Daily Conversations With My Kid.

With all the scary situations that have gone on in the world since Kole was born, it has brought my stress level to its highest. I have never been brought back to the calm side of the spectrum ever since I became a mother. I have considered homeschooling him and keeping him away from all people. I have considered watching his every step to make sure he never comes in close contact with a bully. But life doesn’t work that way. I can only trust in the way I raise him and have faith on how he follows through.

Ever since he started school, three years ago, I have said the same things to him during drop off and pick up. When I drop him off I always say “Be good, be kind, and learn a lot.” Every day.

I remind him to be good. Teachers work hard everyday with 20-30 of our rowdy children. As parents, reasons we often complain about our children is how they don’t listen and don’t follow through, just to name a few. And we only have to deal with 1-5 kids on average. We know the struggle and to put all these kids with all different personalities together can be stressful and tough for an underpaid teacher with whom we have entrusted with our most precious treasures for 6-8 hours a day.

I remind him to be kind. Children are sensitive and remember everything. We all know mistreatment from their peers can stick with them for a lifetime and cause uneccessary violent action. As adults in this world today we are surprised by kindness. Videos about kindness go viral like it’s a foreign action. That says a lot about the world today and it’s not a good thing. I want him to grow up knowing kindness should be normal, given and received. To everyone. From everyone.

And lastly, I remind him to learn a lot. I want him to be open to learning everything and anything. I want him to be engaged so he is always interested on learning both sides of a coin. Ask questions. Be open to the answers even if he doesn’t like them. Not only listen but to understand.

And on to our conversations when I pick him up.

I always ask..

“How was your day?”

“What did you learn today?”

“What did you do and who did you play with during recess?”

“What was your favorite thing about the day?”

“What was your least favorite?”

I know that seems like a lot but it gives me all the information I need and I get him used to knowing that, as a parent, asking him a bunch of questions are not for interrogation. It’s for conversation. To always remind him I want to know about and keep up with his life, not because I don’t trust him but because I’m truly interested. Wanting to know how his day went and what he learned are a given. But it’s important for me to know what happens during recess when the kids are left to socialize with each other on a more independent level. I want to know if the list of people he plays with change, if the list has downsized, or if it has increased. What kind of games they play and if who is in charge of these games are the same person/people or if that role changes from time to time. Hearing about his least favorite parts of the day help me figure out what makes him sad, uncomfortable, or upset so I am able to catch anything he may not express to me directly. Knowing his favorite parts help me remember the things that bring him joy.

If I can’t protect him from all the bad in the world I can only hope I am helping raise good to at least be able to spread a little bit of light in all this darkness. Let’s face it, our world is shit. I want his tomorrows to be brighter than our todays. We just have to make sure we show the love and keep the conversation up and running.

Mind Your Own.

My kids are not perfect. There are times they don’t listen. There are times they fight. There are times they throw tantrums.

It. Is. Normal.

The other day, my kids and I were at a store and Monroe, who is 2 years old, had a tantrum. The woman behind me felt the need to make all sorts of comments and show all sorts of disgust on the fact that Monroe was upset, irritated, and crying. I don’t much care about what others think but it still isn’t easy to hear other people make you feel you are a complete failure as a parent and absolutely more upsetting to see your oldest child hear someone say something unkind about his little brother.

But make no mistake, if you feel free to make your side comments behind my back, do not be surprised to hear my harsh comments to your face. I am a mother protecting her cubs. I bite.

If you have a toddler, you know it’s that time in their lives they just don’t understand why they can’t have everything they want in the world. That’s where us parents step in. We try our best to teach them right and wrong, good and bad, and patience. We all know trying to teach a child that takes time and a whole lot of patience on our part as well. It’s frustrating as hell but that’s our job, to make sure we do our very best to raise them to be good people.

When we say no to our kids, do you think we enjoy watching them cry and get upset? Absolutely not! I choose to say no to them for certain things they don’t need. I choose to have my heart break everytime they cry or get upset because I took something away from them they didn’t deserve. So they will understand they will get it back when they have earned it from hardwork, kindness, etc. and not because they yelled for it. I choose this way so they don’t become grown men who throw tantrums and so they understand the word NO when they hear it.

Look, I’m doing my best here. So if you aren’t here to help, then keep on walking. I don’t need anybody making me feel less than. Parents do that to themselves enough.

Moral of the story, if you see a toddler out there throwing a tantrum, you can either help the poor parents or just STFU.

Happy New Days.

I have never been very much into a New Years celebration. Going to Times Square or any NYE Party was never on my bucket list and never will be. I prefer a much laid back count down. One with just close friends and/or family. And a bathroom I can easily get to and a blanket I can easily bundle up in.

The countdown starts and the hugs, kisses, and well wishes for the new year begin. After all that is done and the sounds of fireworks that give me a damn near heart attack have calmed down, I always say to myself and then to my husband “Wow. I can’t believe it’s (enter year here)” without fail. It is at that point when I reflect on yesteryear and feel the necessary emotions that go along with that year’s memories. We all have our good years and our bad years and 2017 wasn’t one of the greatest for me. I went in and out of my depression moods. Watching the news everyday definitely didn’t bring me one ounce of peace but just another notch on my anxiety belt. It was a rough year for me and Ryan as husband and wife. I didn’t get to do/experience anything I wanted. Whether it be reading a book I said I wanted to read or going on holiday to a city I have never been to before. Don’t get me wrong, there were a handful of moments last year that were wonderful. Ones I will never forget. But it’s not just about everything that has happened around me but a lot more of what I did or (mostly) didn’t do for myself. There is nothing and no one to blame but me. I didn’t work hard or even enough for my own happiness.

My world, love, and attention is set around my family and friends but I have to remind myself I deserve all that for me too.

How can I can make my 2018 a year I’ll look fondly back on? What can I do to FEEL better so I can BE better?

Love myself. Set some time me time away from kids and pamper myself. Read the books I want to or just sit back and mask!

Vision board. Make a vision board to get to the places I want to visit and if I can’t get to those places don’t get discouraged. Keep the dream alive! I’ll get there one day but know I’ve got to get up and do something about it. And tack on experiences I want to have. Like a promise to myself to explore my own city. I have to remember adventure doesn’t always have to be expensive or far. It can just be a hike away.

•Plan. As much as I love to plan and be organized I somehow stopped writing things down and making lists and appointments last year. Envision it, write it down, and (hopefully definitely) check it off!

•Be calm. Meditate. Going from 0-100 isn’t always the best way to go. I must remind myself counting 1-10 should be my first go to before I fly off the handle and that a nice calm chat can work wonders. Who needs to yell at the top of their lungs over constantly stepping on toys you’ve told your kids to put away 100 times before they actually listen?

Not me.


Life is getting shorter. My kids are getting older. I try to do the best I can to make sure they get to live their happiest life. They deserve to see me live mine the same exact way and I deserve to actually live it.

Happy New Dreams.

Happy New Days.

Happy New Desires.

Happy New Ways.

Happy New Year.

Merry Everything And Happy Always.

Christmas has come and gone but I still wanted to share what Kole and I came up with for his class giveaway this year.

Last year I crocheted mini wreaths and attached a mini candy cane to it.  They were the cutest little things!  It was a hit with the class and with his first grade teacher as well.  I’ve got to say it brings me and Kole the most joy when we see people enjoy the little gifts we give.  They are never too big but they are made and put together with lots of love and excitement.

This holiday we decided on giving friends and neighbors homemade sweets.  I happened to buy the treat boxes and treat bags with snowflakes all over them on two different occasions so Kole and I decided to go with the accidental theme.  This year we came up with snowflake ornaments to give to his class.  All I needed was a crochet hook, some yarn, mini ornaments, and a treat bag.

I crocheted the snowflakes and attached the mini ball ornaments to the front to spruce it up a bit and put the finished product in a little baggie to keep it safe until it got onto their tree.

The kids LOVED it! I had some girls in his class tell us how cute they were and some boys tell us how cool the snowflake was.  So I’d say it was a major hit!

We did it!  We brought a little merry and a little bright to a few little hearts which brought a lot of joy to ours.

Hope you had a merry everything and we wish you a happy always.

Bye Bye, Summertime.

Summertime is coming to a close and the school year is about to begin.  When school let out back in June I was so excited.  I get to spend all my summer days with my oldest as well as my youngest!  Then a week into summer vacation I realized peace was all lost.  Quiet and calm was a distant memory.  I was ready for vacation to be over.  But as much as I yearned for peace and quiet and as much as I was so over and done with each day, the night ended with me and Ryan talking about how much we loved seeing Kole and Monroe together, the way they interacted, and the way they played.  We watched them sleep and wished they were awake because we realized we missed the noise.  Oh, but of course never spoke of it too out loud in case the universe actually listened. We didn’t miss the noise THAT much! Monroe seemed to be playing his own game of shadow and followed every single thing Kole did.  Every word and movement was mimicked. Even right down to when Kole sneezed Monroe tried to sneeze.  You know, what every younger sibling does with their older siblings.  The last couple of months Monroe has learned so many things and for the most part it was Kole teaching him.  I’m going to miss their all day interaction with each other.  I’m especially going to miss watching their imagination on high speed and hearing it at the highest volume possible.And I know, most of all, Monroe is going to miss seeing his brother all day.  His best bud.  His ace.  But it’s time to have Kole go and learn second grade things and I’m excited to listen to all his second grade stories.  Next week we say goodbye to summer and hello to second grade.  Bye, Summer 2017.  Thanks for the memories.

My Favorite Moments – July

Faith | There have been some things that happened this month that tested our faith.  Ryan had his heart set on a career change.  He was banking on this new position because it was something he felt will give him a better quality of life.  A chance to spend more time with me and the boys and an opportunity to grow within the company and help us better financially in the future.  Sadly, under circumstances not in his control, it fell through.  With the disappointment with that and the loss of the matriarch in his family, he was under a mini dark cloud.

Feeling negative about things is human nature.  That moment of weakness when you feel like you can’t catch a break because when it rains it POURS, you can’t help but feel like you’re drowning.  One of the things that I think is very important in a relationship/partnership is that two people can’t be swimming in that pool of negativity.  I felt everything he was feeling.  I understood why he felt as such but I couldn’t let him believe there wasn’t a good reason.  Although we are Catholic, we are not constant church goers or avidly practice Catholicism but our faith in God is big and strong.  But we are human, and when our faith touches rocky ground we tend to get lost.

First thing’s first.  Dealing with the passing of his grandmother was tough.  But through all the heartache and tears came out more opportunities to see family he hasn’t seen in  years.  Times spent with his siblings were longer and much more frequent.  After every weekend we see family, Ryan seems more uplifted and more thankful.  Grandma Julie loves that.  I promise you.

Second on the list: getting past not getting the opportunity that he so much had his heart set on.  We had lots of conversations on keeping faith, letting us let go and accept that God has a bigger and better plan, and we’ve gotten through worse so we can get through this.  After those many faith centered conversations and after Ryan finally accepted his fate, he gets a phone call.  The recruiters called Ryan and extended an offer to continue on with their company.  They even went ahead and told him they pulled it together because they didn’t want to lose such a good candidate.

Faith was tested but in the end, our higher power was on our side reminding us that even though we go through struggle down here, He’s up there working his heavenly magic.

The Light. :#tbt

This is a blog post I wrote in September 2012.  It’s interesting to go back and read entries from the past.  It’s difficult to remember those tough emotions but it makes me appreciate how much better I am today.  How much more control I have over my happiness rather than being so out of control in my darkness.  I was going through a lot at the time, finding my way out of postpartum depression (for the first time) and trying to sort out the world around me.  It was a rough time for me.  But even in that time, I still managed to see light at the end of that dark tunnel I was stranded in with the help of two of my very, very close friends.

• • •

The Light.

Time ticks away.  Life moves on.  When you get a chance to just sit and let all that be and you get to reflect on everything, do just that.  Reflect.

Since I became a mother who was able to stay at home and watch my son grow, I was (am) able to reflect a lot on my friendships.  Once my life changed into scattered milk bottles and first words, my friends continued on with their single and dirty diaper-less lives.  I don’t regret one bit that I have gained a certain responsibility, but I do regret how some of my friendships turned out.

When people have different priorities their outlooks on things are obviously just as different.  How did all of a sudden I felt that they absolutely couldn’t be there for me anymore?  But also, how did all of a sudden they felt they couldn’t talk to me like they used to?
Well, let’s take a look.  After I had my son, I unfortunately got that dreaded dark cloud over my head that, as I’ve learned, comes naturally after child birth.  I wouldn’t say it was a black shade but more on the gray scale.  But during that tough time, I took a break from EVERYONE.  I had to grasp what was going on within me on my own.  At that point, I knew my friends wouldn’t understand. Luckily, after I finally opened up to them, I was starting to feel a little more normal.  After I reconnected with them, some relationships got tighter and others just continued to loosen.

It cuts very deep to know that the person you always called first for anything will barely answer the phone.  I guess she’s just too damn busy.  Too busy to say hello.  Too busy to grab a bite or a cup of joe.  Just too busy for….Me. But because of the ever growing world of technology and social networking, I know for a fact this person is not too busy for the people she sees everyday, or the friend who lives thousands of miles away, or anyone else but me (it seems). While all this is happening, I have accepted it and told myself that it’s ok.  If my life isn’t as interesting as it once was to this person, I have found that it is still interesting to others.  I was able to nurture the friendships that didn’t change and because of the roller coaster of emotions I have felt for the past couple of years, I am forever grateful for them.  They never gave up on me.  They had faith that the fog would lift.  That I would see brighter days and they made sure that it was with them that I would share the sunshine.

To A: Thank you for just listening.  I appreciate you more than you can ever imagine. Thank you for trusting me with your feelings on love and appreciating the advice and knowledge I can share with you on the subject.  You have been and will ALWAYS be someone I can rely on.

To D: You are my sanity and my strength.  You definitely play a huge part in helping me rebuild myself when I have completely fallen apart.  For being miles away from each other, you are always there when I need you.  You’re there when I want to cry, to yell, and to just laugh. I love you with all my heart and soul.

A&D: Thank you for bringing me light.