My husband’s alarm goes off at 4:30 a.m. He hits snooze a couple of times before he gets up and then a second alarm begins at 5:00 a.m. Neither of us knows how to cancel that 5:00 alarm, so I am awakened at least three times before my alarm goes off at 6:00.

We have different weekends as well as different shifts. Saturday and Sunday I was awakened repeatedly by his alarms. This morning, Monday, there were no alarms because my husband had fallen asleep on the sofa in front of YouTube and I had left my Fitbit to charge overnight.

I slept till nearly 7:00 a.m. I woke from a dream about otolinos. Google has no common noun suggestions for this term, but in my dream they were workers who made pickled or salted squid in fanciful shapes.

Where did the otolinos come from? I have no idea.

My husband is still asleep on the sofa, so I did not do my 3,000 steps on Wii Fit this morning. This is how the summer has been, from the point of view of fitness: my routines have been disrupted.

To a large extent, this has been my own choice. I ordered the creme brulee in the photo above while out at lunch with #2 daughter. I skipped Wiii Fit yesterday morning, when I had a choice, as well as today, when I feel I have no choice. Today, I could have put my shoes on and gone for a walk outdoors (and I might still do that). No one has forced me to bake cookies and cakes and pastries. I could have served fish and salad to my houseguests, or chosen that for my own meal as I prepared other dishes for them.

But the habits and routines that have allowed me to lose 78 pounds so far only work when I can use them as habits and routines. They offer little flexibility.

Life changes, though. I would not have wanted to give up my family time or my travel in order to have lost 6 more pounds over the summer. As summer winds down, though, and Back to School approaches, I’m ready to get back to my routines. Will my life cooperate with that readiness? I don’t know yet. The HGP begins on August 27th this year, and I will be in the The Big City at the time. A month later we should have The Baby with us, and I don’t yet know how much that will affect me. #1 son and DIL are talking about coming to live near us. That may or may not happen; if it does, it could mean having much more family time. And I don’t really know what work will look like after The Baby arrives. Will we be able to keep the family business going?

Once things settle back to normal, for some definition of “normal,” I’ll need to adjust my habits and routines to work in that new normal.

I don’t think the position of ortolino will be available, though.