Saturday, August 9, 2008

And The Winner Is...


I made one spinach & onion and one tomato & basil. They were a HUGE hit. Thanks for everyone's suggestions... this is clearly a potluck heavy group so I'll have many opportunities to try them out.
At the end of the day I guess I couldn't pass up the opportunity to showcase my beautiful pie basket:
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It's old fashioned charm cannot be denied!

sorry don't know why those pics are sideways!!!

Friday, August 8, 2008

Important Updates (Of All Sorts)

First things first:

Remember the crystal? I think I can safely say I've put this baby to the test over the past 2 months of moving & packing & heat & whatnot. It works people. It works better than the name brand deodorant/anti-perspirant that I had been using. And YES in both departments. Totally badass. Totally smell free. Totally not killing you slowly.

After my breakdown with Kid the other night I realized I needed to get some "me time" ASAP. So I managed to get in to get my haircut last night. On the way there I went to good old Barnes & Noble and got myself a new Amish romance novel. Believe it.

Added bonus of the night is that the hairdresser and I got along famously. I counseled her on her relationship issues... she warned me about the nighttime rapists of Asheville (great!). I think we sat around talking for a good hour after my cut and then she asked me out on a friend date! Excellent.

Third and final photo of the day:

Kid lost her second tooth. Check out that cute toothless grin!

Thursday, August 7, 2008


We've got a Brunch Potluck for Kid's new school on Saturday. We're supposed to bring a dish to share. I don't want to bring fruit salad (as I assume many will) and I'd like to take something that is more of a main course. Any suggestions? It is going to be outside at a park.

You Know What They Say About Measuring Twice...

If you're going to drill 4 holes in my hardwood floors is there a reason you couldn't have done it behind the TV armoire?!?!

Mr F will probably be pissed... but then again he did do this last night:

Move Over Joan Crawford

Last night I lost my temper. I yelled at Kid. I said things that weren't nice. I regretted it, even while I was doing it, but was too immature in the moment to stop. We all have this inside of us. I'm not putting this out there so someone will try and make me feel better about it. I putting it out there so someone might feel better about themselves.
We all mess up sometimes. It's what you do about it that makes the difference.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Oh NO... No...No...NO!

I just saw a RAT

well at least some things are going well...

Cause You Never Know What Hand You're Getting Dealt

After arriving in Asheville a few weeks ago I immediately went to meet with the principals/directors of several schools in our neighborhood. Every single one of them (private, public, & charter) were full for the coming school year. Every single one. The school system is different than a typical public school system. Here the city schools are run on a Magnet program and you get in by lottery. This means that desirable schools fill up quickly and those may or may not be in your neighborhood. If you want to have control over what school your child attends, and in what neighborhood, you may be out of luck. The same goes for the charter schools and the private schools. Relocating a month before school starts and attempting to get in anywhere has been a nightmare!

I had resigned myself to homeschooling for Kindergarten and taking the time to research all of our options and apply for next year. Then while on vacation Up North (which is technically what the region is called I'm not juxtaposing to the South!) we got the call that there was an opening at the private school in our neighborhood. I was so relived I could have cried. As much as I think homeschooling can be both doable and rewarding, I was very worried about being socially isolated in a new place. This school is maybe a bit more "hippy" than I would choose for myself socially but it is perfect for Kid academically and hey that's what school is for... right?

Okay so I've been juggling all the new student paperwork and writing checks up the wazoo (it is NOT cheap) and generally stressing about Kid's first step out into the big world. And then...

Not one week after we committed to this placement and paid our fees and 2 months of tuition (and signed all the paperwork binding us to the entire year's tuition) we get word that Mr F's main freelance client is pulling out and he won't have that work anymore. You see where this is going right? If I had known that ONE week ago I would have turned down the spot. We had been counting on the freelance work for things like... oh I don't know... private school. I'd be wringing my hands right now if I still wasn't still so relieved that someone else will be teaching Kid to read and that maybe (just maybe) I'll find a friend of my own. That just might be worth 8K right?

But this is our life, this is how everything turns out. It has become almost laughable... for every up there is a down. It's hard to ever feel like we're moving forward. We felt good about being able to put extra money down on our mortgage and then, after signing all the papers, we discover that we needed all new appliances... how much did that cost?... exactly as much as the extra we put down when we closed on the house. And now with this we've gone from feeling as financially secure as we've ever been back to exactly where we started... overnight.

It's hard for me to process all this. I mean we just made a huge financial commitment (which may still be for the best) and I'm not sure how we'll make it work. We can make it work... but it will require very careful budgeting (which will be done by you know who). The upside to all this... and it is a huge upside... is that Mr F will not be working 2 jobs anymore. Mr F still has a couple of projects but for the most part our evenings will be family time... which we haven't had in 4 years (seriously). So it's not all bad, in fact I think in some ways it's better, just a bit more stressful.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Under The Weather

Woke up feeling terrible. Light headed, shaky, weird. I fear I might be coming down with something (terrible timing), or maybe I've just been over exerting myself...
However sickness would explain why Baby has not been eating the last few days and waking all night.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

This Week The Plan

I'm back. I think it is a very good sign that I am even attempting to get back in the organizational saddle.
I'd give you the week in review but lets be real you know what it was... hell.


Monday - hamburgers

Tuesday - quiche & bagged salad

Wednesday - chicken & pasta primevera

Thursday - ?

Friday - go out to eat

Saturday - pizza, potluck brunch... hmmm

Sunday - tomato & meatball soup

Diet & Exercise:

This week I'm going to stop freaking lying to myself and start doing something.
6 days this week I am going to do some kind of exercise. You can track it along with me in my left hand sidebar.
I'm going to go for 1600 calories 5 days and have 2 slightly higher days. I'm doing it.

Move Related Tasks:

Monday - take obviously basement items down, finish kitchen, assemble kids beds

Tuesday - get stove delivered, hopefully get stove & dryer hooked up!

Wednesday - Do laundry, get master bedroom set up

Thursday -Target run, hang curtains

Friday - unpack clothes

Saturday - Kid's Kindergarten potluck! Yay!

Outlook Is Improving

Well things have a very different feel around these parts on the weekends. I'm not sure entirely how to account for that but it is true. The sketch factor is replaced by families and the vacant buildings are less noticeable (maybe since it's quieter and more stores are closed anyway?). Maybe there are more 2 parent working families in our neighborhood and so they just aren't around as much during the weekdays?

We still don't have a stove or oven so we've been going out to eat and getting around our neighborhood a bit more. I think I can have the walkable community I wanted and in that regard think we made the right decision to move here. The unfortunate parts of downtown West Asheville is that really only one side of the street is being reclaimed... and of course it is the other side from us and Kid's school. There are about 2 blocks of mostly new businesses and then on our side (where clearly most of the original architecture was torn down) is a gas station, some misc odd stuff, a parking lot, a self serve car wash, a gas station, an abandoned gas station ,and then things pick up a bit with 2 restaurants before you reach Kid's school. On the other side of the drag there is a grocery store and then it is kind of touch & go with some new stores and some old stores.

One issue the contributes to the run down appearance of the downtown for me is that we're walking in front of all the shitty stuff and that there are no easements between the sidewalk and the road or the sidewalk and the gas stations... which not only looks grimier but feels more dangerous while walking your two little kids along the edge of a busy road. I'm actively looking for an alternate route that isn't too much out of our way. I do think if West Asheville had grassy easements (especially w/ trees) the little downtown would seem a lot more like a destination and a lot less like a drive thru area. I think for those locals who come to shop they park by the bakery or market and most likely stick to that smaller area where things do in fact feel a bit reclaimed. It would take a big developer to come in (which isn't desirable either) and have the money to tear down the gas station and build something else, and I don't think that'll happen anytime soon.

Outside of all that I have been delighted (slash disappointed) to discover that you can actually see the mountains from West Asheville... just not from our block! I think once the trees lose their leaves I might be able to see them a bit while walking around with the kids. It was a hard choice for me to make between living some place more naturally beautiful and living some place more walkable... I'll be really happy if I can have a bit of both.
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