Yeah, yeah. I know it is close to the end of February, but I’m about to totally rock out the New Year’s resolutions. We’ve moved to a new city, a new state, a new house… Maybe “New City’s resolutions” is a more appropriate description.
The great thing about living in a mountain region (conversely, the not-so-great thing about living in Ohio) is that people are more cognizant about staying active and not letting the deep-fat fryer take over their lives. We let ourselves go once we got to the Mid-West… Becoming parents had a bunch to do with it, too. We started to turn things around last year around this time; Nathan was getting ready to go to Jump School and I had the go-ahead to start working out again after my C-Section with Alice. We started to eat healthier, got out and DID stuff (active stuff) and started to slim down. I’m not sure where we stumbled out of that routine, but it might have been when we went on our road trip around the East Coast. McDonald’s begets more McDonald’s, maybe?
Either way, I am getting to be way doughier than I would like to admit. Also, I want to be able to rock out the “Cool Mom” street cred while Finn and Alice are in school – I don’t want to be a soccer mom that sits on the sidelines every Saturday. I want us all to be out playing soccer together. Scratch that – I suck at soccer – maybe rock climbing? I refuse to succumb to Mini-Van parenting. I want to be involved. I want us to all be involved. This is more than just exercising, I’ll have you know. This must be the point in a parent’s life where they realize that if they want their children to model certain behaviors, they, too must model said behaviors themselves. I want my kids to be responsible; fiscally, socially and responsible for their own happiness. I also want them to be active, creative and well-traveled. And worldly. And respectful to their mama, damn it.
So, starting now, I have a little bit of work ahead of me.
If you’d rather not hear about my Stuart Smalley-esk little affirmations; no hard feelings, just skip ahead. ‘Cause this is about to get real, ladies and gents.
Feed The Pig: Right now we are so close to getting things straightened out with our finances that I can just TASTE it. Once all of our house-buying/moving debt is wiped out (and it cannot come soon enough), I am vowing to be more productive with our cash. We are going to plunk more into savings. I still want to have all sorts of nice things, but I know that we are wasteful when it comes to our spending habits. We buy way too much. We are scaling back. We are going to be more precise with our spending. I think this one will be easiest for me. It is simple; I just have to stop buying so much shit. Target – you are my new enemy. Diapers and toiletries ONLY. I will not cruise the home decorating aisle… Often.
Part of this starts here at the house, too. The bonus side to scaling down your house is that you have to scale down your stuff. We have donated trunkfuls of stuff to Goodwill and still have more to unpack and sift through in the basement. I’m going to make an effort to whittle down my closet, too. Ugh.
Bottom Line: Buy less; buy smarter. Save more. Get rid of superfluous stuff.
Get My Ass In Gear: It might surprise some of those who didn’t know me in high school, but this now-flabby mom butt used to be hella tight and cute. One might have described it as one of my finer ass-ets, ahem? Way back when, when I was rockin’ a mean pair of overalls and six-inch, stacked-heel, patent leather mary janes (not at the same time), my butt was cute. My thighs were big, but super toned. I didn’t have this strange patch of squish at the small of my back. I know I’m never gonna get my cheerleading-high-school bod back, especially those cute, perky chimichangas, but I need to get closer than I am now. Sure, I am back to my pre-baby weight, but I don’t look like I am.
What am I gonna do about it?
First of all, not hit the gym. Or work out. Let’s face it, I would be totally setting myself up for failure. I am going to be getting out more, though. As in OUTdoors. I’m giving myself a pass until the weather clears up… Me, pushing the double BOB stroller through snow drifts? Nope.
I’m going to eat less. And eat more veggies. I’m only nursing Alice before bedtime at this point, so I’m not worried about my milk supply or her getting adequate nutrition. No more sweets around the house. No more baking. The more sugar I eat, the more I want to eat MORE. Also…
No more Less Diet Coke.
Nathan and I have been contemplating getting a juicer, and I’m just going to go to town with that sucka. We also just started our seeds for our garden, so I’m hoping there is going to be a somewhat successful harvest to shoot through that juicer. I’m not convinced that growing our own veggies will cost less, but I am convinced that I will be more apt to eat them if I spend a bunch of time taking care of them. Here’s to hoping.
Bottom Line: Be as active as I used to be. Eat less. Eat more good stuff.
Try to Be Hot Again: Look, I’m not saying that I was a total babe, but I used to be pretty cute. I had time to do my hair, floss, choose from a plethora of moisturizers and utilize said moisturizers, and pluck my eyebrows. Shaving my legs? Yeah, wasn’t ever really great on staying on top of that. I didn’t set much of a standard for that EVER; and that is certainly not going to change now, peeps.
Before anyone gets their knickers in a twist worrying about me “trying to be hot for my husband,” trust me – that truly is not an issue at all. Not in the way that “my hubby thinks I am beautiful no matter what” bullshit, but let’s be real – once you suffer the indignities of pregnancy in front of your significant other, you are always hotter than those last three months you spent baking another human. Truth be told, your stretch marks and pooch are way sexier than a giant flesh watermelon getting in the way of your bedroom activities. Add the mental gymnastics used to get around the fact that you are trying to get busy with another human being wedged between the two of you, and well, you can only go up from there. (Or, maybe that is your thing, in which case, carry on with your bad selves.)
I miss looking good, mostly because I like to wax nostalgic about what it was like to have the time to look good. I am reminded of a time where I didn’t have another person using my toothbrush as sword. And I think I carry myself a little better when I take a few extra minutes to coiffe. I’m not gonna go balls-to-the-wall with this – my daily uniform of sweatpants and embarrasingly dweebish t-shirts won’t change, but I could find the time to use a blowdryer now and again. Right now, that is an hour task. Because I have mermaid-boob hair.
Since I will be editing down my wardrobe, I am aiming to keep only clothes that fit well and are currently an acceptable style. Three or four outfits and I’m a happy gal. I still will never get rid of my t-shirts proclaiming my love for Disney World, my preference for one Twilight character over another or emblazoned with a certain bespectacled teenage wizard. I just won’t wear them OUT anymore. (Even if it is only to Walmart.)
Bottom Line: Haircut. Blowdry once and a while. Mascara. MOISTURIZE. No Team Jacob shirts in public.
Super Mom: Okay, maybe not SUPER Mom… Just BETTER Mom. Mostly, I need to improve my patience with the kids. I’m not 100% sure how to accomplish this, but I’ve been reading a fair smattering of parenting articles, and all I can do is take it one day at a time. And not allow myself to feel like a shitty parent because I lost my cool and spanked Finn for SPITTING ON ME. (I still feel justified in that one.)
Bottom Line: Breathe in. Breathe out. Woosaahh.
See the World: Even if it is only this part of the world, Nathan and I have gone over again and again and again that we want the kids to be well-traveled. All the places I have seen, all the things I have done – they make me who I am. I can’t imagine how much of a sheltered douche bag I was before I got out and traveled… Now, I suppose I still count myself among the douche bags, but seeing how our contemporaries in other parts of the country do their thang has made me a better person. (I think, anyway.) I want my kids to have a healthy respect for people of all walks of life; I know that carting them across the country in a trailer week after week won’t do that. I am hoping that it will set a foundation for them to go out and make their own opinions about the way the world works and not just recycle the crap they hear on Fox News.
Bottom Line: Keep doing what we’re doing. Get on the road as much as possible.
Keep the Creative Flow Flowing: My “three adjectives that describe you” fluctuated through my young years, but always included this staple: creative. Also in the mix was weird, shy, obnoxious, preppy, dorky and left-handed. Clearly most still apply.
Now I am a creative as a noun and not just an adjective. I have been spending a good hunk of the last few years doing graphic design when the little people are napping, and I want to take it more seriously. I want to get it out there, but haven’t yet, for fear that it isn’t quite up to par with what real graphic designers do. I’m not sure at what point one becomes a real graphic designer, but I’m pretty sure getting paid is part of the equation. Although Alice is only a year old, Finn’s impending jaunt to kindergarten isn’t taking its time plowing over his preschool years. Once Alice is sitting on the giant ABC rug learning the Pledge of Allegiance, I better have a backup plan.
Mainly, I don’t want to live my life pinning cool stuff on Pinterest and never doing anything. Lately I have been letting the “make it” part of me slide. Time to dust off the old Singer and make some new dresses for Alice. I’m going to keep fighting the good fight with my camera’s manual mode. I need to make that damn mushroom stool for Alice’s new room.
Bottom Line: Be a better designer. Make something. Anything.
Okay. I’m done. That is enough resolutions for now. All I have to do is get my family on board. I’m having a Jerry McGuire moment, now that I have finished my manifesto…
“Okay, whose with me? Who is comin’ with me?” (Shake bag of goldfish crackers for effect.)
Oh, please, god; do not let Renee Zelweger be the only one to stand up.