Schedules and Budgets and Other Life Changing Events

I know, I know, it's been forever. I need to update you all now, before the list of things to tell you gets too long and I forget it all.

I'll start with the present, and then go backwards into more ancient history, okay?

In the present, I am working on budgets, recipes, and scheduling. I am almost there. Almost. Now that our lives have some sort of a daily rhythm, it has become easier to plan a schedule. That is nearly completed, and has been done MOTH-style.

Recipes, I decided on a 2-month rotation. I used to have a one-month recipe rotation, but we have so many favorite meals, that I found that one month's worth of recipes just didn't have enough variety. Off the top of my head last night, I listed 56 favorite meals. That is enough for 2 4-week rotations. I will expand on that more later, when I have it all written down in order and also explain the reasons why I do this.

Budgeting will follow after the recipes. I know that seems backwards, but I am a plain kind of gal when it comes to cooking, and my favorite recipes tend to be low-cost anyway. I will try to put the recipes in the rotation so that the cost evens out weekly. Hubby takes care of all the bills now anyway, but I like to give him a little bit of behind-the-scenes help so he thinks he is doing a Good Job managing the money (wink).

The kids have been catching up on schoolwork with a little extra help from me. They are working too late into the afternoon for my liking, but they do tend to dawdle so it's mostly their own fault. The schedule will help that.

Baby is still a bitty bitty thing. Still wearing size 00's and 0's for you Aussies. He is still army-crawling and at almost 15mths shows no sign of readiness to walk, except for a bit of cruising around the furniture. However, he can zoom up the two flights of stairs faster than anything. We plan to invest in a couple more gates this weekend. Almost all the rooms can be closed, but unfortunately when I shut the dining room folding door, to keep baby out of the kitchen, I can't supervise him while schooling the olders. So we need a BIG gate to go across the kitchen entrance.

Jr Spragus was potty-trained last week. He had no accidents the first day, a couple the second day, and none since then. Well done, Jr!

This coming week we plan for Miss Rose and Joman to begin taking art classes and gym classes at a nearby community center. I'll let you know how that goes. It will be nice for us all to get out.

We also plan, very, very soon to do some painting in the main living areas. The outside of the house is so big and gracious, and very pretty. The inside of the house reminds me of a trailer home. Not that that is BAD exactly, it's just such a contrast with the outside. I think a little paint and some new floor coverings could make the inside suit the outside much better. We need to warm and lighten it up in here.

I purchased some fabric to make a tablecloth, and then, through freecycle, got a BIG bag full of free fabric for clothing or crafts or whatever. So our fabric stock has greatly grown. Also, recently, I found craft felt on sale for $1.99 / yard and bought many yards of various colors. It's not lovely wool felt, but nevertheless it is pretty and will be fun for crafts and decorations.

Daddy got his first bonus from work this week. It was better than he had expected, and this weekend we plan to purchase a Yamaha YDP-223 digital piano. We'll be looking at a few other instruments too, as it's a secret dream of Mamma's to have our own little bluegrass band.

I dunno, gospel bluegrass just does something to me. I know, I know.

I would also like to purchase a breadmaker (thanks Deb) and a blender this weekend.

Now, in more non-recent history, a week ago I received in the post a doppler stethoscope to listen to the baby's heartbeat. I did find it on the first day, when I was 9 wks 6 days. I found it again the next day and haven't listened since then. I don't really obsess over it I guess. I ought to listen again soon though, I've had a bit of spotting and my pg symptoms are very mild this time compared to what they usually are, so it's probably best to check every now and again.

I'm trying to think of things to make for a farmers market stall a friend is looking to supply this spring and summer. I might be too busy right now, with everything going on, but it's kind of a little secret dream of mine, to make pretty, useful things to sell.

I guess I better run for now. I got some new photo processing software, so as soon as I figure out what I'm doing with that, and take some more photos, I'll have more to share with you.

love you all!
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