Thursday, April 22, 2010

9 Month Stats

Brooklyn had her 9 month check up last week on Friday. I know, I'm a little late posting this it is.

She weighed in at 19lbs 12 oz. I was a little surprised that she wasn't 20lbs already but she's pretty darn close to it and the doctor wasn't worried that her weigh gain had slowed down a bit. She measured 28 inches and her head was 45 cm. The pediatrician said she was perfectly healthy and hitting all her milestones. She didn't get any shots and will only get them at her 1 year appointment (I can't believe that's the next one!) on July 19th!

Right now Brooklyn is:
- crawling ALL OVER THE PLACE! She gets into everything and gets around very fast!
- pulling up on everything as well and standing for a few seconds without any support.
- still sleeping in our bed with us! We put her down in her pack n' play each night but she eventually wakes up so much that we end up letting her back into our bed. I know, we're being push-overs, but right now we gotta do what's easiest with both of use working and Waylon going to school on the days he doesn't work. We just need to get as much sleep as possible. This summer though, I'm tackling the sleep issue.
- Discovering new sounds to make with her voice.
- Growing back a thick head of blonde hair.
- eating her solids pretty well and we are starting to give her table food very regularly. She likes chicken, we discovered at Cheddars last week. She still loves yogurt and anything fruity and sweet.
- she's learning how to drink out of her princess sippy cup.
- Getting cuter by the day!!!

So there is a little update on Brooklyn. Here is a recent picture of her at Easter. I will have to do a post soon with some more recent pics. She's changing everyday!
This was her Easter dress that her Nana Perryman gave her for Easter. The flower comes off her hat that I bought from brair.claire online and took it off the hat and then put it on her bow. She did really well keeping it on and not taking it off.

I'm now under 30 days of class left! That doesn't count weekends, that's just days I actually have to be in class! It's so wonderful knowing the end is so near! Our last day of school is June 3rd and I have to go to work the next day to finish up grades and clean out our rooms but that day is super EASY. I'm so excited about having the summer off to spend time with Brooklyn and go to our family reunions. Yes, I said reunions. We have a Ross reunion and a Woolbright reunion. Thankfully, there will be a month between both to recover. 

In other good news, my sister just found out this evening that she is finally pregnant with her third baby! She has been trying to get pregnant for 21 months! We are thrilled to be welcoming another baby to our family! Can't wait to meet this little boy/girl! To be honest, I'm hoping they have a boy! I would be so excited to see what their son would look like. Part of me wants to hurry up and get pregnant again so my sister and I can have at least one pregnancy together. But I need to wait till at least August so that I can have an "end of school year" baby and not a "middle of the school year" baby or "end of summer baby" again. 

Welcome to the family baby Mietzner #3!!! We love you already!!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Plan #3 -- on hold temporarily

Our 3rd plan will have to wait temporarily as we had a little hiccup in getting started. Plan #3 is our financial plan. We desperately need to get out of debt and start some serious saving so that we have some emergency money and a good amount for a down payment on a house. While we are living in my dad's house right now (one of his rentals) and will be able to live here comfortably with 1 or 2 more kids (depending on gender), our goal is to be able to buy our own house in about 5 years. That's what's the earliest, realistic, possibility for us right now. That gives us the time we need to pay our debts off, or at least all but our student loans, and have some time to save.

Part of our big plan to help all this happen was going to be starting our Financial Peace University class this past Saturday at a church near my parent's house. I was really bummed to get an email telling me that the class was cancelled due to them not getting the kits in. I don't understand why they don't just postpone it a couple weeks while they get them in and then have the class. The Saturday morning class was really the only class that would work for our schedule right now. We are just too stretched and maxxed out right now to add a weeknight class and we need our Sunday nights to prepare for the work week. Plus, in a week and a half I'm starting a new women's study at my church where we will be going through a book called "The Worn Out Woman". How appropriate! So to add FPU class while I'll be having a mid-week Bible study group would be too much. I want to be able to do the FPU class well and give it the time it needs so we will look into starting it a little later on in the summer.

Here are some of our short-term and long-term goals (I'll label them ST or LT)

- save up $1000 as our emergency fund (ST)
- create a budget (ST & LT)
- use the envelope system successfully (ST & LT)
- pay off the medical bills left over from having Brooklyn (ST - by the end of the year)
- pay off my credit card debt (LT)
- pay off the PT Cruiser (LT - we have 4 years left)
- save up to get everything that needs fixing on the van done (ST)
- create a working system to get bills paid each month on time (ST)
- save up 3-6 month's worth of salary (LLLLLLLT - lol, this seems like a pipe dream to me)
- live on much less than we earn (ST w/ LT effects)
- stop using any form of credit (ST - we've pretty much not used any credit since November of 2008)

So there you have it. I'm sure most of you have some similar goals as these and may have already achieved most of them. If so, I'm jealous of you! We are definitely living beyond our means and living paycheck to paycheck and I'm just so tired of that! I want financial freedom! I can't wait to take the FPU class and have some accountability and go through this with others who are struggling with the same issues and facing the challenge with us.

What are your financial goals? Which of the ones I've listed have you achieved? Which ones that I haven't listed that were your own personal goals have you achieved and are excited about? I'd love to hear some success stories, those always get me psyched up and motivated!

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Plan #2

Plan #2 was to come up with a house cleaning routine to keep our house in "decent" order. I don't expect to keep a perfectly clean house (that's even laughable if you really know Waylon and I), I just want things to be better than they are right now. Laundry is a huge problem. We are horrible at putting clothes up after we taken them off (if they are still re-wearable) and then we end up with huge piles of clothes all over the floor that we have to smell our way through to determine if they are clean or dirty! It's NOT a fun process and on those days I get so frustrated with myself and ask myself why I let it get to this point when I absolutely HATE having to do that.

Another problem we have is clutter and leaving things lying around the house without putting them away. On any given day, you can come into my house and see "stuff" everywhere. The coffee table, covered. The kitchen table, covered. The counter "bar", junked out. Dirty dishes on just about any surface available including the bathroom sink (yes, I know, I can't even believe I'm admitting this). The trash, overflowing. Brooklyn's toys, everywhere. I know what the main problem is for this problem: laziness. We are lazy. We don't want to put things back where they belong because it requires us to get our rear-ends up off the couch. Even though we know that it requires a lot more for us later when we finally have to clean it ALL up.

So, here is what we have come up with. Keep in mind, this is a work in progress. We'll have to figure out if this system will work for us. We'll give it a couple of weeks and re-assess and change things tha taren't working.

We decided that Waylon and I will alternate weeks for dishes and laundry. So one week, he will do the dishes each night (our goal is that every night we completely clear the dishes out of the sink) and I'll do a small load of laundry each night. For the laundry, the easiest way I could think to do it would be to start off I will put a small load in to wash in the evening and then before bed make sure it's in the dryer so it's dry the next night. That night, I'll take out the dry load and put another small load on to wash and while I watch one of my TV shows, I'll fold and put away the small load from the dryer. Then make sure I put the next load in the dryer for the next night. If I start doing this and we just get used to doing a small load of laundry each night, it won't seem overwhelming to put away a huge load AND we won't have to do several loads in one day (which I abhor doing and usually those several loads don't get put away by the time they are dry). If we keep this up, we should never get huge piles of laundry built up and we just might get to where we don't have to do it every night and just do it 3 nights a week or something. That's a big IF.

As far as the rest of the house, here are our goals:

- Clean one bathroom each weekend, this way each bathroom (we have 2) gets a good cleaning every other weekend. I know some of you clean your bathrooms every weekend. This just doesn't happen for us and I hate to admit that if we were to do this new plan, it would be more frequent than those bathrooms get cleaned currently, so I would be very happy with that.
- Sweep and mop every other day. Now that Brooklyn is mobile and crawling all over the place, those floors need to be swept more frequently and mopped. We are considering buying a Shark. I hear they are awesome and easy to use and you don't have to use any cleaning chemicals.
- Spend 30 minutes a day working on getting the office back in commission. Right now, our office has turned into a dumping ground for everything that needs to get out of the way. We can't use it for anything else. My Mary Kay stuff is all over the place and we have loads of random stuff in there that we just need to break down and get rid of. There's also a lot of paper in there, everywhere.

Those are our cleaning goals for keeping the house at a relatively clean status. It's a lot of change but I think the way we have it set up, we can do it.

The last thing we spoke about, which doesn't have anything to do with cleaning, but is very important, is that we want to make it a point to pray over Brooklyn every night before bedtime. I'm embarassed to say that as parents we have really slacked in this department. It should be the most important part of our day as far as Brooklyn's well-being is concerned and we just haven't put time into doing it. Of course we both pray for her on our own throughout the day. I find myself praying for her several times. But I feel that as her parents and for our marriage, we need to pray TOGETHER for our children in addition to our individual prayers. My good friend Stefanie sent me an email of a sheet she was given from her BSF group with 12 ways to pray for your children. It was a great list! We are going to take one each month and pray it over Brooklyn that way we cover all 12 in a year. The first one is to pray for her to come to know Jesus as her Savior at an early age. Could not have picked a better prayer request for our children! If you're interested in it, I can email it to you, just leave me a comment with your email address. :)

What are your cleaning routines? I'm open to suggestions and ideas as this is NOT an area I am very strong in.

By the way, Happy Easter to all! I hope everyone gets to spend this amazing day celebrating that Jesus rose from the grave to give us all eternal life! I'm looking forward to our first Easter with Brooklyn!

Friday, April 2, 2010

Changes...Plan #1

We in the Perryman household are about to undergo some major changes. No, I'm not pregnant! Well, I COULD be since I haven't been very consistent in remembering to take my pill at the right time everyday...but I digress...

After feeling reaching a sort of breaking point this week with my frustration, stress and sleep depravation, we've come to the conclusion that somethings' got to change around here. We are definitely NOT living the way we should be. By that I don't mean that we are living "in sin" like you would think when you hear people say they aren't living the way they should. What I mean is that we have no system to keep the house clean, we are behind on most bills (due to our disorganization), we have had to eat out more than usual b/c I hadn't grocery shopped (laziness on my part), our poor daughter has no routine to speak of so she doesn't sleep well through the night and has been sleeping with us, we are sleep-deprived due to her being in our beds, I am heavier than I've ever been (without being pregnant) and I just feel drained and empty an frustrated with myself and my life.

SOOOOOOO....this prompted us to sit and discuss these things and come up with a game plan.

Plan #1 was to get Brooklyn trained to sleep in her room. Without us getting sleep each night, everything seems dismal. A good night's sleep makes things much easier to deal with the next day. So we began that tonight. In fact, I'm sitting in her room, in the rocker, typing this post, as she sleeps semi-soundly. She has woken up a couple of times with her "sleep-whining" that she has been doing lately, but she has stayed asleep, which is our goal. It wasn't easy getting her down though. We came up with our bedtime routine which is a very quick bath, then I play her Baby Einstein CD while I rock with her and talk to her and give her a bottle and let her wind down. Then when she starts getting groggy, I put her in the crib with her bunny-blanket and let the CD play until it's done. When I put her down, all her sleepyness left her, of course and she wanted to play. I stood firm and walked out and set my timer to 3 minutes. She didn't really cry in those first three minutes. She was still interested in moving around her crib. I thought "This won't be so bad afterall". Boy was I wrong. After about minute 7, all "you know what" broke loose and she started crying. Not just crying but screaming at the top of her lungs and getting super hysterical. Of course, she was standing up in her crib every time we came in to console her. Our times were 3 minutes, then 5, then 6, then 7 and I stayed at 7 the last several times. Every time we went in, we would lay her back down, give her a paci, lay her bunny back in her arms and cover her back up with her regular blanket. She was still hysterically crying and her whole body was shaking with her cries. After about 40 minutes of this, I gave in and rocked her some more and she went to sleep in less than 5 minutes (not without a little crying though). I know, I can't cave in every night. I promise I won't tomorrow night though. It was just so painful to see how distraught she was at being left alone. Now, I'm glad to say that she seems to be in a very deep sleep in her crib. My prayer is that she sleeps through the night without waking up 4 times. I'm hoping that since she's not in bed with us, there won't be as much to wake her up (i.e. our own moving around and turning over in bed wakes her up sometimes).

Since there are so many plans and a lot of details to each one, I'm going to devote an entire post to each of them and try to post them over the next several days. I'll also keep you updated as to how Plan #1 is going! We'll call this: Mission Impossible: the FULL night of sleep!