Frugal: The biggest news around here is that I got that OB job at the local hospital. I’ll start in early April and will work 3 shifts a week for a month as I get oriented. Once I am oriented I’ll cut back to two (night) shifts a week. Since John works only 3 (day) shifts a week, one of us will still be home the vast majority of the time. But it’s been SO long since I’ve worked away from home that it’s going to feel different, especially on the mornings where I’ll need to sleep. The teens tend to already be fairly independent in their school, but I’m working up a simple checklist to help Em (12) and Julianna (10) stay on task. It will be an adjustment, I’m sure, but I’m excited at the thought of helping moms and babies again– it’s such an exciting part of nursing. And we’re really looking forward to getting our house paid off turbo-speed, which will free us up to work on some other projects we have in the works. (I’ll talk more about those later. )
Frugal, (eventually, probably): Since Lidya has been driving our minivan, and John usually has our tiny car, I’ve been driving our big 12-passenger van for my errands. At 14 mpg, the gas costs are pretty high. Thinking of the increased driving that I’ll be doing, we bought commuter car for me for the princely sum of $1500. So when John and I spotted a 2001 Hyundai Sonata with 127,000 miles on it, we checked it out and decided the price was right. It’s not pretty, but it runs great, has A/C and uses lots less gas than our big van. Since the paint is flaking off in chunks, I am toying with the idea of having Emily, my resident artist, decorate it something along these lines. Wouldn’t that be fun?? Probably not the whole car, and probably quite gradually. But she thinks it sounds like a really fun summer project, so we’ll see how that goes.
Not so frugal: we started a project to replace the tile backsplash in our kitchen. At first I brought home a boring-looking tile sample that neither John nor I ended up liking with our cabinets. Too blah compared to my cabinets which have a definite red tinge. We went together to Home Depot and immediately found something that we both liked. It’s a glass one-inch tile with colors that remind me of copper pennies. It is fun and sparkly and gypsy-ish. I am hoping to have a post next week once we get the project finished– we’ve been hard at work on in this week. The tile priced out at about $80 for the whole project, which I thought wasn’t too bad at all. But once we’d bought grout and tools and everything, it ended up being more along the lines of $160. Ah, well.
Frugal: I did pretty well cooking out of the freezer and pantry this past week– it helped to have the menus laid out ahead of time. I also got bread at the dollar store, and stashed a few casseroles in the freezer for easy meals on days that I work.
Not so frugal: I am already finding myself heading toward more convenience food to stash in the freezer for the kids on my work days. I want the kids to be able to easily feed themselves, especially in the first month or two as we are adjusing to this new thing. My work will be a big boost to our income, so I think it’s an acceptable tradeoff. But I will still need to be aware, and try not to go overboard with the easy stuff just because we will have more income. Ya know? Also, I need to get back in the habit of double-batching food every single week, so that I can keep a freezer stash for the busy times.
I’m sure I’ll be writing more about this adjustment to part time work– I already have it in my head that I just need to be super-intentional about all the time I will still have at home, and make sure to fit in fun with the kids right along with the mundane.
How did your week go? What’s new in your world? Are you looking forward to the end of the school year? I know I am!