Sharing my life with you, is what I do.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

And Away We Go!

Since the weather has been so gorgeous the past few weeks, my two youngest sons have been enjoying being able to go outside and play after they finish their school work. I usually let them play for about an hour or more while I finish up dinner. I am always nervous about them playing out in front because we live on a busy main street and for some reason, little boys and asphalt always seem to meet. So as they play, I pray.

So today, as I am sitting in the kitchen, my 9 year old runs in the house. "Mommy, mommy come quick"! I instantly go into "which voice is this" mode. He is smiling and happy so the panic subsides. I race to the door to see what has him so excited. I step outside to see my 7 year old riding his bike for the first time without training wheels! His dad is proudly running behind him. Wow! Look at my baby go. I can't believe he is riding.In my head I am transported to 1994 when my now 21 year old son took his first solo 2 wheel ride. My how the time does fly. Now my youngest is out there, just pedaling away like he has been doing it for years. I ran in the house to grab my camera. As I downloaded the pictures to see what I had captured, my eyes filled with tears. My 9 year old was riding side by side with his little brother. He looked up at me for a moment and gave me a thumbs up. Way to go guys! Mommy loves you so much!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Up and Runnin'

You ever wake up in the morning and instantly know you are late? That's how we started our Monday today. For some reason I woke up with a gasp. Something wasn't quite right. It was daylight! That is a dead giveaway. Oh no! What time is it? I looked at the clock AAHHH! 7:10 a.m. A million questions go through my head in 1.5 seconds. Did I sleep through my alarm? Did I miss my teenagers daily knock on the door? Did I miss getting my see ya later hug? Nope. He was asleep too! In fact, everybody was in a state of comfortable relaxed slumber. I really hated having to shatter that by banging on the doors and turning on the lights. WAKE UP! WAKE UP! We're late!!! Come on, come on. Get up!!!

The teenager, who is supposed to be out the door by 6:30 has not yet learned the art of dressing, eating, brushing teeth and running out the door at the same time! This art has definitely died out with the laid back teens of today.(and a lot of adults too)

The 9 and 7 year old figure that since they woke up 10 minutes later than usual, they should stay home from school. NOT! Although the thought of returning to my bed did cross my mind.(several times!)

The bad thing is, my husband who is also not ready to get up, has to drive the teenager to school because rush hour is over and his usual hour commute will now be a two hour commute if he takes the bus.

So, let's review:

Woke up hour and a half late.

Teenager: moves like a snail and still has to iron clothes because he didn't get his clothes ready last night (like we tell him every night)

9 and 7 year olds: figure that summer vacation should start immediately because the weather is warm and they want to ride their bikes and go to the playground. (I kinda agree with them on this one)

Husband: Isn't happy because he has to face Monday morning traffic AND use up some of the precious $70 dollars worth of gas we just put in our car. ( I totally agree with him on this one)

Me: After I hurry and make the lunches that I should have made last night I realize, it's just another day in a household with over-tired parents. There will never be enough hours in the day.(or night)

And,I am seriously putting more thought into booking that family trip to Florida instead of putting all that money toward paying off the gutters on our house. Obviously, we need a vacation.

Happy Monday Everybody,

Peace and Love

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Weather me this

WOW! What an outstanding stretch weather we have had! We have broken the record for March for 5 days in a row! You know the old saying, "March comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb"? Well, not this year. The lamb came 1st and hopefully has decided to take up residence. We have been in the 80's here in the Windy City. I am thankful for each and everyday we have been able to open the windows and let the breeze come in. I can not tell you how amazing it feels to hear the Red-winged blackbirds, Chickadees and Cardinals sing outside my window. It has been pretty weird too though. This time of year we are usually either digging out from a late winter storm or just dealing with cold, gray days that make you long for days like today. The sun is shining brightly. Flowers are blooming, bees are buzzing, grills are lit and the wonderful smell of barbecued food is in the air. Now, being a native Chicagoan, I have to be prepared. At any moment this streak of summer like weather could end. It would not be weird for our temps to take a dive into the 40's or even 30's again.(I'm just being honest) Hey, It's Chicago! We can have 3 seasons in one day very easily. While it is my sincerest hope that these warm temperatures stay around at least until November, I am keeping my longjohns and fleece clothing out of storage for a little while longer. You never know when that March lion will decide to come and reclaim his territory. Until then, I have steaks marinating and little boys that are happy to be able to ride their bikes and enjoy these beautiful March days.

Peace and Love Everybody. Enjoy each and every moment.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Monday, March 12, 2012

Why I Discipline With Words

When I was a growing up, getting a "spanking" was how we were disciplined. It was commonplace. There were no "timeouts". You got a spanking and THEN a punishment. Which, usually meant I couldn't go outside or watch tv. Now let me further expound upon the spanking. These were done several ways. You could get hit with a hand, belt, extension cord, switch off of a tree or even a shoe. I remember how painful those spankings were and how sad and powerless I would feel afterwards. When I had my own children, my husband and I decided that spanking would not be the way we would discipline our children. I am glad we chose this way. For us, talking to our children, timeouts, taking away something they want has worked. It gets the point across and no one is angry, yelling, screaming, crying or covered in welts. Well, they may be angry and crying, but not out of physical pain. Now, I know there are a lot of you out there that totally disagree with my style of discipline. There are those that believe that yelling, cursing, and hitting are a good way to let your child know, "who is in charge". To me, it only shows a child that you have lost control and that the only way to get your point across and showing "who is boss", is by hitting. Now, let me be clear. I am not against tapping my child on his clothed butt for a quick reprimand. But, it is not done often. In fact, I honestly can't remember the last time I have done it. And, this is not because my children are flawless angels. It is because words work for us. It pains me to hear parents talk about how they "beat" their child because they got a bad grade or whatever the case might be. It just sounds so barbaric. In all honestly, I have had teeth-clenching moments where I have just wanted to slap or just shake the hell out of one of my kids. But, aha!! Why was that? Was it because they did something so bad that they deserved to feel pain? Or was it because at that moment I was just so frustrated and out of control that my 1st instinct was to lash out? For me, it was frustration. And, If you think about it, I mean really think about it, it is more than likely because you were out of control at that time too.

Marinate on that for a minute.

Now, let's move on to yelling and cursing at your child. I hear this so much it is ridiculous. Parents, please this is a really bad thing to do to your child. it doesn't help. Believe me. When I had my 1st son. I was a person that yelled. I yelled at him for the dumbest, most trivial things. Now yelling(screaming) and raising your voice are two different things. I still raise my voice a bit to let them know I am serious. But, I do not scream at them. Again, this only shows that you are out of control. A person who is like a sister to me, asked me a question that helped me when I feeling overwhelmed. I told her that I was yelling at my son and that I didn't understand why nothing was changing. She calmly asked me, "Does yelling help him child understand any better or change his behavior?" I thought about it and answered, "no". She replied, "Then why do you do it?" That has stayed with me for almost 20 years. I hear it resonate whenever I am feeling tired or frustrated. I take a deep breath, think about what I want to say and then talk to my child. It works!!!

As far a cursing at my child. That's is a no-brainer. That's just stupid to me. It shows a total lack of control and I feel it is very detrimental to a child. Cursing should never be used when disciplining your child. This is not what I consider disciplining with words! I can assure you that these are the same kids that are going to school using the same words they hear at home. And if they aren't doing it now, they will be soon. I hear parents cursing at kids 2 years old and younger! Now those are the parents that deserve a spanking. No, they deserve a "whoopin"! Please, please, please parents. Stop doing this to your kids!

I know the stresses of the today are great. Parents have a lot on their plate and trying to raise a family as a single parent or even as a couple is very difficult. My husband and I spend days just looking at each other, taking deep breaths, shaking our heads.

It is not easy. Parenting is the hardest jobs in the world. I have those days when I don't even want to hear the word, "mom". I want to change my name and move to another country "sans children". Thankfully this feeling passes. Although lately it comes quicker and stays longer. One thing I have found that helps is by talking to other parents. You get the chance to find out that it is not only your child whose brain has been taken over by aliens. You are not alone. Getting out and just going to see a movie or having lunch with your spouse or with friends also is a good way to decompress. I know this helps me.

Next time you are feeling like you want to scream, curse or spank your child, STOP. Take a deep breath, take another deep breath. Leave the room if you have to. Collect your thoughts and then return to your child. Tell them how you feel about the situation at hand and administer a pain-free punishment if need be. Just try it. It might change your life and your relationship with your child.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Disneynature's CHIMPANZEE

Disneynature does it again with the upcoming release of Chimpanzee.

Disneynature takes moviegoers deep into the forests of Africa with “Chimpanzee,” a new True-Life Adventure introducing an adorable young chimp named Oscar and his entertaining approach to life in a remarkable story of family bonds and individual triumph. Oscar’s playful curiosity and zest for discovery showcase the intelligence and ingenuity of some of the most extraordinary personalities in the animal kingdom. Working together, Oscar’s chimpanzee family—including his mom, Isha, and the group’s savvy leader, Freddy — navigates the complex territory of the forest.

The world is a playground for little Oscar and his fellow young chimps, who’d rather make mayhem than join their parents for an afternoon nap. But when Oscar’s family is confronted by a rival band of chimps, he is left to fend for himself until a surprising ally steps in and changes his life forever. Directed by Alastair Fothergill (“African Cats” and “Earth”) and Mark Linfield (“Earth”), “Chimpanzee” swings into theaters on Earth Day 2012.

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Rated G

Hits theaters April 20, 2012

New Movies from Disney

As you can probably tell by the dates of my posts today, I am playing catch up. My boys being sick has slowed me down quite a bit. There are so many things I need to share with you. The 2012 movie season is upon us, and there a lot of great movies from Disney coming our way. Here are some pics and new trailers to wet your whistle.

John Carter arrives in theaters, March 9th

JOHN CARTER is directed by 2-time Academy Award winner Andrew Stanton (“Finding Nemo” & “Wall-E”) and is based on the novels by Edgar Rice Burroughs which were the inspiration for such classic sci-fi adventure movies like “Star Wars” and “Avatar.”

This next movie is definitely on my MUST SEE list!

The Avengers bring together so many of my favorite Heroes and packs them all into one action-packed soon to be #1 hit!

MARVEL’S THE AVENGERS hits theaters on May 4th!

FRANKENWEENIE An animated movie from the mind of Tim Burton (Nightmare Before Christmas)

In Theaters October 5th, 2012

Flu Update 2012

I will be the first to tell you how not having to trudge through countless days of snow and ice this year has been heavenly to me. I am used to harsh winters having been born and raised in Chicago. I will also say that this season has been hellish on my children. They have never had more illnesses in their entire lives than they have had this year. We have had every type of nose, throat, and chest congestion. Headaches, extreme nosebleeds, fevers of 104, countless sleepless nights, boxes of tissue and numerous cups of tea, orange juice and ginger ale. I dare not shake hands with anyone because they are so rough from me scrubbing them all day and dipping them in vats of disinfectant cleaners used to wipe down everything in my house. It is not only me that this virus has affected though. I have been reading scores of stories across the country from people that are battling the flu, ear infections, pneumonia and more. Not sure why this year seems so bad. We usually blame big outbreaks like this on mild winters. It is thought that the germs have a chance to multiply and get stronger when it doesn't get cold enough for them to die. Maybe it really isn't any different than other years, but it sure seems that way. It definitely feel that way to me. My boys have been continuously sick since January. Here's hoping that all those feeling bad, get well soon. And, here's praying that all those not sick, stay healthy. Bring on the heat! Peace

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