Friday, December 13, 2013

Why I Lie To My Kids About Santa.

Our kids want to believe in Santa, so for them we do it. I don't think it's teaching kids to lie, like so many people are saying.
I think it's allowing them to have a few years of their lives that they don't HAVE to worry about how much money you have. Once they know that mom and/or dad are buying the presents, the lists change. It's no longer something that is a list of their most desired gifts. It's a list they think you can afford. That's why I agree to lie for them. I don't want my kids worrying about life yet. They're five (twins), and three. They have their whole lives to worry about things. For now I just want them to be little, and to feel nothing but magic and joy this time of year.

If you believe in Santa, he IS real to you.
I just think they're little for such a short time, and if they want to love Santa, why not let them?
If anything, what I am going to make sure my kids get out of this when they do find out Santa isn't real, is that the reason I didn't tell them was because I wanted them to be able to be happy with no boundaries. 

I've heard a lot of people say they don't want to give Santa the credit because they "worked [their] ass off to pay for those presents".
I don't mind giving credit to a man that doesn't exist, because I don't need a pat on the back every time I do something good for my kids. The smiles on their faces is more than enough.

I also can't crush their belief in Santa because Santa doesn't walk alone. He has the Easter Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy with him. And Unicorns. And Fairies. And magical princesses. And mermaids. And dragons.
To take all of those away when they kids are so small and full of imagination would just be so sad.  I can't imagine being responsible for crushing my daughter's dream of becoming a princess when she grows up.  (She'll grow out of it and find a new dream, but for now being a princess is all she wants to do.)

I agree to go along with Santa for the same reason I agree to let them believe in unicorns.  Because it's not going to hurt them, and they like believing in them.

**As it turns out, my daughter (five) doesn't believe in dragons, but my son (five) does.  He says they live in New York City.  ;)

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

How I Feel About Circumcision Regret

Lately I've read a lot of stories of parents regretting having their sons circumcised.  I wish I didn't have to ever read one.  Some of the things I read just bring tears to my eyes, and it hurts my heart!  These parents spent months getting ready to bring this little boy home with them, talking about how he'd grow up to be he'd play in the NHL, or how he'd grow up to be someone who changed the world.  Dreams for their perfect little guy.

And then when he was born, and they looked at him and knew they'd been given something wonderful.

The next day as their little one looked up at them from their arms, they were asked a question they weren't prepared to answer because they had never been given all the information they needed to make a fully educated choice.  They believed the doctor when s/he listed all the "reasons" it should be done.

"It's cleaner."
"Your son will thank you for it later."
"He'll be the only one in the changeroom with foreskin.  He'll be laughed at."

"It's a useless flap of skin anyway."
"He won't even feel it.  Most don't even cry."
"It'll keep him from having UTIs now, and when he's old."
"No woman wants a man with extra skin on his penis."
"It'll stink if we don't."
"Foreskin is a lot of work and gets infected easily."

"It's better for him to have it taken off."
"He'll never remember it if you do it now."

So much bullshit.  Parents are so rarely being told the truth by the doctors about what circumcision really entails.

I really do believe that if parents knew exactly what happens behind those closed doors, we wouldn't have to read all of these horribly sad stories from fathers and mothers who wish they could turn back time and protect their sons.  

Parents are not being told of long term effects of circumcision by their doctors.  Parents are making choices on minimal information, trusting that the medical "professionals" are telling them what they need to know.  And they're being left to make a decision for their son that should never even need to be made in the first place.  You can't take back what's done, and these medical professionals are leaving the guilt and pain for the child and his parents, while lining their pockets with the blood money.

Parents aren't being told how circumcision can negatively impact the mother/child bond, or that it's quite common for a circumcised baby to refuse breastfeeding afterward.  They aren't being told how this one traumatic event could forever alter their tiny son's opinion of them, and of himself.  They aren't being told the whole story, and they're making a choice for their son that should never have been made by anyone but that boy.

I have people ask me all the time why I "care so much" about circumcision, and it's for two reasons.  First, it's because I have to speak up for the little ones who don't have a voice, and whose cries are being ignored.  People have to stand up for those who can't stand up for themselves.
The second reason I do this is because of the fact that so many parents are left shattered after finding out too late what they allowed to be done to their son(s).  The guilt is intense, and forever.  Even when parents are able to understand that they did the best they could with the information they had at the time, so often they still carry the guilt of not knowing better, sooner.

I hate that there are people hurting forever for something that doesn't need to be done.  I hate that there are children being violated, and adults being lied to.  I hate that doctors aren't recognizing or acknowledging that foreskin is meant to be there, and that to cut off a functional body part makes no common sense.

To those who made the best decision they could make with the information they had at the time, and who went on to find out that the decision they made was not the one they'd have made if they knew more, I want to tell you that I'm sorry you weren't fully informed.  I am sorry that you carry guilt.  I am sorry that you even have to.

Our sons deserve better.  By not informing parents of the full and total truth, doctors are denying these boys of their right to an intact body, free of unnecessary and dangerous medical procedures.  They are allowing parents to believe half-truths and total lies, and to be left with the burden of guilt.

As the parents of intact and circumcised boys, we need to stand together and educate others.  We need to take what we know, and share it.  Knowledge is power!  Sometimes we can give parents information their doctor never gave them, and it can save their child from that trauma, and it saves those parents from knowing too late.  

We, as a whole, need to stand up and speak out.  We need to end the suffering for those little boys, and we need to make sure that guilt-baggage is a thing of the past.

I'm sick of knowing that there are people who live in pain everyday because of this.  I'm so sorry it wasn't different.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

This Shouldn't Be A Battle

Snatched this photo from HERE.
The thing is, they're new here.  It's not supposed to be Me Vs. Them.  I'm supposed to be guiding and teaching, not punishing and fighting.  They're new here.  They're not tiny adults.  They're children.  My five year old twins have only been able to even understand wtf is going on around them for a couple of years now, and are still developmentally unable to appreciate when I say not to do something in one scenario that it means ANY scenario similar to that one.  I don't EXPECT them to behave like they're adults.  My JOB is to be there to teach them.  I have no right to be angry when they don't immediately see the big picture.  They're five!  The "big picture" to them is a fraction of the ACTUAL big picture.  Life, to them, is still what is happening directly to them at that exact moment.  They are unable to predict the  outcome of their actions...they're 10-12 years away from even developing that part of their brains.

As I see it, being a child is very much like being at a new job would be for an adult.  If you make a mistake, should they punish you for it, or teach you the right way?  If you think you can get away with doing something in a way you were told not to so things work out in your favor, should they scream at you or hit you for it?  Obviously not.  They would explain to you why you can't do that, and tell you how they want it done, and why.

The difference here lies in the fact that children do need to be told over and over, and they're not trying to make you crazy.  They're NEW here.  They don't have 20 or 30 or 40 years of experience under their belts.  When you have to explain to them four hundred times why they can't climb on the table, you can freak out about it, or you can accept that it is developmentally NORMAL for them to need to be told THAT many times.  One day they'll get it and you won't have to say it anymore.  (Trust me, they don't want you nagging at them all the time either, and when they CAN remember not to climb on the table, they'll stop, simply to avoid hearing you bitch about it again...even though they REALLY don't see the harm in it...)

Why are adults given more understanding than children?

*Sadly I think it's because adults can speak up for themselves and can demand that they are treated better.

Just some food for thought.

Monday, April 22, 2013

PeepOoie Giveaway Contest ~~Ends April 30th, 2013~~

I'm running a contest on my business page on Facebook.  The winner will get a $15 credit toward anything in my etsy shop.  
Find it here:
( )

You can find the contest here:

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Living Within Sensory Processing Disorder


What is sensory processing disorder?

Children with sensory processing disorder have difficulty processing information from the senses (touch, movement, smell, taste, vision, and hearing) and responding appropriately to that information. These children typically have one or more senses that either over- or underreact to stimulation. Sensory processing disorder can cause problems with a child's development and behaviour.

Who has sensory processing disorder?

Children with autismClick here to see more information. and other developmental disabilitiesClick here to see more information.often have sensory processing disorder. But sensory processing disorder can also be associated with premature birth, brain injury, learning disorders, and other conditions.

(Taken from HERE.)

Anyone else have a child with this?  I have two.  (The twins.)  It's made life interesting, that's for sure.  If you have a child who lives with this, you know EXACTLY what I'm talking about.

Our son's SPD seemed to improve dramatically when we took him off sugar, but it's still there.  Just under the surface, all the time.
Life needs to stay within certain lines for him to cope well.  It's why our morning and nighttime routines never falter.  He's able to do pretty much anything during the day as long as he knows what's coming.  He's not into surprises.  For him not to lose it completely, he needs a lot of notice of an event that is going to take place, and to be reminded of it daily.  On the way to do something, he will ask repeatedly what is going to happen.  He has to know the plan.

If a plan doesn't work out; if we tell him we're going somewhere, and for whatever reason we can't (for example, if the store is closed), all hell breaks loose.  We have to be very careful how we tell him what our plans are.  We make sure that we say, "We're going to TRY to go and..."  Then he knows that there's a chance that it may not happen, even if we are all counting on it.  Sometimes he still acts out even if he knew there was a chance of it not happening, but it's slightly less intense, and can from time to time be avoided completely.  *This is why I spend so much time making sure that stores are open/the park isn't locked/the exact times Santa is at the mall...and so on.*  It's easier to avoid a breakdown than to live through one.

We also cannot tell him that we're going to buy them (the kids) something unless we're standing in front of it and we can see that they can, without a doubt, get it.  (This could be anything from a mango, to a toy.)  Being told he can have something, and then to find it's impossible (they don't have any!), results in a meltdown.  He doesn't know how to handle it, and so he just doesn't.  What we say is going to happen HAS to happen.

What really grinds my gears is that there are people who see his behavior and assume he's "bad", or "spoiled", when in reality it's not at all.  He's SUCH a sweet and kind and wonderful boy, and if we say that we're just going to look at something (like toys), he doesn't freak out if he gets nothing.  Because it wasn't part of the plan anyway.  No biggie.  It hurts me to know that people judge my son, and me, for something he didn't choose to have.  Children with SPD look like everyone else, and there are no obvious markers for people to use to identify it.  I try not to glare back at the people who feel the need to glare at me in a moment when all I really need is an understanding smile (or nothing, you know?  If you can't manage a smile, just do NOTHING.  It's better than glaring at me...or my four year old son!).

The Boy is under-responsive to touch, under-responsive to movement, he has all but three of the sensory seeking behaviors, he has an emotional dysfunction...yet with all of this, it is still dramatically less than the list he had when he was still getting foods with sugar.  (There are entire lists now that he doesn't have any "checks" on, whereas before, every one would have been checked.)  Sugar absolutely aggravated his SPD, and caused his behaviors to be more extreme.

As for our Older Daughter, she is learning to live within it.  Slowly.  
The type my daughter has is the same type I have.  I think of it as a sensitivity to certain things.  (Perhaps because I've lived with it, I don't find it all that "abnormal".)

She's got hypersensitivity to touch, hypersensitivity to movement, poor muscle tone (born with this), hypersensitivity to sound, hypersensitivity to smells.

It's something we noticed with her from the start, though we really thought it was just "preemie" behavior.  But it never went away.  With her, the world needs to be soft and quiet.  And it needs to smell good.  She is the first one to cover her ears, even in a place that no one else really notices the level of noise.  She hates wind.  A drop of water on her shirt sets her off into hysterics.  She's learned to live with the sound of a lawn mower, but used to scream to the point of her face turning purple if she heard one.  She'll avoid foods that every other person in this house likes, because it "smells bad".  (It doesn't smell BAD, it just HAS a smell.)

It isn't always easy with her because her reactions are immediate and can sometimes seem like they're just out of the blue, but like I said before, we share many of the same traits in what we can and cannot handle.  So I get it.  I can look over at her and know when something is making her anxious just by looking at the profile of her face, because it's making me anxious too and I can see her tense jaw and know exactly how she's feeling in that moment.  But, I have no doubt that she'll make it through life without most people ever even noticing it.  Unless someone is actually paying close attention, it's unlikely that they'll notice it.  She's one of the most amazing people I've ever met in my life, and I know that as time goes on she'll learn to adapt even better than she already has.  When someone does notice, it'll be someone who cares about her.  (Most people don't pay enough attention to anyone else to notice that they can't walk in tall grass.  Ever.  Or that they wear a sweater in summer because the breeze makes their skin feel crazy.)

I've found that people are more understanding with Older Daughter, maybe because her type of SPD works better for them.  I think they treat her more kindly because she's "so sensitive", and when she acts out it's because of something like rain, or noise.  The whole thing plays into their idea of her being a helpless, delicate, "poor little girl".  For some reason, the world around us seems to want to treat her like a victim in this, and at the exact same time treat her brother like he's a terror for having the exact same behaviors that are caused by the exact same disorder.  It boggles my mind.  I'm trying to raise her to be independent and strong and to not play OR BE a victim.  I'm trying to raise my son to be sensitive and kind and be proud of the person he is, in a world set on hating men.  So the whole thing just irks me beyond belief.
Way to label them based only on stereotypes, society.  You suck.

If you want to see if you or your child have any of the symptoms, find the checklist HERE.

Here is another, for infants and toddlers.

I think a lot of people have SPD and don't even realize.  And I think a lot of kids have it and no one has ever diagnosed it, or it was mis-diagnosed as something else.  

I know that when I was first pointed in the direction of this information a couple years ago, I finally felt like I wasn't losing my mind...I knew there had been something different about them, I just didn't know WHAT.  Knowing this made all the difference.  Which is why I shared it.

Read more here:

Monday, March 11, 2013

Two Dads, Two Moms

That doesn't come off the way I think it was intended...

It really should say, "Two dads are better than one", and "two moms are better than one." 

Not "none".  Because pretty much anything would be better than to be that sad kid standing with NO parents, don't you think?  

And what about that kid at the top...

He has no mom...which we see in the bottom picture is pretty horrible and sad.
And the bottom one has no dad...which, again, we see is pretty horrible and sad, by looking at the top picture...

So I'm going to draw my own in Paint.  One that makes more sense!  (And you'll get a little glimpse of my mad paint skills.  LOL)

See?  Better.


Friday, March 8, 2013

Tongue Tie Debate??

Yeah, so maybe I'm nieve.  I've been called worse.  All of a sudden, it seems, there is this outpouring of mothers (I'd say fathers if I saw even one comment or post from a father regarding this issue, but I have not) online who are devastated by their child's tongue tie.  Or lip tie.  Or both.
Am I new here?  Have I been living on the moon, or is it really just something that seems to have exploded lately?  Is it a new topic?  Maybe that's it...maybe we're sick of talking about how we saw someone putting their child's car seat on the top of the shopping cart at the grocery store, and turned to this?
I don't know.
Whatever it is, it's driving me insane.
I'm probably going to lose a follower or two here, but I'm not doing this to make friends.  I'm doing this to speak the truth about things I think need to be said.  So here I go.

The Boy's tongue tie.
I have three children.  My twins are both severely tongue-tied, right to the very tips of their tongues.  They are, at 4 1/2 years old, STILL tongue-tied.  We were told that the frenelum under their tongues would stretch, and that doctors will rarely cut them now unless a parent insists, or it is causing medical issues (such as failure to thrive), or speech issues later on in life.
The option was there, and after watching the suffering they went through in the NICU, there wasn't a soul on this earth that would have made it out of the room alive if they'd tried to cut those ties.  Seriously.  I was a woman on the edge, and probably could have gotten away with it because I'm pretty sure I was legally nuts at that point.

Anyway, Older Daughter also has a severe lip tie, which I had no idea about until I was pregnant with Little Daughter and found a blog post on it (which I cant' find now, or I'd link it).  I was STUNNED.  Before I read that, I had no idea that there was even such a thing.
(Okay, before kids I DID live on the moon with no internet!)
It explains a lot about why Older Daughter wasn't latching, and when I could trick her (in her sleep) to take the boob, it felt like she had razors in her mouth.  What really grinds my gears here is that the twins were in the NICU for 8 1/2 weeks.  I saw three different LC's in the time I was there, and had a few nurses who all tried to help me get the kids on the boob at least a feed a day when they hit what would have been 33 wks. gestation (for practice).  Not one person identified the lip OR tongue tie on her.  Older daughter never gained 1 cc by breastfeeding in the entire time she was there.  Even after 45 minutes of "nursing".  After 4 months of pumping for her, I put her on high-calorie preemie formula.  It's not my proudest moment.  If I knew then what I know now, it would have been different.  She would still have intact ties, but I'd have worked around them.  *I'll go into that more in a minute.*

Her twin brother was breastfed from 12 weeks on, and his tongue tie never caused an issue at all.  At. All.  And the funniest part is that his was so obvious right from the start that I had nurses telling me he would probably never be able to breastfeed without a nipple shield.  We never used one.  He nursed until he was 22 months old.  Also relevant here, he has no lip tie.

So fast forward to Little Daughter.  She has a pretty severe lip tie, and a moderate tongue tie.  Both intact.  She ate my nipples the first week or so until I discovered the issue, and from that point on I started flipping up her top lip*, and things progressed without further incident.
*This could have been done for Older daughter had I known such an issue even existed.*

Little Daughter's lip tie at 6 months old.
At 27 1/2 months old, Little Daughter is still breastfeeding like a champ, and most of the time doesn't need me to flip up her lip anymore.  It's stretched.  She speaks very clearly with no speech issues.  (She's by far my earliest talker...and she talks.  And talks.  And talks.  LOL)

Little Daughter's tongue tie at 27 months old.
This is identical to Older Daughter's lip tie at 4 1/2 years old.
In fact, the only thing I have ever found to be an issue with the twins at all is the fact that they can't pronounce the "th" sound.  (Yet, I mean.  They're 4...I'm not worried.)  

The reason I feel obligated to say all of this is because for whatever reason, people are having their child's tongue/lip ties to be cut at what I think is an alarming rate.  
I'm baffled.  And saddened.

Yes, I see that if a parent is unable to feed their child and their child is ACTUALLY "failing to thrive" because of their lip and/or tongue tie, you're going to clip it because it's medically necessary.  
Of course you are.  A good mother (or father) does for their child whatever needs to be done to ensure their health and well being.  Every time.

Maybe what bothers me so much is that lately I've seen so many people who are so quick to assume that the ties on their children's lip or tongue, are a horrible birth defect of some sort that need to be "fixed" as soon as they're identified.  I know from experience that this can not possibly be the case in many instances.  I think with a little education, and a little support, most of these children who are getting these things cut, could go on to be perfectly fine as is.  No need for putting them through that pain.  No need for that experience.

And, when I read comments by "intactivists" who say that a lip tie or a tongue tie are a "birth defect" and so the pain of this procedure is "for the best" when they took no effort to find an alternative route, it makes my brain feel like it's melting.  Those are almost word-for-word the beliefs of many people who circumcise their sons.  They do it thinking that foreskin isn't "supposed" to be there, and that removing it "fixes" the mistake, and that it's "for the best".  They "won't remember" being circumcised as an infant...(I could go on, but I think you get my drift.)
The kids getting their tongue ties cut won't remember that event as an adult either, but does that make the pain they're feeling at that time, irrelevant??  Not at all.


Again I am going to say that if a child is failing to thrive, of course you're going to do whatever it takes to help them.  If your child is unable to speak properly because of a tongue tie, of course you're going to do whatever you have to do to help them.  (And after trying alternative routes such as speech therapy, if that doesn't help at all, of course I support those parents.)  But it doesn't seem to me that people...parents...are even allowing their child time to prove that what THEY consider to be a "birth defect" is in fact quite normal and prevalent, and will sort itself out with time.  And way too many people never bother to find another way to work with these though they doubt their ability to work around a challenge.

I don't know.  Maybe it's just hitting too close to home for me to sit comfortably knowing that if my kids had been born to someone else, they'd have likely been forced to have those ties cut for no reason at all other than their parents' beliefs that what they have is a "defect".  I'm not sure why it's a debate when surely this isn't a new "issue".  I am sure that mothers have been working around ties since the beginning of time, but only recently it's become something to panic about.  Perhaps because society has led mothers to believe that they can no longer trust their babies, or themselves, the fear that was never there before has come to overwhelm them and lead them down a path that was just not taken before.

I'm speaking up here.  I standing up for children.  Again.  And I'm standing up for you.  I believe you can work around these ties when you know they exist, because you're capable.  If I can, and I'm certainly no one special, you can too.  Trust your baby and trust yourself.  When you see how amazing you both really are, you can start to re-build the self confidence that our society has stolen from you.

Older Daughter's tongue tie.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Things I Never Thought I'd Say

I think it's time for a funny post.  I'm working on several serious ones, but thought maybe I should get this one typed up first since I'm a firm believer that we need to be silly AS MUCH as we're serious...if not more.

Since having kids, I have said things (you have too) that I never thought I'd ever say.  Here's a list of the most popular at our house.

1.  Stop eating the cat food.
2.  Don't lick the floor.
3.  Don't move.  You have poop on your foot.
4.  Are you eating dog food?  Spit it out.
5.  Get off your sister.  She's not really a horse.
6.  Did you wipe your bum?  No?  Get off my lap.
7.  Where are your clothes?
8.  We don't play with the plunger.  It's yucky.  Seriously, put it back.  Aaaahhh!  Don't touch me with it!!
9.  Don't touch the cat's bum.
10.  Did you just pee on the kitchen floor?  Again?
11.  Did I just sit in pee?
12.  Don't stick that noodle in your nose.  Or your ear.  ...EW!  Don't eat it now!!

I have dozens of these, but that little tidbit gives you an insight on my life.  LOL

This would be a fun one to post on (either here, or on FB), and share your own "things I never thought I'd say".  :)

This has nothing to do with the post, but it's hilarious!

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Waking Up And Tuning In.

This was borrowed from HERE.

Look at Me When I’m Talking To You!

Hey.  You are Mixing Your Messages.  You know like when I’ve done something that makes you mad?  Like drawing in a book?  Or sitting on my sister?  Or eating the apple pie before dinner?  And you get your body real low to look me right in the face.  And you turn my shoulders so I have to look at you while you are angry with me.  And sometimes I don’t even know why you are angry.  I knowMarkers Are For Paper! but a book is paper and I needed to draw a lizard on that rock in the sunshine.  And I know Your Sister Is Smaller Than Youbut I am smaller than you and I can ride on your back like a horsie and she likes the horsie too.  And I know now that The Pie Is For After Dinner! but I was hungry and I don’t know when dinner is coming anyway.
And then you say, Look At Me When I’m Talking To You!  but I want to turn my eyes someplace else because I’m embarrassed but I know you will get madder if I don’t just Look At Me When I’m Talking To You!  Then you talk and talk and talk and sometimes I get distracted by the cat or my friend or a shadow on the wall or the fly that landed on your ear.  Then my eyes go someplace else and you get mad again.
You know those times?  The times when you want my Undivided Attention?
Or when Important People come to visit?  And you talk and talk and talk, and sometimes I need to tell you about the painting in the kitchen or the boats I saw last weekend or my panties that are on backwards.  And you tell me toWait My Turn or Don’t Interrupt Me When I’m Talking.  Or you tell me to sayExcuse Me and I do but you don’t stop talking.  Or you tell me to say Can I Interrupt but you still don’t stop talking.  And when you do give me my turn you have a very heavy breath that tells me I did something Frustrating.
You know those times?  The times when you want me to Not Interrupt!
And then when I am in the middle of looking for my lost green butterfly and you say it’s Time For Singing but I don’t want to come because I am doing something important.  But you tell me Do It Later so I have to leave the spot where I almost saw her fly over a rock.  Then when I am running so hard and fast around the chair and you tell me No Running In The House. Sit Down And Read A Book. and I don’t want to read because of running so fast.  Then when I almost build a castle to the ceiling and then you tell me to Clean It Up Because It’s Lunchtime but I’m not done with it yet.
But I have a problem.  You want me to look at you, even when you are very angry and I don’t want to look at you.  And you want me to wait my turn for talking, even when I have something very important to say.  So why don’t you look at me when I’m doing my very important things before you tell me to stop?  And why do you get to interrupt what I am doing without waiting until I’m done?
Maybe when I am looking for my lost green butterfly when it is really singing time, you could let me keep looking, or you could ask me what I’m doing before you tell me that I have to come and sing.  You could come and look with me or maybe singing time could be after looking for my butterfly time.  Because no one told my butterfly it was singing time and she was almost going to fly over the rock.  Or maybe when I am running so fast around the chair and you don’t want me to run in the house you can tell me to run outside so I can still keep running so fast.  Or maybe when my castle is almost as tall as the ceiling, you could help me save it for after lunch so I can build it later.

If you want my attention then give me your attention,
even if you need me to change activities.
If you don’t want to be interrupted don’t interrupt me,
and if you have to, then help protect my important things until I can use them again.
It might make things a little more clear.

When I read this I did have a few tears.  I am guilty of not always being "present" when I'm with my kids.  I'm busy thinking about the laundry that I have to get done before my husband gets ready for work, or that it needs to be done before the kids go to bed because Little Daughter can't sleep when she hears the washing machine...
I've spent too much time worrying about what I'm going to make for dinner, and stressing over the mess my basement is.  I know I've missed important details along the way while worrying about things that should not have mattered.  I have missed things I should not have missed, and it just destroys me to become this fully aware of it.

I am guilty of allowing myself to become overwhelmed with how I keep getting told things "should be", and instead of enjoying my children in this oh-so-very-important time in their lives, I instead freak out because there are toys scattered across the entire floor of the living room, and random laundry here and there that the kids took off and chucked over their shoulder.

Not only am I finding that all of this is making me fail as a housekeeper, it's also making me feel as though I am failing as a mother.  I can't seem to manage to do it all, and the whole thing laid out in front of me is so overwhelming that I just feel like I'm drowning...  

Along the way I forgot that there are things more important than following a schedule.  And there are things more important than doing everything a certain way because some person you don't even give a flying rat's BEHIND about, tells you that's how it should be.  
Along the way I stopped seeing the crickets.  I stopped finding joy in super-tall Mega Blocks castles.  I stopped enjoying life and started feeling like I was simply maintaining it, at best.

If there is one reason to be thankful for the internet, it's that we can connect with other people who have managed NOT to find themselves buried under a sea of size 4 underpants, and self doubt.  And they can light something inside of us that was burnt out by people undeserving of that ability.

I am thankful for this blogger and the post that I copy and pasted above.  I am thankful for the opportunity to make tomorrow better than today.  And, most of all, I am thankful for the never ending, unconditional love I have from my children.  They have been watching me grow right along with them.  What I saw in my own life, and what I want them to see, are so very very very different.  

I will stumble along the way, but for me, this is a path never taken by my own family, and it's not going to just be easy and natural.  It's not what I know.  The bumps and bruises I get to my ego or my heart, along the way, will make me the person I want them to be.  And hopefully, through watching me trying so hard to be everything to them, and watching me succeed, and seeing me fail and keep on trying, they'll find that the path to this kind of parenting isn't quite as full of brambles as it was when I walked it.  Because I led the way.  Because someone had to go first.

I end this post with this poem (we all know it!) that now means something much different to me than when I read it in high school.
Robert Frost (1874–1963).  Mountain Interval.  1920.
1. The Road Not Taken
TWO roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;        5
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,        10
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.        15
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.        20

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Sugar-Free Super Yummy Peanut Butter Balls

As I'm sure some of you know, my son cannot process refined sugars of any kind.  He also cannot seem to handle maple syrup, or any type of artificial sweeteners.  Also, he is for sure extremely sensitive to dyes.
So that leaves us with raw honey as our main "sweetener".  (We also use bananas and apple sauce, dates, and whatever other fruits we can find that are very ripe, but in baking the honey works best in place of sugar.)

This recipe is one of my favorites because of how easy it is, and it's the kids' favorite because of how good it tastes.    

No bake sugar-free peanut butter balls:

1/2 cup quick oats (you can use instant oatmeal)
1/2 cup peanut butter (you could use whatever nut butter you like)
2 tbsp flax (you don't need this, just increase the oatmeal by a tbsp. if you don't use it)
2 tbsp. raw honey (soften)

Mix it all up in a bowl until it's all consistent.  Roll into small balls.  Refrigerate.

The end.

*These are our tweaked version of a chocolate chip pb ball recipe I found online.
:)  Enjoy!!!