Sunday, August 25, 2013

Back At It

It is officially the week before school. School here in our district starts Wednesday, September 4th. Boy 2 will be in the first grade - there all day. It will be good for him. He was ready for all day last year, but our school doesn't offer all day Kindergarten. I'm starting to get a bit giddy when I think about all I can get done in 6 hours by myself. Although, then again, I'll have no excuses left. 

S'all right, still giddy.

I MADE: a dinner, last week, that even I couldn't eat. I don't think that has ever happened. I feel like I do a good job in the kitchen. I enjoy cooking and I usually have a good tongue (?) for flavors. But, something was not right with this casserole and it all ended up in the yard debris can. Thank goodness it was just us. We scrounged around to get food for everybody - a can of chili, a lonely corn dog, a quesadilla, some peanut butter and jam. I needed to go to the grocery store and there wasn't much from which to choose. 

Big time Mama fail.

I NEED: a lot of alone time. I've written about this before. I usually get it after the boys go to sleep. That would all be fine, except that I usually end up staying awake way too late. That makes it hard to get up in the mornings and I start off my days grumpy. I'm not much of a morning person anyway. Before we had kids, Lobster would get up in the morning and be all chipper and talkative and actually expect me to answer him - before work.  I remember just looking at him and thinking, "Are you kidding me?"  That is definitely one thing we didn't discuss before marriage. It should really be on the list of important pre-wedding topics.

Anyway, in the hopes of good mornings to come, I have decided to give myself a firmish bedtime. If I expect to get up at 6:30 every school morning, I need to be in bed by 11pm. That will give me around 7 hours of sleep and, hopefully, that will be enough. I've been getting not enough sleep for so long, that I'm not really sure how much I need. I know I'll need to, eventually, get an alarm clock, but for now, Lobster will use his phone to wake us up. I'm hoping it will improve the start to our day. We can sure use it. There are some mornings when a boy is room-bound by 7:30.

I'M OVER: summer. It has been a warm, dry summer. While it's great for summer veggies (woohoo tomatoes & cukes!), it's not so good for Amy. It rained this morning and I just sat at the table and happily listened to the drops on the roof and I actually could feel my lawn and flower beds relax. It's like they said, "Oh yeah, that's what it's like."  Our sprinkler system has been shutting down zone by zone over the past several years and it's finally dead. I've been schlepping a sprinkler around just trying to keep things from shriveling away.

So, while there are many things to love about summer, it's just not my season. I really get to missing the rain. I think I was supposed to have been born here instead of the dry desert of Utah. I like the moss between my toes.

I'VE PLAYED: way too much Plants vs. Zombies, lately. I put the game on my Kindle for the boys and I thought I'd better play it to make sure it was appropriate (you never know with zombies-wink wink). I was hooked. I've gone through all the levels in less than a week. Boy 2 loves it as well, and likes to get me to "help" him. I have a hard time letting the boys make the choices about what plants to put where. I've decided I can't play with them anymore. It makes me too uptight and I'm not nice about it. I'm a weirdo - it's just a game, right?

I QUIT: drinking cow's milk. I've been trying different options and I've settled on the unsweetened almond milk. I really like the sweetened vanilla flavor, but it has so much sugar (more than cow's milk, which has a lot). There are a lot of reasons I switched. Most of all, it's just gotten so that it grosses me out to think about all the stuff in milk. I won't mention them here. I haven't been able to talk my family into switching yet, but I'm working on it. Yes, I know that there are many things made with cow's milk - things that I still really like to eat. I'm still figuring it all out. 

I'VE READ: 28 books this year. I have a goal of 40 books, so according to, I'm 3 ahead of schedule. My goal last year was 50 books and I came up short. We'll see how my new bedtime affects my progress. If you haven't joined Goodreads yet, do it! Send me a friend request. I love to see what others are reading! I'm always looking for something good to read.

FOOD: Not enough veggies - needed to go grocery shopping
FOOD TRACKING: 3 of 7 days
EXERCISE: 2 days of light yard work
HYDRATION: Mostly good. I read somewhere that I need to drink water like it's my job. That has helped me.

Monday, August 19, 2013

I Really Need To Stop Watching Animated Movies

Saturday, we had a beach day. It ended up being a very short beach day, but beach day, it was.

It was Lobster's birthday(ish) and he wanted to get some family pictures. The last time we took one, it was March AND that was the last time we were at the coast. I was really looking forward to being on the beach, watching the boys dig and throw rocks and race the waves and close my eyes just for a minute and listen to the water crashing on the sand. Usually, I pack a lunch and try to stay on the beach as long as the boys (Lobster included) will let me. This trip, however, we decided to live it up and try some local fare.

Not finding much to choose from where we were, we headed south to a larger city. As we came to the split on the highway where you have to choose to go north or south on 101, traffic was at a stand-still and backed up onto the highway. Rather than getting in the line of cars, Lobster quickly made a U-turn and got on the highway heading east - toward home. 

Now, I totally agreed with his decision to turn the car around, but going home an hour and a half after getting to the coast was not what I had in mind. 

And I was not happy. 

And I made sure Lobster knew it. 
It's when I get quiet when it's the most dangerous. 
And I. Was. Quiet.

We were all hungry. I was angry about going home. Lobster was upset about me being angry. And the boys, for once, knew when to keep their mouths closed.

Lobster found a little Mexican place in a small town on the way. We walked in and were the only customers there. The food was simple, but good and they had a delicious jalapeno crema in a little squeeze bottle. It was so good on my tacos. Don't worry, I've already found a recipe to try at home. I can't wait. If you know me, you know I won't be making the fish tacos. I'm sure they are very good, though. If you like fish. I don't.

We talked it all through at the table and figured out a way to salvage the afternoon. We took the boys to see Planes at our favorite movie theater. It was really cute. It had a great message about making your dreams come true and doing your best and getting up when you fall. The quote from the Dusty (the crop duster that wants to be a racer) is,
"I'm just trying to prove maybe, just maybe, I can do more than I was built for."
 I have a feeling I put way too much thought into animated movies. The Croods really affected me, too. It was deep. I totally identified with that caveman. I was thinking about it for weeks. And Planes has been on my mind, as well. But the more I thought about it, the more I wondered if it was such a good message to give to kids, "Don't be happy with what you are, you can be better! You can be whatever you want! Don't be content with the mundane. Your life should be exciting all the time!"

Am I being a downer when I think that someone's got to be the crop duster? We can't all be racers. While I agree that we should each do our very best and go for the things we want, we need to be realistic. It's a wonderful thing to be a really good crop duster. And we can be happy knowing that we do a good job. Learning to be content with what we have/are/do is, in my opinion, the best way to have inner peace - and a great secret to happiness. It's a terrible thing to always be wanting more.

I really need to stop watching animated movies.

So, I'm finding this ABC's of me thing much harder than I thought. And I'm using a dictionary. And I'm only on "J". Ugh. I'm sticking to it, though. I've got to stick to something, right? I'm redoing "I", because it was lame last week.

I'M IGNORANT: about most things technical. I'm slowly learning how to work a little more independently on the computer, but I've got a long way to go. I am SO not computer girl.

I JOKE: a lot. It's a defense. I use sarcasm. I'm trying to not be so sarcastic here in my family. Boy 1, especially, has a hard time understanding what I'm saying. He's a little more of a literal kid. When we took a Love and Logic class, we were advised to avoid sarcasm. It was said that the delivery of what we say is just as important as the words.

I KEEP: too much stuff.. I don't have good storage solutions and the paper is driving me crazy. I feel helpless about most days. I need to better use my binder and get better storage. It's embarrassing. Lobster gets fed up with the paper and dumps it all in a box and puts it in the garage. I've gone through many boxes and I've got so many to still get done. It's sure easier to know what to do with papers when they're a few years old. I'm telling you, my organizational skills are severely lacking.

I'M LOOKING: forward to school starting. I'm ready for routines. This will be our first year of both boys in school all day. Part of me is excited and part of me wonders what I will do. I'm thinking of looking for some part-time work. Anyone hiring? 

Sunday stats are lacking this week. I forgot to weigh myself this morning. I've been neglectful in logging in to My Fitness Pal. I've been drinking water, but having trouble snacking in the evenings. 

Monday, August 12, 2013

More Fun with ABC's

I took an unexpected break last week. I lead the music for the Primary, which is the children's Sunday school portion of our church time. It's something that I am loving, but it is exhausting. There is a lot of preparation. I lead the singing in 3 groups. There is the nursery, a group of 18 month to 3 year olds, the junior Primary - which is ages 3 to 7, and the senior Primary - ages 8 to 11. So, although we basically sing the same songs, my methods and plans are very different.

When you work with kids, you have to have energy. Your attitude about them and about music is key, in my opinion. Good, positive energy is essential. But, keeping it "up" for almost 2 hours is very draining. Then I get to come home and everyone is hungry, and dinner's not going to get itself, is it?

Anyway, right after dinner, I could not keep my eyes open. Literally COULD NOT KEEP MY EYES OPEN! Boy 2 kept trying to play a game with me and he finally gave up because he kept having to shake me awake.

Lobster took the boys for a drive and when they left I was in a trance, sitting on the couch. An hour later, they came home and I was in exactly the same position. I haven't been that tired, well, I can't ever remember being that exhausted.

So, I kept meaning to get to writing. But, what a week it has been. I won't even go into all the stuff the boys have broken. They have been in rare form, and not in a good way. Boy 2 is especially, um.....challenging, lately. What is that saying (or is it a song, or a nursery rhyme?),
"When she was good, she was very, very good. But when she was bad, she was horrid."
It is Boy 2 to a "T". There is not much middle ground with him. He can be so loving and helpful and he is a hard worker - give him a job to do and he WORKS. He's such a good snuggle-bug and he's really smart. But, boy, if he's not occupied, or if he's too wound up or ticked off, watch out.

This week, it came down to when I was not "on" as a parent, I just wanted to be "off" completely. I've been emotionally drained, physically tired and perpetually pissed off.

Don't you want to come hang out? Really. I'm a barrel of laughs.

Is anyone else ready for school to start? It's less than a month, now.

Let's get on with our ABC's!

I FEAR: much more than I thought I would as an adult. When I was in Elementary school, a teacher gave us a fill-in-the-blank type form. One of the lines read, "I am afraid of_______." My answer was "nothing." Now that I have children, most of my current fears have to do with them and the world in which we live. After talking with my mom and finding that I, indeed had many fears as a child, I know that my answer was mostly bravado, but oh, to feel that way would be fantastic, wouldn't it? 

I'M GRATEFUL: for the life I have. There are a many things that would be great to do or to have, but I really have a good life. I have a husband that loves me, and works really hard to make sure that I can be here, at home, with the boys. And as much as I reminisce about how quiet our house used to be, and how things used to stay nice and unbroken, and how I used to only have to do laundry once a week, and about all the weekends when I could sleep in, and .....oh wait. What was I trying to say?  

But seriously, those two little boys, sleeping in their beds, and their daddy have my heart. It's theirs completely, and I wouldn't have it any other way.

I HATE: ants. They make me feel creepy crawly and we must live right on top of multiple ant hills, because we just can't get rid of them. We've used traps, and sprays and natural remedies and they just keep coming back. And the funny thing is that they're not even in the kitchen. They are in our bedrooms and bathroom. It totally creeps me out. 

In general, I like bugs. I think they are cool. Give me a Dragonfly, a Praying Mantis, a worm, or a spider, even (and no, that's not an invitation for them to come into my house, just for the record). But ants  - ugh. Oh, yeah, mosquitoes too. Hate 'em.

I INTENDED: to use a lot more letters, but I got stuck on I. But it is time to go to bed. Morning comes much too early around here. There comes a point when it is really just too late to make any sense. 

Have a great week. Peace.