August 6

       It's been a busy week.  I've had to have Megan at Vacation Bible School by 9:30 each morning.  With the church being 30-40 minutes away we have to leave a good bit before hand.  It's also meant that I have had to find somewhere to go and something to occupy me until it's time to pick her up at noon.  Monday and Tuesday I went to Barnes & Noble to sit in the coffee shop and browse.

Matt went along on Monday and we had a nice morning.  Wednesday, Matt was with me again and we went to Twin Lakes.  I sat and read while he tried his luck at fishing.  Yesterday I went to the mall and checked out the new Christian book store.  It's a lot like Barnes & Noble with comfy leather couches for reading and a cafe.  Today, Matt wants to do some back to school shopping with his paycheck.  It's been kind of fun spending all that time in book stores, but I will be glad when today is over and I can get back to a normal schedule.  I don't feel like I've accomplished much at all this week.

       Tim and I have recommitted ourselves to trying to live more simply and frugally......again.  We sat down the other night and made a list of things that absolutely, positively have to be done, such as:  paying off the car we're buying from Mom, install new duct work (something has absolutely shredded what we have now),  buy a second car, buy a freezer, pay for a side of beef, finish the front porch, pay for next year's vacation house rental, and save up for Matt's graduation party and college tuition.  We also made a list of wants:  new windows (the old ones are anything but airtight), laminate flooring in the kitchen and livingroom, a concrete driveway, new sofa.  It's a lot!  So, step one is we cut back where we can and we do things as inexpensively as we can.  Step two is more income.  Tim is going to work a good bit of overtime, not that he doesn't always, but more so now that we have college tuition staring us in the face.  I will be going back to work in a couple of weeks so will have my regular paychecks again rather than just my piddly little unemployment checks.  I am also looking for ways to make more money.  I bought two books the other day.  One is a beginners guide to Ebay.  I've heard so much about selling on there that I thought maybe I could try it.  Has anyone done any selling on there and had success?  The other book is a guide to homebased businesses for women.  I don't want to give up driving the bus and a steady paycheck, but it sure would be nice to find something I could do in between my morning and afternoon runs.  Does anyone know of anything or have any suggestions?  With this being Matt's senior year and Megan still having problems with school (and any kind of structure in general) I'd like to keep my evenings and weekends free to be there for them.

       I've been going through all our stuff, collecting things to sell at a garage sale next weekend.  I've wanted to do it all summer with the ladies from work, but it looks like they're all backing out on me, so it's probably just going to be us and my mom selling stuff.  We're going to start setting up tables and stuff tomorrow so we can set the stuff out as we price it then next Friday all we'll have to do is open the garage door.  Derry is having its Great Garage Sale today and tomorrow.  Mom said she heard there were over 100 participants signed up this year.  My friend, Helen, wanted me to go with her today, but I have to take Megan to VBS and I don't really have money until Tim gets home with his paycheck.  I'm debating about going for a while tomorrow.  Tim probably wouldn't go, but the kids love garage saling.  Both are good bargain hunters.  I don't want to get sucked into buying something I don't really need just because it's a good deal, but on the other hand I might find something we do need.  Megan is great at finding new and nearly new namebrand clothes at sales and Matt gets a lot of his sporting goods and entertainment supplies.  Guess I'll just wait and see what tomorrow brings weather, time and money-wise.

Speaking of weather, it's beginning to feel a lot like fall around here.  We're still getting a real hot day here and there, but for the most part, the days are a little cooler (only 68 for a predicted high today) and the nights are definitely cooler.  It got down to 50 last night!  For the last week or so when I let the dogs out at night the air has had that autumn smell to it.  We've also had plenty of rain.  I think maybe this summer was even wetter that last year.  Maybe not quite as many rainy days, but heavier rains when we got it.  I heard somewhere that we are already at the rain level we were at in November of last year.  No wonder the back yard remains a perpetual swamp.  Tim's brought home a bunch of pipe and one of these days will put in a drainage system.  We've got no choice.  The yard is a mess and I don't like the water lying around because of the skeeters.  We know there is West Nile in the area.

This week coming up is my last to be in my 30's.  I turn 40 on August 15.  Mom turns 60 the same day.  It's a year of big birthdays for us as Megan just turned 12 and Matt will be 18 in October.  Old enough to vote in his first presidential election......and to register for the draft.

Well, off to get the kids up and moving so we can be on time today.  Hope you are enjoying these final weeks of summer.

Carpe diem!