Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Internal Chore-Clock

Some people have a knack for knowing how long something is really going to take.  They know if they need to leave at 5:00, exactly which chores they have time for.  Not me.  I think my internal chore-clock is broken.  I am always overestimating or under-estimating the amount of time something will take.  I'm never just right.  And I never know which of those options it will be!

I often find myself looking at something that needs to be done and thinking, "That is going to take forever!"  When I finally get to it and tackle the job, I find out it didn't take nearly as long as I thought.  Or, I'll look at a task and be sure I have plenty of time to finish it.  But, I'll run out of time (or energy) and have to leave it half-done.  

But, a few days ago, I read a tip on A Slob Comes Clean.  I can't link to the exact post where she talks about it since I am in the process of reading through the entire blog from beginning to end.  But, she mentions that someone once recommended that she time herself doing some of her chores.  That way she can have a realist idea of how long certain tasks really take.

Duh!  Why did I never think of this!  What better way to get a better grasp on the length of time by chores take than to actually time myself doing them?

So, today I timed myself cleaning my bathroom.  Here is the challenge I faced:





Yep, that's my messy bathroom.  I will say that the curtain normally doesn't look like that.  It must have gotten messed up when I closed it after my shower.  I normally fix it as soon as I see that happen.  But, I didn't notice it until I came back to take some pictures.  But, I figured, in order to be completely honest I had to leave it that way for the picture.

This is our one and only bathroom.  So, it gets lots of use!  This is even the cat's bathroom.  Notice the litter box in the corner?  I've tried moving it to the garage, but, I just can't remember to clean it when it is down there.  Unfortunately, there really isn't a better place for it.  But, Allie Cat isn't always the neatest in the bathroom.  Sometimes her little gets tracked on the floor a little.  Yuck!







So, how long did I think cleaning the bathroom would take me?  My guess was about an hour.  An hour?!  For a tiny bathroom?!  Why, yes.  After all, listen to everything that needed to be done:

  • Counter cleared (and everything put away where it belongs)
  • Sink cleaned
  • Counter wiped down
  • Stuff that stays on the counter wiped off
  • Toilet scrubbed
  • Toilet wiped down (inside, outside, top, and bottom - after all I have a little boy)
  • Liter box scooped
  • Take out the garbage
  • Replace garbage bag
  • Towels changed
  • Everything on the floor taken out
  • Go find broom and mop
  • Floor swept
  • Floor mopped
  • Everything put back where it belongs
  • Put broom and mop away
  • Scrub my hands
How long did all of this really take me?  30 minutes and 10 seconds.  Half the time I thought it would!   And that was with a break so Bubby could use the bathroom!  Not too shabby!  Had I actually been keeping up with the clutter on the counter or wiping down all the surfaces, it probably would have taken half that. 

Here is the final product:




My counters a cleared (except the stuff that belongs there which is place neatly), all the surfaces are clean and sanitary, the litter box has been scooped, the linens are fresh, and everything smells nice!  Since I've been cleaning my shower while I'm in it with my kitchen scrub brush, I didn't need to do anything to the shower.

So, now I know that it takes about a half-hour to clean my messy bathroom from top to bottom.  I also know that if I do my daily Swish n' Swipe (ala Flylady) it will take even less time.

Maybe I'm on my way to retraining my internal chore-clock!



Monday, July 30, 2012

Family Pictures

I mentioned that my family had pictures taken yesterday.  My best friend's boyfriend took them and they turned out great!  I thought I'd share them here.


My family with the Cincinnati skyline in the background

Top (L to R): My sister (I know she looks 12, but she's really 23), me, my mom, my grandma (the kids call her Grandma Two)   Bottom (L to R):  My son, my brother-in-law, my husband, my dad, my daughter

My kids love their grandparents!

Aww.....How sweet.  Now if they were always that nice...

Jumping for joy!

This is one of my favorites.  He told them to kiss, but they couldn't stop laughing long enough to kiss for the camera!  How cute!

Weekly Goals: 7-29-12

Well, I'm a day late, but I'm here!  Yesterday was so busy.  We had church in the morning where I taught Sunday School and then learned a lot from the sermon.  Then, the kids had their last baseball game of the summer.  After the game, we had to eat (we were starving by then!) and rush home to get ready for family pictures.  I'll post some of the pictures later today.

By the time I got home last night I did nothing but crash on the couch from exhaustion!  But, I'm back now and I'll post this week's goals.  I'm putting an * next to the ones that I need to improve on from last week.

I'm adding a new category this week: Work Life.  My best friend and I are doing well on our Teacher's Pay Teacher's store, but we really need to get more stuff up on the site.  So, I have to set some goals for myself and get to it!

Also, this week is going to be a little crazy.  My husband and I are headed to an out of town wedding on Saturday and spending the night.  So, my parents decided to take the kids to Gatlinburg!  They are leaving early Saturday and won't be home until Tuesday.  So, I have lots of packing to do to prepare.

Spiritual Life

  • *Read Bible daily.  I am going to plan our when to read and put it on my calendar this week.
  • Be more consistent in praying for requests on my list
  • *Continue to work on being more joyful. 

Family life

  • Help kids prepare for their vacation.
  • Pack for DH and I

 

Home life

  • Finish all laundry on Monday
  • Clean bathroom on Monday
  • Clean off my desk
  • *Wipe down bathroom daily
  • *Vacuum steps
  • Work more on playroom/schoolroom 

 

Church Life

  • Pray for my Sunday School class while I'm away.  Our pastor's wife is teaching this week, so I know they are in good hands!
  • Attend church Wednesday
  • *Set up meeting with the Pastor to talk about Harvest fest.  Meeting can be any time in the next couple weeks.

Physical Life

  • *Write down every bite I eat!  
  • Lose at least 1 pound. 
  • *Try to get to bed by 11:30 every night.
  • *Drink more water. 
  • *Put on makeup every day
  • *Exercise at least one day
(Can you tell I have lots of work to do in this area?)

Social Life

  • Attend wedding on Saturday

Financial life

  • *Update budget software daily
  • *Do not overspend! (I went over a little on my grocery budget and really need to watch it!) 
  • Pay bills 
  • *Have budget meeting with DH on Monday

Mental life

  • Read second library book
  • Renew library books
  • Continue working on blog  

Homeschool Life

  • *Buy Math curriculum. 
  • *Buy some Five in a Row books 
  • *Plan the calendar for the coming school year.

 

Work Life

  • Make at least one new worksheet packet to send to Kathy for review
  • Start at least one other packet

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Week in Review: 7-22-12

Here's how I did on my goals this week:

Spiritual Life

  • Read Bible daily (this means planning ahead on days I work and not just expecting I'll be alert enough when I get home) I didn't read every day.  I think I need to actually figure out a schedule for reading every day since I'm not always able to do it at the same time everyday.
  • Be more consistent in praying for requests on my list  I really focused on this and was much more consistent.
  • Continue to work on being more joyful.  I did much better this week.  But, I do have to admit to one crying episode.  But, it was brought on by something, not spontaneous like it has been in the past, and it was short.  Just a few tears.

Family life

  • Have kids help with dinner on Monday night. I'm not sure it was Monday, but they did help one night.
  • To to the movies with my DH  Check!
  • Buy my mom a birthday present  She decided she wanted us to chip in for a digital camera

 

Home life

  • Finish all laundry on Monday.  I did all but one load on Monday because I missed it.  I finished that one another day.
  • Wipe down bathroom daily  Oops.
  • Vacuum steps  Oops, again.
  • Work more on playroom/schoolroom  Check!

 

Church Life

  • Pray for Sunday School Check!
  • Attend church Wednesday Check!
  • Set up meeting with the Pastor to talk about Harvest fest.  Meeting can be any time in the next couple weeks.  Grr. Forgot again.  I really need to call first thing Monday.

Physical Life

  • Write down every bite I eat!  I didn't do this again.  I really need to remember to talk to DH about holding me accountable.
  • Lose at least 1 pound. I actually lost 4!  I really don't know what happened.  Two weeks ago, I lost a pound.  The next week I gained 4 practically overnight.  But, then I lost those 4 pounds this week, putting me right back where I was two weeks ago.  I'd say it was just a bad reading on my scale, but it read that way for three days straight before going back down.  Weird!
  • Try to get to bed by 11:30 every night.  I think I did them all but two nights.  One night I worked until 11:30.  This was a last minute shift change, so I honestly thought I'd be able to do this this week.  The other day, I stayed up and spent time with DH.
  • Drink more water. I didn't do as well on this this week as I have the last two.
  • Put on makeup every day  Not everyday, but most days.
  • Exercise at least one day Does walking up and down the stair a ton of times on Monday count?

Social Life

  • Possibly go to dance aerobics with my BFF this week.  I'm not sure of her schedule. Didn't happen.
  • Message another friend. Check.

Financial life

  • Update budget software daily I forgot to do this today, but I'll head over when I'm done here.
  • Do not overspend!  I went a little over-budget with groceries.  This is where I have the hardest time!
  • Pay bills Check!
  • Finalize draft of next months budget Check!
  • Have budget meeting with DH  I still need to have him sit down and go over it with me.

Mental life

  • Read new library books I finished one of them today!
  • Continue working on blog   Check!

Homeschool Life

  • Buy Math curriculum. I'm working on it, I really am.  I'm searching for used curriculum because it is much cheaper.  If I don't find something by next week, I'll order it new.
  • Buy some Five in a Row books I'm waiting to see if I can get the used curriculum with my Amazon card, first.
  • Plan the calendar for the coming school year. I still need to do this.  I have a general idea.  I just need to sit down and make it official.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Zero-Based Budget

I'm going to try and finish the post I had started yesterday.  It was nice to have it half done already! 

I talked a little other day about the how we are working Dave Ramsey's program to get out of debt.  I thought I'd come back and post a little about my actual budgeting process.  Our system is based on a zero-based budget.  Meaning that, every month, we spend our money on paper before it even shows up in our account.  This way, we can tell our money where to go instead of wondering where it went!

Today, I'll explain exactly what a zero-based budget is and I'll come back another day to explain how I plan my budget every month.  This was a hard process for me to learn!  I tend to be more of a free-spirit naturally and have had to force myself to be more disciplined and tell myself "no." It took several months of working on it to get it figured out.  So, if you try it, don't get discouraged if it is a disaster the first month!  I learned a lot from my failures.

What is a Zero-Based Budget?

A zero-based budget is one where your income minus your expenses equals zero.  This doesn't mean that you literally spend every cent you make.  Only that you assign every cent a job.  Some money won't be spent right away.  But, it will be assigned to a budget item.  By setting up a budget, you will aim to have money "left over" at the end of the month.  But, you will also know what you are going to do with that money.  Will it go in savings?  Will it go toward debt?  Will it be put aside and added to the next month for a larger purchase?

The concept comes from the "old fashioned" practice of envelope budget.  This is when you kept all your cash in envelopes designated for different things.  We actually use an actual envelope budget now.  But, I'll go into that more in a later post.

How to Create a Zero-Based Budget

To create a zero-based budget, you need to start with your expected income.  Write it down.  If you have an irregular income (like we do) it will take another step.  For now, just figure out the minimum amount that you know you will make this coming month.


Next, make a list of expenses that you expect to have during them month.  Include regular bills like mortgage, utilities, and debt payment.  Also include the things that vary month to month, like food, clothing, etc.  If you are saving up for a purchase, include that, too.  Also, make sure to include any giving you do and money being put into savings.  These budgeting items are the heart of your budget. 

Once you have your list of expenses, you will start to subtract the amounts from your income.  If, when you are done, you have money left over, this is where you get to decided what to do with it.  Assign the money a job until there is nothing left over.  Here is an example of what that might look like. 

Total Income:                 $3000.00
Total Planned Budget:     - $3000.00
                               ___________
                                    $0


Budgeted Item
Amount Planned
Amount Actually Spent
Running Total
Giving
$100.00
 $100.00
$100.00
Emergency Fund
$50.00
 $50.00
$150.00
Mortgage
$700.00
 $700.00
$850.00
Real Estate Taxes
$200.00
 $200.00
$1,050.00
Homeowner’s Insurance
$100.00
 $100.00
$1,150.00
Home Repairs


$1,150.00
Electricity
$200.00
 $200.00
$1,350.00
Water
$30.00
 $30.00
$1,380.00
Gas


$1,380.00
Phone
$20.00
 $20.00
$1,400.00
Cable
$50.00
 $50.00
$1,450.00
Internet
$50.00
 $50.00
$1,500.00
Food
$600.00
 $547.23
$2,100.00
Car Payment
$300.00
 $300.00
$2,400.00
Gasoline & Oil
$200.00
 $197.49
$2,600.00
Car Repairs


$2,600.00
Car Insurance
$150.00
 $150.00
$2,750.00
Debt Snowball
$250.00
 $250.00
$3,000.00
Total
$3000.00

Notice that with some of the budget items, the amount spent is exactly the amount planned.  These are generally the things that you know, in advance, exactly how much money will be needed.  Often, this is because it is the same amount every month, like your mortgage.  But, with other items, the amount spent is less that what was planned.  This is great!  The difference will carry over to the next month.  Some budget items won't have money assigned to them every month (like "Home Repairs" and "Car Repairs" in the example above).

How do I Know How Much To Budget for Something?

The best way is to look back at the last few months.  Get your statement out of your files (if you are actually organized enough to do something like file!) or print one off from your bank's website (this is what I had to do!).  Then, sit down and figure our exactly how much you have spent each month on different things.  For example, look at the statement from last month and write down every time you ate out and how much you spent.  Then, take a look at the total.  You might be shocked at how much you spent!

Put every item on your statement into a category.  Some may just need to go into a miscellaneous category because they really don't fit in anywhere else.  But, try to do that as little as possible.

If you use the last couple of months to determine an average for each of your budget categories, you will have a starting point for planning next month.  You may decided that you want to cut back in an area, like eating out.  If so, plan a little less than you normally spent.  Just remember, this means you will actually have to cook at home more often!  So, be prepared and have a plan!

There are also a lot of great software and online programs you can get to help you do this.  I personally use You Need a Budget (YNAB).  I was able to create categories (it suggests several common categories to get you started), download my bank statements, assign each expense to a category, and view exactly what we had spent each month.  I highly recommend their program and have used it for several years.






Thursday, July 26, 2012

Busy Days

Do you ever have those days where you run and run and never seem to go anywhere?  That was today.  I know that I really did accomplish some stuff.  But, it seems like the efforts I've made have more than equaled the outcome.

Here it is, 6:18 pm, and I am just now posting on my blog.  I first sat down to do this around 11am, but kept getting sidetracked.  I really need to take a day and write out a bunch of posts that I can just publish on days like today.

I did a little cleaning this morning.  I also loaded up all the stuff I've collected for a yard sale I'm having at my parent's house into my van.  Then, after lunch, we headed out to Sis's piano lesson.  While she was at her lesson, Bub and I made a quick trip to the store for milk and bread.  After we picked Sis back up, we made a stop at my parent's house to drop off all the yard sale stuff.  I carried it all in and we headed home.

After we got home, I started a blog post.  I realized that it was a little more detailed than I had time for today about half-way through.  So, I got up to start dinner.  That's when I realized that I didn't have enough of one of my ingredients!  Back to the store we headed.  Dinner is cooking right now and I'm writing a quick post.

As soon as dinner is done, I need to quickly finish loading the dishwasher and head out to a friend's house for a haircut.  I might have time to watch a TV show with my husband when I get home.

Even this post, which should have taken about 15 minutes at the most, has taken a full hour because of interruptions!  Yes, I was cooking dinner at the same time, but there were plenty of other interruptions, too.

Oh, well.  Hopefully, I'll have something better to write about tomorrow.


Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Easy-Peasy Mac & Cheesey!

Let me start off by saying that I am not at all claiming that this is good for you.  Only that it is VERY yummy!  This is about the easiest mac & cheese you can imagine (other than the boxed stuff ).  I made it the other day and remembered when a friend raved about it and I had to laugh because it was so simple to make. 

Here is what you will need:
  • 16 oz box elbow macaroni
  • 32oz box processed cheese spread (You know, Velveeta.  Only not Velveeta because I almost never by name brands.  You can use it if you want, but I hope you have a coupon!)
  • A splash of milk (This is probably about 1/4 cup, but I never measure.  I literally just splash it in.)

That's it!  Three simple (and cheap - notice my generic brands for everything) ingredients.  This is the kind of thing I like.

To make the Mac and Cheese:
  • Cook 1/2 a box of elbow macaroni (you know, boil water, add macaroni...)
  • While it is cooking, cut up 1/3 block of cheese spread into small cubes.  Size doesn't really matter, but the smaller you cut them up, the quicker they melt.  
  • Drain the macaroni
  • Put the cheese bits in the same pot you cooked the macaroni and put on low heat, stirring as it melts.
  • When it starts to melt a bit like in the picture above, add your milk.
  • Continue to stir until cheese is almost completely melted
  • Add the cooked macaroni and stir until all the cheese is melted.



Viola!  Easy-Peasy Mac & Cheesey!

My daughter LOVES this!  This recipe makes more than my family eats at one meal, but we'll eat the leftovers for lunches.  It can easily be doubled for pot lucks or parties.  Also, if you like your mac & cheese baked, I'm sure it can be adapted for that, too.  Although, I've never personally tried it because that's not how we like our mac & cheese.

I hope you enjoy!



Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Going Back to (Home) School with a Bang!

When our kids started kindergarten, we wanted a way to make the first day memorable.  Since we were homeschooling, they wouldn't be getting the experience of a new place and new people.  But, with some planning, we were able to make it a special day that they will always remember.

Some of the things we did have grown into traditions.  The kids (and us) look forward to them every year. 

Pictures

Like many other parents, we always take pictures on the first day of school.  We get up and wear nice clothes and the kids get picture ready.  I have pictures from the first day of preschool, kindergarten, and 1st grade.  The preschool pictures aren't as nice as the others.  But, at that time, the idea of doing preschool at home was just that we'd play and they'd learn their ABC's.  I didn't realize that I'd be starting a tradition or that these were their first real school pictures.
Bubby and Sissy on their first day of preschool (2009)
Bubby and Sissy on their first day of kindergarten (2010)
It is amazing to see how much they have grown!  I'm already looking forward to this year's picture and planning what they will wear.  By the way, can you tell which of my kids is a ham?
Sis's first day of 1st grade (2011)
Bub's first day of 1st grade (2011)

 

Breakfast

We always start school on a Wednesday, because Wednesdays are my husband's day off work.  This way he gets to have fun with us and enjoy the memories.  He also gets to enjoy the breakfast!  
After pictures, we all climb in the car and head for a local Frisch's Big Boy for the breakfast buffet.  Over breakfast, we laugh and talk about what our hopes are for the school year.  I tell the kids a little about some of the things I have planned and we enjoy some quality time.  We call it our "not back-to-school breakfast."  For me, it is a little bit of a celebration that I don't have to be sending my kids to school, but instead get to head home with them in tow.  I love teaching my kids!

 

Science!

This is my kids' favorite part!  For the past two years, we've started our school year with an exciting science experiment.  This is not only fun, it gets the kids excited about learning.

The first year, we did the Diet Coke and Mentos experiment.  Basically, you just drop a Mentos candy (it has to be the mint kind) into a 2-liter of Diet Coke (it must be Coke brand and it must be diet) and 
GET OUT OF THE WAY!
Diet Coke and Mentos experiment



I think my husband liked this experiment as much as the kids!  Make sure you have a large area that you don't mind getting messy - because it WILL!  Also, for a bigger "bang," you can drop in several Mentos at once.

We tied this in to a lesson about geysers and Old Faithful.  We watched a video of Old Faithful and also talked about God's faithfulness.

The next year, we made Oobleck.  Oobleck is a non-Newtonian fluid that has qualities of both a liquid and a solid and is extremely fun to play with!  If you squeeze it, it acts like a solid, but when you open up your hand, it will start to run off it like a liquid. 

It was a great way to talk to the kids about the different properties of liquids and solids.  We also tied it in to a lesson about the Trinity (just like oobleck is both a liquid and a solid at the same time, God is the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit).  It helped with explaining a concept on their level that even the best Biblical scholars in the world can't fully grasp with their limited human minds. 

The kids and Daddy playing with the oobleck
Oobleck Recipe
  1. Mix 1 part water with 1 1/2 to 2 parts cornstarch. You might want to start with 1 cup of water and 1 1/2 of cornstarch.  You can then work in more cornstarch for a more "solid' oobleck. It will take a bit of mixing to get it to the right consistency
  2. Mix in a few drops of food coloring if you want colored oobleck.  (I chose not to do this because I didn't want everyone to have colored hands.  It was just as much fun without it.)

 

Everything Else

For the rest of our subjects, I start off slowly.  We generally don't get into the full swing of things until the next week.  This gives the kids (and me) a chance to adjust to our schedule and not become overwhelmed.  I also make sure to have plenty of fun stuff to do the first few days.

This Year

I haven't made a final decision about what we will do for a science experiment this year.  I want it to be fun, but the kids have to learn something at the same time.  I have it narrowed down to a few different ideas, though.  I will probably run them past my husband and see which one he thinks we should do.  After all, he's just a big kid himself!  (Just kidding!)

I'd love to hear about traditions that other families have for the first day of school.  Whether you homeschool or your kids go to a traditional brick and mortar school, feel free to share your traditions with me!

Monday, July 23, 2012

Shhh...Don't Tell!

I have very oily skin.  No, that's not the secret.  Anyone who came near me anytime after 3pm could easily see that.  That is, until this past February when I tried something crazy.

I stopped washing my face! Yep.  No more soap or facial cleanser.  Instead I have been cleansing my face with oil.  I know, I know.   It sounds crazy.  But, it isn't completely illogical.

oil cleansing method sunflower castor facial acne oily skin OCM
My secret weapon in the battle against oily skin
I decided to give it a try after reading this blog post on One Good Thing by Jillee. You see, when I said I have really oily skin, I meant oily.  It was so bad that I used to be able to take my nail and scrape the oil off my skin by around noon.   By the evening, I was a mess.  And my skin would break out like a 14 year-old's. 

I had tried everything.  I've been to the dermatologist and the stuff they gave me didn't help.  I spent a fortune on Proactive and other cleansers.

I counted the number of different cleansers, treatments, moisturizers, and medications I had for acne and oily skin before I started this.  There were 8 in my cabinet.  Those are just the ones I've tried in the last year or less.  None of them worked any better than any others.

When I read the blog post I figured I didn't have anything to lose.  My skin already looked horrible.  And the idea of replacing the dirty oil with clean, healthy oil so your skin won't need to produce as much sort of made sense.  After all, that is why you always read about how important it is to use a moisturizer when you have oily skin.  Because, if you strip your skin of its natural moisture (the oil) you have to replace it with some other moisturizer.

So, I decided to give it a try.   It has now been about five months and I love it!

Almost immediately, I noticed my skin being less oily.   Now, I still have a little shine by the end of the night, but I can't scrape the oil off and it isn't like that after just a few hours.  I can handle that. 
Then, my acne started to go away.   I still have the occasional blemish, but they aren't nearly as bad.  This holds true until the week of my period.  My skin does break out just as bad as ever during that time.  But, that is hormonal and it wasn't any worse than when I used all those cleansers.  My skin cleared right up after my period was over.


How to Get Started

You will need:

Oil
A container
Washcloth
A terry cloth headband (Optional)
That's it!

The Oil:
There are different oil combinations for different skin types.  You can find a detailed explanation at the www.theoilcleansingmethod.com.  The basic combinations are listed below.  You can tweak them a little to adjust to your skin needs.
  • Oily Skin: Try a blend of 30% Castor Oil to 70% Sunflower Seed Oil.
  • Balanced Skin: Try a blend of 20% Castor Oil to 80% Sunflower Seed Oil.
  • Dry Skin: Try a blend of 10% Castor Oil to 90% Sunflower Seed Oil.

I have oily skin, so I use 30% Castor Oil and 70% Sunflower Oil.  

The castor oil can be found in the pharmacy department by the stomach remedies.  


Castor Oil
Sunflower seed oil is one version of sunflower oil.  It is a bit more expensive.  I've substituted it for regular old sunflower oil which can be found in the baking aisle with all the other oils.  The only difference is that sunflower seed oil is cold pressed and sunflower oil is heat pressed.  They are both from sunflower seeds and both have more vitamin E than other oils.




Sunflower Oil
The Container:
You could use many different things for a container.  I just got a little, plastic, travel bottle from the Dollar Tree.  It isn't big, but I can mix enough in it to last a couple months.  It is easy to store and only cost a buck!

The Cost:
The oil is extremely cheap and I use very little of it.  My castor oil is about 3/4 empty after 5 months.  But, you can see how much sunflower oil I have left!  

I also no longer need a moisturizer.  I do still use under eye cream because I have horrible wrinkles under my eyes that I am trying to correct or at least prevent from getting worse.  I also have some tea tree oil that I use as a spot treatment for blemishes.

How to:

Well, according to Jillee, you are supposed to do it this whole routine at night.  You can read about how she does it in the link above.  But, I'm too lazy for that.  Really, I am just to tired when I get home from work at midnight and want to head straight to bed.

So, I started doing it in the shower in the morning.  I rub a little oil on my face (about a quarter size drop).  I message it in for a couple minutes, then I leave it on while I go about my other showerly duties (Except washing my hair.  I do that last in case I get any oil on my bangs.).  Then, I use the washcloth and gently wipe it all off, rinsing the washcloth often.  It takes a little while to get it all off, but less time than when I did it at night.  One thing I had to get used to was my skin not feeling squeaky clean.  The oil never leaves your skin squeaky.  But, it is clean.  It just still has moisture in it!

I started out doing it every day, but quickly learned that I don't need to do it that often.  Now, I can go two or three days between using the oil.  Other days, I just use water.  

For my eye makeup, I do still use an eye makeup remover at night.  The oil will remove it, but since I now "wash" my face in the morning, I need to remove my eye makeup before going to sleep.  I can't stand sleeping in mascara!

I love the oil cleansing method and can't imagine ever going back to the old way of washing my face!

Now, if I could just get up the courage to go "no poo!"

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Weekly Goals: 7-22-12

Here are my goals for the week:


Spiritual Life

  • Read Bible daily (this means planning ahead on days I work and not just expecting I'll be alert enough when I get home)
  • Be more consistent in praying for requests on my list
  • Continue to work on being more joyful. 

Family life

  • Have kids help with dinner on Monday night.
  • To to the movies with my DH
  • Buy my mom a birthday present

 

Home life

  • Finish all laundry on Monday.
  • Wipe down bathroom daily
  • Vacuum steps
  • Work more on playroom/schoolroom 

 

Church Life

  • Pray for Sunday School
  • Attend church Wednesday
  • Set up meeting with the Pastor to talk about Harvest fest.  Meeting can be any time in the next couple weeks.

Physical Life

  • Write down every bite I eat!  
  • Lose at least 1 pound. 
  • Try to get to bed by 11:30 every night.
  • Drink more water. 
  • Put on makeup every day
  • Exercise at least one day

Social Life

  • Possibly go to dance aerobics with my BFF this week.  I'm not sure of her schedule. 
  • Message another friend.

Financial life

  • Update budget software daily
  • Do not overspend!  
  • Pay bills 
  • Finalize draft of next months budget
  • Have budget meeting with DH

Mental life

  • Read new library books 
  • Continue working on blog  

Homeschool Life

  • Buy Math curriculum. 
  • Buy some Five in a Row books 
  • Plan the calendar for the coming school year.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Week in Review: 7-15-12

This week has been busy, but good.  I feel like I got a lot accomplished, but I know I didn't get everything on my list done.  Here's how I did:

Spiritual Life

  • Read Bible daily (this means planning ahead on days I work and not just expecting I'll be alert enough when I get home) I read most days.  I have no excuse for the days I didn't read.
  • Be more consistent in praying for requests on my list I prayed every night for a few of the urgent requests.  There were a few that I didn't pray about, but should have.
  • Continue to work on being more joyful. I'm doing better at this.  Still not perfect, but definitely making progress.

Family life

  • Play a board game with the kids Check!  A rousing game of Chutes and Ladders (that made me think of my laundry chute which I need to post about soon).
  • Have kids help with dinner on Thursday after their baseball game Once again, this didn't happen.  We were only home to cook on night this week and I was making some stuff that wasn't very kid-friendly.
  • Take kids to the dentist (I'm actually sitting in the lobby as I type this and I'll post it when I get home.  Why not get something done while waiting and free up some time later to get some housework done?) Check!  (Obviously.)

Home life

  • Try to get all laundry done by the end of the day Wednesday. Well, like I said in another post, it took me until Friday morning.  But, it did all get done!
  • Clean the bathroom thoroughly All done except the floor.  That will have to wait until the kids are in bed or they will just need to go as soon as I mop.
  • Sweep basement  I actually forgot all about this until I sat down and started typing.  But, I did get up, go downstairs, and sweep so that I could come back here and say, "Check!"  The stairs still need swept, but I'll have to ask DH to do that.  My back just can't handle it after a my marathon laundry session.
  • Work more on playroom/schoolroom I didn't get to that this week.  This is moving over to my list for next week.
  • Go grocery shopping Friday  Check!

Church Life

  • Plan for Sunday school.  I need to try to get the planning done for the entire 2 months.  That will just leave reviewing and praying each week.  I'm going to do this tonight.
  • Attend church Wednesday Check!
  • Set up meeting with the Pastor to talk about Harvest fest.  Meeting can be any time in the next couple weeks.  I forgot about this, too.  Moving it over to next week's list.

Physical Life

  • Write down every bite I eat!  I'm really struggling with this!  I honestly just forget.  I think I need someone to ask me every night.  I'm going to talk to DH about it.
  • Lose at least 1 pound.  I lost one this past week and know I can do it again.  This one annoys me a little.  By Wednesday I had lost a pound.  By Thursday, I had gained 3 back!  I have no idea what happened.  I didn't eat any snacks and I had a sensible breakfast and lunch.  My dinner wasn't the greatest, but not bad enough to make me gain 3 lbs!
  • Work on sleep schedule.  This may mean taking a Tylenol PM when I get home from work so I don't lay in bed for a couple hours before falling asleep.  I did better when I got home from work and wasn't as tired the next day.
  • Drink more water.  I need to carry a bottle with me when I go out.  I remembered most days.
  • Put on makeup every day  I did this every day but one.

Social Life

  • Go to the Creation Museum with a good friend and her kids.  I must be losing it because she didn't ask me to go to the Creation Museum.  She asked if we wanted to go to the Museum Center.  I don't know how I messed that up!  But, we did end up going.  The kids had a blast and I got a chance to talk with a good friend.
  • Possibly go to dance aerobics with my BFF this week.  I'm not sure of her schedule. This didn't happen again.  I'm not sure about this week, either.
  • Buy a birthday present for a party on Saturday I'm going to stop and pick up a gift card on the way to the party.
Cincinnati Museum Center

Financial life

  • Update budget software daily  Check!
  • Do not overspend!  I did end up having to eat out one day because we just weren't home all day.  I should have thought ahead and packed.
  • Go to the bank on Friday before grocery shopping Check!
  • Pay bills  Check!

Mental life

  • Read new library books  I'm in the middle of the first one, now
  • Continue working on blog  Check!  I'm doing some reading to learn how its all done.

Homeschool Life

  • Buy Math curriculum.  Grr.  I don't think I even looked for it this week.  I need to do that ASAP!
  • Buy some Five in a Row books  Same with this.  I at least have an Amazon gift card I can use for this.