Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Touching the Afro

Well, I've finally resurfaced.  My back has been a mess to deal with and then my husband came home with a toothache yesterday.  He couldn't find an emergency dentist on the road and had to suffer.  We were both quite a pitiful pair!  But through it all, I managed to laugh.  You have to sometimes... to keep from crying. 

But AJ was the source of my laughter yesterday and I couldn't stop.  I hope this doesn't offend anyone. 

As you've read before, AJ has been growing his hair out.  He wants to look like the karate kid.   He recently had his hair braided but now he is wearing his hair in a little afro.  Well, yesterday when I picked him up from karate class, he had this perplexed look on his face.  Before I could ask him what was wrong, he told me.  "Mama,  why does everyone want to touch my hair?"

I burst out laughing because I knew where it was going.  His karate class and just about the whole building is predominately white.  There are about 5 total black families in the whole school that I've seen. I said,. "I bet it's the white people isn't it?"  He was like YYYYEEEAAAHHH!


I couldn't stop laughing.  He said they just keep wanting to touch it and feel it and they just stare at, especially when I combed it out one time.  This reminded me of Cate.  When Cate is wearing afro puffs, I have seen one pat her on the head like a dog to feel her hair.

I told him that they were just curious and probably not used to seeing black hair like that, especially in its natural state.  He said, "Oh."  I could see his mind working and then he said, "Why don't we go around touching their hair?"  I'm still laughing.

I said maybe we just don't care to.  We're used to it. Even though, we are all pretty much obsessed with hair, one way or the other.  Just ask before you touch.

Friday, April 26, 2013

What's up Doc?

It was a horrible, near gut wrenching, burning pain.  I could barely control myself.  I had never felt something so horrible.  I didn't know whether to grab a back scratcher or a sledge hammer.  We're supposed to call on Jesus right? 

Well, I wore that name OUT!  JESUS, LORD, HAVE MERCY!!

It was killing me.  I had already suspected what the culprit might be but the doctor later confirmed my suspicions.  Who would have ever thought that the unusual amount of stress from motherhood, home life, starting a company, and mama moving in would have caused such a thing.


A term that had no relevant meaning to me besides constructing roofs had now surfaced and latched on to my back like a blood sucking leech.  I can't stand it.  The pain hits and my eyes grow bigger than Chris Tucker's in Rush Hour when he realized that giant man was behind that door.

(source: google)
I didn't know what to do.  I tried to lay hands, feet, AND toes on myself.  I was like, "Lawd, way da oil at!!" (Just like that!)  I didn't have time for grammar.  I needed me and my back to get on one accord!  In the name of Jesus! 

Okay, God.  I get it.  To Blessed to be Stressed, not the other way around.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Let It Go

Last night while watching Joel Osteen, I was confronted with a problem I already knew I had.  Letting other people's problems consume me and being completely overwhelmed and exhausted by other people's drama.  Don't we all have enough drama of our own?

I already have this "I need to save the world" mentality.  I can't shake it.  I've wanted to start a soup kitchen, homeless shelter, provide a tutoring service, build a youth center.... You name it and I've probably thought about doing it at some point.  However, I still have no desire at all to wash dishes.

I've stood in the middle of kitchen crying because there are hungry children all over the world.  My kids will surely need therapy for that one. I've even  cried in the car all the way home, a 45 minute drive, because one person CAN save the world and that I NEEDED to be doing something.  My poor husband is surely traumatized by these episodes of  hormonal warfare.

But Joel Osteen said one thing that struck me.  Okay everything struck me but this was one thing I had recently related to - have you ever got finished talking to someone and you felt like you just ran a marathon?  I was like yyeeeeaaaahhh! (laughing)
I've talked to people and have been completely overwhelmed and usually ended up taking all that frustration back home and unloading it like a freight train onto my own family.  Well, nice going mom. Then, I'd sit and try to put together a "plan of action" to help them. 

My husband, the sensible one, is like just pray for them.

That's it!  I can pray but I need to be doing more than that.  Thinking cap is on.  When actually they probably needed to be doing more than that too.

And then I thought, "Oh Lord, do I do this?"  Knowingly or unknowingly, completely unload problems on top of people who are already dealing with enough of their own issues.  Oh, God I hope not.  If so, they're probably wondering why I'm not in a mental institution. 

But I need to learn to let all that stuff go.  I need peace.  Someone else needs it too.   I'll get so consumed sometimes with somebody else, that I'll forget that I actually have a life of my own that needs to be sorted out.  There is nothing wrong with helping people but sometimes you just have to let it be, especially when it's a recurring issue with a person.  When it seems like the situation isn't getting any better because they don't want it to get better.  You can't do the same thing and expect different results.  Example - Me continuing not to work out and expecting my abs to magically reappear. So I'm learning not to let other people's problems consume me.

Let it be, Let it go, and Let God.

But first, make one of these when you're unavailable.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Facebook- The Electronic Demolition Device?

There are times when I log onto facebook and feel like I have stepped into the middle of a war. (Whoa!  Let me move out the way)

There are posts so derogatory and negative and some that are iniating full blown battles.   One day it's full of a whole bleeping lot of bleeping kinds of bleeping people that bleep the bleep of bleeper ville bleeps because they bleeping just want to bleeping do so. 

What?!  Having a bad day?  Nothing nice to say, huh?  Freedom of Speech?

A place where you can reach so many people all over everywhere and we spread hate. Of course, it's not everybody.

I post pictures of my kids and family but I also post things that make people think, make people believe, hope, laugh, dream, and be inspired.  Don't we need more of that?  You can't always look for kindness because sometimes you have to be a carrier, in between the toddler and the bags of groceries you're already holding.

Some people are on facebook for the very reason of escaping something they're going through and/or could be looking for relief comically, for inspiration, information, looking for a word of encouragement, or to just be plain nosey.  I'm  all of these, especially nosey; however, this is just being well informed. HAHA.

What you post on facebook has the power to ignite sparks, start a cold war, or a full blown wild fire in good and bad ways.  You are what you post.  It's your character. 


Sunday, April 21, 2013

Toilet Paper Roll Crafts

Spring Butterfly
1. Cover roll with construction paper. Draw or glue on face. 2. Cut out wings and decorate. Staple to your roll. 3. Punch a hole in each side of the roll and thread a pipe cleaner threw. Simple spring butterfly

Arm Cuff
1. Cover roll with paper and decorate. 2. Cut down side and snap on

Learning Clothes

Well I looked at my plans wrong.  This week was actually rain but since it took us two weeks to get through body parts, we decided to go along with our clothes unit that we missed..

I put out different clothes to identify and name. Then, I called out which one to put in the basket.
We had fun trying to dress the teddy bear.  I also told him to give me a particular item of clothing to put on the bear.
We made a hat and tore half the stickers off.
Clothes coloring sheets that we water painted and dot painted.
I tested my drawing ability and created two felt people with shirts, shorts, and pants to get dressed.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Fitness Friday

Well I've finally managed to get this post done and it's been one of those weeks where there was the good, the bad and the ugly.

Eating has been up and down this week mainly because of how busy and unplanned it was.  This led to stress eating, snacking, and eating whatever was available at some times.  There were some days I didn't even eat breakfast or snack and fell asleep after cooking dinner.
Here is my summary and there was random snacking in between. (handfuls of marshmallows, fruit snacks, oatmeal cookies, eating off a toddlers plate, etc.)

Breakfast -cereal milk/fruit/eggs/sausage

Snack- goldfish/yogurt/fruit/marshmallows/ramen noodles ( I like noodles though my husband thinks I'm crazy for eating these.)

Lunch -Chinese food/soup/salad/pb&j/fruit/ramen noodles/

Snack - cucumbers/cashews/cereal/fruit/pb&j

Dinner - salads with and without meat/fish/baked chicken/ potatoes/corn/pizza/soup

Friday - I did run/walk those 2 miles
Saturday - Went to the River walk and walked around town (active)
Sunday -none
Monday - 1.25 miles and arms - curls, tricep curls, arm raises, overhead press-  15reps each 2x
Tuesday -none
Wednesday -1.25 miles and squats, lunges, jumping jacks, calve raises, leg lifts 15 reps each 2x
Thursday -1.25 miles
Friday - 1.25 miles

Prior to the first blog post for Fitness Friday, I currently weigh in at 176.  I don't necessarily have a goal weight.  I mean how are you supposed to know what a number is going to look like on you anyway.  I just aim to get rid of the mommy tummy and tone up.  Whatever weight it takes to get that done, I'll be happy.  However, there is a staple in my wardrobe that is fitting looser.....MY TENNIS SHOES!!  I'm wearing those suckers out!

Friday, April 19, 2013

It's Been A Wacky Week

Well, I've been running around like a plucked chicken all week.   My car has managed to cross 5 county lines in 4 days-all at the last minute, my hair had managed to turn into a happy to be nappy nightmare, and my wardrobe...please.  I must have been working out 24 hours a day nearly everyday.  The kids had managed to get man handled by the one year old, wandering helplessly into the living room in tears while I'm trying to talk to the PASTOR.  Going anywhere has been a hassle - stopping for 15 potty breaks along the way then being succumb to blood curdling screeches from a toddler who is kindly introducing me to the pre-stages of the terrible twos.  Isn't it odd how kids can be so amazingly sweet and innocent one minute and be a miniature little devil the next.  I used to be annoyed that I didn't see myself in my kids, they don't look like me either.  But sure enough when they go into a rage, I think "there it is."  Karma. 

It's just been one of those chaotic, don't have time to anything, but have so much to do weeks. Well, wait, that sounds like most weeks, but this one was worse.  The funniest series of events had to be Thursday.  Well, it wasn't that funny then, more like completely and utterly annoying and draining

The day started out as usual.   We went for our mile and quarter walk at the track, that's all I can get in before the tot gets restless in his sweet chariot.  I had a few morning errands to run and needed to go by the bank.  Once I parked in the lot, I couldn't remember what time it opened.  I decided to call my husband and, while waiting, I let Caleb out of his seat.   He started playing with the clock in the car and changed the time not to mention my phone was already reading 12:20. I had no idea what time it was until I called the husband. It was 9:20 and the bank doesn't open until 10. Well, I'm not waiting.  My mom calls during this time and needs me to bring her up here.   I would have to go down there- to her house, come back,  take her back home then come back home. Did I mention she is 45 minutes away and this would be my second trip this week. Okay, ma I'm coming. I go home until the bank opens and plan to feed Caleb, pay bills, clean up and take a shower. An hour later ma calls, "Where are you." 

 Home and unaware that I was supposed to leave immediately.

"You hadn't left yet.  The place closes at 3:30." Okay, ma. I hadn't even went to the bank yet. Caleb is done eating has to potty. Not even close to being finished cleaning up.  Shower?  Nope.  No time.  So among the chaos of getting from one task to the next, I threw on a t shirt over the tank and we headed out the door.  On my way there, ma called me four more times. 

1.  Where are you.  2.  Hung up too fast.   3.I didn't answer  4. Got her friend to call me.

The message -You don't have to come.  I'm half way there!    I pulled over and called her in which she told me to come on.  I finally made it down there exhausted from the track this morning and having not eaten anything yet.  I felt like I was going to drop.   And you know what?  After all that calling, you would think she was ready to go.  My mama answered the door in a house coat/robe.  Really?  And then, she no longer needed to come up here.  GA$.  We went to two places in town and that lasted two hours.  I would have to floor it to get back to pick the kids up from school on time.  And on top that, they've been remodeling all the apartments where my mom lives and, just yesterday, yesterday now, they said they would have to move.  By the end of the month.  Less than two weeks away.  Really?  So where are we going. (In my Dora voice)  Oh, you guessed it.  Mama's coming home with us.  No doubt I love her, she's great, helpful, interactive, but mama has her way and I have mine.  My mom is a mix of a toned down Madea and Sally Field (Brothers and Sisters).  Remodeling started 4 months ago. 

Welcome to Everybody Loves Raymond Miranda.   This should be very interesting.
(This is only part of the day, but because the post is so long, I'll spare you.) 
Fitness Friday will be with you shortly or sometime in the middle of night.  We'll see.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Lunchbox Packing Love

Whether it is ham and cheese, chips and dip, soups and salads, or the beloved pb&j, figuring out how to pack all the goodies of a school lunch is a chore.  Well I finally ordered what will now be our staple lunch box packing supplies, and they were delivered yesterday.  Thank God, because I've been packing lunches forever.  I don't know why it has taken me almost 6 years to spend $30 on sectioned containers and silicone muffin liners that would have made my life so much easier.  Maybe they didn't exist then, or maybe they did and my brain cells had chosen not to co-exist with the idea of the simple life.  It is a far better idea than the thousands of plastic bags that would get me Earth Day arrested or the vast assortment of missing tupperware lids and containers that have forever been declared cold case files.

The kids eat school lunches occasionally; however, on most days I'm the pack rat.  My kids are picky eaters, one is near OCD, lunches cost too much, the older one is usually still hungry after eating lunch ( I'm quickly realizing that a pre-teenage boy can eat you clean out of the house), and I could probably do a somewhat better job.  Somewhat.  And besides it's fun and tests my creativity to come up with happy healthy lunches, like the life cycle of a butterfly themed lunch I made for my daughter while they were studying it.  I even wrote one of the vocabulary words on an index card and taped it on the container.  I felt like I had accomplished something, in spite of my inability to wash grease laden dishes in a timely manner or vacuum the crumbs and crafts off the living room for the 3rd time in a day.  Well I'm excited to only be using one item and not having to play another round of tug-o-war with a zipper to close because I have 6 different size containers bulging out of one small lunchbox.


Monday, April 15, 2013

The Boston Explosions

It's so hard to understand why so many horrific acts happen in the world and why people are filled with so much hatred and violent tendencies.  It's heartbreaking knowing that so many lives will forever be affected by this senseless tragedy as well as the many others that we have faced.  After witnessing traumatic events like this, it always puts things into a better perspective.  Life becomes a little more precious, a little more valuable, and just a little more meaningful.  I pray that God will lift them up in this time of need.  I pray that He provides healing and peace in the hearts and minds of these families affected by the explosions.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Fitness Friday

So if you have been following my blog(since last week), I've decided to post about my "get fit journey" on Fridays. 

Eating Habits

First, I would like to say my eating habits are not that bad.  I mostly eat healthy, I just need to kick the sweet habit and/or limit it. 
The weekend wasn't that good, well Saturday wasn't.  The kids and I made cookie pops and I ate 3 and then we had pizza, bread sticks, and wings for dinner.  I just didn't feel like cooking.  I did sometimes sneak in two or three jolly rancher chews during the week, as well.  I really wanted a Reese peanut butter cup, though.  I called my husband for approval.  ( I didn't want to take the blame.)  He reluctantly approved but, because he did, I didn't get one.  I got oatmeal cookies instead.

Sunday through the rest of the week, I did pretty good.  Each meal consisted/varied of some of the listed foods.

Breakfast - cereal/milk and fruit, scrambled eggs/fruit, - I don't drink much milk unless I'm eating cereal

Snack - fruit/peanut butter sandwich/cucumbers/yogurt

Lunch - salad- spinach/cheese/lean turkey or chicken with dressing or grilled chicken wraps with spinach

Snack - fruit/peanut butter cookies or sandwich/oatmeal cookies

Dinner - Salad/grilled chicken wrap/chicken strips/fruit

Working It Out

Friday I attempted to do a pinterest workout that I knew would kill me.

Right about that no nonsense! I didn't make it.  I got through one round minus the mountain climbers and that was it.  My husband sat on the sofa coaching me while eating a bag of Lays.  This was almost grounds for divorce. 

Saturday - Black eye peas for Wii - 35 minutes

Sunday - 3 miles run/walk - I can almost run a whole mile without stopping.  I have to rest my legs then restart.  I think Jesus got tired of me calling on him today.

Sunday - 2 miles run/walk

Monday - 50 jumping jacks, 5lb weights - 10bicep, 10tricep curls/ 10overhead something- looks like muscle man

Tuesday - rest day - I attempted to walk through the mall and my legs felt like rubber.  I was exhausted.

Wednesday - Went to the state park (a lot of walking) - not an actual work out but being active - I realized how out of shape I was running after a toddler, whose running after big brother and sister on playground.  I'm usually active though, just not in shape.  There's a difference.

Thursday - Did absolutely nothing - I'll make this up.

Today - headed out to get my miles.  I'm planning on two and yes I'm really going.  If I would have done it first, I probably would have never written this post.

Wish me luck! Thanks for reading!

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Pretty Brown Skin

Yesterday, I had my car loaded down with more stuff, if you could imagine,  to take the kids and my mom to the state park.  There were bubbles, frisbees, balls, and a picnic.  I just needed to stop and pick up a few extra drinks. ( I had left the water bottles in the trunk of the car with no ice, and they were probably at boiling temperature. )  Upon re-entering the car from the store, the kids were having a conversation.  "My skin isn't the same color."  "Your skin is darker than mine." "I know, but not darker than daddy's." 

Somehow, they were on the dark skin, light skin thing.  This is starting to become regular.  My little munchkin, Caitlyn, came into the world with beautiful chocolate skin like her daddy.  Being that she was the only one who took after her dad's complexion, she became the little prized "chocolate baby", "chocolate Cate", and "chocolate barbie."  Though a while back, she started having issues about her hair and skin color.  She wonders why her skin is dark and her brothers' is light.

I do my best to try to ensure and instill a confident sense of self in our pretty brown skin, despite a lot of stereotypes and judgments in the world and media.  I even had a white bank teller tell me, while in the bank with my kids and 3 month old Caleb, that Caleb's "coloring" was just perfect or the teacher that questioned if his skin would darken and get "regular."  There is an issue if you're light skin, dark skin or in between.  I was glad that my other children were not in ear shot and I was in too much of a shock, then, too respond.  It's a different story now.  I'm honestly still learning how to deal with this but there are times I wish God would cover his eyes and plug his ears.  We blame a lot of stuff on just not knowing, but a big reason for a lot of problems is just not thinking.   

We try and combat these negative views and remarks by always having books, pictures, art and toys in our house that showcase black people in all shades of their brown skin.  We always let the kids know how beautiful and handsome they are.  However, it really struck a nerve after watching a documentary "Who Is Black In America?" some months ago.  There was a little girl who wanted to be light skinned because she thought lighter skin was pretty and dark skin was ugly.   I wondered if my baby felt this way and how much because she talked about it a lot.  We think we go through a lot as adults, but children don't even know how to handle the emotions of life.  It was heartbreaking.   

Before I could join in on the topic, though, the subject had changed and they were happily chatting about the park.  I decided to let it go at the moment, but I make sure that my little girl knows she is beautiful, precious, and "wonderfully made" in her own pretty brown skin.

(source: pinterest)

Learning Body Parts

Well, it's taken us almost two weeks to review body parts. (We were supposed to be doing body parts last week  and then clothing this week.) Mainly because my mom kept my little boogers and Caleb refused to cooperate with her yelling, "No, mama."  So here's what we did.

We made a face out of things around the house.
Formerly, "Nick the Noun"  I reused him for Caleb to identify his body parts.
I decided to use fabric paint and make a helping hands shirt.  Our hands were a little too helpful.
Using baby dolls to point out and name body parts
We read this and another one titled "Thank You God, for My Two Ears"
We also listened and danced to these songs, Head, shoulders, knees, and toes, and another version that starts out slower and speeds up.  
Coloring sheets
Next week is Earth Week

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Our Second Home

We all have that place that we call our second home. It may be a friend's house, your mom's or your favorite vacation spot. It's that place where we usually spend most of our time when we're not at home. Our second home is full of memories and household treasures. It is a place for family meals, quick changes, and story time magic. It is what keeps us together and also what makes us fall apart. No other thing could take it's place.

Our car. We practically live in it when we are not at home. It is usually stock piled with some of every odd and end. It has become our own personal kitchen and dining area, an on the go snack shack, where food is dropped, rubbed, crushed, and smeared into the carpet. The family room consists of rows of grape juice stained, please identify the color, gold fish, coral reef-crusted seats. Games of all sorts and our version of books-a-million entertain the kids from their designated areas on the floor.

The bathroom is also located here. A personal bathing and changing station, because "Mama, pee-pee potty right now" while we are in the middle of nowhere could not wait. Then, the seats are carefully divided into each kids room because "I don't want him touching me" is currently an issue. In their "room" is some of the stuff they've brought into the car and forgot about (so have I)- jackets, the Beginner's Bible, game cards, pencils, notepads (they have both declared they want to be artists) and socks(the littlest one throws them off in minute).   Our second home also hosts a storage shed in back. Here we manage to keep an umbrella, a fully equipped Taekwondo bag, a sword, a stroller, a ball, a zip lock bag of leftover birthday party favors (Easter egg stuffers), and stuff that actually belongs here like jumper cables, a jack, and a spare tire.

Oh, but don't worry there is a trash can. Any mom can probably attest to the fact of taking a kid's car seat out of the car and realizing that they have their own discovery center at hand. While cleaning the car out today kid free, (thank God for grandma's) I managed to find all kinds of buried treasure. There were shark bitten gold fish, cashew halves and pieces, smooshed raisins, 78 cents, empty lollipop sticks, orange peels ( no doubt put there by my daughter - at least she put them in a zip lock bag), tissues probably used and baby wipes.  See.  The total package. 

Though this is our second home, I don't really like spending time here.   Maybe one day, this home away from home may actually resemble some luxurious spa rather than some bottom less pit of the never ending story.  And on those days, I'll turn up the music, relax, and enjoy the ride. 

Monday, April 8, 2013

Wanna Be A Coupon Queen?

Heads Up!  There's something wierd going on with the blog today.  I haven't quite figured it out but I'm working on it.  The only link from this page is couponmom.com.

Why use coupons

They save you money, that's why.  That $1 coupon is like having one dollar in your pocket.  If you have $15 worth of coupons, then that is the complete equivalent of $15.  Now would you just throw away $15?  No, you wouldn't.  You'd stash it in your pockets.   Coupons = cheaper stuff =less money spent=happier wallets.

Where to get coupons

Coupons can be obtained from your local Sunday paper.  However, I noticed that there are rarely or as many coupons in our local paper, maybe somebody's swiping them, so I always buy papers from the surrounding counties.  They always have more.  You can also print coupons online.  I print from couponmom.com.  They have several coupons and when you register (it's free-my favorite reason), they have coupons matched with store deals so you can check out the best prices at different locations.(less work for you)  You can also find coupons in magazines.  Many magazines will have coupons in them and one in particular the All You magazine (Walmart- if you can brave the masses) is usually loaded with coupons.  I always flip through to see if they are ones that I use before purchasing.  There is a list of the coupons and the amount of each in the front of the magazine.

When and How to use coupons

Don't run out and use a coupon the minute you get it.  Wait until those items go on sale.  That's how you get the best bang for your buck.  There are times where I have gotten body wash for 8 cent (it was on close out for 2.08 and I had a $2 coupon, fabric softener for about 26 cent ($3 softner -$3 coupon, just had to pay sales tax) and pasta sauce for 50 cent (sale for $1.49-.50 coupon that doubled to $1).  Check your local ads and see if you can match up any your coupons to what's on sale and see what it will cost you.  (Just because you have a coupon and it's on sale doesn't mean the price is right)  Use your Bob Barker game show voice and say "That's Too Much."  You have to decide what you are willing and not willing to pay for something.

I honestly haven't been going to the store a whole lot because I'm trying to practice a debt diet.  On top of student loans, medical bills, and car payments, we started a trucking company last year.  I'll post about it later.  I've been using what we have and trying to keep from spending anything much.
I'm not a big hoarder either on products. I don't believe in going to the store and clearing shelves or buying 20 bottles of something. (The show "Extreme Couponing" is a great motivator but it's also slightly ridiculous). However, I do believe in getting 'enough.' By the size of your family, you have to determine what that means

There are times that I have bought large lots of items, but hardly ever at the same time or store.(I try to think about others)  I've managed to buy wellness products (body wash, soap, deodorant, toothpaste, feminine products, etc.) for the youth in our church as a part of a back to school campaign to help kids that don't have as much.  We have a lot of children that just come to us as a refuge from a difficult life. There were about 25 children and I spend just under $200.  I also buy for my mom, mother in law, and church pantry.

Hope this helps some future couponers.  Let's pave the way to save!

Friday, April 5, 2013

Fitness Friday- The Assessment

Thank you guys for tuning in for the first and new segment of Fitness Friday, not because I am actually fit but because the alliteration is so appealing.

Sometime, way back when, I had shared my biggest loser post about my struggle with getting into shape.  Well, after that post, I was all into whipping myself right....for about 3 weeks straight.  Then, it started tapering off for a while.  I started working out a little less.  I had backslid.  Isn't Jesus married to the back slider, though?  I was, however, still eating better.  Not a complete failure.

So I needed to asses some things.  I needed to check myself.  What is constantly trying to hold me back from the cover of Fitness Magazine? 

Problem #1 - No energy
Solution - Go to bed earlier, stop trying to do everything, it's okay if the kids are making a mess, leave it

Problem #2 - A jealous toddler
Solution - Wait until he is asleep

Problem #3 - There is so much I should be doing while the baby sleeps - clean up,exercise, laundry, working, showering, resting, paying bills, and blogging of course.
Solution - Something is just not going to get done.  The shower isn't one of them.

Problem #4 - We are hardly ever home. (irony of a stay at home mom)
Solution - Unless I get a Fred Flinstone car that I have to run in and burn those calories,  I haven't found a solution yet.

Problem #5 - Sweet tooth mouth
Solution - Stop buying it!!  Duh!  Well, I have to admit this sucked.  There's nothing like wandering into the kitchen at 10:30p.m. looking for sweet snack and realizing you didn't buy anything.  It helped though.

Problem #6 - No concrete schedule - just saying it wasn't enough.  I needed to see it: the what, when, and how.
Solution - It is in my calendar like bills. ( I'd like for those to disappear .)

Problem #7 - No time
Solution - Well, we make time for something we really want.  Don't we?  Hmm..Excuse for me time?  WHOO- HOO!  I really do need that.

It actually hasn't been that bad.  So every Friday, I shall dutifully post my success, fails, encouragement, sarcastic rants, Godly motivation, workouts, eating habits - the good and bad (hopefully there won't be too much bad), and whatever I'm feeling on this journey to being a better me hot mom.  Sounds better, I think. 

So remember:  Mind over matter and cupcake and cookie and ice cream and chocolate.  There.  We can do it.  Well, you're probably already doing it.  I'll play catch up. 

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, April 4, 2013

The Lies We Tell Our Children

I value the truth, I really do.  I even detest a liar, especially when someone is lying about very simple things.  Those little "white lies." Why would you even lie about that?  Who cares anyway?   So why, then, do we as parents embark on a stock piled high journey of lies with our children?  I try to make sure I tell my children the truth most of the time, but we've all been there. 

Those I don't want to hurt his feelings,  It will crush her spirit, and he's not ready lies.  Those I've just about had it, can't take it anymore, just do it already times of desperation lies.

There are times when those little white lies just make the days run a little bit smoother (the tooth fairy must have had a very busy night and will come by tomorrow), a little bit happier ( yes that picture looks just like daddy), and a little more calmer (the quiet game is really a game. It is.).  When in reality I just forgot or went to sleep or both, I can't even identify your drawing, and my brain is shutting down.  I need peace. 

So here's a few more I'm guilty of:

Pin It

And here's a few more

And then we wonder why our houses are filled with little Pinocchios and we get responses like these:

1.  I can't eat.  My arm is broken.

2.  It wasn't me.  It was another boy named AJ in another class.

3.  It was someone else who tied my shoe strings together.

4.  I didn't steal his money.  God left it for me.

5.  Jesus said I could have a piece of candy.
6.  My daddy killed a bear in the back yard. (to the preschool teacher)
7.  I...um...had...umm...when...umm....see......
And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free."
John 8:32


Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Food for Thought

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(source: facebook)

(source: pinterest)

(source: pinterest)

(source: pinterest)

(source: pinterest)


Tuesday, April 2, 2013

What I'm Learning About Natural Hair

My first thoughts on going natural or returning to natural hair ( as most say) came when my daughter started to complain about her hair.  Oh, God.  Here we go.  She wanted straight, silky smooth, blowing in the wind, bouncy hair. She was 6, almost 2 years ago. She begin to compare her hair with some of her black friends who had relaxers in theirs and her white friends who had straight hair. I would reassure her that her hair was beautiful and very healthy because it was au natural. I tried to make her feel comfortable in her hair and told her we could straighten it out sometimes if she wanted. Although, I was telling my daughter this, I felt highly hypocritical. I had relaxed hair with no intentions at all on trying to do the natural thing. Ain't nobody had time for that.

Being natural is defined different ways by different people.  It's generally the process of forgoing harsh chemical relaxers to straighten our kinky/coily/curly hair.  Most forgo using any products that are not natural products and some don't even apply heat to the hair. I used to think these people must have an abundance of time and clearly don't have children. 

I've always asked myself if I could do the natural thing. Would I be able to let go of the toxic, scalp burning, strong enough to eat through your skin relaxers that made my hair soooo silky smooth? (If you have never seen Chris Rocks's movie about black hair, you should. It's hilarious.) Would I have the time and patience to put up with my hair? I sure didn't want to spend hours picking through what would probably be a thick, spongy, cotton field. And what in the world was I going to look like? Big chop? Oh, No! Most days, I just throw my hair in a ball and head out. I don't have time for all that maintenance. And why on Earth would I want to add yet another head to the morning mayhem?

Well, I have started this natural hair journey and it's bad but it's not that bad. There are days when I have absolutely no idea what to do with my hair and the 3 inch thick new growth that is sprouting like weeds.

What I'm learning while transitioning to natural hair

1.  Myth- It's easy.  Anybody can go natural
     Reality -  It's hard. There are days as I'm fighting to pull that comb through my hair and I'm like  bump this.  Anybody cannot do this.  You need PATIENCE and endurance.

2.  Myth - Going natural is cheaper.  It saves me money on relaxers.
     Reality -  It's expensive. Trying different products to figure out what works adds up.  Then,    there's  the "growing it out" phase.  People say just get your hair braided or hair sewn in.  I'm just adding up the numbers in my head.  I feel like I need an emergency fund just for my hair.

3. Myth - The Big Chop -you have to cut all the relaxed hair off and you'll be bald
    Reality - The Big Chop- Umm, no. We will be growing it out for about 2 years first. My husband has already informed me that I will not be lying next to him with hair shorter than his. LOL!

4.  Just go to the food section. Hair products are expensive. I'm realizing I cook half of my hair routine - eggs, olive oil, coconut oil, apple cider vinegar.  I can wear it on my head and eat it too.

5. Castor oil. I never would have thought I would see the day that I put a laxative on the head. Good for growth and breakage -It brings new meaning to word "poopy head."

6.  Fear is a beast. Fear of the unknown-the what, whens and how of natural hair. It's kinda scary, but it's literally all in my head.

7 months without a relaxer.
mini naturals
Tween natural - wants to look like karate kid
This took me 6 hours with short breaks.  Unless God gives me the strength, I will probably never do this again.  (I know he will, though)

Monday, April 1, 2013

Easter Weekend- The Hunt

I hope everyone had a great Easter weekend. It was a very busy one, I bet. Saturday was our community egg hunt at church and we had a ball. We arrived early, stuffing eggs and baskets while the kids ran around like free spirits all over the church grounds. However, I later realized that I was incapable of stuffing baskets and eggs and parenting at the same time. Caleb came to me twice with wet pants as I forgot to take him to the bathroom and we were all too busy to notice.   Does this classify as child neglect?  I hope not.  Later I managed to redeem myself and get back on board. Most likely, because we were on the last change of clothes.

When it was time for the Easter egg hunt, the kids were bubbling with excitement. Little hands and feet couldn't be still. You could hear squeals of delight and giggles as the anticipation was building in their little bodies. We lined the kids up and let them go. They launched like rockets after the seen and unseen promise of a sugar filled egg.  Oh and cash.   Did I forget to mention cash?   Oh, to be a kid again.

Little legs were sprinting in every direction as fast as they could go while laughter and shouts of "I found one" came screeching out one after the other. I had little Caleb by the hand trying to lead him in the right direction and point out eggs.  I stopped and turned around to point out another one and there it was.  Like a lone deer in the middle of a meadow, a calm in the midst of a storm, there was my daughter. Standing idle in the middle of the grounds like an abandoned soul, there was my child refusing to move an inch and run after eggs.  All that excitement from the week and just a few minutes earlier had taken a nose dive and crashed.  Fear, puzzlement, being overwhelmed, something had taken over once again and had rooted her feet to the ground.  She was like "NO."  I'm not doing this.   Did I mention my daughter is 7?   Every year she can't wait to go out and find eggs and every year she stands like a brick in the middle of the grass and refuses to budge.  I've tried to pull her along and she pulls back.  I've tried cheering her on and cajoling but nothing works. When she has her mind made up.   It's made up.  Hmm... I wonder where she gets that from?  

After the hunt was over, she decided the world was once again an okay place and she happily skipped and ran about looking to see if any eggs were left behind.   She's a little mess, I tell you.  She had a great Easter weekend, though.