Thursday, June 13, 2013

jumping into june

I decided to look into my life, see what areas were bothering me and take one month/30 days to do something about it. My days and to do lists were a bit chaotic and not as productive as they should be. My body was in need of some slimming down. And overall, I just needed to find my groove, my happiness.

I have been in a real need of a good kick in the bottom. My boys wake my up at what is to me an ungodly hour and I go, go, go I seem to never really stop, yet my to do list was not getting checked off like I wanted and really even needed it to be. Things were getting done, just not how they should have been. It would be 4:00 and I would have no idea what I would make for dinner and get overwhelmed. I would let the day pile up with things to do and not get the essentials done. 

My lists would just sit there and get added to, but not be properly taken care of. The hubs likes all his lists kept electronically and I like them all in my gold brain planner. My entire life is written in there. If it isn't written down, I don't remember. Thus it's nickname, the gold brain. Shopping and to do lists, the boys eating and nap schedules. Everything. But the way my planner is set up and how I keep track of everything wasn't just right. I needed a slight alteration to it. I needed to see ahead of time what needed to be done, rather than what was done. I tried a few things, a big chart for the fridge, and a few other things, but nothing clicked. Now I have found that if I take a few different colored post it notes (one color for each of the categories) and put them on each day of the week ahead of time so I know what will be going on. I set a schedule for each day of the week for certain things to be done. They are now concrete. So I know Monday is always wash day. I don't have to think ahead and worry, "Oh when will I fit that in?" Each day of the week gets one concrete chore and one major thing off the list. And then when those are done, I can add in other little things. 

Before I add in other little things, I give myself some down time. I was working myself crazy from the time the boys got up until right before bed, not giving myself much time to unwind and I was truly getting burnt out. I knew something had to change. So whether it be sitting outside getting fresh air while they are taking a nap, reading a few chapters out of a book, or exercising a little during the day rather than in the evening, or blogging. Whatever it would be, I'd take a short break for myself. Twenty or Thirty minutes to just breathe. Now, it doesn't always work if the boys aren't napping together, but I do try to make an effort for it. 

So setting certain days to complete certain tasks, setting aside time for exercise (usually one part in the morning and the other I do every other evening), meal planning ahead of time, etc, has really helped. I don't get upset if I didn't get all 25 things done. They don't have to be done in one day and I was trying to force it and it overwhelmed me. I'm still trying to get this whole owning a house, being a wife, and momma to twins down. It's taking me a while to find my groove. When you think one thing works, you see a reason for it not to. But this is the first time I feel in my groove! Hooray for that!

I have been in need of just the right workout for myself. I am not athletic and I hate working out. Sometimes I feel like I'd rather just have that slight layer of fat cushioning than have to go through all this. Eat this and certainly not that. Workout for x hours each day/week. Ugh. When you are woken up by two bundles of energy before the sun and don't have free time until later in the evening, the last thing I am up for is exerting myself until I don't just feel like I am going to collapse, but do collapse from sheer exhaustion. I was just don't born with that much drive and energy I guess. But, I knew I had to do something. I have been using a weighted hula hoop every day for 20 minutes and that is great because I can do it in the evening while watching tv or while the boys are asleep since it makes no noise, or even with them up and playing. They seem to be entertained by it. I do like that little workout, but I wanted more. I turned to Facebook for suggestions and the one I went with is called Ballet Beautiful. I did it for the first time the other day and I can really feel it deep in my muscles. I hope I see some results sooner than later. I am going to aim to do that every other day, while hula hooping every day and hopefully that will help me slim down slightly. 

Here's to hoping for a slightly slimmer, healthier, more organized, and happier me comes 30 days from now. I am setting a goal for myself for one month. That's it. If I can do one month, see results that I am pleased with, then I will go to month two, and so on. I have my plan set, and if it works, hopefully it can be stuck to. And, if not, at the end of these 30 days, I will try a different plan for myself to attain my goals. 

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

10 current daily faves

Right now, my life is all about practicality, ease, simplicity and a bit of fun thrown in. We all need fun! As a momma to twin, active and needy (all babies are needy) baby boys, I need to keep my days simple and orderly to keep the chaos level low. Not all of these things are daily needs, but they're current faves anyway and in one way or another are used daily! In no particular order:

My new workout plan... part of it! I hula hoop for 20 minutes in the morning, and try to do 20 minutes later in the day. 20 minutes is doable for me. And the best part about hula hooping with babies, it entertains them (for the most part) so getting 20 minutes in is usually doable! I put the tv on to distract me because I hate to exercise and I need distraction.
 Ahhh, my gate. We have become the best of friends! Yes, myself and the gate. My little men are both crawling at fast speeds and they manage to go in every which way - not always the same direction. I was at a complete loss of what to do about baby proofing our home and the hubs suggested I keep them confined, with their toy box, in the kitchen. At first I wasn't loving the idea, but my goodness, after about 2 minutes of it, I couldn't love him more for suggesting it! They love the kitchen, we are always around so they see me during the day while I am getting things done and they can't get into anything! This is a gate that we originally used as a playpen, but now that they can crawl, they did not appreciate being confined to such a small area. The gate opens from a closed shape to a very long gate. As long as you keep it in a slight accordion design, it won't tip over. So we have it all along the opening in our kitchen. I don't have it quite set up in this picture because someone walked through the back end, but you catch my drift. You only see half of the length here. There are six panels. It's large! It is up from son up to son down. ;)
 I've never had great skin. I've tried random products that claim to cure bad skin, but finally gave up and bought all the cheap stuff. My skin got a bit better and just had the occasional random breakout somewhere. I heard a lot about the Clarisonic, but I thought it was a real gimmick. Then my cousin came to stay for spring break and she had one and I talked to her about it. She sold me on it and I am so  glad she did! The greatest part is, you only need a minute. It doesn't take much longer than what you'd do just rubbing some cleanser on your face. She also told me about Philosophy's Purity and I really love it. It's light, works well and has a neutral, yet clean smell. And my Olay night cream, well I just love the way it feels and smells! I get it all on Amazon, but you can find all these things in local shops as well. (Counting my skin care as one fave)
I don't own this, but I tried a free sample and as soon as I can save up a little bit, I am going to purchase this for face wash too. It is light, and just wonderful!
 My new jammies. They are from Target by Gilligan & O'Malley. I have a few nice pairs, but mostly winter ones. We are going away this summer with my entire family on my mom's side (aunts, uncles, cousins, soon-to-be cousins, and even our dogs) and I wanted to have a nice pair of pj's to take along. Plus, I just feel better in cute pjs. They have to be functional with these boys, and look appropriate for the mornings I am outside, in the front yard, with insanely messy hair and a sleepy face, in the neighborhood. Our neighbors already probably think I am crazy so at least if I am seen in halfway decent and cute looking pjs I won't get too many looks. ;) My plan to make them even cuter is to stitch on new buttons. I think I am going to go for cute little gold ones. I thought it would just add a little something extra. And I want to embroider a small "m" on the corner pocket with a metallic gold thread.
 There's a trend trap out there... Painting all your fingers the same color except your ring fingernail. I am not always big on falling into the traps, but I wanted something fun and different, and since I am loving gold (gold on my purse, my planner is gold, gold jewelry....) I thought my go-to summer pink (Mod Square by Essie) would be cute with a glittery gold (Kissed at Midnight, by Nicole by OPI - Selena Gomez Colletcion) on my ring fingernail. I think I like it. :)
 I use a large purse (you can see it in the background) so all my random little things get lost real easily. I was using a small little bag for some of them, but I never found the right bag that could hold it all. Then I found this "bikini bag" that I thought was so cute (of course, because of the gold) and was just the right size! The lady probably thought I was so excited over it because I had a really cute bikini, but if you know me, you know I'm anti-bikinis. And even if I wasn't, now I am for sure because of baby belly. What twins born at 7.4 lbs and 6.4 lbs will do to your tummy! ;) It is from a local shop, by a company named Bliss. I couldn't find it online though. If you have a Swoozies, check there.
 And here's my purse! I had been eyeing this for quite a while. And then my cousin showed up with it and I saw it in person, in use, and fell even harder in love! Back around my birthday when I had a little extra spending money I was tempted to buy this. It's a bit above my normal budget, but with birthday money, I was contemplating splurging. But, I didn't need to splurge too much because there was an error on their website bringing down the price big time! I ran to our local Michael Kors as soon as I could and picked this beloved bag up! I was so tempted to get the tan one as well. Those are my two faves. If it ever happens again that I catch an error, I will buy the tan one for the fall and winter. :) This bag is perfect because I can fit all my things, including my brain (aka my overweight planner), sometimes my large camera and even baby necessities. I usually always go out with the large diaper bag, but if I am just running somewhere quick, I throw what I need of theirs in my purse. It's perfect!
 I wear these daily. I love the little reminder of my boys. Now, I don't really need a reminder because they are always with me, but I just love the thin simplicity of these sweet gold initial bracelets. These are also from Swoozies but I am not sure the brand.
And along with my chocolate milk that I turn to like some people turn to drinking other things, I keep these babies handy. Thank goodness Costco sells in bulk!
And no day would be complete with out my real faves! These two little men are my joy and the reason for lack of sleep. I adore them and they make me laugh all day long. They have the best little personalities!
 What are you current daily faves? 

my fave cold salad: a recipe

I am not a cook. I am not creative in the kitchen. I pretty much just get by. I can follow a recipe though and this is one of my favorites for a cold summer salad. If I can do this, so can you! You can eat it as a side or you can grab some tortilla chips or Fritos and eat it as a dip! Bonus! I'm here to share the recipe with you today!

Black Bean and Feta Salad:

2 cans of black beans (rinsed and drained)
2 small cans of white shoepeg corn (just drained)
2 packages of garlic and herb feta cheese
finely chopped green onions - I just do to taste, probably about 1 handful chopped

For the dressing, use 1 cup of apple cider vinegar,
1/3 cup of olive oil,
a little less than 1/2 cup of sugar (next time, I am going to taste it with 1/4 cup to see if I can get by without changing the taste too much)
a few sprinkles of salt, pepper and garlic powder

Walla! Simple, easy, and oh so tasty!

I hope you enjoy this as much as I do!
I can't wait to take it to a fun summer outing in a cute dish!