Friday, April 29, 2011

Conversation between Jake & Helen

Jake is dishing up ice cream for everyone.
Helen: Why is that one mommy's?
Jake: Because it says 'Orange you glad you married me?' (It really just has a picture of an orange on it.)
Helen: Oh. (giggle giggle)
Helen: Why is that your's?
Jake: Because it says Google.
Helen: Because that is your special word?
Jake: Yep.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Two More Weeks

Picture In Portrait 5x7 folded card
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Saturday, April 23, 2011

Not the # Followed by 100 Zeros

Google, yep, that Google, offered Jake a job.
We will be moving to sunny California in July.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Sugar turns 4!

Big Sister loves pink, art, and preschool.  Your favorite foods are noodles, berries, and cereal.  You love to play outside and to be with your sister.

For over a year Big Sister has wanted a duck birthday party.  So we went ducky.  We did everything in yellow with her favorite color, pink, tied in.  This was the first year for her to have a friend party.  We had lots of fun feeding the ducks at a nearby bridge, decorating individual party hats with stickers, and playing Pin the Party Hat on the Duck and Duck Duck Goose. Afterwards we had duck cupcakes.

Daddy and sister feeding ducks.
Running home to party with friend.

Friends decorating their hats.

Friend playing duck duck goose.

Helen pinning her party hat on the duck

The birthday cupcakes.

Singing "Happy Birthday"

The decorations.

Love you very much!  Happy 4th Birthday!

Friday, April 8, 2011

Project Simplify - The Beginning

I know I have hinted at de-cluttering and simplifying my home. But I haven't shared exactly what I am doing or my results on here as of yet. Maybe it is because I am staying busy with my focus area or project.  Since I am on week 14 I really should catch up start blogging about it.

I started this the 2nd or 3rd week of January after I read this blog post from Laura over at I'm an Organizing Junkie. I have also been following gaining inspiration from Tsh at Simple Mom and her Project Simplify. Both have been extremely helpful in keeping me focused. I took the template that Laura made and redid it to match my likings. It is simply 52 lines associated with the weeks of the year. I filled in each week with an area that needed to be organized or a project. The projects are included because they are things I want to accomplish, and often the projects are cluttering space with their supplies and such. I printed it off the list and hung it on our white board. I look at it every day. That way I know where my focus is for the week. When I have a few minutes (rarely with my girls) I know where to focus my energy. I don't get that not-knowing-where-to-start or don't become over-whelmed (okay maybe I did get a itsy-bitsy over-whelmed, partly due to being sick, during weeks 6-12, more on that later).

It seems too simple, really. But it has been the hugest help for me. I have noticed a change in how I approach other tasks in life too. I am being more assertive in getting things done and putting things away where they go in the first place. One huge stumbling block in the organization process for me was organizing the old while keeping up with the new (for example, mail).

So without further avail here are the first few weeks:

Week 1: Didn't know about the project at this time, but I was getting us back onto schedule (eating, chores, sleep) post holiday season. In a way that is a good start.

Week 2: Clean out the girls' toys. I actually did this before I read the blog post, but I added it on because I did do it and it a good reminder when I did it.

Week 3: Finish table. I had been refinishing a table for a long time and finally finished it this particular week. I'll be post more pictures on it soon.

Week 4: Put away Christmas. It was all taken down already, but the boxes and such were just hanging out on Jake's table. So this week's goal was to get everything to the storage unit. May not seems like a big project, but I drive a small sedan with two car seats  and kids in tow in the back. Our trunk is smaller than most storage boxes. All that leaves a small floor space under my youngest's feet and the passenger side of the car. I think we made it in 2 or 3 loads. I really don't have that much Christmas stuff...just a really small car.

Week 5: Clean out dresser & repair quilt. I cleaned out my dresser and got rid of nearly a drawer of clothes.  I also finished repairing a large denim quilt that had been sitting in our hall for ages just waiting. We also took it to the laundry mat to get it cleaned and dried. That in itself is a time consuming task. My kids love it though because I don't care if they run around and I always take a few extra quarters to get a vending machine treat.
I'll cover the next weeks in the next post because they all go together, plus this is getting way too long. Sorry there are no pictures for the first 5 weeks; I didn't really think about it. Week 5 was also when we started to get sick at our house, so things slowed down, but we have since regained speed and are full steam ahead.

Happy Organizing, Everyone!

Friday, April 1, 2011

What A Day!

It has been quite the day today.
  • To start of I am recovering from some dental graphing done yesterday. Boo!
  • Didn't feel up to messing with my family's food for April Fool's Day. Boo!
  • The girls were being good this morning so we went to clean the car. Yeah!
  • Next stop was a store to pick out a top for H & N to wear for pictures. Yeah! (didn't have one small enough for Norah boo.)
  • Then we went to lunch with Jake on campus. Yeah!
  • Looked at another store for a top.  Rethought the tops and tried to let H help in the decision. (neither yeah or boo)
  • Took Jake back to his laboratory. Boo.
  • Went home and put N down for her nap.  She went down with a peep for the first time. Yeah!
  • Decided to go with original plans for pictures. Yeah!
  • N woke we got ready, went to 2nd store again and got N's top. Yeah!
  • Went to another store and made an exchange quickly. Yeah!
  • Went to girls' well-checks.  H had melt down about eye exam, but passed and is very healthy other than she needs new hand soap. Yeah!
  • N has a slew, okay only 4 but it feels like a lot, of things for me to keep my eye on. Boo.
  • She still got a clean bill of health for now. Yeah!
  • Both girls got shots and wailed.  Boo!!
  • Got home, made quick dinner for the girls (Yeah!) , both of which were certain life was ending in a tragic way. Boo.
  • Tried a new way of serving meals (MTM). Yeah!
  • Girls happy for the moment.  I think both have forgotten their shots until Daddy comes home.  Yeah!
  • My mouth hurts.  Boo!!
  • Going to get ice cream for brave girls and Mommy when Daddy comes home.  Yeah!

That's our day in a nutshell.

Here's our Muffin Tin Meal (MTM).  I learned about them here rather somewhere I can't find, and this is another great site from Michelle, the Muffin Tin Mom.  The girls thought is was fun.  I was grateful it was distracting from their inflicted tragedy of an afternoon.  I am going to add these to our weekly lunch rotation.

Mission Organize Apartment