24 April 2009

I'll Tell You Why We Need Healthcare Reform...

A $3,000 deductible, that's why. I'm a healthy person. I run, I walk, I eat right. I haven't been to a doctor (aside from my annual exam) in ages. I think I had an ear infection in 2006. Seriously, that's the last time I visited a doctor. Nate's a healthy person. He exercises and eats right too. Benny is even healthy. Aside from his healthy baby visits, we've only seen his pediatrician once.

Because Nate works for a small company with relatively crappy health insurance, we pay $600/month to cover both Benny and myself (Nate's "free"). Yeah, that's right $600/month. That's $7,220/year. Don't get me wrong, I'm very happy we have health insurance. But that seems a little excessive to cover three healthy people.

So, when I have complications with a pregnancy (something I can't control), we're responsible for paying $3,000. That's on top of $7,220/year we're paying for health insurance. This year we're paying over $10,000 in health costs. And if something happens to Nate or Benny, we'll be responsible for paying a portion of that.

I shudder to think about people who don't have insurance or who have less coverage than I do. I know it can be worse, much worse. Something needs to change here. I'm not sure if Obama's plan will help or not. But something definitely needs to change.

22 April 2009

That's (Almost) Dr. Struckman to You!

Things went pretty well yesterday. I do have to make some substantive changes on the dissertation by May 8, so I'm not done done yet. But I'm almost there. Almost.


For now I'm focusing on getting rid of this hangover. My body doesn't respond to celebration as well as it used to. Coffee. Lots of coffee.

18 April 2009

Happy Earth Day!

Earth Day greetings a little early! Earth Day and eco-responsibility has taken on new meaning after having a kid. I've always been fairly aware of the importance of reducing, reusing, and recycling. I rode my bike throughout college (and the rest of my school experience). I recycle religiously. I don't buy bottled water. Etc., etc., etc. However, I feel like I need to step stuff up now that I'm a mom and a role model to one very impressionable young lad.

I don't generally establish resolutions at New Year's, but this year I've decided to come up with some Earth Day goals (and these will be nice additions to my "101 in 1001" list).
  • Take sub-five-minute showers 3/4 showers per week. I try to keep my showers to a mininum, but since I've been running more I need to shower more. It's a necessary evil.
  • Research how to recycle more items. Batteries, phones, plastics.
  • Buy more used stuff instead of new stuff (at least 80 percent). We'll be buying lots of stuff for the year over the next year. I'm sure if we look hard enough we can buy used and save money.
  • Buy a bicycle trailer for Benny and drive only to things over three miles from the house. We already drive a limited amount, but it's time consuming to walk 45 minutes to the store.
  • Get energy audit of the house done and make repairs to save energy.
Happy Earth Day to you all! Hope you do something nice for your Mommy Earth this week!

14 April 2009

Prospective Employee

I'm officially sick of applying for jobs - and I've only been looking for a little over a week. At last count, I've applied for 10 jobby jobs. Some are very, very interesting. Others, well, others would be a paycheck. So far I've mostly applied for nonprofit jobs. There aren't many academic jobs open in the city, so I've applied for a couple adjunct positions.

For anyone in Denver who reads this, let me know if you have any ideas about jobby jobs. I'm pretty much up for anything. I can do communications, event planning, development. I'm a fast learner and have some really interesting experience.

Back to it.

11 April 2009

The List. The List. The List.

It turns out that coming up with a list of 101 goals, dreams, and responsibilities is really difficult. I posted 55 items to the right. This list is going to be a work in progress! It was easy coming up with the first 35 or so. And then. And then I had list-writer's block.

There are some key goals on this list that I'll be crossing off soon! Defending my dissertation and graduating are two. I'm running a half-marathon in June. We hope to paint the living room soon. As in a month soon.

Other goals are further out. I'd like to run a marathon. Get preggers. Buy lots of stuff that I've been putting off for a long time (a fantastic purse, gorgeous pillows for the couch, etc.).

This list is also a great thing to blog about. I'll be reporting about it periodically. It's going to be a great 1001 days!

07 April 2009


Now that I'm finished with biggest project of my life (thus far), I've been thinking about what to do with my free time. A friend of mine (who also has a blog, From the Mind of Me) has put together a list of 101 things she wants to accomplish in 1001 days. I think that's a fabulous way to organize goals and dreams and responsibilities. I'll put my own together soon.

While I'm working on that list, however, I wanted to share what this friend wrote about keeping a relationship strong. I think she was incredibly insightful. While I'm waiting to figure out what my goals, dreams, and responsibilities are, I'm going to work on this list (thanks Katy!!!). Here they are:
  • Remember you're on the same team.
  • Kissing, real kissing, is important.
  • If you don't have the money, don't spend
  • Keep your home clean and as clutter free as possible. No one likes living in a mess and it does wonders for your well being if you come home to a clean house and a made bed.
  • A mini vacation to a Holiday Inn for a night can make you really happy.
  • It's best to not be critical of your husband's tomato sauce. When you tell him "I don't really like the cinnamon in it" there's no need to tell him 3 more times when he makes it again. He understood the first time. You don't like cinnamon in your tomato sauce. Done.
  • The last and most important thing on my list this year and every year- Talk about the shit you don't want to talk about or that makes you uncomfortable.
I have to admit, the tomato sauce doesn't apply to my relationship with Nate (although I'm sure I've done the same thing).

05 April 2009

Mom Blog Brag

Nate Emsick, this entry is dedicated to you.

Someone, who will remain anonymous, apparently called my blog a "mom blog." While I would agree with this unnamed person, I do take the slightest bit of offense to that rather narrow classification. Granted, I started this blog to brag about Benny, but there are many aspects of my life that I share via this medium.

So, all that being said, I would like to brag for a moment. As all you faithful readers know, I had some concerns about Benny a few months back. I no longer have those concerns. However, as a mom, I'm sure other things will happen throughout Benny's lifetime. I will worry. I will write. And I will get over it. I'm not worried about Benny being autistic any more because his speech is developing quite normally. He's right where he's supposed to be. He understands us. He has many, many words (more than I can count now) and he puts two words together. It's amazing to see him develop like this.

Here's where I get to brag. About two months ago, Nate bought an alphabet and number set. The rubber letters and numbers were supposed to be bath toys. Benny started quizzing us on them, saying "is" (meaning, what's this). We would go over the alphabet several times a day. Pretty soon, Benny started naming letters and numbers by himself. Now, if he sees any letters, he identifies them. For example, he LOVES FedEx trucks and picks out the "X" and the "F" right away. And he's only 20 months. I'm not certain, but I think this is quite advanced for a 20-month-old.

Perhaps he will teach himself to read :). A mother can dream, right?

01 April 2009

One Step Closer

I just hit send on four email messages. My dissertation was attached. That means it's in. It's in.

Unfortunately I'm not finished up quite yet. I still have to complete my bibliography, make any changes my committee suggests, and submit the final copy on May 8. However, I will be celebrating tonight. For I am one step closer to being Dr. Struckman.