Monday, May 30, 2016

Jobs for teenagers

Grab a cuppa - I'm climbing on my soapbox...

This summer is a busy one for my kids.  3 weeks away mid summer messes up oldest getting a normal summer job for this year.  I definately want the kids to hold jobs because I did it and it helps them to understand that money doesn't just magically appear from the bank machine or parents wallets.  Hubby did lots of volunteer experience type jobs as a teen - working at camps, so he feels that's fine - but then gets steamed when the kids are always looking to us as their personal ATM.
The result is 2 teens with champagne tastes and tapwater budgets (beer can be costly too) - both have shown extreme laziness lately that really irks me.  Since in the school year their main task is to get good grades (B or better), play instrument for school and play 1 sport/yr (counts toward PE credits) and participate in scouts -  I know some of oldest child's classmates have to earn a % of their tuition costs either through scholarships or part time job.  I pay tuition - they need to maintain the grades.

Last summer I had a job sheet on the fridge and the amount I would pay for the work to be completed.  There were 10 ticket items and by Labor Day 2 were done and paid for - although there was much griping and constant questioning and loads of whining when 1 needed re-doing.  I will try it again for the youngest child - scaling the tasks back - but also scaling back the earning potential per task accordingly.

I've found a few jobs that oldest should be looking into for what there is if the summer break time.  I checked - all 3 are hiring and will hire 16 year-olds. I will have to provide transportation but child will pay for gas based on # of trips and Distance - lucky I have a Prius.  We don't have public busses here.

They are at Ocean State Job Lot, Dollar Tree and the pizza place in town as a busboy/dishwasher.
All if which were met with rolling eyes - but they are all decent starter jobs and so much can be learned by taking such jobs.  Bussing tables at a restaurant is hot hard work - but teaches you to be aware of your surroundings and how to clean up after others, and most importantly teamwork, better bus people earn better tips at the end of the night.  Retail work teaches eye contact, direction taking and awareness of the general public.  A lot of this could have been solved if this child had taken lifeguard training and could work at the lake in town - but there was no interest in doing it when the course was offered...

I worked crazy hours during high school and really crazy ones in college - I weeded for a landscape team, tended bar, worked at a grocery store (hated that) waitresses my ass off.  But one summer I earned almost $6,000 in tips and wages - this was the 80s too so that's a lotta quarters.  But all my friends work all summer and during the school year - we still saw each other and hung out during our days off at the beach, mall or mini golf place.  We visited each other at work and helped get our friends jobs where we worked - and we were super happy to head back to school each fall since it reduced our working hours.

Now we have to get thru exams and get the applications filled out and fingers crossed.....


Sunday, May 29, 2016

The annual list

Or as the oldest calls it the anal list (as in mom's anal retentive OCD chore list)

I began the list of tasks & projects yesterday.....it's my tradition.  Once the list has been completed, it is coded as to who is affected and who needs to help with the completion.

There are several items that will need to be done ASAP since we are having Youngest's confirmation celebration here.

this all needs to be done pre-Father's Day weekend
Tidy living room -me
Weed through sun room (this goes from the living room to patio) - hubby
Clean patio (it's concrete so needs to be scrubbed and hosed down) - me doing today
Patio furniture set up.- me & youngest today
Weed through kid bedrooms in prep for the other big projects (this will take them seriously 2 hours of work but 10-12 hearty bitching about it) me and kids after school finishes next week


Big items for while they are away on their big trip this summer include:
Re-grouting my shower enclosure - me 3 days
Re-painting front doors to the house - me 2 days
Painting the bedrooms including the closet in that room - me and sister 2 days

While they are at sleep away camp
Cleaning/converting playroom to 'Craft land'. Also known as projectville....where I can get creative and they can do large school projects without having to pick up midway thru to eat dinner at the table.
i have a armoire office thing that will serve as my desk etc.

Cleaning the shared office that hubby and I share....I love its location but it's just too bleeping small for both of us to share.  Seriously we can't have 2 chairs in there.....never have never will.
The room would have been a better butlers pantry since it's off the kitchen & garage but I lost that battle many years ago and I'm not going to keep at it.

After camp/before school starts
Split and stack a big pile of wood from trees hat fell over last year.  Renting them a splitter. Kids and hubby
Dismantle the crummy fire pit thing and fix the yard where it was.  Kids and I.
Garage and shed need cleaning out badly - job for hubby and kids
Prune all shrubs - hiring friends landscaper hubby for this

My spidey-sense tells me there will be several dump and charity donation trips in my future.  Maybe A few to Lowes/HD, definately one to the paint store and equipment rental place.

I know when its me and the pets home alone it's mostly coffee, ice tea, salads and veggies for meals so at least I will eat healthier - except for the wine/beers at the end of long work days.

Also want to meet up at Ms Sandie & MamaFish's farmer market one day....

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Tag saling

Today was the how wide tag sale!  I was determined to not but stuff not totally needed....
Came home with $20 worth of stuff
1 trifle bowl
1 Pyrex pie plate (cranberry color).
2 hard back novels for me
4 old popular mechanics how to books for kiddo #2 (basic info)
1 pint jelly jar candle
1quart  jar of old skeleton keys (turning into Christmas ornaments)
Revereware stock pot
Not a bad deal.

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Fancy outfit on the cheap

so, a few posts ago I mentioned how I got a dress for an awards dinner I had to attend....how excited I was because I found a dress on clearance at kohls for $12 and was able to even exchange it for the correct size a week later....well I was looking at the reciept again today - turns out I only paid $9.60 for the dress!   I used at 20% off coupon And forgot about it!  Probably because I was so excited for a $12 dress

That takes the fancy outfit price down to...... $25.47 before tax!
dress $9.60
Panty hose at target 5.88
Chunky Necklace splurge at target 9.99 (my simple chains and bauble were too plain)
Shoes - I wore from my closet

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Quiet day for me

I'm so happy today!  I gave the house to myself and it quiet!
My big plans for the day are laundry, cage cleaning & kitchen cleaning.

We are in the last couple weeks of school and it's a flurry of activity. Concert and field trips are done.
This last week the house has gotten away from us.  We are in desperate need for the school year to end and for us to get back into a routine of some sort.  I sound like a broken record - but we really struggle with it .  it will be nice to not be rushing here and there and everywhere....

I'm off to hit mount laundry!

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Yummy crash & burn

on Monday as I ran around exchanging dresses - I also stopped at my local Big Y.  We needed fruit and bread and milk & cheese.  As I neared the dairy row I remembered we were low on Greek yogurt, since I don't drink milk I try to eat some every day.  After I grabbed my 10/$8 little containers of big y Greek yogurt flavors and headed to the milk case one of the kids texted me to get tubs of vanilla yogurt for smoothies, this item wasn't on sale - but....the Greek big y strawberry was - for $1.24/32oz!  The exp date was 5/11.  I only grabbed 2 and made the explanation at home to them.  
I also told them that this summer they are going to learn how to price foods and be part of the shopping process looking for deals and making substitutions....this will teach them flexibility and $$ sense.  

Moms Money Camp!

Friday, May 13, 2016

Where did it go?

where on earth did the week go?  I know we were busy busy as usual.
As busy as we were meals were made at home!  Much better than the week before.
Monday was kielbasa, baked beans & veggies
Tuesday was frozen meatballs & pasta
Wednesday was hot dogs and pasta salad & fruit
Thursday was taco stuffed peppers
Tonight was I had the last 2 peppers....kids and hubs went out

Taco stuffed peppers
1# lean ground beef - browned
1 can kernal corn (we are out of frozen)
1 can small pink beans (like a mini pinto)
1 packet of taco seasoning
1 leftover pack of taco sauce from taco kit
3 cups of cooked rice
Bell peppers (I used 3 sliced in half lengthwise)


Hints....1 kiddo doesn't like rice - so I stuff their peppers first - then add the rice to the mix for the rest.  I also blanch the peppers upside down in the microwave.  Stuff them, sprinkle cheese on and into a 350 oven.  I put the leftover stuffing into a Tupperware - we will reheat it for lunch on the weekend.

Monday, May 9, 2016

Frugal Dress Shopping

So I'm not a girly girl....I like dresses, but honestly I don't have a lot of places to wear them and I tend to favor skirts and tops that I can mix and match.  Last time I bought a dress was for a wedding last summer on Long Island - mostly because I couldn't bear the thought of wearing the last dress before that (5 years ago) or dragging out the LBD to another cousin wedding.  Plus, I'm almost at my delivery weight when I had the last kiddo almost 15 years ago and honestly - this shits gotta change!  None of my summer shorts fit nicely....my diet has begun in earnest!

Sooo fast forward, I have to go to an awards dinner next week and look like a grown up!  This meant last week I hit kohls.  (After the consignment store where I struck out). I kinda hit the mother load so to speak. Bought 3 chaps dresses for $30 each and an Elle dress for $12!  The Elle was my favorite -not just for price, love the color & cut.  But as usual I was running late - since I know my chaps dress size I didn't try anything on and I wore sneakers - I have to wear heals to properly try on a dress...once I got home I dug out my heals & had hubby be the judge.  He said they all look nice and for me to pick - grr, such a chicken!  Well the chaps dresses were not staying...2 of them fabric was too clingy  & neckline too low for my taste - bummer because I loved the geometric pattern of both, the third I felt like a mix between a flight attendant and Kim Kardashian - there was some serious  bootay, not the look I was trying for.  That left the Elle dress, hemline was shorter than I'm used to...but the color and cut (and price) were ON Point!  Just it was a little snug in the bust - to the point I was super self concious....

Today I resigned myself to hit kohls after school and return all 4.  That is, until the clerk asked if I was returning or exchanging, I told her I'd love to find the next size up in the Elle dress - she pointed to the rack about 50 feet away and said they're over there!  And there was!  Only one left in the size I wanted - yay!  Except it was marked to $26 and I just paid $12 on Thursday.  I was prepared to suck it up and pay the difference - where else would I find a dress in a color (that doesn't need dry cleaning) for under $30?  She did a little magic and said - it's a size return - no extra charge!  Woohoo!  Party dress for $12!

And it's a great fabric that I can travel with too, should pack nicely. And since it was so inexpensive I'm not going to feel I have to wear it constantly to get my money's worth, heck I may even consign it once I drop the right amount of weight.



Sunday, May 8, 2016

Last few weeks of school!

We are in the home stretch!  Only a couple more weeks to go!!  I'm pretty excited - it will be great to sleep past 5 am for a little bit.

These last few weeks will be hectic. Both kiddos have final exams & class trips & big concert & they just worked all this past weekend on the school drama production.  Our youngest needs to make a definate decision about staying at Catholic school or heading to the magnet accepted/lottery at.  Both great school....oldest will stay at Catholic - half way done.  It's a tough choice for an indecisive child.

I'm looking forward to NOT having to really drive anywhere except to get groceries or to drop kiddos at an activity.

Tomorrow is the only day I have for this week of working for pay...there is loads to do here at home and volunteer stuff to do still - that needs to be done this week.

There never seen to be enough hours in the days - or motivation in me.



Sunday, May 1, 2016

Taking stock

I'm in a serious stock taking mood lately...
I've looked at what replacement costs are on a few items around the house.  Not food related items but hard goods.  Furniture, appliances, home decor items that are only necessary....that kind of stuff. 

It really adds up!  But the exercise is helpful when looking at home owners insurance policies.  It's important to make sure things like sofas, washing machines, beds & linens would be able to replace if something happened.

Think about it....at my house we would need
3 beds & linens, bath towels etc, washing machine, clothes, at least 4 dressers, table and 4 chairs, lamps, sofa and 1 chair, dishes & drinkware, silverware, pots and pans, vacume cleaner & coffee pot. I mean those are the basics!  Even bought at thrift or on the cheap at a big box discounter it would all add up the thousands of $$.

I did a little experiment and priced it out in ikea. Using their online catalog - 😛$3000. That's before clothes and cookware and a vacume cleaner...yikes!

Stop the Wheel!

its Sunday afternoon and I'm already Friday tired....tonight has to be an early bed night.

Last week went sideways on the running around side.  Youngest is switching schools next year so there was an evening open house with course selection for next year, The next day had this child at drama rehearsal until 8 - Friday had me doing some last minute shopping and era ding for hubby, racing to school go pick up kids and some stuff for drama and the show.

Yesterday I was volunteering an hour and 15  north of me then racing home to grab some stuff hubby & kids needed to deliver it to them at thier activity then home and in bed by 11.

Today has been more of the same running while I try to prep for a busy week of subbing, driving, meeting with other kid for their projects (they asked for help), drama tech week and at some point cooking &. Doing a fast tidy at home.

Makes me think I need to evaluate the wheel - rather than constantly run faster and faster to keep from falling off it.