Sunday, October 31, 2010

Friday, October 29, 2010

Wordless Wednesday

It's been a weird week, so wordless Wednesday is now on Friday LOL


Thursday, October 28, 2010

Thankful Thursday

Today I am thankful that in the midst of an incredibly stressful situation, Geo is my rock.

Last night we were informed that the man who owns the house we rent would like his niece to be able to move into our house and that we have until December first to move out; our landlord was very apologetic but there really isn't much they can do about it since they rent from the man who owns the house.

I'm thankful that Geo had today off and we were able to go look at a house that may work out well for us-it's within walking distance of our current house and is affordable. If that one doesn't work, we'll find another, because things always have a way of working out...but I am so thankful that Geo is here to help with all of it.

♥ you honey.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

No...and I Mean It!

I run more than one parenting forum on line, most of them are filled with new parents, some are more experienced like myself, but as a general rule it's first time parents. The most common questions I read over and over is "why won't my child behave?" or "how do I get my child to listen to me?"

Now, don't get me wrong, sometimes Gabe and Bits do not listen to me; contrary to how I *wish* they behaved, they sometimes have bad days where it doesn't matter what I do, they ignore me and do as they wish (though not for long...ha ha)

The number one thing to do to get your child to behave and listen to you? Be consistent in your words and actions. If you tell them no, MEAN it. If you tell them not to do something or there will be consequences, you had damn well better make sure you follow you with consequences if they do it again.

Someone asked today "How do I get my 18 month old to stop playing in the kitchen sink?" This seemed like a no brainer to me-remove the temptation of the sink (the child had a stool for the sink) and if he goes back to the sink, pick him up and tell him it's NOT for playing with. Do that as many times as it takes for them to understand that a) the sink is not for playing and b) I'm mom and I'm the boss.

Did anyone say that?

No, of course not. The answers ranged from "let him play, there's no harm" to "just redirect him, nothing you do or say is going to stop him from playing in the sink"

*shakes head* Really? Really? There is NOTHING you can do to stop them from playing in the sink? I am baffled.

I have a theory about why children run parents lives now. I think it's just too hard for some people to actually BE parents. It's far too much effort to pick a child up and take them from the sink fifty times in ten minutes than it is to just let them play in the sink. It's too much effort to run to the bathroom every thirty minutes to set their toddler on the toilet; it's too much work to let their child come into the kitchen and help them prepare food with you so they can learn how to do it. It's too much work to make a small child clean up a mess they made.

Now, I know some of you are thinking "well I work a full time job/I'm a single mom/I have more than one child, etc etc" I haven't always been a stay at home momma. I worked a full time job (with Gabriel there with me) for the first three years of his life. I worked full time, had a disabled toddler, and a high risk pregnancy on top of it. I have a husband who works retail and is sometimes gone for upwards of 14 hours a day (and even more during the holidays) At one point, I worked third shifts so that we didn't have to have child care during the day. I worked eight and a half hours overnight, Geo worked his 8 or more hours during the day and I was home, up with a toddler and a baby.  Believe me when I say, I understand that it's tiring to be a parent. While I cannot imagine how hard it is being a single parent, I do know how hard it is to work all day long and come home and take care of the kids by myself for days at a time.

It's exhausting to clean up and chase and entertain children all day's tiring to hear mom called five hundred and sixty thousand times a day...removing a child from a sink fifty times in ten minutes is maddening to say the least HOWEVER I'm the PARENT and I have to do these things to raise my children properly. Trust me, you are not doing your child (or yourself for that matter) any favors by not being consistent with how you handle situations. You can stick to your guns 49 out of 50 times on one issue and the 50th time when you slip up and don't handle it your normal way, your child is going to remember that and is going to push and push and push. And you'll have to start over and handle it correctly the next 50 out of 50 times.

A little extra effort in the beginning goes a long way toward the end result. I don't claim to have the worlds' most amazing children, in fact, Gabriel the little darling that he is, once spit on the floor in front of our pastor-not once but twice. (thank God our pastor raised three boys and laughed about it, Geo and I were embarrassed beyond belief) SarahAnne-well we all know she's got a sailor's mouth, once walked up to a friend of mine and said "it's not nice to sh*t on the floor" (Thank God said friend has four children of her own...) Despite the fact that every once in a while they slip up as a general rule they are really well behaved children. Nothing makes me prouder than someone complimenting my children on their manners or their behavior when we are out. They are polite, kind, and know that when momma (or daddy) says no, they mean it.

You are not going to screw your kid up by saying no and meaning it, trust me. Children need boundaries in order to grow up feeling secure and loved. As a teenager I thought my parents were AWFUL because I had a midnight curfew (MIDNIGHT!?!?!? The horrors...that is so uncool) Now as a parent, I completely and utterly understand why they did that (and my children will have an 11 p.m. curfew ha ha) I realize now that they did these sorts of things because they cared about me and wanted what was best for me. The same goes for that toddler you are saying no to and following through with-you should be doing those things because you love them, because you want them to be happy, healthy and safe. In a few years they'll thank you for it...

Monday, October 25, 2010

Follow Up to Wordless Wednesday-Missing

It's with a heavy heart that I make this post; last Wednesday I posted a missing poster for a local girl; sadly they found what they believe is her body on Saturday night. While details haven't emerged, the general consensus is that the body found was Toni Keller's as it fit the description and had her missing personal items with it.

DeKalb is a stone throw away from us; we live in DeKalb county and do a lot of our shopping in DeKalb. In fact, the other day I was right by NIU. This hits really close to home and I've found myself very weepy over the last few days over this life cut so short. I feel like there's more that should be done when someone goes missing-so I'm going to do "more" on Wednesdays from now on, I'll be posting a missing person poster and maybe, just maybe someone who reads my blog will see it and see the person. Idealistic? Yes. Helpful? DEFINITELY. the Keller family, friends of Toni, and the entire NIU Huskie Family, God bless you all; may you find peace in all of these dark days and I hope your memories of Toni will give you comfort in the hard days to follow.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Thankful Thursday-Love of a Lifetime

We are in the process of planning Geo's grandparents 60th wedding anniversary and a few nights ago I emailed Grandma the Great about some details of her wedding...I hope the Greats won't mind, but I want to share some things about them, their love story if you will...because I'm thankful that love like theirs exists.

Grandma told me that she was 16 when she and her "Johnny" started dating, he waited for her to turn 18 so they could get married. They were so young when they got married people didn't think it would last, that they didn't know what they were doing. They've proved so many people wrong, they are the proud parents of three sons, three daughters in law, two grandsons, two granddaughters in law, one great grandson, and two great granddaughters.

Looking at the two of them it is SO obvious they are still so in love after all these years. Hearing Grandma's sweet voice saying "Johnny, oh Johnny" Hearing Grandpa's gruff yet tender voice calling Grandma "Dolly"...their love is evident, even to those who do not know them.

They are wonderful role models for married people all over, perhaps if more people took the time to honor their wedding vows each and every day and to say I love you and mean it there would be fewer divorces and many more happy people.

I hope in 50 years Gabriel and SarahAnne can say that we had the kind of marriage the Greats have; one that was rooted deeply in hope, faith, and love for one another.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Houston We Have a Problem

And it's getting out of control...

We have books all over the house. At any given time there are five or ten piled up on the table next to my chair in the living room, we have a HUGE plastic crate filled with kids books in the living room, I have a pile of books in the kitchen to be returned to the library, we have two bookshelves in the rec room PLUS a stand that I keep filled with books (and the crate of Montessori books I keep at hand) Then...upstairs. The kids both have a full bookshelf, Gabe has a table next to his bed that is covered in books, today I cleaned under Bitsy's bed and found TEN books that had slid off after she fell asleep reading AND in our room we have a full bookshelf and my night stand has books on top of it that I am reading, not to mention that under the night stand I have a pile of books as well. (did I mention the books we still have in storage OR the books in my "craft" room that are all for crafting?)

Thankfully I have an especially tolerant husband who doesn't seem to mind all these books all over the place (oh...and the cookbooks in the kitchen, how could I forget those? and the pile of books on the back of the toilet...) but seriously, we are being over run with books.

It's completely and utterly my mother's fault. That's right Mom-it's ALL your fault. You instilled a love of reading and books and shopping at yard sales and resale shops (and the library book sales...and church sales and friends' houses...) for books. I rarely pay full price for a book so it's almost as if it doesn't count as a "book" PLUS I'm the Friends of the Library president and I get first dibs on the books when they come in as donations...I am fairly certain that I am providing the FOL with at least 50% of it's profit on books every month ha ha.

Did I mention this is my mom's fault? Because maybe it's not ALL her fault...maybe Gabe is to blame too. I mean, how else do you explain that the other day when I went to the bookstore I couldn't bring myself to pick just ONE book for myself, so instead I got him two new books? (and Bits two new books as well, because really, we have to be fair here...) Maybe if he wasn't such a voracious little reader, I wouldn't have to buy books all the time. Yeah, that's it, it's ALL Gabe's fault.

Well maybe not, maybe it's Geo's fault for putting up with so many books...unlike the yarn balls that he insists I either use or pass on to other people (I just gave away 15 yarn balls...) he never discourages me from bringing books home. So it's Geo's fault, just as much as it is my mom and Gabe's fault.

Before you say "Well why buy books when you can borrow them from the library?" I need to say this, I have a problem. A huge problem, bigger than the books in the any given time there are AT least ten books on my wait list at the library and I have four or five checked out. I am one of those people who DEFINITELY get my tax dollars out of my library membership. At the beginning of the year, I set a goal to read 100 NEW books this year. By March I had surpassed it. I have lost count of the new books I've read this year.

Actually, you know who's fault this REALLY is? My sisters. Yep, it's Tori's fault. She reads almost as much as me (Though a lot of it is for school) and she is CONSTANTLY giving me suggestions for books and of COURSE I have to take them. I mean, what kind of sister would I be if I didn't take her advice on books? Also, I feel the need to add that she also contributes to the amount of books in this fact, the last time we saw her I brought a bag of books home! (I left a bag up there too, so it's a trade off, right??? he he)

Alright, I admit it, it's my own darn fault there are so many books in this house. I love to read, I read constantly, and I can't get enough of a good book (Though I will finish a bad book too, just so I can say I finished it) I read quickly, I read often and I am SO SO lucky that both of my kids have picked up my reading habits. Books transport you to new worlds without having to leave your house, books have the power to inspire, make you feel good, make you realize how good you have it and generally give you a new perspective on life.

and besides that, who doesn't love an excuse to curl up under a fleecy blanket with a hot mug of tea and a book??

Monday, October 18, 2010

Home schooled...

In profanity.

I have a confession to make; I have a horrible potty mouth. I try not to swear around the kids, but it sometimes slips out AND Gabriel can read and often DOES read over my shoulder when I type on my other blog where I am often very casual about throwing around the swears...

This morning I overheard Bitsy playing with her cousin in Gabe's room. What did I hear? I heard a teeny tiny Bitsy voice say "Quit being an a*hole and quit pushing me"

I was mortified...and a little bit proud. Only proud in the way that she used the word correctly and really, that's pretty impressive for a three year old. But mostly, I was mortified.

Bits is getting ready to start in a private Christian preschool in January. I am so afraid that she's going to be expelled her first week for using profanity. I can already imagine the phone call...

"Hello Mrs. Witkowski? Yes, this is about Bitsy, she used the word a*hole this morning to describe Cain"

"Well, really can you blame her, Cain WAS an a*hole, he killed his brother. Quite frankly I would have used something stronger to describe him."

"Mrs. Witkowski, that's not the point, she's three and using the word a*hole"

"Well at least she used it in the proper context right?"

*Big sigh from teacher*

I think I need to go wash my own mouth out with soap...

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Lyle Lyle the Crocodile?

Are you familiar with this fellow? He's Lyle Lyle, the crocodile and apparently his family lives with us. I don't mean to alarm anyone BUT there are currently at LEAST three crocodiles living in my house. Let me explain...

SarahAnne is NEVER naughty; in fact, she's much like Calvin from Calvin and Hobbes and his infamous noodle incident-he's totally misunderstood. SarahAnne is never naughty, it's ALWAYS a crocodile who does the naughty things.

How about a few examples of what the crocodile has done in the last few days: The "man" crocodile (as I said, there are three crocs in my house: the man crocodile, the plain old crocodile, and the baby crocodile) ate her pants. Bits went to use the bathroom and came down without any undies or pants. When asked where they were, she quickly pointed upstairs and said tearfully, "The man crocodile ate them"

The plain old crocodile regularly messes with my computer, one day I had to scold "the crocodile" because all of my desk top icons disappeared AND my antivirus had been disabled...Poor innocent Bitsy walked in on the crocodile clicking at my computer...

The crocodile also cut holes in her pants. Why? Because she needed to see inside of her pants to look at her body and the crocodile helped her out. Who knew crocs could use scissors so well? Same with a quilt, the edge has been cut because the crocodile wanted to let Bitsy see inside of it...

And finally, this week the baby crocodile peed in her pants. I could hear her upstairs saying "you naughty baby crocodile, you can't pee in my pants, momma is gonna be so cross with you!" She came down and assured me that she sent the baby crocodile to her room to think about why what she did was naughty and could I maybe come help her get new pants from the closet since the crocodile peed in them?


At least she has a vivid imagination, right??

Friday, October 15, 2010

Friday Five-Oops-a-daisy!

1. What was the last thing you dropped on the kitchen floor?
Butter and let me tell you, it sucks to clean up butter!

2. What cough drops do you like, and do they work very well?
Halls menthol; they seem to work just fine.

3. Who was the last person you dropped off somewhere?

4. When were you ever dropped like a bad habit?
Never that I know of

5. What are your favorite kind of raindrops?
Big fat warm ones!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Thankful Thursday

Today, more than usual, I am so thankful that my HH, Geo is such a good father and husband. He and I completely compliment one another in almost every area of our lives together. He is an excellent father, who makes a point to listen to our children when they speak, to spend time with the kids, even when he's exhausted from work, and generally BE there for our kids. Gabriel and SarahAnne are incredibly lucky to have a father who genuinely LOVES being a father. I hope that they realize just how lucky they are to have a dad who is so devoted to them, because unfortunately that's not always the case.

As far as husband's go, I couldn't ask for a better husband. My mom once told me that if she could have hand picked a husband for me, it would have been George. I know I've blogged about him before, but he truly is my equal; he is calm when I am frazzled, he is quiet when I am loud, and he's my rock; he makes me want to be a better wife, mother, and person. I'm so blessed to have found him when I did; we've been through a lot together and managed to have a stronger marriage because of it.

I wish everyone could have a George in their lives; there'd be fewer messed up kids, awful marriages, and general unhappiness; so today, I'm very thankful for you, George, and I'm thankful every single day, even if I don't say it.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Qualify THIS

I recently discovered a new parent blogger-at first I really liked him; he's got a lot of great things to say, but then yesterday he said something that really rubbed me the wrong way. He asked for followers to send him pictures of their disabled children so that he can make a post about how gorgeous and amazing these kids are.

Now, in theory, that's very nice; it's nice that a rather well known blogger is bringing disability activism to the forefront of blogging...however...

Why in the world do people feel the need to say that disabled children can be gorgeous too?? As if someone were to see a disabled child who wasn't gorgeous (all children are cute little things in my opinion) and think "oh man, what a homely child" and then when they find out that it's a child with a disability say "oh man what a GORGEOUS disabled child"

Here's what I have to say about it: quit putting YOUR labels on my child; quit putting YOUR labels on ALL disabled children. Why in the hell are we stressing the importance of looks on small children? Why are they only "gorgeous" if we know they are disabled? It's a back handed compliment and it's rude as hell.

It's like telling me "oh for a fat girl, you're so pretty" or saying "Oh that gay actor is so amazing" WHY do we have to qualify it? Is it so incredibly idealistic of me to think that maybe, just maybe, we don't NEED all these unnecessary labels on our children? Even positive labels are still labels and they are still harmful to all of us.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Thankful Thursday Part Two

I'm also thankful today that the newest addition to our family arrived safe and sound, Miss Emma Sophia was born today weighing 6lbs 13oz and was 19.5 inches long. Emma belongs to my "best" Amanda who was here this summer visiting. Welcome to the world little one, we're so happy you came!!! xoxoxox


Thankful Thursday

Today I am thankful for the sunshine, good friends, and Lady Gaga for getting me motivated :)

What are you thankful for today?

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Miss Jacey :)


Bitsy's new baby...ask her and she'll tell you; Jacey belongs to her!

World Domination, One Leaf at a Time

Bitsy is quite possibly the silliest girl I know. This morning we were walking to the library (because the weather is absolutely gorgeous and I had to work) and we were stomping on all of the crunchy looking leaves to make the loudest noise possible. After a particularly crunchy leaf, Bits said to no one in particular "Aha! No one can stop us now!" I asked, "Um, what are you talking about Bitsy?" She said "oh never mind" and continued to crunch the leaves happily.

My sister has decided that she's going to take over the world, one crunch leaf at a out world, here comes Bitsy!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Best Buddies

Last night Gabriel had a sleep over with his best buddy, D. They had a fabulous time rolling around on the ground, playing good guys-bad guys, eating popcorn and staying up WAY too late. Whenever D spends the night, the boys "camp out" on Gabe's floor and tell each other jokes and stories. It's amazing, that even at the age of six, the boys try to one up each other and try to make it sound like one is braver than the other. Last nights' story was about losing teeth-a popular subject around here-D retold the gory (eww, they WERE gory) details of losing three of his teeth and of course Gabe had to launch into the even GORIER details of losing his last two teeth.

I'm not sure if I blogged about it or not, but Gabe was fed up with having to wait for his teeth to come out so he went outside and bit down on our garden fence to pop the teeth out. (For the record; the garden fence is a thin metal fence completely covered in vinyl) He went on and on to D about all the "blood pouring out of my mouf" and then said "But the next tooth didn't want to come out either so I had to bite again" And bite he did...and in the process he damaged his gum. At this point, Gabe says "Dr. Lee says my gum was hurt and I shouldn't do it again. Ha ha, I got that tooth out though!"

The boys then took turns examining each others' mouths for what seemed like eons before finally deciding that it was time to go to sleep. Good thing they crashed when they did, since it was nearly midnight when those two boneheads settled down. Ha ha :)

I'm so glad to see Gabriel SO grown up and becoming part of friendships that I am sure will last for many years-if not life-we've always said that if Gabe had a twin it would be D and it seems to be truer and truer, as D recently grew about three inches and is now the exact same height as Gabriel.

It's hard to believe that Gabe is SO grown up already, seems like just yesterday we found out he was coming. Life moves pretty darn quickly...

Friday, October 1, 2010

Friday Five-Don't Look Back in Anger

1. Who is most likely angry at you right now?
I hope no one, but it's entirely possible that people who consider themselves Republicans may be for some of the things I say.

2. Who were you most recently angry at?
Is it too dorky to say Lexi from Grey's Anatomy? Too bad if it is, I am ANGRY with her, how could she give up on McSteamy??*

3. How easily do you get angry?
Not very, though I am pretty easy to annoy

4. How best do you deal with anger?
I clean a lot. Physical activity seems to help dispel any anger I might have.

5. How can people tell, just by looking at you, that you are angry?
Generally they can't.

*This is McSteamy, how could you give on THIS??
Eric Dane Pictures, Images and Photos


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