Another Busy Day

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This girl is excited because she has a new tooth!  I actually think her other bottom one has popped through also.  What a big girl!!

I am going to run out of titles to explain how busy my days are.  I have been going 100 miles per hour all day!  I started this morning by getting a menu planned and getting a grocery list together.  I left Miss C and Hubs here while I ran errands.  I went to the Post Office to mail a little gift to a dear friend of mine.  Then ran to Target to pick up some diapers, baby food (all their organic pouches of food are on sale this week, and Miss C loves them!), and a gift card/birthday card for my nephew.  Target has a deal where you can get a Target debit card (not credit card… it directly comes out of your checking account), and you automatically get 5% off every time you use it.  I typically get formula and diapers there (which are big purchases), so I have been thinking about signing up for the debit card.  I may give in and do it next time I go.  5% off everything is nothing to laugh at.  You also get free shipping on their website if you use the Target card.

After Target, I went to the grocery store.  I did splurge and get myself a coffee to enjoy.  I was able to keep groceries around $50 for the week.  We have a lot in the house to work with, so I didn’t have to get a whole lot, especially of the basics.

Here is our menu for this week: (Since Hubs works evenings, our big meals are lunch, and I just have leftovers or mac and cheese or something easy for dinner)

Thursday: Tacos
Friday: Spaghetti
Saturday: Out (I am going to be gone most of the day for our nephew’s birthday, so I didn’t want to have something planned)
Sunday: Chicken Kabobs
Monday: Pasta Toss
Tuesday: Grilled Pizza

Hopefully I can stick to it!  If I had to give us a grade on eating in versus eating out this summer, we would probably get a C.  I definitely have those evenings where I don’t feel like cooking, so I give in and just go grab something quick (and unhealthy).

How do you keep up your motivation to cook at home and eat healthy?  Maybe it would help if I actually enjoyed cooking. 🙂

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Busy, Busy

Whew!  I am exhausted!  I was out of town this past weekend to celebrate my grandma’s 85th birthday.

Here are a couple photos I took while I was there:

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This was the view on the way to my grandma’s house.  I know some people don’t like the flatness of the plains, but I think it’s beautiful!  I especially love the big wind turbines.

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I love this photo of my dad and Miss C.  He was being silly and she thought it was great!  I love that they are both looking straight at each other and she is smiling so big.  Precious!

IMG_20130720_111947Here is a sunflower behind my grandma’s house.  So lovely!

Now I am back and am back to being super busy!  I have a couple projects around the house that will keep me super busy for the next week.  After next Wednesday, it’s going to get even busier!  I will have more information to share later.

School starts back up for teachers on August 15th.  I have not stepped foot in my classroom this summer.  I have a lot to do in there, and really need to get to work and get some things done.  Between now and August 15th I have a lot to get through: 2 days of professional development, 3 photo shoots, 1 nephew’s birthday party, 1 professional soccer game to go to, a classroom to prepare, and the other projects at home I have to get through.  It’s going to be crazy!

My priorities have been in my mind, but I have to say that I haven’t been focusing on them very much.  With life so busy right now, it’s hard to focus on anything besides my to-do list.  And even that gets pushed to the side because I find even more to do.  It is taking all my strength to keep my head above water.

I feel like this post is just jumping around like crazy and not really making much sense.  I think that is my cue to sign off and get some sleep!

 

Unexpected Change

Photo for today:

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Project Life 365 had the challenge of “weakness” today.  I had another idea for what I was going to photograph, but I haven’t gotten around to it.  As I thought about the prompt, I realized that this little girl is probably one of my biggest weaknesses.  Just look at her!  How could anyone not give in to her?  I think I need to get better at being stern and not such a pushover before too long.  She is going to be mischievous… I already see that twinkle in her eye at times.

On to the unexpected change:

Well, I am back on Facebook.  I wasn’t planning on going back until next week, but things have changed.  I have been trying to share videos and photos with family via email, but some of them are not able to open them or are not on Instagram, so they can’t see them.  I give up!  I also have been having trouble embedding them in this blog.  I have followed the instructions a million times, but I just can’t seem to get them to embed.  It is quite frustrating!  It was easy to just share everything on Facebook whenever I would post it to Instagram.

I plan to have some guidelines for allowing myself on Facebook, and I outlined them in my post last night.  I have found that even without Facebook to distract me, I would get distracted by other things (namely the tv.)  I think this isn’t an issue of Facebook, but instead with just building some self-discipline.  Luckily I am going out of town this weekend, so I will have a chance to work on that self-discipline (there is not much to do where I am going).  I have a goal to finish editing wedding photos from earlier this month.  The couple is going out of town to a reception, and I told them I would try to have most (if not all of them) completed.  I usually tell my couples that it takes me a month to edit, so in reality I am just getting them done a week/week and a half early.  Not that much of a stretch.

So, that is where we are at right now.  Life is about to get really busy in about two weeks (the beginning of August), so I need to get this discipline thing down fast.

Any tips?   What helps you stay focused and get things done?  I am open for any and all ideas.

(PS sending me ideas for new websites to waste my time on is not going to help.  ::cough, Jenny, cough::)

Realizations

Here are some pictures from my day today:

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Miss C is working on her first tooth!  I can see the beginning of it coming through the gums, so all she is interested in doing is chewing and drooling.  (Oh yeah, and climbing and being grumpy.)

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I had been playing peek-a-boo with Miss C and Bandit felt left out.  I decided to play with him, but he didn’t seem to enjoy it quite as much.  (This was my official day 2 photo for my 365 challenge.  I am going to join the Project Life 365 challenge, so I have some different inspirations each day instead of just taking numerous photos of my daughter and dogs.)

 

Now on to the main part of this post.  I am 3 days in to my Facebook and Pinterest detox.  Hubs and my sister don’t think it’s a good idea to completely leave, but I deactivated my Facebook account, and I uninstalled the Pinterest app from my phone.  I do realize that if there is a recipe or something I need from Pinterest, then I will probably go ahead and get on, but I will not spend hours pinning things.

Both Hubs and my sister think I should just set a timer and call it good with Facebook.  I wish I could do that, but I just don’t have the self-discipline at this point.  Hopefully I will be able to get to that point, but not yet.

I have realized a lot of things these past three days being away from Facebook.  First thing I notice is that I feel a bit lonely.  When something happens, I feel the need to tell someone, but I have no where to go.  I think I need to channel that and carry a journal around with me and write it down instead of instantly think I need to put it into cyberspace.  

Another thing along those lines is that I realize that I think in statuses.  When something happens or when I have some quiet time, I think of some way I could write a status or how I could write it on Facebook.  It’s an odd thing to realize.  Instead of savoring whatever is happening, I immediately think about how I can share it.

By not writing every single event on Facebook, I have found that Hubs and I have more to talk about.  He doesn’t have glimpses of my day by checking Facebook, so I can share everything with him that has happened.  It has really helped our communication with each other.  This is something that I was not expecting at all!

A few things have been tough to deal with since giving up Facebook.  I am definitely out of the loop now.  One of Hubs’ good friends is pregnant and is due any day now.  It is hard to not be able to keep up with her and know how things are going.  

On the opposite side of that, I feel kind of bad not sharing some photos and little stories with family members via Facebook.  I have tried to send some photos and videos each day via email, so that they don’t feel left out.  For a while I felt like I was sharing too much on Facebook, so I think at the end of this, I will need to figure out a good balance.  I already have a few rules on photos I share on Facebook (if I think Miss C would be embarrassed to know I posted it, then I don’t… any photos with her naked are not allowed to be posted either.  Who knows what creepy people really have access to these photos?)

I have also realized that I watch more television now to keep myself entertained.  Where I used to be able to do other things and just check my phone as needed, I find I keep the television on all the time instead of doing things.  This is definitely not a good thing at all!  Again, I think I need to find some balance.  (I am starting to see some common themes here.)

I originally said I was going to go a month without Facebook at all.  One of the concerns that Hubs has is that it will affect my photography business (as it is one of the main ways my clients contact me).  Because of that, after a week, I will reactivate my account.  I will allow myself to check Facebook three times a day.  Once in the morning, once in the afternoon, and once before bed.  My photos automatically post from Instagram, so I don’t have to get on Facebook for that.  I think that after I have gone a week without being plugged into it at all, I will be able to better control my constant habit of checking it.   

I also think I will start doing something that my sister-in-law does: leave my phone on the kitchen counter throughout the day.  From there, I can still hear it when I have a call, email, or text message, but by not having it by my side, I won’t be tempted to be plugged in at all times.  

Any thoughts about this?

 

 

 

Day 2

Well, I had a very good, deep, interesting post to write for you, but then I became very frustrated with trying to embed an Instagram video that I have spent the last 45 minutes working on that instead of writing my deep, interesting post.

I will write my good post tomorrow.  While on my Instagram account, I got the chance to look back at all the photos I had taken since I started on it.  Before we got our smart phones, I thought that the people who did photo a day challenges with their phones were cheating.  That’s not really photography, I would say to myself.  Looking back through those pictures, though, I realized that I have more Instagram photos of Miss C than I do of “real photos.”  Sure when I do a photo shoot, I will definitely use my camera, but for every day photos, it’s so handy having my phone by my side.  It makes things much easier.

Because of that, I am going to challenge myself to a 365 photo challenge.  I have tried these a number of times and failed.  I think I will be able to succeed with this one because my phone is by my side.  Not all the photos will be from my phone, but I have a feeling a good many of them will be.

Here is Day #1:


Baby girl tired after eating. I love my little thumb sucker! #photoaday #dayone by @jlanphotog

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Bad Photographer, but Good PhotosThis is an old photo I found in my files, and it made me feel good, so I thought I would share it with you guys!

Day 1 of my new priorities are almost over.  I feel good!  One thing I did not accomplish was working out.  I do think that Hubs and I will start walking in every other morning.  On the mornings we don’t walk, I will pick back up on my 5K training with C25K.

Priority 1:  When I am finished with this post, I am planning on heading out on to the deck to spend some time in prayer.  I also am going to pull out my Bible and do some meditating.  I don’t have any idea what I am going to be meditating on, but I know God will guide me.

Priority 2: Hubs and I had a deep heart to heart last night, and we still have a few more things to sort out, but today I felt like things were a lot better.  I felt like we were working as a team again on a few things, and it made me feel good!

Priority 3: I was able to focus all my attention on Miss C today.  I didn’t have Facebook (I deactivated my account for the time being), and I didn’t look at Pinterest.  I enjoyed getting to really interact with her and focus on making our time quality time together.

Priority 4: I did not exercise today, but I did fix a home cooked meal for lunch for Hubs and me.  Now that he is working evenings, lunch is our big meal to eat together.  I made a simple stir fry meal and served it with brown rice.  I haven’t done well with my snacks, though.  I need to work on incorporating more fruits and veggies into my snacks.  Now that Miss C is starting to eat solids, Hubs and I need to be good examples of healthy eating for her.

Priority 5: I paid our bills today and updated our sidebars!  In June my graduate school loans kicked into repayment, so that is why there is a new sidebar.  Each time I do the car loan, I get so excited.  We are about 14 months away from it being done!  I feel like we are getting so close to getting rid of some of our loans.  It’s one of those things though that you feel so close, but still so far away.  Some of the payments are so small, that the change in balance doesn’t seem to be much.  We definitely need some motivation with them!

How has your day been going?

Priorities

The next month or so is going to be extremely busy in the Confessions household. We have a lot of personal things going on, along with the start of a new school year just around the corner. After feeling overly overwhelmed, I decided to take a step back and reevaluate where my time is being spent. After taking a look, I realize that my priorities are completely messed up.

The amount of time that I spend on Facebook and Pinterest is ridiculous! I could be getting so much else done, if it weren’t for those two time sucks. I am not a big tv watcher, so that form of technology isn’t too much of a time suck in my world. Because of this realization, I am taking at least a month long hiatus from facebook and pinterest. i am reorganizing and refocusing my priorities.

In true Resolutionist fashion, here are what my priorities are going to look like:

1. Spiritual Life- Hubs and I went to a church last week that we liked. I would like to make going to church a habit, especially with Miss C around. I want her to grow up with a strong connection to God. With this priority, comes prayer and meditation. I am going to start small and commit to 10 minutes a day spent in prayer and/or meditation.

2. My Marriage- With so much on my plate lately, Hubs has been put on the back burner. It is time to recommit to him and make him one of my main priorities. Without a strong marriage, we have nothing.

3. My daughter- I have had all summer with her, but how much time have I really been spending with her? When I am playing with her, my phone is next to me, and I am usually checking Facebook or Pinterest. I have already learned that she grows up too fast. I need to make sure that I savor these times with her.

4. Myself- I need to exercise and eat better. Those two things will help me with my mental state right now. I need to better myself so I can be a better person for my family.

5. Finances- During the summer, I don’t have as much of a schedule with most areas in my life, and I can tell that the lack of structure even runs into our financial life. I need to get back on the horse with this one, and make sure that I stay on top of things.

Those are my main 5 priorities right now. There will be some additional ones as time continues, but for now those are my focus.

Because I am taking a hiatus from Facebook, I am going to use some of that time to blog more, so make sure you are subscribed to my blog so you receive an email every time I blog. Or make sure I am part of your feed or bookmarked. I will no longer be putting it on Facebook each time I blog.

Until later… I hope your priorities aren’t as out of whack as mine are. If so, maybe you can start readjusting right along with me! Wish me luck! (I know I will need it.)