Sunday, March 1, 2015

2015 Good Intentions Part 1

Until this year I have set goals for myself as a New Year's Resolution. Most years I fail miserably and then feel bad for not doing what I had planned.

Last year I did manage to accomplish 2 of  my goals, and all the others were forgotten or just huge failures. I took a Photography Class and I got on a Design Team, my DREAM Design Team.

So even though I did manage to reach some goals last year I decided to try something a little different this year. I did not set a New Year's Resolutions, I did not make any goals.

Instead, I am going to work on a list of Good Intentions. One per month. With no "goals" to reach. I am going to work on creating habits that will last past my "deadline", each one building on the ones before  to ultimately create a calmer, happier, more organized home life, an all together healthier family, and yes, maybe even drop a few pounds. I have not and will not set a weight loss goal, I will not diet. I will not even weigh myself.  But I think each habit over the next 10 months will result in some physical changes as well. (I will be interested to see what my weight is in 6 months when I go in for my next check-up)

I have a list of things I am thinking of using as my Good Intentions, but I won't really decide which is next until I am reaching the end of the previous month.

In February my Good Intention was to wake up and go to bed earlier. It wasn't easy, there were lots of nights where I was up until 2 am, lots of mornings when I turned my alarm off and went back to sleep. But after some time it got easier. They say it takes 15 days to make something a habit. For the past 3 weeks I have been getting up a 5:30 am and for the past 2 weeks I have been in bed by 10:30 pm. It has made my days so much easier. Yesterday and Today I actually woke up a few minutes before my alarm.

I'd say Habit Formed.

I also managed to do something amazing last month. I was able to stop drinking soda. It has been almost 4 weeks since I've had any, my cravings are gone, I finally did it. People would laugh when I would say I was addicted, but I really think I was. I tried to stop drinking Soda for years and could never do it. I would get physically ill and moody when I didn't have it. I could easily drink a 2 liter in one day and still want more. It was disgusting. And it took the help of a doctor and medication to break the habit. And I feel so much better for it.

My Good Intention for March is to drink 8 glasses of water a day. I am NOT a water drinker, but I bet you by the end of the month I will be. And it's not "statting today I have to drink 8 glasses of water or I fail". Maybe I'll only have 3 today, or maybe just 1. That's ok, it's a start. It will get easier, just like waking up at 5:30 got easier.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Little Man Got His First Belt!

My son started Karate and to our relief he is really enjoying it. We've had a rough time these last few months so finding something that he really enjoys is so great. When he came home on Friday he was so excited to show EVERYONE that he got his first belt, his white belt.

I wanted him to know that we were proud of him and that we were excited about his belt too, so I made him a little card.

I think he liked it because he had a pretty big smile on his face when he opened and I got a hug after he read the inside. 

The image is from the Work and Play Collection 7 by Polkadoodles. The paper with the Karate Boy on it comes in the collection too. I love that all of these collections come with a huge selection of digital papers. 

I colored the image with my Spectrum Noir markers and printed out the sentiment to match the background papers. The little silver stars were leftover from a vinyl project I did a few days ago. 

I plan to make Zach a card with this image every time he advances to the next belt color. Someday he will have a nice card collection to go with all of his belts! 

Thanks for visiting! Have a great day! 

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

So What's Up?

Hi there.

It's been quite some time since I actually wrote a post. Things were rough here for a while. I didn't really want to talk about it. I just made stuff and did the best I could to take care of kids. I felt like I had no idea what I was doing,

I felt like a failure.

I can now see I didn't fail. I was just way out of my comfort zone. WAY WAY out. It was a whole new territory for us and I had no idea where we were going or how we were going to get there.

We're still not there, I don't know if we every will be, but at least the future looks normal and bright again.

I guess I should explain what happened.

We knew for quite some time that Sophie (one of the twins) and Zach (our oldest) were not quite like all the other kids. They had quirks. They had huge tantrums, meltdowns that could go on for hours, and I mean hours. There was little eye contact at times. Zach could talk forever about the tiniest little detail of something that interested him. Sarcasm was totally lost on them. Things either were or they weren't, It was right or it was wrong, no maybe, no sort of. Wrong. Right. Change was difficult. A tiny change in plans or the day could ruin everything.

It was hard.

I had a pretty good idea what was happening, but we were in denial. "Maybe it's just a phase" become a common saying in our house.

Deep down we knew it wasn't just a phase.

So we made appointments with the doctors. The kids were evaluated, it took quite some time to get the official diagnosis. I sat in the doctor's office holding Sophie's hand (to comfort me, she was occupied with staring at the timer on the table as she did at every visit).

"Sophie has Autism."

And just like that everything changed, My feet fell out from under me and I had no idea what to do next.

We were given referrals to doctors, schools, therapists, etc. I must have made a hundred phone calls that first week. It got us no where.

Sophie's doctor was really helpful with giving us guidance for dealing with her tantrums, making her feel more comfortable and relaxed, what to do when she shut-down, how to get on a schedule, things like that. It was hard, we basically had to change the way we did everything and we were not good at it. We messed up, a lot. We still mess up, a lot. But it's getting easier.

And it's getting harder.

We know what to do in situations that baffled us before, so that makes things easier.

Sophie is losing some of her speech, that makes things harder. She will go whole days without looking at me or talking to me. That is so hard. But I just have to try to understand. But I don't, I really don't understand how my sweet little girl could have changed so much so quickly. Maybe we're not meant to understand.

I know my little sweetie is still there, on her good days she is so silly and loving. But the good days are always followed by more bad days.

A few weeks after Sophie's diagnosis we got Zach's. I was expecting Asperger's but I guess that's not a diagnosis anymore. It all falls on the ASD Spectrum. But Zach was about 1 criteria short of falling on the Spectrum.

His diagnosis: ADHD and PDD-NOS.

Like Sophie we were given doctor's and therapists to call, we did find him a good OT. The school offered zero help. His grades are suffering and we are lost as what to do about it. He is a smart, smart boy. He has trouble with focus and it's affecting him. I don't like that. We do what we can for him at home, but it never feels like enough (again that word FAIL comes to mind). We continue to fight for him and we'll do whatever it takes to get him back on track.

It's going to be a long road, but I know now that we can do it. There will still be days when I feel like I can't do it, but I'll do it anyway. Because they are my kids and I would do anything for them.

Bugaboo New Release

Hey everyone I have a super cute new image from Bugaboo Stamps to share with you today! The image is called Scene It Cow Trio, and I had so much fun coloring it up. My kids really like this one too.  

I especially love the wonky eyes on the cow on the far right. 

I know quite a few people who will be "mooo-ving" soon so I made a moving day card - yes, I forgot the second quotation marks, I'm not perfect ya know? I will get it fixed, probably, maybe...

I colored the image with my Spectrum Noirs and added some simple patterned papers ( I love these textured polka dot ones I got at JoAnn's) and a ribbon from my Stampin' Up days. 

Check out the Catch the Bug blog for more projects featuring this trio and visit the Bugaboo Stamps store to see all of this week's new releases. 

Have a great day!