I CAN’T BE THE ONLY PARENT WHO FORGOT TO MOVE THE ELF!

As a mother, I don’t need one more thing to remember, not one more thing on my list to do. Whoever started this Elf on the Shelf thing, I’d like to strangle him. Let’s just get real, sometimes when my kid falls asleep… I fall asleep too because I’m completely exhausted. I want to run away from responsibility just like everybody else. 

Holidays are those things that I feel like I have to do because my mother loves them so much but it’s not the thing that I really enjoy doing.  Yes, my house is decorated. Yes, my Christmas trees are up (4 of them). Yes, I have a reindeer and angels and trinkets and Santa Claus everywhere.  My kid knows the truth, she figured it out when she was three that Santa Claus is not real.  She said, “There is NO way he gets from Uncle Chris house in Thailand, all the way to Uncle Aves house in Singapore, then to me in the USA all on the same night. It’s not possible, Mommy!” 

I’ve never tried to convince her otherwise, I giggled and told her don’t tell other children. She pinky promised but she happens to enjoy all the shenanigans. 

This Elf on the Shelf thing is becoming a pain in my butt. Let me let you into my home. My daughter wakes up bright and early at the crack of dawn happy and the first thing she does is search the house for the damn elf. My heart dropped because I realized I fell asleep! Damn, the elf was going to be in the same place it was last night not because my kid was bad yesterday, because I simply forgot and fell asleep. 

She called my mom to tell her the elf didn’t move. Thank God, I have an awesome mother who loves to play all the little elf games. We left to go grocery shopping and what do you know…when we came back the elf had moved! At first, I was confused but then I giggled. 

Thanks, Mom. I might be 44 but you’re still my hero and you’re still rescuing me! To all parents out there who have also bought their children an elf, good luck. I hope you can remember that one more thing that’s on your list until Christmas! 

TRAVELING WITH CHILDREN IS ALWAYS AN INTERESTING ADVENTURE!

I used to have anxiety about traveling with my daughter but now I must say she has become my little road dog! Pausing to take deep breaths and meditation has always helped tremendously. I travel a lot for work and keep her in toe. I have always preferred taking the earliest flight out. Yes, that means very early mornings and often we are on our way to the airport while it’s still dark outside. She ends up being all sleepy on the flight and even when she doesn’t fall asleep, she’s mellow. When she’s able to get a nap in by the time we land, she’s ready to go. As long as we are traveling in the states, the whole day is not lost due to traveling. So, she is ready to hit the ground running.

I have been blessed with a child who loves to travel. Watching her gain her confidence while traveling has become an amazing experience for me. She loves pulling out her own ID, (Even though it’s not needed yet, she feels like she’s a big girl.) holding her own boarding pass and pulling her roller bag all by herself was the new thing on our latest trip. Even checking the scale to make sure her bag wasn’t overweight. Pulling out her iPad and putting it in a bin at security. I know these may sound like little things but she’s 5 years old already knowing how to basically get around an airport by herself. 

😂

This summer my mother started letting her order room service by herself, so this trip back to California she didn’t bother to tell you she was hungry for breakfast, she would go get out the menu and order her breakfast herself! Hahaahah, at 5 years old she’s even figured out she could buy things in the hotel and tell them to charge it to the room  LOL! 😂Thank God my mom didn’t allow her to do that while I was at work. I have a feeling strawberry shortcake ice creams from the gift shop would have been her everyday thing. I’ve noticed no matter how many toys she is given, she seems to talk about her experiences more than her things. While toys are nice, the gift of traveling and experiencing new things seems to be her favorite. Adventure over material…

She has definitely inherited that from me!

EXPERIENCES ARE MORE IMPORTANT THAN THINGS

I live in the most incredible town. They always throw these “Events” for children in the neighborhood. I took my daughter to see Curious George for free at a book reading event. It was the cutest thing ever. Moving from California has groomed me to be everywhere early and thank God because when I say my town comes out to support, that is an understatement! My daughter and I were sitting in front of the stage and she was eating a blueberry muffin. All of a sudden, it turned 10 a.m.  I turned around and looked and out of nowhere there were 100 children behind us.  In no time, my baby girl had made friends with the boy on her left and the girl on her right. They were happily sitting there waiting. Watching her anticipation reminded me how important it is that children get experiences. In fact, I realize experience is more important than “things”. (She remembers the experiences and loves to talk about them.) 

With it being the last quarter of the year, I am going to remember this for Christmas time and try to figure out how to wrap up experiences instead of just gifts.

*Side note as beautiful as the event was, during the last book reading 3 kids approached the stage standing, screaming, and being unruly. A mother came to pull them back twice but wasn’t successful. Now they didn’t block my daughter’s vision because I told them to move but other children were blocked. They refused to sit down or be quiet, as not just me, but other parents in the front suggested! Now, none of us know what the last book was about, thanks to them. Even Curious George was curious about where their mother went. I need to know.

Momma, what were you thinking and why can’t you control your seeds? They were all under 5. The rest of us shouldn’t be punished because you gave up on parenting.

If nothing else at the end of the event, I was reminded my own child may be loud at times, but she is NOT bad, inconsiderate or rude! So, it brought me back to full circle appreciation. Thank you to my little city for all the cute things you put together for the youth! 

BEDTIME STORIES

Tonight, our bedtime stories were all about powerful, beautiful girls. My daughter’s first pick is a book called, Rad Girl Revolution. It features inspiring stories and gorgeous photographs of real girls in 30 different careers where women are often underrepresented. The book is beautiful, powerful and inspiring and teaches young girls to have courage. It was well thought out and is beautifully diverse. Every girl is able to see themselves in this book. The best part about Rad Girl Revolution is I homeschool and they have a great book unit that goes along with it. Thank you, Sharita Manickam & Jennifer Elliot Bruno, this book is truly magical! If you have a daughter, please check out this Girl Power Pack Impressive Book, says my Lil Cherie! 

The book is available on Amazon now

SHE WILL ALWAYS LOVE YOU, STRAWBERRY

It was a sad day in our house today! My little girl and I walked to the park and had a great time. She saw beautiful butterflies and talked about how she loved nature. When we got home, she went to feed her fish. First, she fed Molly then went to Strawberry. Strawberry was at the bottom of her bowl not moving. My heart skipped a beat. She started screaming into the bowl. Strawberry was dead! As a parent, I could either take this time to talk about the facts of life or lie. I picked the hard choice. I looked in the bowl and said Strawberry is dead. There was no easy was to say it. I held her and let her cry…. she screamed and cried. It broke my heart. She was hysterical and I was heartbroken for her knowing unfortunately, it was the first of many heartbreaks. 

When she settled down, I asked her if she wanted me to flush him or bury him. She wanted to bury him. So, we picked a bush she could see through her bedroom window. I dug a hole and put Strawberry in. She wanted to cover him, so I handed her my little hand shovel and let her. I said a prayer and she said, “Amen.” 

She couldn’t concentrate on school, didn’t want to go to Taekwondo. When she didn’t stop crying and didn’t want to go to Taekwondo, that’s when it came to me this was just gonna be a hard day. So, we snuggled in bed and talked. I asked her to tell me how she felt, I allowed her to talk and cry. We turned on YouTube and watched a couple of videos about children grieving over their pets, so she knew she was not alone. We snuggled and talked. I know it’s a long road ahead, I explained to her the pain will always be there but will dissipate over time. 

Good luck to parents since explaining death and grieving to little ones is never easy. There are many wonderful books I read to her about children whose pets have passed away.  One of my favorites was Up in Heaven by Emma Chichester Clark.

Strawberry 

July 21, 2019- October 15, 2019

BOOKS ARE TRULY MAGICAL

I just read a post by our homeschool advisor, Andrea. It said if you read a book to your child everyday by the time they are 5 years old, they would have read 1,825 books by the age of 5. I wish I would have kept count! My daughter has a love affair with books. In fact, one of her favorite hiding places is in a hallway linen closet that I have turned into her personal library. LOL. The comforter bags at the bottom have become her couches that she lines up and lays on as she reads, LOL. From a very early age, she has had an infatuation with getting lost in stories. She reads them, then plays them out, as if she is those characters.

Books are truly magical when you help your child find the magic in them. Parents that read have children that read. It’s really that simple. There’s no better way to broaden their vocabulary and tantalize young imaginations. 

My daughter surprised us when she started reading at 2 years old. Now at 5, I still read to her daily and point out the words as I am reading, which helps her read along and sound words out with me. So, every day she’s getting at least 2 books in. 1 book with me and 1 book she reads on her own. 

Books do get expensive, so the library is one of our best friends. I admit we spend hours in Barnes and Noble where we read many books for free and end up buying one we didn’t read while sitting there. Books can take you anywhere you want to be! 

Happy Travels!

TOURNAMENT OF CHAMPIONS

We woke up at 7 o’clock in the morning. She jumped in the shower, brushed her teeth and got ready. Packed herself an apple, blueberry muffins and grabbed water. We got in the car. She was one of the first children to check in at her Taekwondo tournament.  She went down on the floor, looked at where the judges were sitting and immediately started practicing. She came back, went to the potty, put on her uniform, went back on the floor and practiced again. They called all the participants to ring number five so that they could go over the rules with them. I cannot sit with her but was comforted by the older children from her school surrounding her. Her master’s son was right next to her so that eased my mind since she loves him. I saw her lift her hand and ask a question. I saw the master answer her back, but I could not hear what she asked. My eyes started to swell but with tears… my mother looked at me and said, “Don’t worry she’s going to be OK.”

I’ve shared with you guys before that I suffer from anxiety. I just didn’t want my little girl to be disappointed in herself. After they read the rules, she came back and sat in my lap. She was happy and confident. I asked her, “Do you want to rehearse again?” She looked at me and said, “No, Mom, I’m good. I got this”.

A few minutes later, the lady with the microphone said, “Five and under to ring number five. My family got up and we moved to ring number five. We were right ring side in the front. They called her to come line up and my heart started pounding almost out of my chest… she was cool, calm and collected. She looked at me and gave me the thumbs up when she saw who she was competing against.

It was my little girl and three boys. There’s no way that one of those boys was five years old, he had to be eight easy. My daughter is tall for her age, but he was huge. Two seconds into the competition starting, my mind was eased. She had it in the bag and they could not hold her or outperform her. They gave her scores and all we heard was 9.9, 9.9, 9.9!  It’s the highest score you can get. Not only did she win a medal, she won a grand champion belt and a trophy bigger than her last trophy. Our baby brought it home. Grandma who was cool as a cucumber busted out crying.  She was so proud, trying to play it cool at first.

What an amazing way to spend our weekend. I’m telling you; Taekwondo is taking my baby to new heights. I am so excited to see where her future is going to go. She is one belt away from her black belt.  I know she’s going to get it. We will be sitting there, screaming right in the front all the way through her ride called life. I have never been so proud! Quoting her father, she is in Beast Mode!

24- Hour Handcuffed Challenge

I don’t do social media challenges, but I am all for challenges that make my child happy.

Be careful what you agree to. So, my daughter watches these YouTube shows, like probably many of the other children out there. She got this crazy idea that it would be fun to be handcuffed me for 24 hours. Stupidly, I told my daughter, “Fine with me, we can be handcuffed for 24 hours but you have to win a trophy at your Taekwondo tournament.

Not only did she win a trophy, she won a belt and a medal. So as soon as we left the competition, I drove to the dollar store. She was so excited to get home and handcuff herself to me.  At first, yes, it was an inconvenience. I couldn’t really use my phone. I was trying to cook dinner and guess who was attached to me. But then I gave myself a reality check how cool is it that my five-year-old wants to be handcuffed to me for 24 hours. I will never get this time back in her life. Pretty soon, she’ll be off with her friends and probably wanting very little to do with me. So, I looked down at her and smiled, thankful for this moment. In the end, it is our duty as parents to make great childhood memories with our children though she never sat still so that 24 hours was very challenging for me. I made the best out of it for her so it’ll always be something positive that she can remember. I know I’m thankful 24 hours is over. I’m sure, it’s something both of us will look back on and giggle.

I love my baby girl.

YES, I COOK BUT I DON’T ENJOY IT!

Being a mother, it’s my duty to make sure my child eats and eats well. So, I cook but it doesn’t mean I enjoy it. Yes, I have a beautiful kitchen but it’s not my favorite room to spend time in. See I am used to working long hours, eating whatever has been provided and had no problem spending most of my money ordering takeout at the Cheesecake Factory, lol!

3 times a day 7 days a week, I am tryna think of things to feed my mini me. I know it’s every mom’s favorite thing to do right….wrong! I notice my weeks go by better when I meal prep and think ahead! I have a 5-year-old so keeping it simple is always a plus. I’m going through a phase where I am fresh out of ideas about what to cook. I’m on the hunt for some yummy things that are also healthy. Calling all Moms help me out, please share. What are you cooking tonight?

FUN FOOD

My daughter brought it to my attention that I no longer make her fun food! She was right, she’s only 5 so food should still be fun! Only problem is she now eats a lot so the cute little plates I used to make her would now be an appetizer. I had just brought all of our Halloween decorations inside from the garage, so I figured what better time than now to make some spooky pancakes! Lol, look I’m no food designer and they aren’t Pinterest worthy but the great thing about kids is they aren’t judgmental. They enjoy and appreciate the effort. She giggled with every bite! Keep your kid’s food fun! It’s a great way to make memories…