Feb 132011

Thanks to my education and profession, I am a very Lean mind. However, I have never [really] thought to make the Lean mindset apply to my personal lifestyle until now, thanks to Personal Kanban.

The above is my current personal kanban, it is definately high level and needs many more items added, because let’s face it, we all know the “write personal kanban post”,”clean the tub”, “clean the sink”, “clean the everything” memos are missing… obviously.

So, “What is a kanban?” you ask. It is a visual symbol that you need to do something. My visual symbols are HP Blade Post-Its with tasks written on each.

There are two definite mindsets when laying out your own personal kanban:

  1. Visualize your work
  2. Limit your Work In Progress [WIP]

Here, I have visualized the items in my household that need immediate attention and have written them down and set them in the Backlog portion of my Kanban. To limit  WIP, I recommend placing no more than 5 items in this line. There is a great example of limiting your work on the Personal Kanban website [All my friends in Houston traffic will totally get this analogy (especially my 2 motorcycle riding friends)]:

Once you have completed one of your visual signals, you will move it to the completed side and celebrate. Completing a task of necessity is an achievement, a success, a noteworthy account, without you completing this task, the day was a lot more bleak, dull and uneventful. You are amazing and thank you, honey, for carrying out that task!

Did you see, wrap oranges?! Are you kidding me? Well, no. Before the week of hard freezes, Dak and I went to the back yard to pick the oranges off the neighbors tree. Last year we had the same dilemma, but I read here that you can wrap oranges as long as you plan to eat them and look at them with and astute eye, one bad orange mixed in with other amazing oranges equals all bad oranges.

Our Neighbors Orange Tree

Our beautifully wrapped oranges + purple onion + garlic

Note: HP BladeSystem Post Its are not very wall friendly, I am thinking about investing in the new Post-Its with “kid sticking to the wall” sticky, then they won’t mysteriously fall into the garbage can.

PS – Here is B now, working on one of my WIP’s… I totally owe him!

My B, he is the best!

 Posted by at 2:10 pm
Feb 112011

My 2010 BCS Winnings!

Look what I just got in the mail! I was SHOCKED, and Dak barked her head of, as usual.

It’s an Igloo rolling cooler stuffed with chips and salsa!

Back in October (approximately) Frito Lay:Be Snack Readypost a 2010 TOSTITOS BCS National Championship Game Photos contest in which the top to winners were to claim tickets to the 2010 Tostitos BCS National Championship. So, I entered and then I became a finalist but I did not receive the most votes, bummer but it was still really cool to be a finalist!

Well, I am QUITE happy with these delicious chips and salsa! If I hadn’t already had lunch by the time this present got to me, I probably wouldn’t have made this post, since i <3 chips… big time.

I know, you are dying to see my finalist photo, here goes:

Rock'n the University of Oklahoma Cheerleader gear, HOT!

Thanks Tostitos! Hopefully I will put on a better game face this year and be one of the top two finalists to win the game day tickets. Until then, happy chipping my friends!

 Posted by at 1:58 pm
Feb 042011

When I grow up, I want to be the weather girl. If I became a weather girl, I would only have to be partially right about 20% of the time, the other 80% I would be able to guess from just looking at the sky…

Here is a peak at the winter weather that has shut down [almost] all of Houston and surrounding area today:

Whoa Whoa Whoa, can you believe it!? I mean, it’s almost 500 micrometers thick! WATCH OUT!

If you have kids, I’m sure you heard the big disappointment this morning when they didn’t wake up to even an inch on the ground. After all the hype on the radio and TV from the weather folks, it was like three feet were going to be on the ground when we woke up.

We actually got quite a bit of snow, but it hit two different atmospheric changes before reaching the ground, so all that we see now is minimal snow and lots and lots of ice/sleet/sludge. Thanks Humidity, didn’t think you would be so cruel to us in the winter as you are in the summer.

We did get what I like to call “crunchy grass”, grass covered in thick sheets of ice, it is so much fun to step on and hear the crunch crunch crunch under your feet. It reminds me of when Johnny and I were little, my parents used to set up the water hoses in the trees so that when we woke up there would be tons of crunchy grass and icicles connected to the trees, it was a winter wonderland!

We are supposed to get another hard freeze tonight, so maybe I will be able to build up enough warmth in my bones to do this for the girls to wake up to tomorrow morning. I better start layering now.

Happy “Snow” Day Folks!

 Posted by at 2:03 pm
Feb 022011

Holy Smokes Y’all! Remember when Mom and Dad said patience is a virtue? Well this patience has been long time coming!

Today and tomorrow ONLY, you can score a $200 Groupon to any of the 71 Houston area Mattress Firm store’s [including Clearance Centers] for just $50! That is 75% off!

C has been wanting a new bed/mattress since she hit about 4’11″ and that was about three years ago. She just picked out a whole new, mature bedroom theme actually; our baby girl is growing up [tear].

Here is the fine print for the deal:

  • Expires Aug 4, 2012 [18 months from Groupon activation]
  • Limit 1 per household. Limit 1 per order. In-store only. Valid only for mattress sets and mattresses. Not valid for returns. Tax and delivery not included.

     Posted by at 11:37 am
    Jan 262011

    We are almost through January 2011 and it is time for a resolution update.

    1. Eating breakfast every morning has been amazing. I have felt more active and alert every day. I happened to miss breakfast twice last week for ridiculous reasons, I’m sure. Boy, those days were not pretty and I really regretted not being smart and taking the time to make a bowl of Special K.
    2. Hmmm, still just snacking on fresh fruits and veggies mostly… Any good ideas for incorporating into easy dishes?
    3. Ode to my car, somebody put a curse [I have my suspicions] on that 10 year old girl and she had to be admitted to the hospital and go under the knife for a transmission transplant. She is good now, but there’s to the snowball this month. We are staying positive, I have only been to the grocery store three times this month and therefore have saved LOTS of cash, eating from the stockpile at the moment.
    4. B and I started working out in the morning to P90X, it is pretty insane, but we are surviving… we are definately sleeping better at night!
    5. B + C volleyed until it started raining a couple weekends back and then duked it out on Mario Cart Wii; it is so funny how they are both so competitive and so intense. Like Father, Like Daughter!
    6. Sweetgum Way is up and running and my tiles were posted on their feature page on January 18, that was REALLY exciting!

    I should have added another item to the list:

    • Live on the edge. Case and Point: Order sopapillas FIRST at your birthday dinner and you will be amazed at the looks the kids and adults give you… High Fives all around!

    Have you make/kept any of your resolutions one month into the new year? I hope so, let this be your encouragement to keep on keeping on, YOU CAN DO IT!

     Posted by at 11:57 am
    Jan 252011

    Our brother, Justin, gave us the most beautiful piece of art for Christmas. I just wanted to share it with you because it makes me smile.

    It is titled Mira Niñita, after the Los Jaivas hit song from 1972.

    C also received a beautiful watercolor titled Inside and Outside, which we framed in a white shadow box with black felt background.

    Stroll on over to his website and become a patron; I am sure you will enjoy his creativity and movement as much as we do.

    PS. We haven’t quite decided on a frame style that will do our painting justice, so it is going au natural at the moment. Any ideas?

     Posted by at 10:40 am
    Jan 012011

    Have you made a New Year’ s resolution?

    Personally, I like to think of them as short term goals that can potentially snowball to long term goals.

    I have no need to lose weight or be on better track with debt, so what do I need to adjust in order for better future prosperity?

    How about eating better and continuing to snowball?

    1. One thing I kick myself for almost every day is eating breakfast, the most important meal of the day! I just don’t make the proper time for it so I grab a pop tart or breakfast bar after my morning jog. This just is not acceptable for 2011. I need to be more proactive on eating before my morning activities so I will not feel sluggish through out the day.
    2. I would also like to eat more fresh fruits and veggies throughout the week by incorporating them more in the meals that I make for my family, rather than a snack after lunch or with lunch on the weekend.
    3. Our debt snowball is in progress and unless something absolutely terrible happens we are on track for payoff in just a few months! Yay us! Do you know what is more exciting than paying this stupid junk off? It is the ability to help more people, more families and more of our country, giving is the true gift of financial freedom and we are SO ready!
    4. I will share a really personal goal, who cares, there is no pride in Heaven. I want to feel more sexy in my own skin. God made this body to please Him, me, my husband and to support my family. Whatever it takes, I will admire who I am and who I am made to be.
    5. I want to play more games (board, TV and computer) with our sweet C. She just loves being competitive and likes to learn different strategies to winning, and to losing. She is very humble.
    6. I hope to get my etsy shop, sweetgum way, up and running. So far I am working on product, there will be lovely tile pieces up for sale soon enough!

    I believe I will be able to accomplish these goals and more in 2011 with the love, grace and ultimate hand of God and from my family.

     Posted by at 9:19 pm
    Jan 012011

    Happy New Year Friends!

    We are so excited to start this new year’s journey and see what God has planned for us!

    We pray you have continued health and prosperity along with many frugal finds to subsidize the future.

    Isn’t today just amazing outside?

    B and D are out playing in the yard and I am working on my etsy project and cooking a roast for this evening. C is most likely out with her mom or best girlfriend having fun and making it a wonderful January 1st, 2011.

    Happy New Year!

     Posted by at 4:12 pm
    Dec 202010

    Christmas holds some of my most favorite things, one of them are our ornaments. I just love when we pull them out every year and I get to look at them sparkle on the tree, just like they are brand new or just freshly made. Here are some of my most favorites:

    We just had to have this bird, C and I admired the fancy one my uncle had on his tree and decided ours was not complete without one as well… and they are just silly.

    I love this one, it is B and my “First” Christmas ornament, although we had spent three Christmas’s together since we met, 2008 was our first official Christmas together as Husband and Wife,  and ’til death do us part.

    I love how this red glittery star with silver bell sparkles in the lights on the tree. When I look at it, I want to sing (to whomever is around), “Darling you are my shining star, yes you are…”

    This one is for C, I love it. She is SO great on her saxophone that I couldn’t resist getting it for her. Her and B debate on whether the treble clef or bass clef is better. I stay out of it since I was in choir and used the treble clef (see Red Glitter Star above). I will put in that the treble clef is much prettier, don’t you agree?

    This is our shooting star – go ahead, you can make a wish! – it is white an glittery and hangs on a branch that is perfect to hang since it is almost 9″ long. If we turn on the fan it starts to twist and you can see the glitter lights come to life, it is so fun!

    Rudolph! How did this guy get to be last on the list of many? C made this bad boy a few years ago and I love it. This year he is chilling on a branch just below eye level and he is quite the catch. His nose is a sparkly red pom pom and he totes a green bell around his neck, what Christmas tree is complete without a Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer?

    Merry Christmas!

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