Save. Spend. Splurge.

Week of Money: Where I am told I will need to take on new tasks & transition off

DAY ONE

??:?? — I wake up to Little Bun throwing himself on me. He first checks the lumps of the bed to see where i am, and then he flings himself onto me. I hug him against my body and kiss his head as we cuddle for a few seconds before getting up.

6:41 a.m. — I check my voicemail. Apparently someone called me yesterday? Too bad. I don’t answer my phone to UNKNOWN CALLER. I just heard the voice on there, and frankly, this isn’t an emergency so you all need to chill.

7:50 a.m. — I log off and start working. I have a lot to get done today, actually. Plus a million meetings; I guess I am multitasking.

8:08 a.m. — I think it’s ridiculous that you have a store that has something that goes on sale, but then refuses to adjust the price within the return period (2 weeks or a month). I would just return it, and re-buy it again on the spot. What’s the point? You think people are lazy and they won’t do it? I’ll do it for an $75 back in my pocket…!! Sometimes I wonder what goes on in these company heads.

10:33 a.m. — Meetings. I really think sometimes that people blow things out of proportion. It’s not life or death, chill.

12:02 p.m. — Lunch time.

1:57 p.m. — Down for his Quiet Time / Nap. I am in meetings trying to be quiet.

2:51 p.m. — Up from his nap, he bounces out of the bedroom and I snuggle him with my headset on.

3:40 p.m. — We log in for a session online learning with other kids. He likes typing in the chat and it is his one way to connect with other kids live that he doesn’t know, even if he doesn’t see their faces.

5:12 p.m. — Dinner, then dishes with cutlery (Little Bun’s job), and we have been trying out new curry pastes from Mekhala. They are VERY good. Little Bun likes them, surprisingly, and his favourite is the spicy green one. He eats some, then runs around the room going WHOOSSH WHSOOOOOSH as it ended up being quite hot for him. After a few moments it goes away of course but he squeals: THAT IS SPICY! .. and yet he still likes it. Soon we will all be eating more and more spice and getting used to it which cannot be a bad thing, except for the fact that now I sort of like spice on everything, otherwise it tastes bland.

6:25 p.m. — We watch a few episodes of Asinine Advice (my partner likes them too).

8:54 p.m. — Bedtime routine, and then we go to bed. We are reading his new Richard Scarry book – Busy Busy World which is both funny, well-illustrated and fun. I order more Scarry books for him (as used as possible), online. $193.57

Spent: $193.57

DAY TWO

??:?? — I wake up a little tired but “right on time”. Ideally, I wake up at 7 but sometimes my body won’t let me and I wake up at odd hours. No set schedule at the moment.

6:38 a.m. — I log in and start blogging. Little Bun reads emails from his grandmother.

7:50 a.m. — I log off and start working.

10:24 a.m. — My partner and I are discussing something as Little Bun is in the bedroom doing his work, and I hear him in distress, squealing in the bedroom. He finally runs out and is crying: MOMMY. NO TALKING TO DADDY.

Me: What is going on? *getting annoyed*

Little Bun: *unable to speak* *runs back to the bedroom*

I go after him, and just hold out my arms to hug him. He’s too upset to go into them right now and sit in my lap, but I just sit there and wait for him to explain why he is angry at me all of a sudden.

Little Bun: I don’t like it when you and Daddy talk!

Me: I am allowed to talk to Daddy!!! *annoyed again*

Little Bun: No no!! I mean without ME!!!!

Me: Without you?? *confused*

Little Bun: I wanted to be part of it! You talked without me! I wasn’t there!

Me: OHHH.. You wanted to be part of our conversations!! You were feeling left out.

Little Bun: YEAH

Me: I am sorry! I didn’t think you’d be interested in these conversations, and I did NOT mean to leave you out at all. I was not trying to not include you, I just didn’t think you’d be interested in this story.

Little Bun: I am interested in ALL THE STORIES. ALL THE TIME.

Me: Okay then. Now I know. Come here. I am sorry, I didn’t know you wanted to be part of our conversation. I guess it makes you feel like you’re part of the family if you join in?

Little Bun: *sniffling* Yes. I wanted to hear the story.

Me: Okay then, I will restart the story again. And I will pause until you are around so we can do the story together.

Little Bun: Okay. *snuggling*

The book that helped me the most with this, and trying to stay calm has been – How to talk so kids will listen (ages 2-7) and mainly, not reacting to his distress with anger and annoyance (you see what I did there? Instinctively I was getting angry/annoyed he was upset), and it is because I have been learning emotional maturity in the past few years, ever since I had Little Bun, in an attempt to be a better parent for him (and less like mine to be honest, in this regard).

I used to be yelled at for everything, and yelling at him (a trait I also see in my partner who grew up with similar-ish parents), is a sign of emotional immaturity because Little Bun is expressing himself via anger because it is the only way he knows how and he doesn’t know how to explain yet, at his young age, what he wants and how he feels with precise words. So, we are here to help him puzzle it out, and give him the words like I did above. The book that helped me with THIS, is – Adult Children of Emotionally Immature Parents. I don’t want to repeat the same mistakes.

12:12 p.m. — Lunch time. Today it is pizza and while I m on my calls, Little Bun is picking basil off the plants to give to his father. I am so happy we decided to start basil from seed, as now we have lots to eat with our meals.

12:51 p.m. — Down for his Quiet Time / Nap.

2:51 p.m. — Up from his nap, he bounces out of the bedroom and I snuggle him.

4:24 p.m. — I log off for the day. I am beat.

Little Bun sits beside his father and does math drills. He had a bit of a stressful scream about it because he felt like Daddy wanted him to be perfect from DAY ONE in knowing how to do them, but I grabbed him, went to the bedroom and talked it out.

I told him that we are starting math drills to not make it stressful but to help him improve so that when we ask 8×9 he isn’t counting his fingers. Once he gets them from short-term memory to long-term memory, just like reading, everything will come so much easier if he can add and multiply basic numbers in a flash.

He tells me he thinks Daddy wants him to get it within one second. I tell him that is not the case right now because he is just starting to do this, and it might take 2-3 months, and not happen over night. I tell him NO ONE is expecting him to get it right in the first question and Daddy is helping him get there so that he has the right foundations for the rest of his life.

My partner too, has to break out of this toxic way that he was teaching, as in France they are pretty rude to children in teaching. Do any kids learn well with being humiliated or shamed (??????), I think not, but that was the way he grew up in France, and he was sort of passing it down to Little Bun, but Little Bun is a sensitive, woke child. LOL

I tell him math drills are like athlete drills – I bring up his favourite soccer players and how they also do soccer drills to become awesome, and he is JUST LIKE THEM but with math so that they get better and better.

Little Bun also wants to be perfect all the time, which is something we have to work on, because if he wants that, he has to work hard to reach that level of perfection, or accept that he won’t be perfect. Little Bun puts a lot of pressure on himself but also doesn’t like it when it is framed in a way that he has to be perfect from day one. My partner is unable to explain this to him as he grew up with emotionally immature parents like I did, and he is learning to break those issues via seeing me break my own, and in how I deal with Little Bun and how it is working / getting better in some ways.

Either way, parenting is hard.

5:38 p.m.Little Bun: Mommy? I think if I am drilling math with Daddy every day, that should count as a Math Page for me.

Me: That’s fair. I would agree to that. Let’s do that then.

I like that he is able to come up with a solution/compromise and we are both happy.

6:05 p.m. — For dinner, Little Bun requested sushi and that is what I made for him with my brown rice, cauliflower, some tuna, and a sprinkle of rosemary (he likes it in there). It’s so weird but it’s a “sushi” roll, and he loves it. I let him roll his own so he can learn how to do it, and then cut it into pieces for him.

6:25 p.m. — We clean everything up because sushi making is messy. Dishes, cutlery, we put away the laundry that has been sitting in the room for a day, and we are done.

9:15 p.m. — As i am brushing my teeth, Little Bun runs in visibly upset: MOMMY MOMMY, THEY ARE SETTING OFF FIREWORKS AGAIN. He hates fireworks because he knows animals get scared and run away from their parents, and he hates thinking of the baby animals being hurt or lost. I look at him in alarm, and try to tell him that we can only control what WE can control. If someone says – HEY LITTLE BUN! Let’s buy fireworks and set them off!... I tell him that he can control it by saying: NO. I DON’T WANT TO. AND THIS IS WHY.

But he cannot control what other people do to a certain extent and can only control how he feels and what he does, and is a role model / advocate for others. Unfortunately, we cannot solve the world’s problems and taking them all on ourselves, is a lot of pressure and stress for any individual, especially a tiny one.

I tell him Mommy is the same way, and I am especially sensitive as I absorb so much; I have to tell myself to detach to preserve my sanity because I am doing the best I can. I can do no more than that, and as an individual I can only advocate to help change others’ minds along with voting with my money. That’s it.

I hug and kiss him and ask if it makes sense. He nods.

9:30 p.m. — Bedtime routine of reading books – he is fixed on Busy Busy World right now (Patrick Pig Learns to Talk is his favourite, from Ireland), and then we go to bed.

Spent: $0

DAY THREE

??:?? — I wake up to Little Bun flopping on top of me. I am drained. This is way too early. How is this child not sleeping.

5:01 a.m. — The heat hasn’t even kicked in (we don’t keep it on during the night), and I am shivering. I bundle up, and Little Bun is a bundle of warm energy. I have an appointment today as well, which is why I am feeling like I need way more sleep.

7:50 a.m. — I log off and start working. We have so many small fires to put out, that I am feeling really stretched.

8:22 a.m. — I am on calls all day.

9:47 a.m. — This antique trunk, being repainted is a nice idea.

11:04 a.m. — Lunch time, then I head out because I have a fear of being late, and I hate being stressed about parking and so on. I am glad I checked online about the stores and so on because with Covid, many are closed. I realize the one I planned on going to was closed, so I have to drive half an hour out of the way to go to the other.

2:51 p.m. — Up from his nap, he bounces out of the bedroom and I am already home, snuggling him.

4:12 p.m. — Little Bun settles in to do math drills with his father, as part of his math page, and he starts to get better. My partner highlights the ones he has to work on, and starts adding in multiplication to mix things up.

5:30 p.m. — We log into an online session with other children to watch an activity, and in one of the chats, someone writes: Oh no, it doesn’t look anything like what she is doing!

Little Bun types out (painfully slowly): “Do not feel bad” in the chat …. without being prompted.

He is so cute and sweet. He even wanted to correct someone who had spelled “scenery” as “scenere”, but I told him to let it go.

Little Bun: *eyes open & innocent* But why?

Me: It isn’t considered polite to be constantly correcting people especially if they haven’t asked for your help.

Little Bun: Oh.

In his head, correcting someone is a good thing so that they know how to spell it in the future, but I know it then comes off as a know-it-all. Best to let the teacher or someone else do it like an adult, or if it continues, offer to help them, but only if they are open to the idea.

6:30 p.m. — Dinner, dishes and Little Bun folds all of his father’s laundry for him. It’s a good practice for him to see something and to help out without asking (although in this case, I am asking / suggesting that he do it). Maybe he will get into the habit and not complain afterwards.

6:47 p.m. — I am exhausted. Today was a long day. I woke up at 5 and now I am truly running on fumes.

8:54 p.m. — Bedtime routine, and then we go to bed. I cannot stay awake any longer to talk. I have to start these bedtime routines sooner.

Spent: $0

DAY FOUR

??:?? — I wake up tired. I wish today were the end of the week but alas it is not.

5:12 a.m. — I log in and keep up on the blogging. I have so many ideas and posts flying around but I need time to write them as well.

7:50 a.m. — I log off and start working.

8:20 a.m. — I take a break to watch a few clips of Anjelah Johnson. I don’t love all of her jokes, but she does have some good ones in there, as she isn’t profane about it either which is nice.

12:12 p.m. — Lunch time, just some simple rice and eggs.

1:57 p.m. — Down for his Quiet Time / Nap.

2:51 p.m. — Up from his nap, he bounces out of the bedroom.

3:40 p.m. — I watch the Tinder Swindler and I am just horrified. It’s a great documentary, well worth watching. From the get-go, you can tell just off the name of it there are some red flags, but mostly they were just too trusting as well. To give someone your passport after an hour of meeting them? I dunno.

In general, if anyone asks you for chunks of money to release more money, or asks for thousands to help X family member – ask X family member first what is going on, don’t just send the money. They thrive off panic and people’s inherent greed in asking for more money like “Oh my goodness, I am about to get $10K, what’s $1000?

5:30 p.m. — I log off for the day, but not before taking a call for something that could have been a forwarded email. It had all the info in there. Instead, I am wasting 15 minutes talking about it again.

5:58 p.m. — Dinner, and Little Bun is wiping down cutlery. He goes pretty quickly now. Then he starts making funny faces for a video and we take selfies together.

6:25 p.m. — He is playing by himself with his Stuffies while I take a break and review my To Do list. Then we read books sitting side by side together.

8:54 p.m. — Bedtime routine, and then before we go to bed, we are reading from the book of – How to be a math genius – again. He wants me to choose a page, and we end up on a page about how children know all about math from a young age. The book is fun because it has activities, fun facts, full colour pages, interesting tidbits and so on. Very well worth it especially as it is Little Bun approved (he is going back and flipping through the pages again).

Spent: $0

DAY FIVE

??:?? — I wake up before Little Bun and come out for some peace and quiet.

6:48 a.m. — This seems to be my normal waking up time.

7:05 a.m. — I hear Little Bun open the door and let out this morning whine where it is too bright and he wants me to come snuggle him. I go into the hallway and hug him tight to me. He goes and grabs his “babies” (Stuffies) and then comes out to the front where he puts a shirt over his eyes and lies down until he is used to the light.

7:48 a.m. — I log in and work, and get a message immediately about a missing team member. Lots of people I know are getting sick with Covid now. Practically everyone on the project has been in contact with it through their kids, or just from going to events like weddings. I am also being asked to take on another set of roles/duties on the project, and while I am not 100% thrilled because I know I can’t really ever truly “leave” a section I was in charge of, I will also have to help them, AND ramp up / learn a whole new department to help them. Apparently this is my reward for being an excellent consultant. /sarcasm

10:11 a.m. —Lots to get done today. I am getting handed more responsibilities so I have to delegate my remaining ones to new people. Why do these new people not take the new responsibilities instead of switching me off? Because apparently they cannot, they aren’t strong enough to be able to lead a team on their own. *sigh* (I asked.)

11:30 a.m. — I am on calls and I hear Little Bun cause noise in the bedroom. I put down my headset and go to investigate, and he tells me — Mommy I just like it when you are here with me in the bedroom – and I tell him that I am on a call. His face changes – OH! I didn’t know.

12:22 p.m. — Lunch time. Just a simple pasta – it’s what I crave during winter – and Little Bun begs for spicy curry paste to be added, so we throw in some green curry paste this time (he likes that one the best).

1:05 p.m. — Down for his Quiet Time / Nap. I am in meetings all afternoon.

1:30 p.m. — LOL. I am in meetings and I see this:

2:51 p.m. — Up from his nap, he bounces out of the bedroom but quietly, and watches Riddles on the computer beside me. He has a real penchant for mysteries and detective / logic puzzle shows or work, and that’s just like me when I was younger. I still enjoy mysteries a lot, and will put The Mentalist on in the background while working.

4:45 p.m. — I log off for the day.

5:12 p.m. — Dinner, dishes and laundry. Little Bun is wiping down cutlery, and I am trying to clean up my desk space – impossible. I have so many laptops – from my work, to personal, and Little Bun’s, plus I have all my papers for both, on one tiny desk. I need a bigger desk and definitely more storage to have all of his and my stuff around. At least I am taking notes for my future office of what works for me and what does not.

6:25 p.m. — We watch a movie everyone has been hyping, together – Encanto.

**SPOILER ALERT** Skip if you want to watch it but don’t want it spoiled.

From the start, Little Bun is crying on and off. He felt it hard in his heart that the girl was being excluded for not having “a gift”, and he was crying again when he saw the little boy trying to eat with his family behind a wall, as he felt like they didn’t love him for his gift of prophecy (every prophecy has two sides by the way) and drove him off… this was not a typical fun Disney movie for Little Bun. Personally I think it’s interesting, it brought up good points, it shows how you can be blinded by something from a fear of losing it.

The song – We don’t talk about Bruno is also EXCELLENT but that makes sense as Lin-Manuel of Hamilton fame, did the songs:

8:54 p.m. — Bedtime routine, and then we go to bed. We are reading from the math book again.

Spent: $0

DAY SIX

??:?? — I wake up, at least today is the weekend. Little Bun had gotten up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom and made such a ruckus it woke me up and I can’t go back to sleep. Little Bun drops off to sleep almost immediately (I checked his face before I left the bedroom), and I am now wide awake.

5:20 a.m. — I log in and just sit there, watching videos and blogging while watching. I was told about the show – Criminal Minds – and now I am intrigued. I like rewatching mystery or crime TV series most notably Castle, The Mentalist, Mr. Monk and Law and Order Criminal Intent (because Vincent D’Onofrio’s character is just superlative as a detective). I am going to be extra tired today but I can’t sleep any longer.

5:48 a.m. — I hear Little Bun open the door and call out softly for me in the hallway (he has to get used to the light). Little Bun squeal-whispers as I go into the darkened hallway to greet him: GUESS WHAT MOMMY? IT IS THE WEEKEND. AND WE GET FRIES TODAY.

6:02 a.m. — I grab his milk for him, make a tea for myself, and afterwards, we snuggle. I tell him that I love him all the time. I never had this growing up, a constant verbal barrage of love and attention from my parents, and sometimes I worry I am overdoing it, but I think as long as I am not overpraising him for no reason (as if he can do no wrong at all), it is fine. I still tell him when he is not behaving kindly.

7:45 a.m. — Little Bun saw a cute Easter design in his magazine of a bunny made out of cut up hardboiled eggs and asked if we could do it too – I make a mental note to do it later on this week together as an activity with him.

12:22 p.m. — Lunch time. Fries of course, as we get it every week for a weekend treat. I slather mine in siracha sauce.

1:05 p.m. — Down for his Quiet Time / Nap. I take a break.

2:51 p.m. — Up from his nap, he bounces out of the bedroom and I snuggle him. I ask him if he’d like to do something together. He nods, and suggests a few ideas – Stuffie adventures, Stuffie tag….. you get the drift.

5:45 p.m. — Light dinner, dishes and laundry. Little Bun is wiping down cutlery. I am in the bedroom (after doing my part), reading Rodsky’s new book – Find your Unicorn Space and come across a few of these passages that made me eyes roll:

I have always wondered why self-care articles are such a big thing in the sphere of women, and these passages sum it up perfectly – men simply don’t have an issue with it. Women do. Men just have limits, boundaries, they see they’re busy at work, they come home, they don’t see any of the housework or chores, and they simply set boundaries and do stuff that they want to do and ignore all the rest, more or less.

Here is another one:

Women, aren’t angels either. They raise eyebrows at other women who deign to do things for themselves:

And finally, there are guys that are deliberately oblivious unless you scream at them all the time…. but even if you do, they don’t consider it a big deal “she may give me shit for it“, but really, they just keep doing it because they prioritize themselves. This is a good and a bad thing.

Men have no problem with self-care because they naturally do it without thinking, whereas women are conditioned (?) to consider it a guilty, selfish endeavour that they should not ask or dream about because they are meant to be the sacrificial lambs of families in society’s eyes; women should do it all without complaint and put themselves LAST, because if they do complain or bring up that they need help, they get shut down, or ostracized by other women who feel like they can’t complain or demand equality. That’s what I see.

Obviously this topic triggers me. I find it incredible that we accept this as a societal standard. I saw it in the women in my family and I refused to follow the same path.

7:59 p.m. — We are playing Wordle and today’s word was U _ _ E R … I just couldn’t get it. We tried UPPER, UTTER, Little Bun found USHER, UNDER, and finally I figured it out – ULCER. That was a close one. At least they give you 6 tries and not 5.

8:54 p.m. — Bedtime routine, and then we go to bed. He asks me sweetly – Can we do GREAT THING, NOT SO GREAT thing? .. I say: Of course, and he launches into: GREAT THING WE HAD FRIES TODAY. THEY WERE SO GOOD.

Spent: $0

DAY SEVEN

??:?? — I wake up with Little Bun snuggling me. I give him kisses and tell him – good morning, I love you!

6:30 a.m. — Out in the living room, we are hanging out, and he is telling me riddles he saw on YouTube. They can be quite longwinded and he cannot remember all the details, but at least he is trying.

9:45 a.m. — We set to working making shampoo this time from concentrate. I bought a grater and a spatula just for these purposes so I don’t use our food-only utensils, and the process went much quicker. Use this link for 20% off on your first order. They are truly the best no-waste, zero-plastic shampoo/conditioner company I have come across.

First I grated the concentrate bar of shampoo so it would melt quicker rather than my having to mash down the lumps for 5 minutes. You can use any grater, I bought this grater because it has a little thing at the end that hooks onto the bowl so you can grate easily.

Then you just pour 300mL of boiling hot water onto it, and mix until it dissolves. Takes maybe 30 seconds to a minute, then you let it cool down. The last time I have been doing this, it took me about 5 minutes to mash and squish down the lumps to make them melt as the water was rapidly cooling off. Not ideal. I was left with smaller un-smashed lumps. I bought this spatula for this purpose rather than using a fork, so I could use it to scrape off the shampoo around the bowl as well because.. waste not want not.

Then I used a silicone funnel I got for this purpose as well so I don’t mix food items, popped it into my PERMANENT plastic refillable bottle I got from this Etsy seller, and voilà, full bottle of shampoo with no plastic waste in the packaging, as the concentrate bars come in recyclable cardboard packaging.

The only reason why I had to buy a new bottle in plastic just to do this was because I had been on solid shampoo bars for about 2 years, and I don’t keep empty, used shampoo bottles around after I use them. Had I kept them, I would just have reused what I had, but alas.. I did not think concentrate shampoo to reconstitute as liquid shampoo for easier showering was even an option before these geniuses made it.

12:10 p.m. — Lunch time – this is what happened. Little Bun is the cutest.

12:53 p.m. — This might be too bold for me to want as a permanent thing in my home, but I appreciate the mix of colours and the style. Would be better translated into an outfit, than on my walls.

1:10 p.m. — Down for his Quiet Time / Nap.

3:16 p.m. — He sleeps in today. He must have been tired.

3:40 p.m. — I am in the other bedroom reading, trying not to also sleep because I have a tendency to doze off.

5:48 p.m. — Dinner, dishes, and I do two loads of laundry to get clothes all clean and ready for the week.

6:25 p.m. — I am checking my bank cards and accounts, and making sure things are up to date. Sometimes life can pass by and I forget to do these things, so I have to make sure I am on top of it all.

9:21 p.m. — Bedtime routine, and then we go to bed. We are reading from our math book again – he likes seeing the activities, and sometimes we switch it up. I just let him choose whatever he wants to be interested in at the moment.

Spent: $0

———-

Want more? Read all of my previous Week of Money Diaries.

4 Comments

  • morganlf21

    I’ve been listening to Eve Rodsky’s podcast, and it’s kind of irritating me for the same reasons. I understand that there are societal pressures for women to take on the martyr role and be bad at boundaries…but like, okay, work on it? Start setting boundaries. Start enforcing them. Ignore the protests from your partner as the expectations change.

    You don’t get to just be a martyr endlessly and expect anyone to care. I don’t feel guilty about taking time for myself. I know perfectly well that I can burn out, and I don’t get points for acting like that’s not true. Any woman who gives me grief about that is not someone I’m particularly interested in befriending.

    I noticed my partner struggles with paperwork and bills. I said, If you take on more of the housework, I’ll take on the paperwork. He was thrilled. I’m not interested in taking on extra work just because I have a uterus.

    Sorry, this is a sore subject for me. It’s part of the reason my first marriage ended. I was a SAHM for several years, and when I went back to work and asked for more parity in the household duties (since we were both working full time), it did not go well. That helped me see my situation more clearly and realize I did not have a partner who respected me.

  • Vivian

    How to Talk to Kids is my ultimate guide for parenting, and really, is so helpful in communicating with people in general.

    Adult Children of Emotionally Immature Parents made me see my parents for who they are. It was very powerful to understand them and then to learn what not to do for my kids.

    So crazy you mentioned the two books that made such a few change for me all at once 🙂

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