Keep Calm & Carry On

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I try to avoid house decor trends.  Don’t get me wrong.  I think chicken kitchens are cute, and it’s a hard fight to resist covering Cecilia’s bathroom with rubber duck decor.  It’s just that I’m scarred.  When I was in junior high, my mom let me go all out with the very trendy, very colorful sunflower theme.  My bedroom was painted green and marigold yellow.  Sunflower curtains. Sunflower bedspread. Sunflower, sunflower, SUNFLOWER! A few years later, after that fad had passed, it was bit embarrassing to have folks in my room, and there was no way of covering it’s BRIGHT YELLOW walls.

As an adult, I’ve tried to keep my home a bit more classic.  I like pieces that can be switched out easily without much cost or effort.  I’ve painted all the walls very neutral colors. Even Cecilia’s room is tan.  That’s how devoted I am to a neutral, trend-less house. However, recently I found something I just can’t resist - Keep Calm and Carry On poster.  I’ve seen them in several magazines and websites, and I just think there adorable.  It’s a good mantra to have in your life, especially if you’re a mother of a toddler who’s entering her terrible twos.  Plus it has a very interesting background story.

There are some great Etsy sellers that offer the poster at reasonable price, and you can customize the size and colors.  I paid $15 for my print (including shipping), $5 for my frame (Goodwill!), and $7 for the mat (Hobby Lobby). That’s just $27 for a 16×12 piece of art!


2010 Resolution, Part Oops

Well, I guess my monthly approach failed like most folks’ year-long resolution approach.  Life has gotten a little hectic around here, and I’ve forgotten to make myself a priority.  I still found time to veg out on tv while stalking my friends on Facebook, but I didn’t blog or work out.

However, I haven’t forgotten about my resolution to quit shopping so much.  In fact, I did a little reading on overshopping.  In my research, I figured out that I’m not an overshopper, or at least I’m not addicted to overshopping.  I definitely use it as a band aid for boredom, loneliness, and feelings of inadequacy.  All those things have the potential to become an addiction, but I don’t think I’m there yet.  I’m going to resolve to be more mindful of my attitudes and feelings while I’m shopping, but I don’t think it’s 12-step program worthy.

Over the next few months, I’m going to focus on approaching my life with an attitude of thankfulness and gratitude.  I’ve been blessed with so much, and my life would be much fuller if I find a way to be mindful of this.  I don’t need to add anything to it.  I need to spend my time giving thanks and not by spending time wanting.

In The Happyness Project, Rubin tells how she transformed time spent on mundane tasks, like waiting for the bus, into time spent on gratitude mediation.   I’m going to try this while I’m lying with Cecilia in bed trying to get her to sleep at night or naptime.  I’m also going to express more gratitude towards friends and family members.  I don’t do this enough even though I feel it.  I’m pretty sure it will only strengthen the already strong bonds.  I’m also going to try to project a positive attitude.  This is an area I struggle with.  My default is to be sarcastic and critical.  That doesn’t reflect the happiness and gratitude that I feel.  It’s going to be hard, much harder than cutting back on my shopping, but it’s something I need to do.

I’d love to hear any advice that you guys have to offer.  How do you give thanks? Do you have a grateful heart? What’s your secret?

Sweaty Shade of Summer

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Starting with our courtship, I’ve been after Chris to keep the hvac unit off when the weather was nice.  I just have a hard time making sense flipping the thermostat from heat to cool without an off period in between.  There’s something refreshing about opening the windows and airing out a dusty house after a long winter.  Unfortunately, with Chris’s allergies, sleeping the windows open cause him to develop sinus infections.

I guess it was a good thing he had his sinus surgery in January and had his sinuses scraped out because our heating unit went out the week before we started our hardwood floor refinishing.  We figured we could live without it for a while since it was a nice temperature outside, it would be off during the renovations, and we were staying with his folks for a week.  Besides, hvac repairs can be expensive.

That was nearly a month ago. So far, so good though.  Early spring in Tennessee can be pretty enjoyable.  Plus I was hopeful that it was just the heating part, not the air conditioning.  Until today. It reached 87 degrees - 79 in the house.  No air conditioning.  We called the repair man.  He came. He went.  And $125 later, the house is still 79 degrees.

Chris also informed me that the Jeep’s AC went out too.  Ugh.