Category Archives: Work

Be Careful What You Wish For

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Two weeks ago, the Hubs and I left on 4.5 day road trip down to VA and NC to spend some time with family and friends and attend a much anticipated wedding.  I was so excited about this trip- the Hubs and I love road trips, we travel well together and we were going to see a lot of people we love.  It wasn’t a the most romantic or exotic of trips, but- hey, it was time away just the two of us and we were running with it.  The trip was fantastic and we so much fun!

The only rain cloud hanging over my head was the timing of an upcoming business trip- we arrived back home late on Sunday and I had to leave for a 3 days business trip to TX 18 hours later.  Normally I love traveling for business. I work from home, so I always enjoy seeing my coworkers, eating out and sleeping uninterrupted on the company’s dime. But this time because both trips were back to back, I was less then thrilled.  This was my longest time away from my kids and I knew I was going to miss them terribly and was feeling all sorts of guilty wishing I could spend more time with them. But I sucked it up, enjoyed my time in TX and very happily arrived the airport 2 hours early for my flight home. But it wasn’t meant to be.

The flight was delayed by more then 4 hours due to bad weather in Dallas. The delay caused me to miss my connecting flight in Newark, NJ.  After some scrambling when I was in TX, I found a hotel in Newark to stay at until I could catch the next flight home in the morning.  I think the hotel, a Hilton, was nice- but considering I only spent 4.5 hours in it (4.3 of which were spent sleeping), I can’t be entirely sure.  However, motherhood and all it’s lack of sleep prepared me well and I arrived back at the airport at 6 am smelling as fresh as I could be in the same clothes I’d been wearing for 24 hours (checked luggage- with all my clothes- couldn’t leave the airport for security reasons).

After I checked into my flight, I called home.  The Hubs answered with a “If you’re calling to tell me your flight is delayed I’m going to lose it.”  Hmmm…not the greeting I expected.  Turns out the Bean was up the whole night before throwing up every hour which meant no sleep for the Hubs and the Bean.  Quite honestly, at that point, my delay seemed like God sparing me from what I hated most, so I was almost cheerful as I waited for my 8 am flight. I got myself a nice breakfast, I enjoyed my book and I savored the last hour of me-time I had before descending back into the House of Vomit.

And thank God I did.  Since I got home last Thursday, I haven’t left the house for longer then 2 hours at a time and the time I have been home I’ve had a child draped over me.  The Bean was sick Wednesday night through Saturday night.  She finally started to perk up on Sunday just in time for Scorch to catch the bug and spend all Sunday night into Monday throwing up.  People- I was the one who got up with him the first time he woke  up feeling poorly.  I didn’t realize what was coming, he didn’t realize what was coming and it was ugly.  I’m still patting myself on the back for not running out of this house in horror.  And it didn’t stop for 17 hours.  That poor kid was leveled and the Hubs and I were walking Zombies.

Thankfully we have gotten past the puking part (please God, let it be over) and we’re just into the part of the virus where Scorch has a high fever and can fall asleep anywhere. Like in the bath, like he did today.  The Bean is completely back to normal and making us all freaking crazy. I called Mary, our nanny, this morning and begged her to take the Bean somewhere- anywhere- today for a few hours before I completely lost my mind.  Beaner didn’t sleep well for whatever reason last night, which turned her in to raging psychopath all day long.  She’d rain down the wrath of avenging angels  on your head if you didn’t give her the yogurt covered pretzels exactly how she asked for him.  And if you didn’t sit on the couch next to her just right? May heaven help you, because she had no pity for your stupidity and lack of mind reading abilities.

So, I wished for more time with my kids and I got it.  It’s just not exactly how I pictured it and frankly all of us are too tired, too ill or too sick of each other to enjoy much of it.

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Love Thursday: 9 to 5

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During October of my senior year of college, the Hubs got a job in Washington, DC, about 5 hours from home.  I busted my butt and did everything in my power to graduate a semester early so I could move down there 3 months later in January.  I was lucky- I immediately lined up a few interviews and had accepted a job I thought would be perfect before I moved.

Instead, it was a nightmare.

The job was completely different then the one I was originally hired to do.  It went from being 5% travel to being 100% travel- I spent a total of 9 weeks gone from home with only one weekend back in DC with the Hubs in our new home.  The powers that be noticed how miserable I was and transferred me back to the main office in DC.  That was even worse- I became a very rich bitter woman’s secretary and was berated and belittled on a daily basis. The rest of the staff wasn’t any better and I was clearly the office joke.  Things were so bad that I would spend most of my Sunday’s crying because I had to go back to work the next day.

Needless to say, I applied to any job I possibly could to get me out of that hellhole.  I must have sent out close to 75 resumes when my current Big Company called me for an interview.  After 7 of the longest months of my life, I started a new job.

That was 11 years ago and I can honestly say that 90% of the time, I enjoy my job and that is due in large part to the people I work with.  People who are whip smart and funny and engaging and dedicated.  People who have made the best out of this crappy economy and all the impacts it’s had on our working environment. People who keep doing the best job they can despite shrinking resources, budgets and headcount.  People who I’m happy to call my friends after working together for so long.

Today, some of those people stopped working for Big Company and I couldn’t be more sorry to see them go.  Not only is their absence a blow to the company, it’s going to make my time at work so much less fun.  Kris, Michele & Rob- it’s been a privilege and a pleasure spending the last 5+ years working with each of you! Best wishes!

Home Sweet Home

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So, my 36 hour trip to NYC turned into a 52 hour one thanks to Mother Nature and the never ending snow.  And honestly, I’m so glad that it did.

I woke up Wednesday morning with the news of school closing and weather reports telling me that my hometown was getting anywhere from 12-16 inches of snow.  I hemmed and hawed about what to do.  Do I keep my original flight and hope for the best? Do I rearrange my trip to stay another night and fly home when the weather clears? The one thing I didn’t want to do was get stuck in the airport for hours a time, so after a few quick conversations with the Hubs I decided to play it safe and stay one more night.

Best. Decision Ever.

One of my coworkers, a gentleman I’ve had the privilege of working with for many years, was staying as well so we decided after work on Wednesday to make the most of our grownup time in the city. He’s got three kids of his own, so I think we were a little giddy at the thought of doing things that we could never dream of doing with our little ones.  Like making a last minute decision to see a Broadway play.  We somehow got 5th row tickets to Jersey Boys . I really had no idea what to expect from a play about Frankie Valli and the Four Season- the music was before my time although I obviously knew some of it.  My expectations were exceeded 10 fold.  I was blown away by how great the play was- it was impossible to leave without smiling ear to ear (and yes, I knew every single song- thanks, Dad!).

Later that night we went out to dinner to The Red Cat with some colleagues and had a superb meal.  I was so thrilled to have a meal in a restaurant that doesn’t hand out crayons when you walk in.  A meal that didn’t include any Mac & Cheese or chocolate milk.  A meal where all the adults could talk about grown up things and where I didn’t have to take anyone to the bathroom 5 times and end up eating cold food.  Quite honestly, the food could have sucked (it didn’t), and I wouldn’t have cared a bit thanks to the atmosphere and company.

This morning, I caught the first flight home which happened to be at 10:30 am.  I got to the airport early enough to be able to have a hot breakfast while reading my book; enjoying my last few hours of peace and quiet.  Don’t get me wrong- I missed the Hubs and the kids, but I relished every minute of my time away.

As I was pulling in the driveway, the Hubs called.  “By the way, I forgot to tell you that Beaner has a touch of a stomach bug. Oh, and the dog seems to as well.  She barely made it out the door this morning before letting loose. And I think I heard the cat throwing up in the family room as I was walking out the door.”  He’s a smart man, the Hubs. Had he delivered all that news while I was still in NYC, I might not have come home.

 

Mixed Feelings

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I’m leaving tomorrow for a quick business trip.  I fly out at 6 am tomorrow morning and land back home at 6 pm Wednesday night- so I’m gone a grand total of 36 hours total.

Part of me wants to do my best Braveheart impression and scream “Freeeeeeedom!!” as I pack my bag.  I get to meet with an old friend for breakfast tomorrow, travel with two of my favorite coworkers and attend meetings with some interesting companies doing some great things.  Add in at least one or two great meals out and a night in a hotel and I am one happy girl.

That is, until my 2 year old asks me when I’m coming home.  I tell her I’m going on a quick trip and I’ll be back when she wakes up in 2 days.  “You promise, Mommy?”  And that, right then, is when the arrow goes right through my heart.  I realize in the grand scheme of things a quick 36 hour business trip is not the end of the world, but it’s a big thing when you’re little.  For better or worse, my kids are used to the Hubs traveling for work, but they aren’t used to me being gone.  I keep telling myself it’ll be good for all three of them- the Hubs, Scorch and Bean- to figure out things without me for a few days. The Hubs can try his hand at getting the kids ready to go to school on his own, deal with the fun that is swimming lessons solo and wrestle the kids to bed two nights by himself and the kids will be thrilled with all this attention.

Me? I’ll be loving life in the Big City all the while counting down the hours till I’m home.

Missing Them

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From day 1, I knew I wasn’t stay at home mom material.  Quite frankly, staying home with my kids full time is much harder then my day job!

I have had the luxury of working from my home for a Big Company for the past 8+ years. Pre-kids I had a nice little office set up in one of our spare bedrooms- big L-shaped desk, bookshelves, awards.  Now each of those spare bedrooms is filled with a kid so I work out of a small hutch in our family room.  It’s not glamorous, but it allows me to get my job done each day.

When I was pregnant with Scorch, we researched a variety of day care options. After looking at a few places, we realized how silly it was to send Scorch out of the house while I was here so we hired Mary, our nanny. Since then, I’ve had the pleasure (most of the time) of being able to work with my kids one floor up from me. I can love on them any time I want. I give them kisses when they leave the house and I greet them at the door when they get home. In the summer I can take my lunch outside with them or take a break between meetings to stick my feet in the kiddie pool while they play.  In short, it’s the perfect set up!

Today I took the day off from work and was out of the house all day long.  On my drive home, I realized just how much I missed those little buggers.  Then I realized how much more I was going to miss them next year when they are both in school full time.

Anyone know of a way to freeze time? Because today, I’m all for that!