Sunday, 23 October 2011

101 List - Progress Check 23rd Oct 2011

And the progress report...I'll try to keep it brief as there are a few items to get through, and I may even manage to include some photos and links...

I have to say I am rather pleased with my progress so far, although it is early days and I haven't attempted any of the trickier stuff... being nice for 2 weeks, anyone who knows me (especially in a work capacity) will know that this is probably going to be the hardest one on the whole list, hence I will be leaving it until at least the end of next year as I know there are some ridiculously busy times for the next year or so, and there's no point in me managing to be good for 2 days (like I could do that...) and then have to start all over again. I am thinking that I may have to gaffa tape my mouth for 2 weeks to make this a remote possibility, and may even have to chop my hands off to stop myself typing bad things - oops!!!

My first task that I was able to cross off was number 46, to write a post (very photo heavy) for the wonderful Lucy re my mass of bargains from the Filofax Germany website sale - all those filofaxes at 9 Euros each, I thought I'd gone to heaven. If you are a Filofax fan you can see the post here on Loulou's Modern Musings, or on under the web finds for October 8th 2011 (hence achieving number 62). You would not believe how excited I was to see that Steve had picked up my post to go onto the website, for us special people who just love filofaxes!!!

I have also selected my personal Finchley in Imperial Purple to use as my 101 in 1001 days and set her up ready for use, as shown in the photos below (Hello, number 48, I'm talking about you, you're done - apart from the usual tweaking that follows the set up of almost any filofax):

So pretty - much more purple in the flesh
Various Post-it tabs used as dividers for now - wait for task 84!!!
List of tasks for the category
List of classics - detail
First blog notes

Once the challenge is fully underway I will no doubt do a full post on this beauty, I have had her a while now and wasn't sure what to use her for as she is so soft and posh, although you can see I have brought her down a bit closer to my own level with colourful bits and pieces.

The final completed task is to wear false eyelashes. Now I have tried to do this once before and managed to get one set on perfectly, they looked fabulous. However, the problem occurred, when I tried to do the other side, they were not going to go on in the right place no matter what I did, so in the end I gave up, chucked some more eyeliner on, and headed for the Baileys.

A couple of weeks ago, I went to Newbury to go to my friends wedding reception (considering I'm going to struggle to be nice for 2 weeks, I also wonder how I actually have any friends...). Whilst in Newbury my DF and I figured that we would pop into town to try to find something Scottish to wear, which we hadn't known we needed (quote from bride-to-be "It said so in the invites...", me "Claire, you didn't send us an invite" - now it sounds like I'm just a gatecrasher!!!). We went into the old department store there and I thought I should start to get some things for my 101 list and went to the Benefit counter, where the girl had some lovely little butterfly eyelashes on. She very kindly pointed out that the Paperself girls were doing free demonstrations, so obviously I just had to try them, and, being the type of girl who will try pretty much anything at least once, I had full sets of peacock lashes as shown below. They were great, made of paper, so don't cry, but it means you can bend them how you want to so they don't irritate - love, love, love these. But will probably onle ever get more if I can get someone else to put them on for me :-)

My eyelashes, the Paperself card and some Benefit bits cos they're nice :-)

The peacock eyelashes - so fab!!!

You can see from the updates to my list that I have done some of the preliminary stuff for them, but I will write more on these as and when the tasks themselves are completed, or started depending on how long it's going to take. The walking in high heels thing may take a few attempts, it's been a very long time since I've worn proper, feminine, high heels. And as much as I know Lucy wants to see the pics of my new fab shoes, she may just have to wait a little longer - hopefully not too long though, I want to wear them, they are soooo fantastic.

Anyway, way too much from me for one day. I'm off to read some more of my first 'classic' book - Wuthering Heights, courtesy of Amazon & Kindle.


101 Things to do in 1001 Days - List

As promised, here is my magic list of treats, things I need to do, things I want to do. All listed in the hope that having shared with other people what I intend to do I may actually get the majority of these done.

My official starting date was October 2nd, when I finished my list and completed my first task, result!!! 1001 days makes it all seem a little less intimidating, as this means that I have until Sunday June 29th 2014, which currently seems a long way off :-)

Enough waffle, here's the list, split into various categories:

1.      Read 10 prizewinner bookscompleted Dec 2012
                       Angela's Ashes
                       The Shipping News
                       Midnight's Children
                       The Color Purple
                       The English Patient
                       Schindler's Ark
                       Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha!!!
                       The Sea
                       Wolf Hall
2.      Read 5 Shakespeare plays -  completed Jul 2012
                       King John
                       King Lear
                       As You Like It
                       Antony and Cleopatra
                       The Taming of the Shrew
3.      Read 10 classic bookscompleted Feb 2012
                       Wuthering Heights
                       Far From the Madding Crowd
                       Great Expectations
                       Jane Eyre
                       A Christmas Carol
                       Tess of the d'Urbervilles
                       Lady Chatterley's Lover
                       The Picture of Dorian Grey
                       Northanger Abbey
5.      Load CDs to iTunes completed Dec 2012
6.      Loads all music on tapes to iTunes tape to MP3 converter received Nov 2012
7.      Buy headphones for iPod - completed Feb 2012
8.      Have music playing all day & no TV/computers for whole family (x 3)
9.      Watch 10 new releases (DVD is fine...) - completed Apr 2012
                     Harry Potter (the last one)
                     Captain America
                     The Green Lantern
                     Happy Feet 2
                     Puss In Boots
                     In Time
                     Jane Eyre
                     The Help
10.    Watch 10 classic films - films identified, got to find them, 7 down 3 to go
                      Brief Encounter
                      Taxi Driver
                      The Graduate
                      The Sting
                      The Shawshank Redemption
                      How to Steal a Million
11.    Watch 10 musicals (films) - completed Jan 2014
                      Rock of Ages
                      Half a Sixpence
                      Singin' In The Rain
                      Les Miserables
                      Seven Brides for Seven Brothers
                      Oklahoma (1955)
                      The Wizard of Oz
                      Mary Poppins
12.    See 2 west End musicals - completed 21 Feb 2012
                      Rock of Ages
                      We Will Rock You 
13.    Go to 2 concerts - completed Jan 2013
                      Rock of Highway Semi-Final
                      Rock Highway Final   
14.    See 2 dance productions - completed Oct 13
                      Rock the Ballet
                      Romeo & Juliet rock ballet
15.    Read 5 banned books
                      A Clockwork Orange - Anthony Burgess
                      A Farewell to Arms - Ernest Hemingway
                      Black Beauty - Anna Sewell
                      Memoirs of Fanny Hill - John Clelland
                      Uncle Tom's Cabin - Harriet Beecher-Stowe

16.    Spend 10 minutes teaching/listening to boy reading - cancelled
17.    One big family day out every month - cancelled
18.    Set up playroom for boys now that they are sharing a bedroomcompleted Mar 13
19.    Teach boys to swim (or arrange swimming lessons) - cancelled
20.    1 full week family holiday - completed July 2012
21.    1 weekend family break - completed May 2013
22.    Cooking/baking with the boys 10 times - done 5 times so far
               cookies x 2
               pumpkin soup
23.    10 photo sessions with the boys - cancelled
25.    Take the boys to a show - Batman shown. Completed Feb 2012
26.    Go camping - completed May 2013 (Europaparc covered wagon)
27.    Scrapbook three photos of the boys - completed May 2013
28.    Write a short story for the boys - cancelled

29.    Go to Vegas - completed July 2013
30.    Get married - July 21st 2013 :o)
31.    12 'date' nights with Ben (at home or out) 6 date nights so far
33.    Have dinner by candlelight - completed July 2012

Health & Fitness 
34.    Take a 1+ hour walk on my own (x3) - cancelled
35.    Drink a cup of Rooibos tea with honey every day for 2 weeks - completed Sep 2013
38.    Drink 1.5 litres of water a day for 1 week (reduced Nov 2012) - completed Dec 2012
39.    Take a supplement (vitamins/minerals and/or probiotics) for 3 months - completed August 2012
40.    Complete Les Mills Combat workout programme - completed Apr 2013

Personal Development & Treats
44.    Write a post for Lucy re purchases from the German Filofax sale - completed 2nd Oct 2011
45.    Write a post for Lucy re my A5 work Filofax - completed on this blog 20th April 2012
46.    Set up a Filofax for the 101 things in 1001 days project - completed 22nd Oct 2011
47.    Knit a scarf - completed 24th Mar 2013
48.    Become confident enough to hold a conversation in German - completed Jan 2014
49.    Embroider a sampler - started Dec 2013
50.    Read 5 books in German (basic please...) - cancelled
51.    Write a poem - cancelled
52.    Learn to walk in high heels - completed Sep 2013
53.    Invest in a capsule wardrobe for work - completed 22nd Nov 2011 
54.    Wear only feminine clothes for a week - completed 31st Jul 2012
55.    Follow a proper skincare routine for 4 weeks - completed Aug 2012
56.    Wear full make up every day for 4 weeks (foundation not essential) - completed 1st Jan 2012
57.    Cook one proper meal for visitors/dinner party - completed 8th Jan 2012
58.    Learn 6 new recipes - 4 down
59.    Take camera on days out and use it - cancelled
60.    Get a post published on Philofaxy - completed 8th Oct 2011
61.    Be a 'Reader Under the Splotlight' on Philofaxy - completed 5th Nov 2012
62.    Do the 30 list in 30 days challenge (another blog find that I need to read up on) - completed Jul 2012
63.    30 mins per day to relax/meditate for 2 weeks (while on 2 week holiday with Ben does not count)
64.    Be nice for 2 weeks (watch my tongue/type IM and delete instead of sending) - completed Aug 2012
65.    Learn to use a proper camera - cancelled
66.    Buy some nice high heels and wear them - heels bought...
67.    Buy a posh/designer handbag - completed Oct 2012
69.    Give more praise (at home & at work) - completed Jan 2014
70.    Make a birthday cake - completed May 6th 2012
71.    Bake cupcakes - completed Oct 2012
72.    Go for a manicure - completed July 2013
73.    Go for a facial - completed July 2013
74.    Journal daily for two weeks (15 minutes minimum)
75.    Wear false eyelashes - completed 8th Oct 2011
76.    Buy flowers for home - completed Aug 2013
78.    Donate to charity (sponsoring someone who I would sponsor anyway doesn't count) - Feb 2013

Finance, House & Organisation
79.    Keep to a basic household routine using my Plannerisms planner - started Feb 2013
80.    Set up a recipe binder
81.    Christmas presents sorted by the end of November for 1 year - completed Nov 2012
82.    Christmas cards and envelopes written by end of November for 1 year - completed Nov 12
83.    Plan for Christmas using the Dodo Book of Christmas - completed Dec 2012
84.    Make dividers for Filofaxes in various sizes - completed Jan 2013
85.    Blog re the 101 in 1001 projectcompleted Jan 2014
86.    Have a fabulously frugal 3 months (not immediately after Christmas) - changed to 12 weeks, completed Jan 2013
87.    Take lunch to work daily for 2 weeks - completed Jan 2013
88.    Manage bank accounts properly, update Excel weekly (not monthly/quarterly)
89.    Arrange meeting with financial adviser to sort savings - completed Nov 16th 2011
90.    Save minimum of 60% of 2009 tax rebate - cash committed, completion Jan 2012
91.    Get garden sorted UK - completed May 2011
92.    Get electrics/gas signed off - electrics done Oct 2012, gas done Feb 2013
93.    Get new shower (or whole bathroom) - shower fitted Oct 2012
94.    Set up an events planner - completed Apr 2013
95.    Transfer all data from the Dodo Book of Christmas to the events planner - completed Apr 2013
96.    Finish work on Mondays (ex-monthend) with no work to take home for 3 months - completed May 2012
97.     Finish work on time with no work to take home 2 days a week for 3 months - completed Jun 2012
98.    Work very late for 2 nights at monthend, and 2 'normal' late nights per month with no work to
         take home for 2 months - completed May 2012
99.    As 98, but with hours back in the form of working from home on Fridays with an early finish - completed May 2012
100.  Clean out my closet - completed Aug 12
101.  Organise paperwork - completed Sep 12

10 new tasks to replace those that have been removed above:

-      Sort through the boys clothes - completed Oct 13
-      Make a crafting picture in one of my IKEA picture frames - completed Nov 2013
-      Sort stationery supplies/stickers and post out some RAK packages - completed Oct 13
-      Sort through the hallway cupboards - started Oct 13
-      Package up the big boxes in the hallway and office for recycling - completed Nov 2013
-      Sort through the boxes upstairs that have still not been unpacked
-      Take fish oils daily for 3 months - started Oct 13
-      Take iron supplements twice daily for 3 months - started Oct 2013
-      3 month Facebook ban (apart from personal messages, adding my own photos)
-      3 month Keep In Touch project (letters, calls) - cancelled

And there we have it - my official list of things that I intend to cross off my list by June 29th 2014.

My next blog will include a progress report, to catch up with where I am, but I need to work out how to add photos to my blog first.


101 Things to Do in 1001 Days - Intro

So here we are with the main purpose of this blog. Being so busy with my work it is impossible to plan any regular activities, and I need to do something other than work and chase my tail :-)

I have decided to challenge myself with doing the 101 things in 1001 days project.  I have read about this on a few blogs now and thought it would be a good opportunity for me to focus on the more important things in life (both necessary and fun stuff).

I was surprised that I actually managed to write my list so quickly, I had visions of me spending 999 days writing the list and then having 2 days left to try to get everything done - I am by nature a planner and procrastinator.

The trickiest part so far was deciding which of my lovely Filofaxes I should use to record everything relating to this project, and I was very good - in the end I grabbed an old notebook, scribbled "STOP PROCRASTINATING" at the top of the page and started the list in there instead of waiting until after the Filofax dilemma was solved. (For those of you who love Filofaxes and who can't wait to know, it was the personal Finchley in Imperial Purple that won the fight in the end).

Next post will be later today with the full list... I have some catching up to do as I started the project at the beginning of this month.

What to Blog? That is the Question...

Well, here goes. Welcome to my blog :o)

How on Earth did I end up starting a blog of my own... Well as I have little time to do anything I decided to try out the project 101 things in 1001 days (more about that later), and thought that it would be nice to blog about it to help keep me on track. If I am only accountable to myself then I will achieve none of the things on my list.

However, once I had written my list I realised that I had other things that I want to write about, you know, the general stuff that crops up from time to time.

I am hoping that I will find writing to be therapeutic for me as I have a pretty hectic life - F/T job with long hours, 2 children aged 4 and 6, living in a country with no support network nearby. Thankfully I have the most fabulous fiance, without whom I would not be able to manage my work or our children...

In fact he is such a star that yesterday he installed our old TV in our bedroom so we can on occasion watch a film in bed. As I was knackered and in a fair bit of discomfort from slipping down the stairs on Friday, I decided to lie down for 10 mins while he finished setting it up. As soon as it was done he put "The Devil Wears Prada" on for me a got the boys to go upstairs and do something else, so I got a couple of hours to chill with just a few minor interruptions from the munchkins - such a diamond :-)

Fingers crossed I will be able to work out the technical side of writing a blog, all that linking stuff..., and will have the discipline to actually maintain the blog.

Wish me luck.