Friday, January 24, 2014

2014 & BOOKS.

ugh. this week... it seriously was not my week. not my finest mama or wife moments. i think i've been an ok friend, sister, and daughter... so at least i have that going for me. i thought on monday we would finally be over jet lag. i was completely wrong and then some. i've had a relentless headache. a toddler who sounds like sick monica on friends (she's actually better as of yesterday, but still... it was uncalled for). a body that seems to be turning against me each day (pregnancy is the best!). and then aaron was summoned and chosen for jury duty, so we haven't seen him at all this whole week. and he was asked to work on saturday. blah. go away.

anyways, i've been thinking about things i want to do a little differently this year. not quite resolutions, because i'm really not a new years girl. lets be real... it's almost february and i'm talking about resolutions. but there have been some things that have weighed heavy on my heart to do differently in this new year. i thought i'd share them with you:

1. Budget like it's my job.
i have had a budget ever since i was in college. a nice little neat excel sheet which i would input my earnings and track my spending. we've carried over the system since getting married, but since having a baby it's been more on the back burner than something we've spent careful time on. it's still there, but we want to be invested in it and really stay on top of it as a couple.

2. Learn how to cook a whole chicken and use all it's parts.
i have yet to do this in my life. mostly because raw meat really freaks me out. i could be considered a vegetarian. sometimes i just don't make anything with meat because i don't want to deal with it. aaron has to remind me to get meat a lot. and when i do... it's usually chicken breasts. no bones. them bones freak me out. but really is this beneficial to my grocery budget? i don't know... but i think it would be useful and cheaper to cook a whole chicken and use it up. plus make broth... that is something i know how to do. but i usually do it with a rotisserie chicken. it's time to step it up. i'm going to be a mama of two (ha! to be fair that's not actually a legit reason... but i'll go with it).

3. Spend more time reading than watching tv.
i really love tv. i love whole seasons of shows on netflix. and i love to watch every single episode right away. i'm not going to give that up, because when i good show is made i fully believe it should be savored and watched and shared by as many people as possible. it's an art! but when i had morning sickness, and then just sickness, and then international travel, and more sickness, and then jet lag, and even more sickness... the netflix looks real good. and arthur is on at 4pm which is right after ellen at 3. and you get my picture. it's ok to savor the tv show when sick, but i want to make sure rorie sees mama reading and not just watching tv. she already loves to read and i really want to foster that behavior in her and in myself... because i love to read too! or at least i used to. which is something i want to change. instead of watching a show during my down time i want to read a bit more. i'm currently reading bread & wine. happy face. i plan on re-reading cold tangerines, frankenstein, and the time traveler's wife.

4. Make more homemade meals and snacks
i've only been back for a bit, but i have successfully planned out and executed this whole week's meal plan. it really only included dinners, so snacks are still on the to-do list. this week i made: whatever-you-got vegetable soup, slow cooker chicken tortilla soup, chicken pasta florentine, and slow cooker spaghetti squash and meatballs (currently cooking as i type). not too shabby. and i've already planned out the shopping list and meal plan for next week. go me! but, seriously... can i keep this up?!

5. Buy less. Buy used. Save more. Live with less.
we were in major survival mode with the first year of rorie's life. and looking back i seriously don't blame us. we bought a lot of things on impulse, tried to solve a lot of problems with merchandise (most problems just take time, people!), and ate a lot of take-out and delivery. but now i have some experience with a newborn with issues, so i hope we are a little more equipped to deal with a baby again. i've been going through our apartment for a while now and donating all the stuff we haven't used in the past 4 years. which is a lot of stuff. there's a place for almost everything in our tiny apartment and i'm really glad. it helps me breathe easier and it's a lot easier to put stuff away when there's a place for it. aka- toys. so that's one thing that i won't have to worry about with baby jacob. in our preparations for him, i've been looking to buy a lot of the things we need used. and i've been finding things! it's so great! my wallet is like, "hallelujah, sister!" (maybe i have a very southern baptist wallet- you don't know). so, in our attempts to buy used we hope to save more and essentially live with less. i think we are well on our way.

what do you want to do differently this year?


  1. I love this post, Chelsea. I could get on board with all but #2 (which I admire you for and can't wait to hear about). Your wallet sounds like a very wise and reasonable voice, no matter the religious beliefs :)

    1. thanks :) aww... come on! you don't want to try to cook a whole hen with me?! could be fun!

  2. My tip as far as cooking homemade meals/cooking meat is to get a pressure cooker! You just throw it in there (with veggies or rice or whatever) and it comes out delicious every time with broth made too! A whole beef roast only takes an hour. I usually pressure cook some meat, steam some vegetables, and I have a huge batch for lunches all week (then I make fun things a couple nights for supper and the other nights are left overs or throw my batch of meat&veg into some eggs for an omelet). Cooking all my meals and keeping it cheap is a goal of mine right now as well!

    Anyway, this is all assuming you don't have a pressure cooker... I hope you don't so I can introduce you to the magic! It is the easiest/yummiest way too cook meat I have found.

    And that is all I can say about that! Good luck with those goals! You will have to keep an update on the reading vs Netflix because Amazon Prime is definitely winning the battle over the written word with Seth and I :)