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Showing posts from November, 2015

Sleep Challenge: Week 1

The other day I stumbled upon an article offering X number of ideas for achieving Y. You know, ones that often turn out to be click-bait. In this case it promised tips for improving sleep quality: http://www.mommypotamus.com/sleep-tips/

I was pleasantly surprised to find some good ideas in there, as opposed to just time management ideas for making yourself go to bed on time.


A few that I can say I've already tried:

-taking Magnesium
-cutting out caffeine
-making the room dark for sleep
-getting some light exercise

Although I get around the same amount of sleep most nights, the quality varies. Sometimes I have trouble falling or staying asleep and other times I wake up in the morning unable to remember how the night went.


What I'm trying right now:

-switching computer to warm light in the evening with the software they recommend: https://justgetflux.com/
-getting out in the daylight earlier in the day (which is only possible before 3 or 4 pm)

Results so far: These sleep "ha…

Latest cooking fun

One thing that has made me happy lately is experimenting in the kitchen! And at other times going back to some simple comfort foods.

Every once in a while I like to treat myself to a trip to a different grocery store that is a little farther away and has more variety. It has a lot of imported products which of course can seem more familiar to me. But once I realized that my bill was nearly doubling, I decided to make it more of a special thing, or I get the staples at the regular grocery store and just go here for specialty items.

Recently I had a particularly satisfying trip where I treated myself to artichoke hearts, avocados, eggplant (imported) and frozen strawberries. I also bought some chickpea flour to experiment with. We don't have a "gluten-free" section or anything, but I do try to incorporate alternative items into our diet just to change things up. Oh, and I stocked up on oregano and cumin, two of my favorite spices that are sometimes hard to find.

Meanwhile…

Enough

If I've ever wanted to quit social media, it is now.

I have about 750 friends on FB, and most of the time I REALLY like all the different posts. There are definitely certain categories of posts that can be emotional triggers, depending on what I'm going through at the moment. But for all the chuckles and uplifting posts and fun photos, I don't mind one or two that are hard to read.

Lately, though...the negativity is winning. It has just seemed so...passive-aggressive lately, or something. I wonder if that's true or if I'm just in a phase where I'm sensitive to things like that.

A lot of times, the standard procedure is to post a quote, image, or link to an article that reflects the person's viewpoint. And it makes sense when what you want to say has already been wrapped up nice and tidy by someone else. But for someone reason this is where that passive-aggressive vibe comes into play for me.

A few months ago, it was Planned Parenthood. There were videos su…

Table for one

Today was a little bit of a crabby weird day! David had a screaming fit in the middle of the night and wouldn't tell us what he wanted. When we asked him in the morning of course he said he had wanted something like a snack, but why all the screaming??? Thankfully Andrei is always really patient with him, as I found the yelling physically painful.

Anyway, we were all a bit crabby in the morning, and Andrei was trying to finish some curriculum work that is incredibly draining and time-consuming. But David and I were in and out a lot, embroiled in various conflicts related to potty-training and the like. Yesterday's problem was that I couldn't get him dressed because he made his legs turn to jelly and wouldn't stand up!

David's new favorite game is for us to "switch" roles. He is Mommy and I am David. He gets to boss me around and it is pretty funny hearing his impressions of me! However, he somehow thinks of this game around bedtime. Then he gets to just …

Christian Education Rant

David has been more willing to attend Sunday school, which is his only school-like activity during the week. He is tolerant as opposed to enthusiastic, but no tears at least. Sometimes I wonder if it is very stressful for him, because he talks a lot about going home. After he spent some time with my MIL during worship, he had to keep tabs on where everyone was and make sure no one was going home without him. I told him we were going to go back upstairs to see the rest of the family after we did our Sunday school work. And I think he may see it as sort of a ticket to go home! But nevertheless, he is slowly adapting.

It has been fascinating to watch David's peer group develop, after years of teaching Sunday school myself. Preschoolers have the best comments, and very short attention spans! I shake my head just remembering how we kept trying to have "lessons" with them when they were only 2 years old. Of course there are older kids too, up to age 6 or 7. But there are 5 or…

How the week went

This week felt easier, but it didn't hurt that Andrei was home more! His weekly schedule alternates between lighter and heavier workloads, though of course there is always preparation to do for the next time.

I got more breaks, and took a walk every day, sometimes combined with grocery shopping. I got outside more than David did. After the latest (mutual) meltdown, I have not felt eager to venture out together again. I heard someone reference not "cutting corners," and I think that is so crucial with 2 and 3 yr olds. You have to leave lots of time for transitions. You cannot just stop playing and head from point A to point B. There is no such thing as squeezing in a quick activity, because you have to allow time for preparation and then easing out of it. (But of course if you have PLANNED for the activity to kill a lot of time, it won't. ;) )

Another thing accomplished this week was a closet renovation I'd been trying to get done for several months. David watche…

A City in Mourning

Last week's air tragedy was felt pretty deeply by the people of St. Petersburg. That's the impression I've gotten as I've seen the various posts and interactions that have come up in social media this week. Never-mind terrorism or the fact that the victims were just ordinary people on vacation (or that we flew into Pulkovo recently too). The mood has been more one of mourning.

As I said, I got a lot of these impressions through internet interactions. I didn't go downtown this week or venture beyond our neighborhood, so just by going about everyday life, I didn't see anything out of the ordinary. But bits and pieces started to come together as I saw what friends and acquaintances were writing.

One friend remarked how we (as residents of St. Petersburg) are all just a few links away from knowing someone who was on the flight (my paraphrase). And she went on to share the Gospel, for those who may be thinking more about Eternity at this point.

Sure enough, I did s…

Stateside

Our recent trip to the U.S. (which we arrived home from about 10 days ago) had to be timed very carefully, as it interrupted the school year. We also had the following to accomplish:

-travel before mid-October (when David's old visa would have run out)
-be in the U.S. in early October for my cousin's wedding on the West Coast
-arrive in the U.S. sometime before that, to get over jet-lag and get the visa application in the mail
-travel on a day when Andrei would be free to see us off
-be in the U.S. long enough for the visa to be ready, without having to expedite
-avoid arriving in Boston during a Red Sox game
-avoid early morning flights
-have Andrei arrive and fly back with us during a week when he has the fewest amount of lectures to reschedule


So, we did just that. Here is how we passed the time (sorry, can't get photos in order):