Snowball Fight!!!!

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We finally got some real snow and what better to do, than have a snowball fight! Winters, in North Carolina, can be interesting. We are known for our bipolar weather. We can get all four seasons in one day and it’s not many winters that we actually get enough snow to have a snowball fight. Usually, when the weatherman calls for snow, we may see a dusting or an inch. Nothing to really get excited about, but yet, the state still comes to a stand still.

Last week, it snowed a whole six inches, in one day. Other towns, around us, got up to a foot of snow. So, with some actual measurable snow, we had to have a snowball fight. Della loves the outdoors, and even when it’s freezing outside, we have to play.  It was so beautiful and COLD, but we still went exploring.  We picked up her cousin and started on a winter adventure.

The walk, through the woods, was liking walking through a winter wonderland. The kids thought they were in the movie Frozen. Yes, I will be so glad when they let it go. We made our way to the pond and kids was so excited to see it was frozen over. Nope, no ice skating for us; we just admired the beauty of the snow.

Did you guys get any snow? How do you enjoy the winter? Any travel or winter ideas you would like to share?

 

Hill Ridge Farms – Pumpkin Patch

It’s Fall and Halloween, so we had to visit the pumpkin patch at Hill Ridge Farms.  The kids had a blast.  There was so much for them to do.  They had bouncy houses, slides, swings, a giant bouncy pumpkin, animals, games, and FOOD (funnel cakes, ice cream, popcorn, sandwiches, hot dogs,..) The adults were more excited about food but hey, it’s all in the name of making memories.

Della had her first train ride and hay ride with her big cousin, Bre.  At the end of the hay ride, the kids went to a giant pumpkin patch and picked out the perfect pumpkin.

Hill Ridge Farms is a great place to take the kids where they can run wild and free and learn in the process.  I can definitely say they enjoyed themselves.  We can’t wait to go back for the Christmas lights.

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How We Make Co-Parenting Work

I get so many questions about how I get along with Della’s father or how do we make co-parenting work.  There’s the “Does he have a say in what you do for her” or ” How do can you stand to talk to him” or the “Don’t you hate him now that you are not together”?  People are often surprised by my response.

Yes, he does have a say in her life.  I don’t concern him with the routine day-to-day stuff but for important things, like her health or daycare, I do consult him.  Now, if he has her and has a question, he calls me and asks for advice.  I think  it has more to do with her being a girl and he only raised boys.  No, we don’t hate each other.  We are actually really good friends and we talk all the time and it really helped that we were friends before we had a child together.  We have no intentions of ever getting back together.  He has moved on with his life and is in a relationship with a wonder person and I have moved on with my life.  I actually talk to both him and his wife and there is open communication between all of us.

The most important thing, to him and me, is our daughter knows she is love and wanted.  We make sure she is able to talk to either of us whenever she wants.  She can call her dad, stepmom, or brothers, at anytime, and they will talk to her or video chat with her.  She spends weekends or weekdays, when he’s not working, with her family.

I grew up in a home with both my parents.  They were married for almost 40 years, until my dad passed.  Even though my dad was in the home, my mom was a single parent in raising us. Now, my dad worked everyday and provided a home for us (my mom also worked just as many or more hours), but he wasn’t there for my sister and me, as a dad.  He didn’t show us the love, little kids needed, growing up.  We rarely got hugs or conversations, he didn’t ask us about school, boys, the sports we played, and he never came to one game or awards ceremony. So, as you can image, I went looking for that love in the wrong way and caused myself a lot of pain and heartache.

I never want Della to feel the loneliness and hurt I felt growing up.  I never want her to wish her dad would hold her, play with her, or say something nice to her.  I never want her to feel like she doesn’t matter.  He dad shows her all the things, and more, I wished my dad would have shown me.  Even her brothers are protective of her and they are much older than her.  And yes, she has them wrapped around her finger, and I love it.  Our whole family loves it.  We don’t want her to feel she needs to look to a boy or man, outside her family, to get the love she is missing from her dad.

So, how do we make co-parenting work- we put our daughter’s needs and wants first.  No matter how we feel about each other or if we have disagreements, we always make sure we put her first.

 

Pictures in the Park

It’s been crazy hot, in NC, and Della and I have not spent as much time in the park as usual.  Last Sunday, my little superhero decided she wanted to take pics in the park.  So, she got dressed and to the park we went.  No, it wasn’t raining, but she loves her rain boots and she thought, just maybe, she would find some muddy puddles to jump in…lol  Yes, it was still hot as heck, but anything to see a smile on her little face.

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Just Keep Swimming

Della is back in swim class and I must say, she is doing great for not being in the pool the whole winter and spring.  Since it’s almost 100 degrees, in NC right now, it felt really good to spend some time in the water.  The local pool is closed, so unless we go to the beach, we won’t get in any swimming other than classes.

She’s grown so much between her last year swim pics (the last 3) and this year.

Facing Her Fear of the Big Slide

For some reason, Della decided Sundays are not a good day to sleep in.  Where she got this crazy idea, I have no freakin’ clue.  So, since we were up, I decided to take her out to a mommy and me breakfast at Bob Evans.  I had pancakes and she had broccoli (she’s a cheap date).

We’ve been trying to get to the park all week but it has been HOT the whole week.  I’m talking upper 90s near 100s.  Not a fun time to be at the park. Since we had an early breakfast, Della decided she want to go play on the slides.

Now, we usually go to the kiddie playground not far from the house.  Sunday she decided she wanted to conquer the big slide.  It took her a while to get there.  She slide down all the small slides first.  She even got me to slide a couple of times.  Then, after about 3o minutes, she decided to face her fears.  She climbed the steps, sat down, and held on for dear life.   The first time, I could tell she was scared because she came down in slow motion…lol   She was holding on so tight she could barely slide.  After the initial shock wore off, she got back up and tried it again.  This time it was the real deal.  She came down like a champ.  I was so proud of her.  I don’t think we will be going to the kiddie playground anymore.

 

Each Step is Worth Celebrating

Sometimes, we need to look at life through the eyes of the caterpillar and not the butterfly.

It’s the end of the school year and kids are graduating and moving on to bigger and sometimes scarier things.  This could be transitioning from kindergarten, middle school, or high school.  Or, it could be our littlest ones leaving daycare to join the world of the big kids.

I was talking with the VP, of my department, yesterday, and he was telling me that his daughter is graduating from preschool on Friday.  I asked was he going and he said no because he was busy and her mom would be there.  Now, we talk often about our kids and their accomplishments, so I know how close he is to his daughter.  I told him he should make time to go (preschool is only 15 minutes away).  He said it was only preschool graduation and it didn’t really matter.  I told him, to him it’s only preschool and not a big deal, but to her, it’s a major step into life.  She’s no longer a baby, toddler or preschooler.  Now, she’s a big girl going into new uncharted territory. She’s no longer a caterpillar.

As adults, sometimes, we forget how important these milestones are to kids.  We forget how excited we were to finally go to school, with the big kids, or move on into adulthood. We don’t remember the excitement we felt, seeing our parents and other family cheering us on, at Awards Day or graduation. We have forgotten how proud we were to have those steps acknowledged.

Look at it this way, in your adult life or career, you want your hard work and accomplishments to be acknowledged.  You want to be rewarded for all the dedication and effort you put into a job, project, or advanced degree.  You want others to share those moments with you, because, to you, they are important.  For our kids, it’s the same thing.  They may not be getting paid, but they are getting a promotion and recognition for their hard work and dedication.  Shouldn’t we be there to cheer them on, and hopefully, with a loving and supportive environment, they will become butterflies!