Friday, May 26, 2017

Week 17 Update

Not too much has happened, some good news which I already told y'all about.  We have finally kind of settled in, so life is just cruising on.

1. Land Home - Well, we finally got HOA Approval this week.  We also started the process of the shed.  The contractors finishing cutting down all the trees and are burning the remnants.  That will take a while - it has been mostly raining this week and they are having trouble with the fires.  They have to get very hot and they are not getting there.  I did not go up there yesterday, but I will today, so I will see their progress.

Yesterday, I sat down with the builder and made decisions on window placements and sizes.  I did add 2 smaller windows  - 1 to my daughter's bathroom and 1 to our water closet.  Our ceilings are 10' high, so the windows are thin and high - 1 ft tall by 2-3 wide at the 8 ft mark.  I am a little excited because there will be seven 8ft tall windows with no obstruction in the living room area. 

I also finalized the color of the windows and the roof shingles.  We got word from the county that the culvert needs to be wider, so we will be adding a few feet to it sometime soon.  It is a new standard size - lucky us!

I did ask when the concrete pad would be done.  Here is the excitement - as long as weather holds, the select fill pad should be done by the end of next week.  (which also means we can start the shed!)  Then, our builder said he would need a couple of weeks to prep for the concrete pad, but he saw no reason for the concrete pad not be poured by the June 16th, 19th at the latest!  It will start really moving then!

Oh, I got my wide angle lens yesterday!  I cannot wait to take a picture - I will be able to get the whole open area now! 

2. RV Living - We are doing ok.  I still say if Darrell and I were retired and traveling, this would be more doable, even fun.  Living here with teenagers, not so great.  They are lovely and such wonderful kids.  There are no major complaints, only when we are all lamenting together.  We all agree, it is not bad until you are trying to cook or shower.  That's when it is a pain. 

However, we are making it work.  I have no intention of changing our situation and it is actually going better than I thought. 

Darrell and I are getting closer, so that is one good thing.  The kids are getting closer as well.  They went through a period of verbal fighting, but we had to talk with them and they are actually talking to each so much nicer.  "Koen, I know it is hard, but could you please chew with your mouth closed - it is driving me insane."  LOL - our daughter is a trooper living with 3 brothers.  The fact they are saying please to each other is a very good thing!

3. Homeschooling - Going great!  Another week in the books.  We are progressing along nicely and we went to the rec room every day this week.  They love it!  It gets us out of the RV and they have separate tables. 

We started reading the Constitution.  It is a little dry, but I am bringing in stories as we go, so it is taking a long time to get through - that is ok.  I would rather they remember it then press through and they not remember anything.

We did make a final decision to NOT start Latin or Science until we move in the house.  Latin is important as this will count as their foreign language for graduation, so it needs to be taken seriously.  Science has a ton of experiments that are just not conducive in this RV.  Plus, as we get further along in the building, I will need to be at the land more.

I am good with this.  I felt guilty for a few days, but it is not like they are Not going to get it at all.  We will be moving in the house this year.  It is just one semester.  (see how I am talking myself into this?)

So, there you have it - a little slow, but good.  I hope over the next month, there will be a LOT more pictures to show you - at this point, they are just moving piles around and it is not exciting.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Meal Planning - year?

Have any of you heard about the meal planning for a year?

I have to admit, the idea is VERY intriguing for me.  There obviously is a TON of prep to this, but I have quite a bit of time on my hands, so I thought it might be worth giving a try.

Especially since we will be living in a place (very soon) that is a minimum of 20 minutes from any kind of grocery store or restaurant, eating in is VERY important and getting the right groceries is even more paramount.  There is no running to the store really quickly for butter, eggs or that kind of thing.  Unless Dollar General sells it - which they actually might, BUT I bet it will not be the natural butter we like or the farm eggs we get at the farmer's market.  Just saying.

The premise here is to divide foods into categories.  Such as with dinners,  Mexican, Pizzas, Pork Dishes, Beef Dishes, Asian Cuisine, Italian, 'Merican, Breakfast night, Chicken, Soups, etc - ideally 7 to 14 different categories with a minimum of 14 meals in each category.

Then, you would just repeat those meals - with adjustments to the seasons based on availability of some foods - like pablano peppers in the summer!  YUM!

You would do the same for breakfasts (if that is a meal you need to plan -like me) and lunches.

Then, just plug it into a calendar or spreadsheet and there you go!

Some tips I have seen that make sense:

  • Keep the meals to things your family likes, then every now and then experiment with something new when there is time.
  • If you know there will be a season that is rough (like soccer season), then plan easy meals
  • When the family gets sick and you get way off your menu - don't worry about it, just jump back in when everybody is healthy again.
  • Add in some out to eat nights - then those will really be treats!

This a very fluid way of planning for a year - if you do not like repeating meals a lot, then you don't have to come up with so many.  Me, I like a LOT of variety, so I will be brainstorming for dinner ideas, but for breakfasts and lunches - wash, rinse, repeat.  I don't like to spend any time on them.

I am quite excited about this - it makes so much sense to me.  We plan meals anyway, why not just go ahead and take all the planning out in one full swoop!

 Do any of you plan for a year of meals already?

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Slow Day and a funny

I woke up early because the bathroom called, I decided to turn on the water heater and get a shower, but slipped into back into bed and waited for the water to heat up.  Took a shower, got the kids up, had 2 cups of coffee, then we shuffled our way to the rec room.

Today I was all caught up in grading, so I just sat back and my girlie novel.  Easy to read, perfect for taking breaks while helping kids with their work and grading as we went.

Then an older guy comes in - flips on the light (which we do not like because there is plenty of natural light).  He gets his mail, and then leaves without turning it off.  Sigh.  I get up and turn it off.

About 30 minutes later, he comes back and just sits down on the couch across from me - looking at his phone.  Not reading or doing a puzzle, just looking at his phone. 

All the while, I am answering questions, talking to the kids, etc.  We are not loud, but this guy is just sitting there, now NOT on his phone, but looking around, looking at us.  It is weird.  It felt weird.

So, Delaney goes back to the RV because she is done and now this guy is snoring.  Snoring loudly!

Koen and I try to finish up as quickly as we can since was he close to being done. 

Now, I know this is a community rec room and he is not the first to come in there, but most of the other read or work on a puzzle.  Obviously amusing themselves.  This guy kept watching us and looking around.

Maybe he was trying to make us feel uncomfortable - I am not sure. Maybe he just wanted to get out of his RV.  If it happens again though, we will leave immediately. 

The rest of afternoon consisted of me eating lunch at our property, listening to the birds chirp.  The kids taking a walk and me reading the afternoon away - after cleaning the bathroom.

Such a decadent life right now!

Oh, I have to leave you with a funny - this is a picture a friend sent me of a local grocery store.   I think I need to go buy me some Ass. Cream Cakes!  LMAO!