Sunday, November 30, 2014
Friday, November 21, 2014
1. The baby had her first snow adventure and loved it. She didn't like getting the snow suit on, but once outside she was totally at peace.
2. It hit 25 degrees outside today, so we had some outside play time for a bit today. The boys really enjoyed it. They love "plowing the driveway.
Thursday, November 20, 2014
When I was reading a book about the Strong Willed Child one of the things they said was that it really helps this kind of child to think outside themselves was to involve them with charity work. I think this hit home for me because ever since I was little, I've loved helping those who needed help. In my family, I'm the odd one out who actually gives donations to charities as part of Christmas gifts. I'm just weird like that. So I want to start giving to others early with my kiddos. Last year we did Angel Tree, and this year I would like to add one more thing the boys can tangibly see as helping someone that needs help. I was thinking Toys for Tots or Operation Christmas Child. I honestly like the idea of the latter better because it goes along with what I think of Christmas giving, necessity and fun and personalization with Jesus at the center not just random stuff. Toys for Tots though, is good in its own sense though as it helps people in your own community experience a little joy. So both have their benefits. I'm not sure what we will do, Operation Christmas Child has to be done by Monday, so if we do this one, it will be within the next few days. I would like to do it though, so we will see if we can squeeze it in over the weekend.
So what are your favorite ways or charities that you involve your kids during advent/Christmas time?
Wednesday, November 19, 2014
I am all about the serious on the blog, but this is a less serious post. One about toys!!! My friend Jess had a post about toys that were favorites for her kids and had lasted through three of her kiddos, soon to be four kids, she's due in December! It made me think about what toys my kids really play with, and so I got to thinking about it and came up with our top five, at least according to me.
Whether it be duplos, legos, soft blocks, or wooden blocks, if it can be made into a tower, it is a go to! We are always building and creating.
No seriously, when given a cardboard box, magical things happen. We have had roads and rockets and hideouts made from these. Tears are shed when they are recycled. Its insane.
So there you have it. Maybe this will help you find some good Christmas gifts for the kids. Check out more favorites at the linkup at Call Her Happy.
Tuesday, November 18, 2014
Monday, November 17, 2014
Sunday, November 16, 2014
We made it home! All in one piece. It took much longer than anticipated on the way back, but there were some detours. We stopped at our one friend's home again to pick up left behind things and well its always hard to leave them because everyone just gets along so well.
We did a trip lay over across the river from Cincinnati. Somehow, Keith scored us a discounted rate on a swanky hotel that was on the edge of the river. The boys and I enjoyed watching the river boats from our 11th floor view.
We checked out the Latin rite mass at Old St. Mary's in downtown Cincinnati. I had been to one of these before but Keith had never been. I'm honestly not in the right place for it I think because I'm just confused instead of understanding. Maybe another time in life I'll like it more. For now I'll stick to a reverent English mass.
We stopped at Skyline Chili for lunch. Benjamin apparently wanted to take his noodles with him unbeknownst to us. He had a full handful in each hand, which warranted him a to go box from the waitress. It reminded me that sometimes 4 almost 5 year olds still are little and do silly things.
We played a lot of find the alphabet letter games in the car and a few rounds of guess what animal am I. I think by the 5th round the boys figured out that the game works better if you aren't the same animal every time. We detoxed from screens on the way home, which might have been why it seemed so long, but I think we needed it.
And so now we are home! The snow can come and it will be okay. I'm excited to be back in my own bed again and get some routine back in our lives.
Saturday, November 15, 2014
In the enneagram, you have a dominant personality type and then a wing. The wing is something that you have characteristics of, but aren't fully of that type. So they will list a personality of 3w4. The 3 is the dominant personality and the 4 the wing type. The way they have it set up, you can either be a on the left or the right of your dominant personality for your wing type. I'm sure there is even more data behind why each personality is numbered as so, I mean my friend just told me there is a whole conference on it too. Wouldn't that be awesome to go to?
I wrote last time that I was seeing myself change with regards to I and E with respect to Myers Briggs. When I take the enneagram test at this time in life, I am a type 2 with a wing 1. I do feel like I have a lot of 2 qualities, especially in motherhood, however, the test tells you distinctly that if you are a mother of small children, you are more likely to be a 2 even if you would normally be another type. However, I think that just goes along with the whole we evolve a bit into what our circumstances are. I sometimes think, prior to having kids, I would have more likely been a 1 with maybe a 2 wing, so I guess the reverse of what I am now. I wonder if motherhood has softened me and that is why I am feeling like myself is changing a bit.
So here are some links to Enneagram information
Tests to see what your type and wing are: Personality Tests
How the Enneagram System Works: Enneagram Institute
Wednesday, November 12, 2014
I'm blaming this on the fact that we are currently on vacation. But I will totally own up to missing two days of posting.
I've been meaning to post on this stuff for a while. As most of you know, I love personality typing. I love that there is so much out to learn from it and how much it helps you to understand yourself.
Lately, I've been feeling like my personality is changing. Maybe it's motherhood, maybe it's circumstance or being married to an introvert or age or me just being truly honest with myself. But with time I feel like I'm becoming more introverted and less extroverted. The one thing is I do like people, and at the end of the day I do need to talk to at least one person that isn't little. But I feel like these days I enjoy my quiet more, my curling up in bed nursing a baby and reading a good novel.
So whether I'm truly as introvert or extrovert now I don't know, I depends probably on the day. But I do know I'm growing and changing in this life journey so it's likely I'm not quite who I once was. So, what about you? Do you think you are changing on the extrovert vs introvert scale? What do you think has influenced you the most in your change?
Sunday, November 9, 2014
Honestly, usually I don't tackle things like general statements on birth of babies, because there are so many things attached with it. I will totally tell my own birth stories, but generalities come with so much attachment. It's such an emotional experience and different women want such different things out of it. But a FB friend posted a positive comment about going from cesarean section, to medicated v-bac to natural birth and loving finally having the birth she wanted. I simply thought it was really awesome for her to have such a positive experience get the kind of birth she could feel good about. Because natural childbirth doesn't mean awesome birthing experience always, but but for her this component contributed to a great birth.
I've had three completely different births myself, even though to the outsider they may be classified as natural childbirth. My first was a hospital birth with a midwife who was great despite the mostly medicalized setting, it was what I needed and if similar circumstance arises, I would find this midwife again because she listened. My second was in a birthing center, still attached to a hospital, the midwife didn't show up and the on call doctor delivered my son, this birth if you read back posts didn't go as planned and took a while to process. My third birth took place at home with a midwife and it was calm and awesome and redeemed birth for me.
I don't think everyone needs birth to be the same for them and I think each woman has different expectations. I think what it comes down to is that birth is really hard to control, and honestly you aren't going to just pick things out of a catalog and get it, labor is unpredictable, baby positioning is not controllable among many other things.
However, what I do think makes the difference is the people around you during birth, whether they support or break you down. These people can make or break a birthing experience. Putting all necessary medical intervention aside, I really do think having an attendant who listens and doesn't push an agenda on you makes all the difference in the world, it definitely did for me.
Happy Sunday everyone!
Saturday, November 8, 2014
We are finally taking a vacation for the year. These are some of the highlights of day 1.
1. We went through two major cities. In.Cincinnati we all waved to downtown to tell it hello and goodbye. We then waved to the Ohio river and Kentucky as well. This may not be much, but the silly things like this make my day.
2. Ben declared this the best trip ever after we stopped at a newly remodeled McDonald's with a pretty great play place.
3. The baby didn't cry much and actually was quite the trooper.
4. We enjoyed window drawing the last hour of the trip. We have these window markers that crystallize after you draw with them, I'm always intrigued by them each time I use them. This was one of our windows. Apparently the person looked like Ben's godfather to him because he has spikey hair.
5. The hotel we are at has an indoor pool.Had a dinner within waking distance and an outdoor shopping mall. I call that a win.
Friday, November 7, 2014
Thursday, November 6, 2014
It seems always the general consensus from more experienced moms is to just wait on the school thing. They say to let the kids be as little as long as possible or to let them run and play and just be kids. The reading will come, the skills for school will come at the age they are meant to come.
But then it feels like the other half of the world seems to want to push our kids to learn to read, and write and do math sooner and sooner. It's hard not to get swept up in it. I know at least it is for me because it looks good on paper and impresses the grandparents or other inquiring minds.
I think last week was needed for me to see that isn't what my children need. While some structure and boundaries are good, when pushed too far it can really backfire, as it did for us last week. It broke.
So in trying to figure out what is best for us as a family in our learning journey, I'm trying to take a step back and evaluate the forest for the trees. I know my kids are growing and learning each day. While they may not sit down and do much paperwork or tablet work for that matter, they are learning.
Right now, I don't think we need more class-like stuff, because well because we have just enough already. More and more I realize my boys need to move and need to be outside. Perhaps, a consistent free play group would be good for this. Anyway, this is where I'm at today. One step at a time right?
Wednesday, November 5, 2014
Hi all. I made a facebook page for my blog finally. You can find it at https://m.facebook.com/contranautgirl
I hemmed and hawed for a while about making one. I struggle with promoting things of myself. One because it's a window into my life, and two well its not the real reason I blog. I blog for the cathartic feeling of getting things out of my head and to feel some peace about it. Writing helps me. But the thing is I do have a blog, so that must mean I do want people to read it. And so I don't do a very good job of consistency when it comes to letting folks have the material available. So enter in the FB page. While I do publish everything on Google +, I realize a large portion of people don't really look at it. So, alas the giant that I hate is now helping me to be more organized. So anyway, let me know if you want to follow the FB page and it doesn't work and I'll try to figure that out. Until then have a good evening.
Tuesday, November 4, 2014
Monday, November 3, 2014
Sunday, November 2, 2014
Benjamin has been in a phase lately where he goes around telling me that I am going to die before him and he is going to die before Ephraim. In his 4yo mind, the oldest person dies first, out of order deaths don't happen, no tragedies or illnesses. And honestly, thats okay to me. I think he is doing just fine at understanding death as a 4yo. Ephraim is just a new 3yo, so basically his days are full of bipolar tyranting and so he just isn't there yet, but even he could probably benefit from seeing the resting site of the body of a loved one. Benjamin always asks about his great grandpas, and how he wants to see them, but that they are up in heaven with Jesus. I think somehow, this might help him understand how it all works more.
And now in a less morbid fashion, WIWS. It's honestly, except for one piece, the exact same outfit as I did last time. But lets be realistic, who actually has a new outfit for every Sunday? I sure don't. So I am going to try to help lessen the stigma of only posting new outfits and post a repeat, well except for I wore leggings underneath instead of black pants this time. So here it is, my repeat outfit.
Saturday, November 1, 2014
Today was All Saints Day. Happy All Saints Day! I want to say that we did more for it. I saw lots of beautiful Saint costumes out in the blogosphere, but we didn't do any of that. The boys did trick or treat last night in angry bird costumes, but seeing as everyone does that whether or not they know the origins of Halloween, I'm not sure that's saying much. Not to discredit the fun of Halloween, it was definitely fun, we had a full angry bird family going on. I mean even my inlaws bought some last minute angry bird costumes and joined in on the fun. I mean can you imagine a 57yo woman dressed up as yellow bird handing out candy? Well, that is what we had.
So really for All Saints Day, two small things did happen. It made me think about getting saint namesake dolls for my kids for Christmas, so I did through this shop called St. Luke's Brush. I have been told amazing things about them, and I love that they add to the richness of this Catholic faith that we are part of and are not yet easily breakable by children, something that we struggle with at times.
The other small thing was that we read an excerpt for Loyola Press.com about All Saints Day for Kids. It went like this: