Thursday, April 23, 2015

Reward Date

As of late my kids have been.... challenging. 
Arguing.
Tattling.
Punching.
Slamming doors.
Lying.

All things that we teach them not to be.


 However Ducati has been choosing the right. She's our kiddo that tells the truth no matter the consequence (which usually isn't anything since we tell our kids if they are honest there will be no punishment).
She's the only one who takes advantage of this "get-out-of-jail" free card. 
She's been helpful. Been doing her chores. Hasn't fought back when someone else picks on her. Just all around been a shining light so to reward her good behavior Ducati and I had a Mommy/Cati shopping date. 
 
I got a Kohl's gift card in the mail the other day which are always nice. :) So we headed there first where she found this pink, glitterly, sparkly Queen Elsa dress. She loves anything Frozen so of course she fell in love with it and was added to her shopping cart :)

 And she also found her favorite accessory, umbrellas! I have no clue where this obsession comes from but I hope it never goes away. She's so adorable with all her umbrellas. So when she seen this Cinderella one she just had to have it. :)

With the gift card and my alotted budget she was able to pick up both items and still have a few bucks left to find a princess rug at the thrift store. :)

It is so nice to spend 1-on-1 time with my kids. But this afternoon was peaceful, happy, filled with giggles and cuddles.  A nice break from the tension back at home. 

side note: I'm one of those parents that will reward good behavior. Small praise works just fine. But in our house we want longevity. And words can only go so far. If you are doing a great job at your workplace you'd get a raise or some sort of recognition (Employee of the Month, a longer break, a pizza party, etc..... this happens at Mike and I's workplace) so we took this mindset and applied it to our kids. They work hard they get rewarded. And so far it's driven our other oldest to get their act together in hopes to be invited on the next reward date.

But right now I'm just soaking up all the little moments I had with my little princess today. 

Monday, April 20, 2015

Fight The New Drug

Last night for Family Home Evening we had first of many talks about pornography. 
I've been putting it off for some time now feeling that our kids are too young, especially Lily and Ducati, but I kept feeling prompted that I needed to do this. That we needed to talk to them about it. So I finally rolled up my sleeves and did it. 


 I ordered this booklet from fightthenewdrug.org which gave some great pointers.

So after dinner we sat everyone down and  Mike and I talked about sex. 

The sacredness of sex between marriage. 

How Adam and Eve found out they were naked and sewed fig leaves together to cover themselves. 
Which lead into Satan "Ok'ing" immodesty. 

How babies are produced slightly. How they are made from sperm and an egg but not how they come out since they already know this.

Where to find pornography.

What pornography looks like from mild to extreme

The science fact that your brain only allows a 3 second window to make a decision to watch or run before their brain starts to physically change. Your brain will start to rewire itself into thinking that what is being viewed is what love, intimacy, and relationships are all about. 

We talked about the harmful effects of  what happens to a persons brain if porn is viewed again and again. That this road is called addiction. 

How the feeling of love will be distorted and love making will not exist in their marriages

How some marriages will lead to divorce. Which can also lead to child custody, two households, etc. Mason and Hailey related to this part since living in 2 different households has caused them some stress.

But most importantly how to repent if pornography is ever viewed. That through Christ's atonement he made it possible to be given a fresh slate if we ask for it. 

 Even though there was giggles and some blushing Mike and I push forward and opened those lines of communication. I will admit I felt embarrased when our kids asked us, "Do you have sex since you're married?"..... An awkward silence hung over me.  But I know that I need to be 100% honest with my kids so they can trust me to tell them the truth. So I......WE....had to answer that question :)

But through all of this I am thankful we did this. Afterwards in private some of our kids and told us how they have seen things like what we describe during our FHE while on the internet. There was no shame given to them; only love and forgiveness. 
Of course afterwards, once everyone was in bed, we updated our filters, put time blockers, and website blockers, etc on all our computers. 

 Mike and I fought this fight when we were getting help for this addiction. We know the harmful effects it brings into relationships. So I'm glad we did this. We know there is no age too young to start talking about the harms of pornography. We're standing together as a family to keep this drug out of our lives.

Friday, April 17, 2015

Q&A

This morning Ducati comes up with her chair and a notebook and begins to interview me

" would dad love you even if you were sad?"
Yes.
" would dad love you if you thought you were dumb?"
Yes.
" would dad love you if you were dead and in heaven?"
Yes.
"Would you love dad if he was sad you died?"
Yes.
" would you always love dad since he's always loving you?"
Yes.
I passed my morning interview with Ms. Cati. Where does she get these questions? Lol



Friday, April 10, 2015

National Siblings Day

I had no idea that it is National Siblings Day. This was not planned but just worked out that way.

We (Me, Julia, Daina, Sara, Sue and Katie) all went to see the new movie, Cinderella, in theaters.
This was such a cute movie.

"Have courage and be kind"

 That's such a great reminder to everyone on how we should live. But it was nice to just get out and have a girls date. :)

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

I got a job!

Yes it's been close to 7 years or maybe 8 years ( I don't remember anymore ) that I have been unemployed. It's by choice not because I couldn't find a job.
I dedicated 100% of my time, energy, and focus into my children. Husband. Home. Homeschool. Church callings. Service. Couponing. and anything else life sends my way.

But Mike told me about a position with the church for a part time graveyard shift. The hours would be perfect since I can still focus on everything I want to focus on and work while everyone is asleep.

So I applied, interviewed, and got the job! I know it's mostly since Mike's my husband and everyone knows him. So 100% nepotism!  Whatever.... he might of gotten my foot in the door but I kept it there. :)

So our plan is to live off his salary still and save all of mine. Since we zero out our savings more often than we'd like my paycheck will be going into savings and retirement. That's it!

I just wanted to post this amazing new milestone in our lives. :)

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Easter Sunday

Mike worked the morning of Easter Conference Sunday.

Mason and Hailey were at their other dad's house.

I was home with our 2 girls trying to clean but that seemed hopeless after about 2 hours of cleaning the same room.

But things went much better in the later afternoon. We had family come over for a Egg Hunt/Potluck.

A few days earlier Ducati and I made this Easter-Jelly Bean- Resurrection Egg- Tree. Each egg has a small token with a scripture about Jesus's Resurrection. We've had this tradition in our lives for years but I thought it would be nice to share it with our extended family.

But it was a small task to keep away little hands from eating all the jellybeans. :)

But once everyone was here it was nice to stop and reflect the meaning behind this amazing day. Everyone took an egg and read the scripture and helped bring the spirit into our home and into our festivities.


Afterwards we shared our family our other tradition of Adult/Kid Egg Hunt.

All the kids hid some eggs in our backyard. They tried to be sneaky but c'mon now. They can never trick us! Especially my little niece who found ton of eggs and gave them to Mike. She loves him!


After all the eggs were found it was our turn to hide the eggs for the kids. Mwahahaha!
We let the kids out from youngest to oldest with a 10 second delay so each kiddo could have a chance to get some eggs.

Dax was content with finding 1 egg then hanging out with Aunt Julia. He's such a cutie pie!
But with over 200 eggs everyone had a chance to find some :)

 With everyone running around looking for eggs things got interesting since the uncles/dads gave the kids the most challenges. Eggs up in trees.

 Eggs hung up on our clothes lines. Eggs on top of our shed. Eggs inside wired fence. Eggs inside our dryer vent. Eggs everywhere!


All the kids loved it! Their eggs were filled with stickers, candy, money, chocolate, jelly beans, and prize tickets. Through all my amazing shopping skills I've collected tons of toys, prizes, treats, gift sets and I divided into 2 boxes.

Prize box 1 had oatmeal cookies, fruit snacks, nail polish, applesauce, playdoh, candy eggs, etc.

Prize box 2 had games, Legos, My little Ponies, Mr. Potato Heads, Journals, big bags of candy, gift cards, etc.

So the Build-Your-Own- Basket station was a big hit. Everyone (14 people) picked their prizes for their Easter baskets and it cost us maybe $20. I love that!

 Lily traded about 95% of her candy to her cousins for their money. Mike helped her count it all and she collected $5!
 Ducati redeemed her prize tickets for a My Little Pony doll. She loves MLP :) ♥

Lily traded some items for a MLP doll too. This girl has really picked up on our "trading up/flipping" skill. :)

Ari got some great prizes for her DIY basket but she wanted Jack to be in her basket more than anything.

For my Easter gift Mike got me BUNNIES!
I introduce MY bunnies EB (named after the bunny in Hop), Snow White (the momma), and Jack Sparrow (named after the pirate since he is always escaping his cage/carriers/hutch)

So Snow White and her 2 boys came to live with us after their previous owners didn't want them anymore. So instead of splitting up their family I volunteered to take them all. So now I have a cute,cuddly, bunny family.

Anyways.... Mike and I have made it a point to teach and guide our kids in all things honest. So they know the truth on Santa, the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy, etc. They know their parents are their gift givers. So we've made it a point to still have fun on these holidays but always keep focus on Christ.
We add our own twist to things celebrated. We kick out what we don't want and emphasize on what's important. Eggs and bunnies have nothing do to with Jesus Christ. They are the things that can distract us from the real reason Easter is celebrated. Jesus Christ rose from the dead, just like he said he would, and showed us the power of Heavenly Father but also that all those that believe in him and follow him will have eternal life. And this is something I don't want my kids to ever forget. 


Sunday, March 29, 2015

Temple Square at Spring


 Sometimes our family just needs to take a step back, make a break, and enjoy the moment. :)

Preparing for a busy week of conference preparations for Mike and the end of the school term for our kids added a lot of stress for all of us. To help relieve some of that anxiety we headed to Temple Square. 
Our girls played with the ducks that swam on the reflection pond.

Absorbed the scents from the flowers. Everything was in bloom which made our stroll even more amazing to look at.


Soaked up some sun.
Listened to Ducati's future plans if being married in the temple.
Made our kids laugh as Mike high-five'd President Monson.

We watched the new missionary videos in the visitors center. This scripture pulled at my heart strings that I wiped some tears away before we moved on.
But best if all taking these moments to be reminded that it's not suppose to be easy but only worth it.
To do God's work.
 To be a forever family. 
And love one another. :) 

We needed this break :)