Archive for February, 2011
Solo Chatter

H talks and talks and talks to himself.  His self-chatter is a constant stream of:

“I’m going to the restaurant,” said James.


Look at my pistons go!


“I’m off to the destination,” said Thomas.

James and Thomas are, of course, trains from the famous Thomas The Tank Engine series that H has been obsessed with since he was about 20 months old.  H’s soliloquies sound like books—you can practically hear the quotation marks around each individual train’s speaking turn.

On this snowy February Sunday, we’ve been listening to a lot of H’s solo chatter.  Today was our catch-up day for all of the chores that get put off during the week, which means we don’t have a lot of down time to spend entertaining our little guy.  Luckily, he’s been in a good mood, and has been entertaining himself pretty well, telling stories about his trains and all of their exciting adventures (many of which involve going to restaurants to drink chocolate milk).

I spent 2 hours yesterday grading exams, and I have already spent at least 1.5-2 hours on class prep today, with a couple more hours ahead of me after H goes to bed.  Quitting this job is absolutely the best thing I could do for our family.  I will feel so much better once I have some more balance in my life, and the alleged “free” time I have on my weekend is not consumed with work that really should get done during the week.

Next weekend we’re going to Waterville Valley, New Hampshire, for our annual President’s Day family weekend getaway.  Holden will get to see his cousins and grandparents, and our good friends A & S will be joining the family for the first time.  It’s going to be FUN, and I plan on doing no work during the entire weekend (it helps that there’s no class on the following Monday!)

Let’s see—what else have we been up to?  Well, we had to purchase a roof rake for the first time ever.  Yes, a rake that pulls snow off your roof.  We have so much snow right now that folks are being warned about the risk of roof collapse.  At least 4 barns have collapsed in VT this winter (sadly, a couple of cows perished in one of these accidents).  Houses are at risk for this too, but the risk is not as bad.  We really do have quite a bit of snow:

There’s really nowhere else to put the snow at this point.  I think I shoveled 10 hours last week.  Really.  Rob also spent hours shoveling.  We took turns, so neither of us would get too terribly sore.

The good part about all this snow is that we’ve had really amazing sledding conditions.  H has finally gone down part of the mountain SOLO!  Here he is, capsizing a couple of times, but having great fun nonetheless:

H and I also are indulging in a fun yoga class that meets once each week on Saturdays. He really loves seeing the other kids. We’ll be taking the class through mid-March, and then before you know it, my job will be wrapped up, and it will be warm, and we’ll be able to walk to the park, have picnics, and plant our garden. Speaking of gardening, when I asked H the other day what he would want to plant in the garden he replied, “Carrots! It will make Buca very happy!” Buca is our 9-year old rabbit. So carrots we will plant.

I’m feeling pretty positive about my career change, although I haven’t had much time to devote to preparing for it. I’ve been in the process of printing off a couple of e-books on usability, plus finding out about professional organizations in the field. I now have a contact in the field (thank you, Deborah!), so that definitely helps me feel like I can navigate through everything without getting totally lost. I’m looking forward to having more time to really dig in.

Other than that… projects and more house projects. We’re replacing our windows in June. I found a local guy who will do it for a slightly more reasonable price than some of the larger companies. I’d rather have a local person getting the work, anyway. Our windows are single pane and (in H’s room, especially), the windows are covered with mold because they are leaking water. The windows are original to the house, so they really do need to be replaced. We’ve also been having issues with the hot water in the tub….as in, it’s not that hot. The problem has been progressing over the past couple of months, and now there is NO hot water in the tub. We’ve been bathing H at neighbor’s and friend’s houses. We had a plumber come out last week, and the problem is our boiler. I got the whole sales pitch about how we really need an efficient gas furnace, etc., but the $8300 price tag is too much to swallow the same year that we do the windows. So, I pressed the nice plumbing/heating guy further, until we finally settled on the option to repair the coil in our boiler. Hopefully that will happen soon, so that we can cease our tour of all of our friend’s bathtubs. I’ve also been trying to finish the neverending painting project. I started painting our living room and hallway in August, and I am *still* in the midst of that particular project. I do a little here and there, in between deadlines and grading frenzies. I’ll get it all done eventually, right?

Rob is currently reading to Holden about poop, and we are winding down for the night. I am tired, and I have to lay down with H to get him to go to sleep. This will make me sleepier. Then I will have to get up to work. I cannot wait until my job is over.