Sortafunnylady

My quirky views on life, love and parenthood!

Archive for the tag “kids”

Weight Watchers


Well I finally broke down, again. I joined Weight Watchers online. It has been about a year and a half since I last joined. I have this problem that I think I can do it by myself. But, as usual I let life get the better of me and start eating to much and not being active enough. Which then causes me to gain weight. What a pain!

So I joined last Wednesday (and I had to enter my starting weight), and I have worked to keep myself at or under my points. Sunday was my first official weigh in. Guess what… I lost  7 pounds. Now obviously this is uncommon but I figure it’s a start. I am hoping to loose about a 1 pound a week which is safe.  This is going to be a long road but it will be worth it. I have just decided to embrace it, now it would be great if I could just get ride of this cold!

Not having to make a special meal for myself but include the whole family in this endeavor has been helping me keep to my plan. Plus I told the kids about the changes so they have been ‘reminding me’ lol. On Friday we had grilled veggies and meat which was delicious! We all loved it! We even had dessert. I made grilled peaches with Cool Whip. It was sweet, filling and only 2 points!

There is a Recipe of the Day and it has been inspiring! It has helped me take normal things I would make and how to tweak them so they aren’t so heavy.

I don’t want to go to a meeting and ‘share’ but I want everything at my finger tips so it is easy for me. That way if I want to check it anytime of day it is there. There is also a community page so there are challenges and information and blogs that help give you information and motivation. But it’s on my terms. So for all of you out there that are like me that don’t want to do the meetings but want better resources you might want to check it out.

For me keeping track of my points can be a pain but WW has a mobile app for my phone. So I can keep track of my points while I am out and about.

Planning is a critical part of keeping myself on the right track. I think about what I am going to have for my meal a head of time. That way I am not as tempted to take shortcuts that cost me points. If I plan everything out ahead of time I know how many points I am going to use and what will be left over. If you are lazy like me sometimes and the thought of cooking is revolting there are also Smart Ones in your grocers freezer that taste pretty good and you just have to microwave them. Plus on the box it tells you how many points it is.  I have also been working on tracking all the food I eat and try not to leave things out.

This is one step in the right direction! Come join me for the fun!

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Improve My Lifestyle


I thought I was doing the smart thing by working to get a desk job. Unfortunately my rear does not agree. Have you ever heard of the secretary spread? Well, I’ve got it and it’s not pretty. My doctor has informed me that I live a sedentary lifestyle. What’s that you might say? Well, there are lots of definitions out there but the main one is that I sit too much and I the things I like to do don’t require much movement.

My “sitting disease” has been linked to diabetes, heart disease, and premature death. So I am working on being more active. Now I’m not talking about running a marathon or scaling a mountain but goals are always a good thing. I am going to start with baby steps and work to build up my stamina.

Here are a few suggestions I am working on that I wanted to share:

Get NEAT (thermogenesis): Things that I can do in my seat at work. 10 minutes an hour this can include stretching, turning, and bending. The idea behind this activities is to raise your core temp and to burn calories.

Take Breaks: We all have obligations and activities that monopolize our time. However, taking a break every hour or so and getting up and moving around can be helpful.  Walking around or stretching for a few minutes can help re-energize the body.

If she can do it I can!

TV Watchers: I still enjoy watching TV but instead of just sitting on the couch I try to add time to stretch, use my stationary bike, do resistance exercises, and alternate with other activities that keep my body moving.

Parking: When I go to a store I park farther away. Ever little bit counts.

Going Up: It may take longer but, if you are able use the stairs rather than the elevator when you are in your doctors offices and other buildings you are doing errands in.

Communication: When at work many tend to use email, voice-mail, im, and so many other forms of communication that are preferred for our busy lives. Unfortunately we lose face to face human interaction and many of us just sit on our butts. So, the next time you need to talk to a colleague take a minute and go and talk to them. You get up, you move your body, and you get the opportunity to interact with someone else. The moments add up and make a difference.

Date Night: My husband and I like to go out for date night; however, most of the time it is going out to eat and then coming home and watching a movie or crashing. So we are working on mixing it up. Finding things that are less about food and more about just spending time together and still being active. Some things to try…go to a museum, a park, take a hike, go for a bike ride, or go dancing,  find activities in the community. Many times there is food but you’re not just sitting. Remember date night is about spending quality time with your partner and having fun.

Vacation: What do you like to do on vacation? Go camping, relax on a beach somewhere, or go to a spa? Well, for my family we enjoy camping to which can be pretty active. Other things we like to do is visit family, or go to the big city to see the sights. With a family fun and education is a big part of the draw for us. Do research ahead of time and you can find a ton of things to do no matter where you are headed. By the time your vacation is over you may need to go home just to rest! Now that’s the sign of a great vacation!

You can Do it!

Swimming: I have always enjoyed swimming but, I have not had a membership anywhere for a while. The house we just moved into has a pool, so for the first time in my life I don’t have to go anywhere to go swimming. The pool has been a lot of work but I have so enjoyed getting to go in whenever I feel like it. It’s not huge but the kids and I have had  lots of fun. It gets me in the sun for some needed vitamin D and the water provides a fun workout. Just playing with the kids can wear me out, my favorite time is doing laps when it is quite and I can hear the wind blow and the bird chirp. Swimming is a great way to get my body moving and it has a much lower impact on my joints. So for chubby girls like myself swimming is much more doable than running is. If you can handle getting into a swimsuit then you can do amazing things! Swimming is great for increasing your stamina and improving your cardiovascular system. Look at your local gyms, and community centers many of them have water aerobics and other water activities you can get involved in. Try it and let me know what you think!

New Habits: No matter where I am I am working on making new habits. This may include getting up early to exercise before I go to work. Even doing household chores is not a bad way to start just to get you moving. Taking breaks at work is focused on moving around and not just grabbing something to eat and drink. Being more active is helping me to set a better example for my kids. When I get home we go for a bike ride. Well, they go for a bike ride and I keep up by going walking. It it another way I am getting out of the house and making strides. Increasing your movement and watching what you eat can make a big impact on your life.

I’m not looking to get skinny I just want to be comfortable in my own body and be healthy!

Plus God willing I am baby bound.

Infertility…Are you affected?


Do you want to grow your family?

Do you want a baby so bad it hurts? I have wanted children for many years now. When I was young they told me I had endometriosis, then in my late teens and throughout my twenties I had three ovarian cysts that burst.  So over the years I have done research and what I gathered from doctors and journals and articles is that these problems can make me infertile.

In 2006 I was given a miracle. I met and married my husband who came with three children. So even though I didn’t bear them I have had the opportunity to be a mother. Over the last six years I have learned many things.  Now our youngest is 6 and is just finishing up kindergarten. Some days I swear she is 6 going on 16 but we deal with things as they come.

Recently I had to get a new OBGYN since mine had retired. My first visit was rather scary, I had found a lump in my breast. But after tests, and a biopsy they found that it was a fibroadenoma and not cancer. Now while I saw my new doctor I stated that I had previously been told that I could not get pregnant. She looked and me and said “…I don’t know about that, let’s talk, I deal with infertility regularly. So as the stress has subsided I have began thinking, it is possible that I could get pregnant? Is there hope? I had long been resigned to the fact that I would have no children of my own. Now don’t get me wrong I love the children that I have, and wouldn’t trade them for the world. But, I would like to add to our family.

So now I have become a little crazed at the idea of getting pregnant. So I went and talked to my regular doctor and made sure that there wasn’t anything I was taking that would hurt the baby.

Now the moment of truth came Monday I saw my OBGYN again. This time to specifically talk about getting pregnant! I’m so nervous I can’t even breath, oh that’s helpful! So she came in and we talked about my history and my husbands history. So now that the meeting is over I have lots of homework and I have to see her again in a couple months. So this is a first for me, but now each morning before I get out of bed I have to take my temperature, and then log it. Plus I have to go get one of those ovulation kits to see when I am ovulating. Did you know that there is like a two day window a month you can even get pregnant? Plus I have to send my husband in so he can have a semen analysis done. Oh, he is thrilled lol.

The hardest thing for me to hear was that because of my size I would be considered a  high risk pregnancy. So her first recommendation to me is to loose about 100 pounds. At that point I will just be obese not morbidly obese. Wow, I put on a brave face and said “OK, I can do that”. Then I walked out of the office in a bit of a daze. I was supposed to talk to my husband after the appointment but I couldn’t. I had to think through this first. My first thought was oh great I have failed again.  But as I took a moment and prayed I began to get alittle perspective. I am 34, I am able to move around and work and I can do this! Of course what do emotional eaters do when they are stressed and depressed and feel all alone. They eat! So I ate! Not my finest moment!

Last night as I waited for my husband to get home I made dinner. I made chicken divan, one of my favorite dishes. Lol, not the lowest calorie meal I could come up with. More like comfort food in a bowl.

At last my husband came home exhausted, hungry and not real talkative. So after a kiss and how was your day…I began to talk about my meeting with the doctor. My recap to him was ” I have lots of homework but I have to loose weight, right now I am a really high risk”. Now my husband who loves me no matter the size I am pauses and says “yeah, it probably is safer for you and the baby is you lost some weight”. I think at that moment I cringed a little inside. I knew he was right and I have been battling that all day, but if I want to do this I am going to have to push myself. So this is a test…how badly do I want a baby? Now the best thing about my conversation with my husband last night is that he agreed to loose weight with me. You are so much better with a support system than by yourself.

Now last night I felt sorry for myself and I ate to much and I pouted. But this morning it has been a different story. I woke up early, I stretched, I did twists and light movements this morning. Even though it was only for 20 minutes it is a start. This evening when I get home I will also get my buns on my stationary bike and ride. My plan is to exercise each day. It will take me awhile but I will reach my goal. My family has always said I can accomplish anything because I am so pig headed lol.

My second struggle is my eating habits. I love food and I have the ability to consume alot. So I am working at documenting my food and exercise at a site I enjoy. If you want to join and be my partner in loosing weight look me up username “asan4rd”. I figure we can all use the company and encouragement.

Now I know there are many who suffer from infertility but there is hope. If you have been like me and just let nature takes it course it may be time to find out more. Check with your OBGYN and ask what you can do to try and get pregnant. If your doctor feels that you are healthy enough for pregnancy you may want to find out more. It is important that we take care of ourselves first. Get on a prenatal vitamin, exercise regularly and above all else don’t forget to practice!

As I continue on my journey I will happily share my ups, downs, failures and struggles!

Summer Break… Are You Ready?


As the school year comes to a close I begin to think about the summer. Summer break always feels like it takes forever to get here and then when it does it goes by in a flash.

Between the sleep overs, picnics, BBQ’s, and camps some days it seems just as busy as the school year. So much for a break! So here are a few tips to keep you from going crazy and you kids from saying “I’m bored”.

Swap kids

As adults with kids if you don’t already, work at making friends with other adults that have children. This may be single parents or even other couples. But one thing as a parent is that we all need a break from time to time. So develop friendships (we all need those) and work with people who you trust to swap kids. This may be for an evening for a dinner out, or another family is just planning on having fun.

Free activities – local and regional activities

– Go for a hike

– Check out your local library

– Visit your local parks

– Go for a swim

– Play in your sprinkler

– Birdwatching

– Read

– Bike riding

– Take a tour – a variety of businesses have free tours that are fun

– Get involved in your church

– send your kids to vacation bible school in your area

– play board games or card games

– climb a tree

– go Geocaching

Low cost activities

– Go fishing

– Visit a museum

– Concerts in the park

– Work on art and craft projects

– Have a water balloon fight

– go to the beach

– paint ball

– visit a local university

– go roller skating or roller blading

– miniature golf

– go to a fair

– check out websites for your state

Coupons and Discounts

– check out Facebook for local businesses and activities

– visit websites for coupons

There are tons of things to do you just have to be proactive and get involved. So I encourage you to get into your community and start living this summer!

Touchy Subjects


Premarital sex is a touchy subject. Especially when you are a Christian, a parent, a wife, and you deal with the youth. I know that many parents wholeheartedly believe in abstinence, I agree it is very important. Growing up in a Christian home it was taught that you waited until you got married before you had sex. Unfortunately, for many parents if sex is a touchy subject, your children will not come to you when they have questions. This lack of communication causes your children to go look for answers elsewhere, or not at all. Being naive is so dangerous for our kids and doesn’t solve any problems.

So, I have a few suggestions to the parents of teenagers, boys and girls alike. I know that my kids are not at that age yet but I have already been asked questions from teens.

 Get over Yourself

I think that parents hate talking about sex because it makes them uncomfortable. Get Over It! You are not going to do anyone any good if you can’t face the fact that your baby is growing up. This is part of being a parent and it is your job to be the go to person. This topic is not about you, but you need to be willing to answer your child’s questions. Take it slow but spell things out.

Be Honest

Please do not use the birds and the bees. You need to use actual body parts by their names such as a vagina or penis. This is not a Johnson or other crude words to describe your body. If you don’t know the answer be honest about that too. We all have horror stories about how our friends, family and even parents told us what sex was. Like “when you eat a watermelon seed it grows a baby in your tummy”. Whatever the story is make sure that it is not absurd. Your children don’t usually understand metaphors and will take you literally. So be careful what you say. If your child approaches you and says they have questions, you may need to take a few moments to compose yourself in what you are going to tell them. Don’t dismiss them or avoid the conversation, it needs to happen! And please don’t leave it to our school system to educate your kids on sex.

Fess up if You made Mistakes

We know we’re not saints! Most of us have made mistakes in one way or another. Don’t try to hide it, you will eventually be found out. When your children learn that you lied to them, then understand that your credibility is shot. So if you made a mistake that’s ok. You don’t have to go into detail; but, don’t think you are going to hide it from your kids. We all want to protect our children from making the same mistakes that we did. Understand that when you can face the fact that you made mistakes, then when your kids do it it’s not quite so hard to forgive them.

Answer questions using medical terminology

Again, use medical terminology that is easy to understand. One suggestion to parents is do your research ahead of time. There are many books and sites out there that can help you talk to your kids about sex.

Tactics

Don’t try to use fear or guilt to try to keep your kids from having sex. I think it is important to educate our kids. What is God’s purpose for sex? What is the importance of sex? What is the importance of finding the right person? What is love? Open communication is so important. Now, I know this is difficult. Our kids treat us like we know nothing and act like they are not listening. Even when they don’t act like they are listening they are. It is your job to educate and talk to them, even if you have to say it a 100 times.

Protection

How do we protect our kids? We arm them. We arm them with knowledge and with the skills to handle life situations. If we treat them like babies then we are setting them up for failure.  When you say the words “No matter what, you can talk to me” it is your actions not your words that will make that statement true. So when crap happens if you tend to get mad first and start yelling I will tell you that your child will not come to you when they really mess up. So be prepared and you may need to start working on your own issues before you deal with your children.

Dating

In each household the matter of dating is different. If you want them to wait I understand that; however, you might want to let your kids have some input. Talk about options such as group dates and having friends over at your house. Just because you tell them NO doesn’t mean that they aren’t going to like someone. If you don’t give them an opportunity to talk, without you judging then, you are just going to be left out of the loop. You are going to make keeping secrets a must. Now doesn’t that seem like a recipe for disaster?

Listen

I know that as parents we have strong feelings and ideas about lots of stuff. Make sure that before you start going off on your soap box, you pause. Listen to what your child has to say. I would recommend that you have a one on one conversation and not do this in public. I would also suggest that you not try to use humor to lighten the mood. Sometimes it can come off really bad. Give your child an opportunity to talk to you about whatever is on their mind and really listen. Each child is different so what worked on one will not necessarily work on the next. As we learned in school “you have two ears and one mouth, so you need to listen twice as hard as you talk”.

 Forgive

When they make mistakes forgive them, and yourself. Our children will make decisions even after we have given them all the tools. I am not saying that I condone premarital sex, but I do realize that everyone makes mistakes and no matter how hurt we are our child is responsible to God for their decisions. We don’t have to understand why but they are still our children and it is our job to love them.

Communicate

Above all, keep the communication alive and flowing between you and your children. Do not be so set in your ways that they can’t come to you. Educate your child not only about sex, pregnancy and STD’s but also about people. Many young people do not fully understand that others will take advantage of their need for approval and love. They do not understand that there are those out there who know all the right things to say just to get them into bed. This is not only for the girls out there but also our boys.  You have to pick your battles but it is so important that we keep arming our kids so they can make good decisions even when we are not there.

Now I know that there are those out there who will disagree with my statements and that is OK. I still look forward to you comments.

A Moment In Time


This picture was taken many years ago. A snapshot in time! Two are now gone, two of the couples are no longer together and the youngest is now an adult.  Of the kids above there are more than 10 children between them.

Same family a few years later.

This is family, this is what happens as time goes by. For many years most of us did not even talk. There has been a rift between brother and sister. Division can happen so quickly and last for so long.

Recently, there has been a change. My Grandmother began to die a few months ago. Due to the situation a brother and sister began to reunite. Over many visits and many talks they have been able to see the changes in each other.  Many moments were spent reminiscing of their youth and family members that had been lost. It was wonderful to remember the good times!

Due to the passing of my Grandmother many of the family came together. We have grown up and grown older. Many of us now have families of our own. For another brief moment we came together. We all remembered the good times and had a chance to laugh as well as cry.

Over the last few weeks I have been pondering this situation. What caused the problem in the first place? Was it worth the impact it is has had on the family? No.

We have all admitted that we each share the blame. There is no point in going backwards! Instead, we are working on building our relationships today and for the future. Family is so important! Don’t squander it!

Those that have families often take it for granted that they will always be there. I am learning that this is not the case.  I know that although my Mom has forgiven and was ready to move on I still hung back. I was polite but nothing more. Through the passing of my Grandmother I had the opportunity to spend quality time with family I did not see for years. That was precious time. My entire family enjoyed it! We worked together, played together, and laughed together.

I am so looking forward to spending more time with them and continuing on the journey of reconciliation and forgiveness that is so important in building relationships.

Music for the Soul


When you listen to music throughout the day what does it talk about? Is there vulgar language, sex, drugs, but a good beat? Or is it slow and twangy and somehow you manage to loose your job, woman, and car all in the same song? For me I want good music and great lyrics that help me get through my day. It was a struggle for me to find that until I found a local station called Positive Life Radio (PLR).

I listen to PLR when I am in my car. Their music is a great mix that I enjoy and can sing along with. But most importantly it is uplifting and the whole family enjoys listening to it. If you don’t happen to live in the inland northwest then I would recommend listening to them live on the internet at PLR.org.

If you want music that is more edgy but still positive check out Air 1 Radio. They  have great music that reaches more teenagers, and young people who still like loud music!

One of the many things I like about these radio stations is that they provide great music to get me through the day. Not just entertainment to check out and not deal with life.

So if you are looking for more in your music check out Positive Life Radio and Air 1 Radio today!

Manners…Are they a dying art?


I understand that we live in a technology driven age; however, does that mean that Excuse me, Please, and Thank You have become null and void?

I think not. If anything they are more important! They can set you apart from others  too busy to say anything with their ear clued to their cell phone, talking to the air or texting. Some act as though it is us, the public, that has so rudely interrupted them and not the other way around.  We have to remember to not only live with friends and business contacts in the virtual world but also to live with the live versions, right in front of you.

So now that I am off my soap box about manners in the world let’s talk about manners with our kids and in our homes. Which translates to the manners we will use in public.

Do you have rules regarding manners in your home or do you leave that to our wonderful educational system like sex education? I know that my kids pick things up that I do not like such as dance moves, fashion advice, snotty noses, and lice. Do we really want to leave manners up to the outside world as well? So, it is our job as parents to set the standard, teach them and reward them for using their  manners.

Begin with picking out  few manners to focus on maybe please, thank you and excuse me. Or other items that irritate you to no end like putting the toilet seat down, shutting the bathroom door when you go to the bathroom or not picking your nose. Explain it to your kids, be an example to them, remind them, and reward them when they do use their manners!

My second step was setting the standard in my house and getting my husband on board as well. I have found that when I say Please and Thank You my kids pick up on it, it encourages them to use them as well. Before I enter their room I try to remember to  knock. These are little things that can demonstrate the importance of manners. This can also show your children how important they are to you. Manners are more likely to be used when you use them in your own daily life.  For example to all you Dad’s out there (Mom’s to) when you are in your sweatpants on a Saturday morning watching football and lazing around… Do you scratch your balls (ladies I know you don’t), or let one rip? If so do you even say excuse me or laugh and look for an atta boy?

If we are not being examples by using manners then we are instead demonstrating to our kids that manners are not important and how we treat each other is not important either. What kind of example are you? I know I fail but I pick myself backup and apologize and try again. Don’t forget to reward for manners used.

You don’t have to give them something like candy or a prize! Use positive reinforcement. Say “Good job son, I love hearing when you use good manners”. or “I’m impressed that you have started blowing your nose in the bathroom and not been picking it and wiping it on your clothes”.

I will say that manners like anything else takes time to ingrain on the brain. Don’t stop, have patience (I know that is difficult), and above all keep working on new manners and expand your arsenal of etiquette.

I would love to have you share what  your struggles, suggestions and questions are…

I look forward to reading your comments below.

Parenting: Parent or Friend?


In the picture above are my three amazing kids. My son has a big heart, big mouth and thinks he is incredibly funny! My daughter in the middle is a drama queen, funny, witty, charmer, and scared of so many things and is the baby.  My daughter on the end is outspoken, a daredevil, tomboy, aspiring chef, and a little darling.

Over the past five years I have been thrown into the deep-end of parenting and have had triumphs and failures. Along the way I have learned to pick my battles, not take things personally, relax and enjoy the ride!

I have the joy of being a parent! This is a blessing that I have waited along time for. Unfortunately I only get to be a part-time parent. This definitely has its struggles. I have had to learn that I do not control what goes on outside of home. This is a very difficult lesson to learn and many parents do not have to experience til much later in the parenting process. I have learned to enjoy the kids when we have them, work to be a good example and instill the kids with skills and knowledge that they will use the rest of their lives. I also have learned that no matter what happens good, bad or other wise  I am there so they can talk to me and we can work to solve problems and find solutions.

One of my statements to the kids and a reminder to myself “I realize that at some point you will hate me. I am ok with that. I will still be therefore you. However, it is not my job to be your friend but be your parent!

What is my job as a parent???

– To teach you skills you will use in life

– To set boundaries

– To make you accountable

– To follow through with consequences when you break the rules

– To listen

– To be an example

– Spend time one on one

– To Love You No Matter What You Do!

My job is not to be your friend.  Kids will have friends that they will tell their secrets to, talk about boys, sex, fashion, and all that other stuff! Gossip, giggle, and cry with.

A friend is there to listen and to encourage. Unfortunately when we are younger we tend to encourage to the point of stupidity. As kids we have a different perspective, and we make mistakes. That’s what you are supposed to do! However, as a parent it is my job to encourage but also be there to help pick up the pieces when friends let them down and their world seems to be in ruble at their feet.

I am constantly learning that parenting has its ups and its downs. But I have to remember that being a friend is like being on a roller coaster ride and being a parent is being stable in the midst of chaos.

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