Monday, October 31, 2011

WARNING: Not about foliage!

Here we go, life full throttle... I've done it now!

I've accepted a new job.

A new, full-time, job.

And I'll still be doing work for my old one.


When we moved to NC, I had a plan.  Big boy is in second grade.  Little boy is in preschool.  I was going to stick it out as development director for my Michigan agency (delegating the face-to-face stuff to a newbie) for as long as they would have me (which I figured would be about a year).  I love my work for CTC and being able to pick up boys from school (the first at noon, the second at 3:30) and never have to worry about daycare or transportation or any of the unfortunate side effects of being a 9-5er.  I figured that even though my hours would drop, the increase in Matt's salary would make it up. 

First, we discovered that an extra ten grand for him didn't actually mean bigger paychecks.  Loss of teaching opportunities plus higher health care costs actually mean several hundred dollars a month LESS. Then, I got bored and lonely.  I started to make friends through fellow moms, but I was still stuck in my little apartment far too many hours of the day.  Even the delightful work I did for my agency lost its luster as the opressiveness of being stuck in isolation day after day worked its unhappy mojo on me.  I was bored, broke, and facing the prospect of not being able to go home for Christmas.

So, I started looking for a new job.  I wasn't really earnest about it.  I scanned craigslist, felt out the local nonprofit network, and updated my resume.  But when our savings ran out, we got in real trouble. Haven't-paid-my-student-loans-in-months, can't-replace-bald-tires-so-won't-pass-inspection, have-to-borrow-cash-from-mom sort of trouble.

I got really motivated:D

I applied to about 15 places which resulted in four outright rejections, three false "we'll get back to you"s, two pre-screens where I didn't make an interview, three actual interviews, and two second interviews.

Considering the economy, I considered this pretty good for a month's worth of effort.

Finally, an agonizing week after both second interviews, I got an offer!!!  (Frankly, I'm still expecting the other place to give me an offer, but I won't be sad to turn it away.)

The new place seems like my kind of environment.  I can't give details yet - I start Wednesday and I want to give the folks a chance to call the other candidates.  But it's flexible and fun and full of creative potential.  The pay is frankly kinda crappy, but I'll take crappy pay and high flexibility over awesome pay and long hours/zero flexibility any day.  Also, I'll still be able to work for CTC, so I'll supplement my income and keep the promise I made to myself to not leave them hanging.

But, now I have to work out the kinks. The transportation and child care and making sure all the little details come together.  Like, adding an extra day of preschool and making sure the mom who offered to watch him in the afternoons REALLY wants to do it.  But I imagine the sleep I'll lose over sorting out the details won't compare to the sleep I've lost over being negative in the budget every month.

Hurrah for progress!

Back to our regularly scheduled program next time, when I'll probably rip out most of my summer plants and pop in kale and spinach and daffodils:D

Monday, October 3, 2011

It's Cold!

I woke up yesterday, and suddenly my warm happy place had taken a turn for the chilly.  It was 60, and I wore a long black sweartshirty type skirt and a long-sleeve shirt - laughing at myself for adjusting too quickly to North Carolina's climate.  Christmas in Michigan, I thought, is going to suck!  We'll be those funny people dressed to the nines in sweaters, scarves, double layer socks.... oh wait, I was like that anyway as a native!

Then I woke up this morning, windows open, to a lovely 41 degree day. 

What the heck!  This is supposed to be the South!  The fact that it's supposed to hit 70 later today isn't much comfort.  It's autumn in the South.  The whole next week is supposed to be like this - 40s in the evenings/mornings and 70s in the day.  Once I dig out my wool socks, I'm sure I'll find it quite enjoyable;)

So, this means that I have to deal with the plants on the deck.  I have a number of semi-tropical plants out there, like Swedish Ivy and Kalanoche and Patchouli.  I suppose I should bring them all inside, but I already have lots of houseplants.  Guess I'll find room!

Another thing I'm not sure about is what plants are perennial in this climate.  I love my Datura plants, despite their toxicity.  (I keep them on the rail in the back, away from pets and kids.)  Are they perennial here?  Makes me not want to pull much out!  Guess some reasearch is in order:D

Anyway, off to do some work.  I have lots of photos from summer gardening adventures, but I haven't downloaded any since July.  Once I hunt down the SD cards, I'll upload and backdate them.  And for a parting shot - my lovely double-blossomed white Datura!