That's right. Work. I went back to work this week, and I'm glad for it. I love being in the routine of school, and the challenge of thinking about lesson plans ahead of time is good for me. I also desperately needed to get some professional development hours in, so I'm doing well; so far I have 8.5, and if I make it through tomorrow morning, then I will have 2.5 more. We are required to get 24 per year, so I will be almost halfway there and won't have missed any of the available hours. That's a relief, indeed. M, who did in fact have her baby Saturday morning (at about the same time I posted about not having heard anything), will have to find some way to get those 11 hours--I do not envy her that.
Now, I posted before about how my goal right now, and perhaps forevermore, is to maintain, maintain, maintain, when it comes to domestic duties--at least until the kids are old enough to help out, haha. I know this is a small victory, but every night for a WHOLE WEEK (yes, I know, I'm some sort of super woman), the living room has been picked up with toys put away, the table cleared, the sink empty, the dishes done. I've been fighting through the fatigue to make this a priority. I don't think it's the nesting instinct so much as the desire to wake up to a clutter-free main area. I've also had to fight the "Why do I have to do this?" mentality, as in, "Why can't Eli do this?" It's a partnership that got a wrench thrown in it (named Elsie), and is being tweaked as we prepare for another wrench (as of yet unnamed). We haven't explicitly discussed the division of responsibility (though we should probably formalize some important things, such as who gets to sleep in when), but things have pretty much fallen into a fairly even division of labor.
I pretty much have been taking care of the inside of the house (or trying), which includes the tidying, maintaining, quick-cleaning, laundry, dishes, most of the cooking, etc. Eli has been taking care of the outside of the house, the cat litter, the cars, etc. Since I've been back to work this week and leaving earlier than Eli even thinks about getting up and ready, he's been getting Elsie up and ready while I get all my junk together. And then when I'm tidying/maintaining on the nights that he's here (and not at Coast Guard Auxiliary or LSAT tutoring), he puts Elsie to bed. We're both tired. We make it work.
As for dinner, we are in the middle of week 4 of our E-Mealz plan, and it has been really good. For the most part, the menus have been varied and there were maybe one or two recipes that could have been better. Eli's only real complaint is that there isn't a green vegetable every meal (I, however, do not have a problem with this). We haven't regularly eaten home-cooked meals as a couple in...years, if ever. Prep time has been anywhere from 10-20 minutes, and we talk and play during up to an hour of cook time, so it's really not a strain on my energy or brain capacity at the end of a long day, because, again, all the ingredients are in the house (thanks to our weekly Wal-Mart run with pre-assembled shopping list in hand), and the instructions are hanging on the fridge, right next to the stove. Too easy. No excuses. And the plan for 2-3 is enough to supply us with lunch leftovers, so we're not spending too much extra money on other foods, aside from snacks and breakfast foods. It has definitely been nice.
Let me know if you decide to try it. I'd like to see how that works out for other people. And I'll let you know how we hold up while we're both working.
Okay, time to go maintain.