Here’s what’s working around here this week…
If you’ve been following this blog for any length of time, or if you know me personally, you will know about my unhealthy obsession with my vacuum cleaner. You will also know how ironic this infatuation is since I enjoy cleaning about as much as I enjoy finding an empty box of Thin Mints. Well, my neuroses have extended to include my adoration of this steamer… the Haan Slim and Light Cleaning Floor Sanitizer!
This Haan steamer enriches my life by creating beautiful beams of steam on my hardwood floors and by bringing a song to my heart (too far?). When I’m cleaning, I like to feel like I’m accomplishing something monumental as a result of my efforts (hence sometimes attempting to do a full month’s laundry in one day). This steamer lets me clean and sanitize at the same time! When my daughter started crawling, I felt confident that she wasn’t picking up germs from my floors (picking them up from her brother presented more of a problem as he wouldn’t allow me to steam him). Unlike other steamers, this floor cleaner doesn’t require pumping; the steam flows automatically. The cord is a little short, and the head won’t fit in between my toilet and the wall, but what it lacks in those respects is more than made up for by how light and easy-to-use it is. And it cleans/sanitizes rugs with a simple attachment. Also, the floor pads are washable – what more could you ask for? Of course needing to wash the floor pads contributes to the aforementioned laundry issue…
In case you don’t have children yet, you need to know that date nights are expensive. Start saving now! By the time you pay a sitter $10+ an hour, and pay for a meal at a place that doesn’t have a drive-thru, the evening racks up a bill of at least $80. Add to that price the guilt of using the kids’ college funds to have an evening out, and date nights end up on the endangered species’ list.
Our solution to this problem has been to make evenings out more rare by having more date nights in our family room. We watched West Wing when we were dating, so we recently restarted the series (we found it on Amazon Prime). That ensures that there’s always something good to watch together. (Are you thinking we should be talking and sharing our feelings during these date nights? You must not have children with the energy – and chattering – levels of ours!) To make the night a little more special, we make what we’ve dubbed the “Lazy Man’s Piña Colada” (coconut rum and pineapple juice).
Since I’m pregnant as of late, we’ve had to improvise, and we now make our version of the Dole Whip Floats served in the Magic Kingdom at Disney World. We scoop Haagan-Dazs pineapple coconut ice cream (amazing by itself) into a glass and pour pineapple juice (Dole, not-from concentrate) over it, making a delicious date-night pineapple-coconut float. Then we make out. Or fall asleep. Whichever.
Problem: I like to stay informed about culture and politics, but with such a plethora of information out there, it would take me hours to read the news from a variety of perspectives as is my preference. Also, I don’t enjoy reading about or even seeing all the sensational news that gets raked in by “reporters” looking to fill their news feeds.
Solution: The Week magazine – a summary of the week’s most important events. It starts with “The Main Stories… and How They Were Covered,” pulling quotes from editorials and columns from sources as different as National Review and The Huffington Post. It then pulls the most influential stories from around the globe, followed by the best columns from the U.S. and abroad. The week’s best political cartoons, book, art, and film reviews round out the magazine. They seem to specialize in the dying art of true journalism: unbiased reporting of facts from varying points of view: The Week even concluded one week’s issue with an essay decrying gun control, followed the next week by an essay promoting increased gun control. It is refreshing to get a summary of the week’s news without all the pretend objectivism. You can get 4 free issues and try it out for yourself!
(No, I don’t get a kick-back from any of these places for promoting their products. Not because I’m above that sort of income-gathering, but because I simply don’t know how!)
What’s working for you this week?