Save. Spend. Splurge.

Week of Money: Where I get new Work from Home (WFH) headphones

DAY ONE

??:?? — I wake up with Little Bun and we both go out bleary-eyed into the living room. I set him up to drink his morning milk, and I am getting myself awake to start the day. I feel very very tired.

6:02 a.m. — And NO WONDER. It is so early. I am logging in and blogging.

7:50 a.m. — I log off and start working for the day. I almost wish I had swivel desks or something, because I need a lot of space to have a personal AND a work computer.

8:25 a.m. — After a frantic email, I research up on how to handle a weighted gauge pressure canner for my mother. I find a long article to help her, and make her print it at home to review before using her device.

9:07 a.m. — Little Bun hops out of the bedroom and announces he is done ALL OF HIS PAGES. Already!? I make a mental note to review everything when I have time. He has been so quiet, I guess he was working extremely diligently. He tells me offhandedly, that the pages are too easy. I guess in the Grade 4 books, they start on Grade 3 items at the start to ease you in….

12:22 p.m. — Lunch time.

1:07 p.m. — Down for his Quiet Time.

1:51 p.m. — He comes out of the bedroom early, because we have a special session online. I log in and he sits there, excited to be part of a chat with other children chatting as well. It’s very, very cute to watch him have a running commentary on what they are typing, and spelling mistakes they are making. I tell him to give them grace, they’re in a chatroom and a lot of people type mistakenly.

3:00 p.m. — Session over, we log off and I hop on a call to work.

4:12 p.m. —I log off for the day, and cut his hair. Unfortunately, I was not thinking and cut too close to his head.

5:47 p.m. — Dishes and I don’t really feel like eating. Little Bun is wiping down cutlery, and asks me when I am going to have dinner – I tell him I am just going to eat yoghurt, I don’t feel hungry. His face falls, he had been hoping for a dinner to share with me. I feel bad, and offer to make him something special but he shakes his head – No, that is okay Mommy, I wanted to eat with you!

6:25 p.m. — He takes photos of things he sees in the apartment, like water droplets, and interesting things, and then tries to mock them up or transform them on an app on the iPad.

8:54 p.m. — Bedtime routine, and then we go to bed. I basically conk out almost immediately.

Spent: $0

DAY TWO

??:?? — I wake up before Little Bun and head out to the living room.

6:45 a.m. — I hear the door open and he comes out into the hallway, and I rush to hug and snuggle him. I guess he woke up when he felt my presence missing .. lol .. he usually does this. When I wake up, he wakes up at the same time.

7:50 a.m. — I log off and start working for the day. My entire day is booked until 5 solid with meetings. I am resigned to wear a headset all day.

8:59 a.m. — Fires to put out all day. People are trying to call me every 5 minutes.

12:22 p.m. — Lunch time. A break. But I am eating it while on a call. It’s sad I can’t even enjoy my pizza….! Little Bun is dipping pieces of his pizza into my siracha sauce (I like it drizzled all over). I am trying the Thai Basil + Garlic paste on top of the pizza to see if it gives something new to the pizza.

1:00 p.m. — Down for his Quiet Time / Nap.

2:51 p.m. — Up from his nap, he comes out and works on his math drills with his father – addition and multiplication. We have a call with the school board to check up on him later on this week, so I will have to remember to clear off my desk so he can talk to the coordinator directly via webcam.

3:57 p.m. — I finally end my meetings, and log off for the day.

5:40 p.m. — Dinner this time! I make a bowl of pasta and we choose a curry paste – red today – to add into it. He loves trying out new flavours like this.

6:25 p.m. —We watch a MasterClass by Terence Tao on Mathematical Thinking. I sign up for the subscription just to watch these classes out of curiousity. $20

7:55 p.m. — It was an all right course, but I feel like the intro part was a little too long to try and convince people that they are too, indeed, mathematicians, and I would have enjoyed more examples of breaking down a problem. Instead of just explaining how finding one infected soldier in 100, takes 7 blood tests to narrow down the group, I would have liked a real world application for us, like if we only had X amount of tries, how should we approach a problem?

8:40 p.m. — Bedtime routine, and then we go to bed. I am hoping not to wake up in the middle of the night again (Little Bun has been screaming as of late, with night terrors), and I am hoping for some peaceful sleep.

Spent: $20

DAY THREE

??:?? — I wake up SO REFRESHED. I need to be up at this time every day.

6:35 a.m. — This is my perfect waking up time. I naturally wake up and can’t sleep any more. If I sleep in, I feel tired, if I don’t sleep until now, I feel tired. If I am interrupted through screaming at night, I am tired. Little Bun is up with me.

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

8:08 a.m. — Little Bun runs out and announces (after doing some pages): MOMMY. I think you’d be a shark, because you like seafood. I think I could be a good shark too. I also love seafood.

Then he runs back in.

9:25 a.m. — I get new headphones after my old ones basically conk out and the battery no longer lasts beyond 15 minutes. I do about 25 minutes of research after I got suggestions from everyone around and narrowed it down to Apple AirPods Pro as their suggestion (but I cannot handle silicone inserted into my ears, blocking out airflow), and this brand called JABRA.

I also ask others who work from home as much as I do on calls, what they use or what their company bought them, and it turns out that Jabra is the industry standard for work from home headsets. I listen to a bunch of videos, read reviews, and end up picking up the Jabra Evolve2 75 headset rather than the latest one (they came out with an 85) because the microphone quality is far better on the 75 than the 85, and the whole point is that other people hear me and don’t have to call me AGAIN to clarify things.

It checks off everything on my list, more or less:

  • Nothing inserted into my ears to block airflow – they are ON EAR cups, but with double foam, so your ear “sinks” in. I prefer OVER THE EAR cups, but those are in the Jabra 85s and frankly, I am taking microphone quality over this.
  • They have a microphone boom (that sticky out piece thing for talking), which I think is a necessity for super clear calls. It also folds back up into the headset to ‘mute’ you and you can use them like regular headphones
  • They’re wireless with Bluetooth with a long battery life – over 50 hours
  • They’re rechargeable – most of them are these days but honestly, you never know
  • They’re able to turn the ANC (Active noise cancelling) feature on and off. Frankly, I dislike ANC because it creates a sort of silent buzz that gives me a headache, HOWEVER… the ANC on the videos has been phenomenal, you can even run a blender and not hear it in the background as you are speaking. I needed an option to let me turn it on and off – I will leave it off when it isn’t noisy around me, and turn it on when it is and people (both big and tiny) are excitedly making pizza or food behind me.

They’re not cheap however, but this is for work, and I am okay with that. I only feel stupid I did not do MORE research when I first got some headphones and went straight for these instead of buying a crappy plug-in pair, and then the ones recommended by an IT guy at work that he bought, but in the end, were half the price of these and have already started to die out. $403.87

12:22 p.m. — Lunch time.

1:01 p.m. — Down for his Quiet Time / Nap. I can hear him in the bedroom.

2:51 p.m. — Up from his nap, he bounces out of the bedroom and tells me – I HEARD you on the phone!

3:40 p.m. — He finishes his ‘adventure’ schooling with Daddy, where they visit different parts of the world, practice writing and speaking in French, and math drills (he is getting very good at multiplication now, just a few more months and I think he will be much quicker).

5:12 p.m. — Dinner, and dishes –  Little Bun is wiping down cutlery and then we run off to play a game of Clue (he has been obsessed lately). I bought this vintage-style set that sits nicely on the bookshelf (space saving), and I know it is meant for 3 players and up, but Little Bun and I play with 2 and it is fine. He is learning strategies on how to figure out who it is.

6:00 p.m. — After ONE game of Clue, I have to check pages now. I had let about 3 months of pages pass me by without checking them, so I finally made it a point to check them all, and it has been a few hours a night until they are all checked and corrected. I am flipping through the pages trying to find what to do and Little Bun says very cutely: Oh wait Mommy, I have to scroll to page 20.

SCROLL.

He said to SCROLL to a page, as they are all so used to apps and screens now.

Oh these Gen Z kids…. (he’s Gen Z right?)

7:56 p.m. — Little Bun: Mommy? I think you need to take a break from this.

He’s not wrong. I stop checking his math pages and we read storybooks to the Stuffies instead.

8:54 p.m. — Bedtime routine, and then we go to bed. Our bedtime routine now includes doing a Wordle with Daddy. Little Bun managed to get MOURN (!!!!), but didn’t know what the word meant, he just knew it was A word… and we did quite well all around.

Spent: $403.87

DAY FOUR

??:?? — I wake up with Little Bun sprawled on top of me, snuggling me awake.

7:48 a.m. — I log in to work. We slept in today. Our free trial of 1 week for Adobe Lightroom ends, so Little Bun asks me to purchase it. I buy the yearly subscription for him, as he seems very interested in learning the app and how to edit photos. $77.76

8:33 a.m. — He heads out for his vaccination (second dose) which unfortunately is not as effective for children aged 11 or younger, but nevertheless…

8:51 a.m. — He comes home excited – MOMMY. I got my shot, it was fine like the last time, and I GOT TWO GLITTER STICKERS!!!! THEY WERE SO SHINY!!!!! Then Daddy and I went to the grocery store, and we got some avocados and two bottles.

Me: Two bottles? Of what? Water? Milk?

Little Bun: No….. Wine.

Me: Oh.

12:22 p.m. — Lunch time.

12:57 p.m. — Down for his Quiet Time / Nap.

2:51 p.m. — Up from his nap, he runs out of the bedroom and does his French with his father, along with math drills and “adventures” with YouTube videos online.

4:40 p.m. — He grabs the iPad and runs off after it is all done. All week, he has been taking photos all around the house and then using Adobe Lightroom app to edit them. He has been watching videos and teaching himself how to do things, or just experimenting, like I did when I was a child when I got anything new I was interested in.

5:12 p.m. — Dinner, dishes and laundry. Little Bun is wiping down cutlery.

6:25 p.m. — We play three rounds of Clue.

8:54 p.m. — Bedtime routine, and then we go to bed.

Spent: $77.76

DAY FIVE

??:?? — I wake up crazy early and can’t go back to sleep. My mind is swimming with a lot of work questions.

5:48 a.m. — I log in and brain dump my thoughts that kept me up from last night, and then log in and start blogging because I am also letting the blog go on the wayside from work affairs.

6:30 a.m. — I log off and start working. I have an early call.

8:00 a.m. — More calls. On a call, my manager suggests that we have a daily status call for each of our projects. Is she insane? If we have calls for every project, we are never going to get any work done, seeing as we each juggle 4-5 each, and calls are half an hour each. That would suck up 2-3 hours of my time ON A DAILY BASIS for nothing at all. I prefer weekly calls, even twice-a-week calls, and if there is anything urgent, we can connect ad hoc.

Some people are really out to lunch in terms of working efficiently. In fact, I think most status calls, unless in a state of emergency, are useless. We are all professionals who have jobs who know what has to get done, and we will book calls or say something if it gets too crazy. Otherwise, constant status calls and checking up and sometimes I have 3 status calls for the same nonsense in one day, is exhausting and unproductive.

12:22 p.m. — Lunch time.

12:55 p.m. — Down for his Quiet Time / Nap.

2:51 p.m. — Up from his nap, he runs out of the bedroom to start his schooling with his father.

3:33 p.m. — He is doing French work with Daddy and I don’t know what happens but I am in the middle of a work call and Little Bun bursts into tears. I grab him into my arms, he sits on my lap sobbing as I am on a call. On mute of course. Just holding him seems to help, he calms down, and then he helps me with my work after I log off my call. I have him read out numbers to me, and after about 30 minutes he is calm. Then I whisper: “How about going back and trying French again? I know it’s frustrating. Remember? Open heart. Open heart to learning, like what we talked about?

We had had a discussion a while back when he had a meltdown during French. He was learning something or not pronouncing it right and it was frustrating him. I explained how everyone gets frustrated when they’re learning something and his mother tongue is English, plus we talk and do EVERYTHING together in the family in English, so English comes super easily to him. I tell him how I got frustrated (and still do) while speaking French, and how if I don’t try, then I will never learn but this is what learning is. For everyone. Then we take a break, and we get back to it.

My partner is also realizing he cannot push him so hard so early. Sometimes learning is difficult and he has to be given a break, or something. It cannot be all the time, a huge wave of work at once.

4:12 p.m. — He watches Mr. Bean with his father before our delicious “feast” of a dinner (as he calls it, because it is a different dinner, a special one from weeknight ones).

5:12 p.m. — Dinner time. A feast of confit chicken gizzards, asparagus, and avocado with homemade bread (he loves gizzards and asparagus).

6:47 p.m. — Then we play a game of Clue after he wipes down the cutlery, as well. This time, I make a WRONG accusation (oops) and I end up losing to Little Bun.

8:01 p.m. — Little Bun also does night schooling with his father – they watch one French video from France where the teacher speaks, and that’s about half an hour. Sometimes it goes well, other times it seems like he doesn’t pay attention or gets distracted, and he gets scolded. Sigh.

8:54 p.m. — Bedtime routine, and then we go to bed. We are reading a Good Night story with different languages at the back of the book, and I pretend to make the Stuffies “learn” a new language, and screw it up. Instead of saying the words correctly like – Buona notte – I make them say – BUUUUUU NA NOT! … and he loves it. Then he helps correct them, and encourages them when they do well.

Spent: $0

DAY SIX

??:?? — OKAY this is TOO early.

4:46 a.m. — Yep. He woke me up at 4:46 on a WEEKEND. Oh well. I sit there and watch mindless videos, while Little Bun, is teaching himself Adobe Lightroom.

7:50 a.m. — Out of the blue he tells me – I do not ever want to be an A+ student because it is the C students who become the MOST successful!

Alarmed, I ask him what he is talking about. Then I realize he is referring to a FEW successful people who started businesses, took risks, and were indeed, C students.

We launch into a discussion about how grades matter to open up options. Those with higher grades get a higher chance to do more jobs around them, versus those who have lower grades, that may be limited to more minimum wage jobs in the future. I also explain this is not always true, obviously. Sometimes they refuse to do minimum wage jobs, and start their own companies then become successful, but these are a FEW people who achieve this because 90% of businesses fail.

I explain how we were both very good students in school and how I was very good in school but also started my own company in school when I was a teenager.

I tell him grades matter but not so much once you’re out of school. They only matter to get you into the programs and schools you want, then they do not matter as much in real life or at work once you start. And you can start a business at any time, not just if you are a C student.

I also beg him to not be so stressed about grades, and I only want him to focus on learning, with the end result being that he understands the material, not that he feels graded in any way.

He mulls it over and tells me he thinks he is a B student. I tell him it is likely because he does not go a bit slower in his answers, and when he rushes, he makes mistakes that could be avoided to have him get all of his answers 100%, which would mean he is an A+ student. He just needs to take more time, as he already works very hard. Just to go slower, and pause more. 🙂

(All my mornings sometimes turn out to be pretty long lectures / discussions like this.)

12:22 p.m. — Lunch time. This time with fries, his father makes special French Fries on the weekend. We had a talk with the coordinator for homeschooling over Zoom and Little Bun cited ‘EATING FRENCH FRIES’ as being a hobby of his, on the weekend, when prompted. He was rather disappointed the person did not talk to him directly more, and it was more talking to me about the schooling program and curriculum. He felt sad because he wanted to read to them, do math drills with them and he was eager to show how well he had advanced.

This is our French Fries (my plate). I put Siracha sauce on them.

I tell him – Never mind. Not all coordinators are interested in this because some are, and some are not.

The last coordinator for last year in Grade One, was very keen to hear him do math and english, like in a test, and he loved it.

12:55 p.m. — Down for his Quiet Time / Nap. And I sit and eat a cinnamon ‘coffee’ (it has no coffee) cake in the bedroom.

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

3:16 p.m. — We play a few rounds of Clue immediately. He is really enjoying this game, and all children enjoy repetition, even in books and songs, to the point where parents want to burn said-repeated-item, or make it disappear into the void.

6:56 p.m. — Another lovely dinner, dishes and laundry. Little Bun is wiping down cutlery. I put it all away and clean the kitchen because I dislike waking up to a dirty kitchen I have to clean, later in the morning.

7:25 p.m. — More Clue.

8:54 p.m. — Bedtime routine, and then we go to bed.

Spent: $0

DAY SEVEN

??:?? — I wake up before Little Bun again.

5:48 a.m. — I log in and start blogging. Tomorrow it’s back to work.

7:50 a.m. — I am reviewing my finances, and making sure I have money where I should. I prepay all my taxes (by law), and though they say this is to “help” us not forget to pay taxes, I find it annoying. I’d rather not prepay my taxes and just have a tax bill at the end of the year that I will write a full amount for. Otherwise, I am making extra entries in my books to record prepaid amounts (debit/credit), and accounting for all of it. It just seems inefficient, frankly.

8:08 a.m. — A few games of Clue, and then we go through my closet as I pick out old sweaters and tops to use as ‘house’ sweaters and clothing. I have been picking up a few secondhand cashmere items, so I can now relegate the ones starting to fray (and we are mending) to housewear.

12:22 p.m. — Lunch time.

1:05 p.m. — Down for his Quiet Time / Nap.

2:51 p.m. — Up from his nap, he comes out of the bedroom and squeals: WHEEEEEEE!!!!

3:40 p.m. — We head out tobogganing. There are a LOT of kids out today, as it is March Break, so we end up doing a few rounds, then heading home. Little Bun was getting very upset watching them crash into each other, he would scream a few times in terror, seeing them smash into each other.

He was also the only one wearing a helmet whereas everyone else was not, but I think if you go off on a wrong angle, and smash your head down on an icy spot or a big chunk, it would be disastrous. I would rather err on the safe side. And I suppose we will have to teach him that it may look “silly” and he may be made fun of for doing so, but his life and his health is at stake versus looks. This will be a hard lesson to learn, even adults are into ‘image’ and not substance.

5:12 p.m. — Dinner, dishes and laundry. Little Bun is wiping down cutlery.

6:25 p.m. — MORE Clue.

Little Bun: MOMMY! Know how I knew it was Professor Plum with the knife in the Lounge? I checked to see if you had the knife, AND INDEED you did not, so I knew it was the weapon!

INDEED.

This child is using “INDEED”. Sometimes he amazes me, and it is all these little words that make me surprised and delighted. He must have picked it up from the Roald Dahl books he has been reading. For some reason I thought the books were trickier than they were, but he finds them pretty easy. Maybe he is ready for Harry Potter.

8:54 p.m. — He decides to make a Stuffie Zodiac calendar (was something he saw in his work book), and he creates little icons for each “year”

  • Heart – He loves hearts and rainbows
  • Hoopie (it’s a sock that he wrapped around and made a robot called – Hoopie – out of, which he uses as a “videorecorder” to record things the Stuffies do)
  • Pillow Baby – All things are babies. Pillows included.
  • Stuffies, etc

8:54 p.m. — Bedtime routine, and then we go to bed.

Spent: $0

———-

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

Post a comment

Your email address will not be published.