Friday, August 1, 2008

Note to Self: 2nd Edition

After last week's first Note to Self post, I thought it would be a good idea to do it weekly. And since it's my blog, I agreed with myself wholeheartedly and here we are.

Without further ado, random lessons and insights I've learned in life this week:

1. "The happiest people don't have the best of everything. They just make the best of everything they have." Read the whole story here. And thank you Jenn for sharing this with us!

2. I need to use up stash since I have limited space, and I need to stop spending since I have limited budget. Therefore, I declare August Stash Month with a $20 necessities crafting budget. And I do mean necessities. Like thread, etc. But seriously, I have so much, I don't think I'll NEED anything. "Want" is a different story altogether! I'll admit though, I've been thinking about this for a few days and stocked up on some things I think I might want this month!

Anyone want to join me? I'm doodling while I'm on hold today. (Rrrrrr. Hate insurance companies!!!) Trying to come up with a cool graphic for August's Stash Month. Stay tuned!

3. Real, lasting change takes time. I thought I had my ice cream habit under control, but I really felt tempted earlier this week. I had thought a few times previously in the month that I could move on to more of the lactose family before August, but I'm glad I didn't. I think it would have been one more instance of me jumping in over my head. This month, my Quit Now Challenge is going to be quitting the snooze button. I'll still refrain from ice cream, but I don't think I'm ready to give up cheese, cream in my coffee, and butter yet.
As for the Snooze button, I didn't fail miserably this morning, but I didn't get right up either. I tend to hit the snooze button for about an hour. I only did it for 40 minutes today, so progress has been made.

Along these same lines, I intend to organize my house from top to bottom. But let's be realistic, right? That's one huge job, no matter what size your house is! Luckily, I found Org Junkie's Monthly Organization Roundup which targets one room each month. This matches right up with my new "pace yourself" mentality! In August we're targeting the mudroom/entryway. I say it's not a moment too soon!

(what you see when you walk in the mudroom - this is also the entrance used about 99% of the time.)

This was an addition to the main house. In September, we're tearing this room down and re-roofing the house but not replacing this room. So in the meantime, I have to find a new home for the shoes, coats, mittens, and hats. Everything else can go where it the shed or in my hubby's work van!! And the rectangular bucket in the lower left corner? Catches the rain. Whoever added the porch didn't tie it in well with the existing roof. Oi. Drives my hubby crazy, being a carpenter and perfectionist!
(looking back at the front door)
Think we have enough shoes?
(Slowly sinking)
The mystery closet! What ever will I find in there?
edited *** I just realized that in light of my previous post (Buy Nothing Challenge) I can't make any organization-product related purchases! This is an even bigger challenge than I thought and it gets me excited!!!
4. Keep your car clean! Remember how your mama always told you to wear clean underwear "in case you got in an accident and ended up in the hospital?" Well this is along the same idea. You might just break down somewhere (or leave your lights on all day and drain your battery) and have some stranger in your car learning all of your dirty car secrets!

5. If something is going to happen to my car, it's going to happen when my hubby's out of town! See previous lesson...happened last Friday night right after he left! Last time he went away, I got a flat tire...and I changed it myself! Thanks, Dad, for teaching me how to do that while I was learning how to drive. It's been 15 years, but it stuck with me!

6. It IS possible to get out aged mystery stains from a vintage linen tablecloth. Just soak in two cups of Oxyclean, forget about it for 7 hours, run through the delicate wash cycle and voila! Clean table cloth. I did Literally forget about it! I meant to soak it for an hour and then run the wash, but completely forgot...and I'm so glad! (The package says to add 2-4 scoops per gallon of water for soaking 1-6 hours.) The scoop looked about a quarter cup and I wasn't sure how many gallons of water the small load setting used, so I just guestimated 5 gallons and added 8 scoops which ended up being almost all of the small package!
Thank you to my new friends over at Wardrobe Refashion for all of their fantastic ideas!!

7. I learned how to Trim My Own Hair using these tips!! My hubby was kind enough (and patient enough!) to play photographer for me while I cut my hair for the second time in my life. The first time didn't end so well. I was somewhere between 5 and 8 years old and took those plastic Discovery Toys safety scissors to my bangs. Mom was away at a weekend conference and my Dad and brother didn't even notice!! Good stuff. This week's trim wasn't very noticeable. Actually, if I hadn't been doing the cutting, I'd question whether anything was actually cut! I went by the rule to cut can always cut more later. Really, I just wanted a trim to get the split ends off without paying out the nose!

8. It IS possible for me to get motivated in a job I don't care about! Well, maybe it's false motivation, let's just call it productivity! Thursday I dressed professionally, passed up the decaf for real coffee (with extra sugar!) and logged onto my favorite radio station, WOKQ, for their live streaming. I put on my headphones and bebopped (or country-bopped) through my day. I actually learned to do this in college when I'd work in the computer lab with tons of distractions. I'd put on my walkman (remember those?!) and would be able to breeze through my work. I think it kind of takes the distractable/ADHD part of my brain and keeps it busy so I don't get distracted by everything else around me. However it works, it WORKS!

9. It's time for a change. All the while I'm saving money by making my own laundry detergent and kitchen rags and not buying ice cream (LOL) and making hankerchiefs and on and on and on, I'm going to yard sales getting stuff I don't NEED, going antiquing, thrift shopping and on and on and on. Not that yard sales and thrift shopping are bad, but if I don't NEED something, why am I there? To find a deal? On something I don't NEED? Just a new obsession? This is part of what drove me to my proclamation earlier in the week that I'm ready to make a change in my finances.

So my hubby and I sat down and made some decisions. This weekend is efficiency weekend. We're changing to basic cable (couldn't agree on no cable, though I hadn't seen this yet!), doing at-home tune-ups on our vehicles, finally installing the clothes line, making lunches and prepping coffee and breakfast the night before, menu planning each week, and no more random yard saleing and thrifting for me.

Unless I'm specifically looking for something I NEED. (LOL!)

10. Everyone has an opinion about everyone else's business and everyone thinks (knows) their opinion is right and everyone wants everyone else to hear their opinions (knowledge) about everyone else's business. *sigh*

Okay, I'm being a little cynical and sarcastic, but this is trully how I felt Thursday. If people only knew the whole story. If they had their facts straight. If they really cared about the situation instead of being heard and noticed and getting the attention. Maybe, perhaps, it might possibly change things.

But it's not their business. And instead of saying "well, there might be more to the story, I guess it's not worth speculating about," they jump ahead and think they can blab all over town about you and how they think you should be living your life.


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