A Change in the Air

Our family, or at least our marriage, is about to take on a new dimension. Todd begins work with a new company next week. It will require a bit of travel – maybe a little more than he travels now only more spread out instead of two or three weeks every quarter. The real difference will be that he’ll be working from home when he’s not traveling. Did you get that? He will be working from HOME.

For the most part I’m looking forward to it. We’ll be saving a bundle on petrol (doesn’t that make me sound so very European?) and I think I’ve talked him into swimming with me. I’m hoping he’ll drag me along on those days I don’t want to go (which is probably just about every day). He will only require clean and pressed “nice” clothes when he travels – which really won’t change much of anything for me because it’s not like I iron like I should anyway. I’ll also have a daily lunch buddy. I think it’s going to be nice.

Realistically, however, I imagine there will be an adjustment period. Every time he’s at home he throws me off my mojo and I’m not sure why. My routine just seems to go right out the window. That will not be acceptable if he’s home every day. How in the world will I spend hours on the computer or reading with a messy kitchen and piles of laundry?

I am seriously proud of him. It’s funny because when we were dating I knew he was smart, but I didn’t know he was THIS smart. For the last several years he’s been working in the electricity sector – not for an electric company, but for a Regional Transmission Office (RTO). I liken an RTO to an electricity broker. They “trade” electricity between electric companies in their region and watch the transmission lines, making sure they don’t overload here or run out there. That’s the Jenster’s Mega-Simplified Version, but I think you can get an idea of what his company does.

Have you seen Live Free or Die Hard? If you haven’t you should. It’s one of the most realistic action movies I’ve ever seen. (That statement, my friends, is dripping with sarcasm.) If you can suspend belief it’s awfully fun. Definitely one of my favorite car-chase-explosion-shoot-’em-up movies to date. The reason I bring it up is because a terrorist targets the electric grid, among other utilities. Imagine, if you will, what would happen if the entire US electric grid was shut down. It’s not a pretty thought at all. Which is why it’s high on Homeland Security’s list of possible terrorist targets.

Which brings me to Todd’s job. In a nutshell he’s responsible for making sure the various departments are following procedures and compliant with the government regulations. All electricity entities, including the RTOs, are periodically audited and it can prove bad for them if they are found to be non-compliant.

He works with others across the U.S. and Canada in similar positions and the FBI and Homeland Security to come up with these regulated procedures to insure protection against a terrorist attack on the electric grid.

His new job is for NERC – North American Electric Reliability Corporation – the pseudo-government organization that does the auditing. Yup. He will no longer be the stressed out auditEE, if you will, but the in charge auditOR.

I know, I know. “Auditor” has such a negative connotation to it. But I like the idea of someone out there making sure these companies are doing what they need to be doing so we can continue to enjoy our a/c and TV and lights and refrigerated food and so on, not to mention health care machinery like life support, etc.

If you’ll indulge my bragging just a smidgen longer. According to his new boss he is considered a national expert in the electricity sector. I admit it. I’m fairly preening with pride right now. That’s my man. All mine!

He starts this new position in July, though he’ll be at the home office in Princeton, New Jersey for a bit of it before we go to Hawaii. You know, orientation and all that. Then we’ll be settling into our new arrangement. Should be interesting…


  1. MotoMom on June 23, 2008 at 3:22 pm

    Good news! It is difficult having the man home during the day. The schedule does go out the window. However, I have found that since the time was spent enjoying a bit of “afternoon delight” he just didn’t seem to care if dishes were not done and the laundry piled up. 😉

  2. Travis Erwin on June 23, 2008 at 4:08 pm

    Sounds exciting. I hope everything works out well for you Todd and you’re family.

  3. Jenster on June 23, 2008 at 4:55 pm

    Motomom – Thanks for visiting! If I said that never crossed my mind I would be lying… :o)Travis – Thanks!

  4. Becky on June 23, 2008 at 5:11 pm

    Brag away, sister…that’s AWESOME!Shockingly good news, really. (Sorry, I couldn’t resist…what with him in the electric sector and all, lol).To be able to do his work from home…what a dream job! And what with all the savings on gas…guess you might be saving up for Scotland now, huh? 😉 And I must say I’m so glad to know there are folks in such a line of work, watching out for our country that way. Glad to know it’s a good guy like your man. I depend greatly on my A.C. I mean, I could get by without lights and my computer (in a pinch, and for short periods of time), but not my A.C. It’s so smokin’ hot outside right now, if I didn’t have it, I’m pretty sure I’d combust.

  5. Lori on June 23, 2008 at 5:25 pm

    Wow – congrats! Sounds like Todd is a VIP. I hope that it all works out for you both 🙂

  6. Anne on June 23, 2008 at 5:38 pm

    Congrats to the Toddster!! Woot! Working at home is HARD. It really is, because those who see you there don’t really associate you being home with working… at least not right away–if ever. Especially the kids. It’s going to be a hard transition for you all, but I applaud Todd on his new position. And Jenster, you’re all good. He won’t care about the kitchen until it’s suppertime. *G*

  7. His Girl on June 23, 2008 at 5:53 pm

    a)just to get this out of the way, I totally read it “I’m fairly peeing with pride right now” which sent me in to a fit of hysteria until I rereadb) I am so proud for you! that’s so cool, and I know what you mean about not realizing how truly awesome your spouse is. I mean, my poor husband has no idea how BIG I am in my field… kidding.c)I will be praying that this little adjustment will be fabulous for your family, your marriage, and for you!

  8. Jenster on June 23, 2008 at 5:59 pm

    Becky – Shockingly good news, really. You are so punny!!!Lori – Thanks!Anne – I just hope I can get used to the idea that he is actually working. And you’re right about the kitchen. lolHis Girl – Peeing!! hahahaha!!All y’all (that’s how we say it in the South) are cracking me up!!

  9. Cheryl Wray on June 23, 2008 at 11:46 pm

    That is great for your husband!! And I know you will both enjoy being together…but it will be an adjustment. I think I’d probably want to strangle my husband at least some of the time, if we both worked from home.Have a great night!

  10. Shauna on June 24, 2008 at 3:25 am

    Wow! Brag away. I know what you mean about underestimating your man. I questioned my DH’s ability to install two light fixtures in our kitchen. He’s an electrician. In the oilfield. Hanging track lighting is child’s play. I think he was a little insulted at my lack of confidence in him. My lights look great and none have fallen down. 🙂

  11. CindyS on June 24, 2008 at 3:42 am

    Super congrats to Todd! Bob worked from home a few years back and it did mess with my mojo. Housework was almost completely forgotten because I have a ‘thing’ about people watching me clean. I used to spend the whole day Friday scrubbing floors and cleaning the kitchen and bathrooms. I would be all gross and sweaty and then I would have a shower and be all refreshed. Bob would come home, comment on how nice the house looks and how everything smells so fresh and off we would go.When he worked from home I never quite figured out how to clean. So yep. His fault ;)The good news is you do find a rythme – just keep an eye out for him ‘over working’. Bob would get up and check his e-mails around 7pm and then could spend 2 hours in the office working again. When he went back to working in an office he promised himself he wouldn’t do that anymore.With the blackberry, cellphone and laptop work is pretty much with him 24/7 anyways.And bragging about hubby’s successes is always allowed ;)CindyS

  12. cubmommy on June 24, 2008 at 8:11 am

    Congrats to your husband on his new job! I know what you mean about throwing off your routine when the hubby is home. When my Hubby is home it always throws off the schedule for everybody. I sometimes look forward to him going back to work so I can get things done. Weird isn’t?

  13. Gretchen on June 24, 2008 at 1:13 pm

    So excited for you both. I do get ya on the man-at-home-bad-for-mojo thing, though. When Big isn’t in China (as he is now sans luggage), he can flex his hours. This is great, unless I want uninterrupted computer time. But I’d never be selfish enough to even have that thought cross my mind (*ducks from the lightning*). So excited for your HI trip!!!!xxxooogretchen

  14. Lynilu on June 24, 2008 at 5:25 pm

    Been there, done that, both at home, etc. It does take some planning and commitment to make it work, but it can be done, and it can be very nice! I hope he has a dedicated office, if only an area designated by your both, and when he is in that place, you have to respect his time. As does he!!! He cant just wander and roam or it will be confusing to you both. Give it time, and it will most likely work out! Good luck and have lots of fun!! It’s a very good thing!!

  15. Stacy~ on June 25, 2008 at 7:03 am

    I loved the Die Hard movie, and yeah, not too believable, but very, very fun.Cool news on your hubby’s new job. I’m sure you guys will figure it all out. Hey, it might even be fun, you never know. Good luck with everything.

  16. Sing4joy on June 25, 2008 at 11:04 am

    So…have you finished building the separate.office.yet? Well, no worries, you can hire someone to do it while you’re in Hawaii.And, really, it’s better to have a husband you want to brag about than a husband you want to scream about! Congratulations!

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