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Laura

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Sunday, June 14th, 2015 09:30 am
Things that didn't used to matter when I worked my four-day week-of-doom (because I had Fridays off), but do matter now:
  • The vet my cats go to, here in town, to has full Saturday hours. Which reminds me, I need to schedule appointments for the critters. They will not appreciate it.
  • The dentist we see is here in town. And has occasional Saturdays, but I'm not sure how much I need to depend on that.
  • Our doctors are 15 minutes away, but no freeway/rush hour traffic need be involved unless the weather is bad. We have EXCELLENT doctors, so I am not likely to change this.
  • The eye doctor we see, who is perfectly fine, is 10.5 miles away but it all involves roads that can get ugly at rush hour. They are open only weekdays, except "some Saturdays" (call and ask) and the latest they are open is 6 pm on Monday - the rest of the week it is earlier. Meanwhile, there is what seems to be a perfectly good eye place here in town, which is open until 7:30 on Tuesdays and has regular Saturday hours. ...I need to change eye doctors for us, yes I do.
  • The affordable/easy store probably isn't, unless I ask Scott to go. They used to be right on my way home; they are now an 11 mile drive away. But they aren't too far from Scott's office, so when he's in the office I may ask him to stop on the way home. Some days. (Scott doesn't like grocery shopping, so this is an imposition, though.)
  • The Washington County library system has been my preferred library, both because picking up holds was easier (three days a week I drove past my "home" library in that system, Tigard, when they were open - they're not open Thursdays - whereas Friday was the only day I could go to Wilsonville's library without sorting out kiddos), and because they have a slightly better book selection system-wide, in my experience. Now, Wilsonville and Clackamas County is, because the Tigard library is holy whoa out of my way.


...yeah. Reorganizing my life around being extremely local, and having five days a week of job. On the whole I like it, it just needs some adjustments to fully make it work. The library adjustment I knew was coming; I didn't know about the local eye care place and how good it was relative to my schedule until I started hunting during a recent eye health crisis (when I luckily turned out not to need it, and may I never have a stye/infection on the inside of my lid again, because ugh). I didn't know the vet had Saturday hours because I never _needed_ to know, but it was right there waiting for me on their web site when I looked.

And hey, I get a Thursday farmer's market that I can actually get to. Which is nice, because suddenly driving to the Tigard farmer's market or Lake Oswego's looks like an even bigger pain. (Although LO is a good weekend option, but on Saturday, it's pretty close after the Thursday market. Tigard is on Sunday. Both of those are really good markets, IMO, but ... they require more driving!)

This week, I made two trips that I expect to be atypical - I drove up to Tigard to Home Depot and the Farmer's Market on Sunday, and I drove to downtown Portland for a company event on ... I think it was Wednesday? Maybe it was Tuesday. Some day. And I only walked to work one day this week, Friday.

Even with that, my mileage for the week is under half my former _commute_ mileage (not including side trips or Friday errands). This is really sweet. Of course, this week Drew starts summer camp, which is further away. My route to pick up Drew-then-Ian-then-home is just under 15 miles per day, though - so 75 miles a week for that. Add another 5 miles once a week for the farmer's market. Add 2 or 4 miles per day I drive to work (depending on whether I come home for lunch). 100 miles is sort of the worst-case for all of this, before any attempt to add in errands such as grocery shopping. My former commute mileage, for 4 days a week only, was 200 miles a week. And during the school year, the whole loop from home to Drew to Ian to home is 5.5 miles (instead of 15 miles), and in fact next summer the same will obtain.

(We are switching child care for Drew next school year and summer from the YMCA to Club K, so he can stay in the school and go to after-school activities and such. Drew loves the YMCA, and so do we, but he's willing to try it because he also hears good things about Club K. And one of their summer camp locations IS Drew's school, so that will simplify a lot. Also, his school is close to the farmer's market, so the full round trip hit for the farmer's market won't happen in that case. This switch was already planned for the after-school activities, before I changed jobs, so.)

Reorganizing my life to be incredibly local and allow for my schedule turns out to be, on balance, fairly easy. And really rewarding.

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