Saturday, January 29, 2011

So Here's The Thing....

Ever since I have educated myself more about "food" - I have become increasingly paranoid. I am not wasteful, so I have been using the pantry items Michael brought over from his place....and last night I made the kids one of those packet side dish things - macaroni cheese (I added bacon & they had had veggies for afternoon tea). It was hard, I was almost going to throw it out! But then I felt ungrateful and that I was being a food snob. So I cringed and fed it to them - and promised next time I would make my own super tasty  version with wholemeal pasta and flour....and real cheese! 

Today I am baking biscuits to fill my "cookie" jar (one of my awesome op shop items - post to come!) and I have spent ages on the internet looking for healthy recipes, but I am lacking ingredients as my pantry is not fully stocked yet....

ANYWAY....I baked jam drops using Michael's white flour, and then couldn't handle it and added a quarter of a cup of flaxseed meal (linseed meal).

Do I have a problem??

I still want my kids to enjoy snacky treats and not feel deprived, I would just prefer for them to have healthy options most of the time....

I also read an article posted on a friends facebook page, "Motherhood Matter: Happy and Fat"  from - read it, tell me what you think!

I love good food (no really I love to eat, just ask Michael!), and I love being fit and strong and looking good in my clothes - so I am trying to find a balance - Can I have a great body and be a happy mummy?

So add this to my resolution list for the year, 'Compile 50 super tasty and incredibly healthy recipes'.

PS. My biscuits were a hit!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Oh Ye Of Litte Faith...

To set a bit of a background on the whole house hunting thing - I had been prepping hard!! I had numerous lists of all the characteristics we needed in a house, I knew what we could afford, I knew where I wanted to live, I knew what school I wanted to the kids to go to - I had been praying, fasting and making sure I had paid a full tithe for at least the last 6 months - I wanted to make sure I had all the bases covered. So in my head I was like "Heavenly Father, I am doing all the ground work and leaving the rest up to you, I know you will take care of us."

Being knocked back on the first couple of houses was a little hard to take, but I was still upbeat and we used the time Michael had off work (due to the floods) to do more house the second day we had put in four applications, by the third day we had two rejected - and we found out why.,...apparently my rental reference from the last place I lived in Tassie was highly unfavourable. My past had caught up with me, and the possibility of finding a place was looking very bleak indeed. I doubted. I was extremely upset and angry that I was being judged on someone else's bad behaviour (case of the "ex"). So instead of getting on my knees and exercising a little bit more faith - I completely wigged out! *sigh*

When I finally calmed down, we took the kids to the beach, I was exhausted from balling my eyes out and anxious, awaiting news on the last two houses. (Mind you, Michael was Mr Cool throughout all of this....worse case scenario according to him, I put my stuff in storage and we live in his two bedroom townhouse after we are married) I was too nervous to go swimming I just sat by the phone watching the kids play....but eventually we got the of our applications was accepted!!

We had a house!!

 To me this was a little miracle, as this particular house was under application by a couple of people when Michael inquired about it, and we almost crossed it off out list. I called up to double check and get an application just in case, and heard that both of the applicants had been rejected. I don't know how we were approved, but I am super grateful that we were!

Our New House.....

So its pink - I think I can live with that.....;)

dance floor - yay!!

Tonight will be the last night at my mum and dads place.....hello adventure, hello change and hello independence!!

  Note to self: "Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.
 In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths." Proverbs 3:5-6

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

We Didn't Get It.....

.....The house we really wanted :(, and another application wasn't accepted as well. They just said the owner chose someone else. I am pretty bummed out, it felt so perfect! But hey, some times things just don't work out the way that you think they should, no matter how good it feels.

I have been told that obviously there is a more perfect house out there for us....."more perfect" how? I wonder. Maybe 'more perfect' is the growth that comes from accepting something that may be not quite what we want, or an awesome owner/real restate, or fantastic neighbours....I don't know. Regardless, as down as I feel I know that where ever we end up (even if we have to kick Michael out of his place until we are married ;) it will be where we are meant to be.

We have one more application in - I did really like this place, nice and neat and I spent ages chatting to the real estate lady.....she married someone 10 years her junior, we were talking about age difference. She was cool with the kids running around, hiding in the cupboards. The floor is 'floor board' looking lino, the main bedroom has small walk-in wardrobe and an ensuite, the bathroom was nice, the carpet was decent - I could easily be happy there too....poky street and all. :)

Just realised the neighbouring suburb to where we are looking for a house is still in the ward boundaries - with bigger (4 bedrooms), newer houses for the same price.....If we are accepted for this other house, can we let go of something we already have for something better? One in the hand is worth two in the bush.....hmmm

Looks like its another few days down the coast....this time I am not going to bother with inspections, just going straight for the application after the drive-by.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

This Is The Place.....

So after 3 days of of housing hunting with the three kids in rainy weather....I think we may just have found the perfect home for us!!

The main criteria we had were 3 bedrooms, a convertible internal access double garage (for Michael's daughter to have a pad, or family to visit) or an extra room, a yard for the kid to play in (and me to fantasise about having a vegetable garden) - and hopefully, tiles, wood or some other suitable flooring for Michael and I to practice dancing on.

The first day was really discouraging - all the houses were in tiny streets, with hardly any street parking, the houses were on top of each other, and the kids were driving me nuts! I only got to look in a few houses, with most of the day spent doing drive-bys, checking out the internet, and on the phone to  different real estate agents planning the next couple of days of house viewings.

I noticed something interesting as the day progressed....its not just the house, or the street that has the potential to sway my opinion - its the agent! If they are abrupt and don't seem to care about what we want or the quality/state of the house we are looking to rent - its a major turn off....but if they are super friendly, nice to my children, notice the things that I notice, listen to my needs - I will rent anything off them!

Day two turned out to be full of house viewings, and very rainy - but despite that I was in good spirits. I think it had a lot do with how prepared I was (kinda getting in the rhythm of it all), and I reckon a lot do with the amount of prayers we were sending up to help us in our quest (kids included - I love seeing their faith grow!). The third house we saw that day seemed to me to be a turning point....Michael had convinced me to have a look at complex houses, they are nicer/newer for the price compared to the houses we had been viewing. I hate complexes, but since the streets we had been finding houses on were so narrow anyway and complexes these days sometimes have small yards, I conceded. It was a four bedroom house, at the top of our price range, not ideal but still affordable. It was VERY nice, but had cream carpet everywhere - mind you, it was decent hard wearing carpet....nice house no big deal...

THEN.....the guys says "I wasn't going to show you number 5 because the owners were putting it on the market, but they called me this morning to tell me they wanted to rent it out - the yard is better, it has no deck and is $10 cheaper."

We walked inside and I swooned just a little - the guy apologised for the paint scheme and the few (minuscule) gaps in the floor boards....apologise for what!? was amazing! The owners had been living in the house and although it was very similar to the other house - they had pulled up the carpet and put in floor boards everywhere, and every room was a different bright colour! Yellow, pastel green, peachy red, blue with transfers on the walls for the boys. The kitchen was to die for, the rooms were huge, there was loads of cupboard space, we could dance, we could have Michael's family over, his daughter could live with us - it was perfect *sigh*....


The yard was just a strip of grass all around the house, there wasn't a lot of parking space, nowhere for a garden.....'but there is a pool just across the road!' said the children. They were just as distracted as I was. Although it was in our price range we really needed to be saving as much money as we could so it really wasn't as perfect as it appeared....Oh, but it was so beautiful!

We filled out a bunch of applications together that night, and I sold Michael on how amazing the house was. Even when we read the complex's strict rules on noise and cleanliness it still seem great....I stewed on it all night, I didn't want to get the house and feel like we were living in a gilded prison....but I can't emphasise how tempting the appearance of it was.

Anyway...I called Michael at work the next morning and told him I wasn't going to lodge the application for the amazing house, it just didn't feel right. I would rather get a much cheaper house save our butts off so that 5-10 years down the line we can buy our own gorgeous house, and we can be free!.... For the kids to run wild if they choose, for me to be as clean or messy as I want and for me to play music as loud as legally permitted! :)

After that decision, the first house I looked at in the morning was possibly as perfect as we could get! It was $60 cheaper was on the main road (so no poky street), had a big fenced backyard (with an old hills hoist close line...yay!! I was so sick of looking at tiny ones attached to the house!), a verandah, a huged tiled room under the house with a toilet (perfect! for Michael's daughter to live with us, or as a chill/dance room, or anything!), three bedrooms, separate toilet, laundry downstairs in the double garage, bath/shower, a/c in the louge room, good size master bedroom and security screens.....One bedroom doesn't have a cupboard, no fans in the bedrooms, little kitchen, no built in pantry, living/dining area aren't very big....but I don't care!

So much potential to work with, I am queen of making do....admittedly thanks to my ex-husband! :) It has everything we need, and we can save money as well!!! And the real estate lady was really friendly....and when I dropped the application in to them, their business is run from a house, with only a couple of people and they were so nice to my kids....fingers crossed everything runs as smoothly as it has so far, and we continue to be blessed for our efforts and righteous desires.

I applied for two other houses as well that we would be happy to live in also. We will hopefully be moving in just over a week!!!

If we get this warming party!!!! :) :)

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

New Years Resolutioning....

I never specifically plan to make resolutions in the new year, but they just seem to happen.....fresh starts are so enticing and exciting!

I feel very blessed to have a lot of "new beginnings" in the next couple of months - new house, getting married, new university, new gym, going to back to work - change is definitely as good as a holiday! It was thinking about all these changes, and what wonderful opportunities they were (and an awesome Relief Society lesson - love my new ward!) that sparked my list of goals for the year.

This year I will have two focuses to center my goals around "Balance" and "Action" and this talk on "Keeping Lifes Demands In Balance" by M. Russell Ballard has been my inspiration - read it HERE - its awesome, I promise!

My 2011 goals:

1. Be prepared
2. Be early
3. Attend the temple
4. Nurture my families spirituality
5. Eat clean
6. Train and run a half marathon
7. Follow the "5 Laws of Gold" (in "The Richest Man In Babylon" - you HAVE to read this book! The simplest and best financial advice for getting out of debt and accumulating wealth....and so easy to read!)
9. Start a vegetable garden/food storage
10. Get a part time job in accounting 
11. Do well in my studies
12. Less Facebook....more more MORE blogging!

Looking forward to all the challenges, growth and success of the new year!!!

A World Full Of Cheese.....

I am so crazy, bouncy in love....its enough to make one sick....*wink*

Nothing wrong with a bit of cheesiness....right?

PS Mia Rose is amazing....I love all her covers!

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Sooooo.....The Bells Are Ringing.....

Wedding bells that is....:)

Yes, he popped the question....on Christmas day....It was hidden inside a Christmas card box, with a card on top so I didn't know what was inside ( Jack found my gift stash the day before and unwrapped quite a few, including that one!). I was under the impression I wasn't getting much because I had already got a present from him - although I have to admit I was secretly hoping it was a ring, all the while thinking that it wasn't....I sat staring at the box, alone at 6am on Christmas morning, overwhelmed by the knowledge that I wanted to marry this man more than anything!

For me this was a big deal.....

I had been struggling with a fear of marriage for the last six months or so....we had looked at rings a while ago, and I totally freaked out. It had nothing to do with how much I loved Michael or even the 'tiny' *wink* age was more of the fact that I no longer had an ideal view of marriage and I had a million 'what ifs' going through my head - What if we fight and he doesn't talk to me for days? (even though from experience he never does that...) What if our values change? What if he can't handle the kids? What if he can't handle me?....What if it doesn't work out....? I know some fears are irrational, and some are real....and part of the journey involves taking a leap of hear I go.....;)

It's only been a couple of days and the plans are coming along super smoothly....the date is set for the 26th of February, a week before the dance cruise Micheal had booked for us ages ago - figured it would be pretty cool for it to be our honeymoon! My outfit/accessories/shoes are safely in the cupboard.....I feel so blessed/lucky to find everything so easily!! You are permitted to a sneak peak of my gorgeous shoes....

I got my dress/accessories from Kitten D'Amour one of my favourite stores which I have never been able to buy anything from before....Its Perfect!

The cake is in the works, the location is tentatively sorted......I am trying to keep it low key, and very reasonably priced, so far so good!!

I am kind of excited....did you notice? :)