Our resources

I work hard to make the most of our time, money, space and natural resources.

Gardening is like cleaning a kid’s room

August 5, 2010
Gardening is like cleaning a kid’s room

I rented a community garden plot this year. Mark questioned whether we could maintain a 15×20 garden plot three miles away when we can’t even keep a houseplant alive. But I went ahead anyway. While working in it, it has occurred to me that tending a garden is much like tending a kid’s bedroom. 1. If you are lucky, you start with a clean slate, but more often than not you start with a jungle. 2. You include the kids in the work to teach them about organization, responsibility, the life cycle, contributing to your family, etc. etc. 3....

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Kids’ lunch box giveaway

July 25, 2010
Kids’ lunch box giveaway

Kelly Lester, who wrote the recent guest post about Momables, gave me an EasyLunchbox set to review, and we are loving them. We haven’t used them for a full lunch yet, being summer. But we have packed a nice array of snacks for trips to the playground. I liked them because: I could pack snack-sized portions rather than the whole package of each item. I didn’t need to use bags that would later be thrown away. I didn’t need to find a bunch of little containers and then find something to carry them all in. Each kid got their...

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Daily schedule to end “drifting”

April 13, 2010
Daily schedule to end “drifting”

I’ve often wondered why I am able to be organized, proactive and on top of things professionally while my home is a mess, my library books are late and I’m in my jammies till noon. I found the answer — and it is simple — in “The Procrastinator’s Handbook: Mastering the Art of Doing It Now” by Rita Emmett.* She calls it the “Drifting Along” method of procrastination. Because home is less structured, without deadlines or a set schedule, I drift along all day, all week, all month without getting much done. I’ve tried many tactics to combat this...

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Tip for kids’ DVDs

April 9, 2010

Have you noticed that kids’ DVDs have a million previews on them? And on some they are difficult if not impossible to skip? Here’s the solution: Burn a copy of it (for only your own use of course) but leave off the previews and title menus and everything but the feature film. That way you pop it in and your movie starts immediately. No hitting menu or fast-forward or even play. Bonus: If your kids scratch the living daylights out of the DVD or smear peanut butter on it or otherwise render it unplayable, you still have the original...

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Fair vs. realistic in jobseeking

April 8, 2010

First, thanks to everyone who commented on my denied a job interview post, especially those of you whom I didn’t previously know. I enjoyed reading all your opinions. Thanks to those who said here and on facebook that you would hire me. Now I just need one of you to actually be able to do that. To those who said I’m probably better off not working there: I happen to know this is a good place to work and really values a work-life balance. And I don’t think they were put off by me being a mother. However, the...

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Perceptions matter

April 6, 2010

Note: This was written when my blog was called “Recovering Procrastinator” and was part of the impetus for me changing to the format and name the blog has now. I got an interview for a job I was really interested in. It sounded like a really interesting position that fit my skills well. The pay was good, benefits were great and it was in St. Paul. Pretty much everything I could ask for. Twenty minutes after receiving the information about who I’d be interviewing with, I got a call. I couldn’t get to the phone, and I listened to...

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My save-a-bundle grocery list for the week

March 21, 2010

Here’s our weekly shopping list, put together with weekly ads a little help from lists at Minnesota Coupon Adventures and Pocket Your Dollars. I didn’t list where my coupons came from, but you can find sources for most of them at those two sites. Tomorrow, I’ll figure out what I can make from these things and what we have on hand and I’ll publish a weekly menu. Maybe we’ll actually eat something off it this week. Update: My meal list is now up on Facebook but I need suggestions for Saturday’s meals. Rainbow (on double coupon day, Wed) Zucchini...

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Day 1 of the morning routine

March 16, 2010

7:15 Mark woke me to say he was leaving for work and I should go back to sleep because all the kids were still asleep and I’d been up with Ellie several times during the night. (She typically wakes only once in early morning.) 8:45 Ellie woke. I nursed her and we snuggled a little. 9:00 Grace (who slept in our bed, with her head at our feet) woke, looked at me, wrapped her arms around my feet and laid back down. 9:15 Connor came into the room. Grace woke more fully this time. They asked to watch TV...

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Morning routine – two dreaded words put together

March 15, 2010
Morning routine – two dreaded words put together

I hate mornings. I know a good morning is the key to a good day. But I just can’t get out of bed. The combined smell of bacon and coffee can usually lure me out. But a crying baby, poopy boy and hungry girl make me want to just crawl deeper under the covers. I want to like mornings. I want to wake up refreshed and start the day off with an uplifing routine. I’d love to do yoga with the kids like Carrie. Or read the Bible to them like Allison. Or get up and start the laundry...

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My anti-procrastination progress

March 2, 2010
My anti-procrastination progress

Since renewing my fight against procrastination, I have: Applied for three jobs in the marketing field. Reorganized the closet that serves as our pantry, game storage and broom closet. Kept half the kitchen clean. Cleared all the paperwork, mail, magazines, etc. off the hutch. Started a bathroom reorganization. (Expect a full post on this when it’s done.) Got half my grocery price database done. Walked home from preschool with all three kids. Three miles in 80 minutes. It was exhausting but felt good. And Connor got a good nap in. And Grace was excited that she got to “go...

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