Saturday, November 28, 2009


Yours truly did, in fact, participate in the Black Friday festivities. It was ridiculous. It was annoying. But at one store, it was glorious.

I went to Kohl's first, and that was a crock. Totally overrated. First of all, I got there at 3:55am, and the line was doubled up in front of the store, running the entire length of the building. So it took ten minutes or so just to get in the store. Then, I realized that the prices were good, really good, but not anything to call home about. I wasn't shopping for appliances or electronics or toys really, so the big deals didn't apply to me. Then, I ended up going back to make a return today, and realized that the prices on the things I bought on Black Friday morning at the butt-crack of dawn weren't any different!! Grrrr. Needless to say, won't be doing Kohl's again. And really, it's not their fault that the trip was wasted. I should've done more research.

On with the greatness of B.F. I went to the mall. Got there around 5:30am. It was pretty sparse as far as crowds go, and the deals were truly wonderful. At NY&Company, every. single. thing. was 50%. It's one of my favorite stores, so I was in heaven.

All in all, got some good shopping done for others and myself - I'll be going super early again next year, but I'll just hit the mall. I avoided it in the first place because the thought of the crowds filled me with dread, but it turned out to be better than any other place.

We also got all of our Christmas decorations, lights and tree put up yesterday, so today I'm just enjoying the spoils of it all. I ADORE Christmas. This is my very favorite time of year.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009


It's nice, after the space of about two months of feeling like I've been losing my mind, to have some really fantastic things happen. Over the span of the last two months, I've lost a ring Michael gave me to commemorate Bennett's birth, I've lost my keys, I've lost my wallet, I got a speeding ticket that truly was a bum-wrap, and Bennett has decided to go NUTS behavior-wise. I also changed my diet pretty drastically, and made the decision to quit facebook and to make my entire blog private and able to be viewed only by myself (which means, in effect, I'm writing this entry for myself :) ). Whoa, heavy couple of months if you ask me. But now I finally feel like a corner is being turned.

We had to replace my keys, and the ring is still gone *sniff*, but I just got a phone call today that my wallet was turned in, which was, of course, a HUGE relief, and my lifestyle changes are really starting to pay off. I feel MUCH healthier and am continuing to lose weight at a slow pace from my diet changes. Over time, I'm fighting the battle of being controlled by food, which is a wonderful feeling.

With Bennett, Michael and I have been implementing principles and strategies from Dr. Dobson's book "The Strong-Willed Child," and after a week and a half of being painfully, annoyingly consistent, it is TOTALLY working, and we are both PUMPED. Our whole family is happier and more positive. It's the best feeling. For anyone who has a strong-willed child, or just has a two/three-year-old going through the crazies, I HIGHLY recommend this book. It gives great insight to how the child's mind works, what they want, how to communicate with them, how to create and maintain your place of authority and respect in the home in a godly, loving but firm way, etc.

And finally, with the time I no longer waste with facebook, I've been working like crazy on the book I'm writing, and I am REALLY excited about it - no really - it's SO exciting. Because even if it never gets published or recognized, it's something me and God have been working on - it came out of my head and from the Holy Spirit, and that's pretty amazing. At this point I've written about a hundred pages, and the ENTIRE plot and all of the events are up in my head in order, with chapter titles and basic outlines of what will happen. It's merely a matter of pounding it out on the computer!! (not easy when you've got a 3 year old and an 8 month old, but I put in my time anywhere I can, and I LOVE working on it). Also, due to releasing my hold on facebook, I'm not struggling by half with feeding myself the desire to "keep up with the Jones's" or to be someone I'm not. I'm not struggling nearly so much with envy or wishful thinking, or discontent or judgmental thoughts toward others. Being so much more free of all of these attacks is the greatest. I wish I'd done it a long time ago.

Thank you, Lord, for your blessings when we persevere and keep on keeping on, even when we don't feel like it. Thank you for giving me some bright lights at the end of the tunnel I've been trudging in. Thank you for your perfect plans that are far better and greater than anything I could've planned for myself. Thank you for good things - I know that all good things come from you.

Thursday, November 19, 2009


It has happened. I didn't think it would happen to me - to our family - but it has.

We have a terrible two in our midst. Truly. Although I think he qualifies more as a terrible three, since he'll be having a birthday in a couple of weeks...but "terrible threes" just doesn't sound quite as catchy.

In the past I've been known to watch a certain show called "Nanny 911," and I confess I've found myself shaking my head and chuckling a little at these "clueless" parents who've let their children get so out of control. Likewise, when I've watched a child throw an absolute scream-at-the-top-of-your-lungs-kicking-and-thrashing fit in public, I've wondered how on earth the parent let it get that far.

Oh, how the Lord is humbling me. Because my sweet, energetic, loving Benito has transformed into a child I'm not really acquainted with, and whom I don't really like at times. This may sound harsh, but I've been praying a lot about it and doing a lot of reading (ahem, The Strong-willed Child by Dr. James Dobson), and I've come to the conclusion that this is normal. Maybe not for every child, but for a lot of them, and especially those who are strong-willed like my son. I love him to pieces and I will forever and ever no matter what, but the Lord knows right now is a time of testing and fire, and frankly it's not much fun for anyone (except Jasper, who's so laid-back and little, it doesn't really matter what's going on - he'll find a way to make lemonade).

We have multiple tantrums and episodes of defiance each day. I am consistent. I keep my voice calm. He faces the same consequences for the same offenses time and time again. We also have a rewards system. We pray together. We talk through our actions. But it's becoming more apparent that this is going to be a long-term investment for building character and respect and order in our home. I'm okay with that, even though it is hard. work. Boy howdy!

I write this to remember what we went through so that if I go through it again with Bennett at some other time down the road, or with another one of my kiddos, I can look back and say, "Been there, done that, and we survived it!"

God give me strength! They weren't kidding - these terrible twos and threes can be pretty terrible at times!

Monday, November 9, 2009


I'll be shutting down my blog in a day or two for various reasons, just so everyone knows. Wanted to let everyone know so you don't think I shut you out of my posts or that you've encountered technical difficulties :)