A routine of sorts

My brain settles quickly into a routine, it is one of the reasons I find my usual life fairly complicated, as I have no daily routine, working in various places throughout my week.  Those days are moving into distant memory, but having a routine is a comfort.

On the very first day of the instruction to work from home, the youngest offspring drew up a daily and weekly routine.  Both have flexed a fair bit as we have settled into the rhythm of the week, but the evening activities have stayed pretty much the same.  We now gather together most days of the week.   Monday is board games night, that has been the hardest to stick to somehow.  Maybe we just need a break from the organised routine after a weekend together.

Tuesday is a new invention (not the offspring’s) of singing together with SofaSingers.  Wednesday is possibly my favourite and is craft night.  It a loose definition of craft (fitting the old handle to the new broom head was one activity), but we all focus on something practical and or creative around the table.  Friday is a bit hazy, but we’re trying to make that board games night – last week we did a 3d puzzle and all agreed we did not enjoy them as a family, but we have never done one before, so good to try something new.

Saturday is movie night – surprisingly (or not if you know me!) – this is the hardest one, as we rarely agree as a family on a movie, but we have had a couple of hits so far – Green Book and then Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.  

Sunday is TV night – another big challenge for us as a family.  But we are forcing the offspring to watch Star Trek Picard, after two episodes they are not that impressed.  Then we watch Friday Night Dinner – two episodes of which apparently offsets the pain of Star Trek.  Friday Night Dinner was a recommendation from friends who think we are like the family. I tend to agree!

It is definitely comforting having some sort of a routine to demarcate the different days and I am really grateful everyone in the family put in the effort to create the framework for the next few months. If you have any other good ideas of things to do, do let me know.

Our favourite night of the year

The City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra (CBSO) is a renowned symphony orchestra and an integral part of the varied cultural scene in Birmingham. CBSO has suffered huge cuts to its budget for community outreach, although at least one part of their work has remained in place – the large unauditioned community choir, SOVocal, created to bring the joy of singing in a choir to anyone who fancies joining it.  The choir rehearses in the south of the city and is a joyful collection of up to about 200 people meeting weekly to sing together.

The husband has sung with them for several years now and his decision to join a choir positively changed the fabric of the family in some ways.  He had never sung really before (hymns in church was the limit), so this was a new experience and a chance to hone a skill. He gained a regular hobby as a focus in his week and he has met new people, making new friends and having fun – all hugely important in life.  And all that before we even get to the health benefits of singing.  It’s a great hobby.

And just before Christmas every year we get to share in it, as the choir joins their parent Symphony Orchestra for a Christmas concert in the city’s Symphony Hall, an immense venue which imposes a real sense of occasion with SOVocal joining two other choirs and the full and very loud orchestra.  It is a family occasion for the McMillans. It’s fun to be going to watch Dad in a performance, after many years of Dad having to watch offspring in various things. We gather the wider family together and last night it was good to see my niece cracking up to Alan Titchmarsh’s Christmas-themed antics.

Every year the concert feels like the proper start to our family Christmas celebrations and one of the best nights of the year.