Saturday, October 30, 2010

Do not conform!

"I'm not going to change the way I look or the way I feel to conform to anything. I've always been a freak. So I've been a freak all my life and I have to live with that, you know. I'm one of those people."-John Lennon

Totally on a roll today with my thoughts & I didn't expect to think this much and want to write this much. 

Today while we were out getting a few last minute things before tomorrow and some lunch I look at all of the people around me. There are some people that are truly just weird, there are so many people that are just the same.

I live in Knoxville, Illinois. The land of snobby Mothers and their cliques. It's like high school all over again, it seems, with some of these women. I realize that it's not just in Knoxville, but it is so much worse here that it is say in Galesburg. I always had friends in my short life at school, I was friends with everyone. Very rarely did I not like anyone-they usually just didn't like me because I wasn't going to conform to their cookie cutter persona. But here I simply can not make friends with almost any of these women. You walk up to the school to pick up your child and you have your group of what I like to call the "plastic Moms of Kville." I really feel like they are pretty much critiquing everything you have on, every word you say within their ear shot, anything really.

I like my t-shirts and my dyed hair, I give my kids kool-aid (haha, that was a huge deal the other day I realized with some of the Moms for the Halloween parties...Which doesn't make sense to me..Halloween is supposed to be about the sugar!) I wont conform to what the "perfect" mom is...Lets face it, no matter how much one tries to say that they never scream, never get pissed off, never give their kids sugar and their homes are always in tip top shape!............ Probably is a robot. 

Of course I'm only kidding, I think. 

I'm always going to be that Mom that wants her kids to do extra curricular activities (see previous blogs for reference) I'm always going to be involved in school life, what they are doing, how they are doing, so on and so forth...But I will not conform. I am fine being that outcast. I don't have to lie to myself everyday and pretend that I am perfect or even that they are perfect....I like the way I am...Just wish you did too!

....and then it just hit me.

For the past few days I've been really upset and trying to think of different ways to deal with a certain someone in our house. He's 3 (almost four), big brown eyes......Well, Joseph. I came to the conclusion awhile back ago that he hates me. He always wants the opposite of what I give him, he never listens anymore & he he pretty much just collapses whenever I tell him to do something that he doesn't want to. Like, seriously, collapse. He does it with others to but it's more dramatic with me. The other little kids some times do it as well, but it is NOT as dramatic. It is NOT as painful to watch and it is just not the same thing.

John and I think it's because *I* am the rule enforcer. I try to not let the kids get by with doing whatever they want whenever they want as much as possible. It's really hard because they all have strength in numbers and tend to pull me every which way. Alexander complains about this to me about Miley and Miley complains about Joey and Aiden complains about whatever Miley is complaining about and Joey is crying about I don't know because he is having his "fit" and Dylan...Well Dylan just kinds of sits back and watching it all go down, haha.

I have to be the rule enforcer. I can't just let them run the house. I can't just let Joey do whatever he wants because he is screaming the loudest and I want him to stop....I feel like I'm losing my mind!

But! This morning while thinking about birthday party plans for Joey & other things about the kids...It just hit me.Joey isn't a spoiled brat who hates me and will always hate me for eternity....He is strong-willed! But then I thought to myself, there is probably a fine line between strong-willed and just your average brat. So, I did some reading to try to figure out some things.

Strong-willed children don't usually roll with the punches. They tend to react to situations and environments intensely, exhibiting extrem signals of happiness and sadness when confronted with different circumstances and environments. (aka JOEY!)(
As I read onto this website and other websites I feel like I am reading a book about our guy Joey. An example was given about how they react when things change. I think he has suffered more this past year than anything. There have been good things that have happened but there has also been a lot of bad things happen. I was a part of both restraining orders against John. Before he and I got together I witnessed Joseph cry everyday constantly for his Dad. After J and I got together, I did not get to witness how he acted but I could only imagine because he was more verbal after I moved in and not to mention he was never the same when he came back. He's more sensitive, he NEVER wants J to leave without him and there are other things as well. He acts out in ways that have characteristics of a traumatized strong-willed child!

So now the question is, being the "enforcer" that I am...How do I deal with this? I read this website and it helped a lot.

I have read and heard and wrote about consistency, consistency, consistency with the children. I have caved with the kids..."If I give you this fruit snack with you please just shut up..." But seriously, especially with Joe, I have found it's SO important to give him the same things I try to now. I can't give up, I can't let things get to me, I have to keep going & even though it's particularly harder to deal with him when he is bad....I read that he probably will be the more successful one out of all of them because he is so strong-willed. Not to say that none of our children will be successful in life...But if I continue my work with him he will eventually strive and not only do *I* need to work with him on being consistent and not just giving him what he wants. J does too, family member do too..I need help! Things will get better...and I have to keep going...because I love him so much. It kills me when we have our spats. So onward I go............

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Family fun

Thanks to Aiden for frosting the cake...Except he was mainly concerned with sticking his finger in it!

So anyway, I've had some serious blogs the past couple of days & I am really enjoying the messages I get on here & facebook about what I write. But today I'm going to try to write more about less-serious things and talk about fun things that we do as a family.

We usually try to have a few family movie nights a month. The other day we watched How to Train Your Dragon. John & myself loved it and all of the kids loved it, we all thought it was SUPER cute! I think Alexander liked it more than the others because he can understand it more, since he is older.

Sometimes when you have so many children in one home with differently likes and personalities it's hard to pick a movie that will interest them all or an activity that will interest them all. What are some things that you do as a family that everyone seems to enjoy? We enjoy things from coloring to reading stories to watching movies to decorating cup cakes...Share some of your ideas with me, please! I'd really appreciate it!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Residential Custody.

I love the fact that all of the children live with us....It's such a blessing & also a rare thing for J to have custody like he does. We leave in a judge favoring women world and that's why it's such a "wow" deal.

However, sometimes "joint custody" feels like it doesn't mean anything sometimes. I have my children 84% of the time and John has the boys 64% of the time. We buy pretty much everything for the kids. Grant it I get 75 dollars every week for child support (but $75.00 doesn't go very far) and a huge unfortunate bullshit deal (but had to be done so J could get what means more than money to him..his boys) he has to pay his ex wife child support (even though he has residential custody...that kind of goes with the woman's world deal...a sob story about a gallon of milk a day goes far.) It is up to us to buy mostly everything for school, winter coats, etc. It doesn't seem fair, but that's how it is, and it doesn't bother me as much anymore as it did at first... probably because I loveeeeee shopping for the kids, haha.......Not to mention we are  very blessed because if for whatever reason there is something we can not get at the time, we always have family that will helps when we need it.

Also, something I tend to forget quite often is that I have 100% custody of Alexander, my eldest, but he tends to go in with that "joint custody" since Patrick DOES include Alexander in everything. I do count my blessings though. A lot of women are left to do everything on their own, as a lot of my friends do, and they do not get a dime from their children's "Fathers"....Same with a lot of men. A lot of women walk out on there children for their knights in shining armors & you have those men that are left to be Mom & Dad.

I'm not sure I even have a point right now, I'm just kind of jotting things that are going on in my mind.

Monday, October 18, 2010

I think I will just be sappy today.

"True, we love life, not because we are used to living, but because we are used to loving. There is always some madness in love, but there is also always some reason in madness."

 I don't have a perfect relationship. In fact, I don't know anyone who is in a perfect relationship. In the beginning when you're in that first phase everything seems perfect at that given time, sure. But as things get more serious more issues arise and it's all a matter of how things are dealt with.

My husband & I came from pretty wrecked relationships. We were with the other for 10 & 6 years (roughly) and it makes you wonder if everything was so terrible why did we keep going as long as we did? Without trying to air too much out, anyone who is probably reading this knows exactly why each others relationships ended, both on bad notes...(does a marriage ever end on a good one though?)

Anyway, in comparison to how things are with each other are so much different. John & I barely ever fight...In fact when we do fight we usually end it on someone smiling because one of us has just realized we're fighting over nothing. J & I both have agreed if (God forbid) anything ever went terribly wrong that we would do anything in our powers to make sure that we did everything that we could to make things work....Which is what the other relationships lacked. Effort.

In every marriage it takes some little effort & it takes some a lot of effort. We are lucky that thus far our relationship/marriage hasn't taken much effort to keep each other happy. We have quite a lot in common & even if we don't agree on certain things we always seem to come to some kind of agreement. I feel so lucky to have such a reasonable husband as I do. I can talk to him about anything and everything and he can talk to me about anything and everything. We still can talk on the phone constantly when he is out on a job...(via text) about pretty much everything. Our love life is splendid & always has been....As far as the children go we love all of them with all of our hearts and would give anything for them (as we do).

I am so lucky.

Thursday, October 14, 2010


"I know nothing of philosophical philanthropy. But I know what I have seen, and what I have looked in the face in this world here, where I find myself. And I tell you this, my friend, that there are people (men and women both, unfortunately) who have no good in them--none. That there are people whom it is necessary to detest without compromise. That there are people who must be dealt with as enemies of the human race. That there are people who have no human heart, and who must be crushed like savage beasts and cleared out of the way." -Charles Dickens

I have posted something before as to how adults should act in public & how as parents how we should teach our children how to act in public. What about behind closed doors? When children are at home they tend to "act out" a little more than usual. The same goes for adults, it seems. I have recently noted that not only are some actions in public quite disgusting & rude....At ones home they can be disgusting and rude...So how do you teach your children to act in a kind manner for say, a guest? Even if they do not like them? Obviously you can not make someone like another, but there is something that is called tact-which it seems to me some people have forgotten how to use.

"Actions really do speak louder than words.  Parental role modeling helps teach children to be caring and kind.  In fact, some studies show that children can show signs of empathy and concern from a very early age.  In other words, parents have the power to nurture, guide, show and instill -- to teach kindness, responsibility, and gentleness in a rude and violent world."

I am not a saint, I can not claim that I never have been disrespectful even when someone "deserved" it...I was a teenager once. But there are times, even more so now, where I have to learn to vent later & be an adult and mind what I say.Even on my own property & even in my own home. It does not make me a wuss, it does not make me anything but someone who is NOT in the mental bracket of a spoiled 15 year old, which is also known as a responsible adult who knows what manners are, especially at ones home.

Monday, October 11, 2010


Click here if you want to see a video of all the kids painting their pumpkins!



Sunday, October 10, 2010

"Beauty comes in all sizes, not just size 5."

I don't know how many times I've written about sizes and shapes. I don't know how many times I've been actually down on myself and feeling quite hypocritical.

They say never judge a book by it's cover, beauty comes within, beauty is in the eye of the beholder...and while I try to hold onto those things, I am human. We don't always look for that personality or the smarts...We look for the face. What is in a face? What is in a body? What changes peoples perspective on ones appearance?

I always like to give my husband a lot of heck. He's said he has always loved my face, he's always had a thing for faces and he has always thought it was beautiful. I always ask him, what about my body? When I first met him officially, I had lost a lot of weight from being pregnant with the twins. After that I had gradually gained A LOT of weight while being depressed and everything. During that time he had said "Shes pretty, too bad shes fat." He denies it, and while I don't know if the source is reliable, I don't doubt it.

What has made him change his mind now? Love? Does love cure all human thought? Why would it be too bad that I was fat? I am still the same person then as I was now. I still care about people, I still enjoy the same things...before I became pregnant(this time) I had lost at least 50 lbs or more. Could that be it? What if I am as big as the goodyear blimp by the time I am finished with my pregnancy, will that make a difference? These are questions I like to ask myself frequently about the way I look. It's quite sad actually, because like I said previously. I will still be the same. I will have not changed my personality.

I want to teach the boys & Miley things that I have tried and still try to teach myself. No matter what race, gender, sexual orientation, or size....People are people and everyone deserves a chance for friendship. If you see that chubby girl sitting by herself at the dance, offer a dance, EVEN if it means you could be made fun of. Chances are-everyone will have forgotten it by tomorrow and you just made that one girls day. Or boys, for that matter. These are things I wish I would've remembered on my lowest of low days especially as a teenager-starving to be perfect. I ended up screwing not only my mind up but my metabolism and as an adult I am paying for it. I know many other people that are starving to be perfect-and because of that-they are not only going to pay for it health wise...Their faces are looking older & the glow has gone from them...All they have is their body, and a sad spirit.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Super stoked to see our baby today.

Well, we had our ultrasound today to determine what are little penguine is...oh BOY it's another BOY! I'm totally happy that I got to see our little guy. J & I both were really rooting for a girl, because we both think that we need less testosterone in this house...But alas we are adding another boy to the mix. He was totally awesome, he kept sticking his little hands and fingers into his mouth & was doing flips and flops we're lucky we even got to see the weenie. Speaking of weenie, this kids weenier is pretty huge! No mistaking this one :) Not to sound inappropriate or anything!

We haven't told the kids yet. I think Alexander & Joey will be excited though. They wanted me to have a boy even though every once and awhile Joseph would say that "he had a baby sister in his belly" but I think it will be alright. Miley sure is in trouble though. 5 brothers to kick whatever boys butts that try to make a pass at her!

The name we had previously picked out for the little man was Ryan Benjamin. But I felt like it wasn't right so we both decided to go with Gavin Benjamin. It really wasn't hard for us to agree on a name, the other name I really enjoyed was Grayson, but J didn't like that one very well.

I'm excited, now we can start buying little things here and there for our little booger.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

How to act in public.

   So we've had at least one or more temper tantrums happen in the grocery store, mall or elsewhere with every single child that lives in our house at one time or another. Or one of the kids decided to not exactly use their inside voices. These are things that we have to gradually teach our children between what's appropriate and what isn't appropriate. Unfortunately, there are far too many parents in this world that do not think of teaching their children these sorts of things.

    Friday evening we took my sister, Alyssa, to the quad cities to get her homecoming dress. The particular store we were in was filled with some of the most obnoxious people! I seriously could not stand it. They were all teenagers and some of them were with little babies(I'm ASSUMING  their own children), acting like little babies. It was quite sad, actually. Not only were they rude to myself and anyone around them, they were loud and a few were pretty insulting. I'm really glad that we found my sisters dress pretty quickly because I felt like I was going to explode on someone.

     Sadly on a daily bases we all have to deal with someone who lacks the ability to behave.Wether it's someone you know, or someone you do not know..It's inevitable....and it's sad especially when those you are surrounded by are adults. Which is why I definitely want to make sure that the children we are raising in our home aren't one of those adults or teenagers, so we will lead by example.