Babysitting Co-op

Maybe it’s because we need a date night, but I’m really intrigued lately the idea of babysitting co-ops. A friend tipped me off about, I’m really impressed by the simplicity of the system they’ve set up.

We’ve only really had close friends and family babysit our kids. They have been very generous in caring for our kids, but we’ve also been reluctant to abuse the generosity. So, as a result, our average for a date night has been maybe every three months…and after five plus years, it sure doesn’t feel often enough. We’re both ready to finally set up regular date nights.

When I was in graduate school (pre-kids), I “babysat” on several occasions for friends/neighbors for free. Their daughter was a great sleeper, and they would always put her to bed before I came over…as it turned out she never once woke up while I “taking care” of her…I just do school reading and listen to a humming monitor. It was a super easy gig, and even though I wasn’t yet a parent, I could tell how much they appreciated it. Plus, they were always doing us great neighborly favors.

The fair trade aspect of the babysitting co-op is what appeals to me most, plus the exponential power of networking. The only thing I’m not so sure about is whether I have the time to be the “leader” just yet…I think I need to do a little more research before I’m ready to commit. 

Here’s a great recent experience from a mom blogger that really gets me inspired.

Are you part of a babysitting co-op?

Sustainable Family Finances 
The story of a family creating an abundant and sustainable life.

Summer Schedule

Happy June! It sure doesn’t feel anywhere near summer here in Portland, but I’m doing my best to have faith that all this rain will help my garden grow (not drown it like last summer’s harvest). 

Yet, I am having the urge to make the most of longer days and am less inclined to spend my spare time blogging in the evenings and weekend windows. Life has simply been full lately…with mulching, vacation planning, a limpy doggy, and another funeral service to plan for the country fair…plus a very busy full-time career, two kiddos and a Hubby who desperately needs a date night (and some sunshine!)…very full indeed.

So I’ve decided that to reduce my writing schedule for the summer season. I’m planning to post on Monday, Wednesday, Friday. I don’t want to write for the sake of writing, and I don’t need any self-imposed stressed in my life. So, when you hear from me, it’s because I have something I truly want to share and because I want to continue sharing our family trials and celebrations in the hope that I will inspire you to reach your own sustainable family goals.

Plus, I’m sure you’re ready to enjoy the summer sunshine too 🙂

Hope you will continue to follow our summer adventures…

Sustainable Family Finances 
The story of a family creating an abundant and sustainable life.

Compost Makes a Garden!

When it comes to organic gardening, I cheat! 

…By  buying organic compost by the unit (that’s 7 1/2 cubic yards). 

In Portland, one unit of organic compost delivered will run you $160. The first time we had organic mulch delivered to our old house Hubby balked at the price and wondered whether we really needed so much mulch, but once the job was done he agreed that it made everything look and grow a whole lot better. The truth is that every yard could use a whole lot more than it usually gets. If you pile it on thick enough and plant smartly, you may get away with adding more compost every few years in the flower beds.  Plus,   mulching conserves water  by insulating the soil against the sun’s rays and retaining moisture.

I highly recommend Grimm’s…which came recommended to me. 

It’s the most cost effective way of making your yard instantly lush and beautiful …well, maybe not instantly. We had our compact car-sized compost delivery three weekends ago, and we still have a third left to spread…partly because we have to haul the compost bucket by bucket up the steps, since wheel barrows won’t go up our front yard steps. Personally, I find spreading mass amounts of compost to be one of the most gratifying jobs. 

The kiddos have also (mostly) really enjoyed helping fill the buckets with mulch or raking it into the beds…I had to laugh when Girly was stopped for a snack break of homemade organic granola bars and I noticed her hands were still covered in dark earthy mulch…call me a bad mom, but she sure looked satisfied! Plus, t he dump truck sure impressed!  

Soon I’ll share about our home composting woes, but for today, I’m very satisfied with the purchased kind.

Do you have organic compost delivered by the truck load?

Sustainable Family Finances 
The story of a family creating an abundant and sustainable life.