27 December 2006

Stay-at-home mom

The way the holidays landed this year, I decided it made sense to stay home this week. I get paid to stay with my kids and we don't spend on daycare.


So far, so good. This week has gone better than planned. Sure, we've had whining and fights, but not many. They've been playing together fairly well (thank you Santa for Hullaballo and more Thomas bridges).

We even survived a trip to Wal-Mart this morning for groceries, all three in tow, something I rarely attempt because it is a nightmare. Instead, the gentleman behind us in line complimented the kids on how well-behaved they were. Shocked, I am. But happy.

Tomorrow is a playdate with middle child's best friend. I'd like to catch a couple of movies and go ice skating, too, before the week is over.

If we could afford to have me stay at home full time, I think I'd do it. I feel so relaxed and on top of my mommy game right now. I'm getting projects done around the house that have piled up. I have time to play with the kids and enjoy them without being tired. The laundry isn't overwhelming, because I can do two loads a day and keep up.

Work seems more stressful than it is worth. I've been working so long for the paycheck, and not enjoying what I do, that this refresher was sorely needed.

Honestly, I'm dreading going back. It's not fulfilling or fun any longer. Work is a long, hard slog.

The kids are much more fun.

12 December 2006




(oh, and hey, 100th post, for those interested in such stats)

06 December 2006

Salt? Sand? What's that?

I really hate this city right now. It's been almost a week after the nasty ice storm hit here, and guess what?

Our neighborhood streets (heck, most neighborhood streets here) are still glass.

The city doesn't plow or sand or salt the neighborhood streets. Heck, by Sunday, some of the main roads were still utter messes, nearly three days after the storm.

I've always lived up north (St. Louis, Columbia, NY, Iowa, Chicago). They know how to plow. They send out multiple plows when the storm starts, not at the end. Some places better than others, but you can believe a week after a storm streets would be 90 percent snow/ice free, especially after multiple days in the low 40s.

They put down salt and sand. Even our neighborhood in Chicago, which didn't get plowed constantly, at least saw salt and sand trucks go through once a day.

No, here, they wait for it to melt.

That could be a while. Our neighborhood is lined in trees. Oh, and it's hilly. Did I mention that?

Grrrrrr. I want to move back north. Now.

Breakfast with the Jolly Elf

A few days late. My apologies, all three of our home computers are on the fritz.

We struggled through the snow and ice to get downtown for the event. Two days after the storm, no plowing of major arteries, and our neighborhood streets were glass. Fun.

Once there, once signed in, we settled in to pancakes, juice (or coffee, in my case) and bacon. Sang carols. Did art projects that made reindeer ornaments. (Where did I put those, now that I think of it? They must still be in the diaper bag.)

Middle child whined mightily because the balloon artist wasn't coming our way fast enough. You'd think the threat of Santa walking among us would be enough to stop that, but you'd be wrong. A balloon candy cane is wayyy more important to a four-year-old than impressing the big guy.

Youngest played shy with everyone: University president who came by to say "Hi"; my VP who did the same. Santa, too. The jolly old elf was fine from a distance ("Santwa!!"), but once we were in line for the lap-sit and chat, she wanted no part of it.

Her brother informed Santa what his little sister wanted, and pointed her out to the big guy, just in case.

Ticky-tacky gifts received from student ambassadors dressed as elves (really, not that bad. Santa hats and in red), we had to go back to the balloon guy to repair the popped blue part of the blue-and-white balloon candy cane before we could go home.

All in all, not any better or worse than last year. Kids had fun, hubby and I survived.

Oh, and city streets after ice and snow storm: Sucked.

01 December 2006

Snow Day!!!

I'm as bad as the kids.

Yesterday morning, a particuarly bad ice/sleet/snow mix was headed our way. Every school district but ours closed in anticipation of a mess. Our superintendent was just hired from Colorado. He didn't understand that two inches of ice + snow here = disaster. The plows: Don't plow until the storm is done. Sand and salt? What's that?

I've lived here nearly four years, and they never clean the roads well. After living up north for years, it just boggles the mind.

At any rate, by noon, the roads were glass, and I was picking up the kids. An hour later, we made it home. I drove in sleet so falling so thick that visibility was nil.

Today, my older two are outside, reveling in the first significant snow they've seen since we moved here. First snow day in years. My youngest is two, and she's never seen snow.

She was not impressed. She was fine with sledding, if you carried her to the sled, sat with her on the sled, and then picked her up out of the sled, never once letting her brother's old SpongeBob snowboots touch the snow.

I just went out to let the dog frolick in the snow with the older two, and my kids look like yetis. You can't tell that they have on coats.

Later, we'll have hot chocolate and cookies. We'll clean up the house so we can decorate for Christmas tomorrow. The wood stove will be roaring with a fire.

A good snow day, all around.

Just wish my husband could enjoy it. The media never rests, and he's glued to his desk posting updates. He called at lunch, wistful tones in his voice. I know he'd love to sled. I might have to allow sledding after dark just so Dad can have his turn, too.

Be safe, all on the East. It's headed your way. It's nasty at first; beautiful later.