Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Ta Da... New Year's Resolutions

I am super excited to reveal my New Year's Resolutions.

You may know that I usually post weekly goals along with my menu every Tuesday. I will still be doing that. One reason I believe that that is effective for me is that even if you blow it you get to start over the following week. No big deal pick up where you left off and move on. Less potential for sabotage. So keeping that in mind I was a bit hesitant to commit to changes that might be overwhelming.

At first I wanted to focus on making resolutions that would improve the quality of MY life... and yeah I mean that in a selfish way. But in general I'm an assist others before assisting myself kind of person (read: mom) so I'm not sure those will work out and I don't need to be disappointed in myself or my life or where I'm at with that right now. I'm also not putting down organizational or cleaning goals... it is tempting... oh it is tempting. But history tells me these are New Year's Resolutions that go straight down the toilet. I need to work on them and I need to incorporate them into my life in a daily manner as I have with my eating and exercise changes. I had an epiphany of sorts regarding that when watching The Biggest Loser Finale the other week and was just kind of struck by the realization that losing weight and getting organized require the same endless commitment. It is never fun, or natural, and you have to keep doing it or the tide of disorganization (or extra weight) will just creep back and take over.

So I get this with the dieting and exercise. I committed. It worked. I didn't always want to do it... but the more I did the easier and more natural it got. I'm still not a *natural* exerciser and if you asked me right now if I want to get on the treadmill I would still say "no" ...but I will. And so I realize that I need to get in that same place with... say.... cleaning off my desk. I'm never going to want to do it.... I just have to anyway. And the same joy I get from looking in the mirror and knowing for certain that "I don't look fat" is the same joy I can get from finally tackling this goal as well. But it is not going to be my New Year's Resolution... because it is something I can't conquer in a year... it will be an endless battle. I'm ready to put real energy into fighting it... but I think a New Year's Resolution should be something quantifiable. A 5 lb weight loss, or eating 5 servings of vegetables.

Okay.... blab, blab, blab.... One hour later I'm ready to reveal my New Year's Resolutions!

In no particular order:

Keep developing and posting weekly plans for menu, exercise, and cleaning.
This has helped me so much in the past 6 months. I will continue doing this indefinitely. I find having the opportunity to reassess my goals on a weekly basis keeps me mindful of my own personal challenges and accountable for the role I play in sabotaging my success.

Lower my body fat to 18% (currently 21-22%)
I think this is a lofty yet potentially achievable goal. It should motivate me to really stick to my exercise routines and increase my pilates training in order to increase my muscle mass. Obviously I can't really lose more weight so this is going to take some determination to increase my muscle mass and decrease my body fat %. I think I can do it.... but I think it will take me most of the year to get there. Stay tuned to my weekly updates as I try and map out exactly how I'm going to tackle this.

Study, as a family, one country every month
We are all really excited about this idea. At the beginning of the month we will draw the name of a country from a hat. Then get books at the library. Kid's books, cookbooks, travel books. What have you. Originally I thought we could end the month by cooking a feast ... but in the spirit of trying to make this both attainable and enjoyable... I've decided we will end the month by going out to a restaurant (we are fortunate to have nearly every kind of restaurant here) featuring that cuisine. We are also going to get a world map and tack it on a cork board so we can put pins in all the countries we have *visited*. Yes I know this sounds nerdy... but hey we are nerdy.

Lighten up on the blog
Never fear I'll still post everyday (or nearly) and still respond to all comments. I'll still check in at 10 AM, 12 PM, 4 PM, 7 PM, 9 PM, and 11 PM.... just kidding.... no actually I'm not. But I'm not going to check my stats... that just makes me crazy. And I'm going to focus on writing for me and not so much for my audience. I think I put a little too much pressure on myself to keep everyone happy and it is just a blog for crying out loud. Yes I had dreams of riding my minute success from the Weblog Awards all the way to full on blog fame and stardom... but... ummm... that is most likely not going to happen. And if it does it won't be because I did or didn't check my stats today. Maybe my New Year's Resolution should be to decide what direction I want to take this and how much time and effort I can put in. Any suggestions and or feedback on this is always welcome.

I almost forgot.... learn Norwegian
What? No... you read that right. When I read Heather's goal to learn Norwegian I was actually jealous. Now sure her husband is Norwegian (but whose to say my 2nd husband won't be?). #1 I have wanted to learn another language for some time. #2 much like the Amish I have long been obsessed with Scandinavian countries and culture... yes I am serious. So I'm doing it. This is one resolution that really is just for me... just for my own whimsy and enjoyment. Plus the girls are going to have to listen to the CDs in the car... so who knows.... maybe they'll be speaking Norwegian before too long!

The End.
That is enough for one year.

This time next year I hope to still be blogging. I hope to still weigh 110. I hope that I will still be working out 4-5 times a week. I hope that my desk will be cleaned off. I hope that Kid will be proud of her map and all the places she's visited. I hope Baby starts to sleep through the night. I hope Mr F and I can go out on a date. I hope Mr F has either gotten one job to replace his current two... or that he is happy with what he is doing. I hope our basement gets refinished. I hope I stay off soda. Most importantly.... I hope that Kid is seizure free and off her meds. I hope that her eye surgery goes well and that it will be her last surgery!


Deb said...

I hope for you all that you hope.

I also hope your second husband posts on his blog more frequently than your current one. Mr. F is really starting to bum me out.

Lastly, if you guys pick Egypt for February, I'm happy to help you expand your knowledge with firsthand accounts of our trip there. I'm trying to decide if I want to go as far as podcasting. I probably won't make that decision until we get there, but I'll definitely be blogging as much as possible.

MommyTime said...

Your goals are so nicely articulated and carefully thought-out. Mine seem so flimsy by comparison (also, far less lofty)...but I'm always really afraid to write down the things I really really really need (like a book contract) for fear of feeling like the actual Biggest Loser if I don't make it.

Maybe for your country project, you should post a link or button or something where people could email you photos they've taken of that place. That would be sort of cool...I'll be the Mrs. F readers have been some pretty fabulous places...Just a thought. Happy New Year.

Heather said...

Awesome, awesome about learning about one country a month. LOVE it!

And God Nytt Ar! (Good New Year) in Norwegian!

Yay I'm so glad you'll be learning with me. I did my 10 minutes last night; it actually says NOT to do more than 10 minutes a day. Sweet.

Mrs. Furious said...


and Mr F goes back to work tomorrow... so I'm sure more consistent blogging will commence shortly.

podcast?!? you are way more techno savvy than I!

Mrs. Furious said...


I hear you. It is hard to decide which things you can achieve and are therefore willing to commit to.... versus... which things you really want to achieve.

I think it may be best to think of it as goals for the year ahead... instead of things you are *vowing* to accomplish.

You will note that having more personal time, husband & wife time, reading time, baking bread everyday (yes I wish I would do this!), and not eating at Mc D's once a week for lunch are NOT on my list ;)

And good idea for the blog. Maybe I could ask for recipes too!

Mrs. Furious said...


it seems that Norwegian is not going to be too hard... but I may be getting ahead of myself... I am notoriously BAD at learning languages.

I can totally do the 10 minutes a day. It takes me 13 minutes to take Kid to school... and as much as she loves her some NPR (I am serious) I think she could get into it.

Kid Art said...

May all your New Year's resolutions come to fruition!

Still working on mine...

I would love to hear about your Pilates routine in a future post - do you do mat work or do you have a reformer? No detail is too small!

I love Pilates - and that is saying a lot since exercising is not my favorite thing at all - and secretly wish for my own reformer. Classes are just not in the realm of possibility at this point; either in terms of time or $$.

Good luck with the Norwegian!


Heather said...

OOO I forgot to tell you I really enjoyed your socks on the reformer video. I yelled to Pete: "Come look at Mrs F's latest video! LOOK AT HER SOCKS!"

Mrs. Furious said...

lol... I actually thought of making fun of my socks while I was doing it.... but planking and talking don't go together as well as I would like!

I have a studio reformer with the "tower of power" attachment which essentially makes it a half trap table too. I started training in 2001 and then took a break and trained (privately) 2x a week for 3.5 years right up until I gave birth. Now that was $$$ but worth it for me since I have some body pain issues and it kind of cost about the same as physical therapy and docs and such (that's my rationalization anyway). Anyway after that long I didn't need the trainer anymore I could do the exercises in my sleep!(although it was good to have the appointments). And it was actually cheaper in the long run to just buy the reformer. And I do use it... so it wasn't wasted. Especially since I can't afford to have a sitter for the baby and go to training anymore (Kid was very mellow and good and would just read books... Baby is more of a nightmare!) I've got this ONE. If you click over on my sidebar on the Furious Reality TV.. you can find a video of me using it. I might try and post more so people can see all the ways you can workout on it.

Tina said...

Happy New Year!!!! I don't do resolutions, but good luck with your plans!

P.S. I tagged ya!!!!

P.P.S. Hobbes is for Kid!

Mrs. Furious said...

thanks. I'll try.

and this better be good meme....

Haley said...

I just want to echo everyone about how AWESOME the country idea is. When I have little gremlins underfoot I'm totally stealing that idea...

I haven't come up with any formal resolutions for the upcoming year, because I end up getting all negative and fretful when I inevitably mess up within the month, so I'm going to just say that I will do my best in 2008 to be a healthier, happier, and peaceful-er person. And I'll work on my vocabulary.

Mrs. Furious said...


Thanks! I was totally sure I was going to get made fun of for that ;)

Kid got to help brainstorm the countries so two are continents... Africa and Antartica. I said "yeah but there is no food for Antartica." and she replied "there are seals" Yum... I'm particularly looking forward to that feast!

Haley said...

LOL! She just needs a little club! And maybe a little Green Peace boat to drown in the tub! Oh man, we're going to Environmentalist Hell...

katieo said...

Love the country idea. We do something like that at our house too. To make it simpler on myself I just go with whatever the boys want to learn about in any given week. (we've done spiders, volcanoes, skeletons, blood, bridges and tunnels, Halloween, earthquakes, shapes. and more that I can't remember...) It's really really fun. Sometimes I read through these basic kids books and think. What? how did I get through 16 years of school without learning that?) Sometimes a subject will lasts 3 days, sometimes a month. We check out a gazillion books and videos from the library, hunt youtube, make stuff etc. We go hardcore with it in the summer, during (especially the fall) school year we back off quite a bit. Getting my kids excited about learning is very nerdy but no joke. I get a serious high from it.

Ok, I KNOW you didn't need to know all that, It just doesn't take that much for me to start blabbing away. I just think the country thing is really cool, we might augment our little learning subjects with a few country "units."

Ok, now onto lightening up the blog. On the one hand I want to say, Oh My YES Mrs. F! I totally know what you mean! I've had to do it quite a bit myself! And on the other hand, I want to say, "NOOOOO! I need my furious fix! at least several shots daily!"

Mrs. Furious said...

oh she'd probably get into that... just today while playing in their new snow fort, Kid informed me that she and Baby were polar bears and I was their prey!

you'd make a good homeschooler!
Of course the country idea was originally devised for the food ;)

and don't worry try as I might I can't post less than once a day... really I can't. I mean I'm posting a stupid YouTube video everyday! Sometimes I write posts and don't post 'em since I fear it will be too much Mrs F.
But I have to say you have a pretty good situation with your weekends off and occassional Molly post. You seem to still keep your hits up. Not that this is a business or anything ;) Heck I know you don't post weekends but I'll still check "just in case"!
Anyway you seem to have a better balance than I do... but that is mostly due to my compulsive behavior more than anything else.

emmyjw said...

Go Mrs. F! This whole Norway thing is cracking me up! I was at a holiday gathering the other night and met a really interesting Norwegian lady named Eda. She read us a scripture passage in Norwegian and I so wanted to learn the language! The whole visit another country each month thing is great and very homeschool, sounds like something we would do :) I would be totally with you on the feast thing,good in theory but in practice too much stress on you and why not take advantage of the gazillion great places to eat in Ann Arbor ( we do...even though it is a 40 minute drive). Happy New Year!

Mrs. Furious said...

Do you homeschool?

Yeah once we had our brainstormed list of twelve countries.. outside of Antartica... there was literally a restaurant for every one (Outback Steakhouse anyone?!)... then I was like screw it we're going out!

katieo said...

you'd make a good homeschooler!
lol, For some reason I avoid the "h" word (no offense emmy!) even thought that's really what we do, especially during the summer. Mostly because: a) uh, my kids are in currently enrolled IN out-of-home school and b) that way I don't ever feel guilty for slacking off. Which I do.

Well, let's all take a moment to be thankful for your compulsive posting tendencies. (But I do like having weekends off, I come and hang out here more).

P.O.M. said...

Those are great goals. I love the idea of learning about a different country each month.

But we all need our "Furious Fix" as kateio calls it. But you could blog about whatever you wanted and you know we'd all read it :)

Mrs. Furious said...

I really thought about homeschooling but I don't know if I have the patience for it... however if Kid has not outgrown the Epilepsy and I am not comfortable with the schools medical coverage (which currently would be unacceptable) then I absolutely will homeschool. Right now she goes to a great little preschool though.

One thing I do feel guilty about is that I don't have as much time to read everyone else's blogs anymore. (not yours Katieo... I always make time for yours!) I try... I really do.... but there are only so many hours in the day! So if I haven't been to your blog (sorry) I didn't forget you I'm just still trying to work on my time management! Kid can only tolerate my being "on line" so much before she gets a little antsy!

Deb said...

FYI... If you choose Egypt, it's located in Africa. Not the Middle East. You'd think two college-educated adults (one of whom has an MBA from Harvard) would know that. But Hubby and I did not.

Just thought I'd share and spare the F's the humiliation.

Mrs. Furious said...

awww thanks!

and ..."I love the idea of learning about a different country each month. "
of course you do it is like your real life! ;)

Mrs. Furious said...

"But Hubby and I did not. "


I don't quite know how to tell you this... but....yes I knew that. lol! Psst... so is Morroco.

Now if it makes you feel a little better I just asked Mr F to test him and he said "I think that is one of the countries that might technically be in Africa."
Jeez I expect a little more out of you political junkies!

Here is the deal with Africa...Kid said "Africa" and then I said "well that is a Continent" and she still wanted it and in the end that's fine since I just checked out every kid's book on Africa and we couldn't have had more than one book on any individual country.

what takes you to Egypt anyway?

Danielle said...

Very cool goals! I love the idea of studying a new country (or continent) every month. I'm pretty sure we won't be doing any traveling anytime soon, so this could be a way for us to "escape"! We do something similar to katieo with the monthly topics (although it hasn't worked out to be a monthly thing).

emmyjw said...

Yes, this is my 5th year homeschooling, we started when Rainee was going into 5th grade. I feel really wierd having a highschooler now...especially since I also have a preschooler and a kindergartener. Anyways, so far so good!We go to a co-op once a week, plus music,etc... My house has never been the same since having them all home all day but it is worth it.

Cara said...

Wow those are some great goals!! I really love the family studying one! I wish my parents had done that for me!

Julie said...

Fortunately for me, I didn't have to make a new year's resolution list. I just taped last year's to the back of my new date book. It was so convenient:)

Actually, I just came across the list about a week ago and was like "loser!" as some of them were really easy to accomplish. Although, I did learn how to ski last year and that was on the list.

I am really good at making lists and coming up with cool ideas for the family to do (like the monthly learn about a country thing)...not as good about executing it though. Or rather, do it once and then try to get back to it and don't. Then everyone in family loses interest and I blame it on their lack on interest as to why it did not succeed. Nice, huh.

Mrs. Furious said...

"We do something similar to katieo with the monthly topics (although it hasn't worked out to be a monthly thing)"
yes I'm not terribly organized so we shall see how it pans out. Typically we just follow Kid's insane obsessions and she immerses herself in them for a good long time.... but I never have taken it beyond the books before. I can totally picture Katieo making a volcano like on the Brady Bunch! :)... We just let Kid read books about Pompei... to my mom's horror "they have real pictures of the dead people in there!" Yes Kid's a little weird ;)
I was hoping this might inspire me to get some kind of special craft done with each one.... but either way it will be something I think we'll all enjoy learning more about.

Mrs. Furious said...

"y house has never been the same since having them all home all day but it is worth it."
Yes... that is one of my fears. Although they are both home all the time anyway so I don't know how much worse it could get.
Do you have a good reading curriculum you recommend? Kid is ready. But since we held her back she doesn't have the opportunity to learn at school until next fall.

Mrs. Furious said...

One thing I have always looked forward to was haing the opportunity to learn the things I didn't the first time around!

where have you been!?! Just kidding... you are allowed to have a life outside of my blog (I just don't.)

I say accomplishing one goal from your New Year's Resolutions is actually pretty good. Probably 98% of people don't even do that!

and... "Then everyone in family loses interest and I blame it on their lack on interest as to why it did not succeed"
hmmm.... that sounds familiar for some reason ;)

Robin said...

Nice list! Norwegian sounds like fun, and I am totally stealing your country idea when Kent is a little older.

I am jealous that you no longer have weight as a resolution. I think the body fat%/building more muscle is a great replacement.

When you were losing weight, what was your average weight loss per week? Especially once you got close to/under your goal?

Mrs. Furious said...

I lost 1-2 lb a week the majority of the time. But I'd sometimes go about 2 weeks with no loss and then drop 4 lbs the following week. I just divided it up for you and it was 5.33 lb a month average (yep nerd!)
And the last 16 lbs (that is after I reached my pre-pregs weight on 8/6) came off at 0.89 lbs per week. Pretty consistent for me. I totally expected my weight loss to drop off more slowly at the end.. but it didn't. And my fat % dropped significantly during that time.

Julie said...

where have you been!?!
I know...I have been reading, but not blabbing away like usual. Really no exciting life going on 12here, believe me.

I actually was almost inspired to learn a language this year due to you and Heather learning Norwegian.
I got a lot of that ADD thing going on with me. I literally was looking up books on Amazon for an arbitrary language to learn...again instead of actually accomplishing any of the goals that I set up a year ago. I decided to work on last year's projects first though. Like paying all my bills online. I can't believe I don't do that. I do everything online for pete's sake. My mother-in-law even pays her bills automatically online. The problem is that I won't take the little bit of time it would take to set it up. I would rather read your blog, Heather's, Katieo's and others. Hmmm...maybe I should create my own blog as a resolution. Give me the whole year to do it though. Gotta set up that bill pay thing first.

Robin said...

Thanks Mrs. F!
That's a great rate of weight loss. My first 20 pounds came off at about a pound a week (I'm a nerd, too. I actually have multiple spreadsheets!) I was nursing during that time and don't lose weight very well while nursing. I am hoping the rest will come off at about 1.5 a week. But as long as it is coming off, I'll be happy!

Mrs. Furious said...


that reminds me... since I am nursing I didn't want to go over 2 lbs a week and kept my calories right at the amount where I was losing just under that. Faster weight loss can actually put the toxins stored in your fat into your breastmilk. So I was eating 1650-2000 during that time... more as I lost more and my metabolism and workout schedule increased.

Mrs. Furious said...

"Like paying all my bills online. I can't believe I don't do that"
I don't either! And that is exactly what I wanted to work on today.... but then I decided I needed to work on all the Xmas crap all over the place.
Outside of the really big bills (mortgage and credit card) everything else I want to pay automatically. We'll see. If for no other reason than to save me the $10 a month I spend on stamps!!!

katieo said...

Mrs. F and Julie- You don't pay your bills online? Whoa.

Mrs. Furious said...

believe it.
I only got my computer a little before I started my blog. Yes Mr F has computers but they are in the basement and not ever really convienent. Plus because of our whackadoodle pay schedule I've always been a little hesitiant about it... that's how we acquired debt to begin with and I was hard core about getting control of all the bills and paying it all off (done!). But now I think I could have the utilites paid that way.

eurydice said...

wow nice goals. if norweigan seems too weird at first (and it will, because i have a norweigan friend and that language is crazy!), you should try german. i took several german classes in university and it was superfun!

emmyjw said...

A couple of good reading programs- alphaphonics worked great for Conner it is a good solid no frills program. I also have numerous friends who swear by teach your child to read in 100 easy lessons. I picked up a hooked on phonics K set for Langston for this year and it is OK, I think I will use Christian Light with him in the fall, they are Mennonite but I love their stuff, I use it for Conner and for about half of Rainee's schooling, she does more at co-op since she's a big highschooler now.

Mrs. Furious said...

" that language is crazy!"
lol... don't scare me!

last year I tried to get Kid to learn Spanish in the car with me but they had a German vocab cd and that is all I would listen to... it is so much like English that I felt pretty pleased with how quickly I could pick it up. Yes.... if I fail Norwegian I will try German.. and not just the children's vocabulary words this time!

Mrs. Furious said...


thanks I look those up.
and ... Menonite... that is one step removed from Amish!!

Kid Art said...

Mrs F, thanks for writing back about the Reformer; I will have to check out your video!

You have such a nice one... I have Reformer envy. :)

I had thought about hiring a trainer to come to the house if/when I eventually buy a reformer, but I'm convinced now that it needs to be a good quality one or else it's just not worth doing (and of course that's a rather large sum of money). So, for now at least, I'll have to stick with the boring, but free, gym at work. It's crawling with personal trainers and they make me self–conscious...


Mrs. Furious said...

yeah it is not cheap. But for me I knew that company and used that one and I knew if they are made to withstand studio use and it would last a long time. I definitely recommend that online store though... and they do have cheaper home use reformers. I'm sure they are great. I trained on both the reformer and the cadillac (trap table) so I really wanted something that would allow me to do both sets of exercises... this was the cheapest way to do that. I would think it would be worth the money to have a trainer help you learn everything you can do on it so you get the most out of it. Hey your whole family can use it! If I lived near you I'd show you! It is important to get a good pilates trainer...
I hope you get one sooner

Amy said...

my husband's norweigan too. good luck with that goal. that language seems very hard to learn but that's because i have no idea what they're saying to each other. perhaps they're just talking about me. hmmmm. maybe i ought to be learning that language after all...

Mrs. Furious said...

hmmm... you are the second person to tell me that.... maybe I am being overly ambitious?!? I'll let you know.

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