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Archive for November 10th, 2008

Take today, for instance.  I skipped Mandarin last week in order to get ready to work the polls (ok, so that I wouldn’t be leaving the Bub for so long.)  I know what I need to know for tonight’s class, but I just don’t want to memorize the vocabulary.  I don’t know if it’s because I haven’t decided if I’ll continue Chinese, because I can’t use this class in Real College, or just because I have a list of other things I’d rather be doing.

Instead I would rather be hanging out with the kids.  Finishing up the squash prep and freezing.  Making some more applesauce.  Vegging out.  Doing anything but going into the city, to Chinese class, to potential frustration.  Although this week should be my ‘aha!  I’m doing ok’ week, I’m afraid it will just be further confirmation that I am far too behind on learning my characters to progress well.  So I have made a deal with myself that if I come home miserable from class tonight, I will stop going.  We’re down to the final few weeks and I’m so alternating between frustrated and elated with every class; I can see that I could learn Chinese but I’m not so sure I really want to, and I’m certainly not doing it at the pace that this class is going.  Is it worth the stress?  I just don’t know.  I wish I knew that finishing it would mean something besides having a semester of yet another language.  I mean, see how much I use French?  Russian?  Latin?

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Plus the coming of winter has reinvigorated my commitment to carbon emissions reduction.  We’ve been keeping at a pretty good level for the past few months, but I think we can do even better.  In some cases we may have even been doing better–we’ve  been not-shopping and not-so-much eating out for the most part.  We fell off a bit last week because we missed CSA pick-up for the second week in a row due to election induced insanity and we ended up ordering take-out more than we had been.  Also, I put the worm bins outside a few weeks ago due to MAJOR MAJOR mite infestation (they had gotten out of the bin and onto the bookcase even) so scraps have been into the trash.  There hasn’t been a huge increase in the amount of trash we’re taking out though, curiously.  I think maybe we weren’t doing as well with the worm-feeding as I had thought.

On the other hand, I am hopeful for our electricity usage this month as we have the computer fully off when not in use and we’ve even gotten several bathroom bulbs switched out for CFLs.  I have not used the coffee maker in weeks.  Big usage will be the television until we get it on a Smart Strip and the microwave as I have not managed to get a pot of water boiled in the morning and into the carafe for our daily tea drinking.  I’m going to check the worm bins today and see if any of the wrigglers are still kicking.  If not, I’ll get another batch in the spring.  If they are, I’ll bring one bin in tomorrow.

The thing I’m really starting to stress over is the holidays.  We have a large, rather generous family to get gifts for and I have this financial commitment to school for the foreseeable future.  I do not do well with money issues, having spent a chunk of my life scrounging for money for dinner and dodging phone calls from creditors.  This is yet another impetus for the living simply credo–I never thought growing up that I would be poor, and yet I was well under the poverty line for many a year.  When you live above your means (or even at the top reach of your means,) the crash of having to count pennies is great.  I’m not at panic level, certainly, but I am keeping a sharper eye on money this year.

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Add to all of this the Bubby’s newfound tendency to eat like a small man.  Last evening he packed away half of a link of sausage, a cup of Cheerios, several bites of grapefruit, and at least half of an acorn squash before nursing on both sides.  I think he ended up eating more for dinner than I did. He is almost walking, beginning to talk (the word he says most clearly is ‘din-uh.’  He’s a man who knows what he likes, clearly.)  He also loves to dance and will do so whenever music is played, and will walk around his play yard kicking a soccer ball.  In fact, his sister has taken to dribbling small toys while walking as well.  All of our years of brainwashing gentle coaxing have paid off; they will both be brilliant footballers!

And that, my friends, is what I did on my blog vacation.  Or something like that.

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