Monday, December 30, 2013

2013 Goals Round Up

Here's a quick update on my 2013 goals. I will post 2014 goals and update on our Christmas soon. 

 2013 Personal Goals: 

1. Workout consistently (3 x per week). - I did pretty well with this goal for part of the year, but ended up slacking off a lot towards the end of the year. I have this as a goal in 2014, but more specifically I want to make this a habit or a new “norm” in 2014. 

 2. Finish losing baby weight and then some. - I have done really well with my weight loss this time around, but I still have around 10-12 lbs to lose before I am at my pre-baby weight and then I would like to lose another 5 lbs on top of that. I am continuing to do Weight Watchers, which has been very successful for me in the past. I am also planning to do the Lifetime Fitness 90 day challenge. I definitely accomplished this goal in 2013. I now weigh the lowest I have weighed since high school. It feels great and I’m loving it. 

3. Track WW points daily and weigh in weekly. - I did pretty well on this for part of the year. Now that I am at a pretty good weight I am just watching my weight. If it gets too high I’ll start tracking more diligently. I try to weigh in at least once a calendar month. 

4. Do a daily devotional. - So I typically read the Proverbs 31 devo’s and I have done several ‘She Reads Truth” devos this year, but in general I still have a lot to work on with this goal. 

5. Take my prenatal vitamin daily. - I’d say I accomplished this goal in 2013. 

6. Limit my Diet Soda intake and drink more water. - Done. I gave up Diet Soda for Lent and then picked it back up again with a vengeance. Sometime in late 2013 though I gave it up. I still have an occasional Diet Dr. Pepper if we are at a fast food restaurant, but we rarely go out for fast food. I’d say I have maybe one Diet Dr. Pepper every week to two weeks. Not too shabby. 

2013 Work Goals: 

1. Start getting into work between 7am and 7:30am. - Ok I pretty much sucked it up with this goal. Going to restart on this one in 2014.

2. Complete all account reconciliations by the 15th of every month. - I’ve done a pretty good job with this one. 

3. Be able to complete the Annual Statement by myself for 2013. - I’d like to say this one is done, but there are some things that are outside of my control with it. Hoping to work on it again in 2014. 

2013 Family Goals: 

1. Cook at least 3 times a week. - I’d say this goal was accomplished. I usually cook 2-3 times per week. The girls eat a lot more “real” food as opposed to easy mac and things of that sort. I still want to get better at this, but I’d say I’ve come a long way since last year. 

2. Limit grocery store runs. - Accomplished. I typically go to the grocery store in Sundays and then maybe once more on my lunch break one day during the week. 

3. Spend more time with Autumn and Olivia. - I think I’ve managed this one even though I haven’t managed to get into work early. I usually leave by 5pm and I spend time with the girls until they go to bed at 8:30pm. I also typically spend all weekend with them unless we have something going on where we have Mimi and someone else watching the girls.

4. Teach Autumn more about praying and reading her Bible. - I think we can still do some more work on this one, but Autumn definitely still loves to pray, read her Bible and go to church. I think we’re doing something right. 

5. Pray with Andrew more often. - Need to work on this one more. 

6. Plan more family meals with extended family (at least monthly). - We’ve done this one more in 2013, but not necessarily because of my efforts. Papa and Grammy plan almost weekly family nights, which have been great. 

7. Plan more girls nights. - I definitely suck at this one. I need to work on it more in 2014. It’s so hard to carve out time for yourself and especially for catching up with your girlfriends (especially if they’re mommies too). 

8. Weekly family meetings. - We didn’t really do this one well, but we did stay more organized as a family by using Outlook calendar invites. 

2013 Financial Goals: 

1. Keep my spending under a certain dollar amount each month. - Definitely still working on this, but I’ve made a lot of progress.

2. Have monthly meetings with Andrew at the beginning of each month to go over our personal financial statement and our financial plans/goals for the month. - We haven’t had formal meetings, but we do prepare monthly financials and go over any areas that need improvement. 

3. Buy a new house. - This goal has been postponed indefinitely. Starting to pay for daycare x 2 in early 2013 hit us hard. I’m hoping we can still buy a new house in 3-5 years, but it’s not in the immediate future. Some home repairs are definitely in the works for 2014 though.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Teaching the True Meaning of Christmas

So, I’ve been trying to be very intentional with Autumn this Christmas season. I want her and Olivia (who is too young now to understand much) to really understand the true meaning of Christmas. I really even debated on whether or not to do the whole Santa Claus thing. In the end I gave in. We’ve even given into the “Elf on the Shelf”. Ours is named Gus. Gus has found quite a few inventive hiding spots over the last couple of weeks. Anyways, here are a few things we did this season to try to emphasize the true meaning of Christmas: 1. I started reading an Advent devotional with the girls each night. I have fallen off track with this though. To be quite honest the one I bought was probably just a bit too old for Autumn. I’ll probably try again next year. 2. I have tried to read one or two stories from the Jesus Storybook Bible every night. I am hoping to get through to the birth of Jesus by Christmas. Autumn actually pays attention to this very well and the book is so beautifully written. 3. I had Autumn go shopping with me for toys to donate to my Company’s toy drive. She then came up to my office and dropped them off. I really want to do this or something like this every year. 4. I plan to have Autumn help me write a letter to the child that we sponsor through Compassion International. 5. The girls only get 3 presents from Santa Claus (plus stocking stuffers, 1 present from Mom & Dad, and 1 present from each other). I tell them that they only get three presents because that is how many presents Jesus got. This also helps to limit the gift/spending chaos. 6. We will attend a Candlelight service on Christmas Eve. I hope to have Autumn sit through the service rather than going to the nursery to play. I know there are a lot more things that we can do, especially when the girls get older. What are some of the ways that your family emphasizes the true meaning of Christmas? How do you talk to your little ones about this?

Monday, December 2, 2013

Autumn 3 Years and Olivia 1 Year

I'm trying not to completely neglect this blog, because I really do enjoy keeping this as a way to track the development of our girls. It's just a crazy season in life and I'd much rather be spending time playing with Autumn and Olivia than on my computer writing about them. 

Anyways, here is a quick update on where they are at 3 years and 1 year. 

Weight – 29 lbs (25th percentile) 
Height – 37.5 (50-75th percentile) 
BMI – 14.5 (10-25th percentile) 
Clothes – She is pretty much a 3T, but I’ve noticed that some 3T pants are actually getting short on her, but they’re still big in the waist. She is tall and slender, which I’m sure will work in her favor when she is older. 
Eating – Autumn loves sweets and carbs. She eats really well sometimes and then barely even picks at her food other times. I’d say she is a snacker. She eats so much at snack time that she doesn’t eat much at dinner. Some of her favorite foods include: fruit snacks, raisins, grapes, donuts, chicken nuggets (from Old MacDonald’s – although she thinks they’re all from there even though I think I can count on one hand the number of times she’s been there). 
Potty Training – Autumn is pretty much potty trained at this point. She still has accidents on occasion, but they are becoming fewer and farther in between. I placed my last (hopefully) order of pull ups this week. Once those are gone then we are going to try to go diaper free at bedtime. She wakes up dry almost every morning anyways. 
Sleeping – Autumn hates to go to bed or take a nap. She is a girl that is always on the go. We’ve found that setting a timer for playtime before bed usually works well. Lately though she has become afraid of the shadows in her bedroom at night and she is using that as an excuse to sleep in our bedroom when Andrew is not home. (If Andrew is home he’ll make her sleep in her bed). We usually try to put her down to bed between 8 and 8:30, but she usually doesn’t fall asleep until 9pm or later. She will come out of her room every few minutes and say “I forgot to tell you something.” I’ll ask her what she forgot to tell me and then she’ll say something cute like “I love you” or “I need to go potty (again)”. She’ll do anything to avoid bedtime. 
Personality – Autumn is a very spirited child. Andrew says that she is spirited for a girl, because he thinks most boys are wilder than she is. Autumn is opinionated and down right adorable. She is pushing all of her boundaries. The other night I was talking to her about needing to make better choices and needing to stop making bad choices. She looked at me and said “but I’m learning.” Too freakin’ cute! I get so frustrated with her at times, because she dawdles and pushed limits and doesn’t obey, but then she goes and does the sweetest and cutest things. She is a very sweet and kind little girl. She almost always says thank you and does so even when she isn’t prompted to do so. We’re still working with her on asking for things “nicely.” 
In short, Autumn is a sweet wild crazy and adorable little princess. 
The other day Autumn and I played 20 questions . I asked her what a lot of her favorite things were and I hope to do this once a year around her birthday to see how her answers change over the years. 

Autumn’s 20 Questions: 
1. What is your favorite color? Pink 
2. What is your favorite toy? Ariel that Aunt Alli bought at Disneyland 
3. What is your favorite fruit? Grapes 
4. What is your favorite TV show? Sofia the 1st 
5. What is your favorite movie? The Little Mermaid 
6. What is your favorite thing to wear? Ariel clothes 
7. What is your favorite animal? Giraffe 
8. What is your favorite song? Part of Your World from the Little Mermaid – “I wanna be where the people be” 
9. What is your favorite book? The Little Mermaid 
10. Who is your best friend? Alanna from school 
11. What is your favorite snack? Fruit snacks 
12. What is your favorite drink? Probiotic Yogurt Drink that Mommy drinks, also really liked Strawberry Kiwi Capri Sun 
13. What is your favorite breakfast? Yogurt 
14. What is your favorite lunch? Strawberries 
15. What is your favorite dinner? Macaroni and Cheese 
16. What is your favorite game? This game 
17. What is your favorite thing to play outside? Running and playing with Milo 
18. What is your favorite holiday? I don’t know 
19. What do you sleep with at night? Ariel pillow 
20. What do you want to be when you grow up? Ariel 

Weight – 19.5 lbs (25th percentile) 
Height – 27.75 (10-25th percentile) 
Head – 44.5 (50th percentile) 
Clothes – She is mostly in 12-18 months, but some are big on her and she still wears 6-12 months in quite a few things. 
Eating – I have not come across ANYTHING that this girl will not eat. The other night at our Christmas get together for my Dad’s family, she even ate smoked salmon. She eats very well and she is officially drinking only from cups. Yea for no more bottles! 
Sleeping – Olivia is generally a great sleeper. Most nights I can put her down pretty easily by 8pm and she will sleep all night long, until around 7 or 8am. Occasionally she isn’t ready for bed and fights it. This is usually because she isn’t tired enough or she’s too tired. Either way I’ll let her cry it out for a little bit and then she’s out for the whole night. 
Personality – Olivia seems to have an easy going personality. She is very vocal and is becoming more and more so. She is generally very sweet and loves to smile and laugh. She is very clingy to me these days, but that is normal for this age. 
Developments – Olivia isn’t walking yet, but is very close. I’ve seen her take a few steps, but then she’ll drop to the ground and crawl. Right now that is more efficient. I think she will be walking by Christmas, but we’ll see. 

Overall we have been blessed with the two sweetest and most beautiful little girls I could ever imagine. Autumn and Olivia I love you both so much and I am so happy that I am your Mommy.