Friday, February 28, 2014

Goal Update: house projects!

As a part of my 2014 goals, one of our goals is to do one house project per month. We have an enormous list of projects do to, but they always seem to fall to the wayside in favor of other things. So we're stepping it up this year and getting a bunch of things checked off our list.
We like to ease into things and so our January project was simple. We simply switched our table and our china cabinet. So now the china cabinet lives in the kitchen and our kitchen table is in the actual kitchen.

Once we eased in though, we were IN. Our February project was to shorten our island counter top so that the kitchen table actually fit and could seat our family. So on Superbowl Sunday my mom and I replaced the old laminate counter top with a nice butcher block piece from IKEA. Solid wood and a great color, I love it.

Once I did that, BFF-H suggested painting the backside with chalkboard paint. I just happened to have some of that in my basement from painting some pillars in my classroom last year, so I did it.

My kitchen doesn't allow for great shots of the island, but here's what I could get.

 
I know it's blurry, but it was taken before I got my new camera. Bottom line is, it's amazing, and my kitchen is SO much more open now. So just imagine away the blur and love it like I do. 


Wednesday, February 26, 2014

L'Bri giveaway results!

Woohoo! That zippy little L'Bri giveaway has ended, and the winners are....


::Drumroll::

Sarah and JoAnna!

I will be emailing you both!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Organizing Challenge Week 8! Organize your receipts.

Wow. I can't believe we're on to week 8. Even with skipping a week, we're still on week 8. Wow.

This week is organizing your receipts.
I like this week. because I pretty much have it under control.

I don't get receipts. For any personal purchases, I throw the receipt away. Most of the things I buy, let's be honest, are from Target. At Target you can use your credit card to look up any receipt. One less piece of paper in my wallet/purse/diaper bag. Boom. Same goes for Home Depot which is probably where the next most common place I buy things is.

I get my groceries delivered (I'm REALLY lazy). So my receipts for those are emailed to me.

Excellent. No receipts.

I do have one area where I need to keep receipts though. My BFF and I are in the process of starting our own business, we've organized, gotten our papers from the state, got our federal ID number, our social media accounts, and our website. (I'll be making an announcement here soon!) Because I'm making purchases for the business that are tax-deductible on our personal taxes, I need to save receipts for the good 'ole IRS. So I got a coupon organizer and just slip my receipts in there. It has 12 compartments so I can sort the receipts by month. I don't think I need to, I just can.

So that's my scientific system. What's yours?

Monday, February 24, 2014

Skincare product rave and a giveaway!

Ok. If you know me at all, you know that I don't do much in the way of skincare or makeup. I don't own any makeup (just chapstick), and my skin care regimen consists of wiping off my face after brushing my teeth or getting my face wet in the shower. This has always served me well, since I haven't really had a problem with blemishes in my life.

Until now. Ugh.

Ever since getting pregnant with M, my skin has been red and oily. My chin is covered in zits at any given moment and my nose and cheeks are red and ruddy. I look like a teenaged lumberjack hanging out at the ice palace.

But not anymore! My friend Terri has started selling L'Bri products. L'Bri is a direct sales company similar to Mary Kay, 31 bags, Origami Owl, etc. With one big exception.

They got me. I've never been a fan of those other companies, but darned if I do not love love love the L'Bri products.

Terri gave me a free sample over the summer, and because of my inherent laziness along with my desire to not put an effort into myself, I let it sit in the closet. Then one day while I was cleaning out said closet I found that little bag. Since both children were asleep at the time I figured I'd pamper myself a bit and washed my face with the stuff. Oh my.

So

so

so

soft! My skin! It was softer than a baby's bottom! And I have a baby with a bottom that I wipe frequently, so I know! I loved these products so much I called Terri and asked her if I could get some samples for my friends to use at my birthday spa night. Boom. She hooked me up and all of my friends loved them too.

But wait! There's more!

I'm not jsut telling you about these products, Terri has agreed to let me give two of my lukcy readers their own samples! Look how cute they are!
The greens are for oily skin, the pinks are for dry to normal. If you have combination skin, you get a mix of both.

Entering is easy, use the Rafflecopter widget below AND don't forget to leave your comment in the comments section! I can't send you the right type of product if you don't tell me your skin type!

If you don't win, never fear, you can order directly from Terri's website here. Be sure to tell her DM sent you!

a Rafflecopter giveaway



Friday, February 21, 2014

What is a goal without rewards?

One of my 2014 goals is to lose 100 pounds.


ONE HUNDRED POUNDS.

I'm not going to lie, it is not easy to type those words. In fact, I wrote those first two lines and then walked away for a bit. Shut the computer and just left. I had to walk away from those words. One hundred pounds. It's shameful.

But. I can do this. I have to. For my husband. For my children.

For myself.

Before I found out I was pregnant with C, I joined slimgenics. I quickly, and easily, lost 30 pounds in two months. I say easily, because when I followed the plan, it worked. I was eating great. Healthy, natural, fresh foods, and I actually was allowed so much food I had a hard time fitting it all in. I went back to SG shortly after C was born, but as you all know, BAM, I was quickly pregnant again with M. You cannot do slimgenics while you are pregnant, so my goal was simply to not gain more weight than my doctor wanted me to. Which, at my weight, isn't much. I actually walked out of the hospital with M weighing less than I had when I walked in.

January 1st I was back on the wagon. I was eating on plan and I was feeling fantastic. Then more breastfeeding problems crept in. I wasn't eating enough calories to keep up my supply, so I decided to jump off the wagon for a bit. Breastfeeding is important to me, and I have goals I do not want to jeopardize.

HOWEVER, I've taken it too far. I can eat much more healthy than I am right now. And I'm not exercising nearly enough. (Why can I not spell that word? Exercising?)

Wednesday was my 35th birthday. It is time for me to be serious about this. I'm enlisting you, my friends, to keep me on track. Make me get out to the gym, they have free childcare with our membership, I should be going so I can shower alone if nothing else!

I'm going to give myself rewards for meeting every 10 pounds. Sometimes a big reward, sometimes a little one. But I'm going to do it. I have thought about it, and none of them will be food, but they will all be body related.

Here's what I've come up with:
10: massage (I got a gift certificate for Christmas I'm going to use, so this is even free!)
20: pedicure
30: new bras (I imagine I will be done nursing by this time too, so man will these be needed)
40: new makeup
50: new workout clothes
60: haircut and color
70: new winter coat
80: all new shoes
90: all new accessories
100: All new wardrobe

When I hit 80, 90, and 100, I will probably postpone those rewards so I can buy them all at once, and have pieces that work together. But once I've gotten that far, the results I'm seeing will hopefully be motivation enough.

How are your 2014 goals coming along? Update me. How about rewards? Any great ideas for body-related rewards? I'm open to changing some of these!

Monday, February 17, 2014

It's DMBruary!

It's my birthday month! That means I take this week off from blogging as it's my birthday week. I'll leave you salivating over these top two items on my wish list.
This fantastic camera bag from Darby Mack on Etsy.

This all-purpose 50mm lens for my fancy-pants new camera.

I'll be back on Friday with an update on my weight-loss goal

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Organizing Challenge Week 7: Organize Your Bill paying

Makes sense that last week was all about organizing your finances and this week is about cleaning up your bill-paying habits.

Bill paying and finances are one of the areas that I need to get the most on the ball, frankly.Because of that, I'm combining this second week of bill paying and taking a little more time on organizing our finances.

I slacked last week and didn't get a lot of things done in regards to finances. (I did start our taxes though!) Actually, pretty much the only thing I got done was ordering my camera because I got it on sale and I'm working enough this week to pay for it.

So I guess I'm on the hook this week for all my to-dos from last week as well as organizing bill paying.

All I want to do for bill paying is set them up to be charged to our Amazon points card. that way they're all paid automatically and I only have one bill to pay each month.

Once that's done, it's back to my finances list:
*check into making 2 mortgage payments a month
*set-up M's deposits
*set up camera account
*look into lowering cable bill
*look into streamlining bill paying
*look into a new bank

We use a credit union as our bank. I love it for a lot of things, but I hate it for a few as well. I hate it for their bill pay service. It's bulky and difficult to use. I can't deposit checks on my phone. First world problem, I know. But it's darned convenient.

*look into USAA insurance - I'm pretty sure I qualify this through my grandfather, and I need to look into it to see if I can lower our insurance costs
*make sure N is maxing his retirement contribution

Anyone else slacking like I am? What do you do for your bill-paying? We pretty much pay all of ours online and we use mint.com to track our finances, though we could be much better about tracking. If you have any tips for sticking to a budget, let me know! 

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