• Budget & Finance

    Post-Disneyland Christmas Budget Reality Hangover Remedy

    I want to be a great mom. Yes, it sounds obvious because who doesn’t want to be a great mom…but I really have a deep desire to be a great mom. Do I know what a great mom is? No. I have no idea what I even mean when I say to you, “I want to be a great mom.” Part of me thinks it means making sure my kids want for nothing. Taking them to Disneyland for my brother’s wedding was amazing. They were wide-eyed bushy-tailed thrill seekers the whole time we were there. Even the angsty tween couldn’t help but be sucked in to the Disney Magic ™…

  • Budget & Finance,  Education

    “Teacher Gifts” would Bankrupt Me!

    Last night my kids wrapped teacher gifts for their teachers. One gift for the main classroom teacher and one for each math teacher because they both go to math for an hour a day. Also because they are math teachers and I think that deserves a yearly prize because it’s awesome. My kids were wrapping and having fun and using all my Japanese Washi Tape (<– Look! I figured out how to use Amazon affiliate links!) and I was starting to feel bad. I knew they had more teachers and here I was only taking care of one more than the bare minimum. In what I can only call a moment of…

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  • Agnostic Grace,  Family & Friends

    The Christmas Spirit of Strangers

    This year my Christmas Spirit ™ hasn’t come in with the force of awesome it usually does. There has been stress, there has been weirdness, and there has been overall pressure to make some extra money. Not because we are living in fear, but to stay ahead of the fear, but that doesn’t make scrambling any less stressful. But then there were some really good things that happened one after the other and I felt so much better and lighter and I felt the first tendrils of real Christmas Spirit™ take hold. I hoped things would happen that helped it grow. Then it did! First there was the invitation that…

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  • Budget & Finance

    Waiting, Fantasies, and Poor Christmas (part 2)

    We start with some great news today. One of Mr. Brickie’s SEM side-clients – who was almost 90 days behind in payments – sent in a partial payment this week, so that gave us a little breathing room. 11% of the current amount due isn’t anything great, but I’ll take whatever I can get with thankfulness right about now. Plus, the act of the client making a payment at all shows that the client is still active and makes the odds of receiving the other 89% a real possibility come January/February. In the meantime we’re going to start posting more things on Criaigslist. It’s time to sell everything non-essential. Not…

  • Family & Friends

    How To Make Christmas Break Work (kid edition)

    Tomorrow is going to be the last day of school for the kids until 2011. I’ve amused myself for the last week by telling people I’m so over things and won’t even bother doing them until next year. From eating sushi to saying certain phrases I’ll just be all, “I’m over it. I’m taking the rest of the year off.” It’s not really laugh-out-loud funny, but it amuses me and I’ve heard a couple of my friends start saying it so it’s catchy. Wow. I’m dreading two weeks with my kids out of school so much I’m avoiding talking about it on my own blog. Be that as it may…