Thanks For The Snow Day, Juno!

So the day after the so called epic blizzard we woke up expecting to find at least 30 inches of snow on the ground, but instead only had about six! This so called "epic blizzard" wasn't as historic or crippling as we thought it would be. It seemed like like the whole state of New Jersey was in a panic with streets shutting down at 11pm, and if you were caught driving after 11pm on the roads you got a citation. We were pretty prepared with all the necessities, but had a calm assurance that we'd be okay, and we were. Schools were canceled, and even though this blizzard was a hoax we had a pretty good snow day with the family. Heck...even UPS was closed. Jon had a nice break from work, but at the same time when he awoke to take a look outside he said, "so this is the storm of the century huh guys, we totally could have driven today." Roads were not bad at all, and as soon as we were leaving the house Jon's cell phone rings, and it's UPS calling him to go into work for late pick ups. Luckily he had a couple of hours to spare to go sledding with us, and we were so excited. I love sledding with the kids, and no matter how old we all get it gets more funner! Noah seemed to have had more fun this year than last year. Probably because of the snowsuit we got for him. Keeping a toddler warm is crucial in extreme cold weather, and he had a blast taking turns going down the hill with all of us. That is until his cheeks, and hands turned red.  
I can't seem to find a decent pair of gloves that fit him, and so we have been using socks as mittens (don't laugh!) I brought a few extra pairs because they kept getting wet with snow. That didn't last very long as I ran out of dry "sock mittens" and then Noah started to fuss without whining. He's so sweet when he fusses. It's not a loud fuss, but a quiet one. He'll quietly in a low toned voice said, "mommy I want to go home, I'm tired, and my hands are too cold." We were out for almost two hours,  and since Jon had to go into work we were done sledding for the day.  

So here are a few photos from our "epic" Blizzard of 2015...

Thanks for the snow day, Juno! 

Happy Weekend! 

Happy 4th Birthday Little Blog.

Today marks my fourth year since I wrote my first post, and I would like to take a moment to thank my readers for taking the time in stopping by to visit this little blog of mine. I can't believe it's been four years already. It seems like I started this blog yesterday taking a "time out" from scrapbooking into creating this little blog of mine, writing about my girls, and son who is a year older than this blog! I have to admit I was a bit skeptical when I started this blog, but there have been some amazing ladies via the internet who have inspired me to continue to write. Heck...I think I inspire myself simply because of all the things that I write about, and sometimes I even surprise myself. There are moments when I ask myself, "is this blog worthy for the world to see?", and other times I say "what the heck, it's the truth, and I'm writing it" and I'll start writing away in hopes that others might get a kick out of reading it. There have been quite a few of you who tell me how much you enjoy reading this little blog, and some of you are very dear friends to me. In the past four years I have come to realize that what I'm writing about is not only for you, but for myself, and even if it benefits 10 people then its still worth writing. I enjoy writing about my life, desires, dreams, adventures, and trials. It gives me peace, and brings me to a whole different level of how I view things in my life. It truly releases anything that I've been bottling up inside for too long. I strive to do it with tact, and in good taste. And please...if you feel that I am way in over my head with anything I have written about please don't hesitate to comment. Sometimes we tend to learn from each other, and that's how various bloggers, and readers in the blogosphere strengthen each other. We learn by the words that are written, and the comments that are said. True, I mainly write this for my posterity, but I also write it for anyone who is reading this right now. I've long since realized that even if I get one like or comment I know that someone out there is reading this, and being authentic on the internet is key to my well being. Blogging has been a way for me to connect with others, and also keeps me sane! I enjoy sharing my life with you. Sometimes I tell myself that I'll make this blog private because with my kids growing up you never know what kind of crazies are out there, but luckily I've been fortunate enough to not have any. It's not like I'm a big deal on the internet, and that's fine by me. 

I'm not sure how much longer I'll be blogging, because it's a task when you try to keep up with two other private, handwritten journals, kids, and life, but as long as I feel it's right, and puts me in a place that I love I'll keep it going. 

Because I love to write! 

I love to write! 

...and take pictures too! 

Happy 4th birthday bloggie, and for anyone who reads this site keep on visiting! 

It Takes Time...But You Will Heal.

 ^^^ photo via google ^^^
One thing about me that I love is that I'm a television cop junkie. There are a few tv series that I watch, but one of my all time favorite cop shows has always been Criminal Minds.

Over the weekend I watched quite a few episodes & there was one episode that really caught my attention. Now I've seen so many reruns of this show, but this was one episode I'd never seen before. This particular episode is based upon the character Derek Morgan being molested by someone he trusted. He finally put the man who molested him in his younger years behind bars, and later found out that he wasn't the only one who was sexually abused. Apparently there were numerous others in which this man sexually abused and because of that those who were abused by him became drug addicts, thieves, and in this particular episode one man went crazy and got to the point where his anger and resentment got so built up inside that he developed a penchant for beating his victims to death. His rage also caused him to almost kill his ex-wife in front of their son. Simply because he wanted to protect his son from what happened to him. I know that this irrational behavior, and actions were caused by his long term childhood sexual abuse in which he never resolved with himself or his molester.

I know that this is just a prime time television show, and that all stories are fiction, but in hindsight they are nothing but the truth. 

Because it does happen in real life.

In many ways I find myself like the character Derek except without the badge, and gun. He is tough, fearless, and has a lot of compassion for the victims. Especially for those that have become mentally unstable or psychotic due to the experiences that happened to them in their past. He also has a lot of anger, and frustration towards those who are the culprit of these horrible actions. Luckily for Derek he has the law to take care of the bad guys on a television show, and I have my voice in the real world to help others. It's sad and I know there is no excuse for such irrational behavior, but when it comes to something like childhood sexual abuse, rape, or being sexually assaulted many don't comprehend or even realize that it takes time to heal, and that they need help. Some of us focus on continuing to feel like a chewed up piece of gum that has been thrown onto the ground, and stepped on over and over again drowning ourselves in misery with drugs, or alcohol because someone made us feel dirty, worthless, and violated at a young age. Some of us may not know how to heal, and deal with such abuse until we are older in age, and then it's too late. 

Some of us can end up becoming a danger to society. 

Our lives can be ruined by turning to prostitution, drug, alcohol use falling into severe depression, and unfortunately never recover. Some of us can also become the abuser ourselves. Sometimes keeping it a secret for too long, and being silent for many years can hurt us so much to the point where we can't live anymore, or take it out in various forms of anger towards society. Some may take longer than others to heal, but I am proof that in the end of all that has happened, said, and done that we can be healed. 

And you will. 

It takes time...but you can, and you will.  

Here's to a better Monday than the last one! 

A Little Bit Of A Snowfall.

I find such comfort in the winter. 

It never fails every time it snows I feel a little bit nostalgic because in all honesty, there are days when I actually miss the winters in Utah. I think the fact that we lived close to so many ski resorts got me a bit spoiled. Not that I'm a skier, or a snowboarder, but the fact that we actually got a lot of snow back there, & had a nice view of the mountains was very tranquil to me. The other night I somewhat had a bit of a face time/daughter date with Sierra. She decided to drive up to Big Cottonwood Canyon, but unfortunately was cut short due to black ice. She stumbled upon it as she reached the s curve. She turned around, & her words were "I think I'm going to turn around now because I don't want to die!" Good choice Sierra!! We had a nice talk and she made it home just in time to go to her choir class. 

So when we finally got our first snowfall a couple of weeks ago I was excited. I had been longing for snow since then, and fortunately got some this week. As soon as it came down I told Noah to quickly log off the computer so that we can go outside & feel the snow fall on our faces! These photos were not expected to be taken since it was just us outside being in the moment. Luckily Chelsea came home and because I'm always taking pictures of them asked if she could take some (we seriously need to get her a camera!) I of course never say no to picture taking so I obliged. Especially when the kids ask! She took a few of me and Noah, and then I captured some moments of them two. 
The fact that it was National Hug Day made it so sweet too! It became even more fun when Lexie came home! Yay! Her sibs adore her, and always hover around her when she comes home. Life for her has been pretty busy lately with school that every time we take pictures she's hardly around. I'm so glad I got to capture a few shots of her (which I'll post at a later date), and that Chelsea captured this one of us! 
We had some fun until Noah began to get cold. I was surprised because normally he's all about the snow, and playing in it until darkness falls, but because this snow fall was "wet" it was super cold!! And  we walked ran inside!

The snow here is obviously different than the snow in the Rockies out west, and I've pretty much already gotten used to it being so different. I'm grateful though that we get some snow although it's been pretty mild lately. I'm hoping to get more snow so that the kids can go sledding. Winter is just not complete until we go sledding! We're still in January with two more months of winter left so hopefully mother nature will bring us more snow...and not the wet, wet kind! 
Regardless...I have fun with these kids. I love them so much, and we are going to make the best out of this winter whether we spend it indoors, or outdoors....with snow, or no snow! 

Happy weekend! 

On Bullying & A First Time Experience.

The day before Chelsea's birthday last week she had an encounter and for the first time in her life had an experience of what the meaning of the word bully would feel like. In all her years of elementary school she has never, ever been bullied, mocked, made fun of, or even pushed around. She has always been the popular girl in her class. The one everyone will come to when they need a friend. The one they will go to when they need a pencil, an extra book to read, extra filler paper, a friend to walk, run, and play with at recess. A friend to go to in times of need, and even though she's 10, when it comes to her peers, and school...she's got the mentality of a 15 year old. She tends to be a peacemaker, and someone who knows the difference between tattle telling, and telling on someone who has done something wrong. She's always the first one to laugh, and smile which she was as I posted this picture of her. I hear the same thing every year since she started pre-school at parent/teacher conference. Her teachers have all said the very same thing about her, and it's never disappointing, "we'd like to reproduce Chelsea" "whatever y'all are doing mom and dad keep on doing it" "she's a breath of fresh air" "she's so sweet, and helpful" (you get the picture.) Each year that passes I am flattered at the results of what her teachers think of her, and in how well she does in her academics. I hear nice reviews from her teachers, and how they've never had any issues with her. 

It's always so wonderful to hear all the good things about your child, but when your child finally comes to terms to tell you that because she was defending a friend of hers who was being bullied while waiting for the bus to arrive to take them home got bullied herself. It's like a knife just stabbed my heart. Apparently she raised her voice at this kid, and told him to "stop it!" That's when the boy stepped forward making a fist as if he was going to hit her. Chelsea stepped back, and got nervous. Luckily the buses arrived, and all the kids went their separate ways. What do we say to our kids when, and why things like this happen to them, or anyone? I certainly wasn't prepared because as far as I know her two older sisters had never been bullied in grade school, and even though I went through off and on periods of bullying throughout my entire 12 years of school I had repressed some of those memories, and with all the media that's out there in this generation today about bullying helped me remember, and after watching this video is when I knew I really needed to go in depth with her about the whole bullying issue. 

Because even the best of kids, no matter who they are will once in their lifetime be bullied. 

Since this incident happened right after school Chelsea didn't tell anyone (including me) until the next day which was her birthday. Funny thing is she didn't show any signs of stress in the home when she came home from school. I think the fact that it was her birthday helped her to forget about the situation, and focus on her special day. It wasn't until she returned to school that her teacher noticed she was melancholy, and not herself. That's when Chelsea opened her mouth to tell her of the incident that took place, and why she was so sad. Luckily the situation was immediately resolved by the principal which resulted with the kid apologizing to both Chelsea, and her friend. Along with a future suspension. Let's just hope this kid learned a lesson, and doesn't grow up to be an even bigger bully.  

So, what would I tell my kid in cases like this? I, for one would never tell my kid to retaliate, or seek revenge. That is just not the answer. I know how it feels to be bullied. To be scared wondering why someone is attacking you when you are doing something right. Wondering why in the first place you're being picked on knowing that you've never done anything to hurt anyone. I was bullied as a young kid. Teased because of my Jackson Five, Afro looking curly hair. I had girls who hardly even knew me wanting to beat me up, and for no reason! There was even this one girl who lived near me up until I moved away who teased me in high school. Made fun of my hair even in the freaking ninth grade! Sad because we were childhood friends, and sometimes hung out after school listening to music outside on the sidewalk chewing on chaw gum, and sucking on hot cinnamon sticks. Oh yeah...even the friends you thought were your friends can become mean! 

But I let it go as I grew up, and became a mother. 

My very first encounter being bullied was by a girl named "Evie" who was from the neighborhood (that's not her real name) I was in the fourth grade. I had gotten off the bus, and as soon as the bus drove away Evie just ran up from behind me and yanked on my hair. Yeah...she just pulled it unexpectedly. I just stood there for like two seconds wondering what the heck just happened here. She began going off on a rant, and because I was in shock couldn't recall her words. All I was thinking at this point was making it home, and I had one block to do so. Evie was a big girl so yeah...I was petrified. Luckily I saw my mom from a distance walking towards me which was very rare. She always trusted me to walk home on my own, but on this day it was as if she knew I was in trouble. Evie had a reputation of being a troublemaker, and came from a broken home. I recall trying to be nice to her at one point before this incident took place, but she always came off rude, and scary so I just stayed away. I was so relieved that my mom was there because if she wasn't who knew what Evie would have done next. The next day my mother phoned the principal, and ever since that happened she never bothered me again. I have no idea what became of Evie, and as I look back to recall some of her actions she always looked sad. 

I was about the same age as Chelsea when this happened to me for the first time, and I told her my story the day before writing this post. I told her that she did the right thing by telling her teacher. I also reminded her to always, always-no matter if she feels she's going to get in trouble to always tell me, her father, or her sisters when bad things happen to her especially when it comes to bullying, and to let us know first! Sometimes kids are too scared to tell on the ones that are bullying them, and they continue to take it until it escalates to a point where that child may not want to live anymore. It's scary to think that, but it's the truth. Chelsea is a tough cookie, and I personally feel that she's a lot tougher than me when I was her age. No one wants to see their friends being made fun of or hurt. Instead of Chelsea joining in on those who pick on others, she defends them, and tells them to "stop it!" Most of the time they'll stop, but in this case...this kid scared her, and luckily her emotions upon returning to school caused her to tell her teacher. 

Bullying has gotten worse over the years, and as parents it is so important to reach out to our kids, and talk to them about that. Whether or not they get bullied it should still be an issue in the home so that our kids can defend those who are being bullied, and most importantly to speak up so that our kids don't become bullies themselves. We are the example to our children, and if we exhibit any kind of bullying ourselves they will pick up on it. They will think that's the way things ought to be, that it's okay because mom and dad do it, and that's how life is. 


It shouldn't be that way. It doesn't have to be that way. We are the adult, and it is important to act accordingly because one thing I know is that life is tough. And it can end badly for both the bully, and the one who's being bullied. 

Luckily...I endured everything I went through while being bullied, and survived all the ridicule I took throughout my childhood years.

And I pray that when our kids leave the house for the day that they will always return home unscathed

Let's stop the bullying. 

***This movie also opened my eyes as well with all the social networking going on today. Cyberbullying has got to be the worst!! 


Today I plan on taking Lexie to go see Selma. The fact that she (and her sister) were born on Martin Luther King's birthday is a privilege, and her interest in his life continues to increase as she gets older. For the past three years she has always gone out to do some kind of service project with her classmates from middle school, but now that she's in high school we've decided to watch the movie instead. I have heard amazing reviews, and a few of my friends have already seen the movie. I encourage all high school students to see Selma because the fact that it's based on a man who fought for civil rights without adding any animosity is admiring to me. His dignity, and strength in uniting coloreds with whites with love, and patience proved all too well that he indeed was a wonderful man. A wonderful man who died way too soon. 

He would be 86 today, and even at that age, if he was still alive, can picture him continuing to do amazing things.  Always standing in line first to do something great. Marching ahead of everyone to support the causes he believed in. So to observe the holiday in remembering his bravery and courage we will watch Selma. To remember his life, and to honor all that he did in order for us to live in a world today where we can at least strive to have peace, and maintain to have civil rights. 

"We must develop and maintain the capacity to forgive. He who is devoid the power to forgive is devoid of the power to love. There is some good in the worst of us and some evil in the best of us. When we discover this, we are less prone to hate our enemies."
~Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. 

Such an inspiration! 

Have a wonderful day! 

Scenes of Two Simple Birthdays.

Celebrating the girls birthdays on a weekday was simple, yet a lot of fun and if you have a Snapchat you can see all the details of that day from the time they came home from school until the night ended. There was cake and ice cream, tons of balloons with money tied on the ribbon. There were cake pops, pizza, and small, simple, yet lovely gifts from the girls friends from school, and  the grandparents in Utah. 

I love seeing my girls happy and as I watch them grown throughout the years I've recognized a simplicity and appreciation in them that when their special day arrives they are extremely excited. And that it's the littlest things that bring them joy.

They have never really asked for big parties with a ton of friends or big presents. All our girls have always told us that a simple "happy birthday" gesture added with lots of hugs, and sprinkles of love would suffice, and that makes them the happiest girls on earth. Their outlook of what a birthday should be makes me the happiest mama on earth! Then again...I think I have trained them to think that way, and to always be grateful that we are still alive, and for all that we receive. 

Even though I feel as if my girls are so appreciative of anything we do for them, and don't really ask for much I still want to make their day special, fun, and memorable. And yes...I love giving them gifts! I mean...what's a birthday party without gifts. Even if it's just a few simple gifts it's the thought that counts, and I can see it in their eyes that they are so happy that they received. 

And then there's the cake! 
It was such a wonderful Thursday afternoon. Even though Jon worked all day the second he came home we immediately put candles on their cake, and sang happy birthday to them. Since the girls birthday fell on a weekday I decided to splurge a little, and order them a nice sheet cake from here. This year the girls decided to put all 25 candles on the cake together. It was admirable to see the look on their faces and the gestures they were making as we were singing the birthday song to them. 
They truly are some of the happiest kids I know!

So glad y'all had fun! 

Happy Weekend everyone! 

Ten & Fifteen.

^^^ January 15, 2015 ^^^ 
As each year goes by I am amazed at how quickly these two are growing up. They are alike in many ways, yet sooooo different. Being five years apart I would say that they would have to be different! I will always remember the day I had both these beauties. Little did I know that Chelsea would be born on the same day and month as her sister, because let me tell you....we did not plan it that way! Chelsea's original due date was January 14, but obviously decided at the last minute to be ONE day overdue, and born on the same day as her sister. Yep...she  wanted to be the center of attention, and she totally got it on the morning of Lexie's fifth birthday. 
^^^ January 15, 2010 ^^^
I remember Lexie being filled with excitement when my water broke in the middle of a prayer before Jon was going into work. I will always remember the words said in that prayer, and one thing Jon had prayed for was, and these were the words that he uttered, "we pray that this baby will come soon as Rose is in discomfort, and pray for a wonderful birthday for Lexie." As soon as he ended the prayer, and said amen I kid you not, I felt as if Chelsea did a somersault or flipped upside down around my uterus or something which caused my water to break! I was so thankful, and relieved that the day had come because I was so uncomfortable in the way I was carrying her! The girls seemed excited, and Lexie who just turned five on that day was a little sweetheart. She was so happy that her sister was going to be born on her birthday. She didn't care about opening any of her presents. She didn't care about eating her cake, or being sung to. All she cared about was hoping that mommy was safe at the hospital, and that baby Chelsea would come soon so that she could finally meet her,  and hold her.
^^^ Lexie and baby Chelsea, circa January 15, 2005 ^^^
It has been a blast having two kids being born on the same day. It kind of feels like I have twins except one is taller than the other! It's kind of funny actually. Whenever I've ordered a cake, or buy two of the same thing the sales clerk, or cook will say something along the lines of, "how awesome it is that you have twins!", and then I'd have to correct them and say, "oh no...I don't have twins, they're born on the same day, but five years apart." Then they'd continue to ask how we managed to do that, and my reply would be that we never planned it that way it just happened! Such a fun story!

I honestly believe that Chelsea wanted to come down, and be born on Lexie's birthday so that a bond can be created, and regardless of their difference in age, and personality they sure do love each other.  

Happy Birthday girls!

Love you both!! 

**More birthday posts of these girls you can see here, here, and here!

Sewing The Stitch With My Family.

While Sierra was in town over holiday break we found some time to gather around to sew "the stitch" onto a place where it is noticeable, and to remind us of why we wear it. I had been waiting for this moment to accomplish this 10 month goal with Sierra since last summer, but since she didn't come home then we had to wait until Christmas. I had sent her a kit early last year, & when the matchbox kits came out I got three more for the kids & Jon for Christmas. 

As many of you are aware of the abuse I endured I gave these to my kids to make them aware as to why I support this cause. My youngest daughter who'll be 10 this week understands what sexual abuse is. Her words in defining sexual abuse are, "Sexual abuse is when someone touches the private parts of your body and hurts you." She may be young, but I have taught her to understand and know the difference between good touching & bad touching. 

Jon stitched his on his beanie. He was so excited that he took a selfie of it! He hardly takes any pictures so this meant a lot to me. He knows of everything that has happened to me in my life and wanted to wear this on behalf of anyone who has suffered any kind of sexual abuse. What a guy!!
I managed to start sewing he stitch on my church bag, but because the material was so thick, and with a sore thumb couldn't finish it. So my very supportive, and sweet husband offered to stitch it for me, and it turned out great! 
Lexie and Sierra both worked so hard in sewing the stitch on there Neff beanies. They were getting s little frustrated because of how they were stitching it (such perfectionists), but in the end accomplished it! They took a picture with their dad, and I can tell that they were all so appreciative of why they did it, and the meaning behind that bold colored orange stitch. 
I am so grateful for The Stitch, and for what it stands for. I pray that more of us will come forward with our voice, and speak our silence. I want y'all to know that you are not alone, and to know that there are so many of us out there who knows, and understands how someone feels when they have been violated in a way that makes them feel like they can't turn around, and start their life over. 

Matt Pipkin (the founder of the stitch), myself, along with countless others are proof that we are survivors, and that we made it through the abuse. Just keep hanging on, and with strength, prayer, and most of all hope...we can stand strong and persevere! 

You can read my story here, and all the story about the stitch here

January Cold.

There's something about the winter months that makes you look forward to spring, and makes you want to get out and play. Knowing that we only have three months of winter puts my mind at ease because I know that the next season will eventually show herself. 

I love the cold weather. 

I love the way the cold looks on the trees. The fact that I live in a place where we have the four seasons makes me appreciate the cold. I fell in love with the change of seasons when I moved to Utah 20 years ago. I love how every season transitioned into another, and how the trees would turn vibrant colors in the fall, and how the dew, and snow make the leaves on trees, and flowers picturesque in the winter & spring. 

And Summer! I love summer too! So having winter helps me look forward to the heat! 

Growing up in Texas we had absolutely no winters. No change of seasons, and no change of colors in leaves. Just summer all year round, with a side of cool nights during November and December!! So the fact that I've been surrounded with the four seasons for half of my life has got me spoiled, and I absolutely don't mind, and love the cold. 

Winter is even funner when you have small kids. Last week when the temperatures dropped to about 13 degrees, I was a bit unprepared. I woke up to snow! I had no ice melter, just a shovel. I hurriedly drove to the store to buy ice melter as well as a small shovel for Noah. Noah saw them laying right next to the ice melter, and with the sweetest look on his face asked if I could buy one for him. He said, "I want to be like daddy, and shovel snow too!" He looked so eager, and I didn't hesitate for one second in buying it. I bought him the shovel, and quickly drove home as careful as possible as to prevent any accidents, immediately got out of the car, and began to shovel what snow had already fallen. I then sprinkled some ice melter all over our steps, and driveway. Noah was super excited when I bought him a shovel. He immediately began to help me out. The whole time he was shoveling he kept saying, "I'm just like daddy mom shoveling this snow." Except on this day daddy went to work early, and mommy had to shovel the snow. If you're all bundled up wearing the proper attire, shoveling snow is no hard task. It's a good thing we don't have a sidewalk otherwise there would have been extra shoveling, but it was pretty fun shoveling snow with a five year old.  

And he went to town shoveling snow with that little shovel of his! 
The cold never seems to bother him as witnessed on this post. I swear this kid could be outside all day playing with his sister in the cold. I don't know what it is with kids. It's like they're their own heater or something. 

As soon as Chelsea got home she wanted to play in the snow, and was a tad bit jealous that she didn't get to shovel any of  it. I said to her that we didn't even get that much. I can see the bits of grass underneath it! They both decided to play in it, always make the best of what little snow falls, and had too much fun!

Noah wanted to bring half of his cars and trucks outside to play with in the snow. He decided that the small cars can't drive in the snow, and only played with one of his dump trucks. Good choice Noah!
We haven't had a major snow storm...yet, but I'm making sure we are prepared just in case we have another snowstorm like the one we had last year. Seeing my son help this mama shovel some snow made me happy, and having him doing it on his motive made me even more happier! 
Best six bucks I've ever spent on this kid so far this winter! 


My life seems to be flashing by way too quickly before my eyes especially when it comes to this kid. I've been raising this sweet, fun, and sometimes crazy boy of mine for five years now, and I'm still trying to figure out if the things he does, and says is just a boy thing, or that he's very unique. One thing for sure is that he is extremely different from his sisters, and that's okay by me! I mean...aren't they supposed to be??

Since the new year began he has been getting up way too early, and that's probably a good thing since he'll be starting school in the fall. Definitely best if he starts waking up early and not sleeping in. Although he and Chelsea but heads every now and then they truly are two peas in a pod. He's so lovable, gives endless kisses, hugs, and the sweetest looks. He continues to say the darnedest things, but is getting a little better at saying them without being too bold (most of the time!) 

The other day a friend of mine commented on the photo above, and told me how she'd like to adopt him, and how much I need him not only to keep me on my toes (in other words alive & busy), but to keep me young. 

And you know something...she's so right. 

He definitely keeps me on my toes, and I love being home will him all day. The weather can be 15 degrees outside with sunshine, or 30 degrees with no sunshine, and no matter how demanding my days can be, and how gloomy the weather can get, I still manage to keep my spirits high. Drinking Dr. Pepper, hot chocolate, and lots of popcorn helps too! 

With Noah growing up like Jack's beanstalk his words, and sentences are becoming quite extensive and thoroughly clear. It's a good thing because he'll be starting school this fall. Ever since the year began he has been making us laugh on occasion with the things he's been saying. Even though his sentences are pretty clear there are times when we have to correct him to say the right word. For example...he'll continually say "ax" instead of "ask". I think it's an east coast thing because I hear a lot of people saying "ax" instead of "ask" around here.  

Such as, "Mommy, can you ax Chelsea to stop reading on my bed, and to read on her own bed!" I laughingly respond, "No Noah, I'm not going to ax your sister!" He then looks at me with a weird look, and laughs! See what I mean. Seriously need to correct his grammar sometimes.

Here are some of the things that I've jotted down that Noah has said as of late...

While writing our thank you cards for Christmas I asked Noah to draw a heart next to his name, and he says... "I want to draw a triangle, a square, and a cylinder first. Now I'll draw a heart."
One of his aunts gifted him a lego kit for Christmas, and because the pieces are so small he's been having a hard time pulling them apart with his hands. I caught him trying to pull them apart with his teeth, scolded him for doing so and he said, "Mommy, my fingers are too small, and my thumbs are little so I have to pull the legos apart with my teeth!" 

You know how when we feel we've had enough to eat we'll say, "I'm stuffed", or "I'm full". Well Noah will say, "Mommy, the cereal not making my tummy feel good." The waffle not making my tummy feel good." The chicken not making my tummy feel good." I always wondered why he'd say that after eating his food, and for a moment I thought that it was because it was making him sick. It's then when I realize that he's just stuffed & that those  are his words  replacing, "My tummy is full." Of course we are teaching him to say "I'm full", but he continues to say it the way he normally says it, and we'll let it go for now.
It sounds so cute, and I know that eventually his grammar will improve even more as he grows older while correcting him, and of course when he starts school. 

And my favorite Noahism...

Absolutely nothing goes unnoticed in this kids eyes, and when he saw that all his sisters were back together again over the holiday break singing, acting goofy, and playing piano, guitar, and violin he said, "I want to be a singer mommy. I want to rock like my sisters." 
That's my little man! 

For now...I'm enjoying his words, sentences, and all the things he does, and puts me through on a daily basis because like my girlfriend says...he does keep me young at heart! 

Why I Wear "The Stitch."

Last spring I read about this incredible organization called Speak your Silence, and when I read about it including the founder of it I knew I had to somehow support, and be a part of it. The cause behind it really inspired me to open up even more about my childhood abuse, and to get involved. I have been inspired many times over with others opening up about their abuse as well as the founders story, and in starting up this organization. The fact that we are of different generations is mind boggling because it shows that time doesn't matter when it comes to abuse. It has been happening for generations. Abuse back in the 70's was something that didn't come out in the open, hence not having a clue as to how to deal with it. There was no social media back then where we can read articles to inspire us to come forward. We didn't have the resources then that we have now where we can call for help, and find ways to heal. I mean...who did we have the guts to talk to back then to tell what was happening to us? I know I didn't have anyone. I was too scared, and confused. 32 years ago I wasn't able to defend myself, or have the courage to say anything to anyone including my own mother (that came later.) Having this organization available today to bring awareness to those who have suffered from any kind of child abuse is a blessing, and I'm hoping that it will conquer the stigma of child abuse in hopes that others will find the will on their own to come forward, and to know they're not alone. Unfortunately it happens to so many of us, but in today's society it seems to be more common for children of our current generation to come forward and tell us that someone is sexually abusing them. I know that for me I have taught my kids that if something is being done to them in a way that makes them feel uncomfortable or  handles them in places that is inappropriate to never be afraid to tell anyone...especially me. The one thing I will say to them is never, ever think that I'll never believe them...because I will. 

In the past few months since learning about the stitch I have followed them on Instagram, and am amazed at how many people are opening up, and coming in for counseling. This is the reason why I purchased the kit, and why I support The Stitch because the cause is too real, and too important to be ignored. What I like about it is that the funds go to those who are in need of counseling, and I'll tell ya...if I can be of any help to them I'm there. I will always be on a mission to help find ways to conquer sexual abuse, and ways to find comfort in healing. Not all of us are lucky, and as I was reading a post on one of the grams about how someone committed suicide brought back memories. Memories of the time I attempted it. Like I said...the cause is too real. Whether you're a survivor, or a supporter it's so important to open our eyes because child abuse is never-ending. I always remind myself that I am a survivor, not a victim. 

There are moments where I look back at the time in my life when it all started, and how long it took for me to heal.  Times when I'll look at myself in the mirror, and say to myself I made it. I'm 43, and I made it. It seems surreal at times because of the way my life is right now. Moments when I say to myself that I found a life that is too good to be true. 

Therefore it's important to wear the stitch in a place that will remind me of how hard it took for me to get over the fear of opening up publicly 32 years later about my abuse. A place where I will be reminded of the strength it took to make it this far in life without turning into a complete mess. 

A place where it will never fade way...just like my story. 

These small matchbox kits has a red stitch sticker inside of them, and I decided to stick it on one of my journals to remind me of survival and strength. 
I love it, and boy does it feel empowering! 

With it being a new year it is my hope that more of us will come forward, and be unafraid to speak of any sexual abuse we may have endured. So that the healing process can be begin, because if I made can you! 

Love to all. xxxooo