Sole Blessings

This.

Shoes

I trip over them, I pick them up. I yell at them to pick them up. I clean up the dusty mess they leave behind.

But there are blessings in each of those soles.

That we have two feet to put into them.

That we are healthy enough to run around in them.

That we have a house to pile them up in.

That we have more than one pair to wear, each. And that we have the money to replace some of them soon.

The fact that they are all piled up at 11:30am on a Wednesday means one thing, the kids are all home on break. Even if I am trying to work. They are here, fighting, sneaking electronic time, playing ball, riding bikes, complaining there’s nothing to eat, laughing, chasing each other with the hose (did I mention fighting). But they are here. With me.

I’ll try to remember this the next time I feel the urge to start shutting the windows so the neighbors don’t hear me yelling.

Somethings Gotta Give

Obese.

That one word, shattered my world.

I was sitting there on the exam table yesterday expecting all sorts of praise from my doctor about how great my health was. I have always had very low blood pressure, my HDL (good cholesterol) is high and my LDL (bad cholesterol) is low, I have no medical conditions whatsoever and I have never been on any medications for my health. I figured I was the picture perfect state of health for a busy, overworked 40-something mother of 3.

But obese? That’s the last thing out of her mouth that I expected.

A pit started growing in my stomach.

Wait, I eat vegetables. I cook our meals at home, I don’t choose to go out to eat more than once a week or sometimes only once every two weeks.

I had felt the extra pounds and knew I was overweight, but wait, didn’t I just have a baby….oh, crap, that was 10 years ago now. My hips and knees have been a little achy here and there but my dad has bad knees and I remember my grandmother complaining about her hips aching so isn’t it just hereditary? I don’t have a sweet tooth. One extra helping at supper and then finishing off the pan while I’m doing the dishes is ok, after all I didn’t even have lunch today.

I was beginning to see that these were just excuses. Excuses because I didn’t want to do the hard work. I didn’t want to fight with my family about changing our diet or try to make time in my 28 hour day to try to… Fit. In. Exercise.

But obese, seriously? I have never had a bad self/body image. That word made me see that this has nothing to do with my body image (ok, feeling good and looking good in my clothes would be nice again) but this has more to do with my overall health. The numbers might be good right now but if I keep carrying this extra weight on me another 5 – 10 years it could be detrimental to my health.

I am 43 years old….44 in a few weeks, 5 foot 5.5 inches and I weigh 195.2 lbs and I’m considered obese.

I sit here afraid to push the publish button, afraid of what will happen, what will everyone think, what if I can’t do it…. and I catch myself making excuses.

No more excuses.

Why We Take Our Children’s Electronics Away Every Day

We feel our kids get more than enough screen time and have plenty of opportunities to “chat” with their friends everyday so once a day (every night) they lose their electronics and take a break. I feel it is at least the most important time of the day for them to be electronic free and completely rest their brains.

We have instilled in them a policy that applies everyday of the year, no matter where we are. It simply defines when and where they can have access to their electronics and it’s not a free-for-all just because it may be a weekend (or a holiday or break) and we are at home and mom may be buried in the couch with a glass of wine, watching a Downton Abbey marathon. I can’t be everyone at once, people.

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Our House electronics policy:

  • No electronics after 8:00pm for the girls (10 & 12) and 9:00pm for our 15 year old.
  • They are not allowed in their bedrooms.
  • All electronics are to be docked downstairs in the charging tray every night.

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We used to have an electronics drawer in our old house (that ended up looking like a tangled mess as well) so in the new house I needed a space to house our electronics,  all of their accessories and all of those cords.

I decided this little area tucked beside the fridge was far enough out of site to not clutter my counters too much, but needed something to corral all this stuff in and thought a tray would be a good idea, because well, it’s a good excuse to buy a cute tray from Target.

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We have been doing this since we first handed them electronics of any kind.

No excuses.

They can use them in common areas in the house but they are not allowed in their bedrooms. At night everyone docks them in “the tray”, where they charge for the night, so also, no excuses for not having a full battery the next day. Nobody is  up late sneaking in screen time, snap chatting who knows what photos or cranky the next day (well, this doesn’t solve all the crankiness).

I am still amazed at how my son would be getting texts and messages throughout the night up until 2am at times! Why are these young minds glued to their electronics that late into the night and not getting their much needed sleep!

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Of course my children aren’t angels. They’ve had a few slips here and there, but overall are generally consistent with following the rules.

We also have a 3 strikes you’re out policy.

You use your smart phone/iPod without using your head (in other words you screw up) and you lose the device for a specified amount of time. You break these rules 3 times you get a good old flip phone. For keeps. The purpose of our children having a device is so WE can contact them and vice versa. It’s for our convenience. Not theirs. Not so that they can send questionable photos on snapchat or have secret conversations with others through apps or even be able to listen to their iTunes. Heck if they want to do that I have a boom box from the 80’s I can lend them – parachute pants not included.

It has simplified any question of having electronics in their bedrooms, using them late at night and having a battery die halfway through the day.

We have a password policy as well – we get their passwords or they don’t get their device.

If we are not able to go into their phones/iPads/Kindles and see what they are doing then they don’t get to use them.

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It may be seem harsh to some and this tray may look like a chaotic mess but at least I can rest at night knowing my kids are cozily tucked into their beds fast asleep.

I Never Thought I’d Google This…

OLWQuote Walking Shoes

“How many miles in a 5k”?

That’s something I never thought I’d google. And no, we aren’t talking about running a 5k. Noooo, silly.. More like walking, fastly (yes, it’s a word in my world).

I do not run. I tell my kids that if they ever see me running, they’d better run too because something bad is happening.

So, when my husband called the other day asking if I wanted to enter a 5k (hey, it’s for a good cause), I stalled while I googled the actual milage.

But, after celebrating the holidays as most of us do, with too many rich, fatty foods and too much time laying around watching The Good Wife marathons on Amazon Prime Video (we are two seasons behind), I am more than ready to put my new year’s resolution money where my mouth is, or, was.

I only have a week and a half to get ready for this thing and it’s a good excuse to use my Kohl’s cash from Christmas and buy myself a shiny new pair of shoes. Now I better get moving.

And if you’re still wondering a 5k is exactly 3.10686 miles.

It can’t be that bad, right? After all, somebody said there’d be waffles at the end of the race.

Happy New Year!

10 Things I Know To Be True

Inspired by Shaunna and gang, the ever Perfectly Imperfect. Here’s my own two cents.

1. You will never sleep the same again after having children. Ever. No matter how old they get.

2. Pinterest is a time-sucker.

3. Phyllis Diller was right. Cleaning up after kids IS like shoveling while it’s still snowing.

4. You are your own worst enemy.

5. Why is Candy Crush so addicting?

6. 14 year old boys temporarily lose mental capacity…..or at least I hope it’s temporary.

7. It doesn’t matter if it’s a dry heat, hot is hot!

8. Raising kids will be the most important job you will ever have.

9. We are in a two bedroom apartment right now and everything we own is in storage for two months while our house is being finished. Living with less is so freeing.

10. Iowa will always hold a special place in our hearts.

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And this one time on Spring Break…

…We went to Phoenix…

Moving

Things have been quiet around here because I was afraid to even breath a word……for fear of bursting. Lots has been going on and lots more yet to do…pack up a house, sell a house, find a house, find schools, move across the country! But very excited to say the least 🙂