Tuesday, February 19, 2008

February Update

Well folks, the winter is wearing on, and I'm already getting psyched up for the beginnings of spring! For one thing, crazy amount of rain have softened the ground and melted a lot of the snow. Just having things unfrozen and smelling like the earth is invigorating and exciting to me. I've started to see some greenish looking grass and thinking to myself; "has that been green all winter? Is it turning green now? Could spring be coming??" This weekend I went to Home Depot and bought a seed starting kit. I'm planning on having a REAL garden this summer (whoohoo! no more pots!). Yesterday I planted some herbs, tomatoes and peppers in the starter kit. I will take some pics when they sprout. :) Until then, I go over and stare at it even though I know they all take 7-10 days to sprout. I'm excited to say the least! I know it will snow more before it's all over- but looking ahead to warm weather just makes me happy.

Another thing I've been thinking a lot about is how to be thrifty with money. It hit me a few weeks ago while looking at our finances that having a mortgage with significantly more $$$ than our rental makes an impact on the budget. All of a sudden the fun things (like traveling) become harder to do, more planning has to be done beforehand. Saving? Before we leave? What's that? So after freaking out and saying 'holy crap we won't be able to travel my life is oooooover', I decided to figure out how we can be thrifty and save more money to travel and keep fixing up the house. We've been spending tons on groceries lately. Part of this has been because we've been eating out less (a good thing!), but I still think it was beginning to get a little excessive. I love shopping at Hannaford (so quiet, peaceful, the food is good....) so I went online to www.hannaford.com and found out they have their circular online and that I can actually make a shopping list using it and print it out from there. I know some of you probably think this is the most boring thing ever, but I was really psyched up about it. :) Since using the circular and actually looking at prices (what a concept!), I have managed to save us around 30$ a week on groceries. I have had to plan out more than usual, but it's totally worth it! I'll keep you updated if I find other ways that we can save (besides just depriving ourselves of everything fun hahaha).

I'll update you on the quilt making that I'm doing. I have not started sewing it yet because of procrastination. I do have my mom's sewing machine at home all plugged in and ready to go, I just need to finish cutting those darn pieces! Michelle and I are going to try to spur each other on to finish them- hopefully by next update I will say something like "Oh I've sewed half the quilt together!" My goal is to finish by the end of May.

Winter in the Haven household has gone pretty well. I have not been too depressed or anything which is awesome. John took me to Northampton MA this past weekend for Valentine's Day weekend. We stayed at the historic Northampton Hotel in town and walked to some of our favorite spots. First we went to one of my all time favorite bars, The Tunnel Bar. It's this classy, dark, bar in a renovated railway tunnel. There are lots of cushy leather arm chairs and low tables. It's not a 'give me a bud' type of bar to say the least. :) If anyone is ever in Northampton, I highly recommend it! We went and had dinner at the Eastside Grill, also a great establishment. On Saturday we went window shopping in town and then headed over to Amherst to hang out. We went to the ABC for lunch (no beer though), and then read our books at Starbucks across the street (RAO's was too crowded!). I love pretending I'm in college again, it's just great. I think I would retire in Amherst if I could. maybe....

That's all for now folks!

Monday, January 14, 2008

A Year of good change

It has been FOREVER since I've last posted on here. I apologize, I know everyone was checking everyday, just longing to hear about my life. ;)
Since I've last posted, I have been on two trips (Haiti and Alabama), and bought a house! As we speak I am covered with sticky bits of wallpaper left over from me scraping the walls of our bedroom for the past few hours. This has become a pretty normal situation in our house (being covered in wallpaper bits), this is the third room we've done in the past month! We have lots of projects we'd like to do before the warm weather and fun come back, I might even post some pics online!
I've also taken up a new hobby, quilting. I am making my very first quilt and am in the middle of step 1: cutting lots and lots of triangles, rectangles, and squares to turn into patterns. My sister in law, Michelle and I are taking this on together. Her quilt is turquoise and white, and mine is shades of browns. I have a horrible history of never finishing any crafty or artsy project that I start, so this year I am going to try to change that about myself. I'm actually not that bad at quilting so far, so maybe it will be something I can stick with.
I have been really excited about some changes in my spiritual life recently. I've been feeling lathargic about life and my relationship with God for the past year or two and I've recently become motivated to actively seek God out and make changes in how I do things. This sounds very vague I know, but just trust me that it's been a very positive thing for me. The first mindset that I'm working on is living in the present. I tend to look ahead to things and then miss living life right in the here and now. This is especially easy for me in the winter because I really don't enjoy the cold weather and being indoors. I tend to feel depressed about it and just long for the warm, balmy air for 5 months. Changing my mindset to looking for joy and life NOW has been so helpful in keeping my spirits up despite the cold and snow. I highly recommend it! In the past years I've realized that I need to actively work to stay happy and healthy mentally in the winter months. Doing things like exercising, going outside as much as I can, and making sure I have things to work on so I'm not moping around the house is key.
So that is a bit of my life right now, I will try to keep you more informed in 2008!
I am off to go sit on the couch with my husband and watch the C's win another game. :)