Monday, July 31, 2017

Happy 9th Birthday!

Every year I sit down to write you a letter and every year I cry.
How is it possible the baby who made me a mother is nine years old?
How is it possible the teeny tiny infant weighing under 6 lbs is now a strong, beautiful young lady?

I will never forget the phone call that told me you were mine. I can still remember the weather, where I was, what was said, and the emotions that came over every inch of my body. Your birth was truly a gift from G-d.

This past year has been a roller coaster and you and I rode this ride together, but not willingly. You left the innocence of a child behind and began to experience true worries, frustrations, anger, and disappointment. You had to navigate some tough situations this year and I felt many of your growing pains. You had many struggles.

As you know, in this house we do not focus on the struggles but rather the lessons learned and the positives that have graced your life. And you, my daughter, have a wonderful life.

This year.....

You stopped tennis and found another passion, softball.
You enjoyed being on team sport and learned the joys of competition.
You rocked second grade and proved once again, you are a brilliant child.
You learned responsibility and time management.
You discovered the value of friendship.
You became aware of what a true friend looks like.
You stood up for others when no one else did.
You made positive choices when no one was looking and did not cave into peer pressure.
You experienced the loss of a loved one and were reminded how you treat your family is what is remembered.
You gained independence and started riding your bike 1 mile to the park.
You discovered the power of self reflection.
You became a more patient sister.
You realized you were more sensitive than you thought.
You recognized that others can make an impact on your life.
You embraced your own personality.
You uncovered the necessity for honesty.

On this ninth birthday, I want you to remember that you are the most amazing person. You are beautiful inside and out and even on your worst day, I love you more than the day before. Your heart is huge and you love with all your might. Your eyes are bright with a future that you will achieve because no dream is too big for you to tackle. Your smile lights up your face and makes those around you feel your joy. The loudness in your laughter fills our home and each chuckle reminds me how lucky I truly am.

I thank G-d each day you are mine. Your passion for learning and for your family is like no other. Your devotion to Judaism and G-d is inspiring. It is incredible to me that you, my nine year old, can provide me with such hope. I know you are going to change the world. Anyone that meets you, knows just how special you are in about 15 seconds.

After nine years of being your mom, I still wake up with admiration for you. You start each day anew, fresh, and willing to try things. Your stubbornness to be your best keeps you succeeding even when the odds are stacked against you. You make things happen. You take control. You live the day and pray for a better day if things did not go your way.

I cannot imagine what is in store for you this year as you enter third grade and spend your last year as a single digit.

What I do know about you, my nine year old daughter, is no matter what life throws at you, you will swing and not miss.

Happy 9th Birthday!
I love you more than yesterday,

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Tomboys In Tiaras is TWO!

Here are the top ten viewed posts of all time:

10. At What Cost

9. For My Grandma

8. PSA

7. Category 5

6. 15 Years

5. Taking The Last Step

4. 365 Days

3. Real Family

2. Unwanted Membership

And the number one post in the last two years......

1. Because I am A**Hole

Thank you to all my readers and to my family and friends who continue to support my writing and parenting journey.
This blog has been read by people in the United States, Israel, Russia, France, South Africa, Hong Kong, Brazil, Portugal, Ukraine, Canada, Argentina, Indonesia, China, Ukraine, Australia, Switzerland, and India!
Tomboys is definitely becoming a worldwide blog!
(This is so amazing to me!!)

I would like to give a special shout to my grandma in heaven because even though she is no longer calling me after every post and she is no longer commenting, I know what she is thinking and I know I am making her proud. Of everyone who has read this blog, she really was my number one fan.


Monday, July 17, 2017

WHOLE 30 -

I just finished Whole 30.
It has been a life changing, eye opening experience. Seriously.

Thirty thoughts from my Whole 30 experience.

1. Giving up grains was tough, but necessary and not that difficult. I knew I needed to back away from the pantry.  
2. My bloated stomach was no longer bloated after a few days.
3. Brussel sprouts makes my entire family suffer from flatulence. I have never smelled so many farts in my life. ( I have an oil for tummy problems, so we kept eating them - man, I love my essential oils)
4. I learned how to prepare fish! AND it tasted amazing.
5. I missed cheese, but realized I ate WAY too much. I really love cheese. Cheese is so damn good. I didn't really care about giving up the rest of the food in the dairy category.
6. I am grateful for my friend who let me send her a text each day that I followed the program.
7. I was told give it three days and I would not miss my old foods.
8. After three days, I was still annoyed.
9. Ten days into the program and I was rocking it.
10. There is processed sugar in EVERYTHING!
12. Holy shit, there is sugar in marinades on "plain grilled chicken" at a restaurant.
13. I discovered LARA bars.
14. I annoyed the crap out of my family at restaurants because I asked for all the ingredients.
15. I modeled commitment to my children.
16. FUCK! There is sugar in meats at BBQ places!!
17. I realized there would be sugar in the BBQ sauce, but it is in the rubs on the meat!
18. My clothes started to fit better after two weeks.
19. My clothes were too big after the 30 days.
20. Giving up legumes was no big deal. I needed to back away from the hummus.
21. My girls started eating more fruit. (Even E2!)
22. E1 joined me in eating more vegetables. We both like okra now.
23. I was not a daily a drinker of alcohol so I thought giving it up would be no big deal.
24. I was SO WRONG about giving up alcohol.
25. I missed red wine and vodka sodas.
26. I googled "Can I have _______ on Whole 30" frequently in the beginning.
27. I realized I knew more about healthy eating habits and basically just ignored my knowledge.
28. I lost over ten pounds and quite frankly I needed to drop that weight.
29. I stopped stress eating.

I honestly entered these 30 days because my friend lost weight and I wanted to lose some weight too. What I learned is that I am stronger than my temptations, my family benefited from an insane amount of home cooked meals, and I really do feel better without all that processed crap in my diet.

I am going to continue down the Whole 30 path, BUT I will bring back the alcohol (occasionally.)
Sometimes, this mama needs a drink! (Or two)

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Balloon Spray Paint

I saw this idea on numerous blogs and have been wanting to try it, but we did not have a balloon pump. Well, we FINALLY got a balloon pump!!!!

Supplies needed:
Paint (we used crayola washable paint)
Balloon pump
Something to pop the balloons - I have seen darts being used, but we just used an extra thumbtack
Optional- goggles and a smock/poncho

Fill the balloon with paint
Pump the balloon to desired size and tie balloon
Attach balloon to canvas with thumbtack
Repeat until the canvas is covered.
Pop balloons!!

Penelope and I LOVED this project!! Pandora did not want to participate in the popping of balloons, but she enjoyed watching her big sister.