Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Worst Date Ever

Whoa baby am I sick. On Friday, I started feeling "funny." Just not myself. By 7:30 that night, it was the full blown stomach flu. I was sick so bad over night I ended up in the ER Saturday morning for fluids and medicine. Fast foward to today, Tuesday. I'm still having some gastro intestinal issues (ahem) but thankfully no more throwing up. I'd appreciate any healthy vibes and prayers you can send my way. It's AWFUL to be sick, but especially awful with 2 toddlers.

Moving on to the Valentine's Challenge! Today's topic is...worst date ever.

Valentine’s Day Challenge

I'm pretty lucky in this area, I don't have many bad dates of which to speak.  The one the stands out the most in my mind though was my senior year of high school. I'd be dating the same guy for 2 years at this point. We were really in to the Lord of the Rings movie and had plans the Friday night it came out for dinner and a late show. We were going to McDonald's quick and then the movie, so the plan was. I was exhausted from a full week of work, dance and school so I was wearing yoga pants, a hoodie and no makeup. No biggie, right?

Except my boyfriend failed to mention to me that we were picking up his best friend and his girlfriend (whom I'd never met) and skipping dinner because it would take too long to drive out to get them and get food. So I'm in the car, ready for some McD's fries and a good movie nd BAM. We pull in to a house I've never seen before and out walks cute girlfriend, in heels and a super cute outfit, hair all done and makeup on.

Oh I was mad.

I ended up getting home around midnight, hungry, cranky and tired.

Wow that's really not that bad. I have this one friend, Pam, who's boyfriend Roy and his brother left her at a high school hockey game when she went to the bathroom. On their first date. (Points if you get the reference...;))

Monday, January 30, 2012

Best Date Ever...Valentine's Challenge

Linking up today with Amber, Neely and Casey for the first day of their Valentine's Challenge!

Valentine’s Day Challenge

Today's topic...Best Date Ever.

Crack. Me. Up.

My best date with Dave is so easy. Rory was born in May, 2009 and we went through a rough adjustment phase after that. I think a lot of parents do. It wasn't that our marriage was bad, it was just going through a rough spot. When we finally came out the other end, I rewarded us with a trip to Disney World. Dave had never been and I've been a LOT. (My brother worked there for a few years.) 
While on our trip in February, 2010, we were celebrating our third anniversary. We went for dinner one night at the California Grille on top of the Contemporary Resort. It's a beautiful hotel and a swanky restaurant. MAJ expensive.

Our food was awesome, the drinks were delicious. The staff decorated our table for our anniversary. We laughed, we talked, we people watched. When the sun set, we went out on the roof and watched the fireworks show "Wishes" over the castle in the Magic Kingdom. 

I mean, really? Does it get more romantic? :)

We got lost trying to get back to our hotel, took the wrong monorail, Dave told the bus driver we were staying at a different hotel...but in 7 years of being with Dave, I can't remember laughing and enjoying ourselves so care freely as we did that night. My favorite person, my favorite place. That's about all it takes to make me happy. :)

Friday, January 27, 2012

Boob Tube Babble..or Logan sucks.

Boob Tube Babble

I'm linking up with Neely and Ashley today for Boob Tube Babble! Neely wrote a great post today about the Bad Boys of TV she has loved over the years.


She is sorely wrong in one area.

Logan Hunsberger is a giant douche bag.

Also, he's fictional.

But that's  beside the point. He's an idiot. (Gilmore Girls, people. Gilmore Girls.)

Here are my top 5 reasons I can't stand Logan.

1. Over the top public proposal. In front of her grandparents. The night before graduation. Fail.

2. Acts like a teenager even after graduating college. Logan, a real man works hard and then has fun not the other way around. He winds up losing tons of his daddy's money. Pathetic.

3. Speaks condescendingly ALL THE TIME.

4. He is shockingly short. AND CHEATS ON RORY MULTIPLE TIMES.

5. His family is obnoxious and awful. If Trace brought home a pretty, sweet, intelligent girl someday, I'd be thrilled. Even if her money is not our type of money.

Oh my goodness. I just wrote a top 5 list about a fictional character. Sweet life. :)

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

I'm just...sad.

I know some of you think it's weird that I'm sad over the loss of Joe Paterno. I don't care, you don't have to get it. You can think he is a bad person, you can think anything you want. But I'm sad. Actually, I'm heartbroken.

I've seen my husband cry 3 times in seven years. When his grandfather died, our wedding day (which he vehemently denies!) and when he moved to Ohio. Three times. That's it. And our wedding was more of just...moist eyes. The times I've seen him truly SAD, other than those times above, are maybe five times total. A coupe personal things, when the Steelers lost the Super Bowl last year (not kidding) and this. This whole Penn State mess. It's strange to see Dave sad. But he is. Really sad.

And I'm sad too. Kind of like a grey cloud has settled on our shoulders and we're trying to shake it.

Source: etsy.com via Angela on Pinterest

I thought I'd share a great story I read on Facebook today. (The guy who posted it wants it shared!)

I debated whether or not to share this, but as everyone has been sharing their "JoePa stories" lately, I thought it'd be appropriate to share mine.

Despite attending Penn State University Park for 4.5 years, I never had the opportunity to meet JoePa. I heard stories of friends that had - most memorably two friends who, while out riding their bikes, saw him driving home from practice on the eve of the 2005 Ohio State game. They decided to follow him all the way into his garage so that they could shake his hand and wish him luck. Instead of being weirded out (which would have been pretty understandable) he was very gracious and thanked them for the support.

The first weekend in this past December, I was visiting Penn State for a number of different reasons. While I was there, I wanted to show my support for Joe in light of his cancer diagnosis and how he had been mistreated by the University and the press (based on incomplete information and misinformation) in the last month. I decided to leave him a note expressing my support along with a blue & white bouquet of flowers. I felt awkward approaching the Paternos' home. I had heard stories of students and alumni that had walked right up, rung the doorbell, and been welcomed in by Joe and Sue - in some cases, even being fed by Sue - but having never met the Paternos, I didn't have the nerve. I left the note and bouquet on their doorstep and walked away. That was the afternoon of Sunday, Dec. 4.

On Wednesday, Dec. 7, I received a text from my Mom:

"Does Joe Pa live on McKee St? If so, you got a card from him."

I think my jaw must have dropped about five feet. I was absolutely stunned that Joe and Sue would take the time to send me a card. Later, when I read the card, I was even more humbled by what it contained. Joe and Sue thanked me for the flowers and the note, and said that Joe was drawing strength in his battle with cancer from all the support he had received from Penn Staters. They said that it was "good to be reminded of what we were trying to accomplish at Penn State." They said that after they finished "getting Joe healthy," they would work to remind people of the values that Joe had tried to impart during his time at Penn State. The card was signed, "Very fondly, Joe and Sue Paterno"

But here is the most amazing thing about all of this and what shocks me even to this day: I DIDN'T LEAVE ANY CONTACT INFORMATION WITH MY NOTE. I had signed the note with my name, and mentioned my graduation year, but had been very intentional about not leaving an address, email address, phone number, anything. This means that Sue (I have to think it was her, given Joe's health at the time), despite receiving hundreds of letters from alumni per day, took the time to look me up in the alumni directory (which still contained my parents' address at the time) and send me a card. The Paternos had never met me before; I'm not a huge donor to the school; I'm not someone important who can do anything for them; I'm just another alum. And they went way out of their way to send me a thank you card THE VERY NEXT DAY.

Recently, Penn Staters have been characterized as football-crazed idiots for supporting JoePa despite the allegations made against him in the press. I can tell you that Penn Staters' love for JoePa has almost nothing to do with football. Chris Grovich of Black Shoe Diaries may have put it best when he wrote, "[JoePa] believed in all of us [Penn Staters], whether we knew it or not." Penn Staters are the Paternos' life work and legacy. Joe never missed an opportunity to remind us that success is only valuable when it comes with honor, and that all of us - football players or not - were at college primarily to gain an education, broaden our horizons, and become better people. It is not an overstatement to say that a part of who I am today is directly because of Joe Paterno and his love for Penn State.

Simply put, Joe loved Penn State. That's the only kind of thing that could keep him at Penn State, where he was paid a salary 1/8 the size of other college coaches with half his wins and rejected multimillion dollar offers from NFL teams. That's the only kind of thing that could cause him to donate $100,000 to Penn State a month after the administration fired him over the phone. That's the only kind of thing that could make someone of Joe's stature take the time to send a thank you card to an anonymous alum despite dealing with immense personal trials himself. Joe loved Penn State.

And Penn State loves him back. Thank you, Coach. -Mark Willard

When all is said and done, I hope I can an impact on so many people the way Joe did. Could he have done more? Couldn't we all. 

Monday, January 23, 2012

Raise the song.

Before I begin this post, I just wanted to clear something up. I am not approving of the action or inaction of Joe Paterno in the sexual abuse cases. I'm merely mourning the loss of someone whom I've grown to care for and admire, in a grandfatherly way. You don't have to agree with me, but this is my blog. Please be respectful of my words, my thoughts and the intense connection this family has to Penn State, Penn State Football and the way we are choosing to remember Joe Paterno. Thank you.

Dear Coach Paterno,

You were so much more than the last 4 months of your life. So. Much. More. The money you've donated to PSU is huge. Your contribution to the football team and football program is undeniably large. But your contributions as a man? The good far outweighs the bad. You, Coach, will be remembered, when all is said and done and the facts are known, for the man that you were, not the man people are painting you to be. Your grace under fire was inspiring to me.
I'm proud to call myself a Penn State fan. I'll tell my son, Trace Joseph, about the strong man he was named after. A man who apologized for what he did wrong. A man who stood for something. A man who I would be honored to have grow up to be like.
Thanks, Coach.

"You have to perform at a consistently higher level than others. That's the mark of a true professional." -Joe Paterno

"Publicity is like poison, it doesn't hurt unless you swallow it." -Joe Paterno

"The will to win is important, the will to prepare is vital." -Joe Paterno

"Believe deep down in your heart that you were destined to do great things." -Joe Paterno

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Sad days.

Today we mourn the passing of Joseph Vincent Paterno.  I'm blogging from the road, heading home from Philadelphia planning to stop at Penn State. A complete post tomorrow. My heart hurts.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Self Respect.

There's been some scandal in my town over the last few years with high school girls sending around topless photos. These pictures, which these girls took I'm sure assuming only "one boy" would ever see...have basically gone viral each time. I don't know the girls involved, been out of high school for 10 years, don't know the boys and even I received the photos. It's a big deal in a tiny town where very little ever happens. Naked photos. Goodness gracious. How things have changed even since I was in high school! (And not to mention, children. Naked pictures of 17 year olds is illegal. ILLEGAL. Taking them, being in them, sending them...illegal. Not. Kidding.)

That got me thinking...what is so wrong in these girls lives that they feel the need to strip down to nothing and show off in that way? Is it a self confidence thing? Do they feel a sense of power by showing off for guys? Empowered? Does it boost their self esteem to think that boys are enjoying these pictures? I'm not sure.

When I was in high school, I had an awful boyfriend. He didn't mean to be, but he didn't have great examples of how to treat women in his life. He could have treated me better but I could have broken up with him too. That's neither here nor there. The point is my self esteem in regards to boys and dating was so low, I didn't realize how bad things were.

As a mom of a son, the responsibility lies with me now. I need to raise Trace to respect GIRLS so much that he would never dream of asking a girl to take her shirt off. I would never want him to accept the invitation offered by a girl either. I'm using GIRL here rather pointedly. Young ladies in high school are GIRLS. Fragile, sensitive, easily manipulated girls. I know, I was one. I want my son to be the young man, the boy, who girls are comfortable around. I want parents of girls to encourage their daughters to think Trace is cute because they know he was raised to treat their daughters correctly. No shenanigans here.

As a mom of a daughter, the responsibility lies with me now as well. I need to raise Rory to respect HERSELF so much that she laughs in the face of any guy who asks her to get naked on the internet. I want her to be confident in her looks and her body, but know that she is special and unique. She needs to realize, from an early age, that self confidence doesn't come from a boy. That type of self confidence is false and crumbles faster than the weather changes. True and lasting self confidence comes from hard work, not the admiration of a boy or two. (Again using the term BOY instead of man on purpose...) I hope Rory is surrounded by teachers and friends in high school that lift her up, encourage her, praise her successes and help her learn from her mistakes and failures. I hope she knows home is a safe place.

Oh wouldn't it be so nice if I could control the future? Naturally, I know I can't. That doesn't mean I can't wish I could.

Girls, boys do not determine your self worth. Your self worth, your value, is determined by YOU. Your hard work, your education, you commitments, your kindness, your compassion. No boy can build up or tear down your self worth unless you choose to let them. Self confidence is a reward for hard work. Self esteem is found when you take the time to realize how great you are. Look at you! Look at the things you have accomplished. Did you pass a test that you had to really study for? Make a basket in your last basketball game? Complete a season of soccer without dying? Turn a triple pirouette at dance? THOSE are things that make up the building blocks of self esteem and self confidence, not flaunting yourself for boys.

Boys, the harm you do when you ask a girl to send you a naked photo OR accept her offer goes beyond what you think. You might think it's pretty awesome that she did it and then laugh with your friends, calling her some "lovely" names and think that's the end of it. It's not. Girls don't forget. Ever. Say no. Say NO. Offer to get a cup of coffee or go to a movie with a girl, not allow her to disrespect herself like that.

I don't know. Just something on my mind lately.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Tagged, Tagged, Tagged!

I got tagged in this fun little meme by 2 of my fave bloggers over the weekend. Jess at The Pretty Physicist (go check out her science of beauty post today! REALLY interesting! :)) and Melissa at Little Mrs. Married! She is so sweet and a wonderful person. I'm playing along because hey, it's a snowy, freezing cold Monday and who doesn't need a little fun?! :)

First off, I'm to list 11 random facts about myself. So here goes!

1. I have clinical depression and have since I was 19 years old. It is currently complicated by post partum depression. I am an open book about it and I will answer any and all questions you have about depression. It is nothing to be embarrassed about and it's something that needs to be talked about more.
2. I wake up with a sore throat and a stuffy nose almost every day of the winter.
3. My son's middle name is Joseph, after Joe Paterno. (And my dad)
4. I was raised Baptist, my dad pastored a non-denominational church for 6 years and now I'm a Methodist. Basically, I'm just a Christian. :)
5. My favorite bible verse is Proverbs 31:25: She is clothed in strength and dignity and she laughs without fear of the future.
6. I'm addicted to Pinterest. For sure. I love it!
7. I love to watch the Duggars on TLC. I just really like that family, as quirky as they are. They just seem like good, nice, wholesome people.
8. My son just stuck his hand in my coffee and shook it all over me. Thanks, Trace.
9. I haven't dyed my hair in 7 months! That's the longest I've gone since 8th grade when I started getting highlights. I kinda like it, not going to lie. But once summer comes around...I'll need my highlights. :)
10. Dave and I are going to Philadelphia this weekend! Holla.
11. In high school, I tore all the tendons away from the side of my foot and pinkie toe on my right foot. It still hurts.

11 Questions from Jess at The Pretty Physicist...
1. If you could have dinner with any 3 people, alive or dead, who would have have dinner with? Oh great question! I'd say Eleanor Roosevelt, Susan Stroman and Walt Disney. My personal, theatrical and creative inspirations.
2. If you could do any job in the world, what would it be? I'd be a choreographer at Disney World. Oh, how I'd love that job. I'd do just about anything to get it. Anyone know how to get that kind of job?
3. Would you rather be rich or happy? Happy.
4. Facebook or Twitter? Twitter, for real. I'm over FB.
5. If you could change anything that happened to you in 2011, would you? I wish I would have taken Trace to the doctor sooner. I feel bad that I let his acid reflux go so long.
6. Who is your favorite musical artist? Ben Folds. <3 <3 <3
7. If you could only eat one thing for the rest of your life, what would it be? My mom's spaghetti, my grandpa's salad, garlic bread and green beans. MMMMM!
8. If you could move anywhere in the world, where? Somewhere warm. I'm kinda sick of Pennsylvania.
9. Do you like snow? I do and I don't. I live in the FOREST so we get lots. It hasn't bad this year at all this year though.
10. What time do you wake up in the morning? 7.
11. What is the last thing you do before going to bed at night? Pray!

11 Questions from Melissa at Little Miss Married...
1. What are your biggest pet peeves, not including traffic issues? (We all have traffic issues.) Hands down, loud chewing. I can't stand it. It makes me so angry. Even my students know. No gum, no loud chewing around Miss Kate. I just can't take it.
2. If you could go on an all-expense paid vacation & take one person, who would you take & where would you go? I would take Dave, of course. He's the most fun person to travel with! And I take him to Italy/Greece.
3. If you could do anything you wanted for your next birthday, what would you do? (Money is no object & everything is okay to eat!) Ooooh this would be so fun. I'd like to take a cruise to the Bahamas I think. I think that'd be a fun little birthday celebration.
4. What is your favorite play or musical? If you do not have one, how are we friends? (Totally kidding. I don't watch football, it all evens out!) hahaha Mel, I love this! :) And my favorite musical that I was ever in was Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. My favorite musical I've ever seen on Broadway is either Spamalot or Footloose. My favorite play is hands down, without a doubt The Laramie Project.
4. What are some of your favorite girl names? Favorite boy names? If we were to have another baby (and NO this can't happen) a girl would be named Lacy Kate and a boy would be named Carson James. Feel free to steal these names because this baby factory is CLOSED. :)
5. What is the biggest lesson you have learned in life? People will disappoint you. God won't.
6. What is your favorite recipe? (Link please!) Right now? We are loving the baked spaghetti recipe from Pinterest.

7. What is the last book you read? Did you enjoy it? I read the Pretty Little Liars books over Thanksgiving. I LOVED THEM. They were so mindless and great. I needed that break! :)
8. Who is your favorite author or speaker? My favorite speaker is Oprah. My favorite author is Sophie Kinsella.
9. Which bloggie friends do you hope to meet in real life? Kelly Lindsey Neely Amber Meghan Kerbi Melissa Jess...Actually any of my blog friends. I'm SO SAD I'm not going to Blissdom. :( don't talk about it.
10. What is your nervous habits? Tapping my feet all the time. ALL THE TIME.
11. What do you hope will happen (that could happen!) in 2012? I want to finish losing weight. BLAH.

Now I'm supossed to tag 11 bloggers so here we go...in no particular order!
1. Kelly at Keeping Up with Kelly and Co.
2. Neely at A Complete Waste of Makeup
3. Lindsey at Running Down a Dream
4. Amber at Brunch With Amber
5. Brittan at Babbling Brunette
6. Meghan at The Perfect Compilation Tape
7. Katie at Finding My Way Back to Then
8. Tayler at Down the Rabbit Hole
9. Laura at A Hearty Overflow
10. YOU! Consider yourself tagged. :)

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

PYHO: Confused.

I haven't linked up with Shell for sometime now. Not sure why, really. I love this link up and Shell is awesome. She's such a real blogger. I appreciate her frank take on parenting and her posts/tweets make me feel like I'm not alone in my parenting.

Sometimes, I stare at my son and I'm so confused. I have no idea what to do with him at times. I don't know very well how to "play" with him. With Rory, it came naturally. I taught her to have a tea party, to play Mommy with her dolls, play dress up. With Trace...after about 10 minutes of zooming cars around his play mate, I'm done. I'm just not good at boy things. We build with blocks, roll balls around and drive cars until my eyes are going to pop out of my head.

It's more than how to play with him though, I'm thoroughly confused by his personality. He's the sweetest little mouse on the planet 99% of the time, but some days (and more often than not lately) he cries without end for no reason. He crawls all over me, won't let me sit down without scaling me like a rock wall. He clings to my legs, yanks on my necklaces and sobs like he's dying if I leave the room. He's like two completely separate people at times.

Here's a good example. This morning I was entering tuition in to the computer and using the cricut to make the letters for my January bulletin board. My home office is in the basement, where the kids have a huge playroom. They have a play house, a tricycle, comfy couches, books, toys, blocks, a rocking horse...you name it, it's down there. It's like a toddler's dream. But where's Trace? Standing beside me, yanking my mouse down, smacking the keyboard and crying at me for no reason. He had a juice cup, Mickey Mouse on the tv and a thousand toys. But because I wasn't giving him 100% of my attention, he was having a melt down.

And I have no idea what to do with him.

Sometimes when he's crying, I just walk away. Call me a bad mom, but after a while...when he's not hungry, sick, tired or needs a diaper change...it's all I can do. What else can I do at this point but teach him to self soothe? He's almost 15 months old. He needs to realize he doesn't need to be attached to my side at all times. There's nothing wrong with that. There really isn't. This kid has more toys, books and crayons then a third world country. He won't die because I left him to play on the floor of our very baby proof-ed living room while I walked 10 feet in to the kitchen, attached to the living room, to start dinner. He won't die. He won't even get hurt, sick or injured. He'll just get upset.

Call me what you will, judge me if you want, but that's what it is. I don't know what else to do. Rory didn't seem to go through this particular stage, or at least not as bad. (She has her OWN set of challenges...blah. Like the constant screaming at the top of her lungs in her car seat for 5 months stage or our current and lovely hitting people in the face stage...another post for another day) If I keep picking him up, then he does it more and more so I will pick him up. If I leave him sit on the floor, at least he stops crying eventually. I can't let him think I'll come running every time he lets out a whimper. I mean, honestly. I can't live my life like that. Some moms can and do, and that's great for them. But me? Not a chance! My kids have to learn to be more independent than that.

I guess this is just part of my mother hood journey. I'll deal with it the best way I can, just like I have with all the other trials Trace and I have faced together. This too shall pass. And then it will be on to the lovely throwing toys across the room phase or perhaps the won't eat anything but chicken nuggets phase.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Valentine's Day

I love a holiday. Any holiday, really. I love decorating, doing crafts with the kids, making special foods...I just love to celebrate. Dave's grandma once told me she's usually annoyed by people who make such a big "to-do" about birthdays and holidays, but it comes so naturally and earnestly to me (and my mom), she loves it. :) In fact, I still have a few Christmas decorations up (okay, technically "winter" decorations) because I like my house to be seasonal.

With Valentine's Day about a month away, here are some things I'd like to do this year to celebrate V-day! (All images via Pinterest and link back to the pin I found them from. :))

Red Velvet Heart Whoopie Pies

XOXO Frames...easy and cheap!

Kid's Craft...Heart wreath. I'd let the kids decorate the hearts, since they can't write yet. :)

Friendship bracelets...these would be cute to do for my dancers. But I really don't have time to make 150 of them!

There's lots of great ideas on Pinterest! You can follow me on Pinterest here. Happy Tuesday! :)

Monday, January 9, 2012

iPad, my love.

I bought myself an iPad finally. I broke down and bought it. I've wanted once since they first came out but...well frankly I'm cheap. I wasn't excited about spending SO MUCH MONEY on one piece of electronic equipment. But upon further research, I realized it could easily be used as an integral part of my business. Whoa baby. That was an understatement. Now that I've been using it for a couple weeks, I'm kinda mad I didn't buy it sooner. ;) Today I thought I'd share some of my favorite apps with you!

For teachers...iTeach. HELLO GENIUS. AND FREE!! This app allows you to organize class lists, keep track of grades/attendance, make seating charts (for me, I use this feature to draw out formations!), you can make a profile for each student with a picture, parent info, contact info, allergies...anything else you can think of, really. It's genius. I've spent a good part of my weekend entering my students in to the app. The only thing I wish it did was offer a previously entered student as an option once you started typing a new class list. Like when I start typing L..e...x...i I wish it would bring up a list of ALL my Lexi's so I could just select one. But I realize this is a free app and not for dance teachers who put kids in 5 or 6 classes, so no biggie. Can't complain over something that's free!

For girls...Fancy Nancy Dress Up. (.99 cents) Dora's Skywriting Adventure (1.99) Fancy Nancy is just fun for Rory, no real learning done with this app. She loves it though and it's pretty cute! 99 cents? I can do that. :) Dora, on the other hand, is totally 100% educational. It takes Rory through exercises learning to identify, write and sound out letters. So far, she can successfully write an A, a B and a C. She LOVES to play this "game" and I love to let her.

For little guys and girls...Fisher Price has 4 FREE apps. One for colors, shapes, letters and body parts. They are adorable, play sweet background music and are just active enough for Trace. Not too many flashing colors but super easy for him to play. Any time he touches the screen, something cute happens.

We love the iPad in this house. It was a great investment for my business and for my kids. (And yeah, Dave and I have got some apps on there too. :)) All told, I've spent less than $7 on apps and it's entertained everyone for hours. If you are on the fence about investing in one, I say do it. We've already gotten our money's worth, I'd say! :)

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Good for My Soul Sunday.

Good for My Soul Sunday...week 1.

Source: etsy.com via Margaret on Pinterest

(via pinterest)

I'm not sure how many of you know how severe my post partum depression is. Well I guess now, it might just be considered depression since Trace is 15 months old. But either way, it's hard. Really hard some days and other days, it's controlled and I don't notice it.
The biggest issue I have with my depression is a paralyzing fear of the future. When I say paralyzing, I mean it. I'll stay up all night worrying about something that is inconsequential and out of my control. When I was pregnant with Rory, I lived in a constant state of fear of being audited. Don't ask me why. I run my business "above the books" and considering how tiny my studio is, the chance of being audited is like .00001 but still. Logically, I knew it was a crazy fear but emotionally, I never ONCE checked the mail without being nauseous.
No matter how prepared I am, no matter how many lists I make, no matter how much time and care I take to make things right, I live, at times, in a constant state of fear, waiting on pins and needles for the other shoe to drop. The worst part is my head will be screaming how crazy I am acting, I can rationalize all I want but then my inner voice...that exhausted, worn out depressed voice starts whispering and that's all I need to start spiraling downwards all over again.

That all being said, my lifeverse for this year is found in Proverbs 31:25. "She is clothed in strength and dignity and she laughs without fear of the future."
Isn't that a lovely thought? To be so confident in God's providence, in God's never ending strength and the ability to live your life with dignity that you could laugh easily, without worry for what is to come next? The idea that that could be me is so beautiful.
I love the 31st chapter of Proverbs. I'll be talking more about certain aspects of being a Proverbs 31 wife, the ideal wife in so many ways. But for this year? For this month, week, day, moment...I'm concentrating on being so draped in the Word and protected by prayer that I find no reason to fear the future. I will laugh in the face of my insecurities and I will become a woman whom embraces the possibilities of her future instead of hiding, scared and lonely.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

It's Okay... Birthday edition!

Today is my birthday! I'm officially 27. I don't really care about my age, so it's no biggie to me at all. :) I'm linking up as always this snowy, freezing cold Thursday with Neely and Amber for It's Okay Thursday. This week, we'll do it birthday style! :)

Its Ok Thursdays

Hey it's okay...

...to intend to eat nothing healthy all day. It's my birthday!
...to have my eye on a glass of Clarion River Red wine for after the kids go to bed tonight. (Shout out to Neely!)
...to be considering going to get a manicure AND a pedicure. Going wild over here! ;)
...to look forward to your family birthday dinner tomorrow night like it's a night out in Vegas. I'm just...all about family these days. :)
...to be really glad your sister is on a rotation at a local hospital right now so she's home for my birthday. Selfish? don't care! :)
...to have gotten a little teary eyed over a FB post from a 14 y/o student named Jimmy. He recounted all the memories he could think of from his years as my student and in my parents' plays. It was beautiful! And Jim, if you ever read this, I'll ALWAYS hand you a broom stick and pull you to safety when you wear tap shoes on a sheet of ice. :)
...to be spending the morning lazily watching Disney Junior with the kids and drinking Diet Coke. No hate!
...to have given yourself the day off from work. And laundry. And cleaning.

What's okay with you today? Even if it's not your birthday, you can still be queen for a day. ;) Link up with Neely and Amber!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

My daughter, the terror.

Last night, Brittan from Babbling Brunette and I were talking about disciplining our toddlers. Her Madi is 3 and Rory will be 3 in May. To say it's a tough age...is an understatement. Rory (and Madi, I found out!) is incredibly strong willed. She's stubborn, slightly mischievous and at times a straight up holy terror. Really she's just testing her boundaries and figuring out consequences, right from wrong, all that stuff that unfortunately you aren't born knowing. When Rory hits Trace, she had to learn quite quickly that hitting equals time in her room. (Or whatever the misbehavior of the moment is!)

My mom works at a wonderful school for autistic children. A mom of two of her students shared their discipline method with me and I think it's genius. When the child misbehaves (hitting, kicking, biting, yelling, throwing a fit, whatever) you stop them with a firm voice, say "I love you too much to let you (insert action here)" then pick them up and calmly place them in their room.

I've been trying this for about 2 weeks with Rory and it's starting to work. I like it because saying "I love you" in the midst of discipline reminds me to come from a place of calm, a place of love. Forcing myself to use a calm voice is soothing to Rory and doesn't leave me feeling guilty. Letting her calm down in her room is great. It drives her bananas when she hears the rest of us having fun or watching TV. She gets mad that she's missing out on fun but being in her room, she calms herself down pretty quickly. There are a few toys and lots of books in her room, but nothing to really "play" with and certainly nothing to hurt herself on or with. Sometimes it takes her 3 minutes to calm down, sometimes it is 10. But whatever it takes, she calms down. Once she's done pitching a fit, I go in and we talk for a few minutes about what she did wrong, why she was in her room and why she can't repeat the action.

Is it perfect? Probably not. I'm sure some of you are reading this going "Kate is bananas! That would never work with my kid!" Well, that's true. It might not. It's working for Rory and for goodness sake, that's all I care about at this point. I'm ready to be done with this difficult stage in her life. (Which, by the way, was even WORSE last week when she was on Prednisone. Hello Roid Rage! BLAH!) As she gets older and her offenses get more serious, of course our method will have to change but for now...I'm thankful that something (anything!) is working.

Do you have a toddler? Nanny or babysit for a toddler? Got any discipline tips? Share away, please!

Back to Basics.

I've been reading a lot of fellow bloggers Resolution/Goal posts for 2012. Man you guys. If we all follow through, we're going to be unstoppable! I'm pumped. :) I've noticed a lot of bloggers desiring to draw closer to God and find their roots back in the Bible.

I love this. This is a goal I have every day of my life.


I want to contribute. I'm far from a "perfect" Christian, but I was raised by two Bible believing, God fearing parents and thrive on my relationship with Jesus. I am working on my own connections with God this year as well and I think we should all work together. So here it is. Every Sunday (or most Sundays, anyways) I'm going to post something inspirational. A song, a scripture, a devotion. A question I have, a book I've read, a quote I've seen. Anything goes. Anything that I've read/seen/heard that falls in to the "inspirational" category. And I'm starting this week.

This isn't an official link up, at least not yet. I just thought maybe if I took the time on Sundays to blog about something that really matters, then maybe it'd help me stat my blogging week off on the right foot. Join in if you want. It never hurts to get inspired. :)


Monday, January 2, 2012

Some things, if you will.

Some bullet points, before I resume my regularly schedule blogging tomorrow.

1. I got so behind on replying to comments and answering questions. I'm sorry! I'm usually better than I have been the last two weeks. I am giving myself a clean slate and starting over. Please forgive me if I never responded to your comment. (Unless you don't have your email linked to your blogger account...!) I'll do better.

2. I didn't get up early to do my yoga as I had planned today. But I will do it during nap time.

3. I'm determined to learn how to properly use my sewing machine. I want to make the kids Disney character autograph quilts this summer. Anyone a really great sewer and want to give me lessons? I tapped out in 8th grade home ec. Although last summer, I did learn how to ruffle pretty well. Other than that though...but I'll do it!

4. My birthday is in 3 days. No clue how I'm celebrating or if we even are. Early January birthdays are the WORST.

5. We're supposed to be getting like a foot of snow in the next 36 hours. Actually, it was to start last night and so far? Nothing. Just an inch. I'm not complaining, I've got some super important deliveries coming tomorrow...like my IPAD. I'll be pretty mad if UPS is delayed. Not that I want those guys driving those scary trucks in bad weather, but ahh. I'll be sad!

6. I need to get a new devotional to read to start of my new year in the right way. Any suggestions?

7. Trace has officially stopped using a high chair here at our house. I can't believe it. He's way younger than Rory was when we stopped using it. He still sits in one at a restaurant or someone else's house, but here he sits at the picnic table with Rory. Time to sell that sucker, I guess. Where does time go?!

And one last thing? WE ARE...PENN STATE! Let's go, big blue!!! Sorry Celia, but Penn State is about to embarrass Houston. Here we go Nittany Lions!