Friday, January 11, 2013

Finding our rhythm

Bethany has been with us for almost eight weeks, and I think I'm getting the hang of things again. This week things have felt less stressful and more normal. Before Bethany was born, Noah and I had a pretty nice routine to our days (in a loose sense of the word), and we're finally settling back into that relaxing, normal rhythm.

I find that having a daily "rhythm" gives me a lot of comfort. I don't mind spending the morning washing the dishes and folding the laundry as much as I might have once. It actually feels rather therapeutic to cook and clean and even change diapers (yes, I said diapers). Is that odd? I find that the normal doctor's appointments, family dinners, and occasional trips to WalMart have given me all the escape I need lately.

One thing that I really enjoy doing each day is keeping my New Year's Resolutions. I know, I know, it's only the second week of January, but even so, I've done a pretty good job of keeping up with all those things I wrote about last week. I've been eating much healthier, and I really look forward to the time I get to spend exercising. I started using cloth diapers for Bethany a lot sooner than I thought I would, and so far I am absolutely loving it. My efforts to spend intentional time playing with Noah are paying off as well. Right now, I feel like our playtime together benefits me just as much as it does Noah, if not more. It's such a great time for me to drop all the concerns and frustrations that come with parenthood and just see life through his eyes for a little while.

It's so nice to feel all the bits and pieces of my nature and personality fitting into place. I feel whole, fresh, and happy to be alive. I can go to bed at night and honestly look forward to the day ahead of me, no matter what day of the week it will be.

Time to go take a loaf of yummy wheat bread out of the oven. Mmmmm, I'm hungry...

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

My 2013

I am so excited for this new year! I love the fresh, hopeful, clean-slate feeling that January brings. I feel ready to reach for my hardest goals and my loftiest dreams. I am determined to make this year the healthiest and happiest year yet! Who's with me?!?
There are a lot of changes Tyler and I want to make in 2013. We've decided to take every measure possible to help us achieve these goals. We started with the most basic, important step--writing it down! We did that last night. I've decided to take the next step in resolution-keeping 101 by sharing it with family and friends and enlisting your support. Below is our family mission statement for 2013. Tyler and I are going to keep this on our iPhones and hang it in our bedroom so we can always keep it fresh in our minds. What do you think of it?
Bailey Family Mission Statement 2013
To better prepare our family for any circumstance: Pay off our existing debt; Live debt-free and within our budgets; Complete our family’s 72-hour kit; Create a regular fund for 3-month food storage; Eat out only on special, pre-planned occasions.
To enjoy and care for our God-given bodies: Exercise regularly (at least 3 times a week) throughout the whole year; Eat processed foods and sugars sparingly; Use Bountiful Baskets and the Food Co-op to encourage healthy, clean eating habits.
To strengthen our family relationships: Hold a weekly Family Home Evening; Spend 30 minutes a day playing with Noah and Bethany; Limit television-watching to 1 show a night; Go on at least 2 dates a month.
Apart from our family goals, I have a few personal goals for myself. I want to:
-Lose 25 pounds by June 1st. Sadly, this is the same amount of weight I had leftover to lose after my first pregnancy. It was my intention to do better the second time around, but I kind of lost steam in the last trimester and ate whatever and however much I wanted...oops! On the bright side, I've already lost 25 pounds once, so I feel pretty confident that I can do it again!
-Eat absolutely no sweets or treats in January. No chocolate. No ice cream. No cake. Nada. Folks, I am addicted to yummy, sweet things, and it's becoming a problem! So if you see me reaching for a cookie or a Snickers anytime in January, STOP ME! After January, Tyler and I are thinking about establishing certain days each month that we are allowed to eat a treat (holidays, birthdays, that kind of thing). Right now, though, I'm not thinking beyond January. Baby steps first.
-Complete this running program I found on pinterest. I am just waiting for my 6 week postpartum checkup to get my "official" exercise clearance and then I am lacing up my running shoes! 
Pinned Image
-Run a 5k. I'm shooting for end of June, before it gets too hot.
-Take another summer class from George Wythe University. I took a course on William James' work on psychology last year and it was a blast!
-Do all of the projects on my 2013 Bucket List pinterest board. I'm really excited for this one! I think my first projects will be the vinegar produce spray and the laundry detergent.
-Spend at least 30 minutes each day just focusing on Noah. You'd think this would be easier, considering I am home all day, every day. But even with no car and no places to go, it's amazing how much effort it takes to stop my googling, facebooking, reading, and house-keeping stuff and just focus on him for longer than five minutes. But he needs me. He needs me to look in his eyes, to converse with him, to show him how to build with blocks and put puzzles together. I think he's been having a harder time adjusting to our new family life with Bethany than we've realized. He gets really sensitive and clingy at times in the late afternoons and early evenings when he wakes up from his nap. So my plan is to spend a good chunk of these grouchy times helping Noah do fun, new things--coloring, fingerpainting, playing with his new sensory tubs, building with blocks, doing puzzles, reading stories, and all that fun stuff. I love my little guy, and I hope that these special mommy-and-me times will help him feel more like his secure, good-natured self!  
-Read a long picture book to Noah every day. I'm kind of including this outside of the 30-minute playtime. We read lots of board books (I've got Mr. Brown Can Moo and But Not the Hippopatumus memorized like the back of my hand), but it's harder to get him interested in reading longer stories. He always wants to get up and run away after the first two pages! But even if he doesn't sit still for any of it, I'm still going to read one longer story every day.
-Start using cloth diapers. I've actually wanted to do this for a long time, but we've lacked the funds to make that initial investment. I'm going to be bringing in a bit of extra money from teaching piano lessons, though, so I think I'm going to use some of that in the next few months to buy what we need. I'm going with these Flip Diapers. I'm super excited for the money-saving benefits, and for no more blowouts (Bethany has at least one a day right now)!
There you have it, friends! My 2013 Resolutions!