Friday was my 4th and final day to commute last week. 4 out of 5 days on the road gave me lots of time to think, especially since I knew that it was the last week I'd be on the road 4 days for a while. A week ago, I was just getting back from a trip to Corpus Christi for a conference. While I was there, I talked to my specialist team about how this fall has been an aberration, that I'm only contracted to work 2 days-ish/week. With having new people on the team and new programs and other stuff going on, it's been necessary for me to be at work several days each week instead of working from home, but it's taken its toll on my family, and I'm exhausted. To the point of nodding off while I'm driving, which hasn't happened since college. So, it was time for a change. I knew I had to get through the conference and then a big week this past week, and then I would go back to a more reasonable work schedule. James and my boss both approached me this past week about working too much, and that really helped me let go and start planning how to get back to being at home more.
Saturday morning, for the first time in I don't know when, I had no plans. Kayci had a birthday party most of the day, the boys had a fishing date, and I had nothing on the books. If I let myself think about it I'd start making a list of things I should do to get caught up...but I didn't want to do any of those things. And frankly, I knew I needed some downtime. Everyone was up and around early, so we decided to go to a fun restaurant for breakfast before we all went our separate ways. I told the kids that starting this next week I'll be home more, and will only go into town 2 days each week. James and I were surprised at how excited they were to hear it--I thought they would be disappointed that it would mean less time with friends or Grandma's TV after school.
Last Wednesday at our team meeting, one of my friends (who is also one of our new specialists) remarked at how fast the semester has gone by. Thanksgiving is a month away, y'all. I was honestly shocked as I sat there and realized how much time has passed...is gone. I feel like I've missed almost a whole semester of life. Melodramatic much, Mommygirl? But that's how I felt.
Something happened on Wednesday that put things in perspective for me--the things that feel like life and death are often not that important, but when faced with an actual life and death event (not mine, don't worry), I realized that I needed to keep things in perspective better. And that event took all of the fight and energy right out of me. I drove home Wednesday night feeling defeated and exhausted and just DONE. But I had to get up again and go back on Thursday, and that's when I started really thinking about the past 12 weeks and how they've flown by. I looked at my odometer and was shocked at how far I'd driven since getting my oil changed on October 11th. Let's start there, shall we?
My life by the numbers:
I looked down at the odometer when I got home on Friday.
# of miles driven between 10/11 oil change and 10/24 commute home: 1500
# of days scheduled to work since August 19: 22
# of days schedule to commute out of those 22: 15
# of days ACTUALLY worked since August 19: 28
# of days commuted out of those 28: 25
Here's where it got interesting for me.
Here's where it got interesting for me.
I had to stop and think about this for a few minutes when I counted it up. 10 extra days doesn't seem so bad, spread out over 11 weeks. Keep in mind, though, that 2 of the 3 weeks prior to August 19 I also commuted 4 days each week.
6 additional work days doesn't seem so bad. But, 10 additional commuting days? That's a minimum of 2000 extra miles on my car, and an additional 5 tanks of gas. It's an additional 30-40 hours in the car, not to mention meals eaten out, mornings and evening with my family missed...it's a lot, y'all.
estimated hours in the car since August 19, just for work: at least 100
shortest one-way commute (this past Friday, actually!): 1 hour, 15 minutes
average one-way commute: 2 hours (that's leaving between 5-5:15 AM, y'all, and coming home late)
Until this year, if I worked 2 days in Houston I would go in late one day and stay late another, so I didn't miss so much time with the kids (who have both struggled with my working, especially Noble these past few years). This year, # of days I've gone in early and stayed late: all but 2 of them.
In addition to my PPCD job, I also took on quite a bit of Region 4 work this semester. As it turns out, not only are we saving for DisneyLand, it's also time to replace my MacBook.
# of MacBooks currently on their way to us: 1, baby.
I think it would be funny to add up all of the times I've gone to pick this one up and the battery has been drained, or to count all of the times I've wiggled the charger thingy trying to get it to work. It's funny now...it hasn't been so funny these past few months when I've been using it so much!
Back to Region 4. Since August 16...
# of classes taught: 4
# of students taught: 34
# of assignments graded: 1005
As an administrator, I've also worked on another 12-15 courses.
James has said that the constant grading is what tipped the scale for him...when we went to Vegas last month, I spent an entire day in the hotel room grading and working on PPCD stuff. I'm not sure it was worth it, to be honest, but it was necessary.
# of days I've slept past 5:00 AM since August 16: hmm, maybe 4 or 5?
Let's not forget that I have yet another job, a little happy. It's SOOOOOOOOOOOOO been on the back burner for a long time, I've only been taking orders from friends who seek me out. Above is a onesie for a baby shower at work...guess what her Mommy teaches? :)
I tried to add up my orders in my head, but I don't feel like getting out my binder. So here's my best guess...
# of shirts/onesies made since August 16: 26-30
# of orders that took longer than I promised: 100%
# of shirts on hold since about then: 4-5...getting to them this week, finally!
# of orders turned down: lots
A year ago, I thought a little happy would be rocking and rolling by now...but there's just no time. I don't sleep enough as it is!
Let's get to the fun stuff.
Kayci started reading the Harry Potter books this fall, and she loves them. I read the first 4 when they came out, then had a baby and didn't have time for reading like that anymore (ahem, Kayci). But, I didn't feel comfortable letting her read something like that not knowing what she'd come across, so I decided from here out I need to read what she reads. Sigh. I wish I could not care--that's a LOT of reading I've signed myself up for.
# of Harry Potter books read to stay ahead of my fast-reading 10 year old: 2 (#7 is in my phone now, ready to read...since I started this post, I think I'm on Chapter 7)
# of days taken to read book 6: 1. Did I mention I did NOTHING on Saturday? I laid around and read and napped. It was fabulous. A Harry Potter in one day? It's a record for me. Did you know I read crazy fast? It's not always a good thing!
Here's a fun one: I took Noble to the boot store intending to buy one pair of boots, for him.
# of boots actually purchased: 4, a pair for each of us. I love, love my boots! But don't have a picture of them...you'll have to wait.
# of Whataburgers we visited before we found THE Whataburger, which turned out to be about a 1/2 mile from our hotel: 3. Turns out, the original Whataburger is no longer there. It was quite the disappointment after we drove across town in the rain on our short lunch break.
Here are some other numbers I've thought about since this has been rolling around in my head...
# of times I've had coffee with friends (not at work): 1
# of times I've been able to attend Bible Study: 1
# of times I've been to yoga: 0
# of times I could have gone to yoga but didn't: 4?
Oh, yeah, and remember my big ambitions for October?
# of minutes each day I PLANNED to work on scrapbook organization: 15
# of minutes I've actually worked on it: 30 (2 days out of 27 now)
# of pages of Project Life I intended to have journaled by now: 120+
# of weeks behind on Project Life: 12, at least
Oh, and remember that other thing James wanted to do in October?
# of days we meant to NOT eat meat: 31
# of days we didn't eat meat: maybe 10
# of days until we quit pretending: 22
# of items on my agenda: not nearly as many as you'd think...I realize I can't catch up on 3 months in one day, or even one week. I'm going to just take it one step at a time!
This numbers thing...it's addictive.
I find myself now wanting to figure out how many birthday cards I've mailed this year...and how many have been late. How many phone calls and e-mails and bills paid and hours of TV watched...think of all of the quantifiable parts of our day!
Number of entries in my gratitude journal...number of Bible verses read...I could count all day!
But, I won't. :)
Happy Monday, y'all--have a great week! Who knows, maybe I'll *actually* see you around!