Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Working from home - at last!

Finally, after getting high-speed Internet at home; after weeks of aggravation, of loading and unloading the operating system and programs, of begging for the Secure ID and software I need, and of fiddling with settings and making phone calls; after following the suggestions from coworkers and friends, and with the ultimate help over the phone from an IT friend of my coworker, I’m operational from home!! I can link to my work server, my work files, and have access to everything I need from my home computer!

I am excited!!!!

It only took a month.

Today, a day when puffy snow lines every branch of the trees in the backyard and the woods beyond, is my first day working from home. Yesterday I got permission from my boss to start my new hours: 1:00 – 6:00 PM in the office, flexible hours from home for the rest of my 40 hours. It’s not part-time, but it’s almost better because I can actually work from home in the quiet of my home office, the office from which I ran my own writing business before I joined corporate America seven years ago. I love that home office, messy as it is. I love being home.

It was a very productive morning – no chitchat of coworkers to distract me, no visitors coming by to pass the time. I was in my office working by 7:30 AM. At 9:30 AM, I’d put in two of the three hours I need to work from home daily. I took a break and cooked some bouillabaisse for supper since I’ll be getting home a bit later than usual. I think that with time, I can talk my boss into letting me leave the office earlier and work additional time from home. For now, this will do. This is what I agreed to.

Jacob enjoyed having me around. Last week George didn’t work many hours, so he was around right along with the girls, who had their winter break. It was not an atmosphere conducive to studying. For that reason, I’d given Jacob only half a load of schoolwork. Now with just me in the house, Jacob wasn’t distracted by me, yet he didn’t feel alone. He could ask me questions or share interesting facts that he was reading in The Yanks Are Coming.

I found that Jacob wastes a lot of time. It’s not a surprise. He’s always been easily distracted, especially when he’s supposed to do something he doesn’t particularly want to do - like schoolwork. This morning he looked out the window onto the pristine snowy neighborhood. He watched the neighbor’s dog running through the snow and across the street. He chased our cat. He started to play music on his computer.

“Jacob, do your schoolwork!” I had to remind him several times, breaking away from my computer to find him. At least now I can reprimand him for wandering off and not doing schoolwork, and not let those few minutes expand into hours of wasted time. With no one around for the last month, I know that Jacob wasn’t studying intently as he should have been. After allowing some of these slack habits to take root in his early homeschooling, I’ll have to work with him to develop better study habits.

At least, praise God, I’m finally home where I can do that!

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What we have done for ourselves alone dies with us; what we have done for others and the world remains and is immortal.”
— Albert Pike, Scottish Rite Freemason (1809-1891)