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How much is mom worth?

How much is mom worth?

Well, around $65,000 give or take, according to the 2015 Mother’s Day Index. 
That's 9.1 percent above the $59,862 mom's work “earned” in 2013. Though if you were counting the "value" of my work, it would be $309 less than that, as I do NOT give people in my family haircuts (one of the mommy services added in the task chart). I learned my lesson on giving my loved ones a trim the hard way, i.e. bad bangs and a mullet. 
The Mother’s Day Index uses wage data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics in order to estimate the financial value of a mother’s contributions to her household.
“Earnings for many of the tasks mothers are associated with, such as event planning and decorating the home, continue to grow and elevate Mom’s overall value,” said Penny Gusner, consumer analyst for “Only a few of the jobs mothers take on at home had their wages decrease this past year.” 
-- Martha
May 04, 2015 10:17 pm(0)
Soda Straw Rocket

Soda Straw Rocket

This project is right up Sam's alley. It involves shooting AND spitting. The perfect combo for any little boy.

Okay, you aren't REALLY supposed to be spitting.
All you need is:
papermarkers, crayons, or whatever else you choose to decorate the rockets withglueclear tapeone plastic straw

Visit Kids Science Challenge for complete instructions, as well as a rocket template.

-- Martha
May 04, 2015 12:00 am(0)

Did I smell like bacon or something?

It wasn't a full moon. 

Maybe it was spring fever.

Both my work dog and my home dog were crazy needy on the same day last week.
They couldn't be let out or given treats enough and both pestered me every time I sat down.
It got to the point where I closed myself in my bedroom in the evening. And told my boys to stop letting Alice in to me just because she was whining outside the door.
May 03, 2015 12:00 am(0)
Up all night

Up all night

The people who plan prom activities need to keep us poor parents in mind. We got as little sleep as the attendees did -- and are still trying to catch up.

After a busy Saturday morning with other activities, our prom activities started at around 3 p.m. (And believe me I know for girls, the preparation started much earlier in the day.)
We picked up flowers and my son's girlfriend, then scouted out locations for "official" prom photos. The typical venues -- Hovey Pond and City Park -- were ridiculously crowded, so we picked some other spots around Glens Falls.
Then it was time to head to the high school for Grand March. This event allows family and friends to see the attendees cross the stage and show off for photos, so the actual prom isn't overrun by spectators.
An hour later, we were driving up to Great Escape Lodge for the big event. Since we were early (and they were starving), we stopped for snacks on the way.
Dad and I played tag team drivers for the rest of the night. He went to bed early, knowing he'd have to be up before the sun.
I picked the partiers up at 11 p.m., drove them home to change and back to the high school for the after-prom party.
Despite the paperwork saying that would be done at 4am, it didn't end until nearly 5:30. Dad could've gotten another hour of sleep!
Glad they had a really good time, but we are glad a weekend like that doesn't happen often.
May 02, 2015 12:00 am(0)
New meaning for dog fleece

New meaning for dog fleece

Despite having a really busy schedule (read my prom post from yesterday), I convinced my husband and the youngest boy to accompany me on the Washington County Fiber Tour last Saturday.

It was fun to visit and photograph the fiber mill as well as cashmere goats, alpacas and sheep at three different farms, but I especially loved these two
They guarded the sheep at Hartshorn Ridge in Greenwich.
They were more willing to be petted than the actual livestock.
They had enough fur it probably could be spun into yarn too.
May 02, 2015 12:00 am(0)
Hair today, gone tomorrow

Hair today, gone tomorrow

My boys, all but the long-haired one, have moved on from salon haircuts to an actual barber shop.

The oldest one went to Rad Razors at the corner of South and Broad in Glens Falls last summer, and when his next youngest brother wanted something special done for the prom, I suggested we go there.
The atmosphere in a barber shop is so sedate compared to the gossipy chatter of a mostly female salon.
It might be because there was a lady (me) present, but there was very little talking to begin with. 
The only conversation that occurred was about celebrity hairstyles, compete with looking for pictures on mobile devices.
And despite just getting his hair cut (and dyed blue), the youngest wants to go back. His friend was there while we were, getting a star shaved into the side of his head.
May 01, 2015 10:30 am(0)

The power of Facebook

Some people don't pay attention to the details when something shows up on their Facebook newsfeed.

Recently, my husband and I kept getting anniversary well wishes, but we got married in September. It took awhile to figure out what was going on.
One friend, after looking through my photo album, liked a September 2011 post of mine that showed our wedding photo celebrating our 19th anniversary.
That led to it being viewed by others, who thought they were being kind by saying "Happy Anniversary" to us. And this led to more and more people seeing it.
It was actually our oldest son's 21st birthday that day and that led to some people doing the math.
"Wow, I didn't know you weren't married when he was born."
April 30, 2015 1:41 pm(0)
On the hunt for a metal detector

On the hunt for a metal detector

As mentioned before, Sam loves finding change
For his 8th birthday, we had the perfect gift idea -- a metal detector.
I envisioned hours of beach combing.
Searching the woods for hidden treasure.
Quite possibly unearthing the Holy Grail.
Instead I discovered frustration trying to find coins I buried myself under a few blades of grass in the front yard. True, it is not the top-of-the-line model. What do you expect for a $100? Well, I'll tell you what. I'd at least expect it to go "beep-beep" when I am standing over a spot I know I deposited a coin!
Sam was thrilled either way. He was just happy to be in the yard looking for change.
I am going to experiment with the detector one more day. If I can't get it to show me some results, I am going to return it and put the money towards eventually getting a better one.
Anyone have any metal detector advice? This is the one we bought.
-- Martha
April 30, 2015 7:03 am(0)
Been there, done that, bought the gift store T-shirt

Been there, done that, bought the gift store T-shirt

"Hurry, the timer is running," I said to Sam.

I had taken him and two of his friends to the Skyzone trampoline park in Albany on Saturday.

"You have an hour and a half to jump! Go!" I said, peeling off Sam's coat ... revealing a BARE CHEST UNDERNEATH.

"WHAT!? Where is your shirt?"

Cue Sam's look of confusion over his mother's confusion over his deciding for whatever reason to wear coat sans shirt on this of all days.

"I didn't wear one."

-- Martha

April 29, 2015 11:55 am(0)
Tiny House Makeover, part 1

Tiny House Makeover, part 1

Yard work. House cleaning. Laundry. There was about a hundred other things we could be doing on Saturday. But sometimes you've got to make a non-priority the priority.
"Today is all about fixing your playhouse," I said to Lily. "The whole family is going to work on it!"
By "whole family" I meant me, hubby and my father. Sam went off to play in the woods, Abby crawled into some dark corner of our home, while Lily went inside the playhouse to monitor the work being done in her honor.
The playhouse used to belong to Sam, but had sat unloved and in disrepair for the last year. Giving it a makeover was Lily's birthday gift.

Sections of old siding were replaced. Roof shingles were put on, covering black paper. A window we had kicking around the garage was installed. Purple and pink exterior paint purchased. Inside, everything was taken out, replaced by a tiny antique desk I got for $8 from a thrift store and a stool I painted purple, a shelf and a tiny rug.

She was thrilled and is happy to show off her playhouse to everyone.

But she does have one small request: "Everyone has to take off their shoes before they come inside."
-- Martha
PS -- Sam doesn't seem to be put out that his old playhouse has become princess-ified. He's moved on. "Hey Mom, do you know what I want for my birthday?"

"What buddy?"

"A tree house!"

Did I mention his birthday is Wednesday?

What have I started?
April 28, 2015 12:56 pm(0)

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