Kid Reads, Reading

The Poky Little Puppy-Classic Kid Book

How many of you remember reading this or your parents reading you this book when you were a kid? Truthfully, I had forgotten about this book until a friend of mine gave us a bunch of their books, her kids were to old for these special classics so I happily took them.

I remember as a kid thinking how special the books were with the golden spine. As an adult reading them to my kids now, I feel that they are even more special. We read a lot of newer character books, Dora and Diego the Explorers, Last Kids on Earth, The Magic Treehouse, etc, etc, but none of them made quite the same impression on my kids.

It was interesting to hear how they reacted to the Poky Little Puppy and how they felt about the consequences enforced by his mother after getting into trouble. In the story, Poky and his siblings keep sneaking out of the yard by digging under the fence to explore the surrounding world, despite warnings from their mother not to do it otherwise no dessert! However, the first couple of times Poky comes back after his siblings have gone to bed and eats the dessert for himself.

My son “Ninja D” and I had a somewhat heated discussion about this. lol He feels that the mother was being unfair to the puppies for not giving them dessert before bed.

So naturally I asked, “so there are no consequences for the puppies breaking the rules?”

he replied, “they only wanted to explore and learn about their world, it’s not their fault they get bored in the yard!”

Me: it’s natural to want to explore the world, but they are to small to go out by themselves. What if something bad happened to them? They wouldn’t know what to do or how to defend themselves.”

Ninja D: “well, their mommy needs to find a better solution. Why can’t she go with them to explore?”

Me: “Maybe she was busy working, cleaning, and cooking for the puppies and she doesn’t have time right then to take them exploring. Maybe the puppies should have asked her if she could schedule time to take them out”

Ninja D: “yeah, maybe. But she needs to be the one to have that idea and talk to them. Not just torture them with no dessert”

Me: “so, do I have to worry about you exploring the world without me?”

Ninja D: “heck no!” “you’re stuck with me!”

I found it to be an interesting moment and very insightful to how his mind works. He doesn’t lack discipline or consequences for his actions. But his mind does process information in a very different way than the majority of kids his age. He already at the age of 8 years old values communication and working things out. He is coming to understand that his mind processes differently and he is trying harder to talk and ask questions instead of get angry and frustrated because he doesn’t understand. I to am trying to understand and have a different response to his impulsive defiance and naturally dramatic personality. As long as he waits till after I have had my coffee, we are usually good for the day.

These kind of conversations don’t usually happen with newer stories. The action and adventure stories are fun, but nothing beats the classics. I am going to look into getting more of the Little Golden Book Classics.

Wishing you a Happy, Healthy, Smart, Strong, and Successful Day!

Lessons As We Grow

Trying to Make it Perfect

For the last few weekends the weather has been horrible. This past weekend we had a tropical storm passing by. We have resorted to chanting ancient magic to try and make the sun come out. It goes like this:

Rain, Rain GO AWAY

Come again some other day

Mommy and Daddy need the boys to get outside and play!

I try and make our moments perfect, or course. This is the only moment just like this that I will ever have. How did I make a rainy weekend in a covid world perfect you ask? I did all the normal things in life and recognized, it’s not forever.

I cleaned the house, exercised for a while, took a nice long shower, caught up on work projects, finished reading one of my books, celebrated the Miami Dolphins winning, drank wine and played games with the boys on the Wii.

Yes, I said Wii.

They try to get me to play minecraft on the tablets. But I don’t get it. Give me a Wii mote or Dance Revolution dance pad and I’m good to go. I did introduce them to Resident Evil……they weren’t ready for it. I paid the sleepless consequences for that one.

Yes overall, we try to have fun no matter what. There were even a few moments where I actually felt bored…..it’s a rare feeling for me, it was nice in a boring kind of way.

In a few weeks we are going to venture to St. Augustine, FL and I can hardly wait. It’s going to be a little bit of a pain in the butt, because we take a lot of precautions against COVID. But I need this vacation to happen. I bought a fun scavenger hunt secret mission book to do as a family. It takes you to different places of interest (mostly free ones) and tells some history about while you pretend to be a secret agent. I look forward to sharing our St. Augustine adventure with y’all!

Anyone have any suggestions on “things we should do” while there? I welcome and would love any ideas you guys might have!

Until next time,

Stay Happy, Healthy, Smart, Strong, and Successful!

Cheers!

This turned into more of a jog than a walk 🙂
Lessons As We Grow

Cocoons of 2020

What to say that hasn’t already been said?

This year has been something special.

This year has been transforming.

This year deserves a special name. Like “Year of Butterflies” or “Year of the Moth”. Maybe “The Butterfly Effect”. “Reflection of Human Nature” , “#NOWWHAT?” “#OMGSTOP” , “Year of WTF!!?!?”

I like “Cocoons of 2020” . Because I feel we have all transformed this year into someone or in some cases “something” else.

The majority of us have been cocooned up in our homes for at least 3 months of this year, many of us (like myself) have been inside for almost 8 months of this year. Sure I escape every Friday to go to the office, but mostly I have been home with the kids. Working and Schooling.

I am very fortunate that my work allows me to be home and still be productive (usually after the kids are finished with school or asleep) and my employer is understanding enough to allow me to do it. Being fortunate however does not mean I am without stress, it means that I have chosen, worked hard, and sacrificed to have positive circumstances around me up to this point. I am still with stress because I need to continue to work hard in order to maintain and grow in this environment; while being even more involved with my children’s education and helping them to find ways to grow and evolve in a positive way. I have ALWAYS been involved with their education and well being, but now that we are all home together, it’s more intense.

After having several anxiety attacks brought on by stressing about my kids doing their school work, constantly getting up when they should be working, fighting with one another, feeding them, making them clean their messes, and then deadlines to meet for work, my own health, and on and on on, I reached a point that I have to let go of the “worry” stop trying to control everything, accept that it’s a flexible schedule and just go with the flow. I bought a robovac to help clean the floors (best investment ever!) because one of my kids leaves crumbs everywhere. I don’t know how, but he does. I have had to learn patience on a whole new level as well as a deeper understanding of my kids personal challenges.

And you know what? I’m happy for it. I’m happy for 2020 even though it spoiled all of my travel plans and gave me several anxiety attacks. We have became closer as a family unit and the love in this house is even stronger than before. I think we have all become more comfortable with ourselves as individuals as well. This experience has helped all of us see the reflection in the mirror in a new way.

Yes, we all have definitely been transforming while in our cocoon. There have been “highs” and “Lows”. There has been crying, screaming, laughing, and smiling from all of us and they have learned some new words that cannot be used in school. We aren’t perfect but I think we are getting better and no matter how challenging or angry the day is, we always end it with goodnight hugs and kisses with the promise that tomorrow will be better.

I hope that when the time comes for you to emerge from your cocoon that you come out even more beautiful, strong, and amazing than when you went in. If you have already flown back out into the world, I hope you are doing well and staying safe. For those who have had a difficult time with transformation, remember that the only thing that is consistent is change. Everyone and everything changes in life, how you do it is up to you.

These circumstances will change to. The world will go back to what it was, hopefully better. America will prosper and get back on it’s feet no matter who is elected because that’s what Americans do. Kids will grow up, Parents will grow old. The sun will shine and the moon will glow. The world will turn and take us for a spin, some people lose while others win. I think what a person should ask his/her self is, What do I want my heart be filled with as the world changes? Then take action to make it happen.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

My Reads, Reading

Where The Crawdads Sing By: Delia Owens

I have been into emotional books lately and this one did not disappoint. This was a story that takes place in the 1950s and 60s; its about a young girl who is abandoned by her family at a very young age and forced to learn how to live in the Marsh all alone. She survives with the very few skills her parents and siblings taught her before they left. The towns people treated her very poorly as she was a “Marsh Girl” and most never tried to help. Those that did she was very skeptical of and afraid they too would leave. She befriended and became very close to a boy who was one of her brothers friends. He taught her how to read and opened her eyes to science. However, as everyone else in her life he too left her.

I don’t want to spoil the whole book. The story is very well written and the characters are very memorable. It’s a beautiful story of survival, determination, and finding happiness and peace in self acceptance. I would recommend taking the journey with Kya as she becomes the legendary “Marsh Girl”.

Adventures, Beaches, Just Outside

A Long Weekend on Cocoa Beach, FL

Cocoa Beach, FL Behind the South Beach Inn

This post is a little bit overdue. Life has been so crazy since the kids have been doing virtual school, I feel overdue on several things. Back in September we finally took a little break from life and had a wonderful long weekend on Cocoa Beach. We didn’t do any of the “touristy” things as we are still keeping our distance but we still had fun.

We arrived on Friday to our hotel, The South Beach Inn. It’s about 2-3 miles from the pier where the “hot spots” are. When we go on vacation we always look for places that have a kitchen. Even without COVID we prefer to cook our own meals, not just because it saves on money, but dining out isn’t enjoyable for us with small hyper kids. This place had a kitchen, a bedroom, sofa bed for the kids, and was right on the beach. It was extremely clean and super affordable! It had a nice yard and place for grilling and having get togethers, a deck with plenty of chairs and benches to relax that is lighted at night, a shower to wash off the salt and sand before you go back to your room, as well as beach gear (boogie boards, chairs, etc) you could borrow if needed. The staff was friendly and very helpful when needed. The hotel is an older hotel and has character to it, regardless I would definitely recommend it if you are looking for an affordable place on Cocoa Beach.

Backside of Inn
Second Floor, from outside our room

We arrived during high tide on Friday, the waves were brutal on the beach. If you are a surfer, you would have loved it! If you are a family with smaller kids, probably less love for the waves. Even for me, after being in the water for 5 minutes, I was over it! The waves were so high and smacked me so hard that it rolled me under water and dragged me thru the sand back to the shoreline several times. The boys didn’t go out as far as I did and it was actually worse for them closer to the beach. So, mostly we made sand castles on Friday. Saturday and Sunday were not to bad during low tide. We had a lot more fun with the boogie boards and playing in the ocean. High tide started coming in between 3-5:00pm, so we had pretty much the whole day to play in the water.

We drove to the pier on Saturday just to see what it was all about. Parking is $15 for the day and since this is where all the shops and restaurants are it was very crowded. We decided it wasn’t worth it, went to Publix and spent $15 on some chicken wings and wine then headed back to the hotel for lunch and walked to the beach.

My husband in our beach spot. As you can see, not crowded at all

Another great thing about this beach is there are a lot of sea treasures to be found!

All of us enjoyed our long weekend at Cocoa Beach and will definitely be back. Next time I hope to be able to check out the Kennedy Space Center and see one of the rocket launches.

Lessons As We Grow

Zarbee’s Naturals-Children’s Sleep

A Product Review based on my own experiences

As a mom of (2) boys loaded with energy and armed with ADHD, there is no such thing as “winding” down for the night. The only way my boys are quite, is if they are being hypnotized by the tv or tablets; which of course is unacceptable at night because once they are off they are still charged more than ever.

It wasn’t so bad before COVID because they would go to school then after school was a health and fitness place where they did a lot of running and exercises. By the time I picked them up after work and brought them home, homework, dinner, they were tired. Sometimes they would have a hard time falling asleep, but it wasn’t so bad the I needed to seek help.

In March, about 1 week into the “new normal” COVID world, is when we started having problems getting to sleep every.single.night! I didn’t automatically think sleep aids, I started making them exercise following along to YOU TUBE workout videos for kids, running on the treadmill, locking them outside in the backyard….did I say locking, I meant encouraging them to play. It helped some, but it still wasn’t enough. They were still getting out of bed every hour until midnight-1:00 am. You can imagine how tired I was as I still had to wake up and work from home and make them get up and deal with their bad attitudes because they were tired, do school work with them, feed them, and try and keep the house clean enough that it wasn’t inviting roaches to visit. Oh yeah, and not loose my mind in the process. Am I painting a familiar picture here?

When they are sick with a bad cough or runny nose, I give them the Zarbee’s Cough syrup with melatonin, it knocks them out fast and helps clear up the nose and throat. I have used it for years, luckily they don’t need it much, I am blessed with pretty healthy kiddos. That being said, at this point I got to wondering what other melatonin products were out there. I have come to find out there is quite a few, being that Zarbee’s have already proven effective and safe to this point I decided to try there Children’s Sleep vitamins.

As with everything, there are a lot of different reviews. Some people loved it and other hated it. I fall into the category of love. The recommend serving for their age is 2 yummy gummy vitamins, for us two is too much! They went to sleep really fast, but they would wake up in the middle of the night super thirsty. I tried it out and even I would wake up thirsty, which is very uncommon for me unless I have had to much grown up juice that night. I cut them back to just 1 yummy gummy melatonin vitamin and we have a wonderful nights rest.

It’s now September, we are still home living the “new normal”. We all exercise, now that school is back unfortunately I don’t get what I need in that area, but that’s a different story. They still run and are locked, I mean encouraged to play outside as much as possible. They are limited to only 1-2 hours of video/games a day. All of those things help, but the fact is they can outlast the energizer rabbit. On school nights, taking our “night time vitamins” has become part of the routine just before story time. Once the story is over they are more than ready for bedtime. On the weekends, I usually let them stay up really late and watch family movies or we play the Wii dance revolution or mario cart. Yes. I said Wii as in Nintendo Wii. That’s the last game console I have purchased.

I purchase this on Amazon, I haven’t seen it at any local stores like Walmart or Target. If your child has a hard time falling a sleep at night and you want to try a natural effective sleep aid, I highly suggest this one. Like mine, the recommended dosage might be to much which works out better because the bottle will last longer.

I hope this helps parents who are looking for natural safe sleep aids for their little ones.

I wasn’t paid or given free product to do this review. These are my own honest opinions and real results from our family. I just wanted to share our experience.

Wishing you a Happy, Healthy, Smart, Strong, and Successful Day!

My Reads, Reading

When We Believed in Mermaids- by: Barbara O’Neal

Usually when I read fiction I read something in the Scify-fantasy realm. I decided to venture out and try something different. Broaden my horizons!

Maybe it’s my age, maybe it’s being a mom, maybe it’s being on locked down with the kids for 6 months and I’m going somewhat insane. I have been drawn to more sentimental type stories. So I googled popular books and this one came up, not going to lie, the title grabbed my attention more than anything as I have always loved mermaids.

When I was little we lived in South Florida and my grandparents had a boat that we use to go out on. We would snorkel and swim between fishing sessions ( in different spots of course). I had always felt out of place and sad as a child. I never felt like I quite fit in anywhere. I wasn’t really bullied in school and I had a good home, it wasn’t perfect, but my parents provided everything we needed. I was the sweet and quite girl; because of that other kids assumed I was smart. After “The Little Mermaid” was released from Disney, I wished more than anything I could turn into a mermaid and always pretended to be one when we were at the pool or in the ocean. I think it’s all of those memories that drew me to the title.

Once I got started with this book, I couldn’t put it down. It was very well written and I didn’t get bored with the characters because the chapters bounced from Kit to her sister Josie. Showing different perspectives to the same story.

The story is about sisters who grew up on the coast of California. Their parents owned a restaurant and were not very involved with their daughters. The girls were allowed to sleep on the beach and run wild and on their own until an runaway boy came to live with them and took on the responsibility of looking out and caring for them. The three kids loved one another and would to anything for each other.

A broken family, as they grew the problems grew and the kids couldn’t hold on to one another as they became adults. While Kit was is college, Josie became a party girl and disappeared. Fifteen years later, Kit goes on a mission to find her sister and while doing so finds a happier version of herself.

It’s a beautiful story of overcoming the tragedies that life sometimes gives and about letting go of the hurt and giving yourself permission to forgive. In so doing, finding love and acceptance. Families may be living in the same story, however we see from different perspectives and still experience different circumstances.

I highly recommend this book to anyone who is looking for inspiration to let go of their hurt, find love, and who want a good cry at the end.

Running, Virtual Runs

Flex It Pink-Virtual Run & Fitness Motivation

Talk about Woman Power!!!

Flex it Pink or FIP is an amazing website that provides fun fitness motivation for all women. They have a variety of options available that will work with just about any budget. You can buy individual products and virtual races or subscribe to receive fun monthly motivation.

I have only been subscribed for a couple of months now, but I really do love the product and the can tell that these ladies are passionate about what they do. They offer videos and monthly work out challenges to help keep you focus on your fitness goals.

This is the package I received for August. It was full of fun stuff and really yummy samples for energy water and coffee. The shirts are comfortable and well made, I love fitness shirts and tanks!!

If you’re looking for a program to help you stay motivated, you should definitely check out Flex It Pink!

My Reads, Reading

Books For Successful Minds

A few years ago I was really into reading my horoscope daily. On one of the readings, there was a quote:

“Learn how to be happy with what you have while you pursue all that you want.” Jim Rohn

I really liked the quote so I posted it on social media. But then I got to wondering about Jim Rohn and figured I better know who he is if I’m going to be sharing quotes from him. So I googled and learned a little about him. During the research, I decided to buy this book. It’s a small book, I finished it in a couple of days but it confirmed everything I always thought to be true and led me to other books that re-enforced my belief in the power of the mind.

I haven’t met many people who have inspired and encouraged me to be better. Let alone gave unconditional support. Usually I summon strength within myself to see life as an optimist. That energy was sustained mostly because of positive reactions I received from the people and the world by being this way.

There was a point where I became overwhelmed by challenges, life, and pessimistic views from others. I was consumed by fault and guilt that was not completely my own and I didn’t have anyone to help me see life as an optimist, I became very sad and discouraged. After years of falling deeper and deeper into this hole a life changing event happened and I woke up. This happens to a lot of people, I thought through the years that I was fighting to be better but as it turned out, I was just fighting. I didn’t have the right frame of mind. I was torn between what to do, never really taking steps forward. Until something happened and I realized that I’m not going to live with all of this negativity, I was going to live the best and happiest life possible. When I made that decision, the world automatically started me down a new path. On this new path I met someone who is a true leader. He inspired, encouraged, and supported me; even when I was over the top emotional and self destructive. He never fed the negative or insecure image of myself, he ALWAYS encouraged my more positive qualities. When you have fallen into a deep hole and been there a while, you don’t automatically get out of the hole just because you decided to. You have to fight, climb, look for foot holds,hand placements, and sometimes you slip back down. I am very thankful to this person for shining a flash light down that hole and waiting so I could see better how to get out.

I was drawn to this book and the books below; even though they were published 1930-1980s time frame (more or less) and for the most part are directed towards men in the workforce, I got a lot of valuable and solid information from them. I know this year has been overwhelming and a lot of people are falling on hard times and becoming discouraged. For those people I hope that you are able to summon faith and determination to keep moving towards success and if you loose your flashlight, I hope that someone is kind enough to offer theirs to help you find your way again.

In a nut shell, what I received from these books was the same thing I was told by my flashlight holder, “You just need to make up your mind and go for it”.

Lessons As We Grow, Running

Running Thru 2020

It has definitely been a year to reflect and reinvent. Well, for most. For me, it’s just another year full of challenges. Helping my boys who have more learning challenges than most kids their age in the general population; every year is a year for me to acquire a new level of patience, understanding, and to continuously try to think outside the box to find solutions that will help them but also to find balance between “Career/Work Time”, “Family Time”, “Husband Time, Troubleshoot problems at School time”, and most importantly “Me Time”.

Successful people often say: “You need to prioritize. You can do everything, you just can’t do everything at once.” Well, all of those things I have listed are top priorities and I really have no choice but to do everything at once. What am I saying?, there is always a choice. I choose to put energy into all of those categories because if I don’t now, I’m going to be to far behind later. I may not be getting as far as I would like, but being able to move an inch is better than not moving at all.

This year has actually been less stressful than most. We as a family are in a better place emotionally, we all get along better. That in itself is a big relief and accomplishment that allows me to be able to balance better. Because I have to work from home, I transferred to a different department that allows me to be more flexible with my daily schedule, thus enabling me to help the kids with school (cry. sob. drink.) and for me to get on a better exercise routine.

Exercise is Essential. If I don’t run or at the very least walk daily, I feel absolutely miserable. Running has been a positive attitude life saver for me and has probably saved my kids from a Mommy Monster on a few occasions. Not to say that I haven’t lost my shit a few times this year, but running has alleviated and dissolved some of the chaos. I am getting a little pissed off that I haven’t lost any weight though. I have ran about 200 miles this year and cut out fast food but have only lost a few pounds. Another thing I have had to learn to be “ok” with to be happy. I feel better however. That’s the important part.

I have joined several running groups on Facebook and follow many runners/walkers on Instagram some of whom I chat with. Since I have started the blog site and joined runners on social media, I have come to believe that runners are the happiest most positive people on this planet. Seriously, they are so encouraging, supportive, adventurous, and for the most part, SUPER HAPPY people. I absolutely love it. The days that I feel drained and worn down, all I have to do is scroll through my social media pages for 5 minutes, it’s enough to make me say “Fine. I will get off my ass and give it a go”. 4-5 miles later, drenched in sweat, I’m feeling re-energized and happy I did it.

I’ve also taken a like to virtual runs. I don’t really care for the ones where I just get a medal. I usually join the ones where I get a tank top or t-shirt instead. the medals are beautiful, but they just end up in a box. My kids also like to do the virtual runs, but honestly they would rather have YouTube Minecraft Video time as a reward. Whatever gets them moving.

Getting into a running routine has been the biggest benefit for me so far in 2020, I am going to keep running thru 2020 and into 2021 with the goal of completing at least one half marathon next year.

We have each other. And we are making the best of a “lock down” situation. 2020 is only 365 days. It won’t last forever, as with everything in life.

Embrace the good and take note of the bad or Embrace the bad and criticize the good. I choose the to Embrace the Good.

Just some fun