Posted by: angelnorman | January 3, 2011

blogging with the sting of onion in my eyes

The Normans have had a fantastic start to the New Year, filled with good times, lots of laughs, and getting back to a normal (and much saner) routine. We even managed to throw in a date night (score!) So far I’ve managed to smoke less than half a pack of cigarettes a day (so, 5-10 cigs max, which is an improvement from my, say, 20-30 cigs a day throughout the holidaze) and we’re already eating a lot healthier thanks to organic baby green salads and cooking at home. No fast food for this bunch, although I did eat my weight in shrimp scampi at Red Lobster on Saturday. Hey, you win some, you lose some.

Oh, and I’ve exercised in some form every day, mostly yoga and pilates. Need to amp it up with some cardio but I’m not feeling it yet.

Also, I’ve been spending insane amounts of time trying to organize things around here. The first to get “hit” was my plasticwares cabinet. Oh, Tupperware, how I loathe thee. But oh how I so often need your help in saving my dinners for meals on different days! For Christmas, my mother got me a 40-piece set of rubbermaid containers in various sizes and shapes. I thought I was going to die when I tried to incorporate them into my existing collection, but somehow I survived, throwing out any pieces that looked “flaky” and disgusting, and yes, that does mean that I trashed them. To the landfill they go to pollute the earth! You’re welcome.

Then I attacked the fridge and got rid of all expired goods, as well as ones I tried and hate. I later did the same with both my spice cabinet (90% of my spices were expired and I was pretty sure I used at least 10 of them last month, long after they had past their date– oops!) and the pantry. I could not believe the amount of garbage I accumulated (for the landfill– again, you’re welcome.)

I joke about it now, but it is appalling at how much we waste in this household. Also, it’s appalling to how much I keep, thinking that I will use whatever the item in question is eventually, if the circumstances are right, if I made this recipe or that, if I weighed a little less, or if the planets were all aligned. It seems I have excuses for everything I keep, from food products to clothes to craft supplies. So I have been tackling everything with a “Take 30” approach– I plan to go into every “area” that I dislike and I take up to 30 items out to either donate or use to destroy the earth. that means 30 clothes items, 30 things in my craft closet, 30 toys from Nick’s closet… and on and on. I’ve already managed to do this in my kitchen, and now I have only 7248 more areas to go.

AND if those weren’t enough things to try and do this week, I’m also starting week one of budgeting! I’m super excited to start our new budget, and I HATE the word “budget” as much as I hate the word “diet”. I mean, I don’t know how many times in the past, when Mike and I reached less than $100 in our checking account (or you know, less than $10) that he has said to me, “We need to go on a budget” and just hearing those words have made me cringe. Countless times, I am sure.  It really is offensive to me to think that someone suggests I need to be budgeted, about as offensive as if he were to say, “You are fat and lazy and need to be on a diet and exercise plan.” In fact, I think I would respond to both with, “Your face needs…” But in all seriousness, this time I am on board with the budgeting because last month we sat down, looked at our income versus expenses and oh dear sweet Baby Jesus! We are wasting so much money each month. I literally have no idea where it all goes– it appears to go in $20-$30 increments at various places like Dollar Tree, Old Navy, Wal-Mart… etc. So we began our year by trying to correct all that. We’ve started a savings account (yep, that’s right– we didn’t have one before), we have paid all our bills, and we’ve bought all the groceries we’ll buy for this week thanks to my trip to the store today. The only thing we’ll need is gas next week and cigarettes (and I’m really working on that, I promise.)

So, yeah, so far so good. Hope your New Year is just as spectacular in its third day as mine is!

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