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One word. 365 days. 6 facets.

Happy 2015 to everyone. I'm grateful that this year has come. A few days ago I blogged about our family pyramid- if you did not get a moment to read that blog, click here.

Okay, now that you're caught up... We can move on to my new post: One word. 365 days. 6 facets. For the past few years I've chosen, not only resolutions, but a word to represent my year to come. Over the years my words have changed based on the status of my life and what I have going on at the moment. It's nice to reflect on New Years Day to see how much I've changed in my adulthood. One year my word was "still" one year it was "brave" one year it was "overcome." 

One thing I enjoy about the app "time hop" is that it takes you back to moments that you've posted on social media. It republishes Facebook statuses, photos taken, tweets, and pictures from Instagram. It updates daily and shows what you posted from years back! Wow how awesome it is to see how you've changed- through friendships, hardships, and overall as a person! If you don't have it- I highly suggest you download it! 

This year's resolution word is: BALANCE

2014 was a year of extremities for me in so many ways- and towards the end of the year I could feel my body craving more balance. I need to find small balances 365 days a year, to accumulate more overall balance in my life. 

In my last post I mentioned 6 facets that Cody and I meet to discuss each week; these facets make up our family pyramid. In order to create more overall balance- I'll need find balance in each part of my life: faith, finances, function, fitness, field, and fun. 

For example- in the health and fitness area of my life- I tend to workout 6 days a week or no days a week. My perfectionist mentality plays tricks on me and I get too wrapped up in one facet, leaving the others behind. 

Another example of finding balance is in our function. I'm either Mrs. OCD USA and everything is spotless, organized, organically created- or I'm driving through Taco Bell, on the phone with xyz company paying a bill, and coming home to a crazy mess of a house which drives me to planting on the couch for hours at home each evening. I need to accept that some times my home can be a little disorganized. Even though it's clean, it sometimes doesn't appear so and that is okay. I need to pencil in more cheat meals or dates instead of binging on drive-thru dinners days at a time when I am too busy to enjoy the cheat itself!


I would like to blog once a month about how I find balance in my focus areas. Just a small commitment to keep me on track. 

2015 is wide open. It's ready for my mark. In order to get to where I need to be in 2015 I must breathe. I must find balance. I must trust the process of balance- even when I do not want to. 

I need to balance "existing" with plain ole living.I need to balance work and exploration- sadness and joy- fun and focus. For in balance, lies the real treasure. 

Happy New Year Y'all!
Annie B


2015 Goals and Plans

As our next year approaches, Cody and I sat down with our family binder and evaluated each aspect of our lives. Originally we set up this binder system in 2014 but failed to meet some months,  thus we didn't meet all of our goals for 2014. Here is what our binder looks like. We have a divider and extra information for each part inside:
Inside our Castillo Family Pyramid binder, at our meetings we discuss 6 Fs that our family is based on. In order for our family to function we have to address the 6 elements at each weekly meeting, determining weekly goals and monthly goals to meet. The 6 most important aspects in out family are: FAITH, FUNCTION, FINANCE, FIELD, FITNESS, and FUN. That pyramid makes up our FAMILY. 

We have some ground rules for our meetings- first no texts, calls, or social media during our meeting. Next, we start each meeting with a small prayer. Last- set the next meeting time/date at the end of the meeting. Let me take you through what we discuss in each divider tab, what we write down in our calendar, and how we communicate.

Faith: this is our first tab and most important, or base, of our family. Here we discuss what we want to do weekly to become stronger in our Catholic faith. Our weekly goals add up to one overall monthly goal. (Example: this month we want to memorize and learn 2 Latin prayers. Our weekly goal is to memorize the confiteor in weeks 1-2, and the Gloria in weeks 3-4). Our monthly goal will change in February and can be anything we decide it to be that helps us grow in our faith ( individually and as a couple). We also set small personal faith goals here (for example it may be to say a rosary 1x a week, extra scripture study, or go to Eucharistic Adoration 1-2x a week) sometimes our personal goals are the same and sometimes not! 

Function: this is our second tab. It's important we know our roles and goals and how we will operate weekly. Here, we review the weekly chores and decide who is doing what -that week. We have 10 chores, so we each have 1 small chore 5 days a week. We can choose the day we do each one, but we don't write that in our calendar...rather we mark them off with a dry erase marker in out binder (the chore list is page protected for easy wipe off)! We also have an "other" section where we pick from a list of alternating tasks-- things that don't need to happen each week but maybe only twice a month (bathing dogs, washing the cars, cleaning the pantry, etc)-- you decide! We also make a "To do" list of tasks for the month in our calendar (like getting an inspection, or ordering contacts...) you get the idea! Here we make our grocery list and plan our weekly meal prep ideas/ dinner ideas. 

Finances: Studies show that for most couples, finances are burdensome. Cody is in charge of budgeting expenses, while I am in charge of our bank account balance- we both pay the bills depending on who is home or what our day looks like.  We look at our budgets to see if are over or under budget, what bills are coming up soon. Cody uses the app called "mint" and "mint bills" where he has set up budgets for our spending (example we have 200.00 a month for gas; he puts our bank transactions in each "budget title" to see if we were under, met, or over budget. We have about 20 categories. Some of our categories include things like: rent, gas, personal fun money, get the idea! After checking each budget, we then plot pay days and "bills due" on our family planner/monthly calendar... Because writing it all down just helps! This meeting, we also set our 2015 BIG savings account goal and how much we need to save each month to get there. Any money not accounted for at the end of the month goes straight to savings! We have 2 pretty BIG things we are saving for this year and we are excited to start both of those processes...but that's a post for another time ☺️

Field: here we set weekly goals for our careers/ field of expertise. The better we succeed in our career, the better our family will function. This month, mine is to stay late at work 1 day each week to grade so my papers don't stack up, while Cody's is to watch 1 video each day for work. 

Fitness:it's important for couples to be healthy for themselves, one another, and their children.  At this point we evaluate our schedule and set 1 monthly goal- it may be to lose 5 lbs or workout so many times that month! Then we look at our week and write in our calendar what we plan to do, to meet that goal. For me, it's to find more balance- so my goal for January is work out only 3 days each week- that way I don't get overwhelmed with working out plus all my other busy weekly activities! Each month, our goal changes... For example you may choose to be dairy free for a month or workout each day- whatever works for your lifestyle!

Fun: this is our last tab but one we look forward to! It's important for couples to set a time to be together or to do something they look forward to each month. For us, we find that weekly date nights work best! Here we discuss upcoming events for the month.  We plan a date night each week unless we are scaling back to save money, and we also discuss trips for the year or quarter and details if necessary. We discuss our date night ideas and what our plans are for when friends spontaneously show up and want to have fun. We discuss an increase or decrease in date nights based on our money flow for the month. Then we plot our dates on the planner/ calendar.

After going through all 6 parts, we quickly recap goals and set up our next meeting based on how our upcoming week looks. We usually try to meet on Sunday, but if one is out of town or we are gone, we look at the calendar to set up a better time to meet! I hope this will help you and your family in setting SMART goals for the 2015 year! 

Also, check out Dr. Taylor Marshall's planning tips in this video 

Happy Family planning y'all...

Annie B


Dear Love,

8 years ago today it wasn't this cold out, but it was a beautiful fall day full of sunshine. 

I walked down the aisle to the sound of trumpets; it was gorgeous. At the end of my journey, you were there waiting for me with a half-smile-half teary-eyed look. 

Today marks 8 years as your wifey.  That's so weird to me- mainly because after 8 years of marriage and 15 years together, it's still just "us." I never it thought it would still be just me and you babe, but I'm so thankful it has been all these years. 

This year we decided to buy a mutual gift for our anniversary; probably an iPad or maybe a trip over the Christmas break- we aren't sure yet, but one thing I know for sure is how much a gift you've been to me babe. 

You've loved me when we first met 
And after 15 years 

You've loved me when I was unhealthy

And medium

You've loved me when I was thin

You've loved me as a young man

And you love me now as a grown 

You've loved me when I'm fancy 

And you've loved me when I'm down

You've loved me when I felt unloveable

And when when I feel unstoppable 

You loved me no matter my decisions 

And when I couldn't make one (especially about where to eat dinner) 

You loved me when we lived in our hometown 

And when we moved far away

You loved me when we tried for a baby 

And when I gave it up

You loved me through pain and heartache 

And you've loved me through tough love

You have loved me all these years and no matter what's going on, on the outside the one thing that's remained the same 

is how you look at WE and I see how wonderfully lucky I really am- if it is just you and me. 

I love you...


Full of Yesterday

This is where I have been for a while. I've been stuck in "yesterday"-- and I know all about getting out of yesterday, but for a while I haven't had the energy but to only take 1 foot out while the other is still in. 

Yesterday represents the past and the past can be full of happiness or pain, depending upon what glasses we use to look back. We are either yearning for yesterday or mourning in it. Why?

Yesterday is a place for all of us that hurts more that it actually does, and seems way more fun than we actually had in the very moment. 

My yesterdays are full of a myriad of things. Some I can't share because they still sting, and others I wish you could see from my very own green eyes. 

The scariest part of living in the yesterday, is that it's over. But that's also the most beautiful part. Whatever happened, caused us pain, stung, was uncomfortable, makes us tear in the present, makes us depressed, lonely, not motivated, feel stuck, reclused-- it's all contained in "yesterday."

When I look back on yesterday, I bottle the yesterdays in. They eat at my soul. They make me bitter, sad, and feel that I have to overcompensate in other areas in my life. I feel pulled. I want to share my yesterday's pain, but from fear, I keep it close-- don't we all. To bring one into a raw, personal moment can be scary- what if the world isn't ready to read about pain- most only want to hear and talk about joy. But for some of us, we just can't take the other foot out of yesterday. 

Yesterday can also be a longing or yearning for us. We all have moments in our lives that are so special, so beautiful, we share them with others so they can have a piece of our yesterday. Moments we want to re-live, re-love, re-create. Moments we can't wait to share with our friends and family- the people that love us most. So why are we afraid to share our hurt? 

This week, I'm going to be working on moving on from my yesterdays.... the painful ones and the positive ones. I'm going to try to really live presently. I may need to take a hiatus from social media, step away from distractions and find my way. I may need a day off of work, or a moment of relaxation to myself. I haven't figured out yet what I plan on doing. It's important that we take time to live now. 

We have to make the choice to wrap up yesterday, tie it with a bow, and send it upon it's way. For, if we continue to live in yesterday, we will be missing all the beauty around us today. 


Red Ribbon Week

This week we said "NO!" To drugs at DHS! It was actually the first week I ever really tried to participate in! I even planned outfits lol! 

Monday was "Give drugs the boot" so I wore these cuties (we also had permission to wear jeans- HOLLA) 

  Tuesday was (and I quote this spelling) "Too brite for drugs" wear neon/shades. Now all the kids told me I spelled "brite" wrong... Duh kids, I know it's b-r-i-g-h-t- but that's what the email said, so.... I guess you can spell it two ways LOL. No jeans this day so I paired my neon with polka dot dress pants:

Wednesday was (ironically) "Peace out drugs" wear 60s and 70s clothing. Then some kid blurted out in class, "But Miss... That's dumb, why would we dress like that, didn't hippies do hard-core drugs..." And I'm over here thinking (why do you have to be this smart and yea, let's change the subject LOL)! I wore my cute dress from Boutique Twenty-7 in Silsbee! 

I paired it with neon leggings, a flower headband, and flats! Everyone loved it:
My flower headband is super cute and I might start wearing those types of trendy accessories more often, I loved how girlie it was! Lia Sophia Panorama necklace and Rhumba earrings really pulled this look off!
Hot pink leggings were from Wal-Mart!

I so need a full length mirror LOL I had to get the full shot in a mall bathroom (yea don't judge me)

Thursday was "pop- star, character, superhero day" basically...getting a way with wearing our Halloween costumes - fine by me!  The teachers in the English department at my school each chose a pop star, and I chose Miranda Lambert... 
Thanks to Kelly I had some awesomely HOTT boots!!
I had a long lace skirt that I wore as a dress so that you could see the boots! 

Thanks to my coworker Aimee, I had a cute cowgirl hat:

My other co-worker Amy was.... You guessed it.... MILEY CYRUS ha ha ha! Spot on!

Then I found out some kid called me "fat Miranda Lambert" and I was all like, "yea... I agree, tell me something I don't know!" Which didn't bother me at first but now does, so I'm drinking to that comment tonight  **CHEERS**

Wish I had a cotton candy cosmo FOR sure! 

Friday was "Senior day" where we could wear school colors or a shirt promoting one of our seniors (because it's senior night tonight at the FB game). I kept it classy and wore this (purplish) kimono:

Super fun and got it for 10.00 from the Francesca's sale rack!! HOLLA! Everyone loved it!

Then after work, I did what any "fat Miranda Lambert" would do, and I thoroughly enjoyed a .50 corn dog from Sonic! 

It was a fun week! Here's to a new month! October was full of fun, challenge, and change. 

Hmmm wonder what November will bring?