About Me

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Trying to remember that there is always a reason, always something that makes you smile during the day- recognizing the event, person or situation that made you smile will make your day seem that much better.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Home Sweet Home

We are home...
Got in late last night...spent the night in a hotel and back to work today...
I was spoiled by my mom..
Got to be the fun aunt and listen to the kids giggles...
Spent his birthday with my nephew and went to see my niece at school..
The littlest one is growing up very fast..
It's almost the end of another month....which is always a huge sigh of relief...
Christmas shopping must commence after this weekend and I think a Christmas Tree might be on the agenda for the weekend..
Lots of changes coming up at our house..including the departure of our house guests..
it's for the best and we did everything we could...
Sometimes you just have to let go..
It was a great weekend with the family and I love spending time with my mom...
Never enough, but we were definately able to relax and gain some perspective.
More on that when there aren't people looking over my shoulders

Thursday, November 24, 2011

A day to be Grateful

Grateful for all that we have
A house
Food on the table
The ability to work
The ability to love
Grateful for my amazing family
Who, no matter what, support me, challenge me and pick me up when I fall
Grateful for my amazing husband
Who loves me, listens to me, calms me, riles me up, takes on things without me asking and who is my rock, my love, my life
Grateful for all the children in my life
Who keep me young, teach me everyday, provide countless snuggles, kisses, love
Grateful for all my friends, new and old
Who know me, get my sense of humor, listen, cry with me, laugh with me, challenge me and support me no matter what
Grateful for all of you
Who allow me to vent, cry, smile, laugh and share what I am happy for everyday
Who don't judge when I write something out the norm for me
Who comment with support
who send emails to check on me
Who, although we have never met, are among the people in my life that I turn to
I am grateful for all the smiles, the hugs, the tears, the laughter, the emails, the conversations..
Today is a day to remember,
Today is a day to give thanks
and remember all the good,
all the smiles
My heartfelt love, positive thoughts, hugs and best wishes to all of you out there.
Thank you for being part of my life!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

At mom's house

it is so nice to be out of my house..
We had a bunch of drama before we left and will need to deal with the aftermath when we get home...
But right now I am enjoying being at my mom's house..
We hung out yesterday...
Surprised my niece at school for grandparent's day
She made a quilt for her family tree...complete with pictures...
It was amazing
We got to be the fun aunt and uncle
So awesome
Then dinner with my parents and my grandmother who's here...
It is so nice to just be able to relax
Nice to be able to smile
Nice to be able to spend time with my family.
I hope that you all have an amazing day today
And that you enjoy your families
There is much to be thankful for...
and I count each of you as one of those things that I am extremely thankful for.
Sending smiles, love and lots and lots of positive energy to each of you!!
Hugs and love!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Heart to Heart

Sitting and listening
To the imaginations of children
To the sounds of them playing
and still here.
A heart to heart conversation was had the other night.
I was not nice,
I was frustrated, upset and needed her to realize her bad decisions could have disastrous consequences.
I laid it all on the line for her.
I did not sugar coat it
I did not make it into a pretty little box for her
I was a tad over dramatic, but within the realm of possibility.
I know she heard me
I don't know if it will  make a difference
We are trying to make it work.
In other news, I am super excited to be going to my parents house for Thanksgiving.
A whole week with my mom and dad
Smiles and snuggles with some of my favorite little ones
I am ready for a break..
I am ready for some quality time with my hubby
I am ready to be the fun Auntie who can spoil the kids,
who can wind them up
who can snuggle and have fun
and who doesn't have to discipline
Doesn't have say yes or no
Doesn't have to do bed time
Doesn't have to make decisions
I am ready for a break....and definitely ready to step back for a little while and rejuvenate

Friday, November 18, 2011


The smell of wood mingles with the smell of cigarette smoke,

Coffee, slightly burnt, from sitting in the pot all day

Always sanding with the grain

The smell of chemicals

The thrill of the hunt

The dusty antique shops

Up and down the street

In little towns

Searching for the next piece

Scarred and tattered

Look beyond,

Look at the potential

I looked at it this morning

I look at it every morning

Today I opened it

Read the note that you left for me

Like I do when I need to be reminded

When I need strength

When I need to feel you sitting with me

You made me smile when I left today

No wind, perfectly still

The chimes rang

The special ones

The ones you put in the hope chest

The hope chest that was scarred

The hope chest that wasn’t pretty

The hope chest that was your last piece

The hope chest that you picked out

The hope chest that you worked out the scars

The hope chest that you made pretty

The hope chest that you never saw me look at

The hope chest that makes me cry

The hope chest that moves with me where ever I go

The hope chest that reminds me of you,

That some mornings I can see you,

When the light is right

Leaning over

Buffing out the last imperfection

I remember you saying to me on that trip

Look beyond the scars and the imperfections

There are treasures to be found

Twelve years ago today,

You were taken from us

Scarred and imperfect,

But a treasure that is missing from our lives every day

Thank you for showing me how to look past the scars

Thank you for showing me that imperfections,

With a bit of work

Can lead to a treasure

Thank you for making me smile today when you reminded me that you were there, watching, listening and guiding my path.

I miss you every day Gramps- but remember the lessons, and know that you are guiding my path.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

I am not strong enough

and I may need to let go
I am not able to make you change
you need to make your own choices,
Choose your own path
I can guide you
I can help you
but in the end it is  you who need to be strong enough
Strong enough to think with your head
To think of your kids
To want for the better
Strong enough to take the steps
to walk away
I cannot will the strength to you
I cannot decide for you
I cannot cajole
or make you do it
I can't make you look at the gift you have
your three precocious but precious kids
the three lives who depend on you to make the right choices
who depend on you to be strong enough
It is your path
your choice
your life

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Time out for me..

It was an awesome weekend..lots of time spent with the nephews up north and a mad scientist birthday party for one of them....can't believe how big they are getting.
What I thought was just a nasty cold slammed into on Sunday morning...
Went to the doctors yesterday... pneumonia.  Not so good..
So for now, a second day off from work, a handful of pills, hot tea and peanut butter toast is on the agenda.
I will catch up when i can...love and miss you all..

Friday, November 11, 2011

There are not enough words.

To every young man who, at eighteen signs away his life for years, to serve our country

To every young woman who decides to ignore the stereotypes and put on fatigues

Every shot gun wedding the night before you leave

Every letter a young woman writes to her love countries away and every breath that I held hoping to get one in return

To every father who leaves their children to fight for our freedom.

For every Skype conversation that happens between a mother and child, father and son, every email written,

For every sacrifice that is made fighting for our freedom,

Thank you

Not just today,

Not just tomorrow,

But always.

To the brave men and women, past present and future who bravely sign a piece of paper to fight for our freedom,

Who are willing to sacrifice their lives for us,

There are no words to express how grateful, humbled and honored I am to be call you grandpa, uncle, family and friend.
My Grandpa Jack and Uncle Bob

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

where does the time go??

I can hardly believe that it is almost Thanksgiving and that the holiday season is almost upon us...
It's a bit crazy if you think about it.
It's been a crazy year and recent events have made it even crazier.
I appreciate all of the support that I get from you guys..
We are struggling a bit still...and probably will continue to struggle..
But I came home tonight to a relatively quiet house...
The kids and cousin and hubby had eaten already because it was a late night for me at work..
Hubby was excited because she had made Shepherd's pie which he loves and I do not...
I was perfectly content with the turkey sandwich that I ate...
The littlest one was excited to see me when i came home and told me all about her day and made a picture for the fridge cause i "shouldn't sit at the table all alone....I might get lonely"
The middle child is getting sick and running a low grade fever so she was snuggled up on the couch with hubby..
The oldest remembered that he had math homework and he was struggling so I got to try to figure out how to explain division to a nine year old....I am certainly not earning any teaching degrees but it was kinda fun to figure out a way to explain something to someone who didn't have a clue...
I am debating on how much I am going to sponsor him for the math-a-thon they are doing at school and parent teacher conferences are the first week of December and I want to be there to meet his teachers..
We are dealing with bullying for the first time ever and we need to figure out how to help him at home and make sure that the teachers are addressing it in an appropriate manner...
I remember trying to adjust to a new school when i was his age...at about the same time of the year...it was tough..but he will settle in and be okay...just need to keep working with him..
My cousin was better tonight...she wasn't on the phone all night as has been her normal for the last week or so...which is good..because that was driving me batty.
There are still dishes in the sink that I will need to go do before I go to bed...
Hubby is craving some alone time and we need to go up to see his family this weekend....
I am thinking that a hotel room may be appropriate for the night on Saturday....would be nice to have some quiet alone time..
I have tomorrow off and I am looking forward to spending some time with the kids...maybe working on an art project or two...
I am struggling with some jealousy issues from some of the other kids in my life....who I don't get to see all the time that know that there are kids living in our house....It is tough to make them understand why there are others that get to spend this much time with us when we don't get to see them very often...and I think that their mother is feeding them those lines (my sister) so i will need to take extra care to spend some real quality time with them when we are in Maryland in a few weeks...
I can't wait to see my mom...she is my rock, as many of you know.  She has listened to me yell, scream, cry and laugh through this whole process and I can't wait to be able to sit in the same room with her over coffee...or margaritas and just be able to talk about all of it...
I am actually looking forward to going north this weekend...the oldest nephew's birthday is Monday so we are having a mad scientist themed birthday party complete with science experiments on Saturday for fifteen of his closest friends...which always promises to be fun...and my sister in law is always a good sounding board for me and I know she will have some good advice for me...
Well, now that I have been all over the map with this post, I am going to go up and snuggle with my kitties- who have been hiding for the last two weeks in my bedroom- and my wonderful hubby and get some sleep...I haven't been commenting as much as I should and there's an award out there that I need to address...I am reading and commenting when I can and thinking of all of you often....I honestly don't know what I would do without your comments and encouragement...so thank you from the bottom of my heart...sending love, hugs and wishes for a night full of wonderful dreams for all of you.

Thank you

Thank you all for your words of support on my post yesterday....
I was tired when i wrote it and have since rethought it and pulled it down.
She has been through a lot and is processing everything...
I need to remind myself that.
I am off from work tomorrow so she can go to her DHS meeting and get things set up..
Hopefully tomorrow afternoon we will have a minute to work on her resume and find local resources for counseling and stuff.
I am working on my communication with her and not hedging things with her.
I am going to continue to work on it, enforce the rules and repeat myself.
Deep breaths and lots of counting to ten.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Things I have learned this week

Well I survived a whole weekend with the kids....
I have learned some things...
I have learned that grocery shopping is crazy expensive when you are buying for six people
But to hear a child say that something is the best they have ever eaten makes you forget how much it cost
Cutting coupons is a necessity no matter how much I hate it...
Yes, you are that person in the grocery store that buys eight loaves of bread when they are on sale.
Kids don't understand money...at all..and they still believe in money trees.
You can have a family game night and enjoy bowling with the kids on the wii.
Nine year olds don't EVER stop talking...they narrate everything...sometimes things come out of their mouths that will teach you a lot but you have to listen to all of it...
Nail polish remover doesn't work on walls but it does work on computer covers
Timeouts do calm a three year olds temper tantrum and the bath tub is a perfectly good place to have one.
Spongebob sucks brain cells out of your head
They are proud of the picture that they can hang on your refrigerator
Never assume you know what they are drawing
Little toys hurt when you step on them
Adults need timeouts too.
Kids will repeat everything you say
They crave structure
It is great to listen to them play outside.....they have amazing imaginations
It may be different when they are your own...but I am definitely not a patient enough person to have a child...
I am continuing to learn from them every day and we are all adjusting....some better than others..but we are adjusting and will continue to do so...

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Thursday Thoughts

This week has been a whirlwind of emotions…

I have wanted to laugh,



And sing all in the same breath

I have gotten frustrated beyond belief

I have felt the elation that only a child who trusts you completely can bring

I have walked into my house after a bad day and had it made all better by the singsong voices of a child

And walked into my house after a pretty good day and been deflated and frustrated/

I have alternated between being completely happy and completely disappointed

The extremes of my emotions have been tough for me to handle,

Made even worse because I haven’t been sleeping….too much to think about

It will be okay….there are hidden smiles in everything.

A little hand

A snuggle on the couch

A huge hug when I come in from work

Watching hubby with the kids

Eating dinner together as a family

I know that there is an adjustment period..

And I know that we are right in the middle of that adjustment

I am hoping for patience right now

Patience to teach

Patience to guide

Patience to respond appropriately

I am hoping for trust

Trust that things are being done the way I am being told

Trust that it will get better

Trust that it will work

I am hoping for understanding

Understanding that it is going to be different

Understanding that they don’t know better

Understanding that not everything goes the way we want it to.

I feel the mental shift, starting in the back of my brain.

I take a deep breath before speaking

I take a moment before going in the house

I take a break when I need to

I try to be patient,

I try to trust

I try to understanding.

I need to try harder to teach, to guide.

I need to try harder to concentrate on the smiles.

The big picture is there- I see it and know what it will look like- but right now- we are stuck in the minute details- and sometimes those details seem like they are going to overwhelm that picture.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011


Things have been a bit crazy around my house...but that seems to be the new normal in our house :)
We won first place yesterday in our Halloween contest.
That means that there is going to be a donation made in the name of our department to a charity that provides resources to homeless teenagers...
Here are some pictures of our winter wonderland..hope you all enjoy!!

Here are both sides of the north pole- the nice and the naughty side.

I hope you are all doing well...hugs and lots of love to you!!