Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Speaking the Lingo

What if connecting to one's children were as simple as...acquiring employment outside the home? ...learning something new together?...or purchasing a cool electronic device?

While I am in no way advocating full-time work, and while it is clear that my six and three-year-old boys are not ready for Mama to be missing for too much of their day, it is true that the older ones are seeing me in a new light. So far, my interpreting work has been at most, a few hours a week, so managing both homeschooling and work has been a doable challenge. This week, I have an assignment that will mean 8+ hour days from Tuesday through Friday. After the panic of a child-care dilemma was solved through various kind agents, the "I'm leaving my babies" panic kicked in (no solution for that one), and then the "organization panic" began.

The first item is, of course, meals. This is where being married to a Frenchman has its upside. We sat down together and wrote out our weekly menu, but planned on dishes that could be made ahead of time. Last night we were both in the kitchen cooking for the week. I made a giant pot of tortilla soup, he made lentils and beans. Two nights down, with leftovers to freeze for later. Tonight, as there is no kung-fu, guitar or theatre, I will make the Italian sausage soup that will feed us for two more meals, Pierre will make chili. How great to have the same outlook on feeding our family.

If I am interpreting non-stop for eight hours a day, there are a few tools that will be necessary.

1) A good travel tea mug; check,

2) a small knitting project for the time between when I call my chauffeur and the time he arrives to drive Miss Daisy home; check,

and 3) several good dictionaries with all of the specialty language I will need this week...stumped.

Unless, of course, one had a down-loadable sort of dico. that one could easily and discretely access at all times. After days of deliberation and hours of research, I decided that an i-pod touch would suit my needs and not be a monthly budget drain. I have not seen my Aragorn,12 so excited since the Christmas he was two and opened a giant chocolate Santa. He is so sure he is going to get his little mitts on it to play, and he will, just not this week. He and my husband are having a ball teasing me about my new-found "geekiness". They misattribute my enthusiasm for a really great dictionary that fits in the front pocket of my knitting bag-cum-purse for endorsement of electronic devices. I have a weakness for dictionaries, my favorite calendar is the word-a-day, in Latin. I am a geek that way I now have the entire Larousse French/English dictionary available in the palm of my hand. That is an appropriate use of electronics, and sooo cool. I do look forward to the bonding time that Aragorn and I will have as he teaches me about "apps"; like music and books and games, oh my.

My darling Lily has learned to knit socks. She made me a beautiful purple pair for my birthday, nice, thick ones made for "jumping on the trampoline". Now she is working on a second pair for a mystery recipient. I have the immense pleasure of helping her through rough spots, encouraging and praising her and joyfully seeing her take pride in her work.

As for seeing me and their future in a new light; the kids have suddenly come face-to-face with an almost instant career choice for bi-lingual types; interpreting. They knew I did this before they came along, but they had no idea that both their stay-at-home mother and they themselves could look forward to such a cool choice in part-time or full-time work. Ah, inspiration.

On a wholly personal note, I had a great excuse for knitting time among the chaos of preparation yesterday; I needed a case for my i-pod, of course! I borrowed the rainbow yarn I've been using for Puck's hat and mittens and knitted up a cute little case. I have just remembered about downloading books onto i-pods too. Hmmm,  I wonder if Aragorn can get "Gilda Joyce and the Ladies of the Lake" onto my new toy before I leave for work?


  1. I have some great news for your newfound geekness. Download the Amazon reading app for free and then go wild on their free e-books. The good news here is that classics such as Dr. Dolittle, Pride and Prejudice and on and on an on are free!!!!! You can also download this app on your PC and enjoy these wonderful classics. My daughter has read a number of classics already.

    Well, working lady! Hat's off to you. Being in a similar spot I know how challenging it can get. Good thing that Lily is such a wonderful and responsible girl! Show us a photo of those socks please.

    Have a successful day!

  2. Thank you, Marlis!

    I am so grateful for the empathy and the encouragement. I am, somewhat guiltily, enjoying my new job immensely! What a great balance of work and family, if I can pull it off.

    I will definitely try out the Amazon reading app. My techie son is already downloading apps and music as fast as he can.

    Big Waldorf sigh.


  3. Good luck with the new endeavors, Angela!

    By the way, I still have to post the 10 things about myself for the blog award. I haven't had a chance to do so . . .

  4. Hello Eva,

    I cannot wait to hear the things you decide to write about yourself. I am always curious about the secret life of blogger friends. We all have pretty fascinating lives somewhere within, maybe in the past, maybe in the present.

    Thank you for your message of encouragement!

    Angela, back to being me at home with my little ones for today.

  5. It sounds so interesting, this new job of yours! A challenge to meet but loving it makes it easier to do!


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