Saturday, September 19, 2015

Summer and School Days are Cool Days

Summer officially ends in 3 days and I have no regrets on how I’ve spent the last 90 days. Well, I regret not blogging more, but I’m having a hard time keeping up with my Sentence-A-Day-Diary at this point in my life and I just need to be okay with it.  I’m really fucking busy and really fucking happy. Here’s what went down and what’s going on in as few words as possible.

Playing in the sand before swim lessons

Can we all just agree that this summer was amazing?!!! The weather was spot-on awesome; unbelievably hot and sunny, and you can bet your bikinied-bottom, I have some pitted-out work shirts to prove it.  That subway platform really does a number on us city-folk professionals…but my hanky kept me in-check and looking fresh.

Typically we spend many summer weekends at my parents little lake cabin at beautiful Bashan Lake in East Haddam, CT but this year the lake was partially-drained to clean up toxic pollution. I’m kidding!  (Can you tell I’ve been watching Wet Hot American Summer?). They needed to repair a dam. Damn! Therefore, we spent less time in CT and more time in BK. 

Ice cream, all day, everyday
As much as missed my CT family and friends and having easy access to a ski-boat/water, it was nice to stay close to home. A lot people complain about summer (weekends primarily) in the city, but that’s just because they’ve never stuck around to experience how great they can be. 

We took advantage of staying local by strapping the kids to our bikes or their stroller/scooters and heading out on “adventures”.  Sometimes these adventures were a lame, for example buying milk and bananas at the corner bodega or dropping off dry-cleaning, but so long as I called it an “adventure” the kids were thrilled and wanted in. I think I only have a few more months before they catch on.  We went on many real adventures too. We biked to swim lessons at Brooklyn Bridge Park’s Pop-Up Pool, went to dozens of outdoor picnics/concerts at Celebrate Brooklyn and Brooklyn Botanic Garden, and rode to Coney Island and back for a Cyclone’s game with my parents.

Travelling and saving money don’t mix. We are doing our best to save money and unfortunately, that means we can’t travel as exotically, frequently or as lavishly I we wish. But we still made a point to get in a few great trips. In June (feels like years ago), we rented a beach house with my Sister’s family and some friends in the North Fork. If you haven’t been…GO! There are too many wonderful things to say about it here, so just take my word for it and check out all the vineyards, farm stands, beaches and lack of crowds and stress for yourself. We also crashed "Grandparents' Camping Jamboree Weekend", went to Vermont, a state near and dear to me, twice, both times with new friends….hopefully the beginning of long-lived friendships and traditions. There was also that time when my parents watched the kids for the entire week in CT and Jeff and I had a no-fun, boring time (kidding, obviously).

Lovely Vermont
Kitzmans do NoFo! They better come back next year too!

Grandparents' Camping Gamboree in Paconic State Park

Kids wrestling at swanky vineyards while we sip wine,
pretending not to know whom they belong too.

These are the foundational memories that our kids will string together whenever they ride a bike, jump in a pool, eat a banana and smell the ocean from this point forward.  Really good memories of summer…we should all have that.

Marathon Update

Brooklyn Half Pre-Party

Ugh. Goo. Or should I say, Gu? Okay, bad runner’s joke.

Boo…rhymes with goo. Goo is an interjection, I use to describe how I feel about my running these days. For you non-runners out there, Gu is a flavored frosting-like substance, in a small pouch used by long-distance runners to re-fuel before, during and post runs. Neither one, is great.

I ran Hartford’s CTFastrak, 15K/9-mile course in early May and killed it. I came in 5th out of 50 in my age group with an 8:25/mile pace. Shortly following that, I ran the Brooklyn Half and did pretty well given the fact that I got like zero sleep the night before it (kids, man). I was just a few minutes shy from my PR (personal record) last year when I ran it with my Sister.  I was feeling fast, strong and 90% recovered from my injury last fall. I was excited about taking on my 3rd NYC Marathon attempt and 16-week marathon training program.

But then I did Soul Cycle. Fucking Soul Cycle. I didn’t fall off my bike or anything, but all that “tappin’ it back” was not well-received by hamstring. I tapped myself back so far that I’m in physical therapy twice a week and modifying my training the best I can to prevent further injury and race in this year’s marathon. Seriously, running the NYC Marathon has turned into a mean, long-running joke…I’m just going along for the ride and trying to keep my head up and feet steady underneath me. Stay tuned, I’m sure there will be more to come on this topic.

School Memo

1st Day of Pre-K
Colette started Pre-K. I started my MBA. She’s learning about community leaders. I’m learning about world leaders. She has like 1 minute of homework, whereas I have hours. We’re both into backpacks, highlighters and kitten folders. We agree that being a student is cool but hard.

Two years ago, Mayor Bill DeBlasio and his administrators, launched NYC’s first free, full-day Pre-K program (UPK) made available to all 4-year olds. At its inception, I had a 2-year-old and newborn, was in survival mode and didn’t think much of the program and what it would mean to our family. Fast-forward two years, and it’s all I can think about. After four years of paying for full-time childcare we were so excited to take advantage of the program and savings this fall.

The only problem with the program, is that everyone wants in, and everyone wants in on the same schools. It’s a lottery system and every eligible child is guaranteed a placement, but not guaranteed which placement.  Over 500 families applied to our first choice, our zoned elementary school PS 9, but they only have 90 Pre-K seats available. Therefore, there is a waitlist, and the Rigbys are #6 on it. In the meantime, we accepted a seat for Colette at a private school, which is part of the UPK offering.  Sunny Skies (not to be confused with the horrifying Sunny Side Day Care in Pixar’s Toy Story 3) has been good so far but definitely an adjustment (8am drop-off, uniforms, frequent vacation days, etc.) We’re still crossing our fingers, that we get off the waitlist and into PS 9…the school that all of our and Colette’s friends got into. We’ll see.


We’re happy, healthy, learning, training, going on adventures and making great memories. I’ll update you soon….I promise.