- After working in lumberyard retail for his entire life, Mike has taken a new job working for the state of South Dakota with the SD Housing Development Authority. This was a hugely stressful decision, because while the new job offers a ton of terrific benefits, and a 40 hour work week (as opposed to his typical 60-70 hour weeks), it also includes a pay cut. Enough of a pay cut that I am actively looking for a job myself. I am really hoping to find a job in one of the schools, or a state job, so that we have the same work schedule.
- I have really enjoyed my two years home with the Princess, but in a way it's almost a relief to go back to work. One reason- I'll feel justified in taking down time. Not that I don't take it now, but there's always this niggling feeling of guilt about it, like I should be up cleaning or something to earn my keep. The two little ones will go to daycare until this fall, when the Bug will be in Kindergarten.
- In other big news, we're hoping to move into our new house by the end of January. I should really be packing instead of typing, eek.
- Christmas was mostly lovely. We take a much more lowkey approach to Christmas than many of our family and friends. Each of the kids had four gifts to open (including Santa), plus stockings, which only had a small bit of candy and some crayons and tiny coloring books. We only exchange names one on one with Mike's family and not at all with mine, so only one gift from Grandpa and one from a cousin. That's it. No overwhelming piles, no hours long opening, no money extravaganza. It is lovely and peaceful. My kids don't realize that other kids get piles of loot. I'd like it to stay that way a long as possible.
- I am doing my best to enjoy this last time home with the little ones before I return to work, and have been largely offline this week. I still check email and facebook on my phone, and check in elsewhere a couple times a day, but I am also spending hours on the couch with them and reading books as well. It's been nice, and it makes the time I do spend online feel much more productive.
- A Most Scandalous Proposal by Ashlyn Macnamara. This one isn't released until later this winter, but I got a copy through Net Galley. A really terrific romance, but I wish it had been two books instead of one. I'll write a full review later this week.
Stuff: Compulsive Hoarding and the Meaning of Things by Randy O. Frost and Gail Steketee. Only about half done. Interesting, but maybe not quite enough for an entire book.
- Shadow and Bone (Grisha Trilogy) by Leigh Bardugo. Peasant era Russia, a magic army, flesh eating vultures, great dialogue. I read about 100 pages in one sitting last night. I'm really enjoying it a lot, but already wonder how she can write a satisfying ending with the pace she's setting. If you are at all interested, and you should be, you can get the first five chapters for free for Kindle here: Shadow and Bone: Chapters 1-5