April 13 17

I had really big plans for today. It’s Thomas Jefferson’s birthday and I thought how could there be anything better than spending it at Monticello? My kids love history like I do and we are just a hop, skip, and jump from his homestead, a Passover vacation favourite visit for us. Of course, my brother and stepdad are golfing, my husband and my mom are working, my children are sleeping, and well, I lost my license. Again.


I will probably go for a run and eat some matzah.

Because the sun is out in Lexington and as someone who has convinced herself that she suffers from some sort of seasonal affective disorder, the sun has done wonders for my mood. Wonders. And looking a little less mayonnaise-y is a nice bonus. We have spent the last few days pretty much outside.

Since we don’t use electronics of any kind over the first two days of Passover (and the last two too) no one could work and/or look at their devices of any kind or watch any of my parents all-time favourite shows (Madame Secretary and Designated Survivor,  by the by) when we weren’t eating or Seder-ing (we were eating a looooooootttttt), we were outside. We even played Catan outside, AND GOT MY MOTHER TO PLAY. We took walks through the streets of Lexington, walked through Washington and Lee University, walked through Virginia Military Institute, walked through the cemetery where Stonewall Jackson and his family are buried, searching for the earliest date — Elizabeth something (they were always Elizabeth or William or Ann) died in Lexington in 1749. 1749! We visited a pet store three different times, because the girl who works there was very bored and let us hold all of the animals and we are all in love and will likely leave next week with some sort of animal. She was eating fried chicken in a pet store which was weird, though. We found an old bookstore to comb through and created our own ghost tour.

The thing about a city full of history is there’s always something to look at, something to show our kids. Like this! We had never seen this before, but likely walked over this on the sidewalk dozens of times. My mom lives in lot 21. How ridiculously cool is that. She has the second floor of a building that hundreds of years ago was used to make coffins (so now we all have nightmares). Our parking spot is about three inches away from an old cistern that dates back to the 1700s. My parking spot at home dates back to, like, the 1980s.

lexington lot 21

In addition to my busy photography business, I work part-time-that’s-not-really-part-time for a Jewish day school in Toronto. I am doing all sorts of challenging and awesome things to help a school that turned one hundred years old this year and needed some sprucing up in the communications department.  There’s a hundred years to work through, but I’m making little changes every day that are starting to make a difference. But I won’t lie — it’s a lot of work.

I can’t even put into words how much of a gift it is that the school shuts down for Passover. The week before was madness — tons of communications needed to go out, externally and internally. Some curveballs came down the pipes and some difficulties with the soon-to-be-launched school website meant that it didn’t get launched when I’d hoped. But on Friday, as the 900+ kids were getting excited about their Pesach breaks, I was getting even more excited about mine.

I’m on true vacation for the first time in….forever. The only photography work I’m doing this week is an attempt to photograph my three kids together in one photo without them crying or me crying. And not one work-related email was in my inbox when I turned my computer back on last night.

Vacation me is a very good me. I don’t even care when I lose in Catan.


  1. YAY!!!! This makes me so happy! You deserve a REAL vacation!!

    And your next vacation better be when you come here to see me! 🙂

    “Doin’ whatever it is you do in Monticello”

    Comment by Kristabella on April 13, 2017

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