New Year, New Me, New You

Happy New Year!

After almost a 6-year hiatus, I have decided to try and resuscitate my blog from so many years ago.

A lot can happen in six years.  My sweet little daughter has turned into a teenager and is almost unrecognizable at times.  My sweet toddler boy is starting to require showers on a daily basis because, well, he stinks.  At least he’s not eating me out of house and home.  Yet.

But that’s what happens when kids grow up.  They change.  Usually for the better, thankfully.  It’s a rocky time, though, and it’s by far the most difficult challenge I have faced.  And I’ve managed to throw myself at some new challenges in the last few years, too, including finding a new desire for health and fitness.  In 2013, I started taking a class with some friends to get in better shape and lose weight.  I lost a total of 30 pounds, although since then I have managed to gain back some of that.  Maintaining a workout schedule, as well as the challenge of changing a diet for the better, has proven to be significant challenge for someone who loves junk food and being lazy.

But my road to fitness has led me to new friends and new adventures.  2015, I completed my first Spartan Race – a sprint.  2016, I completed my first Spartan Trifecta – a sprint, a super and a beast.  I also finished two laps of a Warrior Dash and a couple of other Spartan sprints.  My daughter completed her first Spartan Sprint, and my son completed his first Spartan Kids Race.  2017, I have a goal of two trifectas, possibly 3, another Warrior Dash, a Savage Race, and it looks like a Ragnar Trail race.  It’s gonna be a busy year.

 

On being a digital packrat

OK, I have a confession to make.  I’m something of a packrat.  I’m not yet ready to be featured on an episode of Hoarding, thankfully, but I do tend to hang on to things “in case I might need it later.”

 

But I’m working on purging my belongings.  It’s a slow and painful process because I’ll make good progress and then I’ll come across something that I just know I’ll need again someday.  It all goes downhill from there.

 

I’m not here to talk about my struggles with physical things, however.  I’m talking today about being a digital packrat.  Yes, there is such a thing.  Last week, I started with 6,782 emails in my inbox, dating back to 2007.  Yep.  I know, sad, isn’t it?  So I have started deleting them.  I don’t try and  delete them all in one day (cannot possibly imagine how long that would take) and some I have to look at again because, really?, there might be some important information from 2008 that I might need again this year.

 

Today, I’m down to 4,677 emails in my inbox.  Maybe once I get that down to a manageable number, I’ll start looking through my digital photos because I’m sure there are some that should be deleted.

 

I have 12,967 pictures, after all.

Decisions, decisions…

A few weeks ago, I entered in a raffle to help a friend raise money to start her own store-front business, Chameleon Clogs, which, by the way, just recently celebrated it’s Open House in Nags Head, NC.  I bought two tickets hoping I would win something, but feeling like “yeah, sure, I never win anything.”  Well, guess what?  I won!!  A custom pair of ribbon clogs made just for moi.  How cool is that?

So, this is what arrived in the mail today:

Ribbons and leathers galore!  Oh, how is a girl to choose?

I could choose from these:

or perhaps these:

But what about this?

Or perhaps something like this?

Or maybe even from these?

Decisions, decisions.  Oh what is a girl to do?

Eminem and The Swagger Wagon

I am a product of suburbia.  I have the stay-at-home-mom thing going on.  I have a great husband, beautiful children, amazing friends, a house that we hate (yeah, I know that doesn’t fit in with the picture I’m trying to paint, but we really don’t like the house and hope to sell it in the spring), and the “company car” of a stay-at-home-mom: the mini-van.

I have to say, whoever came up with the ad campaign for The Swagger Wagon is a marketing genius.  He or she must be a product of today’s family: busy mom, hip dad (but with a receding hairline), cute kids; otherwise, the commercials wouldn’t be nearly so funny.  There’s one in particular that I just love and it’s because of the rapping.  Many friends and I grew up in the 80’s with the classic rappers like  Sugar Hill, Erik B & Rakim, Run DMC, and Public Enemy, so it’s not unheard of for us little white girls to start rapping along when we happen to hear one of these songs on the 80’s lunch hour on the local hits radio station.

Which leads me to the other part of this post.  I love Eminem.  I can’t really explain it because rap isn’t something I generally listen to (80’s rap notwithstanding).  But there are several cuts off of Aftermath, The Eminem Show and Encore that are always included in playlists on my ipod and I even managed to like one or two off of of Relapse, although I don’t listen to them regularly.  But I have to say Recovery Rocks!!

I do know that Marshall Mathers is inflammatory at the least, but have you ever taken the time to actually listen to (or even read) his lyrics?  To quote a fellow blogger, Sean Platt, “Eminem brings all his verbal virtuosity to Recovery, weaving in and out of wordplay, as though a single misstep or broken syllable would crush his credibility.”

Now, that’s not why I like him.  Well, ok, it’s not the ONLY reason why I like him.  The rhythms and beats of the music resonate within and I find myself dancing and singing along as loud as I can while folding a pile of laundry or stripping wallpaper in Little Man’s room.  Which is quite amusing to the outside observer, I’m sure, because I only listen with the ipod since the kids are usually around.  But, yeah, this little white girl digs Eminem.

I’m sure I get some interesting looks in my Swagger Wagon, too, when I Love the Way You Lie (censored, of course) is played on the radio.  You know if I happen to be without the kids, I have it cranked, right?  Because that’s the only way to really appreciate Eminem, as loud as you can.  But even if the kids are in the car, I don’t change it, I just adjust the speakers so that they’re not playing in the back and pretend that’s enough. Hey, it’s censored, right?  Yep, I get that “mom of the year” award, don’t I?

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ql-N3F1FhW4

I’m a pack rat

I’m not yet qualified for Hoarders on A&E but I do tend to be a pack rat.  Especially when it comes to things my kids have made.  I love to save them.  My problem lies in not knowing what to do with them when I get them so I just pile them up on a desk.

This is where they tend to get piled.  And guess what?  It looks like this after I have moved them to the living room to organize.  I’m not a neat person.  It’s something I struggle with daily.

However, I did get an idea from a friend to do with the projects that are special and that I want to keep ~ Mother’s Day cards, hand and foot prints, notes, things like that.  I bought some 8×11″ scrapbooks on sale and I let the kids pick out the style.  Monkey chose blue and Little Man chose baseball, even though he’s never played the sport.

So I started sorting and adding to the books.

This works out nicely because I can close the book and put it on a shelf.  No more pile of papers.  The downside of this is that many of the projects that were made don’t fit in an 8×11 scrapbook.

So, I still have piles.  Yuck.

Painting cabinets

This past weekend has been a working weekend.  Trey and I decided to tackle something that has been needed in our house for a while.  New cabinets.  Well, since we aren’t really getting new cabinets, we thought we’d paint the ones we have, thus giving them a new look.  Did you know that painting cabinets is a great big pain in the rear?  Well, now you do.  It’s tedious and time consuming and messy and tedious.  Did I mention tedious?

After two full days and a third most-of-the-day, we’re still working on finishing the upper cabinets.  We did get them to the point where the contents can be returned to the cabinets and now all we have to finish are the doors.  But did you catch that?  The upper cabinets, not all the cabinets.  We now have a bi-colored kitchen.  Upper  cabinets are white, although they don’t have doors on them yet, and lower cabinets are still brown.  It’s a great look, let me tell you.

I’m not sure when we’ll get to the lower cabinets.  Hopefully not too long because it really does look funny.  We’ll just have to make sure we set aside more than just a weekend to get it done.

Children cause Adult ADD

I know this may seem a little unorthodox, but I firmly believe children ~ at least my children ~ cause Adult Attention Deficit Disorder.  Seriously.  Why would I make such a wild accusation?  Simple.  Any task I start is almost never done completely anyway.  I’m one to start something then in the middle of that something, see something else that needs to be done so I’ll go do that something then while I’m doing that something, I’ll get distracted by something else I see that needs doing.  For example:  everyday straightening up of the house.  Here’s a typical day:

Head to the kitchen to clean up the dishes but before I start, I notice the dishrag is starting to get stinky so I take it down to the laundry room.  I decide to go ahead and throw in a load of laundry but there are still some clothes in the laundry baskets upstairs.  I fill the machine with what I have and head to collect the rest.  On the way, I pass the living room which still has a few toys so I grab the toys to carry back to the kids’ rooms and drop them off.  I grab the laundry from Monkey’s bedroom and pull it in the hallway, then walk down to our bedroom.  There’s a laundry basket with clean clothes that need folding so I start folding clothes since I’ll need that basket downstairs.  I finish and take a glass from the night before to the kitchen and start washing dishes.  I take some papers from the kitchen counter down to the office and set them on the desk and start going through other papers.  I find something that has to go to the bedroom.  On the way, I trip over Monkey’s laundry basket, which is still in the hallway.  I grab our hamper from the bedroom, add her clothes and go back to the laundry room.  I add more to what’s already in the machine and realize I still have some in the dryer but the clean laundry basket is still upstairs from when I was folding them before….. it’s a vicious cycle for someone who gets distracted from a project easily.

Now, this is what happens when the kids are home:

Head to the kitchen to clean up the dishes but before I start, I notice the dishrag is starting to get stinky so I take it down to the laundry room.  On the way, Little Man asks if I can help put his transformer back together, so I go to sit on the chair, where I have good light, and spend the next 5 minutes making a robot into a car.  I finish and head for the stairs to the laundry room. I decide to go ahead and throw in a load of laundry but there is still some clothes in the laundry baskets upstairs.  Monkey comes looking for me because she has a question about some random topic and we stop to talk about it while I fill the machine with what I have and head to collect the rest.  On the way, I pass the living room which still has a few toys so I grab the toys to carry back to the kids’ rooms and drop them off.  Little Man has a lego rocket ship he built and he wants me to see it.  Monkey is trying to build something else and they start fighting over it.  I go referee the fight before I grab the laundry from Monkey’s bedroom and pull it in the hallway, then walk down to our bedroom.  There’s a laundry basket with clean clothes that need folding so I start folding clothes since I’ll need that basket downstairs. I have to chase the dogs off the bed and they grab some random toy of great importance as they run down the hallway and Monkey starts yelling at the dogs to drop it.  They don’t listen to her and so I chase them down to the dining room and finally get them to drop the toy.  I go back to the bedroom and start back on the clothes.  About half-way through, Little Man wants to show me his lego mountain so I go to his room for a minute.  I find an old sippy cup of water and take that to the kitchen, never finishing the laundry and start washing dishes.  The kids come in wanting snacks.  I finish the dishes and Monkey and I put together snacks.  While they’re eating, I take some papers from the kitchen counter down to the office and set them on the desk and start going through other papers.  I find something that has to go to the bedroom.  On the way, I remind the kids to clean up from their snack and turn off the light. I trip over Monkey’s laundry basket, which is still in the hallway.  She walks by asking another random question about a playdate.  We talk about how her other friends are in school, then she remembers we have Girl Scouts that afternoon, which I had forgotten, and so she goes to get her vest. I grab our hamper from the bedroom, add her clothes and go back to the laundry room, rushing now, because we have to get to Girl Scouts. I add more to what’s already in the machine and realize I still have some in the dryer but the basket is still upstairs on the bed, still with some clean clothes that I haven’t finished folding from before…..

See?  This is why it is my scientific opinion that having children cause Adult Attention Deficit Disorder.