Saturday, February 17, 2018

Week in Review 2.17.18

Most of this week was spent doing laundry and getting back to normal. It didn't work out so great. The house is trashed, we all slept poorly and this morning the girls and I fly down to San Diego to visit my best friend. Looks like we'll worry about getting back to normal when we return. 

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Exercise

I got back in the groove this week with exercise which is good as we are jetting down to San Diego this week which will once again throw me off my routine. I got in 4 workouts last week! I did two boot camp classes and two barre3 classes. It felt good to lift weights and move in a different way this week. I originally planned to do 5 workouts but opt-ed to sleep in on Friday which I feel was the best choice. I needed my rest after a week of poor sleep which sadly wasn't due to jet lag but was instead due to children, pets and other commitments. 


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Food

It felt good to get back in the kitchen this week. On Monday, I made the Lentil Detox Soup from Pinch of Yum and it was really good. The only thing I'd do next time is really bump up the spices. 


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I also ordered one of my favorite Amazon Fresh Meal Kits - The Veggie Quinoa Bowl. I love it so much and it is pretty quick to make. It is a little high in the carbs for me so I'm thinking of how I can craft this same kind of bowl at home but with less carbs.

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The Girls

The girls had some highs and lows this week. They settled back into school but had the worst time going to bed and waking up. Our mornings were rough! 

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They jumped back into their after school activities and started a new swim session. They also really played with so many of their toys. I think they may have missed them! 

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Other Goings On

I made excellent progress on my Nanoo shawl. I also stupidly ripped out a whole section that I thought I had messed up on BUT had not. BOO! Otherwise this week, I worked on some articles, avoided housework and drove my kids around the city. 

Saturday, February 10, 2018

Week in Review 2.10.18

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This week was Sydney, Sydney, Sydney! We had an awesome time on vacation and the kids have decided to move here. This is such a great city and my favorite part is riding the passenger ferries. They thrill me to no end. We also hit up Taronga Zoo which was awesome. You take the ferry to it and then climb aboard a gondola for a ride to the top. Then you work your way down, exploring animals as you amble back to the ferry. 

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Exercise

Exercise was much less about workout sessions and more about all day walking explorations. I walked over 16,000 steps most days. Our quiet day was 14,000 steps. I got in 4 days of over 18,000 steps so I'm counting those 4 toward my workout goal for the year. When we first arrived in Sydney, I was impressed at how fit everyone looked and now that I've walked everywhere while using the ferries to get around, I understand why they are so fit. They also appear to go to workout classes all the time. This is so my city! 



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Food


Food in Australia is expensive but it is some of the most delicious food I've ever had. The hotel breakfast buffet has been my morning happy place with fried eggs that have the most yellow of yolks, amazing chicken sausage, fresh fruit, sautéed mushrooms which Maggie consumed by the bowlful and fresh crumpets. It was seriously delicious and my breakfasts at home are not going to be able to compare. 


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I've had a few mushroom burgers that blew my mind. Betty's Burgers had a fried mushroom burger with melted gouda and gruyere cheese that was sinfully delicious! We also had Japanese burgers with seaweed wraps from Gojima that were just perfect. I had a chicken burger wrapped in fried rice and seaweed. They also had sushi burgers but Scott said the girls and I were about to OD on sushi so I went for something different. Our first burger was at Grill'd and while it was good, it wasn't the best one I had all week. Grill'd is a healthy burger place so the emphasis is on fresher foods which is good. They also have a ton of Gluten-Free options. Actually gluten-free friends would eat well in this city as everything is well labeled and the options are endless. 


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The Girls

The girls have been AMAZING this week. Yes, we have had a few melt-downs and their listening ears have not always worked but overall, they walked miles and miles, greeted each adventure with a smile and charmed the people of Sydney. 


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Poor Molly was stung by a Blue Blubber Jellyfish while out at Manly Beach. She was pretty brave once she got over the initial sting. The lifeguard told us to wash it off with fresh water so I poured water all over her leg. Then we went for a walk to a saltwater pool where I encouraged her to swim. Speaking of swimming, the girls have been in swim heaven. They have swum almost every day at the hotel pool, spray park or in the ocean. 


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The girls have been up for adventures every day, all day long and I love that about them. They have plowed through when their feet have hurt and their skin was too hot. They encouraged me to feed them ice cream for lunch way too many times and it has been a lot of fun. 


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I have discovered that my kids are not shy but that Maggie could learn how to better approach people. Her current method of just yelling, "YOU! WHAT ARE YOU DOING?" isn't really working so well. We've used this week as a good exercise in learning how to introduce yourself to strangers while being kind. 


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Other Goings On

This week has been a dream vacation for me. I've always wanted to go to Australia and now I'm here! I've been koalas at two zoos and even got to pet one! I sailed many a ferry through Sydney and could do that all day. I've eaten the most delicious food and had a great time. I really hope I'm able to come back and can visit Melbourne and Bisbane next time. This is a lovely country and there is so much more to see. 


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Saturday, February 03, 2018

Week in Review 1. 27.18 & 2.3.18


I missed last week's review so I'm doubling up! We had a fun last session of ski lessons and I skied for almost three hours straight. It was pretty awesome! We also hopped a plane to Sydney, Australia! This is a dream trip for me and I am so excited about our adventure! 

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Exercise

I got in 5 
workouts last week! I did two 
boot camp classes, a barre3 class, went skiing and did a Studio 45 workout. This week I got in 3 workouts. I went to a City Cycle class, one boot camp class and barre3 class along with a good walk on Saturday in The Blue Mountains. I had way fewer classes this week because of our trip to Sydney! We spent over 16 hours on a plane so fitting in a workout was a big difficult. 



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Food


Scott was home last Monday so Maggie and I took him to our favorite Poke place. He was impressed with the food and impressed with our vast knowledge of poke. Maggie likes her raw fish! 


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Otherwise, the week was spent trying to eat the remaining food from the fridge. I did do an Acme Kitchen and Farms order which was perfect and provided us with delicious meals for the last few days before our trip. The food in Sydney has been amazing and EXPENSIVE! We need to figure out some places to grab a cheap meal because while I enjoy a great meal, it is going to be too much money if we eat this way all week. 

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The Girls

The girls had their winter showcase dance with ballet school. They both were adorable and both said they wanted to change to Hip Hop dance. I said that was not happening this year but maybe next. 

The girls did amazing on our 15 hour flight. We left on Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. and flew to Vancouver. Then we had a longer layover in Vancouver before getting on our flight to Sydney. The girls settled right in and after having second dinner on the plane, they both went to sleep. I caught a few zz's before they woke up and entertained themselves for the rest of the flight. I was really proud of them. It was a long haul but they did it. 

Other Goings On

I've been busy packing, knitting and writing. Planning for a long transcontinental flight with my kids has been intense. All my planning paid off though so it was worth it. The biggest thing this week was that I GOT TO PET A KOALA! My 8 year old self was obsessed with Koalas and Australia. OBSESSED. That 8 year old girl was so happy today. My kids just didn't understand and did not respect my Australian Nursery Song singing. I know them all! 


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Stories Published

Seattle Refined:  Re-Learning to Ski, 15 Years Later
Thursday, February 01, 2018

Monthly Goal Check-in (January)

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January flew by but I attacked my goals with a vengeance! I actually crossed off 3 of my 18 goals and made great great progress on a few of them. I'm quite happy with how I've started off 2018 in relation to my goals. 


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2018 Goals
  1. Workout 218 times in 2018 - I worked out 23 in January. I hit January hard but I did so because we are headed to Australia in February and while I plan to keep working out, I know that travel + exercise can sometimes be hard. 
  2. Go Skiing - I went skiing three times and it was AMAZING! My muscles remembered how to do it after a long 15 year break and I'm hooked! 
  3. Complete "The Artist's Way" - I started this goal on January 1 and have been doing morning pages, weekly tasks and Artist Dates with my Facebook support group. I have 8 more weeks to go and I'm excited about it. 
  4. Learn Hand Lettering - I sorta started this goal. I got a handlettering kit and played around with the pens but decided to put it aside for now. I want to take time to practice and now was not that time. 
  5. Paint the Bathroom - I'll do this one later. I have the paint and supplies. I just need some time. 
  6. Find a picture for the oval frame in my bedroom - I completed this goal! This was an easy one once I sat down and reviewed photo choices. I printed out the ones I liked on regular paper and then showed them to Scott. He helped me make the final selection and I printed it out on photo paper before sticking it in the frame. and DONE! 
  7. Replace the sad Rhododendron plant with a Dwarf Japanese Maple (or another plant) - This goal needs to wait until late summer or fall so I won't even be thinking about it until then.
  8. Build (or buy) a trellis for my vegetable garden - This is also a later goal. I'll do this one in May to prepare for my summer garden. 
  9. Buy a new dishwasher - I also completed this one and it was not as easy as I had hoped. Our old dishwasher was leaking and warped our cabinets which totally sucks. We do plan to remodel the kitchen but not for a few years. Handwashing dishes for a few years did not sound appealing to Scott or I. My brother has been working hard to help us fix our problem. For now the dishwasher is installed and working but is not completely in place. My brother needs to rebuild part of the cabinet and then properly install the dishwasher. I'm, however, counting this as done because my goal was to buy a new dishwasher and I did that. 
  10. Embrace Minimalism by doing the Minimalist Game for an entire month - I'm planning on doing this goal in March or April
  11. Reduce our food bill and food waste - I've been working hard on this goal. I noticed that my overall grocery shopping isn't terrible but the little add-ons, like meal delivery services, produce boxes and milk delivery add up. I've been more aware of them and only buying meal deliveries when it absolutely makes sense. I've also been trying to eat more leftovers for my lunches to reduce food waste. I tend to make enough dinner for 5 people thinking I'll have it for lunch and then I go out to lunch or eat something else and waste the leftovers. 
  12. Read War and Peace, Moby Dick, A Tale of Two Cities and The Grapes of Wrath - I have not yet started this goal but plan to bring Moby Dick on vacation with me. We have a long plane ride there and back so it might be perfect reading. 
  13. Read the Bible - I've been reading the Bible daily and slowly making my way through it. This is a year-long goal and it only takes about 10 minutes a day. I've been doing my best to do this during quiet moments when everyone is gone so I can concentrate. There is a lot of information packed into each sentence so I read them slowly. I've been intrigued about some of the stories. For instance, most of us know about Lot's Wife turning to salt when she looked back on Sodom. I always thought it was a long story. It is literally a line - "But Lot's wife looked back, and she became a pillar of salt." I am going to assume since I have not done any research that this story is mentioned in other religious texts and expanded on in them because this story is so much bigger in my head than this one little line. 
  14. Knit Nanoo - I started Nanoo and hope to get a lot knitted on my upcoming flights. 
  15. Knit 12 hats for charity - I started one hat and need to get two done this month. 
  16. Repeat Goal: Complete TKGA Master Knitting Level I by March 15th. - I plan to start this when we are back from vacation.
  17. Repeat Goal: Finish my Miter Square Blanket  - Plugging away
  18. Repeat Goal: Catch up on my yearly photo books of the girls - Making slow but sure progress!
Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Ski Season

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The girls started ski lessons at the beginning of January and Molly dove right in with love. Maggie, on the other hand, hates skiing. She did two lessons and declared herself done with it. Molly did four lessons and made awesome progress. She learned how to turn and stop which are amazing skills. Next year I'll have her do lessons and then go skiing with me. We still need to get her up on the chair lift!

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I was also able to get back up on the slopes after a 15 year absence. It was so much fun and I talked all about it over at Seattle Refined - Re-Learning to Ski, 15 Years Later. I quickly remembered what I loved and hated about skiing! 

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There were moments of fun and periods of sadness but overall, our first adventure into skiing went really well. I'm going to give Maggie more time to adjust and see if she comes around. Otherwise, Molly and I will ski while Scott and Maggie stay home. 

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Sunday, January 21, 2018

Week in Review 1. 21.18

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Another week, another ski session. I had so much fun flying down the slopes and I am no where as sore as I was last week. In fact, I'm heading out for a Reformer Pilates class in a bit since I'm feeling good. Also let's be honest, I signed up on Classpass and forgot to cancel last night so I have to go or pay a penalty fee. It will be worth it though! 

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Exercise

I got in 5 
workouts this week! I did three 
boot camp classes, a barre3 class and I went skiing! It was so much easier this week and I got to do a few runs on the magic carpet with Molly. I'm hoping to be able to ski with her next winter. We have one more ski lesson class to go so I have one more day of skiing I can do. 

Last year, I did 217 workouts in 2017 with my gym. The best gym owner ever gave all of us a prize for completing the challenge and I love it. It reminds me that "Anything is Possible" every time I look at my wrist. 


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Food


The kids decided to reject almost every meal I served this week but I didn't care because it was all so good! By the end of the week though I had swerved off our menu plan and ended up ordering take-out a few too many times. Oh well, next week is another week!

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The Girls

Maggie ended up skipping ski lessons this week. Scott needed to stay home due to a procedure earlier in the week so I left her with him and drove to the mountains with Molly. It was so much fun skiing with her. I dropped her off at lessons and while she was learning how to stop, I took a few runs. It was snowing like mad and everyone was out on the slopes. Molly conquered the Magic Carpet and made the hill her own. She is really doing well. 


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Maggie is doing so well at swimming and was even moved up to the harder group in her lessons. She isn't happy though since she now has a boy teacher so I told her to stop swimming so well which made her laugh. She also randomly asked to ride her scooter to pick-up Molly the other day so now I have high hopes for a summer of wheels! 

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Other Goings On

It felt like a really busy week even though we had Monday off and didn't do anything out of the ordinary. I spent a good portion of Wednesday clearing out my paperwork pile of doom. I got it down to a 1/3 of its former self. Now if I could only make myself get caught up on my work receipts for taxes. BLERGH! 


Strawberry Picking

Stories Published

Seattle Refined: Move Over Hygge, It's Time to Lagom!
Seattle Refined: You Can Do It: Become a Morning Person
Seattle Refined: A Beginner's Guide to Snowshoeing
Saturday, January 13, 2018

Week in Review 1.13.18

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The second week of January is in the books and it was a good one. We continued to work on getting back into the routine and I went to bed way too early most nights. The January darkness always means I go to bed early this time of the year but I am just embracing it and being cozy. 

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Exercise

I got in 5 
workouts this week! I did three 
boot camp classes, a barre3 class and I went skiing! I haven't skied in over 15 years but it was seriously like riding a bike. It was so awesome. I did about 5 runs before I needed to be back for my kids from ski lessons and then did a few Magic Carpet runs with Molly. It was fantastic. My calves are cramping up and I'm so tired but it was AMAZING! I plan to go again soon. Being able to go skiing totally made up for my canceled snowshoe trip. I was supposed to go up snowshoeing with someone I know from my gym. I was SUPER excited and then a HUGE storm came in and we had to cancel. It was the best choice but I was so excited about snowshoeing. 


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Food


I kept pretty close to our meal plan this week and watched my food spending. Maggie and I did go out for our Friday sushi date but it is her reward for getting through speech therapy. I also got a meal kit from Amazon Fresh since they had them on sale. It's one of my favorites and makes a hearty meal for two lunches. 

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The Girls


The girls are getting back to school and loving it. I've been working a lot with Molly on her sight words but she is just not into it. My newest "trick" is to do legos with her and have a sight word break every so often. 

Molly loved ski lessons again and Maggie hated them again. I think next week, I'm going to just take Molly up. Maggie is not liking them and I'm tired of dragging her around. 

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Other Goings On

I'm still going strong on my Morning Pages for the Artist's Way and got through the tasks and did an Artist Date this week. It feels really good! 

 
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