Thursday, March 06, 2008

Oh well

Tonight I cancelled attending bookclub. I feel lousy and I am really looking forward to hosting the Surfaces (12 of us) for dinner tomorrow night, so I'm going to go to bed early. Bummer.

Today I turned down our hot water tank a bit; it was uncomfortably hot coming out of the tap (bad with little kids) and an energy waster. This week I plan to get a hot water blanket, which apparently can save 3-10% of the energy used by the hot water heater. (Better get an earthquake strap while I'm at it, and install them at the same time.

I've "hidden" our paper napkins, and now we're using cloth almost exclusively. I had plenty already so I didn't need to buy them. They get reused, not tossed in the trash, and it's one less thing to buy. Environment=pocketbook in this case. (Not always the case, but often enough.)

Church this weekend plans to do "Stone Soup," the classic folk tale, for the children's story, and all members of the congregation are asked to bring in a vegetable to share. This fits perfectly with the values we're trying to teach Tessa, and I'm glad she will get to see how it works. I think she'll also get a kick out of the social hour, enjoying the soup with her friends. We've volunteered to bring some bread to share (just a couple of loaves) and help serve (Tessa's preschool "spirit play" class is in charge of the project, so those families are bringing extras and helping) so we feel particularly connected to the project. Every week, I feel more connected to the WSUU community and their values.

I have also taken on a writing project for WSUUs involvement in building a Habitat for Humanity house in West Seattle. I think that this is an excellent opportunity for family time and community and charity and all the rest, so it will be a family affair to work on the project. I envision Tessa and I cleaning up the construction site (she can pick up nails for recycling, for example); I envision Tessa running a free lemonade stand for the workers; I envision Ryan getting satisfaction from swinging a hammer; I envision writing well crafted essays on the project and publishing them on a blog (not this one) for the WSUU and UU and Habitat communities.

Whereas I'm not able to do much for Komen right now because the breast cancer thing is sometimes too large of a part of my life, Habitat should fulfill my need to participate in charity wihtout bogging me down. That's the hope, anyway.

I have managed to track every dollar (cent!) of our household spending since this project began. This is NOT my forte' so I'm proud of this accomplishment.

I'm planning a family yard sale. NOT the 3-Day massive yard sale, just a litlte family yard sale. In this way I think we'll bring in some extra cash, get rid of clutter. We all stand to benefit. We'll let Tessa do a lemonade stand for profit, and then help her to budget her profits (charity, savings, spending).

I've been asked by Snow & Genentech to go to Colorado in May. Hurrah! I like these trips, and the money will help our family.

Today I had planned to garden, garden, garden....I'd like my front beds to look nicer when Mom & Dad S. arrive. Alas, it's not to be. We still have a mountain of mulch in the back yard, but I can't spread it until I pull the weeds. It will happen. (I'm working on this as Ryan works on the digging of the vegetable garden. In theory, they'll finish up at the same time, adn then I'll switch from the "big" weeding project to just maintenance weeding adn then planting as well. At that point, we also need to aerate, thatch, fertilize, and re-seed our back yard, figuring out a way to do this without Shep un-doing our work. I really want to spend a lot of time in our back yard this summer, enjoying the fruits of our labor. Actually, in our front yard, too!)

Speaking of yards, I'll throw this out there in internet land: anybody have any of the following they'd like to get rid of? I'd be happy to take them off your hands:
- soaker hose(s)
- rain barrel(s)
- ceramic or concrete bird bath
- wooden, metal, or concrete (anything but plastic) garden bench(es)
- trellises (for putting up beans and raspberries)

It worked for the bread machine (thanks Mom & Dad) so maybe it will work for one or more of these items, too.....?

Speaking of the bread machine, I haven't bought a loaf of bread since I got the machine. And now I only want home made bread. ;-) Tessa says she likes store bought pizza and store bought bread better than home made......oh well. C'est la vie. She's five, she doesn't get to choose.

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