Wednesday, January 30, 2008
Winter blues
I need a few days of sunshine, for I am way full of the winter blues. Booger's having a flare up of her allergic rhinitis so she coughs all the time (including all. night. long.). She's got some lower teeth coming in, which, for her means a 101-103 temperature. Yes she spikes a fever every single time she cuts teeth. Always has. Also, the 2 that are coming in look to be behind/not lined up where they should be. We all need dentist appointments anyway, so maybe they'll look at it and tell me to stop being a freak.

Booger's allergic rhinitis is, as I like to say, putting me up in a tree. Things like this bring out my OCD in ways I'm not proud or fond of. All I can think about is how if I would be a better housekeeper she wouldn't have a cough. That's likely 99% bullshit, but I can't shake it. Also, she fell day before yesterday trying to get the mail for me. Fell hard and has a hell of a bruise. Since my OCD is raging, all I can think about is if I wasn't so lazy and asked her to get the mail it wouldn't have happened. I KNOW that it's not my fault. I was carrying in groceries and standing right there watching her. She's 6 now and likes to help. She gets the mail all the time and this one time she falls and I can't let it go.

Add to this the fact that I don't think I did well on my first psych quiz.....well, I'm just in a mood. It'll pass. I'm off Friday, so maybe I can decompress then.


Tuesday, January 22, 2008
Ten Things Tuesday
Frugal Snob Edition

I've mentioned before that our household income has decreased by pretty much half since I lost my job at Large Corporation. I'm trying to change my spending habits as well as save the family money when I can. I haven't exactly figured it all out yet, obviously, but I'm trying. Trying is half the battle, no? I'm going to list 10 things that I've done in the past week or so to try to save money. Some of them may seem lame, but they also reflect a different way of doing things for me, which will ultimately save money. Baby steps, people. Baby steps.

1. Called and ordered our land line to be switched over to our cable provider. They have a bundle package - cable, internet, phone and I keep my phone number. This simple task saves me FORTY DOLLARS A MONTH.

2. I didn't run out and buy the index cards I need to study. I thought I might have some, somewhere deep in the back of a drawer somewhere in this house. Normally, I'd just say fuck it, it's $1.29, I'll just pick them up and find the others later. But I didn't. I searched today, lo and behold, with only 5 minutes of searching I found them. I can't tell you how happy this stupid little act of patience made me.

3. I ate dinner early yesterday (at about 4 ish) so that I wouldn't be tempted to buy something from the deli at work.

4. I am using 3 ring binders we had around the house for my classes.

5. I haven't purchased one new pen for class. You know I have a pen thing. I have restrained myself. It has not been easy.

6. Set up some more automatic online bill payments to save both stamps and late payments. I had some already set up, but am moving towards not needing to write/send any checks at all.

7. You know I work at a retail store at our town's largest mall. I have not stepped foot into the mall in weeks. Not even on my break, when I usually love to browse....which leads to buying. I know everything's on clearance and I am sure I could pick up a few bargains. I just don't need them. If I don't see the bargain, then I don't miss the bargain.

8. I'm trying to not buy Diet Coke from the vending machines at work or school. Buying it at the store is cheaper.

9. Also trying to bring snacks to school (trail mix, etc.) as to avoid putting even more money into the vending machines.

10. Trying to use up the entire product before opening the new one. This goes for boxes of cereal, crackers or snacks, household cleaning products, whatever. I have a terrible habit of opening the new package and completely abandoning the original package, which causes it to get stale then wasted.

Do you have any money saving tips that work for your family?


Monday, January 21, 2008
School's going okay, thanks. My first quiz is this weekend and I'm already terrified. I know the info and have time set aside to study.

I'm still struggling a bit with the new schedule, with figuring how best to study. I have such high hopes and I'll get it. I'm just getting used to the new routine.

I cleaned the house today, well, some of it anyway. That always makes me feel better.

I have a paper to write this week, so I'm going to get some notes started on it....I'll check back.

I'm keeping my senior citizen college student makes me laugh.


Monday, January 14, 2008
Tales of a 35 year old Freshman
I survived my first weekend of classes! I certainly wasn't home much: Saturday class from 8-3, then work from 5:30-9:30. Sunday work from 12:30-4:30, then class from 6:30-9:50. 3 classes total and I think I'll really enjoy all of them. Saturday morning was Anatomy & Physiology lecture followed by the A&P Lab. Sunday night's my Psych class. I refrained from asking the professor if he could help me to not check the stove 6 times before I go to bed. Maybe later on in the semester....

I was not the oldest student in any of the classes, which was a huge relief. My Psych class requires quite a bit of reading and 5 two-page papers, along with a longer yet-to-be-determined research paper. A&P has reading as well, but not as much.

One of my biggest regrets is blowing my college opportunity after high school. I was a smart kid in high school. Naturally smart, though. Never really studied for anything. I went to class, took notes, re-read them once or twice and managed the honor roll. I never pushed for more. I was content to just show up and succeed. When I went off to college, a pretty large state college, I got in over my head pretty quickly. I had no study skills and with no one but myself to answer to, well....I simply decided to have fun. I did not succeed in college and left, tail between my legs a year or so later, with a mere 9 credits toward graduation.

I've always wanted to go back and finish. For myself. For my parents. Now for R and Booger. I need to do this. I AM doing this. I am so damn excited that I can't stop smiling.


Monday, January 07, 2008
I'm a living commercial
Student ID no charge
Parking Pass $20.00
Tuition $915.00
Textbooks $454.97
Assorted supplies $12.00
The feeling of finally getting on with getting a college degree: PRICELESS

I can't tell you how excited I am to start school. I can tell you that it is simply a travesty that textbooks cost more than half as much as tuition. MORE THAN HALF. What a ripoff. I begin class this week. Anatomy & Physiology (and lab) Saturday 8:00A.M. - 2:50 P.M. General Psychology Sunday 6:30 P.M. - 9:50 P.M.

I have an appointment in a few weeks to see if I can get some cash from the county for education as I am considered a "displaced worker." Basically, the office of unemployment has grant money that I may qualify for to educate me in a different field since I haven't found work comparable to the job I lost last May. I am just happy there might be money out there for me. You know? I have to speak to the financial aid office on campus, but the line was too long today. Generally, I wouldn't qualify for federal aid as my 2007 income will show my job up until May, then my severance and my unemployment. Sadly, that's all run I need some "special circumstance" form or something. Whatever, please just help me pay!!!

This fresh start is exactly what I need. I feel better already. Of course that could be the steroid injection I received at the doctor's office this morning. I've been experiencing some strange leg pain that may or may not be related to a back/nerve/voodoo doll issue. Whatever. With the steroid injection, I would imagine I could get a job on a baseball team, so there's another option!

I haven't said much about R and Life, v. 2.0 lately. He's pretty much healed and running regularly on the treadmill - outside if it's tolerable. His blood pressure is still a bit high, so they've been playing with dosages on the buffet of meds he takes. His pain comes and goes. He tells me that he can feel the nerves reconnecting or something in his chest. Like little shocks every now and then. He has some numbness near his adam's apple region, but that's kind of it. He is embarrassed by his scars, but I think they are sexy. And believe me, whenever I have a rough day, I can glance at his scars and remember that guess what? THOSE were bad days. This current day that I'm in? Suddenly not so bad.

I feel like I'm coming out of my fog. I think I just needed a good kick in the ass. A birthday, a new year, and a fresh start in college seem to be just that kick.

I hope you are all well. How are your resolutions coming? I'm working on my official list. Haven't finalized it just yet.

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Tuesday, January 01, 2008
Ten Things Tuesday
Things I've learned in 2007 - in no particular order

1. A job, one in which you get paid for, doesn't define who you are. It's the ones you don't get paid for - being a wife, a mother, a friend, a sister, a daughter - those are the jobs that define you.

2. Things have a way of working out if you can be patient and open minded enough to wait.

3. The Toledo Hospital cafeteria food is quite good.

4. Cardiac surgery is scary. Scarier than anything I've ever experienced in my life. Recovering from cardiac surgery is hard....both for the patient and the spouse.

5. Turning 35 isn't nearly as bad as I thought it would be.

6. I actually do like snow.

7. Working retail during the holidays is truly an exercise of patience and results in lots of jaw clenching!

8. It seems, so far, that you really can control your spending when your household salary gets cut in half....and not feel like you're missing out on a whole bunch.

9. Ally the Wonderdog has a keen sense of when extra cuddles are needed. Also how much having her simply curl up at my feet lowers my blood pressure.

10. A clean house somehow makes everything else less stressful.

Happy New Year, my friends. I hope you are all safe, happy, and know you are loved.