hey there, happy february! ive heard a lot of people refer to january as "the monday of months", and i cant quite argue with that. we made it through january and are very much IN 2016 (and hopefully not still writing 2015 on all our checks... ahem).
anyway... as part of 2016s fresh starts, i decided to do this blogging thing a little bit differently: i printed out editorial calendars for the entire year and am planning posts and series way in advance. im also batching my work as much as i can, doing all the writing or photos or scheduling for a group of posts all at the same time. i really like doing things this way for a few reasons: 1. i can be more intentional in my post planning, keeping things seasonally appropriate and not missing out on key holidays (which ive never, really been good at before), 2. i can put together better and more cohesive post series by planning them out all at once, and 3. i can work ahead of myself so i can do things like finish all of januarys blog work an entire week early (just in time to have a really bad health week right when school starts, as per usual so, actually, im not ahead anymore). to be completely honest, id love to perfect this system to have blog posts done like a month (or more!) in advance so i can do better DIY projects and such.
but theres one big downside here: working this way means theres not a ton of room for like, normal daily life kind of stuff. I'm sure there will be more in the future as i find the right balance here, but for now i figured ill keep up with my old "monthly update" posts as the first post of every month (as opposed to the first monday, as i was doing before). since i dont have big yearly goals to "check in" on every month, im changing the format a bit: instead of a long ramble about life lately followed by a recap of that months goal progress, im going to steal a little something from my friend carrie annes "snapshot" series, and just pop in with a quick list of whats been happening here lately. (aside from this new way ive been writing blog posts)
so without any further ado, here are januarys happenings:
benedict turned 6 months old and has all kinds of new tricks! he can sit up and clap and sometimes it seems like he's waving! also, we got our health insurance situation sorted out enough to finally take benny to the doctor. the little guy is perfectly healthy and measures at 50th percentile for weight, 80th for height, and... 99th for head size. so, yeah, no surprises there. also he got shots which resulted in one day of great naps followed by at least a week of terrible naps.
our car situation is turning out totally ok! first of all, jamess mom is letting us borrow her super fancy lexus hybrid, which is great because: 1. we were only completely without a car for like, three days, 2. i was able to find out first hand that i do not want to actually own a fancy robot car from the future (though the heated seats... im going to miss those), and 3. weve totally been able to thoroughly research what we want to do/can afford car-wise in the long term and not just jump on the first/cheapest thing available. researching cars/loans/insurance/etc. was not fun, but it was a valuable learning experience that will hopefully be over very soon.
james worked for 4 straight weeks! at any other time of the year this would just be a refreshing change, but to happen in january! what an exciting surprise! its the middle of winter, but all the bills are paid and were all stocked up on buying stuff like its the middle of summer or something!
im mostly getting back into my normal routines for the first time since getting pregnant! having really solid routines for chores and errands and meal planning is what gives me the framework and stability to be an actually-pretty-ok mom and not just a wallowing-in-being-overwhelmed-all-the-time mom. unfortunately, i had at least a year where i just could not make it happen. this month, i made it happen. pretty perfectly i might add (for the first three weeks, last week i got sick though so im not going to count that because chore lists dont count when youre barfing).
were introducing the concept of chore charts to alice with very mixed results! alice is very much to the age where she needs to start helping around the house on a consistent basis. she wants to help, to do what i do. so far weve figured out that shes totally capable of doing easy chores (with supervision), and is easily motivated by checking off the boxes on her chart. the thing is shes smart. so shes been finding every possible loophole in every chart system we devise for her. including, i am literally not making this up, filling in the box where a sticker would go for doing a chore with a drawing she described as "me crying because im sad that i didnt get to watch a movie because i only got two points". yeah... i dont even know how to turn that back into a lesson about chores...
i kind of have a job right now and its really cool! its not like, a job job but im helping my friend (a drama teacher) with the costumes for her schools jr high play. basically, im getting paid to do crafts with materials that somebody else payed for. also, this is probably the first time ever ive used any of my actual formal education in an employment situation. there really is a first time for everything!
my school schedule is really great this semester! instead of going to class two or three different days every week, i only go on fridays (for most of the day) and then monday nights (but only today and four more times). so like, i actually have free time sometimes!
im super, super excited to do our taxes! i look forward to doing our taxes every year because thats like, the one time ever i feel like im really good at adult things. we need one (possibly two) more papers to come in the mail and then were good to go. and after taxes we can go buy that car we need to buy...
unfortunately, we did have to say one last goodbye to our beloved disneyland goats. thats pretty much our one really big bummer for last month: thanks to stupid star wars land there are no longer goats to pet at big thunder ranch because big thunder ranch is no longer a thing.
over all, january was pretty great. exhausting, but really productive and definitely what we needed after our doozy of a december. so hello february, lets do this! (and by this i mostly mean taxes because i just really want to do taxes).
how was your january? what are your big plans for february?