Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Buy some happiness

Imagine your child is sick.  Some of you may not have to imagine.  Only once, briefly, I experienced having a sick child.  My son Jacob was in the hospital for a week, he had a raging fever and no other symptoms.  He was barely 2 years old, and unable to comprehend why he was in a small room, unable to interact with anyone other than the masked staff who poked and prodded at him.  It was scary for me, and I am sure even more terrifying for him.

My son got better, life went on.  My children are all healthy and even the common cold seems to come around less often.

Our biggest complaint as parents seems to have to do with feeling overwhelmed, with work, school, activities and whatever else occupies our time. Children are challenging and most of time oblivious to the hurdles that we face in our daily lives.

Now, as I said before imagine your child is sick.  Really sick.  Not the cold and sneeze kind of sick, but the live in a hospital kind of sick.

I would assume that you would be less overwhelmed by work, school and activities.  Those things would no longer exist.   You would be consumed by one thing, getting your child better.  What if that wasn't possible?  What would be your next wish for your child?  Happiness.  Oblivion, the idea that what was really happening, wasn't.

You may think I'm a jerk for bringing this up. Its uncomfortable.  Why would anyone want to think about their child being sick?  Any child being sick for that matter.

I'm talking about this because of my amazing brother, James.  Luckily he is not sick, however he works at a place whose mission is to give sick children the opportunity to enjoy life, The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp is an amazing place that every sick child deserves to experience.

My brother first told me about this place this past summer on a camping trip.  He was excited and proud of what he was doing.  Anyone who knows my brother James, knows that he works best with children.  He's funny, daring, brave, and can literally imitate almost any television or movie character to a T!   Listening to him talk about The Whole in the Wall Gang Camp was exhilarating, it sounded like a genuinely enjoyable place and for a moment I forgot about why the children were there, or at least what was wrong with the children there. My brother didn't talk about how sick they were, he spoke about their unique personalities, their normal child like behavior, their off the wall antics, and without saying it his love for them. 

I have thought about my brothers job off and on for a few months.  When anybody asks about him, I reel in the opportunity to speak highly of his position.  Ironically he and I usually tend to give each other a pretty hard time.  Mostly because I'm cooler than him.  Regardless, I am beyond words proud of him.

James is now trying to raise money for The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp via running in the
Boston Marathon  next year.  I donated a small amount towards his cause.  I know it isn't enough, and this has weighed heavy on me for days.

This morning when I walked my son Jacob to his classroom I noticed the lights were off.  I went to the room next door and a woman inside said that Jacobs teacher was out sick, she would be substituting.  I have never seen this woman before.  She wasn't as warm as Jacob's usual teacher, and her voice was a bit harsh.  I felt like she was rushing me out of the room.  My brother James had mailed "Hole in the Wall Camp" stickers and all of my kids wanted to wear one to school today, even Jacob.  The teacher looked down at Jacob's shirt and asked what the sticker was for.  I began to explain that my brother worked at a camp for seriously ill children.  She nonchalantly said  "Oh we do a fundraiser every year for my son who died of cancer".   I was speechless.  I immediately felt horrible that I misread her, I of course have no idea when her son died but my heart still hurt for her as if it just happened.  I immediately wondered if he had moments of happiness while he was sick.  I literally cannot stop thinking about The Whole in the Wall Gang Camp.

The first thing that came to mind was to blog about it...this isn't my typical "mommy post" but it is by far the most important one I have ever written.

So here is my plea, if you have a healthy child, or know a healthy child please donate to my brothers cause.  http://www.crowdrise.com/teamholeinthewallboston/fundraiser/jamessibelle

If you have a sick child or know a sick child I hope that they will be able to benefit from this wonderful place.

Sometimes the best medicine is happiness, and in this case your donation can buy some more than deserving children that much needed happiness.

Thank you for reading, and I hope you will share this with others.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Its not that difficult...

Why does everything seem so difficult lately?  Things that should be simple, and enjoyable instead are impossible and exhausting! 

My children's school for example, has become a very annoying member of our family, constantly craving time, attention and money!  Hours of homework for my elementary aged children, forms that require signatures, requests for donations and volunteering, its never ending. This school year they stopped recognizing the "terrific" students, for lack of funding.  The school is asking for supporters to send in checks to pay for the cake, bumper stickers and pencils required for such an assembly.  Whatever happened to a verbal recognition, that would only cost...free. 

If you are brave enough to take on school (which is already a full time job) AND outside activities you already know how hard this has become.  My girls are in cheerleading...not the super competitive cheerleading, just a local team, but its a BIG deal!  Practice 3 times a week, games all day Saturday, competitions, more volunteering, and of course donations - you aren't living if you aren't giving your money away. 

The expectations brought on by this world are demanding and often not realistic.

My daughter wanted me to buy her teacher a gift for her birthday the other day. I said no, for more than one reason.  The first being, she asked me with less than 24 hours notice, the second reason was that I have 5 children who each have at least 2 teachers...that's a lot of gifts but I mostly said no because I think her teacher would have appreciated a home made card or a nice letter just as much as a store bought gift.  I suggested this idea to my daughter who of course cried, and I thought about how if I was more organized and she had less siblings she wouldn't be facing this crises.  I know she was also disappointed because I am sure that some of her friends will have brought in a beautifully purchased present.  I don't want my children to think that what they have to offer isn't enough.  She ended up making a card and I found a cat pin in my purse (it was brand new...what, you don't keep cat pins in your purse?).  Her teacher loved the thought and my daughter didn't die.  The point of my story is not that I am against buying presents its that, even my 9 year old feels the pressure of a birthday, because birthdays have become less about the birth and more about the party, gifts and treats. 

Weddings have turned into major events, with very little emphasis on the marriage.  I myself have been avoiding planning my own wedding for this exact reason. 

Life has become over complicated, and although I want my children to be challenged, pushed and even slightly competitive, I do not want them to feel like they have to be the best or have the best all the time. 

I have fallen a victim to it myself, I sometimes try to keep up...but sometimes, I just cant.

The only way we will prevent our children from growing up into an even more demanding society than we currently live in, is if we start demanding less from one another...its not that difficult.

Thursday, October 3, 2013


Not sure if anyone has noticed but I haven't been on FB in a while...or as my fiancé refers to it "Fakebook"

I needed a facebreak for a while, and to be honest I haven't missed a lot of things about facebook.

I do not miss the selfies, the ecard that circles everyone's page just with a different picture and color, the TMI (NO ONE cares that you are in the bathroom at church), the NEI (not enough info...you know the old "tomorrow is the day..." post that leaves you worrying, and wondering what the hell is happening tomorrow??).  I also do not miss the BS, that person who posts that they have the "best hubby ever!" while you are well aware of the fact that they are on the verge of a separation, or the person only posts pictures that depict a perfect image of their spotless home, flawless family, or amazing DIY project, because everything looks better via instagram.

I do miss the pictures of family, and friends that I have lost contact with.  I miss the uplifting posts about people who you truly know are happy.  I miss the relatable posts, that make you laugh, tear up or even jog a memory. 

I miss being in the loop, because facebook has become our societys main source of contact, it has become all consuming and almost a full time job for some.  Posting that you are expecting a child, getting married, moving, or have lost a loved one is the norm,  I have been guilty of doing it myself.  These days, calling someone would be "weird".  I would rather be weird...I enjoy a phone call...but I guess the times are a changin' and so must I. 

Facebook has become an essential part of this crazy world, like electricity and transportation - without we are in the dark and left behind.

So like a weak schoolgirl, I'm caving and willing to give facebook another shot.

Like most relationships that hit a bump in the road...I have learned what makes me happy, and what does not and as I move forward with facebook I will focus on the positive.  I will stalk my brother and sister-in-laws pages to see pictures of my adorable nephew and read posts about how perfect he is (seriously...he is perfect, not BSing).  I will laugh at my two other brothers ridiculously funny mishaps and be jealous of their fascinating life experiences.  I will not post life altering decisions or events, instead I will call those who actually may care to know and than later decide if I want to share my scoop with the rest of the world to be critiqued and judged.  I will ignore the things that don't deserve a like, comment or share and I will not become consumed by other peoples lives. 

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

New blog :)

Hi!  I decided to create a whole new blog, all about blended families!  I hope you will check it out and share it with anyone who you may know that is in a situation similar to mine :)  Here's the link!

Sunday, August 25, 2013

No time for boredom

I only like coming on here when I have something worth telling, no one likes reading a boring blog...some people don't even like reading an exciting blog.  This blog is neither, its just my life.

Last week my life went from semi hectic to full blown NUTS.  Four girls in elementary school and a toddler in preschool will keep you on your toes!  On top of trying to work because you think its what's best for you, staying busy...because 5 children, a new house and a fiancĂ© isn't enough work.

For anyone that doesn't know me, I am extremely organized, always timely and have the patience of a saint. For those that do know me, you know that was all a huge lie.  School started Tuesday, I started my back to school shopping on Monday night - at midnight.  My children have had cheerleading practice 4 times this week, yet I have somehow managed to be late 5 separate times.  I also decided that riding our bikes to school this year would be awesome...clearly I do not know what awesome means.

Every day this week that we have rode our bikes, someone has fallen off.  One of my daughters managed to break the peddle off of her bike...she now jogs swiftly behind us for a mile and a half on the way to school. 

My life scares other people.  Imagine how I feel.

The good news is that my children have made me aware that they will have no more than one child each, at least I am teaching them a sense of responsibility.

I literally want to be bored sometimes, however I'm sure it would be interrupted by someone asking for a snack or telling me they need to go to the bathroom...or if I were bored IN the bathroom, someone would walk in and ask a mind blowing question.

That's what kids do, keep us "un-bored".  Sometimes when I'm listening to sad music in the car, intentionally trying to make myself cry just to be sure I still have feelings...I think "By God I will miss my little sugar plums when they leave me one day...I am going to be bored as hell without them."

Hopefully one will still like me enough to stick around and keep me busy :)

Monday, May 13, 2013

Never a good time

I haven't been around here in almost 6 months.  Things change a lot in 6 months, but one thing stays the same...there is never a "good time" for anything.  I've thought about writing, jotted down some ideas, and even added blogging to my to-do list, which is actually much more of a to-didn't list.

I love writing, and blogging in particular tickles my fancy.  Blogging is me time, yet it is almost never a good time to blog, even now is a horrible time - I'm exhausted, its late, and I should be sleeping.  In the morning, I should be getting things done around my house.  Once the kids get home from school they require my full attention - which coming from a mom with ADHD, I'm already kind of ripping them off.  At night, I'm beat...but putting off something that I enjoy, makes me disappointed in myself.  Its never a good time for anything, until you just do it.

So here goes...I'm very tired and this post may suck but I am MAKING time for it.

3 big things that have happened in the past 6 months...we finally moved into our house and are official home owners (for the first time), we started a business and got engaged.

I'm extremely happy with my life.  For the first time I don't want to see what is on the other side of the fence, because I feel more than confident that the grass isn't greener, which is actually a little intimidating.  Not that "this is it" but now that I am here, where I have always wanted to be, I want to savor it.   It sounds easy, as easy as making time for things.

So there is my newest goal, making time...and savoring it. Except cleaning, I am not making time nor savoring that. 

Well I am starting to crash, but I am glad that I got this post out - I already feel motivated.  In fact, I am going to go make the time to get some rest, and savor it!

Good night.