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I work in the city but I love living in the 'burbs so much we moved there - despite my crazy commute. The closer I get to home, the more relaxed I feel.
This Mama can't wait to share all the fabulous finds and 'must have' things that come my way. After all, if something's great I've gotta tell everyone! 
Join me as I share the ups and downs of suburban living, my journey to be more creative and organized (even with 2 super active little boys) and a whole lot of this and that. While I live in Fraser Valley, B.C., it's easy to translate the suburban experience to pretty much anywhere - and even city folk love to leave the hustle and bustle sometimes!
And living in the most expensive corner of the country, it takes a little savvy to keep it all together.  I'll share what I've learned - and hopefully you will, too!

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

A change is a-coming!

I can feel it in the wind... in my bones... maybe even in my bank account.   A change is coming.  And it's one for good this time around.  I'm looking at our home and figuring out why I feel so frazzled and so lethargic when I'm here.  I've come to the conclusion that my house looks pretty far out from those lovely calming scenes you see in magazines.  I'm OK with the fact that people actually live here. I'm OK with the signs of everyday life.  I'm not okay with chaos and clutter and the fact that life seems to be a never-ending declutter/cleanup/catchup session. 

Earlier this year I put both my boys into the same room - giving me the small bedroom as an office.  (amazing!!). They are thrilled to bits, by the way.  But in the move I came to the realization that they truly have an overwhelming amount of stuff.  One of my friends said it's like Toys R Us.  hmmm. 

I had read a testimonial on Flylady about a woman whose son was unhappy, unmanageable and unfocused. he was young like my kids and I got to thinking about her solution.  She took nearly all of his toys away, leaving him with 3 cars, some colouring stuff and maybe some Lego (I forget the exact items)  After a week, he was calmer and nicer to be around. When she asked if he'd like one of his toys back he replied "no, I'd rather go for a bike ride with you". 

I didn't go so drastic, but since we were home all weekend (#1 home came home sick)I decided to go for it and just move out a huge amount of stuff.  I didn't end up doing as much as I'd thought I would - but I did move out four large Rubbermaid bins of stuff (along with the 3 I did when I moved the rooms together) and now everything has a place.  And you know what?  They barely noticed what left the room. 

It left one complete set of shelves with coloured bins (the kind for all the little bits) empty - so I turned it into a Lego centre with all the different things having their own bins, plus separate ones for each boy for their special things. One awesome re-purpose!  I also left some space to grow, since I know they'll be allowed to have some things back once they keep up with care of the stuff they have out now.  (and I just know more Lego is coming)

I feel better about it all and later this week when I have my energy back, I plan on tackling my office.  I haven't put things away properly so it's the perfect time to use it or lose it, file it or toss it. 
I still feel a little guilty about the toys - I have to admit.  I keep thinking I should do it for me first - you know,walk the talk.  But I'll get there.  I wonder - has anyone else done this?  And what was the result?

Friday, January 20, 2012

Goodbye Cheesies.. hello.. um.. now what?

OK.. so I went back to Weight Watchers and I've been eating better BUT this darn bag of Cheesies keeps yelling at me when I open the pantry.  It's not my bag of Cheesies.  It belongs to my youngest  son (although why I felt the need to buy him a Costco size bag of cheesies I don't know).  I admit - I love 'em.  Not super duper love'em  but there's some feelings there.  Well, you know where this is going, right?

I've decided that since I couldn't handle the chocolate (turns out PMS and chocolate in the house is NOT conducive to actively eating well) I can't handle the Cheesies and one of us has to go.  It's cold out there so I'm not leaving the house.  Bye Bye Cheesies - I 'll tell my son you had to take a trip.  I might even fill a little snack bag for him to have this weekend but  the rest of you are hitting the big compost can.  (I've got to at least recycle them somehow to assuage the guilt of tossing perfectly good cheesies.  Thank goodness for the city compost pickup that takes everything)

That leaves me with the 'now?'  what portion of this post.  I have no idea what to replace those crunchy morsels of cheesie goodness with.  I'm thinking of a cut up apple so I get lots of bites and lots of crunch.  But I have to have a back up plan. I'm going to Costco this weekend and don't wish to have this discussion with myself in the Cheesie aisle.

The upside of this?   I feel motivated finally.  It's taken me a couple of weeks of small changes but today I've decided I feel ready to get back into the swing of losing.  AND I'm going to clear out the pantry.  All the 'bad' stuff that I like is leaving.  I'm not telling anyone - it's just disappearing.  The cold freeze is over here so I'll get on that treadmill in the garage this weekend, too!

Just think - a little healthy change, a little organizing and a little motivation all at the same time.  Definitely a good thing!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

A New Beginning

It's time.  Definitely time to get back on track.  Actually - I have stayed on track fairly well and can say that I ended the  year with a 23lb weight loss.  I have figured out maintenance - I just have to get back into the losing game again.  After getting sick in November things went a bit down the tubes as far as Weight Watchers but I'm back there and back on track.

I figure life is a journey and that little speed bump was just part of it all.   I have kept off my weight and I'm ready to move onto meeting the next goal!   (looking to lose 40lbs this year and then to choose a goal weight)

I think that the upheaval in our home of having our oldest attend kindergarten. different daycares, new schedule and new things that have to be done to accommodate everything is what took me off track from blogging. I had NO IDEA that things would change this much and that I'd be so busy!   But now we are in a routine and I'm getting some of my time back.  In our home October to December is fast paced with birthdays, Holidays and more..  I've already set up plans on our calendar for next year to avoid the chaos.  (who knew I could think so far ahead!)

Getting organized is the key to success, I think.  I'm tired of running in circles, getting nowhere, feeling frustrated and accomplishing little.   If I'm going to be successful at getting healthy, be a great parent, and keep up with a busy workload - then I have no choice but to plan ahead and to organize all parts of my life.  (in baby steps of course!)

So this year it's all about getting healthy (just like last year) but with the added plan to get organized too!   My incentive?  Being able to keep up with the boys, feeling and looking great and feeling a sense of  peace because I know where things are and what's on the agenda.  I love the sound of that, don't you?

( I wanted to add that after I wrote this I was reading two posts on Multi-testing Mommy's Blog and she totally hit the nail on the head in her posts.  Check out her Heart and Stroke foundation posts and she also posted about organization.  I think maybe she's living a parallel life to me.)