Guest Post from Matt

I’m really anxious right now.  My “Math Buddy” is only one day away from taking his Math SOL tests and I feel my own palms getting sweaty.  If you ask Catherine, she’ll tell you that my hands are often sweaty but this is different.  I feel the same way that I did before my two day Certified Financial Plannner (CFP) test – or how I would feel before a big track race.
I started the year with two 4th grade “Math Buddies” but one of them threatened to shoot a kid while on the playground and, well, he’s no longer going to Chimborazo Elementary School.  It still amazes me that a 4th grader would deal with a conflict by saying that he would shoot someone.  This was a really really great kid.  You would have liked him a good bit if you had met him.  Big Smile, he always wanted to sit in the chair closest to me, smart and athletic.
My remaining Math Buddy is also a really good kid, he just didn’t like to eat.  I was about as skinny as a 4th grader comes and this kid would have made me look “healthy”.  He tells me that he doesn’t like breakfast and he ususally just nibbles at the pizza the they serve every Friday.  Don’t get me wrong, the pizza looks dry and crusty but any public school graduate has survived on steady diet of such food and lived to tell about it.  A bag of chips was about the only thing I ever saw entirely consumed but you have to pay 75 cents extra for chips so these were only purchased occassionally.
The lack of nutrition didn’t help my Math Buddy’s contentration.  But he is a smart kid.  My problem was that it took me over half way through our curriculem before I realized that this kid had never memorized his times tables.  It takes a long long long time to do any 4th grade math problems if you haven’t memorized your times tables.  Try completing 429 X 23 without using your memorized times tables.  So after nearly wasting three months, I started bribing my Math Buddies with candy for memorizing their times tables.  Yes, it was shameless bribery but it started to work.

This kid never should have been passed through the 3rd grade math without knowing his times tables and I really don’t know that he has a chance at passing his SOL’s this year.  He needs to get 61% of the questions right in order to pass I he’ll be doing well to be right on the cusp as long as he doesn’t rush.  I can’t wait to see the results, I’ve got many lunch hours invested in this kid.  I think I’m even going to say a prayer for his concentration tomorrow at 9am.


We spent the better part of the morning organizing four drawers in my home office.  It was great to get organized but the highlight was probably the gusto Jack exhibited for every little thing I pulled out of the drawer.  “Wow!” Jack said to the pink paperclip, the unidentifiable metal object, the rubber band, the pad of paper.  Children really are amazing in their wonder at the little things.

I also stumbled across some great organizing websites–

they are

Simple Mom


Organizing your Way

Because I’m mostly at home now, I’ve realized that part of what I want to do is learn to run our house well.  To have the finances, food, cleanliness, etc. run well.  That is almost part of my “job”  I’m not getting paid for it– but Matt would have to pay someone a lot to do everything I’m doing!  That being said- the “well” part.  I want to view this with the same desire for excellence that I did college, grad school, teaching, my other outside pursuits.  No, I don’t want to spend all day stenciling designs on cookies– but I do want our house to run smoothly– to have a system for doing things– Its something I’m still learning because it doesn’t come naturally for me to be organized.  Its something I have to work really hard at.

Hence taking half the morning to go through four drawers.  Although my little helper– though cute– didin’t provide much in the way of actual help although he did provide a lot of moral support.

Swine Flu? (not really but we have felt pretty terrible! with picture of Jack)

We’ve (Jack and  then me) have felt pretty sick the past week or so.  It started out with Jack wimpering and only wanting to be held Wednesday afternoon and culminated in my getting very sick Friday night.  We’ve both had fevers and some kind of sinus infection/ cough. I was pretty much able to do nothing but lay in bed and moan all weekend.  Today is the first day I’ve felt halfway normal.   I had chills and hot flashes– sweaty etc.. so it definitely felt fluish but I didn’t have any throwing up or anything.  Of course I hope that the baby is okay, but there is nothing I can do either way!  I did take Tylenol for my fever to help it stay below 101, which it did.

Here are some picture of Jack and Matt’s family in New Jersey at a cute little place called Van Saun Park.  They have  a train, a carousel, a zoo, and ponies to ride.  Jack liked everything but the ponies. He refused to get on them and so we gave his ride to cousin Emma.

Also note the wooden rocking horse of sorts that he is on.  Matt’s brother Luke made it for Christmas.  Jack LOVES it soo much!

We are grateful to be well around here and enjoying every minute of the glorious spring sunshine!

Appt with New Doctor

I’ve decided this time to go with a new Midwife.  Not because I didn’t like the old one– she actually suggested that I switch to this one– because it would be much less expensive and we are paying for everything ourselves this time since we have a ridiculously high deductible.   She sees clients in her home for most of the pregnancy. However, before you see her you first have to go see the doctor or nurse practitioner at their office.  I think basically they are trying to screen you to make sure you aren’t high risk before you see the midwife.  Everything went well but I think the nurse practitioner could tell I was a little nervous and so she gave me a free ultrasound so I could see the baby’s heartbeat.  The heartbeat looked great, but one thing has continued to bother me through both ultrasounds. The baby is measuring about four days behind the day I’m positive we conceived.  I know that its hard to tell, and difficult to measure, blah, blah, blah, but the due date keeps coming up Dec. 25 when I know it should be Dec. 21!  Neither doctor seems concered, just me.  I was just wondering if anyone else has experience with ultrasound measurements that were off, or has any words of advice.  Last time Jack always measured a few days ahead.  I guess I just always like to have something to worry about!

Ultrasound today

We had our first ultrasound today and everything came back looking great. We saw a fastly beating heart and a little lump in there (which is about what they look like at 7 weeks!)  We have a due date of around Christmas!  I’m very excited and feeling pretty good.  I have been feeling really dizzy which I gather from  Dr. Google is rather normal in the first trimester. Its been a little hard with  Jack running around and I just want to lay on the couch bc I feel so dizzy and my hands and feet are a little tingly.  They took my bp at the RE’s office today and it was 90/50 which is pretty low.  They told me to go home and eat something salty!  Anyone else have low bp and dizziness?


Matt and I recently went over our budget.  We have found the service Mint to be awsome.  It is safe and easy.  And safe.  You enter in your bank and credit card info and it tracks everything for you.  You can then set a budget and it emails you when you’ve gone over.  I would urge anyone who needs to be on a budget– really who doesn’t– to check it out!

Balanced diet

Today I’ve eaten a very balanced diet consisting of rice chex, steel cut oatmeal (a small bowl eaten over the course of 6 hours) , raisins, walnuts (eaten about 4 times in the middle of the night), and pecans.  I’ve figured out that the nausea is better if I eat every 20 minutes or so.  Its a little ridiculous, but I haven’t felt as sick as a few days ago and I haven’t been eating as much either.  It feels a little weird to be eating so few foods, but they really do help with the nausea!

Gotta go– need to eat more chex!