Main Pic

Main Pic

January 27, 2013

Winter funk be gone

My body is battling a virus and I think I am winning. I was feeling really bad, made sure to double up on all my vitamins and eat tons of veggies and fruits plus gargle every few hours with Apple Cider Vinegar and it is working. Hallelujah! I don't have much time to sit and write now but here is a follow up to my last post.
 
Wanna know how to beat winter blues and sickness funk? Spend a Saturday night drinking wine and cutting and coloring your own hair. Even if it doesn't turn out perfectly, who cares? It's only hair and it will grow back. It seems like every winter I go through this funk and chop my hair off. I didn't cut it very short this time but I did cut bangs and I am so happy I did.
 
How do you like the new me? I feel grown up.




Have a great and restful Sunday. xoxo

January 25, 2013

When the rain (eh hem snow) comes...

I went back and forth about whether I should write about how I am feeling today because when I feel this way (which sadly is at least monthly and more often lately because I get a mad case of seasonal depression and have for as long as I can remember), I often think of this Avett Brothers lyric that says "I would voice my pain, but the change wouldn't last."  Will it really make a difference if I put a voice to my pain right now while I am suffering with it, knowing that it will find it's way out of me soon if I shall let it pass? On one hand I know that this feeling of affliction, being overwhelmed, a constant nagging and worrying that something is just not right even though you can't figure out why, coupled with a crack in my emotional state, is caused by a few different things. On the other hand, even knowing doesn't always bring me comfort when I am feeling this way. Nonetheless, I have been around long enough to recognize just what it is that brings me back to this place time and again in my life.

Here is the list: 1. Hormone fluctuations. Being a woman has never been an easy task for me, and I envy my husband's manhood sometimes. He's just so much more emotionally stable than me and it's not fair. He never calls me up crying in the middle of the day saying he can't stand his coworkers or his job is overwhelming him. He doesn't text me that when he gets home from work he's going to hide under the covers and let me handle dinner. Nope..never.

2. Lack of sleep- (hmm..ran out of coffee today, too.)

3. The heaviness of winter that blankets me and overwhelms me. Although very beautiful, it makes me feel stuck sometimes.



 4. Sickness- Honestly it scares me as a mama when my kids get sick. I feel vulnerable and don't know how to fix them especially when they run really high fevers for days. I think this entire episode has spun off of that feeling. They won't take their medicine or eat or drink or do any of the things that will make them better. It is maddening! And I keep playing nurse, washing my hands, knowing that I am a ticking time bomb for this same plague and it will likely knock me out way harder than it knocks them out AND I will still be on call.



5. The energy depletion that comes from just being a mama and giving and giving until you have nothing left to give, at all hours of the day and night, plus the mental worry and guilt that makes me feel like I am just never doing quite enough. This, without a doubt, can also be maddening to a woman if she lets it! I have to tell myself that I AM doing enough, I am doing damn well enough and if I could do any better than I am, then I of all people would be doing it! All of us would. We can only do the very best that we can with what we are given. Sometimes telling myself these things knocks those thoughts right out of my brain, sometimes not. The most important thing to remember while I am feeling low is that my children are a gift and not a burden, even when they are demanding so much of me.


 6. Lack of being kind to myself this week- I need to make sure I eat as healthy as I can, take my vitamins and get some exercise. I just feel exhausted and try as I might to find the grace in today because I swear to you I'm searching for it, I just really don't see it- yet. It's 3:51 pm and it's Friday so we've still got time. Bring it to me, cause I can't go searchin' for it. I often think of the saying (and in my best southern accent), "Lord, don't teach me nothin' new today!" The only new thing I wish to learn today is that I am strong enough to get through it. I need rest for my weary soul...

and sunshine....





the beach would be nice....







or really, I'd just take a nap.....


THIS TOO SHALL PASS.


I am wishing you all a very happy weekend..I'll be ok, promise, and likely will come back tomorrow giving it my best go at being optimistic once more.


Third Day "When the Rain Comes"

January 24, 2013

Our week in photos

Blustery cold days spent inside with...
 
 
Finger puppet shows
 








Laundry Folding Party



Afternoons with the littlest while brother is at school



 
Today my oldest and I woke up with belly aches. He has a fever and I only got a few hours of sleep last night, but the sun is shining brightly and we are spending time in bed watching movies, drinking smoothies and discussing what kind of great adventures we will take once we are well again. I think him being home today is a blessing. I cherish this one on one time with my kiddos.
 
 

 
 
Wishing you a very happy and healthy week. We promise to keep our germs away. xoxo

January 20, 2013

All alone at the zoo

Last week was very cold and gray, but the sun made a spectacular appearance on Friday, streaming in through the front windows of the house and kissing the tops of the boys heads as they played on their computers. I peaked my head outside and felt that, while still cold, it was not freezing and I yelled to the boys, "Let's go to the zoo!" A quick call to my sister and we had a winter zoo date set.
 
I was so excited to get outside, take pictures, allow my body to do it's glorious work of making Vitamin D under the sun's rays so I could boost my mood and energy a bit (it worked!!) But the boys were not as thrilled when we got there and set in complaining that they were cold and thirsty.
 
 
 
I will admit that this trip to the zoo was far less for them to see animals than it was for their mama to get out of the house after a week inside, so I quickly corralled them into the coffee shop by the main entrance. Two steaming cups of hot chocolate for all the kiddos and a white mocha for me. Sad faces gone, bodies warm, mittens on; away we went.
 

 
There were only a few brave souls to venture out on a 43 degree Midwest day and so we quickly discovered that we had the zoo to ourselves. "Run little ones, run. Keep those bodies warm!"

 


We hopped from exhibit to exhibit, lingering inside at the elephants, aquarium, reptiles and manatees to warm up before stepping back into the chilly sunshine.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Who knew a winter day at the zoo would make for such great photo opportunities? Not only that, but the animals were very active opposed to laying around like they do in the summer.
 
 
Active animals, bundled babes, life capturing mama, sweet sister and nephew/neice plus a large dose of SUNSHINE = happy start to the weekend. There will definitely be more winter outdoor dates in our future!
 
 
 
 
Happy MLK holiday weekend to you!

January 16, 2013

Internet musings.

I am an avid researcher and an invested learner of all things. My brother recently asked me, "Kacy, what would you do without the Internet?" I laughed, then paused. That is an extremely great question. Touche. "I guess I'd spend a lot of time at the library."

I am also a very deep thinker; my thoughts go so deep that I surprise myself sometimes. I most often try to avoid television news because it can be depressing and one-sided, but I definitely do spend a lot of time online. I get my news from social media because it's impossible not to, and I try and listen to the voices out there, what they're carrying and how it relates to my life. I follow authors and bloggers, photographers, freedom fighters and activists of all kinds.

I find the Internet to be both a great and not so great thing. There is a wealth of information at my fingertips at any given moment. I can look up anything that pops in my head and find all kinds of opinions about it, most claiming to be the truth. There are theories about everything and so critical thinking is something I am really working on. I tend to be an emotional person and things can tug on the heart strings quite quickly if you let them. So I challenge myself to weigh both sides of the story before I form an opinion. I also challenge myself not to have an opinion sometimes and leave my judgement out of it. Most importantly, I filter things through spiritual truths and let my faith play a role in my thoughts about what I read. I notice in doing that, I am learning a great lesson about how I can look at things with more compassion and love.

The Internet is a powerful tool which gives each and every one of us the ability to have a voice. We all have a story, things to share that can teach others, and I believe each and every human is valuable and important. I am inspired by so many people who put themselves out there through blogging, in the world of social media, photography, activism, etc. The list is endless, and I find inspiration everywhere. People dedicate their lives to really amazing causes and the Internet can provide a platform to reach many people. It also seems to be this generation's way of leaving behind their legacy. The things we put out there stick around long after we are gone, almost like the technological version of a buried time capsule.

In thinking about this, I feel it is important to be mindful about what kind of legacy I want to leave behind online, or maybe not even leave behind but just put out there every day. I have been asking myself what my intentions are not only in having this blog but also my various social media accounts, etc. I'm aware of  how simple things such as commenting on Facebook posts and liking certain things can contribute to my voice.  I chewed on this a lot last night, and discussed it with my husband quite a bit as well. In an age where we can instantaneously decide to acknowledge and affirm others by commenting on or "liking" their pictures, posts, or statuses, does this sometimes contribute to us feeling "likable" or not? Is the real intention to have a lot of fans on my Facebook page and followers on Twitter, or is it just to find value in being a part of a community of shared voices? I admit sometimes it's nice to post a picture of my boys and have lots of people tell me they are cute, because I sure think so, or to find that others relate to what I have posted, but that kind of thing can so easily go to my head and make me forget the real reasons I do the things I do.  When I find I am comparing my writing, photography or my art to somebody else or wondering if anybody cares about what I have to say, I have to remind myself that it's really not about that.

This blog is  the documentation of my family. To have a platform which allows me to weave together words and pictures about the things we enjoy in the present moment is really amazing in and of itself. It is an outlet for my inspirations and creativity. It is a place where I feel safe to share who I am and where I choose to be as real as possible about myself because I have always found it easier to open up with words. It is also a space where, in thinking carefully about what I want to publish and put out there, the brightness of life tends to find me. Often it seems to happen that I'll sit down  with a subject in mind and realize that in digging deep for the words, I have dug up some inner joy to reflect into my writing. I always walk away fulfilled and happy.

I definitely have hope that in writing this blog and also through the way I live my life, my voice carries enough that it could possibly help or touch someone's life in some small way. But I really have no control over whether that happens or not or even who reads my words or not. So, my other hope is that in finding the beauty and merit in expressiveness, I learn to expand my own uniqueness and celebrate who I am, who my family is. That I also learn to celebrate others, everywhere, and really value their words and efforts to own their voices. It's hard to put yourself out there in life. The Internet is just one small way we do that, but in it I have found a great lesson in solidarity and recognizing that we humans are truly connected even in all our differences.

“The important element is the way in which all things are connected. Every thought and action sends shivers of energy into the world around us, which affects all creation. Perceiving the world as a web of connectedness helps us to overcome the feelings of separation that hold us back and cloud our vision. This connection with all life increases our sense of responsibility for every move, every attitude, allowing us to see clearly that each soul does indeed make a difference to the whole.”--Emma Restall Orr
 
"You better live your best and act your best and think your best today, for today is the sure preparation for tomorrow and all the other tomorrows that follow." --Harriet Martineau

January 14, 2013

Weekend fun

We had a really fun and action packed weekend with unseasonably warm weather. Most weekends we are lucky to squeeze in all of the things on our to-do list such as weekend chores, fun family time and a little relaxation, but we managed it all plus the hubs deep-cleaned and organized the garage while I went to work on Saturday morning. I feel refreshed and happy going into this week, but I sure do miss my guys when they head back to work and school!
 
Family bowling at my nephew's birthday party
 
The boys really enjoyed bowling and it was fun to watch them run to the edge of the lane, raise the ball as high as they could and hurl it with a gigantic thud about a foot away, followed by the great anticipation of watching the ball roll slooooowly down the lane and knock over two whole pins!
 


 

 Wait for it, wait for it...
  
Another simple pleasure we enjoyed...birthday cake!
 
 
 
Even the mama got in on some cake action
 
Saturday Night Painting Party
 
We brought out the paints and old newspapers and went to work painting these little dinosaurs that Caden got for his birthday. The little guys had a great time painting themselves, too!
 
 
 
Painting fingernails is way more fun!
 
Our dinosaur family
 
The weekends fly by so fast. I have been trying to enjoy each and every moment of the time we share together because it is so precious. Colten, 4 years old and full of energy and stories. Caden, 6 years old and full of wisdom and confidence. I just love living life with these boys!
 
 
May you search and find the precious moments this week to either capture on camera or freeze frame in your memory bank. xoxo