Well today I was supposed to get my new driver's license. Tonight, I do not have a new card in my wallet. Hours have passed since my fit of rage this morning when I exited the driver's license branch. Basically to obtain a license to drive in the state of Texas you need to provide every form of identification you could possibly imagine. Not even having your first born there as a substitute is enough.
I loaded up the kids this morning - all chipper and confident about my day of errand running success yesterday. It was a sunny, pretty day here. We packed our bag according to plan - knowing the driver's license branch is the worst place in the free-world. I walked into the branch, with the girls in stroller, confident I was prepared for all. I turned around within ten minutes of my initial line with smoke coming out of my ears - "Mommy, what's that smoke coming from?"
Prior to my current role as stay at home mom, I dabbled in project management. I did this type of work enough years to have some planning strategies. Instead of guiding people to a goal in a workforce environment, I am now leading a team of two through the day (every day, all day). However with my new job, we don't get catered in lunch or bonus bucks. So one of my planning strategies is to keep the agenda simple. Each day I have written down about three things I would like to accomplish. This keeps the expectations realistic. It keeps my team of two motivated and on my side. And it usually results in me looking like a good leader when the tasks get checkmarks.
Unfortunately even with the very best of planning, there is sometimes a set back in an agenda...especially when the driver's license branch people are cruel...and especially if my team of two can only tolerate that place once a day.
So, we'll try this again tomorrow...or what I call, we'll be "adjusting the project plan".
When I was a Work Outside Of The Home mom (WOOTH), I had a very strategic way of running errands with my girls. On the weekends, we did theusual - Target and the grocery store. Occasionally I would do a little browsing at a department store - for some new shoes for Syd or a birthday present for a friend. Even in those cases, though, I had to put together a list of what I was seeking. Otherwise, shopping unplanned with a three year old and an under one year old was disastrous. For those errands that required more time and more planning and probably unexpected challenges, I reserved those for my lunch hour at work.
Now I am a stay at home mom....And today I had the stay at home mom errand running initiation...getting my van inspected and getting my van new registration and license plates! I knew the tasks would be challenging, so I did my best mommy-planning - make sure they're rested, pottied and have PLENTY of snacks. My other plan was to not expect to get both of my errands done in one part of the day but assume it would take two parts.
This morning we headed out for the inspection. Naturally the first place we went did not have an inspector, so we had to try and find a new place (in a new city). I got lucky and stumbled into a new place quick. Then we had to get it inspected. I assumed this was a 15-minute process. Texas is different. I was told it would be a 35-minute process. It was an hour and ten minute process. Glad I brought plenty of snacks! Also like I thought, glad thing I knew our errands would be in two parts of the day.
The afternoon, after a long nap, we loaded up and went to the county tax office to get my new plates. Thank heavens for navigation!! I don't know how I found this place. When we arrived, I walked to the wrong building - naturally. I had the girls in the stroller to confine them...another good choice. When we got inside, I was number B243. They were on A262. I had no idea when we'd be called. Luckily for me I had along a Tootsie Pop and Cheerios (see yesterday's post :) and 20 minutes later, we were in.
Our day of errands ended at 5:00 to drive home in the bad direction during rush hour. Really this was the most challenging part of the day. Cheekers was cranky and the Tootsie Pop was gone. Overall, though, we did a good job....The girls and I had great teamwork. We'll see how tomorrow goes, though.... Next errand on the list - the driver's license branch!
Our little baby Cheekers has been under the weather. She's had the sniffles, cough, runny nose, fussy-face since Christmas. We have hooked her up with a vaporizer and some baby Motrin...but she's still just not my happy baby...that is until she sees some Cheerios! There is something magic about these donut shaped yummies that works like a charm every single time the mood is starting to get cranky.
We have been a little off with our "schedule". Trying to get things accomplished with our new house has resultedin us running around to many stores and interrupting some very precious and necessary nap time. To keep our tasks on target, I have stashed these little whole-grain circles of goodness babies all over the place...in my pockets, in the diaper bag, in the van.
I feel guilty with how many Cheerios I give to her; but if it works, why mess with it. Hopefully my little sweetie will be feeling better soon. Until then...I guess we're just working on lowering her cholesterol...
Saturday in winter in Omaha and no dryer = load up the kids in their coats, brave the cold and the snow and head to the laundry mat to get your clothes dry.
Saturday in winter in Austin and no dryer = have the Hubby string a line in between the trees in the backyard, buy some clothes pins, take advantage of the warm winter breeze air and get your clothes dry.
It has been a nice Christmas...though a little bit not like "the feeling of Christmas". Regardless of our new surroundings, weather change and lack of furnishings, we have made the most to have an enjoyable holiday.
Yesterday it was 70 degrees here and sunny - gorgeous! To date, that was our best weather day. The girls and I had some outdoor fun playing on the swingset. Daddy and Sydney picked up sticks in our yard for our first fire last night...a nice way to spend Christmas Eve. This morning we woke up and tried to partake in some "Christmas" events. Mommy made a meal of ham, stuffing and broccoli rice casserole (all in our two pots and one frying pan). We also opened a couple presents, unloaded some furniture from our POD (a tradition on any Christmas :), watched Sydney ride her trike and...yes, played again on our beloved new swingset.
We are Day 3 in Austin... We made it. We arrived to our new home on Sunday. Day 1 was get some rest as Daddio drove us here all through the night. We did our run to Target and unloaded the stocked van. Day 2 was get acclimated. We got our internet set up, went to the bank, unpacked a box (of things we have here) and ate dinner on paper plates. Day 3...it was all about the tree. We will be living out of suitcases until the first week in January. Some of our things are here, but because of the holidays, all of our furniture and stuff will not be here until January 6. We did have our Christmas stuff here, though. Syd, Clarisse and I got into the spirit. While we will not have a white Christmas; and we have no chairs to sit down and look at our tree, we have a tree nonetheless...