Life (and Lack Thereof) of a Modern Housemommy

One women's journey of self-discovery AFTER love, marriage and the baby carriage…

Happy 2011! January 10, 2011

Filed under: Random — housemommy @ 11:04 pm

Happy 2011, everyone!  I hope you haven’t given up on your new year’s resolutions yet, because I have a feeling 2011 is going to be one heck of a year.  I have a feeling 2011 is going to be My Year.  What are my resolutions for 2011? 

-Buy a house (our very first!)

-Graduate from college (Finally!)

-Take a vacation (well, why not?)

This year is going to be a year of change, so in honor of the new year and new beginnings, I’ve suggested 25 easy ways to make a change in your life.  Pick a few or try them all!

-Wear sunscreen.  Everyday!  Even a low SPF will better protect your skin and make you look lovely

-Journal.  Write a little everyday, every week, every few weeks.  It’s tough to commit to writing, but these are the best days of your life!  Don’t you want to remember them when you’re old and senile?

-Read.  Add some wrinkles to your brain!

-Volunteer.  Nothing will make you feel better, I promise.  Pick something you’re good at and use your talents to help the less fortunante

-Eat more veggies.  I know, I know…asparagus is stringy and weird.  I don’t care!  Veggies are good for you, so add them to every meal!

-Stop overwashing your hair.  It’s hard for me to pass on shampoo every other day too, but the professionals swear by it.

-De-clutter your space.   If your space is organized, your mind will be too.  Take a day and get rid of the four-year-old magazines beside the toilet.

-Say “I love you!”.  Nuff said.

-Exercise.  Need a great workout?  Try a Beach Body program.  It will kick your booty, but you will see amazing results (as long as you don’t cheat!)

-Remember.  Create a scrapbook, memory box, or photo album to help you remember the best year of your life!

-Call.  Haven’t spoken to Grammy in a while?  Don’t wait til the next holiday to talk to her. 

-Try something new.  New food, new style, new job…what do you have to lose?

-Face a fear.  I hate worms, but I killed one in my bathroom the other day in order to protect my child (who was three rooms away) from it’s squiggly grossness.  Whatever, it felt great!

-Wash your bed linens.  I know you’re not doing it once a week like you should!

-Send a thank-you card.  It’s a lost art, but it’s so nice and it will make you feel good

-Take a personal day.  Americans work too hard…if you’ve earned a personal day, take one!

-Pursue a passion.  Last year, I wanted to learn French.  Today, I only know about 30 words, but it’s 30 words more than I knew last January!  (PS, A great language-learning website is Livemocha.com

-Buy sexy underwear.  I KNOW you don’t have as many as you should.  

-Play.  With children.  With your partner.  With yourself ;)

-Get eight hours of sleep.  After you’re done playing, of course!

-Make peace.  With your ex, your sister, or yourself.  Don’t wait til next year!

-Kick the habit.  Do you smoke?  Swear?  Sext?  Kick the habit and feel better about your self control

-Donate.  You might have extra money, time or resources.  Whatever it is, donate a little to someone in need.  Are you a broke, busy hermit?  Take the easy route and support a meaningful cause at  The Petition Site!

-Analyze.  Life is short.  Take a look at where yours is going and make a change if you don’t like what you see.  It’s never too late to be a better you!

Happy 2011, everyone!  Let’s make this our best year yet!

 

Winter Favorites! December 2, 2010

Filed under: Family,Food,Random — housemommy @ 12:03 pm

Oh, it’s snowing in Western Pennsylvania!  Since it’s the beginning of winter and the holidays are right around the corner, I’m still in love with the idea of cold, wintry days (See me in February, though, and it will be a completely different story). 

With Hanukkah starting last night and Christmas just a few weeks away, I figured it was time for a few of my favorite things–Winter 2010 edition:

-Need help with gifts?  This bacon wallet cracked me up!  Love it, love this website

-It’s cold out there!  Warm up with some spiced apple cider (there’s even an “adult” version!)

-I love sending photos of my kids in with my Christmas cards.  Get inexpensive prints and great photo gift ideas here

-Give back!  This non-profit organization’s cause touched my heart.  For more information visit their website here

-Last year I made the New Year’s Resolution to start tweeting.  Become a part of the Twitter craze this holiday season!

-My Christmas decorations are kind of hit and miss.  For holiday decorating tips from the professionals at HGTV, visit their website!

-I don’t care what anyone says about how they look…Uggs are soooo cozy and make great gifts!

Happy Holidays everyone!

 

Travel, Turkey and Trouble with the In-Laws November 22, 2010

Filed under: Family — housemommy @ 5:08 pm

I love the holidays.  LOVE THEM!  You already know how excited I get about food, so an entire day dedicated to eating, drinking and being merry is right up my alley.  I also love cooking.  Green bean casseroles, beer roasted turkey, and pies (oh god…the pies!) make me happy, happy, happy.

So why am I dreading the holidays this year?

One word:  In-laws.

Let me back up.

My in-laws and I have had a very up-and-down kind of relationship.  When I first started dating Steve, I got along with his family pretty well.  We went flea-marketing together, took road trips together, sat together at Steve’s football games and held up little signs saying how much we loved him.  We had fun together–honest!  I have video recordings to prove it!

And then I got pregnant.

Not to say they weren’t excited about becoming grandparents, because they WERE.  What they were not excited about was my way of being pregnant (next to no alcohol, no medications, no riding four-wheelers through trails across western Pennsylvania even when my father in-law insisted that it was perfectly safe to let the baby “jiggle around a little”, etc.).  Once I gave birth to Theron, it became worse.  WAY worse.  They thought I should bottle feed when I was strictly nursing, they thought I was too overprotective…Steve’s dad actually asked, “Why is it taking you so long to lose all that weight?”.

Uh, yeah.

Needless to say, we butt heads a bit.  By that I mean, I’m the mother and I make the rules.  If you don’t like it, too bad.  If you break my rules, you WILL hear about it and we WILL have a problem.  Period.

So now I’m a bitch, apparently.

Which is why I am NOT looking forward to spending hour after hour pretending I want to be stuck in a room with the lot of them this Thanksgiving.  What am I thankful for this year?  Going home!

Why do we have to spend Thanksgiving with our extended family?  Why can’t we make our own rules for how we spend the holidays?  I want to engorge myself with yummy food and sit around in my pajamas all day enjoying my children and a rare day off with my hubby. 

Ugh.

Well wherever you happen to spend your holidays this year, I hope you enjoy it.  Just in case you’re going to be stuck spending the holidays with people you don’t like, print off a few of these easy Thanksgiving coloring sheets from American Baby Magazine.  You’ll look like a young, fabulous Angelina Jolie while entertaining the kiddos and avoiding the chaos of the adults in the other room!

 

Breaking the Rules November 10, 2010

Filed under: Discovery — housemommy @ 2:57 pm

I was driving home from Target today thinking about my blog and feeling crappy about myself.  As you all well know, I have a master’s degree in Breaking the Promises I Make to Myself with a concentration in Shame, Guilt and Procrastination.  I don’t remember the last time I wrote an entry here, and I was feeling bad about it.  Especially since I had already made myself  a goal to write at least once a week for six months.   

Yeah that didn’t work out so well…

I would forget, or put it off, or find something better to do during my very limited free time (like nap…or shower).  Whatever the excuse though, I had been putting off writing for several weeks, and it pissed me off.

I never do the things I say I’m going to do.

You know what though?  I’ve decided it’s ok.  I’m allowed to break promises to myself.  I’m allowed to take a nap if I want to.  It’s not the end of the world if I miss deadline, because that is me.  That’s the way I am and I shouldn’t feel guilty about the choices I make. 

The whole point of this blog is to figure out a little bit about myself.  I like to cook.  I like to take photographs.  I like giving people advice about clothes and toys and books even though I have zero qualifications to do so.  I’m never on time.  I’ve got a scatterbrain.  I don’t always use punctuation marks correctly.

I never do the things I say I’m going to do.

And that’s me.  Love it or leave it.

 

Dear Blog, October 19, 2010

Filed under: Random — housemommy @ 3:41 pm

Dear Blog,

Self-exploration is hard…stop making me feel guilty about neglecting you.

Thanks a bunch,

Crista

 

Garbage Day September 29, 2010

Filed under: Go Green!,Random — housemommy @ 10:17 am

Wednesdays are garbage days at my house.  This morning I peeked through the window at the lovely garbage men taking away this week’s trash.  Firstly,  I say “lovely garbage men” because the two young guys that run the route through Slippery Rock are some of the nicest public service workers I’ve ever known (unlike the postal workers…where do they find those people?).  They always wave hello, they always take away whatever crazy items we happen to set out for them (mattresses, exercise equipment, a bajillion disposable diapers…), and they never try to run over my obnoxious dogs that love to harass them while they work.

Secondly, watching my garbage men work made me consider the future for my children.  What will the world look like 30 years from now?  50 years from now?  When my kids are old enough to have their own kids, will they even want to?  Or will their world be such a mess having children would be an act of irresponsibility?

So in honor of the great garbage guys of Slippery Rock, and in an effort to make this world a little more lovely for the next generation, here are a few ways to make your lifestyle a little greener:

1)  Wash with cold water.  About 90% of the energy used in laundering is from heating the water.  Only use hot water for very heavily soiled items like poo and spit-up stains.  Also, try to re-use items that haven’t been worn or used for long (hats, pajamas and towels can all be used more than once before washing).

2)  Grow your own herbs.  I’ve never been great with plants, but herbs are (for the most part) super easy to maintain and take up very little space.  Herbs like parsley, rosemary, basil and sage only take a few weeks to sprout and can sit right on your windowsill.  For a whimsical touch (and extra “green” points), plant your herbs in teacups, empty candle jars or tin cans (peel off the manufacturer’s label and get your kids involved with redecorating their own personalized labels!).

3)  Shut off the water.  When you’re brushing your teeth, doing your hair, washing the dishes–shut off the water when it’s not in use!  This is such an easy green tip, but it goes without saying that the environmental impact is huge.  Teach your children early to do the same!

4)  Make your own toys.  If your kids are anything like mine, they have a box stuffed full of toys, but they only play with about a fourth of them…or less.  Sure, new fancy plastic toys can be fun, but most of the toys my kids love are soft and cuddly bears, puppies and dolls.  And they’re so easy to make!  Try these instructions for making your very own rag doll.

5)  Shop locally.  See those little stands on the side of the road?  Or the signs advertising for the farmer’s market?  Shop there.  Buy fruits, veggies, fungi, bread and loads of other good stuff there.  It’s good for the earth, good for your body, good for your community and good for the economy.  What else is there to say? 

These are just a few tips to help your family live a more green lifestyle.  Let’s work together to make the earth we leave behind for our children a little better, and the work we leave behind for our garbage men a little easier!

 

Unforgettable September 25, 2010

Filed under: Random — housemommy @ 9:26 am

Last night I went to the homecoming game at my former high school.  Of course, being the old fart that I am, I didn’t know anyone on the court, but that wasn’t altogether surprising.  I like the high-school-football-atmosphere, the food and of course seeing old friends and classmates (with it being, you know…homecoming and all).  So imagine my shock when former classmate after former classmate walked right past me with absolutely no idea who I was.  Teachers I had spent entire semesters with responded to my enthusiastic greetings with a half-hearted, “oh, um…hi there”…

Whhaaaattttt??!

I grew up in a tiny town.  My graduating class only consisted of 66 people total.  I may not have been the most popular girl in school, but I actively participated in various extracurriculars.  I was even student council president!  And it’s not as though I’ve been out of school for decades…I graduated in 2006.  So why am I so obviously forgettable?  Why could people see right through me?  Could I have (perish the thought) peaked in highschool?

I don’t want to be the girl no one remembers.  I don’t want to fade into the background of my life.  I want to show up to my ten-year class reunion and have people recognize my face for heaven’s sake…

Recognize any familiar faces?

I don’t have a solution yet.  I don’t even have a plan.  I just know I’m not happy about being invisible, and I’m not prepared to accept that for myself.

 

 
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