Learning

I often feel like I hav much to learn as a parent. Every day seems to come with failed experiments. Ones in which I thought would work and yet they did not go as planned. Often though, my days still have successes. That is just a part of life. Learning and growing are a part of it.

I have been a little missing in action on this here blog thing of mine. There have been many learning moments in the last several weeks. Some days I feel as though I am succeeding and some days I go to bed wondering how I am going to make it through another day. We are all alive though.

Successful days for me include being able to keep on top of my son. Last week I was able to finally pack away all of the winter coats, gloves and boots. It felt so good. In its place were two containers that held shoes. I knew I was in trouble when my son almost immediately dumped them out so he could place the containers on the table. Really?! How could I have possibly expected my son, who likes to dump, not to dump out the shoes? Was I really expected order? I gave up! Okay, not really. I resolved to find a solution.

Several stores later I ended up at Shopko looking at their furniture. I  stopped at my favorite piece that was on sale. It looked so nice, but I was too poor.  I could not justify the expense when I could purchase another item slightly cheaper, although not as easy on the eyes.

Several minutes later I was home going through a box of furniture pieces. My kids were on top of it, and me, the whole time. They were excited thinking there was a new play toy for them. I was excited to have found a solution to my problem.

Everything went well until the second to last step. Normally I pay close attention to the directions and what side I am using but in the process of beginning the step and getting the kids out of my way I didn’t realize my mistake. Forty tiny little annoying nails later and I realized I had nailed the back onto the front. As gracefully as I could I removed those nails, and the back remained in one piece, albeit a little mangled. Eventually it was done. The doors covered up my the holes left over from my mistake. I felt accomplished. One more problem solved, and many more will come as the days go on.

Every day will bring challenges to each parent. There will be times we succeed and times we fail, and each day we hopefully get another chance to try again.

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When it all comes crashing down

Last Friday one of my daughters received the flu shot.  Three kids down and one more to go, include me too.  A few days later she showed some mild cold symptoms but what was a cold for her has turned into the flu for the ones yet to receive the shot. (Note to self: next year everyone gets it at the same time). The last three days I have felt horrible. Being really sick and a single parent is way hard. Just sayin’. You can barely move but you still have to feed children and change diapers. You still have to put them to bed.  I do not even recall the last time I was this sick, let alone even getting the flu.

The first day of my illness started out pretty mild. I wasn’t fully sick yet and began some major projects in the house. These projects started because the night before my oldest had put weight on a high shelf which later that evening came crashing down. So, day one of sickness, and knowing how bad it was going to get yet, I started my projects.  After the first one I noticed I was a bit tired. So I stopped to play with my girls. All the while my son was in his room. All of a sudden a penetrating smell came from his room. I know that smell. It means his has taken his diaper off.  It has quite a while since he has done this. But I have never seen that much mess.  All over the blankets, the walls, his hands and the television he reached by standing on his bed. Needless to say it was a poopy mess.

I can honestly say that when I have a poopy day it really is. And it is nothing like when a baby or small toddler comes out of their diaper.

Since I was already cleaning up I figured I would do my next task. As soon as it was mostly done I was obviously without anymore energy. Two days later one blanket is still sitting wet in the washer (I’ve washed it twiced) and my energy is slowly returning. I had just enough to clean my living room.

On the poopy day my oldest mentioned how i had to admit it kind of was funny.  Yeah, it was so bad all you could do was either cry or laugh. It is my life. This is my life. Everybody has bad days, sick days and poopy days. Why? Because that is a part of life. It is not always the way it appears in magazines, on television, or even in many mommy blogs. This is why I keep it real, but spare you some of the pictures, because we need reminding that it is okay to have the not so perfect days.

Enough Already!

I do not know what it is. I do not know if it is the holiday pressure to be a great parent at this time of year or if it is the feeling that I get from the lack of holiday spirit because of said pressure. Whatever it is I find myself utterly dreading this time of year. Personally, I think life just finally caught up to me and I have way too much on my mind to get into the spirit of things, although I will still do my best for the sake of my children.  If is something I must work on.

A lack of holiday cheer has definitely added to my ability to have as much patience as I normally have. I finally cracked. Okay, not really. I am sure that would be a gross mess and nobody wants to see that sort of thing. I just had it. A lack of sleep and a complete and utter inability to keep on top of my children’s messes threw me over the edge. Okay, I know, not really over the edge but I think you get my point.

Everywhere I turn in my tiny little home my children are creating a mess. They do it while laughing too. Really?! Are they laughing at the mess they are making or laughing at the idea I will have to clean it up?  In all honesty I do know they are laughing because they are happy and having fun. I do not fault them for that. I do enjoy their happy voices.  I just do not enjoy the disaster that is always left behind.

So began my “get the house organized to save mommy’s sanity” project. I had to start with some clean rooms. So I swept everything that was on the floor in the bedrooms (there are benefits to a hard floor home) and put all of it I the living. Yay! Instant clean rooms. Of course, my living room was a compete disaster.

The next day I started organizing and going through all of it. Two things happened. The kitchen then became a disaster and every time I turned my back on the living room disaster all my efforts thus far became undone. I owe that to my son who enjoys dumping things out. Really?!

By day three I was exhausted and not getting anywhere. So I turned my attention to the kitchen. I spent all morning on a project designed to keep that room organized and clean. Yay for a clean kitchen.  Now off to my living room.

I don’t know if my living counts as a living room. It is a room with chairs, and on that particular day a huge pile of stuff. Three or four bags later of trash and an equal amount of donations my living room was finally clean. I felt good. I felt my patience retiring. I felt success and hope that I had not been there a few days before.

I don’t really know if there is much to the point of my sharing this, except that I know we all have those moments. We all break down, lose patience, get tired, frustrated, and so forth. These are not bad feelings to have. We need them to get us moving and to inspire us to grow or make changes in our lives. We cannot just bury them and pretend they will go away because they will surface at some point. We must acknowledge them. We cannot become better people until we do. And no this is not an excuse for bad people to use when trying to justify abusing others or doing things that are just wrong.

My dream home

In the small city where I reside there is one business location where modular homes are for viewing. I enjoy visiting this place. Why? Well, because I don’t have to get permission to go in and view a handful of brand new homes.  Every once in awhile I go there to dream. I call them my mini dream houses.

Every once in awhile an employee will ask if I need help and then they assure me I am fine to dream as much and as often as I would like. So, I keep going back.

i have learned a few things about the type of home that would work for me. You see, I want a functional home. I want a home that is more than just pretty but can serve me well in the best way possible. My dream home has to have a good layout. A functional floor plan is key to a good home.

My dream home would have a sitting room and a family room-out of line of sight from each other. My home needs to have a large kitchen (that could take up a whole post). I enjoy the idea of all or most of the bedroom doors opening up to the family room. I would rather a large closet than a large bathroom. Really! What is the point of a huge master bathroom that is as large as a bedroom? So much floor space is wasted. Give me a nice shower but please spare me the extra floor space.

That extra floor space can be better served in my laundry room. No, not so more clothes can sit on my floor. I have recently discovered the concept of having dressers in the laundry room instead of the bedrooms. You see, dressers in the bedroom are pointless with children. I spend so much time folding clothes, taking piles to their dressers and then they just take everything out to leave on the floor. A huge waste of my time on so many levels. Even my oldest fails to put clothes back in her drawers. I discovered this idea when I got fed up with my laundry situation.

I easily keep up with washing and folding clothes but those clothes take a long time to get back into the bedroom dressers. So, I put a dresser in my laundry room. There is not much room, and it blocks a small part of my washing machine, but laundry has become much easier  clothes get folded and go directly to the dresser  no more clothes on the floor. So, my dream home would have a laundry room large enough for all of the dressers.

Most of my dream home would be very simple and have what most homes have but I would have what I call a snozzle room. It sounds silly but I got the idea from my son’s last school. My son loved the room-a room with sensory items in it.

My son inspires most ideas for my dream home. I need to have built in high shelves and lockable cupboards throughout the house. My kitchen would have to be somewhat closed off to him as well with half doors and whatnot.

I have to admit that I dream of a very functional bathroom that is easy for the care of my son. Yeah, I have ideas of that too.

Anyway, I dream. I dream of a functional home. I dream and I enjoy dreaming.  It is okay to dream, as long as I don’t forget to come out of the clouds.