December 3, 2013

How I Came to be Less Creeped Out by the Elf

I remember the first time I saw Elf on the Shelf. It was during the pre-Thanksgiving Christmas push that comes right after Halloween. (Also known as the beginning of hell if you work in retail).
There I was, trying to tune out the fourth Burl Ives song I had heard in the last hour, unpacking boxes of merchandise when I see it. Creepy, beady, little eyes staring up at me. “Elf on the Shelf,” the box reads.
“Oh here we go!” I thought. Stifling back the urge to vomit, or run far far away, I decide to investigate this new exploitation of Christmas thoroughly (turn the box over and read the blurb).
So the idea behind Elf on the Shelf is that he (or she) is a reminder to your kid to be good. The Elf is given magic powers and flies back to the North Pole every night to report naughty or nice behavior.
“Who would ever want this creepy doll sitting in their house?” Was all that came to mind. At that time the reality of this elf, to me, was just another way for someone to make a profit off a cheaply made product and people who can’t say no the their kids.
Fast forward a few years, and I see through social media that my friend and her family got one of these elves. The thing still creeps me out! He’s got no feet! But I also begin to see that there is some value in it. The way her kids light up when they find the elf everyday, and what mischief he has gotten into while they sleep is pretty spectacular in itself. I can see them growing into imaginative people, and the part their elf plays in this. I also see the benefit from a parent’s perspective. Bringing the elf to life forces you to look at things through the eyes of your child, and I think looking at the world that way, from time to time, helps you be a better parent.
After a Christmas season of watching them, I was convinced, my home needed a creepy, footless, elf.
I want my step son to believe in magic the way I did, when I was young. I know a good imagination is a part of a foundation for being able to think outside perceived limits, to have hope in a seemingly hopeless situation, and just makes life more fun. Elf on the Shelf is just one more thing that helps his imagination grow.
I am still creeped out by Graham Cracker (that’s out elf’s name). But staying up a little later to make a funny game, or a chain that counts down to Christmas, or grow elf flowers (suckers) out of magic elf seeds (nerds), or leave a note from that little footless creep is easily done when I see Trent light up in the morning. The elf is also another way for us to remind Trent that he is very loved. After all he has gone through this year, I am especially grateful for that.

June 25, 2013   15,375 notes

(Source: wilwheaton, via fullydomesticated)

June 25, 2013   4 notes
June 25, 2013

Crazy Lady

My step son’s mom got only the front of his hair cut because she was having pictures of the two of them taken so now we have to take him to get it fixed.

May 22, 2013   3 notes
How to get a bikini ready body:
1)Put a bikini on your body
2) there is no step 2.

How to get a bikini ready body:
1)Put a bikini on your body
2) there is no step 2.

April 18, 2013   2 notes

But Why Not?

I don’t understand parents who use a “I was raised this way and I turned out fine!” mentality as a justification to slack and feed their kids garbage food. Sugar cereal is not a balanced meal. Fast food everyday isn’t good for anyone.

I understand it is difficult when you’ve just got done working a long day and you ache and people were shitty to you all day and life is stressful and it all piles up and is trying to crush you. I really do understand that.
But being crushed by life is no excuse to let down this person who didn’t ask to be brought into this world. That was all you. Well, ok, that was half you.

We are certainly not perfect at my house, but we usually eat out about once a week. This not only makes us eat better at home, but is also a money saver.
Making food together at home can be a lot of fun and you don’t have to spend a lot to get good tasting, healthy food!

One of our favorite ways to make tasty things healthy is to hide the veggies. We purée (you could even use a blender) squash, beans, cauliflower, and other vegetables and freeze them in ice cube trays silicone muffin pans.
When we make scrambles eggs in the morning we add a few squash cubes and hey! Extra vitamins! The squash is undetectable. The only vegetable this hasn’t worked with so far is spinach. The taste is too strong. We also make home made macaroni and cheese with veggies mixed into the cheese sauce. We usually make a big pot on our day off and refrigerate it so when we come home from a rough day during the week, all we have to do is heat some up.

Anyway, my point is, it does take a little more effort to make a well rounded, healthy meal for your kids but it is absolutely worth it! They feel better, they sleep better, bowel movements are less terrible, they get sick less. You can never start too early when creating healthy habits for a long, healthy life.

Thanks for reading my rant.

March 27, 2013   39 notes
February 27, 2013   798 notes
February 24, 2013

One of those days…

Having one of those feel-completely-all-alone days.

February 19, 2013   1 note

Help

A little background:

The reason this post is entitled help is because I would love any advice on how to handle my current situation. I love this family that I have been thrown into. When we are happy, we are the happiest. My step son is smart, loving, giving, cute, funny, and opinionated. But is seems like lately it is really sinking in that I am a permanent fixture in this house. And he is showing signs of jealousy. I know this is pretty standard for a step parent to experience. My reaction to this has been things like, when I see him getting jealous of my fiance giving me a long hug I will pull him in too and make it a family hug. I also make sure that the two of them have quality time alone together. Probably about an hour every day plus one bigger chunk of time once a week. I also try to make sure my alone time with him (while his dad is at work) is positive. We do crafts and go fun places together. If he glares at me or pushes me I will talk to him and say, “(glaring/hitting/whatever) is not nice. I love you. Let’s only be nice to each other.” And that seems to work but only for maybe a few hours.

I understand that he is very young and probably confused and frustrated with all the changes. I try my best to just be patient and understanding but if anyone has any helpful suggestions I would love to read them!