What Are You Looking Forward To? – 100 Day Blog Challenge – Day 92

What Am I Looking Forward To?


There are quite a few things I’m looking forward to.  First off, I’m really excited about the upcoming school year.  Yes, I know the kids just got out of school, but I’m looking forward to the next phase of our life when all 3 boys will be in school.  It’ll be quite a few firsts – the first time all 3 will be in school together all day and the first time I will be in a kd-free zone all day.  I’ve been joking around saying I’m gonna have a party and go wild and crazy, but I am readay to see what life and my days will be like without any kids.

I’m also looking foarward to the possibility of hearing an amazing speaker this September.  A little challenge was posted our way and it’s a little bit of a tall order.  It’s going to require me to really get over my fears, step up and take chances.  When I keep that determined attitude that I know I have (since I’ve done it in the past,) there’s no reason why I can’t make the trip to Montreal to hear this person speak live and have the chance to sit down and speak with him on a personal level.

So, these are the two things I’m most looking forward to.  They’re coming up, so I’ve got to step it up.  I’m up for the challenge, and can’t wait to see what I accomplish.

Father’s Day – 100 Day Blog Challenge – Day 76

Happy Father’s Day

Today is Father’s Day; the day we celebrate Dads and father figures who are out there doing their thing.  For me, today was a crazy emotional day.  I couldn’t put my finger on it originally, but I’d say around mid-afternoon, I snapped.  I’m not even sure what triggered it, but I was an emotional wreck and unfortunately, my kids got the brunt of it.  Oh, man, talk about a downward spiral.  I mean, this is supposed to be a celebration of Dads everywhere who really don’t get the recognition they deserve.  What do I do?  Have a nervous breakdown.

As I was reading through all the Father’s Day posts on Facebook, I was very surprised by how many were tributes.  I had no idea so many have lost their Dads either recently or for quite some time.  The parallels are all the same – there’s that void, a missing piece that’s hard to explain unless you’ve been through it.  I’m not sure if the “time heals all wounds” bit really works in this case.  I know it’s still fairly new for me, but some of my friends whom I’ve spoken with tell me it hasn’t healed.  Once again, it’s quite an experience.

The boys spoke with their Dad on Skype this morning, and Isaac, tonight’s night owl, go to say goodnight to him.  I’m thankful for these little ways to keep connected even though we’re miles apart.


My Mom called today and we chatted for a bit.  She tells me that every night she has dreams about Dad and they’re pretty much full-on conversations.  It’s as if he’s right there.  It’s a lot different for my Mom, and she seems to be okay.  But she sees him every night.  I still really haven’t seen him.  I’ve got my memories, but I haven’t had that vison from the other side or the conversation from the beyond.  I’m not sure if I will and for a while I thought maybe I was weird for not “seeing” him.

Some days are good; some days aren’t so great.  Those days that challenge you really put you to the test.  At least tney have for me.

I hope you all got the chance to celebrate Father’s Day with your Dads and/or father figures today; told him how much you love him and recognize that he’s one of the grat ones.  To those who share memories of their Dads because he’s no longer with us, I’m sending lots of love and hugs your way, and hope you were surrounded by lots of loved ones.

Take care, all, and be well.

It’s Not the Destination, It’s the Journey that Counts – 100 Day Blog Challenge – Day 67

Life is a Journey

“Get ready to
take the picture, Mom.”

My kids never cease to amaze me and today was no different.  Today, Isaac, Precious and I went for a walk.  Along the way, we made a few stops.  For me, I would be in “go” mode – getting my miles in and getting home.  Today, was different.  We stopped and spoke with one of our neighbors, we took our time and on the way back, Isaac picked dandelions and made wishes on them.  As I watched him do this, I realized that those moments are what makes life so enjoyable.  The look on his face was priceless.

Making his wish

We continued on our walk and we came upon an apple tree in bloom.  We stopped again and took pictures and once again, I watched as Isaac reveled in all the beauty that was around us.  Once again, I realized that sometimes I just need to slow down and appreciate what is around me.

Yeah, the bills need to be paid, the dishes need to be done, same story every day.  But in those moments this afternoon, they will be in my memories forever and I have to thank my little guy for that.

Making a wish on
a dandelion
Smile

He’s a kid of
many expressions
Love that face

Making the Adjustment – 100 Day Blog Challenge – Day 62

Getting Back into the Routine

First off, I just realized I am about 2/3 done with this blog challenge.  How did that happen?  That’s pretty exciting and the finish line is starting to emerge.

So, today was the first day back to our old routine of being a part-time single mom.  I think, no I KNOW we got spoiled and was so glad and used to having hubby/dad home.  It’s going to be yet another adjustment for all of us, but, we’re doing what we have to do to move forward.

Today was a bit of a challenge for all of us.  From getting them to pick up their toys to making their beds, to turning off the Wii, it was as if they turned off their “listen to Mom” switch or something.  We made an attempt to have an outing, and it was a case of Murphy’s Law.  Looking back on the whole experience, and after venting to my hubby, a lot of it could have been avoided and handled differently.  Hearing him say, “You kinda created your own mess” was a hard pill to swallow, and very true.  As much as the boys would like to have the dog on an outing to the Boardwalk, it just might not happen.  So, tomorrow, if the weather is nice again, we will wake up early and go for that bike/walk.  And that’s a BIG if!!!

The boys are asleep now, and it’s funny how things seem to come together AFTER they sleep.  I was about to share some pet peeves I have on raising boys, but that gave me an idea and I’m saving it for another blog post.  Today’s reflection for me is to take it one day at a time and each day will get better.  We’ve done this before and came out fine on the other end.  We will be fine once again this go around.

Keep moving forward!!!

What’s At the Top of Your Bucket List? – 100 Day Blog Challenge – Day 52

Top of My Bucket List

At first, I thought this was going to be easy.  It’s my bucket list – the things I’d like to do before I die.  But in reality, this was a tough one for me to come up with an answer.  I actually discussed this with my hubby to find out what is on the top of HIS bucket list.  What he said really got me thinking, because what he desires is not anything fancy, over the top, travel the world type of thing.  That really got me to think about what do I find very important and value the most that I would like to do before I die.

I’m still not sure what is at the top of my list, I’ll be honest with you.  I figured as I was typing, it would come to me.  There are lots of places I want to see and do (kind of coincides with my lottery post,) but to be at the top of my list, this thing has to be special.  Something that snowballs into the other to create that awesome list that I can look back on and say, “Yep, I did it all, and I’m happy.”

Disney World

The more I think about it, in order for me to really do the things that I want to do on my own time requires time and money.  So, in order for anything that I want to do to happen requires taking care of our finances.  Let’s be honest, what I want to do requires money, enough money that will keep us secure and without any worry.  Once we’ve taken care of our finances and are stable, I can focus on doing some traveling and photography.

I know this will happen, but what I want to really do is take my boys on a plane to Disney. It could be either Disneyland or Disney World; heck, it could be both, but my boys deserve this trip.  With the exception of my oldest (and he was 5-6 months at the time), my kids haven’t been on an airplane.  When I got back from my trip, the first thing they kept saying was how much they want to go on a plane.  For me, that would be a great thing to happen for them because I know how happy they would be.  In turn, that makes me happy.

But, this would be a different type of trip to Disney.  A few months ago, I heard how a section of Disney was blocked off exclusively for some of our business partners during their trip.  They received the red carpet treatment, no lines, no waiting, it was all fun.  That’s the type of experience I want for my family, a few close friends and their families.  There’s no way I’d do this all alone.  There’s got to be about 3-4 other families to take part in this as well. And one day, they will get it.

Disneyland

It WILL happen in the very near future!!!

Being Coachable and Learning When to Step Back – 100 Day Blog Challenge Day 7

The Teacher and The Student


Last night, before they went to bed, I asked my boys what they wanted for breakfast. They all said “Pancakes and Bacon.”  This morning, my 8 year old said, “Mom, would you teach me how to make pancakes?”


They’ve asked me all the time, they get all excited with the measuring and mixing, but then they would usually get tired or bored and go off to do something else.  Today was different.  My oldest REALLY wanted to learn, but I was still a little scared.  But, why?  I mean, when I was his age, not only was I in the kitchen cooking with my Mom, but I was helping raise my younger brother.

So, I willingly allowed him to help, and boy, was he eager.  He got out all the ingredients, the bowl, measuring spoons, pans and whisk.  He was on a pancake making mission.  Things were going really well – he did great with the measuring and he wanted to do the mixing.  I was a little hesitant, so I started it off.  I mean, the batter was full and some of it was stuck to the bottom – he may have had a hard time getting it all mixed…

One is ready to grow up, while the other is just not quite there yet.

The time came to start cooking the pancakes.  He didn’t want to pour the batter in the pan, but he wanted to do the flipping.  He did his first flip, and part of it landed on the edge of the pan.  He got upset.  I told him, it was fine, he did a good job and the pancake was still edible.  We went through this process for a bit, and by the time all was said and done, he managed to flip 12 pancakes with some minor hiccups.

He was proud of himself for helping, and I was proud of myself for not being too controlling.  My 5 year old wanted in on the action as well, so he got to flip the last pancake and the look of joy on his face was just priceless.

When all was said and done, we made 20 pancakes, scrambled eggs and turkey bacon for Saturday breakfast.  It was a joint effort, and a fun time was had by all.  They loved it so much, they wanted breakfast for dinner.  There’s nothing left of that food.

I just wish I had taken a picture of it all.  Oh well, next time.

This experience got me to thinking about what it means to be coachable, willing to learn and allow others to do for themselves.  As a Mom, I know that as my boys get older, they will be able to take on more responsibilities around the house, including cooking.  The fact that they are so eager to learn makes the process a little easier, but that protective instinct in me tends to kick into overdrive on some occasions.

I don’t want them to get hurt – or in this case, burned.
It’s difficult in the beginning.
It can be overwhelming.
They will make mistakes.
They will learn from those mistakes.
They will get better each time.

For my oldest, when he flipped that first pancake and it didn’t come out perfect, he was devastated.  To him, it was the end of the world, but I had to keep reassuring him that it was fine and he did a good job.  That little bit of encouragement made the difference and he did get better along the way.  He was also real excited because he got to turn on the burner.  That was like the Holy Grail of cooking for him at that point.

In life, we are always a work in progress, and we should be willing to learn from others.  As adults, this can be a challenge, for some. We’re set in our ways; we’re used to doing things a certain way; we’re in a rush and want to get it done right now.

Wait a sec…it’s the same mentality kids have.  

When you are open and willing to be coached by others, you gain the knowledge and skills necessary to move forward.  Whether it’s tying your shoe laces for the first time, cooking, reading, writing, starting a business, whatever it may be – as long as you are truly willing to be taught, you will go far.

It’s a matter of giving up control for just a little bit, taking the time to learn, being patient, making mistakes, and having fun along the way.  Then, once you’ve learned, you’re able to turn around and teach it to others.  The duplication process at its best.

This morning was a lot of fun for all of us.  We all learned something about ourselves today.

Now, if I can just get them to put their toys away on their own…

100 Day Blog Challenge – Day 4 – Keep On Truckin’…

And the Saga Continues…


It’s Day 3 of no power, and I feel like that’s all to discuss.  It’s kind of funny because when I decided to start this challenge, I really had some good topics that I wanted to share, but this darn winter and no power has taken over. 

GAH!!!

Oh well, I will go with the flow.

The last I heard, it was down to 1,800 customers still without power, but this experience has taught me some things:

1.  Make sure you have LOTS of batteries on hand
2.  Make sure you have matches/lighters on hand
3.  A better appreciation for what God provides
4.  Bonding time with the kiddos
5.  You become a MASTER of operating the generator

I must admit, when I first had to handle the generator, I was nervous and scared and a little of the “girl” on me started to creep out.  The challenge was using the crank because it’s so powerful, but now, it’s almost a walk in the park.  It still likes to put on a fight, but I ultimately prevail!!!



UPDATE – Two minutes after I posted my blog, the power came back on.  {Insert happy dance here!!!}

The kids went back to school today…the kids went back to school today!!!  I only had ONE at home with me!!!  That may sound a little harsh, but after having them home for March Break two weeks ago and then home since last Wednesday because of storms, that’s a little too much child for me to handle on my own.

Don’t get me wrong, I love my kids, they are my life, but they can be TOO MUCH sometimes, and having that little break keeps me sane.  I’m pretty sure my fellow Moms can relate to what I’m saying.  And there’s nothing wrong with needing and wanting some alone time.  It’s necessary and something that I need to work on more and plan to incorporate better in my daily routine.

Just Decide

I listened to a great training call from an amazing leader in our company who is also a Mom and hearing her story again really helped me put things into perspective.  All too often, we (at least I) tend to complicate things instead of just keeping it simple.  Everything always comes down to making a decision.  Once you do, things will fall into place.  It’s the Law of Attraction at its best and when I simply decide what I want, it’s amazing how the right doors open and the right people come into my life.  

So, I’ve made the decision…I’m moving forward and those who wish to follow on this amazing journey, great.  For those who choose not to, step aside.  There are plenty of people out there who are looking to make a change in their life.  Tired of the same hum-drum routine, and willing to do what it takes to go after what they want and have the life they deserve.

So, how about you?  What’s your decision?

Let me know your thoughts on what you’ve been reading.  Comment below, share your feedback.  I welcome all comments and will respond to you.  I appreciate you taking the time to learn more about me and read my thoughts.

Thanks for reading, and I will see you tomorrow for Day 5.

My Boys Will Thank Me Later

I will say this about how I raise my boys…

In and out of our house, we have rules.  If they ask for something, they must use the words, “Please” and “Thank you.”  They must be respectful to their elders, and any adult in the room.  If they get out of line (use a tone or language that we don’t like) they will get a slap on the hand, mouth or bum so they learn their lesson.  They must clean up after themselves, do chores and help around the house in any way we see fit.  They must ALWAYS be there for each other, because at the end of the day, they are brothers and they have each other to lean on for support.

I am a strict Mom.  I can also be a bit uptight.  When we go out in public, I fuss over them, and make sure they behave themselves.  I dislike it when they try to overstep the boundaries, and they do test the limits ALL THE TIME!!!  I’ve yelled at them in public, I have made an example of them in front of other kids, and they know I will call them out at any time.

Why do I do this?  I am their MOTHER!!!  I am not their friend, I am not their equal.  I am their superior and they must respect my authority.  They MUST listen to their parents, they must follow OUR rules.  I’m not here to cater to their every need or give them everything they want.  They’ve heard me say “No” to some of their requests, they’ve seen me blow my top; they’ve seen me cry.  They say they will listen, not do it again, but 9 times out of 10, the cycle has started all over again.

There are times I wonder if the words I’m saying get through to them or if I’m just talking to the air.  I know they understand me and get what I’m doing.  I’m also not a complete ogre who walks around with the yardstick.  We have other rules that we live by in our home.  We sit down at the table for meals all the time.  We say grace before every meal.  We say prayers every night before bed.  We say “I love you” more times than you can imagine.  We give each other lots of hugs and kisses and we say “Sorry” when we’ve done something wrong.

My boys won’t be boys for very long.  Next month, my oldest starts the 3rd grade and my middle is entering Kindergarten.  By next year, ALL 3 boys will be in school and there are going to be pressures from kids at every angle.  They are BOYS.  They are impressionable.  They are smart.  They are talented and they have a bright future ahead.   As their Mother, it is my job to ensure they are prepared for the world – the good, bad and ugly.  They will make mistakes, and hopefully they will learn from them.  We have a pretty strong bond and they feel comfortable telling us their troubles and I hope it continues as they become TEENAGE BOYS.

One day, they will grow up and become MEN.  They will hopefully have a great education, a successful career of their choosing (even if they decide not to partner up with me) and eventually (hopefully) they will fall in love, get married, and have children of their own.  Then and ONLY then, will they understand WHY I was so strict with them as babies.  One day, they may even have a baby girl (or 2 or 3) of their own who will grow up to be a teenage girl and eventually a WOMAN.  They will want their daughter to respect herself, her body and treat it like the temple it is.  They will want their daughter to know that her beauty comes from within and not have to seek it in the wrong places.  They will want their daughter to know and understand that saying “NO” is okay if something doesn’t feel right and that at ANY TIME, they can call on their Dad for help if needed.

My boys may not like and or appreciate all the rules and structure now, but when they get older, they will thank me later.  Why?  I am their Mother, I love them very much and it’s MY job to help raise them to become true GENTLE MEN!!!

Take care, and be well.

Diary of a Busy Mom

I am a Mom.  I am a Mom of 3 boys.  I am a Mom of 3 very active boys.  They are great kids, and I am proud to be their Mom.  I face many challenges every day to ensure I am doing the best to raise them to be amazing gentlemen.  Some days are better than others, and there are days when I am ready to pull my hair out.

Being a Mom is a thankless job; the most under appreciated job known to man.  We wear many hats as Moms – chauffeur, cook, doctor, nurse, lawyer, judge, jury, executioner, referee, psychiatrist, psychologist, cheerleader…the list is endless, and we’re almost EXPECTED to perform these tasks perfectly every time.  Fellow Moms, do you feel that way?  But, on those days when you are doing so much and no one seems to appreciate what you do, that’s when you feel like saying, “What’s the point?”  “Why the heck am I doing this?”  “Is this REALLY what I signed up for?”  “It’s GOT to get BETTER!!!”

Let’s just say, this weekend was the weekend where no one really appreciated Mom (at least that’s how it felt.)  It’s not a great feeling, because as a Mom, you put your heart and soul into EVERYTHING.  Many times, you don’t get the thank-you’s but, it’s nice when you are noticed for the things you do.

As a Mom, as a parent, as a person, you hope that you are making an impact on someone’s life; that you are making a difference; that you MATTER.  The rewards don’t come in bushel baskets, heck, there are times when it doesn’t show up right away.  I know in the back of my mind that my kids get it and when they get older, they will appreciate all I’ve done for them.  The thank-you’s will come then, I’m sure of it…but it would be nice to get them now, every once in a while.

So, that’s my rant for the day.  Take care, and be well.

Excuses, Excuses

We’ve all heard them and even given them, and it’s amazing how we almost BELIEVE most of them.  I’m no better.  For about 6 months, I’ve been making excuses on why I wouldn’t get back to blogging.  “It’s too much work”; “The kids are all over the place”; I’m too busy”; “My hands hurt”; My mouth hurts”; “My kid’s mouths hurt”….you get the idea.

I have another blog, but for some reason I can’t access it, so I’ve started another one.  I decided to pull up my Granny panties and just do it.  I’ve got lots to say, and need an outlet to say it.  Whoever decides to read, great.  I hope you find it helpful, or maybe even insightful.  I may get really candid, and for some of you, it may hit a nerve.  If so, maybe that will push you to do what you KNOW you should be doing and stop making excuses.

I’m a wife, a mom of 3 boys, I am a mom who works from home.  I am a busy Mom, and proud of it.  Some days are better than others, and there are times when I want to just throw in the towel.  But, hey, that’s life.  I’m sure many of you out there have felt that way.  So begins the journey into my life once again.  I hope you decide to take the ride with me.

Until next time, be well, and take care.