Monday, June 28, 2010

First Real Day of Summer Vacation

The kids haven't gone to school in over a week, but as we were in Virginia Beach wearing ourselves out in the heat next to a hockey pitch, it didn't really feel like school was out. But today finally feels like the first day of Summer Break!

I didn't have to worry any children into bed last night. Well, okay, I did a little, shooing them both upstairs at 11:30 because it felt like the prudent thing to do. But as it was 11:30 neither of them complained all that much. I didn't have to check homework or go through papers looking for permission slips, lunch forms or tests to sign.

This morning I didn't have to bag a lunch or rummage through the pantry fussing about who is eating the lunch fixin's and why we never have enough to last the week. I didn't have to coax a very whiny 9-year-old very unwillingly out of his bed (in fact, he's still there) or remind him 27 times to brush his teeth and hair or argue with him about why he can't just wear his pajamas to school.

I don't have to worry about phone calls for forgotten papers, folders or lunch boxes. I don't have to watch the clock so I don't forget to pick someone up. And I don't have to deal with the infernal drop-off/pick-up situation in front of the school!

Would you look at that, there are some things I love about Summer!

We tried to take it easy yesterday. It was our first full day back and we all needed to decompress a little. We did have church, a church planning meeting and a quick trip to the grocery store to complete, but after that, it was loll-around time! We took naps, surfed on the Internet, watched TV, IM'ed friends. And then, after dinner a new Miss Marple was on!

I love PBS' Summer Masterpiece Mystery series! Daria and I keep each other updated on the schedule each year and try to watch them together. We make a pot of tea and try to arrange to have a box of biscuits or some fresh scones on hand and revel in our Anglophilia! Man-Cub still asks every once in a while if Auntie can come over for a pot of tea and a Miss Marple.

If Daria can't join me, which is happening more and more often as she is once again in school, a Miss Marple Night presents a good opportunity to catch up on my ironing. I remember my mother ironing in front of the TV whenever something good and long was on PBS' or A&E. In fact, I think that's how I first came to love Agatha Christie and Jane Austen! We weren't allowed to touch the remote when she was ironing and now, I have to say, I'm thankful for it as she unwittingly exposed me to some of my favorite literature!

So last night, I pulled the ironing basket up to the sofa and ironed away once all the vacation laundry was folded. I was pretty proud of myself, getting all the dirty laundry out of the suitcases and washed and folded within 24 hours of our return home. All of the suitcases are put away, too. Well, all but one. Can you guess whose it is? The Viking has the biggest suitcase and it is, of course, his that we're still tripping over. But I'm going to have one of the children take care of it this afternoon.

Which brings me to my next endeavor. I'm in one of my Let's Tackle This House Once And For All cycles. I usually get like this at the turn of the season. Things naturally need to be packed away (like backpacks) or brought out of storage (like pool toys and beach towels) so I guess it just feels right to do a sweep through the house to make sure everything gets cleaned.

I am usually able to keep the house running much more smoothly when the kids are out of school. I'm not sure why, but I think it has something to do with not being as insanely bored with them here or simply having more hands on deck. Plus, it's just not good for them to be lying around all day just watching TV. They need chores if they're not going to degenerate.

In addition, we've got guests coming for Independence Day weekend. We have a pool and a grill and a good-sized back yard so we usually have some form of festivity here. So, it's a good excuse to get the house in tip-top shape. I want to rearrange the living furniture a bit for Summertime and finally get the powder and laundry room windows painted so I can take down the window treatments that I hate but are hiding the dark, mismatched paint.

So, I'm off to make up a catch-up menu and a summer chore schedule. And then maybe I nap! Ah, Summer!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Gold Medal

Well, the tournament is over and they did it! Redheaded Snippet's team won the gold medal in the Under 16 age group. They were undefeated throughout the entire tournament and beat out 15 other teams from across the nation.

Today's deciding game was almost as exciting as they can get (without going tied into double overtime and three periods of strokes--which happened in a nailbiter last season). The teams were well matched and our girls fought tooth and nail for control of that ball.

No one scored in what seemed to be forever. And then, though I hardly dared to hope it could happen, Redheaded Snippet tipped one in! HURRAH we were ahead 1-0 at the end of the first half!

The second half was no different from the first except that the other team scored one on us. OH NO! More than anything, I was worried about the game ending in a tie and having to go to strokes. I don't know much about field hockey, but I think strokes is a terrible way to end a game, especially one for a medal.

Both teams battled fiercely for the ball and both teams' offensive players were desperately trying to get it in the goal. You could feel the tension in the air and everyone-coaches, players, spectators, parents-was getting all riled up.

The minutes dwindled away, ticking closer and closer to the end...

And then, with only 2 minutes left, Redheaded Snippet tipped another well-placed pass from a teammate into the goal! I thought I was going to jump out of my skin! 2-1 with less than 2 minutes to go!

That second goal seemed to drive the other team into a frenzy, and it sure did do a number on their parents. Turns out, this team has won the gold in this age group for the last nine years. I couldn't help but feel for them when I found that out; Redheaded Snippet's high school team has taken the state title for the last 11 years and I can't imagine what it would be like to fall from such a height.

Somehow, our girls managed to hold the other team off long enough for time to run out and to win the game and the medal! And then I realized Redheaded Snippet had not only scored the winning goal but had scored both of the only goals for her team!

The Viking and I were so proud and so excited for her and Redheaded Snippet's smile was so wide! She had come down to this tournament determined to bring home a gold medal and she had done it! She was flying high!

We had made our way over to the tent for the awards ceremony and were standing around excitedly, waiting for the announcement when I saw a man approach Redheaded Snippet and call her name. She turned to him and he said, "Don't run off after you get your medal. I'd like to record you for the Internet."

That's when I saw the press badge hanging around his neck. Redheaded Snippet glanced at me quickly and when I smiled reassuringly, she looked up at him and said with a broad smile of her own, "OK!"

Her very first interview. It was for a website that follows girls' high school field hockey all across the U.S. The high school's team has been featured on the site several times, but never has Redheaded Snippet been singled out for it before. It's probably not a name that most people would recognize, but it was still unbelievably exciting for us!

I, of course, texted everyone to let them know and have been checking the website every five minutes to see if the story is up yet (it isn't as of 1:30 am).

So here we are, at the end of our trip, having survived the heat and the cooler ban, having spent very little money and avoided eating out at all (except for two ice cream excursions), having enjoyed time together doing things that cost no money whatsoever and bringing home a shiny medal and a small taste of glory.

We leave for home tomorrow. And to cap off the trip we're going to stop for a steak dinner on the way home with a gift card we've been saving for a special occasion. We've been looking forward to this all week long. Even the kids keep talking about it.

I have to say, aside from sleeping in my own bed tomorrow night, I think I'm looking forward to this dinner more than anything! I'm not even going to think about the amount of laundry I'll have to do when I get home!

Sweet dreams!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Hot Under The Collar

So, hot enough for ya?

I hate that question and if one more person asks me that, I may just bludgeon them with the nine bottles of water I've got hidden in my tote bag.

Oh yes, there's an explanation there.

So, that rumor about the cooler ban? Wasn't a rumor at all! It was TRUE!

Just digest that for a while...record-breaking shade from which to spectate...sorry, ma'am, we can't allow any coolers in here...

I thought The Viking was going to go ballistic for a few moments.

Here's what happened. We got to the field on Monday afternoon with two golf umbrellas, two captain's chairs, a tote bag with essentials like car keys, wallets, cell phones (I must add that the cell phone being an essential is debatable) and hotel room key cards, and a small cooler with ice, wet towels and bottles of water in it. I feel it necessary to add that we were by no means toting alcoholic beverages, sharp weaponry, drug paraphernalia or messy foods in there.

We got to the main gate at which point a very beleaguered, very drippy man put his hand up and said, "I'm sorry, Ma'am, we can't allow that cooler in here."

I had been half expecting this, after the rumors I'd heard, but I was still stunned. And a little nervous because The Viking was not two steps behind me and I could see his dander was up.

There was an exchange of words that ended with The Viking asking if someone would be so kind as to come retrieve him if he collapsed from heat exhaustion and, then, we realized that the gatekeepers were very pointedly not checking anything except coolers.

That's when the lights when on.

We removed the bottles of water from the cooler and put them into my tote bag. We did this right in front of the gatekeeper. Then we showed the inside of the cooler to the man, gleefully saying, "See? Just ice and wet towels!"

He let us in.

The next day, there was a young woman turning away coolers. This time, I was alone and I was ready. I had already put my water in my tote bag so when she said, "I'm sorry--" I interrupted her with, "--just ice and wet towels" and breezed past her without missing a step.

Isn't that just ridiculous? Don't even get me started on their Stay to Play policy. Curious? Apparently, in order for your daughter to be able to play in the tournament for which she has already been selected according to her skill and talents, you have to reserve your hotel room through the organization's website in one of the hotels they have already selected. Need I tell you that there wasn't a single one that was in our budget? Need I tell you that we decided to book a room on our own and found one much cheaper?

Well, no sense in getting myself all worked up about it all over again. I really need to get to bed. Redheaded Snippet has a 6:00 am game and has to be at the field at 5:30 tomorrow morning. But, as she said herself, "'Tis the price of being in first place."

Tomorrow, though the earliest day of the week of games, is the last and is supposed to be the least hot. Notice I did not say the coolest as it will by no means be cool. Just not as deadly hot as the rest of the week has been. It's currently 98 degrees with 50% humidity at 11:00 at night. Insane.

Two more days and two more nights and we are back home in our nice, cool house in our nice, soft beds.

And then our real Summer Vacation will begin!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Don't have enough energy for a proper post. I'm wilting from the heat.

We're in Virginia Beach. It is blazingly, mind-numbingly, insanely hot. We had an early morning practice this morning and I was absolutely convinced I hated field hockey and never wanted Redheaded Snippet to play ever ever again.

I didn't tell her that, thankfully. As soon as I got back into the blessedly air-conditioned car, I felt better.

Now we're back at the hotel where we're having temperature wars. I am just not happy unless the temperature is as low as its settings will allow and everyone else is claiming they are cold.

As I said before, no shade and un-air-conditioned bathrooms at the fields. And now I'm hearing rumors about them not allowing spectators to bring in coolers.

It's going to be a long, hot week.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

I don't think we're going to starve.

Well, after ignoring most of The Viking's suggestions (i.e. "Let's just eat Ramen noodles every night") I have finally come up with a Non-Vacation Menu Plan. What a hideous project that was.

I realize this information is probably going to bore you stupid so I figure putting it in list form will make it easiest to skim over.

Monday (on the road):
(L) Hoagies, chips and candy bars (trying to make it a little fun)
(D) Reheated baked chicken, canned corn and raw veggies with dip

(L) Soup and crusty bread
(D) Tacos

(L) Chicken Quesadillas (made from Monday's leftover chicken and corn and Tuesday's leftover tortillas
(D) Cheap Night Out!

(L) Soup and crusty bread again
(D) Dinner Ploughmans'-style: good bread, good cheese, pickles, some fruit and maybe a bit of summer sausage (ok I think the fruit and sausage ruin the Ploughmans' part of it, but it's close).

(L) Nachos
(D) Cobb Salads

(L) Hot dogs, more chips, whatever fruit we have left
(D) Outback Steakhouse! The in-laws sent us a gift card for our anniversary!

Now I just have to write up my grocery lists (for here and there) and figure out what else I have to bring and how to pack it all.

And do more laundry, of course.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010


Can it really be called a vacation when you're not really looking forward to it all that much, you don't expect to have a whole lot of fun and you're going to a place you would probably never choose to go willingly? I don't think so. Hence the quotation marks of doubt (yes, that's what they are).

We are getting ready to go away and it's all Redheaded Snippet's fault. If she wasn't so stinking good at field hockey, none of this would be happening! She has been selected, once again (can't seem to lose that note of maternal pride), to compete in the National Championship in Virginia Beach. Apparently, it makes for good exposure to college coaches and recruiters and looks good on a resume, so I am told. All I know is she has learned a lot from this program she is in and her skills have definitely improved as a result. So we're going.

The Viking seems to have fooled himself into thinking this is a vacation. I don't know what that man's problem is. He thought that last year, a folly I can somewhat understand as it was our first year and we were in blissful ignorance. But this year, we're sadder and wiser and yet he continues to act like we're going to have the time of our lives. I guess that's the basic difference between him and me: he's an eternal optimist and I'm a confirmed pessimist.

I am looking at this venture as a business trip. We are going for Snippet to play hockey. And they don't mess around down there; there are 9 am meetings, 8 am practices and 6 am games! They play rain or shine (with delays for thunder and lightning), cold or hot and believe me, it's going to be hot! Last year was absolutely miserable. I honestly don't understand the thinking behind forcing parents to sit in the blazing Southern sun without a trace of shade for hours on end. The only relief available was in the form of five-dollar vials of somewhat cool water sold at the "concession stand". And if you were lucky, and the wind (if there was any) was blowing the right way, you might get caught in the spritz of the field sprinklers. That's right, they hose down the turf, but not the players or spectators.

I don't like heat, I don't like salt water, I hate sand and humidity and I'm naturally the color of paste. Needless to say, I am not a beach person. I haven't been to the beach in about three years and I don't intend for that to change. So between the climate and the schedule, I'm not expecting much rest or relaxation.

We have been researching cheap or free things to do in VA Beach and have quite a good list going! We're going to try to divide and conquer while we're there which means I will take Snippet to the hockey field while The Viking takes Man-Cub to do things to make up for the fact that he gets dragged all over the place because his sister plays hockey.

We've arranged for the dog/house-sitter and booked our hotel and I've been doing extra laundry each day to get ready for the dreaded packing of the suitcases. But now it's time to do the most dreaded planning of all: meals. Last year we stayed in a room with a kitchenette including a 2-burner stove, full fridge, sink, microwave and even a small dishwasher! There was cookware, tableware, even dish soap, pot holders and dish towels! I really kind of loved that place. I cooked all of our meals (except for breakfast, which the hotel so very benevolently provided) and we saved a ton of money.

The problem this year is we couldn't find a hotel with a kitchenette in our price range. All we'll have is a microwave and mini-fridge. So I have to be creative in addition to being thrifty, although I would say that there is a great deal of creativity already built into thrift so to be precise, I need to be even MORE creative! Aye me.

We have a nice, big cooler which we can fill every day from the hotel's ice machine to keep things that won't fit in the fridge. I also have an electric skillet that I can use to heat up things that won't fit in the microwave (plus I am not very skilled with micro-cookery...I only use mine to thaw meat). We have decided to eat out once while we're there as a treat.

So, I need ideas for five-days-worth of foods that I can either cook beforehand, freeze and reheat there or things that will be quick and easy to prepare with just an electric skillet. I'm already thinking tacos for one night (cooking up the meat and prepping all the other fixin's ahead of time and stashing them in zip top bags). I can bake some boneless chicken breasts and reheat them in a microwave along with some canned corn and maybe instant mashed potatoes? And, of course, there's always lunchmeat sandwiches or hot dogs in a thermos for lunches. But what else????

Sigh. I've tired myself out just thinking about it. Maybe I'd better go throw in another load of laundry and make the beds to take my mind off of menus. And then I'll make some lists, lots and lots of lists: clothes to pack lists, toiletries lists, cooler lists, chores to complete before departure lists, you name it!

Right, off to launder...

Friday, June 11, 2010

Over The Hump

I didn't post it then, but yesterday The Viking and I celebrated 16 years of marriage. Now I'm REALLY starting to feel old.  I suppose having a daughter that is nearly 15  and being only 2 years away from 40 myself didn't do it, but 16 years of marriage did.  Okay, enough numbers.

The Viking and I met when we were both 18 (okay, I lied, more numbers); me only just and he barely any longer.  I was the only Freshman in a Sophomore Music Theory class.  He says he couldn't help but notice me.  He was intrigued by how cute and quiet I was.  I thought he was a terrible flirt but had a great smile.

We didn't start dating until ten months after we'd met.  It's long story, but we both dated other people before finding our way to each other.  It was during a game of Truth or Dare that he asked me out.  The only reason I said yes was because I thought he was kidding and wouldn't expect it.  He'd been teasing me for weeks about marrying me and having children with me and it didn't occur to me that he was at all serious.  When I found out later that he was, I was ready to cut and run (I had just been dumped badly), but he managed to talk me into it.

We were one of those couples who were always laughing, always playing, always having tons of fun.  We were asked once if we got to go on dates much (we were part of a touring singing group representing our college at the time) and before we could answer, another member of the group chimed in, in a rather irritated tone, "Every single day is like one long date!"  I had never known anyone who made me laugh like The Viking did.  And never had I known anyone who thought I was so funny.

What was supposed to be just a fun fling, quickly turned into a serious courtship.  Trips between NYC and South Jersey became frequent as we spent weekends with each others families.  Both sides approved.  After a year together we started talking about marriage.

We got engaged on Valentine's Day 1993.  The Viking proposed then because he knew it was the only day I wouldn't expect him to.  He was right.  I figured a man as unconventional and creative as he would never do something as predictable as proposing on Valentine's Day of all days.  It was a Sunday that year and we were scheduled to sing at the church where his dad is pastor.  I was sick with a terrible head cold and could not for the life of me understand why we couldn't reschedule and was actually quite angry with The Viking the entire morning.  But when the song was over and he didn't move to get off the stage but instead turned to me while reaching into his jacket pocket and slowly bending down on his knee, it all became clear!  He had gone to a lot of trouble to make things memorable.  He had even arranged for my entire family to be there and his sister and mother threw us a surprise engagement party after the service.  Nothing could have surprised me more!

And so we married.  It was the happiest day of my life, nothing but wonder and delight from start to finish.  I still love getting our wedding album out and lingering over each photo.  We always joke that we're going to bring out the video and make the kids watch it on our anniversary, but we haven't done it yet (for some reason we planned an unbearably long ceremony, something I would do differently if I had the chance to do it again).

After a long, luxurious honeymoon in St. Thomas, our life together began.  With a vengeance.  While she wasn't a honeymoon baby, Redheaded Snippet came into our lives much sooner than either of us had anticipated.  There we were, a mere three months after getting married, telling everyone we were pregnant.  I never saw so many people counting backwards in their heads in my life!  Sometimes I would scowl and say, "We married in June and I'm due in June THAT'S TWELVE MONTHS!"  I'm sure everyone was waiting to see if we wound up having a very large, very healthy "premature" baby by the time March rolled around.  Which isn't a very good joke considering what we went through later...

Redheaded Snippet's arrival changed me more than anything else in my life, except for the deaths of my boys later on.  She gave me purpose.  She made me a woman.  I felt as if parts of my soul that I didn't even know existed sprang into life the moment I first held her.  But, sadly, I cannot find any other baby pictures of her on our computer!

There are almost no photos of us during the period between Redheaded Snippet's birth and Man-Cub's nearly six years later.  Frankly, we were just too miserable.  We faced unemployment, poverty, homelessness, debt, illness, and frequent hospitalization not to mention the deaths of two infant sons during that period.  Practically the first seven years of our marriage was set in crisis mode.

Where Redheaded Snippet brought purpose, Man-Cub brought healing.  God had had to cut painfully deep in order to teach me to trust him and Man-Cub was a balm that soothed my wounds so they could heal.  I don't think he will ever understand the good he has done for me, and in some ways I hope he never has to.

While we never, in God's grace, lost sight of joy, happiness (which can never, ever be mistaken for joy as they are quite different), took some time to reappear.  But reappear it did.  We learned to be carefree again.

We took the trip of a lifetime (there we are in front of the Five Sisters window in York Minster in York, England).

We even began acting silly again (as Dog the Bounty Hunter and his wife, Beth for Halloween).

Real life still has its challenges.  The Viking has chronic back problems.  I have hypoglycemia.  He's lost hair, I've gotten fat.  Finances are always a worry.  And we have a teen-aged daughter.  Enough said, right?

One of The Viking’s co-workers, upon hearing that yesterday was our 16th Anniversary, congratulated him on “getting over the hump”.  When The Viking asked what he meant he explained that statistics show that most marriages end between the 7th and 15th anniversaries.  So we’ve gotten over the hump.  Which seems to imply that the worst is over and it’s smooth sailing from here on out.

Obviously, no one knows what lies ahead for any of us.  With all we’ve been through together, it’s hard to imagine that the worst is not behind us.  But we know that God does not promise to make us happy or comfortable.  He only promises to make us more like his son, through whatever means he deems most effective.  That is the good he works out for those that love him, not the things we like to think of as good like love, marriage, children, wealth, or health.

There is much more ahead that God will use to make us more like him.  We may be over one hump but we are sure to face many more.  And we will face them as we’ve faced all the others—together.

Happy Anniversary to my husband, my lover, my protector, my helper, my playmate and my friend.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Agree To Give Me Money! For I Am Super-Fantastic!

Been putting my resume and a cover letter together. What a strange business that is! As someone brought up constantly cautioned against the evils of thinking too highly of oneself, it is hard to brag about how amazing I am, especially to perfect strangers.

I seriously dislike this whole application process. The Viking seems to enjoy it, but then he is one of those people who shine in an interview. I wind up saying something dorky and knocking over a cup full of pencils. But anyway...

We've decided it is time. I need to get a part-time job.

When Redheaded Snippet was born (nearly 15 years ago), we made a commitment to being a one-income family. It was of vital importance to us for me to be home with her and any subsequent children we may have. We agreed to go without much less important things, like new cars, annual vacations, fancy clothes, nifty gadgets or savings accounts in order to invest in the most important things, like security, trust, guidance, supervision, and joy to name a few.

It has been difficult the entire time and extremely difficult at certain times. We were homeless and living in my parents basement (with an infant) at one point. For quite a while I was housebound because we only had one car and The Viking drove it to work each day. Most of my clothes have been hand-me-downs or thrift store or clearance rack purchases. All of our kids' clothes are from consignment shops or are hand-me-downs. I have learned to do my own facials, manicures and pedicures, cut The Viking's and Man-Cub's hair myself and I go to the local beauty school to have cosmetology students cut or streak my hair. Vacations consist of visits to family or friends and are what my mother used to call, "El Cheapo Deluxe". We've struggled with debt, driven old cars, embarrassed our children and learned to delight in the little things. Like The Viking walking in the door last night with $2 ice creams for everyone. You would have thought he had Disney tickets in his hands.

I guess I can't say I've been a full-time stay-at-home-mom the entire 15 years because I have gone out of the house to teach piano lessons from time to time. When Redheaded Snippet was two, I had all my lessons scheduled on one day. Mom would pick me up so I could drop her and my Snippet off at her house then use her car (this was when we only had one) to go to all my lessons one after the other. Then The Viking would meet me back at Mom's to take us home. That was only one day a week but I made all of our grocery money each week.

When the kids were older (and there were two of them) and we had a piano in our home, I had the students come to me. I still kept it to one day and my children would stay in the dining room or kitchen doing their homework while I taught the lessons in the living room. The Viking would come home at some point before I was finished and take care of dinner so I could keep teaching. Again, one day a week and just enough money to keep the edge off things.

Once, when Redheaded Snippet was five (and before Man-Cub was born), I took a temporary baby-sitting job just so I could save enough money for us to go to Hershey Park for three days. I stayed with a pair of elementary-school-aged brothers whose parents both left the house before they were awake. I made sure they got up on time, had breakfast, got dressed properly and were ready at the bus stop on time. I also drove them to school when they missed the bus, reminded them to wear socks and feed the dog, and once had to break up a fight between them. I had to be there terribly early in the morning, but as Redheaded Snippet wasn't in school yet I could easily take her with me. I would bundle her into the car, still asleep, and once we got there she would lie on the couch with her blankie while I supervised breakfast and got the boys out of the house. We were always done by 8:00 and made great ceremony of taking a nap together in my big bed when we got home. It was kind of a bonding experience and I was able to pay for our entire trip (tolls, gas, hotel, park admission and meals) with cash.

But the time has come for measures beyond the reach of a few piano lessons one day a week or a few morning hours' worth of babysitting. You see, we are seriously considering making the change from public to private school for Man-Cub. While I used to be a staunch public school defender, I have begun to see an alarming change in our once-loved, dear, little school. The administration has shown itself to be much more concerned with money and covering its bottom than with the welfare and education of the students in its care. They cater to a small group of students at the expense of all others and all because of money. I know the economy is hitting school districts hard; budgets throughout this area are being tightened, sometimes in drastic ways. But the changes in our school had begun before all that; I can only imagine it's going to get much worse now.

In addition, The Viking and I have come to believe that Man-Cub is exceptionally intelligent and do not feel the school is offering him enough of a challenge. He gets good grades, he says he likes most of his classes, but he is also very bored. We feel he is capable of much more than his classes are demanding of him but we know the school does not have the resources for or the interest in meeting the needs of students like him.

So, our options are a) to move, b) home school, or c) find a private school. We looked into option a) and have decided it's not viable as we don't want to yank Redheaded Snippet out of the high school and we would like for Man-Cub to go there. That means we would need to move elsewhere within the regional district and we can't afford the houses (or taxes) there.

Option b) is also not an option because if my poor Man-Cub was taught by his cotton-headed-ninny-muggins of a mother, he'd be a blithering idiot. I have no Bachelor's degree, let alone any kind of teaching qualifications and I do not think being taught in the secluded bubble of our home would be at all good for someone like Man-Cub. I am not trying to knock homeschooling for anyone else who has done it! I know plenty of people who do or have homeschooled with great success! I am merely saying you have to know your limitations and it would not be a good option for me. Even those who love me agree.

That leaves option c), the one to which I have been most inclined from the start. Private school. Which brings me to the title of this post and my reason for dusting off my resume. Private school is expensive. And we can't afford it on our current income. The Viking and I talked it over and decided this is something we feel is important enough for me to get a part-time job. I'm home by myself seven hours a day as it is, I'm bored out of my skull when the kids aren't home, and The Viking isn't able to do as many handyman side jobs as he once could because of his back.

So, I'm putting the word out. Mom has always told me she would help with picking children up and dropping them off if I had to work a few days a week and Redheaded Snippet is more than capable of picking up a little slack. I know it will probably be stressful and I will hate it at times, but sometimes you just gotta do what you gotta do. Even if that means trying to convince someone to give you money by telling them how amazing you are.

Right. I gotta go check the want ads and send that resume out. I'll keep you posted.