Monday, August 4, 2008


I turn 35 today. A few months ago when I thought about this impending birthday, I felt good about it. I felt like I had come to a point in my life where I feel good about myself, I know who I am, and where I am going. I have known women in their 40's that seem so confident and sure of themselves, flaws and all. I was starting to feel like I was getting to that point in my own life. Sure, I have started to notice a few wrinkles in the last year or 2 and I am still 15 lbs over my pre -baby weight even though my baby is 5 years old, but I haven't found any gray hairs, yet, and attractiveness is 3/4 confidence anyway, right?

But then I went to the mall...

If you are over 30, I do not recommend shopping for clothing at the mall. I haven't shopped at the mall for years. I figured I couldn't afford the clothes there. But we just moved and I wanted to check out mall here and I had birthday money to spend. So Saturday, I went to the mall. Now, I gave up shopping in the juniors section when I was 29, but what I didn't realize is that the mall (except the department stores) is one big junior's section. When I came home crying - yes, I really did cry, I guess I am not quite as self actualized as I thought - my dh pointed out that, of course the mall is a bad place for a 35 year old to shop, the mall is designed for 13 - 21 year olds to hang out at... Duh!

But here is my dilemma. Where do women in their 30's shop? The cute clothing at the mall and in the junior's section is not cut to fit a woman in her 30's, skinny or not. Nor is most of it really appropriate either. I have been looking for graphic t- shirts, but I don't think a 35 year old mother of 3 should run around in a shirt that says," I kissed a girl and I liked it." I was also looking for a lace bottomed tank to wear under stuff, but apparently if you have short waist, the lace will hit you about mid thigh and that is just not attractive at all. But I don't want to wear old lady clothes, now or ever really.

So I have resigned myself to plain colored t- shirts and jeans. And until I get nominated for "What Not to Wear," I will be shopping at Target, Ross, Marshall's, and Macy's (sale rack and store brand) And carefully avoiding the junior's section.

Maybe next year I will become the confident middle aged - ack! - woman that I dream of becoming...

Sunday, August 3, 2008

My name is Michelle and I am a booklist junkie

I admit that I have a problem. That is the first step, right? I just love looking at booklists. And I can't just find one great booklist and use it for our homeschool. No, I have to search out every booklist I can find and consolidate them into my own personal booklists. So for all of you booklist junkies out there. I have published my lists on Google Docs and set up links in my side bar.

They are in excel spreadsheets. Be sure to check out all of the sheets. Some of the lists have several sheets. I couldn't figure out how to give each column a heading and still be able to organize the lists. They should be easy to figure out. I put an X next to the books we have read and stars to indicate how much we liked the book. I also noted age level for some. My kids are 5, 7, and 10, so most books are appropriate for that age range. I also noted if we owned the book. If the documents have more than one sheet, it is usually because each sheet is a separate sub category. For example, the Around the World Books are divided by area of the world. And the ancient history list has separate sheets for Egypt, Greece, and Rome.

This is just a portion of my lists. The rest are still hand written. Check back as I will be adding new lists after I get them typed into excel. Enjoy.