rmc28: (wedding)
By agreement, Tony went out to a party tonight and I stayed home with the children.  Nico was asleep soon after 9pm but Charles was determined to stay up to midnight if possible.  We had a mellow multi-screen evening (Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes on the tv, Charles playing Angry Birds on my phone, me noodling on my laptop) but despite strenuous efforts, Charles fell asleep shortly after 11pm.

I settled in to watch the London fireworks at midnight and put on Captain America:Winter Soldier to watch afterward.

At 1am, Nico fell out of bed with a dramatic thud.  I think he woke up more from my picking him back up than from the actual fall, and settled back to sleep fairly quickly.

At 2am, he woke up and made his way downstairs where he expressed a great deal of concern for the car that was being thoroughly smashed up:  "Car broken! Car broken, mummy!  Poor car.  Car is sad."   We are now watching Teletubbies instead, and eating cold fishfingers because they were there.  Also I am reading through 50+ story notifications from AO3 now that Yuletide authors have been revealed. 

At some point I will try to put both Nico and myself to bed, as I need to get back to something like my usual sleeping pattern tomorrow night.

rmc28: Photo of me shortly before starting my first half-marathon (half-marathon)
But now is when I have time to write, so: happy new year!

I looked at my new year's post for 2014, and am glad that the children have grown easier with another year in them.   We took it even easier than last year, with just the one trip away on the 27th, and some super-easy visitors on the 20th and 14th.  Nico has been only moderately clingy, and I have managed to run a couple of times, and generally feel fairly rested and recharged.

I have some things to look forward to:
- my Change It Yourself course at the local college, where I hope to acquire some basic DIY skills, starting next week
- my sister-in-law's wedding at the end of January
- Eastercon (without the children!)
- two babies due in my extended family in the summer

I have to make a decision by early March whether to continue with my OU study (suspended for most of the last year) or to let it go.  The Change It Yourself course and how it goes is definitely going to inform that decision.

I think, like 2014, my approach to 2015 is going to be Just Keep Swimming.

rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
Tony & I saw in the new year splitting a couple of bottles of wine and watching films we'd previously missed (Pacific Rim and The Amazing Spiderman).  We did start on a third post-midnight film, this time one we'd seen before (Salt), but entirely predictably got disturbed by the small-hours panics of the children before we got more than a short way into it.

I return to work tomorrow.  The break has been nice but also a reminder that "holiday" with a toddler just means constant provision of childcare rather than much actual rest or opportunity to do anything else, not helped by Nico being extra-clingy and mildly unwell since the 23rd.  Some days literally the only time to myself has been in the bathroom, with a howling toddler outside the door fiercely rejecting any attempt by his father to comfort him for my minutes-long absence.

We balanced the desire to see the (large) extended family with the desire not to expire of exhaustion by arranging matters thus:

21-22: family gathering one in Leeds
28: family gathering two at our house
29-30: family gathering three in High Wycombe
4 Jan: family gathering four in Leeds

In the event, only Tony went to High Wycombe so as to stop Nico passing his illness on to his baby cousin.   So I didn't have to travel and wrangle a toddler in new places, but I did have to single-parent both children for a day and a half.  OH WHAT FUN. However, I am a lot more physically rested than I was eight days ago, even if mentally and emotionally I am incredibly ready to do something other than childcare and housework.

I've not made any resolutions.  Like last year, I have enough ongoing commitments (in fact I have less than last year and I'm still overloaded) that really any resolutions I can think of boil down to Just Keep Swimming.
rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
This is already a much better New Year's Day than last year.
  • I'm not pregnant and I don't feel ill. (imagine this in big blinking flashing text, because that's how awesome it is from my POV compared to last year)
  • My brother offered to babysit so I went out to a party! Without my children! And talked to other adults about things other than children! (ok, I did also talk about children, but probably not even the majority of the time)
  • I went running yesterday, in the rain, and today I did the initial trial for twohundredsitups
Last year I made resolutions:

how did I do? )

This year, I already have a whole bunch of ongoing commitments and specific goals (work, study, fitness, family, politics) and I really don't need to add any more.

Maybe I will try a month goal: for January I will try to be in bed before 11pm every schoolnight.

rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
How did I do?
not that well )

I think last year I was overprescriptive - too many goals to keep track of. So this year I'll go back to being simpler.

1. Get and stay as fit as possible during pregnancy and afterward: as much walking as I can manage, aquanatal as soon as I can start it.
2. Do up to 10 hours a week on OU module DB123 until it's done.
3. Go to bed on time (10pm schoolnights, midnight weekends, at the latest).
4. Bitesize decluttering/tidying/cataloguing - 1 or 2 15-min sessions a day, starting with my bedroom, then Charles's, then the rest of the house. Avoid doing marathon sessions and then nothing for weeks.
5. Keep reading the Economist each week.
6. Remember to read for pleasure too (goals mentioned elsewhere).
rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
1. Continue with the recently restarted hundredpushups: reach completion or repeating week 4 four times without progressing on knee-pressups before trying again with full pressups.
2. Restart twohundredsitups in parallel: I completed this last year but fell out of practice so want to do it again.
3. Devise a situps routine I can continue with once I've done twohundredsitups.
4. Go to bed early enough to make 8 hours sleep possible, so at least I'm lying down for those hours, even if I have insomnia. This means 10pm most worknights, midnight most weekends.
5. (continue to) Eat 5-10 fruit/veg a day.
6. Walk at least 10k steps a day: routine when I was walking everywhere, more of a challenge now that I cycle commute.
7. Find 5x 30 minutes a week to do wiifit. (weekday evenings after C is in bed?)
8. Count bloody calories to portion control against increased appetite from increased exercise.
9. Don't go away for more than 2 weekends a month.

1. Check household budget weekly and share summary with Tony.
2. Increase the money I give away to at least 7.5% of income. (More on this in a separate post I think.)

1. Read Economist each week & Prospect each month, but give up on the current edition 48 hours after the next one arrives.
2. Read 1 library book & 1 of my own books each week (ideally but not necessarily off the to-read pile).
3. Keep no more than 6 library books checked out at any one time.
4. Write at least two sentences about each book I read.
6. Finish cataloguing the house books, at least 30 min a week.

Other Happiness:
1. Read at least one book with Charles every day.
2. Follow my morning, hometime & bedtime checklists every day.
3. Get to Inbox Zero in each of my 3 accounts, and monitor weekly. (Work: 254, Home: 68, Gmail: 2)
4. Cook something mostly from scratch (premade sauces allowed) at least once a week.
rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
How did I do?

actually get 7.5 hours sleep a night (actually go to bed at 10pm 5 nights a week)
I did not do this reliably, and it was easily disrupted, especially by finding interesting things to read on the internet. But I probably averaged 7 hours more often than not, and felt the benefit. 7/10.

power-walk 3 times a week
This rapidly became: power walk 5 days a week to get Charles after work, and do longer walks at weekend. The after-work walks lasted until Charles started at nursery, the weekend walks lasted until May. 5/10

complete the London MoonWalk in May
I did this! 10/10

keep counting my calories
This was easily disrupted by holidays, illness, family stress. But I did it more often than not. 6/10

finish clearing the junk room so it can become a music room
Ahahahaha utter fail. Some items have been removed but not so you'd notice. 1/10

implement Getting Things Done more thoroughly; to start with actually checking my lists once a day & actually doing my weekly project reviews
I did establish (eventually) post-it notes with daily checklists in my diary, and made intermittent bursts of weekly reporting on specific projects (budgeting, fitness), but I cannot say that I achieved this goal as stated. 2/10

I'm going to post this year's list separately. I wrote it up before reviewing last year's and am interested to see that I have come up with a much longer and more detailed list, most of which are "do daily" or "do weekly" projects. Sleep & fitness remain on the list along with additional specific health-related goals; decluttering has slipped off as a specific mention, though it might get added to my daily checklists once I'm reliably doing what's already on there. I now have a weekly checklist-on-post-it living in my diary to complement the daily ones.
rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
Tomorrow Charles starts settling in with childminder. Tony starts full-time work the following Monday. At some point this year, so will I.

Goal 1: Sorting finances. We have some accumulated debt from working part-time and refurnishing the house after buying out Keith. It's on 0% credit cards but still debt. First priority for the additional income is clearing that debt. In September we're free to remortgage, and even in the current 'credit crunch' I'm confident our IFA will be able to get us a better deal. I hope we'll be in a position to start actually saving again by the end of the year.

Goal 2: Sorting house.
2a: decluttering. First I'm going to finish moving the paperwork backlog from in/pending/out trays to 43 folders. Then I'm clearing my email backlog at 15 mins per day. Then I'm going to start tackling the junk room, one item per day.
2b: housework. I'm going to try getting some cleaning help via CamLETS (and pay for it with babysitting). I'm also getting back on the flylady wagon, building daily & weekly routines for us.

Goal 3 (or is this really Goal 0? Made a lot easier by 2 and a little by 1):Staying happy. More couple-time for me and Tony. Regular Tony+Charles time to compensate for the loss to full-time work. Regular family swim time. Encouraging friends and family to visit us rather than vice-versa (now we have a plausible guest room).
rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
Keith held a NYE Ball in our house - we were only about 90 minutes late getting started and only a few guests had turned up before I ran away to get dressed up. Special mention to [livejournal.com profile] james_r for bringing the giant bottle of Mo√ęt & Chandon, and [livejournal.com profile] lnr for the very pink cake. We had cocktails (oh blimey did we have cocktails) and poker and scalextrix that kept breaking and much fun talking and drinking. I cooked up garlic bread and pizza near the beginning of the party, on which people fell with enthusiasm. At least one pizza didn't make it out of the kitchen. It was lovely to catch up with people whom I'd not seen in a while and make friends with those barely known. At least I hope I made friends, rather than drunkenly embarrassing people. Can you do both? I lasted until about 3am, and Keith was reasonably cooperative about turning the noise down immediately underneath me when I went to bed.

The resolution I forgot to mention in my list was "go to church on weekends when I'm not climbing". The parish service today was a United service in Castle St Methodist, at the civilised hour of 10:45, and I woke in plenty of time to get there. The sermon was on New Year's Resolutions, complete with buzzword bingo I'm familiar with from time-management courses: making your targets SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Time-related). As I'd deliberately done this for my resolutions (the principle if not quite ticking off the buzzwords), I was amused.

Back at home I attempted to wake a growly [livejournal.com profile] fanf and then set to clearing up the post-party mess, along with Keith and Kline (sp?). After an hour I'd had enough and prepared to meet people at the Carlton for a Sunday lunch. Lovely gentle afternoon, mostly talking to Ingrid, Sion, Jenny and Mark. When we got back, I borrowed Keith's DVD of Equilibrium, which I've been meaning to watch for a while. There are some very good things about it, but my disbelief got unsuspended very quickly because the main protagonist was behaving unbelievably stupidly, and I'm afraid I heckled somewhat. Still, it's stylish, has both Sean Bean and Sean Pertwee playing minor roles, and made good undemanding lazy-day viewing. Early night tonight I think.
rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
I saw in the New Year with a migraine, and the neighbours' fireworks. I've also put on a startling amount of weight in the last two weeks of December, on top of the year's upward creep.

Grouchiness aside, this year I look forward to getting married, Worldcon, much more climbing, getting back into ninjutsu, and getting more sleep. During 2004 I've learned how to handle my migraines and regained a lot of mental energy. I've made some good new friendships and strengthened some older ones. Underlying everything is my continuing happiness with Tony and the journey we're making together.


rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
Rachel Coleman

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