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2017 Goals

  • write to my grandmother every six weeks or so
  • call my moms every month or so
  • cook/eat better
  • clean out and organize my writng/craft room
  • re-institute the cleaning plan
  • publish six books by September 2017
  • reach 120 to 125 pounds
  • walk the dog three times a week

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Monday, May 30, 2011

And so it begins...

...the cleaning.

June is just around the corner. And of course so is July. Specifically, the 4th of July. Independence Day comes early at our house. Usually starting with D-Day.

I've got you scratching your head now, don't I?

Well, it's like this:

My men go to Oklahoma to play the annual paintball scenario called D-Day. It's usually the second weekend of June. They leave Friday, come home Sunday.

Then...the following weekend (usually) they leave for Elm Mott where the fireworks store is located, and where they will stay until the 5th or 6th of July.

Along with getting them packed up and ready to go, I clean house. A really thorough job of it so that I can enjoy the clean while the men are gone and not waste the time to clean once they've left. Of course, there'll be a bit of tidying up to do once they've cleared the driveway, but not much.

Not only have I been cleaning, I've been cleaning out. Drawers, closets, surfaces, etc. If I can't remember the last time I wore it or looked at it or read it, it goes (mostly). Trash or the donation pile. It's a good feeling to reclaim the space and to see the house look tidy.

On Saturday, I helped a friend paint a couple of walls in her apartment. She chose a lovely yellow-orange color called Golden Chime. It looked really awesome and looked good all day. I say that because she only has a west facing sliding glass door for light. So it looked good without direct sunlight as well as with it. It looked good with her burgundy leather furniture. And it didn't make her apartment look any smaller than it already is. After that, I helped her sort through several containers of stuff and by the time I left, it looked like a completely different place.

I was motivated to work on my own painting project and finally applied the second coat to the upper walls of my spare bedroom. I pulled off all the painters tape and it looks wonderful. I've decided to do everything else white. My color choices weren't the brightest so in order to not make the room look any darker, I'm going with white. Last wall, all the molding, and the floor. So now I have to buy white paint. I'm not sure what I'm going to do with the gallon of green I have or the quart of turquiosey blue, but I'll figure something out.

Add laundry and floor mopping and I'm officially bushed. But hopefully I burned a lot of calories along the way. :)
Wednesday, May 25, 2011

It's Official...

I am the Band Booster president for 2011-2012 school year.

I was voted in last night by a vote of the parents in attendance of the spring band concert. I don't know...it seemed very lackadaisical and I'm not even sure if it was binding. I mean, I was PTA president for two years and president of my writers group for two years and we never held a vote that way.

Are band booster clubs run like PTAs or other non-profit groups? I would think so. A quick Google search pulled up several minutes from various booster clubs and it appears as if they do. Good.

I'll be working closely with the band director to see what's needed, though we already have a handful more parents on the board this year than last. Now we need to round up the parents of the incoming freshmen. (Though that won't be my job.)

Ironically, I'll finally be getting to know the mom of one of sonshine's oldest friends. These two have known each other since kindergarten. I'm not saying they've been the best of buds since then, but they've been friends. I never really met this other boy's parents though I know who they are and I love this kid like he's my own. Anyway, so now I'll finally get to know his mom.

So I'm excited to take this on, to help the band director, and make next year a brilliant one for all the kids.
Monday, May 23, 2011

My kid is Awesome!!

Band Banquet was this past Friday night.

The band director sent free banquet tickets for DD and me. I asked sonshine if he had a problem if I went.

His response?

"Of course not, Momma. You're the band mom and everyone would miss you if you didn't come."

Isn't that just so sweet from a 15-year-old boy??

And then he proceeded to earn the "Freshman Band Member of the Year" award.

I'm so glad I decided to go!

This year's drum major also told me that he's on course for being drum major as a junior or senior. Next year, he's first trumpet and section leader (mostly by default as the only other trumpet player is graduating, but hey).

Needless to say, I'm very proud of my boy.
Friday, May 20, 2011

Calorie Counting

In a continuing effort to lose a few pounds, I have decided to calorie count. Which also means portion measuring.

After keying in certain facts (height, weight, age, level of exercise) into online tabulators, it has been determined that I need 1372 calories per day to lose one pound per week without adding exercise to the mix.

I started on Monday and have done pretty well so far. I went over by approximate 34 calories yesterday but was way under by about 300 the day before.

I have even been able to sneak a strawberry shake from Wendy's and a can of rootbeer in there, though not on the same day. I'm finally past the constant hungries and now just experience the occasional hungries. Like today. I'm trying to save up for dinner tonight as I'm attending the band banquet with my kid and I think he said we're having Mexican. I have 800 left for dinner at this point. Can I make it through the rest of the day--six and half hours--until dinner. Hot mint tea acts as somewhat of an appetite suppressant for me, so I'll probably be having a few cups of that between now and dinner. And I'll lose 12 calories a cup. But that's okay.

I do need to exercise though. I've extra-sedentary lately for some reason and my body has been griping at me.

I think after a couple of weeks and a real weight check on the scale, I may reduce my caloric intake by that 72 down to 1300 and see what happens.
Tuesday, May 17, 2011

As promised...

My road trip to Austin to see my kid play with the band on the steps of the Capitol Building...

The video: you may recognized the tune if you're a fan of PBS.



And just a few pics...

Setting up:



The whole group after the fact:



Me and my kid on the south steps of the Texas State Capitol Building:

Monday, May 16, 2011

Fan Girl Squee

So . . . Friday, Sonshine and the HS band left on their band trip. First stop was the Texas state capitol building, where, after a tour of the building and watching the state legislature convene, the kids played a 30-minute concert on the south steps.

I decided to drive down there to see them. Pics and video of that will be up tomorrow. :)

That was really exciting. It was.

But today I'm going fan girl squee and share silly pics of my side trip to Pflugerville where parts of one of my favorite TV shows (Friday Night Lights) were filmed.

Picture 01: The exit sign on I-35 northbound


Picture 02: We've left I-35 and are on FM 1825. Four miles to Pflugerville. While I was prepared to enjoy some scenery on a longer drive, I was quite glad that it ended up not being too much of a detour.


Picture 03: The stadium sign...even though I was playing hooky from work, it completely slipped my mind that it was a school day and that I probably shouldn't have been on campus. However, the school parking lot and stadium were right off the street, so I snuck in, took a couple of quick pictures and then got back on the road home.

Picture 04: The stands that are featured during the football game sequences--the show was also able to use Pflugerville football game footage as their own.
Thursday, May 12, 2011

Keep Sonshine and me in your thoughts this weekend...

Sonshine leaves on his band trip tomorrow morning at 4am-ish. The students going on the trip are required to be at school by midnight tonight and they will be locked in the band hall until the bus arrives.

This is the first time Sonshine will be away from home without a family member for an extended period of time. I'm a bit nervous as he's fifteen...

Hubby gave him the 'talking to' this morning and his band instructor is no pushover by any stretch of the imagination. And generally he respects authority, so I probably have nothing to worry about, but there's still that niggle: I don't want it to be *my* kid who leaves a lasting impression of the negative kind on the whole event.

And according to the band director, band is one of the few school groups that has never had an incident while on trips and consequently still gets to go on them.

They will playing one official event tomorrow afternoon and the rest of the weekend will be fun, fun, fun...

...for them. I'll be a bit nervous until Sunday when I know the bus is on its way home and my kid is safely ensconced thereon with no further opportunities for trouble-making.
Monday, May 9, 2011

Let Me Catch You Up...

Well, Happy Mother's Day--

I know it's a day late, but I was busy on Mother's Day.

Let's rewind just a bit...I have been active. I've walked around the block every weekday evening for the last two weeks, except this past Friday. I gave myself a day off as I woke up with very achy legs. The weekends have been busy with shopping or museum visits and chores.

My diet is not going as well as I'd like. I thought maybe I'd lost some pounds or inches, but I'm not so sure. I've drinking Slimfast for lunch and trying to eat healthy snacks when the hungries get me, but I don't think that's working. Maybe my snacks aren't healthy enough--I know the yogurt I eat is still full of sugar and carbs. But it's sooo yummy. And it's yogurt so it's healthier than say a Snicker bar or a Big Mac, right?

Bah--I've really been trying to cut back on the carbs, but I think that's why I'm still so hungry all the time--not enough *something* for my body to process. I was talking to the gal at the post office on Friday and she suggested more protein. And I think that's probably a good plan. So more hard-boiled eggs, more nuts, more beans. Tomorrow.

I was gone all day yesterday at my MIL's house so I didn't get to prepare for the week like I usually do.

So all of my mothers seemed pleased with their gifts, which is good. And I felt very good about being in a position to give those gifts. That wasn't the case last year.

Yesterday was spent in a small town in the central wilds of Texas. A place I'm hoping to live someday soon. My FIL cooked a brisket--which I'd been craving and we had a nice visit. DD had bought $1 kites for her and brother a week or so ago and on a whim they took them. Now DD is 21 and sonshine is 15, so to see these two enjoy the great outdoors flying kites together was very neat and way cool. They even sucked DD into playing WOW for while. She's resisted so far because she can just be stubborn that way, but hubby said he'd pay for an account for her if she wanted to play regularly. I cautioned her since she's in college and I hear it can be quite addictive, but she's also getting fairly serious about school so...

For prezzies, I really had no great wants or needs. (Especially after last weekend's spending spree.) I just wanted to have a fun day. So I ended up with a plant (I had none.) and two yummy smelling (but too expensive) Yankee candles. I really didn't even want those, but thought the kids needed to give me something regardless. I don't say that in a greedy way, but it's important for them to learn to give gifts (whether to me or whomever).

And amazingly I got some writing done. The word count wasn't off the charts or anything, but a) I wasn't really expecting much of anything and b) I'd been struggling with a few aspects of writing. My plot ideas are really few and far between and everytime I end up with a sex scene, I get performance anxiety. :) So I tricked the muse and was able to write the sex scene.

Well, that's about it.

Have a good week--
Monday, May 2, 2011

I wish every weekend were like this weekend...

...and that I could afford it. :)

So what was so great about this weekend?

Lots of things, actually.

For one, my men were gone. So the house was quiet and easy to clean and keep clean. And, for whatever reason, I get more accomplished without hubby underfoot. :)

The men left Friday at 4pm to go visit hubby's mom and attend the annual Shootout put on by the wholesaler of the fireworks we buy for our store. Only the Shootout was cancelled because of the burn bans in approximately 217 of the 254 counties in Texas. Argh! But anyway, hubby decided to stay all weekend and do some work in the store, getting it prepped and ready for the selling season--should we have one. If the county the store is in institutes a fireworks ban on top of the burn ban we won't be able to open at all. That would be bad, but it is a very real possibility.

But I digress. The men were gone. So I left work early (shh, don't tell) and started cleaning. Not heavy duty cleaning, but just general tidying in my bedroom and came across a picture of my dad. And I had the desire right then and there to go to Target and get a picture frame (finally!) for it.

So DD and I hied off to Target. Then she asked if I wanted to go to Famous Footwear, which is right next door to Target. I said no. But by the time we were done at Target, I was feeling good and I changed my mind. Three pair of shoes and $130 later! I was planning on buying three pairs of shoes (online) anyway and had a slightly higher budget, so it was all well and good. Plus I didn't have to wait for them to be shipped. My new shoes:




Back home and more cleaning, nothing heavy duty, but I did make a list. You see, my critique partner was coming over Saturday afternoon so there had to be a minimal amount of cleaning. Then on Friday evening once I was pooped out, DD and I watched 2/3 of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince.

By the time CP arrived, the bathroom had been cleaned and a cabinet shelf had been thoroughly cleaned out by DD. Laundry had been sorted, the front and side lawns mowed (by DD), dishes had been washed, a grocery list made. The living room cleaned up, swept, dusted. Ice tea and Kool Aid made. DD and I also finished watching HP/HBP.

CP arrived on time and we chatted and brainstormed a bit and then we decided to go to Barnes & Noble. Nothing really jumped out and bit me book-wise, but I did make a purchase:


I remember Gumby and Pokey well. As a little girl, I had Gumby/Pokey figures and played with them in my metal doll house with my Little People.

On Saturday evening, I brainstormed with an online friend for a chapter of a Robin Hood fan fic I'm supposed to be writing. I was at a total loss--I'm in Harry Potter mode now so fic for RH is tough. After that, DD and I watched Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 1.

Sunday dawned cool and rainy. I started laundry, worked on some fic, went to the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth with DD (who has school projects), hit the Home Depot--

--here begins the second half of my great weekend--

I bought new seats for both my toilets. One was broken, one was just old and ugly.

I finally found a chair for my spare room. It's white plastic wicker, but it was only $63, so I am very happy.

DD wanted a shelf for her books and the Home Depot didn't have much in the way of decorative shelving, so I decided we should go to Lowe's...

So we did. And I ended up buying the shelf I've been eying for almost two years. DD put it together for me. My new bookshelf:



DD left to go to the church picnic and I was left blessedly alone. I alternately did laundry, worked on fic (finished one that had been sitting for weeks), put stuff on my new shelf, and cleaned and tidied some more.

I didn't exercise/walk this weekend since I did so much walking at the museum, shopping and cleaning. But I stuck with my eating plan. It's been over a week now, but I can't tell if I've made any progress as I started my period and am now enjoying bloating and water weight from that. :) Give me a few days and we'll see.

So how was YOUR weekend??

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Jen FitzGerald
Thanks for stopping by one of my little corners of the world wide web. So, a little about me...My husband and I have been married for twenty years and we have three adult children although our youngest is still in high school. We've lived in Texas for fifteen years and for the rest of the story, click here.
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Jen's Glossary of Terms

  • DH = my husband
  • my Brown Eyed Girl = my oldest daughter
  • DD = my Darling Daughter (the younger one)
  • Sonshine or Marching Band Boy = my son
  • NT = the North Texas chapter of RWA
  • RWA = Romance Writers of America