Friday, July 18, 2014

Yellowknife Bound!

This morning, I'm on the way to Yellowknife (by myself!) to visit my sister.  We have had this trip planned for months and I absolutely cannot wait!!!  It has been a bit touch and go this week...the van crapped out on me on Tuesday night and it didn't look like I was going to be able to get it repaired in time.  Thankfully it did and I was able to drive to Camrose last night.  We are going to have SO MUCH FUN!!!  Shawn and the girls will be hanging out at home, going on adventures.  I'm going to try and do a little blogging from my phone while I'm away but no guarantees.  I don't have reasonable cell coverage while I'm there and have to rely on wifi and this time it will be even spottier as there are something like 175 forest fires in the area and the residents have been alerted to a possible stoppage of internet and cell service.  Should be a smoky time!  "See" you next week! Have a great weekend!

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Less or More?

Okay, 'fess up.  Are you a saver?  Do you keep everything in case you need it someday?  Are your cupboards and closets bursting with stuff?  Or are you a purger?  Do you constantly donate and toss?

Y'all will shocked to find out I'm a saver.  Hahaha!  I crack myself up.  Just kidding.  I'm a purger.  I'm always throwing things in the garbage.  I always have a garbage bag on the go with things to donate.  The upside to living this way is that there really isn't any dreaded clutter in our house (don't look in the basement).  The downside is that I will often go to use something and realize I pitched it long ago.  I find that I don't mind too much, though.  I'd much rather have our house free and clear of "stuff" than keep something I might use every few years.

Agree?  Disagree?  I have a girlfriend that is reading this absolutely cringing at me!!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Best/Worst Friends

Oh, these girls. When they get along, they are the best of friends. It is so much fun to listen to them play and laugh. When they fight? It's like fingernails on a chalkboard. One even bit the other on the bum last week. Left teeth marks and everything!

I don't think I ever did that to my sister. Did I?!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Goals for 2014 - Halfway Update

It seems that the further in the year I get, the less my goals even cross my mind.  I do have them printed in my closet where I get dressed every day but it blends into the background now.  Do you have any tricks to hold yourself accountable?  To keep focused?

Family goals

  • maintain our daily outdoor time. Great!!  Just figured it out...560 straight days of getting outside to play.
  • have a family movie night once a month.  No.  Maybe once every 2-3 months?  It seems harder to do this in the summer when we're not inside as much.  I'm not super concerned about this one.  It's fun to do but if we don't do it, no big deal.
  • date night for the girls every 2 weeks.  We go through spurts with this.  The girls absolutely love this one on one time, we need to try harder at this.
  • date night for Shawn and I once a month.  I haven't kept count but I think we've accomplished this one so far.  Love going for date nights!
  • 2 kid-free getaways for Shawn and I before the end of the year.  We've sort of had one!  When the girls went to Camrose, we had a "staycation".

Health goals
  • finish Insanity by January 25.  Done!
  • run a 5k under 22:00 by the end of the summer.  The closest I've come is 22:30.  I'm not sure I can get it under that.
  • complete T-25. I didn't do the program as prescribed.  I don't love a lot of the workouts so I'm just using the ones I do like.
  • complete the newest P90x.  No.  Perhaps in the Fall.
  •  no visits to Bulk Barn.  I did last for a couple of months for this and then didn't.  I won't keep it as a new goal.  I'm trying something different by eating what I want, when I want...and magically, that's been cutting back my sugar cravings considerably.
  • 10 clapping push-ups by June 1.  I actually forgot all about this!  I think I had worked up to 8 but I haven't done one in weeks and weeks.  I'll change this to be for the end of September.
Personal goals
  • meditate every day.  I tried this but it just wasn't for me.  What I have been doing instead is a yoga video (15 minutes) most evenings.  I have always disliked yoga and stretching but for some reason, I am really liking this...getting old?!
  • Facetime with family minimum once a month.  Good!
  • reduce screen time (nothing before school dropoff, 20 minutes at quiet time and I'll leave the evenings open for now since that's when I do the banking, update the blog, check in with my mama group, etc.).  I suuuuuuuuck.
  • take some kind of class for enjoyment (knitting, quilting, cake decorating, etc.)  Done!  Loved my knitting class.
  • write letters to our grandparents once a month.  Doing great with this goal!
  • go and visit Leora (the lady I volunteer for) once every 2 months.  Sadly, she passed away in April.  She was a lovely person and I really enjoyed getting to know her.  I think I will volunteer for the same program again at the end of summer.
  • have 5 piano students by the end of the year. I have one student lined up for Fall.  Need to get on this.
  • finish 1 knitting project by July 1.  Not only did I not finish a project, I didn't start a project and I didn't even buy knitting needles.  Wow. 

Friday, July 11, 2014

Kids and Chores: An Update

Back in April, I wrote about how we were starting the girls on chores and paying them a commission.  To read more about what they decided their chores would be, head here

So, 3 months later, how's it going?  I would say that overall it's been really positive.  We have had to  nag a bit about certain chores (stopping what they're doing to set the table or feed the cats seems to be a tricky one for them where making their beds is automatic and needs no reminder at all).  I wouldn't say that they love it but let's face it...I don't love chores either!  But that's part of the lesson we're working to teach them.  These things have to get done and we all share in the responsibility.

I've had a couple of people ponder whether they would pay their kids for chores or not...because we don't get paid to do our own chores.  I do get that and the girls do have chores that they don't get paid for (keeping their toys cleaned up, putting their dirty clothes in the laundry and whatnot).  I think the point of paying them for these chores is that it creates teachable moments.  I want them to see what will happen if they don't do their chores one week, I want them to have spending money and learn all the things that go along with that.  We will definitely be continuing it, revisiting the list and adjusting as they get older. 

Sammy said a funny thing when she was visiting Aunty Chelsey.
Sammy: "I don't want to go home".
Chelsey: "Aw, are you going to miss me?"
Sammy: "I will have to do my chores and chores are boring!"

Thursday, July 10, 2014

June Books

Summer reading!  An excuse to catch up on my light reading authors.  Some disappointments this past month.  Hoping this month will be better!

The One & Only by Emily Giffin

1 star out of 5
Ugh. Awful. Super disappointing and the only reason I pushed through was because I've enjoyed her past books. What the eff happened???

The Geography of You and Me by Jennifer E. Smith

3 stars out of 5
Cute story. I found the resolution of Lucy's relationship with her parents to be overly simplistic but overall had an enjoyable conclusion.

We Were Liars by E. Lockhart
4 stars out of 5
Wowza at the twist. I enjoyed this. Some of it was rich kid predictable but there were enough tidbits kept from the reader and revealed a bit at a time that it kept me hooked.

Fourth of July Creek by Smith Henderson
3.5 stars out of 5
I wanted to like this more...and perhaps it's the author's fault for creating such believable characters. But, for me, they were characters that weren't especially likeable and were hard to muster up sympathy for.