I am tired. I have been a single mom of sorts this week, since Marc is at a conference for work. I haven't gotten any of the errands I needed to run done since he has been gone, because I just haven't had the energy to do more than be here with the kids, but it has been good.
There has been great bonding between Vinny and I. Tiana went to bed early both last night and tonight. Tonight, Vinny stayed up after she went to bed and we did homework. He has just discovered the wonder that is hot cocoa, so he sipped hot cocoa while he played his "alphabet game" that the teacher assigned him. We shopped online for presents for the birthday parties Vinny has been invited to over the next two weeks (oh my... this could get expensive, hence the online shopping). It was funny, when I opened the invite today and I asked Vinny who the kid was that sent the invitation to this birthday party next week, he told me, "He eats sandwiches at lunch and chews with his mouth open and talks and its disgusting and I throw up- not really, but I want to- but he is nice." Oh my. I nearly died laughing. He is so incredibly obssessive-compulsive for a 5-year-old. Well, he always has been. He hated having sandy hands when he was a baby, so he never left the towel at the beach until he was more than two-years-old. If his hands are dirty, he kind of panics. He eats sloppy joes with a spoon because he hates the the "sloppy" part. Yup... that's my kid alright.
Last night, Vinny went to bed early and my friend Barb came over for a paper grading party. I love paper grading parties with Barb. They are not incredibly effective for quantity of papers graded, but they are amazingly effective for quality of thought. As we think aloud, muse aloud, complain aloud, problem-solve aloud, I think I learn more as a teacher than I do in some other very expensive professional development experiences. :-)
The BEST news of this week is that my mom quit her job!!! Hip hip hooray! Why is this such good news? Well... for several reasons. My mom is one of my best friends. I talk to her every day. She is the first person I want to tell when I get exciting news or when my kids do something cute. She is my shoulder to cry on, and in many ways I am hers. We talk every day on our way home from work. And pretty much every day for about the last two years (maybe three or four even), I have listened to my mom lament her hatred for her job. She loves her co-workers, but she works in print advertising which has been on the decline every year since the invent of the internet, so it is tough business and she hates it. She has worked very hard without more than 10 days off in a row for more than 17 years, and she is just done. She was such a dedicated employee too. When I worked with her in 2006, she won "Employee of the Year" at the annual department banquet, and she totally deserved it. It was so exciting to applaud her and watch her get terribly embarrassed as she took the award. But the poor thing is just burnt out. She has had a really tough life, and she deserves a break. I have been begging her to quit for a long time because it is just so sad to see her unhappy, but an ideal job has just not come up and she hasn't financially been ready to just quit.
Until now. A variety of circumstances have made it financially possible for her to quit now, and she decided that she wants to quit her job... to BE OUR NANNY!!!! Yea!!!! This is like my dream come true.
Like a week ago, as I was returning from vacation, I was thinking to myself, "My everyday life is so hard. I wish I had a nanny." Now, to be fair, my life in general is a cycle of work hard, play hard, work harder, play harder. And when I do have time to play, I get to play really hard. As my best friend Mo pointed out, I have a lot of fun. It is true.
But the trade-off is a really hard life on a day-to-day basis. Getting up early enough to do everything I have to do is really hard. Packing perfect meals for picky Tiana for day care and making sure she has fresh linens and diapers and supplies for school, putting out the diapers for the service weekly, keeping the house tidy, doing Vinny's homework, cooking meals, getting all of my work for work done (which is really like a 12-hour-a-day job), getting all of my work for school done, and just taking care of all the little errands and tasks for soccer practices and birthday parties, etc. It wears me out.
I am so excited to have my mom. It is hard for anyone who has not been through it to really understand the difference between having my kids in day care and having them at home with my mom, but there is a huge difference. It takes such a weight off my shoulders. Sigh..
Now, to bed. Hopefully I have heated the house up tonight that Tiana won't wake up freezing 3 or 4 times again tonight. :-/