Summer Headaches and Jiggle-Free Runs

Betcha can guess which one I prefer.

Let me define the Jiggle-Free Run (JFR), for those of you who aren’t runners. The JFR is that euphoric moment when at some point during one of your runs you realize that NOTHING IS JIGGLING.

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I always thought it was just a myth, right up there with the Loch Ness monster and those free Disney cruise tickets you see on Facebook. But I can happily say with confidence that it’s not just a myth – I’ve been fortunate enough to experience this phenomenon at least two times in the past 3 years I’ve been running. It looks something like this: one minute you’re trotting along, wearing the same clothes you always wear, along the same route you always take, keeping the same pace you always keep. And then… you suddenly realize your tushie isn’t bouncing up and down anymore. Your thighs aren’t rippling with waves of kinetic energy. Your arms aren’t flapping in the breeze. And just like that, you realize that you are, in fact, jiggle-free. Now, it doesn’t always last – like I said, over the past three years of running I can only remember this exact incident happening to me on two occasions. Just two. For some insanely unfair reason a Jiggle-Free Run on a Monday does not guarantee a Jiggle-Free Run on a Tuesday. :'(

Here’s where those evil summer headaches come into play.

You want a JFR? Then you gotta keep running. No excuses. That means even if it’s hot enough to fry an egg on the sidewalk outside, you’ve gotta get out there. But running in the summer heat means you’re almost sure to get summer headaches. So achieving the elusive JFR means you’re just going to have to suffer with those horrid summer headaches. You just can’t have one without the other.

Or can you?

Not to brag, I think I may have cracked the code for avoiding the dreaded summer headache.

Now, before you give me my Nobel Peace Prize or whatever honorable award you feel should be bestowed upon me for my discovery, let me be straight with you. First of all, these are pretty no-brainer tips that I’m pretty sure I’ve chosen to ignore for the past few years. Second, they are working really well for me, but there’s no guarantee that they will work for you. Sorry. But hopefully seeing that these tips worked for me will motivate you to try them or find your own secret weapon and get you closer to a JFR of your own. :)

  1. GO EARLY. I know some people run later in the day or early evening, but that just doesn’t work for me. And if you think about it, running late in the day means you’re running in an environment that’s been heating up all day long. The pavement, the air – it’s all been cooking as the day has progressed. I’ve found that going early in the morning means that everything is cooler. Even if that means it’s only 95 degrees out at 7am instead of 100 degrees at 7:30am. :D
  2. DRINK WATER. So basic, right? But seriously, a dehydrated body is a body that can’t function at optimal levels.
  3. TURN IT DOWN. If you run with earbuds in, check your volume level. It’s super easy to turn it up to overcome the noise of traffic, barking dogs, or whatever, but make sure you turn it back down! I’m completely convinced that a lot of my headaches have been the result of too-loud music pounding directly into my brain.

I’ve been following these 3 tips faithfully, and despite my previous complaining about summer running, this summer I have managed to get out for a 2-4 mile run at least 4 days a week – headache free!

Now, if only I could do something about the swoob*… :D

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*swoob = boob sweat ;)

Speak to Me

There are a LOT of quotes out there. Happy quotes. Inspiring quotes. Snarky quotes. Encouraging quotes. I’m-frustrated-so-take-THAT quotes. These catchy phrases can be a great way to summarize how you feel about anything, and because we can all relate to so many of them they spread like wildfire. I have a few friends that post quotes so aligned with their mood that you can tell what kind of day they’ve had without ever asking them.

To be honest, half the time I don’t even really read quotes. But every once in a while I run across one that speaks to me. And almost every time a quote touches me, I’m able to see it as a reminder of how much God loves me and how much I need to lean on Him to get through life.

For example, here is my favorite quote of all time:Screen Shot 2015-07-04 at 10.12.33 PM

I’ve loved this quote for as long as I can remember. It makes me take pride in who God has created me to be, and as a result I want to give my best in whatever I’m doing. This quote reminds me that I am fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14), and that I need to take pride in who He has created me to be and reflect my best for Him.

Usually when a quote sticks with me it’s because it draws attention to an area of my life that I’m struggling with and leaves me with a nugget of quirky wisdom:

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I definitely struggle with expectations I put on myself. Is my house clean enough? Are my children behaving enough? Do I look good enough? But exactly when – and why – did I decide what my life is supposed to look like in the first place? When I set these expectations of “supposed to,” the only one ruining my happiness is ME. I love how this quote puts it in perspective – my life is already awesome, as long as I learn to love it for exactly what it is! <3

Once in a while a few simple words reveal things about myself that I was never even aware of:

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This quote is 100% me. I’m constantly getting disappointed when I don’t feel the same level of commitment that I give being returned, and I never realized why it bothered me so much until I read this. It makes me remember Psalm 46:1: that God is my refuge and strength. Not people. I can’t let myself get depressed or frustrated when others aren’t being exactly what I need them to be, because I know He promises to never fail me.

Quotes also have a way of reaffirming something I’ve already been learning somewhere else in life:

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Last year our church held a women’s Bible study by Kay Warren called Choose Joy. It was during a time when for some crazy reason I was insisting on being miserable instead of choosing to be happy. These quotes popped up on my Instagram feed in one day from two different people and instantly reminded me the importance of the choices we make. along with this one, which not only helps me to evaluate the current choices I’ve been making but also helps me realize that if I want something to have greater importance in my life, I need to find a way to make it happen.Screen Shot 2015-07-04 at 9.55.28 PMI keep all the images of these quotes in a folder on my computer, and occasionally I’ll take a look at them and remind myself to focus on what’s important: my faith, my family, my friends, and myself. These quotes, along with the Biblical truths that back them up, help pull me out of whatever funk I’m in at the moment.

And this one helps too, of course. Words to live by. ;)

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Smores Pops

Smores Cake pops and Oreo pops are fun to make, and even more fun to eat. But if you’re looking for an easier and quicker treat, I highly suggest you try these super yummy Smores pops! I made them a couple of summers ago and forgot all about them until my sweet friend Tina mentioned them a few days ago. Since the girls and I had planned a lazy day at home they were the perfect activity! Seriously, they are the easiest things ever, so they totally qualified as a lazy day activity. :) Here’s what you’ll need:

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  • lollipop sticks
  • graham crackers
  • jumbo marshmallows
  • milk chocolate chips

Are you ready to be prepared to be blown away by the simplicity?

  1. Crush the graham crackers. You’ll only need about 2-3 cracker sheets, I always err on the side of too many in case the chocolate goops them up in the coating process.
  2. Melt the chocolate chips. I put about half the bag in a glass container in the microwave and melt on high for 30 seconds. Then I take them out, stir well, and return to the microwave on high for another 30 seconds. IMG_9643
  3. Place a marshmallow on the end of each lollipop stick.
  4. Dip the marshmallow halfway into the melted chocolate. I twist mine as I pull it out so that the marshmallow doesn’t slide off the stick. IMG_9645
  5. Gently roll the chocolate-dipped marshmallow in the crushed graham crackers, then tap the top of the marshmallow into the crackers so that all the chocolate is covered in graham cracker.IMG_9649
  6. Place the finished pops in a glass so that they won’t stick to each other, then place in the fridge (standing up) for 10-15 minutes to allow the chocolate to harden.

That’s it! Super easy, right? Emily and I made about 20 of them in less than 10 minutes, which means they are also a fabulous treat if you’ve promised to bring dessert somewhere and forgot and don’t have a whole lot of time to bake cookies or an upside-down pineapple cake or monkeybread. Not that I’ve ever been in that situation or anything…. ;) IMG_9651 So there you go! A fast, fun, easy, and yummy treat that makes you feel like you’re camping – even if your hubby would never agree to sleep on the ground in a tent. :D Enjoy! :D

New Beginnings

My best friend’s eldest son and Emily share a birthday. It’s actually the reason she and I met – on a fertility/pregnancy/parenting community website, of all places! Her son, Benjamin, is a couple of hours older than Emily, and as she and I posted and commented on things relating to our pregnancies and growing infants, we also stalked each other’s comments and posts. It was pretty normal behavior though, everyone was curious about how everyone else’s kids (and bellies) were doing. When Benjamin and Emily were nearing three years old, she reached out to me directly because her husband was offered a job in my city. We decided to try and meet in person, and a short while after her family moved down she and I met up at a local park with our kids. Six years later we are the best of friends – and still talking about our pregnancies and infants. :)

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We’ve talked so much about our kids and our experiences raising them (she’s got two other boys, too) that even though we didn’t really meet each other until that first playdate at the park it almost feels like we’ve been comparing notes since the day we gave birth. Which, I guess in a weird way we kinda were through the website, but for me it makes her the only friend who has not only “known” Emily from day one, but has also been moving down the parenting road at the same pace I have.

And now our birthday twins are 9.

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A few months ago she sent me a link to a blog post she’d read from a mom to her 9-year old, giving advice to her daughter on the next years of her life. The post was beautiful, highlighting key points that I also hope my daughter learns and embraces and eventually lives out herself. She called this time in her daughter’s life “halftime.”

I’ll admit, I’m a little nervous now that we’ve officially reached halftime. I’m not sure I’m ready to handle the next stage of raising-her-to-adulthood. You know… get her through her tween years… pre-teen years… TEEN years… then send her off to college to start figuring things out for herself.

Nope. Definitely not ready.

Years 1-9 were easy. Babies are basic, toddlers are cute. I’d taught Kindergarten and First Grade for a while, so I wasn’t worried about those years either. Raising Emily up to this point has been fun – arts & crafts, playdates where I get to hang with the other moms, splash pads, picking out her clothes for her, fixing her hair into pigtails. A colorful, character-filled Band-Aid made any boo-boo feel better.DSC_0426-3Now she does crafts on her own. Playdates are drop-offs, and I’m not needed beyond getting snacks every 15 minutes. Splash pads are now much larger water parks, where I’m lucky to get a glimpse of her waving at me before shooting down a huge tube slide or as she darts past me headed to another area of the park. And forget picking out her clothes – I have a general sense of what she does and doesn’t like, but for the most part she just throws together a cute t-shirt and jeans. Accessories are a distant blip in her past, and she won’t let me do anything to her hair but brush it.

I’ve been told that now is where raising a daughter gets tougher (although I’m confident that raising a son comes with it’s own challenges). There’s boys and independence, self-expression and the scary, scary “P” word. ;) There are peer pressures to avoid, opinions to form, and experiences I’m not sure I’m ready for her to have but that might be essential for her to become the woman God wants her to be. Her first job, her first car, her first love, her first heartbreak. And not a Band-Aid in the world that can fix that kind of pain.

I’m as ready as I can be though. I’m just going to do everything I’ve already been doing: listen. Model. Give space. Protect. Teach. Guide. Love. Be present. Be firm. Be fair. Encourage. Care. Advise. And above all, pray.

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And, of course, I plan to keep leaning on good friends who are also going through this new stage of parenting right along with me. After all, misery loves company, right? :D

Finally on Facebook!

I’m so excited – I finally have an official Frozen Coke Fridays Facebook page!

Screen Shot 2015-06-27 at 4.37.00 PMTechnically I’ve had the page for probably about as many years as I’ve been blogging, as I’ve learned that you need to claim your “name” as quickly as possible on these sites before someone else comes along and takes it first. But I was always afraid to just go for it… I’m already on Facebook more than I should be (I really like knowing what’s going on with everyone, and I love looking for ways to encourage others), and I was worried that it would only suck up more of my time. (I had the same issues when I decided to create an Instagram account for my blog).

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Blogging started as a way to help myself find joy in a really disappointing time in my life, then became a way to thought-dump and empty my head from time to time. At one point I overdid it and burned out, then struggled to get back on track. I never quite regained the momentum I had before that, and I’ve trailed off a bit again lately as I’ve tried to re-prioritize (more on that in a later post, but it involves shutting off the computer at night). Emily’s home for the summer though, and being able to spend more time with her during the day makes me feel less guilty about blogging in the afternoons while the girls play together, and Julia starts preschool in the fall – both of which mean I can hopefully start writing more again!

But… now it’s time for a shameless beg for support. (Come on, you knew this was coming.) ;) If you enjoy this blog I’d love it if you would send a little Facebook love my way by visiting my page and giving it a “like.” Just click on the green heart at the top of this page, then click on the Facebook icon. Feel free to share it and spread the word too, because now this little image on the page won’t stop teasing me…

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Thank you for all the love and encouragement you’ve shown me through my blogging adventure, it’s already been more than I ever hoped for and I feel very blessed! <3

Running Bucket List

Runner’s Envy.

Oh, it’s real, and I’ve got it BAD.

It doesn’t help that I was born with a green streak running through me – jealousy is a nasty beast that I find myself beating into submission on a regular basis. And when I started running there were lots of things other runners had that I could be jealous of. Speed, distance, cute running clothes, tight tushies, fun sneaks, racks full of medals… other runners seem to have it all figured out. But to be honest, I’ve never been jealous of any of that. In fact, for the longest time the only thing I wanted was to be able to breathe without sounding like a freight train.

Then I ran my first 5K, became a medal junkie, and found that easy breathing wasn’t the only thing other runners had that I wanted.

I wanted events. Experiences. Medals. I wanted to be able to say, “I did such-and-such event!” when it came up in conversation. Or even if I just wanted to casually bring it up in conversation. Or if I was talking to myself and wanted to mention it out of sheer lunacy. I wanted to see a brochure or an ad on Facebook for an upcoming run and already have an opinion on it because I’d already added the event to my list of completed runs. I wanted to do it ALL.

Running events aren’t cheap though, so a girl’s gotta be selective. I’ve also got two sweet girls that need caring for while I’m off at these events. Not to mention I’m not exactly the most devoted runner, and while one month I may be able to run 8 miles at a time, the next month I might barely be able to finish two. All in all, it’s not easy to plan out which events I want to participate in the most. I’ve got a few events that I’m determined to do though, and jump on any chance I have to make these happen!

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I almost signed up for the St. Augustine Half Marathon last year, but the dates just weren’t working out for our family. It usually falls right around my birthday though, so I can definitely see this – or even the 10K – in my future! :)

Screen Shot 2015-06-16 at 9.45.34 PMI’ve never dreamed of being a princess, but I have definitely dreamed of completing the Glass Slipper Challenge during Disney’s Princess Half Marathon weekend! First, you complete the 10K on Saturday, then you complete the half marathon on Sunday for a total of 19.3 miles. You end up with a finisher’s medal for the 10K, the half, AND a third medal for completing both. How ridiculously awesome is THAT?

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After my first half marathon I felt invincible. Seriously, I was ready to enter the IronMan competition. Thankfully, I didn’t, and instead set my sights a bit lower – now I’m dying to complete an obstacle run of some sort. If there’s mud involved, all the better!

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I grew up watching Nick at Nite (back when they aired Petticoat Junction and Taxi), and I loved I Dream of Jeannie. So I was kinda giddy when I heard that there was a half marathon in Cocoa Beach with a medal shaped like Jeannie’s genie bottle. Plus I’ve heard there’s a division for folks who want to run dressed like Jeannie or Major Nelson, so that definitely makes it more entertaining!

Screen Shot 2015-06-16 at 9.02.01 PMThe last run on my bucket list is perhaps the hands-down winner… medal-wise, anyway. Completing the Run Nike Women’s 15K or half marathon earns you an exclusive necklace designed in part by Tiffany & Co. Yup. Finish the race, get a Tiffany’s necklace. Because of its popularity, the event allows entrants in via a lottery system. The next event is a half marathon scheduled for this fall in San Francisco, but I think I’d actually prefer to do the 15K if they hold it again in Toronto next year.

I’m sure once I’ve completed a couple of these I’ll have a few more ready to take their place on my bucket list, but for now I think I’ve got enough to tackle! :D

What WE See

Dear Daddy,

You work a lot. For us. You travel a lot, again, for us. You are tired a lot, but it’s because of all the work and travel you do for us. And amidst all this tiring work and travel, guilt can sneak in. Guilt for not being home more, guilt for missing out on things, guilt for sleeping in whenever you can. That’s what you might see – all the ways you aren’t there for us. But it’s not what we see.

PENTAX Image Since the moment you became a daddy, you have been incredibly hands-on. You’ve only grown more gentle, kind, and loving, and for a guy who admits to being uncomfortable around children you are more relaxed and have adapted to any situation better than even you expected. DSC_0899 You set a wonderful example of patience, always explaining things carefully and allowing us to experience things for ourselves. We know that we can make mistakes and you’ll still love us, we never have to fear that a lack of perfection will disappoint you. IMG_1513 You’re protective, which means that you are also aware. You know where we are, and you never let us stray too far. We know your strong arms will always be ready to catch us when we fall, and hold us when we need comforting. We feel safe with you, and in this big scary world that’s a gift we will cherish our entire lives. P1010897 You invite us into your life. We know that we are always welcome, always allowed to share in the things that bring you joy. And you don’t just let us join in, you teach us as we go so that we can continue to enjoy them together as we grow. IMG_1472 You never tire of our company. You want us around every chance you can, never asking us to give you space or time to yourself. You may be traveling or working a lot, but when you are home you can’t get enough of us. And we can’t get enough of you either. IMAG2638You are so helpful to Mommy. She does need a break from us sometimes, and you are always ready to step in and take over so that she can have her hands to herself for a while. We know that if Mommy can’t be with us (she likes a night off from time to time) then you’re ready to jump in and make our time together as special as possible. You’re setting an incredible example of what kind of support we should be looking for in our future husbands. IMG_0866 You aren’t afraid to be silly. To make us laugh. To be weird and goofy and wonderfully strange… because you know that’s what we are and you want to connect with us at our level. You take the time we have together and use it to build bonds that will last us the rest of our lives. You’re giving us memories – magical moments that make us love you even more because they show us a side of you that only a special few get to see. And that makes us feel extra special. :)DSC_1244 We know that what matters to us matters to you, and you do everything you can to take our interests and find ways for us to experience them at new levels. You enter our world and find ways to make it come alive, taking us places and giving us experiences beyond our wildest imaginations. We feel important because you constantly show us that even though we are kids and you and Mommy are not, we can all still have fun together.

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Daddy, we love you. We don’t see that you aren’t here, we see that you ARE here. Never for one second doubt that you are anything less than phenomenal at this daddy thing.

Daddy1

Welcome, Summer!

How do I know that summer has begun?
IMG_8706Why, when we get to start checking things off on our Summer Fun Checklist, of course! We had so much fun with last year’s checklist that the girls were really eager to create a new one to help us set some goals for the next few months. :)

IMG_8700Much of the list is the same as last year, but isn’t the very definition of summer getting wet with friends, then finishing every day with an ice cream? For us it’s also a really great time to get in a visit to Nana’s and Granddad’s house, which is when we make sure to take our annual swim in a natural spring. And of course, a hot summer means lots and lots of frozen cokes! ;)

IMG_8701Our checklist might be full of classic summer fun activities, but there are quite a few new ones, too! Emily is really into chess right now, so she’s excited to participate in Chess Club at the local library this summer. And Julia is learning to swim, which means that gets a nod on the poster as well. This is one of my favorite things about this project – seeing the girls’ current interests and goals written and put on display. <3

IMG_8698Here are some of the other new ideas we added to this year’s list:

  • The Minion Movie
  • 7-Eleven Day! :) (find some tips for a great trip here)
  • Electronics Camp (Emily)
  • VPK Open House
  • Legoland
  • Game Night
  • bake cupcakes
  • bowling
  • Inside Out
  • STEM Camp
  • Sister Sleepover
  • McDonald’s
  • Harry Potter movie night
  • Julia’s birthday
  • Emily’s birthday
  • trampoline park

This year there are even more activities for us to check off – and I love that there’s still a little more room to add things as we think of them! :)

A checklist can be a great way to beat boredom during the summer, and you don’t even have to make it poster-style like I did. A good friend of mine liked the idea but doesn’t consider herself to be artsy enough to draw out her list, so she came up with another way to display her goals – a Summer Bucket List! Super cute, right? Check out the how-to on her blog here.

Easy DIY Bucket List - TM2S

Hope you all have a fabulous and fun-filled summer! <3

Fresh Flowers

I have a sweet friend who is also an amazingly talented hairdresser.  She works out of her home, and whenever I head over there for a visit or to update my hair, she’s sure to have an amazing bouquet of flowers on her table.  I’ve always looked forward to seeing what her current arrangement looks like, and after seeing her fresh blossoms on the table for the past few years, I decided that I needed to give it a try myself.

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I love my teal blue entry table, and it seemed like the perfect place to put a vase of fresh flowers! <3 My local grocery store sells mini-bouquets for only $4 each, and you can buy them individually or choose a few and have one of their florists arrange them into a larger bouquet for you, complete with a beautiful ribbon. I grabbed a $4 arrangement the next time I was at the store, put them in a milk glass vase when I got home, plopped it on the table, and was immediately hooked. Now I always have a bunch of fresh flowers waiting for me when I step in the door!

This is one of my favorite arrangements – I bought a special bouquet for Memorial Day and the girls would stop and look at it and talk about our nation’s flag and colors every time they walked by it. It’s a bit more full than I usually put on the table, but I just loved all the red, white, and blue.

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I’ve experimented with different flower varieties, and some definitely hold up better than others… I think these sunflowers only managed to stay upright for as long as it took for me to capture this photo. They are so top-heavy that they always want to slide around in the vase and show us their backsides. Cheeky little flowers. ;)

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Yellow roses are one of my all-time favorite flowers, but our grocery store almost never has them. So when I’m fortunate enough to spot a bunch, I grab them quick and evict whatever flowers were holding residence in the vase so that I can enjoy my sun-shiney blooms. (Don’t worry, the evicted bouquet gets a new home elsewhere in the house. :) )

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I usually try to stick to one type of flower, or at least one color, but sometimes Jay brings home a small bouquet and I’ll stick the new flowers in the vase with whatever I’ve already for in there. This was one of my favorite results:

IMG_7425I’ve tried all kinds of different blossoms, and I’ve yet to find a bunch that doesn’t add immense beauty to our home, even if it’s only for a day or two. My go-to flowers are usually the simplest – even a tiny filler blossom packs a big punch when displayed alone. Some flowers I’ve learned to avoid… hydrangeas don’t stand up as well as I’d like, and tend to wilt after a day or two, and lillies make me sneeze.

Here are some of my favorite inexpensive flowers:

  • Baby’s Breath
  • Blue Limonium
  • Yellow Limonium
  • Daisies
  • Roses (mini)
  • Carnations (mini)
  • Tulips
  • Chrysanthemums

I usually pull off all the leaves so that the blossoms get all the attention and the arrangement doesn’t look too crowded. Plus I just love the way the stems look all spaced out with the wall showing through behind them. Most of the arrangements last at least 5 days, but the filler flowers (baby’s breath; limonium) can last up to two weeks before they look like they need to be changed out.

Last week I bought a bouquet of pale purple daisies for my entry table, a flower I don’t usually see at our grocery store. Then our babysitter drops off a small bouquet of cheery sunflowers, which I put in a vase in the kitchen. Then Jay shows up with this bouquet of pale yellow carnations and I didn’t know where to put them, so I stuck them in a yellow vase I found under the kitchen sink and placed them on my bedside table.

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The problem is, now I think I’m hooked on seeing fresh flowers when I wake up! :o <3

Friday, I’m in Love

You know that song, “Friday I’m in Love” by The Cure? Just in case you don’t….

You’ll probably be singing it for the rest of the day now (sorry!), but I’m not even kidding when I say that it is eternally running through my head… especially on Fridays. That song perfectly describes how I feel about my house – specifically the state of my house as the week progresses.

I don’t care if Monday’s blue
Tuesday’s grey and Wednesday too
Thursday I don’t care about you
It’s Friday, I’m in love

I take being a stay-at-home mom very seriously, and I consider keeping my home clean and orderly a large part of my job. And, like most job-holders, I love having my weekends “off.” Of course, I realize that the “mom” part of the job title means that I really never have a day off, but as far as household chores and errands go, I do my best to keep those strictly Monday-Friday. When I was teaching, I had almost no time to get the day-to-day stuff done during the week, and it would always eat into our weekend family time. So now I do whatever I can to make sure weekends are as sacred and chore-free as possible, which means that come Monday, my house is pretty trashed. Dirty clothes on the floor in bedrooms, dishes piled all over the kitchen, toothpaste around the sinks. Not to mention whatever we brought into the house over the weekend that we never bothered to put away – food items from a last-minute run to the store, the milkshake cup from Satruday’s run to Chick-Fil-A, or the goody bags from a birthday party. If Jay was out of town and returns home on a Friday you can guarantee that his suitcase will still be unpacked and on the floor come Monday. And that’s when the song begins playing in my head…

Monday, you could fall apart
Tuesday, Wednesday, break my heart
Thursday doesn’t even start
It’s Friday, I’m in love

Once we decided that I’d be staying home, I divided the major household chores up over the week so that I wouldn’t be driving myself crazy with too much in one day. Here’s what my schedule looks like:

Monday – Grocery shop, put groceries away, laundry (Emily & Julia)
Tuesday – laundry (Jay & me), clean out fridge, trash & recycling
Wednesday – Bathrooms, laundry (towels), dust
Thursday – ironing (every other week), vacuum upstairs
Friday – laundry (bedsheets), trash

Things like wiping down countertops, sweeping floors, and making the bed are daily chores, but none of those take more than 5 minutes so it’s not too hard to get those done (even if I end up doing them multiple times a day). Other chores, like cleaning out a closet, take longer but don’t need to occur as frequently, so on days when the regular chores don’t take too long I try to tackle the heavier stuff.

Basically, the way this schedule works out, I spend all day Monday cleaning the massive weekend mess and the regular need-to-be-done jobs, and as the week goes on my chores get lighter and lighter. Then on Friday all I do is toss some sheets in the wash (which stay in the dryer until I need to use it again on Monday :’D ), remake the beds, and empty the trash cans. In 30 minutes my chores are done, and after a week of maintenance there’s really nothing else that needs to be done. Friday, I’m in love. <3

I don’t care if Monday’s black.
Tuesday, Wednesday, heart attack.
Thursday never looking back
It’s Friday, I’m in love. 

I’ve been using this schedule for the past few years, and it’s really helped me to stay on top of things. Don’t misunderstand – I still have plants dying everywhere, overstuffed closets, and a half-garage that’s been affectionately dubbed the “scary room.” But on the whole, my house is clean and orderly.

At least, on Fridays it is. <3 <3 <3