Thursday, October 17, 2013

When You Lose Your Temper, Things I Shouldn't Have Said

Have you ever lost it with your kids and finally just lay it out there no matter how selfish it sounds? Today my kids seem to have all gotten the same affliction. If you are a parent you know the affliction. "Ignore mom to see how lazy we can get away with being." And today I am weak. This week,  I have been weak. Snapping at everyone. 

So today the words tumbled out of my hurting heart. "I will give you my last breath, because that is what moms do, and I will do it gladly because it was my choice to have kids and I get that is what moms do. I did not go into this blind, I knew before I started that my life would now revolve around someone else, forever." And then the worst...
"BUT, if you do not start listening to what I have to say and do what I tell you to do WHEN I tell you to do it some of the stuff I allow you all to do is going to end. I am going to start getting some of those things *I* want and you all are going to have to start going without..."

Yes. I said that. And yes, at the moment I meant it. But I do feel selfish, and horrible for saying it. But when you are a mom, and you look around and you realize that you will never catch up with all the house work, and the floor you spent a lot of time on yesterday looks like you haven't swept in a month and on and on and on... and then you ask for a little help.  "Please, fold the laundry and get another load going." as you point to the laundry in the two baskets (three loads) that you have not touched because you know it's only RIGHT to make them do what you asked several times in three days.  "Please, clean up after you make lunch." to get "OK, THERE, I cleaned it are you happy?" in that snotty 13 year old girl attitude that ONLY 13 year old girls are capable of stringing out... Then walking in to see the mess only half cleaned up.... You know those days. Add to that the pain that refuses to go away (after several weeks). Add to that the guilt from being a snot in general to a husband that does not deserve it...

Yet, I have that voice in the back of my head... "no excuses". Because we are not supposed to make excuses for our bad behavior, we are supposed to just apologize and ask forgiveness. Grr.

So here in my place, this area where I profess to be finding my happy, I have to lay it out... what is my plan? I don't know, because even though I know the right thing for me to do I am still not willing to allow a couple of "pushing the limits as far as I can possibly get away with it and not get my head served to me on a silver platter" teenagers walk all over mom. Not even if most days they are splendid and this only happens occasionally. Any why? Why do I seem to think I need to expect so much from my kids? Because I want them to be splendid all the time, I want them to grow and be better then me. I want them to have more then me. I want them to have a bigger life then me. And you know what that last one there.... that is a tall order to fill. Because even on a day when hiding under the covers seems like it would have been a better way to spend my day then the way I did spend it I do know that I am blessed.

God is good, He has a plan. I am the one that throws roadblocks, and I am the one that makes Him work hard to give me the life He wants me to have. And those moments when I know I've been a snot, and still don't know exactly what He wants me to do and I decide to just keep going down the same ol' road... and I get that smack upside the back of my head, you know the one. I've talked about it before. The one that reminds me I am a terribly stubborn child of God and He has once again had to get my attention.... Those moments are the ones that I know God Loves ME More.... He loves me more than all my mistakes, He loves me more than I am stubborn.  I know He does, because he is the perfect Father, and although I am not perfect AT ALL, I know that I love my children more than their mistakes. And I love them more then they are stubborn. 

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Joy Dare: Three Gifts Understated

31 day blog challenge - share an inspiring story... not sure how inspiring but there are a couple of stories, mixed in with my Joy Dare (which is out of order, btw).

The gift of a baby's cry.
   Most of the time we think of a baby crying and we think "no, not again" or "shhhh, shhh don't cry."  But the other day when we were talking with the kids Hubs and I remembered when our first was born. He was early and needed help breathing. We did not hear him cry for nearly two weeks, and when he finally did cry it was more of a whisper, because of the tube down his throat. But then FINALLY, he got a voice, and he cried. And we rejoiced because we had prayed we would hear him cry. And after that the babies kept coming, and we kept rejoicing at the cry... except at 2 am after a 4 hour cry fest... yes we are still just human.

The gift of a whisper.
   When a person is more than "just a little blue" and there is nothing you can do because there really is a chemical reason, and so all you can do is get some meds and then wait for it to adjust. And when you are in that place, sometimes it's less about "blue" and more about "crazy". Like getting overly touchy, overly angry, overly sensitive and yelling and crying and basically feeling like the world is caving in. And then... there is a whisper. "I love you, you are amazing." And it's coming from the person who chose to commit to spend the rest of his life with you for better and yes for "crazy".  And the person at which you have just directed your last bout of insanity at. And yet a whisper, full of promise, and full of love.

The gift of soft sheets.
    Have you ever bought some sheets because they look soft, and in the package they feel soft, but after a washing or two all you feel are the little fabric pills that feel like sand paper on your skin and make a good nights sleep impossible? So yes, the new truly soft sheets (rather than the sand paper in disguise brand) are absolutely an understated gift.

31 Day Blogging Challenge Participant    A Holy Experience

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Follow me...

Follow me child, I know the way.
The way to adulthood, to grow up I say.

Follow me child, I'll make sure you know,
the path you must take, the way you should go.

Follow me child, It's my place in this life,
to make sure you know how to deal with strife.

Follow me child, I'll teach you to pray,
God is there for you night and day.

Follow me child, we will scrub and clean, 
someday you'll need this, you'll know what I mean.

Follow me child, we will read a book,
to learn about math, and language, and how to cook.

I work and I teach, this child so true,
But I know with your words I've lost sight of you.

Follow me momma, I know the way,
to skip and to run, you remember? To play.

Follow me momma, lets color and draw, 
our dreams out on paper, no one ever saw.

Follow me momma, lets dance in the rain,
a laugh and a smile to push away the pain.

Follow me momma, lets sing a new song,
we have lots of time for me to follow along.

Follow me momma, you teach me to pray,
I'll show you the faith of a child every day.

Follow me momma, a little give and take,
along with the learning some memories we can make.

You work and you teach this child so true,
but momma, God sent me here to also teach YOU.

31 Day Blogging Challenge Participant

Day 6: A different voice

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Kitchen Tips: Making Habanero Oil

Oh yes, habaneros those cute little orange peppers that set your world on fire should you ever be brave (or stupid) enough to actually take a bite out of one.

Pretty little drop of bio-hazzard on a stem isn't it?
We planted some peppers, but lo and behold I forgot what they were. So when I brought some in green as can be, because they didn't seem to be growing anymore and the husband took a little bite... we figured it out. Or at least had a strong suspicion.  When they started turning orange a few days later, then we knew.
In the front on the right I have a tomato plant that went nuts, just to the left of that is the pepper plant.
And we knew we had bitten of more than we could chew, literally. What the heck to do with the little orange fire bites? I went on a search and got an answer from my sis when she sent me this link:
                                                     Making Light: Listening to habaneros.

We decided we needed to make habanero oil, both regular and orange. YUM! Yeah. Read the instructions on the link, then come back here to read this, because there are a few things you really NEED to read TWICE.

1. Freeze them first. As the instructions say it makes them give up their flavor better.
2. Use olive oil.
3. DO NOT take the stems off, or seed them. Just wash them, dry them, freeze them and when you are ready to make the oil cut just enough to get to the middle.
4. Use a ziploc bag or plastic on your cutting board.
5. Use gloves.
6. Do not get the oil in your eyes, on your face, in your nose.

After you have made your oil - and this is important here, because it's not really clear in the link. When you go to cook with it.
1. DO NOT use water in the pan either before or after you cook with it so that it makes steam... STEAM containing habanero will basically turn your house into a gas chamber. Really, I'm not kidding.
2. It is wise to mix the habanero oil WITH regular oil when cooking for the first time, this will help you decide if you can handle the oil at 100% or not without ruining your meal.
3. Make sure that you use lots of hot soap and water to wash everything you touch the oil with.

A few things we used the oil for so far:

 Asian Orange Chicken Recipe
I used the habanero orange oil to cook the chicken in. OMG, heaven on a plate! Very good, and nicely spiced!

Habanero popcorn:
Use regular popcorn popped in the habanero oil, add a little popcorn salt.
Again, don't forget to cut the habanero oil with regular oil if you want to cut the heat.
and again DO NOT GET THE OIL on your face, in your eyes, in your nose. Cook in a well ventilated kitchen.

The husband has used the oil to cook all kinds of things. Hot dogs for instance.

I am not quite that brave (well maybe I am but I HATE hot dogs), I have used it to coat the pan I cooked my eggs in, and I threw a little oil in with some noodles, with some tomatoes (which btw cuts the heat a little) salt and basil. And I think that would be really good if I used orange oil to saute red, orange and yellow peppers with some mushrooms and a little onion and garlic to throw on the noodles as well.

Have fun with it. Cooking is one great big experiment, and if you like a flavor you might as well throw it in here and there and see where it works.  If it does not work out, chances are it won't be so bad you can't eat it... and if it is call it a night. If you are like me, you've probably eaten enough of the ingredients while you were cooking to make it through the night.

Be brave, be creative and enjoy!

31 Day Blogging Challenge Participant

Friday, October 4, 2013

Five Minute Friday: Write

Wow! A post with a duel purpose. It fits both the 31 day blogging challenge and my five minute friday blog. Click the links at the end to take a peak and join if if you like.

So Five Minute Friday Word: Write

Writing is something I have done for a long time, meaning I've dabbled - a lot. I have stories from when I was in middle school. I like it because not only can it take you to another place, but it's a place I have created, therefore making it perfect. Which does not always mean utopia. It can be perfectly scary, perfectly painful, perfectly loud, or perfectly miserable. The idea is not to always paint the most beautiful life with words, but to create a place where the emotion is felt not only by the writer, but more importantly by the reader. Obviously, not ALL writing will create a strong emotion. This one for example, a more informative piece is not very exciting or FULL of emotion, but you should still be able to catch a sense of what the writer is feeling.
I love to write. I can be good at it, and sometimes, not so much. This is why I join the challenges and go with the prompts, because until I can be good at it more often then not, I do not consider myself a good writer.
So what do I think I need to do to become better?
1. Practice, hence the prompts etc.
2. Read other blogs, take note of the ones I think "work" and the ones I don't.
3. Learn more about grammar AND how to apply it to my writing.
4. Practice.
5. Get tips from others.

So after reading a few of my blogs, what would you suggest?

31 Day Blogging Challenge Participant  Five Minute Friday

31 Day Blogging Challenge: Write a post a day for 31 days, through October.
5 Minute Friday: Write for 5 minutes, unedited, on what ever word is sent in an email.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Because Every Woman Should BELIEVE!

Because every woman should BELIEVE this, without a doubt.

31 Day Blogging Challenge Participant

How To: Ice Marbles With Water Balloons

How to make yourself some really awesome yard marbles for winter decorations.

Fill some balloons with water, not too full, they are supposed to be mostly round, not egg shaped. (Although that might be kinda neat for Easter.

Put different colors of food coloring in each balloon. If you want the marble solid color, swish the balloon around to mix the color. If not just set it down in a freezer (or if it's cold enough just put them in the snowbank.) Wait till they are frozen solid.

Cut balloon from around the ice. Place around yard, along the sidewalk, on the steps etc.

  I don't have pics for this yet, because it's not quite cold enough. BUT I will update the blog when I do this with the kids.

31 Day Blogging Challenge Participant
31 Day Blog Challenge - Day 1
The idea being to blog for 31 days.
Click to join.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

App Review: Pepperplate Meal Planner

In my efforts to make a happy home I've been working on getting my kitchen in order. I found a great app for my phone that links to Pepperplate.  The website and app work together.
You add your recipes or recipes from a huge list of websites that are compatible. You plan your menus for as many days as needed and with a few clicks of a button it even creates a shopping list for you. When you download the app to whatever device you have (it's available for about everything), then you take it all with you where ever you go. Recipes, menus, shopping list... FANTASTIC!

Best part? It's all free. No subscription, no sucking you in, only to find out you need to pay for all the "cool" stuff. I love it.

Now before I go much further I will say it was time consuming to start. I mean it's not like they have all YOUR favorite recipes magically in one spot, but I added our standby's over the weekend and had it ready to use by Monday.

We are a busy family. Five kidlets still at home. We homeschool and the two oldest are involved in the Civil Air Patrol and Olympic style competitive shooting. They are out of the house for practice and meetings at least 3 times a week and gone for events or competitions on the weekends. In order to comply with that schedule and NOT have them eating at 10:00 pm I've decided we need to start eating more slow-cooked meals. I am not an organized person. Trying to finish school and get dinner by 4:00 pm just does not happen easily.

Along with our own standby's of pizza and spaghetti I found The Crockin Girls.  Crock pot recipe heaven!
I added several of those recipes to my "Winter menus" and went shopping. We were out of everything! Lately,  I have been trying to have more fruits and veggies in the house, but that means trying to cut other things out of our meals. It has not worked out well. $300.00 every two weeks does not go very far for 7 people, I manage... until I try to add fresh fruit and veggies. Eating healthier is more money. IT JUST IS. This shopping trip, the cupboards were bare. I took my list to the store, started to panic when it started to add up... in the end I went $75.00 over budget, but at the end of the two weeks, we will still have planned meals and the food to make them. Awesome!

No more searching around to see what I can throw together, no more "just cheese pizza" because that is all I have the ingredients for... etc. Yes, I had a plan before, but it was not as organized. This is going to be an awesome two weeks. Meal plans for the evening meals will give us left overs for lunch the next day most days. And I can use these two weeks to come up with two more weeks of winter menus. That means a whole month of different meals, set and ready to go. Then, I'll start to work on those "Summer menus".

Now of course, there is always the chance I could slide back to my old ways, but I am loving this new plan. Even though it's only been a week since I found it, three days of actually using it for meals, I love it. Three days of looking at my phone first thing in the morning, having all the ingredients for the meals, getting it started before we even begin school ... it's the life.

Small confession. Hubs was right, again. Yes, I had a plan before, but it was not very organized. So yes, after three days I know that I had still not gotten it right. Shhh, don't tell him I said that though, he already thinks he's always right.

31 Day Blogging Challenge Participant
31 Day Blog Challenge - Day 1
The idea being to blog for 31 days.
Click to join.