new computer, balancing work and family, pumpkins

My computer died last night, and I am typing this on the new Surface I got today. My computer was 6 years old, which is getting up there in technological terms, and I’d been thinking for a while about replacing it with something lighter, easier to transport. We’ll probably also buy a big screen on which I can do photo editing, but possibly not this month, or this year, what with all the bug-related expenses we’re currently experiencing.

The keyboard is off-gassing, which is annoying me. I think I’ll have to put it outside to let it do that more effectively tonight. I am enjoying the touch screen, and will enjoy using the Surface for movie watching on flights, I am sure. It will also be nice to have on device on which I can do all of my computer-related activity, instead of having a writing laptop and having to make sure everything is synced. I will miss my other laptop, though, despite its heft. I find technology changes somewhat stressful.

Ted and I had a good conversation last night about scheduling, and how to make it possible for him to spend more time at work without sacrificing family life or my professional life. It’s challenging. His commute, now that we’ve really looked at it, is 45 minutes in the morning door-to-door, and an hour to an hour and a half in the evening. That is a huge amount of time to be in transit, even if some of it is walking to and from the shuttle. Given that he works during the day and I work some during the day and then in the evening, our daily schedule is squeezed in a number of ways that make it pretty hard to find a good balance. We did come up with a pretty good solution that gives him 7 more hours a week at work. It will require me to get up earlier (which is hard, given that I work in the evenings), but not every single day. It will mean that I’m bundling all three kids out the door in the morning to get Hazel to kindergarten, but three out of five days; Ted will do the other two. So, for the next few days I’m going to make a strong effort to move my wakeup time a half hour earlier so my body can get used to it, and then next week we’ll start the new routine. This is good for me in the long run, I posit. 🙂

Today was a really beautiful day. This afternoon I piled the kids into the car and we went to buy pumpkins. We got one for each of us, and when we got home we sat outside at our picnic table and drew on four of them with dry-erase markers. I think tomorrow evening will be pumpkin carving. In the meantime, we enjoyed the mild weather, drew pictures for each other, petted the cats who came to visit, and said hello to the neighbors when they came by. Hazel taught me how to draw a rooster using the outline of my hand. Her dad taught her, and she passed it along. It is a novel and marvelous experience to be taught something by my 5.5-year-old. She has taught me Spanish words and songs before, but it was rather wonderful to hear her instruct me, and then reach over and move my hand just so.

Earlier this evening, Ted put a roast in the oven with potatoes and onions. It is smelling quite delicious. I am so happy that we share the cooking!

And now, more Mozart, Bach, and Hodge. Time to practice!

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