Father’s Day 2020 was bound to be a little different, but since Mike is really coming into his own during quarantine, I guess it makes sense that a day with all his favorite things on his home turf would be a good one. Everything lined up just right— the weather, the food, and the company. I should never plan a Father’s Day outing again.

Mike woke up and put in his breakfast order. He wanted a toasted cinnamon raisin bagel with butter and an egg white omelette with spinach, mozzarella and sausage. I looked at him and said, “Ummm…I don’t think Harlow is going to be too pleased with that.” I was right. Harlow is our resident pancake maker and she does not like to switch things up.

After a little scowling between them, Mike gave in. “Okay, pancakes it is.” Harlow told him not to worry— she had big plans for the side dishes. Mike ended up with a plate of all his favorite things— pancakes, bacon, freshly cut mango, and chocolate babka. They also picked some strawberries from the garden.

Mike had to agree that Harlow had thought of everything. Mike is not a fan of breakfast in bed (I don’t want syrup on my sheets!”) so we all sat down for breakfast at the kitchen table. Everyone was happy despite the looks they are giving me in the photo below. I call it “The Wiles Family Grimace.”

Our family has a ten-year tradition of buying Mike monkey-themed cards for every occasion. It’s usually a game at the card shop to locate the one or two monkey cards available. This year, we made homemade monkey cards to keep the tradition alive. (Who taught Frankie how to write???)

At around 11am, my dad came over for a visit. We’ve seen my dad during the pandemic, but always outside, at a distance and while wearing a mask. I wasn’t sure how we were going to do things on Father’s Day, but I came downstairs and my dad was already in the house. I guess we are officially in Quarantine Phase 2.

We spent most of the time in our pool, which we opened on Friday. We got a new dark liner at the end of last year, while we were in the city, so the grand unveiling when the cover was removed was pretty exciting.

IT LOOKS 1000X BETTER. I need to find some before and after pictures.

I fully appreciate how lucky we are to have all this space for the kids to play and swim. Typically, Mike is pretty stingy with pool heater but I told him that this summer, we are making an exception. Especially since the kids made me promise to go in the water more— fully under, hair and all.

After we spent our fair share of time in the water, we sat down for lunch, which was a very special Father’s Day treat. We had food delivered from Katz’s Deli in Manhattan. Oh my god, I miss the restaurant food from NYC. The box included pastrami, corned beef, brisket, knishes, chocolate babka, rye bread, pickles, mustard and a t-shirt. Mike knew it was coming but my Dad was beyond surprised. I wish I had a picture of his face when he realized what we were eating for lunch.

Mike declared it the best Father’S Day lunch ever.

By the time my dad left, it seemed like we had been around him enough that a hug wasn’t going to do any more harm. We have all been quarantining at our homes for four months now, have really limited our social circles and feel healthy. It made a huge difference to finally give my dad a hug. There was a time when I really thought there was a possibility that might not happen again. I held on extra long and tight.

After my dad left, we moved onto the Father’s Day Part 2, which once again, involved one of Mike’s favorite foods— LOBSTER. Mazzy and Harlow even dressed up Frankie for the occasion. Remember this dress from Mazzy’s first birthday?

I think now is the time to tell you about our social distance bubble. We’ve been social distancing with another family for since the beginning of May. They live near us and have been quarantining since mid-March as well. At first, when we hung out, it was always briefly— with masks, outside and at a distance. Then we gradually started having meals alfresco together and swimming in the same pool. Since school ended, we have started hanging out even more, going inside each other’s houses and becoming an official bubble. Having another family to partner up with has been super helpful in terms of maintaining our sanity, making sure the kids have friends to hang out with and feeling safe. As things open up more, our interactions with other people will slowly expand and we’ve promised to keep each other in the loop to make sure everyone is taking the same precautions. I find quarantining to be way easier than figuring out the balance as things open up. But that’s a post for another time.

Our two families ate lobster dinner together out on the deck, against the backdrop of a cotton candy sky. The food was delicious, and it all felt really relaxed. After the last few months, we all needed a day like this.

Since March, Mike has been the cook, the gardener, the camp director, and the grocery store hunter/gatherer. He’s helped me find time to work, tag teamed on homeschooling and been an all-around great partner and dad.

At the end of the day, Mike said he couldn’t have wished for a better Father’s Day. Ditto for the rest of us.


How were your Father’s Day celebrations this year? Did you go out? Stay in? See your parents? I’d love to hear how everyone celebrated in the comments!