So, next several entries will be kind of like my own version of a “mom blog stew.” I’ll throw in a bit of this and a bit of that, you know, things happening in the family, stuff I’m thinking about, that sort of thing. Instead of doing a “Reflections” entry, I wanted to do this so that I can write a bit more detail about this stuff I am thinking about and doing.
I’m wanting to give this a shot because the “fill in the blank” was getting boring, so I thought that I could cover the same kinds of things in this different, less structured format. Plus I didn’t figure you really cared what the heck I am wearing. Of course, you might not care that I’m cleaning the fridges, either, but at least is more of a reflection of the things that are going on my day and week and some of the finer details of living my vocation. I know this time there are a lot and some of them are very long, but I’m sure other entries of this type won’t be, so please don’t panic!!!! Also not that I’ve broken it down into segments an posted those segments separately so that you can skip whatever you like. In the future, I may be able to condense it a bit into one “Stuff I’m Thinking About” entry.
Now, to get started.
This week doesn’t look too rough ~ not compared with some others, anyway. I only have a few things really planned for this week besides the routine “make sure the dishes and laundry get done” kind of thing.
So, here’s what I’m looking at this week:
•Work on lesson plans
It is already half-way through June and I really need to get busy on getting lesson plans put together. I put it off until later in the summer last year (though I’m sure I talked about it plenty early enough!) and it was kind of a struggle to come up with the lesson plans. I’ll not do that again! I am going to get started now and I will start with Miss Creativity’s plans followed by MissKaboom and GuitarGirls. I am still not doing much formal work with TheBoy, as he is only 3 1/2, but there are some preschool type things I will work on him with so he will be ready for a bit more formal school the year after that.
I was told by a friend yesterday that the local Catholic high school is now accepting part time enrollment. The tuition is still crazy high, but more manageable than full tuition. I am going to look into the idea of enrolling GuitarGirl part time, just for the experience for her. I think she would enjoy taking a class or 2 and having that experience. The school is a decent one, so this was very good news to me. I think it will open up a lot of opportunities for the kids.
•Work on an improved schedule/routine
Early in the year, we had come up with a routine that was really working for us for the most part. Nothing will work 100% of the time because of the fluid nature of our lives, but this one was working pretty well. And then something happened! Our routine seems to be barely visible now. I don’t know why it stopped working (or if we simply stopped working it) but the bottom line is we need to get something back in place so that we don’t end up flailing our way through every day, every week. I’ll look over the old and see if I can figure out why it’s not working now (it might simply be that Chief returned and CarKiller left, requiring a new routine for the new dynamics), figure out what I can salvage of the old and work on something new. To be a good steward or our time, we have to have a plan. Nothing too rigid, mind you. I rebel against a too rigid routine or schedule, and I thrive when I feel there is room for “spontenaeity” but I can’t go on with so little focus, either.
I find that some of the first things to “go” when I don’t have a grip on how our time gets spent are the most important ones. If I can’t focus on a deliberate method to getting things done, the temporal overtakes the spiritual every time. If our days get even a bit chaotic for any length of time (it really doesn’t even have to be “bad”) the first thing I cut (without conscious thought) is the “extra” stuff we try to do for living the liturgical year with crafts and activities and such and also things like Daily Mass and we even put off the frequent confession that we all desire. We run out of time even though we have plenty.
•Get back on the treadmill!
One of the reasons that I am not on the treadmill everyday (besides the fact that exercising for the sake of exercising is very distasteful to me) is that I have horrible feet! I mean this in a couple of ways actually, but right now I am talking about the fact that I have “Fred Flintstone Feet.” (FFF) I can’t wear “regular” women’s shoes at all. I live in Birkenstocks (I have decided that German women have real feet and it is reflected in the design of Birkenstocks!) Well, I cannot use the treadmill wearing Birks. I mean, I suppose I could, but they do not offer much stability. I have this inordinate fear of hurting/spraining/breaking my ankles. It might have something to do with the fact that I’ve broken my ankle 3 times in my adult life. I need something more stable for exercise. A bit of cushioning wouldn’t hurt, either, but at this point, I’ll take any shoe that is fairly stable and has laces that will fit my “FFF” so that I can spend 30 – 60 minutes on the treadmill without tearing up my feet. The last time I used the treadmill, I ended up hobbling for a couple of days afterward because my feet were so sore. I get this kind of “rheumatoid flare up” at other times, not related to exercise, weather or diet (I flare up in my feet, ankles, knees, hips hands, wrists, elbows and shoulders, though usually not all at the same time), which is something I can’t really control, so I want to do what I can to eliminate sore feet if I can control it. Here’s hoping I find something and can control that part of it. I am determined, however, that if I can’t get out and find something TODAY that I will get on the treadmill in my socks anyway. I mean what are sore feet compared to, oh, I don’t know, a heart attack, or something? I have to be a much better steward of the body that God gave me than I have been for the last, ummm, 25 years or so? It really is time to start taking better care of myself.
•Get the truck into the shop.
We are getting the truck into the shop this week in preparation for our trip. I am about 2 oil changes late, it needs a basic tune up (just because it is 7 years old ~5 of those years it has been ours ~ and hasn’t had a real tune up since we’ve owned it) the brakes are squeaking now, so the pads are wearing down and a year or so ago, some old dude decided he could squeeze past all the people waiting in a queue in the WallyWorld parking lot for parking spaces and he nicked my driver’s side mirror ~ and he didn’t even stop! Initially, it looked fine and I was really thankful that they make those things so they can move now, but after a bit, it started to get cloudy and the plastic around it looked like it was being eaten by acid. This is one of those mirrors that automatically dims bright lights. Apparently, it does that by some chemical and when the old dude hit my mirror, he did break it, even though I couldn’t see anything at first. This is not going to be a cheap trip to the shop, for sure! Oh, and the inspection is due, too.
•Some stuff to do around the house
Some of the things I have to do around the house, besides the regular, “do the dishes” and “do some laundry” are things like cleaning the fridges out (I missed last week) and work on all the junk that’s gotten stuck in CarKiller’s old room. (no, I haven’t gotten to that yet… no, it won’t take as long as the garage did!)
I’m also trying to refigure a way to store my yarn. It’s everywhere. Really. Everywhere. In cabinets, drawers and closets. In baskets, bins and boxes. And then there are all of the needles and notions that are spread out too much. Maybe after I get CarKiller’s old room finished, I can use that closet as a central storage location for all things knitting. I don’t know. I do like being surrounded by loads and loads of yarn and all those wonderful needles and pattern books and booklets. But I think I am the only one who feels that way here! My poor family.
I have some baseboards that CarKiller never finished painting. Mostly they are not visible because of all the furniture and things in the room, but that doesn’t mean the are completely invisible either. There are also some doors that seriously need a new coat of paint. Probably some of them haven’t had any attention for the past 15 years that the house has been standing!
Chief (when he finds the time!) needs to empty the pressure washer’s gas tank. You know how it can get funky when it sits over the winter. Apparently the gas in the pressure washer did get funky, as it just will not start. Everything else seems fine and we used it last year with no problem, so it’s probably a simple fix of replacing the fuel, but that requires time that Chief doesn’t have a lot of. Once he does do it, though, I will be washing windows and outdoor equipment.
•Make a menu for the rest of the week.
This one is pretty self-explanatory. I need to get a menu in place for the rest of the week. A couple of weeks ago, I decided it was time to stop playing around and get my diet (i.e. way of eating, not way of torturing myself) back in order. The bottom line for me (and for Chief as well) is that I feel better when I cut out the refined carbs and limit the overall amount of carbs that I eat. When I eat too many carbs, I just feel bloated, mentally and physically sluggish and I always feel hungry! When I cut those way back, I find my self feeling more energetic, mentally and emotionally stable, not famished and (tmi warning) I find that my menstrual cycle improves tremendously. Cutting the carbs gave me near immediate results in that area this time. I normally have “psychotic/insane/crabby day” 2 days before a new cycle starts (as well as uncomfortable cramping) but this time, it was all absent. I didn’t go ape-you-know-what on the family for small, stupid things like I do when I am eating too many carbs. As a matter of fact, I was a little surprised when my new cycle started because that “marker” that I watch for (you know, losing my mind) just didn’t happen! I also lose weight without trying (now I am overweight enough that it won’t be visible to others for a while yet, but I know it’s happening now.) So I really have to have a menu. I find that not having a menu and shopping according to it sabotages my efforts to eat this way. It is so easy to shove a bunch couple of crackers in my mouth when I’m hungry if I don’t know what else to eat.
So, there was “part one” … that wasn’t so bad, was it?