Monday, October 28, 2019

Self Care and other Adult Decisions

After a much-needed break to get my world around me in order, I am now back and ready to rock life to its fullest. Its been a rough last year. We've since moved to a new bigger and nicer apartment, my guy is doing well and working from home which is pretty great! Now we live closer to my kiddos so that makes my mental health certainly feel much better than it used to. I am becoming more organized and keeping up on things so that they don't end up overwhelming and even harder to maintain. Over this past year, I have made goals that haven't panned out the way I had hoped but I have re-set my goals since and re-adjusted my strategies so that I can feel more successful and on track each day. Which is way better for my mental health since I thrive on schedules and organized days. It is one of the reasons I have To Do apps on my phone and make a plethora of lists throughout the weeks for all kinds of things. 

I have also started making smarter adult decisions about my own care as well as my family's. I have learned the hard way that if I do not take care of my own needs and listen to what my body and mind are trying to tell me, I WILL fall apart and have a hard time getting back on track with myself. To do this I have incorporated small silly things that keep me happy and able to cope more easily. 

To refuel my body and recenter I meditate, do some yoga, or take a nice hot bath. The hot bath is definitely something that helps my body, mind, and spirit because I can read, relax and even breathe in and feel all at peace. 

 Things that make me smile also help me cope, which is great because some of the things are simple and easy. I love to chew on ice, it helps my anxiety and it is something that helps me through my frustrations. I love to play games with the kids, it keeps my mind busy so my racing thoughts and depression don't have time to take over. I like to clean when I have the energy. It helps me stay organized and being organized helps my OCD, my possible autism, as well as all the other things my mind has going on. 

(As I progress more on this blog I plan to give you some insight into my mental health and maybe you will find somethings I say helps you with yours or someone else you may know.) 

Now as August came in full swing and the school year loomed close I became the super Mom I have always wanted to be. I set up a "back-to-school" order to be placed, I labeled the calendar with upcoming things to remember and made sure to communicate any things that may concern the children with my ex-husband. The kids and I came up with new house rules that I plan to put up somewhere we ALL can see and follow them. We have devised a new "chore-chart" that the kids have been blasting through and totally earning their "stars and hearts" to trade in for 10-mins each of game or screen time, or save up for prizes along the way. (15 of them and they can get a trip out for Froyo or shakes!).

In September the kids and I had some last day of summer vacation fun. We visited the waterfront near our house and had a picnic at the park before playing at the playground and exploring the shoreline for fun finds. After that, we stopped at the library and stocked up on books to do our daily reading.  Bags heavy with new books and movies we headed home and the kids helped me cook dinner. It was great.
Mid-month my daughter and I got to attend an Andy Grammer Concert to celebrate her 12th birthday! It was totally awesome! (and a SUPER big thank you to my wonderful guy who was the one that made it possible for us to go!) That month also brought paying for school pictures, the first dreaded "Fundraisers" and of course the almost weekly Scholastic flyers with tons of books my kids beg me to purchase. Always fun to try to sneak those flyers into the trash and post a link on social media hoping someone will order from my kid (even though some of the items I aSWEAR are overpriced versions of things I could find elsewhere!)
Now here we are nearing the end of October, Halloween just days away and the days starting darker and chillier. It's that time of year that has the air (and store shelves) filled with the scent of pumpkin spice and apple cider. The same two flavors can also be found in so many things on the shelves in the store as well, it is quite overwhelming and very amusing to see the things that they will flavor or scent like that! 
My youngest is now in a six-week karate class and my daughter has been bitten by the "sing ALL THE TIME" bug. The summer spoiled me and made me forget how busy a school year with children involved in various extra activities can be. One particular day had me stressing so much that the entire night before I was up making sure there wasn't anything I was going to forget. It had to also be a Monday of course which we all know has that funny way of causing us to dread it just upon its arrival. That particular Monday found me rushing to give my youngest a bath because his hair was being a particular pain in the "you know what", making sure he also had breakfast and that his sister got off on time with all she needed for the day. Then once he was off to school I had to run some errands at a few places before coming home and squeezing in some lunch and spot cleaning here and there because my weird brain keeps losing focus and worrying about making it to everything on time. Then before I know it school is over and it is on to bring the youngest to Karate for his update on his progress, then his actual class, then bring him back home before heading to his older sister's concert at school which happens to run so late that by the time we get home, it is dark, cold and I am very very hungry. I have to say though I was glad that my guy and I were able to make it to the show because my daughter was stoked we were there since her father decided he didn't want to go. Its a damn shame for her too because it bums her out that he is so uninvolved. I am glad that I try so hard to put them ahead of myself because the smiles and "thank you"s and "I love you"s make it all worth it! Now Halloween is just a few days away and it should be a fun week. Today starts their week of half days and conferences with their teachers. I was able to meal plan and made sure Thursday (Halloween) is a simple Pizza-Salad-Berry Cobbler** night. Tonight since it is just me and Mr. Wonderful tonight for dinner we are having roasted turkey thighs, garlic rice, and green beans! It should be a nice meal to end out a busy day of errand running, baking banana bread, and attending Karate class. I hope you enjoyed catching up with us and seeing what this new chapter has brought. Hope to hear from you all soon with ideas of topics you would love me to cover or anything you would love to read about! 
**If you ever would like a recipe for something mentioned in any of my posts just comment and I will send it your way!**

Thursday, August 15, 2019

Time Flies, When You're Having FUN!

A full year in fact and I apologize for our absence. If you stuck around and are now seeing us again YAY! 

It is time for us to get back in the groove of things. We are starting back up during the preparations for school starting and the ending of the first two months of living in our new apartment! The past year has had some big changes for us. We moved, my guy now works from home so I see him way more, I now have a better custody arrangement and have gotten a lot more organized in many ways in my life! 

Now it is time for the summer fun to end and that wonderful time of year when the kids do all that great learning is upon us. It is time to send them back to school. (Or homeschool if that is what you do) Some students are already back in the habit and attending classes but I still have a couple weeks of fun with them before mine head back on the 4th of September. This school year I have one going into first grade, one into seventh, and one into tenth. That means all kinds of scheduling and making sure that all paperwork and school supplies are ready to go and that we get back on our school schedule with sleep and waking up. We have also been refreshing our memories with what we learned last year so that there isn't brain mush during the first week of school. 

Now coming up in the weeks ahead I will be giving tips, links, and recommendations for the things that help our life run smooth. Also since the holiday months will be upon us shortly I will be sharing some fun family favorite recipes and traditions that we love! 

We hope you will continue following along and maybe find something that helps you "Make it Work" in your own life! 

Sunday, July 1, 2018

Summer is Here

Yep, you heard that right moms and dads out there, Summer is HERE! Which of course school!

I am lucky that I can be home with them while they are out. I am lucky there are with me for a good portion of the summer as they are with Dad most of the year because of school.

HOWEVER, surviving the summer with kids wanting attention the ENTIRE day can run even the most even keeled mother ragged.

My children especially could stump a Pinterest mom with the need for entertainment and attention. Again lucky for me I AM a Pinterest mom and have a plethora of ideas the are spaced out over the summer to help us stay sane in the hot weather. Last week we had our first day out together since school let out and it went about as smoothly as I could have hoped it would.

First we had a smooth morning with a shower and yummy breakfasts for the kiddos. Then we hopped the local bus down to our town's library where I signed the kids up for their own library cards, we did a puppet show and then took out some books and movies to enjoy at home. Spencer spent some time talking and laughing with the fish in the aquarium. Out side they posed with and as statues (it was totally cute).

On the way back we had a little bit of money so we stopped at DQ and got some cheese curds and blizzards before making the short walk home. It was a blast and the kids had so much fun.

I love how much they love books and having them thank me for the "awesome snack" was pretty damn great.

In the weeks coming up we have a few more library trips, a fireworks show on the 4th, probably another BBQ or two and several small activities for the days when the weather doesn't want to cooperate with our plans, such as rock painting, puppet show making, forts, and family games to play.

All in all I think summer will go well and I will miss them when they have to go to theirs Dad's again.

Zee's art page 
Spencer's picture of me and a turtle!
 I even have a blast just making art with them. It makes me smile when Spencer draws our family and when Kenzee comes up with ideas that she does all on her own with no guidance. It really shows how creative she is.

This is going to be a great summer with lots of fun memories. I cannot wait for the next day of fun planned.
I am sure you will all be waiting ever so patiently for my next update on how we are making it all work in today's chaotic world and keeping ourselves happy. Until tomorrow! Ciao!

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Learning about Others

This past weekend we attended the Seattle Pride Parade! It was the kids first time really being a part of something that important. It went really well too, I expected a lot of questions and confusion. Turns out KIDS ARE NOT JUDGMENTAL like some ADULTS I know! 

They had a lot of fun celebrating LOVE, PEACE, and UNDERSTANDING! They learned that people are ALL very different but no one is better than anyone else, just different. They learned that LOVE is what is important! They enjoyed the colors, the music and the fun people they got to see marching in the parade. 

It was very fun for me to see them clapping and enjoying it when I expected them to have questions but they seemed to have no problems just accepting the way people were. I think we could all use to take a page out of their book. We should just accept the differences and learn to love everyone the way we want to be loved. 

 We spent the rest of the afternoon with friends having a BBQ and just having fun. It was really just a GREAT day! 

 I can't wait to take them again and maybe next time make sure we are all decked out to show our support for LOVE in all its forms! 
I am a woman who has a family that FULLY SUPPORTS LOVE and PEACE! We believe that you should love whom you love and never for a minute feel like you have to defend your choice! We LOVE YOU! 

From my little family to yours!  

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

It's Been a While, and So Much Has Changed...

Sometimes things do NOT work out the way we had originally planned. Sometimes you try for a long time hoping something will work better the next time and maybe just maybe it will be okay. That is what has kept me so busy and unable to update this blog for a while. I like to think you all have anxiously awaited my next post but my guess is you kinda forgot about me.
All of that is ok though because now I am back with the Making It Work Together Blog 2.0!

So much has changed but I feel my newest version of my family is the best it can be. I am no longer with the person who I started this journey with but that is alright. We have both moved on to better people for ourselves and couldn't be happier.

Now I live in a new little two bedroom house, with a tiny yard and the best guy a girl could ask for. We even have plans to eventually get a couple of pets, a cat and a dog. We have been through a lot in the last few years and not too long ago celebrated making it two years together. We made it through a major health scare, being on the verge of homelessness, and some crazy people who tested our ability to stand strong together.

 We made it and have come out on the other side stronger and more together in our short time than I ever felt in the years passed than with anyone else. I feel like this is the partner I want to have till the end of my time. We are strong, we make our decisions together and with little to no friction, sure we argue but it is not all that often, sometimes it is over silly things like a tone not meant for us but left over from a long day of stress or such. Together we make it work in ways I didn't think it would for someone coming into a life that included three children that were not his biologically.
He makes me so happy there as well. He is GREAT with the kids and misses them when they have to be at their father's house. (As do I terribly, but co-parenting is tough work) All I know is he is wonderful to have as part of the family!

Speaking of my wonderful little ones, so much growing has happened there! All three of them are moving up to new schools this fall and it makes me both proud and a little sad. My oldest will be starting high school, my daughter middle school and the youngest is starting kindergarten after already making me emotional with him starting preschool LAST fall! It is hard watching them get so independent. I loved being needed so much and now with the youngest doing full days at school the house is empty and quiet. Now while it leaves time for me to organize and unpack more of our stuff (as we really only moved a few weeks ago.) it also makes me sad to not have that little shadow that used to follow me around.
 In the past few years my little ones have learned so much and accomplished many many things. Spencer knows some sign language and knows more colors than I remember knowing at his age. Mckenzee has grown up into a beautiful preteen, who wants to be a chef, but whom I believe would be a great actress (a talent I feel she uses too often). Maybe she can be a BROADWAY CHEF and do a musical all about her journey to become a chef beginning at a young age. (I may have put a LITTLE bit of thought into the story line and song choices) Andrew is doing awesome as well, latest updates have him becoming quite the fisherman and loving spending his time outdoors from early in the morning til evening doing so. I love this because it means he isn't spending all his time planted in front of a video game wasting away a perfectly wonderful day!
I am so proud of all of them they make me smile constantly and I love them so much. They have really made getting through everything that has happened a lot easier knowing I am striving to make a life they can be happy with and that nurtures and helps them grow.

Now while my old dreams didn't pan out because they were just not meant to, I have found a way to dust myself off, redirect myself, and begin the path to a whole new set of dreams that make me happy just thinking about. For some people if this happens you may not have to abandon certain dreams, like me, for me I am still pursuing the writing and hoping that I finally come up with something that will make me proud to share. I think I have some ideas too so who knows that may come sooner than later with the support I have around me now cheering me on.

With all that has gone on I have grown, changed, and learned so much. I wake up each morning more hopeful than I ever have. I have dreams I can't wait to achieve and I KNOW I will! I am grateful for every person I have in my life that is supportive, caring and willing to be an active part of our lives! So while things have changed, I couldn't be happier and this is just the start of a new journey where our family is .... MAKING IT WORK, TOGETHER!

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

A Roller Coaster Month (and it is not over yet)

The month started off with me feeling a little sad about some things, one of them being that I was laid off from my job, turns out there just was not "enough work" for me to be on their payroll so they had to let me go, so one month before my one year mark at that job they terminated my employment.  It is making things a little harder on us financially and it makes me feel horrible.

To make ends meet a little better we sold the van. That helped pay some bills and caught us up a little bit. Made me a little bit sad though because I really liked the van, but when you need the money that is what you do.

Mckenzee started the third grade that same week! September 8 was her open house where she put away her school supplies in her desk and we met her teacher (then we went and got some ice cream).
On the 9th she started school and came home full of chatter about her first day! She LOVES school! She looked adorable too!

We also celebrated her 8th birthday this month! It is crazy how the time flies and how big she has gotten over the years, I remember when she was just a little thing dressed in little tiny dresses, no hair because it didn't grow in until she was over a year old.
Now she is a beautiful girl, who loves to sing, dance, go to Girl Scouts, make new friends, read. She works hard to draw and wants to learn how to make her handwriting "pretty like mommy's" as she put it. I am very proud of her.

The only other down I have is my health issues lately. I have had pain from some internal issues, a pulled muscle in my stomach, and a cold that seems to want to linger lately. I am hoping a trip to my doctor next week will give me the answers and treatment I am seeking. I kinda just want the doc to go ahead with the surgery and remove all the things that are causing my pain and issues. Hopefully he will.
That is really all I have to say for now because it is hard for me to concentrate with my pain and stuffiness. Hope you are all enjoying the first day of Autumn!


Wednesday, August 12, 2015

School Supplies and Readiness

I took a look at the calendar this morning and had the panic attack moment of realizing school starts in just four short weeks.  Thankfully some of her supplies from last year are in good shape and she can use them again this year, so that should save us some money. She also wants to use a bag my mother gave her as a school bag and that is more money saved.  It seems every year in school it is more and more money to spend on supplies, I think I need to find a way to get coupons or stock up over the year so that when school starts I have most of what she needs already saved up and read to pack in.  She is very excited to be starting the THIRD GRADE (though I wish time would slow down some). She will also be starting her last year as a Brownie in Girl Scouts (next year she will be a Junior) so she is super excited about that. When she went on vacation in CT/RI my mother sewed all her patches from this year on her vest and it looks awesome! All her family is very proud of her accomplishments in Scouting the last year! As am I! It is amazing all the new things she is willing to do now that she has been introduced to Girl Scouts, she has matured and done things she was once afraid to.

Her older brother starts the SIXTH GRADE soon and it drives me nuts to know that he is almost 11 years old already! How can so many years have gone by when it seems just yesterday I was teaching him how to walk and eat with a spoon?! Where does the time go.

Then there is Spencer! He is so smart and talks to well that unless he is upset I can understand just about everything he says.  I am thinking since he loves books and seems to have a knack for remembering things, I am going to start small and begin teaching him his letters/numbers/colors/and shapes so that he is more than ready when the time for him to start school comes about. (That day will be tough as I am pretty sure he is my last baby). I love to watch them grow but it drives me nuts that they seem to do it at a break-neck speed. I blink and suddenly they are all grown up and don't need me as much any is a little heart-breaking but smile inducing.  WATCHING CHILDREN GROW IS AN EMOTIONAL ROLLER COASTER!

That is all for today, as I make the mad rush to Payless and Walmart to find all my last minute supplies I hope you are all doing the same and that I run into you soon! ;)