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Friday, July 22, 2011

Misadventures in Potty Training

We decided to give potty training a try with E this summer since my husband is off of work.  We knew it was probably a little early but wanted to give it a shot before we are both working again.  Unfortunately E has not been as easy to train thus far than L was.  Add onto that some unexpected "life" stuff and injuries and you can see how we ended up starting to slack on it.  So essentially we are taking a break until we get back from vacation.  

Well last night after shopping in Lowe's for an hour and a half (not fun), getting tired and trying to make decisions, all the sudden E's little voice says "I have to got to the bathroom" (yes he says it all adult-like).  My husband and I look at each other and then scramble to get him to the bathroom quickly.  Of course then I realize that I committed the cardinal sin of forgetting the diaper bag.  
Bad mommy!

So here's my son in a diaper that he already started to go #2 in, on the potty with no potty seat.  So I have to get all uncomfortable like a game of Twister just to hold him on there.  
Why is it boys take so long to do their business?  It is a mystery to me.  
So after what feels like forever holding him on the pot I start looking at the floor thinking, "I gotta sit down, I gotta sit down, oh God, but look at the floor."  "Am I really gonna sit on the floor of a public restroom"? 

Well ladies, I did.  

Not proud of it but my knees and feet were 
killing me at this point.  

All the while E is asking me all sorts of "potty" related questions and talking about his "tooters".  And he kept wanting to look at it and exclaim "look how big it is Momma!"  I bet the other women in the restroom really appreciated that :)  I kept asking him if he was done and of course his answer was always no.  After a few "years" I decided it was time to be done whether he really was or not.  

But what's a Mom to do?  

I had no clean diaper to put on him.  Had he gone #1 I would have just skipped it and he could go commando in his shorts until we got back home but alas he did not.  I didn't want him ending up in soaking shorts.  

So....(drumroll)...I had to put the partially dirty diaper back on...(gasp)...(gag)...I know.  

I assure you I tried to make things as clean as possible.  Luckily by the time we emerged from the bathroom my husband had just finished checking out so we swiftly went straight home and got cleaned up good and proper :)

Uuggh!  I hope we never have to go through that fiasco again!  I will be sure to be prepared!  But the upside is that E got to experience the success of recognizing he needed to go, telling us,  and then successfully "going" on the potty.  He was so happy when getting his reward of M&M's when we got home.

Any funny potty training stories to tell?
I would love to hear them!

Favorite Things Friday

finding joy

A few favorite things from this past week....

Sticky little boys

This is what I came home to the other day.
Look at the PBJ all over E's shirt!
And yes, that is jelly on his ear and his knees. 
Normally I would have heaved a deep sigh at the laundry
nightmare this is sure to cause but honestly it just had me laughing :)

Farm fresh

This is my loot from a recent trip to a local farm.  Everything looked so delicious it was hard to decide what to get.  So far we've had the corn on the cob, green beans, blueberries, apples, and nectarines plain...and they were great!  So fresh and flavorful they didn't even need dressed up with anything.  My husband made a bacon and spinach frittata with the farm fresh eggs...delicious.  All that's left is for me to attempt to "pickle" the pickling cucumbers, little nervous about that one ;)

The Falls

The new area where the pool used to be is coming along really well.  Remember that handy husband of mine?  This is all thanks to him.  He built the retaining wall (on half is visible here) and reconstructed the fire pit which would hold about anything BUT a fire in this pic. And the waterfall?  Needs some more rock before we can call her done.  But when the water is on, it falls just beautifully.  We're thinking of having a "who needs a pool anyway?" party :)

A new little project

I'm excited to get into a new project (especially one that is little, easy, and will provide me a sense of accomplishment within hours).  We got this dresser for E's room for FREE....boy do I love that word!  Some new paint and knobs and it will be sporting a new look.  I'm thinking bright red for this baby, will go great in his room.

Old school cartoons

My boys are all the sudden into old cartoons that I used to watch when I was kid.  I actually sat and watched Tom and Jerry with them for a half hour the other night.  I'm getting a huge kick out of them asking to watch these instead of the usual modern day pals.  Sorry Dora and Diego but I mean YOU emPHAsize EVery OTher SYLLabLE, and it just drives me nuts. 
I prefer the physical comedy provided by Tom and Jerry and Bugs and pals so its much nicer to have these on in the background.

 Sandal tanned little feet

I love seeing the little stripe of tan on his feet from his sandals.
It reminds me that he is running around like a little boy should, enjoying his second summer.

Finding this little gem

I ADORE this and just may have to make a print with this saying on it for in each of my boys' rooms.

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

In a Southern state of mind.....

Come sit a spell :)
I know many of you are lucky enough to live "down south" but around here we experience severe northern exposure.  Along with the colder temps we suffer from an inhospitable attitude.

Oh I'm not saying its like that in the entire north, 
but where I live...um yea it's the norm.

My husband and I lived in a little po-dunk town in North Carolina for 2 brief years.  It was an unbelievable experience for us.  The absolute love and kindness we were shown in our time there was so enlightening to the way life could be.  When we moved back here we swore we did not want to lose that southern state of mind.  I think we kept it for a bit but looking back now I see we have let it go.  

I think it's time to resurrect some good 'ol southern hospitality!

: :
Like saying hello.  
I mean its commonplace here to walk past someone and not look at them or say anything.  Come on!  We don't even acknowledge people's existence!  How sad is that?  I'm gonna work on saying "hi" to everyone I pass by.  I may even really freak them out and remark on the day or ask how they are.  
That'll throw 'em for a loop!

: :
And opening the door for people.  
Oh we do this sometimes but not NEARLY often enough.

: :
Offering your seat to someone else.

: :
Stopping to help when we see someone struggling and not worrying if its going to make you late.  
That's a big one I'm guilty of :[

: :
Saying "Sir" and Ma'am".  
We always said we wanted our kids to show respect in this way but we have stopped doing it ourselves a lot of times.  One thing we have held on to well is saying "Mister" or "Miss" before someone's first name and our boys have caught on to it.  I just love the way it sounds...."Miss Diane, may I have some juice please?"  Perfectly polite little boys :)

Here's to sweet tea sippin', 
sweet talkin' southerners 
(and northerners in that 
sounthern state of mind)

We love y'all!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

You know its love when.....

You give up a massage for your daughter.

My lovely mother did this very thing just the other day. 

If you've ever had a professional massage you know what an absolute act of selflessness it is to give one up ;) My mother is a retired massage therapist and has given me several massages over the years, so when she had to retire from arthritis in her hands, it was a sad day for me. 
I mean who was going to give me random back rubs...ohh the tragedy!

My mama's been under a lot of stress lately caring for my elderly grandfather who lives almost 2 hours away and recently bought a buy-one-get-one-free massage gift certificate for the Body Bar.  She knows I've been having my own physical issues lately due to stress and offered to let me have one of the massages.  I tried to refuse since I know she needs it worse than I do.  In typical mama bear style, she firmly told me "you will take it and take care of yourself!".

Aren't moms the best?

No one knows what you need like your mom.  At 33 years of age, I still like to be "mothered".

I appreciate you Mom!

I need you Mom!

I love you Mom!

Friday, July 15, 2011

7 things....

My husband and I just had our 7 year anniversary.

This year it pretty much went unmarked except for some exchanged I love you's and Happy Anniversary's.  Not that we wanted it that way, there have just been so many other time consuming things going on.  And since he's always telling me his goal is to make one of my "Friday Favorites" lists, I decided to make this one all about him : )
In honor of our 7th year of marriage, these are seven things I love about my husband.

#1  He never holds a grudge
We can have a heated argument and he has totally moved on in a few minutes.  
He is much quicker to let go of  anger than me.

#2  His Eyes
He has the most wonderful hazel eyes lined by long, dark, thick eyelashes that any woman would kill for.  And he has been so kind as to pass this fabulous trait on to my two little boys, they're gonna be lady killers ;)

#3 He is not a procrastinator.
In fact he often pushes me to get off my butt and do something about it!  Whatever "IT" might be.

#4 He's handy
I've mentioned that before right?  He's remodeled rooms, built a roof over our deck, built furniture, transformed our landscaping, and so much more!  My house is warm and welcoming and beautiful because of him.  He has made our nest absolutely perfect for our family.

#5 He takes care of all bugs that may get in my our way.

#6 He wants us to spend as much time together as a family as possible.

#7 He says I love you everyday
This one says it all, who doesn't want to hear this everyday?

#8 He lets me buy anything I want.
Lucky for our pocketbook I am excellent at restraining myself but its the fact that he would let me if I wanted to.

#9 He reads my blog.

#10 I never have to pump my gas.
He fills up my car every time.

#11 His shoulders
He has big football player shoulders and I adore them.

#12  He wants our kids to be happy.
He's always thinking of fun things we could do for them.

#13 He is funny.
Especially when he sings Christmas carols when he has a stuffy nose.

#14 He takes care of all car problems.
Thank goodness!

#15 He is a good cook.
My favorites are his pizza, lasagna, meatloaf, and mac n' cheese.
Of course most of his recipes come from his mom : )

#16 He wants things done the right way.
No half-hearted attempts from this man!

#17 He never leaves the toilet seat up.
Can I get an AMEN!

#18 He wants Behind the Moon Beadworks to be successful (i.e. he wants my dreams to come true)

#19 He looks great in jeans and a wife-beater tank top.
All bald and tatooed, yes ma'am!

#20 He pre-warms my side of the bed when its cold.

#21 He stayed with me during my "I just wanna be friends, no wait more than friends, no just friends" phase at the beginning of our relationship.  No guy should have to suffer that.  I honestly wasn't trying to be mean in any way (blame it on a previously broken heart and fickle teenage behavior) but I thank the Lord everyday for his persistence!

#22 He calls his mom daily.
And he's more than willing to help her with ANYTHING she needs.

#23 He WANTS me to tell him what I think and give my opinion....on everything.

#24 He spends individual time with each of our boys before they go to bed.

#25 He braves the Black Friday lines and crowds every year to make sure our kids have an awesome Christmas while keeping it affordable for us.  He gets up at 3am people!  All while I snooze....

#26 He fights for me and the kids anytime an "injustice" befalls us.

#27 He plays Mr. Mom in the summer....and does an awesome job of it.

Oh wait I was supposed to stop at 7 huh?  
I could go on but I will spare you.  Well, I really should add 1 more....it's a biggie.

#28  I never get down right scared of anything.
To me, my husband = safety
He shows me everyday how committed he is to our family and I know no matter what life throws our way, I can handle it as long as he is with me.

Happy Anniversary to my forever love!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

A big decision

All this self examination and simplifying has let me to make a hard decision.  I need to put more effort into my family and less into extraneous stuff....that is clear.  

But what to eliminate?

You may or may not have noticed a distinct lack of posts on Behind the Moon Beadworks.  I had lofty goals for growing the business this year but in recent months my husband was having some issues with his job that required a lot more time from him and so I had to pick up the slack at home.  And then it seems we just ran into a string of regular life "stuff" that has kept me from making much progress.  But even though I was not pushing forward with much, it was definitely on my mind and I was really stressing over it spending a lot of mental energy on it

I can't quit my day job...DANG!...so I have decided to take a little break from the business for a few months and really concentrate on our home life. My Etsy shop will still be up and running so purchases can continue to be made that way.  I just won't be adding any new designs for a few months.

On that note I will leave you with a pic of a new design I created recently 
that will post up to the shop at a later date.  

Thanks to everyone for your support of Behind the Moon Beadworks!

I look forward to debuting some new designs in the fall!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Feet up

So here I sit, out on my deck listening to the birds, feet up, and enjoying the warmth before it gets too hot.  

No kids, no distractions, no work.  

Before you get too jealous, the reason I am sitting on my deck today instead of working is that I stepped on a nail yesterday and got a nasty puncture wound so I'm hobbling around on crutches and trying to keep my foot elevated to reduce the swelling.  BUT I gotta say, sitting out on the deck is a great way to go about healing :)

I'm linking up with Carissa today
 for Miscellany Monday.  

From my vantage point on the deck I can see the empty nest in our dappled willow tree.  We have been watching these baby robins grow over the last few weeks and they have finally left their nest.  I was tickled to be able to get this pic though on Saturday.   

We got to watch them learning how to fly yesterday, it was so cool.  One stood on the edge of the nest and flapped and hopped as the mama stood on the nearby fence and chirped encouragement.  I get excited over stuff like that.  Did you ever watch Tiny Toons when you were little?  You know, the version of looney toons where bugs bunny and pals are all little?  Well, my husband calls me "Elmira" after one of the characters on that show cause I want to hold every animal I see.  
What can I say, I dig nature :)

My husband and I worked hard all Saturday to try and get rid of all our construction waste and rebuild the backyard.  I haven't done that kind of physical labor since giving birth!  But my awesome hubs does it all the time.  Hauling wall block, digging holes, moving stone for the umpteenth time.... talk about gaining a new respect for the man!  We would not have nearly the beautiful house that we do if it were not for all his hard work.  And then he offers to camp out with the kids that night in preparation for our upcoming camping trip, even though his back is killing him.  We needed to make sure the tent was in working order but mostly he wanted the kids to have some fun since we had been working so hard all day.  

Mind you he was willing to let me stay inside and enjoy our heavenly bed in sweet silence and solitude (what a man!)....but I decided to take a cue from him and sacrifice my own comfort for the good of the kids.  So we all slept out in the tent that night, on our sloping hill, trying not to roll on top of each other.  Hopefully the campground will be a bit more level AND quiet.  We still had neighbors setting off firecrackers and you could hear all the trucks on the nearby highway but the boys still thought it was "totally awesome Mom"!

Then Sunday brought more effort to get things cleaned up.  We were moving pieces of our torn down deck area to try and condense the mess when I stepped on a board that had a nail sticking straight up.  The funny thing was I was trying to avoid hitting my leg with the sharp broken part of the piece of wood I was carrying!  It went through my flip flop (yes, silly girl was wearing flip flops) and when I instinctively pulled my leg up the piece of wood was still nailed to my foot!  Yikes!  It was a 2" nail so it was about 1" of it that actually went into my foot.  Being the delicate flower that I am, I almost fainted....twice.  Geez, can I be any more girly?  Anyway, it wasn't too bad pain-wise but I felt sick to my stomach all day.  Then the pain and swelling started to set in last night...

So alas, I am basking in the lovely breeze on my deck, 
feet up, doing squat.  

Could be a lot worse :)

Happy Monday!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Random Friday

A little randomness for Friday....

: :

So day 1 of my new attitude went really well.  Thank you to those who left me such sweet comments on my last post!  Fundamentally changing the way you think and behave is TOUGH.

Day 2 saw some negativity creeping in but I was able to recognize it and turn my thoughts and words around, so another success : )

I've mentioned before about the devotionals I read to my son before bed and how they are always so timely for ME.  I think I'm getting more out of them than he is at this point but I hope some of it is soaking in to him :)  
Here was last night's....

"Watch the way you talk.  Let nothing foul or dirty come out of your mouth.  Say only what helps, each word is a gift."  Ephesians 4:29

I have definitely been thinking more before I speak.  Just imagine...saying only what helps.  This is my goal.

: :

Our pool collapsed a week ago : [  And after many phone calls to the insurance adjuster, they determined it will not be covered, so alas our beloved pool is gone.  In line with our determination to find and focus on the positive we have been having fun figuring out what we are going to do with this now void area of the yard.  Some realistic options and some fantasy...L (my oldest son) wants to put in a waterfall leading into a pond he can fish in.  My husband wants a hot tub.  Fantasy?...um yes ; )  We have settled on moving our firepit from where it currently is to this area so people will actually have room to sit around it and enjoy the fire.  We may even put in a tiny waterfall since we have the majority of materials needed already...but no pond to fish in.  Hoping L will still be happy with just a warterfall.  
Firepit....waterfall....all in all I think it will be a really cool space when we're done with it.

: :

My car broke down on Monday and it has been in the shop all week  Thankfully this happened during the summer when my husband is off from work and we can get by on one car.  So I have been driving "Black Jack" to work this week. I must say I have been enjoying it thoroughly : )  Black Jack is kind of a metaphor for what my husband and I are trying to achieve.  It is simple, no unnecessary frills here.  Good old crank windows, manual door locks, stick shift.  You have to actively DRIVE this car and I love it.  But so does my husband so I know he'll want it back : )

: :

All the prayers and support I have been getting have been such a blessing.  They just fuel my fire to really make the changes God is calling me to and be firm in my determination to become a better person and break out of these bad habits.  

I need this.  My family needs this.  

Thank you friends, from the depths of my heart, thank you.

 finding joy

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Pillow Talk

I cried last night....for 2 hours.

It was great.

A true release of all I've been holding inside.  

And my husband was right there holding me all the while.  
I was the one that was crying but both of us were letting it all out.

We so rarely get to have honest-to-goodness conversations.  That's just the way it is with kids, there's always interruptions.  "I need a drink", "he took my toy", "can you change the channel", "I have to go to the bathroom", "look at what I can do"....you moms know how it goes.  So most of the time the only time my husband and I have to actually talk is laying in bed at night. 

We've come to the realization that we need to make some major changes in our life.  

When we look at our life from an outside perspective, it really is pretty great, so why are we so stressed out all the time?  Why do we look at the negative side of things?  Why are we short with each other so often?  We really did some self examination and it was time to get honest with ourselves and each other.  We talked about what we truly need from a bare bones perspective...God and family.  

When you consider the stuff we let ourselves get worked up over, it's laughable really.  

And the extent to which we let it bother us...utterly ridiculous.  

The scary thing is we can see the negativity seeping into our kids too.  We've talked about it a bit in the past and things improved for a little bit but we're really committed to making a lasting change.  It will be hard and I hope we can catch ourselves before we get caught in the same cycle of behavior that we've been in but we've decided not to focus on the past, really work on moving forward, starting today.

Change is hard and uncomfortable but we know the rewards will be great.  

So our first step is to simplify our lives.  Really examine what we can cut out and what we really need.  Again, not an easy task but in a weird way I am looking forward to it.  I'm sure we will end up finding it quite freeing actually.

I've never really asked someone to pray for me before but I ask you today my friends to pray for my little family...that we may live our lives for the Lord...that we look at the world outside of ourselves...that we let go of the earthly junk we have cluttered up our lives with....that we have hearts and minds full of positivity and love....that we are a blessing to others and each other.

Have you ever made a fundamental change in your life?  Were you able to make it stick?

I would be inspired to hear about it!  Please leave me comment or send me an email and share.

Thanks for your prayers friends!

Friday, July 1, 2011

A boy's paradise....and mine too

This past weekend we took a trip up to visit my Dad and stepmother.  They live about an hour and a half away on beautiful sprawling acreage near Cook's Forest.  
Their house is a boy's paradise.....
and mine too.  
My sons absolutely love going to visit.  The sweetness of the quiet and natural surroundings can't be denied.  We all become entranced and it ends up feeling like a mini vacation.  It is one of my favorite places to be.  In all seasons really but summer is truly a treat.  So I thought I'd share some of my favorite things about the farm (aside from the loving people that live there ;) along with some photos that I took.

The Barn

I love walking into the barn on a hot sunny day.  As you enter you're immediately enveloped in cooler air and the smell of hay.  With the sun rays streaming in through the cracks, the quite peace of the barn is almost palpable.  It's also a wonderland to two little boys who love to climb and run and play.  Strangely enough my older son always wants to sweep the floor so there is no hay on the boards.  Not sure where he got this clean gene but its not from me ;)

The Horses

No he's not dead...just rolling in the mud to relieve the itchies

We love everything about them....
their beauty, the sounds they make, the feel of them, and yes...even the smell :)

The Cool Farm Equipment
What is it about old farm equipment that just begs to be photographed in black and white?

What boy doesn't love tractors and diggers I ask!
Well, they ARE pretty cool and I actually would like to drive Big Blue.  Were thinking of helping out with hay cutting and bailing next year (hard with 2 little boys but maybe).  It will be sweaty, hard, itchy work but I think it will be a rewarding experience that we will all enjoy..

The Campfire
Bonfire anyone?
I just love sitting around the fire talking, laughing, and toasting marshmallows!
The warmth and dancing flames are mesmerizing. 

The Lanscape
beautiful blueberry bushes getting ready to burst with fruit
wild daisies

my pretty poochie enjoying romping in the country

Rolling land, ponds, tall grass, rows of corn, horses, barn, farmhouse, firepit, garden patch, wildflowers...you get the idea.  Just look around and breathe in the fresh country air...it will renew your spirit!

The Creek
When you can't find me....I'll be here,
(likely with both boys at my side) playing on the rocks and looking for crayfish in the creek.  Nothing better than a rocky babbling brook dappled with sunlight and a carpet of moss!  Sheer heaven :)

I guess I am just a farm girl at heart!

Check out my stepmother's blog here 
for some farm fresh stories and recipes!

Linking up with Rachel!

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