Wednesday, July 23, 2014

My Marriage Faults

It is never easy to take a look at yourself and face-up to your own faults. Anytime that anyone points out something negative or critical about me I go straight for the defensive. Once you end up with your butt in couples therapy you better start looking at yourself. I'm not one who thinks it's all just him or just me. So far here is what I've come up with about myself.

1) Not communicating expectations.
He can't read my mind and I need to start just saying "can you take Jack for a little while because I need a nap". 

2) Keeping score.
Oh my memory is good when it comes to all the things I do right and all the things he does wrong. Why do I do this when it is not helpful at all? Well it makes for good ammunition. 

3) Having to be right.
My dear husband can be well, flakey. Even when he says something wrong and I know what he means I still feel the need to point out what he did wrong. Not only is it mean but pointless. I know it bothers him so why should I hurt him over nothing. 

4) Too much fluff in the beginning.
Boy oh boy was I The Pioneer Woman when we started out. I cooked and kept house like a good southern woman. Well, you know what, that shit gets old. He expected it and it was a lot of work. When Jack came it got even too difficult. I tried to keep up with it but I failed. Now I don't feel like doing it all. 

5) Losing my playful side.
We use to have a lot of fun. We were always so silly and had inside jokes. The more issues and responsibilities took over the less we giggled.

6) Has to be my way.
My way isn't the only way and I need to face it.

7) Letting him by.
At the start of our relationship when he did or said something I didn't like I wouldn't say anything. I harbored those feelings and then resentment built. It is things that he would have easily changed but I didn't say anything. He has no problem saying "hey could you make sure to do this for now on" so I should also. It's little things to make the other happy.

8) Not enough communication.
Guilty! Jeremy is not a good listener so I stopped communicating. What I should have done is say "can you turn the tv off and listen" but I just stopped talking. Jeremy works away for days at a time so it makes talking not so easy. He is really bad at listening and talking over the phone so one thing I had to learn was to not talk "big stuff" over the phone. 

9) Not fighting fair.
I know Jeremy's buttons and boy can I push them when I want to. When he makes me really mad I can get him just as mad by saying just the right thing. Plus, remember that great memory, well I love to throw all the things I've done right at him and all the things he did wrong. His memory stinks so he always gets frustrated. 

That wasn't an easy post to write. It really forced myself to see my faults in words and not just beating inside my head. I think knowing what the issues are is a great way to work past things and to learn to be a better wife. 

I think what I need to learn more than anything is to stop and use that great memory of mine to remember the feelings I had at the beginning when we were falling in love. I believe it is important to be aware of all the great things he does for us and what great qualities he has. It is often too easy to look at the faults of someone else instead of looking at yourself. 

Monday, July 21, 2014

Couples Therapy Round One

It is pretty taboo to talk about your marriage problems on a blog. However, after giving it a lot of thought and talking it over with my husband I've decided to share. It was always my goal to share the ups and downs of motherhood and marriage.

Let me start off with that I am very proud of my husband. Not a lot of husbands are open to therapy so the fact that he went is admirable. Two, he didn't put on a show for the Dr. R. He was honest. I'll admit that I was worried that in front of the male doctor that he might become prideful and hide some of our faults. He didn't and I thanked him for doing so. 

This session was all about communication. The doctor's point was that no one can make you feel a certain way. He made us each say something that the other did that made us feel angry. He then had us imagine if that same thing was said to someone else. Would they necessarily feel the same way? No! There is something within ourselves that causes us to set off by what the other one said. Once we can figure out why and also openly communicate what those things are we can fix those. 

Our homework was to sit down for 15 minutes twice a week and just communicate. We had to say one thing we appreciate about the other person and one thing we regret. It went great the first time. So far, so good. We go back in two weeks. 

Friday, July 18, 2014

Motherhood Is Not Black and White

When we start our day it always starts with snuggles and sugars. I'm lucky that Jack likes to wake up slowly while holding on to Mama. I get a glorious 10-15 of nice quiet loving time where he lets me hold him. He is my baby in those moments. 

The other morning Jack went and grabbed some Goldfish crackers and jumped on the couch to eat them and watch tv. He looked so grown like a big boy. 

I had to snap a picture of this moment. 

He was being so well behaved that I went into the kitchen and started doing dishes. After a few minutes I looked around the corner to check on Jack and he was no longer on the couch.

I heard him in his room so I made my way down the hallway. Here is what I saw.

The sweet moment had passed and there was the little boy I knew and loved. Always keeping us on our toys. I said "You need to pick those crackers up" and he looked right at me and said "NO!". 

The child barely says anything but he can answer no. I can only shake my head. What are we going to do with this child? We call him Stitch (like from Lilo and Stitch). He tends to destroy everything around him. He is what people like to say "all boy". 

Luckily I have captured moments that remind me of great times.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

My Favorite FREE Printables

I love printables and when they are free....even better! I'm going to share with you a few of my favorites but if you want to check them all out you can view them on my Pinterest board by clicking here

1. Nursery prints can get super expensive so when you can find some super cute ones that are also free then you know you have found an amazing hardworking blogger. Katie from View From the Fridge had a guest blogger share these adorable nursery prints for free.  

free nursery print

2. Jen from Tatertots and Jello shared this sweet print that would look great on a desk or in your kitchen, well basically anywhere.

enjoy the little things free printable at tatertots and jello

3. I just love a fun music quote that brightens a room like this one from Leslie at the Jacob's Clan. 

4. Alli at Cupcake Diaries shared this free print. Can you tell I love kitchen printables? 

5. I put this print in a frame and gave it as part of a housewarming gift. 

6. A baby shower can get expensive but with these free baby shower printables you will save a ton.

 chevron baby shower invitation

7. A good reminder sitting on your desk just adds a special touch. Over at Sweet Bella Roos you will find this inspirational print

I can do hard things- free printable

8. I love Shannon's site Technology Rocks. Not only does she have amazing technology information but her printables are lovely. Here is one of my favorites. I love a pop of color!

9. Oh how I love a family binder. Those things can get expensive but with these printables you can create one for free. 

Second Chance to Dream Free Printable Planner in two colors #freeprintables #calendar #menuplanning

10. Subway art is so cute! I have a frame that I change out monthly. I also used them to make gifts. Christmas is my fav holiday so I especially love this print

I hope you love these prints as much as I do!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Why I Am Amazing

Ladies, too many times we are super hard on ourselves. It's kinda what we do-bad mouth ourselves. Well you know sometimes we need to brag on ourselves because let's face it, we are pretty awesome. I'll start by giving you 5 things I love about being me!

1. My eyes are beautiful-gosh it does feel weird saying that about myself. I love getting compliments on my eyes. Who doesn't love compliments? Speaking of compliments, we ladies need to start taking them instead of blowing them off. 

2. My hair curls really well. My sister has super straight hair which will not hold a curl and I have the opposite problem. If all else fails I can always curl my hair and it looks great.

3. I have good skin. I was one of the lucky teenagers who didn't go through an awful acne stage. Other than a pimple here and there I am blemish free. I don't have a face care plan and rarely take off my make-up. 

4. I can organize the shit out of something. Even as a young child and we were going to have a sleepover I would make a plan with sections and columns. I would write it over and over, plus decorate it, until it was perfect. 

5. I'm a great teacher. Of course, I will always have areas I want to improve on but overall I think I rock at my job. I love my students and honestly care about them. Yes, I teach them stuff too but I think what I'm mostly great at is being in tune with my student's lives and feelings. 

What is something that makes you so fabulous? I would love to hear! 

Monday, July 14, 2014

Pea Pickin' Good Time

Thursday Jeremy and I made a local discovery that has paid off big time. I knew Monticello had a Splash Pad but I wasn't sure about the location or what to expect. We decided to ask about it, found where it is, and were pleasantly surprised. It was perfect for Jack. He had such a great time that we went 3 days in a row. It is safe, fun, and free!

Since Jeremy worked this weekend, Jack and I headed to my parents to hang with family. One of the big things we were able to do is picked peas and butter beans. We sat at a picnic table with a huge fan facing us under a shade tree. It was many hours of talking and picking as my Dad brought us the plants. 

Jack cracks me up with his love with putting a blanket around his head. No matter what he is doing, if he can, he is going to find a blanket and wrap it around his head. It just makes him laugh and us too. 

Today I ventured out into the real world and went to a teacher workshop. Great workshops always get me pumped about my job. I'm not ready for summer to be over yet though. I have a lot more things I want to get done first but I will say this workshop did get me a little excited about a new school year.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

I LOVE Surprises!

Yesterday I got a box in the mail. I wasn't expecting anything so it was even better. I opened it up and Tabitha from A Hundred Tiny Wishes had sent me a beautiful personalize wine glass. 

If you would love your own then check out Tabitha's Etsy shop by clicking here. Not only does she have awesome wine glasses but beautiful jewelry as well. How sweet was it for her to send me my own wine glass just for being her friend and number one fan? 

And just because he is cute...

He is always walking around with a blanket around his head. 

His Daddy dressed him.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Summer Mornings

Jack wakes up with the energy of 10 little boys. My goal each day is to wake up before he does because I have to try and get ahead of him. When I go in his room he is always jumping up and down and running from one end to the other. I do love how happy he is when he wakes up. 

After I get him out of his bed and change his diaper, it is time for breakfast. He loves sausage so I bought a package of pre-cooked and all I have to do is heat it up. With that I add toast, a biscuit, French toast sticks, pancakes, or muffins. Of course, he has to have his milk and sometimes I make that chocolate. 

After he makes a huge mess (he does with every single meal), I clean him up and set him loose. If Charlie is on the couch he always heads right towards him. He loves Charlie but Charlie is scared to death of him. Jack loves to try lay his head on Charlie. I love that he does that because that is something he got from me. I will lay my head in Jack's lap sometimes while he plays with my hair and watches tv. I can't seem to keep Jack from pulling Charlie's tail. 

Next, we do some type of educational activity. His favorite right now is letter magnets on a cookie sheet. I usually can keep his attention for about 20 minutes before he is ready to destroy his bedroom. I let him play on his own while I clean up his breakfast mess and eat something myself. 

Jack will usually stay in his room and play. I join him for some free play after I get a few things done. He is really into blocks right now. We will then watch some Super Why which I believe is a great cartoon that teaches children. 

Around 11 am it is nap time! 

I am enjoying these slow summer mornings of baby hugs, kisses, and messes.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Getting It Together

Have you ever felt like life has taken over the person you want to be? Sometimes days roll onto each other and snowball and before you know it things feel out of control. You may feel like it is impossible to get a grip on things and take control. Today I'm here to give you a few tips on how to get back on top of things in your life.

1. Make a top 5. Sit down and write 5 things that would make you happy if they were present in your life. These may be objects or just feelings. Be as specific as possible. In my own life I would write "do more activities as a family". 

2. Stop and think. If life has gotten chaotic you probably don't have a lot of time but do what you can to give yourself about 15 minutes to just stop and think about what is going on. If you can't see how things got away from you then you might not can take back control. Think about what gives you the most anxiety and what gives you the most clarity. For me I would say "The thing that gives me a lot of anxiety is when I don't stay on top of our finances and what brings me clarity is having the house cleaned up". 

3. Set a routine. You may not can have a morning and night routine right away. It is actually harder than you think. Pick one and write out how you want that routine to go. Practice it. Tweak it until it works for your family. It will make you feel a sense of peace. Our nights need serious work done. If we had a more set routine I know it would be easier on Jack and all of us.

4. Focus on you. When you take care of you then you take care of your world so much better. I'm just gonna say it-you aren't gonna start being a health nut overnight. Just pick one simple thing to add or take away from your life that adds to the quality of your life. It will make you feel better just knowing that you are doing something good for yourself. 

5. Short term goals. What are the most important things to do each day? I can sit down each day and write out a to do list a mile long, but that is only gonna bring me down when I don't make a dent in it. The best thing to do is make a list no longer than 10 things that are most important to get done. You can make this list at night or first thing in the morning. For me, it is easier to do at night because our mornings are just too crazy. 

6. Take care of the 5 F's. Finance, Family, Fun, Faith, and Fitness are the 5 F's that when are in order will give you back a feeling of control. How those five F's are "taken care of" depends on you and your family. Sit down and define how each one would look in your perfect world. 

7. Do for others. When your world feels out of control you begin to get really self-absorbed because well everything just seems to be going all wrong for you. While you are trying to get things back on track do something nice for someone else each day. Not only will it make you feel great about yourself but it will also give you some perspective. Plus, some good karma couldn't hurt!

8. Compete. Give yourself that pep talk and imagine your life back in order. Play music that makes you feel that you are working to overcome a difficult time. Remind yourself daily that you are a fighter and picture yourself happy. Compete with yourself to be happy. You are aiming for the ultimate prize.

I hope these tips help you if you ever feel like your life needs reeled in some. The feeling that you get when your life feels together is so peaceful and something worth working towards. 

Monday, July 7, 2014

Boys Will Be Boys

It was a beautiful 4th here in Arkansas! We set up the pool early that morning and gave it a few hours to let the sun heat it up before we let the boys out. You can see by the picture below that they had a big time. 

Boys are just different creatures. Well I say that based on my experience with Jack. He is all boy. Very rough and tough with some dirt rubbed in. Now when he really gets hurt or gets sleepy he wants his Mama. When he gets all snuggled in on me and holds on tight, that is my favorite. 

I'm also so lucky to have an amazing nephew. My goal is for Jack and Bennett to have a brotherly bond. More than likely Jack will not have a sibling so I want Bennett to be an older brother to Jack. 

Bennett will be 3 next month and he is so smart. He knows all his letters, can count to 40, can write some letters, knows every shape, knows concepts that some kindergartners don't know, and he can draw really well. The best thing is that he loves to learn. He will sit for a long time and let you teach him. Jack will not sit down for 2 minutes but he has been recognizing letters. He says some letters even though it isn't the right one. When words come on the tv he will go point and say o, a, s. It is so cute. 

Mainly they hit each other. Bennett got a set of plastic golf clubs and they have yet to hit a ball but they have hit each other lots of times and the window several times. Needless to say the clubs have been hidden. How do they come up with just walking up to each other and knocking the other in the head with a golf club? Just out of nowhere. The other pushes him down and then they laugh. What the hell? Girls would never do that. 

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Having It All

Today I read a thought provoking post on Jessica's blog The Newly . Her opinion is that mothers can't have it all. It got me to thinking about my own opinion on the subject. 

Honestly, I'm not sure how I feel about the subject because I'm not sure what my definition of all really is. What I do know is that all is specific to the person and I believe it is fluid, always changing. 

I could define all as having a career and being a mother. I believe that is what Jessica was figuring out. Once you become a mother you have a primal urge to be with your baby so putting them in daycare feels unnatural. I think that last sentence could be a rock solid fact. For some, being a full time mother fulfills them completely and for others a nagging feeling will show up making them question if they are doing the right thing. 

As a teacher, I sort of get the best of both worlds. I have my summers to be a full time mom and get to enjoy my career during the school year. 

Do I feel like I have it all?

Not even close. Why? For me, having it all is not just about being a mother and having a career. My all is much bigger and I'm sure it is for Jessica and for every mother in the world. 

In this moment having it all means:
//Jack being healthy and happy
//Jeremy being healthy and happy
//a thriving career
//a clean and organized home
//feeling energized
//fulfilling my creative side
//good relationships with family and friends
//feeling comfortable in my body
//having a meaningful relationship with God
//making and constantly striving for my goals

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

A Trip To Wal-Mart

It's the middle of the night, my family is tucked into their beds happily sleeping. I'm awake with another bout of insomnia. As much as I should be wishing for sleep I am enjoying this wonderful time. I know my family is safe, I'm enjoying this quiet time, and the world feels so still. 

Yesterday I got my stitches taken out. Yay! After my appointment, Jeremy and I went to Wal-Mart to get my prescriptions. While waiting in line to drop it off an older man stood behind us. The line wasn't moving so he started making small talk with us. He first commented on the high prices of the items near-by. He started talking our heads off. I tried to just ignore him (so basically I threw my husband to him). I'm such a good wife! I heard him quoting scripture. I'm not saying that is a bad thing but it does come off a little odd when you are just standing in line for a few minutes. I wasn't listening to everything he was saying but I knew he had said some Bible verses. The more he talked the closer he got to my husband and the lower he talked. I stood to the side and pushed the line along with my mind. Jeremy kept giving me the "save me" look. Finally, we were able to escape. Jeremy shared with me what the man had been saying. He was saying very racist comments. He also said that men should not listen to women. All in all it was an odd situation and we were both happy to get away from that man. You may walk around wearing your Jesus shirt and preaching scripture but when your heart is dark.....

When it was time to pick my medicine up we got in the long line. In front of us was a young adult boy who looked (and smelled) like he had been working hard. He complained about the long line along with the rest of us. His gal with baby in buggy came up checking on things. My hubby (with the face of someone who apparently likes to talk to strangers) strikes up a conversation with this guy. I leave them to their chatting. Once we are in the car Jeremy tells me that their baby has RSV and they were picking up his medicine but they couldn't afford it all. My husband (who is a paramedic) was telling him what was the must have things and also giving him some options of ways to help his son. Jeremy felt bad for the couple and mostly the baby so he wanted to inform them with places that could assist them quickly since the baby clearly needed all of the medication but they couldn't afford it all. If we had the money we would have paid for the medicine but with my own medical stuff money has been tight. I pray they took my husband's words and used them wisely. I pray that baby gets well.

Oh how a trip to Wal-Mart can enlighten you to things. I did walk away with Jack a cute pajama set for $4.97, a package of diapers, and a get well card for a dear friend. 

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

All Around

Summer memories with my little family. We may not be heading to the beach but we sure do laugh.

Chloe's Chili Cornbread Bake. It is such a simple recipe and it is yumm-o!

More water because I want to heal quickly.

Blogs mainly. I started a book weeks ago but haven't picked it up in like 2 weeks. 

To heal, feel better, and enjoy the rest of my summer.

At all the things in this house that need to be done. When you are suppose to be taking it easy you may want to leave your house because everything is taunting you.

Ring around the roses a hundred times a day from my chair. Jack loves to say "all fall down".

All this sit down time with tv instead of reading, writing, and crafts. Damn you SUV!

That we had our own pool.

The last two days with my little family. Jeremy has been off work so we have just hung around the house and its been nice. Also fresh veggies from my dad's garden.

On the house cleaning fairy.

Watching my nephew Bennett and Jack interact. Boys are interesting creatures.

How our first couples therapy session is going to go. We are so jokey with each other unless we are fighting so it might be odd to be real and serious.

Pralines and cream ice I love that stuff!

I can still accomplish the goals for 2014. So far I've done pretty good and I want to keep the momentum. 

That my 19 month old has decided that once he is put to bed to play in his crib for a really long time before actually going to sleep. We can hear him with the monitor just cutting up. He's not crying and will eventually go to sleep so we just let him be. It's almost 10 and he is still laughing it up. 

A pedicure like so bad. 

Nothing right this minute but when I think of a recent smell I think of bleach. I have been bleach soak cleaning the fridge shelves. 

Skirts. Long flowing colorful skirts. Pair it with a simple shirt and I have my summer look. 

Jack around as he gets into everything and climbs on everything.

That I feel a lot more at ease when my house is in order. 

When my husband and I get alone time we act like children. We are a lot more fun when we don't have to be responsible. Getting away from the house helps me to forget about all the things I am suppose to be doing.

About what life would be like if I had lots of energy and I was healed. I'm so jealous of those people who have lots of energy and wake up ready to match Jack's energy. 

Lots of toddler activities. If you want to check them out you can click here. This takes you to my Pinterest board and you can find the toddler activities under Active Mama.

At Jack and his silliness. Each day he gets funnier. You can already tell he is going to be a goofball and we love it. He can really put on a show.

Anxious to get to a better place in my life.