The Year in Review

With 2011 drawing to a close, it feels appropriate to look back at the year and see what there is to be…seen.

So.  How about a few superlatives?


Most Liberating MonthJanuary.  The month of purging- I got rid of 5 things per day.  Lots of stuff went to Goodwill.  Even more than Goodwill donations, however, were the things like library books, dishes that friends had left at our apartment, or random things that belonged in the shed but had somehow ended up in our living room.  I didn’t realize how much space we were donating in our little apartment to these kinds of items until I took a month to get rid of them, return them, or put them in their proper place.

Our most common dumping area was our bedroom, since it was the only room in the apartment that we kept closed off (usually), so it just became this room of assorted piles “to be dealt with someday”.  Someday was in January, and it felt awesome.

Here is a post about how I stayed focused in the midst of all of the mess and little things, and here is a post that shows just a few of the things that I got rid of during January.

Most Defeating MonthMarch.  The month in which I UNSUCCESSFULLY tried to curb my internet usage to 60 minutes per day.  It was a dismal failure.  Yes, I did accomplish a few things that I may not have otherwise (see this and this) but…that might be all.  I had no idea I was so addicted.  Bleh.

Most Indecisive Month: May.  The month of being facebook-free.  I realized my addiction, my perpetual refreshing of the page, and decided it had to stop.  I alternated between missing the announcements about new babies and new jobs (what happened to good old-fashioned email announcements, people?) and feeling totally liberated of the compulsion to check.

I still remember talking to my friend Megan about being off facebook (I just hopped off my account for a month- she canceled hers altogether) and I told her I sometimes thought in status updates.  Let me repeat that:  I THOUGHT IN STATUS UPDATES.  Here is a post about the withdrawal symptoms.

Month I Am Most Likely to Continue to Keep Up With: June.  The month of going to bed by 10:30 and getting up by 6:30.  Months later, and I am still a 6:30’ish riser.  My kids wake up at varying times, so sometimes this gives me 30 minutes of a head-start on them and sometimes it gives me two hours (bless those days).  But any head-start just feels like a nice way to start the day.  Breakfast is frequently the only meal I give my undivided attention to, because I am not sharing that mealtime with a preschooler and a toddler.  I like the quiet and not starting my day in reaction mode.  Here is a brief post on what I liked about getting good sleep and here is when sleep was alluding me.

Wow, I am old.  Only old people wake up at 6:30 on purpose.  Huh.

I learned a lot that month about how to really prepare myself for rest (turning off my laptop well before I am trying to sleep, for example) and how getting adequate sleep makes a pretty big difference in my days.  For example, my need for mid-day snacks (especially sweet ones) really decreased because I wasn’t relying on the sugar to boost my energy.  Also- melatonin.  Love that stuff.  Available at your natural food store.  I use it periodically when my mind is racing and I need help quieting down.

Most Popular PostThis one.  A few tips for how to add clutter to your life.  As the title says, I cannot take credit for these ideas.  Totally lifted it off another blogger.  But darn funny.

First Runner-Up Most Popular PostThis one.  About me and my beloved three year old Chicken Little.  I don’t know- I guess this strikes a chord with preschool parents everywhere.

Most Commented PostsThis one and this one.  The former is about beans (definitely worth the read!) and the latter is about saving money on groceries and fighting over a can of beans (no joke).  Beans- they really inspire people to comment.  Also this one about moving.

Lamest Month for Goals:  December.  Because I did jack-squat all month in terms of goals.

I’m deciding now if I will continue with goals and blogging for the next year.  I think I’ll keep writing because I enjoy it, but I don’t have much inspiration for another year of goals.  I could really see repeating a few from last year, and I have gotten some good ideas from friends about new things to try.  I don’t, however, have the long list like I did at this time last year of things I want to try.  And would people really want to read another months’ worth of writing about 5 more things I got rid of?  The expired medicines?  The trash can lids?

With all that being said, I am taking any and all suggestions for goals for next year.  I need a little more oomph before I roll into 2012.



Halfway through- the update

Day 11 or so of the 21-Day Challenge.  So far, so good.  I haven’t fulfilled every single criteria to the nth degree but I’m not too worried about that.  Jillian and I have been kicking it during the early morning hours, before the kids get up.  With the hubs leaving for work around 5:30/6:00, there’s no chance for that early-morning jog to get my 20 minutes of cardio in.  I mean- 5:00 am jog?  No thanks.  I’ve done a few walks with the kids in the double stroller and even jogged with them the other day for about 3 minutes.  With the hills that we have in Charlottesville, pushing that stroller can really get my heart rate up.

I exchanged an email with Rob, the one who created and kicked off this whole idea, and we both agreed that we’re more tired than we thought we would be at this point.  I guess I thought that my body would have responded to the exercise in an energetic way by now, and I’d have a little more pep in my step.  Instead, I took a pregnancy test the other day to see if I was knocked up.  That’s how fatigued I have been.

Nope- not pregnant.  Just so that’s out there and clear.

Week one I fulfilled all of the cardio “requirements”- five 20-minute workouts, three strength-training sessions, and one 45-minute cardio workout.  I did not, however, fulfill the meditation/prayer requirements.  Just did 2 out of the 3 that were asked.  That’s odd, isn’t it?  I’ll get my tail out of bed to jump around like an idiot in front of my laptop to get my heart rate up, but won’t take and extra 10 minutes to pray or meditate.  Laaaaame.  In reflecting on this, I think I like that cardio work means results, whereas prayer…  well, prayer is just not a results-oriented exercise.  I don’t pray and expect things to immediately turn around in the way I want them to.  There’s no guarantee that what I pray or meditate on will happen as I want it to.  So it is easier to put my time and energy into something that will show results.

I mean, I guess that’s part of what is happening.  Probably lots of other things in that mix as well.

I don’t know how to neatly finish up this post.  So- here ends the update.

Oh and this was on the back of a childrens’ book that my kids recently received as a gift.  It was the parting message to my children after reading the book, and my parting message to you:

i mean... what?

Whole Lot of Shaking Going On

That should be the theme song playing while I work out these days.

I’m trying to get over the fact that no one commented on my blog and told me happy birthday.  I have site stats, people.  I know you’re out there reading.  Come on.  Didn’t that cake wreck inspire anyone to write?

I’m not pregnant, but if I were I would want this to celebrate:

creepy baby in cake?

Day three of the 21 day challenge and I’m 3 for 3- booyah.  Have dusted off the Jillian Michael’s 30-day shred (see also: February’s goal).  Also ran one day, which hasn’t happened since…well… gosh I can’t even remember.   It has been great.  I would not have exercised two of those three days if not for this challenge.  So- really happy I signed up for this gig.  My neighbor Kam also signed up, so now I can take credit for inspiring at least one person.

Anyone else want to join in?  It is not too late!

I’ll leave you with one more: