Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Menu Planning, Week 3

Wow.  I ran out of planned menus last week, plus we were out of town overnight.  Once the planned meals were used up, my creativity went downhill, and the food choices were basic, quick, not-as-healthy selections.  I've got a few dinners planned for this week, but I haven't come up with an entire week's worth yet.  Here's what I have so far:

*Chunky Sweet Potato Stew, Green Salad

*Pasta with Shrimp and Artichokes, *Crazy-About-Carrot Salad

*Greens and Berries Salad with Cashew Currant Dressing, *Black Forest Cream of Mushroom Soup

*recipe from Eat for Health, by Dr. Joel Fuhrman

Monday:  sushi and chicken chow mein from Trader Joe's

Tuesday: Chunky Sweet Potato Stew, made by youngest daughter

Wednesday:  breakfast for dinner-- waffles and eggs

Thursday:  Pasta with Shrimp and Artichokes--I didn't follow the recipe exactly, but how could one go wrong with shrimp and artichokes as ingredients? 

Friday: Ham and cheese sandwich on English muffin

Saturday:  Leftover Pasta with Shrimp and Artichokes, Smoked Ribs

Sunday:  Pizza, 7-layer dip, etc.  (John's Superbowl game meal)

Thankful thought:  Thanks for the abundant variety of recipes that are so easily accessible.  I know this week's recipes came from only one book so far, but it is nice to know that there are many other resources out there. 


Sunday, January 29, 2012

Disneyland 5K Report

I got a phone call from my mom today wondering if I was OK, since this blog has been quiet over the past couple of days.  Yes, I'm OK.  I was just not home Friday and Saturday.  Youngest daughter and I participated in Disneyland's Never Land 5K on Friday night. 


We were two of approximately 4,000 people (from every state, except Maine and New Hampshire) who lined Main Street, from the Sleeping Beauty Castle all the way down to the train station.


While we all waited for the run to start, we listened to a D.J. crank the tunes up, and smiled for the film crew.


Finally, we were off!  Disneyland sure knows how to host a fun run.  Disney characters lined the streets, and parade floats were brought out of their storage garages backstage.  Every mile brought another photo op.





The lights and little fountains from World of Color sparkled in the darkness as we approached the finish line.


At the conclusion of the race, we were each handed medals.


I'm so proud of my daughter for finishing her first 5K!  I had a blast, and would love to participate in another Disney race.  I enjoyed the company, I enjoyed the atmosphere, and I enjoyed being able to see some backstage areas of the park. 

The 5K started at 10:30 p.m., well past my normal bedtime, so we stayed in an Anaheim hotel Friday night.  Saturday, we spent the day in the park.  I love this photo that youngest daughter took.  She gave John Mickey ears, and I'm carrying Walt on my shoulders. 


Anaheim had San Diego (translation: perfect!) weather on Saturday, which was fitting for the happiest place on earth. 

We came back home Saturday evening, picked Reno up from the puppy sitter's place this morning, and enjoyed a nice day at church today.  Reno even behaved himself, sleeping quietly through the services.  Today was a nice end to a great weekend.

Thankful thought: Thanks for "wholesome recreational activities" spent with family!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Feeling More Charitable, and I'd Love Your Answers

First of all, I'm calmed down about the plumber.  The bathroom is functional as is, and John has some more ideas on what to do to make it better.  As for the plumber, who knows what his story is?  Perhaps he is under the misguided notion that being a good plumber means making as much money as he can on each call (even if that means the company loses repeat business).  He probably does a fairly good job at that.  Anyway, I'm going to try to just let it go.  Between facebook and this blog, I've gathered several names of recommended plumbers, so if John needs help, we know who to call.

My question for you, my dear readers, came to me when I was writing Sunday's post, found here.  When I was looking up the scriptural background to the ox in the mire post, I was surprised that the Biblical account didn't actually have the word "mire" in it.  I even googled "ox in mire" and the hits that came up were LDS links, or written from an LDS perspective.  So my question for you, especially for you who are not LDS, is this:  Have you ever heard or used the expression "an ox in the mire"?  I'm beginning to think this is a Mormon cultural expression.  Mire and pit mean essentially the same thing, so it has nothing to do with interpretation.  If it is a Mormon colloquialism, do any of you know how it originated?  I imagine it must have been in a general conference talk years ago, similar to Elder Bednar's "tender mercies of the Lord", President McKay's "Every member a missionary" or President Kimball's "Lengthen your stride."  Anyone know?

Thankful thought:  Thanks for everyone who recommended a plumber--it sounds like there are many honest ones around!

Monday, January 23, 2012

A Rant, Then Thanks

The plumbing issue didn't get fixed.  No problem; call a plumber.  Two years ago, we called a plumbing company who sent Mr. Doom-and-Gloom.  Before we took the drastic measures he suggested, we called another company.  That company solved the problem with a simple snaking of the drain.  This morning, I called a company that advertises "Any drain unclogged" for a reasonable price.  Problem is, Mr. Doom-and-Gloom showed up at my door.  He changed companies.  His solution for everything is, "Let's tear up the foundation of the house!" 

Based upon our past experience with him, our problem should be easily solved by calling a different plumber.  However, a tiny part of my brain is going into worry overdrive.  What if he is telling me the truth? 

Breathe, Kristi, breathe.  Things could be much worse.  I really don't have any reason to complain.  Life is good.

Thankful thought:  Thanks for shelter from the rain and cold, and  thanks for indoor plumbing--not all of the bathrooms are on the affected line.  

Sunday, January 22, 2012

An Ox in the Mire Kind of Day

This weekend promised to be wonderful, and started off that way when John and I went to the temple Saturday morning.  Attending the temple with John is one of my favorite dates.  After feeling the peace of the temple, we weren't even bothered by the heavy traffic on the way home. 

I told John how much I was looking forward to today.  I had no church responsibilities.  No choir practices were scheduled, nor did I have to play the organ.  I don't mind playing, but I was looking forward to just attending stake conference, listening, and soaking everything in. 

This morning, right before we were going to leave for church, I discovered our master bathroom was one big puddle of water. 

In the book of Luke, chapter 14, verse 5, Jesus Christ explains why it was OK for him to heal on the sabbath:   "And answered them, saying, Which of you shall have an ass or an ox fallen into a pit, and will not straightway pull him out on the sabbath day?" Of course, they would not leave the animals, but would rescue them.  How much more appropriate would it be for the Savior to heal a person on the sabbath? 

Anyway, though John had every intention of coming to stake conference with us this morning, instead he stayed home and dealt with our own "ox in the mire."  Fortunately, he was able to solve the problem. 

Meanwhile, I was dealing with my own ox puppy, who chose this Sunday to be completely wound up.  I think it would have been easier for me if Reno had been stuck in a mire.  Not really, but I did not get to concentrate on what was being said.  Instead, I spent much of the meeting walking the halls, trying to wear the puppy out.  Poor Reno is teething, and kept trying to chew on the leash, his puppy-in-training vest, or my arm. 

I did enjoy the one little idea I did pick up from conference, though.  Elder Steven E. Snow spoke about the parable of the 10 virgins, 5 of whom were prepared with oil in their lamps, and 5 who were not.  (Matthew 25:1-13)  He made the statement that oil cannot be bought in bulk, but is obtained drop by drop through little acts, such as prayer.  I think sometimes it is easy to overlook the importance of little things, but over time, those small things add up.  I know that when I consider my childhood, many of the memories come from the daily routines we had.  The ebb and flow of each day shaped my character over time. 

Fortunately, most Sundays we don't have oxen to rescue.  Though today didn't turn out exactly as anticipated, the bathroom is dry now, Reno is sleeping now, and we are enjoying a quiet evening.  All is well.

Thankful thought: 
Setting the table today, I was reminded of my friend, Gwen, who made personalized napkins for my family a few years ago.  Thanks for friends, and for reminders of friends.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

February Visiting Teaching Handout

Here is a handout to accompany the February visiting teaching message.  Right click to save/print.


The message can be found here.

Thankful thought:  Thanks for children!

Menu Planning Week Two

I'm beginning to realize that projected serving sizes and actual serving sizes vary widely in some cases.  I know I am still trying to adapt to cooking for only three people, but I thought if I tried recipes that served 4, we would just have a little bit of leftovers.  Um, no.  For example, I made Spaghetti Squash Primavera Thursday night.  All three of us ate it Thursday night, all three of us ate it at lunch on Friday, and we still have leftovers.  This from a recipe that reportedly serves four.

Anyway, this just tells me that I don't need to plan that many different meals each week.  Instead of the five dinners I listed last week, I'm going to only list four that are on the line-up for this coming week. 

Salmon Burgers,  *Raisin Coleslaw

Roasted Butternut Squash Salad with Warm Cider Vinaigrette (I never got to making this last week)

Cauliflower-Cheese Pie with Grated Potato Crust

*Dijon Chicken, Baked Sweet Potatoes, *Lemon Zest Spinach

*from Dr. Fuhrman's Eat for Health

Update:

Friday:  We went out for pizza

Saturday:  Salmon Burgers, Raisin Coleslaw

Sunday:  Dijon Chicken, Baked Sweet Potato Fries, Lemon Zest Spinach

Monday:  Cauliflower-Cheese Pie with Grated Potato Crust (enjoyed by everyone)

Tuesday:  Soft Tacos and Corn

Wednesday:  Roasted Butternut Squash Salad, but I used a raspberry viniagrette dressing I had on hand, instead of the apple cider viniagrette  (adults liked the salad; teen, not so much)

Thursday:  Eggs and Toast?

Friday:  Take-out burgers (Disneyland 5K night)

Saturday:  Chicken and potatoes

Sunday:  Grilled cheese


Thankful thought: Thanks for food.  (I probably love it a little too much.) How fortunate we are to have not only our nutritional needs provided, but also to have such a variety of textures and flavors.  Raspberries, artichokes, hazelnuts, dungeness crab, chocolate--need I go on?  (Yes, my palate definitely developed in the Pacific Northwest!)

Friday, January 20, 2012

Catching Up on the To-Do List

John has the day off today, and this morning he said, "We should make a list."  Woo hoo!  Call me crazy, but I love getting projects knocked off the to-do list.  Of course, it really isn't fair to John, because while I am doing the "how many people does it take" tasks, such as changing light bulbs,


John is tackling the manly jobs.  He scaled the ladder to prune a tree,


and now he's off to the local home improvement store to get supplies to add another sprinkler line.


Meanwhile, though, I did fill up the bird feeder.  I almost hate to do that, though, because we're beginning to see the food chain at work in our own backyard:


Thankful thought:  As always, thanks to John!  Thanks also for the nothing-planned days that give us the freedom to accomplish miscellaneous jobs.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Time Card Family Home Evening

Every Monday, we hold Family Home Evening.  We sing, pray, play, and talk.  Yesterday, John talked a bit about the idea of time cards in a work setting.  Every day, he needs to account for his time and report on which projects he's been working.  Then we introduced the idea of a kid time card, with task completions tied to allowance.  We even threw in a bonus for having all tasks done in a day. 



You can find a generic example of the time card here.  This is what it looks like (without the date or specific tasks): 


This wee-bit-of-a-control-freak mom hopes that this will help me give up my nagging ways, while simultaneously encouraging some responsibility.


After we talked about time cards and responsibility, we played a couple of games of Quelf:


It's a (sometimes thankfully) relatively short, silly game.  The goal is to get to be the first player to reach the end of the multi-colored path.  Each color represents a different type of card.  Some cards require you to follow different rules.  (For example, last night I had to sit with one hand touching the floor at all times when it wasn't my turn to play.)  Other cards have you act something out, or answer a trivial question.  It's quite fun, and if you can't do what the card says to do, you can always just take the penalty (which is moving back a space or two or three).  Sometimes you are supposed to perform a task without laughing or smiling, which for me means taking the penalty.  Anyway, I'd give it two thumbs up, if I could take my hand off the floor. 


Thankful thought:  Thanks for family home evenings, where we can be serious and silly all in the same night. 

Monday, January 16, 2012

Looks Like This One Has a Silver Lining


Growing up, this would have been called a sunny day.  Look at that blue sky!  Now, in another part of the country, this is called a cloudy day.  It is different enough from the norm to cause me to grab my camera and declare the weather blog-worthy.  I love the interplay of the light and darkness.  The contrast brings interest and variety.  The blowing winds tell me that soon enough the clouds will be gone, but in the meantime, I'll enjoy the change of scenery.

Thankful thought:  Thanks for weather, and variety!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Sunday Scripture Thoughts


Today in church, we explored the concept of meekness, and how meekness indicates a willingness to yield one's heart to God.  I think that society often confuses meekness with weakness (they do rhyme, after all), but meekness is actually a strength. 

Jesus Christ, the Savior of the world, a beacon of strength, epitomized meekness:

Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart; and ye shall find rest unto your souls.  For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.  (Matthew 11:28-30)

I've read those verses many times, but hadn't really picked up on the crucial role of meekness until today.  The passage gives comfort, but in application, that comfort comes by becoming meek and thus taking His yoke upon us. As we follow the example of Christ, and allow our hearts to be aligned with God's will, we find strength, and our burdens are light.

Another scriptural reference with the same message:

Preach unto them repentance, and faith on the Lord Jesus Christ; teach them to humble themselves and to be meek and lowly in heart; teach them to withstand every temptation of the devil, with their faith on the Lord Jesus Christ.  Teach them to never be weary of good works, but to be meek and lowly in heart; for such shall find rest to their souls. (Book of Mormon, Alma 37:33-34)

Meekness even plays an essential role in the development of charity, which is the crowning character trait:

And above all these things put on charity, which is the bond of perfectness.  (Colossians 3:14)

Wherefore, if a man have faith he must needs have hope; for without faith there cannot be any hope. And again, behold I say unto you, that he cannot have faith and hope, save he shall be meek, and lowly of heart. . . . and if a man be meek and lowly of heart, and confesses by the power of the Holy Ghost that Jesus is the Christ, he must needs have charity; for if he have not charity he is nothing; wherefore he must needs have charity. (Book of Mormon, Moroni 7:42-44). 

So, as we yield our wills to God, we demonstrate meekness, which can lead to the development of faith, hope, and charity. 

. . . by small and simple things are great things brought to pass (Book of Mormon, Alma 37:6)

A much more eloquent discussion of meekness, by Neal A. Maxwell, can be found here. 

Thankful thought:  Thanks for scriptures!




Saturday, January 14, 2012

I Never Knew I Always Wanted One

A few years ago, I was given a little liquid measuring cup.  It looks like a shot glass.  As someone who doesn't drink alcohol, I was a little embarrassed by it.  But, I've got to tell you, I use it all the time to measure liquid ingredients in recipes.  It has lines for teaspoons and tablespoons (maximum capacity 2 tablespoons), and it is so much easier than measuring spoons.  I never knew it, but I always wanted one.

Well, this past Christmas, I received another gift that I never knew I always wanted:  an immersion blender.  Like the liquid measuring cup, I use it all the time. 



The soup recipe I made tonight called for me to add whole vegetables to the water, and let them simmer for a while until softened.  My handy-dandy blender pureed two whole onions, 2 whole leeks, 2 whole zucchinis, 2 bunches of kale, along with 1/2 cup of raw cashews!  No more ladling hot soup out to put into a regular blender--just put the blender stick into the pot and voila

What are some of your "I never knew I always wanted one" items?

Thankful thought:  Thanks for modern conveniences.  

Friday, January 13, 2012

Menu Planning

I don't know about you, but it seems I am constantly in need of improving my meal planning.  Trying to consider what is on sale, what is in season, what we need to use up, what I'll have time to make, what various family members can/will eat, etc., and trying to somehow simultaneously come up with an idea of whether the food we have stored constitutes a year's supply-- well, it's enough to drive a girl crazy. 


I've made efforts in the past to be more focused and organized in this regard.  I've read books, attended classes, and tried various ideas.  Finally it struck me.  While planning is good, in order to get a real picture of what is working for our family, I should write down not only what I think we're eating for the week, but also what we actually end up eating. 


So, I will be attempting to use this blog to both plan and document our family's meals for the week.  I'll start just with dinners and maybe expand to lunches and breakfasts.  I'm planning 5 dinners, expecting that we'll probably have leftovers at least twice. 




*Romaine, Spinach, Watercress Salad with Fruit and Nuts    


*Dr. Fuhrman's Famous Anti-Cancer Soup 


Roast Beef with Winter Vegetables 


*Spaghetti Squash Primavera and
*Balsamic Mixed Greens with Chopped Apples


Roasted Butternut Squash Salad with Warm Cider Vinaigrette




*Recipe from Eat for Health, by Joel Fuhrman, M.D.


I'll update this post with what we ate when, and write another menu planning post next week.

Update:  What We Actually Ate

Friday: Romaine, Spinach, Watercress Salad with Fruit and Nuts--A new favorite that everyone liked.

Saturday: Dr. Fuhrman's Famous Anti-Cancer Soup--Tasty to the adults; daughter was not impressed.

Sunday: Roast Beef with Winter Vegetables--Something for everyone, even with beet or meat avoidance.

Monday: Leftover Roast Beef with Winter Vegetables

Tuesday: Fried Eggs and Toast

Wednesday:  Leftover Dr. Fuhrman's Famous Anti-Cancer Soup and a Tossed Green Salad

Thursday: Spaghetti Squash Primavera and Leftover Tossed Green Salad



Thankful thought:  Thanks for food, and wonderfully creative individuals who dream up yummy ways to prepare it!




Thursday, January 12, 2012

Normal Font is Too Small, or I Think I'm Getting Old

To point out the obvious, I'm going to try to remember to go with a larger font.  That way I can blog without having to stand up and go search for the glasses.  While they do make reading easier, I don't need them for anything else.  I figure I'm not the only one in this "welcome to the mid-40's" predicament, and I hope a large font doesn't bother those of you with younger eyes! 

FamilySearch Indexing


My grandparents circa 1940

I love to spend time doing indexing for FamilySearch.  As a family history researcher, I depend on searchable records, and doing indexing allows me to help someone else.  Basically, I just type the information from scanned documents into the computer.  Each record is completed by more than one person, and arbitrated if necessary.  Then researchers can search a previously unsearchable resource.  

While indexing, sometimes I come across bits of information that cause me to reflect a bit about the lives of the individuals represented by the names and dates.  Recently, I've been indexing marriage records from Pennsylvania in the 1930s.  I've noticed a couple of things:  1.  The geographical area was home to many immigrants from eastern European countries.  2.  Many of the fathers of the happy couples were deceased at the time of the wedding.  I can only surmise that World War I or the Russian Revolution really hit hard for these families.  I was just taken aback by the number of marriage licenses that had "died" on the line for father's current residence. 

If you'd like to become an indexer, it is easy to do.  Just click on the above link to get started.  There is no obligation.  You can index as many or as few records as you wish, and you can send back a batch if for any reason you no longer are able to index it.  Pretty soon, the 1940 census will be available, and even more indexers will be needed!   

Thankful thought:  Thanks for veterans, thanks for parents, and thanks for those who help make family history research easier!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Yep, He's a Big Puppy

At our guide dog meeting last night, one of the leaders asked me how much Reno weighs now.  She has kept records of the weights of the puppies in the club.  Out of curiousity, she looked back through her records to compare Reno's weight with the weight of the past puppies.  She was particularly interested in seeing if Reno's weight was comparable to one particular dog's--the "gentle giant".  Guess what?  Reno is 7 pounds heavier than that dog was at Reno's age! 

Thankful thought:  Thanks to Reno for being such a mild-mannered puppy--rambunctious and huge would be hard to handle!

Monday, January 9, 2012

The Boxes Were Placed in the Attic with Care, But That's Not the Point

Friday and Saturday, we finished taking down the Christmas decorations, and we put the boxes in the attic!  Let me tell you, it is so much easier to bring boxes down from the attic, than to heft them up there.  John was super sweet and single-handedly (well, OK, he used 2 hands) carried up box after box after box of decorations. 

Did I mention that this occurred before January hit double-digits (speaking of days of the month, not temperatures)?  It's silly to take Christmas decorations down before Christmas break is over.  The first days of the new year we were practically wiped out with colds, so this past weekend was really the first chance we John had to put things away. 

But the real thought isn't that the decorations are in the attic:

If your Christmas decorations are still up, or in boxes waiting to be put away, that's OK!  Where the boxes are is a little thing in the big picture.  Do not let little things become annoyances. 

When I was in high school, my parents started building a house--while we were living in it!  Talk about a long-term project.  We moved in when the exterior walls were up, the bathroom walls were up, and each bedroom had one finished wall.  We stapled up brown packing paper to use for the remaining walls. My patient, patient mother did without traditional cupboards in the kitchen.  A gorilla rack shelving unit, along with a cinder block and wood plank number held the pots, pans, and cooking supplies.  A table saw sat in the living room.  Tension rods held up homemade curtains, which served as interior doors.  Never did I hear one complaint from my mom (or my dad or siblings, for that matter) regarding the house's state.  I don't remember what year the home was finished; I had long since grown up and moved out. 

The house is beautiful now, but it was also beautiful then.  Living there was an adventure; a shared family project.  Actually, living anywhere is an adventure and a shared family project.  The list of projects is never done.  There are always repairs or improvements to make. 

The point is to celebrate the completion of tasks on the list, without dwelling on, complaining, murmuring, or whining about what isn't done.  In the big picture, the unfinished items probably aren't  important. 

Thankful thought:  Thanks to my parents for their great example of how to work together on long-term projects; and thanks to John, for putting the Christmas boxes up, as well as for all the other little (and big!) things he does.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Reno's a Big Dog Now


Can you believe this is the same little puppy we picked up from the puppy truck in November?  He has gained 10 pounds over the past four weeks, and now weighs 31 pounds!  In comparison, Nicki weighed 18 pounds when she was Reno's age.  I think he is going to be a big boy.

Having received the last of his puppy shots, he can now be outfitted in his vest and venture out in public.  We made a quick stop at the thrift store today, and Reno loved it.  His tail was wagging the whole time. 

I think he's going to make a wonderful guide dog!


Thankful thought:  Thanks for the local veterinarian, who donates his time when he treats the guide dog puppies!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Happy Birthday, Grandma!

I don't know if my grandma wants her photo on the web, so I won't post one, but let me tell you, she's the most beautiful 95-year-old you have ever seen!  She has thick, fine-textured, wavy dark hair (it's gotten darker with age) and twinkly eyes.  She's slowing down a bit, but it wasn't that many years ago that she was a regular at the pool for water aerobics.  She is constantly learning; she's a computer-savvy grandma who checks her e-mail daily.  When the old farmhouse needed electricity to the attic bedrooms, my grandma checked out a book from the library and wired the entire thing herself!  She's so quiet and unassuming, but she is known in our family for her strength (physical as well as mental).  I hope I can be like her when I grow up!  Happy birthday, Grandma!

Thankful thought:  Thanks for Grandma, and the example she is to all of us!

Resolution ABC's: Attitude, Belief, Courage

As one emerging out of the foggy-headedness of a whopper of a cold, I have not been terribly productive so far in 2012.  That's OK, though, as I know my resolutions will wait for my energy to return. 

In the meantime, though, here is an article entitled, "Living the Abundant Life," which talks about the ABC's of resolutions:  attitude, belief, and courage.  It's a short boost of motivation.  I particularly like the part that says:  " At times you may feel like David trying to fight Goliath. But remember—David did win!" 

Right  now I'm still battling my cold, but I imagine I will soon be picking up a slingshot and tackling my resolutions!

Thankful thought:  Thanks for the sunshine, which always seems to give me energy!

Monday, January 2, 2012

All Quiet on the Western Front


The college crew headed back to school this morning, and I am left with a quiet house.  Not that they are noisy kids, mind you, but somehow having them gone leaves an emptiness.  Not bad.  Not good.  Just different.

Look at the eager anticipation on their faces; what will a new year and new semester bring?  I wish them safe travels, joy in learning, and fun with friends. 

Thankful thought:  Thanks for all my kids, who give me infinite reasons to be proud.  Love you!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Of Cod Liver Oil and Raspberries: Another Take on New Year's Resolutions

Hi. I'm Kristi, and I'm a perfectionist. 

I think my sister is, too, because as I read her blog post about New Year's resolutions, I felt a kinship with her that went beyond the literal.  I could relate to the excitement in childhood of making resolutions--goals which if met, would transform me into the person I knew I could be.  Many years have passed since childhood, and while I still enjoy the optimism of new beginnings, the excitement isn't as keen today as it once was. 

Perhaps I've just mellowed with age.  Perhaps I'm becoming more comfortable in my (imperfect) skin. Honestly, I think that this year my motivation waned as my head cold advanced.  Whatever the reasons, however, I think that it is actually healthy to look at just how the me of the present is going to become the me of the future.  Because while I am pretty accepting of who I am today, I fully anticipate that I will improve through time. 

My sister's post helped me realize something:  resolutions don't all have to taste like cod liver oil.  Of course, not all goals fall into the "fun!" category, but a lot of good qualities can be developed through enjoyable pursuits.  As I write resolutions this year, I want to remember to include fun goals.  Some resolutions are more like raspberries--they are good for you, and they taste great!

As for the not-so-fun resolutions (weight loss, anyone?), I need to think about my sister's childhood example of brushing her teeth twice a day.  Our parents did not yell, plead, or berate us, and yet somehow we both established a brushing habit (well before we became adults, I might add!).  The more matter-of-fact I can be with those kind of resolutions, the better.  No inward power struggles nor destructive self-talk. 

This year, I will have plenty of raspberry resolutions to accompany a small dose of cod liver oil resolutions.  I will quickly swallow the latter and savor the former.  Who knows?  Cod liver oil resolutions might become as easy as brushing my teeth!

But maybe that's the perfectionist talking.

Thankful thought:  Thanks for my little sister, who has both youth and wisdom!