Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Saturday, May 9, 2009

WIn a Free Frigidaire Washer and Dryer!!!!!

If you were to walk through my house you would see mostly relatively new appliances some a bit more loved than others but still all constructed during the current century. This would not be the case if you entered my laundry room. Our washer and dryer are probably the most used and abused appliances in our home and they are literally standing on their last legs (hoping this post does not jinx them into retirement).
When we bought our home we needed to almost completely gut the house and start from scratch. This left our wallets quite depleted. The two items that seemed to be working at the time were the washer and dryer but unfortunately they only lasted about a week before needing to be send to the big recycling plant in the sky. With a tight budget and a need for clean clothes started searching the scratch and dents at our local appliance store. Luckily I was able to score a decent washer but no dryer. Plan B was to check out the local Habitat for Humanity consignment shop and I got a dryer for $25. Awesome! If this dryer could just last a month or two we could by a new one....
Fast forward 5 1/2 years and it is still chugging along. I couldn't have asked for a better dryer but I still wonder whenever I put a load of wet clothes in if it will be the last. Not to mention that the newer only slightly scratched and dented washer seems worse off than the dryer. On a good day it gets almost all the soap out of clothes on the first cycle and on a bad it just beeps in defiance telling me it does not want to wash another load of clothes!
As you can imagine I've been eyeing up new washers and dryers for awhile now and love, love, love (if you can love an appliance that does something you don't love doing) the New Frigidaire Affinity Washer and Frigidaire Affinity Dryer. I love that the washer is a front loader which conserves water and that the dryer is largest capacity model on the market. Can anyone say "Do more in less time"? Yay for that!
What I would love more than buying these to items is to win them! Face it people free is always better isn't it? If you would like a chance to win a FREE Frigidaire Affinity Washer and Dryer make sure to fill out this questionnaire. Good luck to all!

Friday, May 8, 2009

The Big Mulch Debate....

Last weekend we found an awesome Rainbow swing set on Craig's List. The set retails for about $2900 but we got it for $475 (Gotta love Craig's List). Madison is so funny. She keeps telling everyone she is getting a park in her backyard and will never have to leave home again. If only things were that simple! I'll post some pics as soon as it is fully assembled.

In the meantime I've been researching what type of soft impact material to put under the play set. The set is on the grass for now but Justin and I both want something a little safer just in case of any falls.

Here are the choices:

Wood Mulch:
  • It is natural
  • Matches our gardens
  • cheap


  • It smells really bad (when fresh)
  • If we buy the black died to match our gardens it will leave our children looking like they played in a coal mine
  • In time it will begin to rot the wooden swing set as it deteriorate.
  • Bugs and critters love the stuff

Rubber Mulch:


  • It is made from old tires so we will be recycling
  • Non toxic
  • Non staining
  • It does not decompose and rot the swing set
  • More shock absorbent than regular wood mulch
  • Does not hold animal odors so they will not be interested in using it as a litter box.


  • Although it claims to be non toxic the skeptic in me wonders what if?
  • On a hot day when my students come off the rubber mulched playground at school like look as if they were playing in a coal mine (no dif than wood mulch)
  • It claims to be inert and won't make dogs sick but I'm not loving the idea of my dog eating it.
  • Quite a bit more expensive than wood mulch

Playground Cushioned Tile:


  • Made of recycled Tires
  • Attractive
  • Seems like the safest option
  • Does not move around
  • the dog can't eat it
  • does not attract various critters


  • Must be installed on a completely flat surface
  • Would require a truck load of dirt to be put down first
  • So expensive we would need to remortgage the house or sell a kidney to pay for (okay maybe an exaggeration but you get the ides)

Ideally I would choose option 3 but I can't justify spending so much money on playground flooring when their are other options and we are not even in a home that we plan on staying in for more than 2-3 more years. If it were our forever home maybe but still it is way expensive!

That being said I'm thinking the rubber mulch is the way to go but I'm still not completely sold on the idea. IF anyone has any related experiences or other options I would love to hear them!


Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Call or Email?

Remember how I announced my big plans of going to nursing school a couple of months ago? Well a funny thing happenned. Life got in the way. Instead of be a thirty something student in a see of horny teens I've decided to give full time teaching a go again. I'm really looking foward to getting back into a classroom and feel that this slump that I've been feeling in is primarily do to the teaching position I'm in now. The problem is I'm not actually teaching! I feel like a glorified babysitter. Anyway enough of the moaning and groaning...

So here I am sending out resumes 'til my fingers bleed 'cause the thought of starting at step one with substitute teaching sends shivers down my spine. I 've even sent a resume back to the district where I used to teach. It is not exactly around the corner but if it means a job I'll take it. Not to mention that I did enjoy my time there and wouldn't mind going back.

Now here is my question. How do I give myself a leg up on other potential new hires at my old district? Many of the administrators I once knew at my old school have either retired or moved on but I do know the current vice principal. We got along well when I worked for the school but I haven't seen or spoken to her in years. I would like to contact her and let her know I'm job hunting but I'm not sure how to do it? Should I give her a call? Should I email her? Should I leave her coming across my resume up to chance? I'm not even sure the school will be hiring for next year but I think if they do I have a pretty good shot at getting a position. What should I do?