Thursday, January 20, 2011

If I had an anonymous blog…

I would probably be a bit more snarky, rant a little more, and come up with funny nicknames for everyone.

However, since the whole reason I blog is to share what is going on in my life with friends and family it would make it a bit difficult to be anonymous, I would think. I do blur out house numbers and license plates in pics, but I’m not paranoid about not being completely anonymous.

So yeah, while an anonymous blog would maybe let me be a little more of a smart aleck without having to worry about backlash…I much prefer my blog the way it is.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

My first blog post…

My first blog post was written just before Christmas of 2005 on my Yahoo 360. I was a missionary in Romania at the time and about to spend my first (and only) Christmas without any family around whatsoever!!

The idea at the time was for me to kind of keep an online journal of all the stuff I was doing and then be able to refer back to it when sending out newsletters to my supporters back in the States.

I don’t know as I would have changed anything about that post looking back at it now…it’s just interesting to see what all has changed in my life and what I blog about now…just over five years later!!

Of course, the really observant of you will notice the dates of my blog posts and think “Hey, wait a minute…the dates on this blog go back all the way to March 2004!!” Well, at one point I went back and posted all my newsletters to my various supporters and back dated them…so that’s what that is about. I have on this blog all the posts I ever posted on Yahoo 360, Xanga, and mine and Brack’s Xanga blog (that got all of two posts on it) as well…all back dated to the date they were originally posted elsewhere. The only posts not included on here are posts on blogs I’ve started on Blogger since 2008…like Essential Simplicity, Fort Worth Mom Reviews, and Different Drum…and you can find links to those on here!!

Monday, January 17, 2011

“Necessities”

I ran out of sugar today. I cannot remember ever having run out of sugar in my adult, on-my-own life. Granted, the reason I ran out is because of a random infestation of weevils in my pantry a few weeks ago (must have brought home some bad pasta or something). I wasn’t buying up a bunch of new staples for a couple weeks in order to deal with the situation. Now I’ve got bay leaves and sticks of spearmint gum everywhere in the pantry to scare ‘em off…and am keeping all grain purchases in the freezer for a few days after purchase to stave off a re-infestation. So in all the putting off of purchasing staples I just let myself get too low and then didn’t feel like getting out over the weekend to the store.

All that to say that I just put the absolute last of my sugar into my mug of tea just now and need to get to the store to buy some more asap.

It struck me though as I put that last bit of sugar into my teacup that we in the US really do have it good. Yes, I know there are homeless and it’s always a good thing to help them out when we can. But overall, people in our country…even the poor ones on welfare…really don’t know what it is to go without. Sure, we may say “Poor me” cause we can’t eat out and have to pack a lunch for work…or we can’t go to Saltgrass and can only afford Taco Bell…or we are wearing clothes that we’ve had for years or bought at Goodwill when we’d rather have gone to the mall for clothes…but that isn’t REALLY being poor!!

My family were missionaries for 30+ years…in Mexico, Romania, and Peru. I have SEEN abject poverty. There was a family we used to visit in Mexico who lived in a corrugated tin shack that couldn’t have been more than 8’ x 12’ and there was a mom, dad, grandma, and at least 8 kids living there. I THINK they had an outhouse and there were a few scattered bits of someone’s castoffs scattered around the dirt by their house that the smaller kids played with, but that’s it. When we first went to Romania it was just over two years since the Revolution to throw out the Communist dictator…and while people were optimistic about the future, the lingering signs of a depressive/repressive regime were still to be seen everywhere. People still stood in bread lines and store shelves still sat more than half empty many times.

Suddenly even we…who while we had it hard at times in the US ourselves still seemed to depend on the availability of “necessities”…found ourselves without. Feminine hygiene products consisted of bags of cotton (like cotton balls, but in big clumps versus balls). Disposable diapers looked like giant sanitary napkins and were tied onto babies with sheets of plastic taking the place of plastic pants. Eggs could be scarce at times. Toilet paper was wound around without a cardboard tube, had no perforations, and was so rough that you could find wood chips in it the size of your pinkie finger sometimes!!

The most memorable thing about the lack of what we call necessities was the time my mom went to the store to buy some sugar. This wasn’t too long after we’d gotten there and while we’d somewhat adjusted to the lack of certain things, my mom certainly never thought about SUGAR as being something scarce!! After all, you go to the big supercenters here and they’ve got displays of bags of sugar fully 8 feet wide!! She asked the lady behind the counter for sugar and was incredulous to find out they had none. I think the lady felt sorry for her because she excused herself for a moment and came back with a tiny bag that had 3-4 tablespoons of sugar in it, tied tight shut with a rubber band. The lady took my mom’s hand and folded that little bag of sugar into it and whispered “Here, for your tea”!! She felt so sorry for the American that she actually parted with a bit from her own personal small stash to GIVE to my mom!!

All the above rambling just because I ran out of sugar for my tea? Well, yeah. But it does make you think, doesn’t it…about what even the poorest people take for granted in this country? I mean we are talking about SUGAR here!!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Goals--how am I doing so far?

Well, we are halfway through the month and so it’s time to check in on how I’m doing with my goals for the year!! First the stuff I talked about in my January 1st post, then on to the stuff I had in my actual Goals for 2011 post!!

Blogging--Well, I have gotten behind twice on posting to my blogs, but I’m trying to catch up/keep up.

Green Smoothies Health Challenge--I totally fell off the wagon when it comes to smoothies and soups!! I had a smoothie every day for the first week and only about 3-4 times total since then!! The soups, well…I still want to make them but so far I’ve only made up one recipe…a broccoli cheddar soup. It was pretty decent, but I don’t know that I’ll make it again. It just didn’t make me wanna go back for more and I want to add soups I LOVE to my repertoire. I am planning on getting to the store for more greens and fresh fruit and start afresh on Monday with smoothies. So there’s that.

Scheduling—Well, I now have an Android phone, so I can access my Flylady/Cozi app on it and get notifications on my phone when something important is coming up. I have also printed out my own version of Money Saving Mom’s Daily Docket checklist and keep a stack of them on a clipboard and handy. Still trying to get to the point where I can just sweep through the house and have it all spiffy in a flash…but with the clearing out / uncluttering / minimizing of stuff that we are doing it will get easier!!

Organizing—Moving right along with this one!! I’ve cleared out a bunch of kitchen stuff and we are working on simplifying our clothing wardrobes. The BIG thing we are currently working on is setting up our Brack And Julie Sell Their Stuff website…where we are listing all kinds of books, movies, and cds currently. We’ll eventually get other stuff on it as well…as we get pics taken and listings posted.

Different Drum—Not done yet!! Hopefully will get some pics taken this weekend and work on getting stuff listed as I can next week!!

Minimalist SAHM wardrobe—Working on it. Sunday afternoon I am going to be going through more of my clothes and hopefully cutting out the pattern pieces to make a dress. Once I weed out all the clothing I am not keeping, I will really need to push forward on getting replacement pieces…otherwise I will be washing the same couple of outfits over and over again!! :-P

Hooping—I’ve tackled a couple more tricks and gotten them down at least a few times…but of course practice makes perfect and not keeping up with it can make skills rusty…so I’m attempting to pull out my hoop and practice at least every other day.

Health—I am SOOO not doing well on the getting plenty of sleep thing!! As long as my little dude insists on waking up so freakin’ early I really need to make a point of getting to bed earlier!! Staying up late and then getting up early just is not working!! The eating healthy…well, as mentioned above…I am working on it. Getting fresh air and sunshine is kinda hard though these days, as it’s overcast and COLD out…and kinda wet too!!

Relationships…working on that too. Trying to make more time with my husband that isn’t in front of a screen…though that is hard sometimes!! I did go to the zoo with a neighbor and her daughter once on a pretty day, but I hope to really start branching out and having people over for playdates and coffee klatches in the very near future…but I’ve gotta get the rest of the big organizing jobs dealt with first!!

Enjoy every day with my little boy—Yup, been working on that!! He is SUCH a cutie and we have a lot of fun…even if he is getting into the terrible twos just a BIT early!! He still isn’t really talking, but is definitely jabbering a lot more…so he’s getting there. The learning of ABC’s, colors, numbers, and going potty are progressing….but SLOWLY!! He does understand a lot of concepts though, as he love to help out…fetching things, throwing things in the trash, washing up, etc.

So yeah…Some of the stuff isn’t progressing as well as I’d hoped, but I’m pretty much at least TRYING on all of my goals!! Here’s to the next 11.5 months being more of the same or better!!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

I am not a Mommy Blogger

I realize that yes, I am a mommy…yes, I do blog…and yes, a LOT of my blogging currently revolves around my little boy.

But I was a blogger long before I was a mommy. In fact, until I started this dare (funnily enough through Bloggy Moms) there were actually very few posts about being a mommy or about my little guy…simply because I was so busy BEING a mommy that being a blogger took a backseat.

So, with that in mind…I do plan on having some posts this year that have absolutely nothing to do with my child or mommyhood mixed in with plenty of posts that do!! Because after all, I’m not JUST a mommy…and I’m not JUST a mommy blogger!! :-P

Friday, January 14, 2011

Recent Cuteness

In honor of Bug having reached the grand old age of 18 months today...here are just a few random cute pics of the little guy since the New Year!!

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Thursday, January 13, 2011

My Routine

So yeah…the blog prompt was a couple weeks ago and I am just now getting around to posting it? Bad Julie!!

Seriously, though…I do need the accountability of having my routine posted where the world wide web (should they really care to) can see what I need to be getting done each day!! So here it is!!

dress/make bed

tidy bedrooms/bathrooms

start load of laundry

make breakfast

tidy kitchen/prep dinner

switch load of laundry

make lunch

tidy kitchen/run dishwasher

feed cats/clean litterboxes

exercise/shower

devotions/prayer time

write blog posts

fold and put away laundry

tidy main living areas

vacuum house

unload dishwasher

make dinner

tidy kitchen/prep lunches

tidy nursery

Obviously this is just the basics...I've got prob 3-4 things assigned to each day of the week to accomplish as well, plus any outside activities and grocery shopping or other errands to accomplish. Not everything ends up getting done every day, but if I try to at least get as much of my list as I can crossed off every day I don't end up drowning in housework!!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Introduction to Playdoh

I had to go today to get the registration done on the car and get some groceries…so we headed out for a few hours this afternoon. The registration didn’t take long at all and the lady just cooed over Bug. I swear that kid is gonna grow up with a big head, as much as people fuss over him!! He already knows how to work a crowd!!

While we were at Walmart I decided to stop by the toy section to check on a toy kitchen. I figured it was still gonna be out of my comfortable price range, but I thought it wouldn’t hurt to check. Well, we didn’t make it home with a kitchen, but since a single container of Playdoh was like 88 cents, I figured it’d be something fun to introduce him to. They really had mostly cheesy colors in the single packs…lots of pink, purple, and teal…but they did have one black, so I grabbed it.

Once back home I didn’t introduce it to him till the “witching hour”…that time just before dinner when he seems to start having a meltdown from hunger and tiredness. I popped him in his little seat at the table, got a tablecloth on the table, and let him have at it with a baby-sized tableknife, a biscuit cutter, and a sewing tool that poked little holes in the Playdoh. He was fascinated, only tried to eat some twice, and all in all had fun and was kept occupied enough for mama to get some stuff done!!

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Monday, January 10, 2011

Fantasy Faire

So this year I really wanna go to Fantasy Faire at Middlefaire in Hillsboro. It isn’t too far away and the tickets are fairly cheap. But of course I wanna go in garb…so we shall see what I can come up with on the cheap.

I totally wanna go as Codex, but since Twig’s look is prob a bit more doable with what I have on hand (well, except for the wings), I might go that route.

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Brack totally wants to go as Altair or Ezio…which definitely require more work, but if he goes with Altair’s garb, then he’d also be able to wear it to Sherwood Faire…since it’s set around the time of the Crusades as well. If I manage to get his garb done it will definitely be the most work. But though he would like to have garb like Altair or Ezio, he is cool with going in his mundanes as well. He’s not quite as gung-ho as me to “garb up”--to twist a Barney phrase a bit.

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Anyway, it obviously all comes down to time and finances…but it would sure be fun!!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

My Hungry (Messy) Toddler

So Bug must be going through a growth spurt!! He actually ate THREE bowls of homemade apple cinnamon oatmeal at breakfast…and probably would have eaten more if it hadn’t been finished off!!

Then at lunch he attacked his bowl of spaghetti with a vengeance and THIS was the outcome of that!! Needless to say he went straight to the bathtub after that!! What a funny boy!!

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Twas rather a quiet day otherwise. I even got a nap in!! It was pretty cold and grey outside, so it was a perfect day to snuggle on the couch. We even saw snow…but it didn’t stick. It DID make Bug point and squeal and Ami and the kitten go dashing from one window to the next to watch it fall, though…so it had some entertainment value!!

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Family Day Out

We went to the Fort Worth RV Show today. It was at the Convention Center, so it was all indoors…which was good, cause it was pretty cold out!!

We saw lots of cool RV’s there…popups, those campers that sit in a truck bed (WAY nicer than back in the day), Airstreams (modern with a retro look), huge motorhomes that are close to half a million dollars (eesh!)…just a LOT of cool stuff!!

The COOLEST thing we saw though was a toyhauler with a patio!! Wouldn’t you love to have something like this?

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What amazed me was that Bug actually fell asleep in his stroller!! He hasn’t fallen asleep while out and about (except in the car) in forever!! He must have been pretty tired!! So the last hour or so that we were there, Brack and I took turns popping into the RV's to check out the stuff we wanted to see while the other stayed just outside them with the stroller.

After we left the show we decided we wanted Mexican food and wanted it authentic…so we headed up Main Street till we saw a little hole-in-the-wall place. It was pretty good (except for the salsas) and Bug just LOVED trying chips for the first time. He got his own taco and thought he was big stuff!! All in all it was a fun day!!

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Friday, January 7, 2011

Our Decorated Nursery

So, I had grand plans to have Bug’s nursery all ready for him before he was born and I DID get stuff up on the walls and the furniture put together…but never got curtains, bedskirts, and the like sewn up till this past week…and he will be 18 months old next week!!

Better late than never though, right? I am fairly happy with how it all turned out except for the light blocking curtain. It just looks too plain and blah hanging there and I also think that there are just too many stripes in that corner. So I think I will borrow an idea from OhDeeDoh and make hanging book holders out of the curtain instead…and hang them in the space between Bug’s name and his toy carpet.

So here is Bug’s nursery in all it’s glory!! I love that while it’s cute it isn’t cutesy and can grow with him. I also love that we were able to incorporate some family touches into the room. The silhouettes on the wall above his bed were actually copied from one of me in the second grade and one of my little brother in preschool. I resized and pasted them onto cardstock which was then pasted to scrapbooking paper and framed. Some other family touches: the bedtime prayer plaque between the two silhouettes was mine as a child, the little green music box in with his toys was also mine, the stuffed dog on the far right in the back on the table was my DH’s, and the Buzz and Woody were Bug’s Uncle A’s when he was little.

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What Happens When a Crayon is Unsupervised…

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I swear my child can get into mischief in a split-second!! I have no idea how he comes up with things to do but just this week I’ve had to clean up the following messes:

Pots and pans he’s dragged out of the kitchen cabinets, paper towels he’s shredded onto the kitchen floor, xbox games he’s pulled out and scattered around the living room (twice), toys he’s pulled out and scattered all over his room and half the house (a given), etc. etc.

The crayon scribbles happened yesterday and I have no clue how I’m gonna deal with the one that has the most scribbles…cause that is the ONLY one that can’t just be turned around (I cut out the back of that one to accommodate some of our cables and such for the xbox, tv, and dvd player)!!

Then, to top it off with the grossest thing yet…this morning he came running up to me holding the measuring cup we use to scoop out our kitties food and handed it to me. I looked inside it and there was about 1/8 of a cup of KITTY LITTER out of the litter box!! Yes, my child had scooped up litter and was wanting me to give it to the kitties!! Where does he come up with this stuff?!!

Yes, I know you mommies of older children are snickering…but it seems we have now reached the milestone of toddler mischievousness!! Fun, fun!!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

I choked…or why you shouldn’t check the video monitor while drinking water!!

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Funny kid fell asleep like this tonight…and no, the gate was not open when he was laid down for bed!!

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So today I tackled the master closet…and won!! There is still more to do really, since DH has finally decided he is going to weed out some of his clothes as well. This will actually be the first time he has decided to do so on his own with absolutely no prodding from me…so I’m pretty happy!! He is pretty good about weeding out stuff generally…but his clothes and books are held onto a little tightly by him!!

As you will see in the pictures, I now have NO clothes in there!! Since I am in the process of trying to come up with a suitable yet minimalist wardrobe I just pulled it all out and will only put back in the things that will readily incorporate into my new wardrobe…which basically means 2 dresses, two pairs of jeans, and a couple tops so far (I really am down to very few things that will work for me clothes-wise at the moment)!!

Anyway…onward and upward as they say!! Next thing to deal with is the laundry room!!

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Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Clutter, clutter, everywhere!!

I am so tired of STUFF being everywhere!! I am such a minimalist at heart I start to feel claustrophobic when there’s too much stuff cluttering up the place. I’ve been working on minimizing all the excess stuff in our kitchen and will have some pictures to show very soon.

The laundry room is next on my “Clear it all out” list…then the master closet. I have pretty much gotten Bug’s room decorated now…though I think I want to tweak the curtains a bit…plus I need to add pics to Bug’s first year photo collage and make some hanging book holders. I will post some pics as soon as I can.

I started working through all my books recently as well…posting the ones I no longer want on paperbackswap.com (I’m Texanromaniac on there). I am then putting them into boxes and putting them into the garage. After a year whatever books are not requested will be donated to the library or sold to Half Price Books.

Anyway…really hoping to make some more progress this week so I can have some pictures to show off. I’m working on getting some more posts worked up ahead of time as well.

Why did I start blogging?

I started blogging while I was a missionary in Romania as a way to keep people in the States up to date on what was going on in my life in a different way than what would have made it into my newsletters. At least that’s what I told myself!!

The truth of the matter is that for the first two or three months I doubt I had ANY readers whatsoever!! I mostly was just spilling my guts and being a smart aleck!! At that time I blogged on both Xanga and Yahoo360…somewhat divided between the two.

Then I joined an online forum and made some online friends and ended up meeting my future husband and more people started following my Xanga blog and it became a place for me to talk about our relationship developing, wedding plans, and other random thoughts.

After marriage my posting kind of dwindled to sporadic posts. I would post two or three times in a row…then not blog for several months!! I lost a lot of my followers when I moved to Blogger ahead of the crowd (most didn’t start moving from Xanga until recently). Then, once we moved into a house and had our kiddo I really dropped the ball…and before starting the blog dare I hadn’t blogged in over six months!! Yikes!!

I am hoping to be a better blogger this year and gain more followers. I really don’t care if I ever gain money through my blog…I just want to better express myself through the written word!! (Though free products for doing product reviews would not be sneered at)!!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

APRONS

Every modern girl needs aprons!! While some may think they could never get used to wearing an apron…they are very handy for multiple reasons…most specifically keeping your clothes from getting dirty or stained.

I realize that I posted this link from the Hillbilly Housewife a few years ago in a Sunday Shoutout, but I like what she has to say about wearing aprons....and here's an LA Times article that comes at the concept of wearing aprons a bit differently, but is also a good read.

So here is some inspiration for every lady out there to wear aprons!! There are some CUTE aprons to be bought and/or made out there!!

Flickr groups: Apron Outfits and Tie One On Apron Projects

Etsy shops: Boojiboo, Sugar Pie Chic and Terrace Hill

Make your own aprons: Scalloped Apron, Frilly Apron, T-shirt Apron, Pleated Apron w/Built-In Hotpads!!

And now for pics of some cool aprons and links to Apronista, Apron Memories, and Angry Chicken's Tie One On!!

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A Trip to the Zoo…

Today Bug and I headed to the zoo with our neighbor M and her little girl A. We spent most of the time in the African section looking at tigers, elephants, lions, etc.

Bug also loved the penguins…we got there right at feeding time and he was laughing and squealing. We ate lunch at the zoo, then ran a couple errands. 'Twas a fun day.

Unfortunately, my stupid little camera is on the fritz…so I wasn’t able to get many pictures. Next trip to the zoo I’ll just have to take the good camera!!

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Monday, January 3, 2011

Some wardrobe ideas…

So I have some ideas about my minimalist wardrobe. I have a couple of patterns that I think may work.

Simplicity 2373 has a dress, pants, and bolero-type jacket. I’m not the greatest seamstress, so I’ll probably make a test outfit to see if it will work for me. I found some cute material for cheap at Goodwill that should work.

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I also have a cute dress pattern from McCall’s (M6027). If I make a dress from that pattern it will be the less full style though.

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I did a teensy bit of poking around today and found some possible sources for a few other wardrobe necessities as well, but I will wait to post links till I check out a few more things and hopefully have some of my wardrobe gathered together first.

The most awesome thing I found out today though was that Scottevest has a women’s trench coat planned. Granted, it’s not EXACTLY the style I was going for…but the coolest thing is I posted on their Facebook wall about what I was hoping for and they actually listened!! I’d love to have one of their coats as my basic coat…they are WAY cool!!

Anyway, yes…today’s blog post was light on content and posted just before bedtime…but hey, at least I DID post, right?!!

Mommy Confessions…

So the blog prompt today was to post my morning routine...what I need to do in the morning so as to not get off kilter...and well, I didn't do the routine...so my day was off-kilter!!

The house IS moderately cleaner than it was when I got up this morning, a few loads of laundry WERE dealt with, some food that was bought Friday evening DID finally make it into the pantry, and a book WAS read to my baby boy...but overall I really dropped the ball today. Pretty bad for it only being the third day of the year!! I did at least get a shower and drink my green smoothie (though I had it for dinner instead of breakfast)...and I am finally blogging just before bed...so there is that!!

I think I'm gonna post that routine on here to help encourage me to keep it up. There's just something about it being out on the wide web to make me feel a bit more accountable about how I spend my time.

Tomorrow I am gonna take the little dude out to the zoo or museum for a while. It may sound funny, but I actually need the occasional day where I DON'T follow my schedule to give me the boost to actually follow my schedule the rest of the time...and we've just been home too many days in a row lately!! Besides that, I'm gonna try to finish up the decor on little dude's room and post pics of it on my Essential Simplicity blog...as well as deal with more laundry. My next project after the little dude's room is subduing the laundry room monster...and it WILL be tamed before the weekend...then on to the big bad master closet!!

So there is my rather lame little post to fulfill my goal of daily blogging!! Tomorrow’s post will hopefully be better!!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Minimalist SAHM wardrobe…what I’m wishing for!!

I am SOOO bored with my clothes!! Most of the clothes I have I’ve had since at least 2007 (with the exception of a couple pairs of jeans I’ve gotten at resale shops)…and some of my clothes date back to college days!!

I am so over looking like a college kid from the 90’s…Doc Maartens, jeans, and oversized tees just look way too sloppy for a suburban mom!! I don’t wanna go the whole soccer mom look either…the track suit look just won’t cut it for me!! The thing is, I want to look feminine and put together without looking cutesy and overdone!! I want outfits that are nice enough to just throw on shoes and waltz out of the house wearing, yet I can be comfortable in and not worry about messing up should we decide that we aren’t leaving the house all day.

Crystal at Money Saving Mom did a vlog about her minimalist wardrobe and while admirable, I don’t think I could go just QUITE that minimal at this point!! She has just two pairs of pants, two pairs of capris, two skirts, one dress, and six mix-and-match tops!!

I found this post that talked about how the French pull off a minimalist look and drew a few ideas from it…specifically how versatile a trench coat can be!! I also found a blog called You Look Fab that has some great ideas about mom outfits and read a lot of the posts they had there and drew some more ideas. Then I took into account what sorts of things I will be doing while wearing my wardrobe and what sorts of things I’m comfortable wearing right now…and tweaked and tweaked and THINK I’ve hit upon what I would like my wardrobe to consist of.

I LOVE black and the jewel tones/summer shades of blues and greens versus pastels…so I decided to stick with those as my base colors.

So here it is: My Ideal Wardrobe!!

*3 pairs of bootcut or fit-to-the-knee flared pants…two pairs being denim and one pair being made of a black woven material.

*5 cute sleeveless dresses that hit right above the knee…not too flared or too straight…for wearing solo or for layering over pants. Snug enough to fit properly, but loose enough to layer short and long sleeved tops underneath (ie. dress as jumper).

*5 or so thin tops for layering (not too sheer…so as to still be wearable alone), in a long length for maximum coverage.

*5 or so tank tops/camis for layering, in a long length for maximum coverage.

*2-3 dressier tops that can be worn with the skirts or pants for church or a night out. Banded tops with a rounded or v-neck seem to work well for me.

*1-2 cute knee length skirts and 1-2 long skirts…in denim and/or black…must be able to mix-and-match with all tops.

*2-3 bolero jackets and/or cardigans for extra warmth for shoulders when weather is slightly chilly or for when in air conditioned buildings. A couple of wraps are handy for this as well (I have two already in black and a jewel tone green).

*1-2 dresses. One of these must be the LBD (little black dress) that should be an essential part of every wardrobe. If there is a second dress it can be a fun print.

*Black just-above-the-knee trench coat w/removeable lining…enough to keep me warm here in Texas on all but the coldest of days…and versatile enough to go with EVERYTHING in my wardrobe.

*Shoes will be chunky boots/chunky flips while wearing pants (for height with comfort)…and ballet flats/sandals while wearing skirts and dresses (for easy, breezy slip-on comfort) . One pair of dressy heels for weddings and date nights to round out the shoe category!!

Two categories that might be unique to me…but essential for what I want are:

*2-3 pairs of modesty shorts. Soft white cotton knit, mid-thigh, fairly snug-fitting shorts for wearing under my dresses. Since I want to be able to wear my dresses just above the knee and since I WILL be sitting on the floor in them as a mom…these are essential!!

*3-4 pinafores. Not just an apron, but more like what young girls wore over their dresses around the turn of the last century. Not frumpy and shapeless...more something fashioned similar to the cut of my dresses, but that only covers the fronts of them and ties in the back. An easy way while at home cleaning or working on projects with the little dude to keep my clothes neat. These can then be pulled off and put aside before heading out of the house!!

So there ya go!! I realize this may not seem that minimalist to many…but when you take into account that this would be ALL that was in my closet, it really isn’t that much when compared to the average closet contents of the average American female!! I don’t intend to have ANYTHING in my closet that isn’t wearable and worn consistently. Much better to have all of this list and be able to wear all of it than to stare in discontent at a full closet and have nothing wearable!!

Whew…this was a somewhat lengthy second post of the year…but now I can just come back and refer to this post as I work on getting my wardrobe complete!!

Some Goals for the Year

So, I decided to use the Bloggy Moms prompt today. It’s a good one, though not quite as easy-peasy to do as some of the others.

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My “To Do” list for 2011 includes the following:

*Make a daily/weekly/monthly schedule and stick with it.

*Blog every day…and with that comes the development of connections online. I need to not only blog, but to comment on the blogs of others when a post resonates with me.

*Get my house ORGANIZED…using the quote “Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful” as my guide.

*Get my Different Drum Artfire shop off the ground and running.

*Come up with a coordinating minimalist wardrobe for myself to replace current mish-mash of clothes.

*Hoop as often as possible and work on improving my skills.

*Eat healthy, get enough sleep, and get more fresh air and sunshine.

*Work on relationships…with my husband, friends, and neighbors. Be more intentional and invested in their lives.

*Enjoy every day with my little boy…get out and go places like the zoo/museum/park/library every week, dance in the living room with him, read books to him. Teach him his ABC’s, colors, numbers, and how to go potty. Relish his toddlerhood before he grows out of it!!

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I'm sure there will be some other goals that I will think of and add to my personal goals list as the year progresses, but this is what I've got so far!!

Saturday, January 1, 2011

A New Year…A New Resolution!!

I realize that I have not blogged in over half a year and that is really sad!! I HAVE been working on various organizing projects and couponing and reading and getting ideas for blog posts…I just haven’t been sitting down and actually posting!! However, I decided to join Bloggy Moms in the Blog Dare!! I am supposed to blog every day for a year…eesh!! They do give you a prompt for each day if you get stuck…but of course this blog is a bit different than my regular blog, so the topics won’t help much with that!! However, the main goal is to just buckle down and blog!! So, here’s to that happening!!

Today’s post really is just to introduce the fact that I am planning on blogging daily…I don’t really have an awesome post all done up or anything and it is already almost 9pm…so this blathering on that I’m doing here will have to suffice for today!! However, I am hoping that by early next week I should have the last little bit of sewing finished up and will be able to show off Bug’s room…finally completely decorated!! It was rather plain for a long while…with just a few wall decorations…but now the furniture has been rearranged, crib skirt remade to match the rest of the d├ęcor, various other bits sewn up, and curtains halfway completed. I just have to make some hanging book holders and finish up the light blocking curtain and then I’ll be ready to show it off.

I’ll also have blog posts about: other organizing projects I’ve been working on, pictures of how I’ve organized my coupons, getting planners and household notebooks set up to fit your needs, and some of my recent couponing deals. I will also be reinstating my Sunday Shoutouts starting January 9th.

Here’s to hoping that I will be able to be more consistent in the coming year with blogging!!

A New Year…Some New Resolutions!!

So, it has been ages since I last blogged…and I haven’t really been that consistent with blogging anyway since before our little guy was born…and he was born almost a year and a half ago!!

Therefore, I have now joined Bloggy Moms in the Blog Dare!! Every day for a year…eesh!! They do give you a prompt for each day if you get stuck…but the main goal is to just blog!! Here’s to that happening!!

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I’m also starting my own Green Smoothie Challenge. Every day for the month of January I plan on having a green smoothie for breakfast and a healthy, hearty soup for lunch. Dinners will be as usual. I also plan on getting in at least 30 minutes of movement in every day…whether that’s walking, hooping, dance dance revolution, or an exercise video. I’ll post some more about that in another post.

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So to catch everyone up to date on what has been going on….

Brack is now warehouse manager at TD as of a few months ago. This means a little more security, but lots of hours!! It definitely keeps him busy during the week and ready for the weekend!!

I’m busy getting the house in shape…trying to get rid of some of the clutter that seems to accumulate when you have more space to fill!! It seems the more space you have, the more space gets filled up!! I’m also trying to get my own little home business on the web going. I have an Artfire shop that will hopefully get set up here in the next week or so…selling accessories and eventually clothing for hoop dance, belly dance, swing dance, and ren faires.

Of course, I also am kept hopping keeping up with the bundle of energy that is our little toddler!! He never seems to stop moving!! I’ve emptied the bottom kitchen cabinets of all but pots and pans, mixing bowls, and plastic storage containers…because inevitably in the split seconds that I’m not looking he ends up dragging half the contents of the cabinets out into the middle of the kitchen!!

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He is a little sweetheart though and has learned to charm the fire out of total strangers and win the hearts of everyone who knows him!! He is very much into music and will start dancing to anything with a beat!! Cracks us up every time!! He got a little marching drum and a xylophone for Christmas and I’m sure he will be making plenty of music in the playroom now!!

Bug dances through 2010!!

We have also added to the family a new kitten. Ami is none too pleased with this new development…but we wanted a cat that would grow up together with Bug, be a LOT more friendly with everyone, and be able to travel well…NONE of which Ami is!! So Kiki joined the family just before Thanksgiving and has already made the journey to my parents for Thanksgiving (making “friends” with Mom’s kitten) and to my MIL’s for Christmas (thrilling all the little nieces and nephews). She has adapted very well to traveling in the car…and will even nap on our shoulders!!

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So, there ya go!! First blog entry of 2011!! Here’s to hoping that I’ll be able to keep up with my blogging and health challenges!!

Tryazon Strictly Briks Party

In the middle of all the busyness that was the month of November I was chosen to host a Tryazon party for Strictly Briks. We got our party k...