Monday, November 29, 2010

Fast Money

I think today is the 28th. So far we've spend ~$315 on groceries. My range was $250-$350.


We'll be out of town much of December and January but I will still try to allocate $300 cash for food. That's pretty low for a family of 4, and considering we eat fresh foods.

We'll refine as we go along because some of that amount listed is non-food items.

I opened an ING checking for me and Mr A, and savings for TR and QT. They were having the black Friday bonuses so we got $256 for opening 4 accounts.

We already have too too many accounts and I'm thinking about closing my other checkings and use savings accounts. Its too much to track.

The financial fast didn't go too well but it didn't go terribly bad. We bought a bed and mattress, I had to get my car serviced. We got some other stuff, we ate out and money was spent. I did put a large percentage of our incomes in savings. At least 50% but since I don't track on excel I can't give the precise percent.

We allocated to our house fund, travel, TR's tuition and general savings. For our house fund we pretend like our rent is 1/3 more than what it is. Next we will pretend it is one-half more than what it is. Its nice to have pretend expenses because its a good incentive to earn more and save more.

Monday is a non-work day. The kids love to sleep when I don't have work planned. I'll get stuff done, so I can play during the time I have work planned.

Men are not women

I stereotype. I am okay with that. I am not trapped in my stereotypes but I identify similarities of groups
and start there.

When I see a male I have certain expectations. Men hold doors. Sometimes the male turns out not to be a man
and the door swings in my face as the b-made male shows me he doesn't meet the definition
of man or human being. Stereotype gone wrong.

I occasionally read/hear a woman describing her ideal man and i think the woman built another
woman in her head. Maybe this is why gay men are so adored by many women. They are a girlfriend in a male body.
I wish more men would tell me their ideal mate so I could know if iguys are looking
for male characteristics in a woman.

I have heard many men listing income/credit when considering mates. That makes me think the man is looking for
a woman to be his husband. Why is a man seeking financial security or help? Perhaps gender roles are a thing of the past.

When women get these men who satisfy the social requirements of a best girlfriend I wonder how
the home operates. He has an eye for art and wants to decorate. He wants her to help him paint.

If he wasn't a girlie man he would have the guys come and help him paint, she would choose colors, make some
lemonade and vacate. With the girlie men they pick colors, they tape and paint and she still makes th lemonade.

Or maybe they hire a painter and he needs her income so he does not have to do labor and they can still
eat.

I do wonder if women review their lists and chuckle at wanting to date a man who is her in a different body?

I admit I am sexist. I don't get men who prefer the company of a bunch of women nor do I get women who prefer men as friends.
I do think men can require less work as friends but they will give less in return.



I sorta get it but not really.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Diplomacy

This morning I looked on the floor of our eating area and saw three pairs of Mr A shoes.

It frustrates me that he refuses to use the closets that I keep orderly. I told him I would be burning them.

He went outside to do something and as soon as the door shut TR told me, "mommy, don't yell at my daddy, okay?! no! no! no!. Don't yell at daddy." Then she put her finger to her lips and said shhhh.

How in the heck did I raise such a sexist?

I have gotten great at not fussing at him because I know TR doesn't like that energy but she wants total harmony.

I'll work on it. She has her daddy's spirit because Mr A also likes harmony. I like it too, but I think its good to hash stuff out and then return to zen.

I'll keep ya'll informed.

stuff

People are relationship killers. It may not be intentional but people will pour their hurt and mistrust and preferences on other
peoples relationships. I used to do it. Then when I discovered some silly people actually cared
what I thought I stopped.

Some people just look for trouble. If you are happy with a man who makes you pay your own car note and insurance,
be happy. Do not let the fact that I would not be happy influence you.

My listserv had a conversation about men "letting" their wives do something.
I tend to put my full weight in my likes. The fact that someone thinks
what I like is wrong means zip, zero, zilch to me.

I ain't asked nobody to like what I like and I don't need you to like or want it for me
to confidently like it.

So the ladies started off with its controlling for a woman to have a man
be able to "let" her or not let her do something.

I wouldn't have a weak man, who was too weak to tell me no that won't be happening.
I married an alpha man for a reason. I also married a considerate man
who likes to see me smiling and does his best never to earn my frown.

So if he says "no" to me, after I figure out he isn't joking (he rarely says no so it doesn't
immediately register), I figure he has a reason and that reason isn't because he just wants to
assert some man control.


I think women need to marry different men. I can't see being married to a
man I can't trust to tell me no.

then you have the ladies who make their own money and if they want to do A with it, their husband can't say boo because its their money.

Money makes unnecessary power struggles. Mr A and I have our money. It does not matter who earned it.
Some people allow money to be the ruler of their relationships.

People have to do what works for them but I am glad the dollar is not a factor in my family. Whether we are broke or
have abundance we love and like each other.

When Mr A and I were dating and I told him the number on my
student loan, he did not throw up deuces he made a plan on how we would erase it fast after
we were married. I told him it was my debt. He said once we were married it
was our debt and we could build faster if we treated it as a joint obligation.

How could I let damn dollar be in charge when I have a man who thinks like that. He
had a vision for his future family.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Forever

TR is 2.5 but if feels like she has been in my life forever. She adds so much excitement to
my life.

I was trying to figure out why waited so long to get her a bed and it occurred to me that she is just 2 and was not here before.

I had originally looked at a pot.te.ry barn bed (since the last time I wrote that name those suckas have kept an ad on my google) but I think Mr A thought it was too expensive. Then I went to AFK Beverly Hills and fell in love with a 5k bed that I was close to ordering. We went back to PB and he said buy it. So PB was reasonable when $5k was the next option.

I love her new bed. I went to look at mattresses on Sunday. I saw a sealy because I want U.S. made and one twin was ~400 the next was ~800. I could not bring myself to buy the lower mattress after laying on the higher ones.

Then I couldn't get her a comfy mattress and leave us in ours. Fortunately I had forgotten my wallet
at home and had no choice but to leave everything.

I remember the first bed I bought after law school. It was queen sleigh bed dark wood with steps because it was high.
I got a nice mattress. Both were from Macy. The total with delivery and set up was ~2000. That was early 2000.

10 years later and we spent ~1000 on a twin bed and mattress. Inflation is not playing.

I am glad she has her bed. I am anxiously awaiting the arrival of her comfy mattress. My
baby is a big girl and my baby boy is quickly becoming a big boy. Baby days vanish rapidly.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Hypocrite

I was writing a post about this topic but decided not to. Then I came across this article and now I'm posting on it. huff post the new stigma

The Sins of Parents

Being a child of divorce I did not want to marry a man whose parents were divorced. I also wanted my kids to have an active grandfather like I did. I needed a man who had a father around. Both of my parents, had parents who stayed together until death. Perhaps having married parents is not the key to a successful marriage.

A parents marriage may not be the key, but I didn't want a man who thought the woman should fend for herself. Mr A saw his father bring his money home, he saw his mom run the house and family with that money. I saw my grandparents do the same. That is how I wanted my family to operate. We were the only single parent home on the block. The majority of kids at my 99% black elementary school had 2 married parents. Only a few kids had different last names from their siblings. I saw married couples as the norm.

Fortunately Mr A did not hold my broken home status against me. If he had of I would have had to understand.

Years ago I had an argument with a friend. He told me his future wife would have to pay her own bills and that his money was his. I told my mom and she said to avoid men who did not grow up watching their father take care of their mother because they think the woman is supposed to take care of herself.

I know couples who both have married parents and they split up bills and if the woman has less money, oh well. So again, married parents is not the key but I still wasn't interested in entrusting my future to a man who I knew lacked an example.

I have witnessed men who I thought were normal and decent, abandon their children and call the child's mother crazy. As I reflect I realize that their fathers were absent. They repeat the cycle.

I still do not understand the women who deal with absentee fathers and sing the crazy baby momma song with him. When a male, friend or foe tells me that madness, I tell them the stats on fatherless children and tell them the mothers "craziness" is more reason for him to be there and protect the child.


Mr A and I discuss TR and QT's marriage prospects. I used to be in support of women who when hitting the end of her clock decide to be a mother. Why should she have to miss motherhood because of men and their issues.

But now, having experienced the dynamics of fatherhood, I admit I don't want my kids having to date in the pool of people who may feel its okay to start families without legal ties. Marriage offers a mother protection if the father dies. If I don't think you are worthy to marry, you are certainly not worthy to add your genes to my kid.

I don't want TR or QT viewing marriage as a part of normal life and being told by the people they date that its unnecessary.

TR loves her daddy. I wonder if I am more aware of that relationship than people who grew up with a loving, active father? If I had had that from my own father, I might take it for granted. I never met my fathers fun side. He is disciplinarian and my aunts said the war changed him.

I don't want my kiddies having to deal with people who can't operate easily in a family dynamic. I want them to have options and at the current rate, hetero marriage looks like it is becoming the dinosaur. Same sex folks are the only ones who seem to want to do it and start families.

My kids are 2 and 8 months, yet I am stressing over the state of relationships and how families exist 20+ years from now. I need to pray.

I have a headache now.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

What had happened was.....

Mr A and I have been on a restaurant tour of little Ethiopia. One of his students father owns one of the restaurants.
We attempted to go there last night but despite the Open sign, the doors were locked.

We dined at Messob our old faithful and tried a different dish in addition to Kitfu.

The spending fast fell by the wayside last week. I had photos taken of QT, we bougt TR a bed,
we had sushi delivered and I did a little/lot of shoppng.

But in good news we put 100% of Mr A's last check in savings. Tomorrow I will put at least 2/3!of
the check from our San Francisco training in savings and all but directtv is paid.

I know we can do better with tracking and controlling our money but because
we put the bulk in savings I don't feel like total failure.

We're planning to take TR on her first ski trip this season. I hope she can fit the skis/snowboard and take a class. I
know she will love it. I haven't skied since 2007? I was pregnant in 2008, had an infant in 2009 and preggers this year.
I am ready to get back to it and extremely excited to do it with my kiddies.

I think my last ski trip, Mr A tried to give me a lesson. He was on a board and I had
skies. We decided not to do that again. It was fun skiing with him but he likes
jumping and twirling and I like to ensure I break nothing.

I will probably leave QT with my mom. Last time we went to Aspen I saw women there and on the plane with their nannies. Ohhhh I would love to have he funds to pay the airfare and salary of a nanny on vacation. Must be nice. I love Aspen. It's so peaceful, small and the food is great. I look forward to us taking the kids there. I think we should rent a house if we have the kids. But I love room service.
Something about room service makes me feel like I am really on vacation.

Get it together

I've been riding the sane train for the last 3 weeks. I've finally gotten to a place where I get work done, take care of the kids, cook and do not feel overwhelmed. I have a routine! When Mr A comes home the kids and I are relaxed. One of ya'll must of prayed for my sanity. Thank you!

Of course football season is nearly over and the end of Mr A and long days. I might find him something else to do. It disturbs me to get stuff together and then have to change it. The kids and I have routines and he changes them.

I turn his chair around and let TR watch Dora and Backyardigans on the computer via Netflix. When he comes home he turns the chair and watches tv.

Last week, TR took the remote from me and put it in Mr A's chair. She said it was daddy's. She would not bring it back and I didn't feel like getting up.

I'm more liberal with the kids and he wants certain order. They pretty much run the place until he comes home. I think they have good balance.

TR tries to divide and conquer. If daddy says no, she will ask mommy. I hate saying no, but we have to present a united front.

When we go to my mom's house, I act as enforcer because my mom lets her run everything. I tell her she cannot have a popsicle and I see her later and she has one. My mom or sister gives it to her. I secretly smile. I want her to have it and I'm glad she doesn't give up.

Anyway, I've been having a good time laughing at the kids. The stuff kids do can keep a person smiling. Their glee is contagious.

Last week the school had an afternoon football game. The kids and I were there early. TR cheered with the cheerleaders and had fun climbing the bleachers. During half-time she ran onto the field. The field was empty of activity.

It was a safe place otherwise I would have held on to her. I started yelling for Mr A to catch her. He said he didn't hear me. He turned his head and saw a pink dress flying across the field. He ran and got her. She was laughing and having a ball when he got her.

The kid is fast. She was in a big dress and dress shoes. Mr A said that field is sloped and difficult to run across. TR is a true athlete. She get it from her momma. Although Mr A says she gets it from him. Whatev!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Zip Codes

I was watching Judge Judy. A deadbeat dad was being sued and the mother was on crying.

I love it when I see my kids enjoying their food. I CANNOT understand how a XY chromosome can go to bed full each night and not think about feeding his child. I cannot. I really think the chair is appropriate for that man. If you eat and won't feed your child, you have no use as a human.

~end

TR had a playdate today. The nannies at the park organize these dates and parties and make me wish I was a kiddie. It was held at the home of 2 kids who have a live in nanny. The kids started off doing art. Then they played on the slides, swings and little cars. They had El Pollo Loco and Cake. TR had great fun!

I want to go to a party in the middle of the day.

Random: A few weeks ago my mom stopped by a lady's house. The woman was having a margarita party. My mom came back to the car and said they were coloring and playing with hula hoops. I was confused and asked why she didn't tell them TR wanted to come in.

My mom informed me the 50 and 60 year old women were drinking, coloring and playing hula hoop. There were no kids there. There is hope for me to get invited to a play date.

Its slightly odd to me that I know kids but no parents and parents know TR and her nanny but not us. Sometimes I meet parents at the park and we introduce ourselves by who our kids are.

I read an Educational Opportunity Report by UCLA on California public schools. The report said most high schools do not offer the classes students need to apply to the UC system.

We've already decided to do what we consider to be high quality private schools but I thought I had at least an option of our neighborhood public elementary. But it seems like even the top public school is likely at the bottom.

It is frightening. I have no idea what happened to my state. We used to be tops. The report said even middle class white kids test below middle class white kids in other states. Its not race or economics, of course black and brown and poor do worse than other but the schools here have some issues. I can't let my kids be subject to that, to save cash. Life is too challenging to live it poorly educated.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Pure Love

TR enrolled at her new gymnastics school last week. Mr A and I could barely wait until the day she started.

She loves jumping, tumbling, walking on narrow beams, hanging upside down and anything that is gymnastics like. We knew she would love the class and she did. We had so MUCH fun watching her. We had equal fun talking about her abilities. I think every parent there is beaming.
We are no exception.

TR is in the class for 3 to 5 year olds. She knows how to follow direction well and she plays with older children well.

The coach told Mr A that the only 2.5 year old she has seen with TR's abilities, is a little Russian. She did not call the girl Russian
but she is.

TR loves the class and has been incorporating the moves in her play.
I am glad there are activities for toddlers who think they are cats.

I'm also glad we recognized she was bored at mygym.

I took QT to mygym. He seemed to enjoy it. He doesn't interact
with babies his age too often and he was observing the other kids.

I remember taking TR to gymboree class when she was months old.
I left early due to boredom. The class did stuff we did at home so I
wasn't willing to leave home and pay to do that.

I was bored at QT's class. I think it will be more fun for me once he is walking and
can play.

Time goes so fast. It feels like yesterday that I was putting TR on the slid
at the park and holding her so she could slide. Now she owns
the slide.

TR's gym has a good number of black kids. The mothers and fathers
come out to observe. Living on the westside of L.A. I often feel odd
being a black family. Black man and other woman is the norm and
I guess the black men who have black wives stay home.

It's usually white, asian, mid eastern couples, interracial couples, gay couples and black women
together.

I read the report that said 72% of black kids are born to unwed mothers.
I blame the women who have 2+ kids for skewing the numbers. Then
all the black couples I know who will not or cannot have kids. It makes
me wonder if the black family will be extinct soon.

It also makes me self-conscious. I imagine people look at me with my
kids and assume they were born out of wedlock or if we are all together
they assume TR is probably not his or we got married after she was born.

Statiscally they would be correct in those assumptions. How could such
a reality, that only 28% of black kids are born to married women
have happened. If my body and finances were better I would
happily have 2 more kids and fight that statistic.

Mr A mentioned another kid and I immediately thought
we would be paying 60k a year on private school if we
stayed in L.A.

But as the post is titled the love for your child us pure. Their happiness
is the parents happiness. It is amazing that watching
your child enjoy themself can put total glee and
pleasure in your heart.

As I sat in the observation deck at the gym, I heard and
saw a room full of proud and joyful smiling parents.

Parents feel their child joys and pains so intensely. It's personal.

I remember my mom telling her cousin that she had always wanted
to attend Cal. My mom had straight A's in high school and college
so she could have had she applied. When my brother got accepted
to Cal she said the joy she felt was better than if she had gone herself.

From my view as a mother I know what she means.

'childfree' folks cannot comprehend that type of love. Childless
folks and parents probably know what I am talking about.



So it's great to interact with full black children and black couples. Exhale.
My kids won't think they are some L.a. unicorn.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

The Art of War

The title of one of my first blogs was "The Art of War" and my screen name was Call2arms.

I discovered that some thought I was a freedom fighter, but that was not the genesis of my title. I was fighting for something.

It was a love battle. Ya'll know love is a battlefield. I eventually hung up my weapons, the war ended. Exhale.

There is always something to fight for, but its not always worth fighting for.

The 1st full day of my knowing Mr A, he told me to hold his skis. I held them. He told my cousins and me to take him home. We all stood up and started toward the car. He was giving a series of commands/demands but there were no question marks.

I had those details on our wedding website. He thought it made him look bad, but I'm a woman who loves a man who walks in his authority. If people think those are traits of an a*hole it means they have a different preference.

He was doing the same thing to the guys at his cabin and they were following orders. It was simple stuff like assigning duties. I figured he was the leader. I like leaders.

As we got to know each other, I told him that I could not figure out why everyone kept taking his orders. I was intrigued by such a trait. He sleepily (we were on the phone NOT in bed) said, "It is possible to impart instruction and give commands in such a manner and such a tone of voice as to inspire in the soldier no feeling, but an intense desire to obey". The full quote is here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Schofield

I said hunh? and he explained that it was part of his college training. He's also an Alpha male.

Anyway, I'm a strong black woman, hear me roar. As a kid I was once mocking a woman from church who had a weak husband. My grandmother told me I needed to marry a weak man because with my attitude strong one would leave me. Nothing wrong with weak men and the women who run them. That is balance.

I dated only one guy who thought I was bossy, but I thought he was weak. I dated a couple of guys who appreciated my controller qualities but I thought they were weak.

I luv me some Mr A because he is so strong and so him, that the me that I am can flourish. He props me up where I am weak.

I am able to relax in his leadership and trust.

My opinion is that strong black women are fine, its the men who need to be stronger.

We made it!

We had a lovely dinner at home last night. I had to fight myself and not suggest dinner out.

Dinner was either free or very low cost. Mr A went to the p.o. Box and got our rewards bucks.
He made cat fish. It wan't fried, not sure what the term was for how he prepared it. It was um um good. TR loves fish and she had two helpings. I also had 2 helpings.

Then we relaxed/played.

Usually our Tuesdays are busy because we go out for dinner. It was nice to be still at home.

I have a hot date on Thursday. A sexy gent invited me on a date. I told him I had to check
with my husband. My husband gave his approval. (sometimes Mr A and I role play. I am not
dating another man).

Fret not people. We can do this date and stick to our fast because we bought movie
tickets months ago from Costco. I * paid for a movie night out a few months back.
That date was ~$50.

Tickets were over $25 and snacks were about the same.
I typically do not look at bills at dinner and outings but wow!, thank
God I am a woman. I could go broke courting a woman.

In other financial matters I ordered netflix and we've been watching it since he end of
September. TR can watch her cartoons on demand.

Suddenly the netflix quit working. We discover that our speed is too slow.
I think they downgraded us once we were using it so much. The Wii would have
never worked at our current speed.

When I called our ISP, there was great confusion over the package we had.

Tech support said we had the lower package and sales refused to upgrade because we had
the highest they offered. They eventually got it together and now we have to pay an additional 7 bucks a
month on top of the $9 netflix cost.

So that is $17 when my original goal was to cancel the costly
cable package. He was traumatized as he sat watching sports and ESPN
went away. I had got the family package that just had TR's channels.
He immediately called them back and got all our channels at a lower cost.

Anyway, I might buy the DVDs of TR's shoes and cancel netflix and the higher
speed Internet. It's so easy to keep adding costs to your life.

* I used my debit card. Our money is joint and linked. It's Our money but someone
has to pay when bills are due.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

The Wonder of 2

TR is almost 2.5 years old.

2 is such a wonderful age. It is truly a stage of blossoming.

I see TR's independence and understanding. Nothing occurs in small measure its all in leaps and bounds.

I go to the park and I spot my little girl playing with the other kids. They are carefree and committed to whatever task they are engaged in. I see TR picking up her sand toys and its like its the most important task at that moment.

Total focus. She knows how to display concern and affection.

Deep sigh..... my baby is becoming a big girl. I'm excited!

21 Days- Day 3

I had no idea how challenging this fast could be.

I considered making a hair appointment, but its not a necessity. We usually go out for dinner on Tuesday but that isn't a necessity.


Why am I denying myself a pleasure our family needs? We need a weekly time out in the middle of our busy week. I think its important to know where your money goes but money is a tool.

I gave up a budget a while ago. We don't have a regular monthly income so budgets do not fit in with our financial needs.

We have our expenses listed. For me, if bills are paid and savings are paid, then the rest is free to use. I guess the purpose of the financial fast is to see where all the unallocated money is going and how it might be wasted.

I'm torn. But I will see it to the end because I started it. I don't want to be a quitter. I will battle my desire to consume.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Love and money- Part !

Mr A and I were discussing the black family. We're community minded people. Since we have black children, we care about the success of the black family and our kids having access to them. We ponder ideas on lots of popular, random and obscure topics.

We were discussing how it seems so many people are opposed to building together. People will not date you and you will get bashed for dating people without a list of material items. People don't ask how they treat you, they ask about his/her job, career, income etc.

When we began dating I lived in my mother's home and I drove an older (paid for) car. A few of his people told him he could do better. Their assessment of me was based only on material items. But it also is a clue of how times have changed. Men are not ashamed to look to a woman to upgrade their lifestyle. He let those nuts know he was not looking at what I had but to who I am.

Some of these same sillybots are now saying that I 'keep' him. So I started out too broke to date and now I am financing him. Some folks cannot accept a happy couple. They need to find something odd to justify whatever they need to justify.

Mr A's smarter and better educated friends are trying to emulate our strategy.

When my maternal grandparents married they had nothing. They built enough that my children have an inheritance. I won't have to use what they left but it was my springboard. Hopefully my children will be wise and continue to build. I didn't have a list of assets the man must have. I know what you have today does not determine your tomorrow.

I think a couples relationship towards money indicates how they really feel about each other and how they trust each other. I don't think money should be ignored. Its a tool that should be used.

I have seen and heard people speak ill of a good and ambitious person because they did not wear their salary.

How can families be built and survive when we are so focused on material stuff? I know people who won't get married and are married but won't have kids because they are weighed down by "good" debt and working hard to pay it off and maintain an image and lifestyle they think they earned.

On living

Someone thought my prior post was about playing games in relationships.
It was and is not about gamesmanship. It's about being who you are and acknowledging
your feelings. I have been overwhelmed and feeling not together
for the last few months. I've been angry too. So while it was not my
intention to remain in that state I was not faking it til I made it.

Even when I am losing my grip and feeling overwhelmed I feel safe that Mr A will help me get back to
sanity. Mr A has a good heart and I would not play games. I would not stress him out on purpose for any
reason. Life is stressful enough without people willfully adding pressure to your life.

Our grocery budget is $250-$350. Part of that includes my weekly trips to
Whole Foods for breakfast staples.

Yesterday I went in and spent $38. I would have been under budget but crablegs were on sale.
I realize if I had only took cash I intended to spend i would have kept to the plan.

So I will head to the bank.

We are doing the 21 day financial fast. That was what I wanted for my birthday. We started yesterday. I had a gift card for TR so we hit the Beverly Center. I'm not sure if 2 year old are supposed to like shopping but TR likes clothes and accessories. I wonder if it's natural or did
I cause this.

She will pass most toys by, but a pretty dress will cause her pause.

A few weeks ago she asked for boots. I thought she was saying 'blue' until she pointed
to a pair of boots. I picked up a different pair at Ross the next day. She has requested to wear those
boots everyday since I brought them home. My mother gave me the cash to buy the same boot
her a larger size in case she still wants to wear them after she outgrows the first pair.

The kids are playing. TR is so rough. I would not play with her but he seems to enjoy it.

Both the kids attack Mr A and the kids attack each other with the same zeal.
it.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Mind Control

I've managed to maintain my sanity all week. Mr A might disagree and that is why I am not asking him what he thinks.

Back to me.

The painting has helped my morning out. TR focuses and I can gather my thoughts.

She paints, I put breakfast on and the nanny arrives and gives the food to the kiddies. She gets them ready and they head to the park. Most days I go to the park for a bit and play and return home to work.

My pile has been reduced, one of my hearings got continued and I'm feeling like my mind is seeing clarity. My case load is sufficient to ensure I can get a check each month.

My goal is to have the full year of TR's tuition set aside and possibly paid before she starts school. In my head that bill exists. We are excited about her school.

While I like to pay for stuff like that in advance I like to disperse my own money. I don't like automatic withdrawals because I prefer to pay my own stuff.

Last week or so my car was low on gas. I told Mr A and he took it and filled it up. Sometimes I don't express appreciation him and my blog has been a bit harsh on him for some months.

BUTTTT...... if you search my archives, he was once annoyed that I was writing only good stuff. I was at a place where the good made any annoyances unnoticeable. I am a woman of extremes. I made an effort not to blog about good and we see what happened.

I tell my girlfriends that men seem to do better when a woman is crazy. As soon as you start being too nice they start complaining. I've had a attitude for a bit and he's been going out of his way to keep me smiling.

Anyway, I probably won't go overboard with things I like about him because then he'll start complaining about me.

I wonder if any of that makes sense. Perhaps not. I just know that my friends who I'd love to have as a wife stay perpetually single and the women who I'd kill myself if I had to live with, seem to get good spouses to drive wacko.

The balance of being crazy enough not to push him away and but crazy enough to make him want to stay close.

I don't usually have Ada work on Friday. She is here for a few hours today. People don't tend to work on Friday's. Even if they are in the office they are not really present. Then there are state furloughs that make it pointless to work.

But Friday is a long day, because of the football game. For sanity purposes I probably need the help but from a financial standpoint, I'm not working that day so if no money is earned no money should be spent.

Today, I'm going to take a little me time. Hit the mall and do some pretty stuff. Then I will return home to the trenches and play it by ear.

Peace!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Life

TR had a scuffle a month or so ago at the park. A 3 year old tried to take her toy but TR wasn't letting go.

I was annoyed since that girl is the only other black girl at the park. The nanny told me that TR and that girl
love to play together. So now I am happy TR has a black buddy in the neighborhood. I plan to get her
contact info. Most of the kids come with their nanny so I rarely meet parents.

Tuesday I went to pick TR up and head to football practice. Sh did not want to leave the park. I kept telling
her we were going to see daddy at football but she said she wanted to stay.

I had no idea parents were rejected at 2. QT and I went to practice.

Later on Tuesday the A family went to little Ethiopia for dinner. We
had a budget meeting and TR and QT were able to participate. TR requested
that bubble be added to the budget. I wrote bubbles and we are allocating $2 per
month to that.

We made a few other financial decisions. We are going to do envelope method for groceries.

I get certain items for TR from whole foods. I realized some stuff is cheaper there
than at vons/ ralphs or trader joes.

Mr a hit the grocery store and was $20 under what our allocation was. Whoo hoo!

Life has, or it could just be my life, has innate conflict. Mr A and I agree on money, kids and
family. I won't say I disagree on football but it is something that bugs me. It's the time
commitment. Actually if I was not here having children testing my sanity I might not care about
the time.

Our top/only school is having an open house. We are Solomon excited.

I had considered looking into another school but felt it was too far. TR's new
gymnastics class is a block away from the school I didn't consider. I got there in under 12
minutes.

Its two turns from home. The other school is 3 miles but because
of it's location it can take 15 minutes and if we are in traffic then it could
be hectic.

I am still not interested in exploring the 2nd school.

I think we could do a fun home school experience. I just want an
environment that supports and fosters a child's natural love of learning.

This is long....... Later gators.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

sooooo

I have lots to do and here I am blogging. My pile is so deep that I don't know where to start. That's not true, I know to start ANYWHERE. I'm overwhelmed.

I tell you. I am here not working and my kiddies are at the park with the nanny. That makes it hard for me to work because I should be playing with them. Its a mad circle that I am on. Hopefully I will be able to drag myself back together. I will get it together and let you know.

So, I took TR to a gymnastics class yesterday. She loved it. The class consists of preschool age kids but she kept up and did everything they did. The instructor told me to leave her in that class and she would learn the routines. She doesn't need to be in the younger class.

There were a few activities and he asked her if she was scared. TR ain't nevah scared. She told him no, as he swung her higher on the hand bars.

She seemed to be bored with the kid gym and frustrated by the activities. So now she is with the Russians, who are competitors.

Mr A and I will probably go this weekend so he can check it out. While we want her to be challenged, we don't want her to get deep in it and be competitive. We want her to have fun and learn the sport. Ada told me that TR was doing the exercises last night. She didn't want to stop. So it appears that she loves it.

Here are a few photos. Most are with my phone and pretty grainy.



We attended a seminar at the school we are applying to. I loved the headmaster. I know TR will love her too. She was WOW!

My mood to work has sorta hit, so I may make it happen today. The kids and I are going to practice. All TR talks about is football and daddy. She misses him.

Oddly when we are in Oakland, she doesn't mention him as much as when we are home. She probably knows I am teetering on the edge of insanity and he is her stability. When we are in Oakland, my mom is her sane friend.

My hope is that my sanity will return when she is 3 and quits screaming when she doesn't get her way right when she wants it.

We got an easel from IKEA this weekend. I was thinking I'd save the money from art class, but I'm pretty sure we spend about $30 bucks on paint. The paint will likely be gone at the end of the week.

TR loves to paint. She claps her hands and says "I looove to PAint!" Not sure why I didn't know this hobby was a costly. I need to shop for paint on discount but of course I want the non toxic stuff which adds to the price point.

Mooving

I spotted a place that would be twice what our current rent is. Mr A went to look at it. It was great. I knew that we'd move as soon as we painted. Fortunately good sense got the better of us.

Mr. A helped me comprehend that we could buy a house a few blocks from our desired neighborhood if we were going to pay that amount of rent.

That amount of rent will also delay our purchase time. I want more space but I don't want it bad enough to delay our goals.

That's all folks!