Wednesday, February 29, 2012

A Snow Day

As we've finally got some snow falling, we're having a snow day here at Casa de Peaceable Kingdom.  Above is the view from the front door of our humble abode...

Music Man and Maestro are currently deep in the assembly of the Mystery Machine driven by Shaggy and Scooby...

Little Red is the boy always in motion around here.  He's also got the body temp of a reptile as he can withstand cold that I can't understand.  You can see how Music Man and Maestro are dressed's Little Red in his current clothes running about the house throwing the football to himself.  This is a constant activity around here for the two boys.  Ya know...whatever works, that's what I say. 

I have taken the bulk of this week off work with the boys home.  I desperately needed a vacation, and am having to do so without pay this week. That's additional stress for us financially, but I've not had a vacation or day off in 3 years, and I decided I wanted to take some time with my boys this week relaxed and unneeded by anyone else but these three precious men in my life.  So, on my afternoon off, I'm choosing from my current reads to dive into.  Music Man will be starting the fire soon and hot cocoa is brewing.

We spent the morning at the Museum of Science in Boston, but departed for home when the snow started to fall.  Hope you enjoy a snow day checked out yourself.   What's on your reading list?  Leave a comment if you'd like to let me know what I might need to read next!

Snowy peace to you today, ~Peacemom

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Freaky Friday

Last Friday was Freaky Friday! at the boy's school.  They had spirit week and got to wear crazy clothes and do their hair in fun ways.  Little Red is not partial to doing anything beyond the normal with this hair, ever. But Maestro enjoys a little wackiness from time to time.
A fun time was had by all!  It was a good way for the school to get the kids geared up for their week off for winter vacation this week.

Wishing you some Freaky Friday of your own, go a little crazy!  ~Peacemom

Friday, February 10, 2012


This is a blog post about nothing.  There's a very specific reason for this and that's that lately, I've been feeling grumpy, out of sorts and well D-O-W-N.  See this bird?  He gets me.  I'm feeling the original Angry Bird right now.

I had scheduled a grown up play date at my friend Laura's yesterday.  As I was getting dressed to go to her house after working 6 hours before 10:30am, I realized something.  Something a little disturbing to me.  I'd not left my house in 4 days.  Well, I did go for a walk one day and got the mail a couple times.  I also tend to the chickens several times a day, so I need to get outside my actual home to do that as well.  But, I had not left the immediate vicinity of my house in 4 days.  No other outside human contact then the men in my life.  Though I love them dearly...ugh and yikes.  Something's not right in Kansas, Toto.  I'm feeling the reasons are many fold.

My job has been...let's can we put much less then fulfilling lately.  I'm working at a job that allows me to be home for my boys most days.  For that I am thankful.  It's helping us just get by in these, yet again, laid off times.  For that I am thankful.  But it's also very stressful, incredibly fast paced and impossible to do really well because of that.  I'm performing a good 42-45 hours worth of work in 30 hours most weeks.  It's not conducive to anyone's best quality work.  It's a job that is spiritually draining to me and often feels pointless.  And after 3 years at this pace with absolutely no vacation, holiday pay, sick time or raises, I'm burnt out.  Not your average burnt out, but charcoal briquette burnt out, the reserves are running on empty.  With all that we've been through the last 4 months, I just need Calgon to take me away.  If only a bubble bath would put it all right, I'd be all set.

So, many things have to change for us and yet they remain the same.  We're in flux of a big decision right now (more on that later after the decision's been made) which means some even leaner times for our family for a couple of years.  We're up for that challenge, but honestly, not sure how much leaner I can function this household.  All I can say is this.  It's a really good thing that, after a literal lifetime of it, I've gotten so good at dealing with financial adversity.  It's going to prove even more useful in the near future if this decision is made. 

Some days, I get to wondering will this ever end?  See, Music Man and I have been together for almost 14 years (what??? how is that possible?).  In that time, he's been laid off 7 times.  I can assure you, this is no fault of his.  All his past bosses were sorry to see him go, but it's just business.  And the nature of what he's trained to do being either absorbed by engineers or shipped overseas when it costs less for the company to do this.  But now, Music Man is going to be 51 soon and the older you get the harder it is to find a job.  This weighs on us both tremendously.  We've got two little mouths to feed besides our own, and hope to some day retire.  So, that being said, something's got to give, doesn't it? It's unavoidable.  Do you ever feel like you're beating your head against a wall?

I'm in one big funk lately.  I think I have some slight form of PTSD because I keep reliving the moment in my head that my loving, talented, caring husband walked through our door two weeks before closing on our forever home we worked (hard- blood, sweat and money went into it) 5 months to get and had to tell me he was laid off.  Again.  From a job he felt was stable, and that he loved. The raw pain in his eyes and face, I'll never forget that feeling, never.  And I'm having some trouble with all of that lately.  I know this too shall pass, life is ever changing, it's the one thing you can totally count on.  But I'm feeling...hmmm...I don't know. 

Not sure how to define how I'm feeling, and it comes and goes.  Some days are better then others and I'm trying to focus on the fact that we're all together, safe, warm, fed and relatively healthy.  And then I go back and forth, should that be all I can hope for, can't I be allowed to hope for more, like comfort, more rested, financially secure and a successful future?  Many people in my life, relatives and others are financially so much better off then we are, and I wonder why that is?  We do all the right things, work hard and are good people, why is it that we keep coming back to this same place?  I honestly don't know what lesson we're supposed to derive from this is, and it's not for lack of trying to figure it out.  I spend hours in the middle of the night almost nightly, lying awake, trying to figure out just this thing.  What's the lesson? Music Man and I have arrived at the fact that things need to change in order for this horrible pattern to stop repeating itself.  Things have to change, there is no other choice.  Change.  I'm never comfortable with change anymore.

So, I will get back to my recipes and homesteading stuff soon, but this is where I'm at and what I'm feeling and so thought I'd share.  You can now resume your regularly scheduled programming.

Looking for a way to get to better, ~Peacemom

Monday, February 6, 2012


An unexpected morning off from work...the old computer crashed HARD on Friday...and I've had the morning off from the paying job.  But, it allowed me a nice time off to accomplish some things around the house.  I am a "morning" person who is most productive from 5-11 am.  I got to:

Clean the fridge (tonight's dinner of thawing pork shoulder, bag leaked all over the bottom of the fridge...eewww)
Paid bills
Wash the kitchen floor
Make yogurt from scratch
Wash, dry & fold 2 loads of laundry
Put a loaf of bread in the breadmaker
Wash copious dishes with, ummm...questionable...leftovers in them (mold isn't supposed to be on spaghetti sauce, right?)
Get the kids fed and out the door in clean clothes, teeth brushed

And I'm sure I'm not done yet.  I'm awaiting the call that tells me to log back on to my work computer and in the meantime, I'll keep ticking off those chores on the list of things I've been wanting to get done.  Also planning on airing the house out as it's gonna get to low 50's today. 

Yesterday was a day outside as well, I was able to get the chicken coop cleaned out, did a little research on chicken tractors (for raising our meat birds this summer) and read up on some composting ideas.  Also walked the yard here to see where the extended garden will be going in and where we might put a pig or two if we're so inclined to try raising those. Not sure about the pork yet, we're still trying to figure out how they would get to slaughter and where it would be done.  Sure wish we had a mobile slaughterer in our midst.  I keep trying to talk our friend into doing that, there's good money to be had there. 

All in all, I think I've got spring fever BAD.  I'm ready.  It's not been a brutal winter here, in fact very unusually mild as you could see from my last post.  But, I'm a person who's favorite activities take place in the other three seasons of the year. So, yes, I'm ready.  How about you?

~Wishing for warm days and cool nights, ~Peacemom