Thursday, June 28, 2012

because something needs to change

Ever since school got out and I became 'unemployed' I have been trying to figure out what to do with myself everyday. Being a one car household means hubby has the car, I have my 2 feet and a stroller, that is if I decide to leave the house. The first few days of summer break I was on a roll, while Leo took his naps I washed dishes, cleaned, vacuumed, made granola bars, I was super mom (not even close, but I felt proud of myself). Then Leo would wake up, we'd eat lunch then go for a nice long walk, come home and repeat. Then something happened, the novel idea of being home all day wore off. By thursday I was dragging my feet to do anything productive, and I blame this on Facebook. To be fair, Pinterest should equally share in the blame too. Obviously blaming inanimate websites is a huge cop out, but that is how I feel! Today I must have checked those two evil websites at least 20 times (i'm not sure if that number is even close, but I checked it a lot today). See what crazy powers those websites have?? Don't say I did not warn you.

Anyways, as I was in my kitchen today, ignoring the things I needed to do; sweep and mop (which can partly be blamed on Leo, every time I get the floor clean and sparkling he ruins it! darn babies...), wash dishes, clean the stove and counter tops, etc, I noticed the large pile of magazines on the kitchen table (that also needs to be cleaned off). Not just any magazines, The Ensign and The New Era, church magazines that I had not even opened (enter major guilt trip). Then I got to thinking, as I went onto the computer for the 21st time today, this needs to change. I saw a post on pinterest (it is an evil, evil website, but it still has good ideas) about things to do before you turn on the computer or turn on the TV. So running with that idea I decided to do my own list.

1.) Read 3 articles from a church magazine.

2.) Read a chapter in the Book of Mormon

3.) Wash dishes for 15 minutes

4.) Pick up 5 things and put them back where they belong

5.) Fold or hang up 15 pieces of clothes

6.) Find 10 things that need to be thrown away (junk mail, food wrapper, etc)

7.) Earnestly pray for someone

8.) Stretch (arms, legs, neck)

9.) Make something and clean up afterwards (birthday card, scrapbook page or even a new recipe)

10.)Write a note to someone

This will be a hard concept for me, so my goal is to do this for the next 3 days (friday, saturday and sunday), baby steps people, baby steps. I will report back on monday, and then maybe set a longer goal or if I fail miserably, set an even shorter goal (one day at a time?). I really hope I stick to this, because something needs to change.

because hydrogen peroxide and baking soda are my new best friends

This post really should be titled "pinterest is amazing and how did I ever live without it", but that title is a little broad, so I have narrowed it down to two amazing things I found on pinterest.

Up until about a year ago I only used baking soda for baking (it is a shame, I know) and until a few months ago I never even used hydrogen peroxide, for any reason. Both of these facts make me so sad, my life was so incomplete before I learned the wonderful ways to use these two wonder-products, and I didn't even know what I was missing! But now I have seen the light and I will no longer live in darkness! (If i seem dramatic it is only because I am so EXCITED about what I have found).

Two things that have changed my life (not my whole life, my the part of my life that is slightly OCD about getting stains out of clothes)..... homemade oxyclean and how to get rid of yellow underarm stains. A few months ago, after Leo started eating solid foods, he started spitting up after eating. In some cases it was an hour or two after eating, and 10 minutes after I finally took his bib off because I thought he we were in the clear. Inevitably his spit up would get onto his clothes and within a week I had a little pile of stained clothes, and did not know how to get those stains out. Up to this point the biggest stain to tackle was poop, which is no problem for the mighty fels-naptha soap, but round two sweet potatoes and bananas? That was a challenge. People on facebook suggested oxyclean, but do you know how much that stuff costs? More than I was willing to spend. Enter pinterest . From the blog, one good thing by jillee, I found homemade oxyclean, and my life was changed! Hot water, hydrogen peroxide and baking soda, add clothes and let soak. It works!!!! I do it in my bathroom sink and at times have forgotten about it for an hour (or two), and they still look great, it is AMAZING!

The 'how to get rid of yellow underarm stains' came from pinterest too, and the same blogger in fact. I tried it with a lot of skepticism, but it works! It requires some elbow grease, but there is nothing quite as satisfying as seeing those ugly yellow stains disappear before your eyes (truthfully I did one side of a shirt and not the other just so I could see the before and after results, I let it it dry in my bathroom and every time I went into the bathroom and I had to check my results, I was so impressed with myself). And all it is a few drops of dish soap, a couple capfuls of hydrogen peroxide, and I used an old toothbrush to scrub so I dipped that in some baking soda.

Maybe it is because I am a little weird, but seeing a yucky stain disappear by using two cheap and non-toxic products, makes me really happy. And as I sit here writing this I cannot wait to go tackle the rest of my wardrobe that has those nasty yellow under arm stains., because hydrogen peroxide and baking soda are my new best friends.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

because failing one test does not make me a failure (at least that is what i am trying to tell myself)

Yesterday I took the first part of the Utah Interpreter Certification test, and today I found out I failed. To receive a interpeter certificate I (and anyone else for that matter) needed to take a written test, pass with a score of 80% or better, then I can take a second performance test, that test has 5 parts and each is scored and critiqued by a panel of 9 people. If you pass all 5 parts of that test, then congratulations! You can now legally interpret, for pay, in the state of Utah.

I however, failed the written test. I got 75%, which is a failing mark (by the way did I mention I FAILED). When I found out this morning, I cried. I texted people to tell them I failed, then my mom promptly called me, she knows me so well. I am still having a hard time figuring out why it is I was/am so devastated (okay, devastated is probably an exaggeration, but I feel really, really crappy about it and myself, so that is the word I am using). And being the overly therapized (not a real word but it should be) person that I am, I now have to analyze this situation to death. No offense if those two people who may actually read this, switch to browsing facebook instead of reading the rest of this.

To be fully and completely honest, I was nervous wreck going into the test, and did not think I would pass it. I have taken 2 ASL classes, and that is where my formal education relating to interpreting ends. Everything else I have learned from my husband, reading a few books, and my general experience in the deaf community. The written test is all about Professional Code of Ethics, what famous person in deaf history did what, ADA laws and so forth. So did I think I would pass? No, but I still hoped I would pull it off somehow, and that does not stop me from feeling like I do.

I suppose it is because so much was riding on this test. Passing this test and the subsequent performance test would give me a job. A much needed job, that would help our current financial situation. Maybe it is because I am a perfectionist, and failing anything it a direction reflection on my personal worth.  Maybe it is because failing this, means I should not be an interpreter all. Rationally I know the later two reasons are ludicrous, but my rational brain has never won out against my emotions, so here I sit, doubting my self-worth, my intelligence and my ability to help provide for my family. All because I was 5 questions short of passing a test. So I have to keep telling myself, over and over, that failing one test does not make me a failure.

because saying please is not that hard

This may be the plight of millions of concerned and well intentioned mothers everywhere, teaching their children and freaking out when they don't 'learn'. Leo is 13 months old and if you ask my mother, he has to be one of the smartest babies to have ever lived. I, however, am very concerned about this child's development. Why? He won't say 'please'. Now before eyes are rolled at my first-time-mother over reacting response let me fully explain the situation.

** I am now going to explain my life like there is someone out there who is reading this that does not now this information already, mostly because I want to keep up my personal delusion that there is indeed someone who is reading this that has stumbled upon my humble blog and is reading it because they find it interesting, or witty, or pathetic, or whatever**

Daniel, my dearly beloved is Deaf. Yes he can kinda sorta read lips, but he uses sign language, and that is how we communicate with each other, and that is how our child(ren) will. Now i know there is this huge 'baby signing' movement happening all over. And I think it is great! Teach your child language so they can express themselves and you don't have to go crazy trying to figure out what they want when they point to that cupboard up there (cookies, cracker, peanut butter, tuna??? what do you want!!!). With that being said, teaching Leo how to sign is less about 'baby signing' and more about him learning language to communicate with his dad. Leo's first word? Phone (lets be clear, I do not talk on the phone that much), second word 'daddy', and words that followed were 'more', 'stinky', 'eat' and 'nice' (as in, nice hands, we don't hit mom or her glasses so they fly off her face).  Seeing Leo say all these words was very exciting, and it still is when he learns a new word. Now being a mom, and in my infinite mom wisdom (note: heavy sarcasm), I thought a good word to teach him next would be 'please' (think rubbing a flat hand in a small circle on your chest). 'Please' encompasses so many things that he cannot yet sign but he wants everyday. You want to be picked up? Say 'please'! You want a bite of my food from my bowl? Say 'please'. You want me to do x, y or z? Say 'please'. What a wonderful word it is! Will he sign it? No. All I ask is for one little pat on his chest, just an acknowledgment that my two weeks worth of on going effort is not all for naught. But validation is not something he is willing to give me easily.

Now rationally I know there is nothing wrong with him for not saying 'please'. That is also the same rational part of me that knows that even thought we won't say or sign 'mommy' that does not mean he loves me any less (or that he loves daddy more because he will say 'daddy'). I do, however, feel like, this is some sort pre-meditated baby manipulation just to let me know, not everything will be easy (as if I needed that reminder). Okay, I do not really think that. But I do think, every time he refuses to say please, 'seriously child? saying please is not that hard'.

By the way, this is my SECOND post today. And yes that is both a miracle and a new personal record.

because everyone is doing it

Here goes attempt number two, me trying to have a blog. I suppose having a blog is not the problem; having an updated and regularly used blog is the problem. Admittedly, I have never been good at keeping a personal record, of any kind. Every time I open up my journal I cringe to see when I have written last, up to a year in between journal entries? Yes, that has totally happened. In fact, I started a journal when Daniel and I got married. I wrote in that journal everyday, for two days. Our three year anniversary is now approaching, and that journal is pathetically sparsely filled.

With that being said, here is my attempt at a blog. Why start now? Because everyone is doing it. Seriously, I see so many links on facebook to cute blogs with witty posts and pictures of family outings and daily life goings on (I have no shame in pointing the finger on this one, Julie Cannon, you put me to shame, and I love you). And don't even get me started about Pinterest! EVERYONE has a blog, making deliciously tempting recipes, displaying cute crafty projects, blah blah blah. Will i have a blog like the aforementioned, most certainly not. Mostly because I am the worst person at posting pictures, I could blame it on the fact that I do not know how to post pictures on a blog, but that is a lame excuse. I'm sure I could bug my husband enough to teach me how, but I am lazy. And if i am going to keep an updated blog, I do not needed the added pressure of making it look nice and fancy!

Who do I think will read this blog? My mom (hi mom!), Julie Cannon because I will post on her facebook that this is all her fault and she will be intrigued and come check it out. Other than those choice two, probably no one. However, this blog may be more about proving a point to myself than anything else. Can I keep it updated? Can I do it for more than a week? Well, we'll see. My other reason is less about proving something and more about me. That's right, I am doing this for me! I miss writing. I have joked to my family before when I was in college, i'm not sure what my major will be, but I know I can always major in english. At the hardest and darkest points in my life, writing helped (a little, but it helped). I loved writing short stories in high school. I love expressing myself through the written (or typed) word. And since getting married and more so, becoming a mom, I do less and less for me, and more and more for my boys. So here is my effort to turn on my writer brain, and do something with the internal narrator I have going on.

Wish me luck, I hope I come back to this blog!