April 30, 2013

Click your heels together three times and say...

I've told you about my mom before. She's selfless, amazing, and fun. My mom tells it like it is, can seem gruff, but is the sweetest lady around. Family life, career, cancer, you name it, she kicks ass and takes names. Last week was her 29th birthday again, and  I was lucky enough to zip home to NY to celebrate with her, my sisters, and my niece for dinner after work one night.

We are a family that fights. That holds grudges. That can go weeks without a word when life gets busy. But when we are together, everything comes together.We laughed so hard my throat actually hurt when I got home. We ate, we told stories, we caught up on all the current events and gossip. And we laughed. Boy, did we laugh.

Sometimes living away from home, I don't realize how much I miss. Even something as small as a dinner means so much more now. Maybe it's a good thing I am so busy that I put it out of my mind. Otherwise I'd probably be sad all of the time. There's no changing where I live now, but my heart will always be home.

What's life without some good music?

I have loved Shazam since the beginning of time. I did not keep a running record when I recently got a new phone though, so all of my old tags are gone(I think?). But here's what I've been tagging lately. I have no rhyme or reason to my music selections, but they always fit my mood. You can see I went from angry to dancing to sentimental in this short little group a few weeks ago. Nowadays, I Shazam to remind myself of songs I like, not find new music. Then I open up the app when I'm grabbing some downloads. Handy and fun!

April 29, 2013

Rocking in the rain.

I've been waiting months to sit out here and stare into nothingness. And I must say, it was lovely the last two days. But now? Well, now it's 30 degrees again and raining. It's gross, and making me both tired and cranky. And we all know what comes next: we will jump right to a hot summer. Boo. (But at least school will be out!)

April 22, 2013

To yarn, or not to yarn ...

Hmm, odd color combo or funky/nice combo? Can't decide, but its what I have so it will have to work! Are you making any great projects these days? #yarngoodies

Are we there yet?

Can't even show you a picture of my work area, readers. Right now I'm kinda at the dining room table, and at times on the couch. I know, a terrible practice, but I can't see the sun from my office. Or the spot I'd much rather be in(see below).

It's been a long year. A year of change, renewed sense of why I do what I do, and a reminder of how mentally exhausting it all can be. I've saved up my vacation days for nice weather, but haven't seen any yet worthy of a day off. Just keep swimming, right?? Sunny summer days are not too far off...

April 17, 2013

Shall I call you a waa-ambulance?

I am so thankful my kids are not major whiners. Pretty sure I wouldn't be able to handle that. The other day in a shoe store I actually heard a girl(maybe 4 years old) scream at the top of her lungs, "I WANT HEELS, AND I/M NOT LEAVING WITHOUT THEM!" Waaah. How Carrie Bradshaw of her, but also, how freakin' ridiculous. And the best part? Dad was negotiating with her and eventually when I left was in the heel section with her. Kid-1, Dad-0.

When did we become a society of give ins? I used to laugh when people would say 'when I was young...' And thought it was just good storytelling. But now I find myself saying that a lot. When I was young, my parents would have NEVER put up with a whine like that in a store. They would not bargain, they would not negotiate. No was no, and you knew better than to ask again. I knew better for sure. I not only respected my dad, but was terrified of him as well. There was no 'maybe' or 'we'll see', it was a firm 'yes' or 'no'.

Now don't get me wrong readers, I've had my fair share of days being pushed over. But as they've gotten older, I've learned to stand my ground. I am careful with my words when I give them an answer, and most importantly, I do not give in or change my mind. If they cry and pout, they cry and pout. And they do. But hey, they get over it, and we move along. They might not feel better at the end of the day, but I sure do.

The world is definitely not a kind, happy, sunshine-and-rainbows place. And my boys will know that before they grow up with a false sense of reality. I won't shield them from all the pain and hurt, or it would be unbearable for them to navigate through it later on. Someone near and dear tells me that we are raising a generation of pansies. Everybody wins, no one's feelings get hurt, and its all those rainbows and unicorns. Well, my boys will be the ones with the heads on their shoulders, pushing through the whiners, leading, not following.

It might not be something some parents are able to/want to do, but I feel it's part of my job. I'm raising men, not boys. I'll continue to make sure my boys buck up, toughen up, and we will not be hearing those  wambulance sirens coming through our neighborhood.

April 15, 2013

The lady of the day.

I'm sure you know the gal on my coffee cup. She's a heck of a lady. Always providing me with that 5am, hot 'time to get up' rush. I'm not particular on the blend of the day, just be sure her face is on the bag.

She's inviting, mysterious, and hard to resist. Thank you Starbucks mermaid(actually she's a Siren), for helping me start my day.

April 5, 2013

Crayon therapy.

When did you stop coloring? I know some of us have little ones running around, so we pick up a crayon here and there, but I mean REALLY coloring. Like outlining the pictures first, getting all those little details color-coordinated and ready for the grand prize coloring. Probably too long ago is your answer. 

Coloring is a wonderful creative outlet for children. Inside/outside the lines, things can be whatever color they choose. But what about the part of it that is so mindless? No thinking required other than color choice. It's a great bonding time for parent/child, sitting and chatting while coloring, admiring each others pictures. All too often we are swiping tablets(or even coloring on them!), and missing out on some of the simple things with our children. Don't you remember opening the brand new box of 64 crayons and hoping they always stayed as sharp and lovely as they were in that moment?

The other day I was waiting for some school stuff to print out, and there was a picture and crayons on my desk. I dumped the crayons out, and started coloring. I got so lost in my little flowers,  and before I knew it I had a complete masterpiece, refrigerator-ready. But better than the picture, was my overall being. I was calm, quiet, stepping away from the hurried work day, and not thinking about anything but my colors. 

What an amazing therapy coloring can be! Try it with or without your kiddies soon. Just focus on the task at hand, and choose your colors. You will be surprised and glad you took the time to step back and smell the colored wax.

April 2, 2013

Light it up BLUE!

Before I even go into this post, please reread my thoughts from last year. It's pretty much what I wanted to say today, but if you missed it, check it on out!

Today is Autism Awareness Day. Wild to think that just a handful of years back, there was no one day to show support. Most people weren't even 'aware'! Now sadly, because Autism has covered such a large amount of ground, many people have become more aware, more educated, and more considerate of Autism. Sure, we have a long way to go(I'm going to just assume some people will always be ignorant), but baby steps.

The numbers have only gotten worse. Still 1 in 88 children will be diagnosed, but a whopping 1 in 54 will be boys. What's being done? My family and I have raised many thousands of dollars for research over the years, hopefully that is helping to shed new light on the world of Autism. But again, that parent 'feeling', that feeling that something is just 'off' with you child, will go a long way with the early detection and warning signs.

I'm not lecturing by any means, I'm sure most of you know my feelings and awesome story about the early intervention. Autism is different than so many other things children might go through, because it's not always apparent. You look through a foggy window, unsure of what's behind the glass. I just ask kindly that you muster up all of your strength as a parent and do all that is necessary to get your child the help he/she needs and deserves. Don't worry about what others say or think, just do it. Your child will thank you some day :)

April 1, 2013

You got to leave it behind...

I'm going through one of those waves, readers. You know, the I can't breathe, I feel stuck, panic, who me panic? kinda waves. Sleepless nights, stressful days, and many tears(stress the many, like crying in public many). What is a girl to do? I'm a strong willed mama, and I can take a whole lot on my shoulders. But I'm at a breaking point. A cracking point.

Walk On as we all know is one of my all-time favorite songs:

And I know it aches 
How your heart it breaks 
And you can only take so much 
Walk on, walk on

And I guess Bono has helped me see the light. See what I need to do for my family. What will help us dust off and carry on, and hopefully enjoy certain things again. We live and learn I suppose, I just wish it wasn't this hard.

Walking on....