Tag Archives: moms

JUST ONE WEEK… only 7 more days… (YIPPEE)

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Summer break is nearly over. 

Did you survive?

Did you thrive?

For our family it is a toss-up!  We had some fun travels, spent a month rotating the flu (which I never succumbed to… another sign that God designed mothers very well) and we had a whole lot of busyness.  Sure, we had sweet moments of playing together (and not fighting), swimming and seeing sights.

But now we are a week from school starting and we are at a fevered-pitch of burnout of all this togetherness, 3 kids (and a mom) full of nerves for a new year to begin and too much togetherness (YES – I mentioned that twice).  I know that this sounds like I am being way too personal or real, but I am just calling a spade a spade.  We are READY!  Well, we are READY or NOT to get this year moving along.

It has become so crazy at times that I can’t even spend 2 minutes alone without crimes against The Geneva Conventions being committed.  (That works for kids too, right?)  The injustice occurs when I am barely out of sight.  Then they have to follow protocol and report the crime against all humanity and especially themselves IMMEDIATELY.  No matter where we are from one another I hear my name called with a shrill and sometimes the overwhelming/choking/gagging tears.  This call sometimes happens when I am in sight.  But usually it is when I am in the bathroom.  (YES – I said it)  Then they proceed to talk to me through the door.

I don’t know about you, but this makes me lose it!!  The sounds of uncontrollable crying of one to three children, the yelling of enough circumstantial evidence that they could conduct an on-the-spot trial and I can’t forget the gnashing of teeth towards one another can make a mom go crazy.  And all I have to protect me is  a one-inch hollow door and a flimsy door knob lock.  It is enough to make my insides boil.  After a summer of requesting 2 minutes alone until I can come out and process the crime with my full attention, I have come up with a new policy in our home and I have posted it for all in the land to see.

 

If there is no...FIRE, or BLOOD loss, or ALIEN INVASION... IT CAN WAIT UNTIL  YOUR MOM IS OUT OF THE BATHROOM!!

If there is no…FIRE,
or BLOOD loss, or
ALIEN INVASION…
IT CAN WAIT UNTIL
YOUR MOM IS OUT
OF THE BATHROOM!!

It has been up one week and it is definitely helping.  I am praying it will continue to lessen as school is in session and our time for togetherness is a little less.  This is what it has come down to in our home.  How about you??

Please tell me what you think or if you have any ideas for 3 children to allow for 2 minutes of privacy I am all ears!

Feel free to print our your own copy for your bathroom door(s).  Yes – you see a plural on that… I have two posted and both help!

If you can relate and feel others can too as we head into this last stretch to school, please share this along.

We all deserve a good laugh and for some reasons as moms we want others to understand us, but we have a real hard time being the real us to others.  This is me today with one week to go.  And yes, 2.5 months ago at the beginning of summer I wrote a sweet piece about not wanting summer to go too quickly.  I still feel that way… but again summer break has proven that all good things come to an end… AND WE ARE READY!

We are in this together – – let’s claim back our 2 minutes!!

Praying for your 2 minutes and mine without ceasing!

Kristin

The PROUD mom of a 5th grader, 2nd grader and 4 year old preschooler

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My So Called Pinterest Interest… (Addiction)

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“Well, I have a couple of minutes to see what others are pinning.”

“Oh! I have a _________________________ coming up and I need ideas STAT!”

                       (class party/birthday party/family trip)

“Who has time to find a good blog with a Google search these days?”

“My Pinterest boards are the only thing I can keep organized!”

“It’s mindless like flipping through a magazine.”

I have said or thought all of the above many times.  I love the purpose of Pinterest, but I am becoming less enamored with my interest.  I have more of an addiction.  I have even tried to equate it to fanatic sports fans.  The fans that know every statistic for the past 10+ years.  But I can’t do that any longer.  They have a passion for a sport and the desire to know all they can to create a connection.  I will confess that I have a need to be nosy into other people’s pins and a compulsion to pin things that I don’t even click through the blog it is associated with.  OUCH.  I rarely check out the pin farther than the initial picture.  Who has time for that? 

Photo Credit: Lasso the Moon

       (photo credit: Lasso the Moon)

I do want to declare that I am not opposed to Pinterest at all or your use of it.  I am opposed to mine.  I think I am pinning when I could be learning from those I know in my life or future friends.  Sure, maybe I can search Pinterest for Disney trip tips, but wouldn’t it be better to ask my friend who just went.  I could learn from someone and make a real connection.  I bet they would be happy to help me.  A recent pinning rampage was an overseas trip I am interested in researching.  I immediately started looking at Pinterest and started pinning to a private folder.   I was pinning before it dawned on my that a new neighbor is from that country.  Of course, I should go to her as my expert.  Wouldn’t I rather have her as my guide and connect in real life?  YES!

I have tried to defend my pinning with my desire for research.  For the year I have been on Pinterest, I have been stuck in the R (research) stage of R&D.  Very little has made it to the D (development) stage.  I have probably only made a couple of recipes and tried a few home decor ideas.  So, then why do I have 114 BOARDS?  How did that happen?  And those boards have 2,878 PINS!  How did this happen?  Please tell me I am not alone in this mindless addiction?  Please!

Maybe you are like me and pinning away on your Pinterest app.  Mindlessly pinning away.  I rarely ever log into the Pinterest website, because I find it too overwhelming and cluttered for my taste.  (Hope you can see the irony in this confession!)  It has been 6 months since I have logged onto the Pinterest website.  That is when those statistics burned into my retina and made my heart race.  Shock and dismay rolled over me like soul-searching waves.  I was truly not aware of my dependence on this app.  Immediately I thought I need to start doing and stop pinning.  My research side kicked into gear.  I wanted to know more about where I spend my time and find out what it says about me.  I bet your boards say a lot about you as well.

Sure, a lot of mine are what I have mentioned: party plans, birthdays, and travel.  Many are for this specific phase of my life including parenting, cleaning, and cooking.  But those don’t have high numbers.  I had to find the board with the most.  It would show me my true interest and a reflection of what I want to change the most.  As I scrolled through 114 boards, it jumped out at me and made me loudly laugh in my quiet house.  There it was 1,124 pins in one board.  There they were 1,124 pins of sayings, quotes, and phrases that I resonate with me like a gong.  The board is called, Things for My Wall.  Can you imagine how BIG that wall would have to be to even if the sayings were on sticky notes?

I can’t say for certain, but I am pretty sure that only 3-5% might be duplicates.  I glanced through the entire board and I didn’t see any, which means that I probably have a secondary problem.  I also have Pinning OCD, if I can remember what I haven’t pinned before.  What a waste of my brain!  Einstein would have a hay day with my wasted brain usage.  He believed in not remembering small details you can look up.  “Only put in enough energy and effort so as to pull out of life what really matters, what you really want. Be organized enough that you can find everything you need or want, when you need or want it. But don’t fret over the small stuff. And have a way to be confident you can tell the small stuff from the big stuff,” was Einstein’s advice to be less cluttered.  I need to take this saying from my imaginary wall and keep it close as a mantra.

Einstein or not:: What good is all this inspiration if it is stuck on a make-believe wall on a Pinterest board?

Some that follow my pins might see it when it is initially pinned.  What impact does that make?  They don’t know why I care about those words or why they could too.  Am I alone in wanting to change the world with my pins?  I know that my budget board with 4 pins isn’t where my passion is found or shared.  Something must come from my new awareness and my 1,124 pins of inspiration.

BUT WHAT?

Tell me what do you think I should do?

What Pinterest board do you have the most pins for?


Here is what I have done to change my behavior today with my iPhone! Baby steps!

BEFORE MY BLOG

Before My Blog

AFTER THIS BLOG – Take that Pinterest!

After My Blog

Advice from a Snow Day Veteran

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Someone else's snow day declaration. www.kooziez.com

Someone else’s snow day declaration. http://www.kooziez.com

OK!  So, I don’t have a ton of notches on my sled, but I have enough to share some tricks from the past five years of grade school mothering.

  1. Never feed the pre-hype for school possibly being cancelled.  This can back fire when you do have to motivate your troops and get them OUT!
  2. In preparation of possible snow day(s); get some FUN food that you usually don’t have in the house.  You know the things your kids tell you they eat at their friend’s house.  Sure having soup, grilled cheese and cocoa are staples on snowy days.  But surprise them!  We will be celebrating with brownies and cool whip!
  3. Don’t let the day just unfold.  Talk to them and “let” them decide the day.  This works great when you need to remind them what they might miss out on if they keep throwing a fit.
  4. Sure snow days are hard on the schedule, but if you can be home with your kids; become a kid!!!!  Let loose!  Play outside.  Throw the first snow ball.  Make snow angels.  Show your children that being an adult can be fun too!
  5. Plan for some quiet time during the day, especially after playing hard outside.  We usually watch a movie and snuggle down under an avalanche of blankets in our basement.
  6. I also highly recommend silly, loud times!  I can’t wait to start the first “tickle tackle” with the kids.
  7. As a mom who blinked and now has a funny, bright 10 year old, please enjoy this bonus time with your children.  Don’t miss IT, while being in the same house all day.  The days are fleeting friends…
  8. If you have older kiddos, put them to work!  We will get some mad dash race cleaning done tomorrow and I am pretty sure I know a 10 year old who will be shoveling my sidewalks.  If you have younger one, have them pick up!
  9. Take lots of photos!  Do simple things and enjoy it!  As for me and my house we will be dancing in the kitchen to very loud music (and serving the Lord :))
  10. Last but not least… Fights, Tears and Personalities are also part of a snow day.  Let laughter, forgiveness, and compromise be the goal for the day.

NOW HUDDLE UP WITH ME…

COME ON BRING IT IN CLOSE…

ON THE COUNT OF THREE…

ONE 

TWO 

THREE

SNOW DAY!!!!!!!

 

P.S. Here is a fun website for you to “predict” the number of snow days you might have for your area.  Looks like 2 for Liberty!

Snow Day Calculator

 

So much…

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I often hear the following:

“I don’t know how you do it all.”

“You should learn to say no.”

“I see you coming and going all the time.  Aren’t you exhausted?”

“Just watching you buzz around makes me exhausted.”

I’ll be honest sometimes it stings.  I do have a lot of plates spinning.  And sometimes I am not sleeping much.  My “extra” things are keeping me up late.  It is the soft footsteps padding down the hall from my sweet three-year old at 3:00 a.m.  And yes, I could have a big production of the injustice of getting out of bed to tuck him back in, but I’ve noticed that his current level of “momma need” is fleeting.  My gig is to be his “person.”

Being his “person” reminds me of a great line from the show, Grey’s Anatomy from a couple years back.

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It is a different kind of “person” than the friendship described on that show.  But it still stands true.  I am his “person” and I will always be.  I am actually 3 smaller people’s “person” and one adult’s.

I try to not lose myself in all the doing, going and being.  It is a lot of ever-changing, coaching, and communicating.  I could use a nap just thinking about it all.  We all know that there isn’t time for that. 🙂  I keep my plates spinning and my people happy. (most of the time)  I am enjoying this phase of motherhood, family, MOPS Leadership, and master’s classes more than any other time yet.  It is freeing to have all these parts to my life and I am thankful for all the plates to spin.  Some days it seems like everything is falling apart and plates are crashing by the crate full.  Those are the days that stick out when some one comments about the business of my busy-ness.  It cuts a little, but I know that this crazy season is what I am in for now and it is a good thing I love it.

In My Rearview Mirror Tonight

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In my rearview mirror tonight, in the dark as I drove home a new way on our busy highway I saw life differently.  As my kids chattered on about their day and church, I felt my heart in my throat.

In the backseat of my cluttered, orange van was my 3 blessings all buckled in unaware of what I was seeing.  Nothing out of the ordinary, except we had a lot more shining headlights near us on the highway.  As the lights shone in, I did what all moms do, I assume.  I glanced in my rear view mirror to see my kids as they spoke and asked me questions.  With the ever changing light, I couldn’t see them very clearly.  Their sweet faces would be lit for a moment and then go dark.

What caught my heart and made me try to do my best “motherhood moment time freeze” (MMTF for short) was what I saw upon their heads.  I saw two with little ash crosses and one with curls.  My two older kids took part of Ash Wednesday services, where they were marked with the sign of the cross in ashes by our Pastor.

He said to each person marked, “Remember who you are. Remember whose you are.”  I hope and pray that those are more than just words they heard once.  I hope those words are resonated in the love they receive from their Daddy and I, their Sunday School teachers, their church community, their extended family and friends.  That in our hearts and minds we can remember their cross on their foreheads like it is always there.

If they grow with knowing that, then we all will have blessed them.  

 

PS – I am challenging myself to post every day of Lent.  

        Dear Lord, Help us all. Amen

        Read, share, skip – – do whatever works for you.  I need to write and publish more.

 

 

 

 

 

Chasing My Tail and 3+ others!!

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Awareness: Haven’t blogged here in 2 months and 2 days. I do write every day (well almost) but I haven’t had the time to type them up here… hence this post. I am going to do better at posting. It really helps me grow.

Here goes… disclaimer… if you know me well you know I love our three wild.woolly.wooldridges but I needed to express how motherhood is selfless at every moment unless you are in Mexico and their grandparents are being selfless to care for your kids.

The only room that really is staying clean (most of the time) is our kitchen. It is the site of three culinary experiences a day right now. Well, maybe not that great, but I’m trying to keep 3 eaters happy and well-balanced. With that comes planning mess, prep mess, cooking mess, dining mess, and cleaning mess and post dishwasher unloading. I get that it is important but not much else is happening these days in the rest of the rooms or personally in projects and plans.

As I was clearing another pile of O.P.S., Other People’s Stuff (a family of 5 makes/creates/receives a lot of O.P.S.) from the kitchen counter, I found a half-sheet from my eldest’s Sunday school class folder. It stopped me in my tracks as I was headed to the recycling bin.

If a task is once begun, never leave it till it’s done. Be the labor great or small, do it well or not at all.

Really???? Ahhhhhhhhhh!!!!!

This is probably how I felt before I had children. When I was on my own or newly married. But I think it took mothering for me to get over this way of doing and also judging others for not doing like I was. Now I can get interrupted just once on the way to the pantry and I can’t remember the ingredient I was after. Countless times I will walk around the house and shake my head at the open, half-emptied dishwasher, the drippy ice cream container on the counter, the forgotten toilet bowl cleaner waiting to be swished for hours (extra clean if it sits all day, right?), and I can’t forget the stinky laundry in the washer. (it isn’t like this everyday… but to be boldly honest… it does happen!) I’m pretty sure I don’t have Adult ADHD, but I am sure that moms, especially me are here to help our people, drop what we are doing to mediate a fight or kiss an injury and snuggle until they are better. I don’t jeopardize my children over the task at hand if I can help it and they need me. I’m not saying I’m perfect at either the tasks or the mothering… just trying to find balance.

The top part of the sheet could make me guilt ridden because I should be more focused to deeds and not needs. I am pretty sure I can’t get “IT” all done. But the bottom of the sheet saved me.

Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might. Ecclesiastes 9:10 NKJV

Praise the Lord!!! My hands are always being called to touch and do. So be it refereeing, snuggling, playing fire trucks while wearing a SWAT helmet, I will do it mightily. This verse helps me see the blessings in my blessings and interruptions. The parenting saying goes, the hours are long, the but the years are short. I couldn’t have imagined how much I would do as a mother. But I can see the years flying by.

Our home (especially our kitchen) is clean enough. Our home serves pancakes from a bag multiple times a week even though my eldest says they are not his favorite. Our home is loving, loud and squirrelly everyday. My kids won’t and don’t measure me by my to do list. They measure me by my love and presence. And those I will continue to do mightily.

NOTE: 1 minute after hand-writing this post: Kaylee asked what was for lunch as I looked over at the counter full of breakfast dishes. While typing this all 3 kids came to me with a complaint, need or dispute. BUT I SOLDIERED ON AND POSTED!!!!!!

Now there is screaming in the basement… off again… no supermom cape… a mighty mom who will be planning and making and cleaning up lunch soon.

Safe and Sound?

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I slept well last night but in my heart I was aching.  I kept thinking of the current abduction of Lisa Irwin.  As a parent, we all have daily safety concerns and development markers.  No one thinks abduction out of a child’s room is going to happen.

I remember back to Jonbenet Ramsey in 1996 with a house intrusion/invasion.  It was 1996 and I was in college.  This story seemed out of this world to me and now Baby Lisa feels hard to comprehend now as a mom.  I have had crazy times of checking on my children.  The most recent was the uncontrollable 4-5 times (that was on a good night… I won’t confess to how many times initially) I would check on Rhett when he was 6 months to 8 months old.  I was in prayer and yet so afraid of losing him to SIDS.

But now I really don’t check on my kids.  I figure I will wake them and then I will be back at care giving instead of heading to bed to collapse.  Last night though, we triple checked our locks, left lights on  downstairs and I did go in and check on all three.  I held my breath knowing that all were snuggled in bed and nothing was wrong.  But that deep desire for Lisa’s family to be able to do the same was heartbreaking.

I am in prayer for her safety.  I will never know what her parent’s pain is like (I hope) and I can’t imagine how life must be spinning out of control for them.  The hopeful believer in me feels she is safe but very far from here.  I hope someone on the national news can really get the attention of our country so that this baby is found.  We all watch CSI, NCIS, Law and Orders, etc. that have this theme, but to have it in our “backyard” is unsettling.  Please pray and never discount a day (the good ones, the bad ones and the ugly ones) with your own children.  And if your children are grown with children help them to raise their gaze from the daily drama and relish in the fact that our children are a gift from God.

Praying for Lisa.

http://abcnews.go.com/US/missing-missouri-baby-amber-alert-cancelled-search-continues/story?id=14670008