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Exhaustion….The Good and The Bad

Not much time for blogging lately. I miss it but always seem to have about 20 other things going on,even at 4 in the morning.

Being the director and producer of Casa La Crazy has meant at times I feel pulled in a million different directions. So many changes going on,but all for the good. I woke up yesterday in an emotional funk. I wanted to be happy but truth is I was EXHAUSTED!

When someone asked me how I was yesterday and I told them tired they looked at me as if I had sprouted a third eye. Why is it that it’s ok for people to comment to you saying they don’t know how you handle it all,but when you admit every once in awhile(and trust me I must have been exhausted to actually admit I was tired),that you are tired they don’t understand why.

In fact someone actually asked,”Why” yesterday.

Which then makes me feel like I should be able to handle this whole big family life without being tired. I mean we the parents are the ones that chose to have a large family right? So we should be able to handle it all. That’s not always the case. Most the time it is the case,but through different seasons things change.

I know this season of exhaustion is just that…a season. So much is going on and so much is changing.

Things that have happened in the last 4 weeks alone:

– started 3 of the kids in a one day a week parent/public school partnership. Which now means I have to write out their lesson plans,check in with a teacher,and send in monthly progress of our homeschooling. Next year that will be all 6 school age kids.

– Kenna’s surgery. Having a kiddo laid up without two working legs is hard. It is for the best,but it is hard. Thankfully her casts are off and she has walking boots on,but she needs a walker, and it has taken her some time to get used to walking in the boots. She continues to amaze me though at her “can do” attitude. She even told me she was ready to start doing chores again!

– Moving our ducks and chicks outside. This isn’t necessarily hard,just another thing added to the day. Including the part where I had to stop feeding Squishy last week because all 19 birds managed to get out of the fenced area….it was bound to happen sooner or later. I was hoping for thought!

– The great bedroom swap! Oh yes we did it again. Too many girls going through puberty,needing to be alone. Two little girls who still play with toys and live in fantasy lands. Yes we swapped rooms. IT IS DONE and I will not swap again until we move!!! Which by the way I have informed Brandon we’re not moving again EVER. Well unless we buy a house or the owner decides to move back here.

– My mom’s visit. She arrives tomorrow! HOORAY!!! I’m genuinely looking forward to this.

 

So it’s not like all these things are bad,in fact none of them are and I enjoy having them be part of my life. It is just a lot going on at one time. I’m sure I’ll adjust to it all,but in the mean time I’m exhausted. I think it’s OK for all of us to become exhausted once in awhile. It means you’re working hard and hopefully with all your heart.

In fact by the time I adjust,knowing me, I”ll add something new to the mix. So for now….Here’s To Exhaustion!!! I raise my coffee cup to you!

 

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Going Ons at Casa La Crazy

I’m not sure how much blogging I will get done this week. Pretty sure without it meaning to this week will become the busiest week EVA!!!!

Nathaniel Lane and Holly will be starting our new adventure in schooling that next year all 6 will be doing. They will be homeschooled still but will also be attending a parent/public school partnership which is basically….they get to attend classes both at home and at this school which has classes from archery to algebra,ballet to biology,cooking to chemistry….ok ok you get the idea.They are so excited as we are as well!

Brandon has been working on fencing off the duck.chicken area in the backyard and not a moment too soon.Yesterday I walked out into the garage,while on the phone, and one of the chicks was on the top of the enclosure. So here I am talking to my aunt and talking to the chick telling it to get back in.

Then it hopped completely out so as I’m putting it back in another one hops out. At this point I tell my aunt,”Hey I have to chase a chicken. I’ll call you back!”

We got the garden beds prepared yesterday just in time for the rain to start. Yeah for the garden beds…not so yeah for Brandon who was still working outside.

I’m proud of the way the kids have jumped in to help. They haven’t always wanted to but we have heard very few grumbles. With their help we have gotten done so much quicker. Whether it has been scooping out the old chicken coop,helping with the flower beds,or watching Squishy for me so I can help outside too. Everyone has stepped up and participated in the family.I promise to post pics soon!

Speaking of Squishy….We are so not ready for this:

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Or this:

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And yes she did let go for a few seconds yesterday standing straight up!!!! ARGHHHHH!!! No Squishy No!

And she’s definitely ready for this:

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Squishy loves blueberries especially blueberry pancakes.

We are rounding out our week with Kenna going in for surgery. She is having both legs worked on. Her calf muscles are too tight and need to be lengthened. This may explain why she was a late walker as well as explains why for the last 3 years her feet and back have been in constant pain.

So for 10 days she’ll be in soft casts and wheelchair or bed bound….then she’ll be in walking boots for 6 weeks. It’s an easy enough surgery and she needed to get it done because this summer she is going to be our little traveler instead of Nathaniel.

So if you have a couple minutes this week to stop and pray for us or just send good thoughts…please do! This momma is going to need the strength or 10,and a calmness that I don’t easily come by!

 

 

5 things you should NEVER say to MY mother growing up.

Oh what a fun topic over at Mama Kat’s Losin It writing prompts this week! I will admit I did the “Kenna Maniacal Laugh” when I read number 4. 5 Things You Should Never Say to Your Mother.

 

Mama’s Losin’ ItI was known as a child to spout off at the mouth. My mouth was the one thing that could constantly get me in trouble. I’m pretty sure I could’ve gotten in trouble just for saying things in my sleep…in fact I did once when my mom heard me cussing in my sleep. In my defense I had an ulcer…it flippin hurt!

So here ya go 5 things you should never say to MY mom. We’ll do it countdown style…because number 1 still I think goes down in the record books.

5. “Why do you have to be home when I get home? Can’t you get a job?When I grow up I’m NEVER going to be a stay at home mom.”  Yeah that one kinda bit me in the ass huh? I now know why my mom was always home when I came home from school and value her sacrifices very much but man back then,I swore it was her day in day out job just to spy on me.

4. ” Stop fighting you two.” Ok I should say I grew up in the age of “divorce”  My parents have been married for 46 years come this June. They’ve been it for better and for worst When I would say this my parents would look at me quizzically and respond with,”We’re not fighting we’re discussing.” Looking back I see that they were because I can honestly not remember ONE fight between the two of them.

3. “What are we having for dinner?” Sometimes the answer would be “baaaa” (yes she made the animal noise),sometimes she would answer,”chicken boobies”(sigh totally embarrassing as a teen), and sometimes she would just answer slop. Oh yummm!

2.”Stop yelling at me.” to which my mom in turn would tell me,”THIS is not yelling….THIS IS YELLING!” ok ok mom I got the difference.

And number 1 you NEVER EVER used as a response to a task my mother asked of you. I mean NEVER…..

1. “Yes Mother Dearest.”  to which the rant would start,” Do NOT call me Mother Dearest! Do I beat you with wire hangers?Do I? Well? NO? Then do not call me Mother Dearest.”  Don’t think this stopped me though. I knew this was the one hot button phrase that would get my mom’s goat.

I shared this with my kids one time. I had to explain to them who Joan Crawford was. Of course they try it with me to which I respond in my best Joan Crawford, “No…More…Wire…Hangers!”

 

32 Reasons I Love My Man~Happy Birthday Brandon!

Yesterday was Brandon’s 32 birthday….awww 32. Seems like just yesterday I was  that young fun age. Now I’m facing 36 almost dead on.

Anyways this isn’t a post about me and how I refuse to grow up.

So,where was I? Oh yes Brandon’s birthday. Yes,yesterday was Brandon’s birthday.

There were decorations:
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There was ooey gooey cake.

There was shrimp quesadillas.

And just possibly…there was a misplaced birthday present that his older feeble minded girlfriend misplaced and still cannot find!

Oh and of course there was the birthday boy!

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So,in honor of Brandon’s 32nd birthday,I present to you:

32 Things I Love About My Man

1. His equal unabashed love of coffee-thanks to him there’s always a fresh pot on.

2. His handiness around the house. Whether it’s cooking or fixing something,he is pretty darn helpful to have around.

3. His height-It’s rare that I can’t reach something but when I can’t,he can.

4. His love for my kids. It’s not easy to walk into a step parent roll…he is a pretty awesome step dad.

5. He makes sure I eat my vegetables.

6. He painted my toenails almost weekly this summer when I was too pregnant to half the time even SEE my toes!

7. He appreciates the little things,not the big flashy expensive things.

8. He honestly would rather see me  without makeup.Which makes me feel so less guilty on those pajama days we seem to have so often around here!

9. His laugh…his laugh is contagious.

10. Watching stand up comedy with him for the obvious reasons…(see number 9.)

11. He works his butt off so I can stay home with the kids.

12.He works nights…anyone who works nights I tip my hat off to.

13. He’s younger than me. Yes yes I can say…yup I got me a young hottie. Or….maybe not….that still kinda sounds creepy. Still I like the fact he’s younger than me!

14. He loves all the kiddos,even on their worst,boundary pushing days.

15. He’s one of the only people that I know,that is more competitive than me at family game night.

16. The feel of his arms wrapped tightly around me. No place I would rather be.

17. Even though he’s not a music person he totally indulges me in my love for music….yes even if it’s NKOTB.

18. He was totally hands on with the birth of Adrienne right up till it was time to deliver the placenta. Yes he delivered our baby girl…how could you NOT love him after that.

19. He’s not really into sports….thank GOD!

20. We would both love to live off the grid someday!

21. He is willing to let me get a goat.(oh yeah that’s a whole OTHER blog post)

22. He can handle me on my “oh my gosh I have sooooo much to do,so I think I will just crawl into the corner and rock back and forth” days.

23. He tells me I’m beautiful even if I haven’t showered in a day or two.

24. He plays enough video games for the two of us. Yes I do thank him for that because I really cannot fall into that addiction again.

25. He constantly tries to educate himself on different topics which makes him fun to talk with.

26. Even though he’s not a singer,he learned the special words to the song I sing to Adrienne,that my grandpa used to sing to me.

27. I know he will fight tooth and nail to keep this family together.

28. He gets just as excited over gifts as I do. so excited I got most of my Christmas presents early! WOOHOO

29. He’s not a big sweet tooth person most of the time…which leaves more chocolate for me! Total Win!

30. He supports my dreams of becoming whatever I want. Whether it is a cosmetologist,a labor doula,or heck even an astronaut.

31. He’s not a boob man…thank god since my boobs belong to Adrienne at the moment.

32. He loves me unconditionally…good,bad,or indifferent, I know he’s there for me.

Happy Birthday Baby I hope your day was as special as you are to us! I promise one of these days I will find your gift…of course it will probably be Christmas by then!

 

 

 

Guest Post for Monday Listicles!!!!

How fun!!!! I told Kenna what this weekend’s topic was for Monday Listicles,and she started rattling off all the little things that make me happy! So without further ado…my first guest blogger my oldest daughter Kenna!

10 Little Things That Bring My Mom Joy!

1.Adrienne

2.listening to New Kids On the Block early in the mornings (I think it’s just so she can annoy Nathaniel)

3.Chocolate

4.Me (since I’m so awesome)

5.COFFEE

6.Homeschooling (Because she loves it when we change the subject in the middle of the lesson)

7.Picking on Nathaniel/Brandon (And of course I always help her out)

8.Not cooking for one night (I enjoy it too because get to have pizza or McDonalds)

9.Breastfeeding (Except for when Adrienne starts to pull on her nipple and choke for no reason)

10.Stopping at every red light while Adrienne is screaming her head off in the back seat.

And there you have it folks a little glimpse of what Kenna thinks brings me joy! I’d have to say she’s pretty spot on!

Happy Monday Listicles Everyone!

 

 

Because My Kids are Kind of Awesome

We started out President’s study this week. We kicked it off by putting a timeline up on our living room wall and I told the kiddos the first one to memorize all the presidents will get to go to Sky High on the next homeschool day. They also only had two weeks to do it.

“But MOM there’s like a hundred of them….” they all whined.

“I’m not doing it I don’t care about Sky High.” Said one defiant teenager.

” What if we DON”T get them all done?” asked a nervous 8 year old.

“Well if only the first person get’s a prize I’ll just quit memorizing if I’m not the first,” said one way to smart for his own good 10 year old.

SIGH…..

grumble grumble…went the kids

public school public school…whispered this mommy,and her head may have just been filled with thoughts of kid free days,lounging around with Adrienne,sipping coffee and writing awesome blog posts.

Then I remembered how much I would miss learning and teaching,the giggling,lazy pajama days….

And I think the kids thought the same thing.

As of Wednesday the two oldest could say them all and the two youngest have made it to Coolidge.

What they don’t know is because they all stopped whining and buckled down to tackle the list they will ALL be going to Sky High as long as they get the list memorized.

Even when they’re whiny brats….they still end up being good kids.

Just don’t ask me how the all house clean up is going to go today….

 

 

 

Booby Love

It is week 6 of Sisters N Cloth Blog hop and so far I’ve only missed one week! That’s pretty amazing for me. This week is all about booby love. Ok maybe it’s more about nursing and what you love about it.

For someone like me who has only tried once before to breastfeed and failed miserably, I was entering this whole booby time very cautiously.My first goal make it till my milk comes in. yes the first time I didn’t even make it that far.

Then the whole nursing in public….or not running to my room when we have guests over(hey this is my house after all).From there …..well I now feel like I could take on the world!

So here are a few things I have fallen in love with regarding breastfeeding Squishy

1.I love that Squishy is now at the age that she knows exactly where her JJ(short for Jug Juice) is coming from. I will hold her and she will pull at the straps of my nursing tanks.

2. Those nights where really all she wants to do all night I can snuggle up on the couch with her and both of us just drift back to sleep.

3. The way that she brushes my left breast when she is nursing on that side….only on that side does she do this.

4. The hours we have spent gazing into each others’ eyes.

5. When she suddenly pops off at the breast and I become a gigantic milk sprinkler…some may not love this but it usually provides me and the kiddos a good giggle at just the most needed time.

6. Her listening to me sing numerous genres of music and not covering her ears but just still contentedly nursing.

7. The smiles….ohhhh the smiles….enough to melt your heart.

8. Seeing her completely and utterly relaxed

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For all the hard work it has been as well me and Adrienne have developed the perfect nursing relationship and I’m so proud of both of us! Never did I think I would love breastfeeding as much as I do.

Dear Control Freak Wendy…You Got This!

Breast Feeding Blog Hop Week #2 Letter To yourself as a new mom:

Dear Control Freak Wendy,

Seeing as you already have 4 kiddos and two bonus kiddos the word “new mom” may or may not apply to you however you’re embarking on a whole new adventure that you never thought you would. You are going to become a breast feeding mother. In fact not only just a breast feeding mother but a breastfeeding mother who becomes pretty much obsessed with all things boobie and breast milk related.

This is funny to you because up until now you have always sang the praises and conveniences of bottle feeding,always had that kind of weird feeling about something else attached to your boob,and liked to be on strict schedules. HAHA for you because you’re about ready to embark on a life changing journey for yourself.

You’ve pretty much always despised your breasts. You have harbored feelings of failure for only trying for two days to breast feed Kenna and then never any of your other babies.

And then….

All that changes…

Withing moments of Brandon delivering Adrienne you have her on your breast. She grunts and squirms as your two bodies are still one,and you have your loving boyfriend right there by your side telling you what an amazing job you did and are doing. You don’t care that he is snapping pictures with your boob hanging out because Adrienne is the star of the show.

You will get Adrienne home and still have a sense of peace and calmness about you knowing your milk will come in shortly. Babies cry that’s what they do…go with the flow this to shall pass. You will have a loving Nurse Practitioner that does home visits and she will give you some techniques that involve Brandon helping,but you soon realize with Brandon working nights and sleeping days as much as you both want him to be able to help with the feedings it’s not always possible so you will lean in and tell your baby,

“Ok Squishy this is going to take teamwork…I’ll be patient with you if you be patient with me.”

This will become your mantra.Breastfeeding takes teamwork. Not only from you and Brandon but little Adrienne as well.

Your rigid schedule for the house will quickly fall away as you spend most of your first month on the couch. You will miss out on big family events because of traveling,but in the long run it will all be worth it.

You will stain EVERY nursing tank you have somedays even within hours of buying it. Eventually you will figure out how to get the stains out.

You will get extremely tired around 3 months and begin wondering if your milk supply is getting low because she is feeding ALL THE TIME!!!!! You will try not to let all the negative thoughts creep in. You will know this is a growth spurt and you will just have to put the urge to get other things done aside for now. Your baby needs you and she’s only young once. Take a deep breath and relax. Enjoy the times feeding and cuddling. Your supply is not low..Squishy is just growing.

For the first time ever not only are you going to be breast feeding but you are totally going to fall in love with your breasts.You will be able to look at them and now that they are there for a very valuable reason,to sustain Adrienne. Your breasts will bring about a bond that you can not easily put into words.

You will go through periods of guilt for not trying harder with your other children.Put those feelings on the shelf or heck kick them out the door.Remember you have some amazing kids who are gorwing up way too fast and spending time over guilt like that will get you nowhere.

You are however breastfeeding Squishy and doing it well. Who Knew?!?Enjoy those quiet and not so quiet moments as she starts smiling and babbling back at you.Take as many pictures as you can stand.These times are going to be gone in a blink of an eye.

You will stick to this and accomplish your dreams. You will be so proud of yourself and learn a new level of patience.I am so proud of you and Squishy is growing bigger every single day.

Remember you CAN do this and you WILL! You got this Wendy and you are gonna rock at it!

Love,

Control Freak Wendy

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(Adrienne EBF at 4 months old.)

Learning To Eat Left Handed and other Goals for 2013

I’d be lying if I said I didn’t jump up and down a little bit and maybe even squeal inside my head when I stumbled upon this Friday blog link up. Squealing inside my head because if I really squealed then I would wake up Ms Squishy and she would want to feed and I’m just not talented enough yet to breastfeed and blog at the same time….

Which leads me to the week 1 link up for the breastfeeding blog hop over at Sisters ‘n Cloth

Goals For The New Year

Squishy turned 4 months on the 1st! 4 MONTHS!!!!!! That means for 4 months straight several times a day and night. I have been doing something I have never done before in my life. Something because of previous hangups,lack of knowledge, and lack of support,I have never done with any of my other children.

For 4 months straight…17 weeks)almost 18) I havebeen breastfeeding my beautiful daughter Adrienne Danielle.

1month old
(one of my favorite breastfeeding pics. Squishy at 1 month old)

I have absolutely fallen in love with breastfeeding and can’t imagine not doing it. This of course is my own personal opinion for myself.,but really in my eyes there is nothing else like it.

So I found this blog hop that focuses solely on breastfeeding. How awesome is that? I am making a resolution to myself and a heads up to everyone else that every Friday in 2013 will be dedicated to breastfeeding.

So to kick things off and to finally stop babbling….here are my breastfeeding goals for 2013

1. To breastfeed to at least Squishy’s first birthday. This will fall in September. Ideally I see me going at least 6 months past that but that would be into 2014 and I think setting my sights for one year is pretty awesome for a newbie.

2.To be quicker and swifter at the whole unhooking nursing tank,covering up baby,while in public. Not that I’m even against not covering while nursing in public but there are some places we go that I do feel more comfortable covering up.

3.To get better eating left handed. Every time I get ready to eat Squishy realizes what I am doing and says “oh hey momma I’m hungry too” which usually leads me to eating with my left hand instead of my right.

4. To be of support to at least one other breast feeding momma out there. If I can help someone else with something I was once scared to do then I will feel as if I have come full circle.

5. And lastly to find the most perfect breast milk stain remover for my poor nursing tanks. Either Squishy is a sloppy eater,or I’m a sloppy nurser but oy very my poor nursing tanks!

6. To keep practicing the keeping my mouth shut and smiling nicely, as I listen to others go off when they express their opinions to me on : Extended Breastfeeding,Supplementing with formula, Sneaking baby a french fry,or any other opinion they feel the need to share with me in a not so nicely way. We all have our feelings and opinions. There are the right way to share them and the wrong way. I’m hoping I can just brush things off and,as with homeschooling, show what works for us through example,not by me popping off at the mouth at getting caught in some huge debate that most likely would not change the other person’s mind anyways.

I am so excited to be part of this link up every Friday. I know I haven’t blogged too much about it yet but breastfeeding has honestly changed my life. I have learned so much not only about my baby but about myself as well during this partnership. Yes it is a partnership,it takes team work between you and your little one.Once it gets going though it is totally worth it in my eyes.

 

One is the Loneliest Number

While typing this I have the song “One is the Loneliest Number” playing through my head. This weekend all of our kids except for Adrienne were gone. As a blended family this happens roughly twice a year. This last weekend was one of those times.

I didn’t name this house Casa La Crazy for nothing. With 9 people,7 of them kiddos,there is always something in some part of the house going on.

Except this last weekend.

Within hours of the 6 kiddos being gone I was facebooking how weird it felt only having one child at home.

By that night I had facebooked that I was definitely not made to have only one or two kids.

We constantly get comments the normal comments most large families get:

Are they all yours?

Don’t you know what causes that?

How do you handle all those kids?

I could never handle that many kids I just don’t have the patience.

I knew after I had my second child that I definitely wanted more children. Poor Brandon kind of got thrown into this big family thing,but I am constantly amazed at how much it suits him.

By Sunday even poor Squishy was in a tizzy over not having any of her siblings here at the home front. she just wanted to be held and cuddled…but apparently not only by me and daddy.

Once my kiddos came home Sunday night Squishy’s face lit up and she spent the rest of the night giggling and playing.

Yesterday the girls came home.

All 9 of us are back under one roof again.

We went out to dinner last night with Brandon’s family. As I looked back over at the kids table I felt a wholeness in my heart again.

Yes for me…One is the Loneliest number and I’m so glad to have ALL my kiddos back at home!