My new planner
In the beginning of this year, I realized my daily planner was not good enough for multiple reasons, and wanted to create what I really need. I stumbled upon personal-planner.com and after playing with the few sizes, choose the largest one (A4), which is their heaviest by weight as well. Their online software was super easy to use (few minor flukes, not a biggy). Once I knew what I wanted to plan in the planner, it took around 3 weeks for planner to get printed and to be shipped.
The planned arrived properly packaged and the first impression was good. The planner is about 2cm thick and heavy (as expected)
1. Front and back pages. They are somewhat customizable online (you can choose from many templates) with colors, texts, etc - or by placing your own photos/pictures. If you want to have a collage with multiple photos, first create it as the single image elsewhere (they offer a link in FAQ). My cover selection was shiny gold and I put the name and my web site on the front page. The back side I choose has one of their "template" images.
2. Freebies. Planner arrived with a full page of cute stickers, ruler (choose your color), ribbon for holding it (pick your color, mine is gold), plenty of empty pages on the back (and fully customizable - some I choose as blank, some are lined). If you wish, you can also add coloring pages, etc. Cover came with an extra hard plastic protection pages for front and back, and the page-protective sleeve (not the pencil pocket, but more for keeping stickers or 1-2 pages). You can even add all the birthdays to planner, and it will calculate how old will be the person during this year. Really COOL!
3. Page #1 shows my information in case the planner get lost. You can write your text text, add emoticons, etc. Very useful.
4. Month overview. This is a page with large boxes where you can put all your appointments, etc. At the end of the book I have a month overview as a least of accomplishments within this year.
5. Main part:
a) Daily entries. Top banner, where you see the name of the month, offers various colors/patterns from many designs/templates. I love polka dots and the combination of light green and hot pink makes me happy.
b). Days in month. Here you have MANY choices for the layout. Anyway you wish! I choose this particular one because on top of 7 days a week, it gives me an extra 8th space which i needed for my personal goals, moments, and daily overview. In that empty space #8 I am tracking down LEARNING portion (lessons in life I learned this week, new cooking/technical/spiritual skills acquired, new piece of knowledge on any subject (new singers), etc. Second portion is MOMENTS. Then I write down my pleasant and unpleasant moments of the day. Noticing them, acting or not acting on them, reflecting = super important, part of Mindfulness practice. And the last portion is GRATITUDE. All those 3 areas are made to notice and appreciate different people/thing in/around me.
c). Daily boxes. Days 1-7: to do, appointments, etc. I customized them with stripes for easy writing (you can choose blank, no stripes), and you can also add the time to lines if you wish. I added three sections/boxes there. You have many choices with A4, even graphs. My first section/box is "weather", I will be using it to track down my daily water consumption (5 mini-checkboxes on top), mindfulness meditation (3 mini-checkboxes below), time spent on meditations (last empty weather square to enter the time). My last 3rd daily box ("today's workout) is for my learning. There I will be adding a time I spent on Udemy, and other online courses. Last portion (today workout) will be a combination of my practical healing workouts (energy, sound, etc), physical exercises, etc. Its important for me to track down self-growth/learning/appreciations, so I choose this layout with such purpose.
d) Modules at the button. You can also choose variety of what YOU need wrt your desired boxes. They come pre-made with their colors/templates. I should say that size of planner gives you different number of choices for those modules. My choice was 3 boxes "To do this week" (each box per each kid, one box for family, one for my personal goals). Then I have a mini calendar (comes by default), and last space for NOTES, which I will be using for tracking down the books I am reading. Notes from reading the book and my various community projects, as well as tracking down the results of that work, will be at the very end on the blank and lined pages of my planner. I will be also using my blank pages as the job search journal and doodling.
Personal planner company sent an extra page with the 10% coupon for a friend. Yours to use freely.
PS: This is an independent review and I get nothing from the company. Thanks for stopping by.
The Power Of Assumption
The Power Of Assumption
A while ago one lady had unfriended me on Facebook. I assumed she either could not control her FB notifications and was annoyed by my posts, but overall, I would respect someone's free choice as I expect others to respect mine.
I organized many fun events this year, and obviously, was unable to invite her as its technically impossible to invite someone to the event, who is not your FB friend.
Then one day came when wanted to share with her about a special event for ladies that I was organizing. I contacted our common friend and explained the situation that while we would love to have the lady over, I can't invite her to FB event due to our unfriend status.
To my surprise, in a short time I received a very heart-warming letter from her, where she sincerely apologized that she had no idea she removed out our FB friendship. She, on another side, had been also assuming that she was left her out intentionally from my/our events, which created some unwanted tension and more assumptions.
This story have been resonating with me today, reminding the recent class on Mindfulness. Our entire class was dedicated to the topic of Assumption and Truth. "Don't believe everything you think", our wonderful teacher told us. Do you know for a fact if this IS a fact or a truth?".
This episode is not unique. As I was thinking about the recent situation that happened in one of my Facebook group (Amy/Zina story), I realize that people ASSUME things their own way, and no one cares on checking out the facts. Its easy to be trapped into your own wrongful thoughts, instead of checking out on the facts and be free.
The story of assumption starts out small, slowly it turns out into a snowball that can grow into a bigger, deeper, conflict. Then it traps in innocent and confused people, who then take sides or make their choices, based on the SOMEONE'S ELSE ASSUMPTIONS, also assuming that those assumed stories are true.
And during that journey of assumptions no one dares to stop, pause and think:
"Don't believe everything you think. A thought IS NOT a fact. DO YOU KNOW FOR A FACT THAT THIS IS A TRUTH? Is this TRUE?"
We are the ones who give the Power to Assumption by feeding her with untruthful thoughts. I hope this small note helps you to notice them, work on them, and live happily ever after.
Monterey Bay Aquarium
Monterey Bay Aquarium is the Ocean Monster of Fun for ALL ages. Located an hour away from San Jose, this breath-taking marine center is the home to 35,000 creatures of 550 species in 34 major galleries & 200 exhibits. Its an amazing breath-taking hands-on educational, environmental, research and adoption center. Set on the original location of sardines Cannery, the old building remains being part of the aquarium
Lilkin.com Tips: Buy tickets online, print them out and arrive prior Aquarium opens up. Hours are 9:30AM - 6 PM. This will avoid unneeded lines both in ticket counter and hours of circling to find a parking, which you can have within 5 min of walking for twice less cost. We parked on Sloat Ave and fed hungry beast-meter twice. They do give parking tickets, be safe there. We always bring snacks and water with us, helps to stay mobile. CAMERA IS THE MUST, however you will be needed to turn off the flash. All my pics were taken with iPhone 5.
Discount admission tickets? Rarely available. Spend your money with joy, as they all go to specific programs - you will learn about them while visiting MA. Your options for discount tickets: Craigslist.org ($10-$20), group discount tickets, employee discounts and overnight stay in a local hotel for a 2-day Aquarium deal.
Must see? There are 2.5 levels. Took us six hours to enjoy. As you enter the main entrance, turn left to starts exhibits. The highlight of the left first floor is petting the stingray (stinger is removed). among other "touch and play" exhibits.
After first level, enjoy otters playing in the mid-level exhibit, look above to see the largest mammals in the world, aka whales, and check times for the Auditorium short movies. We watched a touchy story of baby otter Luna, saved by Otter Program. They are super adorable and important to ocean environment. I promise your kids eyes will shine out, watching the short story of adopted Otter.
Half of the Aquarium are Jellies and they are incredibly awesome. There are two levels of them. There is a hidden gems on the 1st floor that you can only get to AFTER you go up to the 2nd floor. First, go to the second floor (right side from main entrance, above plastic whales) to see Jellies and exit through different side, going back to the first floor. There are two super fun areas that were added lately: Jellies Experience (Aquarium labs grow their own Jellies lab!) and fantastic Octopus area with real giant octopus and his eggs that hopefully will be hatched. You can see through images a lot of educational and interactive stations to enjoy + creatures feeding times. Aquarium added a lot of new stuff in the recent years, so if you are reading it and have not been there for a while, its time to meet them again.
After completing the 1st floor on the right, move back to the 2nd floor on another (left from main) side. I won't go to details about all type of ocean creatures you can see there (i.e sharks, tunas, and clown fishes with Dora to cute seahorses, birds and penguins), but its a LOT OF FUN and IMHO must visit by all members of your family. Cannery raw offers nice experience and nearby fishing wharf is a great place to have a hot clam chouder, if you are still capable to walk :)
Lilkin.com Raiting: 5 STARS! Kid rated: 4.9 out of 5
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What my kid says about me
We don't often have an opportunity to hear what our kids think of us, and how they view us. Here is what my daughter wrote, Elementary School Report:
I would like to dedicate my report to 2 people. First, I would like to dedicate my report to my mom. She would take her time even if she was very tired she would always check over my report. Also, she would be honest about things and make me correct them. She always wants me do my best and pushes me and never lets me get the easy way out. She tries to help in any way when I need help. That is how my mom helps and supports me.
(I am very touched!)
One Mom's view.
"But where do I go from here? So many voices ringing in my ear...
Which is the voice that I was meant to hear? How will I know? Where do I go from here?" (Pocahontas)
In the days like this, I would have had a cigarette & some wine. Those days are left far behind, leaving me with the keyboard as an only tool for such a dramatic mood...
My kid is choosing The College.
Choosing the college would be one of the biggest decisions of his life, effecting his student times, choice of teachers and students, friends and lovers.
Deciding on the path, that he will be taking for years ahead, developing endless web of the new connections, relashionships, interests. Creating new life experiences, business opportunities, and piling financial loans.
After crazy season of SAT racing, college essays and application has ended, the new "college" season has began. Letters of acceptance were pouring all along, ranging through all the stages of "easy to get into school", mid range and dream schools. Once 'easy to get' and 'mid range' were in, the dream schools started to pop up in the mailbox.
At first, we were super proud of his success. Excited. Amazed how well he'd done. No shit, he worked his ass off and will need to work even harder ahead. But with dreams schools it was like a drums on the nerves. Every "dream school" letter weighted a ton. What answer does it have for us? Is it green to "go" or polite "sorry" red?
David got admitted into 10 Universities. Six of those schools are top 100 National universities. Ranging from California's UCs, State and Private schools all over the States with four different majors and various manors. So many choices!
And this is a new stress. What would be the final college of his choice? Where? How often would we see him now? As more letters we received, more we realized that this is IT.
It's his last year to be with a family as a full-time child. My baby is leaving his comfortable parents nest.
This is IT.
I was always ready to send him far. As I myself studied 2000 km away from Armenian homeland in the University at Moscow, I know that being far away from parents builds a stronger character, sence of independence, ability to become truly YOU. As my hubby call it, student form of Army. I was brave and happy for that step, supporting David's move, as I know it would be the best for him to be far away from us.
But now, as his decision will be made soon: am I brave enough to sent him truly THAT far?
I must admit: I am not.
David decided to say good-bye to California. Leave this colorful, warm weather, incredible community of teachers, friends and potential girlfriends, all familiar surroundings, his comfort zone.
Go for a college where he can have all seasons, with cold and snow, choose the land, that is far far away...
And I'm honestly not ready for it.
Its a turbulence times for me as a parent. I am experiencing a full coctail of emotions: mix of pride, joy, worry and sadness.
So far, the last one wins.
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Kedry and Fair of Talents
Despite the crazy morning, with the car not starting up and other accessories, we finally made it to Russian Talent Fair, presented by Kedry. The goal of my visit was to sell remaining small jars of honey and see people I did not see since the last year.
Its always a pleasure seeing this incredibly talented, super friendly and very devoted group of people. This year Talent Fair was nice and quite, but that coziness helped to make it more meaningful on the personal level. As nothing gives me more pleasure in the work of beekeeping, then talking about beekeeping, and making a contact with my customers.
Kedry are truly awesome. They sat to all of us an example on what can group of parents do when they are devoted to the goal of keeping the language and culture in their kids. Truly inspiration and example to follow.
Love you, Kedry.
Hello, people. This is my personal blog. You will be drown in the deep waters of my personal adventures, experiences and soul.
I will sharing with my readers knowledge and tips, writing about remarkable and interesting people I meet, talking about fun places, new crazy ideas and life stories.
Thank you for stopping by and enjoy your ride!
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