If/when I get to work part-time next year, I look forward to being able to spread out chores and errands a bit more throughout the week rather than have to do it all on Saturday. During the work week, the last thing I feel like doing/have time to do is vacuum, do laundry, clean the kitchen floor, etc. That's especially true now that Allen is working, too. On the days that he is home with Ruby, he does do chores and errands, but lately Ruby's been going through a very clingy phase: she just wants to be held all the time and cries when she's put down. They've noticed it at daycare, too. She's getting her top two teeth in right now, so maybe that has something to do with it. She's fun to snuggle, but it also makes it hard to do much of anything. If I try to type with her in my lap, she's got her hands all over everything in a surprisingly wide radius, and FAST! And although we "babyproofed" our apartment considerably, she still can find things to put in her mouth that she shouldn't.
Example: carpet fibers that the cats pull up while they are racing up and down the stairs and scratching the carpet. She is FASCINATED by them. I was reading in a baby development book that at around this age their eyesight becomes very good, and they can see little things from a distance. That is most certainly true: she can see little carpet fibers (which are only about the size of a bean) and goes straight for them. So vacuuming the stair area is important...and annoying! We have a little Dirt Devil type of vacuum meant for that, but stairs are just annoying to vacuum no matter what. Today we made a little game of it. She climbed up each stair and picked up carpet fibers, and I took them out of her hand and fed them into the vacuum. She seem vaguely amused and vaguely bothered that I was taking her precious "snacks." She's gotten them into her mouth before, and they make her gag. Not exactly digestible stuff. She's also incredibly fast. She makes a beeline for stairs; it's as if she knows exactly what she should not be doing and goes to do it. I was trying to vacuum Toby's room for his arrival home tomorrow (as if he'll even really notice it), and she was getting into everything; redirection proved difficult because wherever I put her, there was some other forbidden fruit! TV remote, xbox, carpet fibers, laundry detergent bottle, outlet, disgusting baseboard heater...but when I put her in her room, that was a screamfest. I definitely see the will in her coming out. I think we've seen a bona fide temper tantrum from her. I don't remember what caused it...probably me trying to change her diaper (the nerve!) Everyone (mostly strangers in grocery stores or parents of students) was telling me, "Oh, enjoy the days before she can crawl. Those are the last few days of your sanity. After that, she'll be getting into everything, and that's the end of that." It's true that I now have the reaction, "Wait, it is WAY too quiet in there...what is she doing?" and run into the living room. Sometimes she's doing something very innocuous, like playing with an actual toy. Other times, she's already on the third step of the stairs plucking out carpet fibers because I hadn't put the gate up yet.
But right now, she's napping. After cleaning (which turned into a longer session than I had planned), we went to the Gleaner store. The Gleaner store, for those who don't know (which is probably almost everyone reading this), is part of the Gleaner warehouse. Gleaners is an organization we joined about a year ago. It's a food assistance program. The way it works is that local grocery stores (Fred Meyer and Safeway, chiefly) gives Gleaners their overstock, "distressed" items, expired things, or its produce that is on its way to being bad...or already is bad. This gets brought to the warehouse, where it is sorted and distributed to dozens of "teams" which are arranged geographically. Team captains and team volunteers bring their share to their house and usually twice a week there is a food pick up, where everyone on the team takes their subdivided share of the team's share. It's a lot of food. The bad thing about it is that you can't choose what you get. If your subdivided share includes a case of moldy tomatoes, you have to take it. If you share includes a massive amount of some food you hate, you have to take that, too. Each member has to have an "adoptee", someone who is elderly or disabled who gets at least a tenth of your share for free. In addition to sharing with our adoptee, we also share with some people in our apartment complex and also with Allen's mom (and her many chickens, who apparently will eat produce in almost any condition.) It's a good deal, because the Gleaner dues are only $20 a month, and you can EASILY make that up in just one food pick up. They get a lot of bread from Dave's Killer Bread, which is an awesome local breadmaker, and that stuff is $3-4.50 a loaf in a store, and we'll usually get up to three loaves a food pick up. If only we had a bigger freezer (and the space in our apartment for it).
I have digressed. Back to the Gleaner store. On the 1st and 3rd Saturdays of the month, from 9-1, this little store area of the warehouse is open, and it's nice because you can pick and choose what you want, and it's all incredibly cheap. They usually let you take as many free loaves of Dave's Killer Bread as you want, but today they had free cases of bananas. No thanks. Allen doesn't like bananas, and Ruby and I don't like them THAT much. But I took $20 cash with me and got lots of staples: beans, rice, soups, canned goods, cereal, some treats for Allen to take to work so he doesn't feel tempted to drop money at gas stations on them, dishwasher detergent, etc. Pretty sweet.
Ruby was exhausted when we got back and fell asleep...and still asleep! Enough time to put laundry in...and I should probably eat, too. But no, dear reader, giving you the play-by-play account of my chores and errands is more important than feeding myself.