Thoughts for Thursday

What am I cooking?  Fajitas!  Chicken, peppers, onions, black beans, homemade salsa (still have some Jersey tomatoes!), lettuce, and cheese.  This is a real kid favorite in our home, and Thursday is the one night a week we don’t rush out the door to an evening activity.

What are my weekend plans?  Soccer, two games.  Farmers Market.  Time with cousins (Mr. Red’s sister has 5 children of similar ages to mine and that always makes for a fun day).

What are my prayer intentions for the day?  For a friend who is worried about a serious health issue.  For my children, my pregnancy, and my own health.  I’ve been having some trouble with my eyes (allergy related), and I’m praying very hard that I feel better soon!

What can my children do instead of watching TV?  Well, they can read books, and help put away a boatload of laundry.  Due to the above issue with my eyes, I awoke very early this morning (5:30am!!!)  Wanting to put the early rise time to good use, I went food shopping, traveled home, put groceries away, and was sipping on a Starbucks Latte all before 7:30am.  We had a very productive school morning (thanks to that latte), and I did many, many, many loads of laundry (again, thank you latte).  The kids are now putting away their own laundry, tiding the house, and getting ready to meet a new babysitter.  No time for TV when mama is juiced up on caffeine.

What have I done for my marriage this week?  Umm, that’s a tough one.  I’ve been pretty miserable with my eyes, and, I confess, quite self consumed.  Mr. Red has been a superstar, sitting with me in the ER until late Monday night, leaving for a business trip early the next morning, returning late that night, and asking me how he can help and what he can do to make me feel better.  So I’m giving him this shout out on the blog as a special thank you for his attentiveness and hard work this week.  And I’m going to try to be a lot nicer and more thankful for his special efforts.

What am I reading?  I just read a very interesting article– “If money doesn’t make you happy, then you probably aren’t spending it right.”  David Brooks, columnist for the NYT, has written a lot about the issues discussed in this article, so it was great to read it myself.  Based on a lot of psychological research, the article was full of very interesting studies.  The authors conclude with 8 main principles for spending your money, and I’d love to blog about this more another time, but to peak your curiosity, here they are:

1.  Buy experiences instead of things

2.  Help others instead of yourself

3.  Buy many small pleasures instead of a few big ones (I took this advice to heart this morning when I bought that latte!)

4.  Buy less insurance

5.  Pay now, consume later

6.  Think about what you’re not thinking about (like all those difficult or inconvenient things associated with a new purchase)

7.  Beware of comparison shopping(this leads us to focus primarily on price)

8.  Follow the herd instead of your head

Obviously some of these don’t make sense unless you read the article and allow the author to clarify the principle.  But overall, great stuff, lots to think about and take into consideration when making budget decisions and choices.

What’s challenging me lately?   My role as a mother to a large family.  I regularly feel like a manager and I hate that.  I’m not quite sure how to give all my kids that quality one on one time, AND have enough time for myself, my friendships and Mr. Red.  Today went so well because I got up at 5:30am and consumed a much bigger dose of caffeine, but I guarantee I will be crashing by 9pm (when our oldest goes to bed), and have no time left over for Dad.  I still don’t quite have the hang of four kids, and we are about to welcome a 5th in 3 months time!  I’m praying for peace, for the ability to give up control, and also for some good part time help to step back into my life.  We lost our childcare provider (she was with us for almost 5 years), and we are really feeling the pinch.

Something that made me think?   The death of Steve Jobs and this article.  I admit, I am a bit fascinated with his life and accomplishments.  I have an enormous respect for him as a leader and visionary in our culture.  His appreciation to detail, great style, and love for excellence are all truly admirable.  I’m usually not moved by the death of famous people, but the news of his passing made me quite emotional, and I couldn’t help but feel that our country, and our society, had lost a great mind.

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  • I felt the same way about Jobs’s death, and like you, I’m not usually that touched by a celebrity’s death. But he did things so well, with such focus, and had such low lows and high highs in his career that he fascinates me. Here’s hoping you feel better soon, too!

  • Kathy

    Great post Red! Lots of great things to ponder – your answers and how I would answer them. Special pat on the back to Mr. Red – sounds like my husband. We are all lucky ladies. Hope that you are feeling better soon. nnI think that I will start answering my own “thoughts for Thursdays”.

  • I think everyone feels they don’t give enough one on one time. u00a0It seems to me that with your homeschooling, you at least have a lot more opportunities to interact with each of your kids because you spend that much more time with them than if they were at school. u00a0I don’t have as many kids as you and I get nervous about how much one on one time I give! u00a0

  • Kathleen

    Saw my comment got erased, just wanted to say, I was trying to encourage you! u00a0Sorry if it came off another way!

  • Kat

    Hi Kathleen ~nYour comment is still up in my feed, so maybe it didn’t really get erased? In any case, if it did I’m sure it was completely accidental – some weird things have been happening to comments on our website recently, some sort of a blog formatting issue. So don’t worry!

  • Anonymous

    Your comment is still in my blog feed as well, but it didn’t come through my e-mail, which is strange.u00a0 No erasing and I thought you were trying to encourage me ;-)u00a0 No worries!!!u00a0 And yes Kat, something weird is going on with the comments.u00a0 Wish one of us was good at tech stuff!