Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Wordless-ish Wednesday

Friends,
  I am beyond exhausted after these last 3 days (emotionally/mentally about Manuel starting school, being SOOOO busy at work (I was up until 1am last night working-from home), etc. but tomorrow is September 1st, IDEALLY a slow start to the month (work-wise) and ideally more time to blog :)

For now...

Monday, August 29, 2011

We're here and safe!

Sorry that I haven't posted since Saturday friends, it's been a crazy few days! :) We only lost power for a few hours on Sunday morning, but driving has been pretty troublesome due to down trees, wires, etc. Several friends of mine are going on 50+ hours without electric, and to add insult to injury...MANUEL HASN'T STARTED SCHOOL YET!!!! My baby was set to start Kindergarten today. We would go in, meet his teacher around 10am, have an individual conference, get all of his school supplies set up at his desk, get him acclimated to everything, and then that would be that. Unfortunately, with school being cancelled today (there are about 60some schools in our county still without power), the conference was cancelled (his teacher called me for a phone chat, so that was nice, but not NEARLY as comforting as an actual face-to-face meeting!) They weren't rescheduling them, they were just cancelled. So then I spent all day worrying about how he had to get on the school bus tomorrow, and cried about it pretty much all day, only to find out that school is cancelled AGAIN tomorrow. This whole starting Kindergarten business is WAY too draining for this Momma! ;) I just need to get it over with so I can get my sobbing out and move forward! :) Keep your fingers crossed that he starts on Wednesday, PLEASE

As usual, it's the end of the month, so I am SOOOOOOOOOOOOO busy at work, but I hope to be back soon with pics from the first day! :)

I hope you all are doing well. I miss you friends! :)
And for good measure...(excuse the pajamas...we were relaxing! :))





Saturday, August 27, 2011

Hurricane Irene

Hello friends!

Last week it was an earthquake, today it's a hurricane...quite surreal if you ask me! Unfortunately, unlike the earthquake, there have been several fatalities today as Hurricane Irene has slammed the East Coast. Please be in prayers for those families who have lost loved ones. So sad!

The hurricane seems to have started hitting Maryland as I type. It's 9:53pm EST and they are saying that we will be getting slammed for the next 5 or so hours. I hope we keep power, but honestly, in such challenging circumstances, power is the least of my worries. I worry and pray for peoples saftey, especially those out there who are having to work in this. *As I was typing that, I just heard on the news that they are starting to pull emergency crews off the roads because it is just too unsafe*

Lights are starting to flicker, so power could be gone soon. I pray that if you are reading this and have been affected/will be affected by the hurricane that you are safe! Just pray for all of those in the line of this storm.

I'm heading to bed soon because if not, I'm going to eat every last item of food in my cabinets! Take care friends and have a great rest of the weekend (if we lose power and I don't get read my fav blogs! :))

And for good measure...
 What Mia is doing during the hurricane! ;)
 Manny made this awesome fort for he and Manuel (I thought it was funny that I've never shared pics of my bedroom before and when I do, THIS is what it looks like! ;)
 Ignore the mismatched bedding, again, it's not normally like this! :)
Good night friends! Stay safe!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Earthquake!

Needless to say, living in Maryland, I NEVER thought I would say, "I've experienced an earthquake" but unfortunately, about 2 hours ago, that changed! I'm sitting at work, well working (imagine that! ;)) and start to hear a rumble on the roof (this is not unusual because whenever someone is working on the roof, you can hear it. I assumed that's what it was) but then it wouldn't stop, the entire ground started shaking, the windows were rattling, the flat screen TV that sits behind me on the wall was shaking, and all of us just sort of stood there in shock. I'd say it lasted a minute or so and then it hit us all that it was in fact an earthquake (a 5.8 quake). Immediately everyone started calling their families, children, etc. I called Linnie first to check on Mia, and Linnie had felt it too (at this point I hadn't heard that the earthquake, who's epicenter was about 2 hours from my work, had been felt as far New York City, Georgia, etc. so OF COURSE, Linnie's house, which is about 9 minutes away felt it!) She was crying and very shaken just because those are her babies and she was very scared, BUT everyone was okay. Next was calling Manny, and Manuel's school. Thankfully everyone was okay! It took FOREVER to get through though because all the phone lines were really jammed up!

To the best of my knowledge there were no fatalities...PRAISE GOD!

Shewww, that really makes you want to love your family a little tighter and longer! I can't wait to pick up my babies and just give them a big ol' squeeze! :)

I apologize if this sounds dramatic, especially those of you who may have lived through 9.something earthquakes, but for this East Coast gal who has NEVER been through anything like this (along with the rest of my office), it was VERY scary!

Please keep this area in your prayers as they are saying there could be some pretty bad aftershocks.

Thanks friends! :)

Monday, August 22, 2011

Our weekend...

Hello friends!

I hope this blog post finds you all doing well! I'm not sure where my inspiration has gone, but hopefully it'll come back soon! :)

There is basically ONE thing on my mind these days, and I'd imagine it'll be that way until Wednesday of next week and that is...my baby starting Kindergarten. Have I completely lost it? Am I the only person who is BEYOND emotional about this milestone? I understand moms get upset about it, but seriously, if I even think about it, I tear up. I don't think it's the whole starting Kindergarten thing that's REALLY getting me (although I am emotional about that point), it's the whole him riding a school bus thing! AHHHHHHHH, it gets me every time! (tearing up at my desk as I type!) I know it's something most children have to experience, but still, coming to terms with this is not easy! We will drop him off at daycare in the morning (the place where he attended preschool and now is attending summer camp). The school bus will pick him (and all of his other friends who attend his elementary) up at 8:10am, and take him to school. The bus will then pick him up in the afternoon (we have all day Kindergarten in Maryland) and take him back to daycare where he will stay until Manny or I (typically Manny because he gets there earlier). It all seems like SUCH a huge transition for someone who still seems so young and naive, to me. Monday, August 29th we have a one-on-one conference with his teacher where he'll meet her, see his classroom, assumedly find his desk, etc. then we'll leave for the day. Then Tuesday is the "big day" where we will take him to daycare, and wait with him (since it's the first time) for the big yellow school bus to come pick up and take him to first day of "real" school!!!!
I know, it's life, all kids go through it, etc. etc. etc. but that means nothing to this overly sensitive Momma's heart! Please be in prayer for me (as silly as that sounds) but I could sure use it! :)

On a happier note...Manny and Manuel went to their first football game together on Friday night. It was the second preseason game for our beloved Baltimore Ravens. We weren't sure how Manuel would be at the game (you know, sitting still and what not :)) but he did GREAT! They both had a blast! Manny is SUCH a great daddy and Manuel (and Mia) are SO lucky to have him! Manny also bought a new car on Friday, so that's exciting! (We had to get a new car because his Jeep was on it's last leg! :)) Saturday I woke up and made the fam a very special breakfast (heart shaped pancakes and all! ;)) Then we spontaneously decided to head to Lancaster, Pa to visit Amish Country (and test out the new car)! We had a lot of fun. Random road trips are always a good time. The kids behaved wonderfully okay in the car! ;) I wanted to take picture, I really did, but sometimes you just have to "be". I get so focused on taking pics for my blog or Facebook or whatever, and then I find myself not even enjoying the moment! So, no pics from Saturday. Then Sunday was the usual...church, teaching Sunday school and then more family time. We are trying to enjoy these last days of summer before it gets too cold to be outside. I do know one thing...I LOVE FALL AND I CAN'T WAIT FOR IT!!!! :)

And for good measure...

 An awful cell phone pic of my precious children after they fell asleep together on the sofa! :))
Just call me Betty Crocker! ;)

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Wordless-ish Wednesday: Weekend Photo Recap


 *Yes, it's the Spongebob shirt again, UGH! ;)
 *This is at our friends house (just to be clear...neither of my children still use a playmat! :))
 Sweet Connor (he is the sweet little boy who I share a birthday with)




 Rock n' Roll party in their jammies :)

 *She has my friend Kelli's headband in her hair. Go figure, she'll wear that, but NEVER one I put in there! :))


Friday, August 12, 2011

Happy Friday!

TGIF! :)

I don't have much to say today. Not for any particular reason, but just because I'm in a bit of a blogging rut. My camera was broken (Mia dropped it last Saturday and then the lens wouldn't retract) but last night I just tried hitting the lens against something hard (per a co-workers suggestion! :)) and it's fixed, YAY!!! I'll be taking pictures this weekend (assumedly) and hopefully that will give me blog material for next week.

And for good measure (some good ol' cell phone pics)...

Mia's morning business calls before daycare ;)
 This beautiful butterfly was in Linnie's driveway when I picked Mia up last night. It was just fluttering around and looked SO pretty in the sunlight! I love seeing Gods beautiful creations...it makes me think, even for just a moment, that it's a sweet spirit of someone I love (Not that the actual butterfly is my dad, nepehws, etc. reincarnated :)) but it just reminds me of lost loved ones! :))
Mia waiting for me to pump gas this morning.
*Not that I need to explain myself ALL the time but just so you know...the reason I always have so many pictures of Mia (from my cell phone) is because I'm the one that takes her to daycare and picks her up everyday. It's not that I love Manuel any less! :) but she's just with me more in the car! :)

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Reality check

Hello friends!

I hope you all are having a great week! I'm still here, reading and commenting, but not having much blog material of my own! :) I'd rather write when I have a purpose than just write to write, ya know?

Again, thank you all so much for your support about my latest Pour Your Heart Out post. It's hard to be so brutally honest when this blogging world can be, at times, a mean place (I've never experienced it, but several of the "big time" bloggers I follow have the most hateful, inappropriate things said to them) So thank you all SO much for the love and support! :)

I've REALLY been working on being a better, more patient mother (and it's been no easy task with Manuel on oral steroids for the last 5 days! He is W-I-L-D (which is pretty uncharacteristic of him! :)) But I'm still trying! :)

And if this wasn't the slap back to reality that I needed, I don't know what is...I was in the kitchen with Mia and apparently she had done something bad (I have NO clue what it was) and I heard from the other room Manuel say, "Good job Mommy! Good job not getting mad at Mia." It broke my heart that he would, at the sweet age of 5 1/2, even notice it, BUT at the same time it made me proud that my attempt at change was obvious to my sweet son! I haven't been perfect! I've definitely slipped up and gotten angry about small things, but I'm trying, and that's half the battle! :)

Thankfully, by posting on here, I feel like I have to hold myself accountable. I'll keep you posted! :)

And for good measure..
(Awfully quality cell phone pic!) Mia walking to the car the other day, headed to Linnie's. Clearly, she had important phone calls to make (yes, that's an old cell phone on her shoulder! :), yes, she's barefoot (some battles aren't worth fighting at 7am :) and yes, that's spray paint on the sidewalk (Verizon is putting in FIOS :))

Friday, August 5, 2011

the red dress club: best of

I'm not a writer, but I do love to write. I've always been told I have a knack for words (writing cards, letters, poems, etc.) but sometimes that doesn't transfer to this blog very well. I think too often I try to write for an audience instead of just writing for myself (if that makes any sense at all! :)) This week the red dress club is having a "best of" link up to your favorite writing prompt. I've only participated once, but ironically enough, it's one of my favorite posts I've ever written because it was the first time I spoke of something VERY personal, very real and straight from the heart, writing for myself and not my audience.

Since I have some new readers, I'm going to post it again...




*This is my first time participating in a the red dress club link-up. I'm not a professional writer by ANY stretch of the imagination, but I do love writing! I've been trying to find a way to share my story in bits and pieces and without "exposing" my heart too much, too fast, and I thought this was a PERFECT way to begin*

I could have never imagined that I'd be "that girl". I was always so in tune with the behaviors and actions of the people around me. Even in my wild and crazy days, when I was hanging with a wild and crazy crowd, if you were "on something", I knew it! Even if I was on it too, I knew it. I had that intuition. Perhaps it was from growing up in a household where my father was a drug addict and alcoholic, who knows, but either way, I KNEW! I felt sorry for those friends of mine who were "good" (translation: didn't do drugs) and had no idea that their boyfriends were high and doing drugs. "How dumb are they?", I thought. Little did I know, I would be eating those words one day.

Manny and I started dating in the spring of 2005. He was your typical bad boy (jail time included). I was your typical good girl turned bad out of sheer desperation for attention and love. I fell hard and fast for Manny. He did drugs, I did drugs. It was just part of our relationship. Come June 2005, a mere 3 MONTHS after we started dating, I became pregnant. The drinking, drugs, smoking, everything came to a halt for me, the moment I found out I was pregnant. They slowly came to an end for Manny (or so I thought).

Fast forward...

Manny and I had been married for a little over 3 years. Things were going well (or so I thought). Manuel was 3, amazingly smart, growing like a weed, and the apple of our eyes. I was working hard as a Pricing Analyst at a mortgage company. Manny had just quit working for my stepfather's business to try and better himself and started driving a truck for a local printing company. We had just "graduated' from an apartment to a townhouse (we were still renting) and life seemed good.

One day, I randomly decided to check the bank account on-line (which I NEVER did) and noticed a $25 check written to my husbands brother (a drug addict). I called Manny and asked him why he had written his brother a check. He made up some crazy story (which I didn't believe), and I hung up the phone. I continued to scroll through the bank account and noticed several checks written to his brother, several withdraws, etc. (He did the bills and banking, at the time). I called him back and demanded answers!

Manny wept on the phone to me that he had been doing drugs (street and prescription. I had NO clue!). He couldn't stop, he needed to go away to rehab (it was THAT bad!). When we both got home from work that day the search began for an inpatient rehab that Manny could go to ASAP. We couldn't find a place that night. It was getting too late and most places needed to confirm things with our insurance and wouldn't be able to accept him until the next day.

I woke up the next morning and took Manuel to daycare and took myself to work (I'm that kind of person who is VERY much a "go to work no matter what is going on at home" type). Manny called me a few hours later to tell me that he found a place, his grandmother was taking him, and they would only take him if he came NOW! He didn't get to give me a hug and kiss goodbye. He didn't get to say goodbye to Manuel or give him a kiss. He was gone, just like that. I was going to be a single mommy, temporarily, and have to make my 3 year old think that day was away at work. And then the world shifted.

*Edited (8/5/11)...if you are visiting from the red dress club: best of and would like to know how this story ends, here is the rest of the story*

Thursday, August 4, 2011

The Name Game

*Thank you all for your super supportive and awesome comments yesterday! It's great to know I'm not alone! :) I've already been working on being a more patient mom, and honestly, in barely 24 hours I notice a change. No lie! :) My better attitude seems to help everyone else have a better attitude. Imagine that! ;) Thanks again! :))

Now, on to a fun link-up that I came across over at Jesslyn Amber's blog (who I came to from Mandy at a sorta fairytale)






The idea behind this link up is to answer the questions, "What does your blog name mean?" and "Why did you choose the name?" and include pics. So here it goes...

The name of my blog is obviously, "And for good measure" but if you notice my website address is
http://mcgx2.blogspot.com/ that's because my blog used to be called "E=MCG^2" (a spin off of Einsteins E=MC^2) which I got because my husband and my son's initial are MCG, get it? Good! :) (this blog was started before I had Mia). At the time, when I did post, I typically would end my post with "And for good measure..." and post a pic. Time went on, Mia was born, and I would think to myself that I needed to change my blog name because it didn't incorporate Mia (and I didn't want her feelings to be hurt, as if she cared! ;))

So then I thought, "Hmmmm, I end my blog posts with "And for good measure" quite often and that would be a super cute name for a blog" (at least I thought so :)) so than I changed my blog name. And there you have it! :) I never changed my web address because I am NOT technically savy and I wasn't sure if I did change my website to http://andforgoodmeasure.blogspot.com/ if my followers would be able to find me! :) So I just left my web address alone! :)
Happy Thursday Friends! I"m working from home today and TRYING to keep Mia from climbing on the tables and break her leg, while doing actual work too! ;) Wish me luck! :)

And for good measure...

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Pour Your Heart Out: Me, honestly



It's so easy to get caught up in the "rainbows and sunshine" world of blogging (aka every blog post I write is going to be about how amazing my children are, how fantastic my husband is, and pictures of us enjoying life and being happy ALL.THE.TIME!) Well, I don't know about you, but that's not my reality (even though I'm guilty of keeping my blog pretty "happy" most of the time! :) and not showing the bad, right along with the good. I like when other bloggers "get real" and talk about their reality that might not be positive, might be embarrassing, might get judgemental comments but is real nonetheless.

This post is probably going to be all over the place, but I'm just writing my feelings with the hope that writing it out will hold me accountable to work on changing myself, and maybe, just maybe, someone else will be able to relate.

I fail at motherhood and being a wife, often. Everyday in my world is not happy, smiley, God praising, wonderful, well, you get the point! Do you ever have those days where you think, "Wow, I'm really not cut out to be a parent!?!??!?!!" If I'm being honest, I do! And it probably happens more often then I'd like to think/admit. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE my children! They are my world! They smile, I smile. They hurt, I hurt. But really, sometimes I fail them...I have NO patience (and I'm not being dramatic here. I flip out over the smallest things). THEY ARE CHILDREN! They are going to whine. They are going to throw tantrums. They are kids. But why does it drive me SO insane!??!!? Why do I lose my cool so easily with them? (now please understand, when I say "lose my cool" I do NOT mean hit them, degrade them, etc. when I say "lose my cool" I mean get frustrated/angry/stressed about the smallest things!!!) Patience is a virtue and clearly not one I possess. But honestly, to be a mother, you need patience and lots of it. Where did mine go? UGH!!!!

And what's the point of all of this ramble...I read so many stories (on a daily basis) of parents who've lost their children, or children who are terminally ill fighting for their lives, or people who can't have children, or people who have had failed adoptions, and the list goes on and on, and here I am, with two beautiful, healthy, amazing, wonderful children who any of these parents would give their left arm for, and I take it for granted. Manuel or Mia could be taken from me in an instant (we do not know when we will be called Home) and here I am wasting my precious time with them, being frustrated about putting our sofa pillows on the floor, or whining for dinner the second we walk in the door or throwing their water bottle on the floor and getting water everywhere!  ITS WHAT KIDS DO!!!!! I just wish I could stop! I wish I could be a mom who lets their children play in the dirt, play with flour and get it all over the kitchen for fun, finds the "silver lining" in their children coloring on the wall (although that IS something my children have never done! ;)) You're out there! You "perfect" moms are out there. I read your blogs! Now why can't I be like you!??!?!?! Monday-Friday I work outside of the home, so the time I spend with my children is very minimal (sadly) so why am I not making the best of it!??!?!?! I know that none of you can answer these questions, but again, hopefully writing it out will hold me accountable and make me realize that I need to work on myself!

And sadly, it's not just my children...How come I don't realize how blessed I am to have the husband I do!? Yes, he's put me through a lot, but that was 2+ years ago, and I've forgiven him, so there is no reason for me to treat him poorly! He loves me more than words could ever show! He is an amazing father! But yet, I lose my patience with him because he doesn't buy me the right razors at the grocery store (yes, he does all the grocery shopping!) Or he accidentally buys 2% milk instead of 1%. What is wrong with me!??!?!?! How come when our blessings are right in front of our faces we don't even realize it!?!?!

I've had this post on my heart for days now, so there is a reason I needed to write it. I've definitely just poured my heart out. Please don't judge, I'm only human! :) I promise I'm not always angry, but sometimes I just need a reality check about how good I do have it!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Ocean City Day #4 (part 2)

Good Morning and Happy Tuesday!

Today is the final day of posting our Ocean City, MD pictures! :) We had a blast, and I can't wait to go again next year. Grant it, Ocean City is crowded, WAY overpriced and pretty "standard" when it comes to your good ol' beach town, but it's a tradition for our family (since Manuel was a few months old) and we wouldn't have it any other way! :)

Now, Mommy and Daddy need our own vacation! ;) Just kidding! Although we probably do need it, I HATE leaving the kids. I've never left Manuel for more than about 48 hours, and Mia, I've never left her longer than overnight. What can I say, they I have separation anxiety! ;)

A couple things...Mia is NOT wearing a dress that's too small/short for her! ;) It is a little romper thingy (I'm sure that's the technical term! ;)) And also, although my camera is just a point and shoot, it's not THAT crappy...the beach was SO "misty" (for lack of a better term, even during the day) that it just left a fog around all day. So yes the pics are a bit hazy, but I promise, it's not my camera! Now that's out of the way...ENJOY! :)


 Heading to our beach "photo shoot" :)









 "MAN DOWN!" (this picture cracks me up! :) She had just fallen off that bottom rung as I was trying to snap her pic! :)
 Manny was RIGHT there! Don't worry! :)
 He had to sneak in one final peace sign! ;)
 Who's idea was this cheesy photo!??! Hmmm, I wonder! ;) (what can I say, I'm all about the cheesy family photos! :)




Manny trying to get our kite to fly! It was SO windy our last evening on the beach so Manny bought a super fancy kite and guess what...we couldn't get it to fly!!!!! Everyone around us had your standard kids character kites, and they were having NO problems! It was REALLY funny! We still had fun, just TRYING to get it to fly! ;)

The memories from this trip will certainly last a lifetime! :)