Thursday, February 26, 2009

Dear Diary, he'll write, why can't I have a normal wife?

"I'll be so glad when it's 2011," I said as I sat with my sewing-box in one hand and my latest baby quilt in the other.

"Um?" said Eric, staring intently at the computer (i.e., behaving normally).

"It'll be so much easier signing quilts," I explained. "I hate making zeros."

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

In the abstract

Eric's been craving bacon for a while now. (I call couvade syndrome. Aren't I the one who's supposed to be having cravings?) He finally bought some over the weekend from Andersons, where he prefers to get meat (and we both prefer to get produce), and fried it up last night. "It smells good," I said, and as he always does whenever I say that about meat, he offered me some. I declined, and something occurred to me that hadn't before: I don't really think of meat as food. For me, that is. It can have a nice smell that reminds me of a good restaurant or (in this case) Sunday breakfasts when I was a kid, but that doesn't make me want to eat it. "It's like the way I imagine a gay man feels about a pretty woman," I told Eric. "Abstract admiration, but no interest in partaking."

I had a long weekend, since I was taking my February days off this week so that I could be here next week while one of my coworkers is traveling, and we spent Monday and Tuesday doing household things (shopping and trying to repair a leaky spigot--we need insulation protection gear before proceeding) and sleeping late. It was lovely. I asked Eric what time he was getting up this morning, since he planned to visit a couple of school district administrative offices, and he said, "We should probably try to get up before nine." I reminded him that I had to go to work in the morning, but I thought wistfully that it would be wonderful not to have to. Would we get tired of each other? I don't know. Would I get more done? I hope so. I did some quilting and some writing and some laundry, so it wasn't a wasted couple of days by any means (not to mention the shopping and household repairs), but I always think I could have done more than I did.

This week: finish the spigot repair, write, quilt, plant broccoli, plan my planting schedule, make sure Eric does something every day. He really seems to want the structure that having work gives to his day; he's not enjoying the time off as I wish he could, though I understand why. Also, the sooner he figures out the substituting thing, the sooner we can decide whether I can buy plane tickets to go visit my family in April.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Possibly one of the sexiest things my husband has ever said.

Certainly the sexiest said while in an all-male World of Warcraft raid chat:

"The misogyny in this conversation is getting to be a little much."


Saturday, February 07, 2009

You go back, Jack, do it again

Eric's been fired. We don't know why--the principal did it, but refused to give a reason and seemed ill-at-ease, Eric says. He asked what happened about the four weeks he was promised and the principal wouldn't answer. He's very unhappy, of course--this is the second time this has happened, though less explicably this time around, and he really liked this job and this school and his kids. This happened after school Friday, so he didn't get to say goodbye to his students, but he did tell a few teachers and the quiz bowl team he helps coach, and they were shocked and sad. He's been apologizing to me a lot. I couldn't figure out how to stop him until he said it again this morning, before leaving to pack up his classroom, and I said, "I'm sorry. I'm not concerned about myself except for you." He said, "That helps." I guess I never actually said "I'm sorry you lost your job." I would say I'll remember it for next time, but I hope there isn't one. Twice is enough.

I am worried about money again, because I was told Friday morning that everyone in the company is now required to take four days off of work a month until further notice. I can cover mine with vacation until the end of March, and it turns out that Eric's paychecks will continue coming until then (since teachers work ten months but get paid across twelve), so we've got some breathing room. We're going to tighten expenses and such immediately, of course, and save as much as we can. I'd planned to go back to Washington in late April for a short trip with my cousin Bev and a baby shower and to see my other cousin Jaime's new baby, and we're going to have to see whether I can still do it. There's every chance Eric will be able to get a job as a substitute teacher, so money may not be a very big issue after all, but I'll be happier once we see the numbers and know what he can expect work-wise for the interim.

On the good side, it's warm here--forties--and the backyard is melting, which means I may be able to get to my garden again to dump the compost bin, which has been moldering under my sink for weeks. And my energy and appetite are returning, which means that we'll be able to tackle some household projects that need doing (though some will also have to be budgeted for--but the cleaning-type stuff will be free). Also, brownies sounded good to me the other day, which means my pregnancy-induced disdain for chocolate may be coming to an end. That's definitely a good thing.

Monday, February 02, 2009

The menagerie

The current baby quilt (Fishy, Fishy) is inching towards completion. It doesn't help that I realized that I cut one of my templates and therefore sixteen pieces wrong, and unfortunately they're all too small instead of too big. I realized I never posted a picture of James's quilt, so here it is on my bed:

(Please ignore the mess on the floor. That's Eric's side.) I like the watercolor technique a lot, now that I know better how to use it.

The kitchen is finally almost clean, but the mice are still around. This despite the twelve (no kidding) traps we laid out around the kitchen. I'm quite tired of having the contents of my pantry piled on top of the chest freezer (for one thing, bread and flour go in there, since there's not enough room in the regular freezer) and of having vermin in the house, but we're not sure what to do. Today I saw one skitter across the floor and climb up a hole between cupboards, and I swear it did it on purpose to avoid the glue trap that would otherwise have been in its way. I moved the trap directly below the hole but I have a feeling the mice are too smart for us and we'll never get rid of them. Until I give up and call in the poison, anyway.

Eric's job may be in danger again...his principal told him that he's giving too many Fs and not enough As, and he should do something about it. Anything. Or else. He's told a couple of people at work and they're highly displeased, but not shocked, so apparently his new employers aren't as much better as his old ones as we'd have liked. He was potentially going to be out of a job next school year anyway, since there are statewide education budget cuts and he's a new teacher, but now we're pretty much planning on it, and working out what we'll do if he doesn't get another teaching job at a different school (which, with the budget cuts, is looking unlikely). We did this last year and were okay, but of course we'll have a baby around this time...but if he stays home and maybe picks up some community college classes to teach at night, we'll be saving some $6000-$7000 on childcare anyway and earning a few thousand. And we've been saving money. And I'm working on the freelancing, though not as much as I should. We should be okay; I just wish adulthood weren't so complicated.