Sep 29, 2011

People Who Come In and Out of Our Lives

Be it fate, karma, God or what ever you want to call it I believe people come in and out of our lives for a reason. I am not talking about family but people who you might be in contact with for a short time or life long friends and co-workers.

I have been very fortunate to have many positive people come in and out of my life and I am all the better for having known them. They have helped me through the dissertation, Dee Ann. They have been there when I was a new mom not sure of what to do, Ardis, Christine, Elisa, Rachel, Tuesday, and Renee. The friend who was there when my son was a toddler and both he and I needed a friend, Jodie and Will. The long distant friend whom we have only had contact through FB and WWF but has offered great advise on parenting and whom I have chatted with about things from politics to religion, to the best type of teas to drink and everything in between, Julie. And now the mom whose son is in same preschool class as mine and for whom we have found many things in common, Lacie. All these ladies have made a lasting impression in my life, my heart and soul.

Now these aren't the only ones, there is no way I could list them all so if you didn't see your name just know I think of you too!

And of course I can't be sexist and only list girls. To the man who I meet while I was working in Granbury. You helped foster my love for technology and even though we don't get to talk or see each other often I know you read my FB post and hope you are reading my blog post too. I miss our morning chats, Daryll

I know each and everyone of you out there have that one person or hopefully more that have made a positive difference in your life, if you haven't lately, tell them thanks for just being their selves!


Sep 28, 2011

Delaying Kindergarten

Call it being an educator by training. Call it being a mom of a boy with a late school year birthday. Call it being obsessed with wanting my child to have as perfect of an education as he can have. Call it whatever you want but this one thought keeps me up nights and has become almost an obsession for me.

It started last February when I began to look for a preschool for my son. Anxiety sat in and I have not been able to shake it since. I stay up late at night thinking about it. I do exhaustive searches for research articles about it. I talk to every preschool teacher and administrator I know to gain more in site and try as I may I have not been able to shake this nagging feeling of if I should or should not hold my son back a year because of social maturity.

I know it is early, only 3 weeks into the preschool year and I can see improvement already and there is along way to go but I guess as a mother, as a type A personality, as a born worrier I can't seem to break the cycle.

I know that the decisions I have made so far in his education have been the right ones, Museum School, UCC Weekday School and both were done with meticulous prepping, research. So hopefully all the time involve in me making this choice will also prove to be the right one.

I am looking forward to attending the Private School event this Sunday at the TCU Daniel Mayer Collesieum. And my hope is to find lots of good information for potential schools.

I have my work cut out for me in this journey so wish me luck and lots of Prilosec.

Below are two articles I found today on the negative effects of "red shirting" take a gander if you wish.

http://thepioneerwoman.com/homeschooling/2011/09/will-delaying-kindergarten-hold-your-child-back/
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/25/opinion/sunday/dont-delay-your-kindergartners-start.html?_r=1

Sep 27, 2011

One Type A Personality Mom with A Preschooler

I am a type A personality. I thrive on schedules, timelines, calendars and routine. I think this is one of the reason I loved being an educational diagnostician. The job was based on timelines, deadlines, meetings schedules and organization. It was right up my ally.

Now for as long as I can remember this is how I have been. I was always early for meetings and one of  the first to register for classes, I always shop with a grocery list, I go to bed at approx the same time every night and get up at the same time every morning and so on and so on and so on.

So it was with great trepidation that I brought my son home. After working full time for 14 years, I was now on my own with this little one for whom I got to set a schedule. Now from what you read and all that is drilled into you when you are expecting is flexibility with a new born. And though I was flexible I did set up a schedule. First it was feeding and then naps. And to this day we keep a pretty constant schedule.

So that brings me to my son showing that he is not so much a type A or maybe that he is way to much a type A, I haven't decided.

When we started preschool 2 days a week this year we had to change when we ate breakfast, 45 min earlier than what we were doing. The first week since it was new it was no problem but then the battle began. Suddenly he realized that eating took a way from his precious playing time so he started to resist. Oh my we went through 2 weeks of battles, tears (his and mine), negotiations and frustrations. For me eating breakfast at a table before you left the house was just what you did. But I had to weigh what was more important, eating or eating at the table and in the house. Of course eating was the most important so today I broke with my stringent ways and when it was time to go I put him in the backseat with his breakfast and off we went.

This morning was so nice, he got to play a little longer, I got a few more things done around the house and there were no tears. So as a parent I am constantly learning and growing and hoping that I am not doing irreparable harm to my son. I hope he sees it that way when he is older.

Now for my next growth area, not going back and fixing what my son has "helped" me do, like putting up the laundry. Baby steps!


Sep 8, 2011

A Time for Mom

I have been a stay at home mom for 4+ years. I have been my child's primary care giver for the entire time. There has been no daycare, no mother's day out, no girls night out, no keno, date night or any other extended period of time that I have been away from my son. This past year he has attended Museum school one day a week for 2 hours but that is the extend of our time apart.

So this year as he has started preschool 2 days a week. So with this new time to myself I have decided to venture out and do something for me. Not grocery shopping, not running errands but something just for me. With the help of my friend Christine I have found a bible study that fits in perfectly with my son's preschool schedule and I start tomorrow.

I am looking forward to this time of fellowship with other women and having a new learning experience.

Sep 7, 2011

Home Routines App Review

I view house keeping kind of like I do losing weight. Putting on weight is easy and fun, taking it of it a long, arduous process. Just like house cleaning, it is fun and easy to mess up a house. While cleaning it up takes time and effort. And in both cases for me, they sneak up on you where you all of a sudden look up and say what the...where did these 10lb and messy house come from!

So I am tackling getting my home in better order in the same way I am going about losing weight, slow and steady. It is not a race to see who gets there first or does it the best it is about getting the job done. And also in both instances, losing weight and cleaning, I can always find other things to do and procrastinate. Also, I am into instant gratification (aren't we all), so finding a motivation program for me where I saw some results pretty quickly was a must.

If you want to read about the weight loss journey you can look here and here, but this is a review of Home Routines so that is what I will focus on here.

So when I decided that I needed to do a better job of keeping my house cleaner I of course went in search of and app for my iPhone. After all it is with me all day, I have become a tech geek and it might just keep my interest. I also looked at blogs and online check list that I might be able to incorporate in to a task list or my calender. But in the end the app won out. I looked at FlyLady, Motivated Moms, HabitHacker but it was going to be a struggle for me to do one app let alone incorporate another system in to something I was still learning about. However, if you are using one of these systems they seem to transition smoothly in to this app.

For me the AHA moment came when after a week of using the system, the coffee was ready every morning, lunches were prepared and things seemed to be a little more tidy. Then as the weeks have progressed my ceiling fans and blinds are getting dusted once a month instead of once a year. Instead of spending hours cleaning I spend a 15 minutes each day. And if I have extra time I will try to get a head. It has been very liberating.

Now do all things get checked off every day, no. But as I continue to tweak the app to fit my needs my house is better and I'm not running around at the last minute trying to pick up or feeling overwhelmed when it come to cleaning.

Here are some screen shots of how I have customized this app to fit my needs.

This is not how the default zones looked. I have added rooms and move rooms around to match rooms up for our floor plan. 

I can see all days so I can catch up on things I didn't get done yesterday or if I have extra time to get ahead, Gasp!

Or I can just see that days task if I don't want to feel overwhelmed or just don't have time or the inclination to do much that day.

So if you are looking for an easy to use app to help keep your house tidy, not sparkling I would recommend  Home Routines.