Thursday, November 29, 2012

GIVEAWAY sponsored by Habie Babie Bows on Facebook!

A friend of mine, Sara, has a page on Facebook called Habie Babie Bows. And she is generously donating a prize for my followers! If you haven't already heard of her, be prepared to fall in love with her bows. Not only does she make things for girls, she can do a wide variety of things for boys. Bowties, suspenders, taggie blankets, hair bows, crayon rolls, and so much more! Without further ado, allow me to show you the pictures of the items she is giving away!
Winner will have their choice on the Girls set, or the Boys. Girls set includes 3 large-layered bows. Boys set includes suspenders and a matching bow tie! Winner will also have their choice in colors!
Make sure you come back and enter every day to increase your chances of winning! Also, if you have ordered anything from her within the month of November, you'll be able to snag an additional 10 entries!! (The month isn't over yet! If you order before the month is over, you can come back and claim those entries.)
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Days 25, 36, 27

Yes, I missed a few days. Quite honestly, I am so thrilled that the month is almost over. I never thought it would be THIS hard to find 30 things that are blog-worthy to be thankful for. So, without further ado, let me try to whip these ones out.

Day 25:
I am thankful for the 24.5 years I had with my mother. I wish I had more, and I wish those 24.5 years were more pleasant than they were, but I am so so happy that we spoke before she passed away, and I was able to tell her that I love her. I miss my mother more and more every day, and cannot even begin to tell you what I would give up to have her back. She's missing out on Sofia growing up, and she isn't here to help me out with AJ. And Gianna? She'll never meet her. Mom and Sofia had such a close relationship. I honestly think Sofia took the news of her death harder than I did, if that's possible. She was the light of Sofia's eyes, and vice versa. I never thought that my children would miss out on a loving relationship with their Grammy. I am thankful that they did have the short time to know what she loved them dearly.

Day 26:
I am thankful for Facebook. Because of Facebook, I have been able to keep up with family and friends. I have made some AWESOME friends as well. Friends that I would have never have known if it weren't for FB. I've also met some people that I thought were my friends, but turned out to the be the absolute opposite of friends. I've connected with people, I've found out the truth about others, I've killed time playing games, I have a safe place to store (and share) pics. And so much more. Sure, I complain about FB all the time. It sucks, no doubt about that. Changes every other day practically, but seriously, it's much better than MySpace!!

Day 27:
I am thankful for heat. Seriously, it's snowing outside today. But it's nice and comfy in here! The heat is cranked up to 75, and it will probably go up even higher later on. NY is seriously not the state for me. I need warmth. Not this 30 degree crap. Give me 70s and sunny, and I'll be happy.

So, there you go. A 3-day catch up post of what I'm thankful for. Why didn't I think to consolidate a few days at a time? It would have been much easier!!!

I have another giveaway that's going to be starting tomorrow. A local friend of mine makes hairbows, bowties, suspenders, taggie blankets, and much more. She's generously donating an item for the giveaway, boys or girls, winners choice. Be sure to like her page and thank her for the giveaway! Thanks, Habie Babie Bows!!

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Day 24- 30 days of being thankful

Day 24:

I am thankful for the internet. Because of the internet, I have been able to look up all of AJ's diagnoses. I have a greater knowledge of what each diagnosis means individually, and together. I was able to look up Gianna's blood disorder. Even though I have it as well, I didn't know much about it. 

I now know what I need to do to help them. I have been trying, but man is it hard. Thankfully, I have an ODD support team in the form of a Facebook Group. I've made some new friends from there, and I'm able to relate to them. I'm able to discuss when we have an exceptionally rough day. They understand my frustration, and my anger. They help me cope when I just want to scream. 

Not only do I have the support for AJ, I belong to a FB group for Hereditary Spherocytosis, the blood disorder that Gianna and I have. It's helped me to know that we are not the only people in the world with it. I don't know anyone other than my family who has HS, so it's nice to see that there are others, and see how different our cases are. Gianna has a more severe form than I have, so I'm learning as I go. We will have to remove her spleen soon, but we're trying to hold off as long as we can. In the support group, there are a few who have had it out at 2. Gianna has been doing better, so for now, the spleen stays.

Also, because of the internet, I've been able to find milk donors for Gianna, who have been keeping her as healthy as she has been. I've been able to do my shopping online. I've been earning money. More shopping. More earning. More learning. Not to mention, selling and buying from eBay, and CraigsList. I've also been able to blog and offer up giveaways. I am working on a few more now. Sunbaby cloth diapers coming up. Don't forget about the Haute Pocket Cloth Diaper giveaway going on here!

Thank God that there are only a few more days left of this month. I am running out of things to post!!

Friday, November 23, 2012

My son has SPD

I found this picture using a Google search, but this is perfect for teaching people about SPD (sensory processing disorder). Along with letting people know about my son. So, I'll break it down and describe how he is.
AJ is 5 years old. He will be 6 in January. He is, in many ways, your typical 5 year old boy. He likes guns, blocks, video games. But, he is also very much NOT your typical 5 year old boy. AJ has ADHD, ODD, and SPD.

AJ cannot concentrate on anything at all. He can barely read because he's too distracted by the busyness of the pictures in the easy books. Too occupied by the white space in books that don't have pictures. He's too distracted with what everyone else around him is doing. If we ask him to do something, he forgets halfway through what he was supposed to be doing. 
He doesn't like the vacuum at all. He claims he isn't scared of it, but he runs and screams when I turn it on. This could be a typical little-kid fear, but I'm not 100% sure. He runs as soon as he flushes the toilet because it's loud. And forget about public toilets. He will scream and shriek when they flush. Loud noises typically cause him to jump, and sometimes panic. However, if he's deeply engrossed in an activity, he might not even hear anything at all. However, if HE is the maker of these loud noises, that is perfectly fine. He will make a really high pitched screeching noise. It seems to only bug me.
Chewing:AJ ALWAYS has his hands in his mouth. He has to chew. He is allowed Gum at school because he so frequently chews on his fingers, his clothes, backpack straps, pencils, markers, rulers, gluesticks (covered), anything. At home, I tell him "Hands out of your mouth" at least 3 times every 10 minutes. I try to keep his hands busy, but it doesn't always work. He will stop doing something just to chew his fingers. 
Fine Motor skills:He started Occupational Therapy over the summer. Twice a week we went. He is in OT at school. They took him out of individual OT because he has improved a lot, but he is still in group OT. His handwriting has improved, he can grasp scissors correctly now. However, his cutting isn't the best. He twists and turns the scissors rather than the paper when he cuts. 
Dressing:AJ can dress himself ... to an extent. He doesn't notice that his shirts are on backwards half the time because he's too focused on the materials. His socks have to be black because the white ones have a funny feel to them. He has white socks, and he will wear them if he doesn't have any black ones left, but he is obviously in discomfort if he has to wear them. Tags bug him. He likes his sleeves to be long enough to cover his hands so that he can chew on them if need be.
He doesn't. Plain and simple. He has too much going on that he can't listen to what's being said to him. Everything I say to him, he hears about 10% of it. I have to repeat myself multiple times. This is where getting down to his level sometimes helps. I still have to focus on getting him to actually recognize what I'm saying and understand fully. Complying? Yeah ... well, his ODD gets in the way of that.
Foods:He often refuses new things because he isn't sure on what the texture might be. For example, the other night, I made Chicken Alfredo for us. I didn't use fettuccine, but instead used shells. He cried for an hour because he was sure he wouldn't like them. Even though they taste the exact same as the penne he wanted me to use. But it isn't the flavor. It's the shape and the texture. He prefers smooth. However, his sister requested shells, and I obliged. Why? Because the last time I made it, I obliged his request of penne. He happily ate the chicken, and scraped off the Alfredo sauce to eat, but left the shells for absolute last. After a while, he finally agreed to eat it. 
My son cringes when I go to hug him. People look at us as if we beat him. He seriously cowers when he sees you opening your arms. You have to give him advance warning, "AJ, can I hug you?". If he says no, he means it. He will cry and scream and kick if you hug him when he doesn't want to. We took pics of us as a family on the stairs of our house this Thanksgiving. Sofia was trying to hold his shoulders in a loving embrace for the picture. He whined and made all these pouty faces until she stopped touching him. He loves to be tickled, but only when he wants to be.  When he had a melt down in Walmart a few months back, he screamed bloodly hell when I picked him up to bring him to the cart in the aisle we were in. He screamed out that I was hurting him. Of course, by not telling him I was picking him up, I may have been unintentionally hurting him. Or at least irritating him. 
He doesn't always walk on his tiptoes. He doesn't always WALK, either. He prefers to skip. Or bounce. Or run. Or somersault. Walking requires him to just move his legs. It doesn't allow him to move his entire body. He needs that movement (thanks, ADHD). But depending on how he's feeling, if he's having a particularly rough day with his SPD, he will walk super slow. If he's wearing something that he's slightly uncomfortable in, that's when he'll drag his feet. It allows him to not touch the fabric as much as if he were running around.

There is a lot more to know about SPD, so if you have any questions at all, please feel free to ask me. Either as a comment here, or email me at

Day 23- 30 days of being thankful

Day 23:

I am thankful for laughter. Every day, Gianna does something to make me laugh. I could be having the worst day possible, but she can do one little thing and get me rolling. Even better is when I tickle her, and she cracks up hysterically. Which then gets me cracking up hysterically. Her laughter brightens the whole room up. She has the cutest laugh ever.

When AJ gets her going, it's the best. She certainly adores him, even when he's having one of his ODD moments. She looks up to her big brother, and lets him know through all of her kisses and hugs, and especially by laughing at all the little things he does. Falling? Yep. Running and sliding on the floor? Of course. Banging into things? Definitely. Even if he's singing or saying things in a silly voice. She just can't stop. It's the best sound ever!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Day 22- 30 days of being thankful

Day 22:

I am thankful for my family. My aunts, uncles, cousins, father, brother, and my mother. I am thankful for being able to spend Thanksgiving with my family. 

My family is wild, crazy, but we put the 'fun' in dysfunctional. I couldn't imagine having a better family than I do. I'm very close with some cousins, talking to them almost every day. Cousins who have kids of their own who my kids can play with. I would absolutely love to have our kids all play together and be as close as we were as kids, but so far, it hasn't happened as often as it did for us, but our kids know that there are a multitude of cousins out there, and that they are all very much loved. I couldn't ask for any better family. heart

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Day 21- 30 days of being thankful

Day 21:

I am thankful for markers and coloring books. 

No, seriously. They keep my kids entertained for hours. Even Gianna. I buy washable markers so that I don't have to worry about if G decides to write on herself (she does). And they're non-toxic, so I don't worry if she decides to eat them (she does). The other week, we went out to Walmart. Gianna had a lovely purple marker near her eye. Someone asked what happened to her. It took me a minute to realize they were referring to her purple mark. I explained that we just recently began playing with markers, and that was the result. The woman laughed. She said she'd been there with each of her kids. It happens. 2 days again, we didn't go anywhere because she decided to chew on the brown marker. Her ENTIRE mouth was brown. Even her drool was brown. Gross. There was no way I was going to explain that to anyone! 

We have plans to celebrate Thanksgiving up at my Aunt's house, and then to Anthony's moms after. I just have to keep AJ and Gianna clean until then. Baths will be in order for tonight, and the markers will be put up high until tomorrow night. There will be no purple eyes tomorrow, or brown mouths. At least, not until after 8PM. 

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Day 20- 30 days of being thankful

Day 20: I am thankful for cloth diapers. I tossed the idea around when Sofia was a baby, and even tried using the Gerber Prefolds and pins. By the way, despite what the package says, those are NOT suitable for diapering!! They are better suited to be burp cloths. I never even tried with AJ. But with Gianna, I tossed the idea around some more. By the time she was about 6.5 months old, I decided to give it a try. I got into it when I found out that Jillian's Drawers did a program that moms who receive WIC can receive a free loaner pack. After trying those, I was sold! I started with Kawaii pockets, and Swaddlebees Simplex AIOs. From there I tried BumGenius 4.0, Alva, Sunbaby (future giveaway as well!), and even some WAHM diapers. Some were amazing, others were okay, and some just down right stunk. I found my groove now, though, and absolutely love my AIOs.

 Speaking of diapers, I have another giveaway to offer! This Giveaway is being sponsored by Naturo Mommy on Facebook. She is offering one of the following diapers. Winner gets to chose their preferred color! These are one size pocket diapers, brand new, but out of the package. They do NOT come with an insert. This giveaway is for US entrants only, please. Look for the link below to enter! Giveaway starts now, and goes until Monday, November 26th. Entries WILL be verified, so please be sure that you are sharing publicly where applicable. If I cannot verify an entry, I will have to delete it. Winner will have 24 hours to respond to email. By entering the giveaway, you agree to the terms and conditions. Winner understands that Life In The O.D.D. Lane is not responsible for sending out the prize, only hosting it.

  a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, November 19, 2012

Day 19- 30 days of being thankful

Day 19:

I am thankful for Amazon. It makes it so much easier to get Christmas shopping done for the kids. I'm following a simpler gift-giving guide this year. Something they want, something they need, something to wear, and something to read. I can get just about everything in those categories from Amazon. Although, I prefer to do clothes shopping in person. The only thing I'm really having trouble with is ... what exactly do they need?? Gianna is easy. She needs shoes. She needs a snowsuit. She needs a new toothbrush. She needs new earrings. But what about Sofia and AJ? They really don't NEED anything. 

Amazon has a Clearance section, and from there, I can get toys for them. I can do shopping for everyone based off Amazon's suggestions lists. I love that section. I just browse through it, and add what I want to my cart. Anddddd thanks to awesome websites like Swagbucks, most of my shopping is paid for by the Amazon Gift Certificates I earn. So, that means minimal out-of-pocket expense. Last year, I spent a total of $50 out-of-pocket for all 3 kids and my husband. Everything else was paid for by my AGCs. SWEEEETTTTT!! I plan to do that again this year. Anddddd, I don't have to put on REAL clothes either!! Amazon is fantastic. I absolutely love it. 

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Day 18- 20 Days of being thankful

Day 18:

I am thankful that the month is more than halfway done. This 'thinking of 30 things to be thankful for' business is hard!! I didn't think it would be THIS challenging when I started it. Guess that's why they call it a 30-day-challenge, huh?

There are a lot more than 30 things that I am thankful for. But trying to find 30 that are blog-post worthy are hard! The materialistic things don't seem good enough, and other things seem too sappy. I guess I just can't wait until it's over so that I can resume my normal blogs. Like, blogging about how my 5 year old decided that floor is an EXCELLENT place to take a crap instead of the toilet. And the toilet was only an inch away from where he decided to go. What makes it even worse is that the cleaning supplies are under the sink, and I can't open the damn child-safety lock that's on the cabinet!!! I had to call the 9 year old up to take it off. How pathetic. UGH I'll never understand how to get that stupid lock off. 
Anyways, back to normal blog postings soon, I hope!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Day 17- 30 days of being thankful

Day 17:

I am thankful for being alive. There were plenty of times where I didn't think I could go on. Where I didn't want to go on. But here I am. I have fought through all the problems, all the dark days, all the illnesses, and I am still here, no more fighting.

Another short blog today. I'll get back into longer posts when everything gets straightened out. 

Friday, November 16, 2012

Day 16- 30 Days of being thankful

Day 16:

I am thankful for cable and television. It allows me a bit of a break to get things done while Gianna is wrapped up watching Dora, or Max and Ruby. Even if they only catch her attention for 2 minutes, I'm able to get a bit done. It's also great for when I can't sleep at 2AM. Friends, The Nanny, George Lopez ... Love them all. 

Lots to do today, so little time to get it all done. Sorry for the short post. 

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Custom Necklace GIVEAWAY from Designs By MRS

I have been given the opportunity to host a giveaway from Designs By MRS! She is giving away a BEAUTIFUL necklace!
You can find the information here for this beauty! It would make for a beautiful Christmas present, a wonderful birthday present, or even a fantastic Mother's Day gift if you wanted! Or keep it for yourself and put your children's names on it. 
Be sure to enter every day for a greater chance to win! Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Day 15- 30 days of being thankful

Day 15:

I am thankful for my children. Sure, they drive me nuts and make me want to pull my hair out. But that's what kids do, right? winky

Because of Sofia, I went BACK to high school, and got my diploma. No GED for me. I moved out of my mothers house at 16, moved in with Anthony, became pregnant at 17, gave birth at 18, and enrolled back in school when she was only 6 months old. The high school gave me the choice between the high school, or the alternative school. I chose the alternative because it was closer to my home, I would be able to bring my daughter if I needed to, and it was a shorter day. But, it's still the actual High School Diploma. 

My kids have made me a better person. Each one of them has a fantastic quality about them, and I discover something new about them almost every day. Last night, I took the girls with me to their school for an ice cream social, and to pick up the chocolates they sold for the PTA. We got there pretty late, so we missed out on a lot of the music. There was only one ice cream left. Instead of saying "Too bad, it's mine", Sofia said "Here Gianna! Let's share it!" She is such a good sister. 

I left the boys at home playing the new COD2. AJ was in heaven. I don't let him play the PS3 much anymore, because his attitude is usually so negative. I think I'm going to start using the PS3 as a bribe. If he behaves, I'll allow an hour of playtime. It's an hour of some-what calmness. He'll whine about the game, I'll threaten to turn it off, he'll stop. Yeah. I think that's what I will do today. After all, it's a half day at school because of Parent-Teacher conferences. I'm sort of scared to hear how he's been doing so far. We keep a notebook for communication between his teacher and I, but his attitude changes on the drop of a dime. Hoping to hear he's had more good days than bad. 

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Day 14- 30 days of being thankful

Day 14:

I am thankful for my warm bed. Last night, I started thinking about just how lucky I am to actually have a bed. A nice, warm, cozy bed. I don't use it enough, that's for sure. Going to bed at 2AM and waking at 7 (if I'm lucky). 

Yes, it's a bit materialistic, but last night, as I was laying down and trying to fall asleep, I was thinking about how it sucked when we didn't have a bed years ago. We slept on the floor on top of a bunch of blankets. We've also had air beds. Each one popping after only a few days. Those things are not meant to be used full time! I'm just thankful that we haven't had to worry about that for a long time. We actually just bought new beds in February. King size for Anthony and I, since Gianna sleeps with us. And a new twin size for Sofia. AJ will be getting his new bed this coming Feb. I think we'll be getting one for Gianna as well. She's sleeping most of the night in her pack and play, so we may try a crib soon. In the mean time, I enjoy snuggling with her in my nice, warm bed.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Day 13- 30 days of being thankful

Day 13:
I am thankful for my baby brother.

Okay, so he isn't a baby. But he's still my little brother. Actually, at about 5'9, he's not little either. He is, however, 7 years younger than me. So, my younger brother would be better. Any who, I am very thankful for him. I love him with all of my heart, and would be so lost without him. He is, without a doubt in my mind, one of the best things to ever happen to me. When we were younger, he drove me nuts. I even asked mom a few times if we could take him back and get our money back. I mean, he didn't do anything! He just laid there and cried. And slept. And pooped. But then he got a bit bigger. And by bigger, I mean fatter. My little sumo brother. The CUTEST little fatty I have ever seen. He did more. He rolled, he laughed, he played a bit, he smiled. He melted my heart heart

He became my built-in playmate. Playing together inside, outside, in his room, my room, the living room, every where. He said cute things, he did cute things. I remember a few times where he said silly things, did silly things. Plenty of times where he did things that made me mad, drove me nuts, etc. But that's what little brothers are for, right?

Now, he is a wonderful young man. He's grown into man who I know our mother would be proud of. He doesn't do drugs. He isn't a reckless driver. He isn't a man-whore. He doesn't steal. He isn't an alcoholic. Not a party boy. Just a fantastic young man who has his head on straight. I am very proud of him. 

I went over today to visit a bit while he looked over my car. My car has been acting funky lately, and today the Check Engine light came on. Apparently, my brother has the magic touch. Although he claims he didn't do anything, the Check Engine light is off, and it's no longer fighting me to turn on. And he didn't charge me a dime.
Thank you, baby boy, for being such an amazing brother- helping me with my POS car, listening to me bitch, and just being there. I could never tell you how much you mean to me. I am so glad that Mom never returned you to the hospital. I'd be lost without you!! heart

Monday, November 12, 2012

Day 12- 30 days of being thankful

Day 12:

I am thankful for my wonderful Pediatrician. I changed insurances so that my children could see this specific doctor. He was my pediatrician, so I know he is competent at dealing with the challenges we are going through with Gianna. He's made sure to have her seen by a specialist at a Children's Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders. Gianna's case is much more severe than mine ever was. One of these days, I'll touch upon her blood disorder and how we got to where we are with her.

Not only is he awesome with knowledge of G's condition, but he's also working with us to helping AJ. Remember, he has ODD, ADHD, and SPD. He is a ball of energy, and it's not all it's cracked up to be. He can be very well behaved when he wants to be, and he can be very helpful. But one tiny thing is all it takes to set him off, and he's in a rage that could last hours. Dr N is working with us on medication and treatments. We're still in the trial and error phase, which reminds me, I need to call and make another appointment to increase his medication, or change it all together. *Sigh* It feels like it's never going to get better.

Dr N is very kind. He's an older gentleman, who I swear to God, has not aged since I was a child. He has this charm about him that makes you so comfortable with him. He's very kind, takes time to listen to you, to your concerns, to your child. He always holds Gianna, even if the appointment isn't for her. He remembers you by name, remembers your case, remembers everything that's going on. He doesn't push you to do anything you don't want to. I do not get flu shots for my kids, and he respects that. Gianna's shots are spaced out- we only do 1 to 2 at a time. That was his suggestion, and I was more than happy with that. He also supported me 100% with breastfeeding, and never suggested I use formula or start solids early. Even now, at 14 months old, he knows she's still breastfed, and isn't pressuring me to stop. He isn't pressuring me to give her cows milk. He knows she doesn't eat a lot of solid foods. He's okay with that.

He is just truly a fantastic doctor. I couldn't ask for someone better. 

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Day 11- 30 days of being thankful

Day 11:
Today I am thankful for the veterans who helped to protect our country. Those that are disabled- either mentally or physically, those that are retired who came out unscathed, those that served in a war, those that fought the good battle, those that are currently serving, and those that will serve in the future. 

What is a veteran? A "Veteran"- whether active duty, discharged, retired, or reserve- is someone who, at one point in his life, wrote a blank check made payable to "The United States of American", for an amount of "up to, and including his life."

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Day 10- 30 days of being thankful

Day 10:

I am thankful for my husband. Anthony and I have had our ups and downs, but over all, he is an amazing husband, and an awesome father. We've had our ups and downs, but I believe our ups far exceed the downs. If they didn't, I don't think we'd still be together. 12 years total, almost 4 years married. I have 3 beautiful children with him, and I cannot thank him enough for giving them to me. 

He's my mechanic, mover, electrician, plumber, organizer, chef, etc. He does it all. He works hard to ensure that I am able to stay home with the kids, and to make sure we're happy. We may struggle with bills and whatnot, but he always finds a way to make it work, even if he does have to sacrifice his car not being repaired for long periods of time. Even if he has to go without cell phone service (God help us if there's an emergency). 

I love you, Anthony!!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Day 9- 30 days of being thankful

Day 9:

I am thankful for Ange (@gwacemom). Of course, I am thankful for all of my friends, but Ange has been riding my behind for me to have a blog about her, so I'll focus this on just her winky

As a matter of fact, the reason I'm so thankful for her isn't because of anything materialistic. I'm thankful because, without her, I would know nothing about Down syndrome. You see, her beautiful daughter, Emily, just so happens to have Ds. I was 100% ignorant on the subject. I had false thoughts, and am actually embarrassed of what perceptions I had. Emily has far exceeded my thoughts. I realized that using the 'R' word was VERY hurtful. Prior to Em and Ange, the R word was just another word to me. It was just something I said when I thought something was stupid. Well, that's where I was wrong. She helped me to see that it's not just a word. It is a word that can cut like a sword. 

Not only that, but Emily has taught me that you just can't let a disability put a limit on your worth. Emily was not 'supposed' to do half of the things that she does. If this is coming from medical professionals, then who are they to tell me what my kids can't do? Doctors just don't know everything. A disability does not DEFINE a person. It's just a diagnosis. It's a little something extra, in Em's case.

There, are you happy now, you skore?! You should be!!! I love you!!!!!!!!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Day 8- 30 days of being thankful

Day 8:

I am thankful for all of my crafty friends. I am not crafty AT ALL, but absolutely love things that are hand-made (hint-hint winky). A few of my favorite WAHM businesses to buy from are (in no particular order): The Crafty MonkehHand Made From The Heart Gifts, and The Ladybug Lounge.

Each one of those WAHMs are dedicated to their customers. They are not huge shops, and are based out of their homes. I have bought bibs, a custom blanket with Gianna's name and birthday on it, a diaper bag personalized with her nick name, matching tops for my girls, and much more from The Ladybug Lounge. I've bought pants, skirts, boo boo packs, and much more from The Crafty Monkeh. I currently have a Giraffe hat for G on the way, and a Cookie Monster hat for AJ coming soon. 

I just recently placed 2 orders with Hand Made From The Heart Gifts- a Hello Kitty hat for Sofia, and crochet booties for Gianna. I cannot wait to get them and let you all know how well they are made! I went to school with the owner of that business, which makes me feel even better about ordering from her. 

It's a good feeling when you purchase from WAHMs. You know you're helping a mom make ends meet. Or helping them to provide extra things for their children. They're often doing this as a hobby, something to do to help their husbands who are working full time jobs. Or even they themselves are working part time, and need a bit of extra cash to help out. Either way, I love knowing that my money isn't going to some random factory worker. I love that my money is 100% going to who I'm paying. So, to all of my crafty friends, THANK YOU!!!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Day 7- 30 days of being thankful

Day 7:

I am thankful that Obama won last night.  I am not a political person AT ALL, but this meant a lot to me. 

Call me what you want- Welfare Queen, looking for a handout, poor, greedy, lazy, unmotivated, unproductive, etc. Whatever, I've heard it all. But the truth is, I'm a stay-at-home mom of 3. Two of them that have health issues. One of them is on SSI/D right now for her health issues. While SHE doesn't need the money, I do. There is no one around who can watch her while I work, that has knowledge of her condition. Sure, I could take the time and train someone, but that would likely leave them saying "This is too much. I change my mind." or they ignore what I said, and freak out when she has an episode. Not to mention, Gianna is sick so often, that it wouldn't even be possible for me to hold a job for long. I'd be leaving early often, or calling out more than they'd like, or I'd need to take too many days off for appointments. Gianna sees a specialist about an hour and a half away every 8 weeks or so. And if she gets sick with a fever, we have to go up that same day.

So, call me a mooch. I don't care. I am a stay-at-home mom who's thankful that Obama cares about us poor people. About our sick children. About those of us who otherwise would have been forgotten, or who would have suffered if he were not president. I've worked since I was 16 years old. My husband has been working since he was 15. We are 28 and 30 years old. We have paid into the government just as much as the next person. I deserve this time to care for my children the way they deserve to be cared for so that they may be the healthiest they can be, and the productive citizens of the USA that you all want them to be.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Day 6- 30 days of being thankful

Day 6: I am thankful for the ability to vote. This is my first year voting, and I am proud to say that I voted for who I believe in. Unfortunately, we had to bring ALL the kids with us to the voting place. Oh. Em. Gee. That was a HUGE mistake. Since the place wasn't far, we decided to walk it. Another huge mistake. AJ with his issues REFUSED to sit still, refused to be quiet, and intentionally poked at the baby to get her going. Sofia didn't help issues either (yeah, I'm giving up on the initials. Names it is from here on out.). She's an instigator all on her own. Gianna was tired of being in the stroller. If we had brought the car, we could have kept the kids in the car while we went in, one at a time, and placed our votes. Well, we know what to do next election. Although, at that time, the kids will be 5, 9, and 13. They should be better behaved by then ... right?? Right now, it's almost 7:15, and AJ is in the middle of a temper tantrum. I asked him to fold his clean clothes- all 5 of them. He's been upstairs for the last 30 minutes screaming his head off about how he can't do it. He's too hungry. He's starrrrrvvvvviiiiiiinnnnnnnggggggg. I keep reminding him that all the tears are for nothing. He could have had all the clothes folded and put away 20 minutes ago. He could have been done with dinner by now. Struggles, struggles, struggles. Time to go up and talk to him and try to calm him down. Wish us luck!

Monday, November 5, 2012

Boogie Wipes Giveaway

I've already said that I love Boogie Wipes. Now, I'm giving you the chance to try them for yourself. I cannot speak enough good about them. They are gentle, and as of right now, the ONLY thing my 14 month old will let me touch her nose with. The older kids keep a pack in their backpacks. Their friends are ALWAYS asking them for a wipe or two! They're fantastic! 
Sorry I can't get the rafflecopter to show up right here in the blog ... If you know how, please let me know! In the meantime, click that link, and enter!! Good luck!



Giveaway valid only for US residents. Winner will have 24 hours to respond to winning email. Prize pack will be mailed out within 2 days of confirmation. Winner must be willing to send $.01 to my PayPal account for the sole purpose of printing a shipping label.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Day 5- 30 days of being thankful

Day 5:

I am thankful for Boogie Wipes. Don't know what they are? Oh man! They are the GREATEST thing for boogery noses! Kids, adults, it doesn't matter! We all use them here. They are "Gentle saline wipes for Stuffy Noses". Not only are they good for noses, they get markers off of little toddlers hands and face. Definitely a must-have if you have kids. 

I am a Saline Ambassador. What is that? It means that I am some one who promotes the brand. I give samples to people so that they can get familiar with the brand, try it for themselves, and hope that they enjoy them as much as I do. What does this mean for you? Well, it means that I will be doing a giveaway later today!! As soon as I get it posted, I hope you all enter, and send others to try as well!!

This was the previous package I received. This quarters package is slightly different. Stay tuned for the giveaway!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Day 4- 30 days of being thankful

Day 4:

I am thankful for neighbors. My husbands car hasn't been working for a while now. He's out tinkering with it every now and then, but he can't figure out what exactly is wrong with it. I'm not entirely sure what the issue either. All I know, is it doesn't start. Which means he can't park it on the other side of the street for alternate side parking that we have here. He's gotten one warning ticket so far. He went to rent a U-Haul today with a car tower thingy on the back so he could bring it to a friends house.

Well, let's just say the truck is huge and not easily maneuverable. There was a car in the way, which made it even harder for him to back up into the car to put it on the trailer/dolly thing. He went to knock on the owners door to ask if they would mind moving the car so he could get his out. They weren't home. So now he has this brilliant idea to pull into the driveway, then reverse out and in front of his car. I should probably add that the car was parked in the street, in front of our house. The driveway is shared between us, the next door neighbors and the guy behind us (In-law house, I think it's called). We can't use the driveway because of the guy behind us. Needless to say, there was no way the truck would have been able to get in front of the car the way he was thinking.

Anyways, I'm on the porch, laughing because I knew it wasn't going to work. But I let him try. After a few times, I went over and told him that no matter how much he goes in and out of the driveway, no matter how much he turns the wheel, it's just not going to work. This is when the neighbor came over. Him and I chuckled a bit at how he thought it was going to work. But, he suggested to hubby that he remove the dolly, and just work on getting the truck in front of his car. They unhitched the dolly, placed it in front of his car, and that's when I went inside. It's 30-some degrees here. I was NOT standing outside any longer than I needed to. Next time I looked outside, the car was gone. Until we get the money to repair it, I will not see it. (Anyone want to donate so I can have my car back, instead of having to share it with him!?!?)

So, for all of your help, neighbor, we appreciate you!!!

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Day 3- 30 days of being thankful

Day 3:

I am thankful for my Mother In Law. My MIL is a great woman. We have had our fair share of issues, often disagreeing, but we have a great relationship.

I know, I know, you're reading this saying "You're only saying that because she'll probably read this and you don't want to say anything bad about her." Well, yeah, she might read it. And if she does, I'd like her to know that I appreciate everything that she has done for us. She knows how much my son bothers me. I love him, but Christ Almighty, sometimes I just want to slap the piss out of him. His issues make it hard to enjoy spending time with him. Fortunately, my MIL knows my breaking point and often asks if she can have him for the night. Or even the whole weekend.

I can talk to her about just about anything. We have some awesome laughs, some cries, but we're in this together. I've helped her with her kids, she's helping me with mine. I couldn't ask for a better grandma for my kids. She may drive me nuts sometimes, but I do so love her!!

For everything she does for us, we are so thankful!

Friday, November 2, 2012

Day 2- 30 days of being thankful

Day 2:

I'm thankful for donors. All sorts of donors- blood, milk, clothing, etc. Without blood donors, my daughter wouldn't have had the transfusion she so desperately needed when she was 2.5 months old. She went from my lethargic, yellow, barely eating, always tired little baby, to a bright eyed, awake, attentive, smiling baby.

What a difference a transfusion makes. The pic on the left was taken before we rushed to the ER (11.1.11). The pic on the right was taken after her transfusion (11.3.11). Today is the one year anniversary of her transfusion. To everyone who donates blood so that people like my daughter have a fighting chance, THANK YOU!!!
This is also the day we learned that she has a severe case of Spherocytosis. It was the day that changed our lives forever.

I'm thankful for milk donors because we use donor milk. We have had quite a few donors- Lisa, Donna, Nichole, Nicole, Stephanie, and most recently, Naomi. Because of all those women, my daughter is thriving, and her iron counts have been fantastic. She's gained weight, she's gotten taller, her immunity is stronger. I never thought I'd be okay with using another mothers' milk. But when it came down to her needing more than what I could provide, formula wasn't cutting it. She refused to drink it, I refused to spend that much on it. Besides, how could I give her something that she wouldn't drink?! I can't force her to drink it. Not to mention, I don't even know half of what's in it. So, donor milk it was. Now to convince the hubby it was okay. You drink cows milk. Do you have ANY idea what that cow has ingested? Any idea if it was sick? Any idea if the milking machines were cleaned thoroughly? If their udders were clean? Are you sure nothing contaminated the milk or the containers? And so on. At least with these women who are donating, I can talk to them, meet them, ask about their diets and habits, medications, and I have to say, if these women are feeding this same milk to their babies, I think it's pretty safe to assume they aren't partaking in risky behaviors that might affect their milk.

There are many other things that people can be donors for- clothing, time, cleaning, etc. While we appreciate everything that anyone has ever donated to us, the best donations we've ever received were blood and milk. Hands down. And to each of you who have given us anything, we appreciate it more than you will ever know.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Day 1- 30 days of being thankful

I figure I'll jump on the bandwagon since everyone else is doing it, too. I just hope I can keep up!

Day 1:
I'm thankful for Zoloft. Not many people know that I'm on medication, but how do you think I cope with my son's issues? I'm overwhelmed and have no help with him. I can't handle his outbursts, but the Zoloft helps me to cope a little easier. If I didn't have the Zoloft, I don't think I would be able to find anything at all to be thankful for.

What kind of outbursts? Well, let me give a small example. Last night, we went to my aunt's house for Halloween. The child would NOT stay still. He got yelled at a bit by my dad, which made things worse. I shouldn't really say yelled at. My father sternly told him to relax. It didn't happen. As soon as my dad turned around, he was running around again. While we were out Trick-or-Treating, he made a few comments that were rather rude. The first house we went to, he said to the lady who gave him a piece of candy, "I already have that. Can't you give me something else? Gosh." Umm, what?! Thank GOD we knew that lady. She's lived there for years, and we used to go over there when I was little. She laughed it off, saying boys will be boys. She has a son also, who was 5 at one point, and said things like that as well. 

A few houses down, he had the audacity to say to another lady, "You talk like a boy. Did you know that? You sound just like one." That was it. We were done. We went to a few more houses for the girls to finish up, and then back to my aunts. Her neighborhood is quiet, but there was no surprise when we saw a State Trooper roll through. Just monitoring to make sure the neighborhood stays quiet. It was rainy, so there weren't many little ones out. Lots of teens though. I assume they were making sure the teens weren't bothering the little ones, or causing any trouble to the neighborhood in general. It actually worked to our advantage because we warned AJ that we would flag the cops down if he was rude or disrespectful again. He behaved for the rest of the time.

Once back at our Aunt's, he was hyper, running around, jumping, somersaulting, just on the go. Some more talking to, a bit of yelling, a threat or two, and that was it. When it was time to leave, there were more tears. More whines in the car. Once home, it was a whole different ballgame. He. Was. AWFUL. The moment we walked in the door, it was meltdown central. He didn't want to brush his teeth. He didn't want to put PJs on. He wanted to sleep with S. He slept in her room the night before due to Sandy. So his mattress was still in her room. He refused to get off of it so that I could put it back on his bed. When I lifted it and made him fall off it, he jumped on it to knock it out of my hands. It didn't work. I carried it back, put it on his bed, and he trashed his room because he was so angry. After he FINALLY changed in his jammies and brushed his teeth, he then refused to lay down. Despite me telling me 100 times to lay down. I gave up. I called for my husband, and walked over to S's room to put her to sleep. AJ having the issues he does, cannot handle when she is put to bed first. But he knows that if he pulls this night-time stalling crap, I *WILL* put her to bed first.

So, I did just that. When I finished putting her to bed, he started with his whining: "But you put her to bed first! I told you not to ever put her to bed first!" (the 'first' is a screech/whine). Well, when you act like that, and refuse to lay down, I'm moving on. I have 3 kids to put to bed, and if you decide you want to pitch a fit, then I will put someone else to sleep while you do what you need to. I gave him 2 options; either he lays down, or I walk out and he puts himself to sleep. I informed him that G needed to sleep as she was downright exhausted, so whatever choice he makes, he needs to be quiet. He decided to lay down. He whined for a bit, but with the fan on providing some background noise, G slept through it.

Today didn't go much better. I discovered that he ripped my toilet seat up- it's one of those soft ones. He did it last night because he was mad at me. He took G's necklace and 'accidentally' dropped it down the vent. It was no accident. It's a Mardi Gras type necklace, so it would have made a lot of noise when it hit the vent. Not to mention, chances would have been super slim for it to fall straight down the vent. He dangled it over, and slowly let it go. I could have replaced it. Likely wouldn't have cost more than $1 or $2. But the point is, it wasn't his. He had no right to take her necklace and stick it down the vent. By the time hubby came home from work, I was done. Since he had to go pick up his mother, I made him take AJ. I was done. 

When they finally came back, he flipped out because I put S's dinner in his bowl. Scream, cry, stomp, whine. Whole 9 yards. He finally shut up long enough to eat. When he finished, I sent them up to put on jammies and brush. Since G was already asleep, I asked them to keep their voices down. Of course they couldn't.  He was too busy yelling at her and she was too busy antagonizing him. And of course, they woke G up. As I'm trying to hurry up and put them to bed, he's deciding to go through the whole list of excuses. Nope, I'm done. Tomorrow had better be a better day. Good night. Door's shut, don't call to me. 

And this, ladies and gentlemen, is EXACTLY why I need the Zoloft. Because without it, who knows how I would have handled it.