perma-back burner.

Standard

how do i change the way that i respond when other things take importance over me?

how do i not take it personally when my husband jumps in the car and doesn’t give me a hello kiss and instead jumps right into the stress of his day.
how do i not take it personally when the first 3 hours of our night together is spent talking about a kid. or the kids. or all the kids. ————————————————————-and i haven’t even been asked if my day was ok?

how can i act when i try hard to actively ask about the drama and try to be engaged, but the question or the statement is wrong or is not valid enough to not endure a 3 minute response explaining exactly what i just said.
how is it possible to not feel like i am the pot on the back burner that’s been overflowing and screaming for attention.

i don’t need ALL of the attention, just a few minutes. or an extra hug. or acknowledgement of there being a lack of attention.

we wake up to the drama of all these kids and we go to sleep to it, even on the days they’re not around. my head is full. my head is tired. i need a recoup day.

Advertisements

[ICB Prayer Bible Review]

Standard

20180128_171316

I was given another awesome opportunity to review a great, new Bible Resource from FrontGate Media. This time, The Prayer Bible for Children!

I got really excited to review this because honestly, my family needs more resources that remind us to study together and I am so far disconnected from what kids need that I’m willing to take any help I can get.

When I opened the package, I was pleased to see this beautiful dark blue Bible with gold decor. I will immediately tell you that I wish I did more research before I agreed to this review BECAUSE I am a step parent to a pre-teen and a teenager. This Bible is intended for younger aged children and I allowed myself to be disappointed by that.

If you’re a parent of young children- this Bible is fantastic! Don’t let my mistake be yours.

The Prayer Bible for Children helps children develop a heart for prayer and learn the Bible through the popular ICB translation, the simple translation children can read and understand.  Special pages throughout the text highlight the most famous and beloved prayers featured in the Bible. From Abraham’s prayers to the Lord to Jesus praying before his crucifixion to the way Paul prayed for the churches he planted, this Bible will teach young readers about a God who loves to hear from His children and loves answering prayers. This Bible includes a pocket with a prayer journal for children to record their own prayers.

Some Special Features:

  • 160 Pages of Prayer Articles throughout the text
  • 64 Four-color pages featuring poem prayers, scripture prayers, and engaging Kids’ Q&A’s
    • The full page prayer articles will help children learn how to pray, to not fear prayer, and to see within the Word how and when God’s people prayed
    • The colorful decorative pages will feature kid-friendly scripture prayers, topical poem prayers and fun questions and answers kids have about prayer
  • The Bible comes with a prayer journal as an add-on, a handy pocket on the back flap to carry the prayer journal.

Special features include 160 pages of prayer articles throughout the text and 64 four-color pages featuring poem prayers, Scripture prayers and engaging Kids’ Q&A’s. The full page prayer articles will help children learn how to pray, to not fear prayer, and to see within the Word how and when God’s people prayed. The colorful decorative pages will feature kid-friendly scripture prayers, topical poem prayers and fun questions and answers kids have about prayer. As a value-add, the Bible comes with a prayer journal and a handy pocket on the back flap to carry the prayer journal.

While I can’t discredit this company any bit in their design, the translation, the composition of this Bible- there really wasn’t much that drew me to it. My pre-teen picked it up once, thumbed through it, set it down. He never went back. I didn’t expect him to jump for joy over it, but he was overall uninterested. And my prayer journal holder ripped off the day I unpacked it. It is delicate and not very durable.

The Prayer Bible for Children is written in a manner that is simple for kids to pick up and read on their own. It’s written in a sense that allows them to gather the concept and not have to question the large, over-translated words that some of our adult Bibles feature.

If you are interested in a Prayer Bible for Children of your own, here’s the purchase links:
Blue                                                     Pink

 

 

There is a giveaway happening here

and FREEBIES & discounts here

 

Enjoy!

 

Let me know if you use this Bible! ❤

 

 

 

 

[God is GOOD]

Standard

today i remembered that God promised me healing in His time almost 5 years ago to the day, at a prayer night at my church.
I started seeing a new chiropractor on Friday and just really feel like i need to share that this has been the most pain-free few days i’ve had in over 5 years. i steadily saw a different chiro for 2 years straight and never had this kind of relief.

 

God is good [all the time]

[independence in step parenting]

Standard

Let me just start off by laughing at my title, “Independence in Step Parenting,” because this is not a thing. It’s so far from being a thing, I can’t believe I even typed it out like it was a thing.

Step Parenting is hard because yes, you love your kids. Yes, you care for them. Yes, you financially provide for them and might even be their health care supplier. You wake up with them in the middle of the night, pack their lunches, check their pockets before you wash their clothes, make them dinner and remind them to brush their teeth at night. But you can’t really do any of that on your own.

If you care for them differently than their biological parents want them to be cared for, you are wrong. You are inferior. You are the wrong. It is not ever the fault of the terrible teen or the moody pre-teen. It is not appropriate to share your disappointment in the failure of the kids, even if the rest of the world is disappointed, too. You are to be the friend and never the parent, unless the parent wants help. You don’t really want to be their friend though. You want to parent because you are a parent. Maybe not by birth, but you are a parent.

Just like normal families, mom and dad come from different backgrounds and have different parenting styles and different techniques. But you are step, so it doesn’t matter. Your upbringing is wrong. Your family is wrong. Your ways are wrong.

When it comes to celebrations, they are done in the way of the biological parent because, haha, after all it is their child. Not yours. And this is how it’s always been done.

If you don’t agree, it is appropriate to stop talking and to submit immediately.

We are throwing 9 a 10th birthday party against my wishes. We just moved. We’re finally in a month that doesn’t have a lot of extras- you know, like Thanksgiving and Christmas. We have seen an entire month of bills at our new house and can set expectations for what we need to shell out in order to operate. I can’t justify spending $125 on a party for someone who has 3 friends and is an hour away. I could justify doing a big, giant, fun present for this birthday but, who am I?

I say no. Then eventually just say f*ck it, do what you want. We’re having a party. It’s listed at $125, but I know it will not cost $125. We already have to pay for us to bowl + the older kids if they show. We will have to pay for food for the parents who come. We’ll have to pay for 13’s friend that his mother invited but didn’t consult us about. Us who is paying for the party and planned the entirety of it without an ounce of her help.

13 who is failing his grade for the second time and still has a tablet, a cell phone and a girlfriend. 13 who has an attitude and drives me up the wall. 13 who thinks he is 19 but refuses to take on any responsibility. 13 who took 2.5 hours to wash 1 sink of dishes on Saturday. 13 who cried when I gave him his SECOND chore of the day- to clean the small bathroom. Which he deep cleaned 2 weeks ago, so really will only take 6 minutes in its entirety. 13 who is a pompous as*hole.

I am tired of my opinions not really mattering, even when my prince says they do. I am tired of their mother having more weight than i in my own house and in my pocket book. I am sicked that she can call FOC and demand an evaluation, 30 days after we move to our new house. Why can’t we have ANYTHING to ourselves? The kids are happy. Let it be.

I am so irritated and so beaten down by this parenting gig.

What is Thanksgiving?

Standard

Lets be honest. Nobody really celebrates the real meaning of Thanksgiving. You know, the pigrims, the hats, the journey to America things. We just don’t. We celebrate family. Days off. Shopping. Having jobs. You know, we celebrate what we like.

IMG_5921

But what about the holidays has made it so tough for those of us who have lost? I read on a former teacher’s Facebook page the other day that “grief is what happens when you still have love for someone and nowhere else for it to go.” it’s like your heart is bubbling over for someone and there’s no where to put the goop that runs over. And it feels so true.

I feel like there is a giant hole. There is. Having lost my step dad this year has been so odd. There are times that i don’t really.. remember or think about it and that kills me when i finally say, “Guess that CAN’T happen.” Today, driving to my dad’s house, about 8 minutes from arrival my eyes welled up. The kids were all laughing and having fun in the car. my husband was talking to me. and it just hit me. I thought i was going to lose it and i just wasn’t ready to walk in and sob. But i pulled myself together and just said out loud, ” i don’t really want to cry today.” Too bad.

IMG_4324

I wanted to walk in and see my dear old marvin sitting in the corner seat of my dad’s purple couch, one leg tucked under his arm. Probably in a t shirt and sweat pants or a t shirt and jeans. very casual. A warm, “Hi, sweetie” would have followed as we walked in. I miss his black hair. I miss his funny moustache. I miss teasing him about what ethnicity he was because he ALWAYS said he wasn’t mexican but there is no way he wasn’t. I miss how casual he was. I miss his laugh and his smile. I miss the way he teased my dad. And i miss him a whole lot today.

IMG_4326

What is thanksgiving if your family has a hole in it? Is it a day where everyone tip toes around, trying not to bring up the sad reality we all know? Is it a day where we openly weep? Where we save a spot for dear old marvin and hope that somehow, his joyful heart will have a presence there? What is it?

IMG_4331

Sometimes it’s hard to see through the tough times and find joy. Today i’m struggling. And i’m sorry.
I have a brand new, amazing home, which is bigger than what we need and has more land than we’ve ever even dreamed of. My husband is hunting on it right now. We have two running vehicles and each have jobs. Our kids are safe, with their mom. We have love. We have good relationships. All our parents are alive and so are our siblings. We’re all relatively healthy. Our cupboards are FULL and the heat is on. I can turn the lights on (But am currently sitting by candlelight). I have happy puppies and both have a good bill of health, finally. How can I not be grateful? How can I not be full?

We were almost home and we saw a homeless man standing in shorts on the side of the road. It’s not even 40 degrees out and there is a good amount of sharp wind. It’s thanksgiving and he’s outside, begging for help. Now, i am NOT one to pass my dollars to every homeless guy i see. by no means. but he pulled at my heart strings. where are his pants? why did i empty the clothes out of the back seat, he could use that shirt i don’t want! i have a blanket, stop the car and let me get out to give it to him “calm down.” I ask my husband for all his cash and we give this man $20 and find out he’s got a friend he’s staying with. his mom had a heart attack and they lost the house shortly after. We told him to be safe. happy thanksgiving. and he told us God bless you. we pulled away and i sobbed.

my mom doesn’t own her own car. she doesn’t have a home. she’s living out of her work vehicle and drives a taxi for a living. she’s been homeless for two years and i haven’t seen her in a long time. my heart is just broken today.

i’m so sad that i’m not full of joy and thanksgiving today, and i don’t know how to share this but in here.

IMG_5925

Thanksgiving isn’t the same when your family isn’t near by.

It’s not the same when you blog, alone at your kitchen table.

I miss my mom and i miss my marvin.

i am so grateful for the things i mentioned a minute ago. we had a nice dinner last night and breakfast today. i saw my family and our kids. and i am so grateful for them. today i am just very, incredibly sad.

 

[changes are coming]

Standard

Monday has come and gone so quickly. I worked my way through lunch and left an hour and a half early to go to the closing on house #1. We met the buyers- they’re SO excited. It’s such a weird feeling because we are so ready to be done with that house. The mildew smell in the bedrooms, even after we ran a dehumidifier and my Prince crawled under the house to put visqueen around the edges of the house, to keep moisture out.
The lack of closets.
The dank smell it gets after having windows shut for one day.
Not having a kitchen table
The bathroom fan that doesn’t work well enough for our hot showers.
The pergo floors that slide from one side to another
Using the back door as the front door (I HATE THAT).

We’re so done. We’ve invested so much time and energy into getting that house ready to sell and when we sat in the realtor’s office waiting to sign, it was just an odd feeling to know that we have moved on from it and there are so many parts that I just hate about the house.. that this couple is incredibly excited about. They probably love that it is tiny quaint. I never have and I never will.

And after about forty minutes, we left with a check in our hands and giant smiles. It’s over. One house down.
We only own one house right now! For a few days.

We close on our new house, our farm, on Friday. We only have two nights to pack the rest of our house up and get it in the sun room, ready to go. I think we can do it. My husband is almost done with the “construction” phase of the house and if he helps me tonight, we could knock it out so quickly. Except we have kids. And they are needy. They will not help us pack, they will not help clean, they will not help with the dogs, and God forbid they have to cook something. (13 could make spaghetti or something simple). And I’m supposed to bake cookies with 9. Because he left on Sunday and was gone for 6 hours unexpectedly. Fun.

And my Prince dropped a ball on me a couple weeks ago saying we’ll get them more. And when he said it I started crying immediately.
I think i’m still overwhelmed from summer,when we had them MORE than half of the time. I am not ready for more nights with these two yet.
Yes, I love them.
No, I won’t tell my husband no.
Yes, I’m scared.
No, I won’t tell my husband no.
Yes, I’m anxious.
No, I won’t tell my husband no.
Yes, It makes me want to stay away on those nights
No, I won’t tell my husband no.

More nights. More fighting. More crying. More whining. More CLOTHES and more getting in trouble (ME) over not doing the kids’ laundry. (THEY’RE 13 AND 9 THEY CAN DO IT THEMSELVES). More angst.

I am not ready. I am not ready. I am not ready.
But the life of a step mom rule book says: You don’t have a life anymore. You have a husband and you have to do whatever you possibly can to help him see his kids more. Even if it makes you want to jump off the closest bridge.

Not because the kids are awful all the time. But because I don’t have the skills to handle them. And because I am different when they are around, as is my Prince. Life is different with kids.

I’m gonna see a counselor.

[more book reviews]

Standard

 

I’m excited to say that I’ve been asked to review the She Reads Truth Bible.

It hasn’t shipped yet, I just got approved. and I. Can’t. Wait.

Genesis

As a visual learner who also needs to hear, touch, feel things before I really get it, I think this Bible is going to be amazing. I’m posting my hopes for this Bible before I even get to feel it with my own hands. Maybe you’ll get one of these first copies, too?

They’re equipped with things like devotionals- which is something that I NEED. and i can’t wait to dive in.

Who is looking forward to hearing more about it?