colors of fall.

Happy first day of Fall! Some people thought it was yesterday, but I read on the Farmers Almanac fall offiically started at 10:29pm on Monday 9/22.  So I'll just say it's today! Happy fall folks! The above photos are colors that remind me of the fall season. Pumpkins, purple mums, candy corn, and cranberries. I'm glad fall is here, I'm ready to dress for cooler weather, drink some apple chai teas from Starbucks, and wear some cute boots!

Happy first day of fall!

sibling class.

On Saturday we took the kids to a sibling class held at the hospital I'm going to deliver at. It's a class that prepares the big brother and big sister for the arrival of the new baby. They each had to bring a baby doll or teddy bear of their own.  The lady who taught the class was so very patient! The age ranges of the kids in the class varied from 2 years old to 11 years old.  The class taught them how a new baby looks and acts and how to adjust to the new baby.  They learned how to hold the baby, swaddle the baby, feed the baby a bottle, change a diaper, and what kind of toys an infant would like and how to play with them.
After the class portion was over, we took a tour of the labor and delivery unit. The kids got to see the room I would deliver in, and the room you go in after delivery. They got to see the nursery, however, most hospitals don't use nurseries anymore, the baby stays in the room the majority of the time which is nice.

It was very cute and the kids seemed to enjoy it. The class got them even more excited about the arrival of their new baby sister. They can't wait until the day's getting closer and closer!

If you have younger kiddos and are expecting a new baby, I think a sibling class is a great idea for them. It involves them in the process, and gives them a sense of responsibility as the older siblings. 

around here.

- We picked up a dresser for the baby's room and Kev started painting it. Can't wait to start organizing it full of clothes and things to fill it.
- Giving George some luvins.
- Started watching Orange Is The New Black Season 1 and I am hooked. Can't wait to finish the first season!

The weather is starting to get cooler, we are closing the pool on Monday so I am ready for the fall season to arrive! Comfy pants and sweatshirts, boots, and scarves it is!

Happy Friday.

this goes out to all the stepmoms.

Being a stepmom is hard. Some days its easy and very rewarding, and other days its so hard and far from rewarding. So here's my big brain dump on how I feel being a stepmom some days....

Being expected to please everyone without being able to express how you feel is an unrealistic and totally unfair expectation to place on ANYONE.

Having my role as a stepmom needs to be acknowledged from time to time. Meaning tell me something was appreciated or something along those lines. I cant be expected to walk on eggshells, especially in my own home, just to pacify everyone else.  It only leaves me feeling totally isolated, resentful and depressed. The stepmother needs support, too; support from her husband; support from her friends and family and support from society as a whole! And sometimes I don't get that.

I realize that everyone in the stepfamily has their challenges and own crosses to bear; however, I feel the stepmother receives less support and understanding than ANYONE in the stepfamily and that just has to change.  Everyone else is allowed to act out and freely express themselves without judgment, because society has more sympathy for them, and historically, stepmoms have been deemed as wicked. We sympathize with dad because he doesn’t get to see his children as often, or whatever the case may be. We sympathize with the kids because they’re lives have changed and its a constant adjustment. We (meaning society) sympathize with the ex-wife because she is just trying to “protect” her children.  We then dump all of those emotions, responsibility and aftermath of a divorce that the stepmom didn’t create, mind you, on the stepmother and say, “now you deal with it and you better do it all with a smile. And we wonder why so many are just angry all the time.

When you love your children and/or stepchildren, you will do everything in your power to help them, it is not healthy for you or your kids, to sacrifice your mental health to do so.

It must be understood, by husbands, that they need YOU to step up and be the partner that they married. It must be understood that these are women with feelings, and often times have to deal with the aftermath of everything, and they need some support and understanding, too! They deserve to have a voice and a right to be heard in the stepfamily.

Some advice that I've read over the years is how you start out in any relationship is often times how you’ll end up. If you allow someone to walk all over you from the very beginning then that will be their expectation of you. I have always set my own boundaries and expectations of myself and others. So stepmothers, don’t start off allowing your husband, his kids or the ex-wife to think that you are going to be their punching bag. Setting boundaries for yourself and others is not wicked. As a matter of fact, it’s encouraged and expected in order for everyone to have some sort of peace of mind. And if an ex-wife or a husband has a problem with it, they are the ones who need to be examined, not you! The stepfamily can work and thrive, but the adults have to first have the same goal and be supported in their roles, even the stepmother.

Like I said, big brain dump today.  Sometimes you just need those.

Thanks for listening.

(Side note: This is a brain dump, meaning I am venting some things about what it's like being a stepmom. Like everything in life their are good days and bad days. It's okay to blog about things like this and get my thoughts off my chest. Thanks for understanding this is a place for me to dump a bunch of my thoughts to).

(Photo taken with iPhone)

random information for your tuesday.

Today is National Step Family day. Apparently it is celebrated every year on September 16th. Step Family day recognizes that step-families deserve recognition for the care and support they provide, and that in many cases step-parents, step-siblings and step-relatives are just as loved and close as biological relatives.

The first National Step Family Day was founded by Christy Borgeld in 1997. The holiday was created in order to give step families a day to celebrate a strong family structure, give recognition to individual family members and instill a sense of responsibility in all extended family members.

Let me tell you, step families are hard. Having two sets of parents in the mix and decision making etc, it can all get pretty difficult. But if you have a good support system everything can be alright. Some days its really hard and other days its really easy. Just like everything else in life, you have to work through things.
It is hard to believe I have been in the kids' lives for 5 years now.  Brady was 4 and Natalie was 2 and a 1/2 years old. I remember Natalie was going through potty training! Crazy to think she is a 2nd grader now. Time flies so darn fast.

For more information check : Celebrate Love.

movie night : despicable me 2.

The kids were stoked for the second movie night and they couldn't wait until I told them to go to their rooms and wait for me to call them downstairs. For this movie, I had a little more preparation to do since we had a busy weekend.
Set up the table with some Despicable Me 2 snacks and drinks.
This snack was super simple, plain old fruit snacks that are Despicable Me, and I just taped a few of the minion characters to some toothpicks and stuck them in the snacks. The kids thought it was funny!
Natalie liked this one, Brady not so much. It was supposed to be yellow candy melts but the store was out of yellow so I got plain white. Melted the chocolate and poured it over the plastic spoons and attached edible eyeballs to them to make them look like minions on a spoon.
The cupcakes were the hardest part! Plain yellow cake with yellow frosting, and for the minion I used Milano Cookies. Used black icing to help the edible eyeballs stick on, and black icing for the goggle strap and smile. The kids loved these!
For our drinks I made lemonade and grape koolaid.  Yellow for the good minions and purple for the evil minions. The cups were yellow paper cups, and I used a hot glue gun to adhere the black ribbon on, and hot glued the eyeballs too. They wanted to save the cups for the next day to use.  Not shown were some pictures of the characters and some coloring pages of the characters.
The kids look forward to movie night now, on Friday nights when they come over they always want to make sure that Saturday night is still movie night. If we don't have much going on, it for sure will be!

around here.

The weekend is finally here! It's been a long week around here for sure.
- after dinner one night the sky was so pretty, but you can't really tell from the iPhone camera.
- we took George to the tennis courts so he could run and get some of his energy out.
- a very rainy and major traffic day on Thursday.
- ate a delicious grilled cheese for lunch.
- candy eye balls for movie night this weekend!
- ordered Baby Merz her first set of headbands.
- took George on a very short walk in some really nice weather.

Happy Friday folks.