Sunday, July 31, 2011

Saturday, July 30, 2011

These are a few of my favorite things....: Bedroom

I've had so many great things I've bought lately.  I need to share.

I also need to stop buying.

Hello August budget, it's nice to meet you, I'm gonna stick to you like glue.

No really, I am. :)

I will say that when you have money in SO many different accounts and money coming back to you from so many places it's just hard to figure out how it's all working out.  Now is the time to stick to our money system envelope thing.  It always works.

BUT, that isn't to say that I haven't purchased a few good things.

Lush Decor Abigail 8-Piece Comforter Set, KingFirst off, I did some serious hunting for a comforter set and I found the BEST place to buy it is Ross.  They don't tend to have a ton of them, but I know they rotate through stock fairly heavily.  It was cheaper by at least half.  Similar quality.  Of course, it's ross so you need to check it out but if you're looking for some new linens, that's the first place I'd go.

Coolibar UPF 50+ Women's Long-Sleeve Swim Shirt (Large - Navy/White)Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch Sunblock, SPF 85, 3 Ounces (Pack of 2)Next, do you remember when I bought my swimsuit and I was all wondering if I needed a swim shirt.  Can I just tell you how much I love it?  It's not my brand, but if you find a long sleeved one, BUY IT.  I'm so glad I'm not having spots of burn from where I couldn't get the sunscreen.  Our neighbor told us that you have a 100% chance of getting skin cancer in AZ, so I'm gonna fight it with my swim shirt.  And nutrogena on my face. :)

Honey-Can-Do Commercial 41.5-Inch Clothes Drying Rack, ChromeI think I got this drying rack for my birthday or mothers day a few years ago (romantic and loving, no? -- I did ask for it).  I can't tell you HOW handy it has been here for the towels that just seem to be perpetually wet.  I hate to wash them daily when I know we're just going again tomorrow.  Super helpful, and a money saver.  I would love a rod or something that can go across my tub to hang stuff on, but then retracts... does anyone know if they make those?

Anyway, those are my favorite things for today.  Of course, I love to sleep -- but that really goes without saying, doesn't it?

Friday, July 29, 2011

Photo Friday: House

I think I've posted a lot of pictures of the house already, but I wanted to get some of it in its "Done" phase... please don't think I'm bragging over what a great house this is. It is, but for anyone who was at our OLD house and sees THIS house, you know that we are both making SIGNIFICANT pay decreases we are really livin' it up here in the hot southwest. :)  I think I complained ENOUGH on this blog about how things were never going to work out.  And these photos prove it has.  I'm a whiner.  Enough said.

I just realized it's 1 month tomorrow since we moved in.  1 month today that our other house closed.  Amazing how time flies (and also goes insanely slow, I can't believe it's only been a month!).

First off, I started downstairs.  This is the office/craft room.  Here's my little thank you/loving note wall.  It makes me smile every time I see it...

There's a sewing cabinet, and my machine and a craft table, and all our office stuff is in there too.   

One of the doctors at O'Connor gave me this cool little picture, which I framed.  It will always remind me of all the amazing nurses that helped mold me there in San Jose

And of course, our mother load of storage.  Including scrap booking.  Think I'll ever pick up that hobby again?

And for my mother's viewing pleasure, the guest room.  I'm hoping to get on this this weekend.  Currently it is where boxes go to die.  Goodwill will hopefully be providing a bit of furniture for our future house guests (will it be you?)

Here's the playroom.  Lots of room for play.

And somehow we're taking a back trip to the guest bathroom.  I love how I Could use almost any color of towels with that shower curtain.  That is nice, because we have almost any color of towel.  Thanks to many towels at our wedding reception 14 years ago.

And, back to the playroom.  Here's our amazing storage.  The kids love having the computer down there too.  This was a GREAT investment.  I switched a few toys yesterday and boy oh BOY was it easier then hauling them out from the garage (I just brought them down from lower cabinets).  Do you like our red garbage can?  I thought it'd stand out like a fire alarm -- PUT GARBAGE IN HERE... NOW.  YOU.  Yes, YOU

And a final shot of the playroom.  I just can't say enough good things about how great having a room downstairs for all them young'uns is!

Here's the living room.  I have to say I feel very grown up when I look at it.  We have come a long way from our blue velvet couch.

And the other side of the living room.  I LOVE the top of my shelves.  I like those little display nooks.  Or, "pot shelves" as real estate likes to call it here.  Can you grow pot on shelves?  I guess you can in AZ! :)  I, instead chose to put up some sayings, and a nice clock I got on clearance at the ol' hobby lobby.  Two clocks on one wall, you say?  I love the little motif of our wedding picture, and our certificate and the temple and the clock.  It reminds me this marriage is forever, so forgive the fact that he can't figure out his schedule today.  Ok?  And the other clock was just a great deal.  I love clocks, I love to be in time. :)

The kitchen.... less clean then the other rooms...  I have some pot shelves here too.  I kind of want to do colored bottles between the kitchen and the dining area....

More kitchen (even though our fridge doesn't really "match" I am sure glad we have it in here!  Does anyone know a blog who does useless top of cupboard space look amazing?

Here's where I am typing this blog as we speak. :)   This is supposed to be the dining area.  It may turn into that at some point, but for now we had nothing to do with it.  We only have one VERY ugly table. :)

Our entry.  I love our little light.  You can see my tile that's the color of dirt (which I love).

Oh,and we're back to the kitchen.  Just wanted to show we're getting fully stocked again.  I think it's time to reign in the grocery budget.

In the photo above, if you look to the right, that's our laundry room.  That's right, it's not in the garage (AND I Couldn't be HAPPIER about that!)  Laundry room below:  Does anyone know how much I love storage?  Because I love it.  A lot.

And I'd like to welcome you to our WALK IN CLOSET.  I had to vacuum it the other day, and it made me giggle.  We still have plenty of storage in there, and I even bought a clothes steamer that i LOVE. :)

Oh,and back down the stairs.  All this walking is making me tired. If you look to the left, you can see the sweet photo frame all our CA friends gave us.  Love you guys!

And here we are in P's room.... We're making her nervous just being here, check out that thumb suckin' action.... 

And back to my room, and my bathroom, although it looks like P wants to take it over.

Here's the kids bathroom.  Those rugs can NEVER stay in place.  I may hot glue them down.  And I may not. :)

And back to my room, here's our new king sized bed.  I don't adore our bedspread, but it's nice and light and it'll do until Ross shows me something else. :)

Here's the boy's room.  It has a lot of stuff in there, but they have a lot of storage and a place for everything.  Shockingly, every thing's not exactly in it's place.... who do I speak to about that? 

Here's the other wall... I'm happy they have a desk in there, because there's going to be some serious homework this year.

So, that completes my photo tour.  I hope you enjoyed it.  I kept meaning to get some pictures out.  Now that my camera has made it out of hiding, hopefully we can have some more nice photo Fridays together.  Time to build lots of new memories.

Here in the hot, hot sun.

Thursday, July 28, 2011


Just wanted to say I've had a little more time to do comments lately, and I'm unable to leave comments on a lot of pages.  I think I'm fine on th eones that have a pop-up or a whole other page, but when it's just a box on the page I have a problem, I just keep having the sign in and do word verification.

So, if you have that, just know I love you. And I love your blogs. :)

Tell ME Thursday: Swimming

INTEX RECREATION 59574NP My Baby FloatOk, swimming is going great.  Spencer is doing MUCH better today, he'll dunk himself, and jump in the pool and float like a starfish.  I'm sure that many of you are thinking sheesh, the kid's 7.  But he's always been a sissy in water, so I just didn't want to deal with it.  Until this sweet girl in our ward offered 5 dollar swim lessons, and they're doing great.

SO, here's my question, what can I be doing with P to make her like the water more?  Currently she just wants to hang on my neck the entire time we're in there.  I'm just not a fan of it.... and I want to NOT have the problems we've had with Spencer.

What do you do with your tiny ones to get them to like the pool and be a little more independent.  I put a floaty on her, and that didn't help.  It may have made it worse.

Teach me. :)

{Hey, don't forget to try and win a SIX MONTH subscription to Deals to Meals... I promise you'll save a lot of hassel and money by using them -- and they're available in a LOT of states, including CA, UT and AZ}

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Deals to Meals would be a REAL DEAL if it was FREE... and it could be for you!

Deals to meals, after hearing me GUSH over them is offering a SIX MONTH free membership for my fine readers.

Here's the deal to get your own deals. :)

There's a few ways to win:

1.  Become a follower of their blog and comment here on my blog.
2.  Comment on their blog, and then comment here. :)

(because entries will be chosen from the people that comment on my blog, but I will make sure you've either commented or become a follower of them).

You can also get an extra entry by commenting here (separate comment, please) saying the 5 things you'd most like to stock up on (things your family uses a lot of).  I need to re-stock the pantry and I'm not sure I have everything I need in there.

So, that's right 2 chances to win.  I will say that I am a humble deals to meals follower.  She has A-mazing recipes, I love them.  She is my only bread dough, and everything she makes is just divine.  So, even if you don't live in the area that this giveaway would be useful, be sure and check it out!

I'll choose a winner next Monday morning so the contest closes Monday at 7 am.  Now, go cook. :)

In clarification of this modestly confusing post:
Go be a follower or comment on their blog, then come here and put a comment.
If you want a SECOND entry, you can comment with 5 things you'd like to stock up on.
That is all. :)

What's Up Wednesday

Lots is up around here.  Now that I've welcomed myself back to the land of the living (and I don't really think I've been amongst the living since about March) we're doing all sorts of fun stuff before school starts.

Ok, who am I kidding?  We're all turning into mermaids and mermen.  That would be fine, except we all have to dry off and drive home, with some resounding beggings for slurpees (which, even the giant size are only 79 cents here!)  The boys are doing swim lessons with a sweet girl from the ward.  Conner is doing REALLY well.  He's turned into a fish since we've been here.  She's doing strokes with him, and working on breathing, I'm really proud of him.  Spencer is Mr. Hesitant.  Today he jumped in the water, which earned him an ice cream cone when we got home.  He's never done that before.  I could tell he wanted to cry, but we were all cheering, so he didn't.  I hope this is a good lesson for him.  I worry about him in a new school with new friends, new teacher.  He just isn't always one to jump in with both feet.  I worry about him the most right now...

Conner went and took his school's math placement test today.  I'm hoping to get him into the advanced classes.  They were impressed with his star testing.  He already has homework that's due the first week of school.  He's super jazzed, of course.  The administration's been really nice.  So, I'm happy.

Work's going well.  I'm not sure how many hours I'm going to be getting.  But, that's life with my per diem placement.  I just work when they need me to.  You'd think after 8 years of doing this I'd be used to God setting us up for success, but I must admit I still worry.

BUT, you'll all be glad to know that I am EXTREMELY happy.  My house is in order, I really like it.  I'm starting to get friends, and find kindred spirits around me.  Sure, the heat is a bugger, but it makes swimming oh so sweet.  Drew's gone a lot, but with more room I'm less apt to lose my mind in this house.  It's still possible though. :)  Things are going really well.  Sure, there's worries in my head, but I Have SUCH A strong testimony of how God blesses those who do the things he asks I know we'll be fine.

{God is in charge, don't even THINK of jumping off the plane}

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Thoughtful Tuesday

I've been thinking about a lot of things lately.

First off, my kids are driving me insane.  I always get like this towards the end of summer, as do they... but this year is worse since we never really had a vacation and things have been so off kilter.

On Monday I started back to rigid "my way or the highway" mom.  Let's just say it hasn't really gone over well.  They're too used to "mom's so freaking busy it's time to just do whatever we want" mom.

Well, that party's over.

The funny thing is that while it's been really hard to go back to that (and I have to remind myself I'm being rigid mom) everyone is a LOT more happy this afternoon.  We're back to our routine and things are going alright.  I am also pushing up S's bedtime because he's been SUCH a whiny mess I can't even talk about it.

I guess what my thoughts are is that if there's something that's driving you insane you sometimes need to just throw all your effort into it and then a little bit MORE effort to really get it under control, but then it can be under control.

Your efforts make a difference.

And there is a gecko on our back wall.

Did I mention we have a guest room, and a gecko.  I'll be taking reservations people....

Monday, July 25, 2011

Miracles Monday

There have been lots of tiny miracles in our lives.

The one I want to talk about today is going to work.  I felt SO at home.  I've had quite a few nursing jobs (ok, this is #6) and it's always been a HORRIBLE transition.  I've had a lot of private tears about how it's all going.  It's just hard to get on a new unit with new people and new doctors and take it all in.

But, last Thursday was my first shift on the floor and I felt like I could have gone off on my own at any moment.  I really felt like this was something I could do. 

I know that God is watching out for me, he's helping me be comfortable with my situation here.  I feel really lucky.  On a less miraculous side, these girls have some SERIOUS language issues.  I have rarely heard the F word used in so many imaginative ways.  I wasn't one to rock the boat on my FIRST day, but any of you have ideas on getting that to stop, at least around me?

In other news, I talked to Spencer's new principal today.  He's in a gifted cluster class (whatever the heck that means!?) already, so that's great.  She also said that his teacher is REALLY loving and will do a great job at integrating him into the school.  I'm extra nervous because it seems like no one in our ward goes to this school.  We even have a meet the teacher night next week.  HORRAY!  Everything I've ever wanted.

SO many tiny miracles in each of our lives.  I know that when I notice them I am SO much happier.  I feel very blessed by how Heavenly Father watches out for me.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Hi, Will You Be My Friend?

Here's the sad news, the vast majority of my "good" friends had left California before I did.  Sure, I still had friends there, and a few really good ones but not like it was a couple of years ago.  Esp. when I was pregnant with P -- I had SO many ROCKS that I could count on.  I felt VERY blessed (and they were necessary, that was a hard time for me).

I've been doing remarkably well with no real support system here.  Sure, I have some friends here, and I have met people at church who have been really nice...  I like a lot of them.  I see a lot of potential...

The other day when we were at the pool (BTW, the community pools here, are SO great!) I saw a group of women (all in full swimsuits, made me think they were LDS) all sitting in the pool and chitty chatting.  And I was like, "oh man... look at them, they have friends." 

I think that's really the first time it hit me.  If I wanted to go do something I am totally alone.  There's not really anyone to call.  Drew's headed back to work and I may actually WANT to call someone.  {sigh}

Anyway, I know with time it will happen.  I also have a strong belief that friends aren't always who you THINK friends will be.  I also feel like I have a huge network of friends beneath me that are just a phone call, text, email or IM away.  I feel lucky that way. 

Anyway, they will come.  I need them, so they'll come. This whole experience has taught me that you get what you need.

It just so happens we needed a king sized bed.

So there.

Here's a Mormon Message that has nothing to do with friends, other then it's hard to talk to strangers, homeless or not.  If anyone has a great way to make friends, feel free to give me pointers. :)

Saturday, July 23, 2011

How I Am Eating

Well, I am eating a lot of frozen things, but that's not the point of this entry.

I had a hard time figuring out how I was going to re-stockpile after moving.  I did use my food storage pretty well before we moved.  It was great, I felt blessed to have it.  While I don't think I saved a ton of money, I do think that I had a little more wiggle room in our budget, so that was one thing I didn't have to worry about if we needed to go to subway every now and then. :)

Anyway.  I have great pantries in our house and I am SO excited to have it all HERE with ME. :)  Instead of in some hot, stuffy garage.  I am embarrassed to say that we did move a LOT of canned goods with us.  Probably just 3 small boxes, but you can fit a lot of cans in 3 boxes.  I also moved a bit of our other storage, pasta, honey, stuff like that.  It moved pretty well.

Sadly, there was stuff that just couldn't come, or I ate all of it before hand.  SO, it's time to stock up again.  Yay.  BUT, when we got here, I just knew I wouldn't have time to scour ads or figure out which store was best to go to, blah, blah, blah.  Then a light bulb moment... Deals to Meals is in AZ.  I can use them!

So I did.

Your first 2 weeks are free, then you spend 4.95/month to have THEM scour the ads for you and figure out what's really great prices, what's so-so and then I just read down that check off what I need, print a grocery list and whamo.  I'm done.

Because HERE is the BEST PART.  Walmart price matches all of my local grocery stores (and there are a TON of grocery stores here... cha-ching!).  Also, when I need something that's not on sale, good chance Wally mart is the cheapest anyway.  But wait, there's more... Walmart is maybe 1.5 miles from my home.  It's a SUPER one too.  It's got it all. 

So, yesterday ice cream was on sale at Food City -- I price matched that at Walmart, along with a few other items.  Then I got the regular stuff I needed, some weed killer and some water containers for the fridge and I checked out.  It was truly one stop shopping for someone who used to call that a full time job.

In order to price check at Walmart, you just need to know which store and how much it costs, you don't need a flyer, they just do it.  Now, here's my personal stipulation.  If you do this, you need to be VERY HONEST.  I have always asked a manager if they will substitute their own brand for the store's brand (and they've always said yes), or I ask them if they'll substitute their meat, etc.  It's almost always been a go, but I have been told no (usually by just employees, not by the manager).  It's been great.

Anyway, my full time job is soon going to be eating bon-bons on the couch.  I mean, what will I do with myself?  I'm not sure that I'll keep using deals to meals forever, but I do think that I'll use it for the next few months.  I may, in fact, do it forever.  THat's just a little over a dollar a week, and with SO many ads here I think it may be worth my time just to let them do it.  I do think there are deals I am missing... but I'm not sure that it's that important to me right now. :D

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Some final thoughts on cleaning....

I have a friend who runs a parenting site.  It's great, she's great.... her whole family's great...

Sometimes as I read it my eyes glaze over in how amazing she is, how she is the perfect mom and her kids must adore here and do her every bidding because she's so involved.  Really, that's what I think. 

She actually lives far away now, I knew her when her kids were really little... but then she came to visit. 

And I realized that she is just like me, and her kids are just like mine.

She writes well, and is well meaning, but we all know the chaos that several children can inflict.

So, in seeing these cleaning posts on Facebook (confession, I pre-wrote all of them, knowing I'd be heading to work this week) I am kind of making myself sick with all the self congratulatory behavior.  As if I am a cleaning goddess.

Here's the truth:

1.  I can't stand a messy house.  I am driven insane by stuff that's out all over.  Organization is key for me, having stuff PUT. AWAY.

2.  I have 3 kids, a busy husband and a job of my own.  Having this cleaning schedule is what keeps me sane.  If I see somethings' dirty I can just kind of mentally throw it away (or mentally check it so I can fix it on my next 10 minute tidy) instead of making it linger on my mind driving me insane.  I think that if I just left cleaning to "whenever" I'd feel like I always needed to clean.  I'd see the floor, the bathrooms, the fridge, and I just wouldn't be able to relax.  This way I know the floor will get done on Monday, the fridge too and the bathrooms are on Tuesday.

Anyway, I am by no means perfect in the cleaning area but I do enjoy a clean house.  This way I think I just spend as little time as possible (both mental time and actual cleaning time) on it as possible, while getting the best results I can.

So, sorry if I made you throw up a little bit this week.  I didn't mean to.  I just love getting peeks in other people's lives and how they run stuff.  Maybe this helped you too. :)

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Weekly Cleaning: Tuesdays

American Standard 2829.128.020 Cadet-3 FloWise Round Front Two-Piece Toilet with High Efficiency, WhiteTuesdays is all about bathrooms.  Delish, no?

I wash colors and towels.

Conner's job is to clean their bathroom (and he does all of it).

Spencer's job is to clean the guest bathroom (he doesn't have to do toilet cleaner).

McCulloch MC-1275 Heavy-Duty Steam CleanerI clean our bathroom and then I rotate between cleaning mirrors, steaming parts of bathrooms, stuff like that.  Nothing too crazy.  I do love my steam cleaner for bathrooms.  I just use the steam and then wipe it off, like the steam is cleaner that I've sprayed.  It does a great job.  Yes, it takes a bit to clean a whole shower, but it's worth it baby. :)

Monday, July 18, 2011

Day Numero Uno ala new job.

Multilingual.  That's me.

Today they shared how culturally diverse our community would be.

I snickered.

With a sea of white faces.  Ok, there were some other cultured peppered in there, but they all had a nice giggle over the fact people would speak another language at the nursing station.


I thought so.

Anyway, today was just big ol' orientation, but I sat next to some fun people, which made it almost tolerable.  Also, in our lunches they gave us a candy bar.  Pure genius, it's true.

The CEO has been at this hospital system for 25 years.

TWENTY. FIVE. YEARS.  He said he just likes it there, he has roots.

I won't mention that I had, I think, 3 CEO's at OCH before I left, countless managers, directors, etc. It didn't breed longevity.  Take that as you will.

I just spent 3 weeks unemployed.  It's one of my longest stints, I think.  I do believe I only had 2 weeks off when we moved from UT to CA.  I, of course, had time off when I had babies.

I would just like to say HOW. EXTREMELY. BLESSED. I feel about having those 3 weeks.  It's been SO nice to feel settled at home as I kick P to Drew as I walk out the door.  I'm not worried about things at home as I try to settle into things at work.  We were so very blessed and lucky.

The Erickson's Word of the week is Diligence.  I made this cool white board thingy (it's a frame with fabric behind the glass and then you can write on the glass with a dry erase marker) and it's hanging at the top of the stairs so people can see it every time they run up them.  Anywho... this week's word is "Diligence" (aka, my biggest pet peeve right now is that the kids are sent to do a job and only do it 1/2 way... and when we're 11 that shouldn't happen more than 25% of the time, in my estimations).  So, my quote is from Benjamin Franklin
"Diligence is the mother of all luck."

I have two frames of thought on this, first off -- I think sometimes we're just blessed with things.  Is this luck?  Not really.  But, sort of.  BUT, most times we have been faithful in other areas where that blessing was our sort of "pay".

Secondly, I totally agree.  I was bugged by people who were like, "oh, wow your house sold so fast, you are lucky, you got a job so fast, you're so lucky."  Truth be told, we priced our house to sell.  And truth be told, I've paid some dues in learning my profession well that I was offered 3 jobs and got to choose my favorite.  Was I blessed, yes.  But I had also set myself up for success with hard work.

This isn't to say that we aren't enormously blessed.  But this is to say that I want my kids to realize that hard work brings blessings.

Like getting to play the wii.  Or, on an off day, me not choking them.  Kidding... sort of.

Diligence.  Does that describe you?

My Weekly Schedule: Mondays

Mondays is kitchen time.

Cerama Bryte Ceramic Cooktop Cleaner (28 oz), Scraper and 9 Cleaning Pads Combo KitI clean out the fridge and the top of the stove (we have a ceramic stove top now, so I do the cerama brite every Monday... should i do it more often then that?  Anyone?).  I also clean out the fridge.  I try to go through everything that's in it, throw away the gross-ness and re-organize from just throwing stuff in the rest of the week.  It's always nice to have an organized fridge.  We now have a garage fridge also so that's nice to hold the overflow (of course, we can't really keep stuff in the garage that we plan to eat because it's SO hot, so a lot of the soda/juice etc that I used to keep in my garage are now in that fridge).  I have also traditionally just gone in a circular rotation around the kitchen cleaning out cabinets, re-lining if necessary, and just organizing.  I mostly just set a timer for 20 minutes for all this cleaning and organizing.  It feels nice to make sure I'm hitting all the major areas during the week.

Rubbermaid Reveal Spray Mop Kit, FG1M1600GRYRDIt's also my day to sweep and mop... I think I went over that last week.  I am trying to use either just ammonia or vinegar in my water with the Rubbermaid sprayer.  I have some pine sol, so I may use that every now and then.  You can just keep the pre-mixed stuff and use it again next time.  Loving the new mop

On Mondays I wash the bathmats, every 2-3 weeks depending on how ugly they look.  I do the whites, and the kids clothes (the kids separate all their whites and put those with ours and I do all of those twice a week, and then I do their colored clothes together -- Conner folds his own laundry).

On Mondays, Conner cleans all the counters (including underneath stuff) with an antibacterial wipe.  He sorts their laundry, he folds laundry and gets all the trash.  Spencer cleans the front of the stove with window cleaner and the sliding glass door with window cleaner.

I intentionally have a lot of work on Mondays.  I don't usually work and I am usually ready to get a jump on things after the weekend.  Go me.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Sundays: A Day of Rest

I don't have any cleaning to do on Sundays.  It's our rest day.

I do encourage a 5 minute tidy that everyone does after we have our family meeting.  I thought I'd include our Sunday schedule.  I work hard to not just sleep the entire day away, which I easily could.

  • 7:30 - Drew and I have a meeting together where we talk about the SS lesson and what's going on that week.
  • 8:00 -- Family meeting, where we read the cartoon scriptures and talk about FHE assignements and what's going on that week.  We also try and review some personal goals that people need/should be working on.
  • 8:20 - five minute tidy
  • 8:30 - Breakfast -- nothing fancy, get ready afterwards. 
  • 9:15 - leave for church
  • 9:30 -12:30 - Church
  • 1:00 - P naps, we nap.  Kids have quiet time, after a small snack.
  • 3:00 -Wake-up (this is the hardest part of the day), make lunch/dinner
  • 4:30 - Games, although last week we drove to the Gilbert Tempe, we may start doing that every now and then as we have 3 temples close by here.
  • 5:00 - Movie and popcorn (dessert usually slips somewhere into this schedule)
I really want the day to be about OUR FAMILY.  We don't get that much around here, as I'm sure you don't at your house.  And this schedule makes it so I try and keep the day about our family.

Happy Sunday everyone, remember what's important. :)

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Weekly Cleaning: Saturdays

Saturday is a special day, it's the day we get ready for Sunday.... (it's a Mormon song).  I do really want my house to be CLEAN on Saturdays, and because I've worked during the week I don't have to do a ton, but I still clean. :)

Saturdays we focus on the garage, and probably on our food storage as well.  I tend to set a timer for 20 minutes and clean the whole house.  Just doing odd jobs that needed to be done all week.  The kids have the obligation to get their room clean, and their sheets changed within these 20 minutes.  It's a trial, every. single. week.  But we sojourn on. :)

I do my food storage checks on this day.  Mostly because our food storage used to be in our garage, it's now in our house but it's something I need P away from me for.  I check the long term food storage every 3 months (this is all in #10 cans from the church cannery), I check the shorter term storage (cans, pasta, etc.) every 6 weeks.  This just lets me know what I need to be shopping for.  No one has to mark when they take a can out, so this is my way of taking inventory.  It's like a grocery store in there, so I need to run it like a store too. :)

I usually just set a timer for 10 minutes and organize in the garage.  Now that we have our shelves I'm not sure how much is going to be done here, but I'm sure it will still need help.

We strip the sheets and wash them all on Saturdays, that's my only laundry on Saturdays.  I'd also like to clean the cars every few weeks on Saturdays.  This Arizona dirt is crazy on them!

Conner cleans his room (on Saturdays the room has to be "mommy clean, which is pretty close to perfect... it's a higher standard then the rest of the week), he also vacuums the playroom and the living room, and he and Spencer clean the car out.

Spencer vacuums all the tile with our small vacuum (LOVE IT) as well as also cleaning his room and helping with the car.

If you're getting the drift that I want my home to be SPOTLESS For at least a few moments each week, you are correct.  It just feels so good.

However, on the Saturdays I work you need to be sure that isn't not always this great.  I'm kind of the task driver on this one.  Did I mention it feels good?

Because it does. :)

Friday, July 15, 2011

Thursday Was THAT Day.

There was a time during all of this, where I wondered if we would EVER have a day where all the boxes would be unpacked, we'd hurl ourselves onto the couch with a sigh of relief and revel in the fact it was "done".  Yesterday was that. day.

And I honestly couldn't believe it.  Here's the timeline, in case any of you are wondering (BTW, I just went to get dates off my Google calendar and I couldn't believe these dates were just a few clicks away... seems like YEARS).
  • March 10th - Drew gets his layoff notice, but they're "positive" he'll get it rescinded... although the reasoning seems suspect to me.
  • March 11th - Drew leaves for Ireland with the band. We promise we're not going to stress about this whole situation while he is gone, and for the most part we both do pretty well with that.
  • March 21st - Hilary has a very strong feeling she's going to be moving.  Suddenly all the things that have kept us here in the past and all the effort that's going to be involved seems doable.  Drew also comes home from Ireland that day.
  • March 26th - Drew gets ugly news all week long.  Many of the people I would consider "smart" have said it's time for him to start looking for something else.  Other people just shoo-shoo it away and say he'll be fine.  Drew and Hilary go out to dinner (parents watch children, they were here the whole time Drew was in Ireland and I can't say WHAT a blessing that was).  Hilary reveals the fact that she thinks we're going to move.  Drew is surprised but starts to realize that might be what happens.  We also find a job in Frisco, TX on the website that day.  We're 100% sure this is where we are moving.
  • April 11th - We put an application into at least 20 different school districts.  Hilary and her dad search everywhere online and Drew does the application part.  This is the day we leave for Yosemite.  We have a GREAT trip, we think Frisco will call any day and offer us the job.
  • April 18th - Drew calls Frisco and he didn't make the first cut.  We are devastated.
  • April 25th - Drew gets 2 phone calls for interviews.  One in Tempe, AZ and the other one in a suburb of Denver in Colorado.  Hilary is sure the AZ one is just a fly by night thing, he's interviewing TWELVE people for the job.  Insane, but figures the interviewing experience will be good.  We book expensive tickets for Drew to fly to both.
  • April 29th - Drew interviews at both places, misses P's 2nd birthday, but we celebrate on the Sunday.  he HATES the Colorado job, but feels totally at home in AZ.  He finds out the job is only 80% this year.  Hilary brushes it off and says that's just not going to happen.
  • May 2nd - Drew gets a job offer from AZ.  Hilary thinks it's ludicrous he's even considering it...
  • May 4th - While working out (possibly to Jillian) Hilary realizes we're moving to AZ.  It's a fairly ugly workout, in many ways.  I actually get a lot of inspiration when I work out.  This wasn't what I was hoping for...
  • May 7th - Hilary talks to many loan people, they all say they can't get a home loan.  Hilary is devastated, lots of crying. 
  • May 5th -- Drew accepts the job in AZ.  After some salary wrangling.  Which we did get some success with.  Hilary starts getting moving quotes and we start staging our house to sell it.
  • May 17th - House is ready for showing, house goes on the market.
  • May 18th - Drew leaves for AZ, band boosters fly him out.  He LOVES it there.  He misses Hilary's >2nd birthday.
  • May 19th - Hilary has a phone interview, hospital is nice but too far away.
  • May 21st - First open house, we go to the temple and the zoo.
  • May 24th - Get an offer on the house, we accept it.  It's a great offer.
  • May 25th I find a guy who has an idea about having parents co-sign loan.  Won't involve us having to pay mortgage insurance, but our parents will be on the loan and title.  Grr....
  • May 26th - Hilary flies out to AZ to look for jobs/houses.  She has an AMAZING interview, and an OK interview.  Of course, Hilary's end of the interview is great, but it is clear that one hospital is a better fit.  Offer on house backs out.  Hilary is devastated.  Really thinks life isn't fair.  Newsflash, it's not.
  • May 27th - Hilary sees 10 houses with realtor.  Doesn't like any of them.  Wants a specific location.  Realtor isn't helpful.
  • 28th - Another open house.
  • 30th - Another offer on house, we counter it.  Offer disappears.  Realize that people are flaky and stupid.
  • June 3rd - ANOTHER offer on house, we counter it and they accept.  Offer is a fair amount lower then first or second offer but Hilary knows they are the ones to buy the house.  Hilary is devastated.  It is also the last day of school so emotions were just too darn high.  Hilary is also offered the job at the good hospital.  She accepts (WHAT an up and down day!).
  • June 8th - We offer on a house.  It's not perfect, and far too close to a busy road, but we need a house.  Realtor is super un-helpful, doesn't know what to bid, they counter at far to high, blah, blah, blah we don't get the house.
  • June 10th - We officially aren't going to get that house and we are resigned to the fact that we need to find a rental.  We find that the rental market is crazy hot in AZ, and have a really hard time.
  • June 11th - I contact a realtor that was selling my "dream home".  She hooks me up with a loan lady, she calls me that night with options including houses to rent and homes to buy.  Options all over the place all of the sudden.  Loan lady says that she can do our loan without us having to co-sign with my parents.
  • June 12th - I send a friend to look at 2 houses with her.  She really likes one.
  • June 14th - We offer on the house, they counter, we accept.
  • June 17th - I fly into Phoenix for the day.  I look at house, I talk with inspector.  House is a go.  We are moving in 10 days.  We literally made this decision THIS day.  Can you believe that?  I call movers.  I get bumped to first class.  Notice many blessings.
  • June 23rd - Sign title on California house we pack like crazy people all week, at the same time I work more then I have ever worked at that hospital.  It is insane at work, and insane at home.  Not a nice combo.  Later appreciate the paychecks.  A. lot.
  • June 26th - Lovely going away party.  Can't believe we're really leaving.
  • June 27th - Movers come, house is empty and clean by 2 pm.  I have the best friends, and I am leaving them.  Cry a lot.
  • June 28th - We arrive in AZ, and sign title that afternoon. 
  • June 29th - We get keys.
  • June 30th - Movers come, all of the stuff is in the house by 10 or 11.  We have a lot of stuff.
  • July 14th - Everything is put away, new shelves installed.  Life is good.
So, that's just over 4 months.

The day did come.  I really couldn't imagine it, and I must admit there weren't fireworks last night.  There was a nice episode of In Plain Sight, but it's the same couch.  BUT the stress is gone.  Sure, there is still stress.  I'm VERY nervous about the new job.  I'm nervous about how Drew's job is going to work out, but we both had SUCH strong feelings that these were the jobs meant for us. 

This house is so entirely perfect.  I was sad we didn't have a pool, but with the giant dust storm and all the monsoons you hear a lot of talk about what a pain in the butt pools are right now.  P is safe in our backyard and life goes on.

Life goes on, and it's a good life.  I am so glad I didn't jump off the plane.

Weekly Cleaning: Fridays

You will see that Friday is the slowest of all the days.  Horray, TGIF!

Friday is clean the living room and the laundry room.

Friday is dusting day, which is mostly done by the kids and then I get the high stuff.  Or sometimes the stuff at all, depending on how lazy they have been. :)

Eureka 71B Hand-Held VacuumConner dusts, Spencer's job is the vacuum the steps with our little dirt devil.  I decided it just wasn't going to happen with our larger vacuum.  How do you vacuum your steps?  This is our first house with stairs.  I know, we're SO grown up!

Our laundry room has a lot of great shelving that we, of course have utilized to it's capcaity. :)  Today would be the day to organize that.  I'll probably just set a timer for 10 minutes and go to town de-linting the couch, putting stuff away and organizing the laundry room, and then call it good.  I did put in my phone to run a cycle of bleach or vinegar through my washing machine every 4 weeks.  Just to keep all its parts nice and clean.  I'm fun like that.

I must admit, that because I do a 10 minute tidy daily the living room gets a fair amount of attention in that, as far as just putting stuff away.

On Fridays I was colors.  I should add that Drew does most of the laundry folding at our house.  He's more anal about how it's done and I was doign ALL the cleaning and all the laundry AND working and one day I snapped.  He took that job as it's one that can build up for a couple of days and I don't lose my mind.  It works well. 

Then, I will sit on the couch and eat bon bons, like a good wife should. :)

Happy Friday everyone, I hope your cleaning schedule is as light as mine!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Weekly Cleaning Schedule: Thursdays

Thursday is all about downstairs.  This is where my schedule veers from my previous schedule.  I used to just do our playroom on Thursdays.  I'd switch toys, tidy up the area, throw away the complete crap my kids tend to think is toys. :)

LEGO Ultimate Building Set - 405 Pieces (6166)I will still be doing that (jury is still out as to if I'll be swapping toy bins now as I am hoping to store all the toys downstairs, but perhaps I will be swapping them down from the upper cabinet (the cabinets go floor to ceiling).

BUT, I also have 2 other rooms downstairs that I will try to be fixing up.  This includes our home office that needs filing done every now and then.  I'm not sure how that will all be integrated.  I see myself maybe focusing on the playroom one week and the office another week.

I am also going to try and weed on Thursdays, at least once it gets to the point that I won't melt out there.  We aren't gardening at all right now... but I hope to put in some boxes once things cool down a bit.

I wash whites and kids clothes on Thursdays.

Conner's job is vacuum the tile and to fold his laundry

Spencer's job is to tidy all the books and sort laundry.

Thursdays is a fairly low key day.  You'll notice that my work is more on Mondays and tends to taper as the week goes on, as does my will to live. :)

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

My Weekly Schedule: Wednesdays

Ok, I had a query for my weekly cleaning schedule, so I'm just gonna go through it day by day... starting today and working through the week.

South Shore Step One Collection Full / Queen 54/60-Inch Storage Platform Bed, BlackWednesdays I clean the bedrooms.  That means I take one child and organize their drawers (or my own).  I also just try and put away stuff that needs to be organized (sometimes if I get a giant box of wipes I'll just plop them on the floor, and then on Wednesdays I'll organize them).  Today it's Pagie's drawers.  I'll take out the too smalls, refill with larger sizes if necessary, make sure her drawers and closet are tidy.  Her stuff is easier because I love her clothes.  Not so much with the boys.  I tend to just set a timer for 10 to 15 minutes and just work on it for this period of time.  When it's the boy's turn I have them pull out their dresser drawers for me and stack them on my bed, then they have to SEE how amazing I am when they put them away.

Hoover WindTunnel T-Series Rewind Upright Vacuum, Bagless, UH70120Wednesday is also my vacuum day.  Conner will vacuum the playroom, Spencer does their room, and me or Drew does the rest of the house.

I also flip/rotate the couch cushions every 4 weeks or so.  It's all plugged into my phone and it reminds me to do all this, whose drawers I'm supposed to do, etc.  It's nice that it just tells me what to do.

This is pretty well the same thing I did on Wednesdays at the smaller house, just vacuuming takes longer.  I will probably start asigning out more of the rooms as the kids get a bit older.  Conner could easily do the office or the guest room too, and Spencer could do P's room.

Each day one child is assigned to do the dishwasher as well as cleaning up dinner.  The other child helps with dinner, and I've given them each one night to choose what to have for dinner. 

Spencer has chosen pesto chicken pizza for tonight.

He wanted spaghetti pie, but we have no sasusage or pepperoni, so it obviously has to fall within the bounds of stuff that we have.  I have told him I will look for pepperoni or sausage to be on sale.

And THAT, my friends, is my Wednesday.  I don't do laundry on Wednesday.  It's a happy day indeed.


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