Monday, January 12, 2015

Our Life: 2015 Revolutions

I know there are a ton of anti-New-Years-Resolution folks out there, and I mean I get it. In a way it's arbitrary, right? Why wait until January 1 to set a goal because let's be real resolution is just a fancy word for goal. Around our house we set goals all the time, and say what you will, but we actually like setting resolutions each year. Sometimes we miss the mark, like my physical resolution last year was to run a half marathon. Then I got pregnant again pretty much straight away and run a half went out the window.

I think the calendar changing is just a great time to find your motivation and set yourself up for success. We like to set goals in multiple areas of our life (in fact we call these our Five Pillars). Breaking it down makes it seem more manageable. The Five Pillars that create The Foundation of a person according to the Riley family are as follows (names of these categories are still evolving as we work on our goal setting system): Family, Moral/Faith, Financial/Career, Physical, and Philanthropy

We posit that you cannot set huge goals for change in every pillar of your life all at once. These categories are the sum of who you are as a person; it's beyond measure to believe you can fundamentally change who you are at the core in one fail swoop. Instead, set goals that are achievable and reach for major changes in one sector of your life at a time. 

Which brings me to my next point: Measurable Goals
One of my good friends and I were running, and she told me, "this year I want to be a better Christian." Super. That's awesome! But a measurable goal it is not. I quickly asked her, "what do you mean by that?" Because the meaning of good Christian can mean something different to each of us. Instead I challenged her to maybe try out a bible study. Did I suggest that she try going every week? No. I suggested that she try out three this year. Why? Why would I not push her to do more? Because small failures inhibit most of our big success. 

I believe that if my friend is capable of trying out a bible study group, but she's also busy and in school.  It seems a lot more realistic to suggest a number that isn't daunting because if she goes to three chances are she will keep hunting for the right spot.

Really we could make the goal even better and say on Sunday I am going to attend x church. That's measurable, 

Let's take my physical goal from last year that also happens to be this years goal: run a half marathon. Well bully for me; sounds great. The questions that follow your big idea goal are when? And how? A much better goal is I will run the Cowtown Half in February. I'm doing this by running 3-5 miles 3-4 days a week with a long run on the weekend. That is much more than a goal: it's a plan. 

We have several big idea goals in the hopper that we aren't quite sure how to break down, yet. One of them is actually to write a book, this book. I know you're probably shocked - or really probably not. Sam and I are passionate about helping others to become stronger in this area. We are by no means perfect, but we think our system work (especially for high school students who might otherwise never think about these things this way), and we are hopeful that someday maybe it could grow into a professional development opportunity for us. Who knows? It could just be writing practice for me and that works, too. 

Without further ado here are our 2015 Resolutions... 

Family: Monthly Date Night 
Moral/Faith: Tithe, read the bible
Financial/Career: Budget, pay off medical debt, create a system that works for paying off bills
Physical: run a half marathon (Cowtown), create a weekly workout schedule 
Philanthropy: volunteer at church (this is the foggiest one for us so far because that's so vague. Once our new church campus opens closer to the house we are thinking this will be a little easier for us.)



Thursday, January 1, 2015

Bo & Moose: 3 Months and 20 months



B0: 3 Months

Bo How Big?: Bo is a growing baby boy! He has a lot of height, but he seems really skinny to me. He is by no means starving, but he's not quite the chunk he was. I think he is probably around the 24-25 inch mark. 
Bo Clothing Size?: 6-9 months and really a lot of 9 months! He is so longggg. Most 6 month things are reallllly tight on him. We skipped a lot of clothes that Moose wore. I had to pack a lot of stuff up this time that Bo never even wore. The season makes it different, too. I find that I change Bo's clothes less often than I did with Moose.  We are still cloth diapering and loving it. I really love BumGenius diapers that we use at night, but I also love our old school prefolds that we do day to day. 
Bo What/When is he eating?: I am beyond excited that we have made it to 3 months on exclusively breastmilk... weird story, though, this kid doesn't poop near as often as I think he should. He goes about a week, and if you have never breastfed a kid, you're thinking "oh my, a week?!?" I know sounds awful, but the doctor says it can be normal, as long as he's not uncomfortable. It generally takes until day 5 for him to be uncomfortable. I don't know what to do to help him! I just hope it gets easier.
Bo Sleep?: He sleeps in his own crib, and he sleeps through the night about every third night.  He is getting sleepy earlier and earlier, so bed time has moved up from 10 to about 9:30.  He still wakes up at 3 or 4 most nights, but he will typically go back down after I feed him.
Bo Milestones?: Wiggle machine! He hasn't rolled over yet, but he can go onto his side. That feels like a big deal to me! What, what, guess who rolled over?!? Okay, so, yeah, it was uncontrolled, and he's only done it once, and he got his arm stuck under him - but still, I'm a proud bragging mom - deal with it. He wants to sit up so badly! He will lift his head up and look like me trying to do P90X abs. His little face turns bright red, and he lifts with everything he's got. 
Bo Movement?: See above lol.  

Moose: 20 Months


Moose How Big?: Moose is a giant toddler! He doesn't go back for an official weight and height until he turns 2 (which seems way too darn close if you ask me). He is just about 28 pounds and somewhere around 34-35 inches tall. 
Moose Clothing Size?: He is fitting into 3T and by fitting I mean some of it might be a little snug! I am buying him 4T pjs at this point. The toughest thing is that he seems to be a stocky kid not that he's fat, but just that if you get him a 3T it seems really tight. 4T is too long, but waist wise it's what he needs. This is majorly true with shirts! 3T shirts tend to be too short, but I have to roll the sleeves on a 4T. Kids sizes are weird. 
Moose What/When is he eating?: Moose is still a big fan of guacamole and chips, and of course because we are that kind of awesome parents... He screams the word pizza. That being said he does love grapes, apples, bananas, berries, and many other healthy foods, but he is not a super fan of sitting still to eat. 
Moose Sleep?: Moose (knock on wood) has given up the waking up in the middle of the night (or at least we hope he has)! He still wakes up at around 5:30 or 6, but we've been pushing bedtime just a little bit and he seems to be sleeping in a little later for Sam. We had a magical night of sleep where he slept past 7:30 the other day! Craziness. 
Moose Milestones?: Moose built a tower. Okay, I know - big whoop right? But seriously, this is the beginning of less destruct-o man! We can see the wheels a-turnin' in his head. He is starting to understand how to play on such a different level than he ever has before. He is grasping the idea of imaginative play, and it is awesome! Moose and Momma play trucks a lot, and he is starting to make the noises as they back up "beep beep" and to "vroom" when they are speeding off. It's incredible to watch your kids advance.
Moose Movement?: This category probably needs to go away for Moose because this little stud jumps with ease, runs, dances, climbs the stairs like a big boy, and is pretty successful in his movement. I think that I will keep this category for a bit longer, though, because despite all the success, Moose still has this awesome habit of running smack dab into stationary objects. He runs into the fridge daily, and this week he has decide to face plant into the end table twice. Seriously kid, do you not see the giant object in front of you? Maybe it's because he spins in circles over and over then takes off in a dead sprint across the house. Huh? Maybe I could burn some serious calories that way... or I, too, might run into stationary objects like walls and burn some brain cells. Either way, you know? 

Family: December 2014
Hardest Moment(s) of the Month: Heading back to school was really tough this month for me. Sam was gone to training when I came back to work, so I didn't get to see him as much. (super hard when you're trying to get back in the swing of things) I think that we had some other tough moments this month. The holidays can be a stressful time, but overall, they were much more good than bad.
Best Moment(s) of the Month: We are so blessed. Watching Moose open presents with such genuine excitement and joys almost makes me wish that everyday was Christmas. (almost) Bo loves to watch Moose, so that made the whole thing that much more fun. Having this holiday break reminds me of one of the many reasons I love my job! Getting to have time with our family is seriously the best.
Looking Forward to: As much as we love breaks and spending family time, we are ready for a routine and a schedule. It is a lot easier on all of us when we have a plan each day. Sometimes it is really hard to get into good habits, but overall, it tends to work better that way. We are setting some lofty new years resolution, so we are  amped up for what 2015 has to offer us. 

Moose at 3 months

Bo at three months