Monday, April 30, 2012

Weekly Goals


Taking a clue from Money Saving Mom, I have decided to make up a list of 10 weekly goals that I would like to accomplish this week. Not only will this give me some guidance as to what I find important to do, it will also make me accountable to getting them done. I have found since Benjamin was born that if I set weekly goals instead of daily goals then I am more apt to get them done.

So my goals for this week are:

FAMILY/ MOTHERING GOALS
  1. Continue bed time one on one routine with Rebecca and Jacob. (I started this this weekend and it seems to be going really well at getting them one on one attention and getting them in bed smoothly)
  2. Compliment Bill at least 1 time a day

PERSONAL GOALS
  1. Call and set up eye doctor appointment for me

HOME MANAGEMENT GOALS
  1. Mop kitchen, pantry and dining room floors
  2. Make a menu plan for the week
  3. Clean out storage closet off of the bathroom



BLOGGING GOALS
  1. Pepsi Next review post
  2. Oxford Messed Up review
  3. Momumental: Adventures in the Messy Art of Raising a Family review
  4. Compose at least 1 non-review post
If I get these things accomplished then I will feel pretty good about this week. This is in addition to the everyday tasks of taking care of the family, making meals, etc. I will also be getting a few hours in at work as well this week, both at home and a meeting at school.

Hope everyone has a great week! What are your goals for the week?

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Sunday Night Chit-Chat

Time once again for Sunday Night Chit-Chat...hosted by our friend Carla!

Baby Benjamin got his first real bath this past week! He didn't even cry! :)
What are you.....
Reading?

Right now I am reading Momumental: Adventures in the Messy Art of Raising a Family by Jennifer Grant. (Be on the the lookout for my review and a giveaway of the book hopefully late this week or early next week!)

Watching?

Not watching anything right now. Jacob is watching "Go Diego Go." I have been watching LOTS of reruns of "Everybody Loves Raymond" recently! There are so many similarities between his life and mine.

Listening to?

"Go Diego Go" on the TV. Rebecca playing in the dining room. Benjamin snoring in his sleep in his seat next to me.
Cooking/Baking?

Honestly I haven't been much of a cook this week. I NEED to change that this coming week.

Happy you accomplished this week?

Finally got the crib up in the boys' room.  It hasn't been needed because Benjamin is in the bassinet in our bedroom, but I needed to get it out of the storage closet so that I get to the boxes of clothes in there to sort.

Looking forward to next week?
Warmer weather. Hopefully getting some things done around here before I go back to work.

Thankful for today?

That my hubby let me sleep in this morning and that he took care of all three kiddos. That we had nice visits today with my parents and with Bill's parents. That we had a nice dinner out at a Mexican restaurant with my in-laws tonight. That my mom is done with her chemotherapy treatments! That my kids have been good for the most part today. That the sun was out today!

Friday, April 27, 2012

Started back to work

This past week has been another milestone for me personally.

 Benjamin turned 3 weeks old on Monday.



On Monday I also began to do some work from home. (For anyone who doesn't know, I am team leader at an after school care program. I help to run a program that includes snack time, homework time, activities for grades K-8 whose parents need afterschool care for their children.) I am SLOWLY easing my way back into work. I did some billing stuff from home. On Thursday I had a meeting with my boss to discuss registrations for next year. Today I went snack shopping for the school and dropped it off. This weekend I have plans to work on registrations that have come in for next year, entering them into the computer system and adding the new registrations from the new families. Next week I will also have a meeting, do billing and do snack shopping. I am planning on going back to work in the building in 2 weeks part time.

This is amazing to me because this is a sign that I am recovering MUCH faster and better than my previous c-section (Jacob's birth). With Jacob, I had a HORRIBLE recovery! I ended up getting an infection in my incision, I had horrible pain management, etc. It was AWFUL!

Honestly, with my recovery from my c-section with Benjamin I feel GREAT! I am in no pain. My incision healed wonderfully. I have energy. I have already lost some weight (35 lbs in 3 weeks). I feel good. Today when I dropped snack stuff off and picked Rebecca up from school, I ran into one of the moms there and she couldn't believe how good I looked and how healthy I looked.

I have to keep telling my boss that I am okay with doing work now, even though it hasn't been 6 weeks yet. I am doing great. I think part of it is that I had such a rough last 2 months of being pregnant that I am now just feeling normal.

So that is where I am right now. I am slowly working my way back into working. I am happy. I feel great!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Busy day today

Today was a whirlwind of a day...I was supposed to go into work for a meeting, but I rescheduled it for tomorrow. I spent the morning working from home, getting paperwork together and printed for student loan stuff, books packed up to be mailed, checkbook balanced and rent paid, paperwork found for KCJFS, laundry started...as well as kids fed breakfast, and Benjamin fed several times. After lunch, I got Rebecca off to school, Bill off to the post office and KCJFS, and then I speed cleaned house as my in-laws were coming over to visit. They showed up half an hour early, but luckily I had just finished cleaning up! We had an early dinner with them, then Bill had to rush off to work and I fed Benjamin, folded laundry, got kids in the bathtub and in bed. Now I am taking a short break to work online and then it will be time to feed Ben again and hopefully he will go to sleep for a while. I am tired. I have a meeting tomorrow at work and I am not prepared at all. Today was just a BUSY day and I am tired. But it does feel nice to have some of the things done today that I got done.

Monday, April 23, 2012

10 Goals for the week


Taking a clue from Money Saving Mom, I have decided to make up a list of 10 weekly goals that I would like to accomplish this week. Not only will this give me some guidance as to what I find important to do, it will also make me accountable to getting them done. I have found since Benjamin was born that if I set weekly goals instead of daily goals then I am more apt to get them done.

So my goals for this week are:

FAMILY/ MOTHERING GOALS
  1. Continue bed time one on one routine with Rebecca and Jacob. (I started this this weekend and it seems to be going really well at getting them one on one attention and getting them in bed smoothly)
  2. Research and make a list of activities that can be done one on one with Jacob
  3. Compliment Bill at least 1 time a day

PERSONAL GOALS
  1. Start reading Sportuality
  2. Call and set up eye doctor appointment for me

HOME MANAGEMENT GOALS
  1. Mop kitchen, pantry and dining room floors before Wednesday (when in-laws come to visit)
  2. Make smoothie packets for freezer

BLOGGING GOALS
  1. Pepsi Next review post
  2. Oxford Messed Up review
  3. Set up Internet/ blogging schedule
If I get these things accomplished then I will feel pretty good about this week. This is in addition to the everyday tasks of taking care of the family, making meals, etc. I will also be getting a few hours in at work as well this week, both at home and a meeting at school.

Hope everyone has a great week! What are your goals for the week?

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Sunday Updates

Has it really been almost 3 weeks since I have given birth to Benjamin? Time flies when you are sleep-deprived and trying to survive I suppose. I feel like I have neglected a few parts of my life, including this blog. I think I have finally gotten caught up in some areas of my life, but there are other areas that I have definitely been slacking on. My hope is that this week I will be completely caught up (a woman can dream can't she?).

So what have I caught up on?......
  • I was able to get out checkbook caught up and balanced
  • I have been able to get the laundry caught up
  • I have felt great physically
  • I took Benjamin to my work to meet the staff and kiddos
  • I got all of our bills paid up
  • Rebecca's school registration papers filled out for next year and turned in
  • 3 book reviews (books have been read, just need to post reviews)
  • thank you cards for baby gifts
  • grocery list and coupon matches
I still need to:
-put laundry away (4 baskets full to put away)
-Call and have Ben added to insurance (this will be done Monday)
-look into paperwork for KCJFS
-banking needs to be done
-menu plan for the week
-figure out what summer clothes Jacob needs
-get Rebecca new tennis shoes

I have also slowly began working my way back into the swing of work. I have started doing a little bit of work from home and I have plans to go back to work in about 2.5 weeks. I feel like I need to do this for me. I find that I am a much better mommy when I am doing something for me and then coming back home to the kiddos.

Well I need to go feed Benjamin and then get the rest of the day started. I hopefully will be back with Sunday Night chit-chat tonight!

Have a great Sunday!

Friday, April 20, 2012

Oli's Uncommon Cents by Deborah Allen


From the back cover:

Through the life and death of her grandfather, 12-year-old Oli receives a pouch that holds the lives of abandoned, but unique coins, coins adopted by her grandfather—and now hers. Bearing their mint inscription, In God We Trust, Oli’s coins entrust their lives with hers as she searches for the matters of the heart.

Set in Northern Idaho, near the Clearwater Mountains, Oli’s Uncommon Cents takes readers on unique journeys. These journeys introduce Oli to people who live in the back woods until winter snows drive them out, like the wildlife, all driven by hunger; these journeys introduce Oli to those who count on the charity found in Cardboard City —and journeys among ordinary people, people with scars, some hidden, some visible, and others revealed, especially after their lives become intertwined.

Despite the tensions with her controlling, and egotistical father, she manages to venture on an exploration of her own, and what she discovers are people that her father scorns. Oli’s explorations lead to life-changing lessons, and her most profound discovery is that some things in life have greater value than they’re worth.


My thoughts:

I read this book during a few of my feeding times with Benjamin (my newborn). This book caught my interest in that the story line sort of reminded me of the book Indian in the Cupboard, which was one of my favorite stories as a child. I must say that I was very impressed with Allen's style of writing and the content of this book. I felt that the story line was believable and that I really felt for the cents and how they were living. I love that the message of the book was about the value and worth of ALL things in life and in all LIFE in life! I will be adding this book to our home library to share with my daughter and sons as they grow up.

If you are interested in more information about this book, you can find out more at Read and Write 4 Kids.
Ms. Allen is currently offering up a contest to win prizes, including a copy of Oli's Uncommon Cents! So be sure to go enter and offer her your support of her book!

Disclaimer: This book was sent to me by the author for the purpose of a review. All opinions expressed are my own.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Busy Mom's Guide to Parenting Young Children


Busy Mom's Guide to Parenting Young Children
by: Paul C. Reisser, M.D.


From the back cover:

Quick Answers for moms on the go
Using a question-and-answer format, Busy Mom’s Guide to Parenting Young Children takes you from birth through the “terrible twos” and the preschool years with tips on discipline, sleep patterns, eating, play, potty training, and more. Tired already? Get energized and equipped for the journey with the quick reference material found inside, developed by family practitioner Dr. Paul Reisser with the Focus on the Family Physicians Resource Council.

How can you find answers to your parenting questions? Sure, there’s a wealth of information on the Internet and at the library, but who has time to sort through it all? Talk about overwhelming! Relax—we have the cure for the common search. The information you need is at your fingertips in the practical and easy-to-use Busy Mom’s Guide series.


My thoughts:

Being a mom of 3 now (a 5 year old, a 2 year old and a newborn) I thought that this was a very informative book for both new and experienced moms. I love the format of the chapters which go in order of baby's age...starting with 0-3 months, 3-6 months, 6-12 months, 12-24 months, 2 years old and 3-4 years old. Each chapter was then divided up into questions that most parents have about their children at that age. These include topics from feeding your newborn, to growth patterns at the different ages, to helping develop your child's language and social skills to what to expect at your child's doctors appointments. I felt that Dr. Reisser's answers were well thought out and appropriate and practical. I would recommend this to any new mom who is unsure of what life with a child will bring ( (This would make a great addition to a baby shower gift!), as well as to the experienced mom who just needs a refresher course or a quick reference to questions she may have.

Disclaimer: This book was provided free of charge from Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. All opinions expressed are my own.

Song of My Heart by Kim Vogel Sawyer



From the back cover:

Sadie Wagner has always been devoted to her family. So when her stepfather is injured and can't work, she decides to leave home and accept a position as a clerk at the mercantile in Goldtree, Kansas. Goldtree also offers the opportunity to use her God-given singing talent- though the promised opera house is far different from what she imagined. With her family needing every cent she can provide, Sadie will do anything to keep her job.

Thad McKane comes to Goldtree to investigate reports of a bootlegging operation. Once he earns enough money from the sheriff work, he plans to use it to pay for his training to become a minister.

Thad is immediately drawn to the lovely young singer who performs in Asa Baxter's unusual opera house. But when he hears her practicing bawdy tunes, he wonders if she's far less innocent than she seems. And when Sadie appears to be part of the very crimes Thad has come to investigate, is there any hope the love blossoming between them will survive?


My thoughts:

This was a great, easy read. The characters were well developed and thought out. You really felt for the situation that Sadie is put in with regards to the relationship with her step-cousin and with her career choices and why she must continue to do what she knows may not be the right thing to do. You understand the irony of the situation with Thad and his career path. There are also characters thrown in for comic relief, including the twin sisters Melba and Shelba (who hire Sadie to work in their store) and their brother Asa Baxter, the owner of the town opera house!

I thought that the plot was well thought out and was a page turner for the most part. There was a nice blend between dealing with relationships and with suspense and intrigue (including moonshining and other questionable activities that need to be solved). The only part that I felt was a little cheesy was the ending. (I won't give it away, but in my opinion it is a very cheesy way to resolve the problems in the story.)

This is the second Sawyer book that I have read and enjoyed. And because of this
I will continue to read her books and think you should too!

Disclaimer: This book was provided by Bethany House Publishers in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are my own.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Feels like I have a ton to do

There does not seem to be enough hours in the day when you have a 5 year old, a 2 year old and a newborn! I have so much that I want to get done, but I just can't seem to get it done and that is frustrating me. I took a 2 hour nap this afternoon instead of working on paperwork that needs to be done. Don't get me wrong I need to sleep when I can, especially since Benjamin was up a lot last night. But I feel like I am just surviving at home with getting stuff done.

Because of that I have decided that I will make a list of what I want to get done by this coming Sunday and then not worry if I don't get it done today.

To dos:

-paperwork filled out and mailed to Mohela
-Rebecca's school registration papers filled out for next year and turned in
-pay Directv bill
-figure out budget
-3 book reviews (books have been read, just need to post reviews)
-thank you cards for baby gifts
-grocery list and coupon matchups
-put laundry away (4 baskets full to put away)
-Call and have Ben added to insurance
-look into paperwork for KCJFS

I think that is all I can think of for now....I am sure there are more things.....

Wildflowers from Winter by Katie Ganshert


From the back cover:


A young architect at a prestigious Chicago firm, Bethany Quinn has built a life far removed from her trailer park teen years. Until an interruption from her estranged mother reveals that tragedy has struck in her hometown and a reluctant Bethany is called back to rural Iowa. Determined to pay her respects while avoiding any emotional entanglements, she vows not to stay long. But the unexpected inheritance of farmland and a startling turn of events in Chicago forces Bethany to come up with a new plan.

Handsome farmhand Evan Price has taken care of the Quinn farm for years. So when Bethany is left the land, he must fight her decisions to realize his dreams. But even as he disagrees with Bethany's vision, Evan feels drawn to her and the pain she keeps so carefully locked away.

For Bethany, making peace with her past and the God of her childhood doesn't seem like the path to freedom. Is letting go the only way to new life, love and a peace she's not even sure exists?
My thoughts:

This was a great read! Ganshert explores relationships from many points of views that are both realistic and heart-wrenching. From Bethany's relationships with her mom, Evan, her grandfather, and a long lost friend there is at least one relationship that the average reader can relate to and learn from. I LOVED the character of Bethany in that she seemed so realistic and you could really understand why she was doing what she was doing. The love story between Bethany and Evan is just one aspect of the story and does not overpower the story of finding peace and love in a life that God meant for her to have. Overall, I could not put the book down and would recommend it to everyone!
Disclaimer: This book was received free of charge from WaterBrook Press and their Blogging for Books program. All opinions expressed are my own.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Sunday Night Chit Chat

Time for another edition of Sunday Night Chit-Chat, hosted by http://halfdozendaily.typepad.com/my-half-dozen-daily/.

The Rules:

Start with a photo, then answer the questions...simple as that!


Baby Benjamin....a week old.

The 3 kiddos!

WHAT ARE YOU.......


Reading?


I started and finished Oli's Uncommon Cents  by Deborah Allen this week while I was feeding Benjamin. It was a cute read.

Watching?

Hubby has NHL playoffs on the TV. Not really watching it.


Listening to?

Hockey on TV. Rebecca cleaning up the living room toys and singing the theme song from "Doc McStuffins."


Cooking/Baking?

Tonight I baked some chicken and Bill and I had a nice salad with the chicken on top for dinner. We are both tired of eating fast food and unhealthy (which we had been doing way too much of in the last 2 weeks, ever since Benjamin was born.)

Happy you accomplished this week?

I made it through a bunch of appointments (Benjamin had an appt to check his jaundice levels, we had a WIC appt, I had a doc appt to check my c-section incision, plus we had numerous visitors). And that I have survived a whole week home with a newborn, a 2 year old and a 5 year old!

Looking forward to next week?

I am able to drive as of tomorrow! I will be taking Benjamin at some point to my job to meet the kids and the rest of the staff members. Benjamin turns 2 weeks old on Monday!


Thankful for today?

That I have 3 beautiful children. That I have a husband who has been my support over the last 9 months and who doesn't mind getting up in the middle of the night to make bottles so that I don't have to go up and down the steps. That I have many friends and family members who all love Benjamin and are supportive of us!

What about you? To play along, visit
http://halfdozendaily.typepad.com/my-half-dozen-daily/

Monday, April 9, 2012

BENJAMIN is here!!!!!!

Sorry I have been MIA since last week. On Monday, April 2 I had a scheduled c-section at 7:30 in the morning for the birth of my 3rd child (2nd son).

I am pleased to introduce....


BENJAMIN BRIAN
9lbs 15oz.
21 inches long

I hope to be back this week with some more blogging and with Benjamin's birth story and with more pictures! In the meantime I am off to spend some time cuddling with our new baby boy and just enjoying my children!

Hope everyone has a wonderful Monday! 

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Sunday, April 1, 2012

To do list....for before I have my c-section tomorrow!


I have a HUGE to do list for today....because I am getting ready to have the baby...I am scheduled for a c-section TOMORROW!!!! AGHHHH!!!! Needless to say I am getting really nervous....so I am trying to focus on what needs to be done.

So here is what I hope to accomplish today (with the help of Dear Hubby of course!):
  • Finish all laundry (wash, dry and put away)
  • Put crib together in the boys' room (I just want to have this done before baby comes)
  • Pack kids' overnight bags (they will be staying with my parents while I am in the hospital)
  • Double check contents of packed hospital bag
  • Take kids to Mom and Dad's house
  • Empty trash out of bathrooms and take trash to garage.
  • Have all dishes done and put away before bed tonight
  • Charge my phone
  • make sure camera is in purse
  • clean up Jacob's room
  • Pack diaper bag with essentials for mom
I think that does it. I am sure there is more I am forgetting but I am just thinking of what HAS to be done in my eyes. I am also hoping to get some blog posts ready for next week, but we will have to see. If you see some then you will know I did these. If you don't see any for a few days, then I didn't get to them.

Hope everyone has a productive day!