Friday, May 25, 2012

Sock Curls-No heat!

So not too long ago we tried the whole 'Sock Bun Curl' thing on Maddie. It worked okay...if I wanted her hair to be in a pony tail with pretty loose curls, but for her hair down? Didn't work. There wasn't enough curl around her face because the hair was pulled up during the process.
So, I found another method via the incredible Pinterest and discovered the most amazing blog EVER! Cute Girls Hairstyles. Seriously, I will be visiting her hair a LOT in my future. So, using THIS tutorial for Sock curls I did it on both my girls. I did a few things different than the video though. My girls had just taken baths, but their hair was a bit damp, so I didn't need to wet their hair. I also had to use 5 socks for Mackenzie's hair because that child has the thickest hair ever.
Okay, onto the pictures!! Let's do Mackenzie's first...

After I divided her hair up into 5 sections: One on the top of the head, one in the back and one in the bottom then both sides. 

How it looked from the front: The flash was blinding 

And when she woke up in the morning, everything had shifted a bit...but nothing fell out and she said she didn't feel a thing! (And she is a crazy sleeper)

After we took out the socks, turned her hair over and loosened up the hair at the scalp only...not through the entire hair strand, your curls will loosen up too much that way. 

 How we styled it for the day:

And then a cute, sleepy smile to finish it out.

And now, onto Maddie. Once again, flash was killer, but here's the front view...

And here's the back. I had to use 4 socks on her hair. It's thick, but fine as well.

And this is what it looked like when she woke up in the morning:

This is her head actually turned over during the loosening up process, check out those curls!!

And when she flipped her hair back up:

And this is how we styled it for the day:

It looked beautiful, and as you can tell she was very pleased!
 Curls galore!
And there you have it! Watch the video, check out the pics and try it! If you try it, let me know, I'd love to see how yours came out! My girls loved this and I got asked by numerous people on how we did this. So easy, have to try this!


Tuesday, May 22, 2012

And then there was us

Howard and I are doing well. We weather through the storms as needed and are joyous when the water has a rare calm moment. Mackenzie says we orbit each other and how that might be true, the constant flow of life sometimes keeps our eyes on other things instead of each other, that's true for any couple but that certainly doesn't mean that our relationship isn't good. It is good, and healthy, I believe.
Howard is doing well at work, as he always does. He got a raise and a great evaluation on his birthday (April 18th). Work can be a timing challenge if he has too much/too spread out of a route but that is basically the extent of it. Howard is one of those people who thrives on challenge and enjoys it immensely. He loves pressure, work wise...keeps him on his toes and makes him focus. He has never gotten that from this job, but in this economy he has a decent paying job where he is home every night (as opposed to a long haul truck driver where he is home every three weeks) and he's very good at it. Well, what's the problem? Howard graduated College one year ago and he has yet to use his degree for anything other than a wall decoration. He got a degree in business not because he just wanted a degree but because he generally loves business. He wants to be at the root of the business and help it run smoothly. He has been with this company for two and a half years and in those years he successfully graduated College and has applied for other positions within the company to try to move up and use his skills, ideas and knowledge but has yet to have any movement other than driving seniority. Over the years, he has had many talks with the President of the company, whom he trusts and truly likes as a person and a boss. Most of those talks had to do with productivity in some way and ways that Howard thinks that things can run more smoothly. The man has spent countless hours even typing these things out and giving it to the upper management. Some changes of his were implemented, but no one had the initiative that Howard had to follow them through and of course, Howard got no credit. Having so much passion and knowledge in this field it is very hard for him to sit back and watch his bosses have to deal with problems that he feels  he could easily fix. He has so much drive but no where to put it and it is frustrating him. Badly. He is trapped in a bubble and can't get out and he fears the only way to get out is to leave the company, but he doesn't want to, he loves this company. Never the less, he has applied for other jobs, but doesn't want one like he has now. Trying to find a management position has not been easy (obviously, or he'd already be in one). He still has hope that his current company will realize his potential...that's not accurate...they do realize it...they have just yet to utilize it. He yearns for that and I know he prays for them to snap to attention before he finds another company who will.
Oh, me. Geez. Well, at the end of February I started a journal. I needed an outlet for my feelings and issues and also a place where I could visualize and brainstorm. My thought process is so erratic at times, being pulled in so many directions I needed a place to focus on it, so out came the journal. I have written every day. Writing not just my feelings and issues but marking things done or not done and keeping track of my health and general well being on top of keeping track of my weight loss. Millions of people make New Year Resolutions to lose weight, be healthy, ect. I refused this year, having done it every year. I just said I wanted to turn myself around this year, go back to being me...finding me. One of those is shedding a lot of unhealthy weight that has been on my body for years. I can never recall a time where I wasn't overweight...ever. As of January I am at my highest weight ever, having daily anxiety attacks, crying all the time, constantly feeling just terrible. My thyroid was crazy, my blood sugar and blood pressure were erratic. And then it hit me. I was about to turn 28 years old and I have no idea who I am anymore but I know that my children need husband needs me...I want to grow old with my husband...I have got to do something. So, I quit my vices...coke a cola and fast food. I have a deep, disgusting love for both. Then, I cut my portion sizes and started making better choices in what I was eating. Generally I cut down to about 1000-1,500 calories per day as opposed to about 4000 a day. I started to get more energy, my blood sugar and blood pressure regulated themselves. My depression and anxiety that literally ruled my every waking moment one day just...didn't. I would like to say that I started all of this on January 1st...and I did in part but really I dedicated myself to it on March 14th...during spring break where I was just fed up with myself. Since I started I have lost 44 pounds. I am very proud of every one of those pounds. The past three weeks I haven't lost anything...I haven't gained either. I am at a plateau and know I need to leap off of it by changing things up. I need to be more diligent on my calorie in take and I need more to exercise, and I need help. Exercise at home is not an option because frankly I can find  other things I need to be doing like housework, or making a kid lunch, or doing laundry...something...excuses. Walking has been what I have been doing but with the increasing heat and my intolerance to the heat and to the sun it is literally like hell on Earth for me. So, by considering what all they have to offer as a family we decided to join the local YMCA. However, with our finances we can't afford the membership cost so we had to apply for their financial aid program in hope we could get a discounted membership rate. We applied for it on Friday, May 11th and still haven't heard a word from them, Howard is going to call them tomorrow if we haven't heard from them by then. At the end of April I found out about a program through the county that helps low income adults go to college and choose from a wide variety of high demand careers and the county organization will pay for it. For college...I might be able to go to college, and they would pay for it! I am ecstatic! On June 5th is an orientation to find out about the program and set up a testing date (they need to make sure you can academically handle college) to see if I can get into the program. I am petrified and excited. School is hard, especially with my lifestyle but I want this and need this so bad.
I am so hopeful, about so many things going on right now and that is a far cry of how 2012 started for me.


Saturday, May 19, 2012

My sunshine(s)

I am not in a place where I want can post about all the positive things going on in my life, and I do know and realize that there are a lot of those. The negative is just overwhelming me at the moment, which is generally all my fault. The overwhelming part, not the negative, that's not all my fault, lol. So, lets just go with the edition.
The kids are good. 
Parker is having Daddy issues. As of late, as much as a Mommy's Boy he is, he is all about the Daddy. Copying him, following him, crying when he leaves him. It's adorable and ridiculous at the same time.  He is actually having issues when any of our family leaves and he is left without them, doesn't matter who it is. He is so unbelievably tall and is becoming more and more of a little man every day. He got his first big boy hair cut last week. I can have long conversations with this toddler and he understands every word as opposed to zoning out within the first few words like he did a few months ago or like his tween age sister does to me now. He is very interested in potty training, and school ends in 2 we're starting then. I'm excited, and I know he is too! We are working on creating a better sleeping arrangement for him because the one he has is not working for him or for me, but it is really slow going. Lots of deterrents, but meh...
Maddie really loves school but has been facing some issues with exclusion from friends that I did not expect at this age, it kinda blows my mind (and breaks my heart) how this can happen with Pre-K age students. She is a very tenderhearted child with such personality. She has had a lot of injuries lately. Issues with her pierced ears have cleaned up but she took a large fall at the beginning of March that she still has the scar and pink tissue from in mid May. She also keeps popping up with these weird bruises and one large bite that she got while swimming (we think) about 2 weeks ago on her cheek that is still not healed, it's very puzzling. She has been sewing her oats and pushing her boundaries lately, but it's nothing that isn't normal for her age. She has got  her letter sounds down and can write like no ones business. I heard her sound out an entire book the other day (granted, it was a 4 page board book, but darn it, she did it)! She is very excited for Kindergarten next year and hopefully joining a dance class (she wants ballet and tap) and T-Ball in the fall. 
Mackenzie is doing phenomenal in school. Since state testing for her began in 3rd grade she has been having issues passing said testing, she always chokes and feels rushed. Well, this year with the much debated against STAAR test she feels that she did very well. Plus, on the End of the Year 5th Grade assessments, she passed, with very good marks. Plus she brought her grades up this last term so high, some over 10 points earning her a spot on the honor roll. She is going to finish out Elementary School on a very high note and I could not be prouder of her. She has had a lot of friendship issues. Lots of little girls becoming tweens and getting more cliquey and friendships ending, growing, changing...she is not sure how to handle it. The general consensus has been for her to have utter and complete meltdowns of misery because she doesn't understand how these girls that have been her friends for years can all the sudden not want to be her friend anymore. Mackenzie loves so much and with her whole heart and these changes she is just having a hard time wrapping her head and heart around. We have spent much of the past 3 months watching our daughter mourn for the friendships that she no longer has and doesn't understand why. It's effing heartbreaking to watch. Most of the time I just hold her and cry with her. She is having a lot of self image issues. Being so different from the majority is hard for her. Mackenzie turned 11 on March 21st and she is 5'6'' and overweight. Both of these bother her so much and I can totally understand her feelings because I experienced the exact same issues. She is trying to get healthy, making good choices, but it's a slow going process. She is both elated and filled with anxiety about middle school. Excited for the things that it will bring but petrified that she won't fit in and meeting all the new people. She rolls her eyes most of the time when I speak and everything's a battle. I have to explain myself to death with her and she always has something to say about everything I say. It's exhausting, lol. 

My kids are amazing and bring me constant frustration joy. I am very lucky to have them, and every moment with them and I realize that. Maybe not when I am at my worst, but I am working on it. Overall my children are happy and healthy and I cannot imagine a life or a future without them in it. I love them so deeply and pray every night that I would appreciate the small stuff more, even if it is least I have it.