I can hardly believe the calendar has landed on November. October seemed all together too short, though it peppered with many happy things, there were also many, many challenges. I felt somewhat conflicted as it is my favourite time of year and yet, I was happy to begin a new month and inch closer to some time off over the holidays.
The children are well, so really not much can be wrong. My quietness had more to do with a broken laptop (which won’t be replaced) than anything else. I suppose the other big news is that I purchased our first home – yes – you read that right. The stars must have aligned and God was certainly on my side. Never did I think this would be possible, but a mortgage lower than rent and home owners who needed to move asap and couldn’t find buyers with the same flexibility we had (renting and all) and fellow buyers who all were looking at houses above their budget, not below, means that somehow there was no bidding war and we were able to get a home. A home, I tell you. A home.
No more moving, no more raising rents (I chose a 5 year fixed rate mortgage to help with budgeting, though the mortgage itself will take 100 years to pay off ), no more instability for my children. We are home, dare I say forever, for it certainly meets our needs. And it is home.
I am tired, I must admit. Very tired. There has been so much stress since the start of last month, and we moved at the beginning of this month (adding a tad more stress to the mix), so I think we all need nothing more than sleep, days and days of sleep. But there are boxes to unpack and meals to prepare and meds to dispense and therapies to be had. And it is months like these, where the solo-parenting gig feels hard. Oh how nice it would have been on moving day to have someone else prepare dinner, or the buffer of a second income to eat out, but I think sometimes the reminders of such things are fresher when tired and right now I’m just tired.
It is November now and I hope the beginning of things anew. I’m going to set some goals for the month, a bit of an encouragement, a bit of a reminder to inhale, exhale and really breathe. I’m learning, slowly, sometimes the greatest struggle is forgetting to breathe.
So this month, my goals are easy, the work (I hope!) is light. And my hope is we slowly begin to all de-stress a bit and the anxiety dissipates. So for this month, we are making home in the physical and mental sense and our goals are:
- Unpack boxes
Do a deep clean
Establish a strict budget and stick to it (I’ll put it here for accountability) – lets just say we were tight before, we are air-tight now…it is a bit scary, but this was the right move
- Menu plan and stick to it (food budget $240 a month now)
- Register for parking permit
- Go to pick up all mortgage documents at the bank
Write out and begin new morning routine with our new, longer commute to work
- Plant some tulips and daffodils for next spring
- Do breathing exercises as a family at least 3 x a week
- Go for a walk each weekend as a family (1/4)
- Drink 4 glasses of water per day
- Work from home 1 day/week on weeks where I have 5 long shifts
- In bed by 10:30 pm each night (wake-up time 5:30 am)
- Play a game as a family every single day
- Have each child read for 30 minutes per day
- Read to each child for 30 minutes per day
- Read 4 Chapter books as a family (1/4)
- Read Charlotte’s Web with my daughter
- Take children to the art gallery to see a Group of 7 and Tom Thompson exhibit
- Make Christmas cards
- Hospital appointment for both children
- Continue the quest to find a speech therapist for my son
- Send my son’s latest health assessment to his specialist
- Spend an afternoon painting with the children
- Son in bed by 7:30 each week night
- Daughter in bed by 8:15 each week night
- Begin writing to pen pals courtesy of blog-reader and friend, Kathleen
- Have children write to Auntie B in England
- Begin Wednesday night soup night as a family
- Put in 5 benefit claims for work
- Phone Eye Dr
- Get glasses for night-time driving
- Pack lunch every day for work
- Book 2 PA days off of work
- Check oil in car
- Write thank you cards
Call friend in England who was made redundant
And there you have it. So much more could be done, but I can’t. This month is necessities, making home and breathing.
Soon, pictures. For now, sleep.
I hope you are all well; I wish you a month of breathing and rest.