Friday, January 30, 2009
Wednesday, January 28, 2009
Tuesday, January 27, 2009
Good thing she's cute....
Update - Mallory now has pink eye. YAY DAYCARE!!!
Monday, January 26, 2009
Weight Watchers Update: This week I post a 2# gain. And I'm ok with it. Large meals towards the end of the week and a fundraiser loaded with free wine, cheese, and chocolate. How could I not?
Quiet weekend to report. I was hoping Steve and I could start painting our bedroom, but it didn't work out. I still need to finish the wall prep in the BR and BA. It'll happen and it will look so much better!
We got 2-3" of fluffy snow Saturday night and it was the perfect glinting snow made from perfect snowflakes which I delighted in showing Jenna what a snow flake looks like. After church and lunch she and I dressed in our winter woolies while Steve put Mallory down for a nap. Jen and I went sledding. Yes it was cold, about 10 degrees. But we dressed in layers and She ran around the hills while I pulled her around. In fact, I was sweating pulling her up the hill. We had a great time, and then we read some books and snuggled before her nap. I haven't had fun in the snow like that for quite some time. And because of this I'm anxious for when Mallory is old and big enough to join us outside.
Friday, January 23, 2009
Thursday, January 22, 2009
Mal's appointment was very quick, just a follow-up ear infection from a couple of weeks ago. She was back at daycare an hour before my appointment so I drove to the clinic and decided to go for a walk! YAY ME!!
As I started my walk through the neighborhood I saw all sorts of plastic bottles and aluminum cans just laying around. I really wished I had a bag in my car so I could pick this stuff up and bring it home to recycle, but alas, t'was not meant to be.
I must have really been upset about not having a plastic bag with me as I kept having a discussion in my head about keeping one in the car just in case. There was still a fair amount of ice on the sidewalks and at crossways so I spent a good deal of my time looking down at the ground watching my step so I wouldn't fall.
Sure enough when I crossed a street, there waiting for me on the sidewalk was a dry brown paper bag with handles from Panera! So I picked it up and started collecting recyclables for the next 20 minutes until my appointment time. The bag was filled when I was done.
So I said a little prayer of thanks for the beautiful day, the nice gap in appointments that allowed me to get a walk in, and for leaving me a paper bag to continue my small quest of cleaning up Omaha.
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
First to go on is the plastron which is, basically, a half-jacket comprising of one sleeve. This goes over your attacking shoulder. Next is the jacket, usually a back-zip. Then you have the glove, mask, and foil.
We reviewed advance and retreat, lunge and recover. We learned parry four and parry seven which are defensive manuevers to protect your off-shoulder and off-hip. We even got to jab each other with the foils!! *squeals*
This is a video example of parry 4. Parry 7 is similar only that the blade is dropped a bit to protect the off-hip.
We were also informed at the end of class that we can stick around for another hour, if we wanted, for another hour to practice after class. I'll have to do that next week. I do know that my right thigh is going to be tender in the next few days as this is my lead leg and there's a lot of pressure on it as the video clip shows. But so far I'm really enjoying the class!
I'm just waiting until we get to discuss Cappofello, Bonnetti's Defense, and Hisangleeper.
Monday, January 19, 2009
Weight Watchers Update! Decent loss to report; down 1.6# bringing me down to 214.6 for a total loss of 43.4#.
I've often wondered and reflected on why is this go-around so much more successful than my previous attempts? I'm approaching my all-time (recent) low of 205 a mere three years ago. Granted I was running at the time, of which ain't happenin' now. I am at the weight when Steve and I got married 11 years ago. However, after two children, things just aren't quite put back where they should be. Kind of like the state of our house with two kids.
The reason I'm doing this at home and not attending meetings is simple. This is my third or fourth trip on the WW merry-go-round so I know the schpeel, I know the routine, I know the tricks, and I know my pitfalls. So why should I spend $40/month just to hear it all over again?
After my reflection I think I've come to the conclusion that, while it never should have been a competition, I made the meetings into a competition. You want the attention and accolades of standing up in the group, receiving your ribbon or star. And though the leaders never said anything negative if you gained in a week, I felt that they were in some silent, non-verbal way. And if I didn't get stars as quickly as some other members I got discouraged.
This time around at home I'm not proving anything to anyone. I'm doing this for me. As I always have before. But I don't have an audience to prove anything to. Does that even make sense?? It never should have been about them and proving myself to them. But I made it that way and that's why I think I failed.
Which is where I think Steve is struggling. He sees me dropping over 40# and he'd only been able to do 10#. Granted, he doesn't eat fruits of veggies, doesn't drink enough water, doesn't get additional exercise outside of work. But those are his choices. I think I've given him the tools he needs to be sucessful, but just like quitting everything else, if you're not ready to make the changes then no one can make you. I want him to succeed. Not only for his health but for the furture of his family.
Friday, January 16, 2009
Thursday, January 15, 2009
It's been my understanding that the Cheetah Girls is geared towards the 'tween generation. I asked Jenna, "Do the Cheetah Girls wear really short dresses?"
"Yeah." I was not happy to hear this was being shown to 5 year-olds.
Yesterday I called the principal and voiced my concern. She had never heard of the Cheetah Girls but told me she'd look in to it. In my conversation with the principal I acknowledged that the teacher can't control what is brought in for show-n-tell. I was dismayed that she chose to show it.
I'm not a prude by any means, but given the chronic, wide-spread, low self-esteem issues that our Nation's girls have already, I don't need for it to start with my five year old.
A couple of hours later she phoned me back and said she had discussed this with Jenna's teacher. Her teacher said it was a 'G' rated video and they watched about 15 minutes of it. She did indicate that from now on no outside videos would be shown unless the teacher had screened them first.
Regardless if it's a 'G' rated video, is it still appropriate for five year olds? In my mind, no. Then again, parents are over-protective at times; sometimes for good reason, and sometimes not.
I may have over-reacted but I'm sticking to my guns. I don't care if the Cheetah Girls is on the Disney Channel. There's a lot of shows on that channel that are not appropriate for pre-schoolers.
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
Outside of my utter love and devtion to all things Princess Bride, I've been intrigued with fencing for 20 years when I was at Shakespeare On The Green. There was a group of fencers giving demonstrations during the pre-show. Now that the girls are older and Jenna can get herself ready for bed while Steve puts Mallory down, I figured this might be a good time to give it a try.
Last night we just worked on footing; en garde, advance, retreat, lunge, and recover. I took three advil when I came home as my quads and shoulders are mushy. And next week I need to remember to take my albuterol before class as I was coughing and wheezing a fair amount when I came home. YAY exercise-induced asthma!!!
Enter the jokes, Tom.....There's about 20 of us in class. I'm the only woman and one of the oldest. Yes, I'm surrounded by pre-pube boys!!! Oh well. I still enjoyed it and we were informed that in March we'll be eligible for a beginners tourny!!
I have no idea how far and how long I'll do this, but it's something of interest. Dare I say, I'm also interested in belly dancing???
Monday, January 12, 2009
Not a bad weekend to report. Just the usual domestic crap. Steve and I are taking today off as we're hoping to re-fi the house. Jenna's Christmas Program has also been rescheduled for this afternoon. As we both have floating holidays hours we decided to make a day of it and get stuff done.
I did manage to clean out the bottom of my closet. I've been saving onesies and shirts that the grils' have worn that are my favorites. I had been keeping thm in a tote but the tote was so big my shoes wouldn't fit and kept spilling out onto the floor. Now, despite common myths of the female gender, I am not a shoe maven. Regardless I was getitng mildly annoyed.
The next step was to find my rotary cutter and cutting board. Why you ask? It is my plan that when I'm done collecting clothes I'm going to make a quilt out of my favorite swatches. Granted, it's still going to be a few years down the road before I'm ready to tackle this project. But that's my plan.
I was never this sentimental before I had kids.
Thursday, January 8, 2009
In it, it tells of a 16-year old girl who gave birth to a boy and drowned him in the toilet, then threw him away in a plastic bag.
Threw. him. away. No regard to his life or his potential.
This baby didn't ask to be conceived. This baby didn't ask to be born. This baby didn't ask to be killed.
Meanwhile, there are families yearning to love a baby as their own.
Did the State fail this baby, or does it rest solely on the girl and her parents? Did they seek every opportunity to provide a stable and loving home for this boy?
I think of my own children as I grapple with the thought that there are people out there who are incapable of loving children and therefore, subject them to verbal, physical, and sexual abuse, who are willing to sell their children for drugs.
For years I regarded myself as Pro-Choice. But once I had children of my own and discovered the joy and heartache they bring to me on a daily basis, I find that my views have changed.
Help me understand what goes through peoples' minds when they make such decisions like this.
Then again, maybe I don't want to know.
Tuesday, January 6, 2009
I can't help but wonder is this recession isn't such a bad thing. Think about it....
During The Great Depression, granted things were a lot worse, but people had to ration and scrimp and make sacrifices to make ends meet. Enter WWII. Again, more rationing and living within their means, making sacrifices. After the war our country saw a HUGE explosion of businesses, inventions, and ideas.
The country was in unity.
And things got done. Progress was made.
But it didn't come easy. Nearly everyone had to give up something in order to contribute to the overall success of our country. We quickly became the most prosperous country in the world thanks to a lot of hard work.
Are we that bad now? Not even close. But with so many huge corporations folding because of lousy planning and infrastructure, this could very well pave the way for "the little guy" to step up and fill in the gaps and rebuild the economy from the ground up.
And look at where we are now. Gasoline sales are down, first because of gas being $4/gallon, then because of slower economic times. People are walking more, driving less, saving a little extra money. People had to buy cheaper, more fuel-efficient vehicles.
Holiday sales were down everywhere. People were unsure about their next paycheck. People found other ways to celebrates the holidays that didn't involve searching for the perfect gift.
We, as a nation, are capable of solving this and coming out for the better. That's just who we are. That is what this country was founded on; ideas, visions, and dreams.
Maybe I'm just the eternal optomist.
Monday, January 5, 2009
Weight Watcher's Update: The holidays are finally over and it's time to get back on the wagon. I didn't do as badly as I had feared with 5w off. I started Thanksgiving at 220 and ended Christmas at 228. New Year's week I unofficially started up again, meaning I wasn't counting points yet but drinking more water and eating more fruit and throwing out yummy treats like chocolates and cookies. That really hurts, to throw away yummies like that. But it's the long-term goal that I'm shooting for. Saturday Steve and I officially started counting points and my weigh-in was a pleasant 221.8 (down from 228 the previous week) so not near the hole to crawl out of as I had anticipated. It's going to be a bit more difficult with exercise and the weather as I really just don't like going to a gym. However, next week I start beginners fencing. I'm looking forward to that!
Boy, am I glad the holidays are over! As much as we say that we're going to cut back and scale down the food, gifts, and celebrations, we never do. Why is that? The holidays went well, all things considered. Steve and I finished our kitchen face-lift about three days before Christmas Eve. I'm sure not having that stress right before the holidays would have made things a lot easier, but where's the fun in that??? I didn't take any formal "before-and-after" shots but I think I have enough here to give you a general idea.
In this picture you can sort of see the white-ish cabinets and the slightly darker wall color. Too milk-toast for me. Th countertops are a light terra cotta-esque with splotches of brown, cream, and teal in it. I never liked the countertops because they just didn't look good against the walls. Steve bought two unpainted base cabinets and ordered a custom countertop. Thankfully the formica we have is still being produced! I decided to paint the kitchen at the same time. Trying to find a paint color proved more challenging that I had anticipated. With mom's help we settled on a butterscotch.
Here's the new addition. Whenever we get around to actually redoing the kitchen this is what I had envisioned; a full horse shoe (the side withe DW has the sink, and there's another back of cabinets behind me). It's the most logical use of space.In this picture you can see that I sponged one wall a metallic copper. THis entry way leads into the dining room. I found the plate at Pier 1 and it's in brown, copper, and gold. The counter chairs we got at Nebraska Furniture Mart on close-out for $70/each. There's an inset of verdigris and copper-colored stone and I re-upholstered the chairs in a copper micro suede. The valance I whipped up in one afternoon and it's a shiney striped fabric with maroon, copper, gold, bronze and I put a maroon woven ribbon on the bottom edge for physical and visual weight.
We figured that for less than $800 we have a new kitchen with more drawers and counter space and this will hold us for a few more years. We'd like to do a complete tear-out with stained wood cabinets and new appliances, but for now, this works just fine.
Time to get back to work in earnest. It's nice working for a university that's closed during the holidays so I don't necessarily have to work. There were a couple of days where the kids went to daycare and I stayed home. But, I guess all good things must come to an end.
I know there is more to report but right now it's not coming out. I hope all of you had a peaceful and successful holiday season.
It's good to be back.