Categotry Archives: life balance

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New Year, Big Changes

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I know it’s been a little while since I posted.  The past few weeks have been BUSY!  First I had to get ready to start my new job and then once I started my new job, I had to get back into the swing of working.  I’m starting my 4th week and so far so good!  It’s been mostly training but I needed to brush up on stuff plus, I needed to learn their ways and how to use their systems.  I like my team and I think this will work out nicely.  On the 25th, I’ll actually start doing my job and I have a feeling it will be busy which is what I have always liked about this particular position…there’s never a dull moment.  I know I will never get bored!

It has been an adjustment for everyone though.  I seem to be doing OK with getting up and getting ready to go in a decent amount of time (until today…no clue what happened there).  I haven’t started the actual schedule I was hired for yet but I have still been going in late enough to take L to school.  Literally my second week of work, both girls ended up with stomach bugs so that put a cramp in things.  But B has been great about getting dinner stuff ready so I can just throw it on the grill or whatever when I get home.  We had already gotten used to eating later since we moved here so even my working later shouldn’t affect things too much.  We’ve been making meal plans and sticking to them and that definitely helps.  It’s been much smoother than I thought it would be.

I think the person this has been hardest on is Buggy.  She was used to having me there when she got home from school, etc. so one night at bedtime when I told her I missed her during the day, she said, “I miss you too, Mommy.  When can you stop working?”  My heart just about broke but I explained that I wasn’t going to stop and that next year she’ll be in school full time and she won’t notice as much.  I explained that with Mommy working, we’d be able to do a lot more fun stuff and she seemed to understand.  I had thought I had been handling it pretty well but last week it hit me too.  My manager told us we might have to stay late last Friday and that combined with PMS and the things Buggy had said led me to pretty much burst into (controlled) tears.  In the end, we didn’t have to stay late and I realized that it was all just a delayed reaction to going back to work after being home for four years.

The addition to our finances has definitely been nice!  I managed to get our taxes done early so we got our refund in no time.  I got my first paycheck on Friday and I had actually budgeted to close to the right amount…I was off by about $30 and it was MORE than I though so that was nice!  We spent a night at Disney and it was nice to not have to nickel and dime everything although we were careful not to go crazy (everything there is so darn overpriced!).  Our goal is to still follow a budget but it won’t nearly be as strict which is nice.  And now we’ll be starting on our household projects list which we are BOTH excited about.  Once thing we have always been responsible about is our finances so I don’t plan on letting that change.

I know I am still getting used to being back at work and I promise that once I get into a normal groove, I will be sure to make time for blogging (on ALL my blogs).  I just hope my life doesn’t get too boring and my writing dries up!

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My (LATE) Goals For 2012 Post

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Yeah, I know, I’m really late on this.  First it was because my daughter didn’t go back to school until the 9th.  Then I got caught up in my duties with The Band.  On that front, I had to ask for some help and luckily, I was granted even more than I expected so, now I have more time to blog.

I am going to start by saying that I don’t like the word “resolution.”  I like the word “goal” better, so that is what I’m going to use.  I started thinking about my goals for the New Year Back in October and I think I have a decent list of OBTAINABLE (that’s KEY) goals to reach.

My first goal is to set SMALL goals that lead to bigger goals.  I have learned that if I am overwhelmed with a goal, whether it be weight loss, blogging, etc., I get frustrated and give up.  So now I am going to start breaking my big goals up into little chunks and go from there.

My first goal will help me head to my ultimate goal of losing weight.  My end goal is to lose 50 pounds this year (about a pound a week).  The first small goal is to get my eating back on track.  I was doing so well in the fall and then we had guests and then the holidays came.  Now that all that is over, I need to retrain myself and I am off to a good start.  I am planning a menu every week and sticking to it.  I am buying ONLY what I need and nothing extra (which will help toward another goal).  I am concentrating on buying healthy snacks and keeping myself in check by using www.myfitnesspal.com.

Once I get my eating back on track, I will get back into exercising.  I was doing the Couch to 5k Plan in the fall and I may go back to it.  Or I may start a new plan of walking and running sprints.  I need to decide.  But either way, I need to TRY to exercise for 150 minutes per week, per my doctor.  You see, when I went for my physical, my blood sugar was a bit high and my good cholesterol was a bit low.  So, I need to get on track for my health.

Now I am going to move onto my balancing life goals.  My first goal is to get organized.  I needed to make a schedule for each day that balanced my home and my blogging/Band life.  I have used my email calendar to break out each day and so far it is working well.  I have stayed in track with my household goals and now that I have freed up some time, I can hopefully reach my blogging goals too, though I have not set a firm goal on that front yet.  I do need to figure it out because I would LOVE to get my writing out there so I can someday get paid for it but I wonder if that might be a pipe dream.

I have a also set a financial goal.  We need to try to save money and reduce our (small, thankfully) debt.  Planning meals and sticking to grocery lists has really helped.  We have paid off quite a few things and will use our tax return to rebuild our safety cushion (which went down because we needed a whole new AC system last year).  When B gets his bonus, a small portion is budgeted for our beach vacation but the rest will be used to make an even bigger dent in the debt.  I have updated my financial Excel sheet and I am being diligent about looking for ways to save.

My last goal is to start thinking about what I want to be when I grow up.  Buggy will be starting Pre-K in the fall and I will (hopefully) go back to work in some capacity.  The issue is, I don’t know what I want to do.  I don’t want to go back into insurance.  I am looking into getting into the school system in some way and I also keep an eye on county jobs.  I have my resume out in a couple sites and I am on LinkedIn.  Hopefully, I will find something I can enjoy.

So, there you are…my 2012 goals.  I plan to keep my myself accountable with my weight loss on here so you will see more posts about that.  I plan to revisit all my goals in June and see where I am.  Hopefully, I will have made some headway!

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Summer Break and Schedules

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The last day of school here was June 1.  The next couple of days were spent preparing to leave for vacation and from the 4th to the 11th, we were on vacation.  That means this past Monday was really our first REAL day of summer break.  Over the course of this week the girls played school played out in front of our house with their bikes and scooters, read together, colored, swam in the pool, went to the splash park and watched movies together.  None of this was organized or scheduled and that’s just kind of how I roll and I am starting to wonder if I should change how I roll.

When my kids were both first born, I worked full time.  Our weekends were spent spending time together as a family.  We had a pool so we swam and cooked out during the summer.  The kids played in the yard and we occasionally went on little excursions.  But mostly we just enjoyed time together.  The girls got plenty of socialization at day care so I wasn’t really worried about that.  I didn’t worry about play dates or anything like that.  Frankly, we didn’t really have the time!

When we moved to FL, we decided I would stay home.  Both our rental house and the house we live in now have pools and are on safe, quiet streets.  The kids would swim or we’d go to the park.  They would play out in front of our house with their scooters and bikes.  We eventually got annual passes to Disney so we would do that when it wasn’t too hot.  Linnaea hasn’t shown much interst in any activities so we’ve waited on those.  Eventually we got to know out neighbors more and the kids started playing together but it was usually a spur of the moment type thing.  And despite Alexa spending most of her time with me, her socialization skills were just fine.

But more and more, I have started to wonder if I should change how I do things.  When I moved to FL, I had a friend from middle school who had lived here in town for years.  Now, I knew we had become different people but once I got here, I realized just how different.  She constantly had her kids on the go…play dates, excursions, you name it.  But at the same time, she was a slave to her kids poor sleeping habits which, frankly, were her own fault.  I know, I know some kids have legitimate sleep issues but in this case, she created these monsters.  She is also a “helicopter parent.”  The combination of these things make me a little nuts.  Oh, and once the weather gets warm, she pretty much refuses to take her kids out to do any outdoor activities.  Heck, they have a pool they pretty much never use.  We’re in ours all the time and our kids still play outside and go to the park even in the summer.  I could go on and on but I’ll stop here.  So, needless to say we’ve drifted apart and I have found friends whose parenting and social interests are a little more like mine.

But now that summer is here again and I know more people, even other moms I know seem to have a schedule of what they plan to do every week.  And by schedule I mean they say “Well on Monday we’re going to go to the splash park and on Tuesday we’ll do this and on Wednesday we’ll do that.”  Maybe I’m the weird one?  I mean, I plan to do all those things at some point during the week but for most of them, I’m not going to pin myself down to a day.  Is that strange?  Should I be more regimented?  Am I hurting my kids?  I’m starting to second guess myself and I don’t like it.