Musings: How weekends should be


t’s Sunday afternoon. I just lay down my sleeping daughter on the couch, after singing Frozen’s North Wind 10 times to lull to her sleep. I’m sandwiched between my child and my snoring husband. The dishwasher is running noisily in the kitchen. From my window, I can see a faint orange glow from the setting sun. The Christmas tree emits a delicious smell. It’s freezing cold but I’m wrapped in woolen socks, two layers of clothes and a thick blanket. In about an hour I’m going out for my second run this weekend before cooking dinner.

I got up at 7:30 am this morning, a little late than my normal waking hour. Downstairs I picked up my phone and answered chat messages from my mother and sister. Then I transferred the chicken broth to three containers for freezing and separated the meat to use later for lentil soup and adobo flakes. My husband came down at 8:30 am, just in time to share a cup of coffee before I went to Yoga at 9am.

I saw a beautiful sunrise while doing my twist. Today’s Gentle Flow is just what my body needed after yesterday’s 8km run. Unlike last Friday, I was focused on my meditation. After the session, I chatted with my yoga teacher for a whole hour – about meditation to the excess of the modern life. I went home with a chocolate bar for my daughter.

My husband and daughter just finished eating home-made pancakes. I was starving so I ate the left-over sardines omelette and cold rice for brunch. Afterwards I shredded the chicken meat to use for adobo and started cutting vegetables for the soup. By 1pm, my soup is slowly simmering in the pot, and I opened my laptop to work for a couple of hours. My husband brings me coffee and played Pokemon battles with the kid using the Little Play Shop toys we got from the neighbour before they moved.

At 3pm my soup was cooked and I closed my laptop, satisfied with my day’s accomplishment in an area where I feel very inadequate (finance). I played with the kid until we got hungry. My husband heated the bread he made yesterday and we ate them with the lentil soup. Then we played Pokemon again.

Yesterday (Saturday), we drove to Rotterdam centre early to return an item I bought online. The shops just opened so there weren’t many people yet. My kid was so enamored by shiny, glittering and over the top decorations at Bijenkorf. I was shocked at the selling price of Christmas balls/decorations. One piece costs €10 (sometimes more), the same amount I spent for Christmas balls and lights at the 2nd hand store. And I think my tree is just as pretty.

The products at the mall made my stomach churn. The lessons of Covid-19 pandemic seems to be lost on us. Consumerism is just as prevalent, if not worse, than before the lock downs. As I get older, I’m beginning to hate this materialistic behaviour, egged by media and big companies (I’m looking at you Amazon!). Do you also sometimes get disgusted seeing all the unnecessary stuff they sell at these big malls, garden centres or your neighbourhood supermarket?

We left hurriedly. Some shopper’s weren’t taking Covid-19 precautions. Such selfishness!

We passed by Dunkin Donuts on the way back to the car and our daughter asked for a pink donut. We obliged, and we ate it at a nearby park.

Afterwards we went to this big, open space in front of the cinema. The weather was lovely for autumn, freezing but sunny. While my daughter played, my husband and I enjoyed watching Rotterdam’s sky line framed in the background of blue sky dotted with clusters of passing cumulus clouds. It was perfect until we had to carry a screaming toddler back to the car because we were getting hungry.

At home I quickly made tortang sardina (sardines omelette) for late lunch while my husband decided to make wheat bread. The smell and taste of freshly-baked, home-made bread is heavenly. Paired with peanut butter and jam, they were amazing.

I went running after our hearty late lunch. When I came back, I took a warm, long shower then started making my chicken broth and cooking dinner for us and my husband’s guest. We shared stories of work, family, and the world politics over dinner. At 8:30pm we went up to get ready for bed. By 11pm I was off to dreamland.

This is my idea of a relaxing weekend. I can run, do a bit of mindfulness exercises and cook hearty meals for my family. I’m not very diligent at household chores that’s why I try to keep a minimalist home. Despite working a bit, I managed not to think about next week’s worries. With a weekend like this, I can face the coming work week relaxed and energized.

It’s not always like this though. Any working parent knows that how your week turns out depends on how your child sleeps (or not) and how the stressful work was. My little girl had been sleeping through the night again *knock on wood. I hope it’ll continue so I can have more of these relaxing weekends.

My yoga teacher told me about the importance of living in the NOW. She said that worrying about tomorrow robs us of our present life. I guess that contributed to enjoyment of my weekend. I was able to focus my attention and my activities only around these two days. That, or because I’ve been finally sleeping well again (since the last blog post).

What’s your ideal weekend?