Monday, July 21, 2014

Last Post + An AWESOME Give Away

I've gone back and forth a million times trying to decide if I want to continue with this blog or put an end to it. I've really enjoyed it.  I like writing.  I like hearing from others.  It's nice.

Before starting this blog, I rarely got on the computer.  Since starting this blog, I feel that I'm constantly connected 24/7. I may not be on the computer 24/7, but still connected.  I REALLY dislike that aspect of this whole blogging experiment.  You think I would have thought of that before starting right?  Well, I didn't. I also didn't think about all the time it would take away from my #1 priority- my adorable kiddos and my incredible husband.  It's not only the time it takes away in my days/nights.  It's the time it takes away in my mind.  Does that make sense?  My mind is spending too much time thinking about a blog.

And that is why I've decided to call it least for the foreseeable future.

Why I still consider this blog a success:
I could keep listing things, but I'll stop there. Thank you all so much for reading and giving me advice.  I've appreciated your words.  I don't regret my decision at all.  I have enjoyed it.  I hope you all have too.

Before I go, I want to accomplish my #3 and brag about an incredibly talented individual.  Maddie is my husband's cousin.  I think she's beautiful and recently found out she's beautifully talented in the crochet department. She can customize and create pretty much anything.  See for yourself...

Today is your lucky day because I am giving away 2 of her adorable headband creations.

Pretty darn cute right?

The give away consists of an adult headband and a toddler headband.  The toddler headband is approximately the size for a 1 year old.

Go ahead and enter every day if you want. The winner of the give away will be announced the morning of July 29th.

Get crackilackin!

The good news is if you are in love with these headbands as much as I am, you can go on over to Maddie's facebook page and message her the details of what you want.  I'm sure if you wanted her to customize another order, she wouldn't refuse.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Staying at the Grandparents

My 2 year old little boy is staying at his Nana and Papa's house for a week and a half.   This morning I woke up on my own.  Usually D man is the one who wakes me.  He'll run in to my room and look up at me from the side of my bed.  He's scared me a few times, but most the time I hear the pitter patter of his feet on our hard wood floor and that sound is my alarm clock.  I missed it this morning.

After waking up, I was able to do some cleaning before my little girl woke up.  WEIRD.  That  never happens.  I took Biya on a jog in the single stroller and she was quiet the whole time.  Also WEIRD.  D man talks the entire jog, no joke, the ENTIRE JOG.  Is it possible that his little sister misses him too?  I feel like she's different.  I didn't think I would notice a change in her.

We've decided that the kiddos can stay a week or so at the Grandparents each year.  Last year D man went for two weeks after I had Biya.  It was nice to have some time with her and recover from the delivery.  2 weeks is too long.  D man was missed BIG TIME.  This time around is no different.

I think it's important for him to spend time with the grandparents.  They need him too.  He's lucky to be the first grandchild on my husband's side.  With our 2 kids being the only grandchildren, I'm pretty sure he gets spoiled the whole trip.  Lucky him.

We went shopping at Sam's Club and saw a HUGE stuffed alligator (D man loves alligators, talks about them all the time) and couldn't resist buying it.  I guess he's spoiled at home too.  The alligator is waiting for his return on his bed.

Do you send your kids to the grandparents?  How long do they stay?  What do you do with all your free time?

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Approaching Differences

Reader Post by: Stevie

Teaching my children about differences in other people has been a fairly easy job.  They generally accept those around them with open arms . . . but also curiosity.  When such curiosity is voiced in the home, it is easy to answer their questions and explain what they have seen.

But, what do you do when those questions are asked (loudly, of course) in public and often in front of the individual?

"Why is that man's skin all black?"

"Why does she looks so funny?"

"Is he like, a big baby?"

"Why is she screaming like that?"

Are you cringing?  I am.  These have all been said by my children.  I feel like I don't know how to sensitively handle these situations.  I try to address it calmly, quietly, and carefully, but in the end, I still worry the individual concerned will be hurt that they are called out regardless of how I deal with it.

I especially wondered, do any of you have a disability or anything else that makes you stand out in the crowd (and the unwitting target of children's questions)?  Do any of your children?  If you do, how would you hope a parent would handle these queries?

Monday, July 14, 2014

Sincerely, The Exhausted Mother

Reader Post by: Shantel

Being a mom is wonderful! But let’s be honest, sometimes (Okay, most times) our days are exhausting and we look forward to bedtime.

I have three kids. Mylee is almost 7, Daxton is 3 and Taylynn is 10 months. My baby is a great sleeper! She always has been. She sleeps through the night like a champ. Daxton is a pretty good sleeper as well. (Except for today when he woke up at 4 AM hungry and asking for a hot dog) They both stay in their own rooms in their own beds all night. It is great!

My problem sleeper is my oldest, Mylee. She is almost 7 years old and she wakes up EVERY. SINGLE. NIGHT. and sneaks into my bed! She used to climb over top of me to get into the middle of the bed, but now she is sneakier about it and slithers up the middle right in between my husband and me.

We’ve tried a lot of things to try and get her to stay in her bed. We’ve made a sticker chart with rewards if she’ll stay in her bed for 5 nights in a row (It has never happened yet), we’ve made a bed on our floor, let her sleep on the couch, share a room with her sister, share a room with her brother, etc. Nothing we try ever seems to work!

So my question is: What can I do to help my daughter sleep in HER bed at nights???

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Meal Planning

I don't know about you, but if I don't plan my meals we end up having breakfast for dinner, cheese quesadillas or sandwiches.  This last week, I'm embarrassed to say we've had all three; a breakfast night, a quesadilla night, and a sandwich night.  My meal planning has been slacking BIG TIME.

We are completely out of hamburger, chicken, and eggs.  My husband is a meat man so this is NO BEUNO.  I probably should go to the store today, but I hate going shopping for groceries when I haven't planned the meals and made a list for the groceries needed.  (Planning meals and grocery shopping aren't my favorite.) Most the time when I don't plan before hand, I have to run to the store a million times to pick up ingredients that I forgot we don't have.

I need some help in this department, otherwise I might be making cheese dreams tomorrow night...another breakfast meal.

What's a cheese dream?  It's basically a french toast grilled cheese sandwich topped off with syrup.  They're pretty good, but definitely not an ideal dinner choice.


How do you meal plan?
Do you have a day each week set aside to plan?
Do you use any apps or websites to help you?

Monday, July 7, 2014

Blog Tour: Let's Tour it up!

I worked in Alaska one summer driving a BIG tour bus.  I had my own PA system and would crack jokes about the bears and direct the passengers to their left or right as I told them stories about their surroundings. It was hands down a favorite job.  We would stop at different locations as they got out to enjoy the scenery, a meal, or a show.  The last stop of the tour was the Yukon.  A favorite joke that I would tell my passengers as they got out to take a picture by the Yukon sign: "Enjoy the beautiful scenery and don't forget...Yukon dance if you wanna..." followed by me bustin a move.  Tour guide humor...isn't it great? Oh, the memories.

In case you are wondering what I'm talking about...

This was my first time watching the music video.  Gotta love the 80's.

When I was asked by Chelsea at The Contented Wife blog to join in on a blog tour, those are the memories that came to mind.  I enjoyed giving bus tours so much, I figured why not do a blog tour.  Don't worry, I'll refrain from sharing any more tour guide jokes.

What does a blog tour consist of you ask?  Well...let me tell you.

I'll be answering 4 questions to let you see into my world and why I blog. After reading my answers, you can hop on over to some other blogs that I will share with you.  Chelsea already shared her blog tour post and directed her traffic to me.  YAY!  You should all go on over and read more about why she does what she does at The Contented Wife Blog.

1. What am I working on?  Before starting this blog a few months ago, I knew very little about blogging. Let's be honest, I still know very little.  At the moment, I'm trying to figure out the blogging world.  I'm reading things here and there like, "10 ways to make your blogging more productive".  I'm trying to get people to come and read what I write and build relationships with my readers.  I want people to feel comfortable commenting on the questions posted.  I would ultimately love for this blog to be a fun hang out for moms to connect with each other and share what works for them.

 2. How does my work differ from others of it's genre?  Instead of giving advice, I ask for it.  I also love for my readers to post their own questions/concerns.  I LOVE reading their posts. 

 3. Why do I write/create what I do? I had the thought one day to start a blog, but continued to put the thought out of my mind.  I've never been a person to open up to others easily, especially strangers. After a long day and feeling closed off to the world, I had a moment while laying in bed.  I made the decision to start this journey, told my husband as he was half asleep, and wrote my first post the next morning.  Since that moment, I haven't regretted it.  I've definitely felt discouraged and questioned my decision, but overall it's been a lot of fun. I really enjoy writing, but more than that, I love the connection with others. I've certainly benefited from the great advice that I'm receiving, but my hope is that all of my readers benefit as well and stick around.

 4. How does your writing/creating process work? There's really no rhyme or reason to it.  I have a question that I want an answer to and post it on the blog.  I try to be creative with my writing and that's where the fun comes in. Because I'm new to this mom business a lot of my questions have to do with my kids, like this post about D man.

Thanks for stopping by and spending the time to read my behind the scenes. Your next stop on this blog tour will be visiting these three on July 14th.  I'm sure if you decided to stop in sooner, they wouldn't mind.

Charlee at Humble in a Heartbeat wants her readers to learn from her mistakes in motherhood and family finances, so she gives advice on what they can do differently.  You'll also see lots of ideas on how to spend smarter and keep more money in your bank account.  She loves telling stories about anything in her past, so don't hesitate to sit back, relax, and read away!

My name is Heather. I blog at Krafts and Kiddos . I am a married mama with two spunky kiddos ages 4 and 6. Those munchkins truly are my heart. My son was diagnosed with speech and developmental delays after turning 2, because of this I focus my time and energy into educating myself on ways to encourage the love of learning into our home.
I love to share activities I do with my kiddos, including glimpses into my wildly fun and unpredictable journey through motherhood. Krafts and Kiddos is a place to find all things FAMILY, FOOD, FUN, CRAFTS, and HOME + all things related to being a family and enjoying life!

Samantha is a wife, new mom, and dental student living in San Francisco. She enjoys reading, baking, and wearing sparkly earrings.  She blogs over at Substance and Soul (, stop by!

Thursday, July 3, 2014

God Bless the U.S.A.

This last week I had a wave of emotions hit as I stood singing the National Anthem with our church congregation.

One of my many thoughts: I want my children to be GRATEFUL for this country.  I want them to love America as I do,
"the land of the free and the home of the brave".
I decided to do some teaching this week, leading up to July 4th.  

I have always loved the song by Lee Greenwood, "God Bless the U.S.A.".  
While watching this video, D man and I had a conversation.
Remember, he's 2.

Me: "What's America?"
D man: "America is nice."

Me: "What does U.S.A. stand for?"
D man: "They stand for flag, American flag."

Me: "Do you know why people want to come to America?"
D man: "Because they want to come so bad.  They want to come to America because they're so nice."

Me: "What does free mean?"
D man: "Free means freeze."

As you can see, I have some work to do.  hahaha  I'm not quite sure where he got freeze. Maybe he thought if he added a few more letters he would be close.  At least I know that he's picking up on me teaching him that he needs to be nice. J
We've been doing a few activities this week to help him learn more.

How do you teach your kids about this GREAT NATION of ours?  How do you teach your kids to be GRATEFUL?