Tuesday, March 31, 2009
I think we need a break. No, I'll just be frank. I'm leaving you.. for now. Don't worry, it's nothing personal- it's just that it takes me 20 min. to drive to you, an hour for our meeting, and 20 min. back. It's just too tempting to stay home, get a bunch of stuff done, and fit in a butt-kicking 20 min. workout and be done with it. I have a crush on someone else. So, for now I'm saying goodbye. Who knows, maybe the workout "gods" will bring us together again in the future. Either way, it's been fun, and I'll miss you.
Why am I writing to Zumba? If you're new, see here, here and here.
I've had the 30 Day Shred DVD for a couple weeks now but had been too busy to fit it in (I know, I know, it's only 20 min..) until last night. I realized while at work yesterday that I needed to pick up some hand weights, so I ran to the store and grabbed some 5's- I'd have felt wimpy with 3's and a little scared with 7's. Well, after supper and doing some stuff around the house, I whipped out that DVD and stared Jillian Michaels down.
Wait! Those girls were SO not using 5 lb. weights. Therefore a beginner like me (who has weak arm muscles) should totally not be using 5 lb. weights. Crap.
I was saying, "Oh crap" after about 5 minutes.
And did I mention my lovely husband decided he would sit BEHIND me on the couch and watch while I got my butt kicked by a rediculously toned woman on the TV?? Yeah. Thanks honey.
Then towards the middle he gets up and goes into our spare room. Just as I breathed a sigh of relief that he would no longer be watching my agony, he comes out with our video camera. Gah!! I almost threw one of those way-too-heavy-5lb.-weights at him!
So anyway, workout gets over. I laid on the living room floor for a minute before jumping in the shower. The intensity of of the workout must have stuck with me because when I got out Z said, "Are you seriously done showering already??". Apparently, I went way faster than normal. Go figure.
I slept like a baby last night.
It seems like there are waves of blog-world or message-board-world trends that go around (i.e.- Twilight, anyone??). I've never jumped on board.. until now. Everyone was talking about the 30 Day Shred- I almost got sick of hearing the name. But I couldn't argue with the apparent results from 20 min. workouts. I gave in, and I'm glad.
Seriously, if you're a workout queen, don't judge. :) I will humbly admit that this crazy 20 min. workout really gave me a run for my money. Worth every penny of the $8-something I paid for it.
Monday, March 30, 2009
If you decide to make one, leave me a link to see it (or a post you did about it) in the Comments section. Later this week I'll do a post featuring all your wordles! Ready? Go!
PS- it takes like 2 min.. just amuse me! :)
Friday, March 27, 2009
Of course, any business requires investment, so that means we need to do some serious saving! Which shouldn't be too bad, because we can easily live on less than half of our income. We did a little looking at real estate last night- we want a place that has a nice house with room to grow (3+ beds) and a good amount of acreage as we want to have the business on our property, but not too close to the house. We found a few places that would work, but quickly realized that we need to do some saving for a down payment before we get ahead of ourselves. So, we figure that if we save for 6-8 months we'll have what we need and we can start looking seriously at real estate. We'd like to do it before Dec. 31 because of the first time home buyer tax credit.
I can't tell you how good it feels to finally have a plan in place for our future! Before we have kids we want to have the business bringing in enough $$ to replace my income so that I can be a stay-at-home/work-from-home mom. I'm looking forward to it so much.. especially the whole getting to decorate our first home part!
And speaking of decorating.. lately I've been toying around with the idea of going back to school in a few years.. for interior design. In my opinion, not a ton of schooling is needed to be good at this- you either have an eye for it or you don't. Of course, you can develop that eye, but if you don't have a knack for it, I personally don't think you'll ever be better than mediocre. I (humbly) think I have a decent eye for it and and just need a bit of training.
So anyway- I'll keep you posted on how everything goes! Hang on! It's going to be a fun ride!
How long did it/do you think it will take you & your hubby to get a solid plan for your future in place? Or maybe you just had it super together & knew before you got married? Or is it just always changing and evolving?
Other Random Bits:
*I'm going to be studying & taking the test to become a notary public (for work). Is it just me, or would that make you feel a bit like a more dignified citizen? :)
*I think I have a problem. Ever since getting a Post-It pop-up dispenser for my desk, the sticky notes are EVERYWHERE! Case in point:
*Z and I are heading to Michigan today after work. My family went up there yesterday and we're going to join them staying with my aunt and uncle who live there. I went to college in the same town, so we're planning on going to the beach where we had our first date! yay! The sad part is that tomorrow afternoon my family will be heading back to the great Northeast! I'm going to miss them so much, but plan to go visit them this summer.
And, to close, here's a couple pictures of that first date on the beach (we'd known eachother forever & phone-dated for a while before I moved to MI- that's why we were so "friendly"):
Thursday, March 26, 2009
Now, so you can picture it on a chair:
What do you think?
Note: the design of the chair is similar to the last one. I have two without arms and one with.
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
Anyone else a Mommy's or Daddy's girl? Or just a plain old big family girl? Yup, that would be me. All. The. Way. I probably have more family loyalty and pride than is healthy. Funny though, I never realized just how deep it went until I moved away from home. Now I miss them like crazy. Yes, they're still here visiting, but I miss them already and a small part of me just wants to grab Z and crawl into their SUV & go home with them. I'm thinking the following contributed to this problem:
- When I left home, I thought I wanted to spread my wings and be all independent and such. It also never occurred to me that I might not be back. I thought I was going to college and I'd be home for the summer. I had my whole life planned out all nicely. And it never had me too far from my family.
- Then BAM! God uses Z to totally turn my life upside down and remind me that HIS plans are higher than mine. I didn't end up going back home. God changed all my career plans, my surroundings, and my friends. I moved to the midwest and then got married. This has left me feeling a little like I wasn't ready to take on so many changes, a little overwhelmed at times. I wouldn't change it at all, but sometimes I just ask God, "Are you sure I was ready for all this?".
- I left my sisters at home. Of course this always happens when siblings go away to college, but when EVERYTHING started changing, I feel like we lost out on some serious bonding time. Besides, there's a lot of challenges in your teen years, and as their big sis, I feel like I need to be there with them!
The flip side:
I fell in love with Z. He was the strongest Christian guy I'd ever been friends with or dated and I respected him so much. Still do. When I knew I was going to marry him, I knew we would always have a problem- we both loved our families, and they're 1200 miles apart. But, I gave up my home & being close to my family for him.. Mostly because I'd come to the midwest for college already, so by default, I just stayed. Z has such a strong desire to live a Godly life, it amazes me. I love that about him. He wants to provide for me & our future family, and I love that too.
But here's the part I'm struggling with- like most couples, we don't agree on everything. Lately, there have been a couple important things we just don't see eye to eye on. What I can't figure out is, how do I develop the same deep trust and confidence in him that I have in my dad/family?? Now, please know that my loyalty does first lie with my husband, and I will accept & respect his decisions as the 'last say' no matter how I feel. But, how do I learn to trust his decisions on the inside when I don't agree? With him having about 30 years less experience than the people whose decisions I've abided by my entire life, how do I retrain my mind to be peace with his choices?
[And another side problem- how the heck am I going to deal with the fact that if we stay out here until we have kids, I'll have to do everything without having my mom nearby? Yikes.. makes me not want to have kids til I'm closer to my family.]
See where I'm stuck? The people you've always loved and followed vs. the man you love and follow now. Maybe it's because we've only been married 4 months, but I'm struggling to figure this all out. I know better than to be the rebellious wife that refuses to respect and follow her husband. What I'm looking for is a peace inside. I know the answer is probably just more prayer, but thanks for letting me vent to you anyway.
Regular posts to return tomorrow. :)
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
- The visit with the family is going GREAT! It's so wonderful having them here! We're pretty busy though- thus the reason that I've been slacking a little bit on blog posting. So far we've had a big get-together at our house, given them a tour of our town, played some mini-golf [I guess midwesterners call it putt-putt?], gone to some batting cages, gone outlet shopping, had a movie night, and eaten tons of food (pictures to come). Right now they're checking out the air force museum while Z & I are working. After work Z & dad are heading to the Honda dealership because my dad has recently become interested in Goldwings (it's a motorcycle- it's okay- I wouldn't have known either). Then bowling tonight and who knows what else the rest of the week.
- Yes, you heard me say outlet shopping. It wasn't that glorious though- we had a good time and got a few deals, but my parents had way better luck finding stuff than my sisters and I did. You know it's bad when your dad buys more clothes than all 3 of his daughters! I got a cute J Crew tee and and a top from Gap. I also picked up some bath & body works goodies and a mysterious object from the Pottery Barn outlet that will make it's appearance in my upcoming 100th post giveaway. No hints yet!
- I spent a while Sunday night teaching my dad how to use his facebook account. We all got a kick out of it!
- I got a new phone- the Samsung Sway. My review? Don't bother with it. It looks super cute & love the slider, but the battery life sucks & the texting is slow. I'm calling Verizon to see if I can get it switched.
- I had a freaky nightmare last night that had me talking out loud enough that I woke myself and Z up at 3:30 am. Gah! Thank goodness for husbands to hold you and make it okay til you can fall back asleep! I haven't had a freaky dream since my series of Betty Boop ones back when I was little (Please, please, please, don't ask! lol).
- If I didn't have self control, I'd smack the guy who dumped my sister the day before they came out here. He's ...grrr.... nevermind. I'll be nice. She's hurting even though she's trying to be strong and for a super-protective sister, that's hard to watch.
- If you would, keep Z & I in your prayers as we have some important financial decisions to make coming up. I'm afraid we might not see entirely eye-to-eye on them, so there will have to be plenty of praying, discussion, and compromise.
- We watched Smoke Jumper last night and surprisingly it was a pretty good movie! Definitely worth the watching!
Anyway, I can't wait to show you some pix from our adventures this week/weekend & I'll get a post up asap. Until then, have a wonderful rest of your Tuesday & thanks for your sweet comments lately!! :)
Sunday, March 22, 2009
And to the left, the table base with primer on.
To the right- me talking on the phone while starting the first coat of paint on the primer. Don't ya love my awesome plaid shirt? It's an old one Z let me wear. You know I wasn't about to get my shirts all paint covered! Gotta love it!!
Left: The table top with one coat of paint.
Right: Table base with one coat.
Left: Chairs getting their first coat of paint. Wow, these babies took forEVER! And of course I didn't spray paint- each one took approximately 1/2 hours. Whew! :)
And finally, 16 hours later:
A "new" dining set ready to entertain!!
Approximate cost of project:
$40 - table & chairs via craigslist [not counting the 3 other vintage-y chairs I'm going to refinish]
$15 - paint brushes / mini rollers
$20 - paint, primer, polyurethane (quart sizes)
$15 - refurbished belt sander (was $30, but I'm only counting half since we'll use it again and again!)
For a Dining set (table has removable leaf) that looks almost new!!
What do you think? Worth the effort? :)
Friday, March 20, 2009
And I want to share it because I know some of you share the same qualities that I have that caused me to make said mistake.
Perfectionism and Optimism.
Two wonderful characteristics in a person. However, it's finding a good balance of the two that's a bit more difficult.
My optimism said the following to me: "Go ahead C! You can sand, prime, paint and poly an entire dining set in 4 days! It won't be bad at all! Oh, and get those amazing recipes that require a million ingredients and take forever to cook! You can make them easily! And one more thing- your house? Deep cleaning won't be a problem at all! You dust and vacuum like nobody's business! You're a wonder wife!"
My perfectionism said: "Well, you need to sand that table down perfectly, because even the tiniest bump will show through the paint. And the two coats of paint you have on top of the primer aren't enough- if the sun hits it just the right way [perfectionism doesn't tell you that your table will be INSIDE] you can see a tiny hint of the primer peeking through. Better do 5 coats! Yes, that's much better! And those recipes? You should probably make another spreadsheet detailing your menu for the week! And you better search every grocery store around for those darn Tarragon leaves- your homemade pesto sauce just won't be the same without them! Now, think about your menu. Does each meal have enough color? A nice balance of protein, veggies, and carbohydrates? Do you have a Centerpiece for your freshly painted table? NO?? Better run to the store and get some flowers!! Oh, and each of your towels in the linen closet need to be refolded so that everything's uniform. You don't want to show any domestic weakness do you? And it doesn't matter that you washed all the bathroom rugs a week ago. Don't you see the random fuzz collecting on them? Better wash those too. And lastly, I know you have to leave for work in 5 minutes, but do you really want to have a bowl sitting in your sink when family arrives because you didn't empty your dishwasher of the clean ones? Better do that, and just speed to work."
Whew! Exhausting isn't it?? That's how my brain works. Do you see how the two characteristics conflict? One tells you "yes, you can do all this stuff and everything's going to turn out great" but the other one causes you to spend much more time than you anticipated doing everything, therefore neglecting all other areas of your life.
Last night Z went to bed while I was putting the finishing touches on some Tiramisu for tonight's dessert. We hate going to bed without each other. I crawled in beside him around midnight. As I laid on his chest he sighed and said, "I miss you honey". Wow.. realization hit me. I'd been running around all week without so much as a minute to spare, getting frustrated with him for not offering to lessen my load, without stopping to simply enjoy my husband. He's God's greatest gift to me and I'd been to busy for him all week. Bad move.
It reminded me of the story of Mary & Martha in the Bible. The one where Jesus comes to their house to eat and Martha is running around preparing dinner and such and Mary wisely sits at her savior's feet, seeing the most important part of their evening. Mary was a smart woman. She knew how to keep balance. She knew what was important.
We live in a Martha world. All the way. Especially all us "domestic diva" women. How often do we find ourselves striving to be Martha?
Don't get me wrong- I'll never lose those two qualities. My house will still look clean, orderly, and well decorated, and I'll still whip up some impressive meals. But I hope to never again lose sight of what's important in life. Even if your house is aesthetically pleasing and your meals are the talk of the town, is your husband happy? Is your relationship with God strong? Do you take time for your family, or just some time alone?
It's been a long week, and I'm ready for the weekend. But most of all, I'm ready to spend some time with my husband, and my amazing family who will be here in a matter of hours! Enjoy your weekend, and slow down a bit, K? I promise I will. :)
Thursday, March 19, 2009
7 Things I Love:
- My husband. You've heard all about me "fluttering", so this one is no surprise. He's truly my gift from God.
- My family. I really think it's impossible to convey just how deep my love, loyalty, and appreciation for my family goes. Family is so important to me.
- The piano. It's therapeutic for me, really. Somehow music always helps me connect with God.
- Lists, lists, lists. :) This includes sticky notes. I've probably had you laughing at me for this lately. But really, if I'm stressed all I need to do is whip out a spreadsheet to organize my thoughts, and I'm calm, cool, and collected again.
- DIY projects. It gives me so much satisfaction to put time and effort into somthing that creates a beautiful result. I often look at sites like Pottery Barn, and think to myself- I can do that! A little while later- I've got a replication for a fraction of the cost! :)
- Entertaining. I love having people over to our house! I even love all the prep work- cleaning, cooking, decorating- it's so worth it when you hear "Mmm, this is so good!" or "The place looks great!".
- Last, but certainly not least. In fact, definitely the most- my Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. For saving me from my sins and leading me through this crazy world. All the above blessings and abilities are because of Him.
Liana @ Weight for Me!!
Seleta @ Simply Seleta
Holly @ Life in the Fun Lane
Ashley Paige @ I Love You More Than Carrots
Lindsey @ Learning to be a Wife
- K guys, seriously do the grocery store list thing, as crazy as it sounds!! I saved so much time last night with it!! And I only picked up about 5 items that weren't on the list (which is really good for me!).
- I was suupperr productive last night. *pats self on back* Right now, it looks like all the table needs is a couple coats of Poly & I need to do one more coat on the chair legs. Child's play! We're on the homestretch!! Also- I got a ton of cleaning and laundry done. I didn't stop for 2 seconds (okay, so I grabbed a piece of pizza for like 30 seconds..) since I left work. But it paid off- Grocery shopping? DONE! Last coat of paint on furniture? (pretty much) DONE! Bedrooms & bathroom cleaned? DONE! Laundry? DONE!!
- I'm thinking about my little sister today.. you know, one of the sweet adorable ones I talked about yesterday? Yeah, well.. she got her heart broken. Her boyfriend called her last night and ended it [after NOT TALKING TO HER at all on her birthday the day before & the day before she left to come out here-he goes to school out here and was planning on seeing her]. Grr.. The overprotective sister in me is gritting my teeth and sharpening my claws.. But I'll be good. She just deserves to be treated soo much better!!
- My family leaves today to start the 21 hour drive out here. They're driving straight through, so they'll be here for dinner tomorrow! YAY!!
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
Before you all laugh and roll your eyes, let me explain. I have a lot of shopping to do tonight plus a ton of painting, so I want to be as time- efficient as possible. So I came up with this.
Genius, don't you think? :)
- Let's just start out with the fact that I almost typed "Thursday Randoms" & I've been thinking it's Thursday all morning, even though if it really were thursday I'd probably freak out - I have much too much to do before Thursday rolls around.
- Yesterday was my twin sisters' birthday. They turned 17 and I can't believe that in one short year they'll be planning to come (hopefully) live with Z & I while they go to college out here. I've always been super protective & thought of them as the little sisters. Sure enough.. they're not so little anymore. Can I brag for a moment?? .....k thanks. I have the most gorgeous (seriously!), smart (we're talking 100 average in school people!), mature (they're so not into all the stupid high school stuff most teens are), and giving (some of the things they do would about make you cry) sisters ever. EVER. I love them. And they're coming to see me on Friday!!! (YAYY!!!)
- I walked into the house last night at 10pm. Yep- got home at 5, was out in the garage by 5:30, Z ordered pizza and brought it out to me around 8:30, and I finished my last coat of paint at 10. If you have no idea what I'm talking about, read my posts from Sunday and Monday. So far I've got 13 1/2 hrs. of labor in on this dining suite overhaul in 3 days. Did I mention I work full time? Poor Z.. he hasn't had a good home-cooked meal in a little while! Luckily though, he's had a good bit of work to do on his truck and cleaning up the garage, so he's been out there with me a majority of the time. I was going to show you some pictures of the progress, but decided to save it all for one final product post Friday or this weekend.
- I have fallen in love with Jim Brickman's piano music. Seriously. The man is so talented. I can't wait til we move out of this apartment & can fit a piano for me to play on. My relationship with the piano has taken a real hit the past year and half or so, and I plan to make up for lost time! Here's the song by Jim Brickman we had played at our wedding (when the bridesmaids walked in).
- Z introduced to me his latest entrepreneurial idea this morning. Yesterday he drove by a local place called "The Hamburger Wagon" and started thinking about how simple yet profitable the business was. Cue excitement. Now, we'll be looking into food service. Ah, being married to this man is never dull. As if you needed visual proof, here's a picture of my hubby just hours before we said I do:
Monday, March 16, 2009
Sorry for the blurry-ness. But you get the idea. I'm a woman on a mission.
Note: I don't go to these lengths because my family expects a perfectly clean house or anything like that. I do it because I love them so much & want the best when they're around and because I take pride in my home, and okay, because I'm a bit of a perfectionist.
Anyone else make spreadsheets for cleaning & projects? :)
*Drove straight home (got stuck in rush hour traffic) & did a suupperrr fast clean-up of our house before friends of ours arrived 10 min. later.
*We get together with friends of ours for Bible Study almost every friday night, but this past friday a newlywed couple who are good friends of ours had just gotten back from 2 months of mission work in Mexico. They hadn't bought a house yet, so we told them [2 weeks ago] they could stay with us until they found something (except for the time my family would be visiting). They'd been back since Monday, so we figured they didn't need a place to stay. Friday night we find out they do want to stay with us.
*We go out to lunch (yum- Cracker Barrel!)
*Spend the afternoon talking with them- or rather listening- the guy is a born talker.
*Sat. night finally got a coat of darker black paint on my coffee tables- she helped.
*We get back and changed to go out & work in the garage. BUT- they wanted to show us their pictures from Mexico (We really wanted to see them.. just not right that second).
*2 hours later we're listening to the letter they wrote the orphanage (8 pages) and my family calls on Skype because they're having a birthday party for my sisters and wanted to include us. Had to wait on that so as not to be rude.
*He gets done reading letter, I call family back on webcam, and these ladies show up that want to buy our car. *sigh* Goodbye, family.
*Car is test driven, cash is handed over, and car is sold. Yay!
*I head out to garage.. again. Then proceed to get another coat of the blacker paint on coffeetables, sand down new table top, prime table top, table base and one chair.
*During this time the couple says they're going to his brothers house and might not be back since the brother is going to be out of town for the next week and they can have his house to themselves. A little later, 3 more of Z's friends show up, so he heads inside to spend time with them. I stay in garage.
*About 9pm I get a coat of Polyurethane on the coffee tables which had dried in the 5 hours I'd been out there working. I come inside and wash off the ginormous amount of paint, primer, and poly on my hands. Friends were just heading out the door.
*Realized I'd forgotten to eat ALL day.
*Z and I collapse. End of weekend.
My emotions this weekend:
Friday, March 13, 2009
So what fabulous-ness do I want to share this Friday?
For a long time, I'd been of the opinion that it was a sin to cover up real wood. But, over time, the dark side won me over. Don't get me wrong- nothing says fresh like white furniture (done tastefully!), but there's just something sleek & sophisticated about black furniture. But enough of my blabbing- here's some proof:
Aris Pedestal Dining Table from Pottery Barn
(I LOVE those chairs too!)
Parker Tallboy from Pottery Barn
Thursday, March 12, 2009
- Yes, I know it's usually Wednesday Randoms, but yesterday was sick day #2.
- Sick day #2 actually produced some nice results:
- A cleaned out fridge (no more moldy leftovers!!)
- A completed mystery shop (I don't like rescheduling these, and besides, when doesn't shopping make a girl feel better??)
- A new pair of pants for Z!! Sexy soft dark khaki chinos from said mystery shop locale for $13!!
- A de-cluttered house
- A mothers day present bought way ahead ( I couldn't resist! ... No, mom, I'm not telling you )
- Supper on the stove when Z got home
- A nicely scrubbed shower
- Suupperr cute new earrings
- In case you're wondering, yes I WAS sick yesterday. But around 1pm, I wasn't doing too bad and I was sick of laying on the couch. I HAD to get out
- My 30 Day Shred DVD came in today! I'm kickin' it with Jillian tonight!!
- The repair shop called today and it turns out the $700 fix on Z's truck is done... and is going to cost us $1300. Great.
- I thought the furniture I painted was done. Then I brought it inside. No, I'm a perfectionist, and the Dark Dark Grey color will not suffice!! I want BLACK. So Z and I ran to Menards. $20 later, I'm ready to slap some darker paint on those babies!
- I'm loving getting rid of my wedding stuff! The pile is getting smaller & my paypal account plumper. Only a few more items to go!
- This cold has left me with a strange problem. My left ear hurts.. like inside. My nurse mom says it's just from the congestion. I'm just sniffly now, not all stuffed up like before, so I'm hoping and praying it goes away on it's own. Please don't be a sinus infection!
- Confession: I actually pray for my blog friends! Like, if you blog about something tough and I comment saying I'll pray for you- I do! I've never met the vast majority of you guys, but you do find a way into my "real life". Sometimes I feel funny if I'm praying and I can only remember your blog name, and not your real name. Oh well, God knows what it is, right? ;)
[Sorry for the lack of pictures in this post! I'll make up for it I promise!]
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
I didn't last long there either. They pretty much forced me to go home because they're all so scared of getting this darn thing going around. So I came back home, laid down at 9, and didn't wake up til noon. The rest of the day? I've got some invoicing to do from home, but do you think I've been productive at all?? no. Blaah. More interesting posts later, I promise.
Monday, March 9, 2009
Foliage Silhouette Coat from Forever 21- $39.80
And just so I can take my fall dark purple obsession into spring- a lighter shade!
Sleeveless Knit Dress from Forever 21- $11.50 (!!!)
There must be some occasion this summer I could wear this...
Printed embossed-cotton Aubrey halter dress from J Crew- $79.99 on clearance
Okay, and as I was "shopping" I came across this:
from J Crew.
Could someone PLEASE tell me who on this green(currently brown) earth can pull one of these off?? Seriously- if you can, you either have an extremely short torso or are just that good. I do believe that if I were to wear one of these, it would stay up for about a nanosecond before exposing my normally modest self to whoever was around. Risky business, people, risky business!
So this post was supposed to be about me trading wedding stuff for a new spring wardrobe, but I hereby change that. It's about this bathing suit. Really. I want to know if anyone is actually talented enough to keep this number up!
Sorry, I blame it on the Monday thought pattern!