Monday, December 31, 2012

my latest project.

Ok, so *technically* it was a joint project since Tony made the knobs smaller & drilled the holes for it, but I'll still claim it as mine.

I had an old sign I'd picked up at Goodwill for pretty cheap that was sitting in the garage.  I have been keeping all my old necklaces in this organizer thing I bought in Japan that basically had them all bunched up.  So I decided to make a necklace holder.

Above is the sign before.  I sanded it a bit, spray painted it, then had Tony drill the holes.  He accidentally drilled two extra holes but I looped some ribbon through to create earring holders instead of filling the holes & repainting.

& here is the end result.  I think it's pretty & it finally adds some sort of decor to our master bathroom, which has been empty up until today. :)

Sunday, December 30, 2012


In 2013, I resolve these things:

1) Keep up with this blog.  I anticipate if I do this one thing, it will help with my sanity while Tony is gone.

2) Continue to keep up with my reading of scripture by the bible in a year plan.

3) Work harder to get out of debt so my family can live the way God intended.

4) Exercise often.  Eat healthy.  Etc.  We say this every year & rarely stick with it.  I FULLY intend to do so so as not to gain all the weight I've lost.

5) Work on patience with my children & my husband.

6) ACTUALLY stick to the things that I resolve to do.

What are your plans for the New Year?  I hope it brings love & prosperity to all of you.

(oh, & also?  I will do AT LEAST one or two pinterest projects per month.)

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

boy oh boy.

It's been days, weeks, months, ages since I've blogged.  I'll spare the apologies since no one really reads this anyway, & if you do you're likely a family member or friend who stays abreast of my information via facebook or some other social media route.  I've thought about writing every single day though & to be honest, I'd truly like to make more of an effort to make that happen.  Not for you, for me.

I've long wanted to write a book.  I intend to one day & I figure the best way to prep myself for that undertaking is to actually write.  As much as I'd like to do it the old-fashioned way, with pen & paper, this is more realistic.

I'll pass on the general updates of the MILLIONS of things that have happened in the last few months.  Well, I'll give a quick but brief overview:  Tony left for school two months ago.  I started working full time at a medical office here in Cheyenne.  I was baptized in June.  The boys are awesome.  Tony got his wings & we're moving to Florida next year.  I'm still in the reserves & I'd kill to be back in the Navy full time.  Moving on.

Tony will be home sometime tomorrow. He left two months ago this past Sunday.  As excited as I am to have our family back in one piece, & as much as this may hurt his feelings if he reads this, I'm also dreading it, too.  Not in the conventional sense.  I have missed him.  I've missed our family as one unit.  I've missed the silly, ridiculous things he says.  I have not missed his snoring.  Aside from that, I've missed him very much.  But.

But I've found in these last few months I'm more of ME then I have been in a few years.  In NO way do I blame him for losing myself.  It's just life.  It's evolving, things are changing, & so am I.  The boys & I have settled into a routine, I've become more self confident & more capable.  My ability to handle the boys has tripled since there was no choice in the matter.  I've continued to lose weight, I've become more comfortable with myself, & in general I just feel pretty good.

I'm not sure that it really had anything to do with Tony being gone, or if it's just that I've reached that point in my life where I've realized that I need to make myself a priority.  During his absence I did my two weeks of yearly Active Duty time & during it, I learned a lot.  Not a lot about the Navy or my job, or anything military related for that matter (the truth is I didn't work very hard at all).  But I had time with other Navy people, made a few friends, & realized just how very much I miss it.  I missed the camaraderie, the crass & crude jokes, the bond that brings us together simply because of a set of orders & a uniform.

All of these connections crashed into the other, combined with that ache in my heart for the military & its lifestyle, until I'd reached my breaking point.  I have a good civilian job.  It pays the bills, the people are nice, but it's not me.  So I've made a decision that may or may not adversely affect our family, but I believe that in the end it will be a good thing & be better for us.  When we move to Florida, I'm going to be putting in a package to become a recruiter.  It's a three-year, non deployable billet, which would ultimately be a good thing since right now I could deploy at any time.

I know it will be hard work.  I know that.  But you know what?  So is a crappy civilian job with low pay.  So is being a stay at home mom to two very rambunctious boys.  So is anything, in reality.

"Let me tell you the secret that has led me to my goals: my strength lies solely in my tenacity."
Louis Pasteur

So from this point, I will be tenacious.  I will pursue the things that matter to me, throw caution to the wind.  I fully intend to continue to raise my boys in the best way I can, but I will take care of myself in the process.  I will do everything I can to continue to strengthen my marriage, but I will take care of myself in the process.  I will continue to give everything I've got to the people I love, but I will take care of myself in the process.

At this point, I'm SUPER excited to see Tony tomorrow.  I think him leaving has been good for us both.  He learned so much & I'm so very proud of him.  He's done amazingly well & has been assigned an aircraft that he is so excited about- he's like a kid on Christmas morning when he talks about it.  I think the separation has made our marriage stronger because we've both learned things about the other & ourselves when we weren't together.

From where I stand, I can only see two things: onward & upward.  I see good things.  
See I can see good things for you and I
Yeah, good things for you
Give I can give love and attention
Give I can give all time away
Only to one heart I can give today.
'Good Things' by the Bodeans
& because I want to continue to torture myself with song lyrics (what's better than a song?), I'll add this too:
Live a life less ordinary
Live a life extraordinary with me
Live a life less sedentary
Live a life evolutionary with me
'Life Less Ordinary' by Carbon Leaf
Today, let's be less ordinary. I challenge you & me to do something. Let's find something we love & for the love of God, let's DO IT.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

my dearest sons.

Cody & Sawyer,

I want you to know that no matter what happens, no matter how hard it is, no matter how I lose my patience, no matter what it comes down to: you two are the light of my life.

Every day I feel as though I'm failing you.  I feel like I'm not going to do a good enough job.  I feel like I'm barely treading water & I feel like the two of you are here just to annoy me.  I feel like all the wants & hopes & all I ever wanted for you is never going to happen.

I know that the two of you are beyond well loved.  I know that you're healthy, smart, funny, cute, interesting, & amazing.  I know that in the grand scheme of things, you are perfectly happy.  You play constantly, you tell me & your daddy about your day, you laugh, smile, giggle, & find joy in things that we've long since forgotten as adults.

In short, you are two perfectly normal, perfectly awesome kids.

So when I lose my patience, when I yell or sometimes spank or put you in timeouts or do something that takes that light in your eyes away, I'm truly sorry.  I promise you that I'm going to do EVERYTHING in my power to stop.  I'm going to try my hardest to be positive.  I'm going to show you, every day, how very much I love you & how very much you mean to me.  I'm going to PLAY with you more.  I'm going to read "just one more book" because I know that those moments are fleeting.

I'm going to stop feeling guilty about your life so that all I see is fault in how we're raising you.  I'm going to take advantage of the little time that I do get with you & I'm going to cherish your little minds for all that they are.

I'm going to try my hardest to remember that when you're upset it's not because you're trying to make me mad.  I'm going to try to remember that you being upset is probably because you're frustrated or tired or confused- & me yelling or getting angry is only making it worse.

I'm going to say I'm sorry.  A lot.  Because I know I'll forget all the promises I make.  But please, in all you do, remember that I love you.  God gave me you two because he knew how very badly me & your daddy needed you.  He gave me you two because he trusted me & your daddy to love you & care for you & provide for you & with any luck, guide you two to be even more amazing than you already are.

But more than anything, I'm going to do everything I can to be the best mom in the world, because I love you so very much, from the bottom of my heart.

Cody Travis & Sawyer William, thank you for showing me every day how important it is to be your mom.  Thank you for giving me the opportunity to see where I'm failing you so that I can try again tomorrow.  & thank you for loving me no matter what.  I promise you that your dad & I will do our very best.  For the rest of your lives.

I love you so very much,

Monday, May 21, 2012

Retraining, Eric Church, & God's work in our lives.

First things first: TONY WAS APPROVED FOR RETRAINING!  I know anyone who reads this is also my friend on facebook so you probably already know this, but it's such HUGE news!

The upside:  Tony gets to get a new job that he's been wanting for ages.  He'll be a flight engineer, which, if I understand correctly, means he'll be the #3 person after the pilot & copilot.  He will do the navigation & things like that that my simple, non-mechanical mind will never understand.

The downside:  He will be gone for like 6 months for school.  I know this won't be the end of the world & I know that I *technically* won't be a single mom, but it will feel like it while he's gone.  I'm absolutely terrified at the thought of being alone with the kids for that long, but I know we will be fine.  I know that I can handle it & I know that ultimately, this will do SO much for our family.

On the same sort of token, I've taken to looking for a full time job again.  Starbucks isn't giving me enough hours to justify paying for daycare, I don't make enough to cover it so it's almost pointless.  It doesn't look like the recruiting gig is going to work out for the Navy, so I've been applying at some places here in town.  If I'm unable to find something permanent in the next month or so, we'll be pulling the boys out of daycare & I'll be staying home with them again.  While that sounds ideal, it's tough because I don't feel like the mom that was made to be home full time anymore.  & along with that, Cody & Sawyer both LOVE school.  They really do.  They thrive there & they learn SO much more than I could teach them here.  It's a double edged sword, for sure.  I wish there were a way to do both.  I'm sure we'll work it out in time & God will show us the right path.

This past weekend, Tony & I were able to go to the Eric Church concert.  As everyone knows, I'm pretty crazytown about him.  I bought the tickets when they were first available, & pretty much counted down until the day it came.  My amazing friend Rebecca was willing (i.e. crazy enough) to take the boys for us from Saturday until Sunday afternoon in addition to her own three boys.  We got a hotel room & made a little mini vacation out of the show.  MAN, was it NEEDED.  We not only had an AMAZING, ridiculously good time at the show, but it was just great to get away for a day.  It was great to take a break & come back rejuvenated.  The show was, hands down, the best concert I've been to.  I've been to like 30 concerts in my life & it truly was the best I've seen.  Not only was my man Eric phenomenal, but the other performers were great too.  It was SO good.

God is moving pretty big in our lives lately.  We aren't too sure how we're going to pay our bills but we are truly starting to have FAITH.  Tony has started reading the bible, which amazes me & makes me crazy proud in a way I can't even explain- & it seems that he has more faith than me these days, which I love.  I feel like we're both learning & making our way through & I'm starting to see how we're going to raise our boys in the church & God willing, they'll be God loving men too.

I signed up to be baptized on the 17th of June.  I was baptized as a little girl but I certainly hadn't made my own decisions about God & now, it's for me.  I want to really & truly KNOW God & I think I'm finally, at the very least, taking the right steps to get there.  I'm proud of where we're going & where we'll get, & I know it's all because of him.

More soon. :)

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Good mom or Bad mom?

What makes someone a good parent?  Is it the ability to consistently be patient?  Is it a mother who is able to stay at home with her children, have unlimited patience, creating all kinds of cool crafts?  Is it a mother who sees her kids in the afternoons & weekends because she works all day to pay bills to keep them fed?  Is a bad mother a mom who gets upset easily when her three year old won't listen so she yells?  We all know a bad mom is a mother who neglects her children- but where do you draw the line on good parents vs. bad parents?

I'm having a "bad mom" day.  Whether or not I'm a good mother is something only God knows.  I know that I love my kids more than anything.  I know that a lot of times I lose my patience when Cody doesn't listen or Sawyer continually does something naughty because he thinks its funny.  I know sometimes I yell.  Loudly.  I know sometimes I scare my kids when I get so frustrated that I yell at them or even occasionally spank them.

I know that I judge people unnecessarily over their parenting choices.  I know that in public, I do all I can to get my kids to listen or act like I'm not embarrassed when one of them throws a temper tantrum or runs away from me.

I know that I've tried everything I can think of to try to get them to listen.  I've been consistent.  I've set limits.  We have a solid routine that we are convinced helps them be happier kids.  I'm not saying we don't stray from it occasionally or that it's wrong to not have a routine.  But it works for us & it seems to work for them.  We've tried time outs, yelling, spanking, taking toys away, ignoring, positive reinforcement, you name it.  I have a hard time figuring out what is "right" & what is "wrong" & more often than not, I feel like I'm doing it wrong.  More often than not, I feel like the worst mother in the world & I feel like my kids will spend thousands upon thousands on therapy when they're older because we screwed them up irrevocably.

I know that my kids are well clothed, well fed, have the proper medical care & treatment, & are bathed frequently.  They do not go without hugs or kisses or praise & they certainly are not lacking in entertainment.  & although we are pitifully broke, we still manage to provide them with all they need.


Is anyone doing it right?

This parenting gig is tough.

I know that Cody's whining sounds like nails on a chalkboard & I know that when the two of them hit each other or fight over a toy, it's all I can do to not walk out the door sometimes.

I know that I lose it with them then I get mad when Tony does the same.  I know the both of us barely stay afloat in this sea of crap where the boys are learning & so are we & perhaps, the boys are smarter than us & maybe that's why we screw up so much.

Either way, it's certainly not what I thought it would be.  It's impossible, scary, frustrating, beautiful, & worth every minute, no matter how bad of a mom I am today.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Sawyer's Surgery

I know millions of parents deal with much worse things.  I know it's not even a huge, major surgery.  But I'm still nervous about the ENT knocking my little man out & cutting on him tomorrow.  My poor baby, who is so used to going to doctors & getting looked at.  My sweet, amazing, crazy, ridiculously smart baby.

So if you would say a prayer or send a good thought for my little man, I would appreciate it.  <3

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

back to the drawing board?

Last night Tony asked me the last time I'd blogged.  I told him I couldn't even remember & we had a long talk about a lot of things potentially going on in our lives.

While we've got a million things going on, I'm still feeling rather stagnant.  Now that I'm back in the Reserves I'm going to be applying for full-time support, but until I complete my first drill weekend I'm unable to do so.  I'm working at Starbucks, which I enjoy, but the hours I'm given don't even come close to being enough financially.  School is ending this week & since my degree plan fell through, I really don't have much to look forward to.

I've always envied those people who've known since childhood what they want to be when they grow up.  I still have NO idea & it's almost embarrassing to admit that I've been going to school  for 3 years now & I still don't have an Associates Degree.  To make matters worse, I have NO motivation since the degree I was pursuing didn't work out, so I'm basically floating through my classes without much effort.  I'm not proud of it, but it is what it is.

We should be finding out soon if Tony is approved for retraining.  If he is, we'll have some big things happening but we don't know when.  We may transfer, we may not.  I'm trying to take each day as it comes but honestly, I'm really just overwhelmed & frustrated, & not sure what direction to take.

The boys are amazing.  Cody is stubborn, strong willed, & a total pain in the neck, to put it mildly.  He turned 3 last week & I'm having a hard time finding a middle ground with him.  I don't want to break him down by being too strict but I don't want to be a total pushover either.  It's very, very, very hard, this parenting thing.  Sawyer is a crazy little man who is very, very cool.  For the most part he's pretty laid back, but now that he's getting older he really just wants to do what his brother does & neither of them is old enough to understand the other & the way in which things work.  So there's a good amount of toy stealing, hitting, pushing, head butting, but also a lot of hand holding & hugs & kisses.  I'd venture to say as they get older they'll be the best of friends, plotting against Tony & I.

I guess I just wanted to check in.  I know I should do this more regularly, as it makes me feel better to get my thoughts on paper (err... computer).  So maybe I'll give it more of an effort this time, since school is ending & I'm taking a break.

See you on the flip side.
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