Friday, August 7, 2020

Five on Friday - August Goals

Happy Friday, y’all!  As I mentioned in my post Wednesday, I feel like I hit a bit of a slump this month and I thought my goals would reflect that, but I honestly didn’t do all that bad.  Here’s the recap…

As always, I’m using a Y for YES and N for NO to indicate whether or not I accomplished my goals.



July Goals

Relationships/Connect

Y  Sunday lunches with my in-laws. – Got in a couple this month!
Y  Sunday dinners with my parents. – Got in one!
Y  Call/text old coworkers and check in with them. – Yes!  I texted with three of my girlfriends from work, talked to one guy on the phone, and Facetimed with another.  It was great to check in with all of them.
Y  Facetime with Mama Cass. – We actually did one better and visited with her in person instead... outside and far away, of course, but we got to see her nonetheless.
                                                                                      
Personal/Health/Wellness/Fitness/Beauty

Y  Meditate every day.
Y  Quiet time every day.
Y  Drink 64 oz. water every day.
Y  Close all rings on my Apple Watch at least 20 days.
Y  Read 2 books for fun.
Y  Start reading White Fragility.
Y  Start reading Get Out of Your Head.
Y  Visit with therapist via Zoom.
Y  Donate blood/test for Covid-19 antibodies.
Y  Visit the allergist for my 6-month checkup.

Family

Y  Pick up kids’ yearbooks from school.
Y  Celebrate July 4th.
Y  Celebrate Jacob’s 9th birthday!
N  Register Olivia for 2020-2021 dance classes. – They decided not to open registration as expected, so we’re just waiting to see what will happen.
Y  Sign Jacob up for fall baseball. – Don’t know if he’ll actually play, but he’s signed up.
Y  Work on teaching the kids how to ride bikes without training wheels. – We practiced, but they still don’t have the hang of it.  Waaaahhhh.
Y  Meditate with the kids. – We only meditated once together, but I feel like they got a lot out of it.  I explained the principals of meditation and why it can be helpful, and they seemed to enjoy it.
Y  Life skills refreshers for the kids – how to wash hands, brush teeth, tie shoes properly.
N  Kids take swimming lessons with my cousin. – We ended up canceling this because my uncle came down with Covid (he’s okay now), and we obviously didn’t want to be around my cousin since she lives with him.
Y  Buy new uniforms for back-to-school.
Y  Find some things to do that allow us to (safely) get out of the house. – We did get out and walk the trail at a local park.
Y  Start looking at mountain houses to rent for fall break (if it’s safe to do). – B has started browsing but we haven’t settled on anything yet.  Still don’t know what to do.

Home

Y  Change air filter.
Y  Clean out kids’ closets.
N  Test drive 1-2 SUVs I have my eye on (only if we can do this safely). – Never took the time to do this.
N  Spray paint travel frames white and hang in bedroom.
N  Transfer pictures and videos from last few months to hard drives and Amazon drive. – Started to do this, but I’m having connectivity issues between my phone and my computer, so I haven’t been able to get everything off of my phone, which means I can’t transfer everything yet.
Y  Complete 2 things on Master To-Do list. – I did four!

Blog

Y  Post 3 times per week. 
Y  Plan content for July – September.
Y  Catch up on link-ups.
N  Take a few pictures for my oils Instagram account.

Summary

30 items accomplished
6 items not accomplished

Monthly Stats

Books Read: 2
    The Towering Sky – Katharine McGee
    American Royals – Katharine McGee

Meditation Days: 31

Rings Closed on Apple Watch:
    Move Ring: 20
    Exercise Ring: 22
    Stand Ring: 31

Workouts Completed: 27
    Dance: 3
    Mixed Cardio: 6
    Outdoor Run: 1
    Outdoor Walk: 7
    Stair Stepper: 3
    Strength Training: 3
    Yoga: 4

Time Spent Working Out: 17:48:57 (hours:minutes:seconds)

Calories Burned During Workouts: 4,438


Pictures of My Successes

Meditation

Apple Watch rings

Covid antibody test results
Celebrating July 4th

Bike riding practice

Celebrating Jacob's birthday

Sunday dinner with my parents
Book #1

Book #2

Now for the August goals… I’m not sure what August will look like considering the kids could end up having to do distance learning at any moment, so I’m keeping my goals for August light in case we have to pivot.  And since I’m no longer doing bucket lists for summer, fall, Christmas, etc. our bucket list items will now just be included in my goals.

August Goals

Relationships/Connect

One last Sunday lunch with my in-laws before kids go back to school.
One last Sunday dinner with my parents before kids go back to school.
                                                                                      
Personal/Health/Wellness/Fitness/Beauty

Meditate every day.
Quiet time every day.
Drink 64 oz. most days.
Close all rings on my Apple Watch at least 20 days.
Walk/run 41 miles. 
Start revamping skin routine.
Read 2 books for fun.
Finish White Fragility.
Continue reading Get Out of Your Head.
Visit with therapist via Zoom.
Schedule annual dermatologist skin check.
Schedule annual well visit with midwife.

Family

Take Jacob for his nine-year well visit.
Take Jacob to meet his teacher.
Take Olivia to meet her teacher.
Send the kids back to school and pray that we’ve made the right decision.
Continue to check on registration for Olivia’s dance classes.
Make decisions regarding baseball for Jacob.  (He’s signed up but should he play?)
Continue looking at mountain houses to rent for fall break.

Home

Test drive 1-2 SUVs I have my eye on (only if we can do this safely).
Spray paint travel frames white and hang in bedroom.
Decorate the house for fall.  (Yep, I’m doing it earlier this year!)
Complete 2 things on Master To-Do list.

Blog

Post 3 times per week. 

Friday Funnies


Literally me




On the Blog This Week



Previous Monthly Goals Posts

Wednesday, August 5, 2020

Our Week - The One with Quarantine, Week 20 & Summer, Week 10 (The Funk is Back)

Well, I had a good run with quarantine and making the most of it, but alas, I think the funk has found me again.  Last week was one of my most difficult in quarantine yet.  With Covid cases on the rise and no end in sight, plus the fact that I tend to hit a slump every August anyway, this past week was a rough one.  The fact that school is looming over our heads isn’t helping either.

I’ve had no desire to write for the blog, to work on anything else blog-related, to work on house projects, to take pictures… nothing.  I basically spent the entire week reading books and listening to Taylor Swift’s new album… which in hindsight probably hasn’t helped with my funk.  That new album of hers is just so devastating.  So beautiful but so devastating.  It’s like seeing a train wreck and not being able to look away.  Have you listened to it yet?  She is a lyrical genius, y’all.  Genius.  I have to have listened to the album at least 20 times already.

But anyway, back to my funk… I’m just so over everything right now. 

The pandemic.  Not seeing friends and loved ones.  Being trapped in the house constantly.  Having to tell the kids no to doing normal things.  Making hard decisions.  The heat. 

You name it and I’m so. completely. over it.

Sorry to be such a downer on a Wednesday… I do love to keep things light and happy here, but I also try to keep it real, and unfortunately this is just where I am right now.  I also want you to know that if this is where you are, too, then that’s okay.  I want you to know that you’re not alone.  The good news is that this too shall pass, so we just have to keep on putting one foot in front of the other until it does, right?

Y’all ready for the recap?  Get ready, this one is riveting… we did a whole lot of absolutely nothing.  ;o)

Monday, July 27 (Day 136 of Quarantine)

Monday morning was grocery shopping day and I was pleased to see that Publix continues to enforce mask-wearing… either that or people have finally decided to do the right thing here.  #DoubtItTho  I was also excited to see the first signs of fall on the endcap!  SO here for it.


Jacob had loads of new Lego sets from his birthday weekend, so he spent pretty much all day putting them together.  My mother-in-law and step-father-in-law had gifted him with his first “expert” Lego set designed for ages 16+ and he was excited to tackle it.  I think he was expecting some sort of challenge, but y’all, he put it together like it was nothing… and it only took him probably two hours.  That kid just amazes me!! 


After lunch, the kids worked on more summer homework… will it ever end?!  And the rest of the day was spent doing the usual things… playing, working, screen time, dinner, playing outside, watching shows, bedtime.  See, riveting?  Right?  Haha.

Tuesday, July 28 (Day 137 of Quarantine)

Tuesday morning was another lazy morning.  The kids and I hung out around the house and B stepped out to see his doctor… he threw out his back again (you may remember he also threw it out at the beginning of this year), and this time it was worse, so he wanted to get checked to make sure it’s not something serious.  Fortunately, his GP said he doesn’t think there’s any serious issue, and that it’s likely just a muscle spasming or swelling and pushing on a nerve. 

Mid-morning, the kids and I decided to go for a walk around the neighborhood – attempt one to get me out of my funk that I’d already gotten into – but it was SO HOT and yucky that we only made it about a mile before calling it quits.  We did get to see a turtle on our walk, though… can you spot him down in that hole?


Olivia has decided this year that she wants to start incorporating plaid skirts into her uniform wardrobe, and her new one arrived that day.  I’m not ready for this!  I just want her to wear the little jumpers forever. 


Lunch, summer homework, and work were on tap for the rest of the afternoon, and then we had some rain roll in before dinner.  B stepped out to pick up his meds for his back and the kids and I hung out indoors for the rest of the evening since the rain had settled in somewhat.  The kids tried on their new masks to make sure they fit well, and they wanted me to take some pictures. 




B and I watched the season 2 finale of All American and now I’m going through withdrawals!  I spy a University of Georgia pendant in Coach Baker’s office… #GoDawgs



Wednesday, July 29 (Day 138 of Quarantine)

Wednesday morning, I finished up the laundry and then the kids and I went for another mid-morning walk.  It was cloudy and much cooler that day, so it was actually pretty pleasant (aside from the humidity, I suppose) and we all felt a little more refreshed after returning. 

The rest of the day was pretty much the same as the others, but it included some Mongolian beef leftovers for lunch (one of my favorites!) and then after dinner we watched some AGT with the kids before putting them to bed.  Since we finished All American I haven’t found anything exciting to replace it with just yet, so B has been watching Sneaky Pete while I read or listen to music.




Thursday, July 30 (Day 139 of Quarantine)

Thursday morning was much the same as all of the other days before, but I left the kids with B to pick up Chick-Fil-A for lunch.  B usually picks up food, but I volunteered because I wanted to spare his back since it hurts the most when he’s in the sitting position. 

I opened the sunroof and blasted my music and it felt really good to get out and ride all by myself.  When I was young and carefree, I always loved to ride around and blast music while singing at the top of my lungs… it was something I always did with my girlfriends (and some old boyfriends) and it’s always been cathartic for me.  It did, indeed, improve my mood a bit, and it also made me feel a bit more “normal” since life has been pretty much anything but that lately.

Olivia decided on Thursday that she was going to put on her school uniform and then she proceeded to wear it for the rest of the day.  I mean, can you tell how badly she wants to go back to school??  Bless her.


She also asked if we could paint her nails one last time before she goes back to school.  They’re not allowed to wear nail polish at school, so she likes to wear it as much as possible during the summer.  She selected a deep shade of midnight plus a berry purple and deemed them her Halloween nails!  That’s my girl!


After dinner, I received a notification from the library that one of my holds was FINALLY available (books have been impossible to come by lately… the waiting lists have been devastating) so I decided to take another solo cruise to pick it up.  Sunroof open, music loud, sunglasses on, and lots of singing. 

I started reading my new book that evening while B watched his show, and it was nice to be able to lose myself in somebody else’s world for a little while since ours is just so weird right now.

Friday, July 31 (Day 140 of Quarantine)

Friday morning, we received the dreaded Covid waiver from our school and I promptly burst into tears upon reading it.  A signed copy is required of anyone attending our school this year (whether in-person or distance learning) and I know it’s necessary for our school to cover their bases, but it just sucks that the current state of our world has forced things to be this way. 

No parent should ever have to sign a waiver stating that they understand their child(ren) could contract a virus that could result in permanent injury or death just from being somewhere that they’re supposed to be.  School should be a safe space for them, just like home, but this stupid virus says otherwise. 

B and I (reluctantly) signed the waiver, and then for the rest of the day I was just spent.  I know this all sounds very dramatic, but since I was already feeling fragile prior to that, the waiver was just the straw that broke the camel’s back.

Jacob finally completed the remainder of his summer homework, finishing his book report and illustration to go along with it.  He drew a picture of a dog and a coyote, and he was so proud of his work that he asked me to take a picture to send to my dad (who is an artist).  Sweet boy.



Friday evening B picked up dinner from our favorite pub, and then the four of us went for an evening walk around the neighborhood.  After our walk, we watched Ice Age (the kids had never seen it) and then B and I settled in for some shows after they went to bed.  We started Sweet Magnolias on Netflix because I’d heard such good things about it, but I’m not 100% sold just yet after the first episode.  I thought it was cute, but the acting is a little cheesy and I just cannot with Chris Klein’s “southern” accent, y’all.  He needs a little LOT more practice.

Two fun facts about that show, though… one, speaking of Chris Klein, I met him when I was a teenager and working at our local movie theater.  He was in the area filming We Were Soldiers and on one of his off-nights, he came to the movie theater to watch Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.  (Do y’all remember that movie??)  He walked right up to the box office (alone) and asked me for one ticket, and when I looked up at him and realized who he was, my eyes got as big as saucers.  I played it cool and sold him his ticket, and then after he retreated to the auditorium, all of my friends and I started screaming and swooning.  Lol.

One of my best friends was off that night, so I called her immediately and told her he was there, and she got all dressed up and flew to the theater so she could be there when his movie got out.  Lolololol.  After the movie, he came out into the lobby and told us he had lost his ring in the theater and couldn’t find it, so my manager and I (and a few other people who were being nosy because – hello – he’s famous) walked back to the auditorium to try to help him find it before the next movie started.  We were unsuccessful… we never found that dang ring.

Fact two, the show Sweet Magnolias is filmed right here in Georgia not too far from where we live!  One day I suppose we should go check out the town and visit the set.

Saturday, August 1 (Day 141 of Quarantine)

Saturday morning, I made homemade waffles for breakfast and then I got out of the house alone for a workout.  I ended up walking for over an hour, clocking about 3.4 miles and it felt good to get out and get my blood pumping.  Whenever I try to walk with the kids or Maui or our whole family, things are verrrry slow, so I always love it when I can get out alone and set my own pace. 




I felt pretty good when I got back, and then we spent the rest of the day having lunch and hanging out in the back yard.  Olivia wanted to get in the pool, and Jacob and I sat on the porch.  B had to do some work, so he wasn’t able to join us, but he finished just in time to play afternoon video games with the kids. 

I stepped out again to pick up pizza for dinner to give B’s back a break, and again, I opened the sunroof and sang my heart out… gosh, it makes me miss being 19 so much!!

The kids wanted to watch How to Train Your Dragon after dinner, and I ended up reading the whole time during the movie.  My book had gotten really good and the movie seemed meh, so I ended up finishing the whole book that evening. 


B and I started the new Zac Efron show on Netflix, Down to Earth after the kids went to bed, and it was pretty good.  I’ve been hearing all kinds of rave reviews about it, so we thought we’d give it a whirl.  It’s definitely not going to fill the void that All American left behind, but it’s entertaining, nonetheless.

Sunday, August 2 (Day 142 of Quarantine)

Sunday morning, we had cinnamon rolls and watched church, and then we headed to my MIL and step-FIL’s for lunch.  Once the kids return to school next week, we’re not really sure what things will look like, so that will likely be the demise of Sunday lunches and dinners once again.  We can’t have the kids bringing the funk to their grandparents.  Sigh.


Sunday afternoon was lazy… video games for B and the kids, and me trying to get some blog writing done… this post, actually.

My mom had to return to work earlier this week since our friars have been cleared from Covid (great news!), so she’s back to being super cautious again, and not wanting to put us at risk.  That meant that Sunday dinner was, indeed, canceled again.  We opted for a cheese board at home instead.


And that was our week, y’all.  If you’ve made it this far, I salute you.  Maybe next week’s recap will be a little more entertaining… then again, maybe not.  Because #quarantine


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Monday, August 3, 2020

What I Ordered from Amazon in July 2020

*This post contains affiliate links.  As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Last month I had a record low number of purchases from Amazon, but I definitely made up for that this month.  Whew, so many purchases in July… I blame the birthday gift cards that started burning a hole in my pocket!




Majesty

I read American Royals this past month and loved it so much that I decided to just go ahead and buy the sequel, Majesty.  I’m dying to know what happens in book two so I’m counting down the days until this one arrives on September 1.



Midnight Sun

Y’all!!!!  My friend texted me the other day to let me know that the long-anticipated follow-up to the Twilight series is finally coming out!!  Midnight Sun is the same iconic love story as told in Twilight, but this one is told from Edward’s perspective.  YES YES YES.  There have been rumors about this book for years, and it’ll finally be available August 2.  I already pre-ordered my copy.  #TeamEdwardAAF



White Fragility

This book was on my wish list for months, and with the Black Lives Matter movement picking up at a fast pace back in June, I tried to order it with no luck.  It was finally made available for pre-order again at the beginning of this month and I snatched it up.  After a couple of delays with delivery, it’s finally in my hands, and I’m a couple of chapters in.  I plan to review it eventually here on the blog, but my first impression of it is that every white American should read this book.



Leopard Apple Watch Band

I’ve officially discovered the plethora of inexpensive Apple Watch Bands on Amazon and life will never be the same.  This thin leopard silicone band is ah-mazing – stylish, comfy, breathable, weather-proof, and so inexpensive, and I’ve been rocking it all week!  Only $5.99, y’all!



White Apple Watch Band

This white band is everything I love about the leopard band, only in a different color.  I figure, white will go with pretty much anything, so it’s a good one to keep on hand.  These come in every color and pattern you could ever imagine!  So many options!



Best Leggings

These leggings are like butter, thin and soft and barely there, and after wearing them all day a couple of times, they’re officially my favorite leggings that I’ve ever owned.  They come in tons of different colors and patterns and at just $25.99, they’re a steal compared to their more expensive brand-named counterparts.



Neutrogena Hydro Boost Hydrating Cleansing Gel

Okay, so I’m totally guilty over here of still using the same facial cleanser that I’ve used since I was 16.  While I’m sure there’s nothing wrong with the one I’ve been using for 22 years, my skin has aged and changed, and therefore probably needs something a little more sophisticated.  I’ve always loved Neutrogena products (the one I’ve used for 22 years was also Neutrogena), so, naturally, the first brand I researched was Neutrogena.  Since my skin has become incredibly dry these last few years, I was intrigued by their new Hydro Boost line, and therefore, decided to try this cleansing gel to take my makeup off every night.



Neutrogena Hydro Boost Hydrating Serum

I’ve always been a very basic skincare girl, not using much more than a daily facial cleanser + a moisturizer, but now that I’m 38 and I have a few wrinkles popping up here and there, I decided it was high-time to delve into the world of serums.  Neutrogena’s new line also includes this hydrating serum, so I thought I might as well keep it in the family and try this one first.  I’ll have to report back after I’ve used it for a while.



Neutrogena Hydro Boost Gel-Cream

Yep, I decided to go all in and grab the cream, too.  As I said before, I have very dry skin on my face now, so I thought this one would be good.  All three of these products contain hyaluronic acid which is a sugar that is found naturally in your skin.  It holds moisture and therefore keeps your skin plump and hydrated, which in turn, keeps wrinkles at bay.  Compared to most other skin lines, this one is much more affordable, so I’m hoping that I love it.



Weleda Skin Food Ultra Rich Cream

According to Amazon’s thousands of reviews, this skin cream is pretty much a miracle-worker, so I decided to grab a tube of it as well.  Many people mentioned that it is very reminiscent of LaMer moisturing cream (which retails for $335.00 per 2 oz. – WHAT?!) so I thought it can’t be bad, right?  Especially for that tiny fraction of the cost of the LaMer.  I haven’t tried it yet, but I plan to incorporate it into my skin care routine eventually.  I don’t want to change too much all at once because then I won’t know which things are actually helping and which things could be hurting.  Again, I’ll have to report back once I have been using it for a while.



Ecotools Makeup Brush Shampoo

Wanna know a secret?  I don’t clean my makeup brushes.  I have always bought very inexpensive ones and just tossed them when they get icky.  Well, I’m hoping to revamp my makeup routine soon as part of revamping my skin routine, so I decided to start buying makeup brushes that were of better quality.  Since they’re a little more expensive, I went ahead and bought this cleaner for them since I won’t be tossing them as often anymore.  I haven’t used this yet, but it came up in a lot of my searches as one of the best.  It’s also hypoallergenic and free of lots of different toxins, so I thought it sounded like a good choice. 



Makeup Brush Cleaning Pad

These little silicone pads are uber cheap, so I thought I’d grab one of those, too, to make makeup brush cleaning a little easier and more thorough.



Coty Airspun Loose Face Powder

As I said before, I’m trying to revamp my makeup routine a bit since my skin has gotten increasingly drier over the last few years.  I’ve worn Covergirl Simply Powder Foundation for years, but it doesn’t sit as well on my face now that it’s so dry, and I find that it settles into the wrinkles around my eyes a little more than I’d like.  Instead, I thought it would be better to find something lighter and more translucent.  This Coty Airspun Powder has over 25,000 reviews on Amazon with 4.4 out of 5 stars, and at just $6.84 per pack, it was a no-brainer.  It’s cheaper than my original powder and everyone raves about how well it hides fine lines and wrinkles and gives you an airbrushed look.  Again, I haven’t used it yet as I’m finishing up the last of my old powder, but I’ll report back once I do!



Real Techniques Brush Blush

As I said before, I’m trying to start purchasing higher quality makeup brushes rather than the $1-$2 ones, so I decided to start with these Real Techniques brushes.  They’re by no means top of the line, but they’re by far better than the brushes I’ve used in the past.  I bought the powder brush about a month ago and I’m so obsessed with it, that I knew I had to have the matching blush brush, too.  My blush brush is on its last leg, so it was time for a new one. 



Maybelline Dream Satin Liquid Foundation

I’ve been using this foundation + hydrating serum for years and I’ve always loved it, so I’m not sure I even need to change up my foundation.  It was time for a refill, and I always buy mine on Amazon because, as with most other items, they blow everyone else’s prices out of the water.



Gold Star Necklace

B and I binged Outer Banks back when it first came out, and I obsessed over Sarah Cameron’s gold star choker forever afterwards.  I found this one on Amazon and it’s very similar to the one she wore, but maybe even better?  I’ve been wearing it nonstop for several days now and I love it.  I’ve been sleeping in it and showering in it and it’s held up beautifully so far.  Only $11.99!



Nail Scrubber Brushes

Random, I know, but I bought these in preparation for the kids going back to school.  Germs like to lurk under fingernails, so I’m going to be getting the kids to scrub their nails more often.  Using a nail scrubber is an easy way to do it, and these things were super cheap, so now we can keep one in every bathroom, so they’ll always have one at their fingertips.  Have you seen how much dirt is under your kids’ nails?  YUCK.



I Had a Favorite Dress

In keeping with the BLM movement and keeping my vow to increase diversity in our household, I bought the kids a couple of new books this month.  This book is absolutely gorgeous… the sweetest little story and the most beautiful pictures.  Perfect for any little girl, especially the ones who love fashion!



Those Shoes

I bought this one for both kiddos because it has such a great message about empathy and generosity.  I teared up the first time I read it.  I highly recommend!



Smarty Pants Vitamins

I’ve settled on these as a daily multi-vitamin, so you’ll probably be seeing them in my monthly Amazon posts from here on out.  My hair and nails haven’t looked so good in a long time!



Flonase Sensimist

Fall allergens will be out in full force here very soon (I’m looking at you, ragweed) so I bought a new bottle of Flonase Sensimist to keep on hand.  I use this from about March to November every year since something is always in bloom during those months, and then I’m usually able to take a break from it in December through February.



Amazon Gift Card

Another month, another Amazon gift card to give!  This one had to be mailed, so I stuck with something simple.



If you want to see we’ve ordered in past months, check out the posts below.


Happy Monday, y’all!


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