Wednesday, January 26, 2011

What do you do?

When I get asked "What do you do?" I say that I am a Health Educator. There is a lot that goes with that but one of my first big projects is the Eat Well Waco program. The City of Waco has just started the program and I was asked to interview about the program. Its about 30 minutes but if you are interested in "what i do", this might be helpful.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Organization Station

I was walking through Home Depot the other day and I was surprised by how many organizational baskets and buckets were out. Neil pointed out to me that it is a very popular New Year's resolution. I never knew! He says it because I have been organized since birth!

I don't know about that considering I can never find what I need! Well I did some organizing in our bathroom this weekend. I will spare you ALL the details and show you just a couple of my favorite items.

This one is our main drawer, you know that one that you open every day that holds everything! There was this cool double sliding organizer. And now our everyday items are to be found easily.

I often get "the look" when I leave my dryer or straightener out on the sink-for good reason. But I use one or the other almost everyday! They were being housed in a too-high-for-me cabinet so it was hard for me to put it up and pull it down everyday. I had this left over basket that was supposed to be used for foil, wax paper, etc in the kitchen. Simple. Perfect height. Organized!

That is just one room but it feels better already. We'll see how long it lasts.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

It's a beautiful day for.... croquet!

One of our favorite gifts this year was a croquet set. It is January but it is sunny and 62 degrees. It would be shameful to stay inside!

We have played often enough that the wickets have become a permanent fixture in our front yard. It is great to have such a big yard to play in! The leaves and divets and rocks all play a role in our game. Also, rexx tends to think that our croquet balls are his toys and tries to fetch them while we are playing....Today I won, but I must admit it was not pretty! I am competitive and for some reason I feel that *someone* let me win today!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

What's on my mind...

In no particular order......

The Sting
I volunteered with Upward Basketball this year and I am loving it! My team is called the STING, after the WNBA team and I have 4th-6th grade girls. They are so enthusiastic and willing to learn. Many have never played but they have some natural athleticism. Of course a major objective of Upward to bring the players to Christ and to learn about sportsmanship and leadership.

We have started an office edition of the biggest loser at work as a worksite wellness program.
There are 8 teams of 3 and each player puts in $20 and the individual that loses the largest percent of body weight gets the money. This is one of the best participation rates that we have ever had in this building and it is getting intense. We have seen an increase in celery sticks and walking clubs. And yet, lots of chocolate candy lying around (to tempt other teams ). There are team challenges every Thursday and we just had our first one. We did a Wii Just Dance challenge and they loved it. We FINALLY found something that works - money! of course! All the programs we do require a budget of $0 dollars so this is an inventive way to get great incentives at no cost to the department.

This is a sneak peak into the upstairs bathroom makeover.
It is a VERY slow process as I have only been able to work on it on Saturdays so far.
There will definitely be future posts about it :)

Thursday, January 13, 2011

St. Mary's Quilt

This year for Christmas Megan's present was a St. Mary's t-shirt quilt. She had hinted to me months ago that she wanted one by giving me a bunch of her t shirts. However, she did not expect it or forgot about it by Christmas.

I had never made a t-shirt quilt before and with the help of Mom Shanks, I finished it just before Christmas. The presention of the gift was exciting for me. We waited until Christmas morning to exchange gifts and the only box that it would fit in was one for an air compressor we bought recently. I put in the box, taped it and wrapped it. When she opened it she actually thought that it was an air compressor and acted so grateful but she was much more excited for the real gift.

These are a few close ups of some of the spontaneous creativity that had to happen due to a shortage of t-shirts

Monday, January 3, 2011


Every year, I do make New Year's Resolutions. They either fall apart quickly or become habit quickly, therefore not making them a year long activity. This year I hope to keep myself accountable all year. Three resolutions this year:

1) Cutting down on spending.
Yes, this is a financial resolution that thousands of people make every year...but...its real for me. Let me first say that we have never lacked any necessities and we don't spend very much but we are excited to see what we can save in a year. We have developed a sort of "game" for financial accountability. We have posted a paper on the fridge with headings" home/shopping, groceries, and restaurants. There is a pen attached and we are to write purchases AND initial our spending. (and if you think we might forget, every purchase is tracked online so we can always pull it up). The person who spends the least each month, wins. The prize might be that they are exempt from laundry the next month, or something of that nature. It has gotten intense already and it has just begun. Yes, this will be more difficult for me but its worth a try.

2. Complete a full 90 days of p90X
I am finally at a point in my life when I can commit to a rigorous plan - no school, extra curriculars, or injuries. I have started the program and it lasted 30 days until my internship and full time job started at the same time. But boy did I feel good during those 30 days.

3. Learn to play guitar.
My awesome Christmas gift will be a gift that keeps on giving. I plan to teach myself (with direction from neil). I have wanted to learn guitar in the last few years but have been too busy. I am happy to say that I have already gotten a few hours of practice!

Sounds like this year will be a new kind of fun!

The perfect Duo

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Dream Come True

In a past blog post I described my dream kitchen. Well take a look, it seems that dreams do come true.

Dream Kitchen:
My Kitchen:

It is so big and beautiful! I don't want to get it dirty! I got lucky and found the sink at IKEA..... for 50% off. We were not sure if it would fit but we took a chance and although, it was difficult, it fits! Dad Shanks helped Neil for hours! On his vacation! Thanks for that!

This is a close up of the cute faucet. This was also from IKEA. I was unaware of the single mindedness of IKEA products. They are created to fit with eachother and no one else. Since nothing else in the kitchen is from IKEA, it took some retrofitting. To make things easier, we decided to go with an IKEA faucet.