Friday, February 07, 2014

Work Smarter (and Harder)

Welcome to my dispatch from the front lines of working-part-time-SAHMhood, Polar Vortex Edition. Because yes, like the rest of the country, MN remains entrenched in bitter cold. Which makes me very bitter. And cold. How many more weeks till spring??? Moving on...

I didn't get to start my new job until Tuesday. Which means, yes you figured it right, I've only been working part-time for a few days so far. Not long enough to have fully figured out a.) the job; b.) a new infallible routine for Doing All The Things; or c.) how things are gonna go for the next four months. That said, I'm working on all those things.

I love working at my kidlets' school. I love that I know a bunch of the teachers, and when any of them sees me in the hall with a staff badge around my neck, they're completely enthusiastic and excited for me. I love the hours, which give me the whole morning to get things done at home before clocking in (easier said than done) and allow me to punch out just as my children are dismissed.

I would say more about the work (generally speaking, of course; nothing confidential) but I don't feel like I'm versed enough in what I'm doing yet to speak on it. But I have enjoyed this week and think this will be a perfect way to spend my winter/spring afternoons.

I will say that the pre-employment physical screening I was required to do with an occupational therapist at the sports medicine center in town actually left me sore the next day (you guys! lifting, holding, and carrying a 50-lb. dummy who is as tall as you are (granted that's not very tall) is NOT EASY, particularly when you can't prop him on your mama hip and say, "Put your legs around my waist" like you still can with your 7-year-old, but actually have to use a cradle hold). I will also say that this job is going to be unexpectedly good for my tight/old/useless/runner's hip joints, while I sit cross-legged on the floor next to "my" student during Music and P.E. instructions, marveling that my hip joints don't seem to bend that way anymore. Youch!

It is definitely a change of pace to be gone all afternoon and come home with my children at after-school time. I used to use my afternoons for finishing all the stuff I didn't get done in the mornings: workouts, showers, cooking dinner, cleaning, laundry, errands. No more, friends!

Because the time between school dismissal and dinner (also between dinner and bedtime) is fairly crazy/hectic/requiring massive quantities of organization and patience, I have to be a time management wizard (not really) before I go to work. I have been getting up at five a.m. as always, only now I don't sit and drink my coffee in peace while checking email, Facebook, online news, and my fave blogs; instead I throw on workout clothes and squeeze in a little (lot) Jillian Michaels DVD torture before my kiddos get up. This is the only way to fit exercise in right now, I believe. In the spring when the sun is still out in the evenings, I will have no problem zipping out for a run when Christopher comes home from work; but right now that's just not gonna happen (plus, there's a Polar Vortex out there, remember?).

Then I run around in my workout clothes doing housework and laundry and getting my daughters ready for school until they're out the door, when I get my own self groomed and dressed. If I can get most of the cleaning done before the school bus comes, I still have a few hours in the morning to cook dinner in advance, run errands, and/or grocery shop, that sort of thing.

I know it's only 15 hours a week so compared to some of you working mamas it's definitely no big thing, but it's going to take me awhile to fine-tune my new routine. Gotta maximize my time, you know. 'Cause two nights a week the kiddos have tae kwon do right after a super-early dinner, and another afternoon they have a guitar lesson, is busy, you all. Nothing new, and everything new, all at the same time.

And today the grandparents are coming for the weekend to celebrate my birthday which happens to be tomorrow, so I'm outta here, friends. I'm turning 39 again you know. ;)

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