Human Error

Happy fall, everyone!!!

Sincere apologies for my absence, but things have been a lot more hectic than usual for us lately. Not to mention we dont currently have our own computer.

In my last post I talked about My Happiness Project for August, and I’m slightly embarrassed to admit that i didn’t keep up with it and I abandoned the project for September and October (and probably for good). My brain is far too distracted with EVERYTHING else right now, so.. i gave up. And that’s ok. Sometimes it’s ok to let go of projects that just aren’t working out for us for whatever reason. My flaw is that I’m just extremely flaky. I always start some kind of project bursting with enthusiasm only to find myself a week later ditching it for a different type of project. Like one week I’ll be really pumped to practice drawing and then the next week I’ll start making jewelry, then sewing, then reading, then painting, etc..

I also go through lots of 30 Day Challenges.. Recently I’ve taken on a mom challenge, drawing challenge and a movie challenge. None of them lasted more than a week. And those are like the things that I’m really interested in! But i still just couldn’t stick with it for one reason or another. So it’s not surprising to me that I couldn’t go through with a year-long challenge, even though I was very excited about it to begin with.

But like i said: It’s OK! We shouldn’t waste our time beating ourselves up for human error.

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My Happiness Project- August

So now I’m on my second month of my Happiness Project, inspired by a really neat book i read called (can you guess?) The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin. This month I’ve decided to focus on the area of Mothering! I’m excited for this challenge.

I’m still pretty new at this mothering thing, even though I’ve had over two years of practice. New challenges keep presenting themselves as each milestone is reached, and it’s a relentless cycle. Being a parent is a huge source of so much joy, but it’s also a huge source of stress. One thing that I struggle the most with is the tantrums. I’ve realized that I have a surprisingly short temper and am quick to let my anger take over, resulting in yelling which only makes things worse for both of us. I’ve read a lot of helpful blog posts on this subject, but i think this post on the 4 things NOT to do during a tantrum is the easiest to remember and the most helpful for me personally.

This month, my goals are to:

  • try to properly respond to tantrums. no yelling!
  • not be so quick to say “no!” (i seriously overuse that word)
  • making them both helpless with laughter at least once (daily)
  • read to them both (daily)

So, how did i do last month on keeping up with my goals? Well… Not great to be honest. But not bad, either! I definitely did my best, and that’s really all i set out to do, so I’m not going to beat myself up for any short-comings. I plan on keeping up with my yoga and water intake. My negative reactions to my daughter are making her temper worse and things have gotten so stressful for me that I’ve been drinking more and more coffee every day and less and less water. I’ve even taken up smoking e-cigarettes, which I’m certainly not proud of. So hopefully I can correct this behavior and calm the hell down! 

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What made me happy this week

Last Wednesday was my husbands birthday, and I finally got to give him the neat gifts that I made him. I’m all about giving presents, especially handmade ones, so it’s typical of me to be gift-planning weeks (or months) ahead of time. The anticipation KILLS ME! It’s so exciting. 

Some of the things i made include: a cute shirt (printed freehand with a Rub-a-Dub Sharpie)

sloth

and one of those neat sharpie mugs you’ve probably seen around the internet.

harry potter mug

harry potter mug

hpmug1

Note: I have yet to bake this, but when i do I’ll be sure to write a review of how well this worked for me. Also, Harry Potter font is not as easy to reproduce as i thought, but I think I nailed it.. Sort of..

Also, we were able to leave the girls with grandma so we could go see a movie, which we havent done since Elsie was born (November 2013). It was a much appreciated break.

I haven’t been to this particular theater in years, and it was kind of strange going there now. I realized that I’ve been going there my whole life since i was very little and that it’s really a powerhouse of memories for me. So many different memories from very different stages of my life, with so many very different friends as well as crushes. It was marvelously nostalgic. And surprisingly, i realized walking inside, that they haven’t even changed the carpeting in all these years! 

theatre

I’m deeply sentimental, so this pleased me greatly.

Apologies for the less than great quality cellphone photos.

Note- We were planning on seeing Guardians of the Galaxy, but it apparently wasn’t out yet (we were a day early). So we saw Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, and it did NOT disappoint! It was really well done. Seriously. 

I also made a carrot cake from scratch that night but woefully didn’t take a photo of it as there was no natural lighting and we weren’t about to wait until the next day to eat it. But it had cream cheese icing. And pecans. Oh my goodness I’m hungry now! 

 

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My Biggest Blogging Inspiration

This may be slightly off topic from the sort of things i set out to write about on here, but i think its relevant enough and its something I’d like to share with everyone. 

I would definitely have to say that my biggest inspiration to start a blog is these sisters, and their amazing and wildly successful blog: A Beautiful Mess

elsie and emma

Their incredible success is so inspiring! Not only do they make a living with their blog, teaming up with Apple and getting book deals and huge sponsors, the blog itself is so neat and overflowing with great tips and projects and recipes of all sorts! It’s hands down my favorite blog. I check it pretty much every day. Plus their just so charming and HAPPY! Just lookit ’em! 

You’ve really got to check out the beautiful mess blog!! Go go go!!

 

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Look Up

 

Stop staring at your screens! Put down your phone and LIVE YOUR LIFE!

 

This is an argument we’ve all heard over and over, and i do think its a good point. To a certain extent.

Yes, the majority of us probably do stare at screens for the better part of every day and maybe even feel agitated when we dont have access to our computers or to wifi (internet addiction is a very real thing. There are actually inpatient centers in China, Japan, Australia, Italy and Pennsylvania specifically for treating internet addiction!). INPATIENT! Just let that sink in for a moment.

But there’s no denying that the internet is extremely helpful and a source of so much information. Its just a matter of how you use it.  I dont think it’s fair at all to say that we’re “stupid people with smartphones”. Screens can be really very useful and we can learn a lot from technology and the internet. Not to mention that it enables people to work from home when they can’t work elsewhere for whatever reason.

We just need to step back and take a serious look at how we’re utilizing these screens. Are you looking up affordable apartments for sale in your area or are you leaving meaningless negative comments on peoples YouTube vlogs? Are you posting a new facebook status about how much you love avocados or are you actually going for a road trip with 3 of your best friends? Are you using online flashcards to learn a new language or are you scrolling through twitter? etc etc etc…

Here’s the best argument that I’ve heard against screens. It will put a lump in your throat. (But I still stand on my view that its all how you use the various screens.)

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My Happiness Project

happinessproject

I read this really neat book recently called “The Happiness Project” by Gretchen Rubin and i honestly would recommend it if you’re feeling like your life could use a happiness boost. Who couldn’t benefit from a little more happiness? This of course leads one to give a second thought as to what you believe happiness really is. And then there’s the question of “Is it selfish to focus on your own happiness so much?” and the answer is simply: absolutely not. It is a cause more than worthy of your time and attention. I can understand being more concerned for other peoples happiness over your own, but i think finding happiness yourself would be a good place to start. Kind of like the rule “you cant love others until you can love yourself”. But then of course, helping people (especially people you love) is proven to boost ones own happiness.

So much can be said about the topic of happiness. In “The Happiness Project”, Gretchen Rubin shares an impressive amount of research on this topic and lays it out in a very comprehensive way. I’m looking forward to reading her newest book “Happier at Home” as well as her upcoming book about habits (coming out March 2015)!

Anyways, in The Happiness Project, Gretchen takes on a year of resolutions that she believes will make her happier and therefore make her life better, more carefree and easier to handle! She breaks the resolutions down into categories like friendship, leisure, marriage, books, mindfulness, money, etc. and takes on one category per month. I’ve decided to do my own Happiness Project, but I’m not sure it will be for a whole year. For my first month (July) I’m starting with ways to have more physical energy. I’ve decided to challenge myself to:

  • Drink 5 glasses of water every day
  • Make time to get outside every day
  • Take up yoga (Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Weekends optional)
  • Take the girls for a walk at least once a week

I know that these don’t sound like very challenging goals, but they are for me. Admittedly, yes, i have picked simple resolutions to start off my project, but these have proven surprisingly difficult. Drinking 5 cups of water for some reason is the resolution I’m having the most trouble with. On average, I drink about as much water as i do coffee (3 cups a day). Not proud of this, by the way. Its only been one week of the project though, so I have plenty of time. I think next month my category will be Mothering (parenting).

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