Friday, August 29, 2014

Six Books I Want To Read This Fall

I had so much fun working my way through my summer reading list that I decided I would do a Fall reading list too.

Somewhere Safe with Somebody Good: The New Mitford Novel (A Mitford Novel) -- I can't wait for this installment of the Mitford series.  I hope it holds up!

One More Thing: Stories and Other Stories -- I loved B.J. Novak on the office.

Girl With a Pearl Earring -- I loved this when it first came out, and decided it needed a re-read after hearing Tracy Chevalier's TED talk.

Almost Somewhere: Twenty-Eight Days on the John Muir Trail (Outdoor Lives) -- I'm a sucker for a trail book, and I've heard good things about this one.

The Martian -- Will it live up to the hype?

1Q84 -- This is my reach book.  I've heard it's hard to get through, but the synopsis sounds amazing.

What are you reading?

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Wednesday, August 27, 2014

What Do They Look Like Anyway?

The most recent episode of Books on The Nightstand has a super fascinating conversation about book jackets and how to decide what a character looks like when it's not specifically mentioned.  In my mind Jane Austen's Emma is a blonde, Bronte's Jane Eyre is a brunette, I like Johnny Depp's Wonka better than the 1970's one, and for some reason Daniel Radcliffe never convinced me he was Harry Potter. 

Monday, August 25, 2014

The Five Languages of Annoyance At Work

You know all those books about love languages by Gary Chapman?  I was thinking the other day that it might better lead to your success at work if someone wrote the five languages of how not to annoy people at work.  Mine would be:

Needless confrontation on personal matters -- If you think someone doesn't like you, the worst thing you can do is confront them in a public area about why they don't like you.  Trust me.  If they didn't hate you before they will now.  If you need to confront them ask for a meeting and do it in private.

Saying "Like I said..." in meetings or conversation -- You may not even realize you said it, but it sounds condescending.

Back firing recognition -- We do birthday parties every month in my office that we take turns planning. The person who planned mine came into my office to ask what I like, then came in a few more times to complain how hard it was to plan a party.  Next year, I'd rather just skip it.

Not understanding that my definition of success may look different than yours -- I guess this is kind of like a love language.  Or maybe it's a lack of awareness of love languages.  Pay attention when someone asks you for something.  Just because you would hate it doesn't mean that it's not going to keep a capable person in your organization.

Commenting on someone's lunch or eating habits -- Never ever comment on the size or quality of someone's lunch in the office kitchen.

Then of course, there's the things everyone hates -- micromanaging, lack of communicating when it comes to crucial information, and blatant bullying.

What are your five languages of annoyance at work?

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

The Savings Star Healthy Offer of the Week is Plums!

Click on the picture above to take advantage of the Saving Star Healthy Offer of the Week -- plums.  Ever since we read On The Banks of Plum Creek this summer we've been eating plums like crazy.  I'm excited to get 20% off -- maybe I can match that with a good sale price and get extra to dry for the winter.

Not a member of Saving Star? Sign up today, and enjoy a healthy offer of the week every Tuesday, Friday freebies, and dozens of other offers all month long.

{Note: I am a Saving Star affiliate. Thanks for your support!} 

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

What I Learned At The Airport

I haven't flown anywhere in about three years until this past month, when I flew twice.  I have nothing against flying except for the expense and the feeling that is was always better to drive when my kids were young because then we could always turn around and drive home.

One of my flights this summer was with my family.  I remember feeling anxious that my kids were acting up and bothering other passengers.  I kept correcting them, and trying to occupy them every second of the flight.

My second flight was by myself to hike with some girlfriends.  For the first time I really had a chance to look around me and see what was going on.  It was them that I realized:

My kids' behavior really isn't that terrible.

Wow, there were some scenes at the airport.

Now, I'm not judging you if your kids throw a fit at the airport.  I know how hard it is to drag the kids out of bed early and through all those lines and into the bathroom six times and past the Dunkin Doughnuts.  I even tried to smile at the parents when I saw they were having a rough time.  I'm not sure they saw me, but hopefully they felt my good vibes.

The point is, when my kids are acting up in public, I feel very isolated.  I feel like all of the other kids are behaving, and only mine are causing problems.  It was a good reminder to look around and gain some perspective next time we're dealing with public misbehavior.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

This Week's Menu & Goals

Are kids back to school in your area yet?  Ours don't go back until after Labor Day so we're enjoying our last two weeks of summer.

Here's our menu for the week:

Mon -- Arroz con pollo, veggies
Tue -- Chicken & rice soup, rolld
Wed -- Apple chicken, pasta salad, veg
Thu -- Swim date with friends
Fri -- Scrambled eggs, toast, fruit

Breakfasts -- yogurt, banana bread, fresh juice

Lunches -- Salad, rice balls, leftovers

Linked to: Menu Plan Monday

Last week's goals:

1) Work on Christmas presents one night
2) Finish ironing
3) Finalize Fall activities for kids
4) Deep clean bedrooms

This week's goals:

1) Work on Christmas presents one night
2) Update resume
3) Finish ironing
4) Pull out back to school clothes

Have a great week!

Friday, August 15, 2014

Fitness Friday

I spent the weekend climbing up trails that looked like this, but then spent the week celebrating my birthday. Oh, free birthday burrito, you are my un-doing.  I'm going to call this week a wash.  I want to spend this upcoming week re-committing to my walking routines, drinking water, and getting plenty of sleep.