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So, today is a sort of a different kind of day. I feel, in addressing my  quest to be positive and productive, my brain is a mess of mush. I have so many different ideas wandering through my head on a daily basis that it is nearly impossible to make sense of it all. I want to be a better wife and mother. I want to be a better friend. I want to take better care of myself. I want to embrace my spirituality. I want to be creative and ambitious. However, today, I have been glued to the Internet working on photos while my kids have patiently played around me, and I feel like I am kind of failing. Yep, not so positive today.

Now that the kids are napping, it’s time to get serious. I think in addressing my quest for internal and external peace, I need a plan. Some people are equipped to simply set a goal, develop a plan, and attain it. I am not that person. I need regimented and contant reminders. My rootless positivity is helping no one. I need priorities.

I have 6 main areas that need improving and balance–motherhood, wifery, friendship/family, self, spirituality and creativity. So, here’s my plan:

In the beginning, each day will be devoted to the improvement of one of these 6 goal areas to better dig in and attack concerns with clear priorities in mind. I will prioritize each week, and go from there. At the on-set of each day, I will strive to develop 5 “Completable” tasks for that day. These will be both practical and necessary to stay focused. Lots of organization and motivation. Whew! Can I do this? YES, I can. 🙂

In addressing these goals, there will be prevailing super-ultimate goals that will be incorportated into my daily life along the way. Each of the previously mentioned “6 areas of overall improvement” play a role in my “super-ultimate goals.” I think this is making sense, right?

Setting the ultimate goals is a good place to start. Super Ultimate Goals are as follows:

1. Feel more put together as I meander through my days. In other words, tie up loose ends.

2. Laugh more, with friends and family alike.

3. Start a photography side-business and actually make a small profit.

4. Keep my house reasonably clean and organized.

5. Save money and stop using shopping and attaining things to be happy.

6. Provide a healthy lifestyle for my family and I. Be a good rolemodel for husband, my kids and those around me.

7. Figure out where I am with God and embrace it.

8. Indulge in all the brilliant people in my life, including my husband and my children.

9. Develop a 5 and 10 year plan with my husband to be sure we are living it right.

10. Enjoy my imperfections, but always attempt to quiet my insecurities.

There it is folks, my 10 SUPER ultimate goals. What are yours?

Tomorrow, just so you can see how this works, is a “Self” day. (Yes, I am starting with myself. I am selfish. Hopefully this journey will relieve me of some of my selfishness.) Let me journal it so you can see my plan in motion:

Self Day #1: Thursday, November 1, 2011

  1. Take Huck along with me to the Gym. Kick my own ass.
  2. Start back on my regimented Weight Watchers plan (heading off to a meeting tonite), paying attention to healthy snacks and not Halloween candy. This probably includes a trip to the grocery store (with coupons).
  3. Put away the laundry.
  4. Find a healthy recipe for dinner and make it for my family.
  5. Go to bed by 10pm.

And there you have it. I don’t have all the answers yet, but I hope this makes sense. I have never been great at explaining things, just ask Wildhorse. I tend to always be two-steps ahead, but no more. I am going to own my days. I will share my plans as they develop, maybe on Sundays. I think that will be a nice time for me to regroup and assess my goals. Would love for some of you to take this journey with me. Let’s see what we can accomplish! Set your own goals and let’s do this.

Wow, maybe I am scaring myself a little.

For now, I am off of this computer, and onto actionable results, like, perhaps a shower?


The Mommy Diarist


Am I crazy?

So, just got back from what felt like an incredibly long trip back to the good ol’ Midwest, which included a weekend getaway with my husband to Colorado Springs in celebration of a friend’s wedding.

Two nights away from my children in the cool, crisp Colorado air was very nice, but also very weird. Upon encountering glimpses of our life before children, my husband and I tend to get a little rambunctious. But, we survived, and we danced, which rarely happens, so all in all, it was a success.

And the fire that I unintentionally started at the wedding reception was contained, so no biggie.

We also decided that Denver is an awesome city, and despite our oppressively generic lunch at the Twisted Kilt (a sort of Scottish Hooters), we will definitely be happy when we can again head West to do some further exploring. Bad news, I didn’t take my camera, so the only pictures I have of the actual wedding are from my iPhone. I felt naked without it, and I will never again embark on a journey without my little Rebel again.

The logistics of traveling are tricky these days, but I refuse to let distance keep my kids from their family back home. I’ll be the first to admit this trip was a bit ambitious considering the time and miles. Typically when I make the drive from Virginia to Illinois, I bribe a family member into travelling with me cross-country. This time, due to scheduling and short-notice, I made the drive with a two-year-old and a 6-month-old ALONE.

Yes, more that 800 miles of open road without an extra set of hands. Am thinking I should forget writing or photography and start moon-lighting as a truck driver. Get me behind the wheel, and I can just go on for hours and hours.

Many people have asked me how I can possibly make this trip considering the age of my kiddos. Well, wait no longer. Since I am the expert, I will tell you my secrets. It’s quite simple really.

1. Snacks. All kinds and lots of them (Keep them out of the reach of the kids, though. We thought it would be ok if the little girl had access to her bag of goodies, and she ended up drinking 4 juice boxes. She kept telling me her “body hurt” and had the absolute fullest diaper in the history of diapers. Luckily, they were low-sugar juices from Trader Joe’s, but she was still a crazy bit hyper).

2. Movies. Again, all kinds and lots of them. I so miss the days when I could actually listen to music in my own car. These days the most exciting tune I hear from the driver’s seat is the theme song to Scooby-Doo. Oh, and Redbox was amazing this trip. It’s a buck, and you can drop them off once you’re done with the flick. Perfection.

3. A strong bladder is a necessity. Each time I had to, you know, go, I had to unload both kids and put them into the stroller. Not fun, but if timed appropriately, no biggie.

4. Be silly. Make yourself laugh; make your kids laugh.

5. Look for safe, multi-functioning stops. I try to find Panera and Target. If I can get the kids out of the car for about an hour or so, they are ready to sit again for a while. And, lots of moms hang out at these locales, so you won’t attract attention to yourself.

6. Finally, if you have to stop, just stop. Not in the middle of the road, obviously, but don’t try to fulfill some altruistic road-tripping timeline. Whether it’s to give a hug or reposition a bottle, it’s much easier to just stop then try to make it further with screaming kids.

This is sort of a random post, as I am in travel recovery mode. Still sifting through my pictures and edits, unpacking suitcases, doing laundry. Missing my family a lot. It is amazing to see how your kids react to the kids of your brothers and sisters. It is so stinking cool. I feel very lucky to have so many people who love my babies, and that makes the miles much easier to bear.

Football starts back up tonite, so think it’s pizza (and probably beers) for supper. The Vegas diet starts Monday.

Just wanted to drop a line. Will it ever stop raining?


Mommy Diarist