Archive for May, 2011

I feel sort of silly admitting this, because it’s summer vacation and all, but I am starting to feel totally overwhelmed.  The summer was supposed to be my special time with H, and instead, I’ve managed to turn it into a stressful time where I am trying to do renovations to the house, develop my course for the fall, start my business, and make sure all of the loose ends are tied up with my current job when I officially hand over my keys on June 30th.  And did I mention I have no daycare?  Yikes.

I know this is all my fault–I greatly overestimate what I am capable of accomplishing during a set unit of time, and I greatly underestimate the amount of energy and patience that I have to accomplish those tasks.   I can’t do it all.  I can’t.  And there’s nothing wrong with that.  R and I had a good talk about this tonight—he reminded me that my real job right now is to be with H.  He reminded me of how much I missed H when I was at work, and I should use this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to truly be with H.  He’s absolutely right.  The business can wait a few months until H starts preschool in the fall a couple days a week.  The course prep for the fall CAN’T really wait, but if I make that a priority over the next couple of weeks, I can get the whole thing done if I work on it at night after H goes to bed.  The house projects—well, let’s just say I might be a little too ambitious about those.  We’ve been in our house 2 years, and it still needs a ton of work.  A lot of the work is stuff that I can do, and I wasn’t able to do much of it our first year in the house because I was so sick with sinus and ear infections that year.  This year has been better, so I am making up for lost time.  Currently, I’m in the process of painting all of the dark 1970s wood trim and wood doors that adorn our house.  That is a HUGE task.  The doors take a minimum of 3 coats/side.  That’s 6 days per door x 9 doors.  That’s 54 days of painting.  No way in hell it will get done this summer, but if I can at least get half of it done, that will be 4 doors that we won’t have to do next year.  I know it seems like “Well, it’s just dark wood trim, just let it go for another year….” This is true, I could just let it go another year, but OMG, that disgusting trim drives me crazy.  It has to go.  It just might have to go over a 2-year period:)

The other big project  is our garden—which thankfully, is done! (pictures to come).  We finished it up this weekend, thanks to no rain for 2 consecutive days.  Tending the garden is not a stressor for me, but getting the sod removed, the fence up, etc, was a total stressor.  So at least that is over with.  Sigh:)

Oh, and we’re potty-training.  Not religiously, but we’re kind of attempting it.  It’s actually going really well.  If I prompt H first thing in the morning, he’ll sit on the potty and go!  If he has to poop, we’ll ask him to sit on the potty, and he’ll go. He’s just not always diligent about letting us know that he has to go.  He’ll figure it out.  And if he doesn’t, so what.

So yeah—I just had to chronicle all the stuff that’s going on right now.  It’s a lot, and I need to recognize that, and let some of it go.  I need to be OK with it not all getting done.  I really just need to get over myself.

What would YOU do?

So today, I am REALLY starting to feel better.  The congealed mess that was coming out of my ear has finally started to break up and dissipate, my throat isn’t as sore, my hearing is better, and I have more energy.  Two weeks into this, and I am starting to feel good again!  Now summer can start again in earnest!

Other good news–I went to a “Starting your own business” seminar today, that was hosted by the VT Small Business Development Center.  It was great—lots of practical information, resources, and support.  I have to register my trade name, but I still don’t know what to call my business.  I’m open to suggestions:)

Also, the thing that has been weighing on my mind in a big way, is this little situation with H’s former school.  H has been out of school for nearly 3 weeks now.  Just recently, I found his former teachers and the owner of the daycare on Facebook, and I friended them.  We had all discussed keeping in touch, and somehow Facebook has just become one of the easiest ways to accomplish that.  I got together with H’s former teacher Ashley for a playdate earlier this week.  She watches Jacob, who was one of H’s classmates (and who,  in a weird twist of fate, also lives in our old condo downtown).  Ashley, Jacob, H, and I all went to the park together and had a wonderful time.  The boys were thrilled to see each other, and H was so overjoyed to see his beautiful Ashley once again.  Ashley and I talked at the playground—-and she told me the real scoop behind the school’s closing.  I knew that there were financial hardships, and I also knew that making payroll was a challenge for the owner.  But I DIDN’T know that the owner did not pay any of the teachers for the entire last month that the school was open.  The teachers knew they weren’t getting paid and knew that they would never see the money (the owner told them as much), but they kept coming in to work day after day, so they could support the families and the kids that went to the school.  My heart broke when I heard this.  I cannot imagine being in that position.  And Ashley confided that they all were tempted to talk to the parents about it, but they felt it would be unprofessional to air that dirty laundry so openly.  None of the teachers are in communication with the owner at this point, which is a big deal because they had all worked together for the past 11 years.  Now their friendship is over.  It is sad.

I keep thinking about it, and I keep feeling angry.  I keep feeling like I should do something.  We paid nearly $200/week to the preschool, with the belief that the money would help pay the teachers.  The teachers never got that money.  So even though the school provided the care that we paid for, the owner DIDN’T pay the teachers, and I am REALLY PISSED OFF that our money was not spent in the way that we thought it would be.  Working in a daycare is hard work, and those ladies deserve every cent of their hard-earned money.  One of the teachers is pregnant—and now she is scrambling to find a job.

What would YOU do?  Nothing?  Something?  I’m friends with the owner on Facebook; I friended her before I knew all of this.  I could talk to her about it, but I am fairly certain that she would be unreasonable about it.  So I don’t think that would work.  Maybe I shouldn’t do anything.  Maybe we should all just move on with our lives.

But every time I look at those last little art projects that H brought home from school, I think about the teachers who helped wipe the paint off his chubby little fingers, complimented him on his artistry, and lovingly placed his little paintings in his bin at the end of the day.  I think about their dedication, how they wouldn’t walk out on the kids and the families, how they basically volunteered their time, talents, and patience for the last month the school was open.  Their talents are valuable, and it breaks my heart that they were treated like they aren’t.

Double the fun

My first week with H was last week.  He went to my neighbor’s for one day while I went into work, but other than that, it was just me and him all week long!  It was wonderful.  We took walks to the park, played in the yard, made pancakes, painted pictures, and ate grilled cheese together for lunch.  We were both getting into the swing of things, but then…the weekend happened.  On Saturday I had to go to campus to participate in the commencement ceremony.  I finished up and left for home immediately because Rob was home sick with H and he needed some relief.  I came home, fixed us some lunch, and then we laid low the rest of the day.  That night my throat was starting to feel sore, but I thought maybe I was just imagining things.  On Mother’s Day, it was evident that I really *was* sick.  We went out to breakfast, then we came home and spent the rest of the day at the house.  Today was the first day since then that I have left the neighborhood.  My ears started bothering me on Monday, and then today I couldn’t stand it any longer.  I dragged H with me to my primary care doc, I got the confirmation that my ears are a mess, and I was given a prescription to clear up the infection.  Tonight I’m in quite a bit of discomfort, and I am irritated that my ears are doing this again.  It’s so frustrating.  No amount of exercise, good diet, and low stress seems to be having any sort of positive effect on my health.  It’s possible that I just got some bug from H—he had an ear infection last week, as evidenced by his tubes letting some seriously icky ear goop escape his middle ear.  He went through a week of waking up several times at night, but this week he has been sleeping through the night.  I think he’s past the worst of it now.  I know things will be better once this week is over.  It’s just really hard to adequately take care of an active preschooler when you feel this awful:(


My final grades are in.  I am done.  Summer can officially start!

We had another amazing day in the sun today—we spent a good deal of time prepping another bed in our garden.  This new bed will contain sugar snap peas.  Our bamboo teepees are constructed and ready to go.  We just need to wait another couple of weeks before it’s consistently warm enough to plant our veggies.  H was such a good helper—he diligently transferred worms from the sod directly into our new raised beds.  He also helped us scoop soil and compost into the beds.  H contributed quite a bit to the gardening effort today, although he could be a little bit more careful about where he wields his shovel:)

Later in the afternoon, we spent time chatting with our neighbor, while decorating our driveway with every variety of construction vehicle and airplane, using sidewalk chalk.  I was also informed by H that “Mommy is not a good artist,” but that “Papa *is* a good artist.”  He’s not wrong.  By the end of the day, we were dirty, dusty, tan, and smiling.  Our dinner (on the grill, of course) was curried chicken kebabs, complete with pineapple, papaya, and green pepper.  They were AMAZING.  We then made a spur-of-the-moment decision to go to Friendly’s for some ice cream to celebrate the end of the semester, and the beginning of an amazing, awesome, summer!

I have high expectations for this summer, but I feel like I deserve a good summer after shoveling 125 inches of snow this winter!  So far, this summer vacation has not disappointed me, and we are only a couple days into it!