Archive | March 2014

Random Pictures

Here are some random pictures that I have taken over the past couple of weeks.  I have lots of pictures of the little kids, but none from the bigger kids.  My husband must have them on his phone.  I’ll have him send them to me so I can get some of their activities up here on the blog.  There is never a dull moment with 7 kids!

L sitting on a stump

L sitting on a stump

Waiting for the Lego Movie to start

Waiting for the Lego Movie to start

A's toothless grin

A’s toothless grin

S as George Washington for History Hat Day

S as George Washington for History Hat Day

T's 3rd place finish in History Fair

T’s 3rd place finish in History Fair

L reading herself to sleep

L reading herself to sleep

S as Wilbur in Charlotte's Web

S as Wilbur in Charlotte’s Web for Fictional Character Day

S racing to the finish after a 1 mile fun run

S racing to the finish after a 1 mile fun run

I Ran A 5K Yesterday

Here I am in the blue shirt finishing up the 5k.

Here I am in the blue shirt finishing up the 5k.  The time on the clock was the gun time, not my chip time.

I finished 64th out of 116.  There were 116 runners and walkers.  As usual I was the middle of the pack.  I finished with a chip time of 35:28.  It was a slow and painful run for me.  My best time is a 32:48.

How can I run 8 miles one week and it doesn’t hurt like running a 5k can a week later?

I pretty much have one speed.  Slow.  11:05 per mile isn’t too bad for me.  The sad thing is that my 5k pace is only 25 seconds faster than my half-marathon time.  How can I run for 13 miles at a certain pace (11:30) and then cut that mileage down by 75% and only improve my time by 4%?

Anyway, I was reminding my friend running next to me that the reasons that we run are for fun, for health,  and for exercise.  We don’t really run for time.

But it sure would be nice to turn on the gas once in a while!

5 Frugal Things That I Did This Week

Melissa at House Full Of Searls, posts her frugal adventures, so I thought I would too.

1.  We ate at home all week and we didn’t waste any food.

2.  I didn’t shop at all other than food shopping and I stayed in budget 🙂

3.  I worked on my goals and I had to stay home to do them.

4.  I made a loaf of bread in the bread machine to use up some candied fruit that we had in the refrigerator.

5.  I made vegetable soup out of some older veggies that I needed to get rid of and it turned out great.

What about you, what did you do to save money this week?

 

CrossFit Is Going Really Well

crossfit picture

I haven’t posted much about CrossFit lately.  I am still faithfully going, but we haven’t been doing any maximum lift workouts lately that I can post about.

We have been doing insane workouts as usual.  The good news is that I am doing really well (for me).  I have been working really hard.  I am pretty much in a constant state of soreness.  It varies from day-to-day, but I am pretty much sore all.of.the.time.  And that is a good thing!

I can tell that I am stronger both mentally and physically.  Like, I don’t break down anymore when I hear the word burpee.  I am much better at goblet squats than I used to be.  I really like rowing and jumping rope.  When I first started I couldn’t jump more than 5 jumps in a row.  Now I can do about 100 in a row without missing (on a good day).

I guess what I wanted to say is it isn’t all about the amount of weight that you lift, it is about the whole workout, the whole person, the whole package!

I am becoming mentally stronger.  I’m not as easily intimidated as I used to be.  I know I can make it through the workout, no matter what!

The best part for me is that these workouts are really helping me to run better, faster, and stronger than I have in the past.  I’m really running well for me.  CrossFit is the one thing that I have been consistent with for the past year (other than running) and the strength that I have built is making me a stronger runner!  I didn’t notice it much before we started increasing our distance in preparation for the half-marathon in May.  Now our group of runners who are doing CrossFit are definitely outshining the ones who are just doing the running.  Strength really is important in running!

How about you, are you challenging yourself as an athlete, as a mom, as a person?

Ann

The Little Things Mess Me Up

swingset

Well, I had these grand plans of posting at least 4 times this week.

What happened?

Well, nothing major thankfully, but my plans just got messed up.  First off, it was nice.   How could that mess me up?  Well, the kids wanted to stay at school for a few minutes to play on the playground that they haven’t been able to use since November.  The few minutes ended up being 30 minutes.  No big deal, right?  Well, it just messed up my timing.  I had to rush to get dinner finished up,  and had to rush to Scouts.

L, who is 15 months now, is loving being outside.  How can that mess me up?  Well, I’m outside when I need to be inside getting my stuff done.  I have to adjust my schedule now that the weather is warming up.  I need to get my stuff inside accomplished while she sleeps so we can be outside when the weather allows.

The power went out.  Only for 2 hours or so, but that messed up the dinner I was trying to get done early.  It messed up my blog post…no internet.

How about you, what side tracks you?  How can you overcome the obstacles?

Ann

Signs Of Spring

It has become like Spring here overnight! Of course it won’t last, but while it’s been nice I have been outside scoping out how things did over winter.

My grapes are looking good. My neighbor helped me to prune them. This is my second year with them, so no grapes until next year, but pruning is required to help train them for when the grapes come.

Some daffodils near the house are about 2 inches up out of the soil. I checked in the woods where I have several batches and they aren’t up yet. The trees are keeping the sun off of them, so they tend to grow and bloom later.

My garden boxes are looking good. I really need to get some seeds started NOW. Hopefully this weekend. I’ll have to put it into my goals, so I will look at it over and over and get it done 🙂

One of our bee hives fell over and all of the bees died. We still have 1 hive, so all is not lost. My son T,  is 12 is planning on doing Beekeeping for 4H this year.

We have mole trails everywhere. I don’t really care except that L keeps tripping over them, falling down, and crying. She isn’t all that great at getting up from falling, but practice makes perfect.

I will need to paint some of the trim around the house, especially around the double car garage. The winter has caused this to be more noticeable.

I would like to paint the shutters on the house. They have faded terribly over the years. A nice coat of paint wouldn’t be hard and would freshen up the front of the house.

Window boxes need to be filled with flowers, but that will have to wait a couple of months until the weather is in full cooperation. I love filling them with fresh flowers!

Everything is so brown and ugly. But, the sun has been shining and things will green-up quickly.

A huge tree branch fell and hit a wooden bridge that my son J made as a trial bridge for his Eagle Scout project. That needs some work to make it functional again.

There are lots of sticks to pick up because we live in the woods.

It feels good to see the stuff that I enjoy and the jobs that need attention this year.

How about you, is it Spring where you live yet? Are there jobs that you can see needing to be done this year?

Ann

Working On Writing Out Weekly Goals

weekly goals

 

I recently read Money Saving Mom’s new book called Say Goodbye to Survival Mode. It’s pretty convenient timing as I have been in survival mode for nearly 18 years now.

You know how it is, busy all of the time, burning the candle at both ends,  and never doing anything for yourself because there is no time etc.

My husband has been getting on me about having our teenagers doing more around the house. He thinks that they believe that I am the maid. They probably do!

Anyway I have been on a mission to get some things that I want to do into my day. Now, they aren’t large things, because first and foremost I am a wife and mother, but as my teenagers are tackling more things around the house it does free me up to figure out what I like to do and what I want to spend my time doing.

You probably think I should know that by 45, but truthfully, I haven’t done much for me in the last 15 years or so. When our first three were born so quickly, I had 3 under 3, what I wanted went to the wayside fairly quickly. The little ones needed and got all of my time and attention. The good news was that I could remember life before them and could remember the fun stuff I used to do. Fast-forward to now, I have been doing the same jobs of cooking, cleaning, laundry, grocery shopping, school projects, homework, etc. for so long that I really don’t remember a time when I wasn’t doing all of those things. I mean, of course I remember, but not really, get it?

My husband has been pushing me a little to figure out what it is that I would want to do if I had the time and I am trying to figure it out. It takes a while.  You can’t undo 18 years overnight!

Anyway, back to the book. Crystal Paine has downloadable goal sheets on her webpage. She talks about goals. She accomplishes things.  She runs a very successful website.  She has credibility to me.  So, I thought I’d give her goal sheet a try.

I wrote my goals down on her printable sheet last Friday. I planned out the meals for the week. I made goals for reading, I made exercise goals, I had a goal to blog 4x this week. I had a home improvement goal. I had a sewing goal, and a saving goal. The NEAT thing is that while I didn’t accomplish all of my goals, they were things that I really wanted to do. Seeing them written down made me want to work towards them so that I could check them off. The sewing goal that I had for myself didn’t happen, but the goal of sewing with my daughter for an hour over the weekend did. Without that sheet staring back at me, I’m sure I would have put it off and not spent that time with her.

Having a goal of saving $40 out of my grocery budget for the family cruise helped me have the determination to cook something that I already had planned instead of grabbing some cheap pizzas. I guess you could say, it held me accountable to what I said was important to me this week. I need that.

I already have my goals for next week mostly ready for tomorrow. I am going to try to finish up on the things that I didn’t accomplish so I don’t have to put them on the list for next week. I want to have success.

How about you, do you write out goals? Do you love to cross them off of your list?  Do tell what you do to get things done.

Ann