Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Mornings

When we had to be at school at 8am, mornings were always crazy. Me frustrated, kids whining, breakfast sometimes in the car, all of us forgetting something seemingly important. We were in a constant state of "hurry up." And we were late a lot. Usually just by a minute or two, but enough to once warrant an automated letter from the school district about tardies. Not a great way to start the day. Every day.

We didn't choose homeschooling to avoid hectic mornings, but it has been a beneficial side effect. My kids sleep until the wake up (anywhere from 7-8am). If I'm still in bed, we cuddle and giggle and talk and read and check the weather all over the world. Some mornings I fix them breakfast, other mornings they scavenge for something to eat. We do a few morning chores. I have time to drink a tea and organize my thoughts, and we usually start some school work by 8:30 or 9. No yelling, no crying, no hurrying.

It's nice. Really nice.

Two days a week, we still have to be somewhere by about 8:30am. No one really cares if we show up a few minutes late occasionally. Definitely no tardies. And somehow without the daily hurry hassle and pressure to get there, we are right on time.

Usually.

Monday, January 14, 2013

The Flu

We had it all last week. It stinks. The only one who didn't get sick is Matt. He got the flu shot. Boo.

Mid-week I texted my good friend and pediatrician and told her next fall when it is time for the flu vaccines to remind me how crappy I feel.

The amazing thing is that I actually accomplished a decent amount despite feeling like I could drop dead at any moment.  Probably because we hunkered down for most of the week. It was a good, cold week to be homebound.

I'm determined to follow the Home Storage Solutions declutter program, and I'm actually almost two full weeks ahead (preparing for the weeks we'll be on vacation and for any times when I might lack motivation). I rearranged my whole kitchen and pantry. Pulled it all out - every last can/appliance/utensil - and set it all over the kitchen. Went through the pile one by one. Didn't get rid of much (just a medium sized box), but I took some advice and moved some items out of prime storage real estate. So much happier with the new setup, even if we can't remember where anything is.

I also got a bit of batch cooking done. It *might* have been a delay tactic when I got a bit overwhelmed by the kitchen reorganization. Because what better time to start cooking up a storm than when there is stuff on every surface of your kitchen?? Made a double batch of red beans with sausage (for red beans and rice all winter), 18 salmon cakes for the freezer, cherry chocolate chop cookie dough balls in the freezer, a triple batch of Chex mix, and at least one more something that I can't quite recall at the moment.

We also got an extra week of school vacation as I gave up on starting back to homeschooling last week. There was just no way. But I also cleaned and rearranged our homeschool room (did I blog about turning my office into our homeschool room? I love it!) so we were ready to start fresh again this morning. And we did start fresh... this afternoon...

Sunday, January 06, 2013

2013 Goals

So just writing about not feeling like blogging made me feel like blogging again! That, and it is goal setting time for me, which I love. And for which I always feel more accountable if I share. We've been up in the mountains since last weekend (9 whole days!) which has been lovely and relaxing. But since we started the New Year on vacation, I haven't really had the chance or felt the need to get going on goals. We are heading home this evening, and now I'm ready!

I'm going to keep it pretty easy for myself this year. I decided to give myself another year on my 40 for 40 list (which maybe I'll update later this week). I might also switch up some things on the list.

Maybe I'll just keep it at that. I have a few new life projects that I'm starting, but I don't really know if I want to make them into *New Year Resolutions* per se. That list includes:
  • "Get Back to Organized" plan (because I'm just not quite where I want to be with life organization... and I don't really even have a plan... just taking it one step/project at a time), 
  • an effort to teach myself to be independent with strength training
  • some changes in our homeschool plan (more specific character building, start a meditation practice with the kids, etc)
  • I would still like to work through Simple Mom's One Bite at a Time list.
  • I'm also going to try this 52 Weeks Organizing Challenge from Home Storage Solutions 101, because I am a complete sucker for programs/challenges/lists/etc.
And maybe I'll blog about what I get accomplished, and maybe I won't...

Friday, January 04, 2013

To Blog or Not to Blog

I've been toying with the idea of stopping the blog for awhile... actually a little longer than awhile...

Seems like every December I start to feel like the blog is more of a hassle than a benefit. Usually I get the urge to start blogging again after Christmas, but not this year. At least not yet.

I made the decision several Decembers ago to bring the blog down a notch. I decided to switch the focus to my family and my thoughts. For those who have been around long enough, Greenstylemom had just been mentioned in Real Simple magazine. My page views soared through the roof, and I was feeling the pressure to step it up. At about the same time, someone I knew was violently killed. It was not a great way to end what had been a really tough year for me anyway. (I never mentioned any of this on the blog - that is a funny thing about my blog. Most people - even friends & family - tend to think that if they read the blog, they know what is going on in my life. What I put on the blog is such a fraction of life.) I took it all pretty hard and took a break from blogging. So it seems that every December I now fall back into the same funk that mostly manifests itself in a lack of blogging.

It has also been irking me that certain people get a regular glimpse into my life and thoughts, but I don't get any details from them.  A petty, usually fleeting feeling, but there it is.

We are up in the mountains skiing and relaxing this week. Even though we celebrated New Years, I don't quite feel the newness yet. Maybe when we get out of vacation mode and back to real life, I'll feel more inspired.

Thursday, January 03, 2013

At Least I'm Sleeping Well

I may not be getting much done lately, but at least I'm sleeping well! Back before the holidays, Plush Beds was kind enough to send me a couple natural latex pillows. I'm pretty dedicated to my feather pillow but wanted to try these out. 

I was a bit doubtful when I pulled them out of the box just because they *looked* a little firm, but Matt and I both thought they were pretty comfy. Apparently latex pillows are sometimes known for having a chemically smell when brand new, but I didn't notice it at all. The pillows are also supposed to be good for deterring dust mites (which we thankfully don't have a problem with in Colorado!) and allergies (which we also don't have in our house!).

I had planned to do a bunch more research on eco pillows and blog about these pillows back in early December, but life happens and that research/blogging didn't! Never really did get the research done, but this article from the Sierra Club seems like a good resource if you want to read more about pillows.

Plush Beds usually only offers the pillows as a bonus gift for a latex mattress but would like to offer them as a separate item for sale at a promotional discount to blog readers. You can buy the pillows separately by calling in an order to 1-888-449-5738 and mentioning Greenstylemom for a buy one get one free promotion (limited to one offer per household). A natural talalay latex pillow sells for $79, $89, or $99 each (Standard, Queen, and King Sizes).

I am currently still going back and forth all night between the latex pillow and my old feather pillow depending on if I'm sleeping on my side or my tummy. Maybe I'll be a 2 pillow girl from now on. 

And I'm already eyeing Plush Beds for when we need to replace our RV mattresses...

*I don't make any revenue from my blog. I'll occasionally receive a product to review, and I like to pass on any good deals that I think readers might be able to use. But that's it.

**Another interesting tidbit... my sister and I both pronounce the word "pillow" as pell-o instead of pill-o. Are we the only ones?

Wednesday, January 02, 2013

WIP Wednesday - 2013 - #1


Getting my WIP list out here as part of my "Get Back to Organized" push.  It is much easier for me to keep my quilting list separate from all my other life projects. For 2013 I would really, really, really like to make a dent in my WIP pile (sadly, this is only a partial list... I'm going to better inventory my projects when I get home). Most of my quilts get stuck at basting and binding. I might have to have a basting weekend soon. I'm also going to do my best to work from my stash and not buy fabric unless it is something specific I need for a specific quilt. Would also like to start a scrap quilt or two (or three!) to use up some scraps.

Projects To Be Blogged
  • Crazy Clown Colors Quilt
  • Halloween Table Runner
  • Xmas gifts for kids
  • Kids' name banners
  • Multiple mug rugs
  • Mom's quilt (formerly Repro Quilt)
Binding
  • Halloween Quilt
  • Valentine's Day Table Runner
  • Sunday Picnic Quilt (so close to being done!)
Basting/Quilting
  • Pinwheel Quilt
  • M's Quilt
  • Carpenter Star Quilt (need to make a backing)
  • Wonky Pink Quilt
Cut and Piece Stage
  • Ticker Tape Quilt
  • Green Squares Quilts x2
  • Sew-In Quilt
  • Scrappy Placemats - might make these in to mug rugs for gifts...
  • Penny Lane Quilt
  • Under the Sea Quilt
  • Bluebird of Happiness Quilt