Friday, May 27, 2011

Choices, Choices. And Goals, too.

Wow, that's a lot of cereal. And I am sad to report that we have consumed it ALL as of last month. Wow, right?!! And also, apologies to my two followers for my break from blogging--what a long break, indeed. I know you both cried every night, realizing I had not yet posted a new blog. It's okay to wipe away those tears--because I'm back!! Haha. Poor you.

And shoot, I've really got to clean up my storage room floor! Yikes! Easter grass and picture frames....

I think the hardest part about writing about what the family and I have been going through lately is that I don't want to sound wishy-washy when I'm discussing the options we have and the choices we have to make. For instance, about the time that I stopped writing I had been offered an interview for a job that would have been VERY different than what I'm used to. But I didn't want to say anything until I knew one way or another what the outcome would be.

Oh yeah, what am I used to? Well, my BA is in Sports Medicine, basically. You know, travelling with athletic teams, working as a trainer at high schools, basically being the person who stops when they see a fresh automobile accident to make sure everyone's okay. And yes, usually they are not okay, and are almost always quite uncooperative. Ha.

But this type of position is just not easy with a family. Travel? No way. And having to drop everything or stay late because of a very real and serious injury that needs treatment? Not a chance. And besides, I would much rather stay at home with my children, if possible. And yeah, the money isn't as great as you might think it would be.

Really, I have done everything in my power to work from home so that my children would not have to be cared-for full-time by anyone other than their dad or me. Not that there's anything wrong with that. I was a nanny for many years, and know what a great opportunity it can be to have a great nanny for your children (in fact, I long for a few million dollars so that I might have a nanny on-call just for those times when I think I just might lose it!). It's just that I also know that there were times when the children just needed a good hug from their mom or some more time with their dad. And yes, I know my kids probably get too much attention from me--there is value to having "away" time too!

Seriously, though. I am getting waaay off track! So there was this position. The pay would have been great. But I would have needed full-time care for the kiddos. We have family nearby, but I was trying to find a way to have the husband stay home a bit more....

Long story short the job just was not for me. And so that solved that dilemma.

But now I feel like I need some type of work to do.... It helps to know that for the past four years I have been waitressing part-time in the evenings. It used to work out well because my husband would arrive home from a day at work at about the time I had to leave for work. But now that is not the case. He works evenings.

But I just have a LOT of energy. I like to fill all of my time with productive activities. I am optimistic most times, and I like to think I can accomplish it all. Cooking, cleaning (ha--what a joke!), reading to my kids, playing most of the day, being a calm, responsible adult in front of the kids (another laugh there--"Mommy" loses it quite frequently). And I also want to be the creative mom whom creates homemade cards, bakes cupcakes with flair, and has a perfectly manicured 'do when anyone comes to drop in. I also want to have a hobby farm. A small-scale farm with two sheep, maybe a cow for meat, many chickens, a few dogs, and a huge garden.

I can do it all, right?

Oh, and all while working or making a living of some type. Really, you would think that I'm crazy if you look at all I want to accomplish on paper. No wonder I am always running around like a mad-woman. When anyone asks me how life is going I almost always answer, "Crazy and busy!" It all makes sense. I want to do it all.

So let's just examine what all I currently want to do:

1. Homeschool the children. Okay, this one is not really my passion or dream, but rather my husband's. But until we can work out the ideal money-making job for me he must continue his interior construction-type installation job and I guess I'm the new kindergarten teacher!!!

2. Keeping the house pretty clean until we can sell it. Did you know we both love to remodel homes? That is what we have done with our current home. It is in a fantastic neighborhood, and had great "bones" but was quite outdated. Now we have it cute and of course, right when you get it the way you want it, it's time to sell it! So it is on the market. What a slow market it is, but really, we are in no rush.

3. Cook healthy meals for my family while maintaining a pretty slim budget. It's a skill, really, to be able to create great meals that please everyone, give everyone the nutrition they need, and all without spending too much for those fancy ingredients (sorry, no caviar here!). And as a smaller goal, we all love eating local, fresh food. Mmm--Farm to Market Pork....

Seriously, the best bacon EVER!

4. Garden. I want to grow a bit of my own food. I know it's the latest craze, but I have wanted to and have done so for years--it just has not always turned out so great. My thoughts go back 2 years when i was VERY pregnant and couldn't bend down to weed the garden. Nothing survived--except for the seeds that my son dumped in the corner of a planter--those plants were quite successful! And then there was last year. A late freeze killed my adorable pepper plants, that were all in a row. It also stunted the growth of one of my heirloom tomato plants and the last remaining tomato plant did produce fruit, but it was quickly eaten by my sneaky dogs. This year--I am determined.

Okay, so other goals? Well, there is this idea of a new career. Here is where I am going to talk about something that may never happen. But it is on my list of things to consider. It is medical writing. Next week I will be attending a chapter of the AMWA (American Medical Writers' Association)'s symposium to get a better feel for this line of work. What would be great would be that I could combine my love for the academic side of medicine plus I could potentially work from home doing freelance work or by telecommunicating.

Do you want to know something else about me?

I just stopped my waitressing work to be available to care for a great grandmother with Alzheimer's. Wow, right?! The pros: she really is quite a jolly lady :) She currently acts a bit like a pre-schooler. And she adores my two children. They make excellent playmates! And she is cooperative. Thank goodness! Another pro is that I now get to be with family all of the time. Sure, I am going to need some type of a break during the week. Waitressing used to be my break, my workout, and my money-making time. So perhaps now grandma time can now meet some of our goals. And I really don't feel like listing the cons. Any of the negatives really seem more like they don't even compare to the benefits.

So, do you think I lead a crazy life? I certainly do. I don't know how other people do it. I really don't. I just know I want to do it all, and it's pretty hard to be satisfied when my list of "to-dos" is quite longer than my available time.

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