Thursday, January 31, 2013

My 'Stay-cation'

This post has been updated (photo).

For the first time in what seems like ages, I'm spending a holiday at home.  It would require too much mental effort to actually stop and think about what we did last year and the year before that during this two-week break between semesters in Turkey; but I'm sure we weren't here, at home in Istanbul.

And I am as happy as ... Well, you can supply your own simile.  Suffice to say, I'm love love loving being a stay-at-home mom with a full-time helper and one child in preschool half days!  At a nice, leisurely pace of approximately one errand per day, I'm crossing things off my to-do list that have been there for months: getting a second pair of Isofix hooks installed in my car so that both my kids can ride safely in their car seats; dentist; chiropractor; pediatrician; pedicure; a trip to IKEA.  I've even cleaned out and restocked my medicine cabinet.

And I'm busy at home, too:  you'd think I were pregnant again, the way I've suddenly found huge reserves of energy for domestic chores.  I finally attempted the New York Times no-knead bread recipe I've been saving for about five years; and I'm baking several batches of bran muffins so that I can finally use up the supply of All-Bran (not available in Turkey) an American friend who was leaving Istanbul gave me two years ago.  (Yes, the cereal is well past its expiry date, but I'm choosing not to be bothered by that.)  And a few days ago I made several jars of quince jam, one of my favourites.

I have a sneaking suspicion I promised photos in a recent blog; and here I am again, photo-less.  I won't promise, but hereby declare my best intention to snap a few shots of my handiwork and post them soon.

This morning, my youngest and I practiced saying a few more words (he's currently got either about ten words or zero words, depending on whether it counts that his mother is the only human being able to understand him); and in an hour, I'll take my oldest to the Thursday farmer's market, where he'll be given homemade string cheese by the cheese man, and a cucumber by the vegetable seller.

So here's the question I'm deliberating as I take our 10-week puppy out every other hour and wait for her to pee not-in-the-house:  would I make this good use of my time, were I indeed a full-time stay-at-home-mother?  Or am I making the most of these preciously long days precisely because I know I only have fifteen of them?

My first attempt at bread!


  1. Hi Cecile Eugenie!

    I am a Producer on the US travel show House Hunters International. I found your website when looking for expats who might be interested in being a part of the show, I hope you don't mind me contacting you?

    I thought I would reach out to see if you or anyone you know might be interested in taking part in House Hunters International?! Ideally they should be outgoing and fun, aged under 45 and have bought a property within the last few years or are renting a property.

    House Hunters International is a half-hour TV show currently airing on the Home and Garden Television Network (HGTV) in America. The series is designed to de-mystify the international home-buying / renting process, by going behind the scenes of a house hunt where expats and their real estate agents tour 3 homes. At its core, House Hunters International is a travel show concentrating on the idiosyncrasies of the locales and what makes them special and different.

    Here are some examples of the show that you can watch on Youtube: - Barcelona from LA - Vienna from California – Panama from Pennsylvania

    Please do get in touch if you or anyone you know may be interested in the show.

    Best wishes,


    Michelle James
    1-3 St Peter's Street, London N1 8JD - +44 20 7704 3300

  2. I think, sometimes, that I would like to go to work. And then I get terrified over who would be responsible for the kids while I worked outside of our home. I'm starting my own business this year and maybe that will be the answer. Wouldn't it be nice to be independently wealthy so you could not work and have help so that staying at home didn't mean drowning in all things household too?

    Grass always seems greener. I'm sure it never is though.

    1. I love when I achieve a work-life balance ... The rest of the time, I dream of my own business where I could work from home!

      I'm thankful to have (finally) found a great nanny, but there is nothing worse than stressing over child care! The months/years when I was looking for someone or adjusting to someone new, already sensing it wasn't going to work out ... That was awful.