Bookish (and not so Bookish) Thoughts

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1. Last Saturday my brother drove up and joined us for breakfast at this dive we go to and then for bowling. It was so fun and we learned that Sawyer can lift a ten pound ball and gently set it on the ground. He loved the bowling alley, since it's a place that revolves around balls, vending machines, and swirly chairs. I broke 100 both games, so I was pretty pleased with myself. 

2. I almost got my wedding dress out of the meticulously sealed box the cleaners put it in to try it on the other day, mostly to just see if I could squeeze, sausage-style, into it. Why I'd want to subject myself to such abuse is beyond me. Buuuuut, what if I could? What if, after eight years and a kid, I could still get into it? Nothing, that's what. Not even a certificate. 

3. I'm actually reading a graphic novel right now- Art Spiegelman's Maus. I feel slightly out of place reading this genre, but I guess that's a good thing.

4. SOMEONE AT WORK ACCUSED ME VIA SOMEONE ELSE OF CHEATING IN OUR FITBIT CHALLENGE. Whoa there. WHOA. Back the HECK up. Do we need photographic evidence? No, we don't, actually, because no one wants to be see me in a sports bra with a face as red as a tomato after running at night. Trust me, work people.  

5. I watched another movie this weekend! That's like two this month. A miracle, I tell ya. This one was Sleeping With Other People, a romantic comedy about people who had a ton of sex and were scared of emotional intimacy. The best part is that the weird guy from The League, Jason something or other, and his movie wife stole the show. They were hilarious. 

6. My husband bought Everest, which I cannot wait to watch this weekend. Unfortunately, he has to fly for a quick business thing later this week and he's pretty sure he's going to die (this is only the second time he's flown since I met him, twelve years ago) and I don't really know how to work the XBox to watch it if he does. Fingers crossed he survives, because I really want to see it.

7. How are you supposed to feel when you know someone is hate reading/following/friending you? Flattered because they think you're interesting (ha!) or insulted because they don't have the best intentions? When I have more time I will think about this more.  

8. Are there any novels based on songs? That seems like a fun creative writing assignment- take a song and write a short story, or longer piece, inspired by it. 

9. For the first time in our entire relationship I told my husband what I weigh the other night. And the only reason why was because I was 100% sure he didn't weigh less than I do (we are the same height). If this isn't intimacy I don't know what is. I will still never pee with the bathroom door open, though, because that's just plain gross.

10. The neighbor's dog and mine had a barking confrontation a few weeks ago and he came over and apologized profusely, with his cute little triplets. Then, he came over again, with a bottle of wine. First of all, it was not a big deal at all. Secondly, now I feel sort of awkward when I see them outside. Thirdly, can this happen again once or twice a week so I can fill up my wine rack?

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Top Ten Tuesday- Beauty Products

[never leave home without it]

Yes, you read that right- my freebie for The Broke and the Bookish's freebie topic is beauty products. While I don't experiment with crazy eye shadow colors or change my hair style four times a year, I'm always on the lookout for better products that help me look a little better put together. This is one area that I am willing to spend a little money, too; while I do have some tried and true drugstore/Target favorites I have found that in many cases the pricier brands can last longer throughout the day or just look better (especially when it comes to foundation or eye shadow). Beauty blogger I am most definitely not, but here are some of my current favorites:

1. Clarisonic Mia 2- I've mentioned this a few times but with each day that passes I love mine more. I can count the break outs that I've gotten on one hand in the last three months and my skin is much smoother and less flaky. It's worth the $150, I promise.

2. Lisurgence Lip Gloss (Tarte)- This stuff is the best; it doesn't get clumpy, the coverage is even, and the color and shine are somewhere between minimal and hooker. I love it so much I just ordered a new tube (fine, three) a few minutes ago.  

3. Facial Spray with Aloe, Herb and Rosewater (Mario Badescu)- I love this stuff! It's less than ten bucks a bottle and I spray it on in the morning for a quick hit of moisture and then after all my makeup is on to set things and make it look a more natural.

4. Urban Decay Naked2 Eyeshadow Palette- This is old, but it's my absolute favorite and pretty much the only thing I use (although I do need a matte palette, which I wish they'd make).

5. Stippling brush- I just picked this up a few weeks ago to use instead of sponges for my foundation. I saw a tutorial on one of the blogs I occasionally watch and decided to try it out. The coverage is much, much better this way, but I'm still working on making sure everything is even. It also takes two or three times as long to apply. Nonetheless, I'm a convert.

6. Covergirl LashBlast Mega Volume Mascara- I'm not really into brows or eye lashes, but I grabbed this at Ulta last week and like it more than the other variations in the past. I'd definitely buy it again.

7. Moroccan Oil- Original Oil Treatment- My hair is super, super dry and this oil helps out quite a bit when I put it in at night. I also use it to soften up curls or slick back pony tails. It's really pricy, but you can get by with just a pump or two, so I only have to buy it every six months or so. Sometimes I panic that they'll stop making it and consider stock piling, but that would be crazy... (right?)

8. Hemp Foot Protector (The Body Shoppe)- I know I've mentioned it before, but this stuff is great. I am not kind to my feet- I go barefoot, I don't have regular pedicures, I exercise often, and I'm just lazy when it comes to dealing with their appearance. This stuff works miracles, though (when I remember to use it).

9. Cetaphil Moisturizing Cream for Dry and Sensitive Cream- I have extremely dry skin and this moisturizer has worked wonders for my skin. It's pretty heavy so I don't usually use it under makeup, but I have and it hasn't been too big of a deal.

10. All About Eyes (Clinique)- I started using eye cream at night about a year ago, since I am in my thirties now and I do have a child that is bound and determined to make me look as exhausted as humanly possible. I think it's sort of hard to say whether or not an eye cream really is working when you don't have many lines, but I can say that it helps with my under eye circles and I haven't gotten any wrinkles in the last year. Plus it feels nice. 

Bookish (and not so Bookish) Thoughts

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1. Yesterday my mom and sisters back home in Modesto had to make the incredibly sad decision to put down our family dog, Oscar. Oscar was a mutt that I rescued from my high school campus fall of my senior year (so back in 2000). He was maybe five or six or seven months when we got him, making him almost sixteen years old. The art teacher had taken him and kept him safe while I asked my mom if we could keep him. The next day my boyfriend drove the pup and I home, after permission had been granted. He was a really great dog and lived a long, happy, healthy life. 

[I am too lazy to edit this, sorry]

2. On a happier note, Cordie, our golden, turned eleven over the weekend. We celebrated with homemade banana muffins, her favorite. 

3. I was walking at this little outdoor pond place nearby our house and this lady with a little girl stopped me to tell me how cute my kid was and to chat, I guess. I was friendly and whatnot, but confused. Did she want to be friends? Set up play dates? Steal my child? Did I miss an opportunity to make a new friend? Or save myself from being invited to her Stroller Strides class?

4. I watched an actual movie last weekend, Sicario, with Emily Blunt. It was good, but it was one of those movies that was either super quiet or super loud and I find that highly annoying. 

5. I'm rereading The Awakening by Kate Chopin for the fourth or fifth time, for work. It takes on a whole new meaning now that I'm a mother. 

6. I'm also reading Helen Ellis' short story collection American Housewife, since I though it would pair nicely with Chopin's novella. So far I'm finding the stories a little uneven, but it's early.

7. Twice a week, for three weeks, I am stuck in a freezing, dreary conference room all day listening to students do something called Interactive Oral Commentaries (IOCs) for IB. They speak for eight minutes straight on a Sylvia Plath poem, I question them on it for two minutes, and then we have a "conversation" on either Macbeth or Michael Ondaatje's Running in the Family for ten minutes (twenty minutes per kid, total). It's an interesting day, and it's nice to see the kids' faces when they're finally done, but man, is it long towards the end (I sit with thirteen kids a day). 

8. The other day I went to Trader Joe's for an onion, salsa, and gnocchi for Sawyer. I walked out with all of that, plus $25 of other stuff that we didn't really need. One of those things were Danish Pancakes, which are little balls of pancake goodness. Go get them. And the Dark Chocolate Mini Heart Cookies. 

9. I built this organizer the other day all by myself. It really was actually quite easy, but trying to do it with a toddler underfoot proved to be a little irritating (sure, shred the Styrofoam it came in all over the damn living room, yeah, just do it and leave me alone so I can do this). I feel like I'm a bad feminist for being proud of myself for doing something that involves such a stereotypical male thing (tools! lifting! swearing when things weren't lining up!), but what can you do. 

10. I swore up and down that I was going to save my Anthropologie give card for spring or summer clothes, but I saw this jacket and caved in. I'm super stingy with my cash (usually), but gift cards burn a serious hole in my pocket. I tried. 

Top Ten Tuesday- Recently Added

This week The Broke and the Bookish ask us what the last ten books added to our TBR piles have been (these are all books in my possession, not just ones I mean to buy). Most are gifts from the holidays. 

1. Becoming Nicole: The Transformation of an American Family by Amy Ellis Nut: This is for our English Department book club and I'm really looking forward to it. It is our job as educators to be aware of what's going on with our students.

2. The Japanese Lover by Isabel Allende- I tend to like old Allende better, but I'm still a fan.

3. Notorious RGB by Irin Carmon and Shana Knizhnik- So much respect.

4. Did You Ever Have a Family by Bill Klegg- Amazon was having a 30% off any book sale during the holidays so I grabbed this one on a whim.

5. Avenue of Mysteries by John Irving- I'm hearing it's horrible. But, it's John. 

6. Euphoria by Lily King- I suggested this one for book club (we'll read it later in the year) and it was voted in.

7. Batman and Psychology by Travis Langly- He is the most realistic superhero, after all.

8. Why We Write About Ourselves by Meredith Maran- I received this ARC after loving her first collection (this one is, too, of memoirists). 

9. Thirteen Ways of Looking by Colum McCann- He could start writing technical guides for hanging your flatscreen and I'd be all over them.

10. Maus by Art Speigelman- I think this one is up next! 

Tricks for Toddler Story Time

Toddler (noun): tiny little person that has an enviable amount of energy and an ability to stay put longer than two minutes. 

See also: Tasmanian Devil, irrationality, and loudness

Reading has always been my favorite hobby, stress-reliever, and escape, but I know perfectly well that it would be stupid to expect my child to feel the same way. But so far, Sawyer actually really does enjoy books and reading, and I think it's in part due to our very-print rich household (and just the fact that a lot of little kids genuinely like books).

Reading has changed a lot in our house since Sawyer has become so mobile and energetic. When he was a baby he'd lay in my lap and we'd read book after book without a peep or an attempt to escape. Now it's a bit different, but story time is stuff a huge thing in our family. Here are some things that are working for us:

Availability- There are books in basically every room in our house, whether cookbooks in the kitchen, Scott's graphic novels in his room, our wall of books in the living room, of Sawyer's under the coffee table or on his bookcase. There are even some of his in the car! We don't have to make an effort to have something handy to read.

Nothing is off limits- Sawyer is allowed to pull our books off our bookshelves, with supervision. We've taught him to be gentle, to use one finger to look at the spines on the shelves, and to put them back. We talk about the covers and help him flip through the pages. He bores very quickly with the lack of pictures, but he knows that they're books and he won't get in trouble for investigating. This has been the case since he started rolling and crawling, so by now he simply leaves the adult ones alone or pulls of his favorites to bring to us (he loves the covers of The Art of Racing in the Rain, Confederacy of Dunces, and Scott's coffee table books on the Muppets).

Meal Time- Sawyer eats dinner way earlier than we do, since my husband isn't home until 7 or 7:30. During Sawyer's dinner time I try to take a break from prepping the adult's dinner or cleaning up the kitchen to read him a full length story or two, as opposed to the board books we're constantly thumbing through. 

Rarely Say No- I rarely refuse to read to him when he brings me a book, unless I'm doing something time-sensitive. Or, I'll quickly finish up what I'm doing and then sit down with him. Seriously, how long does it take to stop what you're doing and read a quick picture book? My husband is the same way. 

A Big Deal- Going to the bookstore or opening packages with books is a big deal in our house. We get excited and let him help pick things out or take books out of boxes. 

Don't Force It- It's human nature to hate what we're made to do- I'm the prime example. If we're reading and he wants to get off the couch than I let him. A lot of times I'll just keep reading so he hears the story and he'll come back. It's not a big deal. 

Just Do It- Along those lines, sometimes when he's playing I'll just start reading one of his books aloud and he'll become interested and come sit down. Curiosity prevails. 

Set a Good Example- I try to read my own books in front of him every day, even if it's just for a few minutes or so. I also don't feel bad gently ignoring him to finish a page. Lately he and I lay at opposite ends of the couch, my with my book and he with a stack of board books, and will read together. This never lasts more than ten minutes, but it's a start. He thinks it's a big deal because he gets his own stack of pillows and gets to have "toys" on the couch.

Tap into Their Interests- Right now he loves anything with wheels or Star Wars characters, so I ordered a few books for him about these things (board and normal paper). Awhile ago it was cats and before that ones with colorful pictures of everyday items. Judging from the fact that he's trying to take out the vacuum right now I need to get him one about those...

Don't Get Mad- He loves the books with little flaps and pull tabs- loves to pull them off, to be more specific. Purposefully harming a book is blasphemy in my world, but I remember to take a deep breath and remember that it's my job to teach him how to be careful and that he really doesn't know that he's not supposed to mangle them. This really goes with anything book related; kids are going to steer clear of things that they associate to negativity. 

Rotate- We constantly alternate books between upstairs, downstairs, and the car to prevent boredom (both mine and his). 

I'm sure most of this will change, as everything does when you're dealing with kids, but it's what works for us right now. 

Bookish (and not so Bookish) Thoughts

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1. This was my life the other day: trying to feed a kid dinner, baking cookies, and writing a letter of rec... all at the same time. My husband had called to say he was going to be really late at work and I wanted to get in a run after Sawyer was in bed since my house would be empty. I know there's a lot of evidence to show multi-tasking is bad, but sometimes it's the only way to survive my life.

2. I'm about half way through Lauren Groff's Fates and Furies and have really enjoyed it so far, but I'm curious to see where she's going to go in the remaining two hundred pages. 

3. I've had reason to do a lot of reflection and introspection and over-thinking this week. My conclusion? If you're all in, you're all in. If you're there 100% when things are good, you should be there 120% when things are bad (unless the other person likes to kill puppies or tell kindergarteners there's no such thing as Santa). If not, you should try to be. (Disclaimer: this has nothing to do with my marriage. Just in case someone I know is actually reading).

4. So I have issues with gift receiving and gift giving- with  most people I find the whole thing just really awkward and uncomfortable, mostly when I'm the one receiving. Over the holidays I gave a few things to people and not all of them acknowledged receipt, even though I know they did get what I gave. It's not like I can text them a "hey, aren't you going to acknowledge what I gave you?" but still, it's a little annoying.

5. So, my husband is a huge X-Files fan, but I find the show really disturbing and it creeps me the hell out. He has the complete series and had on the first episode a few weeks ago, one about these girls who had these puncture wounds because they were abducted by aliens. Sunday I noticed several on my legs. Obviously, I was abducted in my sleep. Or a spider crawled up my effing sweats and feasted on me. I don't know, but I don't like it. 

6. Also, if we're talking about weird occurrences then I might as well mention the fact that I had a few moments this week where I thought someone might be living in our attic (I actually wrote a short story about this recently) because there were a few oddly misplaced things in Sawyer's room. But, then I got to thinking. Say there is someone squatting in the rafters and has been for awhile, without killing us in our sleep. Shouldn't he help out with the cleaning? Maybe be available in case I want someone to like come in and clean the carpets while I'm at work? (MAN IN THE ATTIC IF YOU ARE READING THIS EITHER UNLOAD THE DISHWASHER OR GET OUT!!!!)

I am kidding. I scream bloody murder when my husband comes home and I don't know he has arrived. If there is a stranger lurking above the ceiling and I spotted him I would die of a heart attack. No joke.

7. There are a thing! I had heard rumors of their existence but had never seen them in stores (granted, I may not have really ever looked). Well, now they're mine and I just used 1/3 of the jar on one cup of hot chocolate because I kept refilling. Apparently I am eight-years-old. 

8. I introduced Sawyer to my favorite childhood movie yesterday, Follow that Bird. He watched a few minutes in his new chair that his great-aunt got him, took a dance break for a song, and then was done. This is probably a good thing because something tells me I might still blubber over the scene where poor Big Bird is painted blue and cries while being locked up by the super mean carnies.

9. I keep forgetting that Monday is a holiday and then get incredibly happy and relieved when I remember.

10. Give me your best running songs. Please. Fast, poppy, clubby kind of stuff.

Bookish (and not so Bookish) Thoughts

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1. Today I finished my first book of 2016- Dear Mr. You by Mary-Louise Parker, a compilation of letters to different men in her life, ranging from her own father to the orderly that tried to take her newborn to the nursery to the future man her daughter might marry. I thought a few parts were maybe a bit overdone, but for the most part I really enjoyed it.

2. Here's the deal with all the rain in California- it's welcome, but also, potentially, really problematic. Our soil is extremely dry after years of drought and our cities don't proactively plan, so mudslides and flooding are a constant threat. Also, what we truly need is snow in the mountains; that's really where our water supply comes from. Don't misunderstand me; the rain goes into our reservoirs and waters landscaping so people don't have to turn on their sprinklers, but snow is really the answer. 

3. The other night I went through all this trouble to make Flank Steak with Fried Egg, Mushrooms, Parsley Vinaigrette from Tom Colicchio's cookbook and as we sat down to eat Sawyer's bad mood from the afternoon (teething and back to a different schedule) came roaring back. Great timing, sir.

4. Today I had to sit through three sections of seniors analyzing Sylvia Plath's poem "Daddy," not to mention my own review during my prep period. They actually did a good enough job, but it's just a lot of "I have issues with my dad and I am going to use German/Jew references and then talk about vampires" for one day. I can't wait until we're back to a novel in a few weeks.

5. Have you heard of Peloton bikes? I saw someone mention them on Facebook and did some investigating and they seem awesome. They're spin bikes with these incredible dashboards that link you up to live classes with instructors at least a dozen times a day (you can do workouts that aren't live, too). The only drawback? They're $2000. Plus $40 a month for the subscription. If only Scott would have won Powerball tonight... 

6. It makes me so angry that Sea World is pushing free tickets of teachers, since they know, for some reason, teachers love free shit. BLACKFISH, guys. BLACKFISH!!!!!! Also, educators, educate yourselves. 

7. Last weekend I took Sawyer to Irvine Regional Park for the first time since the summer and he loved it. We rode the train, he got to go on a tiny little pony, and we climbed around on rocks. I thought I'd score big with a long nap afterwards, considering all that exertion. Of course not. 

8. I wrote about buying a Clarisonic at the beginning of November. Verdict: I'm glad I bit the bullet and went for it. I now break out rarely, my dry skin is under control, I haven't developed any new fine lines, and makeup applies much better. I'm a believer. 

9. Confession: any time I hear sirens at work, because it's so close to where my daycare provider lives, I get nervous it's her driving around with my son in an accident. One moment last semester, on a really paranoid, off kind-of-day I made up a reason to text her to see if she'd answer back. She did. And now you know I'm crazy.

10. We started the final (season three) of Newsroom last night and I was so sad to learn it was only six episodes. It's just so good! Not that we don't have an abundance of other shows to watch. Seriously- I made a list when we were driving up to Ojai and it will probably take us a few years at the rate we're going (I did watch two episodes in a row last Saturday, believe it or not).  

About the Running

On Sunday, February 7th I'll be doing my first half-marathon in three years. In fact, Surf City, the one that I'm doing, holds a very interesting place in my running history. It's the course where I PR'ed (that means set my personal record, for you non-runners that are reading this) and also the one where I decided that I was burnt out and done at, a year later. It was my eleventh half and I thought it would be my last. Apparently, I was wrong. 

I go into my last month of "training" with excitement and trepidation. Part of me is looking forward to spending the night in a hotel room close to the start line by myself, and then being able to get a few hours down by the beach to exercise. If it stops being a running-and-music sort of affair, it'll be a walking-and-audiobook sort of deal. The race expos are always fun to walk around and the energy in the corrals right before the starting gun is palpable (especially when there are tens of thousands of people hopping around, trying to stay warm, checking their Garmins, adjusting their spandex, and testing out their playlists). Runners are a nice bunch and the volunteers are usually a great group. It's a club, there's a culture. Plus, you get a shirt, a medal and a bag of bagels and bananas. If that's not reason enough, I don't know what is. 

But my feelings really are very mixed. My foot is in bad, bad shape. I don't think it will bother me too much during the race with my orthotics (especially if I can sweet talk my podiatrist into giving me some anti-inflammatories to take before), but after is going to be a different story. Right now even doing four or five miles leaves me hobbling around a few hours later, so 13.1 on asphalt is undoubtedly going to be excruciating (I have an extra bone in my ankle that causes swelling and pain, partially due to the over-pronating my collapsed arches cause). I've also trained poorly, but I knew that would be the case when I decided to do this. I walk in my very hilly neighborhood every day and have been running on the treadmill a few times a week. My running mileage is really low, though, compared to what it should be (I should be running at least 20 miles a week right now). I have been incorporating a lot of speed work and fartleks into what I have been doing, so I'm hoping that will help on some level. I'm trying to go into it with no expectations, but it is discouraging knowing that there's no way my numbers will even compare to what I've done in the past. 

I'm also slowly remembering what all goes into running a long race, logistically. I've never, ever run a race without a Garmin, and mine is shot to hell (these are fancy watches that track you via GPS and give you tons of stats). I'm obsessed with numbers and during a race I'm constantly calculating my mile time and projected finish (and whether or not a PR is likely). I don't want to spend a ton of money on a new one, since I'm not sure if this will ever happen again, so I bought a cheap Timex Ironman one that will let me calculate my lap times. I know it's lame, but  not having a Garmin is really bothering me. Scratch that- not lame, downright ridiculous.

I had to purchase a new armband for my phone and have to decide what I'm going to do about fuel and water. I used to run with a fanny-pack sort of thingy that held two water bottles and had a pouch for Shotblocks and my key. For some reason that sounds horrible now (the hip jostling!), but so does going long distances without anything to drink. 

Then there's the weather and the whole "tossing the layers" thing (runners often will wear cheap gloves and jackets they want to get rid of and toss them as they warm up; race volunteers pick up everything and donate them to homeless shelters or other charities that take clothing donations). I always go in willing to freeze for the first little bit, but I'm not sure if I am anymore. 

And here's what makes all this worrying about details that would seem trivial to non-runners: I'm not really even any good, even when I'm truly training and following a plan. At best? Average. But the fact that in elementary and middle school I was utterly embarrassed about my inevitable back-of-the-pack status on mile days, makes me proud that I can finish 13.1 miles at a time now. The fact that I have to work so hard at even being okay is actually appealing to me, and having something to at least half-assedly train for is motivating. Running keeps me in check physically and mentally. And, if I am being honest, I do it to burn calories. I have to do something to burn off the Golden Grahams. 

So, running. I kinda hate it. And I kinda love it.  

December, Revisited, Plus January

For the past few months I've been posting some monthly goals and then holding myself accountable to review how I did. Like I always say, this is more for my sake, but I respond well to public accountability. 

Yes, I know I have been goal-heavy with the end of the year resolutions and recaps. Oh well. 'Tis the season and all that. 

I may have been too ambitious for December, but considering the grading hell I had to save myself from and the holidays, the fact that I'm still alive is an accomplishment. It was a very half-assed month in many regards:

1. Not gain any weight- Have no clue I haven't stepped on the scale in two weeks, but my clothes still fit so it can't be that bad. D-Day is Sunday. 

2. Go to yoga three times- No way Try zero. It's been way too busy on the weekends.

3. Work on my 2015 book- No I have thought about it and am giving myself until the end of this month.

4. Read a graphic novel- No Sigh. 

5. Pay more attention to the dogs- Yes I definitely walked them more, but still not enough. But technically I did pay more attention to them, so it's a win.

6. Salute the sun- Sorta I did do a session or two every week of sun salutations but want to do more. I love the app I downloaded!

7. Make appointments- Sorta I booked one with my doctor and went, as well as the podiatrist and the tax lady. I still need ones for my eyes and teeth, though.

8. Cards and thank-you notes- Sorta I did Christmas cards but still have yet to do thank-you notes. 

9. Clean out every cabinet and drawer in the kitchen- No This is downright laughable. They're probably in worse shape than they were. 

10. Get out and have some fun- Yup Maybe not as much as I wanted, but Scott and I went away, Sawyer saw Santa, we decorated cookies, we met up with friends, and we saw lots of Christmas lights.  

For January...

1. Make fruit/veggie smoothies three times a week- Sawyer and I need some disguised spinach and kale in our diets.

2. Finish 2015 photo book- It's not going to be a masterpiece, since I'm not very organized, but I want to do something!

3. Take stuff to Goodwill- Why is this so hard? The box of donations is full; shouldn't that be the challenge?

4. 95k steps every week- I'm still training for a half marathon... 

5. Computer maintenance-type stuff- Buy a new laptop charger, back up everything to my external hard drive, back up phone, and update IOSes. I am scared. 

6. Chart time for two weekdays and one weekend- In my ongoing quest to be more efficient with my time, it would be nice to see a breakdown of some typical days.

7. Stay on top of grading- Time to start a new semester! This translates to not wanting to ever feel like I'm in the grading hole. 

8. Journal more- I've let this slide lately, and it always makes me so feel so much calmer and organized. 

9. Write two short stories-  My current goal is to create a twelve story collection. I have no idea why I chose that number.

10. Get a pedicure- Finding the ninety minutes on a weekend to make this happen is tough (this includes driving time).