Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Too Hard on Myself

Given my last post on Aiden’s basketball experience and upcoming preschool. I’ve noticed I’m exceptionally hard on myself in regards to motherhood. It broke my heart to think I failed him and that I wasn’t doing my job. Some days I wish I could take on Jarod’s laid-back mentality and just go more with the ebbs and flow of life.

Because the truth is Aiden is not a bad kid. He is not a bad person. Goodness, he’s not even four; we still have a lot of time to mold him into a outstanding man. Also, I know I can’t be a bad mother because I am whole-heartly trying the best I can. I hate that I was never given a handbook on raising children nor was I given a handbook on how to raise any one of our children . I’m literally hanging onto the seat of my chair, experimenting with various parenting techniques and hoping one works better than the other.

I’ve realized and need to be okay, and I mean, really, really okay, with the fact that I can’t do more for him because I’m doing the best I can. As a mother and as a woman, I feel like if something’s not working then it’s my fault and I just need to do more, just need to do better.

Thus, I’m vowing to stop being so hard on myself and accept myself as I accept my children. I don’t demand perfection from them nor should I of myself. I can’t give Aiden every single thing he wants and needs and so I’m letting go. I’m letting him go out into preschool, out into the world and apart from the place he’s known every second of his life: by my side. Off he goes to meet new people, share new experiences and learn from someone else I hope will care for him a fraction of how I care for him.

(Tears. Tears. Tears.)

Aging One Day at a Time

Baby me with my mom and my two older brothers in Colorado.
As I’ve aged these last twenty-five years and life has taught me a thing or two, I’ve also been graced with a greater calmness inside of me. Granted, I still crave the ease a youthful body once-provided me, the spontaneity and forgiveness a lack of responsibility entitled me and the ability to kiss, hug, cuddle and make love to my husband at any time of any given day.

Over the years, especially my early twenties, I’ve invented myself, reinvented myself, held an opinion as truth and changed that truth as quickly as swift as the passing of a hiccup. The biggest factor I’ve found in becoming who I want to be. A loving mother. A sweet wife. A caring friend. A loyal daughter. And the woman I admire. Is the gentle acceptance of knowing I don’t know a damn thing. I’d like to believe that it’s as easy to say as it is to do. Some days it pains me to not know everything. Some days I feel like a failure because I'm not quite sure how to discipline my children's individual needs. Some days I hate how, even after seven years of marriage, we still fight and sometimes it takes us hours to find some sort of compromise.

I’m slowly evolving and although, I am still far from truly becoming the woman I always hoped to be, I like the quiet ease that's coming over me. More often than not, I feel serene calmness moving forward in life accepting that there is much to learn. I vow to that I will take each day, one day at a time with an open-heart, a glimmer in my eye and the hand of the one I love while my sweet baby ducks waddle and squawk behind us.

Monday, January 30, 2012

The Moment I Was Yours

It was the summer of 2004. The first summer I tethered between unsolicited, protected youth and the free embrace of a new life; still youthful in its pristine, yet, gleaming in ambition and possibilities. It was the in-between of the last of high school and all of its adolescent possessions and it was the start of college and all its adult promises. It encumbered everything that one thinks of in youthful transition; it was beautiful and lovely.

And even more lovely and beautiful because I found you.

I showed up at your house that sunny, warm July afternoon and you smiled back at me in your white shirt. You came towards me as my heart fluttered and a small voice inside of me reminded me to breathe. You gently led my hand as you eagerly told me you wanted me to hear something. We sat in my new Honda Civic, intertwined our fingers and embraced our beating hearts. I rested my head on your shoulder as I savored the moment knowing full-well I wanted to always remember this exactly as it was. The music hummed loudly in the background, the beat vibrated against my body and the only voice I heard was yours, whispering these sweet, sweet promises into the innocence of my ear:

Lying here with you, listening to the rain.
Smiling just to see a smile upon your face.
And these are the moments I thank God I'm alive.

These are the moments I'll remember all my life.
I found all I've waited for and I could not ask for more.
Looking in your eyes, seeing all I need.
Everything you are is everything to me.
These are the moments I know heaven must exist.
These are the moments I know all I need is this.
I have all I've waited for and I could not ask for more.

I could not ask for more than this time together.
I could not ask for more that this time with you.
Every prayer has been answered and every dream that has come true.
Yeah, right here in this moment is right where I'm meant to be

Oh, here with you, here with me.

And these are the moments I thank God that I'm alive.
And these are the moments I'll remember all my life.
I've got all I've waited for and I could not ask for more.

(Repeat Chorus)

I could not ask for more than the love you gave me cause it's all I've waited for.
And I could not ask for more . . .

And that baby, that was the moment I was yours <3

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Sunday, January 29, 2012

Where We Met

We met the summer after my high school graduation. I spent the afternoon at orientation for my new job and he spent the afternoon working downstairs. I came up to his register and he rang out my black pair of pants. He thought I was, "cute and sweet-looking." I thought he was grumpy. It was love at first sight for him and it took me just a little bit longer but I, eventually, fell in love with his grumpy-butt <3

Here are a few of the only pictures we took of us at the place we found love <3

We don't really like each other :)

I have no words. Note to self: take more pictures. take more "normal" pictues.

Why I Love My Husband

Jarod with our first-born, Aiden.
I’m pretty positive I could go on and on about why I love my husband but I’m going to try to narrow it down in one little blog post. I love his sense of humor and the silly faces and voices he uses to make me laugh. I feel equally as honored knowing that that silliness of his is, most often, only saved for me. I love the way he’ll chase after our kids and pretend to be a monster as they run, hide and laugh in an equal mixture of delight and terror. I love the way he would hold our babies in his arms, cradling their tiny bodies and gently supporting their necks as if it was the most effortless and natural of things to do. I love the way he smiled and looked at each one in amazement the second they were born.

Jarod with brand-new baby, Trissy.

I love the way he possess all the qualities in a man, father and husband I always hoped for. I love that believes it’s his duty to support, financially and emotionally, and care for all of our well-beings. I love that he’s generous with his money, often telling me to spend more and to stop being so frugal. I love that he would rather stay home, cuddled in bed with me than go out to some party or club.

Us a few years back <3

I love the way he loves me. I love the way he views me as his equal, never negating me as my own person; yet, treasures me as his most valuable possession. I love how he values my opinion and at times will respect it so much it will outweigh his own. I love how supportive he’s been of me, my new-found, and often-times quick-ending, hobbies and I love how supportive he’s been of my blog and the time that it’s taken away from household necessities. I love the way he has never made me feel less than myself. I love the love he’s given me and how it’s always gently asks more of me; yet, lovingly supports who I am at the present.

I love that he respects and honors women’s rights, a women’s prerogative to stay at home or to be a woman in the public work sphere and believes that intelligence isn’t, simply, divided by what’s down one’s pants but rather the depth and scope of an individual’s mind. I love all of these qualities he possess; yet, I love that I can feel like a woman in love with a man just by being in his presence. I, especially, love that he is the kind of man that our daughter will aspire to find.

Daddy with his baby girl.

I love his intellect; the way his mind maneuvers, his thought-process and his intelligence. I love that we share similar views on almost everything. I love the way his hand always finds mine in the midst of the night and sometimes, even in the pinnacle of a fight. I love his heart and the kindness that exudes out of it. I love his openness, his ability to find humor in life and in spite, of the chaos in our lives and in this world.

I love so much about him but mostly, I love that he’s mine <3

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Basketball and Preschool

Jarod and I played basketball growing up so it holds a soft-spot in our hearts. I'll admit that I've dreamt of having kids and watching them play the sport throughout their childhoods. I've experienced first-hand how difficult playing a sport I loved so much was when it became combined with such high expectations. Basketball wasn't just a game for me; it became much more and somewhere down the line, my love, my desire for it waned. Thus, I promised myself that I would never place that much emphasis on such trivial things in the lives of my children. Grades better be damn great and their growth as a decent human-being should be bar-none but how many points they can score in game will be the least of my worries.

I love him so much even though . . . (read on)

We've signed Aiden up for three activities so far, swim, soccer and basketball. There is absolute no give with me about swim lessons. I don't care how fast his backstroke will be but I want my kids to know how to swim, how to take care of themselves if ever placed in the situation where they must swim to save themselves. You see, I get a bit panicky when the walls of the deep-end seem a tad too far. I can pass as someone who is able to swim by the unsuspecting eye but I'm pretty terrible at it.

However, signing Aiden for soccer and yes, even basketball are our attempts to get him acquainted with the world, to meet and learn how to interact with different people and also, to encourage physical fitness in his life at an early age.

Today was his first basketball game and it's safe to say that he did not play a single second of the game. He even refused to sit by his team. His favorite part of the whole episode was the water break. We begged, pleaded and even bribed the kid with ice cream if he would just play for a little bit to see if he liked it. He adamantly refused. I felt the stares of the other parents, mostly with sympathy and a few with judgements. None of which didn't really bother me as much as having absolutely not a clue how to respond to him or the situation.

"Do you want ice cream!?"

One thing Jarod pointed out was that Aiden could be scared of his coach. Although, the guy is wonderful, super nice and very encouraging; he's much louder and boisterous than Aiden's accustomed to. Jarod and I are soft-spoken and Aiden only hears a raised voice when he's in trouble.

Aiden's coach and daddy trying to convince him to play.

However, that doesn't excuse his downright neglect to listen to authority. He's very good about listening to Jarod and I on an everyday, regular basis but at basketball, he'll even refuse to just sit down on a black line with his teammates.

Ugghhh, WTF.

Trissy, Aiden's fan #1.

Ali, Aiden's fan #2.

The game ended and the coach remarked that it's fine and he will play one of these days. He has children of his own, has a daughter that refused to walk until 22 months and thus, he had the patience and wisdom to know that time will come and his resistance will wane. Yet, when we got home, I tried to fight the tears of disappoint sliding down my face. I was not disappointed that Aiden would not be a basketball prodigy, far from it. I was disappointed in the way I was parenting him.

I was the mother of "that kid" that refused to listen and I realized that I was failing him by not giving him a more structured daily-life. If Aiden wants to sleep in until 10AM, then he does and I acclimate our day for him. If Aiden doesn't want to color, read or sit down and count with me, then we stop. I have the "luxury" to stop when he is no longer interested. Since I'm busy with the younger kids and their needs more often, Aiden is, also, left to play on his own quite often doing what he wants to do, whenever he wants to do it. In retrospect, his life is very self-absorbed as he doesn't have to take into account the needs and wants of others. He's the oldest and his younger siblings don't care enough to fight for their own preferences.

My tears came crashing down and Jarod comforted me, remarking that Aiden is a good kid that was kind and polite to others but the truth is, is that we don't have the time and the ability to give him what he needs. He went on to say that Aiden needs more structure and it would good for him to separate from me and interact with other kids his age, be forced to do things that don't necessarily suit his personal preference at the time-being as well as learn the basis of the future of his education.

I knew the truth of the words his spoke and that afternoon, I saw the necessity of his words.

We weren't planning on putting him in preschool until September but I think we should do it as soon as possible. Granted, I won't lie when I say that the "break" will be amazing. Aiden hasn't napped for months; I honestly can't even remember the last time. Thus, when Ali and Tristen take their afternoon nap and Aiden is in preschool, I can finally have some peace of mind during the day and a nice break from all the parental duties for just a little bit.

I love all three of them very much but a break from them sounds so nice.

This new revelation and change in Aiden's life will take us a step-back from our "getting out of debt" journey but it is what it is. We feel this is a necessity and healthy step in the growth of Aiden as a person. And money, well, will never be as important as that.

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Saturday, January 28, 2012

Date Night

Yesterday afternoon, I went to drop off Aiden at his cousin’s house for a sleepover and as his girl cousins, S and A, ecstatically rushed to the door, jumping up and down from excitement, Aiden, with a very gloomy look on his face, refused to go inside.

In confusion, I looked down at him, asked what was wrong and why didn’t he want to go inside and play with his cousins.

“I can’t go. Trissy’s not here.

His response warmed my motherly-heart and as I was about to tell him that Tristen wasn’t going to be able to come and that sometimes they need to be apart, my sister (my brother’s fiancĂ©) suggested I drop Tristen off as well and that I could just go out and get some things done or just hangout.

What!? Really???

“Are you sure?”

“Yah, the girls are really easy. Just go!” she kindly instructed.

I drove away with Ali sleeping in her car seat and the ride was eerily quiet as it lacked a demanding (almost) four-year-old telling me to, “Drive!!” at each red light (of which I explain to him I can't because the light's red and we would get in an accident if we did to which he will reply once-again, "Mommy, DRIVE!") and him repetitively asking me if I saw that truck, that school bus or  that airplane.

Since going out the eat with three kids under the age of four is annoying difficult, Jarod and I usually will just opt for pizza or take-out and eat at home. It’s hard when there are three of them versus Jarod and I so I have never even attempted to take them all out to lunch by myself . However, since it was just me and baby girl, a sweet, super easy six-month-old baby girl, I decided I was going to get one of my favorite foods, sushi and Korean tofu soup, for lunch. Yum!!

All of this is under $15! Another reason why it's one of my favorite!

As I waited for the food to arrive, I feed her and then sat her back down in the stroller as she smiled and watched me eat without complaint. It’s been so long since I’ve had an easy and peaceful lunch that I’d forgotten that they existed.

I love my boys but man, (sigh) preschool and toddler years are a handful!

Afterwards, Ali and I went to Target to return some items. Usually I would never want to go into a store to run such a simple errand that would take less than five minutes with all three kids because it already takes me between ten to fifteen minutes just to enter the store to begin with. A typical arrival at the store includes grabbing a cart, placing Tristen in the cart seat, putting Ali and her car seat in the basket of the cart, grabbing the diaper bag with all the essentials (just in case) and then grabbing Aiden out of his car seat, instructing him to hold the cart and stay close. It’s a lot of work so I usually just don’t do it but today since it was just Ali and I, I ran my errand, we leisurely walked around the store and then I bought myself a Grande Mocha Frappuccino and a slice of Ice Lemon Pound cake at the Starbucks inside. Ali sat peacefully as I enjoyed my drink and food; again, it was so odd to be able to do this.

"WTF is this shit!?" She tried my lemon cake haha :)

We went home, I set her down for a nap and shortly after, Jarod came home from work. I thought that since the boys weren’t home and wouldn’t be begging to “help” that I should probably clean the house but then I rationalized that I never have this kind of peace and quiet so the house stayed a mess.

Later, we got a call from my brother saying that Aiden accidently slammed the door shut on Tristen’s pinky finger and that we should come over immediately.

A very blurry picture of his finger the day after.

Since I’ve had a few years of mommyhood experience under my belt, I didn’t instinctively freak-out. Over the years, I have had many. many freak-outs, including a waterfall of tears escaping my guilty-conscious mommy-eyes that I fucked Aiden up when he had his first common cold and slightly above-average temperature. Twice, I have driven Aiden in the middle of the night to the Children's Emergencyroom because I thought something was really wrong with him but it turned out that he was completely fine and would just need some time to heal.


Thus, when I got the call from my brother, I wasn't too worried. I've learnt that kids are very resilient and it takes a lot for them to "break." Tristen's pinky finger was about twice as large as the other normal, healthy pinky finger but he was acting fine. He was laughing, smiling, cuddling with me and could bend his finger easily so Jarod and I just decided to keep an eye on it and if it got any worst, we would take him to the doctors.

My mom had offered to watch the kids that night so Jarod and I could go out for a date but since we were already there, my sis offered to watch the kids while we went out to eat; she's a sweet soul and I love her it.

Jarod and I just went to the mall to get him a new pair of casual shoes and then off to dinner at Red Lobster for their $15 four-course meal. Nothing exciting but yet, it was amazing. It felt nice to not have to cater to three little people's needs at all times, to not remind them to follow us and to not venture too far. It was really nice to just be able to spend some time focused on my husband.

We spent the night holding hands, which we used to do all the time before kids. These days we seem to be holding one of the kids hands or diaper bag or pushing a stroller instead. We were able to just talk and laugh without interuption. It was wonderful.

It was also a good reminder why we were together in the first place. It seems during our daily lives it becomes increasingly difficult to find some kind of connection but last night, I remembered that I really, really like this guy.

It makes me sad that time will force the kids to grow up; yet, I'm equally as excited to have some quality time back with the person I loved before all this craziness began <3

My Jj :)

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Friday, January 27, 2012

Naleigh Moon

I just think this is just a beautiful song and video. It almost makes me want to adopt . . . if I had one less kid, my sanity intack and a husband who was willing (I jokingly asked and he very abruptly replied with, "NO, no, no, no, no,") but if I had all of those in my favor, I might just do it. Anyways, I've been obsessed over this song since I first heard it and just think it's lovely <3

I know the kind of guy I am
A bit too much and to myself
Not much left for someone else
And I'm sure I cause my share of pain
But all that changed
When you first touched my face

Halfway around my little world
You had no idea that you were my girl
You found my arms not a moment too soon
I couldn't see past me till I saw you
My sweet Naleigh Moon

I love the man you're makin' me
Yeah, everyday, I wanna prove
There's nothin' I won't do for you
Just to see you in your mama's arms
Is more than enough
To bring me to my knees

Halfway around my little world
You had no idea that you were my girl
You found my arms not a moment too soon
I couldn't see past me till I saw you
My sweet Naleigh Moon

I can't imagine life without my
Naleigh Moon

Halfway around my little world
You had no idea that you were my girl
You found my arms not a moment too soon
I couldn't see past me till I saw you
I couldn't see past me till I saw you
Naleigh Moon
My sweet Naleigh Moon

Just imagine how wonderful the world would be if every child felt this kind of love by their parents


A Conversation About Wieners

Here's a typical conversation in our house. Enjoy! And sorry, you may be a tad bit dumber after reading.

Aiden: "Dinosaurs don't have wieners."

Me: "Boy dinosaurs have wieners."

Aiden: "Hmm. I have a wiener. Girls don't have a wiener."

Me: "Yah, only boys have wieners."

Aiden (who apparently thinks I'm a boy): "You have a wiener??"

Me: "No, mommy doesn't have a wiener. Mommy is not a boy."

Aiden (now trying to be cute and funny as well as degrade me): "You have a wiener!!"

Me: "No, mommies don't have wieners. Only boys have wieners."

Aiden: "My friends have wieners. Daddy has a wiener. Trissy has a wiener. Kuya Jayden has a wiener. Papa has a wiener . . ."

The conversation went on for a few more minutes but I'm sure you can deductively decipher how the remainder of the conversation followed.

P.S. If you were still unclear, I would like to restate that I do not have a wiener. I am not a boy.

To Love a Child

The truth is, there a million and one reasons to not want to have kids and frankly, to not even like them. They stink, they pee and crap in their pants and expect you to clean them. They break your shit all the time and instead of sincerely apologizing to you like a decent human being, they suggest that you just go to the store and, “buy a new one!” They ask you five-hundred-thousand questions just to annoy the hell out of you because they’re curious about the world and they demand an answer. They whine excessively, cry like a little bitch baby and ferociously throw themselves on the floor when they don’t get their way.

A very happy Tristen.

They’re a pain in the ass about 97% of the time.

So why would anyone want to have one in the first place? And why in the world would I, knowing full-well what they’re like, want to have two more after already having one, after knowing what they're really like?

Because the little shits suck you in with their tooth-less, excessively drooling little smiles and somehow, you see past all the inundated saliva dripping down their shirts, you see past their immobile, motionless fat little blobs of a body that do absolutely nothing and you see past their bald, cradle-capped bobble-head and you feel it. You feel a warm, soothing breeze sucker punch you in the gut. You have absolutely no idea how or what’s happening but it feels too wonderful to fight. It's unlike anything I’ve ever experienced and it seems impossible and even undeserving to even attempt to place this, this wondrous, amazing, overwhelming feeling of unsolicited, unconditional love, into mere mortal words.

While I was pregnant with my first-born, my baby Aiden, I knew I already loved him the very second that second line showed up. I tenderly caressed the skin of my belly where he would gently (and then not-so-gently) nudge and kick his tiny feet and hands. I sang him songs about the love I had for him in the still and quietness of my bathtub. I happily dreamt, joyfully thought and eagerly prepared for his arrival into the world, into the comfort of our family and into the protection of my arms. I had no idea what he looked like or who he was yet but still, I rejoiced at the very suggestion of his simple existence. I loved him just as he was. I was thankful to him just for being alive.

See that sweet smile of his?? Totally suckered me into wanting more babies.

In the early morning hours of March 7th, 2008, my little man was born and the love I felt when he was inside of me had nothing on the full-force emotions that steam-rolled it's way into my life the nanosecond he was born. I cradled him into my body and wanted so desperately for him to feel the love his mere existence in this world gave me so I squeezed his tiny body as tightly as I possibly could hoping the love I felt would somehow transfer into his little baby heart. I proudly stroked his sweet, precious head full of black hair. I counted each and every last toe and finger, confirming what I knew all along: he was absolutely as perfect as I thought he would be.

One-day-old baby Aiden.

The first few days of his life and my new existence as a “mommy” were undeniably special. During these days, I could have cared less if the other half of the world dropped from existence because there was only one person’s existence that mattered. Without hesitation, I promised him that I would gain the strength of a million soldiers if I needed to in order to keep him safe and happy. I vowed to put his life, needs and whims before my own.

Stating how easy and simple and how effortless it was to love him seems too much of an understatement because it was much, much too easy, simple and effortless. Loving your child feels as natural as breathing, you do it without thought and you even begin to wonder what you ever did before with your once-meaningless life was graced with such amazement.

My rolly-polly, Aidy-Aids.

Though there are many, many moments where I have cried in frustration, lashed out at my husband because I had no other place to direct my anger and have prayed for time to speed these years forward as swift and as fast as possible, nothing, nothing, could ever take away the love I have for my children.

Nothing they could do could ever make me love them any less. Nothing else in this world could make me feel this kind of love for another. Nothing else could change me so much as much as the simple act of being their mommy.

Kisses from Trissy.

To say, “I love my children with every ounce of my being, every fabric of my soul, every thing that makes me whole, that makes me me,” just doesn’t give the love I have for them any true justice.

So to answer the question on why in the world did I have a child and then proceed to have more children??

My sweet baby girl and my very pink bra.

Simple. Because this love I've so generously been given and freely allowed to feel, own and protect is too damn good, wonderful, amazing, overwhelming, beautiful, incredible, lovely, great, extraordinary, delightful, magnificent and brilliant to not want to experience over and over again.

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Thursday, January 26, 2012

Makes My Heart Smile

She makes my heart smile.

How To Parent

Recently, I went shopping at Target with my three little babes and as I rounded a corner I saw and overheard a woman in pure frustration say to her child, her four-year-old daughter, “Then why did you say you didn’t want it?!?”

Through sheer miraculous God-intervention my three children were behaving perfectly at the moment. Well, I’d like to take some credit for their behavior because time and experience has taught me a few tricks on how to have well-behaved children. 1) I went shopping during Ali’s nap time so she slept through the whole shopping trip peacefully in her car seat . . . with or without some form of sleeping aid, I can’t really say and 2) I shamelessly bribed the boys with popcorn and Cherry Slurpees from the Cafe if, and only if, they stayed seated in Target’s double-seated shopping cart.

Sleeping baby Ali <3

What can I say? Parenting is easy; it’s all about having the patience, wisdom and experience to know exactly how to drug and/or bribe your young, easily-manipulated children into submission.

But, back to the lady yelling at her child. So I round the corner, she’s talking in an aggravated, louder-than-normal voice to her child , who has her arms neatly folded across her chest and a very discerning look of abrupt attitude written all over her face, and the other mother embarrassingly notices me, a young mom who seemingly has “her act together” with her three (temporarily) well-behaved young children. I can feel her humiliation as she begins to doubt her approach, anxiously recants her former parenting approach and starts apologetically back-stepping.

As this happens, I feel a bit sad for the mom because I know exactly why she's doing this. I can't help but sympathize with this mom because as a mother, myself, I can feel the weight of judgments being passed on the way I choose to parent my own children, all the time.
It’s almost an atrocity to me that women, particular mothers who know how hard this job is on it's own, feel so strongly about their way of parenting that any and all other forms of parenting are clearly wrong. Although, more often than not, those words are never actually heard from their mouths but it’s rather difficult to hear these people over their actions.

There’s no book on how to parent and every child is different, they are truly different and if you don't agree, go have a second child and then come back and talk to me, so it’s impossible to treat and discipline them equally. The only form of discipline and parenting that I completely disagree with is a lack thereof. You’re the parent and you know your child the best so it's only fitting to assume that the parent should care for their child as they see fit.

I don’t know what exactly happened in the situation with the mom and her daughter but from what I saw and overheard, I gather that her little (shit) four-year-old was being a brat and using her obvious dismay to get exactly what she wanted. I know from having an almost four-year-old, myself, that those little buggers are incredibly smart and can be very efficient on knowing how to get exactly what they want.

Baby Aiden before he became a four-year-old when I really loved him.

I know that Aiden usually cries because he’s caused some self-induced injury to himself, Tristen cries because he’s being unjustly treated (by his older brother) or he just wants what he wants NOW and Ali cries because she’s hungry or she can’t see someone in her line of vision. The way I respond and the speed of which I react to each of my children varies. It’s not that I love one more than the other (well, at least, not most of the time) but they’re my children, I know them best and there are reasons why I treat them the way I do.

Sweet baby Trissy when we thought he was going to be a quiet kid.
She's such a happy baby and attention whore.

Thus, I think the same is true for the mom at Target. I believe you know her best and personally, I think she was just acting like a bratty four-year-old. I really wished you just kept parenting the way you say fit and not the way you thought I would see fit.

(Hugs) Four-year-olds are tough, man.

My Relationship with My Husband

There are million different qualities about Jarod that still make me swoon and sends me over the moon when I think about him. Tears of joy can, literally, fall from these grateful, brown eyes when I think about how much I have because I have him in my life. He’s given me the courage and strength to believe that it’s possible for someone to love me. Through all my failures, misgivings and annoying, indifferent quirks, I can always feel the grasp of his desire for me.

We’ve gone through a lot. Even with the knowledge of the undeniable strength my children would gain from going through what we have, I hope with everything inside of me that they experience less than a small fraction of what we‘ve gone through. We have been broken by life and by each other; yet, his hand seems to always find mine when my knees tremble, my voice quivers uncontrollably and I feel as if there is no more of me to go on.

I love him. And I’m thankful to have a man such as him love me back.

But yet, I get so annoyed at his quirks and shortcomings. I hate that he instinctively believes that buying the top-of-the-line, most expensive item in any genre, or matter, is a necessity. It annoys me that his socks always fold inside-out when I go to load them in the laundry (even when I‘ve asked him countless times not to). I hate how he never cleans up the mess he makes in the kitchen and how his dirty clothes always seem to linger right where he last undressed. All of these “problems” are, without a doubt, minor in view of what really matters in life.

When I see my life and the course of it’s existence, even more than I see our beautiful children and our future gorgeous grandchildren, I see him. I see my Jj. I see my hand cradled lovingly and delicately by the hand of my best friend.

I’ve recently realized (especially with our wonderful array of arguments lately) that I need to remember, really remember, what really matters in life. I need to quit magnifying such small matters and remember what I see down the line and who I want to see fifty years from now. I need to force myself to take a step back and see the bigger picture. I need to remember whose hand I want to be holding many years from now and instead of getting exceptionally upset, I need to find a different release.

I need to breathe, square my shoulders, visualize the love of my life, recline my wrist a tad and most importantly, follow-through . . . while I watch those damn dirty socks still turned inside-out hit him square in the middle of his baby blue eyes.

(insert happily smiling and visualizing this resolution here).

Yes, this is a wonderful solution: less anger from me and more throwing of dirty still turned inside-out socks at him.

Yes, I believe I have definitely found a solution. Anniversary Year 50, here we come!!

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Organized Chaos

I want life to go smoothly, to be easy and predictable but anyone who really knows me knows that my complexity stretches far outside of myself, possibly far enough out to be deemed, “a tad bit insane.“ No one who really wanted a smooth and “easy” life would ever possibly think that having three kids this close together would be a good idea. And who gets married straight out of high school, anyways? Definitely not somebody who wants a ride on easy street.

I’ll admit that I like organized chaos but in all honesty, should those two words even sit beside one another in a sentence?

Probably not.

But still, it must be said: I like organized chaos and I like driving myself insane.

My current state of life captured in a picture.
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Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Out of Debt Journey #1

With all the holidays, car maintenance and car problems expenses and a recent expensive, although very lovely, iPad 2 purchase (you‘ve very welcome, hubby), we have yet to make any real ground on any of our debt as of late. It’s been a bit discouraging for me and it’s, also, been a great source of arguments the last few days. (Don‘t know what I‘m talking about? Just check out my last few blogs to catch up; essentially, it’s been a pretty shitty few days in our household).

Jarod really wanted an iPad and we talked it over and decided it wasn’t the right time. He brought it up again. And again. And again until I finally gave in agreed. Some things in life (and especially, in a marriage) you just have to let go, compromise and smile through your teeth as you sputter out in a not-so-joyful tone, “Merry friggin' Christmas.”

Ohh, Apple, you don't have to sell it to us; you already suckered our money out of our pockets.

So yes, we bought the damn thing. Later, we fought about it and then I finally decided to completely let go over any angst I had about it and move on.

Other than that, we have been really good about money in other ways. Our big-screen TV in our living room is officially an asshole. The last time I tried to turn it on it took, and I swear on my Urban Decay Naked eye shadow palette (absolutely love that thing!) that I am not exaggerating in the slightest, 15 hours to fucking turn on. I want so desperately to grab that TV by it’s extension cords, slam it into the ground screen first and ferociously kick it’s ass but instead I whisper sweet nothings into it’s speakers in hopes that it’ll turn on and let me use it just one more time just like a frat-boy in college does to a  pretty, bright-eyed Freshman.

That’s a bit dark and dirty. Sorry, Mom.

So we just leave the dang TV on ALL the time; truly not an exaggeration again. I’m wasting energy. My power bill is probably going up by every single minute. But I’ll be damned if we buy another TV before that thing finally, truly crooks. The thing is, Jarod and I, won’t settle for a dinky 28 inch screen box TV because we’ve had better; so when we go to buy a new TV, without words or even a single glance at one another, we’ll both just magically gravitate to the bright, sparkly 60+ inch big screen TV of our dreams, which will most definitely not be a LG again. Never again.

Beautiful big, screen TV of our little hearts’ desire, we can’t afford you right now because Sallie Mae is a bitch.

Also, we’re currently saving up money because February is my mom and Tristen’s birthday months and March is Aiden’s birthday month. We’re going to go out to dinner as a family on each of the kids’ birthday, have a bigger joint (no, not that kind) birthday party with family and a few friends and then go to friggin’ DISNEYLAND at the end of March. So all in all, it’s going to be pretty amazing but friggin’ expensive.

Yay!! :)))

I know what you’re thinking, “You’re going to go to Disneyland when you have THAT much debt!

To which I answer with a big: Hell Friggin’ Yah!!

I don’t want to sound irresponsible when I say money is just money because it’s essential and necessary, especially when you have children to raise, but Aiden (this trip is essentially for Aiden) will never have the look of astonishment and disbelief when his eyes behold onto all the magic that is Disney ever again. I know the money could be used to pay off debt faster but some things are just much too important to me. These are moments I will forever cherish and to all the debtors I owe money to, you’ll get your money soon enough but first, I’m going to Disneyland!!

But one thing I’m proud of, even though our debt is only going down slightly with the minimum payment amounts, is that we'll be rollin' with dough, absolutely no plastic, when I meet, I mean, when Aiden meets all for his favorite characters.

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