The State of Affairs, January Edition

Trips I took:  2
Jeremy and I spent New Year's Eve in Atlanta watching Auburn play in the Chick-Fil-A bowl.  We had a very low-key night away, complete with a leisurely breakfast before heading home the next day.  It was nice to have a full day and night for just the two of us.

I had my first solo weekend away when I went with our youth group on a retreat.  It turned out to be one of my favorite youth trips ever.  The adults were not called upon to do much other than make sure our kids were where they needed to be, so I had a good bit of free time to read and relax in the serenity of the wilderness around us.  I will definitely sign up to repeat this trip next year.

Books I read: 2.5
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone--This was the first time I have reread this book in many years, and I felt the magic of the Harry Potter world all over again.  Reading from this perspective, in which I know the scope and depth of the saga and how enormously it would impact our culture, I couldn't help but marvel at what Rowling created.  How does a mind even begin to craft something that amazing?

First You Try Everything--An honest, upfront, and heartbreaking look at the demise of a marriage and a woman who has moved far past the point of desperation. 

Laugh with the Moon--Reading this now, and the more I read, the more I enjoy it.

The soundtrack of the month was mostly a combination of Mumford & Sons and Peter Eide (who performed at the youth conference).  I am no musical trendsetter, and I am usually far behind everyone else in musical discoveries, but I do love just about every song on the Mumford & Sons Pandora station.  I also began listening to NeedtoBreathe this month, and I will probably be exploring that one a little more soon.

Milestones/Notable Memories
The weekend of my youth retreat was Jeremy's first weekend alone with the girls.  It went really well...as far as I am aware, anyway!  : )  I understand there was a little crying for me at bedtime, but not as much as I had feared.  Overall, I think it was a success and gave the girls a great chance to have quality time with their daddy.

Addison & Mackenzie had their first hibachi experience at our favorite Japanese restaurant.  The first visit went very well, and they have already told anyone who would listen that they would like to go back soon.

On the last weekend in January, A & M attended the birthday party of a friend from school.  This was the first time we have been to a birthday party for a classmate, where Jeremy and I didn't really know the parents and/or the family.  The girls had a great time and there were some amazing cupcakes, so I count it as a win.

We bought our first Mac, and we are loving it so far.  Need to learn how to use a lot of it, but loving it nonetheless.

Alabama beat LSU to become National Champions once again!  We also won in 2009, and Auburn won last year, so it has been a good three years for our state.  Roll Tide!!

Random Notes for the Month
While not exactly a New Year's Resolution, I decided to get serious about my weight and my health.  I downloaded the MyFitnessPal app to track my food and exercise, and it's really helping me to think about every bite of food I put in my mouth.  I'm still working on the exercise part of the equation, but I did this yoga/Pilates workout tonight (on Netflix instant!), and to my surprise, I really enjoyed it.  Maybe there's hope for me yet?

I also decided it is time for us to get serious about our money.  This is a decision I make every few months or so, but I hope to really get something on track this time.  Mostly, I want to figure out where our "lost" money is going and use it in a more positive and intentional way.  Jeremy is not as gung-ho as I am at this point, but I'll get him on board.  I am working on procuring a copy of Dave Ramsey's Total Money Makeover.  Anyone done the Dave Ramsey thing?  I'd love to hear your experiences.

It has been crazy warm here for January (in the 60s!), but very rainy.  We have done our best to take advantage of the mild weather and have spent a few afternoons outside.  While I wouldn't mind seeing a little snow this year, it is hard to complain about open-windows weather in the middle of winter.

I am feeling very busy with extra projects right now.  I am teaching a new course at the college, in addition to the old one.  I am also working on preparing a grant application for our court system, which I will be working pretty hard on next month.  Side jobs give me something productive to do and bring in some extra income, so I am NOT complaining.

How was your January??


  1. oh dear, I love this post! I love recap posts and you had a FANTASTIC Jan.

    Can I also sign up for your youth retreat?

  2. I LOOOOOOOOOOOVE Mumford! LOVE THEM! They are who I almost went to see the past summer. I kill myself every time I think about it! I am stalking them, waiting for the next tour where I am willing to travel half way across the country to see them!

    As for the $$$. I was constantly back and forth. I found it helpful, but not overkill, to keep a notebook. It's a simple list of bills due, by date, and how much I gave them. At the end of the month I go through my statement ( I only use the bank card because cash will FLY out of my hands) and add up all the extras into categories-groceries, eating out (HUGE), house, and misc. I highlight a bill (currently a personal loan) and throw extra money at it every chance I get. It gives me a simple way to track my money, and reminds me to work on paying off debt instead of going out for fondue!

    If you need any mac help just drop me a line!

  3. LOVE the format of this post!!! I think I may just have to borrow it, if you don't mind! What a great look at the bigger picture!

    Congrats to Daddy on his first weekend with the girls! My hubby is a long, long way from that, but I have hope...one day. :) And that sounds like a fantastic retreat for you, too.

    It definitely sounds busy, but what a great start to the new year. And - of course - ROOOOLL TIDE!!!

  4. LOVE this post :) fun to look at the whole month. that makes it look awesome (and i can imagine that mine would look less stressful than it felt and maybe i could take a step back?).

    sounds like january was great and you're on track for a great year! i also just started the myfitnesspal thing and it's the total hawthorne effect, right? i KNOW i've been eating much less since i have to log it all. last night i had 3 caramels and was shocked to see how many calories they were! i would have rather had something else for those!!! keep us updated on how it goes!


  5. Ooooh...I like this.

    I never thought of netflix for exercise videos. Thanks!


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