Monthly Archives: March 2013

sad about a sweater

I’m feeling a bit depressed because N washed and ruined the sweater I knit for L.  It was hand wash only.  It’s not really her fault.  If I even told her this, and i may not have, it was when I was telling her everything at the beginning.  Regardless of the fault, though, I’m really sad about it.  It took me forever to make it, I really liked it, and L hadn’t even fully grown into it.


dress shopping

I’m trying to decide what dress to buy for L for my brother’s wedding.  I’m in the wedding party and will be wearing a navy blue dress.  All of the options are fairly inexpensive, so price isn’t a huge factor.  Opinions?






quarterly goals

I like Sarah’s idea of having quarterly goals.  I didn’t get around to New Year’s resolutions, so here are my goals for the next 12 weeks.

1.) Finish knitting the Aran sweater I’ve been working on for my brother.

2.) Exercise at least 3 times per week every week.

3.) Run a 5K

4.) Pay down mortgage 25K

I think that’s enough for now.    My plan is to try and run Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.  However, it’s definitely tough running three days in a row, and every day I don’t have to work.  Therefore, I’m also trying to add a midweek workout, probably either a workout video or a run around the neighborhood now that it’s staying light later.  I just tried Jillian Michaels’ 30 day shred, and I am stretched out on the bed exhausted.   I guess that means it was good for me.

financial goals

I thought this was a good article.  One of my philosophies in life is definitely, “Never finance a car.”  Even if it was a good deal (0% interest) and I could afford to pay cash but thought it would be better to invest the money, I still wouldn’t finance a car.  I think it just helps you be more conservative about the car you buy when you have to write a big check for it.  It’s easier to say Bye to $10,000 than $25,000.

From the link:

You can afford a car if you can pay CASH for it while still making timely progress on your other goals. I repeat: If you can’t pay cash for it, you can’t afford it. By cash I don’t mean retirement savings in an IRA, I’m talking about actual cash in the bank (or at least something you could quickly sell for cash in the bank).

If you have to justify it with “I’m in medical/law/computer/finance/basketweaving school and I’ll be making the bucks soon!”… no you still can’t afford it. If you justify it with “I need a brand new car because I need something reliable and anything less will explode! Do you want me to die???”… no you still can’t afford it.

On a similar note, my personal financial goal right now is to get my mortgage down to five figures.  There’s nothing like taking a year off to clarify the importance of a salary (and health benefits) and hence the importance of using that money wisely.  Once we get down to five figures, my goal will be to pay it off.  We’re starting to look at where we might move to for better schools, and I don’t want to sell this house right now, and I also don’t want two mortgages.  I’ve been paying down the mortgage a bit for a few months, and what I really like is seeing the percentage of my monthly payment that gets applied to principle increase more sharply than it had been.

On an unrelated note, can anyone recommend a replacement for Google reader?


Note – I published this by accident, but there are comments, so I’m putting it back up.

One thing that is really important to me is that L has a positive school experience.  My own experience was mixed, but ended on a high note and had many highlights in between, and I’d like to make sure her experience is at least as positive as mine.  I’d like the following:

1.) Opportunities appropriate to her intelligence level.  If she’s smart, I want her to be challenged.  That does NOT mean more work – just the time she does spend in school learning, not being bored while other kids catch up.   I’m worried that in a big city like Sea.ttle, there might be too much pressure and work for smart kids.

2.) A good social environment.  Maybe L’s personality will change, but right now, she is very obviously shyer than many other kids her age.  I’m assuming it’s really too young to tell, but given that B and I are both shy introverts, there’s a good chance she will be, too.  It’s very important to me that we find a school situation where’s she’s happy socially.

3.) Arts, music, etc.  Sports and other extracurricular activities.  School isn’t just about the ABCs!

4.) Affordable.  $30K a year is not impossible but definitely not a preferred option for us.  If L for some reason really needs private school, we’ll make it happen, but I’d much rather she go to public school or some kind of free or nearly free school if possible.

I grew up in arguably the best school district in my rather small city.  I went to public school for high school for half a day, and to a public school for science and math (magnet) for the other half a day.  Overall, I had a very good experience in public school and I’d love L to have that as well, but I’m very conscious of the fact that there is huge disparity between public schools.

There is actually an elementary school a few hundred feet from our house.  As you can see from the link, greatschools rates it 2 out of 10.  Students score well below state average on all tests at all grade levels.   More than 70% of kids qualify for free or reduced price lunches.  Basically, it’s only redeeming quality is that, like our cul-de-sac it is incredibly diverse – 25% Asian, 25% white, 20% black, 20% hispanic and 1% native american and otherwise unspecified.   While I think it would be good for L to go to school with kids who weren’t all wealthy and who were from varied backgrounds (in particular, there are a lot of recent immigrants in my area), I’m extremely unimpressed by the test scores.

a pope of color

People keep speculating about a pope of color, an American pope, and so on.  I’ll eat my socks if the pope is anything other than an old, white, European man.  Anything else is just wishful thinking.  People also speculate about women priests, allowing birth control, accepting gays, married priests and so on.  My guess would be the first pillar to crack would be celibacy for priests, but I would be surprised if it doesn’t take at least 30 years.  Perhaps when I’m an old lady, priests will be allowed to marry, but I’m guessing at the time of my death, we will still not have had a pope of color or women priests.  Being behind the times is the church’s forte.