Sunday, November 23, 2014

I wonder. A letter to my biological father.

I recently found my ancient old Ipod.
So ancient there wasn't even a touch screen. Yeah that existed.
Anyway, I am looking thru the thousands & thousands of songs.
Music is/was my love language. & while most of my music is just Doc Mcstuffins CDs & Mickey Mouse Clubhouse now. It used to help me through so much in my life.
If you were going through something, I had a song for it. & by the end of that song, it would make me/you feel better.

So tonight after date night tonight. Dang near midnight. I decided to go through my old playlists I found a old song I used to love/hate.
It was by Kelli Pickler & it's called "I wonder". The song is actually about her mother, but I related to it about my biological father.
Let me cut in here & say I have the most amazing father/dad/daddy. We might always see eye to eye but He has raised me & is the person I call dad. The person I am about to talk to was not my dad, he was simply a man that helped give me life, & haunts alot of my life to this day. I don't for one minute wish I didn't have my dad, & had my biological father in my life today.

Ok so going back to this song. If you haven't heard it you can listen here.
Some snippits of the songs go kind of like this:

"Sometimes I think about you
Wonder if you're out there somewhere thinking 'bout me
And would you even recognize
The woman that your little girl has grown up to be

'Cause I look in the mirror and all I see
Are your brown eyes looking back at me
They're the only thing you ever gave to me at all"

 It goes on to say I wonder what you would say to me.
I dreamnt of that day alot. I had this distorted dream that this man would come me & apolgoize & thank my father for raising the person I am today.
That day came a couple years ago. I got a message on Facebook. & my heart sunk when I saw his name, the man that hurt me physically & emotionally had sent me a message. I thought this is it.
This was the message that would maybe give me closure? Did I need closure? What did I need closure for? My mind wouldn't stop. I finally clicked the message. & that message was anything but. It was a harassing message about money.
I couldn't believe. Or really I could.
I never messaged him back, & now I can't since that man is now dead.
If I could message him back, I would tell him I wondered, just like that song said. & now I don't know why I did at all. Why I cared what this man thought about the life I now lead. Would he be proud? When that man had never cared about my life in the first place. I wish I would have told him exactly what I felt about about him. What he did to me. & that I knew he was incapable of loving me even thought he & his family had claimed he once had. Because now, now I knew what a father was. I knew from my own father & because of my husband. 

When I stood in that courtroom at his murder trial. Up to testify. Subpoenaed to not only bring up my old memories of my short time in his life, but to see my mother talk about this horrific time in her life. Pregnant, with a very high risk pregnancy I sat there still looking out into courtroom; begging for that family to see how I turned out. That I was given this amazing life. But was reciprocated with evil instead. Hoping for that closure. What ever closure was? Why did I need closure for again?

I didn't get it. I didn't know what I wanted. What I thought I needed from this man. & what I thought I was missing after his death. Why I was mix with emotions about said death. I just kept wondering.

Years later, I sit here in my living room. With my amazing husband, that is a beyond amazing father. In my home, rebuilt by my father. The man that help make me to be the parent/person/woman I am. Listening to this song, crying as I did with my "brown eyes". & I realize. I never had to wonder. I do not need closure. & really the only thing I am is grateful that because he is was the way he was, gave me this beautiful,wonderful, amazing life I have now. & that I am sad for HIM & his family that they missed out on, & continue to. Not sorry for myself. 

& now, now I know exactly how I feel, I feel exactly he felt for  me... & that's nothing.

& it feels so good to say that.

My dad & I:

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Hot Chocolate Pancakes



This is such a fun take on a pancake!
Especially during the holidays & when it is cold!
Or maybe for your elf's welcome breakfast?
I ran out of chocolate chips for pancakes for dinner & the girls were not happy!
All I had chocolate was hot chocolate mix so I thought what the heck!

What you need:

-Pancake Mix
-Hot Chocolate mix
-Syrup
-Marshmallows {optional}

Mix in the hot chocolate to the pancake mix & prepare according to directions.
Make like normal!


Top with syrup, marshmallows & snow {powdered sugar}



ENJOY!!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

currently

Netflixing..
All & anything Christmas. I could watch Christmas with the Kranks everyday! I love White Christmas its a top fave here & Ill Be Home for Christmas! I wish they had more! 
I am looking for a new series to start! Any suggestions?
I about died when "My Father the Hero" came up on the recently added. I used to LOVE that movie! Brandon is on a old movies kick, mostly Arnold Schwarzenegger movies. Have yall watched the old Total Recall? Like what the actual heck is this movie? Is it all a dream? Why is there alien baby man thing coming out of the  guys belly. You guys, I can't. Why do men watch this stuff? 

Cooking..
 I was just on maja maja apple cooking kick. Pie, crisps, dumplings, you name it I made it! I am ready for more holiday things now. My list for next week consists of lots of pumpkin pies & pecan pies!

Laughing..
At the things these kids say. Mostly Kensley will end anything you say or do in "you're crazy" or "you're crazy mommy". Kennedy I can't even handle her sometimes with the stuff that comes out of her mouth. Yesterday day she came up to me and said "Mom, today we are humans because we are kids. But just today we are humans". Whatever you say kid.

Reading..
I am actually not reading anything right now, surprisingly! But I do have this on my night stand:



Crying...
About how cold it is. I was 10000% ready for the snow really I was. & the cold. But 10 degrees already in the middle of November. Lets still with at least the 30s!?



In my Amazon cart..
Mostly it Christmas presents! So I can't tell of course :) But besides that I have my bottle of spray tan that I really need to order because I am really low! Momma needs some glow!

Awaiting.. Our elf's arrival!! I am so excited for her welcome breakfast & surprising the girls with our trip to the REAL polar express!! That reminds me, I really need to finding them the perfect jammies, off I go...


Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Holiday Gift Guide for Him

Sometimes the men in our life can be the worst to buy for!
Brandon is a true guys, guy but also spendins all day in a office.
Here are some great ideas for your dressy lumber jack!

Enjoy!!

1. Old Navy Flannel
2. North Face Zip Up
3. Old Navy Pull Over
9. Perry Ellis Travel Bag
10. Bose Portable Speaker

Monday, November 17, 2014

Thankful Tree

I wanted to do something this month that would help the girls understand Thanksgiving, what exactly being thankful is & what we should be thankful for.
I needed it to be fun & hands on for them to want to do it everyday!
 I did a tree like this in my Pre-K classrom years ago & thought it would be great just adding what we are thankful for on each "leaf" hand.

Everyday we wake up & do our "thankful hands" I write down whatever they say. Sometime its silly & other times Im blown away that the first thing they thought of to be thankful for was each other, or something I had done with one of them.
All you need is:
a marker
construction paper
tape



I just used 3 full sheets for the trunk & we trace our hands on each color of paper.
I found out pretty fast it was best to cut out LOTS of hands at once rather than cutting them out everyday. It helps on school or library days when we just need to get out the door!

Sometimes we skip a day & forget. Which is probably best because our tree would be huge! 

I think this is a tradition that will be here to stay as they are little!
It is super simple & a fun way to show what we are thankful for!
Hope you enjoy!

Saturday, November 15, 2014

raising a grateful child

I have the cutest video to share of Kennedy opening her birthday present early.
I keep watching it over & over again, not because it is so cute & she is so excited but because I see something in her; she was grateful.

As a parent we are always wondering if we are doing the right thing. Will it stick? Is everything we are doing, molding them into the person you dream they will be?

One thing that is so important in raising our girls, is that they have grateful hearts.
It is no secret that these girls have everything they need. My husband works very hard to give us & more importantly our children the best that we are able to. But in all this "spoiling" I never wanted them to be "spoiled" or even put the "b" word at the end of that phrase. {brat is a bad word at our house}

I have gotten never ending compliments on our girls' politeness  & I smile from ear to ear when I don't have to remind them to say please or thank you.  But I was always wondering if it stuck. That they weren't just saying these things to say it, because thats what they were supposed to say. They are so young that right now yes thats why they were saying it. & there has been many meltdown for not getting that sucker at the grocery checkout lane.

But now just a day shy of being 4, I think Kennedy has it. Through learning this whole month about being grateful. I can see her thank you's are truly thanking us for what we are doing for her.

While I was setting up for her party she came into the living room & said "gosh this looking amazing, thank you so much for my party" & continued to say for each thing I was making. Then last night, she got to open a early birthday girl. One she had REALLY wanted. & as she opened I could tell with each "I love all this stuff guys, thank you so much" She was grateful, truly grateful.

& after the last couple of months of having just some tough tough momma days, I can see it. I can see all the work paying off. All the "what do you say", the explaining why daddy is at work, & putting up each thankful hand this week about our home, food & clothes. I can see it.
 I can see their grateful hearts, & it makes my heart so grateful God has given me ability to do this. 
& that my friends will be my thankful hand today.

kennedy opening her birthday present ma thing AG outfits from Tara Mumaw on Vimeo.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Top 5 Christmas Apps

I had this post set for tomorrow.
But Santa made his appearance this evening & the shrills & screams of pure happiness compelled me to post it now for you all to enjoy a little earlier!
Everyone loves a good app! But then add in Christmas? You gotta love it!

I compiled a list of the best kid friendly Christmas apps!
Hope you enjoy!





Christmas Tree Decorator
this one we just found & the girls love. super simple & easy for them to do themselves.
Their nabi is the play store, i was unable to find on itunes but i found similar

Reindeer Cam
You maybe under a rock & never heard of this, & if you have its ok. Just get ready to blow your childs mind, & yours. This is app is a live feed from the "north pole" its starts November the 16th for Santa to come out & feed the reindeer & wave! There is 3 times a day he comes out & get your ear plugs because your children will scream for joy! You can view the reindeer now but santna doesnt start for a few days; although he made a quick appearance tonight!

Santas Calling
This is a good one for when the kids are just not listening or maybe they had a exceptionally good day. We have used this twice now & had great results with the girls going to bed & straightening up. First, I have to say when you first open the app thre will be an ad for other calls; just wait a second for the menu to start. Then you get to select between nice,warning & naughty call. Then select how long you want to wait for santa to call. Like 5 seconds til it rings. You press accept just like a real phone call & you hear a very nice message! Even the naughty call is very encouraging! LOVE it!
I couldnt find this one for Play store :(


Elf on the Shelf Snowball Fight
Are you elf crazy too? Here if your favorite Chippy & a super fun game! I even get into this one! Another easy one for toddler & they get such a kick out of it!!



Santa Tracker
& of cours every one need a Santa tracker app! This is great for Christmas Ever to see where Santa is when you can expect him at your house!

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Winter Car Seat Safety

Recently this post about a Michigan cop going out & buying a mom a car seat rather than giving her a ticket for her 5 year old daughter not being in a car seat was being shared everywhere.
 Every one was applauding that he did bought the seat & didn't give the ticket, but I stood there applauding that he noticed she wasn't in the right seat!!
There are thousands of people getting seat belt tickets a day. I myself even got one when I had my seat belt on, but behind my shoulder. It is a rare occasion that a cop will look back & check to see if a child is belted properly, or even in the right car seat.
Its 2014. There is NO excuse. NONE. For you child to be in a car seat not strapped in properly. 
If you didnt know this & have been strapping them in wrong. ITS OK. You are NOT a bad parent. you don't know unless someone shows you.but if you know this & choose not to, remember this is your childs life. their LIFE. every time i buckle up my babies their life is in MY hands; not only behind the wheel while im driving but to be sure they are safe, if someone else hurts us behind their wheel!

I see SO many pictures of many unsafe babies/toddlers/children in carseat/sans car seats; & I want to comment SO badly. but i also know so many people can get on the defense about their parenting. so can I ask you a favor? if you have a few on your newsfeed that are unsafe, will you share this? hoping that parenting truly didn't know & you can educate them? YOU could save a childs life.

Lets start with the basics.
Buckling.
This is going to be a shocker, but the chest clip. Goes on their chest, NOT their belly, not their ribs.
car seat safety - chest clip

Next you will notice where the shoulder straps are..on the shoulders..
when the chest clip is down & strap are on their arms; literately your child can completely fly out of their seat if you were stop abruptly or be hit from behind. the belt is doing NO good.




We are coming up on cold weather. & it is unsafe for your child to be in a bulk coat in their car seat. On impact the coat completely compresses. so that space, no matter how tight you tighten the straps is like you didn't tighten it at all!
what wrong with a little space?
"the forces that your childs feels at a 30 mph crash are akin to jumping out a 3 story window and landing on the pavement" via 
so how do you keep your child warm?
We do a light fleece jacket.
Keep blankets in the car.
Or even more brilliantly but the coat on backward with the back open, like a snuggie.
Always keep on hats & gloves.
Does this make my time getting them in & out longer? more frustrating at times? Sure.
but my childs life is priceless. & I will take ALL the time i need getting them in & out to ensure they are safe.

Here is Kennedy with her coat on. i have tighten this til it couldn't be anymore.

When I take off the coat, the space in between her & the straps which is the space that will be there when in a crash could fit her sister in their with her.
NOT SAFE.

Keep safe this winter, & ALL the time. 
Every time you buckle your child in, take the time.
this is their life. they are depending on you.


Friday, November 7, 2014

Thankgiving Menu Planner {links to love}

I have SO much going on right now, that the holidays are a little daunting!
Im not hosting Thanksgiving this year, but I help with bringing something for both my families & my in-laws!
I need to keep organized, & nothing does it better then putting pen to paper.
I am super in love with this menu planner
I filled it out in preschool car line yesterday...while eating left over Halloween candy ;)

The bottom cracks me up!

If you are hosting I love this "cheat sheet" if you will!

Here's a great detailed planner to set up your down the hour! I know I am pinning this for the future!

I will be printing these off for the girls to color on Thanksgiving!

& how FUNNY is this Thanksgiving BINGO?!

Speaking of Pintrest.. are you following me?
If you're not, you should be!






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