Monday, September 26, 2011

to each its own...value.

Mondays have always been my least favorite day of the week, but now even more so. This school year our county decided every Monday should be early release, I'm not sure who benefits from this. The teachers still have a full day, and parents are less than excited to pick up the kids an hour earlier, and of all days why do this on a Monday...a Friday may have been easier to handle?? So every Monday I lose my patience and energy an hour sooner than usual.

Not that my weekends consist of much relaxation.

This weekend I attempted a yard sale with my girlfriend. I realized that my treasure is another's trash, and people will not pay top dollar based on how "sentimental" something is to you. It crushed me to let go of things that were not only special but expensive...and the difference between 50 cents and a dollar is huge to some people! I was so emotionally and physically drained after the whole ordeal...and I may have ended up sneaking a few things back into my house.

I sold a beautiful dress that I payed $80 for (on clearance!) and only wore once for 5$, a play kitchen in mint condition for $20 and a toy rack that retails for $60 for $10. I loved that dress, it was one of nicest things I ever bought for myself...but I had no where to wear it. That kitchen was given to kaylee when she was 2, I could see her curly little head peeking in the oven, checking on the cake she was baking, and that toy rack was a life saver when it came to clean up time.


I guess things are just that...things. Hopefully my stuff will bring as much joy to someone else.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

I can dooooo it!

My house is a mess. I have no idea what to do for dinner. I have tons of laundry to do and a sink full of dishes.
I'm sure my mom had these same problems, but how come they weren't a problem for her??
I can never remember a time where my mom couldn't handle things, she cooked dinner every night and I got plenty of attention....and I was not an only child....although maybe her favorite.
If the good out weighs the bad in childhood is that all we remember?
I sure hope so.
Some times my life is full speed, too fast, too many turns, and no brake peddle.
Other times my life is smooth, easy and calm. I often wonder how this affects my children...when I'm stressed are they??
Do they feel my anxiety when its 7:45 am, the baby is crying, cereal is stuck to the floor, nobody has matching socks on, and I am repeatedly saying "we are going to be late, we are going to be late..." I notice that on days that I am more patient and relaxed, they are easier and cause me less stress. I think as a whole we are happier as a family. My to-do list is never ending.
I hate the idea of not being able to say "I'm finished!" but mom or not I guess that's just life.
I have two choices, be completely stressed out and anxious over what is, or except what is not.
My house is not clean right now.....I am not sure what we will do for dinner....I have a lot of laundry and dishes to catch up on. Things will get done.
My mom did it....I can do it...not as good...not even half as good...but I can do it.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

First things first

This was a week of firsts.

Kaylee and Brooke had their first tennis lesson, I took all the kids on a bike ride by myself for the first time in our "new" neighborhood, we hosted our first sleep over and in less exciting news Kaylee was was stung by a bee, hopefully both a first and last.

Other things were repetitive.

The dog ran out of the house twice and was waiting for me in front of the girls school, the baby ended up in my bed at least once, my car alarm went off multiple times in various parking lots, I lost my cell phone for several hours each day, my house only stayed clean for the time that I was cleaning it and the list goes on.

I was much more aware of the new experiences this week than of the normal - or as close to normal things that go on in my life on a daily basis.


I'm not the mom that takes out the camera for every milestone, I only got one page of Kaylee's baby book completed and I'm pretty sure I have yet to order Jacob's hospital pictures. However I am the mom that gets really excited about the first day of school (unlike when I was in school), volunteers to coach my daughters fist soccer team (even though I was less than qualified), and tries way too hard when my kids bring over a new friend to the house for the first time. I'm sure as my memory fades I will wish that I had saved more things, taken more pictures and written more things down but for now I would much rather enjoy the feeling of firsts.

I'm sure we do things for the first time everyday and don't even realize it. Whether its as simple as trying a new food or something bigger like jumping out of an airplane. The feeling of doing something for the first time is a unique blend of fear, excitement, joy and sometimes confusion. When we are so wrapped up in everyday chaos we sometimes miss out on that feeling.

Some firsts are more enjoyable than others (get your mind out of the gutter), some are exciting and others are miserable. We learn what we like. what we will never do again and what makes us happy. New experiences help us grow and figure out who we are. Without firsts every day would be the same as before, life would be predictable and we would never learn from our mistakes. If we all slow down, open our eyes and embrace what new things we encounter our lives may become more fulfilled.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Do what you love

For as long as I can remember I have tried to "find" what I was good at, or what made me happy. I have always wanted to take classes or learn something new, I have had a thousand career goals and many unfinished "projects". To me there has always been 2 kinds of people, the kind who are naturally talented. and the kind who work hard to perfect a talent. I never felt that I was either. I have been labeled "funny", but to most I'm pretty loud and annoying. I am not sure if the humor that I give off is even intentional, as most of the time people are laughing at me and not with me.

Once I became a mother my passion for success grew bigger, I wanted my child to look at me with a sense of pride, and for me to be her inspiration. Being that I was a single mother I also felt an obligation to teach my daughter that women can be anything. I wanted to rule the world.

I tried different business ideas, trades, full time jobs, and a few direct sales opportunities. Nothing ever fit for me.

Once I met James and his girls I was ready to give up. I thought being home with kids, volunteering at school, making meals, cleaning...the list goes on, would make me the best mom ever. But that feeling of wanting to "be" something was still there. Some people play an instrument, paint, run successful businesses, whatever their talent, I'm sure it helps define who they are.

Talents can be right in front of our faces, we may not recognize it as something that we are good at because it is natural to us, or acquired over time as a habit. This blog has taught me that. I love writing, I have always loved writing. It makes me feel good, and I can express myself far better than I ever could in words. This is my talent. I may not be extraordinary or ever get on the new york times best seller list, but this is what I have been looking for all along. So open your eyes, figure out what you love and do it because when you are doing something that you love it makes your whole world a little happier :)

PS my next post will be extra sarcastic...

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

long day

What a day.

I spent the last 2 days in bed...so sick. I'm actually still sick, and pretty foggy, but I had to share some of what happened today.

Because I've been in bed, we have no food, no clean clothes, no lunches were made last night, I'm not sure if the kids brushed their teeth all weekend and to be honest I'm surprised my house didn't burn down. Dad was in charge.


So this morning I crawled out of bed, showered, and dug through the pile which we call "laundry mountain", all the clothes that get thrown from the dryer onto the couch in my room. (yes I have a couch in my room...would be so "cool" if it wasnt covered in clothes) I successfully found clean underwear, socks and matching outfits for everyone. I was going back to school today myself and had to be dressed and ready by the same time as the kids. I woke everyone up, grabbed some granola bars and bananas, and tried to get everyone out the door, a process that usually takes 15-20 minutes from the time I say "we are leaving". One kid didn't have shoes, two kids needed me to sign something and someone was in the bathroom taking forever!

Finally we were ready...I told my 4 year old to stay home with daddy and I would be right back...she said "OK!" I walked out the door with my 3 big girls, a baby in my arms and coffee in hand......beep beep...that was the noise the front door makes when someone opens it. "NOOOOOOOO!!!" that's me screaming as the dog runs out the front door.

I run back in the house with the baby...James is yelling at Veronica "why did you let the dog out??" Veronica is crying...I put the baby down...the baby is now crying...I grab the leash. Meanwhile I had placed my coffee cup on the side walk outside of my house...all I wanted was my coffee. I do not want to chase the dog. I'm wearing all black (School uniform) I start to follow the dog, the girls are running after him too, finally we get to the crosswalk, the dog then crosses the crosswalk towards the school. At this point I tell the girls to go to class. My dog is now in the car line, almost gets hit...twice...I'm yelling his name, kids are staring, teachers are rolling their eyes, a woman says "if you just call him, he will come"...he darts over by the bus loop. I run as fast as I can, but lose him. I have to get back home, I cant see him anywhere. I hang my head and start to walk away...then a man asks me if I'm the lady looking for a dog...wonder what gave it away, the running, the leash, me mumbling "bad dog" under my breath?..."YES!" I scream...he leads me to the bike rack where a small crowd is forming around my dog. I attach the leash and head back home, picking up my coffee that was on the sidewalk...hopeful that someone had slipped a "happy pill" in it.

I walk in the door and James is ready to leave for work, suitcase in hand, showered and fresh...I on the other hand, disheveled, sweating, and frustrated have 2 more kids I need to take to school before I can start my day.

I get the kids in the car, run in and out of the house at least 5 times because I forgot something and then am finally on my way.

Remember how hot it was, well while I ran in to drop of the 2 little ones at school a tropical storm formed. I get soaked on my way back to the parking lot.

The good news is I made it early to my school and nothing out of the ordinary happened in class.

I hit traffic on the way home and didn't move for an hour, but luckily James was able to pick up the girls from school.

I was excited that James was going to be home when I got there, but I was sadly reminded that during working hours, even if he's home he's still working. So I was on my own with homework.

After homework, the girls and I headed to their first piano lesson, I don't know who was more excited...me or the girls. They were each having a private 30 minute lesson, which meant 2 hours of me in a waiting room with 4 children. It was a long afternoon, the instructor was 30 minutes late, and the kids were kinda crazy in that waiting room. But they all did well and loved it!

We got home late, had a healthy dinner of McDonalds, Jacob drank my iced coffee that I left on the counter, and bed time was a struggle as usual.

So I had one of those days...you know the kind where you are ready for it to be tomorrow. We all have them, and its really all about how we handle things. To be honest, most of the day I was calm, and I think I even laughed a few times. Its just life....

Saturday, September 3, 2011

A team effort

Jacob slept in his own bed last nice...but in all fairness it was because he didn't wake up and scream "mama" repeatedly while banging on the wall (which happens to be next to my bedroom)...so the real test of my strength has yet to come.

James is working a home show all weekend, which leaves me alone with the kids for three days...I should come up with plenty of material to blog about.

I am very tired today, last night the kids went over to a friends house for movie night and we didn't get home until after 10. Considering I was "on the clock" since 6 a.m. that was late for me. We had a play date at our house in the morning and then went over to a friends for dinner tonight...so tired is an understatement.

I think just that fact of knowing that James wont be here the next few days is part of what wears me out as well. When you have a partner you depend on them more than you even realize. People always give me so much credit for being a mom of 5, and most of the times I fully deserve it ;) but I know I couldn't do the things I do without the help I get from James. He is my best friend, and although he may not fully understand my role as a mom, he's the only other person who really knows "what its like". Not what its like to have 5 kids, but what our family is like. He makes me laugh after a long day, disciplines a child that I've already disciplined 10 times, picks up milk on the way home, walks the kids to school so I can stay in my pajamas and does so much more that goes unseen. I know that I need him in order to be "super mom".

So although I'm happy that he will be working hard this weekend for our family, I will miss all his help. And maybe the next time I feel like I do everything, I will come back and read this blog :)

Friday, September 2, 2011

all children are created...VERY DIFFERENT

My son is spoiled. There I have admitted it. Now I have to fix it.

Every one of my friends will attest to the fact that my daughter Kaylee was a perfect baby...or at least that I thought she was. She never cried, was so easy going, terrible 2's did not exist, and a temper tantrum was a mere lip quiver and glassy eyes. Time goes on though and she is now 8...and cops an attitude on a regular basis...I miss my perfect baby.

Jacob is the COMPLETE opposite of Kaylee...Karma, something I ate when I was pregnant...VOODOO?? Whatever the case, my son is a handful.

Last night was my breaking point...or maybe yesterday as a whole...considering he started the day by telling me to "go way". He screams every night, and for the fear of him waking up the other 4 angels that are sleeping, I reluctantly bring him into our bed. HUGE MISTAKE. How someone so small can take up an entire king sized bed is beyond me, he must wear stilts under his jammies or be related to inspector gadget, he manages to jab both James and I in the ribs, face, and stomach multiple times a night.

Back to last night...it was different..I was ready to put my foot down...take back what was mine - my bed! He woke up at around 10...screaming...I let him cry. He cried...and cried...and then I think he used profanity. I went into his room and tried giving him his binky. Nope, that wasn't what he wanted. I took him out of the crib and tried sitting in the rocking chair with him. He refused to sit with me...he pointed in the direction of my room. I began to weaken. James was still down stairs watching TV, I decided to bring Jacob down....which made for a very happy baby...until he wanted a drink. He began so scream "gink" (that means drink...duh) I give him a drink...and we then proceed back up stairs. He then has a complete break down, screaming and kicking. I take him in my bed..."TV ON!" TV ON!" he wants the TV on...but not my TV, the downstairs TV...I took him back down stairs. My night revolved around that crazy little boy.

James ended up sleeping on the couch. Jacob kept me up all night...as well as Kaylee who had a bad dream.

I have to change my ways with him, I let him get away with more than I would let any of the others. He is my only boy, and my baby...but its not right...I'm the boss...I am the boss....yeah...he's not the boss of me.

Kaylee was easy by nature...just a good, happy, baby. Jacob is happy, when he gets what he wants.

All kids are different, and I now know that some will take much more work than others. Its my job as a mom to give each child what they need not just what they want.

Tonight it will be very loud in my house, I am going to sleep in my bed...ALONE. Even if it means I have to hear Jacob scream all night. I may not actually sleep but at least I will be giving him what he needs.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

new year...new me...same stuff

We have made it through almost 2 weeks of school already, on time, dressed, fed and well rested....only what 34 more to go?? This is a big year, my "baby" (Kaylee) is in 3rd grade, we also have Brooke in 2nd, Audrey in 1st, Veronica in VPK (or as she calls it "pre-pre k"), Jacob in a toddler class, myself back in school, a wedding to plan, a house to buy (and finish decorating) and a dog that I am determined to train. My life is busier than I even knew was possible. I am focused on making my life organized (stop laughing...), functional, and as stress free as possible.

I have always had a hard time with taking on too much, and making things more exhausting than they have to be. Maybe I have a fear of boredom...whatever the reason, I insist on being busy...and usually complain that my life is too crazy. Well no more. This is the life I have, and I want to fully enjoy it.

Things could be so much worse...sure my son has been driving me crazy, and yes I have 4 very dramatic, loud, messy....oh this could go on for a while...little girls. My dog keeps me on my toes, and my fiance works entirely too much...but I love who we are. It takes a long time for a blended family to really blend...and for a step-parent (who would never refer to them self as a step parent) to build a bond. We have gotten over so many hurdles over the past few years, and I think we can now really enjoy where we are.

I am so excited for school projects, wedding planning, family vacations and everything else that this year will bring. It will be way more than I can handle, and I will make many mistakes...but at least I will have my big crazy family to share it with!