That Left A Mark

My littlest aquired her very first, that left a mark, ouchie yesterday afternoon. I dont know any parent who likes seeing their child get hurt, no matter how big or how small the boo-boo is. Let me tell you, her cries and screams made me believe it was going to be awful. Then I spotted her fast swelling goose egg on her sweet little forehead. Although it didn’t look pretty, all parts of me were relieved there was no blood, no concussion & no need for an emergency room visit. 

Along with feeling relief over that realization, all parts of me also felt extremely horrible that I did not prevent this from happening to her. I learned quickly the first time around that we can not keep our children in a bubble forever & some things just happen. Athough, as parents, we can’t prevent all ouchies from happening, I know that I sure as hell try to prevent most all of them from happening! Oh the joys of motherhood! 

It is hard seeing the legitimate tears of their pain, but being the one to kiss their boo-boo’s away, wipe away their tears and give them that motherly tlc while they snuggle their whole body into you for comfort or hold on tight with a comfort hug, knowing they are once again safe in Mama’s arms is one of the best feelings ever! In my daughters case she comfort nursed and fell asleep. I of course, held her longer after she fell asleep and continued kissing her sweet cheeks.

She is 7 months now and her first ouchie is now in the books. Sadly, I know it won’t be her last. She is a determined little girl who so badly wants to keep up with her big sis! If you are wondering how she got hurt yesterday, she was pulling herself to a standing position on the kitchen chair and the rest is history. Kitchen chair: 1, K: 0. 

Being the little dare devil she is my job as mom is to continue trying to prevent these oopsies from occurring. For the ones that I cant prevent, I will be prepared with ice packs in my freezer, special bandaids and ouch cream in the cubboards and endless amounts of Mama’s healing power and generous amounts of TLC. We all know that Mama’s can make any ouchie better, no matter how big or how small!

Father’s Day

Father’s Day has come & gone. As in years past, my heart is always torn about acknowledging the day on social media. I know how I felt during our struggle with secondary infertility when Mother’s Day approached. I felt a mix of joy because I was a Mother already and yet I felt an overwhelming sense of grief because I was struggling to become one again. As much as I celebrated the mom I was and tried to make the best of it, the day itself triggered me negatively. I would be lying if I said it didn’t.

It certainly did not help seeing a million posts on social media with mothers who had multiple children. It was yet another reminder of what was not happening to me. One huge lesson I learned going through SI is that not only was I hurting, but it was so important to acknowledge that my husband was hurting too. I had become aware of this in my everyday actions and even now knowing what I know, it changes my approach on many things.

After praying and mulling over it for a while, I did end up writing a post. This was not in vain, rather from the heart.  For those of you who do not follow me on Facebook, here was my Father’s Day Post:

I realize my post could have very well triggered another, but while praying about if i should post or not, I was reminded by the word hope. No matter how many times I was triggered in a negative way when something reminded me of what was such a struggle on my life, I somehow could use that to also give me hope for my future. That in itself kept my gas tank full. Although I have felt strongly about not acknowledging this day on social media in the past, this year I needed to give a shout out to the amazing men in my life and my kiddos lives. It was such a tough year, and each played such a special role in making it easier by being there. In life, your support system is your everything and well they are a big piece of that puzzle!

Breakfast On The Farm

Yesterday was a fun family filled morning on the Dairy Farm at Voight Acres in Shiocton, WI. Not only did we do something in light of June being Dairy Month, but we crossed one adventure off of our summer bucket list.  We were lucky that the weather cooperated and it was a beautiful morning, although quite sticky-hot.  There is nothing more enjoyable then spending quality time with my family and this certainly was a great little activity.  I’m so glad we had this on our bucket list and I encourage you all to go to a Breakfast on the Farm this summer if anywhere in your area offers them.  I know there are still a few more being held in WI this month:

 

🐮 Brown County at Country Aire Farm.

Sunday, June 18th / 8am-12pm

Admission: $7 for adults, $4 for children (5-10 years old) Children under 4: free.

Description: In addition to breakfast , there will be an opportunity to tour the farm, activities for kids, Culver’s frozen custard, music, displays, viewing dairy cows, kiddie tractor pull, petting zoo, pictures with the calves and much more.

Website/Link: https://www.facebook.com/BrownCountyDairyPromotions/

 


 

🐮 Waupaca County at Waupaca County Fairgrounds, 602 East South St. in Weyauwega.

Sunday, June 18th / 8am-12pm

Admission:  Adults are $6.00, Ages 5-12 are $4.00 and Ages 4 and under are FREE

Description:  Lots of activiites including: Kids games, Raffles, Farm Machinery, Petting Zoo and of course a delicious dairy breakfast.

Website/Link:  http://www.travelwisconsin.com/events/fairs-festivals/waupaca-county-dairy-breakfast-43221

 


 

🐮 Calumet County Sundae on a Dairy Farm at Faust Farms, W3563 Cty F in Chilton.

Sunday, June 25th / 11am-3pm

Admission: FREE for Adults and Children.

Description:  Enjoy free milk and free cheese.  Activities include: Kiddie tractor pulls, kids games, sand pile, tractor wagon rides to tour the farm plus much more.  Food will be available for purchase along with traditional ice cream sundaes.

Website/Link:  https://www.facebook.com/Calumet-County-Sundae-on-the-Farm-2017-409044512798816/

 


 

🐮 Marinette County at Dave and Sheila Denowski Farm with Families, W7419 18th Rd. in Crivitz.

Sunday, June 25th / 7:30am-12pm

Admission:  Adults – $6.00, Children (6-10) – $4.00, Children 5 years and under – FREE

Description:  Pancakes, eggs, sausages, cheese curds, maple syrup, applesauce, milk, juice, coffee, ice cream sundaes. Petting zoo, face painting, balloons, kids bouncy play area, viewing of barns & cattle, wagon rides, music. New this year, weather permitting, is an airplane candy drop!

Website/Link:  https://www.facebook.com/Marinette-County-Breakfast-on-the-Farm-336959919674024/

 


 

🐮 Shawano County Brunch on the Farm at Mielke S-Curve Dairy in Marion.

Sunday, June 25th / 9am-1pm

Admission:  Adults are $7.00   Children are $4.00

Description:  Dairy Dash & Stroll 5k Run/Walk, Wagon Rides and Farm Tours.  There will be kids games, petting zoo, live music, educational displays, kids dairy bar bake-off and much more!

Website/Link: https://www.facebook.com/events/1882876701991363/

 


 

🐮 Door County at Wilke R Organic Farm owned by Kevin & Tricia Wilke, 5238 STH 42 in Sturgeon Bay.

Sunday, July 2 / 6:30am-11am

Admission:  Age 7 and up is $9.00, Kids 6 and under are FREE.

Description:  Farm fresh all you can eat along with live music, hayrides, petting zoo and more.

Website/Link:  http://www.jacksonport.net/organizations/sevastopol-ffa-alumni-association/

Here are a few pictures from the time we enjoyed this weekend as a family:

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The Voight Acres

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All tuckered out before we even sat down to eat breakfast!

 

 

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Enjoying a hearty breakfast complete with Chocolate milk, scrambled eggs, ham, WI squeaky cheese curds and cheese cubes, hash browns and a cinnamon roll.  Our bellies were happy!

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A farmer feeding his rooster!  These cute little picture board props were all over and so cute for making family memories!

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Cows, cows & more cows!  E’s favorite were the “chocolate milk” cows as she liked to call the brown and white cows and of course the baby calf’s. 

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A fun fact we learned:  10 gallons of cow’s milk makes 1 lb of cheese!

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Happy Pigs!

 

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This was the little petting zoo area!

These are just among a few pictures I took while our visit to the farm.  Not pictured was the bounce houses, face painting, and ice cream offered.  There were also many opportunities for learning, farm tours, tractor rides, hands on exploring of the farm equipment, big sand play area, milk station tour, churning your own butter…I mean the fun was endless!  Big or little there was something to enjoy for all ages!  It was a quality filled morning and I am anxious to see what else we are able to cross off of our bucket list for summer!

Summer Family Bucket List:

As promised, I am going to share our Summer Family Bucket List with all of you.  Now, this is only my rough draft of our list.  When I say rough draft, I simply mean that as of now it’s just a very unorganized list of things to do (for you all to scroll down and see) with a few attached links.  It’s nothing fancy at this point and the disorganization of it makes my head spin if I’m honest with myself, haha!  On a side note, disorganization seems to be the story of my life lately (#momproblems #orjustme #help!).

With that said, my goal is to organize this jumbled list into categories to make it a lot easier to look at and for my own sanity in finding things on this long list!  If you are looking to make an organized bucket list, here is what I’m guessing some of the categories names I will include on our final bucket list are in case you are looking for ideas for your own:  Water Fun (possibly breaking this down to splash pads, pools and beaches), Hikes-Bikes-Picnics, Zoo’s, Local Fun, At-Home, Camping, Weekend Get-A-Ways, Day Trips, Special Events, Nature Centers/Botanical Gardens, etc.

Being that I’ve never made a bucket list for our family for the Summer, please hang with me as this is very new to me.  However, I wanted to try making this bucket list for our family because so often we find ourselves going back and forth about what we should do when we have free time.  I don’t know if you find yourselves doing the same thing ever, but it’s really frustrating and annoying to me at how indecisive we can be.  Ultimately this leads to us wasting time.  This also typically will result in us sitting home doing nothing or just doing busy work while the kids play.

I will not let this happen to us this summer! It is my goal to have a quality summer, with less time wasted and more time spent together creating memories, because as we all know time is just going too quickly (and summers tend to go by in the blink of an eye). Having a bucket list will give us a go-to list of things to do when we are in that bind when we can’t think of anything to do off the top of our heads, no excuses.  The best thing about a bucket list is that we don’t have to do these things, we WANT to do these things which will help us to be less indecisive as well.  I also love that we don’t have to do these things in any particular order (although some of the special events and such do have specific dates), there are a variety of activities to suit our changing moods and weather AND we can continually add to our list all summer long.  With that said, here is our list of our first 50 ideas:

  1. Camping trip with my sister & her family. Location TBD.
  2. Camping just us. Location TBD.
  3. Wanick Choute Park/Sherwood, WI Splash Pad
  4. High Cliff State Park-Hike or bike ride and picnic lunch:  http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/parks/name/highcliff/
  5. Erb Park & Pool:  http://www.appletonparkandrec.org/pool-programs–information/pool-information/erb-pool
  6. Trip to Hayward, WI:  https://www.tripadvisor.com/Tourism-g59952-Hayward_Wisconsin-Vacations.html
  7. Weekend in Winter WI at my parents Cabin
  8. Go to our local Farmer’s Market:  https://www.facebook.com/downtownappletonfarmmarket/?hc_ref=SEARCH
  9. Outdoor Movies Wednesday evenings
  10. N.E.W Zoo:  http://newzoo.org/
  11. Bookworm Garden:  http://www.bookwormgardens.org/
  12. Backyard Campfire and make s’mores
  13. Sunset Beach Day:  http://www.vokimberly.org/departments/parks-recreation/sunset-beach-swimming-facility/
  14. Family Bike Rides
  15. Canoeing
  16. Day trip to Door County
  17. 1000 Island Nature Preserve:  http://www.1000islandsenvironmentalcenter.org/
  18. Timber Rattlers Game
  19. Brewers Game
  20. Packer Family Fun Weekend
  21. Derks Park
  22. Pay it forward project
  23. Visit Family In Iowa
  24. Dicks Drive In
  25. Visit a new library
  26. Summer Reading Programs
  27. Dave’s Falls:  http://gowaterfalling.com/waterfalls/daves.shtml
  28. Maribel Caves:  http://www.co.manitowoc.wi.us/departments/i-p/parks/county-parks/cherney-maribel-caves/
  29. Play a game of catch in our back yard/kick the soccer ball
  30. Blow bubbles/draw with chalk
  31. Splash bash in our back yard (simple water fun, balloon fight)
  32. Shred Aquarium:  http://www.sheddaquarium.org/
  33. Mall of America: http://www.mallofamerica.com/
  34. Slumber Party in our basement (Movies, popcorn & sleeping bags)
  35. Create a nature scavenger hunt and do it together at a park.
  36. Skyzone:  https://www.skyzone.com/appleton
  37. Mini Golf
  38. Roadster rides (my husband has an old buick roadster)
  39. Have the neighbors over to grill out and let the kids play
  40. Polluck Pool:  http://www.ci.oshkosh.wi.us/Parks/Pollock_Community_Water_Park/
  41. The Twist for Ice Cream treats
  42. Play Tennis
  43. Go to a performer series at the Library
  44. Explore a new town together
  45. Paint with water
  46. Put up a tent together and read stories in it, play in it, and sleep in it in our backyard
  47. Play flashlight tag at night.
  48. Visit family in Amery
  49. Refurbish our bedroom set as a family
  50. Pick our vegetable garden and make dinner or a recipe with some of what we harvest

*I will share with you my organized version once I have it finished*

Wishing everyone a fun, safe, happy and quality summer with your family!  Enjoy this awesome season to it’s absolute fullest.  Here in WI the summers are just too short!

Summer Break

Guys and gals, my apologies for being quiet lately.  Life just happens and priorities take over.  I love this blog and blogging, yet making the time to write in it (at the bare minimum) weekly just hasn’t been happening lately. I fear there will be more gaps in hearing from me as today is the first day of summer break. This is the first summer I will be juggling full days with 2 kiddos of my own, plus 1 extra part-time kiddo (I care for a little boy in my home too). Not only does life happen, but there will be all sorts of busy in between. This is just your FYI for when more gaps happen, which they 100% will. When they do, please be patient with me because I will always be back at some point in time to write.

With that said, we’ve been busy with the starting of summer sports. My oldest is in both soccer and t-ball. We’ve had practices for both weekly. Her first soccer came was this past Tuesday but she had to miss it because her 4K graduation happened to fall on the same evening (I will back track to her graduation night in a bit). This coming Sunday will involve volunteering 2 hours in concessions for T-ball, t-ball team pictures and her first game. She played soccer last year (and I played soccer) so we are familiar with what goes down. T-ball is new to me (although I get the sport, I didn’t realize all we had to do just to be involved with this sport-fundraising, volunteering, multiple practices, etc). She seems to be enjoying both so far and as long as she’s happy and having fun (and staying active) then I am a happy mama!

Getting back to her 4k graduation. That night made for an emotional mama and filled me with many bittersweet feelings. Her teachers did a great job putting together a special night for the students and parent, family & friends. She even wore a cap and gown. They sang 3 songs, had a picture slideshow that recapped the school year. Then each child was introduced and walked up to shake their teachers hand and get their 4k diplomas. Cuteness overload! This mama is so proud of her and can hardly believe we have already closed the preschool chapter and I will have a kindergartener this coming Fall. Tissues….anyone have a box of tissues for me?! 

Proud parents of a 4k graduate!!!

Not only do I have an almost 5 year old, but my baby will be 7 months on the 17th. She’s currently working on mastering crawling, but can move from one end of the room to the next fairly quickly. She can go from laying down to a sitting position. In other words…time is flashing before my eyes. I’m embracing and loving every minute of every day, but it seems like just yesterday we were struggling to have her…she was only a very big hope in our heart and now she’s here. She’s here, filling our hearts with love and joy every.single.day. It truly takes my breath away thinking about.

Our little love bug!

These two girls keep me so busy, some days I’m lucky if I’m able to squeeze much else into my days but caring for them and entertaining them, and so on. However, it’s my goal to do some fun filled summer activities. I decided to start a bucket list of what I’d like to do with my family this summer (blog post for another day). I’m hoping to knock a lot of them off our list and make some nice memories with the 3 people who are my world! What are things on your summer bucket list? Since ours is a work in progress, I’d love for you to share with me your list! Not only am I working on this bucket list, but I am working on a new summer schedule and list of daily activities for the kiddos and myself. It is always nice to go on new adventures all the while trying to maintain some sort of routine. I will get back to you on that too once I have it all figured out. Wish me luck!

My heart!

Well folks, I could write for days since it’s been such a long gap of time since I last wrote but life is happening and I have things I need to tend to. Wishing you all a safe, happy and quality fun filled Summer! Do things that feed your mind, body and soul and spend time with those you love. I’m feeling so blessed to get to spend another summer with E and my first with K…I simply wouldn’t want it any other way!

My summer side kicks!


Lets talk birthday parties…

My daughter is turning 5 on June 27th.  She of course wants a birthday party (my definition of hell).  I mean, what little girl wouldn’t want a birthday party though?  Being the introverted person I am I freak out at the word “party” and I certainly don’t enjoy playing hostess.  I am organized and can make mean party food but I honestly don’t enjoy the headache of it from start to finish.  I don’t enjoy having to clean my house from top to bottom, just to have to clean it from top to bottom after everyone leaves me a mess.  I don’t enjoy being around groups of people who in my mind are critiquing my decorating skills, food making ability, and other hostess duties (even though you probably are not).  It’s stressful on me and I overthink everything which doesn’t help.

Pretty much every year, we have had some sort of birthday party for our daughter at our house, except for one birthday where my husband and I decided to take her to the zoo, have a picnic at the zoo park, later going out to dinner, opening presents and having cake and ice cream (just the 3 of us) and called it a day (seriously, that was the best birthday ever because it was simple, no headache involved and I loved that we had quality family time). This year, my daugher decided she wanted a Splash bash in our back yard.  I honestly tried talking my daughter into a simpler birthday with just her dad, me and her sister and going somewhere that she chooses, like the year we went to the Zoo.  My persuasion didn’t go very far because she made it perfectly clear she wanted her neighborhood friends over, her cousins and her 3 BFF’s from school over to help her celebrate with water fun in our back yard.  After trying to persuade her for days that it would be much more fun to pick somewhere to go as a family this year for her birthday instead, I came to one realization.  Apparently, I am not good at persuading an almost 5 year old!

Okkkkkk……so, we are doing this shin-dig!

Sooooo, what did I do? I got on my computer and I pinterested (Is that even a word? Too bad, it is now)  the sh*+ out of splash bash parties for kids. Did you know there are an overwhelming amount of very pinteresty (a word? meh) ideas for splash bash parties?  Well, you do now.  Well folks I will be honest and tell you that anything I have ever tried on pinterest looks far from that perfect.  In fact, I for see that my daughter’s party is going to be the equivilant of the dollar tree version splash bash party instead of the hobby lobby version of these splash bash parties I’m seeing on pinterest.  The struggle is going to be real!  The good thing about it is she is still young enough to not notice the imperfections that this party will be.  Instead, in her eyes, I will be the best mom for throwing her the party she asked for, haha!  This is what I hope for anyways.

Being that I really don’t want to play host or even throw a party, but I am going to because I love my daughter…I did decide I am going to try to not overthink any details and just keep it simple (if this is possible for me).  With that said, this party is going to be geared for kids only.  I am not entertaining adults like years past (although the parents will be welcome to stay if they so choose to help watch their kids).  I am only having the party from 1-4 so that I don’t have to feed anyone lunch or dinner.  I do plan on having a few kid friendly snacks available during the party (probably drinks, munchies and fruit) and then we will celebrate with popcicles, ice cream and cake.  I will do a little bit of decorating outside on our deck and we will provide the water fun (sprinklers, slip n’slide, water balloons and water squirters) and I’m calling it a Splash bash!

Possibly there will be pictures of  this splash bash fail to come (mainly will be for your entertainment).  While you are waiting for those though, kindly tell me about birthday parties you’ve thrown for your kiddos.  How old are they?  What have you done or are going to do this year for them?  Have you ever thown a splash bash party before?  If so, what tips do you have for this clueless mom?!  Lastly, enlighten me with a failed birthday party experiences you’ve had for your kids (pictures welcome)…I need to feel better about this, haha!

 

Monday Motivation

The beginning of the week is hard for me, especially when this weekend’s weather was doom and gloom and good old Mr. Sunshine was no where to be found.  We stayed busy, but it felt like we were busy doing a whole lot of nothing.  Therefore, I’m tired this morning and still feel like I’m dragging my feet and I still just don’t feel like doing much of anything important.  Although the sun is shining, it’s a chilly and windy 50 degree morning outside which is hardly the medicine for motivation. Currently, my oldest is off to school and I know these semi-quiet mornings are coming to an end quickly because summer vacation is quickly approaching.  I want to take advantage of the pure and simple fact that they are more quiet then they will be.  I want to take a couple minutes to decompose.  I want to not feel rushed or like I’m needed by anyone.  I want to be still and listen and these things are very doable right nice since my baby is taking her morning nap!

This morning, I don’t really have anywhere in particular I need to be.  I do have a bunch of things to keep me busy, but nothing too terribly pressing.  Nothing I have to do is really going to fill my heart with anything that will make me feel accomplished.  I’m sort of feeling like my efforts won’t really get me anywhere, so what’s the point of doing them?  With that said, I just want to stay put at home and just put the busy aside for a moment.  I decided to do a daily devotional this morning.  This is something I used to do daily, but for some reason or another  I don’t always make the time for doing them lately. This morning I did and ironically the one that popped up was “Morning Calm”.  It talked about the importance of using the bible for guidance for how to best spend our time and our energy but also to just stay put and let God work on our behalf. Interesting right since this was just the thing I needed to hear right now?  God listens and God knows what we need always.

I often find myself feeling like if I’m not busy doing something or going some where that I label myself as lazy or unproductive, so I busy myself with tasks that often make me feel empty at the end of the day or I go places that I think will help fill the void and ultimately do not.  I loved this quote from my devotion that said, “A few moments of quiet reflection before starting a busy day can make all the difference to the outcome of that day.  Be with God at the start, and He will be with you throughout.”  I wanted to share those words with you because they really hit home to me.  Sometimes what I think I need and do are the exact opposite of what God wants me to think or do.  If we all started paying a little bit more attention to the things we should be doing that feed our soul and putting more time into those, then just empty busy tasks or going places that have no meaning I think we could all feel a lot happier and feel a lot more accomplished.  When we start feeding our soul, we feel more nourished.

With that said, here are ten ideas of ways to nourish your soul (it’s important for EVERYONE, but for mom’s especially because we are not going to be our best selves or caretakers of our little ones if we first don’t take care of ourselves).

  1.  If you are feeling down and out, like I have to admit I have been feeling lately. Sometimes it’s important to just step away and reflect.  Be still.  Be quiet.  This doesn’t have to take long, even 10 minutes of alone time can be a wonderful breath of fresh air.  In this time, think of something silly your children did that made you really smile or laugh.  Think of things you are truly grateful for and vision your future.  Maybe you just need to still your mind completely, quiet your brain and let yourself be.
  2. Put down social media and actually connect with a real live person.  This could be meeting a friend for an hour or two and having a conversation over coffee.  This could be picking up the phone and calling a friend you may be out of touch with and simply catch up.  This may be taking a walk with your husband and holding hands and talking.
  3. Snuggle or take a nap with your partner or children.
  4. Exercise and practice deep breathing.  This not only  helps you let go of stress it actually helps fuel your day and clear your mind.
  5. Read an actual book or do a daily devotional.
  6. Simply slow down.  In today’s world everything is go, go, go and fast paced.  If you are like me and always feeling rushed walk a little slower and take time to notice the beauty that surrounds you.  If you are doing a task, only do that one task from start to finish before moving on to something else.
  7. Pray for someone or have someone else pray for you/with you.
  8. Take time to actually sit on the floor and play with your kids or go outside and do something together as a family.  It’s about quality time.
  9. If you have pets, take time to love them…play with them…pet them.
  10. Plant a garden.  Now is the perfect time of year to do this.  Not only is it relaxing, but you will get to see your efforts grow and you will reap the benefits once your fruits and veggies start growing.

Now ask yourself, is your soul feeling nourished today?  If not, what will you do today to feed your soul?  We only have this one life to live. Time already feels like it’s going fast.  Make each day, each moment count!  We all need to reflect on whether or not we are just living our day to day accomplishing empty tasks and going places that are meaningless or are we filling our days with meaningful tasks and activities that are hearty and fuel our souls?  On this Monday, I challenge you to just be and listen to the whispers of God and see how it affects the outcome of your day.