Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Ten on Tuesday: Favorite Health and Beauty Products

Is it a bad sign that the last three posts have all been for Ten on Tuesday?

I think it is definitely a sign that I need to get moving on some of my craft projects! I guess the problem is they are all long-ish term ones. The quickest would be the socks I started for 'Curly', but even they are pretty thin yarn and feet that are getting bigger every day. Maybe I can have a real post when the snow stops here... ;)

So, my favorite health and beauty products... let's see.

1. My pedometer - I have a very competetive nature, whether it is competing with myself or someone else, so keeping track of my steps makes me move more, and know I'm moving more!

2. My mp3 player - during the winter I can't exercise much outside so lately I've been listening to my mp3 player while jogging in place (or around the house). Sometimes if I'm jogging in place I even play on my....

3. Play station 3 - Just the past week or two I've been playing tetris (while listening to music) while doing my jogging - oh how the time does fly!

4. My warm bed - very healthy to get enough sleep, and to stay warm on these cold nights!

5. Water - I love drinking it and it is so good for you

6. My new bar lotion from The Loopey Ewe. I just love it, and my hands are pretty picky about lotions.

7. Small bottles of shower gel from Bath and Bodyworks... I love trying out new scents

8. Vitamins, especially a little iron

9. Blistex - I'm not one for lip stuff, but I don't like chapped

10. Umm, I don't know? What's your favorite?

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Ten on Tuesday: Favorite Childhood Games

Well, this ten on tuesday was favorite childhood games, so....

1. Playing in the sandbox. We had a big one in the backyard and used to make castles and tunnels and if we were really lucky we'd get to bring the hose over and soak the sand and get more creative.

2. Four Square. We used to play this in the street in front of our house - having breaks as cars came down our mostly quiet street. The neighborhood kids could really bounce high enough that you had no chance to send it back!

3. Clue

4. Parcheesi

5. Uno

6. Pretend School - which is actually pretty funny since I homeschool now.

7. Hide and Seek - Backwards or normal

8. Word Association Games - one person starts by saying a word, then it moves around the group in an orderly fashion with each person just saying the first word that comes to them - with the third person playing off of the second person's word and so on. It could get pretty funny in our family.

9. Computer Games - old school atari like digdug, space invaders, qbert, etc or the newer old ones like mixed up mothergoose and where in the world is carmen sandiego?

10. Trivial Pursuit - but we played with a religious set of cards, so I stink at the normal trivial pursuit, but have a fair (jr level) knowledge of scriptures and such!

Help me out family, what am I forgetting? ...or for everyone else, what did you like to play when you were growing up?

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Ten on Tuesday: Ways to be More Organized

In an effort to blog more and put a tiny bit more of myself out there I joined a group for Ten on Tuesday - so every Tuesday you'll get a little list from me to you!

This first Tuesday is Ten ways to be more Organized:

Of course, trying to be more organized I got this post ready on Monday for Tuesday and then accidently published it briefly.... oh well, here it is now, for real on Tuesday.

1.Make a list Sometimes I go days or weeks without a list, but normally I live off of lists. I started on at least half the mornings last week on the days I knew I needed to get stuff done but wanted to sit on the couch all day. I started one this morning and I have 7 out of 15 crossed off already. I also, however, make lists of more long-term things. I have a netflix list of things we want to watch, including 30 items on the save portion that means they aren't out yet, but that way I don't have to remember them. I use goodreads the same way, I can keep track of what I've read, which is interesting, but I love more keeping track of what I want to read so I can use those brain cells for other things.

2.Make a routine When things happen all the time you don't have to think about them, just make sure every once in a while that you are doings things efficiently and keep going without thinking. When it's time for the weekly library trip my kids know I'm going to pull up their record on the computer, see what's due, make sure they can find any books we aren't returning (so I can keep an eye out for any that are 'missing') and make two piles - those we are returning (into a bag) and those we are keeping (back in the other room)

3.Make a schedule Very rarely, on days that I know are going to be crazy I actually write down my mental schedule of the day to make sure I am not trying to fit in too much or forgetting anything. Most of our schedules though are to make sure everyone is on the same page. I write out school schedules for the girls most weeks so they know which days to get different things done - that is kindof a routine too because it's mostly the same every week, but if there's something different it is reflected in the schedule.

4.De-clutter your surroundings If your brain is constantly looking at stuff it will make you tired. If you can never find anything you won't feel organized and your free time will be eaten up by clutter and mess and searching.

5.De-clutter your life People vary, but when I get going too crazy my patience wears thin and I snap much quicker at my family. When I make sure I have enough time to mentally rest life goes a lot smoother.

6.A Place for Everything... and everything in its place. This goes with the declutter surroundings a bit, but also it means others can help. If there is one place for specific items, others can (may?) put them back in the right place so everyone can find them when they need it. Scissors are always in one drawer in my kitchen (at least the big pair of scissors are), the library books go into the bag in the living room, board games go back in the closet, shoes go in the closet, coats get hung up, etc.

7.Plan ahead I know, easier said than done, but if I know I have tons of activities on a certain day I try to have the kids prepare the night before, make sure I know what dinner is going to be, tidy up the house a bit so I won't come back to a mess, etc. I always try to have a book or a craft with me so I won't mind any delays, and remember which things are the important things .

8.Pack a bag When I'm getting ready to go and do something I grab one of my big bags and just throw everything in it. This works for us for two reasons - the kids usually pack their own bags now with me just verbally going through it with them, and I always empty the bag at the end of the day. This keeps me organized on a daily basis with what I think I'll need, and when I can I'll pack it in advance so when it's time to go I can just grab it.

9.Just do it for me, being organized has a lot to do with just doing it. Don't put it off, don't delay... plan and then do it. Especially if you have tasks nagging you to do them and you know they'll only take a few minutes go ahead and get them done. Then you'll have less hanging over your head and you'll be able to see what needs to be done next.

10.Ask others for help I recently finished a book all about changing your life in short, quick ways. (If you're wondering about that book you can look at my goodreads list!) One of the things I learned from the book was that the best way to get closer to someone (friendship-wise) is to ask them for help. Being organized is not a one person Olympic sport. It is a group effort, at least it is if you don't want to end up a little crazy. Everyone, no matter how organized they are, will need help getting through this life. So don't wait for someone to notice, just ask!

Some days I feel more organized than others, but on the days I feel pretty good about it, these are all part of that feeling!

Monday, January 10, 2011

New Year, New Yarn

I had some gift cards hanging over my head that I suddenly felt the need to use before I lost them! I exchanged a couple gift cards for this:

For some reason my husband has placed order with The Loopy Ewe before, but I never had. I got two skeins of smooshy sock yarn and since I had a little left over I decided to try some new lotion. It's the tin that has a pear on it because, it's pear scented. It's a solid lotion that you rub on your hands like a bar of soap - so far it's great! The sock yarn looks wonderful too, but it will be heading to the bins of yarn stash for the moment... I also love ordering from the loopy ewe (or watching my husband open his orders) because they always include just a little something that you didn't order - this time I got a card to keep track of my knitting needles and a couple of sample cards of other yarns.

I had also bought some green fiber for something for my son recently, but when looking for patterns I realised it wasn't quite enough, so I looked on etsy for something green and superwash and found this:

It also came with a little nice smelling satchel that I didn't expect. I love these internet orders that slip something extra in! The little Tomato was very excited to have me open a package and explain that it was eventually for him. It originally came in the mail as one long braid of course, but, since I want to spin them together into one yarn, without carding them completely together, I split them each up into little tiny balls of fiber which I will rotate through as I spin. So here's how they look together:

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

New Year Goals

Every year my family sits down, looks at the goals we had made for the previous year and makes new goals for the new year. 2010 I actually lost our list of goals and then found it two days before the end of the year, so our achievements (of those goals) were pretty dismal. I had made progress on all of my goals, but only actually accomplished 2/5. This year I have five new goals.

1. Make a habit of daily scripture reading
2. Read a majority (average a book a week) of my goodreads list
3. Spin at least 60 oz over the year
4. Go through toys - donate/toss/keep and in 1 or 2 places
5. Deep clean each room twice

I'm actually starting in the New Testament reading just one chapter each day, trying to make it more of a habit than an rushed goal of reading each book. If I stay on target I should finish the New Testament around the end of August, after that I'll hopefully move on to something else for a chapter a day.

I have a current list of 68 books I want 'to read' (well, actually 67 since I am reading one of those currently and haven't moved it over to that list). I had books on there that I originally added to the list last June, which doesn't sound bad except for the fact that I 359 books listed as read since last January. I give myself permission to just delete a book if I'm no longer interested in reading it, otherwise I want to read and work that list down so it isn't where books go for a slow torturous death.

I really enjoy spinning. I feel more calm and relaxed when I get to spin for a bit every day for a while - and while that is not exactly my goal, my aim of 60+ oz for the year is very reasonable. It breaks down into 5 oz a month which I could easily do within a couple of days if I just did it. I have a lot of braids or bags of fiber which are 4 or 5 oz each - so that would be nice to work through, but I also have a couple of larger lots (brown alpaca, grey superwash, more?) that I could spin up for a bigger project...

Toys.... We aren't actually over the top here, but we do have way more toys than we need - especially if you consider that we have three kids who spend a lot of their free time either reading, gaming, imagining, or playing with a couple specific toys.... I just need to psych myself up and go through them and decide and sort. ...and then go through again and make sure that they are stored in a way to make it easy to pull out and play with and put away again.

I am good about keeping the house neat. In fact, I actually kindof like keeping the house neat (especially when everybody in the family grabs a room and straightens and the whole house is done in less than an hour). I am not good at keeping it *really* clean though. Surface clean sure, but a deep scrub the walls and baseboards, mop and wax the wood floors kind of clean is very rare around here. I think that nesting is one part of my previous pregnancies my family really liked because everything got super cleaned and gone through (no, I am not pregnant and not planning to be pregnant, just realized that's the only time I've enjoy scrubbing).

So those are my goals for this year - and I think I'm pretty set for achieving them, as long as I don't lose the list again (which now that I've typed them in matters so much less!)

Monday, January 03, 2011

Christmas and New Years

For Christmas my kids gave me some wonderful presents! 'Curly' and 'Tomato' each gave me a skein of yarn:

The colors are a bit tricky to photograph, but they are purple and maroon. They are meant to be used together as the specific yarn used in a pattern on my new LOOM! :)

Unfortunately the new loom was missing a small hook (which arrived today - thank you webs customer service!) so I started warping it with some of my weaving cotton to practice and learn how this rigid heddle loom works. I look forward to having some fun over the next week or two and then hopefully warping with the new yarn!

My husband also gave me other presents, including a couple of knitting books - Wrapped in Lace by Margaret Stove and Knit. Sock. Love. by Cookie A. both look interesting. He also gave me Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day - which I love the artisan bread book so much I'm excited about these variations.

My other daughter 'Lily' gave me some coupons for extra chores around the house and a whole book of different things I can request of her (running some laundry, sharing with siblings, watching siblings, doing her school work quickly, etc)

I also received a beatles cd and an elvis cd, a gift certificate to webs, and some fun games to play with the family.

During our wonderfully calm (although disappointedly sick) vacation I also finished the fiber that was on the spinning wheel, so I now have this pretty yarn!

We also watched a lot of tv and movies (due to the sickness that travelled through the family) and so I spent a lot of time wanting to work on easy projects - the crochet blanket is pretty simple and straightforward, so I made a lot of progress on that. Currently it is almost big enough for a lap/couch blanket, but I have at least three more large-ish amounts to add and then I'll want to look through both my stash and my husband's for more sock scraps!

I also spun a little silk on the spindle last night, even though my hands are a bit dry it wasn't as bad as I thought and was actually pretty calm and fun.