Friday, September 28, 2007

Already starting ...

Today my 7 year old came to me pretty sad.
A few girls in the neighborhoods made fun of her clothes. They said her shirts were not "cool." They also teased her because they weren't bought at 2 stored that are apparently in around here. Furthermore, they laughed and guessed her clothes were bought at Target or Kohls.
I knew this day would be coming. And I feel her pain (I never shopped at the right stores growing up either). And it's killing me to know they are are already teasing her about this ... the girl is in second grade! Do kids really care about where the clothes they wear come from? Do other parents buy the clothes the children insist are "cool" without thinking about the cost or the message they are sending their children? Well, apparently kids that young do care about it.
And because dh and I don't believe in catering to what is cool and what is not, my dd will pay the price by having these kids make fun of her.

We did talk about it today. I told her what is on the inside is more important, but that it is sometimes hard to remember that when you are young and trying to be cool. I told her she is beautiful no matter where her clothes are bought. I told her to not let anyone make her feel any less pretty because of it. I gave her a big hug. I told her I was sorry that it was happening. I tried to make her feel better. I tried to alleviate some of her pain. She smiled when we were done. She told me she knew the inside was more important. But she told me it's not fun to be the "uncool" kid.

I can't fix this. And I'll admit ... there is a part of me that wants to run out to the "cool" stores and buy her a few shirts from there so that she can be like the others, but I won't do that. Maybe when the budget allows for it, or we are going just because it is a place to shop, we'll go to them. And maybe we'll buy something ... but I don't want to teach her at 7 to cave into peer pressure!

But folks, my heart hurts for her. And I hope this isn't going to happen often or anytime soon. Because I've been there. And it doesn't feel good. And it isn't easy to remember to judge someone by the inside when you are 12 and the other kids are laughing at you.

Thursday, September 27, 2007


Right now the Clinton Global Initiative is happening in New York.
My friend Emily is there right now (and blogging about it here).
Today she shared the link so that we can watch it live via the web ... go check it out ... here.
I've been able to sneak in a bit between everything else going on here and wow - some amazing things going on there. Lots of good talking. Lots of good sharing. Lots of good ideas. Go, watch, listen, learn and maybe something will spark with you and you will be moved to do something!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

I've been neglectful ...

of this little blog here.
Some days I am bursting with 1,001 things to tell you about, and other times, I'm silent - not having much to share.
Right now although I am silent, it feels as if 1,001 things are happening around here. Except I lack the words or the time or the motivation to come and share it all. Sometimes I need to come here and type everything out and other times I need to mull it over in my head for a while and then I'm ready to come type it all out.

We are in the midst of all these changes around here - which seem big to talk about and yet are small in the day to day routine of things. I suppose that's a good thing. Small changes in the routine are easier to incorporate, are easier to make habit and are easier to stick to. We are doing fabulous on our budget. We are spending wisely and "acting our wages" finally. Of course, to really do that well, we will probably be selling out house this spring. It leaves me with a bit of sadness. I like our house. I like our neighborhood. It will feel as if we just got settled and then we will have to move again! We'll see how that goes. I have also started to fall in love with housekeeping tasks and meal planning and grocery shopping and all that jazz - something I've never wanted to do before, much less actually enjoy it! DH was just replaces at his company (but thankfully not fired from it - right now he's training the replacement and will hopefully be moved to another spot in the company). It leaves me a little bit anxious though! What if they decide to fire him in a month? He isn't all that convinced that the other guy will even work out though so maybe he won't stay replaced for more than a few weeks!

My son is driving me nuts. He is just constantly challenging me, whining at me, wearing me out, driving me crazy, and pushing all my buttons - all at the ripe old age of 21 months old! Something has to give here. I am trying to readjust my parenting strategy with him. I'm trying to swoop in and redirect before we get to a temper tantrum point, but well, I'm not always successful with that! Today though he helped me make some applesauce which proved to be a good distraction for him and great fun for us as we watched him try to "sneak" bits of apple from the pot when I wasn't looking! But we're trying .. and I know miracles don't happen overnight.

My Little Momma is doing fabulously well on her diet. I keep waiting for it to stop working (I know, sort of sad) but it keeps on working well! So yeah for that! =)

I suppose I should also tell you that the scrapbooking the other night was FABULOUS. I am so glad I didn't cancel it - we had fun. I finally finished the book I have been working on. I got 3 embroidery orders. And I laughed. A lot. So that was good.

The parenting seminar I went to a few weeks ago was good as well - and my church has been doing a small group study that is more in-depth which I've gone to a few times (although we skipped on Sunday). It is good stuff. However, it is really for kids 3 and over - the things we talk about just don't translate to a tiny guy very well (i.e. we talk about having the child change their heart and taking breaks and being able to answer "What did you do wrong? Why was that wrong? What will you do next time?) Although these things are working well with my girls (ages 5 and 7), not so much with the 1 year old. Oh well. We'll get there with him. And hey, it is working with my girls and has lowered the amount of yelling a lot so I'm thankful for that.

Anyway, I think that pretty much covers all of life for the moment. And now I must go tend to the applesauce I am making and which is smelling so YUMMY!

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

In 20 hours ...

I will be hosting a scrapbooking gathering at my house.
This should excite me - I'll get together with some ladies, I'll get to scrapbook.

However, I am filled with terror and dread!

1. My entire house is a pigsty. Tomorrow somehow I will need to clean, sweep, mop, vaccuum, organize, finish laundry, teach the children, entertain the school and not lose my mind.

2. We have almost no food in the house, about 3 diapers left, no paper towels left. So I have to go to the grocery store. Which is usually a nightmare trip truthfully.

3. My mouth still hurts. I made it to the dentist today to find out in the spot that was hurting - an old filling leaked into the root (or something - I was only half listening), my body saw it as a foreign object and began to attack it. Oh, yeah, that sounds lovely. So we had to start a root canal today. It was not pleasant. I tell you, my mouth does not stay numb long. (This has been on-going since I can remember and also happens with topical numbing creams like lidocaine). They do some work, it starts to hurt, they stick me again, do some work, it starts to hurt, they stick me again. It never fails that we get to the almost done part and I grin and bear the pain instead of stopping to get numb again. And even though I do it by choice, it still sucks frankly.

Anyway, my mouth is still pretty sore and frankly shopping/cleaning/entertaining is not on my list of things I want to do. I will attempt to do it all anyway, because at the end of the evening, I will be glad that I had people over and that I could get that time to work on my scrapbook! But I will probably whine my way through it tomorrow LOL

That is all. Just wanted to get that out there and whine a little to the internet.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Do. Not. Procrastinate.

I am the QUEEN of procrastination. I have procrastinated on nearly everything at some point in my life. Every time I get something pretty close to the wire, I promise to not procrastinate next time. Apparently, I am procrastinating on putting that promise into action! But it seems that each time I am able to squeak by. And I have to say, sometimes the rush of trying to do things in a short time, well, sometimes it can feel good (in a weird way I guess). So far I haven't had anything really bad happen due to my procrastination.
Until this past week. Not only was I burned once by procrastinating, oh no, I was burned twice.
First, I sometimes I procrastinate on laundry - but eventually the cries of my family running out of underwear get me to do it. However, sometimes I put my son in cloth diapers, and sometimes I don't. Apparently last time I put him in cloth for a few days, I forgot and never did that load of laundry. I think the last time he wore cloth was a month ago? Maybe? I won't tell you about it - only that even after washing everything about 10 times, everything in that basket will be thrown away. Actually, if I had found them the night before garbage day, I would have tossed without washing. But since I found it almost right after the garbage was collected, I could not let it sit for another 6 days like that. Really, all I can say is, it was gross. And I'll leave it at that.

Second, when I had my teeth cleaned this fall I was warned about some cavities. A few on one side and a few on the other (yes, I get a lot of cavities and I've discussed it here before but it's just how it is). So I had the one side worked on and promised to come back to get the other side. Besides, I told myself, it's not like any of it hurts or anything. Until Thursday night that is. I was innocently brushing my teeth before bed. I then flossed and even used Listerine without problem. Laid down and approximately 43 seconds later pain was searing through the left bottom of my mouth. I got up, took a few Tylenol, and tried to go back to bed. Tried to suppress the tears, took a few more Tylenol and finally, about 3 hours later fell asleep. Now, the crazy thing is that when I woke up, it didn't hurt. I actually wondered if I dreamed it! But to be on the safe side, I phoned the dentist (hoping to get in the next day or two). Oh no, Mr. Dentist wasn't going to be in the office again until Tuesday. I was told to take ibuprofen next time and call back if the pain increased. So I went about my day and in the afternoon the pain started to come back - but nothing too bad. Until it got really bad and I popped 2 advil, sat on teh couch and just started to bawl! Yes, I bawl and I'm a wimp. Big Man stopped to buy some orajel on his way home. It helped a little bit - but then the advil kicked in and so we decided to go out to dinner (since it was my mommy's birthday). And it was good, until towards the end when it felt like someone walked by and stuck a knife through my tooth and gum. I went to the car (where I bawled some more) and waited for the rest of my family to finish. When we came home, Big Man called the dentist. And I now have an antibiotic in case it's infected and some vicodin to take. And it's helping, but there is still some pain there. And Tuesday feels like it is 4 months away.

So, well, if this won't teach me not to procrastinate, I'm pretty sure there is no hope for me on that subject!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007


Today marks the anniversary of what happened not all that long ago.
And thoughts are swirling around in my head. 9/11/01 is a day I will never forget. I didn't even know about it right away - nope. I was watching PBS kids with Little Miss then. And dh called me and told me he was leaving downtown Chicago (which actually, he is down there again today - kind of weird since he goes to Chicago about once a year for work). He told me to change the channel to find out what was going on - he couldn't even really explain to me what was going on, only that it was bad and a LOT of people were leaving Chicago so traffic was pretty bad.
I flipped the station and almost immediately burst into tears. I was so scared. And then the building fell. And all I could do was just sit there. It was awful. I called dh again, kind of hysterical and begged him to come home. He couldn't. His boss wanted everyone at work. And not only that, but they weren't allowed to watch the coverage at all (and yes, typing that today fills me with a sadness and anger - I wonder if they regret that decision now). I did not want to stay home alone. I was terrified something would happen in Chicago/near Chicago and I was just completely afraid to be home alone with my daughter. I called my mom. I was supposed to go to college classes. I didn't. It was an hour drive and I just couldn't make myself get in my car and go. Instead I went to my mom's house. And I sat there most of the day. We watched coverage. I was terrified and scared. Everything seemed so surreal to me.
I remember most of all, waking up the next day, needing to go to classes, needing to take my daughter to the sitter and struggling to figure out if that was safe to do or not. I did do it.
I will tell you right now, I did not directly know anyone who lost their life that day. I did not know anyone who was injured. (I did know a few people in the area who had crazy experiences to share with me) but something inside of me just couldn't handle all that was going on.
I ended up dropping out of two of my classes that semester. I couldn't focus on things for a while and I had a hard time leaving my daughter as many days I was supposed to. So I dropped some classes and was only on campus a few days a week.

Fast forward a year later .... and the first anniversary of 9/11 was approaching and I was getting ready to give birth to my second child. Because of how things were going with the pregnancy (meaning they weren't going quite as well as they should have) my midwife wanted to induce me. We decided 9/10 would be a great day to do it - but then she looked at me, very seriously and said "Will it be a problem if she is born on September 11?" I felt taken aback - Of course not! I responded. She was concerned the inducement could carry over to the 11th and wanted to prepare me for that possibility.
I went home, dh and I chuckled about it. And then told ourselves that if she was born on 9/11 that would be a beautiful thing - something good on a day that would seem so sad. We thought it might even be kind of nice if she waited to be born that day!
Well, she wasn't. She came on the 10th just as planned. And it was wonderful. Truly it was, but then I turned on the coverage of the memorial. And I sat in that bed, holding my new baby just bawling my eyes out. The pediatrician came in, turned off the tv (told me I was in no condition to be watching something so emotional), opened the windows, checked her out and told me to spend the morning bonding with my new baby.
I think that is how I spend each September 11th now - I know it's going on, it is in my heart, but I for all intents and purposes turn off the tv (meaning I don't really like to watch the stuff on TV nor do I really read about it) and go about life with the kids.

Today we are playing, doing school, we will run errands, and we try to just do what we do.
But in my heart and head, I am saying prayers. I am still mourning the loss of life, I am mourning what happened since then, I am mourning how that sense of safety feels like it went away. And I am also waiting in anticipation - of the next attack, of the next attempt. I'd like to think we can stop it from happening again. But that might be a little naive? I hope not, because I really do hope that we don't have something like that happen for a while ....

Monday, September 10, 2007

Reading the wrong blogs ...

Today, just by randomly browsing blogs, I came across three blogs that talked about Christians. And basically said all Christians are judgmental because all of them judged non-Christians harshly and thought anyone who wasn't a Christian must not have morals, must not be nice or good people, and should be avoided at all costs.
Then the preceded to talk about how they couldn't be friends with Christians because of those reasons.

And I thought to myself, well, aren't they doing the same thing they are accusing all Christians of doing? Furthermore, are all Christians really like that? My husband (who is not a Christian) would probably say no, not really. Especially since I am a Christian. I think he's pretty nice, pretty intelligent and has some pretty darn good morals. I thought he was nice enough to marry and even nice enough to have children with.

Most of the time, I could care less if a person is a Christian or not, just so long as they are nice and friendly. I am friends with Christians and non-Christians. I do not think that only believers are nice or that only believers have morals, nor do I shield my family from them.

Do I think I'm perfect? Nope. Not at all. Do I think anyone who says they are a Christian is perfect? Oh goodness, no way! Have I hurt people's feelings in the past? Yep, probably more times than I am aware of!

But, I have to admit it hurts to think that if I walked up to some people and said I was a Christian, chances are they would want nothing to do with me from that moment on. I admit, they probably have been cast aside or treated poorly by people in the past, but truthfully, haven't most of us been treated poorly at one time in our life? I can't cast out an entire group of people based on the actions of one, because really - there wouldn't be anyone left for me to talk to!

Anyway, I'm rambling. And just sharing. I don't have answers. And I don't want to debate with anyone about this. I simply want to share and blab about what is going through this head of mine.

Sunday, September 09, 2007

More tossing things ...

So last night, I went through a lot of my magazines - which of course I save because, well, I might need them one day. I looked through and decided which to keep (admittedly over half of them I still own) but I picked a lot to dump.
Then I (quickly) flipped through and ripped out any articles I wanted to save. I purposefully flipped quickly otherwise I might want to keep all the articles LOL!).
Actually, I was surprised by how few articles I kept.
As an extra incentive I teased my dh that he should pay me a quarter a magazine. He agreed, thinking he might owe me 1 or 2 dollars.
I got rid of:

44 magazines!

And kept just a small pile or articles:

I already had a binder started when I did something similar a few years ago, so I just added them into the binder. And we had a huge pile to add to the recycle bin today! LOL!

(cross posted at My 101 in 1001 List)

I also went through the bathroom shelf and got rid of about half of my lotions. Which is fine because some of those bottles I've had longer than I've been married. I know, it's so sad. I have a hard time letting go, but I have to admit, getting rid of things has been a very good thing, and I am enjoying it a lot!

Friday, September 07, 2007

Just in time ...

Tonight the whole family is going to a parenting seminar called Parenting is heart work.
Right now, it feels like hard work. And I'm ready to go and hide for a few days.
Mostly it's my 1 year old. This kid throws fits like I've never seen. He screams in the grocery store, temper tantrums in the library, fights me about everything, can't handle it if Thomas the Tank is not on TV (which it is not on most of the time). He stresses me out. He pushes all of my buttons on the same day - no, the same hour!
Don't get me wrong - I love the kid. He's got spunk. And when he's not fighting/crying/tantrumming he is really happy and it's hard to not laugh when you're playing with him. I just wish I could get more of that side of him.
Oh well. Tonight he will be in a nursery playing games, and I will hopefully be learning something useful to help me through these days! LOL!

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

On a Mission ...

Today I have set out with a new mission for around the house.

I want to start a household binder. Nothing fancy, nothing store bought, just something I can make at home to keep our things together. I haven't thought much about how I will accomplish this quite yet, but I thing the tabs I want to include are:
grocery lists
Budget Info
Holiday/Birthday section
Important Phone Numbers
To do Lists
Kids Info
Medical Info

This will be first on my list of items to accomplish. After that, I think I want to do a School Binder, Home Binder, Garden Binder, Craft Binder and then make an "I'm Bored" binder for the kids.
We'll see ... I need to finish this first binder before I can think about these other things. I think the next few days will find me gathering recipes, shopping lists, creating spreadsheets, gathering all the important phone numbers into one place, typing lots of things and also trying to make it look pretty! That is just as important to me afterall! LOL!

Here's hoping if I spend a lot of time working on it now, it will get easier in the future. Afterall, come October, dh and I will both be working part-time and there is a chance I might also do some part-time work come November/December to help kick-start our savings and get the budget stuff under control! So if that does occur, I really want to get things a lot more organized around here!

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Homeschooling: Week 6

This week marks our 6th week of school. I know, I know, we did start early. For most people this will be somewhere between the first to third week of school.
Anyway, you'd think with 5 weeks under our belt, we'd be in a good rhythm, a good schedule. Things would be going pretty smoothly and we'd have a flow to our days.
Well, you would be wrong. For the most part, Little Miss enjoys her work and has fun with it. She likes what we are reading and hasn't been complaining about the worksheet items we are doing either.
And yet, we can't get on a schedule. Things come up, we have to run errands, the phone rings, Little Man is crabby, etc, etc. This week I need to really focus on us getting into a good rhythm with things. I need to increase time spent outdoors and reading and decrease time spent with tv/computers/video games.
We will get there. I will say we are doing much better this year than last year, and for that I am very thankful!

Monday, September 03, 2007

Labor Day ...

Happy Labor Day everyone!

I leave you with this today:

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Wah, wah, wah

I'm sitting here feeling pretty sorry about myself.
I know, it's dumb really, but it's the truth.

Anyway, tonight dh and I were both supposed to be home. We were supposed to hang out, talk, play games (on the computer) and mostly just enjoy each other's company. Frankly, we've not spent much time together this entire summer and it's really just seemed like too much away time.

But guess what? I'm here. Dh isn't.
I suppose I should mention he is working tonight. Which is better than say, ditching me to go out with the guys, or drinking our money away, or for me to say that I he's not here and I don't know where he is. I know I should be glad he's not here because he's working. And I know I should be glad that he works so hard to support my family and allow me to be a stay at home mom - and I am. I am very glad for all of that. But sometimes I am selfish and I WANT TIME WITH MY HUSBAND.

::sigh:: Off to find some chocolate, grab some knitting, and curl up in front of the tv for the night ...