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I do not like them in a box.

I mentioned in my previous entry that we’ve moved to a new house. Now I can’t decide which I dislike more: packing or unpacking.

We’d hired movers, but only to move the furniture and other things we couldn’t move ourselves. They also agreed to take any boxes we had packed by the day of the move. So we were scurrying to keep ahead of them; I got to the point where I was practically tossing things into boxes just to get them packed up. Tossing things in boxes is an EASY way to pack. Unfortunately, it turns unpacking into a ridiculous mess.

On the other hand, methodical organized packing takes a lot longer, and I’m not sure the time-save on the other end makes up for the time spent trying to decide which items should go into a box together, especially when they’re going to a house with a different layout and different distribution of storage areas.

We decided (well, in a “we don’t have time for this” way) not to do any keep/toss/donate triage during our packing. It seemed like it would be easier to cull out the things we wanted to get rid of after we were in the new house and had a better idea of what we’d actually have space for. I still think this was the right approach, but now it’s getting harder to find space for all the things that we’ll be sending off to Goodwill! Does anyone want a couple dozen mismatched wineglasses?

(And given how infrequently we drink wine, it’s amazing how many wineglasses we had… and how many we’ve decided to keep. We might need to make a second pass through what we’ve got on the shelves. Later. Right now I just need to get all these boxes empty.)

(Maybe it would help if I emptied some wine bottles too as I go along.)

We have a huge bonus room that we’ve designated as the playroom. It’s full of toys now, and eventually they’ll be sharing space with a TV for video games. At the moment there’s no space for anything but the toys, and somehow the boys have managed to spread out everything they own almost corner to corner. We’ve let this happen because letting the kids entertain themselves means more time for us parents to unpack boxes.

Some day we’ll have everything unpacked, and if we’re lucky, it will be before the next time we move.


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Time flies.

The last time I wrote here (about my own life, I mean), I had a two-going-on-three-year old who was, in theory, learning to help me with household chores. I’d been experimenting with making different kinds of candy, to varying degrees of success, and thinking about how to recruit more women into engineering fields. That was more than two years ago. Things have changed a little bit.

That two year old just turned five last week. He just graduated from Kindergarten Prep in June, and will be starting kindergarten this fall. His school is less than a mile from the new house that we just bought, and are in the process of moving into. Oh, and he’s got a one-year-old little brother now, who’s all but walking, and who looks just like a junior version of Kiddo the Elder.

My work life has changed too. I’m in charge of two projects (well, let’s say one and a half) and I have a handful of people reporting to me – the first time in my 15-year software engineering career where I’ve had minions reports. And naturally, these changes have had an impact on our family life. So has the fact that my husband now works at the same smallish company that I do.

When I first started writing here, I was dealing with the challenges of learning how to be a parent to a young child. These days, it’s things like finding the right school districts; keeping work conversation at work rather than the dinner table; and just figuring out how to be a family of four, when the number of kids has doubled but my capacity for attention (and patience!) has not.

Oh, and figuring out how to get Kiddo the Elder to help with household chores. Still.