Friday, July 31, 2009

Quitting Smoking = Healing My Life (part 1)

So, I've made it to the one week mark. I quit smoking 7 days ago. I've been using the nicotine gum, and doing pretty well! But I have a confession. There is one hurtle I have yet to overcome. That last cigarette before bed. After the kids and hubby are in bed and the housework is done, when it's just me and my thoughts. I have not managed to give up that last cigarette each night. So, the ticker at the top of my page isn't 100% accurate. Take away 6 or 7 cigarettes from the part where it says "Number of Cigarettes Avoided."

But I can't think of myself as a failure. I can't judge myself badly for that. This is a habit that is 10 years in the making. So it's time to look deeper. Why do I feel the need to smoke? What have the cigarettes been a "smoke screen" for?

I have the book, "You Can Heal Your Life" by Louise L. Hay. I have read it, but I haven't really taken the time to apply each lesson to my life. But now I think it's time. Perhaps if I really take the time to work thru some core issues, I can truly give up this habit for good!! Did you know this is my 3rd or 4th time to "Quit" smoking??

I started smoking when I was 17, but just socially. When I was 18, I got pregnant, and quit smoking, but as soon as Miss Z. was born, I started smoking again, and not just socially. I kept smoking until I was 23, when I got pregnant again. So I quit again. After I had Princess A, I didn't start smoking again. Not for 3 years, until after the birth of my 3rd baby. At first, again, it was just socially. When I was drinking, or when I was stressed, but of course, this accumulated to the point of being a full-on smoker again. In '07 I tried to quit again. I made it about 1 month, then started again. I blamed it on stress. I've Always blamed it on stress.

This time, I don't want to start again. I don't want to continue to use smoking as a vice to help me deal with stress. I don't want to lose my commitment as soon as life turns stressful again; and it will!! So I think this time around it will be time for a little more soul-searching. Time to heal not just the addiction, but the roots of the addiction itself!! So, remembering that this book had some great advice for Healing all sorts of problems, I dug it out of my bookshelf, and re-read chapter one.

I'm going to quote some key points from this chapter and then talk about how I can apply these points to my life, right now, and my goal of quitting smoking.

1) Life is really very simple. What we give out, we get back.
The more I stress and worry about quitting, the harder it becomes. If I simply trust that I can do it, I can! I need to fully believe the the Universe / Life will assist me with my goal. Staying positive, uplifting myself, and never criticizing myself will create the positive outcome I desire!! Also, in treating others with love, kindness, respect, sympathy, and support, I will get the same back!!

2) The Universe Totally Supports us in every thought we choose to think and believe.
So, rather than thinking "It is so hard to quit smoking", or "I am having trouble quitting", my thoughts should remain focused on the positive outcome! Affirm!! Celebrate!! "I am a non-smoker!" "I have successfully quit smoking!!" "I am in control of my cravings!! I make healthy choices!!!!"

3) The Universal Power never judges or criticizes us.
When I am struggling, God/dess does not see me as "weak". If I make a mistake, The Universe does not label me as a failure. I should not pass these judgments on myself either! When I see myself in the same loving light that God sees me in, it is so much easier to simply smile and move forward. No "Tallying up the failures", no criticizing the past mistakes.

4) Most of us have Foolish ideas about who we are and many, many rigid rules about how life ought to be lived.
"I need a cigarette to calm down. I need to smoke to wind down. Wow, I'm stressed out, I need to smoke. Quitting smoking is harder than quitting a drug addiction. I can't deal with stress. If someone else is smoking near me, I need to smoke too." These are some examples of some of the beliefs that I have held, some of the attitudes I have had, that have further enabled me to continue smoking. Changing these core beliefs shouldn't be too hard, once I accept that there is no truth behind any of these statements.

5) When we are children, we learn how to feel about ourselves and life by the reactions of the adults around us.
Okay, at this point things get deep. I may have to reserve another blog for this (and the next) entirely. My parents were loving and kind, but not always supportive. ("You just can't stay focused. What were you thinking?") And they were very strict and protective of me. So, thinking of this - am I still smoking because I am STILL, at 29 years old, rebelling against my parents? Do I have trouble quitting because my mom always told me that I was a naive', scatterbrained, silly little girl who could not focus or get things done? (No, she did not say it in those words, or even in a mean way. But this is the feeling I remember.) And then my dad, always so positive, but harshly judgemental at the same time. How would I ever measure up? I remember as a teenager, realizing that I could NEVER live up to their standards, so why try? Then came the smoking, drinking, and drugs.... sigh..... Yes, it is all connected.

6) When we grow up we have a tendency to re-create the emotional environment of our early home life. However, we should not blame our parents for this.
(Louise L. Hay goes on to say that we cannot blame our parents, because they were just recreating what they had learned as children, and they their parents before them. We cannot place the blame on others, because this just creates resentment. And resentment causes illnesses and addiction - it's counterproductive.) In what way am I recreating my home life by smoking? Neither of my parents smoked. But I would agree that they each had their vices and addictions, their ways of avoiding the stress rather than dealing with it. And then I, wanting to rebel, and feeling like I would never be accepted by them, chose smoking as my vice. Perhaps even my previous failed attempts of quitting smoking is just mirroring the way that I always felt that my parents were trapped with each other, trapped in a lifestyle that didn't seem to make them happy. I don't have to be trapped. I'm not trapped, and I don't need to rebel anymore. But I still feel the need for their approval, and I still feel like I will always fall short. Like I said, this may need a whole different blog post. After all, this is just the first chapter!

7) We Choose Our Parents.
Louise L. Hay belives along with myself, and many others, that before we are born we get to choose certain things in our life. We get to choose who our parents will be, and what life lessons we would like to learn. It's good to take time to remember this. No one has perfect parents. No one has a "Perfect" relationship with their parents. It's all part of the human experience. Some may be learning a very difficult lesson; in having no parents, or in having abusive parents. Some simply have to learn to overcome the beliefs instilled by their parents, or to embrace them. So I must ask myself, what wonderful things have I learned from my parents? Because I must have choosen them because of what they could teach me - beyond the negative. I think that from my mother I have learned about Faith and Trust. And from my father I have learned Humor and how to stick with something and not give up, To Go After My Dreams. These things are all lessons that I can utilize to help me quit smoking!

8) The point of power is always in the present moment.
When I am feeling most weak and tempted, I am thinking of my past. I am thinking of how I used to be, how I smoked one cigarette last night, so I obviously can't control myself, and that I should do it again. Or I am thinking of my past feelings of addiction; the past feelings of pleasure I may have had from smoking. I must bring my awareness to the NOW, and remember that past and future do not dictate this moment. My power, my spirit, my thoughts, my beliefs, are HERE and NOW. One of my favorite affirmations is hanging on the wall above my desk. It says; "In the here and now, I am strong. I have Divine energy, wisdom, insight and ability. In this very moment I can accomplish anything I want with my own willpower and spirit! "

9) The only thing we are ever dealing with is Thought, and Thought can be changed.
When I think "I am weak, I need to smoke." or "Gosh I really want a cigarette right now.", these are THOUGHTS. Not realities. If I change my Thoughts, I change my reality. "I am strong. I have done so well. I am really doing great in reaching my goal. This gets easier every day."

10) The innermost belief that creates negativity is "I'm not good enough."
Why is it so hard for most people to look themselves in the mirror and say "I AM WONDERFUL" ? I've got a head start on this one, because my spiritual journey over the past few years has been about learning to Love myself. Fully and Truly. I am still working on it; it's hard to overcome generations and decades of society telling us all that we're not good enough, not pretty enough, not rich enough. But I know, deep inside, that I am worthy of self-respect. I am worthy of love. My body is worthy of being treated like a temple! When I am tempted to smoke, I need only remind myself that I am good enough and worthy of being healthy and free of addictions!

11) Resentment, criticism, guilt, and fear cause more problems than anything else.
Boy, do I know that one. I know and can admit that it was my own feelings of guilt, fear, self -criticism, and inner resentment that caused me to smoke in the first place. As a teenager I began to drink, smoke, and do drugs to try and mask or self-medicate these feelings, but these masks did not help the problem, did not cure the feelings, only made them worse. Worse, but buried. Now they are buried deep, and have probably bee festering for a long time. I've come so far... I have been clean from drugs for 8 years. I hardly ever drink, and never get drunk anymore. So I'm chipping away the mask, little by little. Once I get through this last part, I think I can finally begin to heal these inner feelings which cause much more than just my addictions. Who knows what else in my life can be healed once I face these innermost beasts?

12) We can change our attitude towards the past.
As you might be able to tell from the previous paragraph, I have a rocky past. It's not easy for me to think about it or talk about it. So changing my attitude about it? Hmmm. What I already know is that our past does not have to define our present. I was a drug addict. Not anymore. I was an unmotivated slob, with no housekeeping skills. Not anymore. I was a smoker....
Not Anymore!

13) To release the past, we must be willing to forgive.
True forgiveness can be really hard when you have truly dark things in your past. When I think of my past in terms of forgiveness, I feel those old resentments bubbling up. Anger. Fear. Yes, even Hate. How can I really forgive those who have hurt me? Rape. Physical Abuse. Mental Abuse. Even thinking about it now makes me shake, and suddenly I am fighting an urge to go smoke!! There it is, there is the core of my problems, the roots of my insecurity. Those feelings aren't gone, they are just buried and masked. And hardest of all to forgive is myself. The book says "We may not know how to forgive, and we may not want to forgive, but the very fact that we say we are willing to forgive begins the healing process. It is imperative for our own healing that we release the past and forgive everyone."
I forgive you for not being the way I wanted you to be. I forgive you and I set you free.

14) All Dis-Ease comes from a state of unforgiveness.
Whether it be our parents, ourselves, or someone else that has hurt us, I know that holding onto resentment can create no good. Resentment is a thought, and thoughts become feelings, and feelings manifest themselves in physical ways. Have you ever been so stressed that you give yourself a stomach ache? So sad or depressed that you make yourself sick? Resentment might not create these instant illnesses such as headaches or stomach aches, but since it is such a deep feeling it can cause the deeper illnesses. Chronic pain, digestive problems, additions, even cancer. Working on forgiveness; of myself and others, is the true way to Heal my Life.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Thursday's 13 - Strength

Well, I just had to post another Thursday's 13 today, I couldn't help myself! In keeping with this week's journaling theme at Journal Yourself Awake (Strength), I've found 13 beautiful variations of the Strength card (Tarot) Enjoy!

Alice in Wonderland - Artist unknown
Unknown Artist / Deck

art by Stephanie Law

Spiral Tarot by Kay Steventon

Rider-Waite Smith deck

art by Laifierr Grogan

The Housewives Tarot by Paul Kepple and Jude Buffum

Harry Potter - unpublished deck, artist unkown

The Fey Tarot by Mara Aghem

Druid Craft Tarot

Celestial Tarot by Kay Steventon

art by Kari Buziak

art by Annie Rodrigue
* Many of these images were found on public domain on the internet. I claim no ownership of these images, and I am not their creator. No copyright infringement intended.
Join me at Thursday's 13 every week and make your own list of 13~Anything!
Join me at Journal Yourself Awake for weekly journaling suggestions for self-discovery and Spiritual Growth!

Thirteen Goals of the Witch

This week for Thursday's Thirteen I thought I'd share a little more about my beliefs. I've been feeling very connected to my spirituality this week, as I have been journaling, quitting smoking, and celebrating the season. I will actually be posting more than one "Thursday Thirteen" this week so come back later and check for my posting on Strength!

The Thirteen Goals of a Witch was written by Scott Cunningham and is revered and respected by the Wiccan community as an excellent set of guidelines to be followed by any Wiccan.
The Thirteen Goals of the Witch appear in Scott Cunningham's incredibly popular book, "Wicca for the Solitary Practitioner," which is among the first books on "Eclectic" Wicca. The Thirteen Goals are not Traditional (meaning I'm pretty certain that Cunningham made them up), but they nonetheless help to underscore "universal" Wiccan ethics.

1. Know yourself.
2. Know your Craft (Wicca).
3. Learn.
4. Apply knowledge with wisdom.
5. Achieve balance.
6. Keep your words in good order.
7. Keep your thoughts in good order.
8. Celebrate life.
9. Attune with the cycles of the Earth.
10. Breathe and eat correctly.
11. Exercise the body.
12. Meditate.
13. Honor the Goddess and God.

The following is an examination of the relevance of each of the Thirteen Goals within the life of a Witch. I found this at Cyranna’s Book of Shadows;

1. KNOW YOURSELF.Know who you really are, and don't lie to yourself. It is important to continually take stock of both your vices and virtues. There is a reason that this goal appears first on the list: one cannot make any progress without first knowing what you're about and what you need to work on.

2. KNOW YOUR CRAFT (WICCA).Knowing your Craft doesn't just mean the knowledge you have attained from books or with your teacher -- it also refers to what you have learned through your own experience, for the true Mysteries are those that cannot be written. So celebrate the seasons, serve the Old Gods, and liten carefully to the whispers of nature.

3. LEARN.Yes, that's right, learn! Read, read, read. Read some more. Check bibliographies. If possible, train with a qualified teacher. The old cliche is correct: you never stop learning. Don't just rely on your books and your teachers, though. Look to nature. Look within. Listen carefully.

4. APPLY KNOWLEDGE WITH WISDOM.First, knowledge and wisdom are two things. If you have ever known someone who is "book smart" but totally lacks common sense, you know what I mean. It is one thing to know a lot, and something else to apply one's knowledge effectively. In Wicca, we place a great emphasis on personal responsibility; use your knowledge to make informed decisions, and be ready to accept the consequences of ALL of your actions. When doing spellwork, make your intentions clear, and again, be ready to accept responsibility for ANY outcome.

5. ACHIEVE BALANCE.It is the goal of the Witch to become a strong, dynamic, and balanced individual on all levels: physically, emotionally, spiritually. Learn to balance work with play. Balance your diet and be mindful of your health. Balance your checkbook. Learn ways to incorporate your spritual and "mundane" lives (hint: they're really not that separate!). Wicca is a Earth-Based religion: strive learn to live in harmony with the Earth. Align yourself with the rhythms of nature by celebrating the Sabbats and paying attention to the phases of the moon. Exercise outside when possible. Try gardening -- growing your own herbs can be very rewarding, and you tend to learn a lot more about them in the process! Recycle, and be mindful of your rubbish output. Finally, a word about psychological balance: emotional/psychological imblances should be attended to with professional counsel. IT IS NOT A WEAKNESS TO GET HELP. Witches are people, and may potentiallt experience all of the same problems that non-Witches may. I, personally, have never had to deal with severe anxiety or depression, but I know many Witches who have been BRAVE enough to confront their problems -- and have grown tremendously for having done so.

6. KEEP YOUR WORDS IN GOOD ORDER.Again, it's all about personal responsibility. A Witch is in complete control of his/her own words. She has the ability to make an intelligent statement without putting their foot in her mouth. It is of paramount importance NOT TO LIE -- to yourself or to another: dishonesty is spiritually corrosive. One simply cannot move forward while caught in a web of lies. Be careful with so-called "white" lies -- examine why you might want to bend the truth even just a "little bit." When it comes to answering those who want to tell you that Wiccans are nothing but low-down, perverted, Satan-worshipping baby killers, doomed to rot in Hell for all eternity, the key phrase is: stay calm. Famed Salem Witch Laurie Cabot once appeared on a TV talk show along with a minister who had, shall we say, a very negative opinion of the Craft. He spewed forth the typical ignorant fundamentalist nonsense about Wicca, but Ms. Cabot carefully maintained her composure. She made no personal attacks on the minister, even though he was less than courteous towards her. In the end, who are you more likely to take seriously: the indivudual who is so absolutely incensed that they cannot even form an intelligent sentence, or the individual who remains calm, and provides well-worded answers to whatever is slung at them?

7. KEEP YOUR THOUGHTS IN GOOD ORDER.Thoughts are, in fact, things. They are composed of and propelled by energy. Sound familiar? That's one of the most basic elements of spellwork. With that in mind, of COURSE you should monitor your thoughts. Negative thought patterns can unintentionally result in physical manifestation. Ever heard of the "self-fulfilling prophesy?" That's one example. In a similar vein, several medical studies have proven that prolonged negative emotions, such as anger and sadness, can affect the physical body, resulting in sickness. Witches are people. We laugh, we cry, we get angry. But we can't let our thoughts and emotions get out of hand. Somewhere you hear the echo: "'s all about personal responsibility..."

8. CELEBRATE LIFE!Wicca is a religion that does just that. We celebrate life. Celebrate the Earth, teeming with the vital essence of the Divine. Meditate in nature. Be THRILLED, if even for no other reason that you are ALIVE.

9. ATTUNE WITH THE CYCLES OF THE EARTH.As the poem on my splash page says, "We are one with the Earth." Attune yourself with the cycles of the Earth and recognize that you are a part of nature, not "apart" from it. Meditate on the seasons. Celebrate the Sabbats. Notice the subtle changes within the Earth each day as we move around the Wheel of the Year. Participate in the great, ecstatic dance that is Life.


11. EXERCISE THE BODY. Your body is, literally, a temple for the Gods. It is my opinion, and the opinion of many others, that the healthier you are, the easier it will be to commune with the Divine. So make it your goal to achieve your optimum health. Reduce your intake of sweets and other unhealthy foods. Start that exercise program. This isn't about vanity: it's about feeling your best. Be certain to properly attend to any chronic illness you may have so that you can enjoy life as much as possible. On a side note, it is the experience of many Witches that that sickness can interfere with magic. Therefore, it is probably advisable that you do not work magic until you feel well enough. Seriously, when you are so ill that you can't even adequately focus your attention on daytime television, do you think you can do magic?! Just let your body get some rest, use its energy to mend itself, and have someone else do some healing magic for you!

12. MEDITATE.Meditation is good for the whole organism, mind, body, and soul. Bringing yourself to that point of stillness will help you discover your inner self and true power.

13. HONOR THE GODDESS AND THE GOD....and rememeber that They are truly present in every molecule of Creation. In an interview, Witch Barbara Morrigan once said, "It is all Sacred." She wasn't kidding. The very act of living life to its fullest is an act of honor to the Gods. Celebrate Them in ritual and song. Recognize the sanctity of everyone and everthing. Develop relationships with the Gods. Serve them well, and perhaps most importantly: BY YOUR OWN LIFE BE an honor to them through example.
From Cyranna’s Book of Shadows; Come Join me in posting your list of 13 ~ Anything!~ every Thursday!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

The Meaning of Thyme and Other Deep Questions

I am late with posting today's Meme. I hope that Queen Mimi will be understanding, and hope that she hasn't already sentenced me to time in the dungeon. She should understand, I had two little princesses and one little prince demand that I take them swimming today. And then I had to go grocery shopping. And then I had to watch Hell's Kitchen. Watching Chef Ramsey yell at people is a highlight in my life, and actually helped me get my mind in the kitchen for this week's meme.....
1. If you could put thyme in a bottle, what is the first thing that you'd like to do?
I'd sell that shit for about a hundred dollars a bottle. Thyme is Money, and I think people would pay. Hey, someone has to support my lavish lifestyle.
2. Do eggs really crack or do they merely have a nervous breakdown?
In my kitchen they have been known to jump from the refrigerator to the floor in a suicidal frenzy. It's a better fate than being burned in a pan at an unholy early hour in the morning.
3. Why are you whipping the butter? What did it ever do to you?

It made a comment about my pork loins. Stupid butter, you don't even have thighs, and thought you would be smart and comment about mine? I'll show you....

4. Do your spoons spoon in the drawer? Have you ever noticed? And more importantly, if wooden spoons spoon do they get splinters?

Great. I already stopped using forks because of what I found them doing in the drawer last week. Now I have to question my spoons as well? I never realized my kitchen was home to such debauchery! Thankfully, I only have one wooden spoon, and she has pledged herself to godliness. No splinters here!

5. You hear: "Dumpling, my Dumpling, come hither." The candles are lit, the fondue is dipping, the Godiva is pouring, the scallions are steaming and the music is playing.....but wait, the windows are open.Why did you close them?

The windows were open to let out the smoke, silly! If you think it has cleared enough in here to breathe comfortably and not sting the eyes, tn feel free to close the windows, I would rather the neighbors not hear the silence that occurs when I ask my lover if he likes his meal.

6. Do you need a recipe to cook or are you a bohemian chef? Show us your reckless and wild side in the kitchen. Don't have one? Here's a recipe I made just for you: You will need a spatula, a whisk, a gallon of Chardonnay, a banana and a rump roast. What is the name of your dish?

I'm more of a recipe gal. My husband wears the chef pants in this house. My meal would be called "Rump Roast" because I might have manged to cook it, but having drank the whole gallon of Chardonnay, I have neglected to season it or prepare any side dishes. Who cares I'm not going to be eating anything tonite anyways, here's some cash so you can drive yourself to McDonalds. I didn't use the banana, because I am allergic.

7. After dinner, the dishes are so dirty that the dishwasher refuses to wash them.What did they say to get in hot water?

Those nasty dishes must have blabbed about what they saw me do while I was cooking. Oh well I'll have to wash them myself anyways. Have you ever heard the saying that your life is only as messy as the messiest room in your house? I can't leave something as important as my life to be cleaned up by some easily offended dishwashers! As you can see, my inner life is in sparkling good order, thank you!

(<--Housewives Tarot by Paul Kepple and Jude Buffum)

8. Is your pot black?

Yes, but I never thought about it before. Should I be giving it special treatment? Do you think I have offended it by keeping it away from the stainless steel pans? I didn't mean to segregate, but everything has it's place....

9. What is the sexiest spice or condiment in your cabinet? What makes it so?

Cumin, of course. Yes, dear, I know that it's supposed to be pronounced "Kyoo-Min", but it sounds so much better when you pronounce it "Cum-in", just like it's spelled. And you can't have Fajitas without Cumin. What's more sexy that "Fah-Jite-Ahhhs"?

10. How much crock is really in your crock pot?

Its about 50% Crock and 50% Pot. Really, no one would eat my food if they didn't have the munchies first. Legalize marijuana already!

Thank you for playing the Queen's Meme this week.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Weekly Flightplan; 10 of Pentacles

My Goals for this week;

Continue with Quit Smoking plan & program.

Drink more water, Detox.

Get up by 7 am daily, bed by 10 pm nightly.

Keep following my control journal / daily routine.

Zone of the Week - Livingroom

Study / read with kids daily

Make routines or charts for the kids

Work more on my Control Journal

Take time daily to meditate & pray

Start planning Princess A's B-Day party

So, for the coming week I have a few immediate goals in mind. Obviously, first and foremost, I want to continue with Quitting smoking! So far I feel like I am doing really great, I am aware of my cravings but controlling them and teaching myself new things to do with my time. I would like to get the kids more settled into daily routines for morning and night so they will be prepared when school starts on Aug. 17th. So I want to work on charts or schedules for them, as well as working more on my physical control journal (it's a FlyLady thing, in case you're wondering)

I decided to draw a card for myself this week, and I got the 10 of Pentacles! I think it's a pretty positive card for this week, reminding me to stay positive, focus on what I have rather than what I want or lack, draw on the strength of my family, and remember my true values in life. The 10 of Pentacles relates to Tradition, Value, Affluence, Permanence, and Convention. As it might apply to my life right now it could represent feelings of security, being successful, having good fortune, creating a lasting foundation, thinking of the long-term outcome or goals, having order in family life, nailing down the plan or routine, continuing in known patterns, going by the rules, and following guidelines. ( think that in order for me to find the success and fortune that I want, I should continue along the path I have already started; continue following my daily routines and using FlyLady as a "guide" for helping me get organized at home, continue with the suggested use of the nicotine gum to help me quit smoking, and keep in mind my long term goals while being grateful for the wonderful things I already have.

I CAN achieve my goals! I CAN quit smoking! I CAN continue to get more organized, and I CAN help my children establish routines and get organized as well!! Just look at this card from the Housewives' Tarot; what more do I really want than a home life that I can be proud of?? I am so close!! I may not have the big house, but my home life can be orderly, healthy, and rich with Tradition and Value!

MONDAY - Weekly Home Blessing Day, Errand Day, Sour Cream Enchiladas
TUESDAY - Weekly Kitchen Blessing Day, Pampering Day, Breakfast for Dinner
WEDS. - Weekly Bathroom Blessing Day, Anti- Procrastination Day, Tacos
THURS. - Weekly Kid's Room Blessing Day,27 Thing Fling Day, Spaghetti
FRI. - Weekly Master Bedroom Blessing Day, Hot Spot Fire drill Day, Pizza

Friday, July 24, 2009

Weekly Housewife's Report 7/24/09

My Weekly Housewive's Report, July 19 - 24, 2009

Remember the beginning of the week, when I posted my Flightplan? I wanted to start going to bed a little earlier, getting up a little earlier, and having my main cleaning / chores done by lunch time? Well, I've had a pretty great start! I've gotten up 1 hour earlier than usual 3 out of 5 days this week, and those days have been amazing!! It seems like if I get up earlier, my brain is more ready to wake up, whereas if I sleep in an extra hour or more I become more groggy, and it is much harder to get movng! Who knew that this extra hour of sleep has been sabotaging my whole routine all along?!?! On the days I get up early I do tend to have my cleaning done by lunch time, leaving me free to spend my afternoons relaxing, playing with the kids, learning, or writing. I made some really amazing personal steps this week, including beginning the task of quitting smoking!! It really makes sense that while I was working on cleaning out some private, personal, inner issues, I was also working on the innermost sanctum of my home - my bedroom!

Here's one of my bookshelves before my decuttering began;
and here's what it looks like now;
Here's the top of my dresser before my decluttering;
And here it is now;
Ahhhh.... I could feel my spirits lifting as I cleared away this clutter. It made it so much easier to work on my inner personal stuff when my space was cleared!!
I even re-decorated my altar to welcome the Sun intothe sign of Leo and prepare for the upcoming Harvest celebration; Lammas -

I am really really excited about the progress I have made this week;

* Starting new habits- getting up earlier and getting my stuff done faster
* Releasing old habits - clearing the clutter and quitting smoking
* Making time for my spirituality - spending time in meditation and doing readings and journaling!

Chakra Clearing; Quitting Smoking, Day 1

Finally, I have become resolute in my decision to quit smoking. Thanks to my New Moon meditation I was finally able to say, "Yes. Okay. I'm going to quit NOW" rather than "Someday soon."
I had a moment of prayer the other night, asking for help and guidance. I felt an amazing sense of peace and strength rising up inside of me. I knew that rather than asking the Universe to help me quit smoke, I needed to instead ask the Universe to send me signals to remind me of my own strength and power. Rather than asking for help to quit, I only needed to ask for Support while I quit. I have been studying the chakras for quite some time, but seem to keep running into blocks when I get to the Second Chakra; the home of desires and addictions. I picked up the book "Chakras for beginners" by David Pond and was inspired by this paragraph about dealing with addictions and balancing the Sacral Chakra;
"The Second Chakra grasps for whatever brings pleasure and these experiences habituate very easily. Sex, alcohol, tobacco, chocolate, and the sensation of drugs; all are Second Chakra, and all are very habit forming. The lure of the habit overcomes the individual trapped in this center, and the thought of pleasure drives one to indulge. When you are in the habit ode of this center, you are attempting to recreate a pleasure you remembered from the past. This obviously cannot lead to fulfillment, as it is missing the immediacy of the moment by looking to the past. Quitting any indulgence rarely works. What is pushed down, grows stronger. Taking part in the indulgence, while simultaneously staying aware, is the antidote."
I took this message to heart, and all day yesterday I was aware of every sensation I had while I was smoking. This revealed to me a couple very important things. 1) I do not enjoy smoking anymore. I couldn't identify any pleasure, except for the release of feeling like I had finally caught something I had been chasing... but once I had it, there was no real pleasure. 2) I did enjoy the time when I smoke as a time to step back from my day. I found myself catching up with my thoughts and plans, remembering tasks I had forgotten, finding inspiration. But I also realized that I can take these moments for myself without a cigarette.
So, after spending my day being aware of my sensations, being aware of what causes me pleasure and what does not, I found that by the end of the day, I didn't even want t smoke any more. I crushed my last 4 cigarettes, and got ready for bed, resolute that I had just smoked my last cigarette!!
I decided to give myself an Oracle Card reading. I wanted to see what further advice or support I could get from the Universe. I decided to use my Archangel Oracle Cards by Doreen Virtue, Ph.D. As I shuffled the cards, I asked God to reveal to me what Angels he has sent to help me as I quit smoking, and what message these Angels have for me. I drew three cards; here they are-

Archangel Metatron: Chakra Clearing
I had to laugh out loud. I mean, it was my study of the chakras and my desire to balance and cleanse my chakras which lead me to this point, after all!! Yes, how very appropriate!! The card says "Call upon me to clear and open your chakras, using sacred geometric shapes." above the picture of the angel on the card there is the Geometric Shape associated with The Tree of Life. Each energy point feeds into another... I know that Metatron will help me find balance, and that by quitting smoking I will be able to achieve more inner balance which will reflect onto my outer life as well.

Archangel Jeremiel: Overcoming Difficulties
A picture of an angel with great white wings like an eagle is soaring away over a mountaintop. Of course, in my mind, the task of quitting smoking is a big, hard, scary thing. This card reminds me that I do have the inner power to overcome whatever I set my mind to. From the ground, I am sure that mountain looks huge and foreboding. From the sky, soaring with Angels, it looks beautiful, not scary at all - and all I have to do is simply set my sights beyond it and fly over it! The card says "The worst is now behind you, and you are surmounting any previous challenges." Making the decision is often the hardest step of a journey, and I have already made that first step. Now I just have to trust in my own abilities, and trust that I have all the help and love of the Universe to help me.

Archangel Metatron: Indigo and Crystal Children
Of course, my children! What better gift can I give to them than the gift of my own health? What better way to help my children than to have my own energy cleared and free? I can turn to them for help and inspiration, and in turn I will find my greatest strength of all!! The card says "You have a bond with children. In particular, you can help children who are sensitive." Of course, I have been wanting to be a better mom, more patient, more understanding. (Read previous blog - My Lunar Self) Once I free myself of the bonds of addiction and allow myself to clear my Sacral Chakra, I can move on to the other chakras and become a more balanced individual, and more easily find my place as a mother and guide for my children!

My first day without smoking has gone surprisingly well. I have been using the nicorette gum to help curb my cravings, and have kept myself busy with cleaning house and playing with the kids. I have still let myself step outside twice to do some deep breathing and refocus my thoughts and energies. But I'm feeling really confident and happy!! The true test will be when my husband comes home with his cigarettes. I will tell him that I have quit and hope that he is able to support me and keep his temptation away from me if he continues to smoke. I am sure he will be supportive, it is my own strength that will be tested. But I will have Metatron and Jeremiel here by my side to remind me to stay strong!!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Thursday's 13 - Potty Mouth

Thirteen things I have yelled or shouted from the toilet seat, butt-naked!! No, I honestly do not get moment's peae, not even to use the bathroom! The joys of having three kids!!

  1. QUIT banging on the door!
  2. No! Stay Out, I'm busy!
  3. Go away! I'm peeing!!
  4. WHAT was that noise?
  6. Leave the Cat Alone!!
  7. You'll just have to wait I am busy!!
  8. No, I don't know where your sippy cup is!!
  9. WHY are you crying?
  10. DON'T answer that phone!
  11. No, I'm NOT running you a bath! I'm going POTTY!
  12. Where is all the toilet paper. AGAIN??
  13. If ya'll don't knock it off, I'm saying in here FORVER!!

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others’ comments. It’s easy, and fun!

Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

View More Thursday Thirteen Participants

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

New Moon Meditation - I'm gonna quit smoking! From The "New Moon & High Priestess" Journal

Journal Part 2;
Check out this excellent Meditation by astrologer Rebecca Brents. Take some quiet time to visualize as suggested. The second part of the meditation tells you to write down what you heard, felt, saw, or learned from your meditation. Don't censor or edit your words, just write down what you remember of your experience.

So last night after putting the kids to bed and washing the dishes I decided to do some visualization meditation and try out this one from the link above. But I had already turned my computer off, and I didn't record it on paper like I should have; I know, I know, Bad Tarot Mom!

Here's what I remember.
I visualized walking on the beach. It was dusk, or twilight, It was still light outside and still warm. The thin crescent moon was rising up above the horizon of the ocean. I could hear the water gently flowing back and forth from the beach and I could feel the warm sand between my toes. I let myself just enjoy visualizing the beach and feeling the ocean breeze.
I looked up the beach a ways and saw a cloaked figure sitting between two stone pillars. I walked towards her - it was The High Priestess. She was gazing thoughtfully at the moon and her eyes met mine as I walked towards her. She didn't speak or smile, but her gaze was no hostile either. I walked a little bit closer and she shifted herself on her seat. When she did this a couple of the stones at her feet shifted and one of them came tumbling down the slope and landed at my feet. I picked it up. Moonstone. Smooth, opaque, translucent white with shimmering purple and green. I looked back up the where the High Priestess had been, but she was gone; along with the two stone pillars and the stone upon which she had been seated. So I knew the stone was my gift, not only from the High Priestess, but from the Moon. I walked further along the beach, watching the waves. I took the stone out of my pocket and looked at it. When I did this the scenery shifted, it was like I was dreaming. I saw myself, not on the beach but somewhere else. Coughing and Hacking and looking very sick. Then I was back on the beach holding the moonstone in my hand. I knew what it meant, but I was still surprised that my meditation had taken this sudden turn. I found it very hard to continue my visualization so I came back down to earth and thought about it for awhile.

I have been thinking about quitting smoking for awhile now. Pretty much every time I light up a smoke I think about quitting. I wouldn't say I'm a heavy smoker. I can goal day at work without a cigarette. I have quit before (when I was pregnant) and I don't know why I ever started again. I think I've reached the point when I'm willing to quit for ME and maybe that will make the difference. In the past I quit for my babies; because I was pregnant and wanted to quit for THEM. But now I want to quit for ME. Yes my babies, of course will benefit from it too, but this time my reasons are personal. I know that my subconscious has been trying to get me to quit for awhile but my stubborn ego has not been willing to let go. I think last night's meditation made it all too clear and I can no longer deny that this is what I'm going to do.

Today I smoked a lot less than usual. Each time I smoked, I only smoked half a cig. rather than the whole thing, plus I smoked less frequently. I bought a pack of nicorette gum. I joined a quit smoking support group on CafeMom. I don't have a real game plan yet but I am taking steps and it feels right.

Want to journal with me? Want tips, suggestions, or need direction for your journal for Self-Discovery? Come Journal Yourself Awake!!

Wordless Wednesday - I kinda Miss the 80's

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

My Lunar-Self

Journal Yourself Awake; The New Moon & The High Priestess

Journal Part 1;
This New Moon (July 21) the Moon is in the astrological sign of Cancer, along with the Sun. Cancer is ruled by the Moon, making this an ideal time to look within at our own lunar selves.
Key characteristics of the Moon include the following traits; Being Instinctive, our Automatic Responses, Our Unconscious side, Being Feeling-oriented, Mothering or Nurturing, Being dependent or needy, Being Changeable or Flexible - or being too stubborn and fundamental, or being Moody or Reactive.
Take a moment to think about these aspects within yourself. Are any of them too strong or too weak? Have you let your emotions or instincts rule your life? Are you allowing yourself to be nurturing and mothering? Are you burying or denying your emotions or not following your instincts? Allow yourself to write about these traits in yourself without judgment from yourself and without fear of judgment from others.

I've been very drawn to the moon latley. I journaled last week about the Tarot card "The Moon", I have been up late at night moon-gazing, and I've been studying once again about the cycles, phases, and astrological transitions of the Moon. So I guess it makes sense that my first "journaling assignment" at my new blog would be about the Moon. I really didn't plan it that way, but since today marked the New Moon in Cancer, what better time is there? (The New Moon transitting thru the Astrological sign that is Ruled by the Moon - while the Sun is also transitting through that same sign. Now it makes sense, right?)

So here I am again, ready to bare my soul to you as I journal with Part 1; Looking at my Lunar Self;

My Instinctual Side- what are my automatic responses?
I have worked so hard over the past few years to change my thought patterns from negative to positive. But I still find it hard sometimes. Sometimes the automatic response is one based on fear or worry. But the thing is; at least now I am aware of these feelings, and thru awareness I can autoatically turn them around. It's actually becoming a habit to replace my negative thoughts with positive ones... and this is an amazing change within myself that has led to wonderful things!! The one "Automatic Response" that I know I still need to work on has to do with my mouth. More specifically; my yelling. These crazy kids are jumping on funiture, wrecking the house, torturing the cats, and driving me crazy and the first thing I do is yell at them. It's not working, I need to change that. But it comes out automatically before I canthink of any other way to react. I will try to be more aware of my reactions.

Being Mothering & Nurturing -
I need to work on this too. It pains me to admit that sometimes I'm not as Nurturing or Mothering towards my kids as I should be. Don't get me wrong they get plenty of cuddles and kisses and snacks and baths. But sometimes I don't think I nurture them in the right ways or at the right times. When they have been whining and fighting and tattling all day, I don't want to hear it anymore! They sometimes will come to me for the 10th time wanting me to somehow heal the rifts of sibling rivalry, smooth out the arguments, or heal the hurt feelings from the insults they have hurled at eachother (yes - sisters can be really mean!!) I feel like I fall short on the nurturing in these areas because when my patience has been worn so thin, I just can't think of anything to tell them other than "Well tell each other you're sorry and get over it" or "Why don't you just seperate for awhile". I don't kow why this is the first thing that comes to my mind when I think of my ability to nurture, I guess it's just something that bothers me.

My flexibility / changeability -
That's always a rough area for me. I don't like change. I am one of those people who can really get stuck in their ways. I have to make sure to add some spontanaety into my life or I will get stuck in a rut. On the oposite end of the spectrum though, Iam very adaptable. I will find a way to work around new situations and fit new or different things into my life when change comes a-callin'. And it does. My favorite quote has always been "The only constant is change". I embraced that quote early in life and it has helped me become more adaptable, more wiling to flex and flow. It's still a challenge for me, but I think I've come far.

Am I dependent or needy?
Well I'm not going to say that I'm not independent. I'm a strong, independent woman!! Why do I feel like I'm trying to convince myself of that? Because I know I'm pretty needy and dependent. Not the needy-clingy type, but the need-interaction type. I'm not really sure I ever learned how to be alone. I went from being a child living with my parents to being a mom, and was never single in between boyfriends and husbands for more than couple weeks. Plus I have my kids. I feel sometimes like if what I've done or said isn't being noticed by someone, it's pointless. Probably why I started a blog. I need to be watched. Kinda kinky, huh? And I do depend too much on others sometimes. I crave approval. I try and tell myself that I don't care what other people think of me, and for the most part, I don't. But there's that little part of myself that feels sad when no one comments on my blog, that little part of me that feels afraid to go to the grocery store by myself - that's my dependent, needy side.

My feelings and moods -
I am pretty in touch with my emotions, and painfully aware of my moods. Yes I can have crazy mood swings, I wish I could control them better. The older I get the worse they get. Sometimes I think it's because I have spent so much of my life holding my emotions inside. I mean, although I am very aware of my feelings and emotions, I don't always show them. I can accept them and understand them, but others might not. And why would they need to see my emotions anyways? What purpose would it serve? Other than for me to not appear to others as a cold-hearted-bitch. Look, even just talking about showing my emotions brings out my sarcasm. Sheesh I never realized that my Sarcasm and Humor are such a big cover up of my feelings. *click the light bulb comes on over my head* Wow.... hold on I'm having a moment here....


Come Journal With Me!!

please come check out my new Journaling blog!

I would like to invite you to my newest creation in blog land;

If you're ever wanting a journaling excersize or a blog theme feel free to check it out. Especially if you like self-discovery or exploring spiritual awareness. I will be posting a new journaling exersize each week.

I will still be using this as my main Blog, and this is where I will be posting my personal entries of the journaling suggestions at the other site. If you know anyone who would be interested in Journaling for self-dsicovery, please send them my way!!

Monday, July 20, 2009

My Day; the DMV, Hot Dogs, and RAIN!

Yes, it actually rained today! For the first time since April I felt a cool wind and blissful drops of rain on my shoulders. But this was the end of my really nice day..... well for the most part!

Hubby had the day off. It is rare that we get a day off together. He works Monday thru Friday, and I work weekends. We see eachother in the evenings, but that's about it. Since we only have 1 car, and he has to drive it to work, I am stuck at home with the three kids 5 days a week. I don't mind most of the time, but I do get a little Cabin Fever!!

So today he was home, which was great because I needed to go to the DMV to get temporary registration tags for our car. I left for the DMV around 9:30 am, waited there, and my number finally came up. They refused to give me a 30 day tag because according to their records, I didn't have insurance! Which was total B.S. because I had proof of insurance right there. So I had to drive from the DMV to my insurance agent, have her print out something that said there had never been a lapse in my policy, and go back to the DMV again. Get a new number and wait. AGAIN. Of course, the DMV gladly gave me my temporary tag, but under no circumstances would admit that they had been wrong. I think it must be in the state by-laws; The DMV is deemed infallible. For them to admit they were wrong or to utter an apology for wasting any part of my day would have ripped a hole in the space-time continuum.

So I got home around 12:30. The first half of my day gone. So much for the first day of my new schedule. But after the rest of my day, I think I should be fully ready to tackle my new schedule first thing in the morning!! Because we decided to drive out of town and go visit some friends.

It was really nice to get away. As I said before, the kids and I are stuck at home pretty much 24/7. Our friends used to be neighbors here at our apartment complex, but moved to a house about 20 minutes outside of town over a year ago. We have only seen them once in the past year, and that was at a birthday party and Peter Piper Pizza. So we packed up the kids and drove 20 minutes out of the city and spent the rest of the day at their house. They have three kids also, ages 5, 2, and 6 months. My kids were so happy to see thier old friends again, as well as probably very pleased to be out of the apartment and be able to play with someone else's toys!! They were so pleased, in fact, that they pretty much left me alone the whole afternoon and evening, playing upstairs. I stayed downstairs, playing with the baby, catching up with my friend, and watching "Pineapple Express" on TV. (By the way, that movie was pretty hilarious!) For dinner we did Hot Dogs and Brats with grilled onions, Baked Beans, Mac & Cheese, and Potato Salad. I did notice something when I stepped outside by the grill... it was QUIET out there! I couldn't hear a constant droll of traffic, I didn't hear any sirens or helicopters, no TV's from surrounding apartments. There were other houses around, but it was just much quieter out there. Out of the city and closer to the mountains. Hubby was drinking beer with the guys and grilling the Brats and Dogs on the grill, and I was enjoying a Rum and Coke with my girlfriend and helping to cook the side dishes with my girlfriend. Pretty simple, but I was reminded that sometimes it's the Simple things in life that are really refreshing to our spirits.

While we were cooking, the clouds were building up and the wind was blowing really hard. It cooled down outside from 110 to something in the 90's... a real wonderful feeling for us Desert Dwellers! After dinner, it started to rain; nice big fat drops of rain. Man I love the smell of rain, the sound of thunder, and a strong cool breeze. Being without rain for a few months in the desert, with daily triple digit heat really makes you appreciate the rain when it comes.

All in all, I had a really refreshing day. Just not worrying about housework or the usual stuff, spending time with family and friends, getting out of the city - out of my Apartment!!

The Queen's Meme, Week 2 ~ Mission Impossible ~

I shall attempt to complete "Mission Impossible", As commanded by Mimi Pencilskirt, Queen of the Memes, Most fair and wise Meme Queen of them all;

1. You are a guest on the space shuttle. You just arrived on the moon and realize you forgot something back home that you can't live without. What is it and how do you convince them to go back and fetch it?
I forgot my clean underwear. It won't take much to convince them to take me home to get it, seeing as I lost control of my bladder during take-off. Don't judge me - there's a lot of confusing sensations during takeoff.

2. Pretend you are a teacher in a rough public school for one day. You have been assigned to teach Manners 101. You have the "challenging bad butt kids" class (remember this is a pretend school and anyway I can't say ass on my blog 'cause it's so unQueenly and I might get fined or something).They are jumping up and down, cursing, and throwing things at you.
What is the first thing you would write on the board?
Nothing. I am too busy trying to smash an invisible spider on my desk with my eraser. Chasing around an invisible spider is a good way to get people's attention.

3. Someone in your family or a friend has started a blog. They think it is anonymous but you have figured it out. They are saying derogatory things about you. Do you tell them or do you read it for awhile?How would you handle it?
I would probably read it for a few days to see how bad it really is. If I am 100% sure that it is being written by a friend or family member, I would be seriously offended and crushed. I would probably stop talking to them and distance myself, allowing my pain to turn into anger before mustering up the courage to confront them. And with me, there are no second chances. I will speak my mind and then say Good-Bye. They're out of my life; end of story.

4. If you had one dollar left in your pocket, what would you spend it on?
One Dollar? Can you still buy something with One Dollar? I would probably spend it on a fountain drink at the Gas Station, and hope to get a free refill later when this guy who has a crush on me is working behind the counter. :o)

5. President Obama and the First Lady are coming over for dinner. What do you serve?
Screw that, they better be bringing some food too. I guess I'd serve up some good american Barbeque, cooked by my amazing Chef husband. But the Obamas better at least bring their own beer.

6. You walk in on your lover. They are trying on your clothes. What do you do?
Raise an eyebrow, tell him that he is never going to fit into that, so please don't stretch it out, rip it or ruin it, and walk back out of the room. Quickly.

7. Every astronaut must have shots! Choose your vaccination: You only get one and you can't enjoy any of the attributes of the other choices. You choose either: (1) The fountain of eternal youth and sexual vigor but only for 10 years (2) perfect health for a lifetime (3) eternal mind-numbing nirvana and peace of mind (4) unlimited hedonism for one year with no negative consequences.
Number 3. Because what good is perfect health, eternal youth, sexual vigor, or unlimited hedonsim without Peace of Mind? Although I don't know if I want my Nirvana to be mind-numbing. Can I please have just half a dose and get the Peace of Mind and Nirvana without it numbing all my senses?

Sunday, July 19, 2009

This week's Flightplan

Just planning ahead a bit to try and keep myself on task!

Of course, I'll be trying to stick to my daily routine, as outlined in my Control Journal.

Each week with FlyLady we have a different Zone to focus on decluttering or detailing. This week's Zone is the Master Bedroom, and my bedroom always needs help!

I think it's just that room where I throw everything and think I'll deal with it later. But it never gets dealt with. I should just re-name this room my Procrastination Room!!

In order to have time to do my daily routines and still have the time I want to focus on organizing this room, I have realized I need to tweak my schedule a little bit! Right now, with summer break and the girls out of school, mornings have been lazy. I've been staying up late, sleeping in, and not getting moving very well in the mornings! I'm lucky to be starting my Morning Routine by 9:30! School will be starting again in about a month, I need to change my habits NOW unless I want mornings to be stressful and chaotic!!

So here's my Flightplan for the week, including my new habit!

Go to bed at 10:00 pm - no excuses!! I do not allow my children to stay up all night, so why don't I take care of myself in the same way? (Actually, that's a lie... I've been letting Miss Zee stay up till 11:00 watching Nick At Nite or Disney Channel! This is gonna stop too... for her own good as well as mine!!)
This means starting my Evening Routine earlier, and restructuring my time before bed so that I still take care of the kids, the house, and myself all by 10:00. I am gonna have to practice some real self-discipline!!

Get up at 7:00 am - UHG! This is going to be so hard!! But I know I can do it!! Once again - Self-Discpline!! This means setting my alarm and actually getting UP!! Before 8:00!! Because once school starts again I will need this time to get the girls ready for school, and if I'm not in the habit before school starts; well it's last year's Morning Chaos all over again!!
This is going to mean really embracing my morning routine. Get Dressed To Shoes. Brush Teeth & Hair. Get Kids Dressed. Breakfast. Vitamins. Coffee. Water. Feed The cats. Check My Hot Spots. Make The Bed. Check the Calander / Control Journal. Plan for Dinner.
See, I didn't even have to look at my Control Journal, I know my Morning Routine by heart. But I just have to make myself DO it. ALL OF IT!! If I get up by 7 am, I can have my morning routine done by 8:30!! Which is the time I will be taking the girls to school once it starts again. And look, I'll already be ahead of myself by a whole hour!

7:00 - 8:30; Morning Routine / Kids & Self ready for Day!
8:30 - 11:00; Daily Cleaning. Doing the usual stuff on my list. Two and a half Hours should be plenty of time, if I stay focused and don't get distracted. 30 minutes at a time with short breaks in between.
11:00 - 12:00; Break for lunch, rest, etc.
12:00 - 1:15; Zone Work, Decluttering, Organizing. This leaves an hour for this stuff, 30 minutes at a time with a 15 minute break in the middle.
1:15 - 2:45; More cleaning IF I'm motivated and have more to do. Otherwise, this can be time for Blogging, FaceBook, games, reading, studying, Tarot, etc. Whatever I want.
Once school starts again, at 2:45 I will be going to pick up the girls from school. So I want to have all housework and stuff done BEFORE this time. Plus, in the fall, if all goes as planned, I will get my hours back at work, which means that I'll be working in the evenings again.
3:00 - 4:00; Homework and studying, Arts & Crafts with the kids. I've been awful about this. It's time to get the kids, and myself, back into the habit of studying, doing homework, reading, etc. Even if it just means coloring or painting.
5:00 - cook Dinner, eat dinner, family time. However long it takes.
7:30 - Evening Routine!! Kids Baths or Showers, Clean up from dinner, Shine the sink, rescue the livingroom, and start winding down for the day. Put the kids to bed, take a shower or bath, yoga, meditation, etc.
10:00 - BED!!

Link to this week's Zone Plan @ FlyLady;

Goals in the Master Bedroom;
Organize the bookshelf
Declutter the wire shelf by the door
Declutter top of bookshelf #2
Top of Dresser
Vaccuum, Dust

Monday; Weekly Home Blessing Hour / Livingroom Blessing / Monday's Oracle
Tuesday; Weekly Kitchen Blessing Day / Pampering Day / Tarot Tuesday
Wednesday; Weekly Bathroom Blessing Day / Anti-Procrastination Day / Wordless Wednesday
Thursday; Weekly Kid's Room Blessing Day / 27 Thing Fling Day / Thursday's 13
Friday; Weekly Master Bedroom Blessing Day / Hot Spot Day / Weekly Houswife's Report

Monday - Sour Cream Enchiladas
Tuesday - Chicken, Veggies
Wednesday - Pancakes, Eggs, Bacon
Thursday - Chicken Veggie Stir Fry, Salad, Garlic Bread
Friday - Pizza Night
Saturday - Spaghetti, Salad
Sunday - Hubby's BBQ nite

Friday, July 17, 2009

How Not To Act in a Restraunt - Being Seated

Customers at the restaurant where I work are spoiled.
I mean, we pride our business on good customer service, and we try to give our customers what they want to keep them happy. It's a local, family-run business and we have lots of "regulars" who come in on a frequent basis. But still, I am often surprised at what these customers have come to expect and how they treat some of the employees.

When you go out to eat, you probably don't give a second thought to the hostess and where you are seated. If you go somewhere often you probably have a certain section you like to sit in, but are you really going to go out of your way to sit there? And do you really expect he host/hostess to know where you want to sit? Or - would you go as far as to be rude to the hostess in order to get what you want?

Here's an example;
Me; " Hi! Welcome to _____________. How many tonite?
them; "Two"
Me; "Would you prefer a booth or a table?"
them; "Booth"
me; "Okay, right this way please."
them, following me, then stopping and hollering after me; "NO! I'm not going to sit there."
me; "err.... okay. Would you prefer a table?"
them; "NO. I just don't want to sit there.... How about over there?"... (pointing to the opposite side of the restaurant.)
me, trying to restrain myself and keep smiling; "Okay, sure. Lead the way."

I mean, what's the point of having a hostess if you're going to pick your own seat? Do you not realize why we are even here?
If you have children I ask if you need a highchair and will take you to an accommodating section.
If you are handicapped I will seat you somewhere accessible and close to the door.
If you request a certain waitress or section upon entering, I will be more than happy to accommodate you.
But other than that, I am going to follow the seating chart. The Host/Hostess job is to make sure that all the servers are being seated equally. If one server gets 3 tables at once while the others each have 1, it is not fair to any of them. So, aside from taking the customers to their seats and providing them with menus and telling them the specials, it is also my job to keep the servers happy. Did you think I was seating you near the corner because I was picking on you? Or, I'm sorry, was I supposed to KNOW that you would prefer a window seat. You didn't say that when I was asking you if you wanted a table or a booth. Believe it or not, I can't tell if you have poor eyesight, claustrophobia, or a bad back unless you tell me.
So, now that you have asked to sit somewhere other than where I was going to take you, the other customers up front are waiting patiently for a hostess to seat them while you choose your seat. The waitress in whose section you are seating yourself just got a table 5 minutes ago and is still serving them, have fun waiting for service. Meanwhile, I have to go back to the front, make adjustments to the seating chart to show what has happened, seat the next customer, and hope the waitresses don't come up to me snarling and asking why I am not seating people in the proper order. And you wondered why I seemed to have to pull that smile out of my ass. If you had just requested a certain area in the first place we could have avoided the detour, and I wouldn't have had to hold back any snark in the first place.

I am sorry. I just really had to get that off my chest. Because it happens on a regular basis. Sometimes people are downright mean, or really rude. Other times I think they are not so rude, but still it can be annoying because they just want to seat wherever. I mean, if you could just sit wherever, we wouldn't have a hostess, now would we?

Please, remember to be respectful of all your service providers in life. We're mostly over-worked and under-paid; there's high chance that we might just go postal on you one of these days. * wink-wink*

Weekly Housewife's Report 7/17/09

My Weekly Housewife's Report for the week of July 12 - 18, 2009

At the beginning of the week I was off to a rough start. Sorry if this is TMI, but my monthly gift from Mother Nature does not make for a pleasant or happy Housewife. Monday and Tuesday I was pretty down in the dumps and feeling awful, and didn't really get any cleaning done. Remember my Tarot Reading for the week? The High Priestess and The Moon reminded me to look within, and take time to slow down. A little break was much needed. By Thursday I was ready to get back into my routines full swing.... and I really feel like I have once again learned the lesson of The Chariot this week....

This one is from "The Fey Tarot" by Mara Aghem. The Chariot is all about knowing where you want to go, embracing your inner power, accepting your mission. Once I gave myself some time off, I had to really DECIDE to get moving again. I was so tempted to just give up, but I knew that I wouldn't feel good about that choice. I had to really reach inside to find my inner Magician, recognize my true strengths, and just hop back up on the wagon and keep moving!!!

This week's Zone was the bathroom. Although I didn't get all the missions for the week done, I did some decluttering and cleaning and I am loving my bathroom again!! Check out these before & after pics of my decluttering;

This little drawer set really comes in handy in a small bathroom, but everything was just jumbled together!!
Oh, look! Now I know where things are because they are all separated into separate drawers!!

Under the sink was a bit jumbled too......
But now it's much more organized! I can find what I'm looking for without digging!!
Actually, organizing the bathroom seems like it was a perfect zone for me this week. I was learning a lesson about self-care, and now that my bathroom is a bit more organized and clean, I am much more motivated to spend some time in there for pampering! I was reminded that I do have the tools to take care of myself; vitamins and medicine, bubble bath, nail polish, facial cream, oh my - I'm sounding awfully girly!!
I was also reminded that sometimes the little things, like making my bed, feeding the cats, and wiping down the countertops can be much more than "Chores". This was something I hav known and practiced, but had temporarily lost sight of. I was reminded of this by Thorne's wonderful blog yesterday, check it out!
I think, most importantly, I learned that I can't be so hard on myself ALL the time. I am allowed to give myself a break, especially during a certain time of the month!! Actually I am thinking of making up a special daily routine just to use during this time each month - or for those days when I am sick or feeling worn down. And I will put a reminder about "The Chariot" on that page of my control journal, reminding me that it's okay to take time for myself to find my strength again, but once I find it I need to grab those reigns and get moving again - I just might suprise myself!!
Join me in sharing something Positive every Friday with the "Only The Good Friday" meme!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Thursday's 13 - 13 books I have read this year

13 Books I have read this year (between January 2009 and July 2009)
  1. My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Piccoult
  2. Twilight by Stephenie Meyer
  3. New Moon by Stephenie Meyer
  4. Eclipse by Stephenie Meyer
  5. Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer
  6. The Host by Stephenie Meyer
  7. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling
  8. Harry Potter and the Prizoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling
  9. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J.K. Rowling
  10. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by J.K. Rowling
  11. The Neverending Story by Michael Ende
  12. Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling
  13. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Wordless Wednesday 7-15-09

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Come share your Wordless Blog post with me!
Are you posting wordless today? Leave me a comment I'd love to see what you posted!!

I really need a Raincoat

Remember this song? Raining in Baltimore by the Counting Crows
"3,500 miles away, but WHAT WOULD YOU CHANGE IF YOU COULD?"

It hasn't rained here in so long, but when he says "I really need a rain coat" I feel like I can relate. It's not about Baltimore, and it's not about rain. It's about change, and life, and regrets. But can you really regret anything?

Before I graduated High School I was thinking of going to Art college in Baltimore. But I met my x husband, got married, and had a baby at 18 instead. How different my life would have been if I had persued that scholarship rather than him. But would I change it? No, of course not! I have my beautiful daughter. And from the events that transpired after my divorce, I met my current husband, and we have two more kids together. But sometimes I miss the dream... the possibilities, the could-have-beens.

This circus is falling down on it's knees
the big top is crumbling down
It's raining in Baltimore fifty miles east
Where you should be, no one's around

I need a phone call
I need a raincoat
I need a big love
I need a pone call

These train conversations are passing me by
And I don't have nothing to say
You get what you pay for
But I just had no intention of living this way

I need a phone call
I need a plane ride
I need a sunburn
I need a raincoat

And I get no answers
And I get no change
It's raining in Baltmore, baby
But everything else is the same

There's things I remember and things I forget
I miss you
I guess that I should
Three thousand five hundred miles away
But what would you change if you could?

I need a phone call
maybe I should buy a new car
I can always hear a freight train
if I listen real hard
And I wish it was a small world
Because I'm lonley for the big towns
I'd like to hear a little guitar
I think it's time to put the top down

I need a phone call
I need a raincoat
I really need a raincoat.

By Counting Crows - Lyrics by Adam Duritz