Our New Journey: Changes in 2014

Our New Journey ~ Plumfield Dreams

I’m not typically a person who makes resolutions at the beginning of the year. I don’t find it helpful. This year isn’t an exception – I still won’t be making any resolutions. But, we ARE making big changes this year around our house, and it so happens some of it is lining up with the new year, so it seems like a good time to fill you in.

Clean Eating
We’ve had many months of Andy feeling worse and me struggling to determine everything that might be bothering Noah (not to mention steering clear of the things I know bother him). When it comes to my eating habits I’ve always thought I just needed to become more disciplined, but I was setting myself up for failure by having things in the house I should be avoiding. Andy and I talked it over, and we decided we are going to work together to clean up our diets moving forward. We are committing to a lifestyle change, but if there’s one thing I’ve learned about eating clean, it’s that it is a process. You can expect to hear quite a bit more about that process (starting with a detailed explanation of what I mean by “clean eating”) in the coming weeks.

P.S. If you know my husband and are wondering how we “talked it over”, I’ll tell you: I talked about it ad nauseam, from every angle, and he never disagreed with my monologue. Thus, I knew I had the go-ahead to proceed. You may be thinking, “I could never operate like that”, and I get it. I think that all the time about others’ relationships. 😉 The thing is, this approach suits his preference for not speaking and my preference for processing out loud. Everybody’s got their quirks!

Home Renovations
We are about to move forward with our interior home renovations. This is sort of a continuing journey more than a new one. A few years ago we redid the existing downstairs, and in 2013 we hired a contractor to put on an addition along with a new roof and new siding. When that work was done we added a deck, and now, finally, we get to start work on the inside of the addition and the existing upstairs.It’s going to be a long(er) process, but I am excited to get started, and am looking forward to sharing with you about it as we move through the job. I have no control over the timeline, since I am not on the work team (that would be Andy and his dad). I can’t make any promises about the frequency of my updates, but you will be getting them, with photos.

There’s more, but I’m not ready to talk about it quite yet (no, it’s not a baby). I need a little time with it myself before I’m ready to talk about it here. When the time is right, though, I’ll definitely fill you in.

I’m excited to share with you this year! If there are specific issues within these topics you’d like to chat about, please let me know!

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Quick Takes: Wherein I Am Feeling Accomplishy

 BabyFruit Ticker

  • I believe I have hit the nesting phase of pregnancy. It seems a bit early to me, but in the past week I’ve suddenly been riding a wave of energy and initiative. My to-do list is quaking with fear, I’ve been putting lines through it so aggressively. My midwife appointment last week was very good. Stephanie gave me a list of herbal supplements to look into to help prepare for labor in the last weeks. Other than that, it was fairly uneventful – we’re still in good health, and Noah is still measuring normally based on fundal height. We’re on two week appointments now, and next week I have my follow-up scan to see where the placenta is placed now (since it was low the first time). I’m looking forward to another peek at Noah, and hearing how the ultrasound is currently measuring him. Stephanie is optimistic that he’ll be smaller than Aria, since I’m not having any of the problems I had in my pregnancy with her.
  • The contractors are entirely done. The gutter guy came a couple weeks ago, and the decorative siding went on the end of last week. The house looks beautiful on the outside! I love it. I thoroughly enjoy coming home just so I can look at it as I approach. We are in the planning stages for a sizable deck out back, which will be one of the next projects, I believe. I hope so, because it would be fantastic to sit out on our own deck this summer.
  • I’m particularly enjoying work right now. I think it’s knowing that leave is coming on like a freight train, which forces prioritization and intense concentration. I feel super-productive. Maybe it’s more of that nesting thing. We usually have a staff meeting one morning a week, and Mom watches Aria for me. This week we had no meeting, but Mom still volunteered to keep Aria for me and I went and spent 5 – count ’em, 5 – straight hours at Starbucks working away. I never got up once. It was pure bliss. I accomplished so much, and it was relaxing (yes, it was relaxing to work 5 hours with no break). I wouldn’t mind doing that semi-regularly. I’ve also begun taking a MOOC (massive open online course) entitled Instructional Design for Mobile Learning. It’s very interesting, and feeds my need to be constantly learning something.

I have my first guest post slot lined up! I’ll post specific information when I am able. For now, I’ll just say I’m excited!

Quick Takes: 27 Weeks and a Homeschool Convention

 BabyFruit Ticker

  • Taylor Online has a booth every year in the massive exhibit hall at a homeschool convention that takes place every April in Cincinnati. My coworker and close friend, Cassie, and I work the convention each year. It’s a long weekend, stretching from Thursday evening through Saturday evening (not including the drive to and from). Last year we kept our girls in the booth with us the entire weekend. They are 19 days separated in age, so they were both around 4 months old at the time. It was a very long weekend. 🙂 We took our daughters again this year, but this year we had childcare lined up. Cassie has good friends who live in Cincinnati now, and they took care of her daughter while we worked. My mom went with us and took care of Aria. It all went very smoothly this year, though nothing will make it a relaxing weekend. I always enjoy it. I like the energy of the convention, and we get a kick out of representing Taylor, because we’re proud of our school. I love spending the weekend in conversation with Cassie, as well. We get a lot of girl time between chats with parents and prospective students.
  • The construction crew left while Aria and I were in Cincinnati. They’ll be returning some time next week to put on the last small amount of siding (once it arrives), and a subcontractor will be here in the next couple of weeks to install the gutters. The siding will probably take less than a half day, and the gutters should also be a short job. I’m looking forward to seeing the finished product (the mostly finished product is already beautiful!). Next weekend Jim and Andy will start working. We are kicking around the idea of putting on a back deck as one of the first tasks. The guys also have to fix a foundation problem in one corner of the house before we can move inside. It will be fun to watch it all come together, but I’m in no hurry. (Which is a good thing, because it’s going to be a while before any of the progress inside is cosmetic. There’s still some demo to do, and all of the wiring and plumbing needs run.)
  • Aria is officially her own person. One of her favorite words is “no”. She will now tell us when she is ready for bed. As of last night she can crawl on and off the couch on her own (I don’t care for that one at all). We discovered this past weekend that she loves my mom’s umbrella stroller. She repeatedly asked to be put in it. She also loved being wheeled around the exhibit hall at the convention. Mom told us amusing stories about her loud talking to everyone they passed (which largely went ignored, because it’s noisy in there and homeschool parents are experts at tuning things out).
  • Yesterday we went on our first walk of the spring. It was LOVELY. Occasionally my right hip gets out of whack, and yesterday was one of those days, so it was a slooow stroll – but whatevs. I’ll take it. I was hoping to go on another today, but the weather has not been conducive. I am looking forward to many, many more strolls around the neighborhood this spring. My goal is to go on 1-2 walks five days a week, as the weather allows (Stephanie would also like to see us going on one or more walks each day as we enter the third trimester).
  • Week 27 is the final week of the second trimester. Today it has really been hitting me how little time we may have remaining before Noah arrives. Since Stephanie is hoping we will be able to convince Noah to come a little early, we may only have another 10ish weeks before he arrives. (I am not assuming he will be amenable to our plan, but to be prepared I need to act like it will happen that way.) There’s a lot to do!  It’s nice this second time around that we don’t need much. I thoroughly enjoyed the process of researching and purchasing baby items before we had Aria, and am also enjoying not doing so this time. Cassie and I found the convention an excellent place to scope out double jogging strollers, for which we are both in the market (I can mention that now, as they have just made it public – Cass is 3 months pregnant…we’re doing a great job having our kids together). If you have a double jogging stroller, would you recommend it?