How long do you have to work to fill your tank?

I was reading my email this morning and in one of the email’s I read was a link to calculate how many hours you need to work to fill your vehicle.  Since I generally need to fill up after 3-4 trips to work and I have to work 3 hours to fill my vehicle, essentially I need to work 1 hour for just gas.  It is about what I thought my commute cost in terms of gas.  What about those who work outside the home?  (I know many of you who read this are stay at home parents.)

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Cuddling with my Boys

That is what I am doing right now, typing with one hand. They are both sitting on my lap, watching Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, drinking chocolate milk from their sippies. I enjoy these cuddle times.

I originally wasn’t going to say much about trying to Fly again, but I enjoying the process. Check out the link if you don’t understand the terms I am about to use. I can tell I am getting “flywashed.” I’m not keeping the sink shiny, still haven’t figured out how to do that on the days I work since when I get home I usually want to fall into bed. I definitely don’t have any routines yet, though I think without thinking about it I am creating/changing routines. I am slowly working on the decluttering. What a job.

Since the weather was so warm last week, I finally got the boys drawers switched over from winter to summer clothes. Which anyone who has little kids knows that not only are you changing wardrobes, but that quite often is when I change sizes since it is an easy time to change. So I was into my tubs of clothes that I have kept from Tyler for William, I was sorting through and seeing which clothes I wanted to put out and what ones I wanted to get rid of. I am not sure if this is perfectly Flylady, but these are the questions I was asking myself while I was going through the clothes – Do I love them? Will I dress the boys in these outfits? I got rid of several things. We even made a trip to Goodwill last week to get rid of clothes. I know that I have been slow in changing the clothes. I need to go through the closet still and the adult dresser to sort out the winter clothes to put away or give away and figure out what summer clothes I want to get rid of. I have so many things I have had for years that I have fallen out of love for. I have another box of clothes already started with stuff to donate. If anyone wants any 18 month boys clothes let me know, I have several almost new outfits in my give away box that I don’t love. I need to go though the 24 month/2T tub still, but I am sure I will have several things out of those as well.

Yesterday as I was picking up the house I kept repeating to myself, “Cleaning done imperfectly still blesses.” I wasn’t striving for perfection just cleaner and picked up. I have a full garbage can and recyling bin out to the road for garbage day. Definitely progress in the decluttering and getting the house cleaner. Reading the flylady’s emails have helped me change my thinking in regards to housework and I would say also my attitude.

I was very happy this the dinner I made last night. Last week to help with our finances I made a main dish menu and a shopping list. It has been nice this last week to look at the list and make the decision if we want to have the main dish that night and figuring out what we want to have with it. We haven’t perfectly followed the menu I wrote out, I sure has helped. I plan on doing the same thing again before we go shopping on Thursday or Friday. Since we have to go the Saginaw for doctors appointment on Friday, maybe we will go to Alddi’s and see if there is anything on my list that will be cheaper there.

I still don’t have a new job, but it seems to be getting closer. The manager wanted to talk to some others from Ingham (where I used to work) before she offers me the job. It was nice to talk to some old co-workers yesterday to verify their phone numbers and get their permission to pass on their phone numbers. I really need to talk to them more often.

Well, both the boys are on to other things, so I should probably get some stuff done before I go to work today (fold a load of clothes and empty the dishwasher) and fix some breakfast for my hungry boys.

Happy New Year

We did get everything done with returning the rental car, except it took us almost twice as long as it should have to drive down to Lansing to return the rental car.  It was snowing pretty good when we left and it took us almost 2.5 hours to drive down (normally 1.5 hour trip).  The boys both did pretty good.  We split them up when we were in 2 cars, I did have to deal with a screaming boy for part of the trip especially since he didn’t have his brother to entertain him.

As I look back over the last few months I can see how God has been providing for us.  The van is already almost paid off and should be once I get the check for the remainder of the payoff from the insurance company from the credit union that held our loan, thanks to an unexpected gift.  Thank you.

2008 is definately looking up for us.  I am starting to very clearly see some areas of my life that need some work and already have plans to work on them.  So of them I have already started doing.

I do have a list of things I want to work on this year.  I wouldn’t call them “resulutions,” but rather goals.

  • Daily or near daily Bible reading and prayer.  I would say I do pray daily, but my Bible study has really been lacking over the last few years and I know that is something that needs to change.  I really stuggle to know what to read and need to have a “plan” to follow.  I am just going to concentrate on reading through the New Testament this year.
  • De-clutter my house.  Russ is saying how the clutter is driving him nuts.  We both really need to work on it.  Moving last summer really opened our eyes to how much “stuff” we have and how most of it we don’t even use and haven’t used in years.  I am planning on making good use of the van to haul stuff away from here.  May make my first of many stops for the new year to Goodwill today.  We really need to get the garage cleaned out so that we can park the van in there, especially since my uncle came and picked up the lawnmower so we could get the van in there.
  • Get myself in better physical shape.  Enough said.
  • Budget and save money.  We wouldn’t have had half the struggles we have had over the last few years if we had been following those steps.  For our  wedding anniversary my mom gave us Your Money Map, by Howard Dayton.  Stop number one — live on a budget and have $1,000 emergency savings.  That is my goal (and I dare say Russ’ as well) and should be possible long before the end of the year.
  • Relationship building.  I see some relationships that need a lot of work right now.

Trying to decide what to do

I talked to the adjuster this morning (well yesterday since it is 2 am) and he is going to total the car out.  We wish it wasn’t that way, but it is the way it is.  I inquired about a loan at the credit union and they said that they could not give us a loan at this time.  So now what to do?  Do we buy an inexpensive older car with anything we might get back after our loan is paid off?  What if we don’t get anything back after the loan payoff?  Do we try to get a car through one of those places that says we will get you financed as long as you are working?

Tough decisions . . . . I wonder what Russ has thought about today in regards to the car situation.

“It’s Probably Totaled”

That was the phone call Russ got today from the insurance adjuster about our car.   I guess they are thinking new engine and transmission is what is needed for the repair.  So  I guess we are going car shopping this weekend.  Hopefully I won’t have to take a day off work to get the entire thing taken care of.

Now to decide what to get (or start looking at).  I really like our Saturn sedan, but is it time to make the move to a vehicle that can carry more than 5?  On thing I do like about the PT Cruiser we are driving right now (rental car) is not having to bend over as far to put the boys in their seats.  I don’t like how there is not room for a 3rd person in the back seat between the car seats.  I had already been thinking our next vehicle would be some sort of SUV or cross-over.  Minimum passanger is 5 with room for an adult in the backseat with the car seats, though 7 passenger would be nice.

I am not sure about a loan with our financial woes, but God will work that part out.  It looks like the current loan is covered by the value of the car.  We will know more for sure after I talk to the adjuster.

Exhausted . . . . Well, not so much now

What a week this has been and it is only Thursday.

Monday we headed down to Lansing (1.5 hour drive) for doctor appointments on Tuesday. We thought it would be better to stay with family and not have to leave our house at 7:30 to get down in time for the first appointment at 9:30. That plan would have been fine if Russ had remembered to grab his pills . . . . he couldn’t sleep and because he didn’t sleep well, if at all, I didn’t sleep well and neither did William.

It was nice to spend time with family though. We got to go to my sister’s Christmas band concert and see some people we used to go to church with who I had taught in Sunday School.

Tuesday’s appointments went well. I think we have Russ back on track with his medications for his chronic fatigue syndrome. Our new doctor in this area really changed his medications and it has affected his quality of life, but I think we are headed back to a good place. The doctor did give Russ some sample medications at his appointment.

Tyler and William had appointments with the geneticist. There is a family history of Neurofibromitosis (NF1), Russ has it and so does his dad though I don’t believe his dad has ever been formally diagnosed. I found the first “cafe-au-lait” spot on William when he was 3 months old, so right then I suspected that he had inherited it. At 7 months he almost met criteria for diagnosis and at this appointment he did meet criteria. His head is bigger than his brother’s! (another sign of NF). I just need to get more educated about it as I can be the advocate the William and Russ if necessary.

After that appointment, we were headed right home. I wanted to sleep in my own bed and get a good night sleep, but God had other plans . . . road debris that did MAJOR damage to the underside of our car. We had to wait until Wednesday for the car rental place to have a car available to us, so we stayed at the other parents house. Thankfully we have rental coverage on our auto insurance.

We finally got home on Wednesday after another not so good night of sleep. I still haven’t heard back from the adjuster on the damage to the car, though he said he would be out to look at the car yesterday.

I am glad that we made it back for church last night. At church, we finished watching a DVD on the Star of Bethlehem. It reminded me of the greatness of God and how he cares for every detail of our life.

Though I am still tired, I got a good night of sleep, but more important I am reminded of how good God is and how he takes care of every detail of our lives and he will take care of our needs. (Right now a friend is cleaning our our driveway with his tractor). I can rest in peace that God will take care of our needs.

Excited

Yesterday at work I got in to a conversation with one of my co-workers about cutting hair.  It turns out that it used to be her job until she was in an accident and couldn’t cut hair 8 hours a day because of her shoulder, but could be an RN.  She is a single mom to 5 kids.  Though the course of our conversation, she ended up offering to cut my hair for FREE!!!!!!  She understands what it means to be short on funds and just loves to do hair.

It has been about 5 months since I had it cut and I had it cut into a short style the last time I had it cut.  I think I am going to have her cut it short again.  I cut my own bangs the end of last week and now the front of my hair is a mess.  It is time for some real help.  I am going over to her house in about an hour.  It is also nice that she lives in the same town I do, though we work about 30 miles from our homes.

God provides in ways we lest expect.