Friday Five

  1. We survived the blizzard of 2016. You wouldn’t have thought so, though, because of the lack of posts. Once again, having a toddler is so exausting. Sometimes, putting words into meaningful sentences is easier said than done. As for the snow, Jimmie hated it outside. I say outside because I tried to bring some inside, as well. He also hated the inside snow. I think what he hated MOST were the snow boots. Those were a waste of money.
  2. We finished watching ‘Making a Murderer’ last night. There are endless blog posts about the docuseries. Everyone has something to say about this cringe worthy/binge worthy documentary.  Although the link above, from Huffington Post, is meant to be funny, this article10 conflicting feelings you’ll face while Binge Watching ‘Making a Murderer,’ hits the nail on the head.
  3. To continue on the topic above: I just don’t understand how not only Steven could be prosecuted for murder, but also Brendan. The kid was/is obviously confused. If I was on the jury, (I’m sure everyone that has watched the show has used this line at least once) I would say that there is reasonable doubt considering the only piece of evidence they had was a coerced confession. Therefore, he shouldn’t have gone to jail. I know this is not a big revelation, but it makes me MAD, MAD, MAD. But then again, we are seeing only bits and pieces of a bias documentary; meant to show that both Steven and Brendan are innocent. Only time (or God) will tell us if they are or not.
  4. We are going house hunting this weekend! I am so excited to finally see the inside of houses that we have been looking at from the outside for months. My parents are coming down tomorrow and we are going out early on Sunday to see four houses. Since they are coming down early, we are taking advantage of babysitting time and going out to dinner. I am beyond excited. We  just had a date night when we were up there a few weeks ago, but ever since Thanksgiving, times have been tough with Jimmie. He has been sick twice, constipated, teething, and now we have nap time resistance going on. Many breaks are needed to rejuvenate our patience and to drink some beer. This is also going to be our five year anniversary celebration, even though our anniversary isn’t until February 19.
  5. As I mentioned, Jimmie has been fighting naps like a champ for over two weeks. Most of the time he ends up passed out on me in front of the TV. Not good. I do not want to create long-term bad habits. He has always been an amazing sleeper, I truly mean always, and this is just really difficult to process. Last night, he refused the pacifier before bed. We are actually considering tossing them in the trash (in a few days as long as he doesn’t want one.) Maybe he is giving it up on his own. I didn’t think he would fall asleep, but he did, and slept the whole night. Today is a new day, maybe without the pacifier he will nap. I have low expectations.
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He enjoyed unzipping his zipper on his snow suit.

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NOOOOOO SNOWWWWW.

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Old Navy has the BEST carts. I actually bought two shirts while I let Jimmie play with a hanger. You can just give me the mom of the year award now.

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This could be his last pacifier picture. Baby is growing up.

Happy Friday, everyone!

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Friday Five

Happy Friday, folks!

  1. If you live anywhere near the North East, you are probably preparing for Snowmageddon 2016. We went food shopping on Wednesday and it was already a mess and a half. I should have bought more milk…and cookies.

2. This article by Becky Thompson is HILARIOUS. Seriously, I had tears in my eyes and was almost rolling on the floor laughing. Okay, I admit, I was drinking a 7% beer while I was reading it after a very long day of parenting. But either way, it is SPOT ON. Target Starbucks, I’m sorry for hating on you while I worked at a REAL Starbucks, you are a life saver now. When the snow is gone, I am going on a Target vacation. This momma needs a break!

3. I have been teaching Jimmie that we have to put one toy away before we get another one out. He totally gets the concept, except for the fact that he makes me clean up each toy. Of course, he “helps” but when I say it’s okay to leave out this or that toy, he’s not having it. Looks like I made a mini rule follower.

4. My fish died this week. I have had him for 6 1/2 years. Jim and I bought three fish the first summer we were together. One died within days, one died in a few months, and one lived for 6 1/2 years at my parents house. We were up there this past weekend and he was looking kind of sad. My mom tried to save his life by feeding him frozen peas, but it wasn’t enough. Little Fishie passed away on Monday night after we left. Jimmie will be sad next time we go up and I am sure my nephew, Nolan, isn’t too thrilled with the missing fish, either.

5. We started watching Making a Murderer this week. We have watched two episodes so far. Pre-mom me wants to binge watch it all weekend since we will be snowed in. Mom me realizes that this won’t be happening. I think this weekend is the perfect opportunity to introduce Jimmie to the Disney classics. The Lion King and Aladdin are first on the list. Maybe even some Finding Nemo. (Oh, and playing in the snow. If it is anything like our beach experience, though, Jimmie will not be a fan.)

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This is going to be my face when I wake up on Saturday and Sunday, minus the pasta sauce.

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I know these moments are fleeting, but the laundry doesn’t fold itself.

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I think I was way more excited than Jimmie when I realized we could pretend that this castle was Prince Wednesday’s castle.

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RIP Fishie (photo is from September)

Book Review: Hope Unfolding by Becky Thompson

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I have heard a ton of people say, “You can’t learn how to parent from a book.” I’m here to say, you’re reading the wrong books. There are a lot of amazing parenting books out there, and I am not talking about What to Expect When You’re Expecting, I happen to hate that book. I am talking about real books written by real parents. I have recently discovered one of the most amazing books to add to my collection: Hope Unfordling: Grace-filled Truth for the Momma’s Heart by Becky Thompson.

Hope Unfoldling: Grace-filled Truth for the Momma’s Heart by Becky Thompson isn’t a how-to book. It’s a book that portrays the reality of being a parent. Being a parent is hard and lonely, a fact that most parents never admit. What Becky Thompson is trying to convey to moms is that you are never alone because God is always with you no matter what kind of day you’re having. Not only is God with you, but every other parent in the world is facing these same challenges.

Hope Unfolding really hit me hard. Often times, especially right after Jimmie was born, I felt more alone than ever. I couldn’t understand why because I was hardly ever alone, Jimmie was always with me. The thought never even occurred to me that while I was breast feeding at 3 AM, God was there holding my hand, whispering in my ear, and encouraging me to keep going. I wish I had this book back then. Instead, I would google all articles about “baby blues,” none of which really helped. I love how the author speaks to the reader as if they are sitting at Starbucks together, drinking a cup of coffee. She refers to the reader as “friend” throughout the entire book. It really made me feel understood an heard. On almost every page I found myself either nodding, crying, or laughing. There are some powerful words in here, folks. Words that every mom needs to hear.

Why do we judge each other as moms? Becky Thompson wants to start a revolution where moms encourage each other and not put each other down. Where we don’t compare each other, just understand each other. Becky Thompson wants you to know that you ARE a good mom, even when the things you think you did wrong that day keep you up at night worrying. God always believes in you and loves you no matter what: even if you lose your patience, even when you “think” you messed your child up for the rest of their life. She  explains that the Enemy wants you to believe you’re a bad mom and wants you to believe you’re not living up to everyone else’s expectations.

Hope Unfolding consists of personal stories, personal feelings, and prayers. I have never read anything more honest and real than this book. Becky Thompson shows the reader her heart, mind, and soul. I just can’t say enough wonderful things about Hope Unfolding without rambling on and on. Every Christian mom, or a mom that wants to let God into their heart, should read this book. It is truly inspirational. Thank you Becky Thompson for reminding us that we are all good moms; you’re a good mom too.

Hope Unfoldling: Grace-filled Truth for the Momma’s Heart by Becky Thompson will be available for purchase on March 15. You can pre-order a copy from Amazon today.

You can also check out Becky Thompson’s blog where you can connect with other moms.

I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review. All the opinions are my own. 

Sending Love with Recordable Teddy Bears for Military Kids Dealing with Deployments

 

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Have you heard of BEARegards? It is a recordable teddy bear website that allows people to send stuffed, recordable animals to their loved ones. BEARegards is based in Tuscan, Arizona. It was created by an United States Air Force veteran named Garry Beauregard. During his career, it didn’t take him long to realize how hard it was on his kids while he was away. He created BEARegards after noticing that recordings of his voice soothed his children when he wasn’t able to be with them. His hopes are that these stuffed bears will take away some of the pain military children feel when they are separated from their parents during deployments.

Sending Love is BEARegards newest charity initiative. The initiative gives deployed military members the opportunity to send bears to their children while they are away. These teddy bears contain special messages that they are able to record from wherever they are. For just $12.95 you could supply a military child with a stuffed teddy bear from their deployed parent.

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Please check out this very special video from Duracell that features these meaningful bears: (Warning: it’s a tear jerker)

Please consider taking the time to donate. One donation of $12.95  from you could put a smile on one military child’s face who is missing their parent more than you could ever imagine.

Book Review: Platinum Doll by Anne Girard

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It’s the end of the 1920’s and prohibition is in full affect. Newlyweds, Harleen McGrew and Chuck McGrew have just moved to Beverly Hills to live a life of luxury courtesy of Chuck’s trust fund. After marrying at the young age of 17, Harleen and Chuck decide to move to Beverly hills to escape the monotony of the Midwest. Harleen wants to relive the excitement she had there many years ago when she moved with her mother. They moved back to the Midwest when her mother’s acting career failed. Unlike her mother, Harleen had no desire to become famous, but Hollywood had other plans for her. Harleen, also known as Jean Harlow on stage, is thrown into a whirlwind romance with fame. Torn between her husband, her family, and Hollywood, Jean Harlow quickly learns that being famous doesn’t always come easy and that she has to be willing to lose a lot to get ahead in show business.

Platinum Doll by Anne Girard is one of the first historical fiction books I have read in quite some time. Before reading the novel, I had heard of Jean Harlow, but didn’t know anything about her. After reading the novel, I wonder: What is real and what isn’t? That’s the thing about historical fiction: Some information is fact, and some information is made up. Anne Girard mentions at the end of her novel that she tried to keep the book as realistic as possible. Platinum Doll is a fascinating piece of literature that not only focuses on Jean Harlow’s rise to fame, but also focuses  on other aspects of Hollywood during the 1920’s and 30’s, the era of classic cinema. What would the movie scene be like if Jean Harlow lived a full life? I love how her life influenced Marilyn Monroe’s.

What I found most interesting about Platinum Doll is how little actors made in the late 1920’s and early 1930’s. Of course, it is all relative to the decade, but Jean Harlow barely made what she needed to get by. Granted, she was taking care of her crazy mother and her step-father, which didn’t help her own situation. I really disliked Harleen’s mom, the original Jean Harlow. She was an ungrateful, selfish woman who should have told her lazy second husband to get off the couch and get a job. It is a shame, how even back then, young actors were being taken advantage of by their greedy parents.

I loved reading about old Hollywood in Platinum Doll: How “talkies” came into action and how popular the Brown Derby was. What would old Hollywood actors think of this generation of actors? Now that alcohol isn’t hard to come by, Hollywood has turned into even more of a party. It isn’t about who can act and who can’t, it’s more about who wore the best dress to a red carpet and who drives the nicest car. Although, according to the novel, Jean Harlow bacame famous mainly because of her looks and her iconic hair color, not her acting abilities. Even back then, having looks didn’t get you everything you wanted and needed to be happy; romances were doomed from the start and how marriages were torn apart by jealousy. Maybe Hollywood hasn’t changed all that much.

Platinum Doll is a nice and entertaining novel. If you have any interest in old Hollywood, you will enjoy this historical fiction book. It is a secret peek into the lives of Clark Gable; Carole Lombard; Joan Crawford; Clara Bow; Laurel and Hardy; and Jean Harlow.  Read about where they ate, danced, worked, and lived. It was a small world in Hollywood. Jean Harlow learned that once you are given a role, it was really hard to get out of that character, even when you have bigger plans in mind. She made it her dream to play roles she thought she deserved. Her determination and intelligence is inspiring.

I was given a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. 

Friday Five

Happy New Year! I wrote 2016 for the first time yesterday, pretty crazy. I’m not going to lie, I wrote 2011 a few months ago….blame it on the mom brain. Where does the time go?

I know I haven’t done a Friday Five in forever but I figured there is no day like today! Maybe I’ll start it again, weekly, maybe not.

  1. I didn’t make it to midnight for the second year in a row on New Year’s Eve. I was awake, but lying in bed, praying for Jimmie to stop crying before I had to go in there. My prayers were answered and he was able to self sooth. I must admit, he is a a champ at self soothing, most of the time. We had a lovely New Year’s Eve with Jim’s parents. We ate lots of junk, drank a little, and played board games. Not going out is for the win!
  2. You know what Jimmie is not a champ at? Eating with utensils. He would much rather have me do it. He is fine when it comes to using his fingers, but give him a spoon and the tears begin. If I put food on the fork or spoon, he will SOMETIMES eat it. I’m such a mean mom for teaching him manners. You’ll thank me one day, kid, I promise.
  3. The Bachelor started this week and I have to admit, I like Ben Higgins even more than Chris Soules. How cute was it that he called his parents on the first night? Unlovable, come on Ben, man up, these girls ADORE you. Some maybe too much (i.e. Lace). Why is Becca is back for another chance at love with Ben? Am I the only one that thinks she is annoying? Am I the only one who still watches this show since they are now on their 20th season? To be fair, I didn’t start watching until 2011.
  4. Did you know that Sesame Street is moving to HBO? I didn’t. This is what happens when you get rid of cable. I need to keep up with the news. We watch Sesame Street on Netflix and Hulu. Jimmie cracks up when Abby’s Flying Fairy School starts. He also tries to say “Elmo.” The cutest.
  5. Jimmie has been sick all week, hence the lack of posts. He went to the doctor yesterday and even though his strep test came back negative, they still gave him an antibiotic because he had white spots on his tonsils. If he is anything like me, this will be the first of many treatments for tonsillitis. I had my tonsils out when I was 20. Needless to say, we have been binge watching Sesame Street and Daniel Tiger’s neighborhood.

See what happens when I don’t post a Friday Five for months? Four out of the five facts turn out being about Jimmie. Enjoy your weekend!

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Fun at the farm

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sick baby boy 😦