Sunday, July 20, 2014

Days 14-20: Accountability

There have been a few times now that I've not filled out the chart the same day. I'll go back and fill in the last few days. This does not work! I am realizing that the power of accountability decreases if the accountability is not timely. (Woo! A lesson!)

Something strange has come of this goal. While I haven't necessarily improved in all categories, the category of keeping the house clean has improved drastically! I guess the thing that most needed work weaseled its way to the top of the priority list when I started looking at my list every day. (Another lesson?)

Today, after baths, we all got in our PJs and went for a "family pajama walk" in the woods. Lilly loved it and I really enjoyed it, too. I decided it may be a fun family tradition to have occasional evening "pajama walks."

Now for some totally unrelated photos from the last couple of weeks:

Lilly found my old sponge curlers and asked what they were. I told her they make your hair curly. "Like my daddy?" she said. And boom. It was a done deal. She wanted me to put them in her hair.









Sunday, July 13, 2014

Days 9-13: Accountability

Wednesday night I marked my "perfect" spreadsheet. Thursday and Friday night I did not and I can't honestly remember whether or not I did certain things on those nights. So the only thing I gave myself credit for was what I knew I did FOR SURE: Thursday I know I did not eat at McDonalds. (Woohooo!) Friday I went to bed early, did not eat at McDonalds and played with Tina and Lilly.

I don't mean to complain or make excuses, but life is crazy lately in a way I've never quite experienced until recently. The girls are sweet and fun but I only have about two hours a day to myself, if I'm lucky. That happens between the hours of 9pm-11pm and by then I am often so tired that I want nothing more than to watch a movie or a show with Matt and relax. Basically, there are many things I would like to do that are productive that will just not happen for a couple of years. If someone tells me about an awesome book they just read, I think "Oh! Sounds great. I haven't read for a while...maybe I'll take a loo (SPLASH!!) Ahhh! I spilled milk all over the floor! Lilly wet her pants and Tina's crying!"

This video kind of sums it up (the kids are even the right ages):


I realize I am lucky that I am able to have children and I'm grateful for all the joy they bring into my life. I have close friends who have not had an easy time conceiving so I realize how it can be annoying to hear moms complain. That being said, being a mom is not always roses and this video basically nails it.

Now, I'm done whining and ready to report on my progress:

I am not going to keep posting the poorly displayed spreadsheet on the blog because it's boring. Instead, I'll give general updates, while continuing to fill out the spreadsheet for my personal use. At some point I will ask Matt to teach me how to do something cool on Excel to display the data in a way that's worth sharing.

Here's what I've noticed: when I use the spreadsheet as a checklist I do much better. When I forget about it and just mark what I did at the end of the day, I don't. Lesson: Accountability only causes change when I actually intended to do something in the first place. I guess that ought to be obvious, but as a very wise old lady friend of mine used to say: "You live and you learn."




Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Day 8: Accountability

Matt surprised me this morning by declaring it my day! He had gone in to work over the holiday weekend and was going to stay home today and let me be in charge of what we do. I had planned on going to the YMCA with the girls, so I figured I'd let him take a much needed nap while I went. While there, I signed up for an orientation to the online workout program for Thursday. (I think it will just be 30 minutes w/ one of their trainers showing me how to use the machines, but I'm not sure). Once I've done this, I will have access to a computer-based workout program that I hope I can use to whip myself into fitness. :)

When we got back, we all went to Culvers (yay!), then went to a park and let Lilly play on the playground. Finally, at 6:00 Matt had to tutor someone at the library, so Lilly, Tina and I went and enjoyed the library while he tutored. When we got home we had worn Lilly and Tina out enough that they actually were both sleeping by about 9:10. HALLELLULIAH!!! It was like heaven. We watched a show together and ate a late dinner. Now, Matt just finished doing the dishes and appears to be cleaning the stove. (Swoon!) It's been a wonderful day. :)

I am also happy because I am doing better on my checklist. I haven't worked out in a LONG time, so just that one check makes me feel very happy.

Here it is:










Wake up at 7:00
15 minute clean
Prepare for the next day
Take Iron
Give Tina her vitamin D
At least some outside Time
At least some play with Lilly time
Be on time 
Cross at least one thing off to-do list
Write in journal
Laundry (on laundry day)
Exercise
Visiting Teaching
Something for my SS class
General Conference Talk
Date Night
Scripture Study
Bed by 11:00
Call a Family Member
Play with Tina
Not go to McDonalds

















I'm going to be working on finding a better way to do a visual on my spreadsheet. Eventually I'll figure out a nice graph or something....
























This was Tina's first time in a big girl swing! (And Lilly decided to join her even though she has mostly graduated to REALLY big girl swings :)
































































































































































Monday, July 7, 2014

Day 7: Accountability


Tonight was another night that the girls were not asleep until about 10:30. Not to whine, but that really makes it tough to get much done when you aim to be in bed by 11:00. Sigh.

I decided I am going to post daily, with my spreadsheet, but I obviously have not been writing much of interest on most days, so I will only "advertise" a new post on facebook when there's something worth reading. Perfectly accountable, but not perfectly boring. Deal?




7/1/2014 7/2/2014 7/3/2014 7/4/2014 7/5/2014 7/6/2014 7/7/2014
Cam's Perfect Month Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday Monday
Wake up at 7:00   X          
15 minute clean           X X
Prepare for the next day             X
Take Iron   X     X X X
Give Tina her vitamin D X         X X
At least some outside Time 1.5hrs     X      
At least some play with Lilly time X     X X X  
Be on time  X X   X      
Cross at least one thing off to-do list X            
Write in journal              
Laundry (on laundry day) X     X      
Exercise              
Visiting Teaching              
Something for my SS class X         X X
General Conference Talk             X
Date Night     X        
Scripture Study X         X X
Bed by 11:00             11:30
Call a Family Member Tina, Mom




Grandpa
Play with Tina X
X X X X X
Not go to McDonalds
X
X X X











































































































































































Sunday, July 6, 2014

Days 5 & 6: Accountability

Well, tonight the girls teamed up to prevent us getting to sleep at a decent hour. Lilly just keeps bawling. No idea what's wrong. At first I thought it was night terrors (she's had them before) but this was different because she is slightly responsive. She can't explain to us what's wrong. The best I'm getting is that her foot hurts, but I don't see any reason why it would be hurting her and it was fine before she went to bed. Growing pains? Nightmares? Both?

When I went in, she was bawling uncontrollably and the only thing that she could think of that would help was to see "my baby Tina." Lucky for everyone, baby Tina was also refusing to sleep, so we brought her in to cuddle with Lilly. Lilly immediately calmed as soon as I put Tina next to her. She hugged her tight and said "my baby Tina!!!"

Unfortunately, we weren't about to leave Tina sleeping in Lilly's bed with her and Lilly went right back to bawling as soon as her baby was gone. It's 12:45AM and I can't tell you yet how this story ends because it's still happening. One good thing: I was finally able to get Tina to sleep in our room.

Here's my accountability for today and yesterday:



7/1/2014 7/2/2014 7/3/2014 7/4/2014 7/5/2014 7/6/2014
Cam's Perfect Month Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Wake up at 7:00   X        
15 minute clean           X
Prepare for the next day            
Take Iron   X     X X
Give Tina her vitamin D X         X
At least some outside Time 1.5hrs     X    
At least some play with Lilly time X     X X X
Be on time  X X   X    
Cross at least one thing off to-do list X          
Write in journal            
Laundry (on laundry day) X     X    
Exercise            
Visiting Teaching            
Something for my SS class X         X
General Conference Talk            
Date Night     X      
Scripture Study X         X
Bed by 11:00            
Call a Family Member Tina, Mom




Play with Tina X
X X X X
Not go to McDonalds
X
X X X

Friday, July 4, 2014

Day 4: Accountability




7/1/2014 7/2/2014 7/3/2014 7/4/2014
Cam's Perfect Month Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
Wake up at 7:00 X
15 minute clean
Prepare for the next day
Take Iron X
Give Tina her vitamin D X
At least some outside Time 1.5hrs X
At least some play with Lilly time X X
Be on time  X X X
Cross at least one thing off to-do list X
Write in journal
Laundry (on laundry day) X X
Exercise
Visiting Teaching
Something for my SS class X
General Conference Talk
Date Night X
Scripture Study X
Bed by 11:00
Call a Family Member Tina, Mom


Play with Tina X
X X
Not go to McDonalds
X
X



Happy 4th of July!!!! It started out a little rough here. Matt told me he would have to go in to work for a few hours (boo!) and then it looked like it might be most of the day. I was pretty disappointed because the 4th is one of my favorite Holidays and I was excited to enjoy Matt's day off with him, find a parade, go to the park, etc. before fireworks. As it turned out he was home by 1:00PM and we had a fun day after all.

The girls were darling all day. Lilly remembers the 4th of July from last year and she said "Mommy, I'm not gonna be scared of the fireworks this year, because I grew up a lot and I'm brave because I'm bigger now." She was true to her word. Tina was also mesmerized by them.
Lilly after I dressed her up in her patriotic duds and did her hair. She was so excited! :)

Backpack packed and ready to go! (Lilly packed crayons in a small plastic case that was originally for earbuds, a piece of paper, and a couple of her toys. She did this while I was packing up snacks, sparklers, etc.)

Lilly made a little friend who helped bury her. We have a cute picture with her friend, but since I don't know her parents and I didn't get permission, I'm not going to post it on here.

Matt and Tina in front of one of the obstacles in the "Wife Carry Race." (No joke).

Daddy Daughter

Awwww

Happy Girl

My attempt at a three-person selfie

Riding the gator!!

She looked a little nervous during the ride (this was before it started). I think it was a little jerkier than she expected. But, she said "I love the gator ride! It was fun!"

If you look real close, you can tell she's not so sure about this ride now that it's started.


Thursday, July 3, 2014

Day 3: Accountability



  
Cam's Perfect Month Tuesday Wednesday Thursday
Wake up at 7:00 X
15 minute clean
Prepare for the next day
Take Iron X
Give Tina her vitamin D X
At least some outside Time 1.5hrs
At least some play with Lilly time X
Be on time  X X
Cross at least one thing off to-do list X
Write in journal
Laundry (on laundry day) X
Exercise
Visiting Teaching
Something for my SS class X
General Conference Talk
Date Night X
Scripture Study X
Bed by 11:00
Call a Family Member Tina, Mom

Play with Tina X
X
Not go to McDonalds
X


 No, I didn't forget to mark for today. That's really how badly I did. But the good news is, my month is still perfect because I'm being accountable. I'm looking at those two little exes from today and saying, "wow. Most of the things that most matter to me I didn't do today." All the more motivation to pick it up a notch. After all, so far, my hypothesis that keeping track would increase my likelihood of following through is not very well supported. (Heh...)

To be fair, I did a lot of good things today that aren't on that list. Also, I spent some good quality time with the girls, I just didn't "play" by the intended definition of the word. Speaking of which, I'm going to blog soon about what I mean by each of these items.

Now, though, it's 1:15AM. Bedtime.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Day 2: Accountability





7/1/2014 7/2/2014
Cam's Perfect Month Tuesday Wednesday
Wake up at 7:00 X
15 minute clean
Prepare for the next day
Take Iron X
Give Tina her vitamin D X
At least some outside Time 1.5hrs
At least some play with Lilly time X
Be on time  X X
Cross at least one thing off to-do list X
Write in journal
Laundry (on laundry day) X
Exercise
Visiting Teaching
Something for my SS class X
General Conference Talk
Date Night
Scripture Study X
Bed by 11:00
Call a Family Member Tina, Mom
Play with Tina X
Not go to McDonalds
X



That is all I can do for tonight. I worked from 9am to 8pm and am going TO BED!

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Day 1: Accountability

I have, with Matt's help, created a pretty intensive spreadsheet of the things I would like to be doing with my time and energy. I don't expect to do any of them perfectly and that isn't my goal, but I would like to have them regularly on my mind and make an effort. So, my goal for the month of July:

Perfect accountability.

Every evening I will go through my spreadsheet and mark off what I did. To be clear, my goal is NOT to do each thing every day, but to pay attention to what I'm doing, give myself credit for what I'm already doing and stretch myself to do a little more.



7/1/2014
Cam's Perfect Month Tuesday
Wake up at 7:00
15 minute clean
Prepare for the next day
Take Iron
Give Tina her vitamin D X
At least some outside Time 1.5hrs
At least some play with Lilly time X
Be on time  X
Cross at least one thing off to-do list X
Write in journal
Laundry (on laundry day) X
Exercise
Visiting Teaching
Something for my SS class X
General Conference Talk
Date Night
Scripture Study
Bed by 11:00
Call a Family Member Tina, Mom
Play with Tina X
Not go to McDonalds


I will work on finding a better way to display my spreadsheet in future posts, but I needed to get this done for tonight so I can go to bed. Zzzzz.....

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Day 2: Sleep

I confess I went to bed at 11:01 or possibly even 11:02 last night. That's how seriously I'm taking this. It won't happen again. I'm learning that an important part of my get-ready-for-bed routine is getting Christina ready for bed. Turns out she likes to eat before going down for a nice all-night sleep. (Yes, she does sleep ALL night. We're talking from 11-7:30. I know I am so spoiled).

Two nights ago, I was proudly swaddling my full-tummied baby at 10:55pm and was about to set her down in her crib when...you guessed it...SPIT UP!!! And not a little. She needed a full outfit and blanket change. I enlisted Matt's help to get Tina to bed so that I could rush to brush my teeth, change and say my prayers and still hop into bed w/ lights out before 11:01. Matt is awesome. Of course, right after he got her changed and re-swaddled, she decided it was time for a diaper change, too.

Last night I was one or two minutes late because we started "Chuck" a little too late. (My new favorite Neflix addiction). Humor+Action+Plot+Romance+More Humor=Blissfully happy Cam

So I'm learning already. The things that are making it difficult to make it to bed before 11:00 are also the things that were surprising me (every night) and causing me to go to bed at 12:30 or 1:00 instead of a reasonable 12:00 like I'd planned.

Lessons so far:
Feed baby at least 30 minutes before I want to go to bed
Allow myself 10 minutes to brush teeth, get changed, say prayers, etc.
If we're going to watch a show, watch it early in the evening
Basically start getting ready 45 minutes before target bed time. Oh boy.

She looks so innocent
Side note: Lilly has been giving herself a new name every few days. It's always a name from/based off of a book or movie that she likes. She refuses to respond to Lilly (I don't think she's responded to Lilly for about a week now) and instead informs us that her name is _____ not Lilly. I figure, for fun, I'll document her names on this blog.

These are not Lilly and Christina
 
Past names
-Big Wish Bear
-Mike
-Jake
-Little baby Lorax

She is currently: Tender Heart.

Matt, Christina and I have also been receiving new names every few days.

Matt:
Grumpy Bear
Fix It Bear
Onceler
Sully
Cubby
Jason

He's currently "Nicholas."

Me:
Sunshine Heart Bear
Izzy
Sully

I'm currently "Kim."

And finally, Christina:
Sleepy Bear
Baby Boo
Baby Captain Hook (my personal fave)
Scully


Please comment on the blog (especially if you've been working on early to bed and early to rise!) I'd love to hear from you. It helps my morale and motivates me to do this 100%





Monday, March 24, 2014

Day 1: Sleep

Before I typed a word of this entry, Matt and I had a quick discussion.

Me: Okay, here it goes: Day 1. Wait. Is today day one or was yesterday day one? I went to bed at 11:00 last night, but that was just a half-day.

Matt: I guess that is a standard that you get to set.

Me: You're right. A half day doesn't count. Today has to be day one.

Matt: (Laughs)

Me: (Confused about why he's laughing and almost assuming it's whatever he's reading/doing on his phone). Why'd you laugh?

Matt: I said that you could choose whether it's day one and you said, "you're right. It has to be day one." That's not at all what I said.

Me: Hmm. But I said "you're right." That's nice, isn't it?


aaaand impromptu woman-made border--------------------------------------------------------------------------

I'm happy to report that I made it to bed by 11:00. I'm a little less happy to report that minutes after I went to bed, Matt came in with Christina (my baby, not my sister...that would be REALLY weird) and she cried for milk. So, I didn't have time to fall asleep before I got back up, but what can you do when you're a mommy? Tonight I'll try to make sure Tina's fed before I go to bed.

After taking care of Tina, I went to bed with excited dreams of working out, reading my scriptures, and cleaning the house, all before anyone else woke up.

When my alarm went off at 6:30 I didn't want to work out. Imagine that. So I took a nice warm shower/bath and started the day in a less-jarring way. (Baby steps). Once I warmed up to the idea of morning, I called our friendly neighborhood job center to clear up a problem with our application for child care tuition assistance (Lilly's was set to end 6 months earlier than it should). Turns out without the county's help, I lose money by working. Thank you, government. I will pay you back when I'm rich.

That was a mini-tangent.




Also, LOOK! I magically know how to do a french braid now that I'm a mom! Cool. :)

If you are trying to do this Perfect Month along with me, comment and stay accountable. I'd love to hear how it's going for you!


Sunday, March 23, 2014

Announcing a new Perfect Month

I'm back! And I'm announcing a new Perfect Month, starting tonight. (In 17 minutes, actually). Now, I know what you're thinking, but I REALLY REALLY AM gonna do it this time. This month has been in the beta testing phase for two weeks already so it's all set and ready to go live.

With that, I need to get going because my new Perfect Month is:

Early to bed and early to rise!!! (I tried this one before, didn't I? I think I posted my favorite Youtube video on the topic and got a complaint from my good pal Jeni. True? Dig through the archives).

Babies have already done this to me, so no problem.

The rules? In bed, prayers said, lights off by 11pm. Out of bed at 6:30am. It's that simple. I need to seriously hurry now, if I don't want to blow it on day one.

Peace!