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Overnight Growth…

So when my son woke up this morning, I told him he’d grown in his sleep and that he was now too big for diapers. At first, he burst into tears and I thought I’d done the wrong thing. As it turns out, he thought he was now a grown up and wanted to be a boy. After I’d explained he was just a bigger boy, he was okay- and get this- went ALL day without an accident. After over a year of trying to potty train, that’s what it took. I hate telling lies to my kids, but sheeesh. I am glad I told him this one.

I doubted myself at first. I came so very close to giving in and putting a diaper on him… but I knew he was ready and just needed a push. I hate lying to him though. I tried “it’s time, you’re too old,” and it didn’t work. The diapers not fitting (though his skinny bottom would fit for years yet…) seemed to work for him. I mean you can’t argue with it. It’s logical, if he can not wear diapers he is going to have to “go” somewhere. But, as happy as I am, I do feel mildly guilty for fibbing. Mildly.

Parents: Do you think white lies are part of the game or do you think we should always be completely honest?

I’ve finally found my groove when it comes to thrifting in Texas. It takes more work than it did in Washington, but I’ve found a few great stores. Yesterday I went thrifting with a friend and found lots of wonderful things. Also, some really, really terrible things. As in this:

Sorry for the crappy camera phone photo… who knew there would be something so wonderfully ugly that I would need photo evidence to show my discovery to others?

But as I said, I found a ton of great stuff, the kids and I both got new clothes and I got a bunch of items for my newest project. It’s an Etsy shop called Pecae, Love and Tickles. I am going to be devoting my shop entirely to items made with repurposed materials, mostly kids clothes but whatever I am inspired to make with what I find. I am super excited. I’ll update as I get set up. I am really excited about this as it not only gives me a creative outlet but makes old things new again and saves them from the landfill. If you’ve read this blog much you know that’s something I care about very, very much.

I’ve found some really wonderful materials to work with and I can’t wait to get sewing. I’ll have some really fun items made quickly. I am going to wait a bit before I post them on Etsy, but I’ll share them here as I go.

In other news, we’ve really started to love our local library. Well technically, it’s not “our” library. The one in our town sucks. But the one eight miles down the road is great. Totally worth the drive for ten times the kids books. Keagan and Eden love the place.  We went this morning, Keagan picked out 17 new books to read and we read half of them before lunch. Which I dubbed “rock star lunch” because Keagan said he wanted to have a rock star dance party. He ate those veggies up so fast just because they were “rock star” veggies. I am filing that one away for the days he won’t eat.

Off to enjoy what’s left of naptime 🙂

I have yet to really decorate the house we’re living in now. You know, the one we moved into in March. I think that has something to do with the fact that Texas hasn’t felt like home. I love this house… Texas, I am still working on. But I am not helping myself by keeping my house bland. So I am going to start making some things for our home and start looking for some 2nd hand frames, prints and other decor.

Anyone have any advice on decorating on a budget with thrifted/ handmade items? I’ll hit up etsy.com too, but I am so impatient, I want this house beautiful yesterday!

I’ve also decided I need to get out and explore the Dallas area more. I am sure I would like it here better if I did. I want to start doing some day hikes. We’ll have to drive a ways for this, but I miss nature. In Washington state, where I am from, the nature is mixed right in with the city, at least more so than here. I miss all the tall trees and the beautiful Puget Sound. I am sure if I look, I will find the beauty here in Texas.

My kids are growing way too fast. Sweet little Eden is 15 months old now! Keagan is changing so much… every day he reminds me that he is not my baby anymore, but a big, smart boy who has a mind of his own!

Anyway, I will be updating on my decorating adventures. Hopefully with some photos of my no longer drab house!

Science Rocks

I recently started doing simple science experiments with the kids. I really thought this would be all about Keagan, but Eden’s been having a blast too. Albeit,he’s getting more out of it, but the fact that these little projects keeps both kids happy AND occupied makes for a happy mama.

These have been super simple projects, Mixing oil and water, seeing if things float, that kind of  thing. I ask Keagan questions and answer his, trying to let him learn more from the experience than any “instruction.”  We’re all having a good time and Keagan is learning to love science. How great is that?! At this stage it’s just about thinking about how the world works. And keeping my very busy kids occupied.

I really hope I can continue to keep a lot of hands on activities as part of our daily lives. I think that there is so much to be gained through observation you make on your own versus that which you read in a book. Don’t get me wrong. We totally heart books around here. It’s just great to try things out for yourself 🙂

Damaged by life

Broken. hurting.

This world an unkind place of residence.

Reality crashes down around me

Falling like tiny shards of angry glass.

I try and move on

but I stumble

Time and time again

in an endless game of pinball

that has me spinning every which way

only to be halted and turned another direction

with swift knock in the head.

Bing! Married! Five thousand  points!

Ding ding ding! Home Owner! Mom! Business Owner! Ten thousand points.

Bang! New baby. Five thousand points.

Boom! Foreclosure. Start again.

Bing! Cross country move.

Points to be determined.

Spinning. Crashing. Beeping.

Oh, the incessant beeping.

And then I hear the Whisper

in this storm of life

and I remember You.

Even when I try and put You

in a box, I can’t.

The King of Kings

does not fit

in the tiny box.

Eternity does not  fit.

Agape does not fit.

As I listen, the bruises start to heal

(those to my ego)

and my heart feels alive again

and I know that You have plans for me

“plans to prosper me and not to harm me,

plans to give me hope

and a future.”

So I let go of it all

and breath the biggest sigh of relief.

And I stand ready, waiting.

Waiting for life. Waiting for God.

Waiting for Grace and for pinball.

And knowing with Your grace I can handle it all.

My sweet little Keagan was diagnosed with Sensory Processing Disorder a few months ago.

What is SPD? I’m still learning myself, but I’ll give it a go.

We all have quirks with our senses. You can’t stand the way a tag feels on your shirt. You are easily distracted by bright lights. Or maybe you have a hard time sitting still for very long. Or you can’t stand loud music. There’s something about each of us that we’ve learned to handle that isn’t “normal.” But what is normal is that, for most people, it’s just a few things that we can look past.

When it’s SPD, you have a lot of of  those “quirks” and you can’t just look past them. It sounds like people are screaming at you when they aren’t. When someone brushes against you it feels like they hit you. When you get a drop or two of water on your shirt it feels like you’re soaking wet. This is what life is like for my son. His senses seem to misfire. And in addition to that, he tries hard to seek out sensory response to try and figure it out. So he’s always jumping, always running. He climbs to high places and tries to jump. He has no fear in that sense and yet is hysterical when I vacuum.  Before we started giving him melatonin to help him fall asleep, bedtime would  take hours every.single.night. Some nights it still does. His brain won’t slow down on it’s own. He wants to talk about the shadows on the wall or the car he hears driving by or the book we read before bed. It’s as if all of this stuff is swirling around in his brain and he can’t block it out.

For more information, check out this link http://www.sensory-processing-disorder.com/sensory-processing-disorders.html

What SPD isn’t: It’s not a discipline problem. It’s not that my child is being “bad.” It’s not an excuse. It’s not made up. It’s a very real disorder that a lot of kids deal with.

This brings me to my point:

I’ve too many times heard people brag about telling parents to shut up their kid or complain about some kid who they thought was acting out in public. These people generally think that these kids they are passing in the grocery store or the like are “bad” because their parents are not parenting them correctly. Well that’s bullshit. I am sorry. My son may have a meltdown in a restaurant when he spills his water on his shirt. He may spin around in circles at the library. He may even slap a kid who touches his head. But he’s not bad. He has neurological disability and he and I are both still learning to handle it.  He’s only three. He looks totally “normal.”   And strangers passing us have not a clue how hard his days are nor mine.

So before you judge that mom in the store who’s child is throwing her shoes in the aisle or the dad at the park who’s kid crashed into you- stop. You don’t know what their life is like. You don’t know what their day has looked like up until that point. You don’t know if maybe mom only got an hour of sleep the night before because the wind kept their toddler up or if that boy got kicked out of preschool because he does not understand personal space and his mom is sad for him and desperate. You have NO CLUE WHAT SOMEONE ELSE IS GOING THROUGH.

Judge not, less ye be wrong. Move on, remove the plank from your eye and smile at the poor parent at the store. And please, don’t tell me how to raise my son. I am doing the best I can.

A recurring theme on my blog, before I moved to Texas, was decluttering. When we moved, we made the ultimate move in living simply… we got rid of 99% of what we own. We only took with us what fit on top of our Saturn Vue and inside it after my two kids, two dogs, husband and myself were in place. Basically, we kept clothes, a few toys, the computer, a few books, and photos. Obviously, we had to replace some things when we got to TX. Like furniture. The week and a half we had no sofa drove me batty. We bought the kitchen basics (mostly secondhand) and a few new toys (secondhand) but other than that, we haven’t bought anything new.

And I love it. The kids have more room to play. We have less clutter to clean. Every once in awhile, I think of an item I miss. A few of them I have gone ahead and replaced, (a blender is high on our list right now) but for the most part I decide that I am happier with less stuff. Most people are shocked by our choice to live with less, but we are as happy as can be.

It was really interesting to see what we took with us- it showed where our priorities are. All about the kids of course… I did take two larger personal items- my camera and sewing machine, so I am not totally selfless haha. We surely did take more toys than totally needed, but I wanted the kids to adjust as easily as possible.

I find myself with much less desire to buy things now that I know how nice it is to live without the burden of clutter. Every once in a while I think I am crazy, but when I look around our cute little home, clutter free and cleaner than any home I’ve ever lived in, I am happy.

It’s kind of odd for me to be done decluttering, it was a goal for so long. I guess now the goal is to keep it simple and not allow it back into our lives. I am working hard to resist any urges I do have to get “stuff” just to have it, and we’re doing pretty well.

So for those of you who were decluttering, how’s it going?