Wednesday, October 29, 2008

A Little Time For Bereavement

I just wanted to give everyone a heads up. We have had a death in the family and I am going to be out of town a lot over the next week or two. I will try to check in when I can and will keep everyone posted as much as possible.

As for the 21 days habit challenge, I have not gotten in a walk everyday like I hoped to. I am still plugging away at it though and will most likely have walking as a goal for the next challenge also! I am not going to give up on this and I am not moving on to another goal until I get this one down so please bear with me. Whit and I did take Butter for a walk today. She loved it and it was a good way for us to get out of the house and to focus on something else for a little bit to relieve some stress! We definitely felt more calm afterward.

Well I am going to get off of here and continue with the other things on my To- Do List for today. I hope you all are doing well!

Happy Training,
Love Jenn

P.S. Took a pic or 3 of my man tonight as he was on his way out the door! Isn't he Sexy! I know your jealous, it's ok!

And just to add a little extra cuteness to my blog, I give you the ButterBall!

And just for fun I edited this picture of me. Keeping in mind that I weighed a lot less when this picture was taken than I do now, I think it turned out really awesome!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Clearing the Clutter in Our Lives.

Editors Note: I wrote this post for Road To Domesticity but it never got finished or published. Actually I forgot about it until today. I was reading through the posts on RTD and came across this one, then I remembered something that MizFit said in one of my comments. She said "wonder if you now wholeheartedly believe all the declutter before you can ever shed weight hypothesises?" in reference to this post. Well the answer is yes I do believe that you have to declutter your life in order to declutter your body. I wonder more and more if in fact that is part of my troubles with loosing weight. So I am going to post this one and I am going to work on following my own advice. Now that my apartment is decluttered and organized I am going to work on some of the other clutter in my life. I hope you all enjoy this post as it was a labor of love and necessity for me.

Well since this months goal is Clutter Cleanup and Fall Decorating I decided to make my Wednesday Challenge all about Clutter Cleanup. However, it's not just the clutter in my apartment that I want to discuss (although if you really want to help with that, I won't complain!), but also the physical, mental, and emotional clutter that can accumulate during the week.

Sometimes the clutter is so intense that it makes it hard to function. So lets see what we can come up with to help us relieve the clutter.

Domestic Clutter:
We all have it. Junk drawers, deadly closets, overflowing shelves. It's hard not to have some clutter here and there. The question is when does it stop being ok to have clutter? Some is fine, but too much clutter in the home can hinder progress in a lot of areas of one's life. There are a lot of study's about clutter being a problem for childrens study habits. It's hard to think with lots of stuff everywhere, isn't it? so what can we do about it? Well I did a search and came up with this great website with links to articles all about organization and clutter control! ( I know, I was excited too.) No matter what kind of clutter you are dealing with, they seem to have an answer.

Physical Clutter:
This one is all about your health. Are you taking care of yourself? Are you smoking or drinking excessively? Are you eating a balanced diet? Getting plenty of exercise?

Taking care of your body is so vital to living an over all healthy life. The steps to healthy are not easy ones to take, but they can make such a big difference in your life. I have recently decided to get healthy. Not Skinny! Healthy! I knew that the path that I was heading down would not lead me to a long and healthy life. I knew that if I didn't change I might never get to have children or be alive to see my grandchildren. In June I quite smoking! In July I started my fitness blog and started working towards a healthy body. This body is a temple and should be treated as such. I am working on changing my life one vice at a time. You can too! So go for a walk with your family, add some fresh veggies to your meals, and take control of your vices. Trust me! You will thank me.

Mental Clutter:
It can be so hard to think straight when you have millions of thoughts zooming around behind your eyeballs. Clearing out the mental clutter can really help you to focus on the task at hand. Plus it only takes a few minutes to make a big impact. No physical labor required (although it sometimes helps). Taking a few moments in your day to stop and breath and deal with the stuff in your head can make the rest of the day more productive and can also help you sleep when done right before bed. Here is an article with some tips on dealing with the mental clutter.

Emotional Clutter:
The best thing that one can do for emotional clutter is write it down! Had a bad day? Write it down. Boss driving you crazy? Write it down. Lose someone you loved? Write it down.

Writing things on paper helps you to not only get it out of your system but also to focus on a solution. Once it is out of your head and on paper you can look at it more objectively so that you can deal with it accordingly.

I would also suggest that once you have it down on paper, pray about it. Talk to God about your worries, troubles, hardships, and fears. Knowing that he is there listening to you and that he can help makes a world of difference.

So, after reading such a long post you are probably wondering what is the challenge exactly?

Clear out some clutter in your life! Not everything of course, because all of this will take time. So just choose one thing from this post and make an effort to clear that clutter.

Happy Organized, Decluttered and Stress free Life,
Love Jenn

A Thank You and A Welcome

A Road To Domesticity Post Dated September 22, 2008.

As you can see I have already accomplished a lot of these things but I really like this post and think I was pretty witty (If I do say so myself) so I wanted to keep it and publish it here. I hope you all enjoy it as much as I do! LOL

I am loving all of my readers and enjoying their feed back immensely!

I specifically want to say hello to my friend Nancy from class. She is not a blogger but she is a sweetheart so we can forgive her this one flaw! I wanted to mention her because she and another classmate Tara got me a gift today. It's a little scarecrow and I absolutely love it. It is perfect timing too since I am working on decorating for fall.

So thank you so much Nancy and Tara. I really appreciate the sentiment. That little scarecrow will have a place of honor in my home for a long time to come because I am the sentimental type and love to display gifts from sweet people.

As for decluttering I have started working on that today. We are putting away a lot of "things" from around the house that are contributing to the clutter. Some of it will be saved for future use and some of it will end up in a garage sale next spring. I want to hold on to this stuff until then so that I will have a chance to relook at the things I want to sell and decide if I really want to let go of them or not. I want to declutter but I don't want to have regrets afterwards. Some things will be immediately put away for our future children, such as some of the fairies, angels and balarina's that are left over from my own childhood (I really hope we have at least one girl or we are going to have a very confused son), and some of Whit's toy cars and other random boy stuff (I don't even know what the point of some of it is).

This weekend I don't have to work so I will be really getting into my task full spead ahead and the main thing that I want to tackle is the book case.

I love books and have always had a very hard time parting with them. However, I also own a lot of books that I will probably never read again. I don't see the need to keep all of these books that I won't be reading but another part of me says "You never know, some day you might start to like poems about toenails and won't be able to read them if you toss the book!" Yeah, my thinking is really that warped!

Unfortunately that is how I think about most "things", which explains the clutter. I always think that one day I may need that tea cozy or M&M shaped cookie jar! Never mind that cookies in our house don't usually last long enough to make it into a jar (Whit eats them all pretty quickly) and the only time of year that they might is around the holidays. For them I have two (yes 2) santa shaped cookie jars for that purpose (one of which I don't use because it's hideous! but it was a gift from a friend).

Once I declutter the living room the next room I will tackle is the kitchen (I am so packing away those cookie jars! Bye Santa). Then I will decorate the bathroom and finally our bedroom. I am not going to be decorating one room in the house though. The spare room is basically Whit's room. It's where he has his computer and his guitars and his keyboard. It's where he goes when he wants to relax and get away for a while. I don't want to intrude on his space. If he wants it decorated he will have to either ask me to do it or do it himself. I know and understand that everyman needs his own room and we don't have a garage!

I don't have much for decorations so a trip to the dollar store will be justified toward the end of the month and I will also possibly take on some fall crafts to help with the lack of decor! I promise that I will get some pictures up as soon as I can.

Happy First Day Of Fall,
Love Jenn

21 Day Challenge... The First Checkin!

Well I hope everyone is doing well on their challenge. I have been checking in on you all when I can, sorry I don't have a lot of time these days to comment as much as I used to.

As for my challenge I am happy to say that I did in fact walk everyday. I am sad that due to illness I only did the bare minimum though so tomorrow I am upping the ante and changing my challenge goal to walking 3 miles every day. That is exactly one time through the Walk video and takes 45 min. to complete so I know that I can do this in the morning by just getting up an hour earlier. Should be no problem.

Now an update on my organizing and decorating. I have done some decorating but not a lot. I am happy with the simple nature of my decore for now and will work on adding more little touches until Dec. then it will be time for Christmas. Here are pictures of my little touches around the house. I am so glad to be able to finally post my own pictures!

I just added the swag above this picture. I have had this for years now and it's been up year round just because it depicts my favorite season and my favorite lifestyle so beautifully.

This was made by a friends father back in the 70's and I happened to come across it at a flea market. Again it is usually displayed all year.

This was a garage sale find my first year back in michigan. I love it!

I got these pillows at a craft sale. They used to sit on my vintage sofa but unfortunately we could not get it into our apartment so the sofa is in Mary's basement and the pillows are on the egg chair.

A friend gave me this little witch years ago and I just love her! Isn't she darling?

This little Indian Princess was given to me by my mom because she said that when I was little I was always making that face. In my own defense, that pouting face always got me goodies from grandma Sherry!

This is the scarecrow that my classmates gave me. I think he is so cute. He looks great over there with my sad little excuse for a house plant. I told you all that I do not have a green thumb and this is the proof.

That spider can play chess better than I can! However since I am only playing against Whit my lack of skillz can be overlooked and if I play anyone else I will just have to bring along my pet chess spider!

These two are one of my favorite Halloween decorations! I love that you can put red candles in their heads and when the candles drip it looks like they are dripping blood!

Here's a rather blurry close up. See what I mean about the red wax?

This little piece of cheap artwork cost me about 6 dollars to make! I got all of the pieces at the dollar store and just threw it together in about ten minutes! I think it looks great with my plaid placemats.

My best friend Missi gave me these canisters several years ago! She said they matched my color scheme better than hers anyway! I think they are great. ( I am working on removing the annoying reminders of diets past from my kitchen but I have to finish going through them and getting the recipes out of them first.)

Finally I leave you with my guardian. This guy is in the hall by the stairs. Everyone who enters must pass him. The best part is that the sword in the dragons hand is actually a letter opener!

Well I think that is quite enough for me today. For those of you who have entered the 21 day contest, don't forget to leave a comment and update us on your progress. Have a great day everyone.

Happy Training,
Love Jenn

Friday, October 24, 2008

A quick note, then it's off to work I go.

1. I have been doing a little walking every day. It's not much and I am not going fast but I am walking and for that I am proud.

2. I am finally starting to feel better! Good thing too because I am volunteering at a girl scout thing tomorrow morning. Sickness was not an option.

3. I got to talk to my good friend Missi the other day. I don't get to talk to her much anymore because we are both busy as heck these days. Her first wedding anniversary was last month.

4. My externship is over next tuesday! I am sad to be leaving because I have really enjoyed it but I am looking forward to the future.

Nuff said!

Happy Training,
Love Jenn

Monday, October 20, 2008

I'm So Excited...

...And I Just Can't Hide It!

I am thrilled about how many people have joined me in this. So many new faces amongst my old friends. There are still a few hours left for people to join in.

I was only able to get in a very short walk today as I have become ill. Mr. C has been sick all weekend and last night I realized that I had not done enough to keep healthy. I feel terrible, my head is pounding, my sinuses are full and drippy, and my throat is sore. This is probably the one thing that I dislike about fall is cold and flu season.

I should be thankful that unlike the last three years, this is the first big illness of 2008! It would seem that I am finally getting healthy again.

In other news, I promised you an update from my bloggerville absence. As most of you know I have been working on getting life organized in my home. This is not an easy task when you only have one day off every two weeks but for the most part I have managed it. I unfortunately had to decide what I would spend my time on so my workouts have been few and far between lately. I also have not been eating well due to lack of funds. We have just been finishing off what is in the cupboard the best we can. Well all of that changes now. I put myself on the back burner for a few weeks to accomplish something that I felt really needed to be done but now it's all about me again. (does that sound a little self centered?)

I am getting up every morning before the day job to do a walk video. EVERY DAY!

I am not going to change anything else just yet because I really want to concentrate on getting active again and making it stick! I will work on some of the other healthy habits one at a time but not until I have this one down. I have learned my lesson about making to many changes all at once. I get too overwhelmed when I do it that way and I am looking for life long habit changes, not temporary fixs.

Other than that, my externship is going well. It is not looking like they are going to hire me but that is ok because it was never a guarantee anyways. As for my nanny job, lets just say it can be very tough and stressful but I just adore the kids. Mr. C and Lil Z are for the most part easy to care for. This weekend was rough however because on top of Mr. C being sick, he also ran out of one of his meds. He was pretty tough to deal with but tonight he has been a complete angel and even went to bed at a quarter to eight. He must have been tired because he didn't even turn a movie on to fall asleep to.

So that has been my life recently. Not overly interesting, but productive non the less.

To all of you who are joining me on my endeavor I say welcome and goodluck. I hope day 1 went well for everyone. Bring on day 2!

Happy Training,

Love Jenn

Sunday, October 19, 2008

The Long and Short of the Contest...

Ok all, I have decided on the deets of the 21 Day Challenge. If you would like to participate please leave me a comment and tell me what habit you will be working on for the next three weeks. Then either download and print my calendar or mark the dates on your own. Every Sunday I will have an update post when you can leave a comment updating us on your progress. At the end of the three weeks all of the people who made it to the end and commented on the very last Sunday checkin will be entered to win a Mystery Michigan Menagerie Box. In other words, a box of fun stuff with my home state logo on it. If the winner happens to be from Michigan and does not want the box then they can designate a new winner from the comments.

The deadline for entering is Monday night October 20th at 11:59 pm EST.

The contest ends on Sunday November 9th at 11:59 pm EST.

I will pick a winner which will be announced on Wednesday November 12th.

I am looking forward to seeing how everyone does and I am really excited about my very first contest. Good luck to everyone. The party starts tomorrow.

Happy Training,
Love Jenn

P.S. If you don't get signed up in time for this one, don't worry, if this is a success then I may be bringing it back on a regular basis!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Habit Forming! I Challenge you

Feel free to download and print this. I am putting it on my fridge with my Fridge List, which I will explain later.

I am starting a challenge for myself and anyone else who wants to join me. I am challenging myself to change one habit in the next three weeks. 21 days starting on Monday. My challenge is to walk every single one of those days. I want to make moving everyday a habit. You don't have to use the same habit, however I would love it if you picked something and joined me. There may even be a prize in it for you. I will have to work out the details but I am really loving the idea of a contest.

So, who is with me?

Happy Training,
Love Jenn

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Access Denied!

Came up a little short this past week so the internet is off till later this week. Just wanted to let everyone know so that they didn't worry about me. I am posting from work so I only have a second. I promise a nice long accounting of what I have been up to as soon as I get my net back!

Happy Training,

Love Jenn

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Let's Take a Walk...

(Road To Domesticity post)

...around the internet for some great tips, trends, idea's, and RANDOMNESS!

I will start with a personal story about a girl, her dog, and her dogs really bad breath! I love my dog, but I am not overly fond of her breath. It is rank! We have tried a few things to deal with this little annoyance with mixed success. I read somewhere that parsley will help with bad doggy breath so I bought one of these. It worked great as long as she was chewing on it! However shortly after she had consumed the whole thing her breath would go right back to badville. I have had her teeth checked by the vet who says that she is fine and that some dogs just have chronic halitosis. I am not satisfied with that answer at all. So I have been searching for some help on the internet and came up with this. Cross your fingers and pray that this works! I don't want to have to resort to tying a ribbon around her muzzle! J/K!

Moving on to my fitness life, I came across this blog article this morning and wanted to share it with everyone. I sometimes feel like I am struggling with two Jenns, the one that is working towards her goals and the one that is sabotaging the other ones efforts. After reading this bloggers review I am going to dig into the original article this weekend. Anyone else want to take a look. I would love to hear your insights and feedback.

Keeping with the fitness theme for just a moment longer, have any of you seen this. I am a total geek, nerd, etc, and love the idea of following the path of the Hobbits. On my other blog I am taking the journey from Hobbiton to Rivendell. Would anyone care to join me?

How many of you love to read the classics of literature? I know I do. I love this site because I can read the book right from my lap top which means that I don't have to go to the library or book store (both of which are dangerous for my pocket book).

Do you have a brown thumb? I love gardening and houseplants but I always manage to kill them. I either over water or underwater! So what is my solution to this? Check this out! I am going to be giving a lot of these out come christmas time!

Finally I would like to leave you all with something fun. Just don't click this link at work unless you want the bosses attention!

Have a great weekend everyone! I hope you enjoy the links!

Love Jenn

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

No! I didn't get abducted by the aliens!

I have been really busy and not had a lot of time for everything I am trying to do. Exercise is down to 3 days a week which is really low for me. With these two jobs plus all of the projects that I tend to take on, my time is just very limited. Hopefully it will get better soon. I am trying to get the house organized and decluttered. I have been getting annoyed with all the clutter for a while and when I started my other blog I decided that decluttering was going to be one of my first goals. I have worked my magic in all but two rooms in the house so far and I must say that it is looking much better. I am looking forward to the start of my next project which is decorating for fall.

I have been working on organizing as part of the declutter project. I have made us a financial organizer and a housework organizer. This has already started to streamline the day to day stuff so that I have a little more wiggle room time wise. My next organizing projects are expanding my recipe organizer so that I can say goodbye to all of those unused recipe books and a household organizer with stuff like addresses, phone numbers, birthdays, anniversaries, gift ideas, coupons, meal plans, and so on. Whit and I always have the best intentions to send out cards and gifts for stuff like birthdays and anniversaries but neither of us has a great memory and neither of us has a current list of all the pertinent info. I am going to be working on getting all of that info together this month. I am really loving the feeling of being organized.

On another note, I am going to be deleting my other blog. I just don't have enough time for two jobs, two blogs, exercise, housework, etc. and something had to give. So I decided that 1) I love blogging and the friends I have made and 2) this blog was here first and is my first priority, so I am letting the other one go. However I am going to keep some of the posts. They will be transfered to this blog over the next couple of days. I am telling you all this right now because the last time I made a big change I confused a lot of people and I still have not gotten some of my readers back. So consider this fair warning!

As for the weight loss challenge, I didn't lose anything again this week due to lack of exercise and not the best eating. I am feeling more adjusted now and hopefully I will be back on an upswing real soon. I know I can do this!

I have a special post in the works that I am not going to tell you much about. However I will tell you to tune in monday when I will be posting said post. I hope you will all enjoy!

Until then,

I just can't keep up.

I was doing really well for a while on this for a while. Unfortunately I don't have enough time for two blogs, two jobs, and domesticity and something had to give.

Therefore I am going to delete this blog. I will be keeping my other one however and some of my posts from here will be there. I will continue with my goals and will give updates there as well. So if you are interested in reading about my life and my progress then you will want to refer to my other blog.

I will leave this up through the weekend so that I can switch some of these posts to my other blog then it will be taken down.

I have enjoyed my time in domestic blogging and promise that this will not be the end of my voice in this genre.

Happy Homemaking,
Love Jenn