A New View At Life

IMG_3497Almost a year ago I had an epiphany of sorts. I will blame it on the whole ‘turning 40‘ thing. I took a big step back and really analyzed where I was in my life, what I wanted and where I wanted to go. This ordeal sent my mind spinning in crazy directions, leaving me truly wondering what did I want? It was at that moment I decided to walk away.

Now, any of you that know me realize I do not do change well. I stayed at the crappiest job ever for 12 years because the thought of change scared me more than the toxic people I worked with. After much prayer and a gift from God, I was able to leave that job for a new one I truly loved. Fast forward two years and change would have its way with me again as we up and moved from Chicago to the grand ole state of Texas. New town, new state, knowing no one. I couldn’t even get to the grocery store without my navigation in my car. But I trudged on and am now getting quite familiar with this new land and have been able to do so without relying solely on Google Maps. Yeah me!

I tackled turning 40 with my bestie by taking a girls surfing trip to Barbados. It was amazing; the food, the surf, the stories – oh the stories! I think this picture sums it up quite well.

IMG_2633Now Kat, weren’t you talking about walking away? Yes, yes I was. I decided in my pre-midlife crisis moment to walk away from writing. This included my blog, Blissfully Domestic, my journal and every other writing platform I was working on or posting to. Seems easy I know, but when something has been a part of your life for eight years it is hard to walk away. Through writing and blogging I have made fierce life long friendships, I have met amazing people, been inspired over and over again, have finally been among people that ‘get’ me – how could I walk away from everything I loved and cherished. These guys.

IMG_1862And Hubby, I can’t forget Hubby. I had caught myself one too many times saying, “Just give me a minute to finish this up” and “Can you please quiet down? Mommy need to get her work/writing/post done“. I was actually convicted by Monkey who said, “I know Mom, you always say that.” Whoa. THAT is not what I wanted to hear. I didn’t want them to remember me as some crazy haired person hiding behind a laptop. I wanted them to remember me; that I spent time with them, was fully present in their lives, that I cared about them more than the internet, that I loved them with all my heart and soul.

So after a heart to heart with Hubby and his assurance that the world would go on if I didn’t blog, I took a break. To say it was easy would be a big fat lie. I was like an addict – “If I just quick put up this haiku I just wrote people wouldn’t forget about me, maybe if I do just one more 100 Words….” The list went on and on. I made a conscious effort to leave my laptop out of plain sight. I actually hid it in my closet. Pathetic, I know. But I missed it. I still miss it. But by walking away for a bit it made me realize how much time I was truly spending on it. Time that I could never get back with my family.

So now our family rule is no laptops after dinner. Internet time has been replaced with mandatory family snuggle time on the couch. And even though it is cramped and squishy and full of boy madness, I wouldn’t trade it for the world. But I am trying to find a way write more. Because life has to be about balance right?

 

Strong Mom Party of One, Please

daboys

I am often outnumbered, in fact, I am always outnumbered. I am the sole female living in a house full of boys. Not that this is anything new to me. I grew up with a brother, had all boy cousins and lived in a neighborhood full of boys. Ironically, girls are a foreign entity to me.

But being a Mom to boys is not always easy. My vision of motherhood is often challenged and is nothing like what I envisioned as a young girl. Being a Mom to boys has its own crazy unwritten rule book. Rule Number One: There are no rules. There isn’t much of a learning curve either. You leave the hospital with this bundle of boyhood and hit the ground running. Will you stumble? Yes. Fall flat on your face? Oh yeah. Love them unconditionally even though they drive you to the brink of insanity? Absolutely!

Here is what I have learned so far:

  • The seat is never down. Never. Dreams of it ever being down again have long been flushed away.
  • Body functions are funny. If it comes out of the body – it’s humorous. Most days it is downright hilarious. It’s even funnier when it is inappropriately timed or in a public forum.
  • Duct tape becomes your best friend and a necessity. It can fix toys, accessorize swords and guarantees that your child’s diaper stays on through the night.
  • Your vision of you house smelling sweet and welcoming is replaced by outdoor musk and stinky socks.
  • This vision takes a cruel turn for the worse when your child enters tweendom and discovers Axe. *save me*
  • Your purse becomes a safe haven for random Legos, action figures, gum wrappers, special rocks they had to keep, athletic cups and anything else they deem worthy of keeping but not important enough to carry themselves. This by the way applies to everything they own.
  • You cute sassy purse turns into a huge canvas Mom bag.
  • You will have an in-depth knowledge of Star Wars, bugs, football statistics and all the noises you can make with various body parts.
  • You will learn that boys have invisible dirt magnets under their nails and no matter how often you wash and scrub them, they will be black again in minutes.
  • Your husband, sensing the testosterone filled house, will embrace his inner 12 year old and teach and/or encourage many of the above mentioned behaviors.
  • You will have bad days. Days when you will yell, say not nice things, things you regret. You will be tired, angry and frustrated. They will still love you.
  • Your boys will see you at your worst and still think you are beautiful and when you put on a dress they will say, “WOW Momma, you look pretty!”
  • It will be the best and most rewarding job you will ever have!
  •  Take the StrongMoms Empowerment Pledge

    ** I am participating in a blog campaign with One2One Network. I have not received any payment. All opinions, pieces of wisdom and parental transgressions are my own. **

Presentiment

I desperately searched his eyes for the answer, waiting for a response I didn’t want to hear.

He was still so young, but deep down, I knew his love for her was real.

This is my response to prompt two of this week’s Trifecta challenges: Write a 33 word response using the third definition of the word ‘Anticipation‘.

So Much To Be Thankful For

This lassie has much to be thankful for and I am grateful for the abundance of blessings God has provided me. Most of all, this car full of chaos!

From my family to yours, Happy Thanksgiving!!

Photo A Day September: Days 1 – 9

Day 1:  Now  Day  2: Dad   Day 3: Far away
Day 4: Mailbox  Day 5: Bright   Day 6: Every day
Day 7: Natural   Day 8: At night   Day 9: Something you do most weekends

Photo A Day August: Days 1 – 9

1. outside   2. one   3. coins
4. where you sat   5. logo   6. writing
7. 8 o’clock   8. glasses   9. messy

Six Word Memoir – La Familia

Back together again, all is good

This week my memoir is doubling as my Summer Fun Photo Challenge. This weeks theme is family. I love mine and after not having Bear home for two weeks, I was uber excited to see his smiling face again, even if he tried to hide in the picture!

So snap of picture of some family fun and join in!!


Six Word Memoir – And He’s Off

He’s on his way to Canada

sassy irish lassie

My heart just broke a little

Today I put Bear on a plane to Canada for two weeks.  He’ll be an exchange student and have the time I his life.  I only cried a little, not wanting to embarrass him. It is the first of many strings that will be cut as he continues to grow into an adult. But every little cut hurts a little more. Who told him he could grow up so darn fast. Sniff sniff

Get Up, Get Out, Get Active

As a Mom of boys, and as an athlete myself, I know how important it is to get kids outside and active. I started team sports at a very young age and continued playing through college and still play now! The camaraderie, competition and exercise is great for the mind and body. So when my boys approached me about playing sports I responded with a loud and definite YES!

My boys are avid football and lacrosse players. Our weeks are full of practices and our weekends are full of games and tournaments. You know that uber loud obnoxious cheering Mom at the games? Yeah, that’s me. There is something about sports that sucks me in and gets my adrenaline pumping. What better way to encourage and motivate your child in a sport, right? Even more important is the fact that they love doing it and are building healthy lifestyle choices in the process.

The Chicago Bears are strong believers that children should be fit and active. That kids get off those couches and go outside! Their youth camps help children push beyond their comfort zone, learn new skills and acquire a life long love of being active. The Chicago Bears Youth Camp believes with patience and encouragement, kids gain confidence.

Kids love learning new skills and are always excited to succeed. Tom Finks, Executive Director of Chicago Bears Youth Football Camps, states, “At our camps, through fun skill challenges, fun competitions and fun games, kids exert themselves—often beyond their normal comfort level.”

The Chicago Bears Youth Football Camps are safe, non-contact instruction for kids ages 6-14 and are very suitable for any kid that just wants to learn the game. They provide a station-based training format that allows campers to be divided by age and experience level so each receives the right level of instruction and support. Kids will learn to run, throw, catch, defend, form block, form tackle and explode out of their stance with proper technique and improved speed. The camps, which each run for 5 days from 9am to 3pm (that’s 30 hours active learning, instruction and fun!), do more than just introduce kids to sports, they make kids passionate about being healthy and help develop a lifelong love of fitness. Camps are held at various Chicagoland locations.

Want a chance to give your a Chicago Bears football camp prize pack? It’s easy!  Leave a comment about your, or your child’s,  favorite sport to play and your email and you are entered. Want a second chance? Tweet this giveaway and leave the URL in the comment section. An example tweet could be:

My child wants to go to the Chicago Bears Football Camp! http://tinyurl.com/cttb9za #eatlikeabear

The winner will receive a Chicago Bears Youth Football Camps prize package that will include items such as: Small leather binder, Bears rally towel, water bottle, Play 60 drawstring bag, D.J. Moore fan face, Bears gloves and football cards. One winner will be randomly chosen June 1st.

Good luck! Now go outside and play!!

Six Word Memoir – Open Doors

six word memoirOpen to learning what God wants.

What is your six word memoir for the week? Join in, I would love the company!