Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Withheld = Telemarketers

Withheld = Telemarketers
Originally uploaded by k1rsty
This isn't really my phone. If it were, I would know NOT to answer. We save money by not having caller ID ( we buy treats instead), and in some ways it is good because I tend to not answer the phone anyway if I don't feel like it. That is something about me that is different from my husband. He thinks if the phone rings it is like a knock on the door, and we NEED to get it! The people calling NEED us! I, on the other hand, have more of a laissez-faire approach. I think if they are calling and we're doing something, we shouldn't be interrupted unless we want to be. Plus you can return the phone call later when you feel up to your social best.

Anyway, I digress from the topic I haven't yet introduced: The Golden Rule.

I don't like it when my heart-rate starts rising from its usual 40 bpm to about 80 because I feel like there is someone that wants more from me than I would like to give. SOLICITORS. Door-to-door and phone solicitors alike. I don't like saying no to people, especially face to face. I don't like them getting mad at me because I choose to not embrace their offers! It is not fair that I have to feel bad about being my stiff, abrupt, ornery self with strangers. And the thing is, I am a nice person in the core part of my being. But they only want you to be the YES man or woman or you are a bad seed. It is one-sided and emotionally damaging.

After talking with a solicitor about magazines tonight (I haven't yet taught my kids that we only answer the phone at night when Dad's home) I feel okay. Why? Because I already had that magazine. So I got off lucky. But next time I might really have to say NO to the request for money, or the donation to some charity, or the offer of more features on my phone. And that goes ditto for the door to door people. So how can I work this?

Back to the Golden Rule! Treat others how you'd like to be treated, right? So I need to prep myself for these situations and by knowing I am going to be nice, will take the increased levels of anxiety out of my system. At least that is my hope.

Potential situations:

Aggressive solicitor:
"Mom, (I hate it when they call me that!) buy this cleaning product so you don't waste your money".

Me: (with a real smile, not fake)
"I think you have a great product there and though I'm not going to buy it, I think you'll find lots of success in your work with your great approach". (I will hide the sarcasm successfully of course) Firmly close the door, no excuses in the wind!

Next scenario:
"Ma'am, I am just selling home security systems and unless you buy one you will probably be the victims of a home invasion".

"What a great idea. We have a different, highly confidential security system that we've found to be successful so far, but I think next-door neighbor is interested". (I'll try not to lie of course, and no excuses or distractions or offers of pop or ice-cream to them like Russell does to at least make them happy)

So now that I've gotten my plan in place, how will you handle your next solicitor in a reverent, loving way? And should I just offer them a can of pop before shutting them out of my life forever? Is this our one chance to make a good example of ourselves to this person? Pre-destination? Should we offer a Book of Mormon to them in return? Wouldn't that be fair? I guess if it was a sincere, loving gift?

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Ice cream on the porch

chubby hubby
Originally uploaded by smooshipantz
Summer makes me think of evenings on the porch, rocking on the rocking chair with a cold glass of lemonade while the kids run in the streets playing flashlight tag. I think I read a book about the South and people who did this. Anyway, it stuck with me. So what's on my mind? Something kind of similar: cool treats.

I am a big fan of Ben and Jerry's. It is $$, but I figure since we don't go out much then buying it on sale provides an experience worth money. And baby, it delivers. I usually like Light Phish Food, which is a bit healthier and doesn't taste different than the full-20 grams per serving regular portions. But I found a new favorite. CHUBBY HUBBY. Out of all the ice creams out there, this is number 2 on the most fattening list. (I found that online). I usually only like chocolate based ice-cream, but this one is vanilla malt ice cream with fudge pretzels (add the salty sweet combo!), fudge ripples and peanut butter. I like my ice cream chunky and interesting!

Anyway, if you'd like to share your summer treat please do!

Friday, June 13, 2008


Well, I guess I can't keep putting it off any longer. I need to stop thinking about how cute his feet are and how his little laugh touches my soul. I need to stop thinking about how I feel so weak and deflated when I hear babies cry for more than 45 seconds.

It's funny how when you start praying that he will improve his sleep habits they get worse. Just bad enough that you have the strength to put him in the crib and let him wail.

Have I done it yet? No. But I am getting closer and closer. He has never slept more than 4 hours in a row, and that has only happened a few times. The average is 2-3. He is well fed I think, as I look at the folds of skin around his thighs. He should sleep longer!

But darn it. He is so cute....
Just pretend this is a picture of Sammy and his Dad instead of Olivia. This is all I had on my computer and I am too lazy to go take feet pictures of Sam. There is resemblance, no?

Night #1: put him down. Mesmerized by musical and bubbly crib toy for about 30 minutes. Went in twice to insert paci. He fell asleep! Woke up 1 hour and a half later. Debated whether to let him cry this time or feed. Opted to feed. Fell asleep well, woke up 1 1/2 hours later. Should we let him cry? After unsuccessful paci-insertion, we decide I'll take him to bed with me, where he slept 3 hours before waking. First night a success, because he did sleep in his crib!
Night #2: put him down cold turkey, he cried for 15 minutes. I went in, insert paci, he starts spitting and cooing to me. How can I resist? I pick him up, feed him to sleep, put him down. Wakes up 15 minutes later to cry, we let him. He cries for at least 30 minutes but I fall asleep with my pillow over my ears. (It is after 11 after all!) Success. He sleeps about 3 1/2 hours. I think we're on to something here?

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

My beach house...

Hampton Beach, New Hampshire

Lately I've been yearning for life on a farm. Well, lately meaning as of yesterday. Why, might you ask?
  • Seclusion.
  • Fresh smells.
  • No friends wanting to play all day long.
  • Working from dawn 'til dusk (well, maybe the indentured servants would do that).
  • Banjos and violins (Pa Ingalls playing the violin- what a peace to my soul!)
  • Animals (wait. I don't like their smell and hairs).
  • Cooking for my sweaty man (wait- I do that).
  • Tomatoes that don't have salmonella
Well, that last one pretty much sums it up. I am so sad we have salmonella in a bunch of tomatoes coming to our stores! I didn't care about spinach- that phase in my life lasted about 5 minutes. The bagged lettuce scare caused me to not buy lettuce for about 2 weeks. But the tomatoes. I love my tomatoes. How can we trust eating any produce if this nastiness continues? What about our beloved apples and bananas? Grapes? The only fruit my kids pop like candy, probably because it is?

All this stress is really driving me to my true summer daydream: living on the beach for a month in summertime. Preferably the North East shore. I could do the Hamptons. Wouldn't that be the ultimate family vacation? Laying out with daiquiris, reading, sand castle-izing, quaint store hopping, deep sleep every night. Oh yeah......

Friday, June 6, 2008

No excuses?

before the re-do

Well, normally I feel like hushing over the fun things we spend the dinero on because I feel guilty. Excuses flying like birds, justifications thrown like frisbees; explanations for why we bought brand-name cream cheese instead of generic; why we bought furniture over food storage; why we bought new shrubs instead of investing in the kids' college funds or R&E's retirement.

But you know...sometimes we buy things because we desire them. A righteous, non-envious, non-worshiping desire.

And though the wood veneer on our old counters was chipping away with every cleaning of food deposits on them, they still could have lasted years.

With all that said, I would like to introduce our new countertops and sink.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Summer school

Well, summer school has officially begun. Recess is from 10-11 outside while it's still cool. Then Anika teaches Isabelle and Olivia from 11-12 with a lesson that includes singing, stories, coloring, and letter tracing.

Today is letter B, number 2.
www.printactivities.com has wonderful
letter/number printouts. Snack was prepared by Anika as well.

If they complete all their school work
(I give Anika a few worksheets to do later in the day) , on Fridays they can choose a little prize from my prize bag.

So far, so good. I know it's only day #2 and kids have short attention spans for routines but I am crossing my fingers for success!