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Valentine’s day

Last week Walker’s class was able to celebrate Valentine’s Day.  He handmade each and every card for his classmates.  I was highly disappointed to find out that Peyton’s class was not allowed to celebrate this particular holiday.  There was no explanation other than it is the rules in his program.  He attends the same school as Walker but in the pre-k program.  So as my usual self I send off a letter to the head of the program explaining that if this is suppose to be a transitional program to make the students feel more comfortable why on earth can they not celebrate the same holiday that the rest of the school celebrates.  So while Walker is making his cards for his classmates Peyton was not allowed to bring in Valentines for his friends.  There is no explanation for such nonsense and it appears that a more strongly worded letter needs to be sent.


Sleeping with the Fishies

For most that statement could be construed as negative but for Walker and Rich is was a great experience to be able to sleep among the fish, whales and sharks.

Last weekend Walker and Rich had the opportunity to go to the Mystic Aquarium for an overnight stay with the cub scouts.  They got to have a tour of the aquarium at night and see the whales, seals and the almighty shark.  I decided to stay behind with Peyton as he was too young to go.  The Scouts got to dissect a squid that night.  How exciting is that?  So while the boys were gallivanting around the aquarium Peyton and I decided to make camp in the living room. 

Although Peyton was a little disappointed he didn’t get to participate we pitched a tent in the living room big enough for Peyton.  Pop came by to check on the camp site and Peyton said we needed to turn off all the lights for real camping.  So the lights were off but the fire was lit.

Pop asked, “Peyton, are there bears”?

“No” said Peyton as though that was a ridiculous question.

“Are there lions”?

“No” he replied while chuckling.

“Are there Tigers”?

“YES! Their names are Bandit, Hobbs and Calvin.

Just to make it clear these are the feline friends of our household.  The smores were a little messy but very good.  Who says you can’t go camping in the living room?  Peyton lasted about five minutes camping and then announced that camping was over and we needed to turn on all the lights.  Also turning all the light assured that the tigers would stay away.

Good time was had by all!


Moving Out?

I have talked with many of my friends since I have been laid off and their first question is, “How is it going being home”.  Some people may think being home with the kids increases the stress level but I have to say my kids make it easy to be home with them.

Tuesdays are becoming the “play date” day.  This past Tuesday was the first Tuesday that we had one planned.  Walker asked if one of his classmates could come and play.  The mom works from home and needs to finish out her day so this was beneficial to both her of us.  The boys are old enough to keep themselves busy and occupied. 

I went to the school to pick up my two boys and the friend for Walker.  The two boys walked up to the holding area for parents waiting to pick up their kids.  To see the smile on their faces was priceless.  They were so excited I hated to think of what a distraction they were in class all day.

So when I talked to the mom to set this play date up she mentioned that Walker was one of the eight.  Ummm… I was a little confused and needed additional information because not being sure as to what these “eight” were I wasn’t even sure I wanted to know.  Apparently the boys in his class have decided to move into an apartment together.  Please note there are eight of them.  Eight boys living in one apartment can’t be good nonetheless sanitary.  I can’t even keep the bathroom clean with two little ones and one big one in the house.   So the mom told me that her son keeps asking her if he can take the television when he moves out.

The conversation went like this.

“Walker, I hear you are moving out into an apartment with a bunch of your friends.”  The shocked set in and he mirrored a deer in the headlights.

“How do you know that”? He replied while keeping eye contact.

“Mom’s know everything.  Haven’t you learned that by now”?

While quickly trying to cover up or recover from what he thought he did something wrong.

“I don’t plan on moving out until I am a parent”.

“Ummm… well if you are a parent do you really think all your buddies will want to live with you and your kids”?

Confusion set in quickly as he tried to think of a clever answer.  Peyton came to his rescue.

“I am going to get married someday” said Peyton with a twinkle in his eye and a smirk on his face.  “Because when you get married you get kissed”.


Is it Wednesday?

So by now you all know that I am currently not working but am at home with my kids when they are not in school.  To save money we have pulled Peyton from full time daycare and Walker is at the afterschool program for three days instead of five.  Since this is a time when Walker can play with all his friends we didn’t want him to feel punished by taking away playtime with his friends.

So now my schedule of obviously quite different from what it was before.  I used to get up and be out of the door by 6:15 to catch the 6:30 bus to Hartford.  I would be exhausted by 9:00 at night.  After several months I have finally adapted and can sleep later than 5:00 in the morning.  Thank goodness!  I can also stay up much later at night.  That extra time has been used to kill virus’s obtained from Facebook but that subject is for another day.

Monday, Wednesday and Thursday Walker is in the afterschool program and Tuesday’s and Friday’s Walker comes home with Peyton and I.  Peyton is only in school Tuesday through Friday from 10:45am to about 3:00 in the afternoon.  But since I pick up the kids on Tuesday and Friday I need to be at the school at 2:30 but on Wednesday and Thursday the bus brings Peyton home at about 3:10.  This doesn’t include any play dates or other extra circular activities that may be planned.

So this brings me to the fact that I used to make fun of a friend of mine who would call me up at work and ask, “What day is it”?  Are you kidding me?  How can you not know what day it is?  Laugh as you may but I am here to tell you that when your vigorous schedule no longer exist and you have to adhere to your children’s’ schedule it is not as clear cut as you would imagine.   The consistency made it much easier. 

I am certainly up for the change and challenge.  Lord knows my time is much more appreciated and acknowledged.  So Mary… this one is for you… don’t be surprised if I call and ask you, “What day is it”?


The Times They are a Changin’

Over the past several months there have been many changes therefore adaptability was a necessity.  My website received an overhaul and has been renamed.  I no longer have to balance work and family.  Being home with the boys has been wonderful for me and for them.  I have worked for over 30 years and it is time to take a break and spend time with the ones that actually can appreciate my time and efforts.

I had worked for my previous employer since 1992 in varying jobs.  My last position was for approximately five years.  I worked hard and worked long hours and sacrificed time with my children and husband.  I would tell myself it was for the good of future opportunities.  In the end I was paid a decent wage and received above average performance ratings.

Last September, a day before a weeks’ vacation, I was notified that my position was being eliminated but I would need to work the next sixty days in order to collect my severance.  Since my package was worth 28 weeks of my salary there was no question I had to stay and fulfill my obligation. 

Last spring I notified my manager that I would be looking to post for another position within the company.  He was getting ridiculous in what he was asking me to work on and certainly was not securing a job for me in the future.  The projects I was working on were merely a back door to get items done that he didn’t want to go through the correct channels.  Keep in mind he had made promises of delivery of these items prior to seeking approval or verifying available resources.  In the end he still has a job and I don’t.  The difference is I know I did the right things and rose above the situation and fulfilled each and every obligation.  What goes around comes around.

Last year I offered to go on a business trip.  My boss had asked and I was happy to assist.  I found out later that most people just didn’t want to travel during the holidays. I paid the ultimate consequence.  I missed Walker’s first grade winter concert.  Ten years from now I probably won’t remember the reason for the business trip but I will always remember I missed his concert.  There are some things that just aren’t worth the price.

So in the end I figured I would either find a more desirable job or get to stay home with the kids for awhile.  Either way I win, right?  Well that is the way I chose to see it and now I am home with the boys until further notice.  I have worked for the past 30 years and it’s time to take a break and enjoy the kids while they are young.  I am sure I will be working again at some point in my life but for now let my kids enjoy and appreciate my efforts.  I will miss many people I worked with but certainly not all of them. 

For years many of us hear that the grass isn’t greener on the other side.  I am here to tell you that it isn’t always greener but in this particular case… it is.


A New Look for a New Era

I have just changed the look of the site with some pictures from the fall.  Many things happening around here but first and foremost being laid off has enabled me to spend more time with my kids.  This particular job is more satisfying in every sense.  I am lucky in that the kids are both in school.  Walker is full time and Peyton is four days a week for a few hours each day.  I am not going from one extreme of being a full time working mother to a stay at home mother of infants.  I am able to enjoy the best of both worlds.

We have given notice to our daycare provider that Peyton will be there until December 18th and then he will be home with me when he is not in school.  I am hoping it will be a treat for Peyton as much as it will be for me.  Since he is the second child you never really get that one on one time.  Every Monday will be ours to do whatever our hearts desire for the day.  Walker will remain in his after school program three days a week instread of five to save on cost.  He loves being able to play with his friends and I really don't want to take that away from him.

So I hope to be blogging more frequently than I have in the past several months.  They weren't pretty ones and the things that I wished I could blog about I really couldn't given company policies.  Let's just say I was looking for other opportunities within my company though my performance was above average due to management circumstances.  A few months after I told them I wanted to post out of my position it was announced my position was being eliminated.  Please keep in mind a position that sounded alot like mine was being posted a few weeks before the end of my employment but was considered a higher salary.  To my knowledge they have not filled it yet.  It was to say the least unethical in my mind for them to do so.  They made enough changes within the position to state it was a different job. 

I still consider myself as getting the better end of the deal.  I was required to stay for 60 days after the notification in order to collect my severance package.  So I either would get a new job or stay home with my kids.  It was a win win situation.  Needless to say finances will not be easy but we will deal with it as long as possible.  My boys are much more appreciative of my efforts and time therefore making it much more satisfying for me. 

So stay tuned for the next chaper in the Harrigan Household. 

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