Last week was the week of no sleep. I stayed up really late several nights and I can say now that I prefer getting to bed in time to get an early start the next morning, I like to be rested enough to enjoy the early morning time and have a lot of daylight left in front of me. Part of what caused the late nights was that I was playing Battle Panic just before trying to get to bed. It’s a new game that Luke introduced me to. Gets me all keyed up trying to beat it and then I can’t sleep. So, Luke made me promise not to play it after 9 PM. Thanks Luke!
This week has been more normal though with me inbed around 10 most nights.
Last week we also got to have some real world Money Management education in our house. My yearly bonus for 2013 came and we split it 6 ways this time. 1/6th to each one of us and 1/6th to the emergency fund. Every other year I either paid down debt or just saved all the money, so actually sharing the money with everyone is a first. It was hard not to do what I’ve always done and decide on my own what’s best for everyone. This was by far the most fun I’ve ever had with the money. It took a lot of effort for me not to direct the kids on how they should save or spend. I’ve always been open about money management with them, so they already have some wisdom and independent ideas about money and they don’t need my overt direction right now on this. Giving them total ownership of their part was the right way to go and I learned a lot about my spending and saving habits and about theirs too. I’m glad I trusted their judgement. They make really good choices. This lesson will go on for a while because it does not look like any of them are eager to spend down big parts of their bonus any time soon. There were just a few initial purchases and then things went pretty much back to normal. Collectively, we spent less than 10% and saved 90%. Pretty cool to see how that played out. It was a better investment of the money than any other place would be right now.
I also switched from my iPhone to a regular phone last week. Saves $80/month. Now I get to plan ahead before I get on the road and figure out my route without relying on the iPhone map. I haven’t missed the iPhone once while on the go and all the cool stuff still works fine on wifi at home on the iPhone. I still use the iPhone at home for audiobooks, music and pictures.
Rylee and I cleaned her room and got out a ton of stuff to donate. We had a great time. No stress, no worries, just working together to pare down. She likes her room neat and organized.
Kelly and I biked over to Baton Rouge High one morning to see the Mayor’s press conference where he spoke about the upcoming conversion of 11 miles of Government street in Mid-City to a more bike friendly road. They’re taking four lanes down to two, with a turn lane and a dedicated bike lane. That’s a huge improvement for this side of town. Support for more biking is really gaining momentum.
Kelly and I biked out to the lakes a couple of evenings to watch the sunset. Those have been some of the best, most relaxing evenings. Getting outside, watching the waves and the birds and just being outside by the water for about an hour and a half without rushing to do something else. It’s surprising how hard it is to just be somewhere without thinking about what to do next.
Kelly found a furnished apartment in Portland. If it works out, we’ll be in a great part of town and won’t have to bring much with us. My fingers are crossed that we get it just because it’s a cool place with a cool story on how she’s going about getting it. But, we’ll find a fun place to live even if this one falls through.
I have had a couple of great bike rides with Luke lately. This is the first time he’s asking me to go biking with him instead of me asking him to go. It has been so much fun. He’s hard working, brave and tough when he takes his spills. He’s very persistent when he tries to pick up a new skill. He loves being outside and moving around.
I’ve had a couple of late night meals with Tate when he decides to come out of the back room when his online friends have gone to bed. He blows me away with his happy smile late at night and his constant excitement. I’m glad I got to see him and eat some carrots and green beans with him. I also cut his hair again this week. This is the second cut in six weeks. That may be a new record for him. I’m so glad I have this time with him, he’s getting to be so big and independent!
And, I’ve spent a lot of time lately on our great patio reading and writing. Enjoying some phenomenal March weather and, I still can’t believe this one…live music every afternoon! There are a couple of folks who live just above me and when I’m on the patio I can hear them practicing their music. I hear a piano and a singer, sometimes a flute or clarinet. The music sounds great and they play for a couple of hours. It’s a nice touch when I’m just enjoying a good book on the patio.
March is winding down quickly.