Sunday, April 10, 2016

The Blocks of Life

Lets be honest. You can learn everything you need to know in life by playing with blocks. From sharing and team work to patterns and math. Imaginations bloom and create marvelous inventions. Creativity is encouraged. I watch my children in complete awe of the wonders they create. So I'm left wondering, why doesn't everyone embrace their inner child and build with blocks everyday?

We have so much fun playing blocks together. Yesterday we were building extreme yachts and speed boats. Emma built a cow that barked. It was pretty cute. There are no rules when we build. We enjoy block time so much that we actually have about five or six different kinds of blocks.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Stronger Than You Know

     For some reason my mind has been wandering. So I thought I'd share my thoughts with you. I've been thinking about how strong people are. Maybe because I've been sending up alot of prayer requests lately for others. But I started thinking how strong those around me are. I began thinking how lucky I am to not have had to go through some of the terrible things that others have. But those kinds of thoughts only bring the hard things from your past to jump up in your face. I never appreciate those moments.
     You see, I too have been through many tough times. I call them tough times because though they were scary, sad and above all difficult to handle and maneuver through, I did. That makes those times tough and me strong.
     There are only a handful of specific events that my closest friends & family know of. I'm not going into details on anything so dont expect to get any juicy gossip. Like all situations some were harder to deal with than others. I swear just about every where we drive I have a memory of something that's happened. From cemetery's where friends who were too young to lay are indeed to the complicated stories of my childrens births and first few months. I guess I decided a long time ago that I would focus on the better aspects of negative memories. While it can be hard to focus on the positive in a bad situation it really is possible. For me at least.
     For example, the time I had to explain to my family why the police department decided to assign me a private detective (who called the house no less) and to have me escorted to work by an officer. That was a pretty scary time in my life. Both for me and for those around me. One I wont give many details about. But through that my family (Thompson & Loyd) pulled together and gave me the best support group a girl could ask for. I learned alot during that time and became more self aware. I learned just how many people cared for me and the lengths they were willing to go to ensure my safety.
     I find myself made stronger by the many car accidents as well. Some were near misses some not so lucky. I had minor injuries that I'm still pained by physically. I ended up with a fear of driving and didn't get my license until  just before my 21st birthday. But everyday that I get behind the wheel of my car I see as an accomplishment to overcoming my own fears. I make jokes with those I've given rides to because I can be overly cautious as a result.
     I still remember like it was yesterday the day a family member was attacked during a mugging turned attempted kidnapping right before my eyes. I cant even begin to tell you how that messed with my head but I can tell you I drive by the place it happened on a weekly basis. And I dont let it over take me. I remember the people that were there for us during the healing process. I think of how its made me more cautious as a woman and as a parent in my everyday actions to help protect me and my children from becoming victims.
     In all of us we have the ability to survive and thrive. To take the crap that's been dealt to us and turn it into something far greater. To become a rock for ourselves and those around us. Most everyone I know has gone through some pretty horrible stuff. I am luckier than most (in my own opinion) but we are all stronger than we know. Next time you think something is too hard to handle just look back on all the things you've already been through. You did it once, you can do it again. And if you dont think you can get through it alone, CALL ME! Ill be your rock to lean on and the glue that holds you together. Thats me. I'm a sticky old rock.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Passing the Torch

This beautiful lady is my mom. She was THE candy maker when I was growing up. Her skills were unmatched. I remember watching her for hours while she mixed & melted down her candies and carefully painted the candy into its mold. Her creations were absolutely breath taking. So much so that I always felt a little guilty to eat them. But only a little after all they were delicious too. I have such fond memories of her time as a candy maker. So much so that I decided to give it a try. If I have just but half of her natural talent then I should be fine. So I decided to ask my mom if she still owned her old candy molds. And to my utter joy she does. Or did. As of Sunday they are now mine (with the condition I return them should I decide I no longer want them). She had so many candy molds that she filled up a 35 gallon the top!

Why yes, those are Star Wars molds on the left.
I cant express the excitement I was filled with when I opened that lid. First thing I did was pull out every single mold and write down what it was. To my amazement it was full of holiday molds, ornate candy molds, animal molds, misc cute stuff and even some boob molds. Yes, that is correct. I can now make a lollipop of a woman's boobs. Hahaha. But the ones I am most excited over have to be the character molds. There are Pac Man, Spiderman, Muppets, Flintstones, Garfield, Yogi Bear, Scooby Doo, Care Bears, Rainbow Brite, Pink Panther, Cabbage Patch Kids, Smurfs and the awe inspiring Star Wars.

Now, I dont have any of the necessary tools for quality decorating. But I wasnt gonna let a little thing like that detour me from taking these molds out for a test run when I had some candies (pink and white) in the fridge. So I picked out two of the ornate candy molds and began mixing & melting my candy.

Once my candies were ready I dug out a pair of wooden chopsticks (from Panda Express) and pulled them apart. I used one for my pink candy and one for the white candy. I tried a tooth pick but that just wasn't working. Chopsticks & a spoon were my only candy working tools.

With that being said I think I did fairly well. I enjoyed standing there painting these molds with the chopsticks then filling them in with the spoon. I think given how they turned out on my first try ever and with no tools that maybe I could posses a little of my amazing moms talent. I will need lots of practice and the correct tools but I think I can pull this off. I'm so excited to keep trying.

Just starting out.

 Filing in the molds.

 The first mold is ready to be refrigerated.

Second Mold is ready too.

The finished products.

I hope to do my mom proud.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Interrupting Cow..

Knock knock.
Who's there?
Interrupting Cow.
Interrupting Cow.......

I sit here repeatedly having my thoughts interrupted by the love of my life who for someone has the desire to talk to me everytime I try to type. I love him to death so I'm gonna call it quits and try again tomorrow. When I have less of a distraction. Hahaha. I cant believe I actually said my three kiddos were less of a distraction than my husband. Thats all for tonight. We shall catch up over a cup of french vanilla coffee.

Peace out home fries.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Toooo Infinite And Beyond!!

To say that my son William (1 year old) is addicted to Toy Story would be an understatement. If I would let him he would sit on the couch all day holding his Toy Story toys while repeatedly watching the Toy Story movies. I'm not completely sure what it is about this series of movies that has enthralled him so deeply. Although my son Alex (4) and daughter Emma (3) are equally entranced when the movies are on. William is also the proud owner of a slew of Toy Story products.

Obviously we own the movies. We have seen all three although we still do not own the third one.

And then there is his 'Buzz' shirt that he loves to wear. 

You cant sport a 'Buzz' shirt without matching kicks.

Then there's the toy line.

William wearing his Jessie dolls hat on his head.

To top it all off he has a Toy Story bed too. My little 'Buzz' fan.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Were Building A Birdie House

Normally our crafty time is free in nature. I like to let the kids express themselves through their art. We have only one rule, there are no rules. For the longest time my son Alex has been asking to build a bird house and while I was at Michael's the other day I came across these:

I didn't notice I snapped a picture of the non English side.

They were only $1 so I thought they might be a fun little craft for the kiddos to do. They have an age recommendation of 5+ but other than helping my 3 & 4 year old assemble them they were more than competent to handle this craft.  

The kit came with everything you needed to build the bird house. Instructions, wood bird house pieces, sand paper, paint, glue & paintbrush. To keep the kids from painting my kitchen table I cut a piece of butcher paper as a work mat for each of them.

The first step was to sand all the pieces. They only partially followed this step as they are young ones and not too motivated to sand something without an obvious result. Second step was painting all the pieces. They were very excited to paint something besides paper.

Emma's a painting pro.

Alex has an interesting painting technique.

To keep the kids from mixing colors too much I gave them each a little bowl of water and a wash rag to clean their brushes on. We only had one spill during the whole project. That made mommy very happy. After all the pieces were painted to the kids satisfaction we allowed them a few minutes to dry. Once they were (mostly) dry we got them ready for gluing. 

Emma just painting away.
Alex was proud of his art.
Alex was frustrated that his roof kept falling off.

Emma gluing her last piece.
After all the gluing was done it was time to show off their bird houses.

Alex sure was proud of his bird house.

Emma's favorite thing is to paint so she was just beaming.

We set their finished projects outside to dry in the sun. These turned out to be two of the best dollars Ive spent in a long time. We had a blast doing our crafts and making memories. When Daddy came home from work the kids each got a turn to surprise him with their bird houses. Wonderful day!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Going for a Swim

Its no secret that I dont care for in ground pools. I find them to be too dangerous. Even a gated pool is dangerous while having a pool party. It only takes a second for a child to fall in.

With that said, we were invited to a pool party this past weekend. We told the kiddos they were not getting in the pool but since all the other kids were in or next to the pool that's where mine wanted to be. I told them they had to stay by the steps at the shallow end of the pool (just in case they fell in). I also told them to not be leaning over the side of pool and of course no running. I stood next to them and supervised them the entire time we were near the pool. And still, it happened.

That heart wrenching moment when my baby (William) feel into the swimming pool. I saw his little body floating on the water while his head stayed submerged. He was thrashing his little hands and feet so hard that he actually propelled himself away from the side of the pool. His body was moving in a violent struggle for air. I jumped into the pool after him. Grabbed him by his shirt and yanked him out of the water. As soon as his face broke through the water he began crying. Not that I have a boo-boo or someone took my toy cry. But that I'm scared out of my mind cry. I just stood there in the pool holding my baby. From the time he fell in until the time I pulled him out was probably only about 30 seconds but it felt like I was seeing it in slow motion and it lasted an eternity. I felt my heart stop beating in my chest. I was terrified.

Hearing him cry made me feel comforted because at least I knew he was breathing. He had instinctively held his breath while he was under water. He sneezed several times blowing out some pool water but nothing more. I felt very lucky to take my dripping baby home to get a warm shower and clean clothes. I felt lucky that I was standing next to the pool. Lucky that I was watching him and not looking elsewhere. Lucky that he held his breath. Lucky he was alive to cry.

I dont think that one can truly understand the depth of that fear unless you've also gone through it. I had a friend go through the exact same thing several weeks ago and while I was sympathetic I didn't know how exactly she'd felt. Now I do. It doesn't seem as scary when you just think of a child falling in and being rescued so quickly. You think they're fine. It was only for a minute. Its not that big of a deal. But then when you witness your child so full of fear its a completely different story. I dont think I will ever forget that image. It has been replaying in my head. Over and over. All the what ifs that could of happened. What if I wasnt there? What if I had looked away? What if he hadnt held his breath? What if he was farther away from me? But thanks to an amazing friend who kept talking when I didnt want to listen Im getting past that stage. I will never forget how it felt or what I saw but I will not let the what ifs take control of me. I have a perfectly healthy super happy amazing son. Whats not to feel lucky about?