Thursday, May 24, 2018

Summer Wishlist 2018

I've seen a few other bloggers create summer wishlists or bucket lists and it seems like a fun idea. Some of the items here are ones I pulled from my 2018 To Do List, but some are new. They may not all be possible, as money is EXTREMELY tight. But that's why it's called a wishlist, right...
  • go berry picking
  • go to the beach
  • climb a mountain with a fire tower with my son
  • go camping (in a tent)
  • get ice cream from the ice cream truck
  • go to the farmer's market
  • go swimming
  • hike to a waterfall
(That's all I can think of right now, but I may add more later if inspiration strikes.)

What's on your summer wishlist?

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Mother's Day on the Bog

What better way is there to spend Mother's Day (or any day) than with a hike at Second Home Nature Center? That's what we did, returning to the favored Bog Trail. The weather was perfect, starting cool and warming more than 20 degrees while we were out. We saw tadpoles, a giant snapping turtle, several painted turtles, fish, and frogs. We threw LOTS of rocks and sticks and watched people paddling in canoes.




Throwing rocks.

Tuesday, May 01, 2018

2018 To Do List: April

  1. Rearrange/clean the family room to make it a more usable space
  2. Read at least 28 books - two books finished in April (12/28)
  3. Hang snow shoes
  4. Hang rabbit art (x2) in my son's room
  5. Acquire a hammer ✅
  6. Get rid of clothes my son has outgrown
  7. Get rid of clothes I don't wear/like
  8. Go swimming, preferably in a natural body of water
  9. Go to the Adirondacks
  10. Take my son camping in a tent in the woods for at least one night
  11. Frame 2017 school pictures ✅
  12. Spend less money on weekly groceries - efforts underway
  13. Try shopping at Aldi ✅
  14. Eat more veggies
  15. Eat more fruits
  16. Journal more
  17. Complete 365 Mile Challenge - 34.3 miles for April (101/365) Best month so far!! 
  18. Refinance my mortgage
  19. Make my own kombucha
  20. Get my son to use the potty
  21. Get new glasses
  22. Decorate the house in some way for smaller holidays (Valentine's Day ✅, St. Patrick's Day ✅, Easter ✅)
  23. Grow some sort of veggie this summer (zucchini? tomatoes?)
  24. Have the driveway sealed
  25. Take down the baby gate at the top of the stairs to the family room ✅
I continue to plug away at my reading and mileage goals, but otherwise April was pretty slow for the to do list. My reading time during lunch has been much interrupted of late, which is frustrating but goes with the territory job-wise.

I've fully incorporated Aldi into my weekly shopping routine. I go there first, purchasing as many items as possible, then I race across the road to Wegmans to get the rest of what I need (items not available at Aldi). The only line in my monthly budget that is at all flexible is food. So I am focusing my efforts on spending less money on food since it's the only item I can control. I already switched to store brands whenever possible and stopped buying organic. But it's not like we can live on rice (my son won't eat rice). This past week I spent a total of $59 between the two stores and $11 of that was diapers (dude really, really needs to start using the potty). I am taking advantage of some food items already in the freezer and pantry, so I won't always be able to get the bill down that low. And of course now that I'm into an Aldi/Wegmans rhythm my Aldi is closing for renovations until the end of June. Sigh.

I may share more about my finances and budget in another post.

Monday, April 30, 2018

Birthday Weekend

Saturday morning (my birthday) we took it slow. We both needed some slowness after the mad rush Monday through Friday to get us out the door to school and work on time. Eventually we headed to Target so I could collect my free birthday drink from Starbucks (a large Green Tea Latte) and a couple cake pops. We also picked up hay for the guinea pigs and yeast because the grocery store hasn't had any for 2-3 weeks and I was craving some homemade bread.

From there we headed for Second Home Nature Center for my annual wildflower hike. Alas, the never ending winter wasn't really working in my favor. We found a few spring beauty, hepatica, and blue cohosh in bloom. Even that surprised me. I thought we'd come up completely empty. The trillium and trout lily were in bud, just barely. It was overcast and sprinkly, but still fairly mild. We also heard two barred owls calling ('tis the season) practically on top of us, but I couldn't search for them because my son was at the water's edge doing his best to throw everything not nailed down into the water (including himself?).

We encountered a man with his two year old son and got to chatting. He made it clear he was single and I tried to indicate the same, but nothing came of it. Do I need to be more direct? (That's not gonna happen.) Or was it the fact I hadn't showered in days? Who can tell.

That night we went to Panera with my dad where I collected another birthday freebie, a yummy tulip cookie. My sandwich was probably the worst I've ever had from Panera, but of course I ate it anyway.

The weather on Sunday was cold and dreary and raw, which made me grumpy. But at least I had fresh bread.

How was your weekend?



Trying to get my phone to ficus on the blue cohosh flower.

Monday, April 23, 2018

Currently



Drinking: Water. Black tea. Kombucha. Same as always. I found a new to me kombucha flavor yesterday and it is fantastic.

Watching: I started catching up on Designated Survivor this weekend because I finished my re-watch of ER. I think I had 7 or 8 episodes of Designated Survivor on my DVR, so I'll be working on that for a while before moving on to the next show.

Reading: Balanced and Barefoot by Angela J. Hanscom. The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson. It's Fall by Linda Glaser.

Playing with: Wooden marble track. Shape magnets. Penguin ball.

Feeling: Miserable. I'm so sick of the constant drip, drip, sneeze, cough. It's been a good four months straight and I'm OVER IT. I scheduled an appointment with an allergist for mid-June (their first available, sigh). 

Enjoying: We finally had a mild, sunny weekend! It was fantastic. We went for a hike, played in the yard, walked to the playground, and generally just enjoyed being outside as much as possible.

Looking forward to: More warm weather. The end of the semester.

What are you up to these days?

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

10 Items in Your Car

I used to have a super neat car. Not clean, but neat. I didn't let anything pile up or collect in the car. And then I had a baby. I could easily list WAY more than 10 items that ride around in the car all the time.
  1. Winter hat, big mittens, fleece gloves. Because it's still WINTER apparently.
  2. Pile of car toys: elephant, caterpillar, watering can, blue car, tiny tiny piggy, 2 wooden trains, a dump truck...
  3. Box of tissues
  4. Snow brush (this is in the car year round, regardless of the never ending WINTER)
  5. Folding bike (not that I've been using it for the last week, because WINTER)
  6. Picnic blanket
  7.  A slew of CDs I never listen to
  8. Bike helmet
  9. Baby blanket (for diaper changing purposes)
  10. Old towel (for mud, vomit, whatever)

Friday, April 06, 2018

School Lunches

My son started at a new school (daycare) this week. It's a smaller center without a full kitchen, so I  have to pack his lunch from now on. I'm sure this will get easier for me, but it's actually been more than a little stressful. Am I providing enough? Is it something he likes and will eat? Plus, I hate the idea of wasting food, so I want to avoid giving too much. Tricky business. My sister passed down her son's preschool lunchbox and it is super awesome. My Little Man loves it and loves that he can do it ALL BY HIMSELF.

Here's a look at some of his lunches from his first week.

Mini meatballs.


Deli turkey.


Peanut Butter on tortilla shells. Fruit twist (not licorice). Friday.