Labels

Family Life (79) Surrogacy (66) Rachael (43) So Sayith... (22) Justin (16) Jordan (14) Taylor (12) Elijah (5) Nerdness (3) Adoption (2)

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Growing a Gamer

There are a lot of things in my life I blame on my parents.  Like the fact I didn’t experience the joy of sushi or clam chowder until college.  Or the fact that “scary” clowns don’t scare me but “happy” clowns are clearly from the devil. One thing in particular I blame on my daddy.  And yes, I still call my father daddy and if you have a problem with that you must not be a daddy to a daughter.

I am 95% a daddy’s girl.  I had to do what daddy was doing.  I had to know where daddy was going.  I had to be the center of attention to make daddy happy.  I tried to be the “son he never had” and do all the things with him he wanted to do.  One of those things was video games.

One of my earliest memories of gaming with my daddy was with our NES and a shiny gold game cartridge.  If you don’t know what NES is my heart is heavy knowing I am older then I think I am.  If you know what NES is but do not know what the shiny gold game is my heart is heavy knowing you did not fully enjoy life.

It’s Zelda in its truest form.  My dad would play for hours with me by his side “helping”.  I would document things I thought were important to know and give him “hints” on where he should go next.  He did a great job, looking back, on letting me feel like I was actually helping.  I still remember “North, West, South, West”

These early beginnings grew into something more until I was buying my very own consol and PC games.  I became a “gamer”.  I use that loosely since there are still only very specific types of games I enjoy, but I still enjoy them.  I can sit with friends (usually all dudes with an occasional Jen or Julie in the mix) and play and interact and just have a good ol’ time. 

So I blame my daddy for the fact that I will gladly take 2 hours with a controller or mouse in hand killing a bad guy over 2 hours of crafting or shopping any day.

It’s been interesting to balance my free time in a way my kids get their needed time and still allowing me to keep my sanity.  So the logical thing to do is raise gamers right?  We spend time with our kids playing board games.  We spend time with our kids playing Wii games and working up a sweat on occasion, and playing computer games (fun ones along with reading/writing/typing etc).

Some (a lot of) people frown upon “screen” time and how it’s bad for kids, but I have a different story to tell.  My kids can sweat from 30 minutes playing Wii Tennis as easily as running outside for 30 minutes and avoid the nasty neighborhood kids that intentionally hurt them (physically and emotionally).  My kids can learn as much about reading/typing/writing playing a game on the computer for 30 minutes as they would with Justin sitting with them for 30 minutes and avoid the frustration or distraction of the other kids interrupting constantly.

I’m not saying plop your kid in front of a tv for several hours, but I am saying that “screen” time does not have to be bad time.  Use it as a tool and not a babysitter.

Grow your own Gamer.

Monday, March 25, 2013

The Prom Flop

I read something today about sunsets and remembered a story from High School.  I don’t have many stories from High School that involve non-church friends because, unlike the normal teenage girl, I was in school to get good grades to go to college.  So with nose in book I was rather oblivious to most of the normal High School things.

In an attempt to “normalize” me a good friend decided my senior year she was going to get me to Prom. Up to this point I had only gone to 1 dance my entire 4 years and I only went because my BFF really wanted to go and needed a date. 

I hated it.

So Prom was out of the question.  But to appease my dear friend I agreed as we sat in our AP Micro Econ Class (one of my favorite classes) that the next guy to walk in the door would be my potential date.  The rule was if he said no then I wouldn’t have to go.  Lucky for me over half our class (I’m guessing) were already taken either by a girlfriend or an early arranged date.  So the chances of a “yes” were slim.

In walked Carlos.  One of the few single gents and one of the kindest guys ever.  Also somebody I had spoken maybe 3 sentences to our entire 4 year fellow student relationship.  So conversations began and the question about Prom happened.  And suddenly I found myself going to Prom. WHAT?!

In the weeks leading up to this terrifying event I got to spend a lot of time with Carols and his crew of boys.  Man I did love those boys.  I remember playing Counter Strike for the first time with the name “Hooker” so whenever I got killed (which happened a lot) “Hooker was killed” flashed across the screen.  Good times.  Carlos and I would spend hours talking and realizing we had a lot more in common then we (or maybe just I) thought.  They were good times indeed.

Then the day came.  The boys picked us girls up in a rented car of some sort.  Big enough to fit several couples.  We had dinner, took pictures (good thing we did…), and then headed to the dance at some place with some theme I could care less about. 

The prom itself was fine.  I totally would have been fine not going, but the best part was still to come.

I turned 18 just days before Prom which meant I had no “curfew” which meant all I had to do was tell my parents when I’d be home and I could stay out.

So we drove to the beach to watch the sunrise.  The whole group of us in that rented vehicle.

That vehicle full of 8 (I think 8) mostly honor/AP kids sat and waited for the sun to rise.

As the sky brightened we noticed an abundance of light and a lack of sun.  Then somebody finally realized... the surn rises in the EAST!
Yes friends, we were sitting on the WEST coast watching the WEST shoreline waiting for a sunrise. 
Obviously we missed it.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Silence in the Chaos


So one of my confessions was centered around building a deeper relationship with my savior.  That resulted in me buying a bible which HOLY COW was not an easy job (maybe I have to tell you that story too).

I had a bible.  The bible I had from my childhood full of notes, scribbles, pictures, and even random memorabilia from that time in my life.  It was a loyal bible, but it was time for me to get a bible that wasn’t full of pointers on how to talk to your parents and such.

So I got a small bible that will fit in my purse and be around me nearly all the time.  No more excuses.

I also picked up a plan to read the bible in its entirety in 1 year in chronological order to help it feel more story like.  I was concerned otherwise I just wouldn’t stay engaged (another guilt filled confession for you).

In my past I had good intentions and would start to read and just get distracted.  So I am also very intentional about taking my reading time in silence which means staying up late or getting up early and so far its been a success.

I’m only a couple weeks in and have a long way to go, but something has surprised me.  It’s something I’ve heard my entire life, but never actually experienced until now.

In my moments of silence I pray that all the chaos of life and all the distractions just disappear.  I focus on the words in HIS book and take time to let them soak in.  In these moments of forcing myself to stay focused and forcing myself to slow down I get to experience this THING I’ve heard so much about.

I get to experience the life that is within HIS book.  I get to experience that these words are alive, moving, and breathing.  I get to experience HIS voice speak to me in this moment NOW from words written thousands of years ago.  I get to experience HIM in a new way.  It’s rather invigorating.

It’s not easy.  It’s hard to sit in silence.  It’s hard to slow down in this world of busy.  It’s also so very worth the outcome.  Those moments I spend with just me and my savior recharge me and I find myself longing for more of those moments.  I find myself counting down the minutes until my break at work where I get to sit in the silence with just me and my FATHER.

He’s teaching me something precious right now, but that’s a blog for another day.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Slingshot and Quick Death

Things. Things. Things.  Things always get in the way of some other thing.

For those of you that read when I do not post to facebook an update:

1. I have taken my confessions seriously and am making good progress.  #1 has been a very smooth transition and I will have more to say on that later.

2. The “opportunity” or whatever I called it is a no go.  My prayer was that all doors would fling open if it is where God was leading us and that any sign of resistance was a good indicator it was a bad move.  And there were a few half open doors in the way so the choice was not to move forward.

NOW for interesting THINGS which is merely taking shape with an interesting conversation I had yesterday that goes like this…

Justin called me and asked a question to which my response was:

Me: You get it after you get your sling shot

Having heard just that part of the conversation 2 of my fellow male coworkers became quite interested in what type of conversation I could be having and assuming it was with Justin, because who else would I be telling to get a sling shot. 

I quickly informed them we were talking about the game Zelda:

Coworker (AKA Paul, AKA The dude who picks on me as much as Justin does): You got it?!

Justin and I continued our conversation and something about ulcers came up and how he might have one:

Me: You’re dying
Justin: It’s the kids that are killing me
Me: Well we should just have more kids then. To kill you quicker and put you out of your misery

FYI: There will not be any (planned) kids growing in this belly and God would have to work some miracle-ness to make it happen.

And SAM that would not be funny.

And MAYBE (if I can convince Justin) I do want to adopt like a 3-4 year old boy in 2-4 years.  You know, to kill my husband off and all.

And MOST DEFINITELY I will be posting more about the odd conversations Justin and I have along with the crazy things my children say/do.

Friday, March 15, 2013

To Be EXCITED And STRESSED At The Same Time

I’m sort of giddy and freaking out nervous right now.  I don’t want to give too much information yet because things are insanely up in the air, but PLEASE pray for us:

  1. Please pray that if this is God’s will he make it VERY clear to Justin and I as we make this decision (and all the small decisions that go with it)
  2. Please pray that if this is God’s will we somehow manage to find/get/borrow $2,000 to help make this amazing opportunity a reality
  3. Please pray if this is God’s will the process go smoothly
  4. Please pray if this is God’s will our finances will be able to handle the little additional stress

I appreciate you friends and if we decide to make this AMAZING step I’ll let you know the details and probably be begging for some help with a few things.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

A Day In The Life Of...

A fellow blogging mommy does a thing called “A Day In The Life Of” where she just documents the day of one of her boys from their perspective.

There are some days with my kids where I think – I really need to do that type of blog.  Most days I just realize that that is just WAY to much work so it won’t happen.

Despite that yesterday ended up being such an interesting day with Jordan I can’t resist doing one.  Please note this may never happen again.  And by that I mean this won’t happen until I have another randomly event filled day with one of the kids with enough funny things to tell you about.

So, I (Jordan)…

Woke up and proceeded to climb into bed next to mommy while she sat working.  I asked her, like I do every morning, “Is your work closed or open?”

Mommy told me her work was opened, but because daddy was sick she was going to work on her little computer for a little, but then stay home with me!  I let mommy work and ate breakfast with daddy and Taylor and Elijah.

I went into mommy’s closet to pick new clothes to wear.  Mommy has to keep my clothes in her closet so I don’t change my clothes 5 times everyday.  I picked my favorite Tinkerbell shirt and pink pants.

Daddy had to leave to take Taylor to school so mommy came to the couch with her little computer to work.  She let me play puzzles next to her while she worked.  She even helped me with some pieces when I got frustrated.  I did ALL of our puzzles!  When I finished the puzzles I ate some of mommy’s chips and cheese.  The cheese was really spicy so I just dipped the chip in a little tiny bit and told mommy it made it “Just a little tiny spicy”.

I asked mommy if I could color with markers and she said YES!  I told her, “This is the best day ever” and colored her lots of pictures.  When mommy was in the bathroom I put all my pictures in her purse so she could take them to work for her desk.  She told me she likes my pictures at work.

I had to go to the bathroom and when mommy saw me she asked, “Why are you sitting with your butt inside the toilet like that?” so I told her, “because when I poop I don’t want it to splash me”.  Mommy laughed.

I got to pick lunch and I wanted yellow cheese.  So mommy gave me cheese and crackers with something else I told her I didn’t like.  But I ate every bite anyway because I really did like, but don’t tell mommy.

After lunch mommy told me Sophie was coming over so we had to clean the toys out of the living room so she didn’t put them in her mouth.  I cleaned really fast and helped mommy vacuum too!  Mommy told me I had to be a big girl and take a nap with the door closed so Sophie wouldn’t go into my room.  I told her ok.  Because the door was closed I got to play the WHOLE time and mommy didn’t know I was playing because she couldn’t see me! Don’t tell mommy I didn’t take a nap.

I heard Sophie playing and mommy made me stay in my room for a long time.  So I sometimes would peek under my door and yell “Is it wake up time yet” just to make sure mommy didn’t forget me.  When mommy finally let me out of my room I played with Sophie a lot.  I helped her drink with her cup and fed her raisins.  Mommy told me Sophie was big enough to drink and eat by herself but when mommy wasn’t looking I kept helping her.

We got in the car to leave and I got really mad because mommy and daddy put Sophie in front of Taylor’s seat and not my seat so I couldn’t look at her.  We went to a big store with lots of books and veggie tales toys.  Then we went to church.  I ate my dinner really fast and got mad at mommy for forgetting to bring my Cubbie vest and book with us to church.  I got to play with Uncle Sam and Sophie before AWANA. 

After church I really wanted to stay up, but I told mommy I would be a big girl if she rubbed my back while I prayed.  And I stayed in bed a little bit.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

3 Confessions

There are those moments, those things that make you think.  I like those moments and things even if the thoughts that come with it are tough.

I’ve been reading something lately that has gotten me thinking.  And it’s been tough thoughts.  And here are the 3 things that are standing out for me (well there is a 4th, but that gets its own blog a little later):

1. My Time with the Lord

Have my “affections” for my savior been merely words?  All my life I’ve heard and been taught “going to church doesn’t make you saved”.  I know this truth and I do not doubt my salvation.  I do, however, doubt my commitment.  What actions in my life am I taking to express my love and worship to Him?  I need to engage with him more then a prayer with the kids before bed or listening to a pastor on Sunday and Wednesday.  I need to be active in my faith.  I don’t know what that means for me yet, but I know I am lacking in this area and for a person who has been in church all her life this is an embarrassing and humbling realization.

2. My Attitude with my Kids

I love my children and do so much to make things “good” for them.  So much so that so many times I am just exhausted – physically and emotionally. I try so hard to do all the things for/with them that a stay at home mom does while still working full time.  And I have to admit to myself that I can’t.  I have to accept the fact that I am a working mom and that is ok (I don’t believe it yet, but I’m trying). I have to convince myself my kids will turn out ok even if they don’t get the “stay at home mom things” I think they are missing out on.

Don’t hear this as a negative against Justin he’s a great daddy it’s just not his cup o’ tea to do the “normal” stay at home parent kind of things. And it’s not like they have a lot of stay at home dad groups like the do for the moms so he’s pretty much on his own.

In trying so hard to fill 2 roles I’m just wearing myself out and missing the joy in actually doing things with them.  I try to be intentional about doing things with them (as you all know), but I find myself often missing the enjoyment of those moments and rather just getting through it to “check something off my list”.  

3. My Consistency with my Home

The condition of my home reflects the condition of my mood.  The messier things are the more stressed and irritable I am.  The cleaner things are the more relaxed I am.  In my reading I came across something that we’ve all heard “an object in motion stays in motion and an object at rest stays at rest”.  This was used in context of parents getting things done.  It’s much easier to keep doing something then it is to start/stop.  With this in mind I’ve deiced to the first 10 – 15 minutes when I get home from work (already in “motion”) I will work with the kids to “tidy up” their rooms and the living room.  It gets done quickly and I can start my time home with my family with much less stress to “enjoy” them (see above) and remove the burden/expectation from Justin to have to get it done before I get home.

So there you have it have.  My 3 confessions.  Full of guilt.  Full of embarrassment.  Full of shame.  Full of hope that admitting them is the first step to making it better.

Oh and on a lighter note.  As opposed to the very “rough” February we had (you can find that here) March has been a much better month for the Davis’.  My kids are back to normal (well as normal as they can be with parents like us).

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Floating Brain Thoughts

There are these things floating around in my head this morning that I am going to share with you.  I originally started trying to sort out these things so I could blog on a specific topic, but that’s boring.

Random list of floating brain thoughts is what you get instead.

  1. When I stress out I get nauseas.  I would like to change that to be a headache or something.  I am SO over being sick and nausea just reminds me of those horrid times in the very recent past.

  1. I needed to be at work at 7 yesterday and got stuck in horrible traffic.  Why you ask? Because there was a crew of gents putting up a bunch of those free way tub/can things of sand at the end of the divider.  You know the big orange ones that will keep you “safe” if you ever run into that divider a “cushion” for your collision. That should be their slogan “cushion for your collision”

  1. Since I didn’t make it on time yesterday I had to be here by 7 again today.  And guess what!!?? I was late again because of traffic.  Why you ask yet again?  Because that same divider that was getting some new “cushions for your collision” had a 3 car wreck.  And those “cushions for your collision” saved some dude in a blue SUV’s life.  Hey dude in the blue SUV, I hope you believe in Jesus because it’s not a coincidence that those were installed just YESTERDAY!

  1.  There are these things you put over door knobs to keep your kids out (or in) a room.  They “childproof” the door.

Jordan: At age 4 decided to figure out how to open these child proof doors.  Who then taught Taylor how to do it so…

Taylor: At age 5 learned how to open these child proof doors.  Then there is…

Elijah: At age 2 decided to bypass the door trap entirely and learn how to just take the cover off completely.  That’s right friends.  My 2 year old just removes the childproofing on the door and hands it to us in triumph.

  1. On that note Jordan may not know her letters or numbers, but she is anti-childproof anything.  She climbs over baby gates with ease, bypasses child locks on cabinets, and opens childproof pill bottles (she didn’t take any of the pills she just felt the need to help me when I was sick and opened my 5 pill bottles by my bed while I was sleeping then woke me up to tell me she got them ready for me)

And 5 is where I’ll stop.  Merely because 5 is my favorite number and it deserves some acknowledgement for its hard work.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Sometimes It's OK to Not Like Them

I’m pretty sure I tell you enough how much I love my kiddos.  I love them in a way you can’t fully understand until you are a mother.  It’s a deep unconditional love.

That being said, there are many times I do not like my children.

This last month has been a hard month in general to like our children.  Part of it was out of their control with pink eye, sinus infections, kidney infections, colds, fractured rib, and so on causing all involved parties to have a short temper and whine more then usual.  The lack of supervision from sick parents also let them get into even more trouble since they could get away with whatever they wanted while one or both of us was stuck in bed or in the bathroom.

The other part of the problem is just their attitudes.  They aren’t always this back, but man o man February was a rough one for us.  From a VERY WHINEY 6 year old to an ornery (wow not spelled awnry like I thought) 2 year old.

Taylor: She has whined like she has never whined before.  It seems 70% of the things her day send her off into a downward spiral of  2 year old like tantrums and that annoying high pitched whine that NEVER ENDS.  It can go on and on for like 30 minutes or more once she gets started.  No matter what we do with her. Comfort her: whine.  Ignore her: whine.  Put her in her room to calm down: whine.  Whine, whine, WHINE. She’s doing it EVERY where and not just at home.  At school, church, public, and so on.  Its not only annoying us now the poor world has to deal with her ridiculous behavior.

Jordan: Super defiant, so much more then her normal which is already excessive.  She has decided in life that there is no reason at all to acknowledge anything we say.  She just sits pretending to not here you and continues on her merry way.  When you force her attention she freaks out into fits of scream crying (it’s a thing).  Especially when you are alone trying to juggle 2-3 kids she pushes every button.   Pushes every rule.  Defies every request.  And its not just at home.  No matter where she is or who she has been with it’s the same report.  Its usually just her “moments” with us and now everyone else is being forced to deal with it and not just as “moments” but All The Time.

Elijah: NO.  This kid has taken a break for his “chill” personality to express himself with the use of the good ol’ word “No”.  Being our 3rd kid I know each kid goes through it at some point, but it doesn’t make it any more fun.  Everything you say to him is greeted with an evil look of disgust and a “NO!”  Couple that with an imitation of Taylor’s whining and you may understand what this 2 year old is like right now.  His, in comparison, isn’t that bad, but when you combine it with Taylor and Jordan’s behavior this momma has wanted to call it quits.

Most frustration days, maybe several days, are followed by good days.  We’ve had nearly a month straight of just rotten behavior from our kids and its exhausting, and frustrating, and emotionally draining.  Who has that kind of patience?! The kind of patience that lasts an entire stinkin’ month? Not this mom.  I could use a break.  Not from my kids, I do love my kids.  I just want my well behaved kids back.  I want to not only love my kids, but actually like them again for more then 5 minutes at a time.

If you think I’m a bad mom for thinking like this, I really don’t care.  I know I’m a good mom.  I’m just a tired, exhausted, sick/in pain, emotionally drained, good mom.  And that’s OK, I’m just ready to back to being a regular good mom.

Monday, March 4, 2013

I'm Married to Old Man

Today my hubby turned 30.  Well I don’t know if he’s turning 30 or turned 30 since I don’t actually know when he was born.

I actually don’t remember when my kids were born either other then it being around/after dinner time.  Close enough.

Anyway, Justin is 30.  There is something you need to understand about this man.  He is not very excitable.  He is generally happy, but he is not excitable.  When he is excited about something he doesn’t express it like most people with a squeal of delight (ok that’s me), or even a “Wow! That’s Awesome!” attitude.  Instead it’s usually just a “cool” – like you just told him he won $5 when in actuality he just won $1,000.

That doesn’t mean he doesn’t like things, he does.  He just doesn’t express it in an obvious way.

So when I said to him “How about for your 30th I hire a babysitter or 2 to watch all our kids and friends kids and all the grown ups have an “all nighter”.  A day of laser tag, go karts, bowling, etc.

His we response (in a very casual tone) was something like “That’d be cool”.  Which I took to mean its something he wouldn’t mind, but not something that he was excited about.  So I didn’t waste the money on something that would be “OK” when I was going for “Awesome”.

I found out yesterday what he actually meant was that’d be awesome.  But, well that’s not going to happen now.

I still have another idea floating around in my head that I may still try to pull off.  We’ll see.

For now though I wanted to tell my man HAPPY BIRTHDAY.

Justin,

I love you so very much! You drive me crazy, but still manage to make me so very happy.  You put up with my stubbornness and always-right-ness without going crazy on me like I do to you.  Our kids adore their time with you and miss you even when you’re gone for only a few minutes.  You bring calmness to my stress.  You bring laughter to my grumpiness. You bring strength in my weakness.

You love me selflessly in so many ways and I couldn’t ask for a better man…I could ask for a less HAIRY one, but nobody’s perfect.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY BABE!

Friday, March 1, 2013

You Have To Go Through Me First

There’s a story I realized I never told you that desperately needs sharing.  I wish I would have gotten a video, but if you would have seen her reaction to the situation already it probably would have been a bad mom move to record it.

I hope my words do it justice.

The rule in our house for messes is based on a timer.  Depending on mess we give the kids say 20 minutes on the kitchen timer to clean it up.  Anything left on the floor is put in a box in our storage room for a couple of weeks before they can “earn” it back.

We give them plenty of time, however, they get easily distracted and have come to fear the timer since it results in them losing toys about half of the time.

So when I got home from work one day to see Justin at his tipping point due to a minor mess in the girls room that they just would not clean I tagged myself in and set the timer.

Taylor heard me do it.  Taylor was told I set the timer.  We gave reminders EVERY minute that counted down for 20 minutes.

Then the timer went off.  And the drama began.

I grabbed the toy tub and began putting things in it.  Taylor started shoving toys up her shirt and in her pants “NO, You can’t have them.  They are mine!!”

I kept a straight face and kept putting things away.  After her shirt was full she began diving in front of me and grabbing toys in my hand to throw to the opposite side of the room “You can’t take these!”

I had to turn away by this point because her absurd behavior coupled with bulging shirt and pants full of toys was a site to see and I couldn’t hide my giggle any longer.

“YOU LIKE THIS! You’re a monster” was her response.  I didn’t do such a good job hiding the smile and told her that I did not taking her toys away, but there were consequences for her actions.  I apologized for smiling and told her I wasn’t smiling because I liked it, but smiling because she was doing funny things.  I asked her to think about what she was saying and doing before doing it.

She the laid herself across her toys and glared at me “If you want these you have to go through me first”

Well, I lost it.  I had to leave the room at this point to gather my composure.  I came back in and finished the job by taking the toys out of her clothes while she screamed at me and I wondered where in the world did she learn things like “You have to go through me first”.

The best part was probably when I was done.  She held onto the tub handle as I pulled it out of the room "You're taking me with IT!"