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Boxes

Over the years, I have had many conversations with our girls that left a bigger impact on me than it may have on them. I love our daily exchanges but only a few hang with with me year after year. Last night my oldest and I were able to slow down for a bit and have some loose conversation over a cup of coffee. Okay, I had the coffee. We talked about labels and the boxes we put people in. Seriously, I love her perspective so much I have to share it.

She asked what I thought about lables. Honestly, I don’t like them. I think they put people in this giant category removing all uniqueness and set people up for instant judgement. Labels are a negative to me. I asked her what she thought of them. Her reply? “I don’t like labels but I like boxes.”
Dumbfounded, my only reply was “boxes”? I was so caught off gaurd, it took everything I had not to laugh when I said it. In general, I don’t laugh when my kids are being semi-serious.

Her explanation was simple. The first thing people will learn about her is her name. It’s posted on the side of her “box”. As they get to know her (if she allows and they want to) they get to learn the contents of her box. The contents are a hodge-podge of ADD/ADHD, dyslexia and dygraphia. Those are the labels the doctor gave her. They rattle around in her box every once in a while becoming an annoyance. The labels only explain her struggles but not who she is. I asked her what she perceives is in her box.
– Books. She loves books. The longer the better.
-Love of piano. She don’t care if it is listening or playing. She loves it just as much she enjoys learning as much as she can about famous composers.
– Her love for jazz, blues, UK folk music and anything folk/ alternative type band. The needs to feel the voice as much as the music.
-Art. She loves to draw. She is working on exploring and maturing her drawing skills. She is getting quite good I may add.
– God. She loves The Lord with her whole heart and thrives enjoys her girls bible study each week. She loves their fellowship.
– Mindcraft. She is a geek for Mindcraft and proud of it.
– She loves to write songs, poems and stories.
-Her unique fashion. She loves fedora hats and you rarely see her without one. (or one of her many plaid shirts or her skinny jeans and boots! haha!) She loves playing with her fashion. She likes to make a statement that she isn’t like the other girls.
-education. She has FINALLY taken an interest in her education and exploring her interests.
Her box is pretty cool if you ask me. She is growing up so fast and becoming this confidant young woman. She is very sociable while around people but craves her introverted tendancies. She is becoming choosy with her friends and who she allows around her. I am glad she feels strong enough to do that. Her biggest pet peeve is bossiness and I notice that those who get overly bossy with her get pushed away. I don’t discourage it. Up to this point she has always been very passive so I love seeing her become more assertive. She avoids cliques and the dramatic girls. She has her focus and knows what she wants.

She is full of insight and creativeness. I am so proud of who she is becoming. She has crossed into the logic stage of the classical continuam.

Our conversation makes me think of my own box, and the boxes of those around me. One thing she said hit a chord. Not everyone sees what is in her box. They may know it exists but she won’t let them see it if she does not trust them. Others may only see pieces. She feels that at this girls are one of 2 ways. Judgmental or copycats. She wants no part of either, so she gaurds her box until she feels she can trust them. I wanna be her when I grow up :)

-Copycatmom
* In case your worried, I ALWAYS have permission if I speak about the girls. I don’t want to invade their privacy.

 
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Posted by on January 6, 2014 in Parenting

 

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New Year, New Changes

We welcome the year 2014 with excitement and anticipation. 2013 was full of ups and downs. I can count it all as joy because it has been a year The Lord has used to grow me. I questioned my faith, who I was and my purpose here on earth. If I really want to be honest, The Lord has been teaching me lessons for a few years without me knowing I was getting one. The biggest lesson over and over has been to trust. Trust The Lord knows has a plan for my life. Trust that he has me in his care. Trust that he knows my needs before I know them. It has taken several bricks, bible studies and some major life changes but I got the lesson. The last lesson being my husbands heart attack. Through the entire event I could see God’s hand at work. He had every step planned out even though, (if I am really being honest here) I was still questioning my faith. My path.

I don’t question his plans for me anymore. I won’t lie I still have so much learning to do, but the biggest lesson I learned in 2013 was trust. I can trust The Lord and count the path as joy. A lot of people make New Years resolutions. This year I have just one. Only one but it is a biggie. See the joy in all things. Joy.

I am a little nervous about my goal. It’s a biggie. I am control of my actions, thoughts and feelings. However, LEARNING to control them outside of my “bubble” will be the test of strength. I need to put up some bigger boundaries with others. I think if we don’t have enough boundaries it can be hard to be joyful. Some people can suck that joy right out of you. I have to find that boundary that allows for kindness, and joy but is respectful of myself. One way I am going to have to show myself respect is being careful of certain friendships. I have some “red-flag” friendships and some that clearly mean more to me than to them that I really have to put some walls up. I need to invest in the relationships that want it and the others can either die off or if my “friends” really want to have a relationship they will actually act like it.

The end of 2013, I read 2 really awesome books. I didn’t find the classes very helpful but that is just me. I do better in a bible study situation. “How we Love” by Milian and Kay Yerkovich. I have a love- hate relationship with this book. I think in a group situation it is uncomfortable, depending on the level of discussions. One on one with your spouse in the comfort of your home working through the workbook is perfect. I have a love for self help, psychological style books but I am noticing a trend in books lately that are all about blaming the parents. I tread carefully with these books as the bible says to honor our mother and father. I found at different parts of this book getting angry with my mother. I think their has to be a level of control used with books that take this direction.

The other book “‘Boundaries with kids” by Henry Cloud and John Townsend. Okay, this one has some of the “blame it on your parents” mentality and the “it’s your fault” undertone, but this book is my favorite. Seriously, my favorite!!! We have been going through some growing pains with our oldest and this book has saved us years of destructive behavior. Big Daddy and I are so proud of all 3 of our girls, but our girls are still normal kids. They have their moments they find trouble, are cranky or down right difiant. They are not perfect as we as parents are not perfect. After reading this book, we had to change the way we did things, which was really tough! I’m going to be honest here- Taking the advice from this book and implementing it has been really tough. WAY tougher than I thought. The idea is simple and relaxed yet complex for follow through. Seriously, if your a parent get this book. Unless, your that perfect parent with perfect kids that never make mistakes or step out of line. We are not doing our kids any favors by pretending they are perfect.

So regardless of trial or triumph I want to be able to count it all as joy. Welcome to 2014! Praying for another great year for our family.

-Copycatmom

 
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Posted by on January 2, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

Our Break…..

In the middle of writing our road trip, I felt the need to take a break. I will resume writing about our trip down the road, but for now I decided to rethink sharing it and just savoring it for a little while. I have been planning and living on a schedule for some time. Always running from one thing to another but never living in the moment.

I am a planner to my core, and I am not sure anything can take that out of me. I have spent the last year always in the future. Homeschooling became such a CHORE (like scrubbing the toilets kind of chore). I couldn’t put my finger on why everything was becoming so lifeless when my calendar said I have an amazing life. I was at the point of living frazzled and becoming depressed. Daily I was asking myself “What the heck is going on?”.

The 4th state on our road trip route turned the lightbulb on. I had my nose deep into the road atlas, following our route on the GPS, planning stops, meals, and things to see, when my entire family started oohing and aweing. By the time I looked up I had missed something amazing. I felt like crap. Here I thought I was this awesome road tripper planning things and I was missing everything.

It was that moment I decided to be in the moment. That included putting the blog down and just living my life. It’s part of why I am still not fully back. I believe God used this road trip to teach me a few things. I still have a TON to learn, but I am taking this lesson eyes wide open and applying it in other areas.

I certainly won’t be writing every day or every week. Not for a while anyways. I have spent the last few months savoring the time with my girls, reading some good books and checking out curriculum for the next year. The girls are growing like little weeds. My oldest has changed so much in the last 3 years, it is almost like she is a little adult now. She is an amazing young lady. So, for now I am taking this time to cherish life.

 
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Posted by on September 25, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

Day 3: Utah!

Hello Salt Lake City!!! It’s my birthday and I am in the most beautiful state I have ever been to. Seriously, Utah is beyond amazing. We arrived quite late and had some drama at our hotel but everything is fine. Just a floor full of silly kids thinking they dare to be kids ;). I am all for kids being kids but in appropriate places. I am slightly less tolerant after many hours of driving.

We haven’t had the chance to explore the city but we did go out to dinner to this little place called “Ruth’s Diner”. Forget the food, the location of this place is beyond aw inspiring! The food isn’t great, or horrible. Honestly nothing about the food stands out other than the price. It’s very overpriced. Be warned ahead of time they are not known for their service either. I would have rated their service one of the worst I have ever been to, which sucked because you know it’s my birthday and all. A little effort would have been night. The drive into Utah was long, HOT (record breaking), it was my birthday and overall it sucked. I didn’t even get cake! Anyways, this place is hidden in a less known area. If you choose to eat their be warned, but you really should see this amazing location!

I’m so thankful for my family but I think I’m salty and feeling a bit jipped! I don’t know why I feel this was or what I exactly expected. Maybe it was just a long day and I was looking for this amazing birthday in another state. A nice waiter and good food would have fixed it I am sure!
I don’t like wishing today’s away for tomorrow to come but today I am……I need tomorrow. Everything will be better tomorrow.

 

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Day 2: Wyoming

Cheyenne Wyoming is the most charming little old town I have ever scene! We took the trolly ride tour in downtown Cheyenne. Future travelers- save yourself the boredom,torture and money. If you wait at the trolly stop there is a FREE horse carriage tour that picks up in the same spot as the torture trolly. Ok so the trolly wasn’t that bad. The driver “tries” to be funny but rather than actually riding it is more of stop and sit to the point of dying of heat. I would rather at lease have open spaces.

One of the best things we did in Cheyenne is this free little children’s garden. It has a high educational value if you take the time to use it. It’s quite appealing on the eyes as well. I also really enjoyed the Wyoming state prison. (No joke!) it was full of history and I liked the extra fact it scared my kids a little bit.

Wyoming may have given me a small train obsession. I just love them! Apologies in advance if I overload you with train photos!!!

If your looking for a nice place to stay we highly enjoyed little america. Hope you enjoy today’s photos!

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Day 1: Nebraska

The first journey of our trip was from Kansas City, MO to Kearney, NE. We have traveled parts of Nebraska for dance competitions but it was nice to see another side. We didn’t do much on our stay as we arrived to our hotel super late, and left fairly early.

We made sure to stop at the Buffalo Bill Trading Post and Museum which we thought would be as educational as it sounds. It’s not. It’s an overpriced decked out gift shop to sucker tourists like ourselves. They had some cool stuff in the store but it was not what we were hoping for and honestly felt very mislead by it. Yes, I am a little salty. I hate parent traps. More so when this trip is to be educational. They should have to add gift shop somewhere in there!!!!

What else did we do? Hmm, we got to see great sunsets and sunrise, met some nice people and my husband broke a tooth at old Chicago. Technically, he busted a crown out. The bread was hard as a rock and he bit down only to break the tooth. Thankfully, the manager was awesome and didn’t charge us for meals. Worst part was he had job orientation, benefits meeting etc out in Cali in a few days. We tried to find a dentist but at the cost of out of pocket expense ( would be reimbursed) we decided super glue worked good for short periods of public interaction. As his wife- I can’t wait for Big Daddy to get his tooth fixed for several reasons!

Even with the rough starts and giant mishaps we enjoyed the Nebraska leg. I hope to explore what else Nebraska has to offer in the future!!! Here are a few photos from today. Bringing the blog to you live from my IPad so things may or may not come out the way they should.

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Packing up “bob”

Life has changed drastically for us since my husbands heart attack. Our values have changed in many ways yet have only confirmed some of the beliefs that were starting to form. We decided to use my husbands new job and need to get to California for training (and the recent events of his heart attack) as an excuse for a family road trip. Things are always more enjoyable when you can see them from sunny side up.

We packed up “BOB” (aka my car) 5 days ago and headed for Cali. Did I mention I got a new car? It is a Ford flex. I love my new car!!! We packed a backpack for each person, 4 favorite “to-do” items per person and headed out. Life is a journey. You can’t change things but you can change how you view them. More from the road in a few days!

Because of the way life has changed for us, we have realised even more now then ever how important it is to experience life, relationships and interact with people. I don’t want to let things rule our lives anymore. We are going drastic. With the heart attack I think everyone in the family felt the “near death” reality.

I came across this blog http://www.theminimalists.com/21days/day1-2/

I love these guys for the record. I love what they stand for and their ideas. We decided to take their packing party challenge. It will be more complicated for us because we have 5 people but it is important to us. I pray this road trip will show how the stuff you own should have a purpose and should give you joy. You should not sit around feeling frustrated by all the stuff you own and how much time you have to set aside in your life to clean and organize that stuff you own.

Before planning our road trip we decided as a family to pack up the entire house. Just like if we were moving. We are currently trying to accumulate boxes but I will update you on the process.

 

 

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