Tuesday, September 30, 2014

On To The Next Chapter

I don't know when it happened but it seems like The Toddler Chapter is officially over as the little people in our family mature into slightly bigger people. Not really much bigger, if we're being honest. Just older in their heads. Think 3 going on 15 and 6 going on 16. And yes, the little girl's number is moving at a more rapid pace.

My phone is one alarm clock after another between tai kwon do, gymnastics, and the play dates I've managed to avoid until now. I have nothing against play dates, really, but with the different school hours and our kids having an early bed time (read: early wine time for the parents, just kidding, although maybe I'm not kidding), we just haven't really pursued additional friend time before. Benny has also put in a request to start doing Tater Tots again. He meant Torah Tots but it's name shall forever be changed now. We'll see if that can be worked into the equation, no promises little man.

Last year, Benny had a friend he really wanted a play date with. When they were placed in the same class this year, we made an effort to get to know his parents so Benny could get his chance before we move. Tomorrow is our big Play Date Day.

And of course, now that we are moving in about three months(!!!!!), Bella has a new girl in her class this year and they are attached at the hip, beyond besties, princess twins, frozen fanatics, matching braids and tutu skirts kind of friends. It's absolutely adorable and we are three play dates in with her already!

The nice thing is both of these friends have really nice parents. Score! (That was for you, Bubby.)

And now let's move the spotlight to me. I am on Week 2, Day 2 of my workout and I am still actively enjoying it and doing it. The run time is getting easier to handle, even though it is getting longer. My diet is going well, too! Considering the fact that we are in Food Country over here with all the holidays, I have not lost a significant amount at all but I am still lower than my starting weight instead of over. My hope was to at least stay balanced through the holidays, so the odds are ever in my favor at this moment!

Treated myself to a nice pair of running shoes after my first week, got them during a great sale!

Slightly more intense than last week.

My legs' best friend right now. Note to all you non-workouters out there, don't let your body become fudge. Or just never become active. 

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Back For a Run

There's no way I'm covering all that's happened in the last eight months of my blogging silence but all you need to know is this:

1. Shuky was offered a full-time position at Amazon and we are moving to Seattle at the end of December.

2. We have three months until graduation as of this past Friday.

3. Our company sponsored move does not require my packing or much else. I've been organizing slowly but no pressure. So the panic attacks should be under control. :)


Ok, all caught up. Welcome back. Both of us, truly. I've both enjoyed my sabbatical and missed my posting. Considering I've been getting gentle nudges from a few people over the last few months to sit back down with my computer, I'm assuming I'm not the only one that's missed it. If I'm wrong, leave me be with my ignorance!!

This past week, I joined weight watchers with a family member -- stress, baby weight (just go with me on that one), crazy past year, and so on and so forth, have all pushed the need for this. I'm in it to win it and really hope to see results! Paying for a program makes it so much more real and serious!! I also downloaded a 'Couch to 5K' app on my phone and started my first workout today. Not as bad as I expected it to be at all! It's an 8 week fitness system, 30 minutes a day, 3 days a week. Each week gets a bit more intense until you should be able to run a 5k. I'm not planning on running in any 5k. I just need something to whip me into shape! This should definitely do it.


Honestly, knowing that I'm not intensely planning a move and packing like crazy, I am choosing to put aside some of my time to start down our new path in Seattle as a better me. That's all. The same way I'm clearing out excess belongings we don't need to take with us in our move, I'm saying goodbye to my own excess.

This has been a super unexciting 'welcome back' post but it's what I've got right now!!
Hope you all have nice and meaningful holidays, if this is the season of yours. If not, enjoy hearing about all the food we consume over the next couple weeks!!! 

Happy Rosh Hashana from ours to yours!

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Snow Business

I would like to formally take a moment and thank all of New York and its surrounding areas for being a team player. Someone  had to have the gross weather today and I appreciate all of you taking one for the team!!

Here, where the fear of freezing your butt off was first discovered (I just made that fact up), it is a beautiful 41 degrees, the sun is shining, the snow is melting, there was a huge line as I waited to get my car washed, we are all wearing sweaters and they are unzipped (**gasp**).

I'm sure this means that our city will be one slick sheet of ice tonight, but IT WILL NOT HAVE BEEN FOR NAUGHT!

In other news, I fear this winter, in whatever capacity we are suffering through it, may never end so I have taken the initiative to go ahead and order myself a new beanie. A girl's gotta stay warm somehow.

Today is a rambly sort of post so I'll continue as such. Our in-the-same-building-but-one-floor-down move is coming along. Still have more to transfer over and I'm organizing as we go through it all, adding some to our storage and just getting rid of others. My trusty red wagon is definitely getting its exercise! We had to slow down this week because our little family decided to throw a sick party -- Bella's got the pediatric version of walking pneumonia, Benny's got bronchitis, and Shuky's got something in between the two. All three of them are on meds, Benny is in school and Bella and I have just been chilling. Between the doctor appointments we've had on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and the follow up today for Bella. And the first three obviously had corresponding pharmacy visits!

And with that, I can say enjoy your snow day if you are having one, as I am ABSOLUTELY enjoying not needing one!!

Monday, February 3, 2014

That Just Happened.

Do you ever feel like you work so hard to avoid something specific and find it still follows you around every corner? 

Moving is my kryptonite. I hate it with a passion like you wouldn't believe and, yet, I just can't get away from it. Even as a kid, my family moved. A. Lot. By the time I got married and was ready to start my own home, I had somewhere between ten to fifteen moves under my belt. And I was only 21.

Not able to avoid it, our sixth anniversary was matched with six moves, not including the time we spent bunking with family in between (not insignificant amounts of time there either). I really had myself convinced that this last one, a little over two years ago, would be the last move until we were ready to leave Iowa. I was so sure! And yet, I hesitated to decorate our apartment, as is my M.O. Why put time and emotion into making a place mine when we might just pick up and move on soon! 

After getting back from Seattle, I was on this intense 'get our apartment organized' kick and part of that included a little bit of functional decorating. And making the kids' rooms a little more exciting.

We moved to Ames in the summer of 2010 and it took until post-summer of 2013 for me to be interested in decorating, just so you understand completely.

The past few weeks have been a little intense in our apartment. We've had some major heating issues, keeping our apartment very cold. It also happens to be that this winter has been EXTREMELY harsh in terms of low temps and windchills in the 'never should get there' zone. Our building manager and maintenance guy exhausted every effort, trying to get our heat to a comfortable level but this past week, they realized there was nothing that could be done until the end of winter, when the entire building could have the system turned off for work to be done.

Simultaneously, we have been having small electrical issues here and there that the maintenance guy had been able to fix each time, more or less.

When they realized the heating couldn't be fixed, they provided us with a space heater for each bedroom and a nice, larger one for the living room area.

Within a minute of turning them all on, the breaker tripped and the power went out. A new breaker went in, the heaters were turned back on, and the same thing happened. Within a minute, it was all off.

Out came an electrician.

The diagnosis was our apartment would need rewiring and it wouldn't be a quick fix.

I'll spare you the details of the emotional train wreck I was at this point. 

At this point, it was noon-time on Friday. We had just picked Bella up from school and had a couple hours until it was time to get Benny. 

Our manager offered us a vacant unit of comparable size with very generous terms of how long we could take to move in (she even offered to allow us to use it just for the winter if we wanted our apartment for the long run, after the work would all be finished), and went above and beyond to make sure we could make it all work.

At which point, we started moving our belongings. 

We opted to just permanently move to the other unit, as we will be moving within the year (GOD WILLINGGGGGGG) and it didn't make sense to come back for a few months.

Remember how I said this was Friday, around noon? By the time Shabbos came in that evening, we had all three bedrooms mostly set up, a semi-functioning kitchen, a living room, and our table and chairs. How? I have no freaking clue. A friend came to help with the couch and table, another friend watched Bella until it was time to pick up Benny and We. Just. Trekked.

We are slowly working our way into the apartment and I honestly debated just pretending this never happened. But what's a blog without a post or two every so often so here I am, spilling the beans.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

335 Days.

We are officially one week in to our second to last semester here which means in less than a year we will be D-O-N-E over here!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Did I use enough exclamation marks there?

Eleven months left. And three of those will be spent elsewhere for Shuky's summer internship.

While I was talking a friend about that number earlier this week, she showed a better way to look at it - four months left here, go spend three months somewhere awesome, and come back for another four months to pack and move. Just writing that helps me breathe easier.

Those who know me personally are probably aware of the fact that I am a planner. I like to have things figured out in advance and, while I can definitely roll with it, spontaneity is not my favorite thing. During the first few years of school, the unknown was easier to deal with. It was completely out of our control and our future was not even tangible. Now, things are so close but we won't know for sure where we will be moving until next September. NEXT. SEPTEMBER.

Don't worry, we are still planning. I've been researching galore. Trying to weed through all the hypothetical cities that could be potentially be home for us. Knocking some areas off the list, moving others higher up in priority. At the end of the day, we can not decide until job offers come in but it doesn't hurt to have an idea of what's out there instead of scrambling around last minute to make the decision!

And again, for those who REALLY know me personally, you are probably aware that I spend every free second on Zillow. I have my houses picked out in our top cities already. Hopefully the new tenants will get transferred to the Midwest when it's time for us to come. And I say the Midwest because that sure as hell would not affect our housing situation, if you catch my drift. My cold and icy drift.

Hope everyone enjoyed their New Years and is back in the grind of things in this amazing year of 2014. {December of 2014. That's been floating around in my head like that old screen saver on Windows. You know which one I'm talking about. The one that used to say Yournamehere Rox!!!, and would bounce off each side of the screen while doing flips and twists. Yeah, that one.}

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Cold Blogging

Here's the thing about me. I'm an introvert. Sometimes I just need to retreat into my head and keep my space. It has happened before here, although most times, there's some sort of life change happening that keeps me away. This time it was honestly just needing space. I needed some time to myself. While I generally love blogging, this is something I do of my own accord, I just needed to pull back from all things social. I've been more quiet on FaceBook than usual as well, if that makes anyone feel better! And yes. That is me being more quiet.

I've tried coming back here to get my blog groove back but I now have a bunch of unfinished posts, some with only three sentences, some with only three words, others with half a page. None of which really make sense. All of which will be deleted.

The last time I posted was around the High Holidays. We are going to just hit 'Live' right now and scoot right up to where we are here and now.

Hi again!!

I am loving all the new organizational things I've done around the apartment and how much nicer things are looking and the better air flow we now have! And I've also worked on getting the kids rooms looking a little more lively.
 Added this great poster above Benny's bed. I have some posters to put up on the wall alongside his bed, just have to restock my stash of command strips!
And gave him an astronaut view as he launches off to sleep. It cycles through the different phases of sunlight, really cool actually!

And Bella finally got a gorgeous name sign from my beyond talented mother!! Hard to see but the decal above says 'Once Upon A Time There Was A Princess...' 
I have a couple more things that will be going up on Bella's wall opposite this, where her toys are. Just need to decide if I want to frame them or go with self-painted clothespins like I did above.

It's been pretty cold here, we got a couple inches of snow over the weekend. So that's been fun. Without the fun part. I'm pretty sure anyone that knows me is aware of my feelings toward coldness and snow and real winter. Not a big fan, just to clarify.
It's sad because the snow is actually quite gorgeous here, all sparkly and white. But then the temperature has to go and drop below zero with insane windchills (Take the -20 windchill we had yesterday. Not cool Iowa.)

Almost forgot this awesomeness, last night Shuky went out onto the porch in the crazy cold to make this awesome video of a bubble freezing!! 

Either way, we are coming up to winter break over here. As a family, we will be going to NY for a week. First time since the summer we spent there right after Bella was born. As a family, anyway. And then, when we get back, I will be escaping on my own for a few days. Heading to somewhere sunny and gloriously unwintery!!! And I. Can't. Wait. Like beyond excited and would already be packing if I could. :)

Ok, I keep getting distracted and I really want this to get posted so I'm going to go ahead and finish up over here. Until next time!

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Organization Overhaul

This time of year it's always harder to post regularly. Between unpacking, doing laundry, repacking, driving to our holiday hosts, keeping the kitchen only minimally stocked so nothing goes bad, keeping up with school needs, and breathing, there's not really a whole lot of extra time. So naturally, this is when I find myself knee deep in a major organization project at home.

Just to give you some insight into my blogging devotion, I spilled a way-too-full cup of Gatorade on my keyboard on Friday and while it is clearly still typing, none of the letters really want to pop back up after being pressed down. So this may take a little longer than usual to get fully typed!

Our storage unit (our apartment came with a small storage cube by the elevator on our floor) used to be a large tetris box and getting things in or out was a major chore. I realized that more than half of what is in there is really not needed anymore! So now there's about 1/3 of what used to be in there. Most has already been sold or donated or tossed. I have four large tubs of clothing that I separated into the appropriate piles last week and this week I will distribute as required! Between the laundry and repacking. And the Mommy-monitored visit with Bella to her soon to be classroom.

I have also been working hard getting the kids' rooms more organized. Benny had an ugly bookshelf in his room, holding his books and toys. I had some credit on Amazon from survey sites I do so I ordered him a nicer looking shelf and put his bookshelf in our 'entry way' {read: kitchen/living room/dining room} and we turned it into our very own Meyerbrary (hoping to make a cute banner with the kids to hang over it). The kids each got a little box in their rooms and they can switch out their books once a week-ish. No need for thousands of books strewn across each floor!

Here you can see the tubs waiting to leave our apartment. I'm planning on using the top shelf for winter gear baskets. Right now it's all on the top shelf of  our coat closet and I pass things out each morning.

Bella's room is also looking much better. I am tempted to order the same shelf for her room but I really have to get rid of her enormous dresser first. I was originally planning on replacing it with something smaller but I think I can completely eliminate the need for a dresser. I have a set of plastic drawers in her closet that was being used for things she grew out of, but our lovely consignment shop is now in possession of some of that stuff! So I transferred her clothing to those drawers and just need to get more skirt hangers and it should all be fine! I made her a cute little accessory station on the inside of her closet door and she loves it!
I need to add some more hooks for hanging her jewelry :)

I pulled out our 'growing into' box to see what I have for the new sizes of the kids. We had a nice amount of stuff to pull out now and my box is sadly more than half empty! Time to keep stocking up on larger sizes, although I am hesitant to get too much as we don't have a lot of time left here. A year and three months (but who's counting) may seem like a lot of time to some of you but when you feel stuck in the eternity of college life, that is like a sneeze and a cough away!!!!!!

As usual, our bedroom is the dumping ground for everything that needs deciding. I feel like the kids' rooms are just so much more important for our little people to be able to sleep and function nicely! Shuky and I can handle the craziness much better, even though I am hoping to get to our room as soon as Bella starts school! As soon as that is done, I can start on some of my crafting that I am waiting to do. I have been preparing at least, found a pattern sale at Hobby Lobby last week, picked up a couple craft patterns at $0.99 a piece and I can't wait!!

Hope you all are enjoying the holidays and maybe some of you are getting cooler weather already. Would love to hear what kind of projects everyone else is working on now!