Tuesday, April 22, 2008

this post took 10 hours to write

My father and sister and seven-year-old nephew are visiting with us this week and we are having a great time together. After they'd been with us for a few hours and the kids stopped acting shy and were running through the house screaming like banshees, I joked that the cruise ship they saw in the San Diego harbor driving to our house from the airport - is the same boat that Charlie and I have tickets on, and we'd be leaving for Cancun in ... let's see what time is it now ... three hours.

Surely they'd be fine watching the kids while we partied in Mexico for a week. Right? My sister nervously laughed and asked "Sure. Where do you keep the Valium and velcro?"

We've been busy, busy and we have something scheduled to do every day this week. If people who are planning to come visit us in San Diego are looking for a relaxing vacation ... they might want to rethink their vacation destination. If the kids don't Tucker them out ... spending full days at the Zoo, Wild Animal Park, Sea World, Legoland, the beach, and our neighborhood pool surely will.

Since our computer is in the living room (aka: dining room / southern play space / guest room) my access to things like say ... my blog ... will be limited for the next few days. As time allows, I'll be addressing some of the questions that I've received over the past month. Because really, with three new people in the house - and activities scheduled almost every moment of almost every day - my brain capacity for writing about the motivation in teasing as a function of birth order and hair color, is nil.

So, with my next few updates, I'll answer questions about Montessori, what will happen to Henry if when I go back to work, plans for weaning, things I do with the kids for fun, and I'll also throw in a good recipe or two. Maybe, I'll also have the chance to publish the kitchen organizational post that I started working on twelve days ago.


What would you do about benefits if you quit your job?

Currently all of our benefits are through my employer, but thankfully, Charlie works for a company that offers good benefits, too. Although, we would not be eligible for a 10% discount on gas, or three teeth cleanings a year ... we would have excellent medical and dental coverage. We would also have the option of visiting a chiropractor - if we so choose. And maybe I would, if I wasn't completely freaked out by the thought of someone "cracking" my neck and "adjusting" my spine.

How do you keep toys that your older kids play with, away from the baby?

All of the toys that I have out are toys that Henry can also play with. Toys with small parts or that are breakable (i.e. ceramic tea set) are tucked out of sight and I only allow the kids to play with them when they are sitting at the table and I can directly supervise what they are doing. Thus far, it hasn't been a problem because what the kids cannot see, they do not want to have. They stay happily entertained with all of the larger, nonbreakable toys or stuffed animals that they have access to.

Have you ever considered advertising on your blog to offset the cost of preschool?

Yes. And then, no. I'm not too sure about advertising. For those who do advertise on their blog, I'd like to know if the revenue generated is really worth having ads on the site. I've been contacted a few companies that have wanted to advertise here and I haven't been interested. If there is a particular product - or company - that I think is good enough to mention, I will. But I don't want to have random advertisements show up based on key words that are in a blog posting, that I may or may not endorse. Particularly when I write about the elongate and how this gate that expands to 14-feet was a life saver when our triplets were infants.

Go ahead. Type elongate on Google and tell me what you find.


  1. I tried Google AdSense first. After a few months, I decided the income wasn't enough to justify the ugliness---but they don't send you a check until you hit a certain minimum, and I was reluctant to part with the accumulated amount. So I thought I'd hang in there until I got the first check, and then discontinue them.

    But then they sent me a form letter saying I was a "danger to their advertisers" and they were closing my account and wouldn't be paying me. They said they couldn't tell me why. I filled out the appeal, which was lengthy and demanded to know why I'd been kicked off (but they couldn't tell me why I'd been kicked off, so I didn't know). A lonnnnng time later they sent another form letter denying my appeal. Now I'm permanently barred from all Google AdSense stuff, and I swear---SWEAR---I didn't do anything wrong. No way to appeal the appeal, and they have all my financial/SS info now (they collect it for tax/payment purposes). Nice!

    I did a Google search for THAT and found about a million people who had the same experience. So, in short, I don't recommend Google AdSense.

    I've had BlogHer ads for a few months now. They pay about four times as much as Google AdSense, their ads are prettier, and they personally respond to emails. (Google AdSense won't: they send a form letter saying they don't respond to emails.) It's not a Montessori preschool amount of money, though.

  2. Wow, I use AdSense and haven't had problems....yet, and the previous commenter's post really gives me pause. I looked into BlogHer ads, but they're currently closed to new accounts, and haven't really looked beyond that.
    That said, I've made about $20 on my new blog in the past few weeks with AdSense, so you might look into it.
    Oh, also, I had weird ads for the first week or so (mail-order Mexican brides, anyone?) but it improved when I put a block of invisible keywords at the bottom and I had more content. Now I get cute ads for toy stores, potty training, etc. Stuff people actually want to click on :)
    I don't think the ads are obnoxious, either...I just put them in their own column. See it here:


    good luck! I say do it, we wouldn't begrudge you and might throw you a few daily clicks!

  3. Dad looks very comfy with his Caretaker. She is so sweet and caring. Why are you running around so much? Just a trip to the ocal park is such fun. How about advertising for Trader Joe's cookies.
    I also love the picture of Will fishing.
    Have a good time.

  4. Enjoy your time with your family!

  5. I could almost fill up my car with the proceeds from Google Adsense. I should go check and see if I've made any money. I was going to sign up with BlogHer and did all the paperwork and got "accepted", but never sent in the financial stuff because there was this big thing in the contract about "editorial standards" and I don't have any of those, as we all know! All I know is that if I write about throwing up, I have bulimic ads on for days. But you would have to do it the way the Pioneer Woman does it. She makes a pile of dough! You have the traffic.

    Have fun with your Dad. He's probably trying to figure out how to get to the cruise ship right now!

  6. Okay. I've made $49.91 since 12/07/07. So even if I made four times that amount with Blogher, that would only be $200. $150 isn't enough for me to start having editorial standards. I only blog for the "power", not for the money! :) There are many evil corporate empires left to uncover!

  7. One of many cuzzins!4/23/08, 12:06 AM

    I love that picture of your Dad and his little nurse. How cute is she?

    Sounds like you are treating them to a wonderful vacation. My kids loved Legoland & the Animal Park when we were out there several years ago. I'm sure you are all having a ball together. Enjoy the rest of the week.

  8. Too afraid to go and google "elongate" ... I already have an idea of where THAT will go.

  9. I read somewhere recently that a blogger named Dooce- http://www.dooce.com/- generated so much income from her ads that her husnband quit his job to manage her advertising! It estimated that they brought in about $40,000 a month in ad revenue.
    Not that I want to see your site become a giant ad space BUT if it will put the kids through school...

  10. Re: chiropractic
    Having my neck cracked totally creeped me out, but the benefits of chiropractic were stunning (to this nonbeliever who didn't try chiropractic until age 58.)

    Now I go to a chiropractor who uses the Activator method - no cracking or whacking. I'm amazed at the improvement in not only my low back and hip (the original problems), but also my overall health. I haven't had a cold in over a year (I work in an elementary computer lab and believe me, those keyboards are germy!)

    Check out:
    and if you ever decide to try chiropractic, keep this method in mind. I'm sold!

  11. I'm an avid reader of Dooce.com, the website that Jen mentioned above.

    It's totally true, her and her husband are stay-at-home parents now, both making enough just by working on her blog.

    I think you could be a Dooce.com type blogger. You write frequently, you're a great writer, and your blog obviously attracks the traffic.

    The one thing though, that makes me wonder if it can work for everyone, is that Heather (Dooce) and her husband are both of a web designer / programmer background... so the technical side to making her blog a Big Deal is not a big thing for them. I find that being a bit computer-programming illiterate makes having a Stupendous Blog Industry (as we'll call it) a little tougher. Not impossible, but tough.

    I just use Adsense...but more out of curiosity to see if I could earn anything online. LOL. I don't get many clicks though, so I don't earn much, LOL. I figured it was worth a shot, and Adsense is free and super easy to add to a Blogger.com blog.