Thursday, April 19, 2007

Dispatch While Bouncing

OK, for once I am not breastfeeding and have the use of both hands. I am however bouncing maniacally on an exercise ball with Filbertine on my lap to ease the tummy pain brought on by my consumption of a handful of M&Ms this afternoon. She seems to have been experiencing less spitting up and tummy pain in recent days so I, never happy unless somebody is crying, have slipped in more and more formerly verboten treats. A morning cup of coffee with rice milk went down ok yesterday, so today I tried a cup of coffee with real milk. And the M&Ms this afternoon. And now my sweatshirt sleeves are dotted with her own brand of clotted cream. I went too far!!

I did a lot of Mommy-type things in the last couple of days, and spent only a few hours on the phone and email with our agent, the plumber, the sewer guy (that's a new cast member in our drama) and various mortgage providers. Instead I talked to preschool providers, my children and my parents, all of whom I like better than the people in the previous sentence. Oh, except our agent. I like her way better than anyone. Am covering my baby's ears while I type that so she doesn't get jealous.

Anyway! The mommythings: Went to the park and chased a Frisbee with Nutmeg. Shopped at Target and prepared various artifacts for the birthday party she's having Sunday with the children of my cousins and friends. Nutmeg is a big participant in preparing for this year's party, which makes it even more fun than her last two birthday parties. We painted her pinata together this afternoon, and we put little ballerina stickers on the glossy white lunch bags in which the kids will receive their rainbow goldfish, their sandwiches, grapes, and veggies with dip.

And yesterday I visited the expensive preschool. It's not so expensive by Montessori standards -- it's around $5k for 9 months, 5 days a week, while another in OP is $9k for just 3 days a week and KMommy just called me today to say she has an educational crush on a Montessori school out in SF that charges FIFTEEN THOUSAND DOLLARS A YEAR. But yes, expensive for us. I liked it though. They have the mixed age classroom which I think would be very good for a smarty like Nutmeg. I think Montessori's emphasis on independence is a boon to any parent because I would love my kid to neatly put away each project when she's finished the way the kids did in this classroom. I also liked that it wasn't a purist Montessori school like the one we toured in SF which said they would never allow parents to set foot in the classroom because we are not trained in THE METHOD.

We'll see. If only we hadn't spawned this second sponger, er, child, I'd be able to work part-time while she's at school and hopefully more than pay for the tuition. Sure, I may be able to get some freelancing in if Fil naps while Nutmeg's at school, but I'm not under any big illusions. Anyway, our other options at this late date look like a language and music school that also has a Spanish immersion preschool, and takes enrollment less far in advance, the OP park system, and the YMCA preschool. All sound a little low rent. Does that matter? Well, I'm hoping they will return my calls so I can see about observing a class and I'll see.

Oh, and for you junkies, here's the real estate update: We're in almost a lull right now while we wait for a plumber to check out the pipes in the house and make an estimate for what it would take to restore water pressure. We're also having a sewer company come to snake a camera through the house's sewer line to check for damage. Our landlord, who buys and sells property including elderly houses like the one we're living in right now, suggested this move and we think it is very wise. We believe we can get both these contractors in and out on Monday morning and be informed to formulate our game plan by Tuesday. We will obviously be asking the sellers for some kind of credit to deal with the plumbing issues.

Our other inspection results are all back: The radon levels are acceptable. Soil and water are at acceptable lead levels, but the bedroom windows are, as we assumed, highly toxic. Now, we budgeted for having a lead specialist replace those windows anyway, so we are not upset about these ratings. Check it out:

The Illinois Dept. of Public Health says that in a window trough, the maximum acceptable micrograms of lead per square foot is 200. The ever-caring EPA says 400. The window trough in the bedroom belonging to the seller's 3-year-old? SIX THOUSAND. The other windows were in the thousands too, but that one bedroom was particularly high.

I wish I could see the same test done on the windows here in the LeadDome. But the difference is, I'm sure these people didn't keep the bedroom window shut all summer like we did. Ah, well. I'll update you on house matters again on Monday.


Notta Wallflower said...

Jeez, preschool is so expensive! Guess H and I better start saving now. :-P

ioio said...

Lots of updates!

I'd hate to be the guy who has to view the sewer-cam video.

Carrie said...

Notta -- Not all preschools are as expensive as that, but since you're in the Bay Area, they're definitely not cheap. Here in the Chicago area there are a few that are more like $200 a month for part time, which seems reasonable to me.