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Barreling through September

September 24th, 2011 at 06:54 am

Man, where does the time go?! I finished the third week of school, and all the kids I work with are settling into schedules for the most part. My own kids are off to a good start. The calendar is busy for the younger two girls with school and activities, but many of the sports end by mid-October. The older two are busy with their schools and lives too (oldest is away at college and second commutes to her school and lives at home.)

Part of the fading fleet of vehicles faded further. Our oldest car, which third daughter drives, needs some work that is beyond what my husband can do. Will bring it in later this morning to the auto shop - shouldn't be too outrageous, but given the age of the vehicle (20 yrs) there can always be more that needs repair - so fingers crossed!

Back into a regular grocery shopping mode with the start of school (I stretched out trips over the summer to clear out the pantry and freezer spaces a bit.) We're restocked pretty well for our fall/winter type of cooking and baking - hey, I switched out my warm-weather clothes for cool-weather...I guess it's the same for food in the kitchen Smile

A bit of nesting going on (blame it on the recent cold weather!) Bought a new shower curtain at Target and some fall scented candles at Michaels. Got some chocolate chips for baking, and we're on our fourth type of apple from the apple stand across the street from the school (we have a big surplus at the moment, so maybe a pie or crisp to remedy this.) A trip to the library later today. Copious supplies of tea and cocoa. Ready and raring for fall!!

I like the beginning of school schedule for the fact that I'm back to getting a paycheck and that there is not a lot of time to spend it! The stakes are a little higher this year with two post-secondary payments going out, but so far so good. My check also is covering the savings amount going to car replacement and vacation (smaller plans for this during "the college years" - what were we thinking with the spacing of our girls - yikes!) On the other hand the beginning of school brings many opportunities for check writing, or as my husband states, money hemorrhaging. But once again, we've survived another year to tell the tale!

Plans for today - after dropping off the car, a little baking, a little chili-making, a trip to the library, tidying up the gardens, and the first walk on the autumn trail at our nearby county park. The sun is shining, and highs into the 60s - as perfect a Fall day as ever! Enjoy your Saturday!!

Ready for April

March 31st, 2011 at 05:08 am

Our spring break ended with a fizzle....

My youngest got sick, and she was knocked out on the couch or in her bed for several days. The high school played in championship basketball games, and my third girl played in the pep band several times over the course of the week. The least I say about the snow storm mid-last week, the better. Spent two afternoons, straightening out the FSA and all things health insurance - I have nothing civil to say about the process, except that I am really hoping there is someone there who can, and will do, what they keep telling me they will do to fix it (and no, I do not want another confirmation number as I have plenty!)

Not all was dismal though - I spring-cleaned my bedroom, and it's now lovely in there. Cleared out several bags worth of stuff from all over the house and dropped off at our favorite charity. I tried out some new recipes and baked. We visited the library a couple of times, and we all read more than we had been lately. In my ever quest to be organized, I came up with yet another way to keep track of user/passwords for everything on the computer (took longer than it should have, but now even my husband could figure it out if he had to, and the new way does not involve a flutter of post-its:-) Wild and crazy life, I know!

Back to school and work for us girls this week. Time for buckling down expense-wise too. We're expecting to have to pull together some big dollars by fall for schooling for the two oldest. There is enough to cover it from our savings, but I'm thinking we can do a bit better with our budget of late and get together at least a good amount before the first payments are needed. We have some sort-of figures from the fafsa, but won't know until just before school starts what we'll need exactly (and this drives me crazy, so we always over-estimate, which isn't a bad thing either.) My oldest got some good news a couple days ago - she was awarded more work-study funds for the rest of this school year, which is great because she is signed up for classes in the summer in her quest to graduate early. (I feel like a broken record with all my posts in trying to figure out this college stuff....but I guess I've been known to talk to death some subjects in real life too - just the way I roll I guess :-)

My third girl is heading to Denver after school on Friday for her high school band trip, so tonight will be wrapping up the packing. She's excited! We're hoping for good weather (not sure what that is any more for any where this year.) I'm sure she'll have a great time.

Have a wonderful spring day!

Looking forward to this weekend...

March 5th, 2011 at 08:15 am

Busy week at work - the resource room I work out of has a student that has been difficult to service, and we're trying to figure out ways to accommodate his needs, while still balancing the needs of the other students in the room. As a staff, we're taking turns visiting a facility that services students with unique needs from area school districts (the most difficult students to service in our small, short-staffed local school districts.) I went on Tuesday, and felt our student would fit perfectly at the facility, which has a 1:1 student/staff ratio. I'm not sure how well we'll do with creating that sort of environment at our school, given we aren't anywhere near that ratio! But I came away with some great ideas that will help with the student(anything would help the situation!)as well as for the other students I work with. Still loving my job and the kids! People ask all the time how I'm liking it at the middle school, and my standard response has been that it's the same needs as in early childhood, just taller kids. This week I have to say though - same needs, taller kids, but hormones make quite a difference -yikes!

Last week I had mailed out a renewal of a work license for my husband to the state. Yesterday, we received a mailing from them, and opened it. Out dropped a mangled version of what we had mailed, with the bottom half missing, plus a letter saying they couldn't process the license or check. Hmmm, I wonder why - maybe because it was half missing?! Not sure where it happened (suspect the PO, as the stamp hadn't yet been canceled,) but mailed it out once again. Fingers crossed!

Finally got tabs renewed for my minivan and our trailer this week. I went to do it over our little break a couple weeks ago, and missed the office being open by a half hour (early hours on Fridays - got to remember that)and then on that Mon, it was closed for President's Day. Glad to have it done, though we need some warm weather to put the tabs onto the plates.

Last Sunday, we visited a free zoo and conservatory. My two middle girls are taking the same photo class at school, and they both had a ball with their cameras. The conservatory had their spring flower show - so beautiful! It gives one hope of things to come....

Will be heading out for groceries at SuperTarget soon. I have a pair of black pants of my daughter's to return. Not too much needed today, as we had stocked up at Sam's last weekend. Just some items, we can't get at Sam's, and some we just prefer to get at Target. Doing well with eating at home, except for planned eating out. Plus we've made good use of giftcards for restaurants we received at Christmas. It's all good...

As many have mentioned here, gas is getting pricey. It just seems that when the prices are highest, we end up driving all the more - ha! I do get reimbursed for mileage I did for school, which will help. We have been trying to do something fun on Sundays, usually it's a free activity, except for gas. Oh well, at least we can still afford it. (I feel most bad for those who can least afford the prices and have no other options but to pay :-(

My oldest called with news - she and her friend have found a place for all of next year (Jun '11 - May '12.) She needed some help with the deposit, and I transferred the dollars to her account. I also checked it out online (love google) as much was possible. The owner is local to the unit, which is nice. There are four bedrooms, and as of yesterday, they already have a third friend for a room. The monthly amount divided by two is a little high but not unreasonable, divided by three is what she is paying now, and by four will be wonderful! It's an older home (as most of them are in the area) but smaller and less grand than the one she is in now - meaning the ceilings aren't so high or not so many grand, cold windows,etc. Plus it's been updated better. My daughter has the whole top floor with lots of windows at her current place - "I can see Lake Superior!" My first thought was shoot, it'll be freezing when those winds come a-blowing. She also has a cranky radiator. The thing is massive, but you couldn't tell for all the heat she gets in her room. It's been a learning experience for sure! We sent up an electric blanket and a space heater - luckily electric is a part of what her monthly rent covers. She was very proud in finding that first place, but knows a little more about covering the basic human needs. She and her friend found this one on their own too, but it looks like it'll be a good choice for them. It's as far from the school as the other, but a quicker route, as it's nearer the main street heading up to the campus. So my girl is set with a place, a job, and classes to take over the summer. We'll be definitely heading up to her for visits this summer - it'll be so different...my girls are growing up, and mom has to get used to it!!

My second girl just got a job at Applebees. She went through three interviews with three managers, and she did it! It should work out great, as it's near the school that she'll be starting at this August. They know she's still in high school until June, and it sounds like her hours will increase over the summer, and then back to a reasonable amount for school again - so yay!. (There's a few doing the same thing.) She starts training on Sunday.

Already did some of the weekly cleaning/chores last night and this morning. Groceries in a bit, then maybe some more snowshoeing (the sun is out!) Maybe a little baking - been on a kick with the new range, plus the girls like the treats in their lunches brought to school. Maybe tomorrow we'll head to our history center (free with our membership.) It's a weekend with much potential! Take care!!

Lots Learned....

February 12th, 2011 at 07:41 am

...in the last two weeks! First, we finally, FINALLY, received the tax forms needed for our taxes. Refund from federal (e-filed through TurboTax with refund to be paid out the 28th if I recall.) Of course, we owe the state (always do) and the forms are ready to be mailed out nearer tax day. Whew - done with that!

I did my oldest's taxes last night and e-filed her federal, and attempted a free e-file for the state, but decided to just do that one by hand. It was a bit weird - It was a site that had an interview process, much like TurboTax's, but then at the end, you couldn't print a copy of the state taxes, but they could mail you one for a fee - grr! I should have known 'free' was too much to expect from the state. But these are done and over!

I still need to do a quick check on number two daughter, but I think her earnings are too small to have had any tax withheld.

Left to do are the fafsa's for the two girls, which I'll start after I get off here. I want to know, but I'm not sure I'll like what I'll learn (or maybe I'll be pleasantly surprised :-)

We've been improving on the eating out front (planned rather than circumstantial lapses.) I've always been good with meal planning, but I feel like I've become more realistic lately in the amount of food I need to bring home. Maybe I was in denial of my oldest going away to college last year or something, plus the reality of my 2nd just being busy and not home as much for meals, but it took me a while to not be cooking such big amounts of food for meals, as I'd done for years. And then I'd put the leftovers in the frig, and no one would want it because "we just ate it". Talk about stuck in a rut! So, now I'm fixing meals in smaller amounts (still can accommodate my 2nd girl's comings and goings plus the addition of a friend staying for dinner - yep, no one starves at my house!) For meals that are a better deal to make in quantity, like chili and soups, I send leftovers right to the freezer. I know, slow learner!!

I'm not sure I took on HouseHopeful's lunch challenge, but my girls and I all brought our lunches each day. We always do and did, so not much of a challenge for us. My husband mostly brings his, but maybe once every week or two, he'll head out to a fast food lunch with the guys. He works in the field and eats alone most days, so if the coworkers are working in close proximity, they'll eat out together. For the most part, it sounds like few from his work bring a lunch. We, and many here on the blogs, stand alone in the crowd on this lunch from home front :-)

Loving my job more each week - I knew I needed a change, and the middle school position was available, but I really didn't know how it would go, as I've worked only in early childhood and some elementary. I'm so enjoying my students and the other kids and teachers of the the classes we're in. I'm amazed at how helpful and inclusive the kids are, even in light of some hard-to-understand behaviors of our kids. I help our kids navigate the typical classes, but I also help others be comfortable with and enjoy our kids. I'm witnessing such compassion and growth on all parts. I'm glad I took the chance (and my superiors took the chance on me!)

On the agenda for this weekend: two fafsa's, grocery shopping, a little house cleaning, clear the catch-all counter.... for fun, my husband wants to go to the camping, rv and vacation show on Sunday (printed off discount coupons.) We haven't gone for many years, and what can I say, it's been a long, long winter and we need some hope our tent trailer will be exhumed of it's snowy burial at some point :-)

Take care!!

Where have all my entries gone...

January 22nd, 2011 at 06:34 am

...even my old standby highlight and copy wasn't keeping them safe. Well, maybe I was just too wordy!

So short and sweet-

Oldest back to college and new room is working out. Got her bill for 2nd term with an increased state grant amount - surprised, but will take it!

My new job is a blast! I moved over to our middle school, and a very different experience than early childhood, but I'm loving it. Same special ed needs, just taller kids!

We're on the search for a new range. We replaced the washer, dryer, and dishwasher in Oct. I guess the range too is feeling its use and age. (This is what we get for buying all of our appliances all at once eons ago!) Luckily we've been skimming along using the burners and crockpot and microwave, so as to do some comparison shopping. My husband is very handy, but when we priced the part needed for the repair and figured in the age and wear of the appliance, it made sense to find a good sale. (Fingers crossed for our hard working frig - we need a couple more years and then we could downsize a little too.)

As many here have mentioned, I too am awaiting the tax forms to do our taxes and fafsa (for two girls this year!) Soon enough we'll have an idea of what to expect to pay for next year with two in higher educational pursuits - it's like you want know, but you don't want to know :-) I just keep throwing money into the savings in anticipation of what it might be. We didn't have the means earlier on, but learn from me - you'll be so thankful for any dollars saved ahead. The pay-as-you-go method is hair-raising!

Ok, getting a little wordy at the end, but I'll try it, and hopefully it'll publish! Take care!!

Working through the errand list...

January 2nd, 2011 at 10:37 am

...though the list may be endless!

Drove off the other day without the three bags of donations - so I have a good start to this year's donations. Thrift-o-rama commented in my last post about checking out resale shops. We do sell (and buy!) from Plato's Closet, but ours is pretty particular about what labels are on the clothing and they can be no older than last year's season. These were my oldest's who keeps her clothes a while and most were Target brand (not quite what they look for at this store.) My second is the fashion girl, and so has more luck selling to Plato's. There are other resale places, but not nearby, and we have found each store has a particular look they will purchase (and it's not often the eclectic jumble of clothes we acquire:-)

I have to make one last return - a pair of snow gloves for my youngest. I picked up a large youth size, and somehow, some way she's bigger than that! My baby!! Will exchange them for a pair that fits.

I did get to Sam's a couple days ago, so we are pretty stocked up food-wise for a while. I bought a huge beef roast there that I put in the crockpot yesterday for shredded beef sandwiches. It smelled wonderful cooking all day as we took down our tree and cleaned the house. We then brought it and other meal items over to dad-in-law's yesterday to eat after we took down his tree and decor. There are lots of it leftover, so that's what we're eating tonight.

I've been reminding the girls to get their school stuff together for tomorrow. I start my new position too, and am figuring out a new routine for the morning, as I have an earlier start time. Much of the household tasks got done before I left for work, but we'll have to see how it all works (I'm an early riser, but 5 or after is more my style, and I already do that!) I have a couple of crockpot meals planned. There's one medical appt and a marching band night, but otherwise a pretty quiet week. Yay!!

My oldest will be heading back to school next weekend, and we may head up with her to help her get settled in her new place, depending on who of her friends is up there to help. Either way we'll buy her what groceries and the few items she'll need.

I have a couple of bills to pay out this week. I'm starting to collect what's needed for the taxes and fafsa (two this year!) ...like I say, the list never ends......so I better get to it!

Take care!

Enjoying the Break

December 29th, 2010 at 07:00 am

Christmas was very quick, but fun. The girls and I had school through the Wed before Christmas. I took a half day off Wed afternoon to finish up some errands like grocery shopping etc. Instead of that, I headed north to get my oldest from college, as all of her stuff didn't fit in the car she was coming home in (she goes back to a different apt after break and couldn't leave anything behind.) But we made it back safe and sound...and I shopped with the crowds the next day!

Christmas Eve was spent with my brother and wife at our house. After our own Christmas in the morning with the girls, we headed over the dad-in-law's, bringing tons of food, and met up with my husband's sister and family. Fun visiting all around - my voice was even hoarse from all the talking and laughing over the two days!

We've been enjoying our time off - my husband took vacation the last two days and headed back to work today. The girls and I have off the rest of this week. We've been sleeping in, eating, watching the new movies we got for Christmas, playing games, goofing around with the new toys (my youngest got Just Dance - 1st and 2nd - and that's been fun to do together, mostly because some of us (mom and dad!) are pretty lame dancers!!) Now we're getting into puttering mode - organizing and clearing out and finishing the undone. Love, love these breaks!

As mentioned above, my oldest is moving into a new apt, with a lease this time, for her 2nd term. We're helping her out with the 1st payment (rent and damage deposit), but otherwise with her campus job, a monthly amount grandpa sends and a little on our part, she's got rent and groceries pretty well covered. Her books will again be rented from Chegg, and her tuition will be the same as 1st term, as it maxes out on cost over a certain number of credits. She's been taking over that amount each term, and should be able to graduate after 3 1/2 years. She may not be so great at planning details like packing the car, but she does get the big picture at least!

Yesterday, we dropped off more donations. I've been going through some of the easy to ignore areas of my house. I checked out the wrapping drawers to see if we needed to replenish, but no need. I organized the pantry cupboard, as soon I'm needing to grocery shop again (the ham is almost done!) Things that were given to us that my inlaws could no longer eat, and had sat in our cupboard since the summer are being donated. We eat so differently that no one at my house could stomach the stuff - I feel like I should write sorry on the bag. Oh well, maybe others will enjoy it.

I'm seriously going to have to cut back on my holiday baking, as everyone is now baking and trading treats! I'm going to freeze up a bit to dole out in the girls lunches (it may see us through to the end of the school year!)

Before break, I applied for and got a new position at work. It's still the same classification, but instead of early childhood, I'll be working with special ed middle schoolers. I'm very excited to be there. All but three are students I worked with in their early childhood years and some in their elementary years too. I'm up off the floor and there's less diapering! I'll also have the same hours as my girls, as the time with them is so fleeting! I start next Monday, though I spent some time over there last week.

And the last of my current ramble - Santa brought me and my youngest each a set of snowshoes, and what fun they are! This is the year for them, with all of our snow. So far we've been trekking around in our yard, but will today be venturing to our county park a half mile down the road. The other girls are intrigued by the fun we've been having, so we'll rent some for them to try out. It should be fun!

Enjoy your day!

Sept ramblings

September 23rd, 2010 at 07:38 am

Here it is another month gone by...so much has happened.

My mom-in-law passed away earlier this month. She had been battling colon cancer over the summer, and had been three treatments into her chemo before it became all too much for her body to take. The summer was filled with helping her and my dad-in-law, who has health issues and uses a walker himself. It was precious time indeed for all of us...

My husband and I grew up in the same town and only moved the next town over when we purchased our house. Our girls were the oldest (and the only for quite a while) grandkids, and were very close to all of the grandparents, so it's been hard. With both my parents and now my husband's mom gone, well, Grandpa is getting lots of attention.

I'm very proud of my oldest at college - she signed up to participate in an upcoming cancer walk in memory of her Grandma.

Having seen my dad ravaged by mesothelioma and my mom-in-law by colon cancer - please take advantage of any early screening available. Those who have witnessed the suffering caused by cancer know what I mean, and those who haven't, really you do not want to. My mom-in-law talked often over the summer her greatest regret in not getting screened when it was recommended a few years back, which we didn't know about until after her surgery.

My in-laws also didn't have a living will or POA or anything - my husband's family tends to keep private those sorts of details. That part was much easier with both of my parents - we talked openly about their wishes, and then followed up with the paperwork. There's so much else happening at those times of crisis that you don't always have time or ability (as in questionable cognition after the surgery) to discuss what measures are to be taken. Very, very difficult time... So my PSA is to take care of yourself and try to avoid cancer if possible, screen for cancers early AND get all your affairs in order and paperwork figured out before anything happening.

Within the midst, the girls and I started back at school. Third week in and all of my girls have gotten upper respiratory infections with coughs. At my school, staff have been going home sick with fevers, kids have been throwing up, preschoolers suffering from diarrhea - I have been vigorously washing my hands, taking extra Vit C, snuffing up the nasal saline solution. I've yet to catch what's going around. Boy, this seems very early for the stuff beyond the allergies and little sniffles the kids usually get after getting back together at the year's beginning. I'm so wanting to avoid getting sick! Pretty please....

My brother and family from Alaska also made their annual visit to us and the lower 48. They were roughing it through the wilds of Canada and hiking the Superior Trial up north, so we weren't able to reach them to tell them what they were coming into at our house with funeral plans and all. But it all was fine, and actually very healing to be so totally surrounded on all sides by family. We bid them safe travel to WI and then onto the western states on Monday.

There is more on our financial front, but with all that's been happening - well, suffice it to say, thanks be to savings accounts that see you through times of less watchful spending.

Take care!

Catching up

October 2nd, 2008 at 04:57 pm

The expenses have been settling down finally, though I did just write one more check for a field trip for my oldest. Back to getting my checks regular, and getting the savings built up again.

It's been a beautiful fall, but the last few days were very cool. The temps have been hovering in the upper 30s at night. With the windows closed up, and the extra blankets on the beds, we haven't had to turn on the heat yet, though I was tempted last night as it inched to 61. I open the blinds in the morning to let in the sun, and close them at night to keep out the cold. We're hoping to hold off the heat until at least the 15th (later would be great!)

With a few extra activities this week to work around, the crockpot has been getting quite the use. I generally use it 1-2 times a week, but so far have used it straight since Monday. I planned ahead, and have been able to vary the menu a bit, so no protests yet. After a day of working, and then running kids around, I am really enjoying the convenience. And no fast food!

I have to drive daily to the main school campus in the next town over. Three afternoons a week, I head over to the school building just a street behind where I live. So MWF, I eat my lunch at home (leftovers!)and bring my lunch the other two days. Then I head over to the school via my bike. Will enjoy this as long as it lasts - lots of predictions for a very cold, very snowy winter ahead - oh yay! Before I head into the classroom, I ride the bus with one of our more fragile students, who has frequent seizures (I keep an eye on her, and can administer her meds if needed.) The bus driver is a nice retired guy, who recently lost his wife to cancer. He has apple trees that are having a bumper year, and offered me some. He gave me two full grocery bags of them, and we are making great use of them.

The computer is needed, so time to get off. Take care!

Now... a word from my employer...

August 13th, 2008 at 02:06 pm

Got my job assignment for the coming school year - pretty much the same as last year. I'll be working most of my hours with sp.ed. preschoolers and some with elementary and intermediate school sp. ed. students. How fast this summer has gone...

My position is under a union contract, which expired over a year ago (before I took this position.) I still don't feel like I know all of the issues. My own personal situation was greatly improved by taking this position, though I try to be sympathetic to what others who've been around longer are saying.

Since we've worked over a year without a contract, you can tell it's not the most confrontational group around. We have a union meeting next Monday, and I'm so hoping all has been settled - ha - I'm not so confrontational myself!

I know one of the little schemes that was mentioned at the end of the last school year is one that I don't favor. Part of the issue has to do with what is paid toward family coverage for health insurance by the school. To force the union's position on it, they proposed having the 5 FTE paraprofessionals (one of them is me) not decline our insurance option (as we all happen to do) and take out a single coverage for ourselves - paid for by the district. I'm sure we aren't doing anything wrong, but it sure doesn't feel very right either, PLUS I hardly need more things to keep track of medical-wise. We'll see how it goes... (I'm not sure how long a union contract is for, but gosh, I hope that by the time this one does get settled, it isn't time for another contract!)


While I plan to enjoy every moment left to the summer break, I am starting to feel a little excited for the new school year. It's so fun to see how the kids have grown and what new things they can do. One boy, in particular, was starting to use a walker last year, and was going to do some intense therapy over the summer - I can hardly wait to chase him around. Two of my little buddies that I worked with daily are off to Kindergarten and it'll be so fun to see them in the halls. That's the key - think of the kids, not the politics!

Better get back to those moments of fleeting summer! Take care!

A Little Side Job Woes

July 9th, 2008 at 06:30 am

Yesterday afternoon, I worked on a little side job. Even though I changed positions within the school district, my old place still keeps my mailbox filled and offers me the job of processing their bulk mailings. I get paid by the hour, and it's a quick way to earn a little pocket money in an afternoon a few times a year.

This time, for some reason, one of the four flyers that wasn't trifolded at the printers. So I had an extra hour for folding (yay for the money, arg for the mind-numb.) Then they were short on the outer piece (imprinted with the bulk stamp.) After work today, I'll run to that school, near my house, and get the copies to finish the mailing. Then hopefully I can get the PO for the postage from the district office right away. With that I can finally head to the post office with the mailing. Whew! I'm not sure $10 an hour is worth the hassle. Oh well, I'll collect my check and run!!

Glorious Fall Day

October 13th, 2007 at 12:15 pm

Sunny, 60s for temp, leaves have changed, but haven't fallen...exemplary fall day here in MN.

And my plans for this gorgeous day?? I've already gone shopping for more clothes for my mom - with being in the wheelchair and having aid at mealtimes, she's gained weight and outgrown much of her clothing. As the girls were all places this morning, I took my husband along and he found some steel-toe work boots (his old ones had split across the sole, though he con't to wear them for quite a bit, which became a problem with the recent rainy weather and working on a new construction site in that rain.) We then went out to an early lunch - just us.

In a bit, I'll head over to bring the clothes to my mom. Then I'll come back home and do some much-needed straightening and cleaning. Hopefully I'll have time to do some puttering outside too.

Also this weekend, I want to do some baking for the week's lunches and for the bus drivers for bus driver appreciation week. I ride one of the small buses with one of our more delicate sp.ed. students I work with, and I've gotten to know that bus driver pretty well. He's a retired guy, whose wife died a few years back. He tells me about his four kids and his eleven grandkids. Anyway, we were talking about the bumper crop of apples this year and how delicious they've been, when he offered me some off of his apple trees. So far, he's given me a huge grocery bag full of two different, unsprayed apples. So I want to do up an apple bread or some muffins with those apples for good old Wayne. I think he'll enjoy them. He's so good with all of the special kids he drives - they are all very excited to see him. He's a good guy, and it'll be fun to brighten his day.

Last night was the last home football game, and my three youngest all participated in some manner (oldest was working at the pool.) My second girl danced at halftime, my third cheered at the game, and my youngest was part of a cheerleading camp for grades 3-5, and 'helped' the cheerleaders with the cheering, as well as doing a special sement at halftime also. It was a beautiful night, and fun to see the girls. I'm glad I opted to not pay for the family pass, as the girls either have participated most of the games, or I've only paid for my youngest on occasion, as my husband got in as my guest on my school pass, which gets us in free. Winter season is coming up, but I think we'll still come out ahead by not buying the family pass, which was pricey.

I'm not sure how it came to be, but the cheerleaders get to cheer over the winter season on their fall season athletic fee. So my third girl will continue to cheer for a few more months. She has put in for hockey, though I'm not sure she can as she isn't the steadiest on skates (in which case, the savings on that athletic fee may be far outweighed by the medical costs incurred by cheering on skates - mom is heavily suggesting basketball cheering might be a whole lot safer.) My second girl has opted to not do the winter competitive dance season, as she wants to concentrate on her grades - a wise move indeed.

The three younger girls have joined their older sister at the pool for lesson time Saturday mornings. They will have to put in 15 hours unpaid probation time to train as aides during the swim lessons, and then they'll all be on the school's payroll. Yes, even the 10 yr. old will be receiving pay at $6.50 an hour eventually. Amazing! As we encouraged with our oldest, most of their earnings, if not actually all, will go into their savings account. They really have so few things that they want to spend money on, and especially we find, if it's their own earned money. Isn't that a great thing to learn!

Enjoy the weekend...take care!

Catching up

October 8th, 2007 at 02:25 pm

How busy the last month has been! Between school's start and my new job and my husband's job, along with the girls' few activities - whew!

I've now worked long enough to get three paychecks, and all I can say is that it's so nice to write out the bills and have the funds ready. Our checking account buffer is back in place again, along with the small emergency funds. Now we're working on the one last cc debt - actually we have been for the last year, but we are making greater strides in obliterating that balance.

This month hasn't been cheap either. The school fees and expenses aren't fun, but are normal and expected. The unexpected included another repair on the conversion van (along the more important repairs, I now have the driver side washer fluid line working AND I have greatly improved heat and defrost. Yay! As this has been our warm weather camping van, this hasn't been too much of an issue. But with my oldest driving her sisters to school in the minivan, I'm using the behemoth, and well, heat is a good thing.)

The other expense that we weren't expecting quite yet was some dental work for my husband, which I paid in full today. Easy come, easy go the paychecks!

Budgetwise, we're holding tight. I've been cooking at home and still shopping once every two weeks. My grocery budget has actually decreased a little, due to changing to a different grocery store. I've been able to stick to just under $200, which has been my goal. The last couple trips I've been including stocking up bit by bit for upcoming holiday baking. I've also been trying out new recipes, mostly because I'm bored with our usual meals. Many are from the Light & Tasty magazine - some have been more successful than others. The girls come to the table warily, and I'm no longer bored as it's very entertaining to watch their expressions. A mom's gotta have fun once in a while!

Utility-wise, we're doing pretty good. MN has been going the whole range of weather lately, and we have had the heat on one night a couple weeks back. The last two days have been very humid and near 90. I keep a pile of blankets next to the beds and keep a constant refrain of "take the jacket...where's the jacket" ringing in my girls' ears.

That's all for now...take care!

Work is working out

September 10th, 2007 at 06:28 pm

It always take a week or two for us to adjust back to school and work. Last week I was tired, and my head was swimming by the end of each day. This week is going smoother so far (one day, I know - ha!)

I get my first paycheck later this week (I thought it would be on the 30th.) With all of the beginning of school year expenses, the timing will be great. Actually, all I have left is school photos for the youngest and yearbooks for the oldest two. Whew - I don't know why I'm so surprised at the flurry of checks the first couple of weeks of school.

I'm already trying out my paid sick leave on Wednesday afternoon. I arranged for a sub so I can go to a medical appointment with my oldest, scheduled from last spring. We're winding down on these appointments, as her medicine seems to be where it needs to be (finally!)

Last weekend was busy, but fun. We went to the high school football game on Friday night to watch my third girl cheer and my second one dance at halftime. The girls looked great (yes, I was the mom taking those annoying flash pictures.) The evening was absolutely perfect weatherwise, and the team won too.

Saturday I ran errands in the morning, including the grocery shopping. Later I took the younger girls over to the next town over for their Heritage Festival. Very small town, but it was fun seeing so many people we knew. My youngest two spent most of the time in the petting zoo area, with hedgehogs, bunnies and guinea pigs. They also went up the portable climbing wall a few times. The girls helped their daddy, who's a police reserve officer, in the public safety area. An AirCare helicopter even came as the highlight - I did mention small town, right?

The two youngest went to an amusement park
with our church youth group on Sunday afternoon. The two oldest were busy with friends. Gosh, my husband and I almost had visions of what it'll be like in a few years. So what did we do?? We made a run to make a return to Officemax, had a fast food lunch we were both craving, and gassed up at the cheaper gas station up that direction. Then we came home and caught up on some housework. I baked for the week's lunches. Hmm - not very exciting, but nice just the same.

I did good at the grocery store. I got a ton of food for the next two weeks, as well as some at the store deals on meat that I put in the freezer. Slowly, but surely I'm stocking us back up for the fall. A few weeks back, I switched back over to Cub Foods for most of my groceries. With this change, my oulay of dollars has decreased once again, making me wonder why did I ever leave Cub in the first place? I shop every two weeks, and I keep a running list of groceries needed, as well as menu plan a night or two before I go to the store. I guess there have been periods in my life where that much preparation was beyond what I could handle. I'm getting better at this as my girls get older. No slacking for me!

My house and work all seem to be in order - at the moment. Please make note, as it can all change in the next moment!

Have a great weeek and take care!!

I have a new job

August 31st, 2007 at 06:48 pm

I interviewed on Tuesday, and was offered a position late this afternoon. I accepted, and called my current supervisor and co-worker to let them know, and with their well-wishes, I start on Tuesday.

I'll assist the preschoolers who are in the school district's special ed program. I actually will be back in the preschool classrooms where I have been working the last several years, but working in a different capacity. I'll get to still work with all of my great co-workers.

This new position will also increase my wages for the year by 1/3, plus I receive a benefit package. Because of the increase in pay rate and hours, my public employee retirement account will really get a needed boost (I was at home with my girls for 11 years.) I work the same schedule as my youngest. Gosh, can I gush anymore over this new job?? I am excited!

In other news - where, may I ask, has August gone?! We took our annual camping trip the first week, and then the rest of the month just whizzed by.

After seemingly endless cleaning on my oldest's part, we painted and decorated on the cheap her bedroom. We were also able to catch a special exhibit on Pompeii at the Science Museum in St. Paul - very interesting. Getting the girls supplied and outfitted (minimumly at this point) for school took up a few afternoons. Otherwise, I'd say the rest of the time this month has been spent puttering. If only that resulted in the house looking neater - ha!

And for this weekend... more puttering, I'm sure. I'll bake something for the girls' lunches. I have a couple new lighter recipes to try out - an oatmeal raisin bar and another bar recipe using dried cranberries and vanilla chips. I'll try one or the other, or maybe an old tried and true one - we'll see what strikes me and/or any helpers.

Tomorrow we'll all head over to my inlaws in the morning to do as they wish - they have a list! Later, we'll visit my mom at the nursing home. Then the rest of the weekend is open for...whatever!

Enjoy the long weekend..take care!!

How to keep busy, without really trying...

July 2nd, 2007 at 05:35 pm

I'm off from work this week, which is nice, as there seems to be many little things to keep busy with.

Last Friday, I called into my bank's automated system to find out the amounts of my and my husband's paychecks. Mine was surprisingly low for all the sub hours I put in the last two weeks of school. I called the school's payroll person, and oops, some of my hours hadn't been put through. Grumble, grumble. Luckily, she was able to contact who she needed to verify I did work, and a check was issued today. All's well, that ends well - but I'm keeping a keen eye on them.

We've been trying out a new medicine for my oldest for the last few months, and her doctor thinks we're ready to send out for mail-order. It's for a three-month period, but much cheaper for us, as it's only available as a namebrand. My oldest takes it twice a day, with the morning pill a lesser mg than the evening. When I looked over the prescription at home, the dr wrote it to look like we needed two separate prescriptions, which would double the costs of this expensive drug. I called up the mail-order pharmacy, and asked them about this. At first, I was told, it would be filled as two scripts. I pointed out that if they were the same mg, the dr would have just wrote the pill amount as double, and it would be one script. I asked that if I had the dr write the total dosage for the day, with instructions on the how much for morning and evening, would that work? The woman put me on hold to check, and she said to do that. Now, I know from dealing with a number of insurance companies through the years, that this may or may not work, as calls don't always guarantee what you get. But given the drug's cost (plus it's not the only medicine we pay for each month,) it's worth it to give it a shot. I called up the dr, and she rewrote the prescription. Tomorrow, I'll send it in with a check for the single script amount, and then we'll see...

In other news, my second passed her written drivers exam, and she has her permit now. My 'clutching the passenger door handle' muscles are still in good shape, as it wasn't all that long ago they were in use for her older sister.

My oldest turned 17 yesterday. She picked out a place to eat, and we had cake at home. Her birthday marks the end of 'birthday season' - the 6 weeks/3 birthdays time of year. 'Til next year...

Still have more of life's details for tomorrow...take care!

Summertime...& the living ain't so easy

June 20th, 2007 at 12:32 pm

When I start blogging every three plus weeks, you know that it's been busy around here.

So a quick summary of these past weeks: school's out (yay!), guinea pig died (wah), third girl goes to camp (sad, because it was her pet), I clear out and donate the contents of one of our attic spaces (only three more to go!), oldest takes week-long swim intructor class and passes, second girl starts the classroom portion of her drivers ed, third girl comes back home from camp, youngest turns 10, I help host the (insanely) huge party for inlaws' 50th anniversary (notice I didn't say plan, because I sure would have suggested a less elaborate to-do - but I was a good silent helper, and it was fun to see so many at a happy event rather than a sad one), oldest and I start our summer work this week, second starts her dance team practices, and third starts her cheerleading practices. Whew!

On the money front...well, we have been regularly writing checks for various things associated with the dance and cheerleading teams, but we're nearing the end, and so far I haven't had to take funds from the savings. Our church allows the kids to earn money for their youth account by working different functions and fundraisers. So my third owed nothing for her camp (just a little canteen spending money.) My second goes on a mission trip in July, and owes around $50 after applying her account funds, and she will use babysitting money for her spending money.

Otherwise, we're a cheap and easy to please crowd here. We're close to several beaches (and one we can bike to) and have a county library hardly a block away, and have several more near most of the places we visit and shop. We have at our house enough art and craft supplies and other materials (junk, or junque if you want to be fancy) for us to to be thoroughly creative. We live in town, so there's lots of friends around. There's tennis courts, four-square and a huge playground at the school on the next street over. If the kids are bored, it's not because there isn't something to do. I did suggest some dusting at the youngest's "I'm bored" the other day - that always sets their imagination in motion - ha!

One thing I need to get back to is hanging the laundry. That has fell to the wayside in this week of adjustment back to work. Also, I think I've got the girls eating meals, rather than grazing through the kitchen constantly throughout the day it seems. My dinners are still in adjustment though. Between the activities of the older three girls, our usual sit-down dinners aren't together. I guess we've been spoiled to able to do it as long as we have. Crock-pot dinners work well, but it's been very hot lately, so we've been eating cooler meals. It seems that there are endless leftovers, and repeated meals several days running. I will have to adjust to making smaller meals, or rather meals that can be flexibly small or large. In the meantime, we're eating leftovers daily (lunch and dinner) and using lots of tortillas for wraps, and eggs and more eggs. So far, no one has perished from starvation (though heat is another matter)...


It seems it's either feast or famine when I blog... I hope you're not too gorged with my 'little' account here. Take care!

A Quick Entry...

June 1st, 2007 at 05:22 pm

...because I am tired!

I've been working sub hours like mad this week. This is a great boost to the paycheck, but makes for a tired me. Today I worked with a 4th grade girl with Down's Syndrome. I'll sum up the day by saying, gosh, that girl can run! It's one thing when it's in the school building, but today was 'play day', a sort of field activity day that was out in the high school football field. At least I scored a Mackenzie, after running the length of the field. My youngest was out there too - she thought it was funny that I was running all over that field. Fine sense of humor, kidlet!

Our first camping trip of the season was last weekend. I woke early on Saturday morning and took a nice long walk by myself. On Sunday and Monday, we all slept in. During the days, we canoed, biked and hiked. Each evening, we sat enjoying the campfire. It was a nice break.

Tomorrow I'll head out to the bread outlet and the grocery store. I also need to see if there's anything I need to get for my third daughter, who leaves for church camp next weekend.

I woke up on Tuesday with some sort of cold or allergy thing. I tell you, I work all school year with preschoolers sneezing on me and not getting anything. It doesn't seem to be a true cold, but I'm attempting to generic "Airborne" it any way. Not too successful so far. Luckily the weekend is here. Well, not that sleeping in is going to happen (girls going in all directions,) but I won't have to chase any of them across football fields.

Enjoy the weekend...Take care!

Watch out!!

May 5th, 2007 at 02:18 pm

There's a new driver on the road! Yes, my oldest passed her road test on Friday. And oh, have I been getting offers to run my errands, although I hardly run all that many errands on a Saturday. I am thinking, just maybe, someone is a bit anxious to be DRIVING. I let her take the minivan to work on Saturday and to a friend's on Sunday. She's happy, and I'm not out too much gas. Oh yeah!

Moneywise, my husband got his pay raise - not a lot, but we won't turn it down. It'll mostly end up going into our retirement funds, where it'll be far more appreciated and beneficial to our future selves, than what we would currently do with it.

I emailed my interest in working the extended school year over the summer, and they were interested in having me back. They'll let me know what grade level, and I enjoy working with all ages, so I'm not picky. My oldest works the same hours - 3 hours in the mornings M-Th for six weeks - and it's only until last part of July. What a hardship, I know! My second daughter will stay with the younger two, and I pay her a little for it (she usually uses it as her spending money on her mission trip and for her church camp week up north - it's quite amazing how careful she is in making purchases, when she's earned the money!) If the younger two want to take a community ed offering, it's also at the same time as what I'll be working. And of course, I'll get a paycheck into the summer a bit. Win-win all around.

I planned meals for the next two weeks, made my shopping list, and went to the grocery store on Saturday. Still keeping within the budget for that too.

Otherwise, plugging along...take care!

Catching up....

May 2nd, 2007 at 01:35 pm

We've been having gorgeous weather, so every morning I've been hanging the laundry on the line. We had a little rain a couple evenings ago, so the grass has been flourishing.

We've been eating meals from the crockpot or slapdashing something together each night. At least, we're staying away from fast food on these busy days of late. Tonight's dinner is homemade pizza once again!

I finished up the last of the kindergarten classes this week, which will ease up the calendar. I also saw the posting for the summer positions. I could apply for paraprofessional for either pre-k through 5th grade or 6th through 12th grades. Still determining the logistics with the girls...

This week hasn't been easy on the checking acct. I signed up the oldest for the instructor course through Red Cross. Maisy, my mom's border collie, went to the vet today. She's 16 years old and was a bit cranky about having some blood taken, but otherwise, she's doing good. On Sunday, she'll go in for grooming.

I go in a bit to pick up third daughter from girls scouts. First, I'll get the clothes off the line. (It's such a hardship to be out in the warm sun with he temp at 70...)

Enjoy your evening...take care!

The Good, the Bad and the Dull

April 25th, 2007 at 04:54 pm

Not much happening here. Still going strong with the laundry out on the line. All meals are at or from home - even though after working the whole day yesterday, with an hour at home for homework and dinner, and before heading out to work again...I WAS sorely tempted to do a fast food run. We opted to eat what you want, as long as you can fix it yourself. By no means a stellar meal, but it worked in keeping us away from the fast food, and it definitely worked for tired me. Tonight I made pizza, before evening church activities.

Only one more week of the evening Kindergarten classes. I know many of the kids and families, so it's been a lot of fun to see them so excited for Kindergarten. But the long days get to be VERY long! The checks will be welcome too.

Tomorrow the minivan finally gets repaired. I'm anxious to get it done, and find out how much it will be. Fingers and toes crossed that it will be less than more.

Need to still call for a vet appointment and some grooming for the dog. Along with the tulips, lilacs and rhubarb, spring blooms abundant bills!

Have a nice evening...take care!

Work, bills and snow - oh my!

April 10th, 2007 at 05:11 pm

Got stopped in the hall at school this afternoon, and was asked if I wanted to to sub in special ed tomorrow. Of course! The end-of-year rush to use up personal days is starting, and I'm happy to help out. This week also starts our kindergarten connection classes for next fall's incoming kindergarten class. Many extra hours for my next few paychecks - yay!

I'm also considering doing the extended school year again over the summer (June into July.) I really enjoyed working with the middle and high schoolers last summer. This summer I would have to choose between preschool/elementary or the ms/hs again - I know I would enjoy either. I've already decided to not do the kindergarten prep classes in August. It's the only month we can do some longer camping trips, and I really just want some time off with the girls before we all head back to school (spoilt, I know, and lucky too.)

Otherwise, I received three medical/dental bills in the mail today. Only one was correct! How much time I spend on the phone with billing departments - arg! Of course I do, because it's my dollars they want. I do keep good records and notes, but it's a hassle nonetheless.

It's just begun snowing...again. Where is spring this year??

Oh well, going out for a walk anyway, then a bath, some sleepytime tea and more time with a book by Chris Bohjalian (called Idyll Banter) that I picked up at the library. Did I mention that the girls are done with their homework? The day will end pleasantly...take care!

Money in - that's staying in

February 2nd, 2007 at 12:18 pm

It's been a few days since my last entry - a busy week, I guess! I'm happy to say everyone went to school and work, every day this week. We are healthy again.

My brochure mailing was sent off without a hitch on Monday. I also volunteered to work an event a week from Saturday at the school. A bit extra on my paycheck.

I was paid on the 30th, and I transferred my whole check into our savings. I'm replenishing our EF (kind of our second one, as we also have a cushion in the checking acct.) With our medical expenses of the past year, that account was seeing heavy use. I'm glad it was in place to be used, but now with the medical expenses slowing down a bit (keeping fingers crossed,) I can finally take the opportunity to build it up again. I'll feel better with more $ in that account, with all the changes with my husband's company buy-out. He still has his job, plus there's been lots of OT, which he's grabbing up, while it's available.

We have a PTO fundraising event tomorrow to attend with the younger girls. Not my favorite thing to do, but the girls love it, so we'll go, of course.

Stay warm...take care!

Sunday This & That

January 28th, 2007 at 06:14 pm

My oldest daughter and I are losing weight together. Since early Jan., we've lost 5 and 8 lbs, respectively. And if that isn't enough, the amount I'm spending at the grocery store is reducing as well! Yay! I spent under $200 on Saturday, for the food and supplies for the next two weeks and a bit of pantry stocking.

Another thing I've been trying to do lately is try out a new recipe every week or two. My cooking definitely falls into some serious ruts. Tonight my family tried one called Bruschetta Chicken. They all found it tasty, though I'll cook it a little longer to crisp the top a bit more. It was also not too bad health- and dollar-wise.

I worked on the bulk mailing from work earlier today (my weekends are exciting, you can see.) I'll have a check cut at the district office and drop it all off at the PO, after my preschool hours tomorrow. I also work for a bit tomorrow night - and my younger girls can come to help me, and play with the kids that will be coming, if they want.

That is all, for now...take care!

Can you believe?!

January 18th, 2007 at 01:20 pm

My third daughter is home sick today. I think illness has taken up residence with us! The nerve of it, too - I've been a fiend with the Lysol.

I just received a call for a bulk mailing of preschool brochures to go out at the end of next week - a bit more money on the paycheck. Plus my supervisor said she mentioned my name to our Community Ed. program for bulk mailing the school's Sr. class party mailer. More potential income...yay!

Yesterday, a coworker gave me a bag of clothes cleaned out of her middleschooler's closet. My two middle girls had the clothes divided in literally seconds. It's funny - my third daughter was needing some pants too, and there were two pairs that fit perfect. Someone is looking out for us, that's for sure.

Dinner will be tacos, laundry is done, house straightened...boring, but nice.

Temps are pretty cold with the windchill, but better than yesterday (and tomorrow, by the sounds of it.) This is more like MN. And the price at the gas pump is surprisingly not too bad - I think I must have missed some news piece about why, but I'll relish it while it lasts!

Enjoy your day and take care!

A bit of work, a bit of play...

August 18th, 2006 at 08:22 pm

Setting up a new classroom is a lot of work! I started in the morning, and came home at dinnertime (I know, like a real job - ha!) Still plenty of work left, but progress was made. Plus I will love the extra hours on the paycheck!

After dinner, we all went to pick up more on the girls' school supply lists. One more stop to OfficeMax for a couple more items - probably tomorrow. At the end of the school year, I had received a $15 discount off a $50 purchase for OfficeMax. The supplies we need to buy there won't come close to the $50, but it so happens I do need printer ink. The ink's a grumble purchase, but having a discount helps.

We may also get gym shoes for the two middle girls this weekend (the oldest and youngest have theirs already.) Otherwise, a lazy couple of days ahead - sleeping in, puttering, grilling, reading, maybe swimming (at this time of year, the lake can turn pea soup green almost in an instant - the arrival of what I grew up calling dog days)...the best sort of weekend! Enjoy yours and take care!

Busy day in a busy week

August 17th, 2006 at 04:22 pm

What a busy week! I started our 'Ready,set, Kindergarten' class this week. It's exciting to see my former preschool kids proudly doing what Kindegarteners do. I've also been receiving bags of pass-along clothes from some of my coworkers - my girls look forward to my return each day!

After work today, I got a chance to go over my summer paychecks (I was waiting for my 8-15 one.) I finally figured out that I received all the hours I was supposed to, but on different checks and different pay periods. Confusing...but glad I didn't have to march into the payroll office, and glad to have the pay, for sure!

I took my oldest to one of her medical appts today. Being there three to five times a week, I take care to pay our co-pay and get a receipt each and every time. Just before our camping trip, I had received a bill for a sixty day old co-pay charge. I asked about it today, and it was in error, so our account is cleared. Yay!

It's nice to get two more things cleared off my eternal to-do list! I even visited my mom after the medical appt. She's doing well (only one call from the nurses on our vacation!) Conversation is still strange, but it's not so shocking as it used to be. Mom laughs a lot and keeps on talking, so no harm (and it's nice to be reminded of things from her childhood.) I'll need to be the keeper of my own childhood memories now. Well, on to dinner duty...take care!

What luck!

August 14th, 2006 at 05:58 pm

This afternoon, my third daughter got a call from our local librarian saying that she had won a drawing, and could come pick out a book of her choice. When we arrived at the library, we found that she had also won a second drawing for two tickets for our upcoming state fair. Lucky girl! What's neat is that my husband and I were just talking of going to the fair, as our oldest will be competing there with her fire department explorer group. Two less tickets to buy is grand!

On the work front, I got a call today that we can put in a bit of extra hours this week and next, as we are preparing for a big open house on the 25th, as well as school's start in September. This is in addition to the 'ready for Kindergarten' classes I'm already doing these next two weeks. They didn't have to ask me twice! May our luck continue...take care!

Back at Home

August 12th, 2006 at 08:37 am

We're back from our camping trip up north. It was so fun and relaxing. We spent lots of time in the water - swimming in Lake Superior and under Gooseberry Falls. Roasting hot dogs and marshmallows over campfires at night. My second daughter discovered a talent at making pancakes, so we had several breakfasts featuring her artistic creations (round is boring, mom!)

During the requisite laundry catch-up, I spent time gathering together my youngest's outgrown clothes, as well as checking out the rest of the girls' closets. Altogether I had eight bags of clothes, shoes and miscellaneous household clutter to donate at our favorite place. Yesterday afternoon, we made a run to make the donation, as well as check out their thrift shop for clothes for school. I told the cashier that we were leaving with almost as much as we donated. Well, only four bags...but good deals nonetheless. Still looking for some jeans for the two youngest, but not desperate yet.

We're almost school-ready. I have the bulk of the school supplies bought (just a couple things that I need from the art and office supply stores.) My mother-in-law offered to buy the girls their gym shoes - the oldest and youngest are done, still have the middle two to do. Yay all around!

The next two weeks, I'm working the 'Ready, Set, Kindergarten' class. I need to get out of vacation mode, and back to real life! I have to plan out meals for the next two weeks, make the gocery list, and then head to the bread thrift and grocery stores. I'll definitely be out of vacation made by today's end! Take care!!

Preparations

July 28th, 2006 at 06:16 am

I worked earlier this week, and I'll go in today. Our classroom space is moving around, and today we're moving our parent resource library to a different room. I'll head over in a bit - we're making an early start as the temps are predicted to be 100 today, and there is no a/c at the school. I'll be readying our program's fall registration brochure for mailing next Monday, so bit by bit I'm accumulating a few hours this summer.

We've been lucky in being able to hang out laundry almost everyday this summer, though the dryer usage savings is probably offset (or exceeded) by fan usage. If we can get through our 100s of the weekend, the forecasters are predicting 90s by Tuesday - oh yeah!

The girls have an afternoon rehearsal, and then eat bag dinners before tonight's performance. I have the makings for sandwiches, and can scrounge enough for the rest of their meal. I may try to do some grocery shopping while they are at rehearsal, or if not, I'll do it tomorrow. My list is ready, including meals at home for next week and for camping the week after. I'll freeze the meat for camping.

Last night we went shopping for a new clothesline (it's ancient, and was hanging by its last reinforcing middle threads, which did thankfully hold out to the end!) We also picked up a griddle and new coffee pot that we can use on the campfire. We had been making do with an old whistling tea kettle, but the plastic parts melted into the pot our last camping trip. All I'll say is that I never melted plastic when I put the keetle on, but I did appreciate that someone was trying to help. Now HE can help with the new pot, and there's no plastic whatsoever to melt! Anyway, we boil a lot of water camping, for consumption and washing, so now we can all have cocoa at the same time or have plenty of hot water for the dishes. I know, I get excited over silly little things!

Stay cool....take care!


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