a whole day

I fully admit that part of the reason I became such a fan of food blogs (of blogs in general) was sheer voyeurism. I love seeing into other people’s lives. Trying to figure out if I’m normal, speculating if I’d die of boredom if I were a product-shilling blogger (note: this previously said “stay at home mother” instead of blogger- SO DID NOT MEAN TO BASH THE MAMAS OUT THERE! I was thinking of a particular breed of food bloggers who do nothing all day and I phrased it super thoughtlessly).

To that end, one of my favorites is when bloggers go through their whole day. Apologies in advance if some of the work stuff is a little arcane.

Wake up. New favorite breakfast, which is two toasted multigrain waffles with almond butter (or whatever butter) and bananas. And tea (whatever caffeinated I feel like; I have like seven kinds- seriously, not an exaggeration- at any given moment).


My current conundrum is this: the Food Lion, extremely close to me, sells frozen multigrain waffles. The Trader Joe’s, not extremely close, does too.

The TJ’s ones are absolutely fantastic- buttermilky and fresh tasting within, crunchy on the outside. They are also a lot bigger than the Food Lion ones, which is actually problem number one- more calories, take more time to toast, get fewer in a package so I have to buy them more often if I continue to eat a serving of two waffles. Tricky. Also, white whine.

Next I take the (awesomely) free Chapel Hill transit to work. I work on the UNC campus, and one of my favorite parts of my day is walking the short route from where the bus drops me off to where I work.

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My office is in a cool old building (sweet!) in a slightly weird old room (less sweet) with a ton of natural light (sweet!). We keep plants on the windowsill. It’s lovely.


Now it’s work time. Throughout the morning, I: hear from one of the teachers we sound out to schools is out sick, and search for a sub for her; discover our website has a blurb about a “pdjunct” professor so politely email my boss about the typo, edit a letter for the introduction to a set of educational materials we’re preparing to train afterschool teachers; post a job opening for a teacher to a bunch of listserves.

Then, I edited a Rube Goldberg lesson plan, also going into the set of educational materials for informal science teachers in the community. This involves differentiating the activity for different age groups, and finding North Carolina science standards with which the lesson aligns.

I will add that this day I documented everything I did was Bob Marley’s birthday. If you have my boss, that means trying to focus while Bob Marley blasts through the shared office all day.

Then I get to put out a fire of unpleasantness when I discovered drama going on at one of the schools where we send teachers. Deal with that crisis for awhile. Meanwhile, however, one of my rock star teachers says he can fill in for the missing teacher! Score.

Time for a tea break. I keep a tea stash in my office, too. I was serious about the tea thing.


Note: this tea will make your whole office smell good.

Back to work.

My coworker is doing a lesson plan for his elementary students about blood. I decide my middle school students would love it too. I start adapting it… then make a slight sidetrack to read the teacher blog from whence had come the lesson plan because it was good and I thought I could pick up on more stuff. That led to doing a little research about what doing a genius hour with our students could entail.

More blood blood blood! I got frustrated because in the lesson about mixing together different blood types INSERT SCIENCE GEEK TANGENT FEEL FREE TO SKIP TO THE NEXT PARAGRAPH you make type A with red food coloring, water, and milk; and type B with red food coloring, water, and vinegar; so when you mix types A and B you see agglutination, which is medically accurate. BUT you just make type O by mixing water and red food coloring, BUT TYPE O AGGLUTINATES WHEN YOU ADD A OR B TO IT. (I spent a lot of time frustratedly trying to figure out how to properly mimic nature, barring using actual blood, which I think middle school teachers would have an aneurysm about).

Time for a quick diversion from my coworker. http://www.gotoquiz.com/pottermore_sorting_hat_quiz_2.



Decide that some fresh fuel for my brain would help me wake up.

Big bowl of random leftover sushi ingredients and a greek yogurt.


I’ve come up with the (brilliant to me, obvious to others) realization that I perpetually forget to take vitamins at home. Thus, I have stashed them in my office, and have been taking them faithfully every day with lunch. I also keep my hand lotion at work, since I also perpetually forget to moisturize at home.


(Note: I take D3 and B12 because a doctor told me I was deficient in those vitamins. I started taking probiotics after a round of antibiotics. Make your own vitamin decisions!)

Now that I’ve given the impression of being healthy, let me confess that I make the occasional guilty convenience store run for cookies.


In my defense, I inherited the desk of someone with a junk food drawer. I was afraid that eating daily blow pops (and I really don’t even like lollipops much) would rot my teeth. If there is sugar in front of me, I eat it unless I have a viable alternative.


Next, I drink more tea. I’m going to let you infer how many subsequent bathroom breaks follow these tea breaks. There are many. I share an office with two men whom I think I bewilder.

An ominous email arrives from buildings staff. I have to send out mass email to our teachers to make sure they’re putting their materials away properly in the basement. Then have to go clean the basement. This is not fun, since in the basement I typically feel like I’m going to get murdered, likely by ghosts.

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I send out some gentle reminders on basement cleanliness. Note: the basement is totally cleaner now, so some of the daily tasks in this email have become pleasantly obsolete.

My coworker had gotten me all excited earlier in the day, announcing that he had “a meeting with the butterfly people”. Yes, there is a lab on campus that is all about butterfly research. It’s pretty great. I’m hoping to partner with them. I totally crashed his meeting.Then I took a nice chunk of time doing frenetic research of scientists we can get involved in our afterschool program. I email three departments about doing outreach in my program. My odds aren’t bad, because a bunch of them need to demonstrate they are doing outreach as a condition of their grant funding.

I had a complicated conversation with my new timesheet supervisor about how comp time works. So un fun. But then I finished blood lesson plan, and titled it “Bloody Fun” and included all sorts of gruesome scenarios about students misbehaving, getting injured, and needing blood transfusions. Bloody fun indeed.

I have another epic conversation with the powers that be regarding the teacher drama at the school. Draaaaaaaaaaama.

Then I have a lengthy conversation about a discrepancy in the mileage log for a van, then realize I’m talking to the wrong person about the wrong van. Then I talk to the right person about the right van. I think it’s safe to say I do not have a future job in transportation logistics.

For my own context, I decide to take a little time to research the statistics in the schools my organization serves. Back at my food bank job, I learned to use the state and federal databases showing what percentages schools have of students receiving free or reduced lunch. It’s a useful little measure to help you infer a school’s level of poverty, or at least relative poverty.

Now, this list is pretty funny. A few coworkers and I had gotten into an epic conversation about our favorite scary movies, and decided to commandeer a work projector to have a scary movie night. Meanwhile, a counter contingent of coworkers said that they hated scary movie. I imagine they were involved when I found substantial edits made to my movie list.


And thus the day concludes. When the weather is nice enough (which in North Carolina it is an awful lot) I like to walk home from work. This particular day wasn’t all that jazzy, and I had my boyfriend asking me to a fun night out at one of my favorite places to grab a bite. Pull my leg why dontcha. Started with a fun glass of vino.


Love the prices here. You’d never guess by the cheapness…


… how cute it is!


Tru makes totally customizable sandwiches- you check off whatever you want and pay per item. The crazy thing- ANY VEGETABLE is 25 cents- whether you get light, medium, or heavy servings. AND THIS INCLUDES AVOCADO. This makes me exceedingly happy.

Anyway, I was fantasizing about my avocado packed sandwich, waiting patiently, and it was taking forevvvvvvvvvver. So my hero Steve ordered us some brie and olives.


And then… after waiting an HOUR AND A HALF (giving them some leeway because there was a private event going on) we realized they had lost our orders.

They redeemed themselves by giving us everything on the house (including the cheese and wine, which I thought was pretty classy) but we had a bad taste in our mouth (haha!) so we took our sandwiches to go.

Let the record state, this is still a fabulous sandwich.

– whole wheat bread, toasted
– pepper jack
– spinach
– tomato
– sprouts
– HEAVY avocado!
– roasted red pepper relish



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