Watermelon Roses

A collection of random thoughts, commentaries, and journaling. There is a lot to explore here, including links to other sites of mine. These are mostly for my own benefit, but guests are welcome to browse and explore as much or as little as they like.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Resolution Revision

Lest the few readers who keep up with me should think that I've already failed in my resolution to write more, here's an update. Apparently I can't even find the time to write on weekends without staying up until the wee hours of the morning (note the time of this post.) I've decided that making a habit out of writing will have to wait until I've made a habit out of SLEEPING. I think I should also make habits that involve managing my time more wisely, thus making time for the writing.

It occurs to me that I should also make an actual list of the year's new habits, since at the moment they're just floating randomly through my head. Here we go ...

January: Make bedtime a priority. Dishes can wait until morning if they have to. Aim for 7-9 hours of sleep each night, preferably 9 until my sleep deficit is paid. The month is already half over - no time to waste on this one!

February: Get moving. Make exercise a priority. Having enough sleep and getting more exercise should go a long way toward improving my patience and stress levels!

March: Plan meals and snacks, even those (especially those) for times when I'm on-the-go. Planning healthier choices and taking them with me when necessary will keep me out of drive-thrus, saving both my heart and my money.

April: Manage mornings. I'd love to think I could learn to manage my whole day wisely in a month's time, but I know that's not very realistic, so I'm going to take it a bit at a time.

May: Manage afternoons. This is the trickiest part of the day for me, when I start to run out of steam and just want to either nap with the baby or snack in front of the television. Once it starts, it's hard to stop! I'm hoping the sleeping and exercising will have continued, giving me more energy and making this part a little easier.

June: Manage evenings. Once I'm out of steam and full of unhealthy snacks from the afternoon, it's really hard to be efficient about mealtimes and bedtimes. I tend to drag through these, fantasizing all along about collapsing into bed the minute the children are asleep, then playing the martyr and staying up late to finish dishes, laundry, and tidying that should have been done earlier in the day when I was doing nothing productive.

July: Get involved with the finances. I have no idea what is happening with our finances at any given moment. I do know that with the expected increase in our private school tuitions this fall, we could be in trouble if I don't participate in budgeting and cutting back where necessary.

August: Stop procrastinating. It's already mid-January, and I still haven't thanked people for Christmas gifts. I'm terribly embarrased by this, as I am every year. I'm slow to write thank-you notes, make phone calls and appointments, and pay the few bills that are not automated. I'm not sure I can kick the entire procrastination habit in one month, but if I can cover those things, it will be a good start.

At this point I realize that prioritizing the new habits is going to be difficult, unless I double up and take on two per month. The finances and the end of procrastinating really can't wait for summer! I'm not sure what to do about this yet, so I'm leaving them where they are for now.

September: Back to writing. If I've successfully started sleeping, exercising, eating better, and managing my days, I should be able to find time to write! All the children should be in school by this time, too, though I may have to take a job to make that possible. Regardless, I should still be able to find SOME time to write!

And I find myself running out of resolutions. I can be perfect in only nine months! Oh, there's one ...

October: Work on letting go of perfectionism. Assign chores to my four children and quit trying to do everything by myself because of the need to see that it is done right.

November: If I haven't already miraculously managed it by now, STOP YELLING. Re-read those parenting books on how to stop yelling, and actively work on it.

December: Be kind to myself. I'm asking a lot of myself this year, and if even one of these changes sticks, I should be proud of myself. I resolve to do my best, and not to be hard on myself if some areas still need work at the end of the year.

Now, in the spirit of January's improved sleep habits, instead of telling myself that it's already late so there's no need to hurry, I'm going to tell myself to turn off the computer and go to bed. I'm not going to check the news or the weather. I'm not going to check e-mails or Facebook updates. I'm not going to catch up on any more blogs. I'm not going to click on any more family pictures running through the slideshow in my sidebar in order to reminisce. I'm not going to see if it's my turn in any games of Words With Friends. I'm not going to check to see what the Free App of the Day is on the Kindle Fire. I'm not going to start a new book or check message boards. I'm not going to fold laundry or put away clean dishes. I'm not going to eat ice cream and catch up on missed television shows. These are all things I regularly do after my bedtime that deprive me of sleep. Here's to sleeping in and dropping these bad habits!

Wednesday, January 04, 2012

This is Why

It's nearly midnight, and because I went to a book club meeting tonight, I just now finished the dinner dishes, the laundry, the tidying, and getting ready for bed. It's already more than two hours past my bedtime. Yep, I think this is why the blogging fell by the wayside a few years ago. I'm thinking weekly posts on weekends when I don't have to get up so early may be more realistic.

There's not much to say about today anyway, since I'm now so far behind on sleep that I snuck catnaps all day. So on to Plan B: taking back my bedtime and blogging on weekends!

Zzzz ....

Tuesday, January 03, 2012

Sleep vs Blogging

I'm beginning to remember why I haven't blogged in years (besides blaming Facebook.) It's because I have so much to do with four children, a husband, a cat, and a house, that there's already hardly any time left to sleep! I have yet to get a full night's sleep this year.

The children are back in school! The husband is back at work! I had more peace today than I've had all winter vacation. My house is clean, decorations are put away, and I have a shiny sink. I even got the train tracks reassembled on the train table.

After school, I took the children to the January mini model build at the LEGO Store. Only a one and a half hour wait in line this month, which was somewhat better than the two hour wait last month. I'm still not sure if we're going to make this a regular thing. We're going to try getting there about 20 minutes earlier next month and see if that makes a difference. At least I came prepared with handheld electronic entertainment for everyone this time!

I accidentally watched The Bachelor tonight (when I should have been blogging and sleeping.) I just had it on while I was eating dinner and cleaning up the kitchen, but then I was hooked on the drama between Monica and Jenna and had to sit down and watch the rest. And now that I've seen the season's sneak peek, I'm probably in it until the end. Oops.

Monday, January 02, 2012

A Day in Pictures

Layth and I had a nice couple of hours at IHOP today. We ate pancakes and played Monopoly on the Kindle Fire until the battery ran out while K took the younger three snow tubing. Zayd enjoyed himself for a little while, but was tired and cranky by the end. K says he can try again next year.

The rest of the afternoon was spent trying to get Layth to complete his application for middle school, which is due by next week. He needs to answer four essay questions, and after a long struggle today, we have two and a half down, one and a half to go.

Maya didn't want to go upstairs to get ready for bed tonight, and this was her excuse:
That's her dad on the left yelling, "Maya," me in the middle saying, "put her down," and Maya yelling, "Ahh" in the roaring monster's hand. Before you melt into a puddle of sympathy for this poor, frightened child, I should point out that she was cracking up over this picture, as were we all!

K went out to the store while I was putting the kids to bed, and came back with roses and ingredients for dinner, which he cooked for our 16th anniversary tonight. The roses were an unexpected surprise! We watched Year One after dinner. I like Michael Cera, but K wasn't very impressed with my choice of movie. :-)

Sunday, January 01, 2012

Resolution Time ... Here We Go!!

Instead of the traditional New Year's Diet Resolution, I've decided to try to develop 12 good habits in 2012 - one per month. This month, as you may have already guessed, I am going to try to get back in the habit of blogging and journaling. These are often one and the same, but not always. As Facebook absorbed me into its Borg-like collective (resistance really was futile,) I found that I posted pretty much everything I felt the need to say, which made it difficult for me to want to maintain this blog. What I miss, though, is the journal-like aspect of it, and the ability to read through my history when I'm feeling nostalgic. That said, if the only thing I am inclined to write for the day is something along the lines of ,"Kids made me crazy today; can't wait to go to bed," I will probably spare my readers and put it in a journal (yeah, and probably Facebook,) rather than a blog post. Still, I expect to post here at least weekly if I'm successful in renewing this habit.

Here's hoping!

Facebook Highlights of the Day

A quote from the kids, while eating lunch at Burger King:

Layth: "What would happen if you planted a sesame seed?"
Maya: "Nothing would grow but a burger tree."


Today I noticed that many of my southern friends were having their traditional New Year's Day black-eyed peas, cornbread, and cabbage, which made me think that maybe I should, too. Unfortunately, this involved going to the store, which never happened. I did, however, find a honey cornbread recipe that I can't wait to try!

Picture of the Day

Maya and Rayan were striking silly poses in the full length mirror. I caught them holding hands in a sweet moment.