Posted in Job, Me, Professional Organzing

SAHM

I have been a full-time stay at home mom since I ended up pregnant and on bedrest with multiples. I have not regretted this, although sure, some extra money would be nice.

About 6 or 7 years ago I started a part time business wherein I was a professional organizer and helped others organize their homes. I loved (LOVED!) doing it. I loved getting paid for something I loved doing. I loved helping people. I loved everything about it.

But.

I haven’t worked in about a year. Not through a lack of desire, but a lack of clients. I don’t typically work during the summer due to the kids being home. But this fall, instead of all my kids getting on lovely school buses and being gone during the day, two will be home doing cyber school. Making working outside of the home incredibly difficult, if not outright impossible.

We just received the automatic renewal notice on my business’ website. Being that I don’t intend on being able to actually work, it’s time to take the website down. Which ended up being rather difficult for me to accept. It’s the right thing to do, but it’s like saying Good-bye to my business, which I loved.

Someday in the future I may be able to go back to working, but for now I’ll just be a SAHM. And thankful for the privilege to do so.

Posted in 7 Quick Takes, Addiction, Cleaning, Job, Kids, Thankfulness, Vacation

1. Two posts in two days! Aren’t I impressive?!

2. My tale of woe for today: Today is the first day that all four kids are off. Ethan’s school district always starts late and ends late. So for a week on each end I’m dealing with wanting to stay up late and having to get up early. SO, today is the first real day of summer vacation. I could SLEEP IN PAST 6:00. No rushing to get anyone out the door. Jim would even put the dog out for me (which I always do since I’m the first one up). Ah, bliss. Only notsomuch. 3am. I wake up because someone went to the bathroom (side note, does deep sleeping ever come back once you are a mom?). 3:01am Laura comes in because she had a bad dream. She’s almost 11. My tolerance for this is getting lower. I rub her back for a few minutes and send her back to bed. Am awake for awhile, but eventually fall asleep. Wake up around 4:30am. Just because. Go back to sleep. Wake up around 5:??am because of the garbage trucks. Shut the window, go back to sleep. 7:20 or so KNOCK, KNOCK. Wake up out of a sound sleep. Laura wants to come in and lay down with me. Any other morning in creation I would have been fine. This morning? NO WAY. I admit to not being the kindest, lovingest mother in my response to Laura. She leaves. I lay there, wide awake, wondering if I should give up or try to fall back asleep. A few minutes later, the door opens and in comes Catie to snuggle. NO! I asked for one day! ONE DAY.

I got up. I told Jim what his daughters had done. He gave me an “awww!” I’m going to renegotiate for another morning.

3. Morale of the story: lock the door and sleep with earplugs. Or don’t even try. Low expectations never disappoint.

4. Changing gears, I have said I want 2012 to be a completely sober year. I’m halfway through and things are looking okay so far. There have certainly been twinges, there have been temptations, there have been moments where the goal was less important, but so far I have chosen obedience and sobriety. It’s been GOOD.

5. A friend of mine and I are doing a Home Reboot with SarahMae. With summer vacation the house generally nosedives. I really, REALLY don’t want that to happen this year. However, I know myself very well and if I don’t have someone to hold me accountable (and this friend is my addiction accountability as well!), I will definitely not follow through. So far I’ve tackled the upstairs bedrooms and am currently working my way though the laundry (changing seasons of linens on 5 beds makes for a lot of blankets!) and the dreaded office. Today I’m determined to clean the stove and oven (which is a 4.5 hour cleaning cycle and makes the house smell) and continuing with the office.

6. Jim has been between contracts now since March. It’s been very challenging around here. Two expected contracts never came to fruition. Not that we are in any marital difficulties, because we aren’t, but I understand why money trouble is the #1 reason for divorce in America.

7. I listed Ethan’s pullups on Freecycle. Two different people came and picked them up. SO WEIRD, but SO AMAZING to not have a drawer full of them. To only keep a few “just in case”, which has not been the case since early May. He hasn’t even had an accident except for one day at school where he told the teacher he had to go, but they were outside on a cane lesson and couldn’t get to a bathroom in time. He’s had no accidents at home at all. Praise God from whom all blessings flow!

Posted in Job, Me

The Light is Bright

when you are on the other side of the tunnel, that is.

After 9 weeks I’m back to being a stay at home mom. Here’s what I learned from the experience:

1. I am not wired to work outside the house all day and then come home and manage to keep up with everything that needs to be done. Laundry, cooking and the occasional clearing-off-the-counters happened. Oh, and I cleaned the toilets once or twice.

2. If I am cheery at work with nice adults, I have a much more difficult time being cheery at home with children who are not so nice. It’s like I have only a certain amount of cheeriness and then it gets used up. And since I’m not going to be grouchy around adults, my family will bear the brunt of it. I didn’t know this about myself.

3. Seeing the house pile up and not having the energy to deal with it made me rather excited about the idea of being finally home to deal with it.

4. I made a better wife than Jim does. Go figure!

5. I look forward, after the children are grown, to rejoining the workforce. I actually like working in an office. I enjoy being administrative help, although I certainly like professional organizing’s pay better! I got many kudos and thank you’s from the people I worked with/for, which was really, pretty darn nice. Families don’t, normally, do that. Jim calls them “attaboys”. They make life a little nicer!

So, all that said, I’m very glad to be at home again. I have a HUGE paperwork pile to tackle, which includes some very important, time-sensitive insurance re-enrollment stuff. I’m happy to finally have the time and energy to do this.

Oh, and one more thing–5 WEEKS UNTIL DISNEY WORLD!!

Posted in Job

Two-Thirds

That’s how far I am through my temp job. I enjoy the actual working–interacting with adults, doing adult work etc. But the SAHM part of me really misses how the house used to look and having guilt-free free time. If I’m not doing laundry or something else productive, I’m feeling guilty. I think I need a wife. That would help. I have only three weeks left and am very happy the light is visible at the end of the tunnel and I’ll soon be able to grocery shop on Mondays again. Because Sunday night grocery shopping stinks.

See you all soon!

Posted in Job, Me, To Do List

Bear With Me

So I’ve been working for a week. I mean, working for PAY. In an OFFICE. NOT ORGANIZING.

Rewind life 11 years ago, pre-children, and life was somewhat similar. Except now I have four children who wear a heck of a lot of laundry and a husband who works sometimes-utterly-insane-amounts of hours and can’t pitch in with the house stuff a whole lot. Or at all. Which explains why not only is my dishwasher full of dirty dishes, but so is my sink.  There are no clean spoons. Or mugs. Or, apparently, socks or my elder daughter, because laundry has also fallen by the wayside.

How do you working moms DO IT??

I leave the house the instant my kids leave for the bus stop (8:45) and come home at 3:20, in time for Ethan’s bus. All that stuff that used to get done in the intervening hours now has to happen before bedtime. And it’s just not. We still have elder/deacon meetings, karate, variety show practice, good news club, science fairs….and all of THAT has to happen before bedtime as well!

Again, how do you working moms DO IT?? Do you just give up getting enough sleep? Because I’ve done that when the kids were little and managed to survive it, but I did not have to interact in a coherent manner on the phone in a professional atmosphere.

So, all that said, this blog is definitely going to be taking a backseat. The instant I press “publish” I’m going to finish filling that dishwasher and clear off the kitchen counter. I hope. Then pick up the kids and make sure they do their homework. And then do laundry so I have something to wear to work tomorrow. Then fix dinner. And put the kids to bed.  And then hopefully see my husband (who worked 73 hours last week–13 of those on Sunday alone!)

I’ll miss you. And I hope that you’ll be with me when April rolls around and my temp job ends.

Posted in 7 Quick Takes, Jim, Job, Kids

7 Quick Takes Friday

1. I dabbled in karma yesterday. Or, to put a Christian spin on it, I did to others as I wished that they had done to me: I visited a friend on bedrest. I HATED bedrest. I came down in the morning, waddling the whole way, got breakfast and then laid on the couch. All. Day. Long. Until it was time to laboriously climb upstairs to bed at night. I was so lonely and bored, words cannot describe. So the instant I learned about my friend on bedrest, I immediately emailed with “I’m coming!” because, really, I wouldn’t wish that on my worst enemy.

2. Speaking of worst enemies, here comes my big toe dipping into politics for a second. There has been a LOT of cheering about Osama Bin Laden’s death this week. Which, honestly, saddens me. Are we so inured to death from the media that we cannot mourn a real human being dying? He was a child of God; Jesus died for him. The fact that he didn’t believe is something to be sad about. We KNOW where he is, and I wouldn’t wish that on my worst enemy, either. Ok, except for Satan. He IS my worst enemy. Yes, bin Laden was the mastermind behind much evil. Yes, he deserved to be brought to justice for what he has done. But the cheering and outright gladness for his death is over the top.

3. Switching back to normal life topics, what is the deal with sticking tongues out? I am constantly hearing “MOM! Catie stuck her tongue out at me!” I’m sure I did it at that age. But, oh brother, am I ready for this particular stage to be done with.

4. We had to have “The Talk” with Catie this week. One of our neighbors’ children has been talking about sex in a very inappropriate way. I talked to his father who talked to him, but unfortunately the damage was done. She and I sat together and went through Book 2 of God’s Design for Sex. Her comment? “Euuu!” Let’s hope she keeps that point of view for many years!

5. Jim’s been working for two months now, but we are still definitely playing catch up with finances. We had some debt before all this started and only added to it, as well as having to borrow money from family. It’s going to take some time to dig ourselves out of the hole. In the meantime, other than our special Friday night pizza and cheap movie, we’re not doing anything extra. I can’t WAIT until we are out of debt and finally able to save some money again!

6. Pursuant to #5, he was able to convince the New Hampshire people that telecommuting made a lot more sense for them financially. It was costing them upwards of $1000 each time he went up. So he’s been home for two weeks and we are very grateful to have him at the dinner table each night, as well as to help put the kids to bed. Splitting the parenting burdens makes things ever so much easier!

7. I’m surviving The Upgrade. I’m still finding my way around everything, but each day gets a little easier. There are still things that need to be loaded on–I keep finding new needs when I go to use a program and there’s a “You Need to Load XYZ to use this”. But, in the end, it will be easier and faster and better and I’ll be glad I did it. I’m just not there yet! 🙂

Posted in Addiction, Church, Family, Job, Me, Worship

The State of the Blogger

Hey People. I’ve missed you all! I know it’s my own fault, but sometimes, ok, many times I’ve passed by here not knowing what to post. Not wanting to just put down words for the sake of just having a post. That’s disrespectful of you and your time. I haven’t had any excellent recipes lately. No massive spiritual insight. Jim’s still working, thank the Good Lord. We’re still afloat. The kids are reasonably healthy, having a small stomach bug and a cavity. I have a new client starting on Saturday.

There. That’s the last two and a half weeks. Aren’t you edified? 🙂

One thing of note, I guess. As of tomorrow I will have 9 weeks of sobriety. That’s a satisfying number. I emailed the elder board and our pastor and asked to resume my deacon duties if they approve.

Our church is going through it’s “re-launch”. It’s been challenging with a different format, changing the way we worship, meeting expectations etc. But it’s also been nice to see visitors in the pews and someone, GASP, raising a hand during worship time.

You know, for YEARS I didn’t use my musical gift. I sat with the congregation, whether by my choice or someone else’s, and soaked up and enjoyed. On the one hand, there are times that I miss that–being able to get lost in worship. But on the other hand, being able to actually USE my voice and my piano playing for God’s glory is amazing. Now, the piano ain’t nearly as good as the voice, but it’s decent enough. My wish each week is that I don’t get in the way of the congregation worshipping.  I don’t want them to focus–for good or for bad (i.e. “wow, she has a great voice!” or “wow, she really messed that up” or “boy, I wish we could have someone else up there!”).

I know some of you help lead worship. Are you able to worship at the same time?