1. Survived Lockdown
Yes, we are actually IN Boston. Like Boston Boston. Not 30 minutes northeast of Boston. In the city limits. So yes, we were on lockdown. Also technically it wasn’t really lockdown, it wasn’t martial law being declared, it was a shelter-in-place request from the governor and the mayor.
Oh, and it was the 7th day of spring break and I wasn’t allowed to take the kids outside. How did we survive? Snacks. Lots and lots of snacks. I *might* have given Tessa 4 packs of fruit snacks (all-natural very small packs of fruit snacks!) because Twitter told me it was okay. Also: Graham watched the entire series Justin Time on Netflix.
No, we did not have any SWAT teams at our house because the action was all on the other end of town.
In all seriousness, we were safe and relatively clam the whole day even if I was wound tighter than… something wound very tightly. It was one of those times when it’s a blessing that your kids are young and not really picking up on what’s happening around them.
2. Made my International Media Debut
Through Twitter I was approached by the BBC to talk about being on lockdown. I was happy to chat with them though I made it clear that I was not too close to the action and that I had two small children in the house who were constantly demanding snacks. They were, oddly, okay with this. (They told me they like interviewing people “on the ground.” So there you have it, the BBC says having small children in your house is like living in a warzone.)
The show was World Have Your Say and we conducted all of it on my cell phone. No, I don’t have a clip. And honestly, I don’t think I was particularly interesting or awesome. It was notable that my interview was concluded because Graham started requesting hot dogs for dinner at the top of his lungs.
If you are wondering if being interviewed by the BBC means I am now internationally famous, the answer is yes. I totally am.
3. Escaped Lockdown
So the hitch was that I was supposed to leave for Philadelphia midday on Friday with Charlene. And Kathy was supposed to come watch the kiddos. It became pretty apparent that neither of those things would be happening since Kathy had been up all night and had SWAT teams going through her house and her neighborhood.
I spent the day trying to figure out what we would do and how the kids would be taken care of. We received many kind offers. But ultimately things worked out well when they told people to go home from work and Eric returned home. There was still some concern about leaving, but since people were going home from work and it was still light out I thought it was best to just go. So we did.
We’ve been fortunate this week to be test driving a RAV4 from Toyota and it couldn’t have come at a better time. I hopped in, picked up Charlene and we made a break for it.
The drive was oddly peaceful. It was the least amount of traffic I’ve ever seen on the drive down the Eastern Seaboard. We didn’t listen to the radio or obsessively check the news. We just drove and chatted and enjoyed the calm.
Finally we heard the siege was over not long before we reached our destination and we all breathed a sigh of relief for our families, our friends and our city.
4. Acted Like I Knew What I Was Doing In Front of a Crowd of Awesome People
We were so anxious to get to Philly because we were speaking at Type A Advanced about setting up a business. This was my first time as a speaker at a conference. It said “Speaker” on my nametag, which meant that when people saw me they assumed I was important and ran in influential circles and that was why they’d never heard of me before. It also meant that people let me go ahead of them in the coffee line. (Well, not everyone. Just Kelly.)
It was a huge honor to be there and all the intensity of the previous week meant that I wasn’t nervous about our session. Still, to be safe, I wore my lucky kraken. (And the same outfit I wore to Blissdom, hoping no one would notice.)
If you ever find yourself speaking at a conference, I recommend the first session. Everyone is awake and you can kick your feet up for the rest of the day. (Actually I took crazy amounts of notes, but it was much more relaxing.)
I think it went pretty well and I really really hope that Charlene and I get to go back to Type A Parent Conference in Atlanta. (If you want to come, too, you totally should! I’m an affiliate with them and you can sign up for Type A in September here.)
5. Had a Basically Perfect Kid-Free Evening
After the sessions ended I headed out with some buddies to Talula’s Garden for dinner. It was, simply, magical. We were seated out on the patio and while it was chilly there were heat lamps that made it super cozy. The little garden-in-the-city setting was delightful. They served fantastic food and fantastic wine and this bunch of moms enjoyed themselves like only moms away from their kids without a care in the world can.
We shamelessly instagrammed our food (except for me, as soon as they put it down I just started eating, no time for pictures). We relaxed. We talked. We gushed over the deliciousness of our meal. I ordered a second glass of wine.
You have to enjoy these moments when they come because they don’t come often.
6. Talked Books Like Only a True Obsessive Can
Bloggers may love to read but a lot of them don’t really “get” book reviewing that some of us do. We’re a small group and we live in a very different place website-wise. When you tell a blogger that you get books to review they wonder what’s in it for you. It’s just a book. You’re not getting paid. Advance copies have no value so you don’t get any income. It’s a foreign idea to many of them. But those of us who live that life get it. The books are the reward, the pay, the everything.
I was super lucky to run into some other book people at the Type A evening reception and it made my already-perfect night even better. After getting to talk to people like Rachée and Thien-Kim was awesome. People talk about going to blog conferences and being able to talk to people that get you, but this was like my little tiny niche that get me even more.
I hope none of those ladies thought I was too crazy because I can give off a whiff of insanity when I talk books.
7. Talked Baby Gear in NYC
On our trip home on Sunday we made a stop in Manhattan for the Babypalooza put on by The Big Toy Book. We bloggers get a lot of event invites and it seems like whenever there are toys involved those of us with little kids have nothing to look at since everything’s geared at the 7-9 year old set. It was great to see actual baby and young child brands there and see some sweet products. There will be more to come this week, so I won’t go on at length.
A highlight: meeting NYCJenny, a fellow Twitter-er and #zombiemom.
8. Returned home to a Clean House
If you’d seen the state of our house before I left you’d realize just how massive an undertaking this was. While I was home all day on Friday I couldn’t concentrate on anything. I knew I could’ve cleaned house but it didn’t calm me, it just made me more anxious. Things have been worse than usual since I left for Blissdom and I’ve been in a funk since then so I haven’t taken any major steps.
So some super big props to Eric for doing the impossible and showing me up as clearly the superior adult in our house. I am hoping it takes me at least a month before it all goes to hell again.