Monday, December 7, 2015

#51 - Train Jason to be completely diaper-free

Jason has been out of diapers during the day for quite some time, and might have even been when I wrote my 101 Goals in 1001 Days list. But nighttime took a lot longer to overcome. He would go weeks without a nighttime accident, then go weeks without a dry Pull-Up. 

I tried everything we tried back in the day with Ryan, but nothing seemed to work. Jason seems to sleep SO deeply, that even trying to wake him to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night became a huge struggle. I was very careful not to shame Jason or show my frustration with this issue, which was very hard to do when I was battling to get him out of bed at 1-2am.

Sometime last year, I stopped buying Pull Ups. That created a LOT of laundry for me, which was annoying, but I knew that Jason was relying on Pull Ups so he didn't have to get up to pee in the middle the night. He even told me once, when I was trying to wake him, "It's okay, Mom, if I have to go I'll just go in my Pull Up." 

Earlier this year, when I got sick of washing sheets and comforters 4-5 times each week, I bought the nighttime bed wetting disposable pads to put on his top sheet. That saved us on laundry AND Pull Ups, which was a great solution for the time being. 
Then accidents decreased because Jason didn't like laying in a wet bed. I don't blame him!  But when he was particularly tired, had been swimming or at soccer practice that day, or when he was sick, nighttime accidents were inevitable.

This summer, I created some incentives to give Jason a reason to get out of bed when he realized he needed to go to the bathroom. We decided that after a week, he could sleep with his beloved stuffed dog that we retired when he turned 5. After 10 days, we would buy him new sheets and after 14 days of waking up dry, we would take Jason to a local mini amusement park. He would get to 7, then have an accident. Then 10 days, then an accident. Once, he got to 13 days, then had an accident. 

What I realized was that he wasn't meeting the 2 week goal, but he was really only having 3-4 accidents a month. But we were focusing on the accidents, not the dry mornings. So we went to the park as a family. 

Jason still likes to keep track of his dry nights, and recently got up to 19 days before having an accident, so I think we're going to count this task as done. We only have an emergency package of Pull Ups for sleepovers with Grandma and I still use the bed pads, even though we usually throw them away because they become mangled after sleeping on them night after night. 

I still wake Jason up before I go to bed every night around 10pm, and have resorted to fully waking him up so I don't have to fight to get him into the bathroom. 

The next thing we have to look forward to is that once he's dry for a whole month straight, we're getting rid of his (disgusting) mattress and buying him new bedding. I want him to have a fresh, clean start!
What's ironic is that when we used the amusement park as an incentive for Jason, the older kids wanted to earn "bucks" to get an all-day pass, too. I set up a reading program with them for the summer that them excited about reading. Now they read almost every night before going to bed without prompting, sometimes begging me not to make them shut off the light so they can read "just a little bit more." That is what I have wanted for them for YEARS!!!
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Sunday, November 29, 2015

#65 - Touch up the paint spots all over the house (with the correct shade)

As it turns out, after nearly 10 years in a house, paint fades. For the life of me, I could NOT figure out how to touch up any spots on our walls because the right paint color, with every sheen under the sun, was not a match.

I later learned that sprayed-on paint can't necessarily be touched up with a paintbrush. Who knew?

Now that we've decided to stay put in our house for a while, I decided it needed a face lift. A friend had her cabinets and banister painted and it looked nice in pictures, but once I saw it in person, I couldn't stop thinking about it! 

Was there anything "wrong" with my house before? No, not really. I was just ready for a change, and paint is a relatively cheap way to change things up.

I didn't mind the tan that was throughout our house, but I have had an itch to cool things up with gray for a couple of years now, so I started looking for grays. There are brown grays and green grays and TONS of blue grays...finding a shade of gray turned out to be a lot harder than I imagined.

I finally pulled the trigger and picked one. We painted all of the common areas of the downstairs, up the stairwell, into the office and in the halls. I really like how it turned out! I went with a basic white for the cabinets, even though I considered tea-staining it, I decided on white in the end.
Kitchen: Before
Kitchen: DURING the painting of the cabinets. I thought ahead and pulled out some dishes and silverware and put them in the pantry, but they moved the fridge right in front of the pantry door. Curses!  So we had to eat out almost every meal for 3 days and, what's worse, is that I couldn't get into my kitchen to make Mike a birthday cake this year. :(  He got a birthday pumpkin pie from Trader Joe's.
(I didn't know what was going on behind that quarantined plastic wall, so I peeked through from the backyard window.)
Cabinets painted, walls the same
Kitchen: After
Family room: Before
Family room: After
I bought some pillows to try to tie together the old brown and the new gray, because we're clearly not replacing our furniture and window coverings anytime soon!
This was my inspiration for the staircase. We'll rip up the carpet and put in wood down the road.
Banister: After
This was my inspiration for a VERY dark charcoal bathroom with red and white accents.
Bathroom: After
It's easy to decorate with red and white at Christmas, but we'll keep the colors the same when we replace our decor in a few weeks!
In the bathroom, I spray painted a useless, mint-green tin container bright red and that's what's on the back of the toilet, holding extra towels. I also touched up a giant red basket that holds extra toilet paper on the floor. I know it seems silly to pay this much attention to a random half bathroom, but I am in there every day, multiple times each day, and it makes me happy every time I see it.
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Wednesday, November 25, 2015

#82 - Do something crazy with my hair (well, crazy for ME)

It took me a while, but I finally decided to do something fun and different with my hair. I tried last year, but when I told my friend, she asked if I was going through a midlife crisis. It made me feel like I was trying to be younger than I am.

But during my most recent hair appointment, I finally pulled the trigger. My hair stylist (who originally tried to talk me out of it) said that I would be disappointed if I just did a strip underneath because you wouldn't be able to see if. So she took a HUGE chunk and colored it bright red for Christmas. I LOVED how it turned out!!!  I might even have her recolor it red for Valentine's Day, then phase back to my normal hair. 
So, at 39 years old and only a few weeks left until the 1001st day, #82 is crossed off of my 101 Goals in 1001 Days list. What's funny is that it's such a big deal for straight-laced me, but hardly anyone has noticed it. I've probably only had 4 people say anything unless I brought it up!  Go figure.
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Saturday, October 24, 2015

Hulk 6th Birthday Party

I got some of these Hulk ideas from Pinterest, the cupcakes are my original design, though!  After a chaotic all-boy party at the house last year, we decided to go ahead and celebrate Jason's 6th birthday at the park. It was a beautiful day and the kids had fun playing tag, sidewalk chalk, soccer, and baseball in between snacks, cupcakes and presents.

Happy birthday, Jason!
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Thursday, October 15, 2015

#53 - Buy reading lamps for next to the kids' beds

I'm not quite sure when I checked this item off my 101 in 1001 list, but it was sometime this summer. I knew we were redecorating Kaylin's room and we had just given Jason his own room, so I bought them both lamps at Target. We just relocated a tall lamp from downstairs into Ryan's room and boom - they all had illumination for reading before bedtime. 
Kaylin's room while in transition - new comforter and accents but before her walls were painted.

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Thursday, October 1, 2015

Sleeping In. Daily.

I don't know how the other kids do it!  Practicing sports so late, then waking up at the crack of dawn and being expected to function at school all day long.

Ryan is starting his first season of tackle football. He has practice late, two nights each week. He gets home around 9:30, eats a second dinner, spews  details about plays and hits and passes he caught that night, showers, then finally gets to bed around 10:30.

He has never been a kid who sleeps in, no matter how late he goes to bed, but when he turned 11, puberty started kicking in and he final…FINALLY…was able to fall back to sleep after waking up early in the morning.

Now, he stays up a little later, reading (I finally found him some lists of books that he has been enjoying!) and almost always sleeps past 7:00. On the mornings after football practice, he doesn't wake up until 8:30-9:00. 

Every time he wanders down the stairs that late with bed-head, I wonder how tired his teammates must be. They get up at 6am, take the bus to school and have already been bombarded with information from their first class long before Ryan's eyes open for the day. 

Just another reason that I'm grateful we are homeschooling. My kid can participate in sports AND get the amount of sleep his body needs!  Sometimes, it's the little things.
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Friday, September 25, 2015

A Little Redecorating

A few months ago, I posted that I unpacked the boxes and boxes of personal pictures that were taken off the walls when we put our house on the market. I've enjoyed having bare walls, less clutter, and more of a model home look all summer. 

But in the last few weeks, I started to MISS seeing the smiling faces of my family as I walk through the house. This pile just wasn't doing it justice.
I decided that I wanted to switch the pictures above my dining room table with the mirror in my front hall. These pictures were the last thing to find a home, and I ended up buying a clock (which our bedroom desperately needed) and hanging them over the armoire in my room. 
Before: Pictures in dining room
After: Pictures relocated to bedroom
Above the table in my front hall, I'd decided to do a gallery wall. I solicited help from a neighbor, who rearranged some photos on the floor until one "felt right". I just love how it turned out!
Before: Front hall table
During: Positioning everything on the floor.
After: Front hall gallery wall.
The next gallery wall I wanted to do was upstairs in our hall. I had a LOT of pictures to work with for this one and ended up making the arrangement myself, after going through 1,000 ideas on Pinterest.
During: Making it right on the floor
After: A few adjustments were made after this picture was taken, but you get the gist.
I set aside some pictures of just me and Mike to put in our room above his dresser and messed around with the arrangement quite a few times before just deciding to go with one of them.
One of the arrangements - I didn't like the two circle mirrors, so I switched it up.
After: Above Mike's dresser.
Overall, I'm really happy with how everything turned out. The upstairs wall is a bit more crowded than I pictured in my head, but it's fine. I actually started hanging in the middle (the undefined "line" about 1/3 of the way from the left) and realized that I started too far over, and had to pull out the nails and move everything about 3-4 inches to make it all fit. I'll just patch up the holes later! 

For now, I'm pleased with the results.
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