Teaching Through Examples During the Christmas Season

Punky and I were asked a young man outside of Walmart to donate to needy children. I asked if he was affiliated with the Salvation Army. He said yes. I told him “No thank you. We would rather not donate to anyone affiliated with an organization who chose who was needy and who wasn’t. I advised him we would stick with non-discriminatory charities.” I don’t think he was pleased with my answer, as I caught him whispering about me as I put Punky in the cart.

Frankly. I don’t care.

After the last few years, I have read nothing but terrible things about how they treat human beings of gay  and lesbian orientation. I am not okay with supporting them. I don’t begrudge those who do support them and on the surface, they are very caring and they seem to be doing good. But, I will stand up for my family and I will teach my daughter that it’s not okay to say you are a Christian and then pick and choose who you will be helping during the holidays. 

Walmart has an “Angel Tree” and I haven’t heard of anything negative about their tree – so we donate a toy to a needy child in that way. I feel sorry for the children who are being ‘helped’ by the Salvation Army, because they are likely also being brainwashed to think the way this organization does about people.

I won’t allow my daughter to be raised that way. I will not allow her to think that it’s an okay to treat human beings, regardless of their beliefs, wealth, orientation, social status or other labels. People are people. We are all made from the same stuff. We are all created in the same way.

Whether you believe in God or not, which of course, I don’t, in the end of the day, being a Christian is to be like Jesus. Jesus was kind and giving to all those people around him. The needy, the sick, the sinners. This organization claims to be Christian, they claim to be affiliated with the religious church and stand behind the testaments of the ‘Lord”. At the end of the day, they don’t. They don’t come close to showing people what Jesus was really about. They don’t live in the image of their maker or teach the principles that Jesus preached.

They follow, but they do not live by example.

Anyway, enough of my rant. Punky and I went into Walmart and I am beginning to really notice that Punky is really not okay with Santa Claus. The elderly gentleman at the door offered her a Santa sticker, she loves stickers, she flatly told him no. She shook her head when I told her that she could have a sticker on her hand, and again said No.

It’s probably because when she was 9 months old, I plopped her down on Santa’s lap and snapped some pictures. She was pissed.

18203_10151583264654148_1791065046_n

So, she probably has some form of baby PTSD when it comes to Santa Claus. We have a book to introduce her to Santa now that she is older and enough to maybe appreciate the spirit and the magic of Christmas. When we say “That’s Santa!” and make a happy time of it, she promptly shuts the book and says “No”.

So, imagine my surprise when the guy on the intercom at Walmart said that Santa was in the garden center and you could stop by and see him. Get a picture with him even. So, of course, I said, “You wanna go see Santa?”

“No.”

“You wanna just go look at him?”

“No.”

“Well, let’s go just watch the other kids and if you want to sit with him you can.” I said. I wheeled the cart to the garden center.

The Santa was sitting on a bench, so she wouldn’t have had to sit on him lap, but when I pulled her out of the cart – she stood right next to me. She watched several kids sit up there with him and he said hi to her and blew her kisses. She wasn’t having it.

In the end, she did say “Bye Bye” and waves to him as we headed home.

I guess that’s a start!

So, since Punky is a little older and is getting to understand things more. I have decided to make an Advent Calendar for Christmas. What that really means, is we will be counting down to Christmas with Punky. I will be making one and we will get to do things with Punky as a family. Like going to Christmas in the Park to see the lights and baking cookies and decorating them together, like I did with my grandma when I was younger.

I’m pretty excited and I will likely post some picture of the advent calendar and the activities that we do with Punky this year. I’m pretty excited. I went to Walmart to get the stuff to make the Advent calendar envelopes and get started making the awesomeness.

We went to a new park that just opened up in the neighborhood and played a little bit. It’s been a while since Punky and I have been out together and I wanted to get her out of the house and spend some time with her. So after Walmart, we headed to the park. She had a blast.

IMG_2744

IMG_2749

IMG_2772

IMG_2765

Also, not sure if anyone else has seen this on Pinterest, but I got this idea from there, and it seems to be working. When I get Punky out of the car, if I need to gather things from the car still or out of the trunk, I ask her to put hand on the “Space Place”. Which is really just the gas door on the car. But, she’s so interested in putting her hands on the car that she isn’t running off into the road or parking lot.

IMG_2788

Advertisements

My Most Favorite Hobby

I have become quite the party planner. This is mostly thanks to Pinterest and other people’s brilliant ideas. Some of which I can execute, and some, I clearly cannot. It’s also thanks to my talent for getting great deals and spending my money on things that are needed very wisely.

My best friend turns 30 today. She is my very best friend. Really my own good friend left – at least where we live now. I have some friends from high school and my hometown that I still keep in contact with, but they don’t have the same spark as my best friend!

Anyway, her husband, her other best friend and I have been planning a Surprise party for her 30th birthday. A masquerade ball. I had so much fun planning this party! It was so well deserving for the birthday girl and I am so very glad we did it!

1424492_10152422231729148_792285681_n

Red plastic tableclothes, black lace and centerpieces with thrift store vases, red and white glass marbles and rocks, and black and red feathers. Add touch with LED lights in the bottom for light, sitting on a circular mirror.

I needed a mommy night out and boy did I get one. If you know me personally, I don’t really drink. In fact, drunks induce something inside of me that causes me to be very upset. I’m told it stems from my childhood, but I was also a very crazy drinker in my teenage years, I’m pretty sure I still have flashbacks about the crazy things I did back then!

My friend hasn’t ever seen me drink. Hell, K has only seen me drunk once or twice and we have been together for ten years. I just don’t drink. My good friend has always wanted to see me drink, she’s said it more times than I can count in our friendship.

Well, last night she got her wish! I had four shots of I am not really sure, but it was all very cinnamon flavored and kind of delicious. I was pretty good and buzzed by the middle of the night. I had a few people asking me if I was driving home. Which I was, but I never would allow myself to lose my faculties enough to get too drunk to drive. I stopped drinking pretty early in the night and by the time the night was over I was more exhausted than anything! From all the dancing I did, I may have lost a good 10 pounds, HAHA!

530415_10152422232459148_1593794482_n

The hostesses!

Needless to say, the party was a success and it may have been for my friend and she definitely deserved it, it was also for me. I met a lot of very nice people, mostly her other friends and family I had never met before. We all know I’m not the most social of people, so it was a change for me. I needed a night out. 

1451553_10152422231559148_644498599_n

Cake and punch table

1454793_10152422231599148_623851573_n

We ran out of tablecloths, so we improvised. Black lace in the center and a border of pictures of the birthday girl with friends and family!

1426485_10152422231999148_1138884226_n

There were three centerpieces. The middle vases and two side glasses on the ends with red and white marble and glass rocks and lit votive candles for extra lighting

936752_10152422232224148_1779937035_n

150 balloons were blown up and placed all throughout the room. We had originally planned a photo wall, but the venue did not allow us to hang things on the wall.

pictures

They did however have hooks in the ceiling, so we strung up the 160 pictures of the birthday girl and draped them against the white walls for more decoration. She had a great time looking at all the pictures compiled from several Facebook pages!

As much as K drives me crazy some times, she is the best partner I could ask for. We ended up with no sitter last night, so she was unable to join me to the party, and had to stay home with Punky. I felt bad, because I am not sure why, but Punky has been doing a lot of yelling lately. AND, with my debit card getting stolen, we literally have no money until Friday.

So we ran out of coke and K was without caffeine for some time yesterday! A lot of time. So, of course, she’s got a toddler screaming and experimenting with yelling and a headache from caffeine with drawls. I wasn’t much help yesterday because I had to go to this party I was helping host. I really appreciate all she does for me! She’s my perfect match and I am just so darn thankful for her!

Anyway, I had my fun for the year and I’m glad we could celebrate my friend’s birthday with the best darn party ever! I really had a blast planning it and it’s become my most favorite hobby.

In Our Part Of The World

Two days ago, we learned that someone in California had gotten a hold of our debit card number and charged upwards to $300 without a card. We had both cards. I was both angry and defeated all at the same time. It was like I had never felt before. I felt so violated, I still feel violated. We are currently without money because the bank will take up to 10 days before they will dispute the charges, the pending transactions have to post. It’s such an awful feeling to be unable to use my money!

K has been seeing a therapist for over a year and I have been going with her for some time. We decided after the incident at work, that it might be best for me to see my own therapist. I was starting to get that irritability back that I had before and I was starting to lash out and it wasn’t really a great feeling.

I certainly don’t want to teach Punky to express herself in the way that I have been known to express myself. I also know that at one time, I was a bully, I don’t want her to inherit those traits either. I also know that I don’t want her to feel the way I felt growing up, so in the end, I am working on making myself mentally better – so I can make sure that I am able to better prepare her to be emotionally stable and well adjusted.

In the end – I have recently been diagnosed with PTSD, for those who don’t know, that’s Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Stemming from, but not exclusive from my childhood and my teenage years. I never really thought of myself as ‘traumatized’ but I can see how some of the experiences in my life have caused me to be more damaged as an adult than I cared to admit.

With that said, we have started me on a routine weekly visit to the therapist to work on the issues from my past, because frankly, it needs to be sorted out and medication doesn’t really cure or have a way of assisting in PTSD.

Anyway, I’m still me, and I’m still the person I have always been, I’m just learning about how I tick and what makes me think and do the things I do. Why I react the way I do and to the things I do. It’s been very enlightening and I think it will help make me a better person, a better partner, a better mother, sister, daughter, and co-worker for that matter.

It’s almost that time of year, Christmas is coming. Now, look, I know Thanksgiving hasn’t even come and gone, but I never fully understood why we needed a whole day to celebrate what we were thankful for, when really, shouldn’t we be thankful and express how thankful we are every day? Anyway, I work that day and I am more interested in getting the tree up and enjoying the holidays with Punky when she can actually interact with us and help and enjoy it too!

I am also set for sending my Santa Letters to the kids. I sure do love this time of year and it really is my most favorite thing to do. I have been sending letters from Santa to kids since I was a teenager when I sent them to my brothers and sisters. Now, I have nearly 80 kids on the list for this year and it just makes me so happy to do it!

il_570xN.520718242_juhg

One of the kids last year with their letter from Santa!

I always say it is probably more exciting for me to send them than for the kids to receive them. Anyway, I wanted to extend the offer to all my blogging friends – if you would like a letter from Santa sent to your kiddos, send me an email at rachael (dot) leann (at) gmail (dot) com. Send me names, ages, and addresses! The more the merrier, truly, I am even sending four letters to kids not yet born, still warm in the belly!

Hope everyone has great plans for the weekend and the Thanksgiving holiday, I have been keeping up with everyone, and it looks like a few babies are due soon, can’t wait to meet them!

Punky’s First Haircut

We have an awesome place in town for little kid haircuts. I know that $15 isn’t exactly cheap for a 10 minute toddler haircut, but it was well worth it! We had such an awesome time at the Shear Madness for Kids place in our area. If you don’t know if you have one, you should check your area. It really was worth it and we can see our little girl’s eyeballs again!

firsthaircut

It was so great! They had her sit in a little pink car and let her drive it around while they snipped away the bangs and gave her some face framing layers to make a cute little fall hairstyle. Well worth the $15 bucks and they let me take all the pictures for her first haircut that I wanted!

IMG_2402

 

IMG_2405

IMG_2406

IMG_2414

IMG_2415

We celebrated our haircut adventure with yummy ice cream from Yogurtini.

IMG_2419

And we decided that she’s a little geek. She had her gamer pajamas on and she put on her dragon hat and glasses. I think she thought if she put a disguise on, I wouldn’t notice the attempt to steal Mommy’s dinner!

IMG_2440

In the end, we have had a few weeks of decent time. Today, Punky was a sad and puny sickly one today, she threw up violently, according to her Mama today. She has been running a low grade fever and some massive blowouts. Oi. Hopefully she feels better tomorrow!

On the NaNo front, I am above the goal with word count, so in that realm, Fred Phelps still isn’t getting my money! 😉 19, 403 words down! I’m almost halfway there!

Halloween and NaNoWrimo

So, we had a great Halloween, we just jumped on the bed like normal. We didn’t take Punky trick or treating because well, she’s still too small to enjoy it and the candy really is just for us! But, I did dress up at work and it turned out pretty awesome. We did a family themed Halloween costume this  year. Punky was Snow White, I was the Evil Queen and K was Mirror, Mirror. It was awesome fun. 🙂

Here are some of my favorites from this year’s Halloween season.

IMG_2206

IMG_2217

IMG_2239

IMG_2336

IMG_2384

IMG_2301

We got a family picture, but Punky was pretty scared of me in my costume, so she wouldn’t sit still for a nice picture.  Overall we had a great time though this season.

Now that it’s November, I am participating in National Novel Writing Month. For those who don’t know what it is – click the link and join me, it’s not too late!! Basically, the goal is to write 50,000 words in a novel for the month of November. I’ve been doing it for 6 years and I have won every year. Last year, it was close.

Last year and this year I am making a bet with myself. If I don’t win, I have to send $50 to the Westboro Baptist Church and benefit Fred Phelps. Whom I’m sure all of you know the infamous hate filled church leader. I do not want to send him money. THUS, I will be winning this NanoWriMo! Day One: 2177 words written!

Wish me luck, because frankly, I’m not as prepared as in years before. I will be writing nonstop for this month!! Let’s get the writing on and ready to go!

Hope all of you had a great Halloween and are looking forward to the Thanksgiving season.