Monday, January 1, 2007

Happy New Year!

bluebirdofhappiness
My daughter and I just made breakfast for the family! We baked a coffee cake. The recipe is below:
New Year's Coffee Cake
New Years Coffee Cake
Ingredients:
  • 2 cups Bisquick mix
  • 2/3 cup of milk
  • 2 tablespoons of sugar
  • 1 egg (we substituted 1 mashed banana as we were out of eggs)
  • 1/4 Streusel topping (recipe below)
Cinnamon Streusel Topping:
  • 2/3 cup Bisquick mix
  • 2/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 4 tablespoons butter (firm)
Mix all ingredients in small bowl until crumbly (we used the food processor to make this easy). Reserve until end.

Directions:
  1. Heat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Grease 9-inch round pan
  3. Mix together ingredients above until blended.
  4. Mix in 1/4 of the Streusel topping.
  5. Spread in pan. Cover with remaining Streusel topping.
  6. Bake 18-22 minutes or until golden brown.

New Years Cleaning

I have spent the last couple of days -- and will spend a bulk of today -- helping my children get clean and organized for the new year. Day before yesterday, my daughter and I spent 4 hours cleaning her room. We felt SO good when we were done!

Glimpses of her room:
Ruth's Room Ruthie's Dressing table Ruthie's dresser Ruthie's toys -- organized!


Yesterday was my son's turn. We didn't finish in 5 hours! We had to get ready for our New Year's Eve Party and left a HUGE pile of clothes on the floor. We are beneficiaries of a hand-me-down clothing stream. My best friend has a son who is just over 2 years older than Gage. He is downstream from a woman with a serious shopping addiction. She only buys the "best" and she buys lots of it. What her son is finished with goes to my friend's son and then to Gage. We then pass it back and it goes to another family with twin sons a year younger than Gage. I have passed on clothing with the labels still on them. It's amazing! So, we have to go through and try everything on and sort into "donate" "pass on" "save for later" and "put away."
In progress:

During the cleanup!


I hope to continue this effort into other areas of the house for the rest of the week. My office/laundry room/studio is one such area that needs my attention. Our bedroom and bathroom are another. And, then there are some cabinets that need some SERIOUS attention -- linen, kids' bathroom, all the kitchen cabinets! So, that's my plans for starting the new year!

I learned today from my friend, Cindy at What's That You Said, that cleaning everything thoroughly is an asian tradition for New Year's. She helped clean her dojo from stem-to-stern this week.

My New Year's Resolutions:

Home:
  • re-institute a home management system (ala FlyLady -- I use her system as a loose guideline and modify to make it work for us!)
  • plan 2007 calendar with camping trips and work weekends (working around the house!)
  • research native plants for backyard landscaping
  • put together a household emergency kit and one for each vehicle
Writing:
Family:
Kids:
  • supervise kids' personal hygiene better
  • create weekly chore schedule for kids and supervise it
Self:
  • Continue to watch what I eat
  • Take regular (daily?) walks -- take my camera and call it birdwatching! :)
  • Layout clothes the night before -- use extra time in the morning to put on makeup!
So, overall, this is a plan to recover from two years of putting my schoolwork first. I need to capitalize on my half-time job (leaving me more "free" time) and make sure that we get back on the right footing. So much has gone by the wayside over the last couple of years and I want to make sure that we are ready for the future. It's also about being more actively involved in our lives -- rather than letting life happen to us. I've learned, in the past, that if I make goals and talk about them, I can make them happen. But, if I don't plan, make goals, and talk about them, nothing moves forward.

My wishes for my family and for all of you in this new year is to have a happy, healthy, fulfilling 2007.

PS. As a New Year's Treat, my birds are treating me extra well. I captured two male Anna's Hummers actually sharing the feeder. One was immature -- father and son? The other treat is that my chickadees are back! I let the feeders go over the holidays -- but cleaned them out the day after Christmas -- took the little darlings THIS long to come back and visit. I'm so glad to have them back!



Sharing of the feeder Chickadees enjoying Suet Dough

3 comments:

LauraHinNJ said...

Gosh Liza - I'm sort of exhausted just from reading your plans! It's great to be so organized.

I was doing an *adapted* flylady thing last year this time, but lost track of it in the Spring. Ought to get back to that - it helped me to not feel so behind all the time.

Best of the new year to you and your family. Happy Cleaning (yuck!)

Liza Lee Miller said...

I have had great success over the years using the adapted FlyLady thing to keep me moving in the right direction. I tend to be lazy and let things go plus my husband and I are natural packrats. We have made HUGE strides over the last five years and what-with-school-and-all, I've let things go quite a bit. But, still I am working on picking up some of those reins again just to feel more in control.

Mary said...

Liza, like Susan, I'm exhausted, too, reading your new year plans. Whew.

Like you, we cleaned up this weekend and all of yesterday so today I needed to get back to the office and rest up.

Your bird photos are great. I love reading your posts.

Happy New Year!