Sunday, December 31, 2006
The Day After chronicles the events of a small town after a nuclear attack. It followed the lives of a doctor, several in the military and a farming family. Deep down, I think that one of the reasons I want to move to the country and live off the land is not really to reduce the impact my family has on the environment. And maybe it is only partly to reduce the stress in our lives and bring us closer together and make us healthier. I think the real reason is fear.
I believe it is a possibility the US will undergo a nuclear attack. At the very least, I believe we will eventually enter another recession, one akin to the Great Depression. Maybe it is the pessimist in me, but this drives to want an independent existence. This movie took some of the peace of mind away from me. As I watched the characters of the farming family survive the attack, but then deal with the aftermath and the slow death due to radiation poisoning, it made me think. Wouldn't it be better to go quickly rather than suffer through all of that?
I have had nightmares nearly every night since watching the movie. Maybe all this cleaning and organizing I have been obsessing over is my feeble attempt at something I can control.
Saturday, December 30, 2006
I did a fairly good job at the areas of the mind. My new job is technically challenging and I continue to educate myself in the areas of real estate investing. I also signed up for golf lessons in January along with a friend, so I am carving out time for myself to relax and rejuvenate.
I can see that by joining the gym, we will be much more consistent with exercise. I know that I have lots of room for improvement in what I feed my body and I plan to concentrate on this area. I have not been as diligent in what I feed the kids and I will concentrate on this as well.
This is the area that most needs improvement. One of the key values I wanted to instill in my children is compassion towards others. I am consistent in delivering this message, but the message needs more action. Consistently donating items we no longer use and giving money to various charities is not enough. We need to give something even more scarce and precious- our time. The children need to see first hand how they can directly help others and how important it is to help those less fortunate. I think they are finally old enough to be a help rather than a distraction.
Thursday, December 28, 2006
Have you managed to simplify and if so, how?
Thursday, December 21, 2006
Anyone have good tips or techniques for making your home more organized?
Monday, December 18, 2006
On a side note, we have been moving forward on our house and settled on the company we will use for financing. I read through the documents a last week and it mentions that you should not buy anything until you close. You know, like appliances, or furniture. Or maybe a house.
Saturday, December 16, 2006
Hubby took the kids swimming while I took a class Thursday night. That evening, what usually takes 1 - 2 hours of yelling, coercing, and tears, took only 3 seconds. The kids went out like a light. Not even a peep. I can tell you already, this is better motivation than wearing pants I haven't fit into in 4 years or improving my health. We know the secret to wearing out the kids.
Thursday, December 14, 2006
I am typing this all out this evening because I am fairly certain I will not be able to lift my arms above my waist tomorrow.
I pick up some of the materials and see that the pool is closed on Wednesdays after 2 pm. Hubby calls to confirm. Uh oh. We try to substitute driving around, looking at Christmas lights and promise a trip to the pool tomorrow.
The boy gets upset halfway through the event, so we cut out early and start heading home. Then it turns into a full blown tantrum. He's crying and begging to look at more lights. Then he says that he is going to run away and find better parents. He adds- I am sure I can find better parents than you!
Hubby, being a kid trapped in an adult's body, stops at a house on our street with lots of lights. He tells the boy- these look like good parents, look at all the Christmas lights. Why don't you get out and ring the doorbell and see if you can live with them?
Thursday, December 07, 2006
Monday, December 04, 2006
What time is it? 6:28 pm.
What is your full name? Spritzy, duh
What are you most afraid of? Losing a loved one
How many grandkids. None hopefully for a really, really long time
Have you ever seen a ghost? No, but I think I hear one in my house quite often
Where were you born? Houston, Tx
Ever been to Alaska ? No but I have a coworker moving there- I am already making arrangements
Ever been toilet paper rolling? Yes and "forking" which really does not turn out as cool as you expect it to
Ever loved someone so much it made you cry? Of course
Been in a car accident? Yes and the lady sued me in excess of a million dollars. I broke her tail light.
Croutons or bacon bits? blech- neither
Favorite day of the week: Friday
Favorite Restaurant? Amazon
Favorite Flower: Hydrangea
Favorite Drink: Vanilla chai tea
Favorite ice cream: Banana pudding ice cream from Hank's
Favorite fast food: Chick-fil-a
What color is your bedroom carpet? light beige with coffee stains
How many times have you failed your driver's test? None
Before this one, from whom did you get your last email? I don't know, already deleted it
What do you do most often when you are bored? Eat
Bedtime? Anywhere from 9:30 - 11:00
Ford or Chevy-Ford
What are you listening to right now: whatever the kids are watching on tv
What are your favorite colors: blue, green
How many tattoos do you have? none, haven't figured out what I would like permantly on my body
How many pets do you have? 1 dog, 1 cat, and whatever insect the boy has adopted at the moment
Which came first the chicken or the egg? the chicken
What would you like to accomplish before you die? Raise two healthy, self suffient adults who feel compelled to make the world a little better
How many people are you sending this e-mail? the entire world! hah!
Wednesday, November 29, 2006
He made Majik Poshin and he drank it. Wyrd things hapind to hem. He skard hes Mom & Dad & hes sistr. He kepe hes room how Evre he Wanted it to be. He Even Eyts cookies! & iec crem for brefist. He rids hes byck in the stor and he dasint go to scool. He eyts pissa with awt napkins. He dasent tayk a bath wen hes dertey. He wathes TV wen it is Time to go to bed. Son you Just hade a bad drem. Is that psehn no good.
Tuesday, November 28, 2006
Monday, November 27, 2006
Hubby got home from work at 3 am Thursday morning, so the kids and I let him sleep in a bit and then headed to my folks. We ate until our stomachs could not hold any more and then spent the rest of the day with hubby's folks and brother and wife and cousins. 5 children under the age of 6 plus three very large dogs does not make a relaxing afternoon, but all had a good time.
Friday, we cleaned up a bit around the house. I got caught up on accounting for the business and then we headed to the cabin my dad built. Our good friends called on our way out of town and were heading to the same small town, so we decided to meet up on Saturday. We played games, and visited with Santa in downtown Hallettsville and built fires and went on hikes and went to sleep early and woke up late. It was a wonderful weekend and the cabin is a great place to escape the world.
We also got the Christmas tree up and decorated yesterday evening. It was a lovely weekend with lots of quality family time.
Thursday, November 23, 2006
I have many reasons in my life to be thankful. I have a loving, generous, supportive husband and two imaginative, affectionate, bright and funny children. I have a strong family and friend network that I love and cherish. My husband and I both have good jobs as well as bigger dreams that we are working towards to be able to leave those good jobs and spend more time together. We are all in good health.
I have so much to be thankful about- Happy Thanksgiving to you and your families!
Wednesday, November 22, 2006
I have exactly 4 hours, 23 minutes to reach goal #2. I already missed goal #1 as I went to the mall with my mother today.
Monday, November 20, 2006
Speaking of the house, I don't tend to post much about it because our plan fluctuates daily. However, I think we have arrived at a path forward. The plans should be complete by the middle of December. We have interviewed two builders and plan to interview one more. We need to order a soil sample for the structural engineer to develop the foundation drawings, figure out who we will use for financing, pick out the materials we want, get bids from the builders and hope to begin construction by February 1st. Hubby has been working hard around our house, painting and fixing problem areas. We'll put our house on the market in February and hope to move into our dream home by the summer.
As for the little old house that is there, we do not have a consensus. I have finally reached the conclusion that we should bulldoze it, but hubby wants to move it to Canyon Lake as his lake house. No, we don't own land on Canyon Lake.
Monday, November 13, 2006
I told my mother I thought it would be a bit weird to buy my cousin thong panties for Christmas. She answered that was what she wanted as well. I told her that was even more weird. What a Christmas this will be! Thong panties for everyone!!
Saturday, November 04, 2006
The boy, who is 6, would walk up the door holding the girls hand, who is 3. He would ring the doorbell and then walk off the porch, leaving the girl to fend for herself.
We walked from my parents house to my grandparents house. The kids wanted my mom and I to hang back when they went to the door, just to see if they would be recognized. So mom and I hid behind and tree and then decided it was safe to come out when the kids were welcomed into the house.
Thursday, November 02, 2006
This is where the conversation gets interesting. One of the guys is married to a girl from Belarus, another is dating someone from Venezuela, the third guy is married to an American but has traveled extensively around the world, and there is me, the American girl. The topic of American women and basically how awful they are always comes up. I always try to defend my tribe. First off, I hate stereotypes. Second, I am one. I finally pry out an explanation- women from other countries 'take care of their man and understand women's roles'. Wow. Then I find out that they are offended why I pay, even if everyone else takes turns paying.
They feel threatened that women want the same things that men want and feel that this competition is bad.
I thought that I lived in a totally different world than I obviously do. I know that I live in a conservative state and work in a conservative industry with a bunch of engineers, but I had no idea that I would never be considered an equal by my coworkers. Several of these guys are my generation, one is about 10 years older. Fortunately, I am married to a man who loves me, respects me, and truly thinks of me as his equal and partner. I had no idea how rare he is!
Tuesday, October 31, 2006
Monday, October 30, 2006
I have been spending much more quality time with the family and taking care of forgotten tasks at home. I spent this past weekend on catching up on accounting for our businesses and filing and organizing the house. We met with the architect Friday afternoon and we are finally pleased with the layout. Now we are getting down to the nitty gritty details of the plans. He can't start on them until early December, which means we will have the final plans around Christmas time. Then comes the arduous task of getting bids from builders, figuring out the financing, and getting the necessary approvals from the city.
We have made some head way in getting our house prepared for sale. It is terrible timing to put on the market and I have no idea where we will live while we are building, but we are proceeding ahead. My new goal of being in the new house by this Christmas has changed to start construction by the end of January.
And just to prove that I am getting my life back under control, I started Christmas shopping yesterday.
Tuesday, October 24, 2006
Tuesday, October 17, 2006
On the other hand- I have kids! And a life! I took my off Friday off and hubby and I actually had a day to spend together. Lately we've completely traded shifts. He'll get home after I'm asleep and I will leave before he wakes up. He did have to go to work Saturday morning and was gone the rest of the weekend, but I'll take one day. It was wonderful having three days off of work and it was just what I needed. Even better than that is an extended family trip to Leakey coming up this weekend.
Tuesday, October 10, 2006
Saturday, October 07, 2006
Wednesday, October 04, 2006
Friday, September 29, 2006
The boy has had two loose teeth for what seems like months. He has been asking everyone to pull the loosest out for him- me, his dad, baseball coach, teachers. I didn't think I'd be so wigged out about a tooth dangling and the thought of pulling, but I am. It finally fell out this morning after just hanging for two days.
He's also been asking about the tooth fairy. I kept putting off the question because he always asked if there was a tooth fairy while his sister was around. I asked him last night if he really wanted to know the answer and he responded that he wanted the truth. So I told him the truth. I wonder how long before he connects the tooth fairy with Santa and the Easter bunny......
Monday, September 25, 2006
Sunday, September 24, 2006
Saturday, September 23, 2006
My father has spent every free moment the last eight months building a "country cabin". I put that in quotes because I'm not sure a country cabin has wood floors and stainless steel appliances. We spent part of last weekend testing it out for the first time. He has a little more work to do and then he's putting it on the market as he plans to do this during retirement.
He is not convinced it will sell and the rest of us are not convinced we'll be able to use it for more than a few months.
Kitchen, bedroom and full bath, screened in porch, living room and a separate bunk house with another half bath. Not exactly roughing it....
Wednesday, September 20, 2006
But that's not the point of this post. The latest assignment was to describe to your child how they got their name. I am afraid this will be TMI for the teacher and the boy. Let's just say, his name happens to coincide with the location in where he was conceived. I spent two days pondering on how to skirt the issue. Oy.
Thursday, September 14, 2006
Wednesday, September 13, 2006
When I picked the girl up from school Wednesday afternoon, they told me she was sick. No fever, but late in the afternoon started complaining and not acting well. We went ahead to baseball practice, but then had to leave early because she was getting worse. By the time we got home, her fever was 102. It peaked at 103.5 that night. She complained that her stomach hurt. By the time we left Thursday afternoon, she was feeling much better and didn't have a fever.
Well, wouldn't ya know, Saturday evening I suddenly felt ill and was getting chills. I laid in bed Saturday night and did what I had to Sunday to pack up and come home. Took my temperature Sunday evening and it was 101.5, only it took my 3 days to get over.
It did rain on us Saturday and was a little cool, so most of us did not get in the normally frigid river or pool (with the water pumped in from the river). The kids swam for bits and got out with chattering teeth and purple lips. All of that considered, the trip was great and the kids LOVE being all around the family.
Monday, September 04, 2006
Friday morning, I woke up sick, sick, sick. Could not keep anything down all day, not even tiny sips of water. At first I thought it was the 4 glasses of wine, but then hubby got equally sick Saturday morning. I haven't spoke to anyone from Thursday night, but we're convinced it was food poisoning from the food we ordered. I slept almost all day Friday and part of Saturday, and hubby spent Saturday and Sunday in bed. Luckily, the family has been entertaining the kids. My folks had the kids Thursday night and almost all day Saturday. The boy went to church again with my grandparents and he is really enjoying it. I keep getting back reports of how well behaved he is- complete opposite of the reports from school. I asked why and he answered that they let him run around in Sunday school. Active little boys who love to talk and move around just don't fit into the mold for school.
Hopefully we'll be able to manage something fun on this long holiday weekend.
Monday, August 28, 2006
Early Saturday morning, hubby left for work. I picked up one of Andy's best friends to play substitute hubby at the fantasy football draft at Star Pizza. The kids were fairly well behaved with each of them bursting into tears only once (maybe twice) for various reasons. We were able to relax at home for about 45 minutes and then off to our next adventure. We met up with friends who are in town at her parent's house. And waited for the 32 foot long Hummer to take us to Wings N More as a birthday present for the husband. We all had a blast and the girl wants to take the "big truck" every time we go out to eat now.
Sunday was not so much fun. I met up with coworkers to try to knock out some work as our latest deadline to miss is today. And the connection to our software was down. After wasting 3 hours trying to get it to work, call someone to make it work, and finally giving up, we spent another 4 hours discussing what needed to happen today and formulating the plan.
The boy went to church with my grandparents (his first time!) and the girl spent the day with my in-laws. At least they enjoyed their day!
So, here I am at 6:15 Monday morning, wanting nothing more than to go back to sleep and not wake up until Tuesday.
Friday, August 25, 2006
In other words, the honeymoon is over! Don't get me wrong, I still love my job, but let's just say I can definitely pick out all the faults now. I did eat lunch with former coworkers today and it sounds like they are not having anymore fun than myself.
In other news, when I got home this evening, all was quiet. Hubby has the kids at swimming lessons and they are not due home for a half hour, so I poured a glass of wine and jumped on the computer. Why, I don't know since I spend all day on the computer at work, but I guess it is just a habit. Checked email. Oh, fantasy football draft tomorrow. Insert groan here. I hate football. Nothing else too exciting. Hopped over to the internet and not feeling creative, check the drop down list for ideas to surf.
And there I find www frootloops com. No periods, just spaces. I will have to assume the boy's been on the computer.
Thursday, August 24, 2006
Tuesday, August 22, 2006
Monday, August 21, 2006
Sunday, hubby arrived home from a red eye flight at the same time we all climbed out of bed, so I rounded up the kids and headed back to my folks so he could sleep for a few hours. We had friends over Sunday afternoon and spent time at the pool and catching up.
This morning, we walked the boy to his first day of first grade. My, it is going by so fast.
Thursday, August 17, 2006
Monday, August 14, 2006
On the way home from Galveston, I bought us each a drink and told the kids to please not drink all 16 ounces of water or we'd never make it home without one last visit to a public restroom. Of course they finish the water and 15 miles from home the boy shouts- I HAVE TO GO NOW OR I WILL PEE ON MYSELF!!!! I was able to distract him long enough until we made it into our driveway where he proceeds to jump out of the truck and pee on the side of the house.
I presume we have no room to complain after the ocean incident....
Sunday morning after breakfast, we dipped the kids in the pool quickly, cleaned up and checked out. Then we took the ferry over to Bolivar peninsula. We saw dolphins swimming off in the distance. We drove around Bolivar a bit and then headed back across on the ferry, ate lunch, and then stopped at the beach for sun and fun.
It was great trip and just about the right length of time with a 3 year old and 6 year old.
Wednesday, August 09, 2006
|How You Life Your Life|
This assessment is only done with a birthday and I must admit, this is how I think of myself.
You Are A Rowan Tree
You are full of charm and cheer. You light up a room.And while you crave attention, you do it without ego.You are an interesting mix of contradictions - and very unpredictable.You are both dependent and independent, calm and restless.You are passionate, emotional, gregarious, and (at times) unforgiving.
Tuesday, August 08, 2006
Friday evening was cocktails and then a really nice dinner. First time I'd had 50 year aged balsamic vinegar. Saturday was golf and I tried my best, which was definitely not good enough. I've only played once and it was 7 years ago. I enjoyed it so much, I am planning on taking lessons. Saturday afternoon was lunch, then a hot stone massage and a little swimming followed up with another cocktail hour and dinner. I decided to give my team a reprieve and let someone who knew how to golf play in my place.
Hubby came up with the kids Saturday evening, although he made it in too late to join me for dinner. Sunday, we ate breakfast with one of my coworkers family- wife and twin 4 year olds and then hung out at the pool for a few hours. From there, we headed up to visit our friends/business partners in Temple. The kids played and we talked trailer park and then stopped by the trailer park on the way out of town for a quick meeting with the manager.
We didn't get home until 10:30 Sunday evening and I was so incredibly sore from golf. Which is not surprising considering how many times I'd have to swing to make contact :)
Monday morning we met with the architect and gave him our comments on the plans. Hopefully we can get some momentum going with that and actually build the house in our lifetime. Maybe.
Friday, August 04, 2006
In a few hours I am heading off for a free golf and spa weekend with some coworkers at Barton Creek in Austin. Please, stop the abuse!!!
Wednesday, August 02, 2006
Monday, July 31, 2006
Hubby finally got a reprieve from his job and came home last night. He hates the plans. He thinks they are too complicated and way more than we need. I am going to let him digest them today and see what he thinks tonight. One of the activities I spent most of Saturday working on was creating to scale representations of our furniture. It really helped me understand the plans spatially.
Yesterday, my folks finally got back from their second vacation of the month (first to France, now to Colorado), so I gave them a few hours to rest and then took the kids over and spent all day at their house. We went to the little, old house and marked up the trees on the plans. Unfortunately, the 80+ year old elm tree is not going to make it. The location is right in the middle of the lot and it would block the driveway. I do think we can save the huge pecan in front.
I would like to meet with a builder who made our short list and see if he can give us a rough estimate. I am extremely nervous to hear that number. It still seems surreal that we are actually building a house, a house exactly like we want and a house that we plan to stay in for many, many years. It feels good.
Wednesday, July 26, 2006
Tuesday, July 25, 2006
Friday was an off day for work, so I managed to tick off items on my to do list that I had rescheduled for months. The boy's summer program had a talent show Friday afternoon which included singing, dancing, comedians, and an art gallery. We visited with my aunt and uncle and cousin who came into town Friday evening. The kids were very excited to see my cousin as it has been months since he was in town last.
Saturday was the girl's birthday party. It was at a gymnastics studio and they sang songs, played on the rings, the balance beams, and the trampoline. The kids seemed to enjoy the party and I loved the fact that I didn't have to entertain 16 kids in my house.
Sunday evening the four of us went to dinner and then to watch the Lion King. It held their interest for nearly 3 hours, which is a testament to the entertainment value. I would highly recommend seeing it.
Thursday, July 20, 2006
Saturday evening we find out that his @#$%# job has moved his days off and now he has to be at work 1 hour before the birthday party was due to begin. I begged him to call scheduling and explain the situation. No one makes the guest of honor miss his own party, right? Right?
Wednesday, July 19, 2006
Tuesday, July 18, 2006
Thursday, July 13, 2006
Any trip that we take will likely be short, last minute, and relatively inexpensive, but I really want it to be special and different. It is not enough time to go overseas, but I don't want it to be within driving distance either. Any ideas?
Monday, July 10, 2006
Saturday, I took the kids to the swim school for a makeup lesson. Later that afternoon, we visited a graveyard near our house that we pass twice a day on our normal commute. The boy has been begging to go in, so I obliged this weekend. Some of the headstones were from the early 1800's and the most recent were the 1920's. Very interesting, but a little creepy.
Then we went to Mickie D's to fill the kids full of high fructose corn syrup and trans fats. It was raining and they have a nice indoor playground for the kids to burn off some energy. Then I made a brave attempt at the dollar store for goodie bag treats for the girl's birthday party.
Sunday, we met hubby at the airport as he had 5 hours between flights. Because he had 5+ hours of 'sit' time, per the contract, the company is obligated to provide a hotel room. So we brought a swim suits and had a great time hanging out at the pool, watching the airplanes fly overhead.
Oh, and I have a sinus infection now and I am thinking that cutting my head off might be less painful.
Friday, July 07, 2006
Tuesday, we went to my brother and sis in law's house to watch the 4th of July parade in their neighborhood then the kids swam in their pool. I went back to bed for most of the day and then we went for a late dinner and watched the fireworks.
Wednesday was back to work. I am getting a little frustrated because I am learning all of the systems and tools and most of my coworkers will be out at different times this month. I want to be fully on board and useful, but am far from it and that is bothering me. Most of the tools are home grown and have been developed over time and lack any instructions on use. I am afraid it will take awhile to get up to speed.
Today is my off Friday and I am trying to get caught up on everything around the house. My sister-in-law gave birth to baby #3 this morning, so I am going to stop by the hospital later this afternoon for a peek at my new niece.
On an unrelated note, the boy is becoming even more fascinated with religion and god and "bad god" and the word that is a bad word: h e double chopsticks. He asks everyone about their beliefs. My parents are Christian and my in-laws are Jewish, so he is getting quite a variety of answers. My favorite is when he asked the day care manager if she believed in god and then proceeded to tell her that his parents didn't. We've had several conversations recently about boundaries and what is polite to discuss in public and what is not :) I really want to feed this curiosity, but hubby and I are disagreeing on how to do that. I want to send him to church with my grandparents and to also expose him to different religions. I want him to learn about all religions so that we will have compassion and understanding. Maybe we do need to look into the Unitarian church.
Sunday, July 02, 2006
Anyway, where was I going with this? Oh, yes. I sent out my contact information and almost immediately, I get back a message from my former computer guy. Apparently I'd left a CD in my laptop and it was full of family pictures. Attached to the message was a picture of me, in a particularly goofy pose. Nice.
Update: Might as well post for all to make fun of....
Thursday, June 29, 2006
Monday, June 26, 2006
Tuesday, June 20, 2006
Which leaves me with a question. Are the hole punch and stapler company property? What about the half used pencils and highlighters?
Monday, June 19, 2006
The satellite box was acting up, so I unplugged it and let it reboot. Only I unplugged the TV on accident and when I plugged it back in, it would not turn on. I finally convinced hubby to take the TV in to get it repaired. After extricating the TV from the entertainment center, he looked at me with total amazement in his eyes. IT ISN'T PLUGGED IN!!!!
I had accidently plugged the in the VCR, thinking it was the TV. D'oh!
Sunday, June 18, 2006
Saturday, June 17, 2006
Thursday, June 15, 2006
I was working in this large computer lab and was unhappy. My current supervisor kept yelling at me about my work quality and quantity. (Actually, that is close to my current reality). So, I decided to quit and just walked out. When I left the building, I found myself on the river walk at the Woodlands and a crowd had gathered. A very pregnant Julia Roberts was on a cruise ship passing through. A parade had formed, including the Aggie band. However, when the ship passed through, it was so large, it created a wake that started destroying the river walk. Myself and another girl standing next to me were able to slow down the cruise ship and saved the lives of thousands.
After I saved the day, I ran into hubby, our business partner, and my kids. I needed to take a shower after playing hero, but I didn't want to lose sight of the kids, so I just took a shower out in the open. That is when a couple of strangers tried to distract me so they could kidnap my kids. That is when the alarm went off.....
Wednesday, June 14, 2006
I have told a few people, but I am letting the rumor mill do most of the work. I told one of the people working for me today and she started crying! I tried explaining the feeling to hubby (who has never worked an office job) and likened it to Norm walking into the bar at Cheers. His response? So, everyone's drunk all the time?
I leave behind great friends, great experiences, and gratitude for all the opportunities I was given.
Tuesday, June 13, 2006
Last night was just such a night. I was completely stressed because I left work late, picked up the girl at her school, and had to stop by the store to order the cake for the boy's birthday party Saturday and pick up a few other things. I had exactly 30 minutes to do all of that and get to the boy's school to pick him up. As to be expected, I chose the line that took FOREVER. Four people in the line next to me had already checked out and loaded up their car by the time I reached the front of mine. I ran to the truck, threw the food in and raced off to get the boy and reached him right on time. Which left me 10 minutes to get to the dry cleaners before they closed. I hurried the kids into the truck, zoomed over to the cleaners, and got there 2 minutes before they closed.
Finally home, the kids were tired and hungry and we were an hour later than usual. I searched for something quick in the pantry for the kids- can of mini ravioli. While sitting around the dinner table, we all relaxed and talked about our day. And the girl kept referring to the ravioli as "crabioli". So cute.
Saturday, June 10, 2006
Friday, June 09, 2006
Tuesday, June 06, 2006
At the restaurant, I was startled to see an attendant in the ladies restroom. I walk towards the sink and she turns it on for me and then pumps a squirt of soap in my hand. Next she hands me a towel to dry my hands. I presume at this point I was supposed to tip, but since my purse was still at the table that was an impossibility. As I am walking out of the restroom, she says "have a great evening!". And to this I answer- you, too! Right. She's going to have a great evening sitting in the ladies restroom.
Sunday we took care of stuff around the house and went grocery shopping. That evening we took the kids to the neighborhood pool. It was evident that our year long commitment to swimming lessons for the kids had paid off. They both are fish and swam until they could hardly see straight.
Sunday, June 04, 2006
I have started my spreadsheet, I will fill out the positives and negatives for each option, but in the end, it will be a gut check. Which one feels right? I just don't know.
Thursday, June 01, 2006
Tuesday, May 30, 2006
The car is the worst and the kids are not allowed to have it in the car anymore. Without thinking, I pulled a piece out my purse while driving to knock out the horrendous garlic laden breath I was sporting. I remembered the kids in the back that see EVERYTHING and I slowly pulled my hand out of my purse, unwrapped it in my lap, and turned my head to quickly put in my mouth.
That's when I hear- UH! from the back seat. I want gum! No, not in the car- you know why. Then the boy quips- you were trying to sneak it, weren't you? So we wouldn't see?
Monday, May 29, 2006
Why, he pressed. The man, not sure whether he should go into it all answers that he didn't really know because that is just how he was raised. But why would you not celebrate birthdays, my son asked. Well, every time a birthday was celebrating in the bible, something bad happened and then he went on to explain in further detail.
My sons response to it all- is that really true? Is the bible for real? We did have an animated discussion on the way home after all of that explaining that yes, many people believe that the bible is the word of god. One of the most important principles I want to instill in my children is that people believe many different things, but it doesn't make them wrong. Which is the biggest issue I have with christianity.
Thursday, May 25, 2006
Then, I had kids. After kid #1, I ran a marathon. I rode my bike to Austin. Then I had kid #2 and fell into complete sloth mode. I trained for a half marathon and dropped out 2/3'rds into the program. I started and stopped exercising so many times. Right now, I average running about once every other week and haven't lifted weights in years.
But I did get a treadmill and the other night, I actually used it. My plan is commit 20 minutes every evening for a vigorous walk. 20 minutes out of my day- that isn't too much to ask. Maybe I should rig the TV so the power is generated from the treadmill.
Tuesday, May 23, 2006
Monday, May 22, 2006
It is also terrifying that one is completely burned to the ground- how long did it take the county fire department to reach it? The blaze had to be visible from the main drag, so even if no one was leaving or entering the neighborhood, there must have been cars on the main road. There are some major disadvantages to not having city services and being at the mercy of the county. And was it arson? Is there an arsonist on the loose? In our neighborhood?
Friday, May 19, 2006
It was 10 months of misery for me which was a downward spiral ending with me being completely unproductive and unsure of my abilities. And now they want me to work for one of the culprits. He is a control freak who redoes anything anyone else does. It is NEVER done to his standard of excellence. Every number must match to the thousandth decimal place, every 'i' dotted, and every 't' crossed. I understand that I am an engineer and I work with engineers and we do engineering, but it is not an exact science. We are estimating and using engineering judgment. That precision of accuracy adds nothing but introduces more room for error when you're redoing and redoing just to get it perfect.
So, I basically told the department that I will quit if I have to report to this person again. I am told I will be insulated, but I am preparing my resume.
Wednesday, May 17, 2006
Gift giving was always a big deal in my family. Not that the gifts were extravagant, but they were thoughtfully planned and presented. My husband's family, not so much. For the past 2 years, I have not received a birthday present or Mother's Day present. And for me, it's not about the material things in life, but the thought and effort that goes into a present is what is special.
I have tried explaining this before, but I guess I have not effectively communicated my needs. We did have a long discussion about it last night. Last year, I was angry for months. This time, I am trying to see things from his viewpoint and help him understand mine. I look at this as a growing experience for both of us and I think our lines of communication are improving. Amazing after 17 years together, we're still trying to understand each other.
I did receive a special belated birthday present from my dear friend Darkle. The candles are my favorite scent- honeysuckle. Every spring the honeysuckle would come out and fill the air with its delicious fragrance in the woods next to my house growing up. I love watching the candles flicker and the bubbles of wax rise up and the colors separating into this lovely cream and green when lit. But I love the candles mostly because of the thought and effort that went into making them.
Monday, May 15, 2006
Then we picked up the kids for swimming lessons. After swimming, we headed to Lupe Tortilla for the end of season baseball party. The boy got his trophy, which is the main reason he wants to play. Saturday morning hubby left for work and we went to the boy's last baseball game. It was bittersweet as it his last season of t-ball. Next fall he'll be in coach pitch.
Then the kids and I voted and went grocery shopping. We hung out at home for a few hours and then went shopping for mother's day. Went out to dinner with my folks and the day was over. On the way home, the boy informed me that he wanted to make me breakfast the next morning and asked how to make coffee. All sorts of images of broken glass and scalding coffee flashed through my mind. I told him that I would make it tonight and tell him which button to push the next morning.
At 6:15 am Sunday morning, I awoke to light in the kitchen and the sounds of little voices. I begged and pleaded to let me sleep a little longer. At 6:45, the boy walks in with a bowl of yogurt and coffee in a plastic cup. It was so sweet. And thankfully, no injuries. Then I opened all my gifts from the boy and cried.
The kids played with some puzzles and I went to work on my accounting for the trailer park and laundry. My mom picked up the girl and the boy and I headed over a few hours later to celebrate with the family. My mom had asked the girl if she wanted to get me a present and she got money out of her piggy bank and then she helped my mom wrap it.
It was a beautiful day and I always enjoy being around my extended family. We will have a delayed celebration with my mother-in-law when hubby's back in town. I am so fortunate to have two wonderful, loving, thoughtful children and I couldn't have asked for a better weekend.
Tuesday, May 09, 2006
Tired - This is how I feel most days. Especially today since the boy was up most of the night. As for why- see the next word.
Terrible - The boy is badly sunburned after an outdoor birthday party last Sunday. I put sunscreen on him, but only put in on his face, arms, and neck. And he took his shirt off at the party- so this is how I feel when he woke up in the night because it itched and hurt.
Travel - I love to travel, although it has been sporadic at best since the second child was born and I went back to work full time.
T-ball - I love watching my son's t-ball games. It is one hour, once or twice a week that I can enjoy my children and relish in delight that they are still young, impressionable, and growing.
Train - Growing up, I knew that my father was an engineer. They don't make any cutsie kid books about chemical engineers, so the only engineer I knew about drove a train. I could not figure out why my dad didn't have to wear the striped uniform and hat to work.
Time - Something I will never have enough of.
Tenants - Tenants will eventually bring freedom and independence for my family. Call it the get rich slowly plan.
Tub - This is really bath tub, but it is a place that I find peace, serenity, and especially important while pregnant- a feeling of weightlessness. (And no, I'm not. Thank you for asking.)
Texas - The only place I have ever lived and where the majority of my family and friends live. It is home.
Trying - I am always trying. Trying to be a better person, trying to set a good example for my children, but many times just trying to get through the day intact.
Monday, May 08, 2006
It can also lead to bad habits such as not capitalizing anything or completely spelling out words. I have to stop and think when I am trying to type an email because my brain is in short hand mode. And I will never get used to grown men typing heehee, :) or any other emoticons. Sexist? Probably, but it still cracks me up.
Saturday, was a birthday party for the boy. The kids and I walked over and had a great time. Sunday was another birthday party for the boy and a friend and I dropped our boys off and took the little girls to a movie. In between the parties, I tried to catch up on laundry and dishes (something that will NEVER happen- the catching up part) and kept the kids entertained. I also tried to design house plans using 3D Home Architect. I definitely did not miss my calling, but it was fun anyways.
We had a good time, but I am so glad to be "off duty" for awhile!
Thursday, May 04, 2006
We are closing on the little, old house May 15th. The house was built in 1914 for the sugar factory workers. The house has since been remodeled (badly) several times, stripping the home of any original details. The house happens to be sitting on a beautiful lot, located in a transitional neighborhood that we love and we feel will aggressively grow in value.
The original plan was to sell our home, move into little, old house until we get our plans together to build. Unfortunately, there is a potential mold issue with the house and the inspector did not recommend us living there.
The little, old house
We have three options:
1) Tear it down. This is the option I like least as it does have a history and I would like to see it renovated and preserved.
2) Sell house and they can move it off our lot. We will consider this option, but only if we can get some money for it.
3) Buy a lot, move the little, old house and renovate it. Sell or rent. Obviously the most difficult and time consuming option, however this might be the most profitable.
Prepare house for sale. Sell and/or give away stuff we don't want to move. Rent a storage space. Sell or rent house.
Find and hire an architect. Decide on plans. Decide on materials. Get construction loan. Find and hire and manage subs. Try not to get divorced. Build house. Try not to get divorced. Move into house and live happily ever after.
Depending on the timing of everything above, we may or may not have a place to live. I guess we will deal with that issue when we get to it.
Wednesday, May 03, 2006
Tuesday, May 02, 2006
We have one of our rental properties under contract, and another we are hoping to be under contract within the next 30 days. Our neighbors might be interested in buying our house later this summer. One of the tenants in another house who is under a lease option is making great gains in her financial world and may be ready to buy the house this summer. That would leave us with only one rental and a trailer park.
We have started the planning process for the new house. We have agreed on a rough plan and have started reviewing interiors. We need to interview architects, put lists together for subs, start getting permits from the city, talk to moving companies, get permits for moving, buy a piece of land to move it to, and figure out where we will live in the interim. Because of the condition of the house- mold and rot, we won't be able to live in the little, old house with the asthmatic girl.
Sunday morning I woke up with whatever the girl had Thursday, only mine lasted 2 days with a fever. I took yesterday off and am still recovering today and probably will be the rest of the week.
My baby boy has 15 school days left of kindergarten. Then I will have a first grader.
So, not too much going on.
Thursday, April 27, 2006
This morning, right before my alarm went off, I hear the girl coughing. Then I hear what sounds like throwing up and then screams for me. Rats.
Update: My mother-in-law was able to watch the girl so I could still go on the field trip. And she only threw up only once in the car on the way over. Yuck. The field trip was well, memorable. Let's just say I have a new found respect for teachers. A friend and I decided to join forces and we were responsible for keeping 7 kindergartner's from running off or getting hurt. Not small task. We car pooled with a dad of one of the kids and decided when it was all over, that we needed a drink. So we did. Too bad the Gingerman doesn't open till 2 pm. We ended up at Baker Street Pub instead. We did make sure to take off our name tags associating us with the elementary school before we entered the bar.
Wednesday, April 26, 2006
Tuesday, April 25, 2006
An hour later, the phone rings again. Ha! Amazing what happens when you don't care anymore. They'll take our offer, but need to close sooner. They want the 10th, we countered with the 15th of next month. Still waiting for the answer, but I have the sickening feeling this is going to happen.
Now I'm starting to panic. I realize that we need to figure out how to pay for all of this. I call my mortgage broker to discuss. Imagine that you can't finance a house and then move the house! Go figure. We need a construction loan. In order to get approved for the construction loan, we need plans and an entire list of the materials required. Hubby and I haven't even started discussing the plan, much less found an architect.
So, the plan for the moment, if the contract is signed and binding, we will buy it using traditional financing, try to sell our home, move into little house all the while formulating our plan. Then we will bum off everyone we know to crash at their place for a few weeks while we build our house.
Anyone mind 2 slovenly adults, 2 high energy whiny kids, 1 non-stop barking dog, and 1 barf and pee all over the place cat?
Monday, April 24, 2006
Sunday morning, as we were about to head out for a family bike ride with my folks, the phone rings and I see on caller ID that it is my realtor. My heart skips a beat, I answer, and she tells me the contract has fallen through and we can have it if we're willing to accept their last counter and close quickly. Otherwise they will put it back on the market (not that they ever took it off).
Instead of bowing to all of their demands, we offered our last counter (which is only $2000 different, btw) and that we would close at the end of May. I expect to hear an answer back sometime today. And honestly, I don't expect them to accept it and at this point, I really don't care. So there, the emotional attachment is gone.
Friday, April 21, 2006
Thursday, April 20, 2006
I know this is a problem because the boy is the exact same way. He must understand the logic behind every rule. It goes way behind the innocent "whys" to everything in the world. If you can explain it to him in a way that he understands, he is 100% behind it. If not, well, forget it. It is frustrating, but once I understood this, it became very easy to manage.
The girl, however, is not this way. She doesn't care what you have to say. If she doesn't want to do it, she won't. And no amount of logic will sway her.
Wednesday, April 19, 2006
I KNOW that I should not get my hopes up again. I KNOW this. But there's hope! And my hopes are up.
Monday, April 17, 2006
Other than that, the weekend was great. Easter egg hunts, baseball game, birthday parties, and a large family gathering. Good times.
Friday, April 14, 2006
Either the script didn't allow for objections or she decided to skip that part, but I started wondering if I was talking to a real person or a computer. When she finally decided to pause, I asked -"are you a real person or am I talking to a computer?" Then she laughed and answered that I had been talking to "Ok, real, live person, please remove our number from your list."
Thursday, April 13, 2006
Check back with me in two months when we're paying two house notes, working with an architect to design a house to agree with both of us, demo an existing home, build a new one as our own contractor, and trying to sell our house. In addition to me working gobs of overtime due to personnel shortage, running a real estate business, and did I mention two young children in the house?
Tuesday, April 11, 2006
Darkle, please come back!!!!!
Monday, April 10, 2006
We went and checked out the house that I've hung all my dreams upon. It's a definite tear down. We're just not sure you can tear down in that area. I still think we could manage to live in it for a year. Especially if we built a garage. Here's my idea- rent out our house, build a garage with an apartment above on the new property. Live in the house while the garage apartment is built and then live in the garage apartment while the new house is built. We're looking at two years of transition- living in a construction zone and ending up with a mortgage the same size (or probably bigger) than the one we have now.
In other words, this idea does not simplify. It does provide close proximity to the elementary school (less than a block), much less commute time for me, and the ability to walk or ride bikes to the kid's activities and our family. The neighborhood is one in transition, although it has been for years. Most people are remodeling the existing homes with only a couple completely torn down. None have been torn down recently. I probably need to let this one go, but I'm not ready. I love the idea of living in that neighborhood and building a house to meet our needs.
Thursday, April 06, 2006
Next year, the boy is zoned to a new school. This school happens to be 25 minutes from our house, in the wrong direction. His baseball field is 20 minutes from our house (with evening traffic). And the swimming school is a good 30 minutes away (with evening traffic).
So, let's add this up:
1 hour per day gain for work commute
30 minute gain per week for baseball
30 minute gain per week for swimming
1 hour gain per week for visiting folks
A total of 7 hours of extra quality time with the kids a week, we'll have to reduce our "stuff" vastly to fit in a smaller space and won't have the desire to buy more stuff, and the smaller mortgage won't suffocate.
I hate it when he's right.
Although, there are drawbacks. We probably won't be able to sell our house because there is glut of used homes in our area (still building new). We love our neighborhood. We lived in a smaller house before and I was stressed because of the lack of space. And the house I have in mind does not have a garage, but has been converted to another room.
Wednesday, April 05, 2006
I finished a book yesterday, The Lilypad List, about living simply. It is not a book with all the answers- in fact it doesn't have any answers, just questions. Some of the questions are how do you see your ideal life and what things make you happy. Some of the things that make me happy are spending quality time with my family and friends, swimming, hiking, generally just being in nature. I envision my ideal life as one more connected to the earth. Growing a good portion of the food that feeds my family. Greatly reducing the amount of stuff we have in our lives. Treating the environment and our planet with much more respect. Eliminating the blind consumerism. Doing things that I feel passionate about. Helping others.
This is in complete contrast to how we live now. We hop from one obligation to the next. I spend most of my waking hours doing work that I have no desire to do, coming home exhausted and stressed to deal with my children in the evening. We have slowly started reigning in the consumerism, but we still live in a house much bigger than we need and drive more than we should. I live in the suburbs of a major metropolis, in a very wealthy environment. The adults drive fancy cars and the kids have lavish birthday parties. None of this makes me happy. Ultimately, what makes me happy? Nature and people, not stuff.
I emailed his teacher and she sent back good suggestions, but we are already enforcing them all. I am completely frustrated and at a loss for how to fix this problem.
Tuesday, April 04, 2006
Thursday, March 30, 2006
My son is on a t-ball team and the coach and the team mom are married. They are wonderful, generous people and very devoted to their kids. This couple happens to have 3 kids under the age of 4, they both work, and they are both volunteering their time for the team.
It all started with collecting the money to pay for coach's gifts, the team banner, names on the back of their shirts, and snacks at the games. It was $50 a team member. I know the team mom felt bad, but there were only 10 kids on the team this year and frankly, that's just how much it cost.
One of the kid's dads sent out emails questioning the $50, wanting a break down of each item, wanting to know where his registration money went, etc. Fair enough. Team mom sent out the budget and then he argued with $20 for coaches gifts, $10 for snacks and water, and so on. The team mom was infinitely patient and kindly responded to each interrogation.
Things died down until today. Now he's upset because his kid didn't get his bottle of water at the last game (not that he asked for it either). And now someone else is upset because her kid didn't like the snack. I wanted to blast them, but instead my dear friend Sara helped me draft a nice email. However, it was not nearly as satisfying as telling them all to grow up.
Wednesday, March 29, 2006
Monday, March 27, 2006
Saturday was the opening day for baseball. The teams marched in a parade, played games, and had professional pics made in their uniforms. After a brief rest at home Saturday afternoon, it was birthday party time. I took the girl to the party and it turned out that she had an older brother who was friends with the boy. So, hubby brought over the boy. Then it turns out that the father is a flight instructor, building up time to become a commercial airline pilot, which is hubby's job.
Sunday, we headed over to a friend's house (the same ones from Friday night) and packed a picnic for a family concert in their neighborhood. After the concert and playing at their house, we all went out to dinner.
I did find the secret to well behaved children- keep them busy and entertained every minute of the day and make sure they are in constant motion.