Wednesday, December 2, 2015

This and That

Here's what I'm up to:

After being given the go ahead from my cornea specialist, I started swimming again. After three weeks I can go for 10 laps, or 20 lengths, which sounds so much better. I've set goals for each month, and December's goal is that I can consistently get up to 24 lengths, January be at 30 lengths, and keep on from there. Does anyone out there swim for exercise, do laps ad nauseam, who can tell me how you made progress? Or put differently, how do you ever get to the point of swimming one length, turning around and going back the other, without having to hang onto the side of the pool, gasping for air? Advice appreciated!
A weird quirk I have is baking Christmas cookies calls my name - including wrapping them up, delivering them to neighbors, friends, etc. but I don't feel inclined to eat them. Over the years my cookie baking has fallen to the wayside, but I saw these off-the-charts CUTE cupcakes
christmas-tree-cupcake-recipe

with adorable little green trees on them. I think I  have to bake them for somebody. The only exception to this not-inclined-to-devour rule is if I bake what I call Sandies (aka Russian Tea Cakes), and they're dangerous to have around, so I avoid them entirely. I could eat 10 in one sitting, no problem.

Back in the spring I found a housekeeper to come clean our house once a month. She did a great job, and it was very nice to have the entire house clean and fresh, with nice vacuum marks everywhere all at the same time. But we've decided we don't actually love the whole experience. It feels awkward to have someone here cleaning, so much so that I always feel like I need to pick up before she arrives, then I need to look or be busy while she is here. CS  feels like he's in the way, no matter where he goes. So we are going back to doing the cleaning ourselves, even though in truth it likely won't be as clean. My joints just do not love bending down and scrubbing baseboards these days, and I'm not inclined to dust for three hours as she did. But we think we can keep it good enough.

 My daughter shared a link earlier this week for Clean Mama, and her website has the cutest little check off form that I think will work well. The cleaning routine is divided into 4 - 5 weeks of the month, and looks very doable. Does anyone else out there relate to this - feeling awkward having someone come in to clean or am I just weird? The upside is that after having her come for a good nine months the house is in great shape, so hopefully I can keep it up.

We are in the middle of Christmas shopping for those eight Littles. I sent each of them a letter, asking them to fill out the reverse side with their list, and have their mama initial if the request was approved and mail it back to me. It worked great, and I'll do it again next year. Some of their requests had a firm mama's 'no' by them, but I was able to find something on everyone's list, and I had so much fun choosing Barbies and little critters and such, and the letters were adorable!

We gave our 7 1/2 pre lit Christmas tree to one of our kids this past weekend, then promptly bought a 4 1/2 foot one at Lowes. CS came up with the think-out-of-the-box idea to put the tree on the outer kitchen counter! It sort of wraps around the outside of the kitchen, bordering the family room area, so I said 'why not?!' I'll share a picture after we get it up and decorated. I also cleared out our decor closet, took half of it to Goodwill, and passed on some to our kids to enjoy using in their homes. I went through every single tree ornament, and had fun bundling up a bag full for each of our kids. All those tongue dispenser reindeer, etc are now in their proper homes, along with some fun favorites I think they'll remember from their childhood trees.

I finished Thin Places, a suggested memoir, and am reading another memoir, The Glass Castle. Crazy, amazing story that is supposed to come out as a movie next year. I won't get everything read this year that I'd like, but it's not for lack of trying. I'm also on track to finish reading through the Bible in one year, and am now listening to it on my phone app while I walk Miss Lily in the morning. Switching to various translations has made it very fun. The Message is my favorite audio version for sure.

So years ago, the very first Seinfeld I watched was the last episode. I had never, ever watched it. I heard about a show called The Good Wife a year or two ago, but never bothered to watch it, and knew nothing about it. CS started taping it, and asked me to watch one episode with him. Since then we've been on a marathon, having gone to the library and checked out Season one - all 16 episodes, and now we're finally a few shows into Season two. I believe the show is in Season seven, so we've got a long way to go. 

The upside to all of this is I've gotten a good amount of knitting done, and CS is happy to have me as company in the evening.

So tomorrow is date day and we're off to do a bit of Christmas shopping, of course. CS gave me a choice of what movie to see, Creed or Mockingjay, I chose Mockingjay. He was surprised. I'm surprised that after 35 years of marriage, a man who knows me through and through thinks I would choose a Sylvester Stallone fighting movie over action/adventure where the hero is a girl. Can anyone else relate to this? And of course this movie viewing will definitely include popcorn. The DASH diet says two cups is the normal serving, but normal has never, ever been my goal.

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