30 July 2015

Not Fine Friday...The Dreaded Hormones

The Dreaded Hormones

Maybe I was supposed to know this was going to happen.  Maybe I was supposed to be prepared, but when your independent, free-spirit, happy go lucky child starts crying all the time, having separation anxiety, and begins taking naps again, it's hard to explain the shock I felt.

Julia will be 8 in December.  I know this girl like the back of my hand.  We are together all of the time.  She is your typical extrovert.  She is sweet, loud, funny, and always the life of the party.  She can make it sunny during a thunder storm.  But the past 2 weeks she has been different.

It all started at a girl birthday spa party.  We had a long week at Vacation Bible School and one of Julia's closest homeschool friend's Olivia (her mom Bianca was one of my close child hood friends) and I knew Julia was tired.  The party started at 5:00...Julia was so excited!  She got dressed up (even though it was a pajama party) she brought her sleeping bag, and her American Girl doll Rebecca.  The girls were going to get facials, manicures, pedicures, eat dinner and then watch the newest AG doll movie.  At 8:30 my cell rang...Bianca was so surprised because she is used to Julia being bubbly and by that time Julia was weepy, "I miss my mom, I want to go home, please call my mom to come get me."  Not a problem we live 3 minutes away and I planned on picking her up by 9:30/10 anyway.

But what surprised me was that she said she missed me.  We were together the whole day.  I asked if she had fun and she did, so why on earth would she want to leave the party before the movie started?  Anyway I let it go...and then came Sunday...

Sunday is family day.  Always.  No exceptions.  We went to church.  We cleaned the church afterwards, and then we headed to the Lambertson's house to swim in the pool and eat dinner.  John and I planned to go out on a date Sunday evening and my sister Sara was coming to babysit.  All day Julia kept asking us, "But why do you have to go on a date?"  "Why mom? We are supposed to be together all day?"  I explained that we would be together all day and then at night John and I were going on our date case closed.  She asked at least 3 more times throughout the day and kept harping on it, and really making us feel guilty that we wanted a date.  "I miss you mom, why are you going?"

I don't get it.  I'm a stay at home mom.  I see her all day long.  All. Day. Long.  I'm always home.  We are always together! John and I really needed to get out and have a date and be together and she was making me feel so bad about it.

So my sister comes over and Julia barely says hi to her.  And Aunt Sara is literally her favorite person in the world.  Julia! Aunt Sara is here!  Say hello!  Come over here.  She walks out of the room!  Then I called her back in and she sat down at the breakfast nook and we had a chat...then the tears came..."Why do you have to go?  It's dark out!  You should be home.  How close is the restaurant?  How long will you be gone?  Will you kiss me when you get home?"  Hysterically crying!

That's when I had my Aha (God) moment.  This girl is changing...it has to be hormonal because nothing else has changed.  So I sat her down and we chatted.  I explained that what she was feeling was completely normal.  I explained that girls have these hormones in their body that make them happy or sad or confused sometimes at the weirdest moments.  (The movie Inside/Out really helped)  I explained that it was ok to be nervous or upset but that everything was ok, Aunt Sara was going to be with them, and that bedtime would be the same routine as always and that we wouldn't be long.  I told her that as she grows these hormones might make her feel sad or anxious and that it would be good to talk about it.  So she cried some more and explained how lately she just doesn't want to be away from me, especially at night, that she feels safer at home, and that she just wants to know we are going to be close.

The hard part of being a good parent is knowing when to push your child and when to just comfort and coddle.  We hugged it out and then we went out.

Sara said she went to be fine, so that was good, then Wednesday night happened...

This past Wednesday, the Dimares wanted to take the big kids to Six Flags Great Adventure.  This would be their first time and Mark was so excited to go.  They were supposed to go last year but RoRo had a birth to tend to and had to cancel.  I could tell Julia didn't want to go...who doesn't want to go to six flags?  I kept telling her about the rides, the cotton candy, showed her pics online...nothing I said made her want to go.  "Mom I just want to be with you."  "Mom it's going to be dark."  "I have a head ache."  "My stomach hurts."  Finally at 5:00 I lost it.  "Julia, you are going!  You are not sick, you are going to have fun, and you need to tell yourself I am going to have a good time, I am going to have a good attitude."  At 6pm when the Dimares came to pick them up...she was hysterically crying.  

I was so tempted to keep her home, but I knew the minute Mark got home she would regret her decision and be jealous she didn't go.  So my gut told me to push her to go.  Oh, I felt horrible.  My kid is hysterically crying and I am making her go to Great Adventure.


Roe texted me about 5 minutes later and said the tears stopped and she was totally fine.

When they finally got home at 10pm Julia ran in and said, "Mom, we had a GREAT time!"  Oh, what a relief.  It felt good to know that she came out of it and allowed herself to have fun even in the midst of her anxiety.  Lots of prayer has been over this child lately.

I knew having daughters would be rough with all of the emotions and hormones but I didn't know it would happen so soon.  I keep feeling like I have no idea what to do with this kid.  During the week she cried at VBS on Monday and Tuesday, so we took Wednesday and Thursday off and just stayed closer to home.  She was crying in the bathroom at crossroads church both days...and no one knows why.  I think because she wanted me to hurry up and pick her up.  

I've talked to several moms with older daughters and they confirmed that third grade is the year of coming of age in a way.  Girls become more aware of life and death.  They start realizing that people you love sometimes die or get sick.  They start to understand the world in a bigger way and from a different perspective and things that they normally enjoyed doing now may seem scary or overwhelming.

So I am taking it day by day.  Today was a good day for the most part.  But that's because we were home all day in her comfort zone. Tomorrow we venture out into the world.  Sometimes the world is a scary place.  I keep reminding Julia to pray during those moments.  And I tell her to ask God to give her peace.

The thing is when your child is suffering, you suffer.  When they are struggling, you struggle.  It's my job as a mom to make life wonderful for her and it kills me to see her so sad, and nervous, and  sensitive.  I just want her to be okay.  I want her to be happy go lucky again and to not worry so much.

And to think...we haven't even hit puberty...


29 July 2015

8th Day Cafe...The 300...My husband's latest project!

Just Another Project?

We've been married for almost 12 years now...in 10 days we celebrate our official wedding anniversary.  And if there's one thing that drives me absolutely nuts about my husband it's that he is always working on another project!

His first big project was starting Seminary almost immediately after we got married, then when we moved into our second home in Aberdeen it was the "house" project, then it was switching careers, then hobbies, there is just always something John is working on, or passionate about, and although it keeps him very busy I can see that much of it is what makes him, John.  He's a go getter, he's a multi-tasker, he pays attention to details, and He's always coming up with new ideas or new ways to make life easier or better, especially for those around him.

Sometimes, I get frustrated because we have so many little people in our home and sometimes Daddy's "projects" seem to get on Mommy's nerves, because mommy wants a break from her 4 projects, Julia, Mark, Micah, and Amelia...but...I can't change John, and I actually  admire his spunk, passion, and work ethic.  I am just waiting for him to finally sit still and just breathe...but one day we will.

Christianne and Grant have been dear friends of ours for a very long time.  They also have a passion and a heart to serve their community in Kolkata, India.  They have opened up a bakery in India in hopes to rescue women out of a life of prostitution and slavery and into a safe environment where they can earn a living and be proud of what they do.

Christianne and I go way back to the age of 5 at pioneer girls at church.  When Christianne got engaged to Grant they visited us and shared with us their heart for India and the women there and this amazing idea of a bakery.  And now it is here!  And they are looking to build/start a second bakery and location.  It is amazing how dreaming big and thinking outside of the box and putting others first really has changed their way of life and how they have positively impacted these women's lives forever!

My husband John is doing a Spartan race.  He is doing it twofold, to get back in shape and also to raise money for Grant and Christianne's 8th Day Cafe.  Will you support us?  Will you join us?  Will you dream big with us and think outside the box, and perhaps open up your heart?  John has already raised over $2000.  His goal is to have 300 supporters.  People have donated $25, $100, $300...it's whatever you feel led to give.  

Check out this interview we did with the Walsh's (Grant and Christianne are also our son Micah's god parents...they are truly an amazing, godly, and inspiring couple).

Thanks for reading this!  This is not just another project.  I am excited to see how passionate John is about this and even more excited to see what God is doing in Kolkata, India in the lives of the people there.

Thank you to all of you who have donated and joined John's 300!  It's really exciting to see so much support in such a small amount of time!  We feel really loved and we are so excited to bless Grant and Christianne in this way.  They are doing an amazing job and have sacrificed so much just to love on people.  I want to be like them when I grow up!


01 July 2015

Stitch Fix is Amazing! My passion for fashion!

Three Reasons Why I Stitch Fix:

Gone are the days that I can shop with my kids in tow!

I have a 7, 6, 2 and 10 month old.  Can you imagine all 5 of us in a fitting room?  No one sits still.  No one cooperates.  And mommy gets to strip down naked in front of her older kids who now actually care.  Negative!  Taking a 1 or 2 year old shopping might be okay.  Taking 1 or 2 kids might be okay.  But for me, I just can't do it.  I can't concentrate.  I can't think.  And most times I end up leaving the store without buying anything.  Stitch fix is great because a box is delivered to the comfort of your own home, you have time to go to your own room.  Model the clothes in front of your own mirror.  And you don't feel rushed or stressed as you look through everything.

I like keeping up with the trends!

Call me crazy, but I like to look nice.  Yes, even stay at home moms care how they look.  I've always had a passion for fashion and now even more so I like to look presentable when we go out as a family on a field trip, when we head out to church, and on date nights!  I like my figure and I want to dress appropriately.  What I love about stitch fix is that your personal stylist listens to the survey that you fill out when you sign up.  I wrote very specifically that I do not want cleavage showing.  I also wrote that I want bright colors because I tend to buy lots of blacks and grays.  I also can let her know if I have an event coming up like a photo shoot, or a wedding, or that we are about to celebrate my daughters birthday and will be hosting a big party.  She takes all of those things into consideration and adds pieces in each box that are geared to not only your style and size, but the event you are planning.

I love the idea of having my very own stylist!

How cool is it when someone goes shopping with you and they honestly tell you how you look in the clothes you try on and they recommend the perfect outfit for your body type?  It is a rare and unique gift.  The women at Stitch Fix have a great ability in really listening to what you say you need and are looking for and put outfits together in a trendy way.  They also give you a spread sheet with how to mix and match the pieces they send you.  I save these sheets and keep them in my closet or next to my mirror so the next time I put together an outfit I try to mimic the ideas they give.  It's amazing how adding a piece of jewelry or a jean jacket can totally give your outfit a new look.  

How can you get your next fix?  Click on the link above and fill out your own survey and schedule your first fix.  What is the worst that can happen?  Out of the 5 pieces they send you, you can pick what you want to keep or send them back for free.  If you even keep only one item the $20 stylist fee is waved.  It's a win-win.  And trust me you will like what they send you!  You tell them your budget, what you're looking for, your size, and it's their job to go shopping for you! How great is that?

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