A hero, a web server and friends.

I wish I could write today and say that my pouty attitude from yesterday was better.
Unfortunately it is not.  It might even be a little worse.  I don’t remember crying yesterday, but I did it at least three times today.
Since January is Gratitude Month, I’m going to list a few positives I can skim off of today instead of dwelling on my frustrations.
First, we had a ton of leftovers from dinner last night, so I didn’t have to cook dinner.
Hubby worked all day yesterday and 6 hours in the middle of the night and still got up at 11am and spent most of the day building us a media server and me a web server so I can work on creating my own WordPress blog themes and designs.
He was also home when the battery died in my car and was able to quickly come to town and rescue me.
One of my online BFF’s gave me another opportunity to do some design work… and she liked the result!
I am within 30 minutes of being done with a project I should have had done already.  It’s one of those things that clings to the back of my mind as a “if they’d just behave I would have finished this already” anger trigger.  Thrilled to have the work, bummed that my time management skills are lacking….  but looky looky… I’m almost done!
I doodled a new idea for a friends blog design.
I found a pair of clean pants.
My shirt is a tad wee bit looser.
I have a couple of great mommy blogger friends who have taken me up on my offer to host guest posts!  I can not WAIT to see what these GREAT ladies write up!
I taught my kids Roman Numerals today and they totally got it!  We had fun writing our ages and birthdays in Roman Numerals.
Our six year old read two entire “chapters” in her Dick and Jane book with NO help.  ROCK ON TADERBUG!
The water bill arrived, on pink paper, warning of a disconnect. I got to throw it away because the check had already been sent in- they just crossed in the mail.
Our two year old used her potty three times tonight!
I will try again for a better day tomorrow and remember to end it by counting my blessings.

Just me

No meme, no theme, no vlog with graphics, no cute pictures.
I feel like as of January 1, 2011 my blog has gone downhill.  Maybe I feel that way because after my first week of well thought out scheduled posts were done I found myself scrambling to make sure I posted something everyday.  Everyone was starting these great New Years themes and I wanted to join in.  I even started my own.
Suddenly I don’t feel like blogging.
I am running the Couch to 5K program.
I am sitting on the floor with my kids.
I am (thanks to a broken washing machine) doing LOTS of laundry.
I am learning to do better blog design.
I am learning new tricks for my graphics design.
I am trying to be optimistic about hubby’s trip out of town most of next week.
I am desperately ignoring the speed at which my ONLY son, and last baby, is advancing through the “infant” stage.  He is stealing food off my plate, drinking my tea, and climbing the stairs.  He just turned 7 months old.
I am trying to read my Bible every day.
I am trying to cook more real food and less boxed food.
I am trying to focus, organize, take time, make time, love, cherish, remember, hang on, let go, trust, wait, balance, juggle, breathe.
I.am.failing.
My house is a wreck. My kids are stressed (their behavior gives that away). Mr. B is at his wits end with them.  I feel stupid and inadequate. I have to write a to do list to remember to brush my teeth and hair.
I really thought that if I stopped trying to dabble in everything and just picked a few things that really interested me that I would be more successful.  I feel even more lost.
I need to find a way to work with what I have.  I have to step up again.  I have to make it work.
Hubby keeps telling me there is no such thing as “multi-tasking”. It is only “switch-tasking” and it is NEVER an effective way to function.
I keep telling him he is not allowed to lecture me on this topic again until he can give me a viable alternative.

Stop Reacting and Start Responding ™- Book Review


Living My MoMent has invited me to participate in their new blogger review program by doing a review of Sharon Silver‘s book “Stop Reacting and Start Responding ™”
I have download this very easy to read eBook and am already several chapters in!
Please join us during the LIVE MomTV.com show with Sharon Silver(Proactive Parenting™ ) and Abbey Fatica (Living My MoMent) on January 5th, 2011 at 9pm EST and get answer to your parenting questions.
This book has me very excited for what could happen in our family!  My last pregnancy was hard on me (emotionally) and I found myself becoming Quick Draw McGraw with the kids.  I was not being the parent I wanted to be at all.  The chapters I have read so far have been easy to read, easy to implement and I look forward to sharing it all with you in my full review.

****I am a participant in a Living My MoMent campaign for Proactive
Parenting™ and have received the e-book Stop Reacting and Start
Responding™ by Sharon Silver as part of my participation.****

3 strikes…I’m done

This was my goal today:

CIMG0722

It WAS the craft room and music room but I really needed the crib moved to it’s own room. So hubby moved the rooms around and moved my sewing stuff downstairs and this room became the school/music/ohyeahthebabysleepsinhere room.

In all the moving and with the holidays, this room turned in to a dumping ground for all things.  Today I wanted it cleaned out.  Because I want the baby to have his bed (not that he sleeps in it, but still).

Hubby doesn’t like hints. I very plainly said I NEEDED his help with the baby and the 2yo so I could work on the room.  He helped. He helped as best he could until he couldn’t help any more. 

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It seems the kids wear him out fast.

The first time I had to stop was to try and settle Bubbagirl down from a T total meltdown. Still do not know what it was all about.

The second time was to nurse Peanut and put him down for a nap (that took 30 minutes).

I was making pretty good progress, when the terror that is Bubbagirl decided to start screaming about the movie she was watching and she woke up the wee little fat man named Peanut.

As I tried to nurse Peanut BACK to sleep, the diva Doodlebug and the mighty Rapunzel-Mermaid Princess Taderbug felt the overwhelming need to play 20 questions at my bedroom door regarding lunch plans.

Where the heck was their father?

So, three interruptions, three strikes and I was done.  I was so angry and frustrated. 

I kept asking myself “why can’t HE fix lunch? why can’t HE change the diaper? why can’t THEY just…..”.

(He had been helping some… but not enough for me to get this done, and I always had to ask first)

Then I felt guilty.  All of these things I’m asking him to do are my responsibility.  I shouldn’t be getting so uptight simply because my kids were being kids and they became hungry. 

Yet I feel angry whenever I’m working on something big and can’t find peace to complete it. 

This time the project wasn’t even for me (something related to my hobby or reading for fun). This time it was something very much related to my job as manager of our home.  I was trying to create a tidy and organized environment.  I was attempting to prepare my house for school to begin next week.  I endeavored to provide a sleeping place for our son so that we might have an occasional five minutes alone once in a while.

None if it helped my already weary and wobbly attitude.

It’s almost 2:30pm. Lunch is done. Hubby, surprisingly, helped clear the table.  Our girls emptied the dishwasher. They also broke another dish.  I can check off “clean kitchen floor” on my to do list for this week.

Hubby has 15 more minutes to play online before I disappear back into that room to try again.

Am I the only one that finds it this hard to get things accomplished?

 

**I am hoping to post a video of my room redo as a response to my friend Linda’s vlog**

No one respects people who set boundaries

They respect people who ENFORCE those boundaries.

settingboundariesbutton

This goes for your kids, your family, your friends.

After almost jumping off the deep end before Christmas, I found myself in conversations with friends that revolved around me and my situation and how I needed to set boundaries and learn to say no and …and…and…

Funny.  I have boundaries.  Really. Don’t laugh. I have them.  I just bend them, break them, nudge them, and ignore them all too often.  I was actually accused of doing this out of fear someone would stop loving me. 

Ahem, let me make this clear.  I am not afraid anyone will stop loving me.  I am afraid of hurting someone.  I am worried that if I don’t do it or go or talk or be whatever it is I am needed to be at that moment that bad things might happen and I would feel guilty about it.

That the phone call I didn’t answer will be Nana sick, or Momma stuck on the road somewhere.

That if I had just helped you pick out the best item with the best reviews you wouldn’t have been taken advantage of by the electronics guy.

That… insert RIDICULOUS situation here….

I’m also afraid of making someone mad, or disappointed.  You can love someone you are mad at them. 

My goal for this year, since EVERYONE (even those who have enjoyed my “boundary breaking”) seems to be in agreement that it needs to be done, is to ENFORCE my boundaries.

 

My first step is with time wasters.  Mostly the phone.  Second is the interwebs.

I’m going to start with the phone.  I was going to change the message on our voice mail but thanks to a new plan to pay off some big debt this year I might be eliminating that voice mail all together.

(This is where I get to enforce my boundaries without hurting anyone’s feelings)

Hubby and I want to try and pay off two of our big debts in one year.  This is going to be nearly impossible.  But if we buckle down and don’t waste any tax refund we might get we just might make it work.

I’m going to post more about that plan later.  The part that is important here is that we are considering cancelling the home landline and reducing my cell phone from a Blackberry to just a phone…a dumb one.

That will save us about $75 which is pretty significant when you’re trying to pay down a $2400 credit card.

My family HATES to talk to me on my cell phone, ANY cell phone.  They have a hard time hearing me and with kids making noise in the background it is hard to hear them too.  But in an attempt to pay off this debt we really NEED to make these cuts.  This means the calls I do make with family/friends need to be quality calls.  We can always skype or IM if we want to just chit/chat.  At least I don’t have to worry about the noise the kids are making if I’m just typing back and forth.  Somehow it’s easier for me to say “I have to go” when it’s in print and not over  the phone.

Fewer phone conversations means fewer opportunities for me to be asked to help with something that I really don’t have to do.

Now, to figure out how to say “Sorry, that just won’t work for me”.

Salt tray "chalk boards"

Today school was tough. There was whining and fussing about rounding numbers to the nearest 100.  There was laying on the floor in near tears over not remembering our basic math facts.  I knew for sure there would be crying over doing cursive practice.
Then I remembered something a friend of mine mentioned to me.  She had suggested I pour salt on a cookie sheet and let my daughters write in the salt.  (It was during a conversation about teaching phonics)
I wondered if the change up, the idea of playing with food, the texture and the ability to easily “shake” away your mistakes would put my Doodlebug at ease with working on her math.
So I pulled out a craft tray and covered the bottom with salt.




I think it was successful 🙂 Don’t you?

Sometimes you have to keep your goals simple

Now what are we s'posed to do with him?


Mom left.  The in laws left.  Hubby returned to work.
Just me – Mommy.
Just lil ole me. . .
and FOUR kids.
All by myself.
All day.
*insert panic here*
Monday’s goal was survival…  and we did.
Tuesday I got brave and took everyone out to have lunch with Daddy.  Then I went – WITH THE KIDS- to Target to buy my new stroller.  Bad idea with no big strong Daddy there to help pick up the heavy-as-all-get-out stroller into the cart, and up to the register, and into the trunk.  Followed by a trip back home so I could assemble it out of the public eye.   My sanity still being MIA, I took them to the library so I could look for once a month cooking books.   Tuesday must be “Glutton for Punishment” Day because I decided I wanted to actually COOK something and left the library headed for the grocery store.  I’ll skip ahead to the part where after resisting the urge to punch the nice cart fellow who offered to help me get my stroller back into the trunk (hormones anyone?), I proceeded to sit in my car and cry along with my children.  Taderbug was crying because I didn’t bring her a drink.  Doodlebug was crying because I refused to buy her a candy bar.  Bubbagirl was mad the I wouldn’t let her drive and Peanut was hungry.  I wondered what the heck I had been thinking.
We were two weeks into being a family of six and I was worn out.  I felt like a horrible wife, a mean angry mom and a useless member of my extended family.  I kept trying to tell myself that once the holiday weekend was over we could get back to normal.  My dad would come up Friday, my in laws would come visit on the 4th for my FIL and hubby’s birthdays, and then everyone would leave again and leave me to get my family back in order.   I just had to hold it together until then.
Wednesday and Thursday were awful because hubby had to work overnight AND during the day.  My backup help was either at work or trying to sleep, and very much needing me to keep the kids quiet.
I can remember, with our first child, my doctor telling me that the key to not feeling overwhelmed was to start small and keep it simple.  I was instructed to keep my ‘to do’ list to 3 things, and not to add anything unless the entire list was crossed off AND I felt up to tackling something else.
To Do:
1. Feed the little people
2. Don’t eat the little people
3. Survive the day
Some times that the best you can do.