One thing I didn't include in my goals which I should have (rather than my second goal which is listed below) was preparing for and having a party for my mom's 82nd birthday. She is still in the transitional care unit as a result of a cracked ankle and now complications from diabetes. Despite this, she was able to go home for part of the day which was good.
Basically, on Tuesday morning (April 24th - her birthday) she enjoyed having birthday cake, mixed nuts, and coffee with 16 other ladies from her quilting group (they make quilts for people in need, without a home, or who were in domestic violence situations).
After the gathering, my sister joined my mom, Sophia, Olivia, and I for lunch. I made chicken noodle salad (the kind that my mom use to make when my sister, brother, and I were growing up – with little noodle rings, bits of chicken, onion, Watkins potato salad seasoning, Miracle Whip, eggs, celery, and radishes…the last two ingredients being added “for color” as my mom would say), whole grain rolls, fruit salad, deviled eggs, pickles, Sun Chips, pretzels, applesauce muffins, fresh vegetables with dip, and sugar-free lemonade.
Sophia played her harp as my mom was walking in the door and for a while (she played each of the songs she knew since my mom asked that for her birthday that Sophia play the harp); the ladies from the quilting group asked Sophia to play another song while they ate cake (she chose a song from "Sound of Music"); and then both Olivia and Sophia played a song on the piano after lunch. My mom enjoyed listening to the music.
My sister, mom, Olivia, and Sophia.
We are celebrating my mom's 82nd birthday.
So, here's what else I was able to do this week in terms of the three goals I set in April:
1 – Prepare and host an Easter gathering. This was done during the first two weeks of April.
2 – Clean half my office. I cleaned my desk off (as much as possible) and well as the top of a filing cabinet that is next to it during the first week. I still have some pending projects that I would like to complete and papers to go through.
It's a matter of sitting there for a half a day and going paper by paper...or project by project...and simply completing what needs to be done.
I also was working on one of my closets this month. During the first two weeks, I cleaned off four shelves on the two bookshelves (there are ten shelves total). This past week, I began working on another shelf. I cleaned and organized the craft and sewing supplies in each of the bins on that shelf. Found items to donate, toss, and reorganize so all like items are in the appropriate bins.
So, this project is left uncompleted as the month wraps up. It was too big of a project (even though I had broken down the major goal of cleaning my office into smaller steps).
Given that April included anticipated events such as Easter, the three-day homeschool conference, and my mom's birthday as well as unexpected events such as a health crisis with my mom (resulting in a change of her discharge plans from the transitional care unit from going home to going to assisted living for a month) and personally being sick for over a week and a half...it was too big of a goal. There's next month to hopefully finish it.
3 – Clean the blue room. This weekend, Sophia, Olivia, and I went through all the toys, games, costumes "dress up" clothes (for playing), and the play kitchen in the blue room. We ended up filling five trash bags with items to donate. There were also two doll cribs/beds to donate. In addition, there was one bag of items for the trash.
Items to donate: five bags of toys, costumes, and household items
plus two doll cribs. Also have one big bag of trash.
Last week, I went through the two small bookshelves in the room and chose books that I thought the girls were done with. They each took a look at the books - some they still wanted, but others they were ready to donate.
We added them to the collection of books that we are going to donate to the African Library Project for a library in Lesotho, Africa. Read more about the project HERE. (As a side note, if you're interested in helping by donating some children's books you have that you no longer need, the link will give you more information about how to get your books to us so they can be shipped to Africa.)
Once all the bags were out of the room, I vacuumed the room. I have not yet dusted or washed the walls and windows. Although technically I'm not quite done with meeting this goal, I do feel very happy with the fact that so many items were removed and can be donated or tossed.
A side benefit to removing what the girls no longer can fit into or play with, is that what is left is what they want and it is now organized and easy to find. Both girls wanted to play yesterday after the room was cleaned, and did so again this afternoon. It's been a while since they've played with things in the blue room, so it was nice to see them doing this again.
What are my three goals for May?
1. Finish the projects I did not complete during the past four months. For example, during January I was unable to paint part of the master bedroom; and during April I did not finish cleaning part of my office.
2. Do the Biology of Behavior program. This was something that I learned about at the homeschooling conference in mid-April. It is designed for children who are having learning challenges and/or health issues (the latter of which can affect the former).
Dianne Craft (the speaker) recommended quite a few books as well as a comprehensive three-month program that includes dietary supplements and a change in the way one eats. Sophia, Olivia, and I began the program on Thursday by using acidophilus (this is an article by Dianne Craft about its use and how it fits into the program). Even within four days, we each are noticing positive effects that it has on each of us.
During May, I want to read the recommended books as well as continue adding the different supplements or modifying what we eat each week.
3. Do a nice Mother's Day meal. As with Easter, we will have Mother's Day at my mom's home. We will take her out of the transitional care unit for part of the day so she can spend it at home.
I will make the meal and bring it to her home so my mom; my sister + her family; my brother + his family; and my family and I can enjoy the day together.