Sunday, February 26, 2012

Week in Review - 2/19-2/25

Carla's Challenge

I am 56% through our money and we are 90% through the month!  I got my reimbursements in, which is why my percentage is actually up from last week.  I haven't gotten any decluttering done yet, and I think I am coming down with a cold, so my house may be staying messy this month.

10 Pound Challenge

I weighed 200.6 lbs today, up .2 from last week.  Not sure what is going on, but it may be related to being sick.

2012 Goals

I'm too tired to see where I am exactly in the Bible this week, but I haven't done much.  Did make it to church on the 19th.

I worked out three times this week, but did not make it to the gym.  I want to do at least as well this week, even if I did spend today and may spend tomorrow down with a cold.

Money is boring, and on schedule.

No shooting.  My house is a wreck - the lovely living room I showed you last month has been re-cluttered with cardboard boxes and has a fine layer of shed cat hair across it.   I just can't seem to get caught up on the house thing.  On the plus side, I don't have any energy for visitors except for my mother, and she knows I am a total slob married to a pack rat.

Now I am off for some cold medication and some "sleeping while the babies sleep."  Wish me luck getting better.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Free EBook Friday - Night of the Wolves

Some of the best bargains on the internet right now are free ebooks on Kindle.  They can also be some of the worst dreck ever produced.  It just depends on which you stumble on, so I thought I'd start sharing those that I come across and enjoy.  Book prices change frequently; all I can promise is that the book was free when I published this post:)

This Week's Book:

Book it Reminds Me Of:

David Daglish writes firmly in the realm of dark fantasy, but happily he does not confuse it with erotica, as seems to be the case for many new authors.  This is all sword and sorcery and faith in gods and great deeds - nary a romance to be seen.  This book centers around two paladins, each of a different and competing god, who are assigned to the same area by their churches.  When the village is threatened by wolf-men, each man has to decide how he will respond when his most puissant ally is also his sworn enemy.

Mr. Daglish sets all of his novels in the same world; if you would prefer a darker series with a bit of romance thrown in, book one of his Half-Orc series, The Weight of Blood, is also free this week.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Procrastination Has "Pro" Right in It

Well, my ugly desk is still ugly ... but I am happy to report that I procrastinated cleaning my desk by doing my taxes(which was supposed to be my "dreaded challenge").  So I guess that the desk is the "dreaded" challenge after all:)

Seriously, this week I am planning to finish up the desk and the bedroom (which I did not complete for week one).  I'll leave it to Carla to decide whether this counts as a win or not, but I'm happy.

GW2 Beta

GW 2 Beta is live!  Now I just need Monkey and Football to start STTN.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Week in Review - 2/12 - 2/18

Carla's Challenge

I am 64% through my money and we are 62% through the month.  I need to get my reinbursements in, though, because I have big bills that hit at the end of the month and, also, I haven't got any groceries in the house, so this will need to cover two weeks worth of shopping.

No progress on the ugly desk; planning to work on that and reimbursements tomorrow.

10 pound challenge

I weighed 200.4 lbs today.  I'm barely below where I need to be for the challenge, but I can't complain because I failed to work out again this week.  I know I will do better this week, though, because I already worked out today.  I plan to keep the momentum going tomorrow!

2012 Goals

I'm only to the 33rd chapter of Deuteronomy, even though I felt like I did a lot of reading this week.  Not sure what is up with that.  I did make it to church today, and the babies were perfect angels.  I plan to enjoy it while they are not mobile; they'll be running up and down the pews soon enough.

No working out this week.

Money continues to be socked away.  At this point, it is pretty boring; everything is set up auto-pay.  Boring is good, though, it means that Mr. Goat still has a job;)

No shooting this week.  Also, I've not started Flylady routines, although that was one of my resolutions for the month.  I think I'll push them to next month; I have enough on my plate right now.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Week 2 Success!

Week 2 of Carla's Challenge is finished!  I organized my outgrown baby clothing into 3 piles, 1 pile of girly stuff for my friends' son who is having a girl, 1 (kitchen sized trash bag 0.o) pile of boy/gender neutral stuff, and 1 pile of stained/not nice anymore to be given away.  The larger gender neutral pile was to be given away, but my little brother talked about "when he has babies" twice in the last 3 days, so I am going to keep it around for a bit to see if he is going to propose to his girlfriend or not.  I figure, if he has babies in the next couple of years, it is worthwhile to keep the stuff around.  Most of it is winter stuff anyway, so I can re-evaluate in October (i.e., if they are broken up, I can try a consignment shop).

I put 9 outfits and 1 electric nail file into my Goodwill box, so I am up to 17/29 things gotten rid of.

I've decided to change up my week 3 and 4 challenges.  It is tax time, so I've decided to make my dreaded challenge completing my federal and state returns for 2011.  Between my kitchen and the piles of paperwork around my desk, the desk is the more urgent, so that got moved to this week's productivity challenge.  I think we can all agree that this needs work:

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

10 Pound Challenge 4 Week Update

On Monday, the official day of the update, I weighed 202 pounds.  On Sunday, the day before, I weighed 200 pounds.  Today, I weighed 201 pounds.  I'm not sure if the problem is the scale or my crazy eating and sleeping schedule.  I don't want to get a new scale, though, because as long as this one is reasonably precise, then the accuracy doesn't matter.  And it appears that it is precise to +/- 1.5 pounds, which is not that much in the grand scheme of things.  I needed to weigh 201 and 2/3 pounds on Monday to be on track; I am pretty close.

I'm not sure how I am losing weight, since I am not watching calories at all and have not exercised in almost two weeks.  The challenge has kept me away from mindless snacking on sugar, though; perhaps that is enough to drop a bit of weight simply because of the caloric requirements of nursing.  I think I am just about done with this cold, and I plan to begin working out again on Thursday because tomorrow is just too crazy to even try.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Week in Review - 2/5 - 2/11

Carla's Challenge
I have spent 44% of our household budget and we are 38% of the way through the month.  I haven't put in for reimbursement from my FSA, though, so we're really about on track.  I thought we were doing better, however I have been sick all week and this is the first day I sat down and actually ran all the numbers.

I haven't gotten a thing done this week.  The nasty cold has resolved into a persistent cough and overwhelming fatigue.  If I don't have a screaming baby, I am asleep.

10 Pound Challenge
Tomorrow is the 4 week mark, so I am saving my discussion for then.

2012 Goals
I'm on the 26th Chapter of Deuteronomy.  I missed church again, mostly because I couldn't make myself wake up to my alarm.  This makes two weeks in a row.

Having babies has given me a new perspective on reading the Bible.  I must have read Numbers 31:17, where the Israelites have defeated the Midianites, and Moses tells them to kill everyone but virgin girls, dozens of times.  But somehow, this week reading "now therefore kill every male among the little ones" made me think of my little Monkey, who is such a serious boy most of the time, but occasionally breaks out in big smiles.  A whole nation of little Monkeys was put to the sword because of something that they had nothing to do with.  I know that's the way the world works, but it really drives home the difference between the old and new testaments.
My Little Monkey
I haven't worked out at all this week, I was too busy coughing and sleeping.  I haven't done anything re:money.  I haven't gone shooting.  Being sick is one gigantic fail.

Hope your week has been more productive!

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Week in Review 1/29-2/4

I have spent 17% of our monthly budget and we are 14% through the month.  However, I expect 8% of that to be reimbursed from my FSA, so I'm calling myself ahead.

I have made no progress on my bedroom, in fact I have regressed, because I have been sick since Friday.  So my bedroom is now disorganized AND strewn with used Kleenex.  I'm feeling better today, though, so hopefully I can get cracking on both the bedroom and the baby clothing this week.

I did clean out a shelf in my hall, and I have a few things slated for donation.  This is three olive oil bottles (all presents), a hurricane lamp and lamp oil, a box that I won at a Christmas party, a snowman that was a favor at the same party, and an entire bag of icicle Christmas lights that aren't LEDs. So I am 7/29 for throwaway/donations for the month.

10 Pound Challenge
Today I weighed 203 lbs.  I'm hoping it is water weight from being sick, but I haven't been watching my food or exercising much this week.  I'll get back on this once I'm well again.

2012 Goals
I'm currently somewhere in Numbers.  I missed church this week.  I'm still reading the Proverbs 31 emails daily.

I worked out 4 times this week and made it to the gym once.  Getting sick will do that to you.  Better luck next week.

Not having a toy budget last month meant that there are a bunch of things I want to get this month.  I already purchased Brawn (hello, guilty pleasures) and I want to get Fair Game and A Perfect Blood
 as soon as they come out.  (Maybe.  I hate to pay hardcover prices on an ebook, when I know that waiting a year will allow me to get the same content for half the price.  I might just order them from the library and buy them later if I decide they are worth it.)  I also want to see Big Love: The Complete Fifth Season; I'm debating whether to buy it instantly ($15.99 for the season), get the DVDs from Half ($17.99, but hopefully they will retain resale value), or re-subscribe to Netflix for one month ($15.98, but I could watch other content too).  I also need to be saving for my bar association dues and my tithes.  In other words, I need to get cracking on selling some stuff if I want to get some stuff.  Unfortunately, I don't think I have much that's low-hanging fruit on the sales items anymore.  Hopefully I'll come across some stuff while I am purging this month.

Still no shooting.  I suck.

Hoping for better health next week!

Friday, February 3, 2012

Last Chance for Giveaway!

Today is your last change to enter A Girl and Her Gun's fantastic giveaway.  It's open to any lady interested in the shooting sports, and the prizes are:
(1) $300 Toward any Self-Defense Course from A Girl and Her Gun
(2) 1000 Rounds of Ammo (pick from a slate of standard self-defense calibers) from ZerCool, North, Tango Juliet, Scott McCray, The Calm Gun, and  Old NFO.
(3) Your option of either (a) a basic pistol and concealed carry class in Va or (b) a $50 gift certificate for gear from Keads
(4) A $50 gift certificate from Gun Goddess
(5) Ear muffs and a holster consult (in Va) from Female and Armed
(6) A pistol class for yourself and a friend in IA from Bill
(7) A holster from Remora
(8) A St. Barbara's medallion from Nancy
(9) Three cans of Steelguard Firearm Protector from Firearm Protector
(10) The Gift of Fear from GunDiva

Any lady interested in shooting can enter.  You can be a complete novice who has never fired a gun and still win all this great stuff.  Why are you still here?  Go enter now!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Carla's Low Spend Challenge - February Edition

Carla's back with another challenge.  You can read the details here, and it is not too late to sign up.  I've decided to do both parts, low spending and decluttering.

For Low Spending, I'm going to cut my household budget by 17% by (a) continuing to buy only essentials and (b) figure out what is going on with our phones.  We had 3 phone charges last month, and we've only got two phones.  I am seriously considering dropping our land line and going to cable; it wouldn't work in a hurricane, but I'll be down the road in a more secure house if I have to ride out a hurricane anyway.  I hate AT&T; their bills are impossible to read and they are always screwing stuff up, and we live so far out in the country that we have no other choice in either land or cell service.  I'm going to sock away the extra money toward repaying my parents at the end of the year.

For decluttering, my four challenges will be as follows:

(1) Personal Space - clean out the bedroom.  It's become rather a catch-all area since the babies were born, and I need to get it back into working order.  Also, I need to set up a better system for nighttime handgun storage, so that my firearms are easily accessible to me, and not accessible to rug rats.

(2) Family Space - Re-organize baby clothing.  I've received a ton of baby clothing as gifts, really so much that I don't use much of it.  I need to purge the ones they have outgrown and organize the new ones into weight categories so that they are easy to rotate in.  I also need to organize the old clothing into goodwill, giveaway for girl baby, and giveaway for boy baby, so that I can be prepared to give my nicer stuff to a couple I know that will need it, as soon as they know their baby's gender.

(3) Productive Challenge - I need to re-organize my kitchen.  The household chemicals need to go somewhere not easily accessed by babies, and my shelf for wine glasses needs to be replaced with a better system.  I don't know if I can get it all done in a week, but I can certainly get it all planned.

(4) Dreaded Challenge - Go through all the paperwork in the house and answer it, file it, or get rid of it.  I have piles that have been waiting for my attention since I was pregnant; I know there can't be anything important in there, or it would already have started to smell, but I need to get the stacks out of my path.  This is mostly concentrated around my computer area.

As a personal thing, I am going to start Flylady's baby steps again.  I'm not sure if this is the fourth or fifth time, but I keep trying to get the habits ingrained, since I can see that they work if I can just stick with them.