Saturday, September 26, 2009
Thursday, September 24, 2009
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
- I am thorough and follow directions well.
- I can write and have a fair amount of editing experience.
- I love to bake.
- I collaborate well with others and can also work fine alone.
- I work well under deadlines.
- I love that it helps me document activities and projects.
- I love that it gives me a place to get out some of the thoughts that rattle around in my brain.
- I love the sense of accomplishment that it provides.
- meeting with the pastor about FH's baptism
- haircut (which is desperately needed)
- FH's three month checkup
- eye appointment
Monday, September 21, 2009
Saturday, September 19, 2009
There are four major entrances to our home. Strange, I hadn't really thought about it until I started this project.
Technically, this is the side entrance, but it is the one everyone uses. All those glass panes were what started this all. I have been wanting to clean them for some time now, so I did today...and swept, and convinced myself that what it really needs are some flowers and a welcome mat.
This is the back door. Many little fingerprints covered these glass panes, and the dirt loves to settle here by the door.
Friday, September 18, 2009
I was reading this blog Working Moms Against Guilt and thinking about working for a paycheck and being a mother.
Honestly, for me the emotion is not guilt. Guilt implies that I think I am doing something wrong by working. Nothing could be further from the truth. Maybe if LM and FH had to go to daycare, I would feel that way, but since they are cared for in the home by my most wonderful and loving sister, guilt really doesn't enter the picture much. (This is not to say that I like it when LM calls me Megan instead of Mom.)
a feeling of responsibility or remorse for some offense, crime, wrong, etc., whether real or imagined
It is more sadness and quite frankly selfishness. For me, staying home is easier than going to work--especially since I am absolutely committed to breastfeeding.
I know, I know that I have done the SAHM thing for only a limited time while on maternity leave, and I know that for the most part I have had just the baby, as LM has been kept on his regular schedule with my sister watching him.
I just am way less stressed out, and the house is better run when I am at home fulltime. Yes, the kids can be demanding, but in a much different way than a boss and other colleagues. I have no performance anxiety about being a mother. There is no one judging me.
I love being able to set my own schedule for the most part. If we want to go to the zoo on Wednesday, we can--no leave requests, no permission needed. When I work, everything just gets jammed into the weekends--errands, grocery shopping, family time.
Without a doubt, the family eats better when I am at home. We eat out far less, and I have time to try different menu options. There is also more time for exercising.
So......since not working is truly not a realistic option at this point, I would like to make a few changes that will make working and home life more harmonious.
- Do more cooking ahead, so there is always a meal in the freezer that can be heated up. One of the things I hate the most about working is the "get home rush." As soon as I hit the door at 5:00, I start cooking dinner since everyone is "starving." Then there are the dishes, other household tasks (paying bills, etc.). Before I know it, it is bath and bedtime.
- Hire a housekeeper.I have resisted this option for some time. It seems like a waste of money to pay someone to do something that I am totally capable of doing. We are going to start with just once a month though to help with the things I cannot ever get to.
- Get a routine. Although routine can be mind-numbingly boring, I do think there is something said to having a routine around the household. I am talking about things like doing the laundry and cooking those freezer meals. on certain days of the week. In general, I do so much better when there is a schedule, so I am going work on setting one up.
Instead we took them to the Perry Wildlife Zoo in Perry, WVa.
They say an interesting blog has good photographs....
I would love to show photographs of the kids squealing with delight, as they fed the bear. The deer shedding its velvet would have also been a great pic. Or how about the porcupines, that also would have been a neat photo.
Alas, I brought the camera, but the batteries were totally dead. Ugh.
I hadn't been to Perry Zoo in probably 15 years. It is a perfect outing for small children--low key, relatively inexpensive, and a good variety of animals. I am not a veterinarian, but all of the enclosures appeared to be clean, and the animals well cared for.
I always have mixed feelings about zoos. On the one hand, I like seeing and learning about different kinds of animals, and the kids certainly enjoy it. It is sad though to see a cougar or lion all caged up though when you know they are accustomed to roaming large areas. In many cases though, zoos take animals that would otherwise die or be treated poorly by individuals. As with most things in life, there is more gray than black and white.
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
- wiped down door handles and door frames
- cleaned the glass in the patio door
- made bread with LM
- organized the spices
- cooked a new recipe
- added additional tags to photos
Thursday, September 10, 2009
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
- extra batteries
- first aid kit
- multi-purpose tool
- sanitation and personal hygiene items
- copies of personal documents
- cell phone with charger
- family and emergency contact information
- extra cash
- emergency blanket
- map of the area
- baby supplies (food, diapers, etc.)
- games and activities for children
- pet supplies (leash, food, carrier, bowl)
- two-way radios
- extra set of car and house keys
- manual can opener
- surgical masks
- rain gear
- work gloves
- extra clothing
- plastic sheeting
- duct tape
- liquid bleach
- blankets or sleeping bag
- rechargeable squeeze flashlight
- children's poncho
- activity book and crayons
- toys--jump rope, paddle with ball, and jacks set
- child-sized backpack
- food kids recognize--hot chocolate, jelly, fruit cup, raisins, fruit roll up, etc.
- extra clothes
- a favorite toy, doll, or stuffed animal
- paper with home address, phone number and parents' names
- $20 in small bills and coins
- make copies of documents
- find a hold flashlight for kids
- buy small bottles of alcohol
- make a "to grab if time" list
- buy two child ponchos
- pack some kid-specific items
- find the under-the-sink flashlight
- get small bills and coins
- find long-lasting gluten-free food
- consider gathering up items for an inhome emergency (candles, matches, flashlight, first aid kit, water purification, lint, etc.)
- get a map of the area
- put together a emergency contact card
- get pet supplies together
- add the travel sewing kit
- check the battery on the camp light
- find the flashlight that belongs underneath the sink and return it
- find the hand crank radio and return it to under the sink
- pack everything up
Tuesday, September 8, 2009
Well, we all survived the family yard sale. It was busy, hot, and we even made some (a little) money.
- Do as much of the pricing beforehand.
- Price every individual item if at all possible.
- Make sure the prices on the items are correct. The kids switched some of the stickers without our noticing, and I think some of the items did not sell because the price was too high.
- The early birds can be REALLY early. We said 8:00 in the ad, and had someone sitting on the curb at 7:15. It was difficult to be finishing up the pricing and dealing with customers at the same time.
- Do the pricing at a time when people will not stop by, or behind the garage doors. We did some of the set up on Friday morning, and people kept stopping by, thinking we were having a sale. That really slowed us down.
- Do not underestimate the number of tables or flat surface needed to set out all of the items. We had to go get more tables.
- No one came after 1:00 p.m. Officially run the sale from 7:00 to 1:00 instead of 8-3.
- People can be incredibly cheap.
- People can be incredibly rude.
- Put baby clothes in different bins that are labeled e.g. 0-3 onesies, 6-9 outfits. People just rifled through the piles, and it was difficult keeping everything straight.
- Do put an ad in the newspaper.
- Do have the money box and table all ready to go before uncovering the tables.
- Do have the tables all set up in the driveway and just cover them the night before.
Friday, September 4, 2009
Thursday, September 3, 2009
My legs propped up on the couch
Your weight on my chest
My cheek against your head
The gentle cadence of your breathing
And the incredible softness of your hair
Oh, how I wish that moment and those physical experiences could be captured in a bottle.
Friday, August 28, 2009
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
Saturday, August 22, 2009
Friday, August 21, 2009
Thursday, August 20, 2009
I just finished reading The Millionaire Next Door by Thomas J. Stanley, and William D. Danko. New York: Pocket Books, 1996. It was a quick read. Maybe because it is 13 years old now, I did not find anything too revolutionary in it.
In it they outline seven factors for millionaires:
- They live well below their means
- They allocate their time, energy, and money efficiently, in ways conductive to building wealth
- They believe that financial independence is more important than displaying high social status
- Their parents did not provide economic outpatient care
- Their adult children are economically self-sufficient
- They are proficient in targeting market opportunities
- They chose the right profession
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
- gluten free eating
- beginning investor
- travel in area with kids
- Consult with local businesses/individuals on preserving archives
- Offer a service like This Young House with advice on preservation
- Become a personal organizer
- Work with churches to improve their websites/start new outreach like blogs/facebook/etc.
- Blog about journey as a beginning investor
- Develop a blog/site about places to visit in the area with kids. I actually think this idea has some merit. As far as I can tell there is not a consolidated site that has descriptions and reviews of places of interest--especially from a mother's point of view. On the weekends, we say, "ok where should we go?" It is a real pain to visit all of the web sites of potential places, and it is difficult to find out relevant information or even come up with ideas. I would love to have reader-submitted reviews as well as my own. It could be tied to Flickr, Google Maps and all kinds of exciting things. Not sure about the income-generating part though???
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
- Had printed directions for various routes
- Got a late checkout of 2:30
- Saved the food from the night before for lunch
- Minimalized walking to and from activities
- Brought an extra stroller
- Brought plenty of snacks
- Stayed in a hotel with a microwave and refrigerator
- Focused on a couple of activities rather than rushing to a whole lot of things
- Research local eating options prior to arrival
- Printed reverse directions for getting home (especially in a town that is full of one way streets)
- Pack hats and spray-on sun screen in the stroller
Sunday, August 2, 2009
Saturday, August 1, 2009
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
Sunday, July 26, 2009
Nursing a newborn is a tremendously time consuming task. Thankfully, a laptop and many trips to the library for books help me utilize this time.
I have recently branched out and added the following blogs to my blogroll:
- Economist Mom
- Escape from Cubicle Nation
- Frugal Dad
- Wall Street Journal: Digits
- Wall Street Journal: The Wallet
A couple of articles caught my eye:
The Juggle, July 22, 2009, 1:58 AM ET, By Marisa Wong
I say yes, but I tend to be a more private person and have a really like/find it fascinating/think it is weird relationship with Facebook. Personally, I did not post much about my pregnancy on Facebook although I certainly know people that do/have. I did post an announcement about his birth, but didn't include anything that wouldn't have been in a regular print birth announcement.
Frugal Dad recommends keeping some cash on hand (around $500), about $1,000 at a local bank, and the largest bulk of the emergency fund in an online account or other savings account.
I had certainly heard of having cash on hand and having a large emergency fund for unexpected issues. However, I had not thought of having money in a local bank. For families like us whose bank does not have bricks and mortar branches this makes even more sense. In some kind of disaster we could not get at the bulk of our asset easily. I am not a doom and gloom person, but it is something worth thinking about.
Saturday, July 25, 2009
- Psychologically it was just depressing to have these payments. We have both been out of school for some time
- I think debt, in general, is not a good thing
- I pay the student loan immediately once the funds are available, so we do not use that money for other things. This is key.
Friday, July 24, 2009
- White floors create a nice foundation for furniture to rest on
- Paint different rooms in variations of one color
- Freshen rooms with painted furniture
- Stay away from formal, fussy fabrics
- Group like items together
- In the kitchen, leave bare wall space for found objects
- When arranging furniture, start with one large, quality investment
- Avoid a neutral palette that is flat and dull by using different shades of beige and by picking fabrics and finishes with varying textures
- Affordable doesn't mean unstylish
- Replace fussy, old china with simple white ironstone
- Grandfather clocks can be very serious and very boring. But Swedish grandfather clocks are nice because they are whimsical and can be an architectural element
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
Tuesday, July 14, 2009
Sunday, July 12, 2009
Wednesday, July 8, 2009
Sunday, July 5, 2009
Sunday, June 28, 2009
Inspired by The Light Garden, LM and I tried out Sunprints yesterday.