Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Works for Me: Franklin Covey

I use the Franklin Covey planner system. I love my planner! Franklin Covey has solutions for paper planners, as well as PDAs and electronic planners. There is an extensive seminar that you can take to show you how to maximize your productivity using the Franklin Covey planning system. I have never attended this seminar (it can be quite expensive), but I have read the materials that come with the planner, and I love the system.

Franklin Covey starts with establishing a mission statement, recognizing your various roles, writing long term goals, and short term goals. Then you break your goals (even something as simple as meal planning or daily tasks) into manageable steps, which go on the monthly pages and then on your weekly compass, and then on your daily task list. Each item on your daily task list is prioritized by importance. The goal is to be able to focus on what is important, but not urgent (so that you are not constantly running around like a chicken with your head cut off) by utilizing the quadrant system. This information is all explained in greater depth in the planner materials.

I do a little bit of weekly planning at the beginning of the week. As I remember or come across tasks that need to be done on a certain day, I open my planner and write it in on the appropriate day. Each day I check the appointment schedule and the task list, add some tasks if needed, and prioritize the list. It is very easy and very effective.

I now have my goals in my planner, as well as records for Sunday School, gift lists, website records, postage stamps, and my weekly shopping list so that everything is in one place.

When you visit the website you may be overwhelmed by some of the prices. However, if there is a store near you - go check it out. I purchased a leather planner (which will last me many years) for $20 on clearance. I spend about $25 per year for my planning pages. It is worth it to me to be organized and feel less stress when I have a lot to do.
Be sure to check out Rocks in my Dryer for more WFMW tips!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Things I Have Leared From My Oven

There are a couple of "homemaker/wifey" tasks that I really don't like to do. One is handling raw meat. It doesn't agree with me. I don't like cleaning mini blinds. It takes too much time and precision. I don't like to plunge the toilet. If Ben isn't home to do it I have real issues. I don't like cleaning out the refrigerator. That's probably why I don't like leftovers - it they don't get eaten, I have to clean them out. Yuck! But I really don't like to clean the oven. Somehow I missed that lesson when I was living at home.

I sprayed my oven down with oven cleaner and closed the door last night, knowing that by doing so I would force myself into the unpleasant task before I could tackle my list of baking today. I learned a few things in the process...

  • 1. I don't know what they put in that can of oven cleaner, but it is my friend. It makes it a whole lot easier to get the crummy stuff out of my non-self-cleaning oven.
  • 2. I think there is an oven gremlin that occasionally visits my house at night. He (it must be a "he" because as far as I know only the "shes" have to actually clean the oven) sprinkles food in my oven so that when I turn it on to preheat everything crusts to the sides and bottoms, causing eye-burning fumes when I open the door.
  • 3. It isn't worth it to try and be frugal by using a rag instead of paper towels. Sure, the rag can be washed and reused. But for the rare occasion that the oven gets cleaned, it's better to use up the roll of paper towel and save myself grossness and frustration. Paper towel soaks up that foamy stuff (which is my friend) a whole lot better and quicker, and without the yucky rinsing in the gross bucket of vile water (from the last rinse).
  • 4. I don't understand how my oven racks get so dirty! It's not like I overflow every casserole that goes into the oven. It is a rare occurrence! So why are they so hard to get clean?
  • 5. Aluminum foil is a wonderful thing. My husband has been telling me that for a while, but I finally experienced it second hand. By putting foil in the bottom of my oven I saved myself some cleaning.
  • 6. If Eve hadn't eaten that apple, I wouldn't have to clean my oven. We would still be eating unforbidden fruit in the Garden, and there wouldn't be any meat to cook, so no need for my oven.
  • 7. In heaven I'm going to have a self-cleaning oven!

Friday, November 21, 2008

Book Review: The Christmas Sweater

The Christmas Sweater by Glenn Beck is a novel loosely based on the true life story of Glenn himself as a 12-13 year old boy. It is hard to tell much about this story without spoiling the plot or the ending.

Eddie is a 12-year old boy whose mother works tirelessly to provide a meager living for the family. Eddie desperately wants a new red Huffy bike for Christmas, and he is intensely disappointed to receive something entirely different. The Christmas Sweater is his story of facing life's storms and finding faith and love in the difficult times.

I enjoyed this book. Actually I couldn't put it down - even reading in the car on the way church when I knew it would make me carsick. But I was driven mostly by a desire to know what was going to happen (as I am with all novels, except the utterly boring ones), and not because the book is a thriller. Glenn's theology is pretty messed up. He brings Christ into the story, but it is a message of "You are worthy. You deserve this," instead of the true message of salvation, which is Christ died for me, even though I was and am so unworthy." The book has a 'feel-good' ending, but I don't think I would spend my money to have it on my bookshelf, and I probably will not read it again.

Snowy Day Ramblings...and Giveaway

It is the perfect morning to curl up by the fire with my Bible or a good novel and a cuppa hot latte and be lazy! It is cold and damp outside, and the faintest hint of snowflakes are sort of half-falling from the sky. I think there are about three total snowflakes, but they bring the promise of a possible more real snow. Especially considering the high today is in the mid 30s, and the low is 28. We are supposed to get snow all day, but since it is VA, probably no accumulation.

When Ben called me to say it was trying to snow, I ran my pajamas...and flipflops. I guess Virginia Beach is the only place where I would run to see snow in my beach attire.

Well, I don't have a fire, and I don't have a latte, but I have some tea, and my Bible, some I'm going to go be lazy! Let me leave you with the sweetest little outfit - Grosgrain has been doing costumes in their giveaways for Halloween, so there haven't been any to catch my eye. But I think this outfit is adorable, and I wish I had it in my size. Click the link to visit Grosgrain's website and enter the giveaway to win it yourself.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Think About It

"A real friend is one who helps us to think our best thoughts, do our noblest deeds, and be our finest selves."

Proverbs 17:17 A friend loveth at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.

Are you being a real, true friend? Are you surrounding yourself with real, true friends?

Philippians 4:8 Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever tings are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report: if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

My Birthday

Monday (Nov. 10) was my birthday. It didn't seem like a birthday...just a normal day. But I guess that's what birthdays are. Just normal days. We just picked up a new car from my dad in NC on Saturday (Nov. 8), so I spent the day running around to get it licensed, registered, titled, and insured. I also had the normal grocery store, etc. to hit. Then it was rush off to Hebrew class for the rest of the night. Ben took me to Friendly's for ice cream after class.

I received money for my birthday - I needed to go shoe shopping - so I coerced my husband into taking me to the shoe store on Tuesday night. We went out for dinner on Thursday with a gift card we had received to Outback Steakhouse.

I also splurged some birthday money on a Pouchee purse organizer (I read about it on WFMW at Rocks in My Dryer). I love it! I like to have my purse match my shoes, so I am constantly switching purses. (If I had to choose a vice...something I cannot live would be purses. They are my addiction. Shoes are great, but they take up a lot more space, and they are harder to pick out). Anyway, my new pouchee makes it super easy to switch purses on the fly.

Ben gave me a Mini Everyday Display frame from Creative Memories. I have had my eye on it for a while, but until recently it was only available as a hostess gift. Ben also gave me a new scented oil burner and "Stress Relief" oil. Do you think he is trying to tell me something?

Anyway, that's it for now. My new shoes are great - comfortable, casual, flexible, and they will be great for Israel in February. I had a great birthday, and I can't believe I'm 26 now.


See the handsome men in my life! (Father-in-law and brother-in-law not able to be present)

Wesley, Kenny, Ben, [me], Dad [Wally]

We took this on a recent trip to NC for Anna Greene's 21st birthday, and to pick up a car from dad. It's a long story, but suffice it to say that our wagon is retired, and we were able to "upgrade" to 1996 Camry (stick-shift: Ben is still learning to use a clutch!) which we purchased from my parents. My dad drove the car to NC and then flew home to Denver. We went out to eat with my brothers and dad while we were in town.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Works for Me: Emergen-C

It's Wednesday again! With winter right around the corner, and germs floating everywhere, today I would like to share my cold-prevention remedy. It's called Emergen-C. It is a little packet of 1,000 mg of Vitamin C as 7 mineral ascorbates. It contains 32 different mineral complexes and B vitamins. You just dissolve the fizzy packet in water and drink it. And the best part doesn't taste yucky! It dissolves very well (not lumpy or gloppy), and comes in several flavors that taste similar to Kool-Aid.

Emergen-C is a super energy booster. You can take 2-4 packets per day as a dietary supplement. It is available in a box of 36 packets for $8.86 at Wal-Mart in the vitamin department. It is distributed by the Alacer Corp. of Foothill Ranch, CA.

My mom introduced my brother and me to Emergen-C in college when we kept catching the common cold. I would take the packet to lunch in the cafeteria and drink it with my meal. It really boosts your immune system and helps to keep you from getting sick. I shared it with my friends, and it became known to us as "Airborne on steroids" because I think it is a superior product. I don't drink it daily anymore (now that I am out of the dorms), but when I sense that I am getting sick, or I feel my throat start to tighten up, I start taking Emergen-C. Yesterday I had three packets, and today I am feeling much better.

Some of the supplements in Emergen-C are vitamin C, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, B6, folic acid, B12, pantothenic acid, calcium, phospohorus, magnesium, zinc, manganese, chromium, sodium, and potassium. Get yours today!

This is what the box looks like - the Pink Lemonade flavor was a special for Breast Cancer Awareness month, and I picked this box up for 50% off at the grocery store because it was a limited edition.

Be sure to check out more great WFMW tips at Rocks in My Dryer.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Think About It

Sorry this is a day late - we were out of town with no internet connection. Here are several thoughts to think about.

The difference between Christian giving and communism/socialism:
Communism/socialism says, "What's yours is mine."
Christian giving says, "What's mine is yours."

In reference to the election, consider Titus 3:1-2: "Put them in mind to be subject to principalities and powers, to obey magistrates, to be ready to every good work, (2) To speak evil of no man, to be no brawlers, but gentle, shewing all meekness unto all men."

Now that Barrack Obama is the president elect, we must respect him and his position of authority as God ordained, and "speak evil of no man" - including a president we may not like.

A quote from a Bible commentator (given in our Sunday School lesson, and the man was not named) on the fact that the Apostle Paul never slandered Nero (his "president" and a very wicked man): "How could Paul attack or verbally abuse a person for whom he was praying?"

Think About It!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Ronald Reagan said...

A Little humor from Ronald Reagan to take away the Obama depression...

"Republicans believe every day is the Fourth of July, but the democrats believe every day is April 15."

"The most terrifying words in the English language are: I’m from the government and I’m here to help."

Also, here is a link to a good article I read today. I think it sums up some things about this election very well - much better than I could have said.

Statement of Results

Well, as went the nation, so went my state, so went my precinct. As the 3rd largest precinct in Virginia Beach City, we had around 4500 registered voters. 300 voted by absentee ballot. Around 2100 showed up at the polls. There were around 1200 votes for Obama and about 963 votes for McCain. It just wasn't enough.

When I arrived at the polling place at approximately 4:58 am, there was already a line of voters from the door down to the curb, waiting in the rain, for the polls to open at 6am. From the time the polls opened until around 10:30 am, the line was 2-3 wide, down to the street (our polling place is the Eastern Shore Chapel, an Episcopalian Church). From 10:30ish until 1:30ish, the flow inside was still heavy and steady, although the line outside was not as long. We had a brief reprieve around 1:30, and then it picked up again until 4:30. Between 4:30 and 5:00, for the first time all day, there was no one in the "H-O" line. After 5:30, things pretty much died, much to our surprise. We expected a line, especially with people getting off work around 5.

I was on my feet for most of the day. I think I sat at the pollbook for a total of two hours, and I worked the voting units and crowd control for the other 14 hours. I was thankful for my coffee, and for the Jr. Bacon Cheeseburger that Ben brought to me, along with a free Starbucks for wearing an "I Voted" sticker. I met some very nice people, and I had a good time.

These are my consolations at the outcome of the election:
1. It doesn't look like a filibuster-proof senate was obtained for the Dems.
2. The Gay Marriage ban passed in California.
3. "He shall not be afraid of evil tiding: his heart is fixed trusting in the LORD." Psalm 112:7
4. "This is my Father's world - O let me ne'er forget, That tho' the wrong seems oft so strong, God is the Ruler yet."
5. Whether or not Obama knows it, his heart is still in God's hands, "and as the rivers of water, He turneth it whithersoever He will." (Proverbs 21:1)
6. No matter what happens to our country in the next four years, the blame should be laid at the feet of the Democrats, because they possess total power. However, realistically, I know they will find a way to shift the blame to the Republicans. They always do.
7. Whatever happens to America, my eternal destiny is settled. I know where I am going.
8. As long as God wants me here, I am safest in the center of His Will.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

You Have One Vote

Today is election day. I am serving as an election official for the City of Virginia Beach. My slumber ended at approximately 4 am, so that I could arrive at the polls at 5 am. In Virginia the polls are open from 6 am - 7 pm. The city has hired 1500 + citizens to man the polls this election. In past years Virginia Beach has only hired around 800 officials for a general election. We are expecting a huge turnout and extremely long lines all day long. The Voter Registrar warned that we may have 200 people in line waiting to vote when the polls close at 7 pm.
***Translation: The polls may close at 7 pm, but I don't expect to leave before 10 pm. That works out to a 17 hour day! If we are done at 10 pm.

So go out and vote today. It is only one vote, but that one vote counts. Help save America from socialism, increased taxes, and defeat and surrender in Iraq.

I'll be back tomorrow to let you know the results of my day at the polls!

Monday, November 3, 2008

One Vote Video Link

Please click here to view short video presentation on the importance of your vote tomorrow

The Night Before Elections

A friend sent me this poem: ‘Twas the night before elections

’Twas the night before elections
And all through the town
Tempers were flaring
Emotions all up and down!

I, in my bathrobe
My wife in her night dress
Had cut off the TV
Tired of political mess.

When all of a sudden
There arose such a noise
I peered out of my window
Saw Obama and his boys

They had come for my wallet
They wanted my pay
To give to the others
Who had not worked a day!

He snatched up my money
And quick as a wink
Jumped back on his bandwagon
As I gagged from the stink

He then rallied his henchmen
Who were pulling his cart
I could tell they were out
To tear my country apart!

"On Fannie, on Freddie,
On Biden and Ayers!
On Acorn, On Pelosi"
He screamed at the pairs!

They took off for his cause
And as he flew out of sight
I heard him laugh at the nation
Who wouldn’t stand up and fight!

So I leave you to think
On this one final note-

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Think About It

I am going to start writing a "Think About It" post each Sunday. It will be Scripture, or quotes, or thoughts from the sermon at church. This is the first one.

"The answer for America is not a new administration, but a new attitude toward sin."
~Pastor Warren Skinner, Diamond Springs Baptist Church

"If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land."
2 Chronicles 7:14

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Seeing Progressively

On Thursday my new specs finally arrived. Finally. I've only been waiting for 4 weeks! But, I got a 15% refund, so I guess it was worth the wait. I seem to have bad luck with eyeglasses. There is always some problem or another complication.

Anyway, back to the specs. I am now wearing progressive lenses, or no-line bifocals. And I'm not even 26 yet! I guess I could blame Dad - I get my bad eyes from him. On the other hand, he's still wearing single vision lenses, and I've been in bifocals for years! Boy, does that make me feel "old."

I haven't had very much time to let my eyes adjust. Sometimes the table seems to swim, even though my head isn't moving. If I turn too quickly tings are all blurry. And I have to move my head more than just moving my eyes in order to look through the correct section of my lenses. It's still a mystery to me to know exactly where those sections change, so could be using the wrong on and I'll never know...

At any rate, here are a couple of pics. We had a photo shoot because Ben is still learning how to use my camera. **Translation: we took A LOT of pics to get A COUPLE of good ones. But I love him, even if he's not a picture-taking-scrapbook-thinking guy.