Friday, February 20, 2015

My Journey in Compassion...


Wikipedia's definition of compassion is as follows;

Compassion is the emotion that one feels in response to the suffering of others that motivates a desire to help.[1][2]
Compassion is really the act of going out of your way to help physical, spiritual, or emotional hurts or pains of another. Compassion is often regarded as having an emotional aspect to it, though when based on cerebral notions such as fairness, justice and interdependence, it may be considered rational in nature and its application understood as an activity based on sound judgment. There is also an aspect of compassion which regards a quantitative dimension, such that individual's compassion is often given a property of "depth," "vigour," or "passion." The etymology of "compassion" is Latin, meaning "co-suffering." More involved than simple empathy, compassion commonly gives rise to an active desire to alleviate another's suffering.[2]
Compassion is often, though not inevitably, the key component in what manifests in the social context as altruism.[citation needed] In ethical terms, the expressions down the ages of the so-called Golden Rule often embodies by implication the principle of compassion: Do to others what you would have them do to you

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Compassion for me has been a part of my daily life as long as I can remember.  I was raised in a social service youth organization that bespoke compassion as one of it's greatest teachings. My mother and grandmother were very caring, compassionate people. We were always going to visit the sick in hospitals and nursing homes, just to bring them a smile, a laugh, a card, some human touch to make their situation better or bearable.  To bring a little sunshine to their day.

 I had a privileged upbringing. Along with that came the lesson of social service and giving back. I was not raised privileged and pretentious, I was raised to appreciate what I had, and that there those less fortunate and also those that were suffering or struggling.  I was taught to try to be the sunshine in everybody's day. To be caring, kind, and compassionate. To leave people a little happier, more cared for, or appreciated than before I came. I was taught to share the gift of myself with others.  Sometimes all we need as humans, is the touch of another to know someone cares.  Sometimes all we need is a little time spent to reaffirm our faith in people. Sometimes we all need a butt in a chair beside us, simply holding our hand. A little caring, sharing and laughter help feed the soul!

I learned by example from my mother, father, Nana and Pawpaw how to be compassionate.  I was not aware that when someone's loved one passed away, going to their side, taking them food, holding them while they cried, being by their side at the wake and funeral were acts of compassion, it's just what we did. I learned that when my Granny and Pawpaw passed that you would do anything to take away the hurting, the pain from your loved ones if you could...even though you were hurting yourself.  You help pick out the clothes, you write the thank you cards, you are just there, supporting them silently as they go through the journey of grief. When friend's grandparents and parents pass away, you are just there by their side, no matter the miles, because you know just by being there, you will bring a little relief to make their suffering bearable, even if just for a dinner, a visit, an hour.

In my youth group, when you were elected president of your local assembly as well as when you were elected to be the district president, you got to choose a project. A social service project that you raised money for, a charity for which you had all the members volunteer, a social service project that in some way allowed the members to give back to their community.  Some collected winter coats for children, some donated all the money from saved pop tabs to local women's shelters, some raised money for the Heart Association, I chose to collect toys and candy canes to take to the Shriner's Crippled Children's Hospital in Lexington, Ky.  We traveled to the hospital the week before Christmas and delivered the toys and got to meet and hang out with many of the children. The smiles, hugs, and laughter that filled the room that day I will never forget! At least for one afternoon, for a few hours, the girls from my district assembly and I brightened the day of each and every one of the sick children in that hospital.  We brought more than presents that day, the gift of ourselves. Most of those children spent Christmas that year in that hospital, some never made it home again. 

When my mother was sick and eventually passed away, what I gave to her came back to me a thousand fold. I was in awe of the sweet calls, food, visits, play dates, friends, cards, gifts, messages, and  general outpouring of love and compassion that was shown and given to me.

When one is a loving, giving, compassionate person, it sometimes comes back to bite you on the booty! People will refuse your offers of kindness, and they will take advantage of your compassionate nature.  Don't let them block your sunshine! Gracefully bow out and know that you did your best!



Sometimes when we need compassion from others the most, is when people will surprise you.  Some will just simply be there for you in whatever ways you need, silently standing by you through your loss, guilt, disappointment, or shame and the ones you thought would always be there for you, will remain silent and far away.  There are many lessons learned through and in compassion.  Being on the receiving end can really open your eyes to the goodness and on the flip side the imperfection in people.  Everybody has bad times, bad days, bad situations, and conversely good compassionate people have lapses in, well, being compassionate. 

You never know what struggles someone is facing.  You never know what battles someone has fought and won.  Always try to put yourself in someone else's shoes.  Be the one who tries to understand. Not just for those who are less fortunate than you.  You can show compassion in every facet of your daily life.  Is there a new mom at the PTO meeting? Scoot over and invite her to sit with you.  Is there a new face in the pickup group after school? Say hello! Is there a mom with three kids struggling to get the door? Hold the door for her! Is there a set of new parents in church with a chatty baby? Tell them that you are glad they are in church, and comment on how cute the baby is! Know someone struggling with infertility? Share your story and/or a hug. Know a person who has just lost a a parent? Share your story and let them know that you know their pain and suffering! Offer prayers,a shoulder, some food, or to handle the influx of visitors after the funeral, to help them disappear for a few hours to get their mind off the tragedy.

There are a million ways to be compassionate!



Always be the most compassionate you can be.  The world is hard and ugly, and sometimes people are too.  Just put your compassionate panties on and carry on! Don't let anyone bring you down or make you want to change your sweet giving nature! Give of yourself freely and often.  It feels good to brighten someone else's day! Even in the face of naysayers, be good anyway! Do good anyway.

Be a listener, be a friend, be someone who hugs even though they don't understand, show some love, share yourself, be there, show you care, and always honor the golden rule.






Wednesday, January 7, 2015

My Super Secret Blog

Happy New Year Snappers! Welcome to 2015! This new year means different things to different people.  To me it is my first year in my forties, beginning a fourth year with out my mother, and the year my baby is in the first grade. The year(my fortieth) that I have vowed to live completely out loud, be myself one hundred percent, and make no apologies.

This past year, I took a step back from the blogging world, and decided to breathe. I decided that I am tired of  'blogging on eggshells' so to speak, so I set up a super secret blog.  Anyone in my real life that is close to me, knows all about my blog.  Therein lies the problem. So I have a completely anonymous super secret blog.  Or two.  These are a place where I can go to write about my frustrations, my peeves, and to let it all out.

Why do you need a secret blog you ask? Because my husband, my kids, my in-laws, my husband's entire ginormous family, my extended families(there are several by marriage), my friends, other bloggers and people I have never even met, occasionally read my blog.  We all break out our brand spanking new blogs for the first time, proud to call ourselves bloggers.  We start writing for various reasons, for an escape, a release, because we like to write, because it gives us stay at home moms a hobby or something to make us feel 'heard'. You become part of a silent sisterhood of bloggers. Our blogs pick up steam, we aspire to be the next 'BIG" blog, and dream of one day getting published.  We design our blog's look, participate in or sponsor blog hops, write guest posts for other blogs, create our buttons, invest in one or more self help blog advice books, or bloggers how to guides, set up our Facebook fan pages, our blog's Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Bloglovin, and various and sundry other social media tie-in sites, get everything all set up and running smoothly, some even get published, make some bloggy friends, ... and BAM! Then it happens, writer's block. 

Then we pick ourselves up and start writing again.  Eventually we rediscover our voices. We get back into the rhythm of blogging. Then again, over time, we begin to find what once was so much fun, becomes monotonous again.  We find ourselves slaves to the numbers, where the numbers are more important than what we actually have to say.  How many views did this post get, how many comments did I get last week, so on and so forth until we lose sight of why we first started blogging.

Why did you start blogging? I started blogging after I became a stay at home mom, and to spend time with my sick mother(who passed four months after I started my blog in July of 2011). I used to entertain classrooms full of people on a daily basis, and now there was an audience of my mother, myself, and my two year old. So I needed to talk, to write, to vent.  To get the "ME" out. I used to tell my funny kid stories to my classes, and now I tell them to my blog. I have always been a social person, and the slower pace of my newfound life took a lot of getting used to. I wrote because it was my outlet, my release.  Then after my mother died, I started a blog about Grief, The Grief Chronicles

The other part of setting up a secret blog is that there is more than one side of me.  I am by nature a people pleaser.  I am the peacemaker of the family. I was raised a lady, and remain a lady.  That being said, I also have a wicked sense of humor, a naughty side, and have been know to have quite the potty mouth when I step out without my child. We each have many roles in life.  When you are setting up a blog, you must choose which persona you present to the public. For this blog, for example, I have chosen to be the cool mom, homeroom contact-person-ie 'mom', dutiful, fun loving, happy go lucky wife and mother, who gives you a peek into my at times airheaded, fun, crazy, less than perfect, wild and wonderful life. I do not choose to share all the other sides of me publicly on this blog.  And trust me, there are many.  So when I feel like not keeping my mouth shut, and writing a scathing, bitchy piece, I go to my super secret non-censored blog and voila! I feel all better!

Does it bother me that it is not wildly popular like this blog?(Well, to me 50,000+ is wildly popular in these here West by God Virginia hills) Nope, not at all! That means I don't have to promote it! And let's all be honest, it takes a lot of self promoting and time to rack up the numbers! SO I recommend that everyone has a super secret blog! I love mine! A blog free of scheduled in advance writing times, scheduled this and scheduled that! And only a handful of people who know of it's existence! A blog for just me! That being said, I love you guys! And you can't get rid of me!

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

My Traumatic Bathroom Catastrophe #169

Hiya Snappers! Merry Christmas Eve Eve everyone! Hope everyone is ready for the holidays! I myself still have 3 more things to get, and a few things left to wrap.  Then I am ready!  I thought I would share my funny story with you all today.  I have been super busy with life, homeroom momm-ing, PTO volunteering, coordinating volunteer readers for classrooms at my child's school, traveling, Christmas partying in northern Virginia, sightseeing in DC for the first time, seeing my almost 87 year old Nana to present her with her 50 year membership pin to the Order of the Eastern Star at my Uncle's installation as Master of his local lodge in Pineville, North Carolina, visiting family, shopping, playdating, cookie-ing, gingerbread housing, Frozen party at schooling, and a half billion various and sundry other things that occur in the daily life of a stay at home mom!  SO here goes the story about one of those such occurrences! Hope you get a laugh at my expense! You are welcome! Merry Christmas!

I am in the shower.  I , of course, cannot shower alone. There are multiple 6 year old interruptions.  First she talks to me.  Then she pulls back the shower curtain.  After telling her not to do that again, she then tries sticking something in the shower for me to see.  I have obviously forgotten, what it is like to have my child at home with me all day long, since starting the first grade in August.  I am thrown off from my normal shower routine and timeline.  I am busy thinking of all of the things I have to do today. I take my razor and lift my arm to shave my underarm, and when I go to make the first swipe across my pit, the razor flies past my pit and shaves of two big, long, ugly strips of skin from my chin. It hurt! A lot! I try and pretend that my chin is not bleeding.  As I feel it oozing down my chinny, chin chin,(or as Lil Pumkin Do says, "My Shinny, shin shin!") I open my eyes and peer down into the bottom of the tub.  Yep.  There is an amazing amount of blood pooling around the drain, slowly swirling with the water.  It looks like a macabre candy cane design.  Then in a strange, removed from the situation, as if in an opening scene from a  Stephen King movie kind of way, I realize in horror, that that is my blood.  TWO DAYS before Christmas festivities begin! Oh my WOW! Well, just...SHIT!

I cannot believe that I have just done this.  Right before Christmas! When there are so many pictures to be taken! ACK! So I then realize I only have to wash my face, because I obviously am having an airheaded day that does not need to involve using a razor kind of way, day! So hairy legs and pits, yeah, we'll just go with it! Le sigh! So I wash my face, and it burns like hellfire! As I rinse my face, I can distinctly feel where there once used to be pieces of me that are now gone! Ooww! It burns! As I watch the last of the blood swirl down the drain, I touch my face, trying to gauge how fast my chin is bleeding, to see if I need stitches or not.  I think we are okay to just swathe my face in band aids, and wait until the bleeding stops! I cannot believe I did this.  I amaze myself at times. SO I peek at my chin in the mirror.  Yep, just like I thought, no covering that one up! So I whip out the Mickey Mouse band aids, and go to town.  Ironically enough, one of the band aids says BAM! Oh so appropriate! And hilarious.  This is a goldmine in bad jokes waiting to happen! So I am just going to roll with it! So much for pretty perfect makeup for holiday photos! Good excuse to go makeup free, or opt out! Hah! Not happening! I am that annoying picture taker at EVERY family gathering.  Not likely that I will be allowed to opt out!

So by the evening, it finally scabbed over.   I now have to remember not to touch my chin. Because it hurts.  So here are a few not so random selfies, because I just had to share this with you all! At least it wasn"t my eye this time! Hahaha!

 


 


I hope everyone has a beautiful holiday, Merry Christmas, Happy Hannakuh, Happy Kwanzaa, or whatever holiday you celebrate or don't! Love you guys! Merry Merry!



 
 
 
 

Monday, October 27, 2014

My Dream Pumpkin



Ever since I was little, in the fall, my parents took my brother and I to pick out pumpkins for carving.  It was a yearly Halloween ritual for our family.  Like a lot of families, we each got to choose a pumpkin.  There were rules to choosing our pumpkins.  It had to be the right size for carving.  Not too big and not too small. You wanted to pick out a pumpkin with a smooth face for carving, but tall enough for a face. Every year I dreamed of getting a giant, perfectly round monstrosity of a pumpkin.  My dream pumpkin would have no flaws, be round and perfectly symmetrical, and the most beautiful shade of orange you have ever seen!  Each year I longingly looked for my perfect dream pumpkin, while picking out a smaller version for carving. I kept my pumpkin dreams to myself. One day, once I had found my soul mate, had a daughter, or three, had a house with a porch for a big 'ol pumpkin, I would have my dream pumpkin!



I grew up.  I then picked out more medium-ish pumpkins for my annual single girls Halloween party, year after year.  I still secretly longed for my great big, fat pumpkin, even though I subconsciously relegated myself to never having  my dream pumpkin. I admired them from afar, those big, fat, orange, round beauties that I secretly wished I was lucky enough to possess. One day I vowed, I would have my dream pumpkin! I kept telling myself that when I was married, settled down, and had a family...then I would have my dream pumpkin.  Every year on the front porch of our home, our giant pumpkin would be proudly displayed. One day!

So I settled down, found my soul mate, got married, joined our families and the pumpkin hunting tradition was revived for Sissy the Eldest and Mr. T.  We picked out pumpkins for carving every year, and I found myself reciting the same rule as my parents before me, 'Not too big, not too small!" My pumpkin dreams got pushed to the side once again, although this time in exchange for affordable family pumpkin memories. Big punkins' are 'spensive y'all!

When we had Lil Punkin Doo, again we picked out pumpkins for carving each year, and the same size restrictions were in place.  Seeing the sheer joy on all of our kids faces, from a simple, fun, family activity like picking out their own pumpkins and carving them is priceless! Hearing them scream when pumpkin guts touch their little hands is also priceless by the way! Just in case you were wondering!



This past weekend, we took Lil Punkin Doo to Gritt's Fun Farm in WV for the day.  They have slides, corn pits, tractor rides, corn maizes, photo ops, hay bale climbing, and a big glorious pick your own pumpkin patch.  At the end of the day at Gritt's, it was time to pick our pumpkins.  My LPD picked a tall long faced pumpkin, and just like that, I turned around and there it was.  The pumpkin of my dreams.  She was fat, the perfect shade of orange, the exact size and dimensions I had always dreamed of! She was perfectly symmetrical, and had a big, thick stalk on the top.  Beautiful.  I suggested her to LPD and she said no, that she wanted a tall pumpkin.  So after we found her perfect vision of a pumpkin, I turned to Hubbie the Dearest and asked if I could have my dream pumpkin.  He said yes! I told him it was my dream pumpkin, and he said yes!!! So while I was soaking in the fact that I was about to score my dream pumpkin, happy as the day HTD proposed, he advised me I had better hurry up and get it, because there was another family looking at the pumpkins right beside my pumpkin!


 I left LPD with HTD, and practically ran back to my pumpkin.  The little family was picking up the pumpkin beside mine.  Pschew! I thought I had lost her! Before they had a chance to try and steal her from me, I bent over and grabbed ahold of her thick glorious stem, and lifted her.  And thud.  Back down to the ground she went.  My baby is heavier than I had imagined.  So I reached down, put a little back into it, and lifted her with both arms into our wagon. Wow.  Funny how I never imagined my dream pumpkin ever weighing more than a normal sized pumpkin!



So HTD went to get the car, and I stood in line and pulled the wagon with LPD, and our two dream pumpkins to the wash and weigh station.  I lugged my beauty onto the scale at the weigh station, and it turns out she weighed 31.7 pounds.  LPD's weighed 17.2.  49 pounds o' punkin, plus my kid, plus the wagon.  My forearms are going to be killing me tomorrow was all the negative I could think, in my pumpkin finding, elated state. I am now the proud owner of my perfect pumpkin.  After lugging our 50 pounds of pumpkins around the pumpkin patch and into our car, I was exhausted. But I had my dream pumpkin.



We waited until the next day to clean out and carve our pumpkins.  Lil Punkin Doo drew her face, and I carved it into her pumpkin.  She then decided that she was going to draw the face for my pumpkin too.  I was happy to let her draw the face for my dream pumpkin.  I proudly drew it on and carved it out.  It may look like a many eyed, stop sign nosed, scary toothed face or a tutorial in shapes, but I am so very proud to have my daughter(my creation) create the face for my dream pumpkin, that I am close to bursting with  happiness.  And it now sits proudly displayed on my front porch, right beside hers, just like I always dreamed.  Totally worth the hours of carving and achy back, shoulders, and arms!



It is a good thing to hold onto your dreams, no matter how big or small, no matter how long it takes, because soul mates, families, daughters, dream pumpkins, and dreams really do come true!

Happy Halloween Snappers! 
 
 
 

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Tattler's Studio Celebration Edition-Felicia's Red Door Life



Hi again Snappers! Today I have another guest blogger for you, to celebrate 40,000 page views! Thank you my loyal and faithful fans! So here are a few questions to let you get to know Miss Felicia from Felicia's Red Door Life! Enjoy!

Why did you start a blog?

I started blogging many years ago as a creative outlet for the jumbled thoughts that run rampant in my head. I've gone through many name changes over the past seven years trying to find the perfect fit for what I have envisioned and now I blog not only for the outlet and my love of writing but because I've grown to love the community that is blogging. 
 
Who is your blogging inspiration?

Oh, I have so many but the one that sticks out the most is Sandra from Diary of a Stay at Home Mom (familycorner.blogspot.com). I admire her style, her openness and the fact that she hasn't bought into the whole drive my numbers up, drive my followers up. She blogs simply because like me she loves it. It's nice to see that in this day in age of the blog-o-sphere. 
 
What or who inspires you?

In life on a grand scheme level, my faith and love in God are my driving inspiration. He has blessed me with so much that it's impossible to not be inspired by Him. 

On a daily basis I gather inspiration from every aspect of life: family,friends, the wind rustling through the leaves, clouds floating (a favorite past time of mine, cloud watching), art, books.....anything that strikes my fancy at the moment. I'm a soak it all in and fling it back out kind of gal. 
 
When you have a creative writing block, how do you get past it?

Do blog interviews like this one. ;) No seriously I've had a major case of writing block the past week due to the crazy life happenings and just couldn't get words to come out. This interview has been a huge blessing. 

Other things I do involve grabbing my camera and heading off to take pictures, art journaling, reading books other blogs, listening to my children (always plenty of blog fodder there) and recently I've learned to start praying about it. This is new for me and I almost didn't say anything because I'm not all that good at the praying bit of being a Christian but I like to keep it real so yeah.  So this last go round I talked to God about it and low and behold the next day I run across Ginger's call out for guest bloggers and this ends up in my inbox.  

I have written this much in ages! 
 
Tell us a bit about yourself...

I suck at this part, it took me forever to get my about page done . 

Basics...I'm 31, a wife of 7 1/2 years, mother of two girls ages 11 (12 in 19 days) and 6 (7 in October)

I'm a child of God whose constantly battling her desire for worldly things and trying to focus on God more. 

I met Mike, [the husband] in September of 2006. I give every bit of the credit for our relationship to God. He put Mike in my path at the exact right moment, like as in the day before I met him I told a close girl friend of mine that if I was going to get married God was going to have to send the man to the book store I worked at because I was a single mom who worked 45 hours a week and didn't do the bar scene at all. Never challenge God...He will win. I met Mike the next day, first time he'd ever been to Books-A-Million, there only because a friend made him come to see me, we went to the fair that night. Six weeks later we officially started dating and we married January 9th. 

I tend ramble a lot....if you haven't noticed that yet you will soon. Bit of a chatter box ya know. 

I am in love with Doctor Whoand would have to run away with the Doctor if he asked me to go traveling but we'd only be mates cause ya know married. 


I love to art journal but don't get a lot of time to do it. 
 
Favorite vacation location is.....

I almost don't want to tell so no one goes to it, lol. My favorite place to go is a park in Arkansas called Lake DeGray Resort State Park. It's the most amazing, relaxing and fun place I've ever been. It's within 45 minutes of Hot Springs so you can leave the park and have fun in town or you can stay and take advantage of all the fun in the park. There's bike rentals, boat/patoon rentals, a lake beach, trails for hiking, horse back riding, golfing, activities for the kids and family ....it's amazing!! And if you go during the week on an off holiday there's normally very few people there. 
 
Favorite vice....

I'm not sure if I'd call it a favorite vice so much as what trips me up the most in life that I should control better. :) For me that would be my love of food. 
 
Favorite holiday...

Thanksgiving. I love it when the families gather around to share stories and enjoy each others company. 
 
How long have you been blogging?

Off and on for seven years. I've done a lot of growing and soul searching in that time, even stepped back to see if it was something I truly wanted to do no matter what. This go around (and hopefully the last go round) I've been at it for alittle over a three years. Wow, can you believe I didn't know it had been that long. 
 
When do you have/make time to blog?

Now that the children are all in school I try and get any blogging and it's companion networking done during school hours. My goal is to be present when they are home. Summer is a bit more sporadic, but the girls are great at giving me time to focus on the blog. I also reserve weekends for just family things, so you'll only see me Monday's throughFriday's 
 
What do you say to all the naysayers who make rude comments about spending so much time on something you do not get paid to do?

Honestly, I don't say anything. Two reasons, the main one being I've never really had anyone make a rude comment about it. My family and friends who get what blogging is are all very supportive. The other reasons is I just don't care what others think as far as if they want  to say I'm wasting time. 

The only two I have to answer to about my actions are God and my family. I know it sounds cheesy or like a cope out but for me those are the only opinions that matter.
 
What bloggy dreams do you have?

My dreams have changed so much over the years as far as blogging goes. I've dreamed of just having people read to being the Bloggess (uh hello she's amazing!) but as I mentioned earlier I've done a lot of soul searching in the past and now my dreams are more grounded in what is important to me as a person. 

With that, currently my dreams are as follows: 1.) That God will use me through my blog to bring glory to Him. 2.) That I stay true to myself and not give in to the pressure to be the next best thing or make it big because everyone else is 3.) That I make someone smile at least once a day because of my words.


 

 
Felicia E.

 
Things I've Learned This Week

When Ginger asked me to write a post go along with the interview feature I was at a loss on how to show you more of who I am without feeling like a drawn out about me page. Then it hit me, I could an old favorite post subject of mine and take you through some of the things that have been going on in my crazy life. There are certain things in life that never change no matter how much you try. Things like death, taxes, homework in middle school and that you are always learning new things, even when you don't realize it. Every once in awhile I like to take a look back at my week and see what all I've learned.
  1. My 51 year old mother is not the wisest choice when looking for a last minute babysitter for a three year old. She called me in a near panic because she didn't know what to do with the cutest little boy of one of her class mates. Needless to say I got a good chuckle out of teaching my mom, who's had two children, what to do with a toddler.
  2. Having my very own land shark is the best thing in the world. While I feel a small bit of guilt for Foxie I can't get over how cute she looks.
  3. My oldest daughter, Kyla, is way to grown up but not grown up enough to get over slow dancing with her boyfriend at her first school dance.
  4. Hobby Lobby carries the cutest stuff owl in their Fall 2014 collection.
  5. My husband willing supports my crazy owl obsession, case in point he bought me said stuff owl just because I squealed in delight over it.
  6. Having school teachers who are willing to work with you and your IEP child is a unbelievable blessing.
  7. Watching 2 seasons of Criminal Minds in one week leaves you a little unbalanced and can have you 'profiling' the scary moms in car pick up line.
  8. After watching Listen, the latest Doctor Who episode I am a firm believer that Peter Capaldi is going to be the greatest Doctor ever!
  9. Rubbing alcohol will remove smoke soot off of cabinets and ceiling fans, making a gray/black mess nice and white again!
  10. Coming home to dinner cooked by your husband and seeing him loading the dishwasher is one of the sexiest things in this world!

Check Felicia out! Go give her some lovin's and tell her I sent ya! Muah~
 photo logo1_zps6384bc7a.png
<div align="center"><a href="http://feliciasreddoorlife.com" title="Felicia's Red Door Life"><img src="http://i1347.photobucket.com/albums/p714/Felicia5E2/logo1_zps6384bc7a.png" border="0" alt=" photo logo1_zps6384bc7a.png" alt="Felicia's Red Door Life" style="border:none;" /></a></div>

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Tattler"s Studio-Celebration Edition-Chronically Sick and Sometimes Manic Mother

Hiya Snappers! Guess what? We hit 40,000 page views! This is a big deal to me! So in honor and celebration of my 40,000 views, I decided to share the love! We will all be getting to know two lovely ladies this week, and their blogs.  They will each be answering some "get to know me questions" for you, and then writing for you! I do hope you all enjoy this little celebration treat with me!

First up is Chronically Sick and Sometimes Manic Mother. You can find her at http://chronicallysickmanicmother.wordpress.com/ .  She is also on the following social media outlets as well;

https://www.facebook.com/ChronicallySickAndSometimesManicMother?ref=hl
https://twitter.com/CSMMother
http://instagram.com/chronicallysickmanicmother
http://www.pinterest.com/CSMMother/

Check her out!

Why did you start a blog?

I needed an outlet to relieve stress. Writing has always done that for me. I also had a friend who continually told me I needed to write, and still does. 
 
Who is your blogging inspiration?

I have always been an avid reader. I don't think I could pick one source. I read to relief stress, boredom,to satisfy curiosity and just to expand my knowledge.
 
What or who inspires you?

Basically life does. It is one of the reasons I don't write just about one subject. 
 
When you have a creative writing block, how do you get past it?

Typically I resort to reading. If I can I will go for aimless drives with my phone on talk to text and email myself my thoughts. Sometimes I go for a long walk in the woods.
 
Tell us a bit about yourself...

I always hate this question. I don't know. I am me. A wife, a mother and a friend. I have worked in a variety of places. My education is in Early Childhood Education. You would think that would help in parenting. I am just as clueless. My education was early childhood education, so my daughter at nine is way out of my depths. I have been married for fourteen years. Our relationship went from just dating to really serious when my husband was in a car accident. He was on life support and in a coma for four days. I am not really able to work, so I have been trying to find myself again the last three years.
 
Favorite vacation location is.....

This is hard. I would say some cabin in the Mountains but we have not been able to travel outside of Florida in the last like seven years. I think I am falling back in love with Florida because I am gonna say camping at Disney World. The last two years we have gone camping at Fort Wilderness and picked one park to visit. Its three or four days of just wonderful family time. Camping with my chronic pain and illness is not the same as when I was growing up. However it is still camping and it just does so much to re-center me. 
 
Favorite vice....

Coffee, and Mountain Dew.  I can't stop. I have tried. Resistance is futile. 
 
Favorite holiday...

I would have to say......Well as trite as it may be...I live for the ones my daughter enjoys so much. Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter and even Fourth of July. 
 
How long have you been blogging?

I think it is coming up on two years.
 
When do you have/make time to blog?

For the most part, I write while my daughter is in school. However, it is not unusual for me to write because I can't sleep. It is also not unusual to find me up in the middle of the night when I have woken up and can't get back to sleep. I try to respond to comments on my blog very quickly, so I have alerts come to my phone. I try and set aside at least one day while the kid is in school to write and one to read other blogs. 

 
What do you say to all the naysayers who make rude comments about spending so much time on something you do not get paid to do?

Money isn't everything. Yes, we could do so much more if I earned steady income. However, to me it is more important to encourage other parents dealing with chronic illnesses to re-embrace life.  They are not alone in their struggle and sometimes that is a life or death difference for someone. 
 
What bloggy dreams do you have?

The fact that one person has contacted me saying what I wrote helped them, means my bloggy dreams are already realized. 
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                 And now for the guest post you have all been waiting for!

                 Technology Does Not Always Mean Social Media

Recently my phone died. It literally just died while sitting next to my laptop. To be truthful, technology mostly baffles me. It died almost a week ago. I don't see it as all bad. It is nice to unplug once in a while. The only down side is our landline phone isn't working. This makes it impossible for my daughter's school to get ahold of me, if they need to. I let them know via email that I was not reachable by phone. I keep in contact with my friend who is also my emergency contact for the school. Mostly I have been staying home. 


Today as I was driving back from the bank I had a million things going through my head. I didn't even think. I just reached where my phone normally is. I like to voice text myself emails. Reminders to do things, thoughts that I want to include in blog posts. I started thinking about all the ways I use my phone that has nothing to do with social media.

1. Alarms- I set many alarms. So many many alarms. Medication alarms. Time to stop reading and get the kid alarms. Time to get up and get the kid to school alarms. 

2. Calendar- I have tried to keep a calendar that is not just on my phone. I have failed to do that. It is just such a habit to put it in my phone calendar. This is something I will need to fix when I get my new phone. I can't tell you how many times an event has popped up on my phone, that I have completely forgotten about. It has saved me many times. 

3. Pedometer- I walk. It is a good form of exercise. It is about the only form of exercise I have been sucessful at regularly doing. For someone with chronic illness and chronic pain that is a big freaking deal. The ocd part of my brain needs to know how far I walk. I have gotten around this so far this week by walking familiar paths. Paths I have walked previously and know how far I have walked. I have an overwhelming need to monitor my progress. If not progress than that I am at least maintaining. It is so easy to let the pain dictate my walks. I can manually add the walks I have been doing while my phone is down. It is just not the same as being able to look at it. Truthfully knowing my pace and how far I have walked helps my confidence. 

4. Goodreads- Now I know I can use goodreads on the laptop. However I try to make me time for reading while sitting in carline to pick up my daughter. Most of the time it is fifteen minutes. Sometimes I feel the need for more time so I go earlier. I log in where I stop before getting my daughter. It's part of my routine. Routine is a very important part of someone who has Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. 

5. You-tube- I know this is also available on the laptop. I use Self Hypnosis and Guided Meditation for anxiety, depression and sometimes to listen to rituals. I can use the laptop. I have been. But I really find it best to use headphones and use my phone. 

6. Weatherbug- All I can say is Barometric pressure. Weatherbug lets me know when its fluctuating and when storms are moving in. This can be invaluable information when I am out and about. I can either medicate ahead of time or head home. It also lets me know when there is lightening in the area. Living in Florida, in one of the lightening capitals of the world,its a necessary precaution. There can be not a cloud in the sky and we will have lightening. As a parent this is a great tool for me to know when it is safe for my daughter to be outside. 

7. Calculator- I am not going to lie. I use it when my daughter is doing her homework. When I want to stay on budget with grocery shopping. I don't math very well so I use the calculator a lot.

8. Camera- I do love me some instagram. However, there are so many pictures I do not post on social media. I love taking photos. Some times I take them and later I use a photo editing app(also not social media) and play around with them. Sometimes I will post the results but not always.

9. Google- If you have a kid you love google. Why do ants bite? How long do bees live? When will we see baby hawks again? What does " insert some obscure word" mean? I could go on and on and on. I am getting really tired of saying, " I don't know" or "we will look it up later."

10. Texting- I have two friends that are not on social media. The only way we talk is texting, as long distance is not fun to pay for. Sure there is email but its not as quick. 

So there it is. The invaluableness of a cell phone that has nothing to do with Social media. Well not too much anyway.



Hope you enjoyed Chronically Sick and Sometimes Manic Mother! You can visit her at her blog site by clicking the link below!
http://chronicallysickmanicmother.wordpress.com/






Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Mommy's Little Budding Blue Eyed Sociopath

Do you ever feel like you have the sweetest kid in the entire universe? The kind who only got her card turned twice in her first year of school? The pleaser? The one with the biggest heart, who puts others before herself? The one who is the sweetest child on the planet? The one who everybody brags on and compliments for her good behavior? Right.  That is my child.  My little good girl.  My little performer. I am so proud to be her mommy.



Her father and I have always been very proud of her and her behavior.  She generally behaves in public, and lets her hair down at home. She sings, makes up her own songs, and loves to dance. We have family dance-a-thons, and boogie and sing on a regular basis in our home.  If she gets a little out of sorts, as they all do, she is sent to her room to "find her sweet girl" and calm herself down. 

Don't get me wrong she is a one in a million child, but she still has moods, and grumpiness like any grown up. She has also been through all the stages children go through, and all the emotions.  She has her mothers temper. She has dealt with death and loss of her beloved Granny at the tender age of three, but otherwise  has led a rather good life.  Her existence is primarily a happy and joyful one at age six.  That being said, the following happened right before bedtime last night.



As I mentioned previously, she loves to sing.  And based on the last twelve months of Disney Princess movies, guess what is her current favorite song ? That's right, 'Let It Go'.  So a half hour before bed she is serenading me with the aforementioned song.  She got to a part where she forgot the words, so I sang them to  her.  And then it happened.  This blue eyed little monster emerged. The one where her eyes slowly began to glow, and her smile turned into a frown, and she started shrieking and yelling! She flipped out!  How dare I help her, she has told me not to ever interrupt her when she is singing her favorite song, and how she wishes Daddy were putting her to bed, because he never interrupted her! So she got put to bed a half hour early. Obviously she was tired and frazzled.

                                 (Anna clad, Minnie mouse ear wearing, fashionista rock star!)

As a parent, I have two older kids, with whom I have been well trained on mood swings, anger, and the like, however nothing prepared me for what happened next.

6yo-"Mommy, I shouldn't tell you this, but I feel like I just have to get it out of me!"
Mommy-"What is it baby?"
6yo-"When you interrupt me, I just want to pin your mouth shut. So you can't interrupt me or sing with me.  I just want to pin your mouth shut and tie your hands behind your back so that you can't unpin your mouth!"
Mommy-". . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ....Okay, I am sorry for interrupting you.  (and I give a small one minute lecture on how everybody likes to sing, and like in the Sound of Music(which we just watched together for the first time), frequently join in....you must let us know it is requested for us not to sing, that you are giving a performance...because it makes us happy, and we want to sing too...and everybody is allowed to sing in this house, and how pinning someone's mouth shut and bondage is totally not acceptable, even if you're angry. Ever.) Okay so I didn't use the word bondage...but you get the jest of it.



My first reaction was to pin my own mouth shut so as not to bust out laughing.  My second reaction was just wooooooooow.  My husband used to worry that one of our big kids would turn out to be a sociopath, but they turned out fine.  Just like I said they would.  Now our littlest spawn, may just surprise us yet! Where the heck did she get "pin your mouth shut", and "tie your hands behind your back"? I guess like Bette Midler's character, in my favorite movie of all time, Beaches, she "feels deeply"!


Meanwhile....I love my little budding blue eyed sociopath, Baby Hannibal, to the moon and back and a million trambillion! Even on her worst days.