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Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Smart January

I am very excited about my goals this month.  I have gone to work out each week no less than 3 days.  Woohoo!  I can't say that I have lost many pounds, but my boss noticed inches!  This is a step in the right directions, now if we could just get the weather to stop being wintery so that we can have school more, then I could up my attendance at the gym. :)  I supposed Kyle could come home to get me then drive me back to Ashland, but who wants to spend the gas even though its cheaper?  My favorite of the month is Kayla...I had on her chore list for two weeks to organize the bins of her stuff by the front door, because I noticed they were full and she is leaving her stuff lay around the front room.  I waited (patiently) for two weeks for her to comply.  Then Saturday, I brought a bin to the table next to her and said, what can I throw away.  Then proceeded to get out another bin and she got the not so subtle hint.  She says, "you need to quit exercising because you have too much energy!"  Ha!
My more like Him goals are going okay too.  Patience is always going to be tricky, but hey, I have learned to temper my tongue a lot more at home than I used too.  I am the ward missionary too, so I have just this week made up my mind to make 2 contacts a day.  Or 7 letters and 7 phone calls, all of which I might do in 1-3 days, but its a start.  I don't always leave church with an assignment so I thought I will start here as well as continue my work with the YSA and call it good enough. 

This guy turned 20 last Thursday.  He woke up with the flu and didn't really recover until Monday.  The cake I make last Wednesday did not taste as good on Sunday, as it would have on Thursday.  I held his birthday meal of hamloaf and mashed potatoes until Sunday.  It just was a big bust.  His birthday present still hasn't arrive, so I showed him a picture of what I ordered.  I can't wait to get a picture, so it will have to be a surprise until then. 

We are still waiting on the mission call.  We have zero feedback as to whether the papers actually got submitted, if he has an open mission account, all we heard from the stake leaders is we are actively working on it...whatever that means.  Waiting is so hard...

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Three Day Weekend

We had a busy weekend.  Friday, Kyle, Dakota and I headed out to Columbus to go to the temple.  We have been trying to attend more before Dakota goes back on his mission.  Dakota decided on twice a month.
Saturday there was a game night at church.  We brought tailgate food and just enjoyed a night playing games and eating good food.
We all enjoyed some volleyball action.  I was so sore on Sunday.  It seems like forever since I played for real as a freshman in high school.
 Monday we didn't have to work since we  have government jobs.  So we packed up the family and headed to the Natural History Museum in Cleveland.  It was SO busy, all the museums were free to get into because it was Martin Luther King Jr. day.
 We slipped through crowds of people with strollers and small children to see some of the dinosaurs.
 I think my favorite was this large moose.  We breezed through the museum crowds in about an hour so we headed over to the art museum too, which was a short walk down the street.  I ran out of battery, but got one shot of a German chair used by monks.
Kyle set off an alarm by pointing at an exhibit, it was kind of funny.  We ended our weekend by eating a great lunch at the Mongolian Grill.

It was an action packed weekend where I soaked up being a mama to two children who still like hanging out with their parents.  I think that is one of my greatest gifts!

Monday, January 12, 2015

Snow Day Stuff

Snow days are a bittersweet kind of a thing.  Sweet to be home and doing other things.  Bitter when you get three in a row just after winter break.  So I have been trying to utilize my time.  I got my social studies plans done through March.  I got my grade cards done.  So I turned my focus onto a couple things I have been wanting to to do at home.

I cleaned out my freezers.  I organized them and I made up a few meals using the produce we have been collecting.
 I made a couple bags of Butternut Squash curry.  Recipe here.
 I made a pumpkin bundt cake, I even pureed my own pumpkin.

I think I chopped every vegetable I had in the crisper and froze it to make meal prep easier later.  I worked for hours.  I didn't get many meals made ahead, but I got a lot partially prepped so that we can make quick meals and REALLY try to eat out less when things are busy.  I'm excited to try them.  I worked really hard to meal plan meals that I can actually make during the work week.  So far so good, 
 Dakota got his passport in the mail today.  I wonder if he will have to use it?  I hope he gets to return to the original mission he was called to, but we will just be happy that he is out serving.  I am so excited to see the next mission call.
 Kota was playing with the puppies outside.  They like to chase snowballs.  It was fun to watch.
 I was practicing with my camera this weekend during the blue skies and got so pretty good shots.
Can't really complain here, I have got a lot done over those three school days.  The best part is spending quality time with my kids before work for Kayla.  Dakota gets snow days too, because his boss stays home with his boys on snow days, so a lot of fun time with the Mooseman before he takes off for two years.  What more could I ask for on these bittersweet days!

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Smart New Year

We heard a talk recently about setting goals.  SMART goals to be exact.  I have been fairly successful about setting goals and have accomplished many.  My favorite was to be More like Him, the Saviour. I realize I will not ever be perfect like Christ, but I can work on developing Christ like attributes.

My goal this year is to recognize the attributes in myself and work on the weakness that creep up during the year.  So, the attributes I'll be looking for is faith, hope , charity, love, virtue, knowledge, patience, humility, diligence, and obedience.  Some of these I am already good at so I hope to maintain and grow those, others I really struggle with.

To have a Smart goal:
Specific:  I will work on patients and humility when I am in tough situations at home and work
measureable: I will report honestly my successes and failires (boo) as they occur
Attainable: because I am not expecting perfection and know this is a work in progress I can attain it.
Relevant: this will help me keep covenants I have made
Timely:  I will report out monthly in my blog
Another goal I have for my self is to be more healthy.  It is the 40 year, so as a friend of mine said
before (and I'm changing the number) 40 by 40.  Okay, so realistically I won't lose 40 by July, but I do want to lose.  Kyle and I are working together.  We have pledged not to get angry at each other when we point out unhealthy eating habits.  We got a gym membership and have already attended twice ( much to my squeaky joints dismay) and we are being realistic and allowing one day a week to eat whatever.  The goal is to live long and see great- great grandkids.

In reflection of the last year of more like Him I learned ALOT about patience, humility, love and diligence.  Spiritually, I had to learn about forgiveness for mistakes that weren't mine, but affected me greatly both emotionally and financially.  In that trial I had to be patient.  My reactions and ability to bite my tongue more than I wanted to improved.  I learned that diligence in prayer, fasting, obeying council from priesthood leaders, and truly uniting in our purpose as a couple can bring forth miracles.
I love this goal, because as I reflect I realize a lot of blessings throughout the year, which in return gives me faith and hope.  It truly is the best goal for me.

2015 is going to bring blessings with a return to the mission field, a daughter getting to go to dog trainer school, my landing an administration position (if it's God's will), and so many things I couldn't possibly know at this time.  I'm excited to start.  Wowho!!!

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Better Late then Never

We did a lot of different things this year for Christmas.  As part of my calling at church I  have been working on having fun activities for the Young Single Adults (YSA).  This year we made plates of goodies and put them into a homemade sweater stocking that Kayla and I made.
 We attached a saying about you've been "socked."  We had a good time, so good in fact that the missionaries ended up delivering all the stockings in their travels!
 Christmas is the year mark of having the puppies.  Oh how they've grown.  The kids love them very much and they are a messy part of our family.  I don't miss having hair-free floors and couches...
 What does Santa bring young adults,..well we started getting home things for Kayla and she loved them, special cups (milk jars) and blue pots and pans and she even asked for a cookie jar.
 We loaded Kota up with mission supplies, again.  We we went through his packed bags we discovered his neck size grew like the grinch's heart.  He needs all new white shirts.  Oh well, if that is what it takes to get him back there.  His mission papers were resubmitted on 1/1/15.  We look forward to seeing the progress and if he is returning to the same mission or going on to a new one.
 Speaking of missions, the missionaries came to call home to their parents.  Christmas is one of two times in the year they get to call home.  All four of them took turns using our computer and ipad to skype or facetime home.
 We got the kids each a puzzle for the afternoon, so we worked on them for hours in the afternoon.  Kota's was 300 pieces and went together much faster than Kayla's 500 piece.
Kayla's puzzle was missing 4 pieces, Ugh!  Nothing worse than an unfinished puzzle.

I don't have any pictures of New Year's, but we had fun visiting Grandma Beninghof and mom.  Kayla spent the afternoon doing another puzzle with Aunt Terri and we enjoyed talking about everything with Grandma.

This break Kyle took some of his vacation time and ended up spending several days with just me because the kids were working.  It was kinda fun.  We wend shopping and I got a beautiful wreath that was regular $70 for $10 in the clearance sale.  It is more of a winter wreath instead of Christmas so it will get to stay up for a few months.  I need to learn how to make a burlap one for spring.  I also need to learn how to use my camera.  I've watched several youtube videos and I think I actually got worse, see the blurry pics above.  I've put it back on auto and now they are better again, but on auto I don't get to do what I want...guess I'm going to have to take a real class.