Thursday, August 13, 2009

Back from Vacation

My husband & I were fortunate enough to be able to go to Las Vegas for a family reunion. Each day there was a family event. We also went to see two shows; Lion King and a Cirque du Soleil show called Believe with Criss Angel. I also got to spend time by the pool, read, and I did a little stitching. The one thing I did not do was gamble. What I found is that there is plenty to see and do in Las Vegas even if you don't gamble. I hope I can go during the winter sometime to restock on sunshine and warmth. This past February we went to Phoenix where my husband was playing in a golf tournament. It wa wonderful to escape the cold, snowy, clouding northeast for a few days. I hope we can go somewhere sunny and warm again this coming February. The best part is having a time of peace away from routine and having dedicated time with my husband.

The only downside to vacation is catching up on your real life when you get back. But it is so worth it! I am thinking we should plan four long week end vacations a year. It is amazing how quickly you fall back into your normal routine when you return home. I love my children dearly but I am glad they are old enough to be left on their own for a few days so that DH and I can take these kinds of trips.

This trip helps me work toward my 'Strengthening Family Relationship' goal on my '101 Tasks List' . Now to get back to my stitching. I want to be able to post a finish here soon.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

101 Tasks in 1001Days ( 8/1/09 - 4/28/12)

The Mission: To complete 101 predefined tasks in a period of 1001 days.

The Criteria: Tasks must be specific with a result that is either measurable or clearly defined.
Tasks must also be realistic and stretching (ie. represent some work and growth on my part)

Why 1001 Days?
We often create lists of goals such as New Year's resolutions which we don’t achieve. One reason is that we procrastinate.

The key to beating procrastination is to set a realistic deadline. 1001 Days (about 2.75 years) is a better period of time than a year,
because it allows you several seasons to complete the tasks that may require multiple like seasons to complete.

Some common goal setting tips:
1. Be decisive: Know exactly what you want, why you want it, and how you plan to achieve it.

2. Stay Focused: Accomplishing any goal requires sustained focus from beginning to end.

3. Assessment: Constantly evaluate your progress to motivate you to further progress.

4. Welcome Failure: Failure presents an opportunity to learn.

5. Write down your goals: It clarifies your thinking and reinforces your commitment.

6. Keep your goals in sight: Review them frequently to ensure that they are at the forefront of your thinking.

7. Tasks are steps to completing goals. My tasks are organized by goals.

Start Date: August 1, 2009

End Date: April 28, 2012

Strengthen Family Relationships:

  1. Plan a monthly date night and occasional trips with DH
  2. Call or email my father, Lin & Wilfred , and my brother at least once /month
  3. Have monthly dinner for family at my house
  4. Take Erica to the Art Museum or Cloths Line Sale
  5. Teach Eric how to cook
  6. Document family b’days and anniversaries
  7. Send out cards every month ( b’days, anniversaries, etc)
  8. Create new family address book
  9. Plan & have Eric’s 60th b’day party
  10. Plan and have Erica’s Graduation party

Promote Great Personal Health:

  1. Develop habit of aerobic exercise 3 days/week
  2. Develop habit of weight training 2 days/week
  3. Practice yoga or relaxation techniques daily
  4. Lose weight: target 1=170
  5. Lose weight: target 2 = 150
  6. Lose weight: target 3 =135
  7. Take care of my teeth; identify a dentist & schedule regular dental appointments
  8. Schedule mammogram annually
  9. Schedule annual Gyn visit
  10. Schedule annual physical exams

Enhance My Home & Life:

  1. Power wash & stain deck
  2. Apply sealer to dry basement walls
  3. Clean out & organize basement
  4. Organize files in lateral file drawers and new file drawers
  5. Clean out all boxes of paper
  6. Organize/Review Finances & document bill paying
  7. Replace kitchen countertops
  8. Have roof replaced
  9. Make or buy drapes for family room
  10. Decorate Library
  11. Decorate Family Room
  12. Replace carpeting upstairs
  13. Paint hallway, stair case, and foyer.
  14. Paint family room and kitchen
  15. Install tile floors on first floor
  16. Redo powder room
  17. Buy new mattress and box spring
  18. Have screens repaired
  19. Buy a new front door and have it sealed
  20. Develop a new landscape design & implement it

Pursue and Improve My Needlework:

  1. Cross stitch at least 5 days per week
  2. Finish Dragon Virtues Afghan WIP
  3. Finish Story Teller WIP
  4. Finish Dragon Ride WIP
  5. Finish Wedding Sampler WIP
  6. Finish Mini Mandala Garden I #3 WIP
  7. Stitch 2nd Day of Christmas WIP
  8. Stitch 3rd Day of Christmas
  9. Stitch 4th Day of Christmas
  10. Stitch the Kiss on Mira RR
  11. Stitch Taj Mahal
  12. Stitch the Bliss Fairy
  13. Stitch Dragon Needle Case
  14. Stitch Delightful Dragon Fob
  15. Stitch 3-6 Christmas ornaments per year
  16. Finish Mira RR and Hang
  17. Finish LKRR and Hang
  18. Finish TWRR and Hang
  19. Finish all stitched Christmas ornaments
  20. Finish quilt for Eric Spencer
  21. Sew three polar fleece throws
  22. Make large floor pillows for Eric Spencer
  23. Sell surplus stash on ebay
  24. Send out 1 RAK /year

Contribute to my Department/College/Institute

  1. Develop ten articulation agreements for our BS degrees
  2. Develop annual workshop for Community Colleges
  3. Develop & document support agreements with SE, CS, IST, and NTID
  4. Develop and execute curricular changes that distinguish & strengthen our degrees
  5. Strengthen the systems administration sequence
  6. Add large scale computing to the curriculum
  7. Develop a capacity model for our programs
  8. Develop a faculty development and assessment plan

Pursue Scholarship in Support of Curriculum

  1. Write three papers on collaborative learning, experiential learning, or active learning
  2. Join ACM SIGITE & join curriculum committee
  3. Read three books on curriculum or pedagogy
  4. Act as a peer reviewer
  5. Identify an opportunity to edit or write a text book
  6. Develop a active learning textbook for the Intro to Unix Course

Pursue Excellence in Teaching

  1. Redesign Advanced Routing and Switching Course (4050-545)
  2. Revive 515 lab manual and update annually
  3. Revise layout & content of 351 lab manual annually
  4. Develop a substitute curriculum for Freshman Seminar
  5. Learn new techniques and incorporate them in my courses.

Pursue New Knowledge

  1. Learn C# and OOP
  2. Learn BGP
  3. Learn IS-IS
  4. Learn OSPF
  5. Learn MPLS
  6. Learn IGRP/EIGRP
  7. Take a research methods course
  8. Take and pass the CCNA certification exam
  9. Take an organizational behavior course
  10. Learn how to do zero based budgeting

Invest in My Personal Development & Contribute with Service

  1. Develop the habit of refection using a written journal or my blog daily
  2. Improve organization by cleaning out & organizing my office at work
  3. Take golf lessons to improve my game.
  4. Participate in a woman’s golf league at least once and play with others.
  5. Take sailing lessons and start sailing regularly.
  6. Refine my leadership capabilities by reading, workshops, & practice
  7. Serve my church by serving on at least one committees, teaching Sunday school
  8. Volunteer at LPGA each year

Reflecting Forward

I spent time this week reflecting on the next 101 tasks I wanted to list to support my goals. Some of the unaccomplished tasks from my first list and some that I did accomplish have been moved to the new list. Looking at what I accomplished off my first list helped me to redefine what really matters to me. I lost sight of this list over the last year or perhaps longer so I realize I must review it regularly in order to accomplish the tasks I have set before me. I must have a plan. My plan is two fold. I will print the list and put it in my daily record book. This is a notebook I have to keep track of my work responsibilities. Secondly, since I have decided that from now on Sunday will be my day for reflection and relaxation, on the first Sunday of each month I will review the list and select those tasks that I will work on during that month and put the 'to dos' on my calendar. If you are curious about some of my goals please feel free to look at my new 101 Tasks in 1001 days list.

Sunday, August 02, 2009

New 101 Task List

I realized today that I forgot all about my 101 task list that I started in 2006 and which ended in April of 2009. I went back to that post and updated it so it reflects what I did get accomplished. Unfortunately I did not get as much done as I had hoped. This week I will update and post my new 101 task list to reflect what I want to accomplish in the next 1001 days.

Saturday, August 01, 2009

Why is this so hard for me?

As you can see I have not posted since January. I had every good intention of posting to my blog but fail to do so because I think my posts will not interest other readers. I have continued to visit the cross stitch BBs that I frequent. Unfortunately the traffic on those BBs is quite low compared to what it was 2 or 3 years ago. We all have only a certain amount of time and I suspect as more of us blog we spend less time on the BBs.

I like the BBs because they are like a multiperson conversations. Blogs feel very one way to me. I know that people who read your blog can comment but I rarely get a comment so I feel like I am talking to myself. On the BB if I post a progress pic or a happy dance you usually get at least a few people who comment. Or if you have a question you can usually get an answer. The blog is a great way for me to express my opinions about something or dispay pictures or updates on my work but is not necessarily the best way to have a conversation.

I 've decide to try again beacause there was a thread on one of the BBs asking for our blog URL and because some said she had gone out and read my blog. I felt bad because it was so out of date. So I added my blog address to the list and said I would start to blog again.

My cross stitch goal for this year was to finish 10 projects. In previous years I have had more specific goals and have not succeeded. This felt comfortable. I am on track to complete 10 projects this year. So far I have completed 6. The last two were Deco Spirits- Fire panel by Mirabilia and Christmas is Forever by Lizzie Kate. Pictures of those two are posted above.

Monday, January 05, 2009

Great Day

Today was the first day back after almost two weeks off from work. I did absolutely no work for my job over the break so I knew today would be busy since I had to turn in my budget requests today and it is the first time I am doing it. As it turns out it was not as complicated as I had feared and I got it done in an hour. I then spent the rest of the morning updating and prioritizing the capital requests for my department which are not due until April. I had done all the research prior to our break and wanted to get the work done while my notes still made sense.

The sun was also out today and always improves my spirits but it also meant the day was cold. So thoughts of spring were in my head so I looked for a picture that signifies spring to me:

I hope this brightens your day too.

Sunday, January 04, 2009

Golf History

My husband is an avid golfer. A couple of nights ago he asked me which women golfers I thought had won the grand slam. I made a couple of guesses but decided tonight to look it up. First of all I didn't even know what defined a grand slam so I started there. It turns out that the depending on the year it is winning two to four major tournaments in a given year. It turns out that no woman has ever won four majors in a given year but two women have won the grand slam by the rules of the year they won it in. The one I started reading about is Babe Didrikson Zaharias. She was accomplished in just about every sport - basketball, track, golf, baseball, tennis, swimming, diving, boxing, volleyball, handball, bowling, billiards, skating and cycling. She was an Olympic gold medalist in track and field and became best known for her remarkable golf career.

Today we are wowed by Tiger Woods but if Babe were alive today she would dominate the sport. She was perhaps the greatest athlete of all times and most people have never heard of her. What a great role model she could be for the young women of the world. If she had been a man would we still be talking about her?

Saturday, January 03, 2009


I woke up this morning thinking about time. My thoughts revolved around making the best use of my time and being able to fit all the things I want to accomplish into the time I have. None of us know how much time is allotted to us in life. What we can control is making the most of the time that has been given to us. So each day I must plan wisely. I need to go back to my list of 101 Tasks in 1001 Days and evaluate the content as well as the accomplishments. I need to prioritize, I need to stay connected to family and friends and I have to make sure I have fun along the journey. In 2009 I will spend more time with my family ( immediate and extended) , work on my fitness, work on my house, take on new challenges at work, explore my spirituality, and stitch as much as I can. With that it is time for me to get going.

May you all find the time you need to do the things you love.

Friday, January 02, 2009

Where My Cross Stitch is Going in 2009

My cross stitch stats for 2008 are as follows:
  • Number of WIPs at the start of 2008: 8
  • New Projects Started: 12
  • WIPs completed: 13
  • Remaining WIPs @YE: 7

My stitching goals for 2009 are:
  1. To StRIP 10 projects from my WIPs or stash
  2. Finish my current 10 project challenge.
  3. Finish 12 completed projects.
  4. Be a SOS except for two exception: JCS Ornie magazine and supplies needed to complete projects in my stash
  5. Send out at least one RAK out of my stash.
My Starting WIPs for 2009 are:
  1. Papillon's How Does Your Garden Grow: Stitched 65% in 2008
  2. Dragon Virtues Afghan - 38% - Stitched 25 % in 2007, none in 2008
  3. Mira RR Deco Spirits - on Mira RR - 20% - Stitched 5 % in 2007, none in 2008
  4. Dragon Ride- 12% - Stitched 4 % in 2007, none in 2008
  5. Peace Ornament: Stitched 10%in 2008
  6. TW Wedding Sampler 10% - Stitched 5% in 2007; 5% in 2008
  7. StoryTeller - 5% - I did not stitch on this one in 2007 or 2008
New 2009 Starts:
- TW's 2nd Day of Christmas
- Chatelaine's Mini Mandela I.3

Other Possible Starts:
- other small travel projects as needed
- Taj Mahal
- The Kiss

My Plan is:
I will stitch at least 1 hour per day. I am a One At A Time (OAAT) stitcher for my major pieces.
- I will stitch Christmas ornaments and other small projects as travel projects. The Peace Ornament occupies that spot right now.
- The 2nd Day Of Christmas will be stitched on TW Mondays.
- My OAAT project is currently How Does Your Garden Grow. I will then stitch the Mini Mandala.

I look forward to an exciting and fun stitching year. So what abut you? What are you looking forward to accomplishing this year?

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Reflection 2009

I reread my post of January 1, 2008 and I will repeat some of it here in order to remind myself of the importance of reflection in my life. As this is the first day of the year what better time to recommit myself to the practice of internal reflection than today. Many of us spend a great deal of time looking at our external reflection so we can evaluate our physical appearance. But how much more important it is to look inside yourself and reflect on what you have done with your life so far; to decide whether you are happy with what you have done or need to do some things differently. Today is a good day to look at your actions and accomplishments for the past year and determine what you would have done differently and then make your plans for the new year.

Although I reflect often on my life I am not good at recording my reflections or the events of my life. Therefore it is sometimes difficult to evaluate my growth and progress. So here I am at the beginning of another year pledging once again to use this blog on a regular basis. Hard-copy journals don't work for me but I would love to leave my children something of my inner self for their future reading. Also my husband thinks I am a mystery because he doesn't often understand my motivations. I think they are perfectly clear and my children understand better than DH because each of them is like me in some way. DH and I are opposite in personality but we share the same family and moral values. We love each other deeply and I believe we balance each other giving us a rich and happy marriage but my reflections here might help my DH to understand me better.

During 2009 I will work on my fitness so I can stay healthy and therefore continue to live life to the fullest; enjoying my family, my work, and my hobbies.

Happy New Year to all my online friends and may 2009 bring you peace, health, happiness and prosperity.