Yesterday was a bit of a "meh" day. Several reasons for that:
- I am waiting on several people to do things or get back to me on stuff. They all have reasons for the delay, but my to-do list was looking like a "wait-for-so-and-so" list.
- It was grey outside, and not as warm as it often is at this time of year. I'm longing for warmer weather. Longing to get out of jackets and long-johns.
- Linked to the above, the weather for our camping trip was looking cruddy. Rain, snow, sleet, all these were forecast for the whole three days and four nights. Ugh. We'd anticipated having an epic four-family camping trip with other CAJ-teacher-families. This has been in the planning since last November and yesterday's texting conversation between them all was about whether to go ahead with our plans, or to change, or cancel them. Depressing—as I was looking forward to this trip so much.
- I really don't like being a single parent, though it's been quite a bit easier this time than many times in the past (they're older and there's only two of them), I'm still missing my soul mate and partner in running this household. I'm getting tired. Yes, these guys are at school all day, but I'm still doing "parenting stuff" at 9.30/10pm at night, past my "Cinderella Hour" and it wears me out when I can't share this. As always, my respect for single parents shoots through the roof!
However, I'd put "ride to the park" on the calendar for yesterday two weeks ago, so I forced myself out of the house and rode. Thankfully, the clouds cleared a little while I was out and there were shadows, even full sun for a bit. It was definitely good for me.
Every day this week I've taken some "me" time during the day.
- Monday I spent time with other parents at two prayer meetings and over lunch (this was organised by someone else and was very enjoyable social time).
- Tuesday I had a massage (yes, I do this, it is a maintenance thing, but it isn't weekly)
- Wednesday I had lunch with a friend who I haven't spent one-on-one time with for ages. It was great (unashamedly deep conversation), but too short due to unavoidable constraints on her time.
- Thursday I rode to the park.
- Friday I took lunch to a local friend who has three little ones. We also had wonderful, though understandably fragmented conversation.
I'm so thankful my work this week has given me the freedom to do this.
At the park I mostly rode around looking for signs of spring with my camera. The "major" cherry blossom trees aren't out yet, but they're very close. There were a few other trees who had a chance to shine, though. Here are some of my better captures:
A type of early blooming cherry blossom. Sorry, don't know which kind.
Magnolia. Not as spectacular, but still gorgeous after months of nude trees.
I need to work harder on getting my depth of field right (camera setting), but this was an intriguing tree called a Sanshuyu mizuki (I know this because many trees in this park have labels) or an Asiatic dogwood (which I know because of my awesome Japanese-English app).
This one is slightly better.
This tree is called a Kibushi in Japanese. There doesn't seem to be a common English word for it, maybe an "Early Spiketail"? Or Stachyurus praecox, to use the official botanical name. Whatever it's called, it's pretty.
Just about to pop!
Not a lot was blooming, but there were an awful lot of buds on the trees. Next week will be glorious, if it isn't raining!
I dared to have my camera out for a short part of my ride home (it still makes me nervous to have this equipment hanging around my neck when I'm on a bike), and I captured (but not very well, my focus was too close to me) one of my favourite things at this time of year: the pink of sakura just poking out in an unexpected place.