6.07.2011

Day 4

Favorite break-up song.

Jess- Ben Folds Five "Song For the Dumped"  Not even because of the subject of the song (though it was picked because it fits the category for today), but more for the raw sounding angry piano slamming.  I love listening to all the chunky chords, especially in live versions.  I will never be able to play like that.


Matt- Cryin' by Roy Orbison. Matt is probably way better at this game than I am.

6.05.2011

Day 3

A song from your favorite movie.

So my favorite movie is A Life Less Ordinary.  Not many people have seen it, or even heard of it, despite the fact that it stars Cameron Diaz and Ewan McGregor.  Actually this movie was one of those "things" that Matt and I connected over before we started dating nearly 11 years ago.  We found out that we both really liked the movie and since Matt had it on DVD (whereas I just watched it whenever I managed to catch it on HBO) I went over and watched it with him... just as friends of course ;) 

There is actually a decent amount of music in the movie, and we do own the soundtrack.  But picking a song from this movie is so easy, it's got to be Beyond the Sea by Bobby Darin.  In one scene in the movie Cameron Diaz and Ewan McGregor sing this karaoke style and her singing is so awful that it reminds me of what I used to sound like.  Hopefully I've gotten a little better.


Oh good, I found the actual movie clip to go along with this.  Yes, it gets a little weird towards the end, but that's all part of the greatness of the movie!  So watch this clip and then go watch the rest of the movie.

Matt:  Matt's favorite movie is Good Will Hunting.  So the song he picked is Miss Misery by Eliot Smith.  He totally lucked out, that movie has an awesome song.

6.04.2011

Day 2

Favorite love song.

Okay, I find this day a little boring and generic.  And also, I don't know that I REALLY have a favorite love song.  It took me a while to pick one out.  There are just so many to choose from.  But I'm happy with my final selection, but I bet if you asked me this again a year from now I'd have a different answer, which is something I'm trying to avoid while doing this.  Anyway, here is it:

First Day of My Life by Bright Eyes


I don't find it at all sappy, but it's still sweet.  And (like in the video, which is simple and sweet as well) it makes me think not only of my love for my husband, but also for my child.... and how much happines our little family has brought to my life.

Matt:  Agreed, this was kind of an underwhelming question.  But in the end he chose At Last  by Etta James.  Because it's what we danced to at our wedding.  Hard to argue with that.  :)  Here's a great live version.

6.03.2011

Day 1

The other day I came across a music related blog in which they referred to this 30 day song thing on Facebook (30 Day Song Election Spectacular)  Basically you leave a comment everyday for 30 days naming a song that meets different requirements.  I read through the list and instantly wanted to play.  I even got Matt to play along.  But instead of posting them on the Facebook page where a bunch of strangers could read my choices (and judge me) I decided to do my write ups here.  So let's get started...
Day 1- Favorite cover version of a non-obscure song.  Hands down... Johnny Cash's cover of "Hurt" originally by Nine Inch Nails.  It may be somewhat obscure, I don't think the NIN version was a big hit or anything, but this is probably one of the best covers ever, so we're overlooking the slight bit of obscurity.  This song made me a fan of the Man in Black, though oddly enough not of NIN.  It's incredible. He has a lot of really great covers from later in his career, but this one is so good it gives me chills when I listen to it.  The video-- doubly so.  If you haven't heard it before you definitely should check it out.

Matt- Agrees.  We didn't coordinate, this was the first song he thought of as well.  In fact, this is his favorite song period.

4.12.2011

How I keep a clean house

Routine!  Seriously, this is the only way I'm managing the household at this point.  Everything is part of a routine.  It's the best way to get things done.  I have a fairly simple method to make sure that all the necessary chores are accomplished over the course of the week.  Prior to putting our house on the market my system was simple, effective, and not very time consuming.  But now that the house needs to be show ready by 10 am everyday it's a little more involved, but still manageable, especially now that Eve has had her shedding winter undercoat removed (thank you professionally groomers-- $90 and 8 hours well spent for a little help in that department).  It has taken me quite some time to come up with a routine that works, but I finally did.  Just in time to get ready to move and have to figure out new routines and systems for a new house, but at least now I have a starting point.  So here's a little sample of what my cleaning routine looks like:
Every morning: empty dishwasher while coffee brews (now we can immediately put all dirty dishes straight into the dishwasher during the day).  Open blinds and curtains to let light in, crack open windows if it's nice out.  Make beds.
Late morning: specific chore for the day (more on that later)
Evening into pre bedtime:  clean kitchen, all dirty dishes in dishwasher (and run it), wipe counters, table, and sink.  Dylan picks up his toys before bath time.  Pick up miscellaneous stuff and put it away (this shouldn't be too much because I have adopted the "don't put it down, put it away" mantra throughout the day).

Second part of the routine involves a rotating schedule of tasks:
Monday- Laundry day.  All dirty laundry, sheets, towels, clothes.  Washed, folded, and put away in the same day so I don't have to think about it the other 6 days of the week.  This has been a little difficult lately because I can't leave my laundry piles out all day in case we have a showing, but I still try to tackle it in a day as much as possible.  I usually wind up doing 4 or 5 loads which is manageable.
Tuesday- Food/Kitchen day.  Meal planning, grocery shopping, clean out expired food, do a detail clean in the kitchen.
Wednesday- Office day.  Pay bills, file papers, take care of phone calls, make appointments, etc.
Thursday- Floors day- dust.  Vacuum, mop.
Friday- miscellaneous day.  Tackle a decluttering project or a once in a while project (like Reorganizing a closet or cleaning the fridge).  Run errands.
Weekend- bathrooms.  No matter how much I've tried to squeeze bathroom duty into the week (so I don't have any major weekend cleaning) it just doesn't work.  At some point Matt will take Dylan out so I can spend a good chunk of uninterrupted time cleaning the bathrooms and whatever other things need some attention.

There you have it.  Everything gets cleaned on a regular basis.  The only flaw in the system is that the whole house is never perfectly clean at the same point in time, like it was when we had cleaning ladies.  But it's also never too far from being perfectly clean either )like it was before we ever had cleaning ladies).  But most mornings I wake up to a clean enough house, and most nights I go to bed with a clean enough house, which is a good feeling.  Plus this method only requires a little effort everyday and the best part is that I don't have to worry about laundry on any day other than Monday....  I don't have to wonder when I'm going to get a chance to mop again, because I know I'll do it on Thursday,  and sure  there are times when plans force things to shift a little, but that's fine... I'm learning to be more flexible.

3.31.2011

Pan Seared Halibut with Roasted Tomato Basil Sauce

This was really good and not at all difficult to make.  The sauce could also be used over pasta.  Im sure I'm not the first person to ever make a roasted tomato sauce like this, but I didn't follow a recipe.  Instead I changed one from a tv show... Chucks Day Off on the Cooking Channel.  He made a smoked tomato-tarragon sauce and it looked really good and simple.  Except I don't have a smoker, so I decided to try and roast it instead.  The first time I made it, the tarragon was a little too powerful, so this time around I used basil instead (figuring it was a more classic pairing).  I liked it much better this way.  It's super easy and quick because you dont have to do much careful chopping (like you would when you make a marinara since it all goes in the processor)  So here's how I made it:

4 medium tomatoes, quartered
1/2 a medium onion, roughly chopped
2 cloves garlic, smashed
3 of the biggest basil leaves I've ever seen in my life
Olive oil, salty, pepper

Toss tomatoes, onion, and garlic in a pan, drizzle with olive oil and a little salt and pepper.  Roast on 400 for about 30-40 minutes (I didn't really time it).  Transfer to food processor, add basil and puree.  Add salt and pepper to taste.

I pan seared 2 halibut fillets (the frozen ones from Wegmans) in some olive oil and salt and pepper.  Then poured a generous spoonful of the sauce over the fish. It was delicious.  I also have enough sauce left over to use on pasta later this week, yay!

3.30.2011

Finally Reading an eBook!

Yay!  I finally figured out how to read Library eBooks on my iPad.  Ive been reading a lot lately and some people have asked me if I'm considering getting a Kindle or Nook or something like that.  But I get nearly all of my books from the library for free.  And as convenient as an eBook reader would be, I just can't justify spending all that money for a device, and then even more money for books. Right now my monthly book budget is right around $0.  It's hard to improve on that.  But one thing I have been waiting for, knowing that it eventually has to happen, is a way to borrow library books on my iPad.  I mean you can borrow eBooks on your computer, but I'm not about to sit at my desk and read a whole book.  How much harder could it be to get the book on my iPad?  Apparently it's not as simple as I think it should be, but it is finally possible.  Unfortunately I only have like 300 books to choose from (stupid DRM), but I'll take what I can get for now, because I figure things are moving in the right direction.

Oh, if anyone in Loudoun County is interested, here's a link to instructions.  There are a few steps to het everything into place, and the Overdrive App is a little quirky, it may take a couple days for your books to show up, but it might be worth trying.

3.29.2011

My Sisyphean* Task

I cannot begin to describe my frustration with trying to keep the house clean while we are doing showings.  I didn't think it would be that bad because I tend to keep the house fairly clean in general.  But not spotless... because that would drive me insane... and guess what?  It is driving me insane.  Trying to keep a house perfectly spotless and relatively unlived-in looking with a toddler and a husky (in her peak shedding season) is beyond frustrating.  I spent most of today cleaning the house only to have everything I do undone not even 5 minutes later.  Vacuum the living room, Eve walks through and clumps of fur fall onto the carpet.  Put away miscellaneous toys, gadgets, water cups, etc. only to turn around and see that Dylan pulled out his 50 alphabet blocks and spread them evenly throughout the upstairs level, wipe the counters then spill milk all over them.  Ugh.  At least we didn't have any showings today... though I think that's the most frustrating part.  I do all this work and then no one comes to see it.  What a waste of my time.  Of course the day I decide to slack always results in a last minute showing.  I can't wait for this to be over.

* story of Sisyphus

3.21.2011

Some thoughts on Moving

As we prepare for a possible move (staying in the same area) I've been thinking about a lot of my previous moves and my take on moving in general.  I moved a lot as a kid... a lot.  Herndon VA was the 11th city I had lived in and at that time I was a sophomore in high school.  My parents still live there, and I still live in the same general area (only about 30 mins away).  It's crazy for me to think that I've lived in this area for nearly 14 years, and that Matt and I have been in the same house for over 7 years.

There have been pluses and minuses to moving so much.  I definitely think it had a big impact on the person I am today, for better and worse.  But now that I've finally been in one area long enough I've finally experienced how a stationary place changes over time.

For instance:
  • Radio stations change their programming.  I didnt know this happened.  Actually I didnt really ever think about it enough to guess that this ever happened.  I still remember getting in my car one day several years ago and tuning the radio to 99.1, at the time an alternative station, and hearing Spanish music.  For a while I thought it was a joke, they I found out that someone had bought that station and changed it's programming.  I still miss the old 99.1, though I hardly ever listen to the radio anymore.
  • You loose friends even when you or they don't move away.  People drift apart, or head in different directions and eventually you lose touch.  It happens, sometimes even when I don't want it to.  I always thought that the only reason I wasn't still friends with the people I knew in kindergarten was because we moved away from Texas.  But who knows what would have happened with us if I'd stayed in Texas my whole life (ooh, there's a scary thought).  I tried really hard to stay in touch with people when we moved away, but eventually the letters stopped being mailed, or someone moved enough that I couldn't keep up with new addresses and we'd lose contact.  It was hard to let go of people, and it still is.  But now I know that it's a fairly normal thing and it doesn't detract from the value of the friendship at that time.  I also know that maintaining friendships take a lot of work, especially as they become less convenient, but hopefully the good ones last because both sides are willing to make the extra effort.
  • Possessions build up quick when you aren't forced to go through them (due to packing and moving) nearly every year.  I think my main reason for being such a purger has to do with packing and moving.  Though I've heard people say the exact opposite, that since they moved so much they held on to all their stuff so they could keep the things around them permanent.  Not quite sure why I went to the opposite extreme, but I did.  Yet it didn't take long to fill our townhouse with stuff.  Thankfully I went through a bunch of it last year and forced myself to get rid of a bunch of stuff that was just sitting here taking up space.

And anyone who has spent any amount of time in Northern Virginia knows how much this area has changed, new shopping centers, schools, bigger roads, overpasses so you can drive on the bigger roads with fewer interruptions, new housing developments... My surroundings are constantly changing.  It was easy for me to assume that once I stopped moving, things would stop changing.  But of course changes don't only occur when you are transplanted; everything changes, things move on, things fall apart, people change, they change their minds, move on to something better, move on to something not so better.  It still happens, but for some reason, I just didn't expect it to happen here so much, not when I've lived in the same house for over 7 years (a lot longer than anywhere else). 

But I will say this, even with the realization that a permanent-fixed-unmoving-unchanging environment doesn't exist (not that I want it to really), I much prefer my fairly stationary lifestyle.  I like that I know the area and people in the area well.  It's nice to have some roots, and finally a hometown.  

3.07.2011

FL trip part 2

Lizards are everywhere outside of my hotel!  Fortunately, not inside, though I wouldn't be surprised if one found it's way in.  Whenever I walk anywhere they all scurry into the bushes. I'm sure Dylan would be in heaven.

Harmony's wedding was beautiful :) Of course, I expected no less.  Picture perfect day, the weather wasn't too hot or too cold, there was a nice breeze, it was really perfect.  Followed by a fun and lively reception (thanks in large part to a Latin band).  I'm so glad I was able to make it down here for it.  It also made me think of my own wedding... What a good and perfect day that was as well.  I wish we could get married again, it was fun!  Maybe we'll have to have some kind of vow renewal celebration in the future. 

I've made it a good way into my book.  I'm hoping I'll be able to finish it, but it will be close.  Not much else to comment on since the whole point of this mini-vacation was to take advantage of being able to relax.  It's been really nice.

FL trip 2011 part 1

First time on a trip all by myself.  A truly introverted vacation so far.  I've been gone from home for less than 12 hours and I've made my way through about 200 pages of East of Eden (look at me reading a real book for a change), listened to  about 4 albums on my iPod, did about an hour of yoga, ate dinner by myself (where I knocked out a good 20 pages while waiting for food), successfully navigated through the airport and streets of Orlando.  There's been a minimum of interaction with other people, so i haven't even had many conversations.  It's been nice and peaceful.  Though every time I see someone with a toddler I think "oh Dylan... i wonder what he and Matt are doing." and my hotel has a bunch of outdoor fun areas and I keep thinking that Dylan would low to run around in the soft grass, then I remember that he's a plane ride away.  It's a good thing that I miss them, but I'm still going to enjoy my alone time.

So Matt and I have been to Orlando a couple times.  I kind of recognize the area I'm staying at, but to be honest, I'm having a hard time telling the difference between Orlando and Las Vegas.  I think I wrote about how Disney and Vegas were similar a few years ago.  I still think that.

Oh and no Internet in my hotel (not free anyway), so this will be published when I get home.  I can't remember if I did this on purpose so that I wouldn't spend all my time reading blogs and updating my Facebook page, but it is what it is now.

2.16.2011

New Music to Listen To

Yay!  I get so excited when I have new music to listen to.  I am currently working my way through the following:

Mumford and Sons: Sigh No More
Amazon has been recommending this CD/Band for me for a long time.  I think because I recently purchased several Avett Brothers discs and apparently these bands go hand in hand (even the people who do the Grammys think so).  So after I saw their Grammy performance, I decided to go ahead and get the disc.  I loved their energy and sound.  Plus apparently I'm all into alt-folksy stuff now.

Bright Eyes: In The People's Key
My sister Sarah is obsessed with Bright Eyes like I am with Wilco.  She got me listening to them and I'm happy she did.  I instantly became a Conor Oberst junkie.  This is supposedly the last Bright Eyes album though, which is sad.  This album leans more electronic-y than my preferred Oberst stuff, but it's still good.  And I love his lyrics.  Sarah is going to see Bright Eyes in concert next month (I'll be in FL or else I probably would have wanted to go as well) and I am dying to find out how they are live.  Especially if he can remember all his lyrics since he doesn't have repeated choruses or anything like that (like through-composed music, or I guess this would be through-composed lyrics...  That makes for a lot of words to remember).

Avett Brothers: a few older CDs (getting ready to see them on Friday in DC)
I absolutely love their I And Love And You album and was so glad to see them perform Head Full of Doubt/Road Full of Promises song at the Grammys (even that title is great).  They have a combo of great lyrics, singing, and instrumentation... It's fun, meaningful, sincere, and insightful all at once.  

It's good listening for the most part.  I'm still getting to know the music so I don't feel completely comfortable writing detailed reviews quite yet.  Just wanted to post a little about what I've been listening to lately.

2.08.2011

Another Leftover Recipe

On Sunday night I made Garlic Roasted Chicken and Vegetablesfor dinner.  This is a delicious recipe and very simple to prepare.  I've sent to several mommy friends when they've had babies and it has been well received over all.  Since the meal itself is so good, I figured I'd share my favorite way to eat the leftovers (which I happen to think may be even better than the dinner).  I usually make rice to go with the chicken, which is essential for the leftover recipe.  All I do is cut up some of the leftover chicken into cubes, then I throw some rice, vegetables, and the chicken in a sauté pan (with a little olive oil) and let it heat up.  As usual when I make leftover rice, if you can get some of the rice to brown and crisp up it's extra good.  Then pour into a bowl and enjoy.  Takes a whopping 5 minutes to make.  If it seems a little dry you can add a tablespoon or so of chicken stock, but I find that the residual juices from the night before are plenty good.

This can work with pretty much and rice/veggie/ and or meat combo.  For Christmas my mom made a pork shoulder roast (which was to die for) and I made a roasted vegetable medley (think any kind of veg that can be roasted) and I ate this as leftovers everyday for about a week.  In fact I had to force myself to wait until noon to eat it because I would start thinking about it around 10 and my mouth would start watering. Yum!

2.05.2011

Alone Time

In March, a good friend of mine from college is getting married in Florida.  I recently made the arrangements to attend the wedding, and guess what... I'm going by myself.  I'd love to go with Matt but we both agreed that we didn't really want to leave Dylan for that long (especially being so far away) and it's a kid-free wedding so we couldn't bring him with us (we also had a kid-free wedding), so I decided to attend solo.  And I realized something, I've never travelled by myself... Ever!  Which is just crazy, especially since I'm not someone who minds doing things by myself.  So I'm really looking forward to this experience.  I'm sure I'll enjoy being independent for a few days, having a quiet room to relax in and read a few books, and then when it's over I'll be even happier to come home to my husband and kid.  My only concern is having to navigate my way through Orlando, but I will be sure to have detailed directions for everywhere I go, so I should be okay.    

Things I enjoy doing alone:
  • listening to music, especially while driving
  • cleaning
  • playing piano
  • reading
  • going to a coffee shop or bookstore and reading/writing
  • going to my yoga class and not talking to anyone (which no longer happens because someone I barely know from my past is now in the class and she's quite the talker, but that's alright)
  • going to the movies.  I've only done this once because I rarely go to the movies anymore, but it was fun!
  • grocery shopping, mostly because when I do go by myself, I listen to my iPod while I shop

Oh and when I see people eating by themselves at restaurants, etc. I don't really feel bad for them, instead I think it's cool that they don't feel pressured to be with someone at all times.

2.04.2011

I have always found the following confusing: how we pronounce lose and loose so differently from how we pronounce chose and choose. The more I think about it, the more confused I get and the less convinced I am that choose is even a word (seriously, look at it, it's weird). End of Friday Morning Ramdomness.

1.24.2011

List Time

I'm an INFJ according to all the Myers-Briggs assessments Ive done.  I pretty much agree with that.  (introverted, intuitive, feeling, judging). I know that one test can't possibly capture my entire personality, which is fine.   But knowing that I have a stronger introverted tendency, than extroverted helps me identify and explain certain behaviors I have so I think it's a valid label to that degree (one day I'll write a post about my take on labels.)

I remember reading somewhere that J types like to make lists, I cant remember where I heard that though so it may not be true, but I'm pretty much basing this post on that, so i hope the reason I remembered it is that there is something truth to it. (ha!- this statement right here totally reinforces my INFJ-ness).  I am a list-aholic.  Seriously, I keep lists of some of the most ridiculous things.  There's the obvious to-do lists as well as grocery and shopping lists (which I couldn't get through the week without), but lately there have been even more: lists of ways I want to save money, lists of food I want to cook for the first time this year, a list of resolutions, an actual written out lists of my own personal morals and values, lists of work thats been done to the house, lists of books I've read (which I've had to start over since Visual Bookshelf on Facebook crapped out), a list of books I want to read, a brand new list of books I want to re-read, and let's not forgot my last post... a list of my favorite concerts. Actually I think that whole last sentence was basically a list of my lists.  Oooh, I never thought of making a list like that before... a Master List to help me keep track of all the little things I want to keep track of in life.  Hmmm... I know what I'll be doing when I finish this post.

Um it can get out of hand at times, but one thing I like about my iPad is that I can keep all my lists in one place.  Update and change them on the go without scraps of papers and 40 million notebooks lying all over the house.  It's helping me fully embrace (and maybe obsess over) my list making trait.  So the thought occurred to me the other day that maybe I could write more of my blog posts in list format.  I mean, a bunch of them already are, and more would have been, but I purposely changed them so it doesn't look like I'm entirely incapable of writing in paragraph form.  Here's one to conclude this post:

My List for Why I Like Lists:
  • they keep my day to day activities organized
  • they keep my thoughts organized
  • it's a simple way to externalize things I want to remember or keep track of (especially helpful since my memory is not the greatest)
  • they are short and to the point and quick to jot down
  • they are easy to go back to and get quick information

More lists to come in the near future!

1.19.2011

Top Concerts

I've been in a list making mood lately.  Which isn't really saying much since I am pretty much always in a list making mood, but it's been even more than normal lately.  Since seeing live music makes me really happy I decided to make a list of some of my favorite concerts.  So here they are:  

1.  Jeff Tweedy in Charlottesville last month.  I still can't believe that I went to this.  It was incredible from start to finish.
2.  Wilco in Pittsburgh this past April.  Mostly because they had no opening act and played for just about 3 hours so we got to hear lots of their music.  Secondly, because they did a small, acoustic set in the middle of the show and there's nothing more I love than breaking things down like that.  Thirdly, because they performed Laminated Cat.  Fourthly, because the venue was a beautiful small chamber ensemble type theater, our view was great, and the sound was amazing.
3.  Bob Dylan with the Racontuers opening for him.  Front row seats again.  Jack White was AMAZING live.  This show turned me into a big fan of his. It was awesome to see Bob Dylan up close like that, I can't believe he is still touring and sounding good (even if it's tough to understand him, the music is still great).
4.  Jars of Clay at the Birchmere several years ago.  I've seen them live a ton... it helps that they play the Birchmere fairly often.  But this show stands out because they did a little acoustic set in the middle of the show (remember how I said that I loved that?) They sound their best without a bunch of electronic stuff, unfortunately they seem to be moving more and more in that direction, so I didn't even buy their most recent album, even though I own every other one of theirs.  Sigh.
5.  Buddy Guy at the Birchmere.  I admit, I don't really listen to his music, but Matt does, so I went with him (and our friend Mike) for this show.  And it was really good.  Buddy Guy really interacts with the audience and is an incredible musician, but mostly I just remember this show was fun.  I was a little concerned ahead of time that it would be little boring to me... A non blues guitar aficionado, but that couldn't have been further from the truth.
6.  Every other Wilco concert.  They are just so good live, I really had to fight the urge to list them as #s 1, 2, 3, 4, etc...  The first show we saw them at an outdoor venue in MD, the time we had 3rd row seats in Phillie and they started with Sunken Treasure, seeing them with Conor Oberst at Wolf Trap last summer with the whole crowd getting into all the songs... All good :)
7.  White Stripes at the Patriot Center.  I don't think they're touring anymore so I'm glad we got to see them at least once.  Again, Jack White is just such a captivating performer, even though there's only 2 people in the band, it stayed interesting.  And I loved Hotel Yorba!
8. The time Matt got to meet one of his favorite musicians... Nuno Bettencourt at Jaxx.  I cant remember which band he was performing with at the time... Mourning Widows possibly.  Nuno used to be the guitarist for Extreme back in the day... Remember "More Than Words"?  That's him!  We got there super early so we could sit at the bar and watch the Yankee-Red Sox game (the big 2004 games where the Red Sox made a comeback from 0-3) and the band was there watching too, since they're from Boston and big fans, they had even been at the game the previous night.  Matt got to chat with him for a little while and then later during the show he even got to go onstage and sing a little (meanwhile, I left my camera in the car... Oops).  We've also seen Vanilla Ice at Jaxx...  Haha, how awesome are we?

Hopefully I didn't leave any important ones out.  But there are definitely lots more concerts that I've enjoyed and will remember, these just really stand out.

1.11.2011

Randomness Post

A few random thoughts and things going on lately:

2011 is off to a fairly uneventful start.  I made a bunch of personal resolutions in late 2010 that I have been doing well with.  I added one official 2011 resolution (in addition to the few personal goals I mentioned in my last post), which is to stop watching TV while Dylan is napping (at least during the week).  I've only had one slip up so far, but otherwise I really like the restriction, I can do anything else I want.  So a lot of time I clean, try to get through a few productive tasks, but I also read, listen to music, take a little nap, and surf the Internet.

I remember when I was younger and I'd get a new CD and take it into my room, listen to it over and over while reading the lyrics until I knew all of the songs completely.  I miss doing that.  Now I'm lucky if I even learn the name of a song.  Case in point, the other night I was listening to a Bright Eyes song and thought, "for some reason this song always reminds me of Ode to Joy (better known as Beethoven's 9th symphony") then I actually looked at the name of the song in case I wanted to do a little research on it later and it turns out the name of the song is "Road to Joy!" I've had this album for several years and I never realized this.  Could just be a crazy coincidence, but I'm guessing that the similarity between the two songs in unintentional.  Had I gotten this cd in high school, I would have noticed the connection immediately.  Anyway, so I've started listening to my music that way again.  Learning and memorizing it as much as possible, it's fun and it makes me happy :) a way better alternative to watching wasteful TV like Food Network all the time.

Last night I used the slicer attachment on my food processor to cut cabbage for some peanut slaw.  Wow, that was soooo ridiculously easy.  I've had that thing for 6 1/2 years, and never realized all it's capable of doing.  I think that's largely due to the fact that I used to have so much junk in my kitchen that the food processor was a huge pain to take out.  So I never used it.  Now that it's easily accessible though I probably use it 2-3 times a week.  I think that's fairly true of most things that survived the kitchen purge.  Again, something little that makes me happier.

I end a lot of sentences with prepositions.  I'm aware of it whenever it happens, and try to correct it if possible, but sometimes I can't figure out how to reword the sentence so I just leave it.  I'm definitely not the only one who does it.

Sometimes when I look around the house, I get discouraged because despite all our purging efforts of the last year I still feel like the house doesn't look all that different.  What else can I get rid of?!?!?  I think the main reason I feel that though is because most of our purging was with stuff hidden in drawers and cabinets and closets.  Not the open spaces you see all the time.  This year Matt and I are planning to do some major changes to the house though, so I'm trying to hold off judgement until everything is done.

   

Jessica