April 22, 2013

McDonald kid brag post- Jameson 4 1/2, Delaney 2 1/2, Lorelei 11 weeks

Recently my friend Lynn posted an update about the little quirky things her son is currently doing and it made me realize that I want these posts for my kiddos. They are just growing up SO FAST and I don't want to forget all the little funny things that makes them who they are at this age. I'll warn you that I am going to brag about my kids quite a bit in this post. :)

Let's start with the eldest...


  • Jameson LOVES to learn. He absorbs every little things going on around him and wants to know how every little thing works. My days are filled with "Mommy, what's that. But how does it do that? Why does it do that? What would happen if it did this? But it can do this... right??"
  • He is constantly amazing us with how quickly he learns. He picks things up so quickly, whether it be facts, human tendencies, skills, you name it! He can make inferences based on facts that are certainly advanced for his age. He used to have a slight fine motor skill delay but has now completely caught up. His preschool teachers are very impressed with his abilities.
  • He is such a natural leader it is a little scary. When he is playing with other kids, even those older than him, he takes charge. He can be a little bossy (we're working on that) but he actually usually gets them following him. We joke that with his charisma and ability to influence people he will either grow up to be president or a used car salesman.
  • He is an amazing big brother. Though he and Delaney fight PLENTY, he is quick to do what it takes to make her happy and takes pride in taking care of her. When put in charge of Lorelei he takes it very seriously and will panic when she starts to make the slightest fuss "Mom! The baby is fussing. Mom, she's really mad! Come quick!" is usually what I hear when she squeaks a bit.
  • Current favorite activities dressing up as a knight, narrating for his Thomas trains, going exploring with daddy, being outside, and coming up with on the spot pretend games with Delaney. He has also recently started asking to cuddle with Shaun and me. He never really stopped this since he has always been a very cuddly kid, but it has increased recently. We are soaking up every second of it we can get!
  • He is no longer really taking naps more than maybe once a week. He watches movies during quiet time because asking Jameson to sit quietly and play is just not reasonable- he has to get up to get something else for his activity or show us something, and he just plain forgets that he is supposed to stay quiet and still.
  • He is really starting to get lippy! He is a very witty kid and is constantly amazing us with the things he says to us! We are working on teaching him to be respectful while balancing it with making sure he still knows that his opinions are important and that he deserves to be heard.
  • Food likes and dislikes: Loves pizza, spaghetti, milk, toast or plain bread, chicken nuggets, most fruit (especially bananas, strawberries, and apples), broccoli, corn, peas, cheese, and chocolate in any form. Hates anything that he hasn't eaten before, meat, food with any sort of sauce coating it, isn't super fond of juice but will drink it on occasion (we never have it around the house). Still hasn't been introduced to gum or soda and we intend to keep it that way for as long as possible, thank you very much!
  • Sleeping: He starts out the night on his "big brother bed" which is now an inflatable kid sized mattress on our floor. Shaun moves him to his bed and he almost always stays there for the night.

  • Delaney in a word? Nuts! She is constantly moving, moving, MOVING! She is in no way afraid of trying things unless they involve touching an animal (or something that resembles a living thing) and in that case she shuts down and clings. Bugs FREAK HER OUT. She doesn't mind being dirty and gets down and plays boys games like it is no big deal, but hates having dirt/food on her hands.
  • She was my first kid with a lovey. She has a 9 foot long Jeff Gordon blanket that I made for Shaun in high school that she drags around and calls "bank". She can't go to sleep without it and prefers that it ride in the car with us. When she is starting to get tired or just needs a break she will grab her binky and blanket (B and bank) and plop down somewhere to rub bank on her face. We call it "Laney time"
  • Based on her speech worker's assessment, her motor skills are rather advanced, probably because she has always been willing to attempt anything that her brother can do. She is able to completely dress and undress herself, do pretty much anything at any park, and stays within about a half an inch of pictures she is coloring.
  • She is (technically) no longer considered to have a speech delay, but a delay in intelligibility and annunciation. She has come so far since her problems were first identified a year ago. She is stubborn, so we had to first convince her that talking was easier before she would do it, but once it clicked, she took off. Only a few months ago nobody outside of Shaun and me could understand most of what she said, and it was usually a struggle for us. Now her grandparents, aunts and uncles, and sometimes even strangers can make out what she says. When she is trying to say a word and isn't being understood she will patiently slow down and you can just see in her eyes how hard she is trying to make the word sound right. It makes me smile every time because you can just see the determination and patience she has with herself for getting something just right. When she turns three in August she will no longer be able to continue with her speech worker and will transition into an IEP with the school district. She will probably attend a preschool setting or speech group getting focused time with a speech pathologist. 
  • Did I mention she is STUBBORN??? Until Delaney wants to learn/do something, she isn't doing it! Though it can be (very) frustrating, I also know that this can be a very worthwhile quality to have in so many situations. 
  • Delaney loves to just sit and observe people. I have to refocus her frequently when we are in public because she just studies what other people are doing (ahem, stares). On more than one occasion at the PAT playroom, Discovery Center, library, etc, she will miss out on doing something because she is too busy observing the other kids. She is definitely more of a follower when she is playing with other kids, but if they are playing something that she doesn't want to she goes her own way without batting an eye.
  • I love how she goes from playing with her dolls and having me fix her hair one minute to roaring a dinosaur at her brother the next minute. She occasionally will play dress up, but isn't super in to it yet. She loves to play in her play kitchen and enjoys helping me cook. I have to be sneaky and not let her see that I am cooking if I want to do it without a "helper".
  • Delaney LOVES books. It is common to walk into her room and catch her sitting looking at books and pretending to read them. She loves having books read to her. I have a feeling we have a little bookworm on our hands! She loves the Llama llama book series.
  • She knows her colors, though she won't consistently name them for us. She knows several shapes and can count to 10 (apparently- she did it one day so I know she can, but I haven't been able to get her to do it since then). 
  • She loves to sing and dance. When there is music on TV it is like she just can't help but groove! She'll randomly break out into song and if I am singing she joins me. Her face absolutely lights up when she is singing.
  • She recently got moved to a big girl bed after taking a nose dive out of her crib that scared me to death. She gets moved to it after falling asleep in "daddy's bed" (yeah, apparently I am just a guest there). She comes back to our bed most night, but even after moving to her big girl bed she yells for daddy to come get her.
  • Food likes and dislikes: Likes almost any food. She loves carrots, peppers, crackers, cheese, apples, berries, spaghetti, macaroni and cheese, nuts, and casserole type foods. Hates: Things that are "ucky" (anything with sauce on them that Jameson has expressed dislike for).

  • We are still getting to know Miss Lorelei. She is a very strong baby. When she wasn't even a few hours old she was already holding her head off our chests when laying on us. She is able to sit supported (mostly) and is rolling from tummy to back already. 
  • She is a very content little baby. She is perfectly satisfied to lay in her bouncer, her swing, on the floor, or be carried in the Beco and go along with whatever we are doing. She is funny, though, because as soon as she decides that it is time that she be held or nurse, it must happen that second! She goes very quickly from happy to mad.
  • She has been smiling for several weeks and tonight started giving us the first glimpses of almost laughs!
  • She loves listening to singing and books being read. If she is fussy she calms down for these things.
  • My poor girl has super sensitive skin just like her momma. 
  • She isn't crazy about the car seat, but once we start going a fast rate she calms down and goes to sleep.
  • She is a pretty good sleeper. She wakes several times at night to eat, but nurses and goes right back to sleep. She naps at around 10-11:30, 1-3, and in the evening sort of cat naps depending on the activity in the house. We are still trying to figure out the best bedtime and routine for her, but we currently start around 7 with nursing, massage (which she is not enjoying but I think I just don't know what I am doing so we are going to try for a bit longer), swaddle, and lay down in the bassinet with the white noise machine going. I also sing praise songs to her while I massage, swaddle and lay down. So far this is what seems to be working the best to give her restful sleep, but I think we still need some tweaking. 
  • When being held she doesn't like being laid back and cradled but would prefer to be sitting up or looking over your shoulder.
  • She LOVES to nurse. At her 2 month appointment she was sitting in the 90th percentile for both weight and length and is already in 3-6 month clothing. She doesn't seem to have any issues with anything I eat. She will take a bottle, but fights it some and after a few will pretty much refuse to eat until she gets to nurse. She is already showing preferences to having daddy or mommy over other people.

February 24, 2013

Lorelei's Birth Story

Oh, Lorelei. I have a feeling I will be saying these words many times in the future. That is, if Lorelei continues to live life the way she lived her birth!!

Lorelei's birth story drama really starts weeks before her birth- at the 39 week mark. The day I turned 39 weeks I tested positive for influenza. I am sure you don't need to be a baby expert to understand that being diagnosed with an illness that can be detrimental to a person's respiratory system, particularly that of an infant, is not exactly good news to a full term pregnant mother. I lived out that week begging and praying that Lorelei would stay put. Since I delivered her siblings at 38 weeks and 3 day and 39 weeks and 5 days, I had little hope of making it to a point where I would no longer be contagious. This was an extremely stressful week for my family and I pretty much put myself on bedrest so that I knew I was doing everything I could to keep our little one safe in my belly. By the grace of God, I reached that day that I was aiming for- the day when my antiviral dose was complete and I would no longer be putting our baby at risk by simply being there. I was so grateful that she stayed put and thanked her all morning for listening to mommy- and then promptly started telling her it was time to get out of there.

See, I was super uncomfortable by this point. Having never made it this far in pregnancy, this was all new territory- territory I didn't think I would ever see. Days passed, and before I knew it my due date had come and gone and I was at 40 weeks and 6 days. Now, don't get me wrong- after having a baby rushed out by an impatient doctor, I was grateful that she was coming on her own time. But I was ready for her to decide it was time. That Sunday, we went for a long walk (thank you, unseasonably warm February!) and even attempted accupressure using youTube. We were ready to meet our little girl! All day I was having random contractions, but as that had been going on since about 36 weeks, I really wasn't too impressed by them. I had just been texting with my good friend and due date buddy Lynn about how she was going to be induced in a few days. I teased her how it would be funny if I had my baby before that day just to be obnoxious. Shaun decided to treat us to some milkshakes that we had all just sat down to. I had taken about 5 or 6 bites when I felt a sharp pain in my belly. It was a different feeling than I had been experiencing, but I figured gas pains (looking back I am pretty certain it was a contraction). I sat back forward, intent on finishing my little treat when I felt that all too familiar gush. Even though I knew what it was, I didn't want to excite my family for nothing, so I hopped up to go to the bathroom (something that my husband hardly even noticed since I could never go more than 15 minutes without a potty break). My hunch confirmed, I went back to the dining room and informed Shaun that it was time to call his mom to tell her that the kids were on their way to spend the night.

What followed was this: the famous "flight of the expectant father" (c'mon honey- you are the most calm, cool and collected person I know, but I would ALMOST consider having another baby just to watch this entertainment again), Jameson and Delaney jumping through the house yelling "we're having a baby", calling of all the necessary people, and me taking a shower and shaving my legs. Yep, you read that right. In my defense, my doctor specifically told me he didn't want me going to the hospital until my water had been broken for a few hours or contractions started. He wanted to give me the best shot at an unmedicated birth, and he knew that if I went straight to the hospital they would want me in the bed and not walking like I should be. So, did I need a shower? Were my legs especially hairy? No, and no. But let me just tell you- water breaking may look all cute and dramatic on TV, but the reality is that it is the most disgusting feeling EVER. Being in the shower was the only place that I could ignore the "peeing constantly and can't stop" feeling. As adamant as I was to not leave until I had contractions, a certain husband of mine was really getting antsy and nervous at the idea of me hanging out at home at this point. Since it is his kid too I figured he got a vote, so I agreed to head to the hospital. Luckily, we both got to win because my contractions started on the way to the hospital.

After meeting up with Shaun's sister in the parking lot to pass over children, we went in through the emergency room entrance. Let me take this opportunity to inform you of something- it is never a good plan to try to tell a pregnant woman, especially one whose water has broken, that she isn't allowed to use the bathroom. Ha! This is what I was told by the desk clerk in the ER. I told her there was no choice and she was welcome to join me if she was worried. She declined. For the record, I totally understand the policy- nobody likes a baby born in the toilet. But do they really expect to be able to enforce this rule? (I realize this story wasn't necessary to the storyline of the birth, but it was pretty darned funny so I had to share).

Jumping forward to after I was all in the bed (blah!) and checked in. My contractions had stalled, which is apparently pretty common with being in the car and then a bed. We were informed that the on call doctor was the one I'd had with Jameson- madam "screw what is natural/best for the baby, we are doing this on my time" herself. I was pretty bummed, but a quick chat with my nurse had me feeling much better. She assured me that she would be my advocate and would do everything she could to give me the birth I was wanting. Feeling even more desire to get some contractions going, we started walking the halls. We only made it about 2 laps before the contractions started. It was only a few after that that they really got going and I was no longer able to walk through them.

When it was time to check the heartrate we discovered that she wasn't handling the contractions well- her heartrate was dropping after every contraction. This required that I stay in the bed for awhile longer. While I was laying there the contractions really got going. The nurse had just informed me that I was at a 5, which has me worried since it seemed like I had really far to go and the contractions were really picking up. They quickly progressed to being strong enough that I was needing to moan through them and hold Shaun's hand (which surprised me since I didn't want him near me during Delaney's birth). During this I have to say that I had the BEST support in that room that anyone could ask for- I had a loving husband telling me good job after each contraction, a nurse telling me EXACTLY what I needed to hear (to relax my face, picture my cervix opening, etc), my mom encouraging me, and even my birth photographer was reminding me to relax and telling me how awesome I was doing). I don't know how I could have gotten through it without their encouragement. After her heartrate had settled down a bit, the nurse let me get on a birthing ball to try to get some of the pressure out of my back. It was amazing- the back labor disappeared and the counterpressure on my cervix was such a relief. The contractions were still very strong, but I was able to stand them a little better. I was actually even smiling through a few of them. Unfortunately this didn't seem to be the optimal position for Lorelei as her heartrate was suddenly plummeting with the contractions. I was quickly moved back into the bed. The charge nurse came in to install an internal monitor to track the heartrate and confirmed that I was still at a 5. While this was all happening my contractions had very suddenly grew much, much stronger. They were now almost back to back and not completely going away in between. Though it cross my mind that this was classic transition, I had just been told my two separate nurses that I was at a 5, so I knew there was no way this could be transition- which freaked me out! I was terrified of what transition would be like since I was in such pain. I started telling them that I couldn't handle the pain and asked my mom to pray for the baby and for my strength.

As the charge nurse walked out of the room, I suddenly felt a very strong urge to push. I was absolutely terrified at this point. I was at a 5- I had heard horror stories of women who pushed when they were not fully dilated and caused their cervix to swell to the point that they had to wait longer in labor before they could push. But I had no choice- I had to push. My nurse ran out of the room to grab the charge nurse during which I gave one big, involuntary push- and Lorelei's head popped out. The nurses came running back in and reached me just in time to catch her halfway through my second push when the rest of her popped out.

Nope, I didn't miss anything- the time span between when I was last told I was at a 5 and when Lorelei was out was about 2 minutes. I didn't even have time to feel the pain from crowning (which any mom who has delivered with no epidural can understand how amazing that is!)

Though her birth was incredible, natural and absolutely beautiful, it was "unattended", meaning a doctor wasn't present, so she was quickly swept to the warmer to be examined by one of the 6 or 7 nurses who flooded into the room in the minute after Lorelei came out (I even got the supervisor who informed me that she was never there for births). This was pretty heartbreaking for me because I very strongly desired to have her put to my chest immediately after birth. My baby girl who came out with beautiful, pink skin and lungs screaming was being treated like a high risk. Though I certainly didn't blame the nurses who were just doing their jobs, this "policy" really ticked me off. I have no idea why they thought there was any safer or better place to be than on her mother's chest! It took a good 10 minutes before I finally got to hold my baby. During this time the doctor arrived and started stitching me up- without saying anything more to me than instructions and shot dirty looks at the nurses the entire time. I guess it offended her to know that something as natural as childbirth could occur without her presence? (Can you tell I am slightly bitter about this woman?)

After much too much wait, I finally got to hold my baby girl. I offered her the breast to see if she was interested- boy was she! This wasn't too much of a surprise as the entire time she was being examined I could hear her lips smacking and she kept sticking out her tongue  classic hunger cues. She instantly latched on. And for the reference of anyone who is ever present in any capacity for a birth- get the momma her baby ASAP! As soon as I had her in my arms my nerves calmed and I was no longer focused on the pain from the stitches. We were in our own little world. I even have some pictures taken by my birth photographer at an angle that I am sure I should have noticed her and I had no idea she was there.

Overall her birth was incredible. I finally had a totally unmedicated birth. I realize this is the worst nightmare of many women, but for me it was incredibly empowering to have my body do what it is supposed to do. Delaney's birth gave me some of this since I had no pain medication for it, but this time I hadn't needed drugs to get my contractions going. And I have to wonder if there was something in my body or Lorelei's that triggered to get the birth happening quicker since she wasn't handling it well. I don't know the science behind this, and I know that there is so much about childbirth that is not known, so there probably isn't a real answer to this, but it definitely makes you wonder!

Knowing that Lorelei will almost certainly be our last is so bittersweet. While it is painful to know that I will never feel a baby move in me again or experience my child's birth again, we are eager to move into the phase of raising and enjoying our children. It also helps to know that I was finally able to do what I have always wanted- have a baby come when they are ready and not a second sooner, and to deliver them naturally. I am also not devastated with the idea of never facing morning sickness again...

Below are some pictures taken by our incredible birth photographer. I was lucky to have Tammy Schmidt of Little Leaping Photography in the room for Lorelei's birth. Tammy asked on a moms' group Facebook page for pregnant moms who would be willing to help her build her portfolio in exchange for her free photography services. I was a little hesitant with the idea of someone photographing such a vulnerable time, but I am so glad I decided to take this step out of my comfort zone. Having my last birth in pictures will be a priceless treasure and Tammy was amazing to work with and did such great work. I highly recommend her!

This picture was taken soon before her birth- birthing ball=women in active labor smiling through a contraction

November 29, 2012

Share the Wealth: Online shopping tips!

I recently realized that I have become quite the online shopper! Almost all of my Christmas shopping this year has been done online. I rarely make any decent sized purchase without first checking if there is a better deal online. Now, I am certainly not expert, but as I was giving my mom some tips this morning about shopping online, I realized that I do know a few little tricks that others may or may not be aware of that I could share!

First and foremost: Take shipping cost into consideration

My best "secret"? I almost never pay shipping. And when I do, it is because I am getting a heck of a deal on the item. I think one place where a lot of people go wrong with online shopping is that they forget to watch the shipping charges. And retailers know this! I so very often see, especially on sites like Ebay or Amazon.com, where a retailer will be offering a heck of a deal on an item but charging something ridiculous for shipping. I am no retail expert, but there are two obvious advantages to doing this: First, their item will appear on the search screen with a far lower price than their competitors. Second, if they catch a shopper who isn't taking the shipping charge into consideration, they will trick them into feeling like they are getting a really good deal when they are really making all their money on the shipping charges. 

The solution? The first and easiest way to make sure the item is still a good deal when adding in the shipping charges. If that movie is $5 cheaper than the stores, but the shipping charge is $10, it isn't a good deal! The second way is to watch for free shipping promotions and try to make your purchases during these times. More and more retailers are doing these as a way to compete. You do have to be careful here- I have noticed with some sites (such as Kohls and Children's Place) that their prices seem to raise when they aren't charging shipping. So again, make sure that you are taking the total cost into consideration and don't assume that you are getting a good deal just because you didn't pay to ship the item. Many stores also offer free shipping coupon codes or at a certain threshold (free shipping for orders over $50). I'll talk more about coupon codes later, but with the shipping thresholds, just be smart! Make sure you never make purchases you wouldn't have otherwise just to get to the free shipping! If you are close, you can always look on the store's site for items that you have been planning to buy anyway and see if they happen to have a good deal on that item as well. But if you are far from the threshold, consider just sucking it up and paying the shipping charges rather than ending up with $40 worth of stuff you don't need so that you could save $6.95.

Never buy without searching coupon codes

Make it a rule that you never checkout online before searching for a coupon code. Almost all major retailers will put out coupon codes occasionally that you can find online very easily. The easiest way to do this is to just do a simple google search: "Kohls coupon codes". Different sites will give you different coupon codes available for that site. You can browse if one fits your needs. This is also a great way to find free shipping codes! One thing to watch out for is that many sites only allow one coupon code, so you may not be able to get a percentage off and free shipping, so you need to figure out which choice will save you the most money in the end. 

One way that I really save on kids' clothing is to shop stores when they have out good coupon codes. Many blogs such as www.moneysavingmom.com or www.myfrugaladventures.com post when store have good coupon codes out so that you can check if there are any good deals. For instance, when Children's Place has 25% off coupon codes, I will check their site (especially clearance!) for anything that is a good deal with the coupon code. You never want to feel like you should make a purchase simply because of a good coupon code, but stacking these codes with a sale is a great way to hit awesome prices.

Use sites that compare prices

This has become easier than ever now that search engines have become so user friendly. I generally will just google search a particular item to see what the item is selling for at various stores. If you need something more user friendly, sites like Nextag.com for froogle.com are specially made for searching different sites for their prices. You do still have to do a fair amount of the legwork since these will not always account for shipping prices or coupon codes available, but it is a great starting point and will give you an idea of what prices are realistic for the item.

Amazon wishlists

Amazon wishlists are so helpful, especially when you are in the market for an item that you aren't in any hurry to purchase. For example, I have been wanting a particular toy for Delaney for awhile, but they are a little pricey. Since she is in no hurry for more toys, I am waiting until I can catch it at an excellent price. This is easier when I can check back frequently to quickly see the price the item is at. Though this won't tell me what the item is selling for at every site, Amazon tends to be the cheapest and most flexible with their prices, so it is a good place to watch.

Something new that I just learned about today is the search alert on Money Saving Mom. With this free tool, you can find an item on Amazon and set your buy at price for that item. This tool will email you when the item drops to that price so that you don't miss it! I do realize that there are probably at least 14,000 Smartphone apps that do this same thing, but for a boring phone user like me this is pretty exciting!

Cashback sites

This has got to be one of my favorite tips ever, and one I only learned about a year or so ago! Did you know that there are actual, legit websites that pay you cashback when you start your shopping at their site? There are probably a lot out there, but my two favorites are Shop At Home and Ebates. These are both very easy to use and I have personally received checks from both so I can tell you they are legit! If you get in the habit of always starting at these sites (always check both, but I can tell you that Shop At Home is almost always the better deal) you can really get some good, free money! Most sites average cashback around 5% with promotions going all the way up to 20% cashback! This doesn't all seem like that much, but if you do a lot of your shopping online like I do, it really adds up. I use Shop at Home the most and about every 3 months I will get a check of around $20 from them (your cashback all compiles until you hit the $20 mark). I know that isn't a huge sum of money, but at about $80 a year for something that is risk free and takes almost no time, that is a pretty good deal. I have actually installed the Shop At Home toolbar on my computer so I don't even have to try to remember to go to the site first- I automatically gives me the cashback anytime I shop somewhere that qualifies. 

I think that about covers all the little tricks I know- I am sure there are more? Do you have any awesome tips for saving money with online shopping?

Oh, none of these blogs paid me to talk about them. The Ebates and Shop At Home links are my referral links that give me credit for referring you if you decide to join, yada yada. :)

October 23, 2012

Book review: 21 Days to a More Disciplined Life

I have now been a stay at home mom for almost 6 months. It started out with a few weeks of tending to Jameson after his surgery, then the morning sickness started. The morning all the time sickness didn't finally go away until around late August, which means that I have only been able to just start getting the hang of this whole stay at home mom thing. I am discovering that there is a learning curve to this, which is something I HATE. I don't like to not be good at things, especially something that is so important to me. It didn't take me long to realize that what I was most needing was discipline and routine.

So, when I found out that my favorite blogger Crystal Paine from www.moneysavingmom.com was putting out the 21 Days to a More Disciplined Life, I knew I was sold! I was following her blog when she did this as a blog series but it wasn't something that I chose to follow at the time- the timing just wasn't right. But this eBook release was perfect timing!

Now, I will tell you that this is a bit of a hard book to review. It isn't really a book that is intended to be read cover to cover, but rather day by day following the indicated steps. Seeing as how I didn't get my copy until late last week, I was definitely not able to complete the full 21 days process yet! However, I can tell you that the book is well written and easy to follow. I love that she gave multiple real life examples and that she writes in such an encouraging way. After reading the book, I was so excited to finally get started. I have only  completed day one so far, but am so excited to see some results in my daily routines!

If you are interested in downloading a copy, here is a link! And best yet- it is only $.99 through Thursday, available in PDF and Kindle versions.

(PS- No, I am not getting paid for my review. The link is my affiliate link that earns me a portion on books purchased through this link). :)

October 1, 2012

Goals for the week: How I did in the week of a vacation!

I had such a good week! It could possibly have to do with the fact that half of the week's goals were met by having fun with my family, but I'll take a win where I can get it!

  • Continue to work on getting to bed by 10 am and be up by 7 am. I did such a great job at this! I even continued it through vacation, which wasn't as difficult since I was so exhausted at the end of each day and was excited to get ready for the day each morning!
  • Have house cleaned up prior to leaving for vacation Until I made it a point last summer to come home to a clean house, I totally didn't understand why someone would put time in to cleaning when they are trying to get ready for a vacation. But I tried it and discovered that it is AMAZING to come home to a house that can be relaxed in when you are worn out from vacation!
  • Get family packed up prior to leaving I have a little confession to make- I have actually started LIKING packing for the family. Weird, I know. But I have gotten it down to such a system that it isn't so stressful and it feels so good to get somewhere and know that I have planned for everything without toting along our entire house!
  • Stay within budget while on vacation I don't mean to brag, but we rocked this one! We actually came home with money LEFTOVER. We have never returned from a vacation with money to spare, and once upon a time, returned with a stack of credit card debt (I plan to post a blog about how we did this soon!)
  • Enjoy some family time during vacation!!!! We had a WONDERFUL time. It was such a low stress, relaxing, enjoyable time!

Goals for this week:

  • Keep up with daily chore list
  • Blog about vacation budgeting
  • Plan Sunday School class
  • Get list of words for language book to Lona (Delaney's speech helper)
  • Work on sight words with Jameson
  • Work on obtaining a location for playgroup 
  • Work on getting house prepared for new pictures

September 24, 2012

Goal Making Monday: Getting ready for vaca!!!

Did okay, but not awesome last week...

  • Keep up with the daily chore list (no, really!!!)- Almost did perfect on this! I got super busy toward the end of the week so I didn't finish great. But I have definitely improved!
  • Continue to work on getting to bed by 10 pm and get up before 7 am- Almost perfect on this, too! Just a few nights I didn't make it to bed on time! I also was up by 7 am every morning except the one where the kiddos were staying at grandmas- who can blame me???!!!
  • Do one craft with kids- FAIL!
  • Organize a playgroup to take place in the next couple of months (I have been a part of a mom's group since I started staying home and am feeling like it is time for me to start setting up some activities instead of just going to them! I can't really have it at home since I live out of town so I have to figure out a location. Hoping I can come up with something fun!)- I haven't set anything up for sure, but I am working on this!
  • Work on sight words with Jameson and speech temptations with Delaney- Only got to work on this a little, but did do it!
  • Prepare Sunday school for the next two weeks since I will not be there the last weekend of September
  • Drop off Little Britches items Thursday morning and work volunteer shift Thursday night
  • Enjoy some shopping at Little Britches with the hubby on Friday night followed by a late anniversary dinner!

Goals for this week:
  • Continue to work on getting to bed by 10 am and be up by 7 am.
  • Have house cleaned up prior to leaving for vacation
  • Get family packed up prior to leaving
  • Stay within budget while on vacation
  • Enjoy some family time during vacation!!!!

September 17, 2012

Goal Making Monday: The week that was eaten by Little Britches

This week didn't really go as planned. I really thought that tagging wouldn't take a whole lot longer and that I could get it out of the way and move on with the week. This just wasn't the case- it took me an entire day and a half! Now, this was definitely not committed tagging as I was also having to keep two children alive during the day as well. 
  1.  Find out the baby’s gender Monday night, go to dinner to celebrate! We found out that we are having a little girl which was a total shock because I was sure I was having a boy! We went to Chilis after dinner with a coupon for the kids to eat free and Shaun and I got the 2 for $20 combo. Since we had a few dollars left on a gift card, we ate dinner out for less than $20! I was pretty satisfied!
  2.  Finish tagging for Little Britches (has to be a priority- last day to enter is the 16th!!!) Done! Yea!
  3.  Take Delaney to a library story-time while Jameson attends preschool This is definitely going to become a weekly event. She absolutely loved it. It was a "Move and Groove" storytime so there was a perfect mix of songs and stories so it kept her attention well!
  4.   Initiate some "communication temptations" for Delaney around the house (She is really doing great on catching her speech up, these will give her more opportunities to use her words!)- We didn't get any of the formal things done I wanted to do, but I have been making more of a commitment to helping her speech on a daily basis and it is going great!
  5.  Prepare for toddler Sunday school and print off schedule hardcopies to keep at church 
  6.  Keep up with daily chore list- this may be a little difficult since I have to get tagging done! I’ll of course keep the house livable, but extra cleaning has to go on the back burner this week!- Heh, yeah, not so much. Shaun did help me get the house back to normal at the end of the week, but I really had to get the tagging done! So happy that I can get back to a little normalcy this week!?
  7.  Do one craft with the kids This technically got done. I asked the kids if they wanted to do a craft or help me make cookies and they wanted to cook, so that won out!
  8.  Do one school work/ coloring activity with kiddos Jameson really wasn't interested in "school work" this week and I want to keep it fun so I didn't push it. We did do a lot of coloring. I also am starting to work with him on his sight words so that kind of replaced this activity.
  9.  Start making it a priority to go to bed before 10 o’clock and get up before 7 o’clock (I was AWESOME at this when I first started staying home, but my morning sickness switched me to survival mode. Now that I am feeling better I need to start getting up earlier again! I can get so much more done when I get up before the kids!)- Um... I tried? E for effort?
  10. Attend the K-State game with the hubby! This would have been a much better time if a certain little in utero daughter of mine hadn't been kicking my bladder the whole game causing non-stop bathroom trips!
Goals for the week:

  • Keep up with the daily chore list (no, really!!!)
  • Continue to work on getting to bed by 10 pm and get up before 7 am
  • Do one craft with kids
  • Organize a playgroup to take place in the next couple of months (I have been a part of a mom's group since I started staying home and am feeling like it is time for me to start setting up some activities instead of just going to them! I can't really have it at home since I live out of town so I have to figure out a location. Hoping I can come up with something fun!)
  • Work on sight words with Jameson and speech temptations with Delaney
  • Prepare Sunday school for the next two weeks since I will not be there the last weekend of September
  • Drop off Little Britches items Thursday morning and work volunteer shift Thursday night
  • Enjoy some shopping at Little Britches with the hubby on Friday night followed by a late anniversary dinner!