Thursday, January 29, 2015

A new chapter...

The day has come. Gareth's first day in High School. I don't know who will miss who the most? 

Thursday, January 22, 2015

What is this Beetle?

Does anyone know what this very colourful beetle/bug is? I saw him on my evening walk with Murphy. It was hard to take a photo because there was a breeze blowing the tree branch back and forth but I think you get the general idea?! He was about the size of a 5c coin...

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Preparing for back-to-school.

It's that time of year again where the kids are trying on their school uniforms and seeing what still fits, what needs mending or adjusting and what needs to be bought before the new school year begins again in a couple of weeks. The kids are enjoying the last few days of holidays but I can feel the itch  to get back to some kind of routine...

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Fitbit crazy.

I still love my Fitbit. We recently bought them for the kids too. We thought it would show them what couch potatoes they were but they have surprised us with how many steps they register on an average day. 

Byron and myself both still aim for 10,000 steps a day and see how many days in succession we can do without falling below our goal. We often make it for many months without failing. Some nights I pace the bedroom floor and watch it go 9,998 9,999 10,000 and fall straight into bed! Other days I exceed the 10,000 steps, particularly if it's a Monday when I walk with a friend as the kids play tennis. 

This screenshot is a particularly crazy day. I was decluttering and cleaning, running up and down the stairs over and over as I brought things down to the box for this weeks charity shop visit. I also had a mammoth phone call home to my mum where we caught up on loads of things but I walked as I talked (Thank you Dr Michael Mosley documentary for that tip!) Followed by my Monday evening walk.

My grand total as I fell into bed was over 30,000 steps. I slept like a baby! Do you have a pedometer or activity bracelet? I can't imagine not having one now. It really has been amazingly motivating. What keeps you at your optimum fitness?

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Walking on Nobby's dog beach.

Since getting Murphy our weekends have changed. We now gravitate to beaches and parks that allow dogs to run off the lead. This small beach in the middle of Newcastle is perfect to let him free to run around and meet other dogs big and small. He's still not too sure of the sea, he keeps going down to the waters edge and then starts running backwards as the waves come towards him. It's like being with a small child and watching them experience something new. It's getting us out of the house too and moving which is a good thing to help shift those Christmas calories!

Wednesday, January 07, 2015

De cluttering

I got an email from a friend after Christmas. It told me about a book I just had to read called the "Life-Changing Magic Of Tidying Up" by Marie Kondo This is NOT a sponsored post. Marie Kondo does not know I exist and I am not a poster girl for her de-cluttering concepts. She suggests you de-clutter your entire house in one day. That's right! Your entire lifelong belongings in one single day. You have to be ruthless and hold each and every item in your hand and decide if it makes you "fizz" with joy! If it doesn't then pass it on. Bin it, recycle it, give it to a friend or a charity shop. Just don't keep it. 

Buying and reading this book didn't make me try to follow the KonMarie example. I just couldn't be as disciplined as she is. Instead it started a huge urge to spring clean room by room. I have cleared bags and boxes of "stuff" from our house. Each week the large whizz bin is dragged down to the kerb overflowing with junk and broken things I thought I might just have had a need for someday. Our neighbour is away for a few weeks and I got his permission to use his bins too so I can get rid of double the junk each week and keep his house looking occupied too! 

The local charity shop has been visited at least once a week and each drive there the car boot is laden down with clothes and toys that we have grown out of. Cupboards have been re-organised and re-purposed to adapt to the changing needs of our older family. Less toys, craft kits and dressing up and instead more designated storage for school work, laptops and study areas.

I do think that the book was the trigger for this big clear out and I may actually do a true KonMarie day at some point in the future but I think it will be a more manageable thing to do if I have already thinned out the contents of each room beforehand. 

Have you heard of this Japanese lady and her belief that everything you own should "spark" and "fizz" you with joy? Or do you just think I'm a lunatic for getting excited about it?! 

Byron says that as long as I can reassure him that he still makes me fizz with joy he's happy!

Sunday, January 04, 2015

Boys in a row

One of the best things about having cousins is the ability for a boy who is normally surrounded by sisters to find himself immersed in testosterone. And what do boys do when they find themselves spending the day together? Sit side by side, not talking about anything except the here and now and loving every minute of it!