Sunday, January 29, 2012

Divine Intervention

We had a crazy weekend.. both Lexi and Jake played in a basketball tournament.

That meant eight basketball games in two days.

Amazingly, none of the games were at the same time, but they were close, and they were at different gyms, which meant a lot of running back and forth for those of us with driver's licenses.

Today, it caught up with me, and with the little girls too.

Brad had commitments at church he coudln't get out of, so I was left to play taxi driver by myself (not really by myself - I was so lucky to have Mary, Madonna and Chrissy to help!).

At some point during Jake's first game of the day (the second we had sat through), the little girls started melting down.

This was not a little meltdown.

We're talking about a very big meltdown.

Huge, to be exact.

I was ready to leave and never step foot in a gym again.

But I knew I couldn't do that.

Because while Lexi and Jake would tell me it was ok, I know they would have been hurt if I'd bailed.

But this meltdown was bad.

Jake's game ran long, and I knew we'd be late for Lexi's game.

Of course the girls didn't cooperate and get in and out of the van nicely.

And they were even worse during Lexi's game (of which we missed the entire first half).

I didn't enjoy the game, even though Lexi played great and her team won.. the game and the tourney.

Afterwards, she decided to hang with her team rather than go watch Jake's last game.

Lizzy completely lost it.

Total meltdown/temper tanturm.

Not cool.

Morgan fell asleep before we even left the parking lot.

Jake and I decided to drive to the other side of town to get McDonald's and ignore Lizzy's screaming.

After 30 minutes of screaming and crying, Lizzy finally fell asleep.

I took Jake to the gym and opted to stay in the van until game time.

It was then, while I played solitare on my phone and enjoyed the silence (and occasional snores) from the back of the van and contemplated skipping Jake's game, that I got a mood-changing text. It read:

"I know this may be kind of strange, but I was thinking of how AWESOME of a mother you are. Just wanted to tell you that."

Talk about divine intervention.

At it's finest.

I so needed to read those words, because at the very moment I got that text, I was doubting my mom skills. How in the world did my amazing sister in law know that? And why did she take time to send a random text telling me what a great job I'm doing?

That text changed my perspective on my situation, and reminded me that one bad moment (or two hours worth of bad moments, in this case), doesn't make me a bad mom.

It makes me human.

And even though I could have handled their behavior better, I didn't do a lousy job either.

We moms are too hard on ourselves.

But the reality is, even moms have bad days.

Its ok.

Kids have bad days too, and that's ok too.

It's how we handle those situations that's important.

And even at our very worst moments, some people still think we're doing a pretty good job.

It's something I need to remember, and I also need to remember that others look up to me as a mom, and as an example.

That's a lot of pressure.

I just hope I can handle it, and rise to the occasion, even during the biggest meltdowns ever.

That text also taught me how important it is to be nice, and to take time to be kind. I need to do this more often - whether it's the teller at the bank, my boss, or even my kids. Kind words can change a person's entire day.

Trust me.

And to my amazing sister in law: thank you. You have no idea how much I needed that random text today. And, for the record, I think you're pretty awesome too.

Monday, January 2, 2012


My sweet baby Morgan.

Silly, smart, happy, beautiful.

Man, I love this girl!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

In 2012...

I hate new year's resolutions.

I never keep them.

This year, I considered not even making any, just to spare myself the guilt.

But then I had to write an article for work about setting realistic resolutions, and I got inspired.

So this year, instead of making a ton of resolutions that I know I won't keep, and trying to do them all in the first week of January, I'm going to pace myself. I'm also going to blog them... that should give me some sort of accountability, right?

So, here goes.

In 2012, I will....

  • Yell less. Seriously, I hate yelling at my kids. I'm not going to do it anymore. I am going to count to ten in my head before I fly off the handle. While I'm counting, they may color on the walls with a permanent marker, slam their fingers in the door, or maybe even be late for school. But there will no yelling.
  • Eat healthier. I know. Everyone says they're going to do this, but I really am. I'm even going to start eating breakfast (and from now on, breakfast will consist of more than just a cup of coffee or a Diet Coke). In fact, from what I've read, I actually need to eat more. I don't eat enough (which is weird.. I should be skinny). It's not even that I make terrible food choices (string cheese and popcorn are actually pretty healthy snacks) it's just that I don't eat enough. This will be a challenge for me - I don't eat because I simply don't have time. I'm going to have to do some pre-planning here.
  • Try new recipies. While I'm on the subject of food, I'd also like to try new recipes more often. I feel like we eat the same five or six meals every single week: spaghetti, tacos, hotdish, etc. Boring. I have been saving some crockpot recipes that look good... time to actually make them!
  • Drink more water. I know, I know. It's good for me. And I actually even kind of like the taste of water. I just don't drink enough of it. I will drink more water, and less Diet Coke. I promise.
  • Be more organized. I'm an organizational-geek. Yet I still manage to be totally unorganized. I like everything in it's place, and I hate clutter. But every morning I run around like a crazy person, looking for my keys. No more. I will put things where they belong, and so will my family. We will no longer be late for things because we can't find our keys or our shoes. And, taking that one step further, I will not only make lists and fill out my planner in great detail, I will also reference those things and will never miss another chiropractor appointment, haircut, meeting, or practice.
  • Run a 5K.  I've just recently gotten back into a good exercise routine. In 2012, I'm going to expand on that. For a couple of years now I've been thinking about doing a 5K. I don't like to run, but it's something I'd like to do, just to prove I can.  Plus, I'd really like to lose some weight (about 50 pounds, to be exact.. or 2 dress sizes) and gain some muscle.. running seems like a really great way to do that. And, if I run every day, I will get a short break from the chaos that is my life. Sounds like a win-win.
  • Slow down. Life is so busy. We're always running from one thing to another. While I want my kids to be involved in things and experience different things, I also want slow down a little. I want to spend a beautiful spring afternoon at the park, or a hot summer day at the pool. I want to paint pictures on a rainy day, or bake cookies when it's snowing. Too often I take on too much, and don't have time to do the really important stuff, like build a fort with the little girls, or play Yatzee with the big kids, or go out for a drink with Brad. This year I will make time for those things.
  • Spend wisely. Ok, so I want to save money. But I want to do more than that. I want to use our money wisely. That means using coupons, watching sales,  controlling impulse buys, and not using credit cards. Of course I have a list of things I'd like to buy with that extra money: a new computer, a new van, a new lens for my camera, a vacation. Realistically, I know we will not be able to buy all that in 2012, but if we spend wisely, we can be in a much better position to buy those things in 2013. And, in the process, we can teach our kids some really important lessons about money.
  • Spend more time in my craft room. Now that it's all nicely organized, I am dreaming of using this space every single day. I know that will never happen, but I would like to spend a few hours a week there. I haven't even started Morgan's scrapbook yet (she's 2!) and I'm several years behind on the other kids' books too. Besides scrapbooks, I have zillions of other great ideas in my head that I would love to actually do. This is the year....
I could go on and on and on, but I think this is probably enough non-resolutions for one year. Overall, my goal is to just be a happier person  and a better mom,and wife.

Wish me luck!