Monday, May 02, 2016

Monday Confessions

Confessions:

*I ate four cookies for breakfast. And some goldfish crackers. Maybe some of the baby's apple cinnamon oatmeal.

*I haven't had more than 5 hours of sleep in a row since about... 2014.

*I bought some Jamberry. I know that I have loads of friends who sell it and have been trying to get me to buy some (not super aggressively --all have been very nice about it!), but I didn't want to. Until now. Heh. Anyway, I got some because I want to curb my nail biting habit. I've tried to keep them painted in the past to do this and it was ridiculous because the paint would come off in two days. You can see how gross my cuticles and hangnails are in this photo --I'm also attempting to fix that as well. So far, so good! I haven't bitten a nail in more than two weeks! I love "fine china" and I did the girls' nails last night. Since I rarely wear makeup (or jewelry or curl my hair), this is pretty fancy schmancy for me! The end.


*I didn't sign the Target boycott. I also kept my red card. That said, I'm shocked at how many people are supporting gender neutral bathrooms, especially feminists. I think gender neutral bathrooms are a horrible idea and our society is on it's way to hell really, really fast. We're pretty much already there. That's gonna offend people, and so I direct you to my next confession...

*I think people spend way too much time being offended. It's the plague of social media.


*I read so many books that I can't remember what books I've read some of the time. And the only book genre I can read consecutively without having to take a break (because of hard subjects or whatever) are clean historical romances (the clean is imperative). Regency is a plus. Which reminds me --I got a Julie Klassen book at our Young Women's garage sale fundraiser for $1! Score!

*I thought I was getting better at not yelling and screaming at the family. But because it is my biggest vice, I can't seem to eradicate it completely. I don't expect myself to never yell for any reason whatsoever, but I do expect myself to grow up and be nice. I'm the greatest of hypocrites, you know, and I abhor hypocrisy and dishonesty in every form. I teach my kids to be kind! Be calm! Apologize! Forgive! Don't bark at your brother! Stop screaming at your sister! And yet what am I doing? Barking, yelling, seething... BLERG. Great example, eh? It's damaging to their emotional state --it's damaging to mine! Sometimes I think I may be too hard on myself because I'm not the only mother who yells. I also am not the only mother who is frustrated with children who won't obey until their mothers become screaming banshees. But I know better. And because I know better, I feel I should DO better. I'm not gonna give up, though. Each new day is a day to try again and honestly, dear reader? I'm trying. I really am.


*I absolutely and unabashedly love the Royal Family. Especially Will and Kate and their adorable babies.

*I feel no shame in admitting that I am a Christian woman who loves and tries to follow Jesus Christ. I don't feel fear in professing my belief in prophets and modern revelation. I feel blessed to have a Savior and I am just peachy keen to let the world know of Him and His commandments and why following Him brings us true peace and real joy. I will never apologize for my testimony and faith. I will never deny what I know and believe to be true because I have never found anything else that can even come close to competing with the safety I have found in Jesus Christ. No matter what else happens in my life, I know I have a Savior.


*It's taken me hours to write this post because of interruptions from the minions. And now I will go clean my house and start dinner in the crockpot. Maybe. Unless I'm distracted by something else...

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Next Chapters and Stuff

Well, we've been here for about a month.

We've had two tornado warnings (the sirens went off 2-3 times Sunday night and once, yesterday) and a lot of hail. I was a basket-case during the siren, yesterday, because the boys were still at school. Everyone was just peachy-fine, of course, and I've been told I'll get used to the sirens and the warnings and that like lightening, you never know where the tornado will go, but it's easy to prepare for the worst. In fact, my friend told me that it's a lot easier to prepare for a tornado because 1. they see them in advance and 2. you can get to your shelter and most likely be just fine. Earthquakes and tsunamis and such give no warning --it happens and people only know it's going to happen for a couple of seconds. There's no way to prepare for something like that...

So, my house is almost unpacked! Huzzah! I only have to finish the library (so close), unpack the basement food storage, and the garage. And buy some furniture and hang up all the pictures. "But Cheryl," you ask, "don't you know it's ridiculous to focus so much on unpacking when there is so much living to do? Why do you want to make others feel badly that they took 2 years to move into their houses by doing it within 2 months?" Well, those are excellent questions, dear reader! The answers are: "Who says unpacking isn't living?!" and "If they feel badly, then that has nothing to do with me!" The end.

Depression and Anxiety update:
Well, I'm still on my meds, but I knew the change would be hard and it's HARD. I adore my house, I love my family, the ward is so nice, our neighbors are the best, things are cheaper, the parks are fun, we got library cards, we've already been to the temple (and Costco! We loaded up for two months), and again, I love my house. But I'm struggling because of change. I'm going through big changes (and no, not "the change")! The obvious one is moving. The not-so-obvious ones include:
1. Brandon being home all the time. I love it, but like any military family or other business-traveling family will tell you, re-entry is difficult. We're navigating our way to a new normal (a better normal!), and so there are bumps along the way.
2. New everything: new schools, orthodontist, dentist, doctors, grocery store, ward, laws, systems, culture, etc.
3. Toddler stage with a toddler that doesn't want to wean or sleep through the night and I'm not ready to give up nursing, either. And she is smart. Which translates into getting into everything.
4. Hormones (see below under TMI)
5. Making new friends is hard work as a mother. I'm busy with my family and so I don't have time to just go hang out with people very much. Plus, I have baggage and they have baggage and we all have our baggage --and our baggage looks differently, like some have baggage with a really cool vintage floral print, and others have classy briefcases with locks, and I have a bag-lady beach bag with holes in it, but hey! Our baggage is our baggage and as long as we all admire and enjoy and tolerate each other's baggage, it's all good. It's just getting used to it...
6. I can't remember names and faces, anymore. Is it because my memory is full of the previous places I've lived? Is it my age? Apathy? All three?
7. I'm having anxiety because I can't seem to find a psychiatrist for myself. And I need one soon.
8. I'm not being a very nice mom, lately. This is the part about myself I have the hardest time forgiving --I don't like being a nasty, selfish mom. The guilt makes me more nasty. It's a vicious cycle that I KNOW how to break --it's just remembering to do it.

One good thing: my particular wit (and humor) is coming back. Sort of. This may mean I will have the desire to write more... Maybe even poetry, again...

TMI: Aunt Flo has returned after a blissful year of non-periods-due-to-nursing, even though I'm still nursing most of the time. What, period, you think you should get to come back because it's been a year, already?! Speaking of which --has anyone used THINX? What do you think of this THINX? Because I'm very, very, very tempted to buy them and rid myself of pads forever and ever, amen. The idea is so intriguing and genius because:
1. Convenience (sure, I'll have to change my underwear a few times a day, but with pads, it's like, a 284 times a day! Changing the pad, I mean. Not my underwear. You get it.)
2. Overall cost (sure it's expensive to buy a week's worth of undies, but you only pay for them once. And if you take good care of them, they will last for years! Years and years! In fact, I did the math, and I'm totally kidding because like I ever do math...)
3. Environmentally conscious --I already wash clothing; it's not like using some more water is going to impact the Earth as much as my current period-waste that sits in a landfill...
4. More TMI (seriously, look away): I can't wear tampons anymore, so things like the diva cup don't work for me, either.
5. They are helping women in Africa!! Go here.

I need to figure out a time to do something for myself, by myself, every day. Besides time spent in the bathroom (which is never really by myself, isn't that so normal and sad?). And besides writing or reading. I want to walk again. But I need: a time to do it that will not hinder my family nor put my children in danger AND a walking buddy. Why the walking buddy? Because I do better when I have someone to talk to. "But Cheryl," you ask, "wouldn't that defeat the purpose of being alone?" And I would say, "Oh, yeah... Well, whatever."

The kids get out of school before Memorial Day! Huzzah!! I'm ready for looser schedules. No, not loser schedules, looser --more loose. (Although sometimes my summer school schedules end up being loser-y. Ha!) Time to explore! Do more chores! Mess up the house more! Fight with siblings more...! and... Well... I'm still excited.

The piano is in our living room. Our living room is in the center of the house and conveniently located near the kitchen and dining room and stairs. Because it is on the main level where I spend most of my time, and because it's in a big open room where I can see and hear where the kids are most of the time, I am finding that I am playing and singing more. The acoustics are fantastic thanks to wood floors and nothing on the walls at the moment! I remember a time when the bulk of my day was spent on the piano. I kind of miss it.


Goals for myself for this next little while:
1. Unpack the house and find glorious furniture that will compliment my tastes and desires for the living room (that fluctuate wildly between gorgeous Victorian/Edwardian and super cheap).
2. Walk outside
3. Go to the library with the kids
4. Explore more of the city
5. Take a nap. A long one. A very long, beautiful nap. Preceded by a bath. A long one. A very long, beautiful bath.

Quotage for your day:


Friday, April 22, 2016

Home Sweet Kansas

Hello, dear reader!

We moved. Obviously, although maybe not so obviously if you haven't been keeping up with me on social media. Poor, neglected blog... I'll try to write more later next week...

Living Room not long after we arrived!
Kansas is WONDERFUL, people. I know what you may be thinking: wha? How is it wonderful? Isn't it flat and just full of farmers? (as if flatness and farmers are not wonderful, sheesh!). Well, here are the reasons I love Kansas:

*People here are genuinely friendly. Not in a fake way, either. On the East Coast (which I love, so don't take this to mean I hated it, because I didn't), people are polite, but not friendly. They're helpful, but not open. Here, they are open and friendly and helpful and so very nice!

*We live in the Flint Hills (tail-end) and so we have rolling hills and lots of trees. Not quite as tree-filled as back East, but definitely just as hilly!

*Our house is a dream come true for me. Literally. It's nothing I thought I would want and yet everything I've ever wanted! And we own it! I'll share photos below.

*Church is 6 minutes away (instead of 25). Work for Brandon is 5 minutes away (instead of another time zone and airplane ride!). Schools are close; friends are closer.

*Music lessons and sports activities are way cheaper here! This means we can put the kids back into some things.

*Realizing we can travel to Philly this summer for the Temple Open House as well as Idaho/Utah in a reasonable amount of time. Being in the center of the country (quite literally) is pretty awesome for that!

The kids are doing okay. Adjusting pretty well to the house and environment and the new-ness of it all. They're slowly making friends and trying to find their places in the ward and at school. The biggest complaint? "Mom, at school they swear a lot more here than in PA --and they keep using the F word for everything. It's just awful." So, BOO on that! You may be nice, Kansas, but you should clean up your language!

Easter:




I am doing a bit better than I expected. Depression-wise I had one HUGE meltdown on a morning a few weeks ago. Once I screamed and yelled (at the air, not the kids, well a little at the kids, sigh...) and bawled for an hour, I felt a lot better. I think the stress just needed to get out. But I've been consistent about my medication and keeping the stress down as much as possible, so I'm doing pretty darn good.

Things I've been thinking about:

*Not the election. I hate everyone who is running.
*Summer plans
*Unpacking the house (I'm seriously so close!)
*Finding time to go walking
*Getting baby girl to sleep all night, or at least most of it! Maybe weaning her, too...
*Writing again
*Getting my kids into swimming lessons, music lessons, and sports
*Adjusting to having Brandon home all the time (which we LOVE)

5 gazillion photos of the house -- most without a lot of our furniture and zero pictures on the wall (still waiting to touch-up paint before we do that portion of the unpacking):


























































Quotage for your weekend!