#24 Pre-job weight

I started the job I currently have just about 3 years ago. I began right out of maternity leave when my youngest was 3 months old. I had lost all the pregnancy weight and was pretty healthy.

Since that time I managed to pack on a few (30) extra pounds. I don’t know what happened or if it was a combination of things…but about 3 months ago it just became very apparent that this was not okay for me and needed to take my body back under control.

So thinking about what happened…The city where I work has extremely limited eating choices. You can have fast food, go to the grocery store, or pho. In the past year was my most significant gain which had been filled with my supervisor being laid off and taking on her job as well as my own and then the two people I work with on Maternity leave at the same time and all those additional responsibilities. So…busy, basically.

Change needed to be made.

Somewhat starting with my running in the Sound to Narrows Race as well as a pedometer challenge that we had at work… I just started paying attention. I read a whole slew of books about health/diet/nutrition and have cut much of the carbohydrates out of my diet – not hard core Atkins, but rather just avoiding bread and pasta and empty sugars.

I’ve lost a ton of weight and feel fantastic. I went to a naturopath the other day and got on a cleanse program (#8) to help re-set the baseline and support my efforts. I’ve been continuing to run 2-3 times per week and do yoga now a couple times a week in morning. I feel like I’ve been enjoying food more than ever and making fresh good things – and bringing it to work every day as well.

So I have completely accomplished #24 on my 36 things to do when I am 36, but the new challenge for me is to maintain these lifestyle habits through the winter when it gets cold, rainy, dark and depressing. So, they say it takes 6 weeks to cement new habits – I’m giving it the whole summer for it to last a lifetime.

#3 Subscribe to a CSA

#3 on my 36 things to do when I am 36…subscribe to Community Supported Agriculture program.  Through the lovely Terra Organics I can support their local farm and receive produce that is grown here  – within 15 miles of my house.  It also has the convenience of home delivery (which is a must in our crazy busy lives) and being able to select additional items for purchase that are grown out of area.    It’s only been a week, but so far I LOVE.

It was delivered 3 days ago, but already we’ve eaten almost everything except the beets and have a little  parsley left.

They are having an ‘open farm day’ next weekend that I’m really looking forward too.  During the ‘open farm’ they open up the strawberry patches for u-pick.  yum!

#27 Pay it Forward

Right around the New Year I participated in one of the Facebook trends that spreads like crazy.  This one, however, was a pay it forward, promise which I made.  This also so happens to be my #27 on my 35 things to do when I am 35.

‎”2011 promises to be a great year and I’m paying my good fortune forward by promising to send something handmade/hand drawn over the course of the year to the first five FB friends to comment to this post AND who agree to pay it forward by posting a similiar promise as their status. You have a whole year to make good.”

I am excited to make my friends Heather, Rachael, Jennevieve, Laurie and Emily something wonderful.

Creating a New List

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about making a new list for my upcoming birthday to carry on the tradition of last years 35 things to do when I am 35. Creating this list last year was inspired by seeing someone I admire do this and share her accomplishments throughout the year, as well as a bit of a birthday panic of not really remembering where the last year went. Creating the list this past year has forced me out of my comfort zone and to pursue things that I would not have otherwise. I look at this past year with pride and a sense of accomplishment and am excited how I can take the foundation that I created this past year forward into the next.

Some of the items on my list in hindsight are more of a ‘to do’ list – which I STILL HAVEN’T DONE. Goes to show the power of dislike of sitting in Government offices like the County Building to fix Lulu’s birth certificate (#20) in which they managed to completely and utterly misspell my name – to the point of not even being recognizable (its actually quite impressive how they thought of how to add g’s and n’s to my first name…very creative). Or sitting in the DMV, Social Security Office, and others to make sure my name is listed correctly on official documents (#19). The sheer thought makes me groan, but I know that it needs to be taken care of.

To start thinking about making my new list and wanting to make a good list for myself I checked out from the library “Creating Your Best Live: The Ultimate Life List Guide“. Reading it makes me feel a bit mid-life crisis self-help bookie – but so far it’s been a good inspiration point to start thinking holistically and reinforcing the power of list making.

I’ve always been a list maker as a way to organize my thoughts, to-do lists, as well as the ever satisfying “check” in the box once an item is complete (and yes I draw the little boxes too). I’ve extended this to my kids as well – when we are all home and want to give them an idea of what to expect for the day and empowerment to choose we create an illustrated list that we create together and cross off as we go through our day. This is today’s list for example – we’ve been cooped up for the past few days with one and then all of us with strep. I feel great besides the burning throat and being completely contagious. So on the docket for today:


Snow Day!

I stayed close to home today because of the wacky weather. I had plenty of work that I brought home with me, so I just set up a station at my dining room table facing the big picture window and watched the weather happen. The kids went to daycare after a slow morning getting ready and out of the house, and during the day I got a ton of work done. The type of work that includes filling out paperwork, writing grant applications and contracts. It was a perfectly quiet cozy day of get-er-done busywork.

The snow was on and off throughout the day and started to really come down right around 3:30 so decided to pick the girls up early to avoid any crazy driving conditions. We made the most of the shortened day and the afternoon together. Bundled up and played in the snow, made applesauce muffins (and cupcake-ized them), made dinner, and now are all cozy watching a movie. The pleasant afternoon just has me thinking about balance of life and work. Two young kids, full time work with a commute, making jewelry and finding ways to sell it, it all adds up to busy. Busy is good, but the right combination of busy is the ‘carrot’ or the constant goal. Not sure what the right combination is…but one of these days I’ll figure it out (hopefully).

Gift of Art

It is so wonderful to see how happy an artwork created from the heart can mean to another person.  My 5 year old stayed home sick from school the other day and sat down and drew this wonderful picture of her Grandma in her garden, with “boo-boo” birds above, and a cherry tree with a bird house that only had room for one of the birds.   It’s lovely – in both how she created a complete vision and story but also the sentiment of love that inspired her to draw it.

I took a picture and sent it to her Grandma as I knew she would be absolutely tickled.  She instantly wrote back with lots of xoxoxox’s (which my daughter could read in the thank you email) but also said that it is her new wallpaper for her computer.  A few days later, another note, again with thanks simply saying how happy it makes her when she see’s this picture on her computer.

xoxoxo’s for grandma!

artwork by maren

Grandma in her garden

#14 Mail Christmas card to all


#14 from my 35 things to do when I am 35


I am headed to Long Beach, California for a conference that I am attending for work – it’s the Western Arts Alliance (WAA) annual meeting/conference – and from the looks of it going to be quite an experience!  About 6 months ago my supervisor was laid off, she oversaw all the performing arts programming for the Theater (250 seats) that the City runs, as well as the BRAVO season (4-5 shows in the Auburn Performing Arts Center, 1100 seats).

So, now I’m learning all about performing arts and will be attending this booking conference.  So from the looks of how this conference works is that you go from room to room, listening to bands, seeing performances, and talking to reps.  I am sorry, but how cool is that!   Plus the mail that I have gotten from performers  is a series of invitations to see X band, at X bar afterhours and many include drink coupons.  No, not the regular museum conferences that i’ve attended in the past.  The festivities are scheduled until 1 in the morning most nights.  It’s going to be so much fun!

I was going through the showcase listings the other day at work and one of my co-workers came around the corner and asked “what are you doing, I am hearing all this toe tapping”.  I was listening/watching this group, so I’ll share it again here: http://www.marchfourthmarchingband.com/

35 things at 35

I was perusing Jennevieve Schlemmer’s blog http://houseinsideout.blogspot.com/ a few months ago.  She (inspired by another in turn) created a 35 by 35 list. My 35th birthday was in June and for my 35th year I have been creating a list of 35 things to accomplish throughout the year. I’ve started the list, some big things some small – but all  goals that I want to accomplish throughout the year.

35 Things When I’m 35

  1. Run in a Race
  2. Participate in a craft fair as a vendor
  3. Set-up a Etsy shop
  4. Have a special day with Maren
  5. Have a special day with Tallulah
  6. Weekend away with hubby
  7. Presents and love notes for Cousins and Family
  8. Photo albums/memory boxes for the girls
  9. Start a blog
  10. Take art class and learn something newPart Deux
  11. Send an unexpected someone unexpected flowers
  12. Organize a field trip for Maren’s class
  13. Buy a pair of fabulous shoes  (and don’t feel guilty)
  14. Mail Christmas card to all
  15. Can summer garden bounty
  16. Have a dinner party with friends
  17. Studio family photo shoot
  18. Get a pedicure
  19. Change to married name for all accounts/documents
  20. Fix Lulu’s birth certificate
  21. Pitch  inventions
  22. Give my time to something that I believe in
  23. Write and illustrate a children’s story
  24. Have a housewarming party
  25. Paint a picture for each of the girls’ rooms
  26. Make gifts for the Helena girls
  27. Pay it Forward
  28. Paint bedroom
  29. Shade Garden
  30. Worm composting
  31. Attend a roller derby
  32. Go to a movie alone
  33. Project runway inspiration jewelry
  34. Finish downstairs bathroom (or help as much as I can)
  35. Laugh until I cry

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