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Well, it’s that time of year again.  Time to do your back-to-school shopping.  With three children still in school, it’s not an easy task.   My youngest son Austin, as most of you know, has Sensory Perception Disorder (also known as Sensory Integration Disorder).  So, it’s not easy finding clothing that he will wear without having a major meltdown.  Tags, seams, and the fit of some clothing is just too much for him to handle.  Thanks to a wonderful company called Soft Clothing for all children, I can now find clothes that my son will wear. 

Soft Clothing for all children is having a wonderful giveaway co-sponsored by a wonderfully insightful blog called Hartley’s Life With 3 boys.   I’m so excited about this giveaway that I just had to tell everyone.  One Grand Prize winner will get the following:

1 Grand Prize worth over $250 will be given:               Soft, seamless socks.

3 pack of Soft Sensory Tees in color/size of your choice
6 pairs of Soft Seamless Socks
“This is Gabriel Making Sense of School” by Hartley Steiner
Lands End Uniform Backpack
Classpack of Crayola Colored Pencils
Tactile Fidget
Desk Buddy Sensory Bar
6-Pack of Mead Sprial Wide Ruled Notebooks
4-BG Flash Drive
12-Pack of Crayola Washable Fine-Tip Markers
Peltor Junior Noise Proctector Headphones
Classic Pencil Grip Pencil Sharpener
4-Pack of Sharpie Highlighter Pens
3-Pack of Pink Paper-Mate Rubber Erasers
2 Mead Classic Composition Books
Plastic Hinged School Tool Box
Max’s Mud-Natural Sculpting Dough
Pocket Stixx Oral Motor Tubes

Enough said?

CLICK HERE TO ENTER GIVEAWAY

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This morning I woke with an ache in my back.  I honestly thought that it was going to be a bad day.  But, I was totally unaware of what surprises the day had in store for me. 

It seemed like a typical day to me.  Then, I checked my email and found a wonderful surprise.

LizAnn from For Girls & Dolls  had nominated me for a Beautiful Blogger Award.

Beautiful Blogger Award

Words cannot begin to express my gratitude for her generous, loving nomination.  I never thought that someone would nominate me for anything concerning the blogging world. 

 
Isn’t it beautiful?! 
The recipient of the award chooses 7 bloggers to pass the award on to, and shares 7 things about themselves. 
 But, before I do that, I wanted to share with you a little bit about the lovely woman who nominated me for the award.
 If you haven’t been to For Girls & Dolls, please go check it out.  LizAnn is a mom of three girls and a fellow Pennsylvania mom like me.  She and her sister, Mildred, started developing products for girls and their dolls.   She is a very talented, witty, and generous woman.  For Girls & dolls is one of my daily web stops.  I love the inspirational words of wisdom that she fills my day with along with a dose of humor and helpful tips.  Life has definitely been much more fullfilling with LizAnn in my day.
 
I’m giving the Beautiful Blogger Awards to:
  1. Lindsey Petersen of Raising 5 Kids With Disabilities.
  2. Playground for Parents.
  3. If Mama Ain’t…
  4. Mommy Goggles.
  5. Unknown Mami.
  6. Parent Trend.
  7. My Organized Chaos.

Wow, that was really hard to pick just 7!  Please head on over to these blogs and enjoy yourself!

Okay, now for the last part of the award conditions, 7 things about myself.

  1. I was born and raised in Vermont.
  2. I lived in New Jersey for over 14 years and all 5 of my children were born there.
  3. I am owned by 9 birds and my African Grey talks non-stop.
  4. I went back to college when I was 36 years young.
  5. I am dreading turning 40 this year. 
  6. My oldest daughter is going to be 20 this year.
  7. My kids still give me a hug and kiss goodnight.  I love my kids!

Thank you again LizAnn!  You are truly a joy to have in my life.

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I have been hosted by momwebs.com

My new site is Foggy Mama

Mom Webs Hosting has earned a reputation for top notch service and patient, friendly technical support but they’ve just taken client support to the next level with the launch of a brand new ‘Helper Line’.

Mom Webs clients now have easy access to quick answers to sticky questions that often come up for new web entrepreneurs. This is more than tech support, this is all around internet business support. Whether you need help placing an affiliate link or have gotten stuck with wordpress, as a Mom Webs client – you never ever have to stay stuck for long.

Check it out at

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Lately, my husband has been complaining of dry, itchy skin; , also known as “winter itch.”   It only bothers him during the winter months when the humidity level is low.  We bought a humidifier for the house to help alleviate this problem during the winter.  Another thing that helps him is adding baking soda to his bath water.  He’s not one for showers.  He prefers to soak in a nice, hot bath after a long night at work. 

  • For a shallow bath, you can add 1/2 cup of baking soda to your bath water. 
  • For a deep bath, add 1 cup of baking soda.

If you experience “winter itch,” you should take a short bath or shower, no more than 10 minutes, once in a 24 hour period.  I know how relaxing a nice, hot bath is when it’s cold outside and you’re aching all over.  But, soaking in hot water or even warm water for an extended period of time can rob your skin of its natural oils and make matters worse.  Taking a short shower is much better.  Add a humidifier to your house and use the baking soda home remedy in your bath and watch the “winter itch” fade away.

 

My husband now knows that I’m the Queen of our house. 

“Whenever I have a question about something, you always have the answer.  And, you’re always right,” stated my husband before giving me a great big hug and kiss.

 

Unbeknownst to him, this little tip came from a home remedies website.  But, I’m not going to let him know that. 🙂

 Home Remedies and Natural Cures.  This website has an enormous list of home remedies.  I have tried many of them myself.  These home remedies are inexpensive and easy to make with ingredients that you most likely have in your kitchen.  One thing that I do want to say, though, is that these remedies are not intended to be used in place of your physician’s expertise.  Always consult your physician before trying these remedies.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Vote for my post Do you spank your child?  Poll included on Mom Blog Network

Spanking is a very controversial issue.  Many people consider spanking to be a form of child abuse.  Others, feel that it is necessary for discipline.  Still, others feel that an occasional spanking doesn’t do any harm.

Many years ago, I did spank my children.  A tap on the butt or hand when they were in a position where they would harm themselves.  But, the first time that my 2 year old daughter slapped my hand when I touched the stove while it was on, I was amazed.  Here I was teaching my child to hit someone.  Mind you, it was a light tap.  And even though it was to make her aware of the dangers of the stove, among other things, I was still teaching my child violence.

Children don’t come with a manual.  You live and learn from your mistakes as a parent and then you move on from there.  There are some people that believe in the biblical verse, “spare the rod, spoil the child.”  The rod does not have to be taken literally.  I do believe in God.  I prefer to see the “rod” as the rod of discipline.

The Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary defines discipline as:

1 : punishment
2
obsolete : instruction
3
: a field of study
4
: training that corrects, molds, or perfects the mental faculties or moral character
5 a
: control gained by enforcing obedience or order b : orderly or prescribed conduct or pattern of behavior c : self-control
6
: a rule or system of rules governing conduct or activity


The definition for punishment makes me stop and think twice.

Main Entry: pun·ish·ment

Pronunciation: \ˈpə-nish-mənt\

Function: noun

Date: 15th century

1 : the act of punishing
2 a
: suffering, pain, or loss that serves as retribution b : a penalty inflicted on an offender through judicial procedure
3
: severe, rough, or disastrous treatment


SUFFERING pain?  For my child?  I don’t think so.  And what about #3?  Severe, rough, or disastrous treatment?  No way. Now, there are different versions of punishment.  Ones that aren’t so severe.

I prefer to discipline my children without any form of violence.  Violence begets violence.  I will never put down anyone who prefers to use a spanking as a form of discipline.  But, I would urge you, if you spank your child, please use extreme caution.  Here are a couple of websites that give great information about spanking.

wikiHow – How to Include Spanking in Child Discipline

Christian Parenting

I have been a parent for almost twenty years.  During those many years, I have learned that taking away privileges as a form of discipline has been so much more effective.  And let’s not forget to praise our children when they do something good.  Too many parents, and yes I’m at fault, overlook the good.  Parenting is more than just discipline.  We need to teach our children, love them, praise them more often, and enjoy them!

Don’t forget to take the poll and comment.  Let me know your views on spanking.  How do you discipline your child/children?

Tell your friends to stop by and take the poll.

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National Blog Posting Month

The theme for February is TIES.

FEBRUARY 1, 2010

The Ties That Bind

Dreams can symbolize many things.  They can symbolize our wants, needs, and fears.  In our daily lives we experience emotions.  These emotions are expressed or filtered through our minds while we dream.  Some of our deepest, darkest secrets and fears can be revealed to us in our dreams.  Sometimes, if we realize these fears, the solution to a problem can be revealed in a dream. Dreams are the ties that bind us to our true selves. They can help us to discover things about ourselves that we never knew existed; or that we have refused to believe.

One of my biggest fears is losing my true self.  I fear that I may lose control of who I am.  I’ve been a mom for nearly two decades.  Yes, that does make me the woman who has scaled that infamous hill and is now standing at the top ready to plummet downhill.  I’m afraid of getting older and not being anything other than a mom and a wife.  I have so much more to give to the world.

Don’t get me wrong, I love being a mom and I wouldn’t trade that for anything in the world.  But, sometimes, I feel like I’ve lost ME.  I’m a vibrant, intelligent woman with a lot to offer.   Unfortunately, I don’t get to show that side of me.  Most people see that I’m a mom and wife.  They even compliment me on how I’m such a great mom.  I’m very flattered and happy about that, of course.  It’s just that, sometimes, I would like people to know that there is so much more to ME.

NOTE:  THE FOLLOWING WAS A DREAM, THIS WAS ONLY A DREAM.  HAD THIS BEEN AN ACTUAL EVENT, I WOULD HAVE DIED OF A HEART ATTACK.

Last night I had a very disturbing dream.  In my dream, I was twenty again.  I was with four of my friends.  Two of them were female friends and the other two were male friends.  We had decided to have a sleepover at this abandoned house.  In real life, I would never have been there.  But, in my dream, I succumbed to peer pressure and went anyway.

This abandoned house apparently had a history.  Ergo, it remained abandoned.  The five of us sat in the dilapidated living room in a circle telling scary stories and drinking wine from plastic cups.  One of the guys related the story of the abandoned house.

Twenty years ago, this young girl was tortured and then murdered by a group of men.  There was more to it than just torture.  But, because this is a family blog, I will leave that horror to your imagination.  It’s been told for many years that the spirit of this girl haunted the   People would come from all over just to try to catch a glimpse of her ghost.  Rumor has it that she would kill any male that dared to enter her house.

When he had finished relating the story, I started to feel funny.  Suddenly, my body went limp.  As I lay on the floor feeling like I wasn’t myself, I looked around at the faces of my friends.  They were all around me with astonished faces.  They were talking about me and pointing at me.  I felt like I wasn’t really there.

I started growling and lashing out at my friends.  My heart was beating faster than a hummingbirds’ wings.  Part of me realized that I had been possessed by the young girls spirit.  Part of me, her part, didn’t care.  I felt myself sit up, grab a cup in each hand, and slam them to the floor.  The cups shattered into pieces.  I became instantly angry when I looked at the faces of my male friends.  I couldn’t understand it.  I tried fighting the girls spirit.  I altered between screaming out and fighting for control of myself to growling and snorting.  The girls spirit was getting stronger and I couldn’t control her.

I felt myself pick up a shard of the plastic in each hand.  I felt wild and angry.  I wanted to kill the guys.  I lunged at the guys aiming the shards of plastic at their hearts.  Fortunately, they were fast and they moved out of the way in time.  I hit the floor hard.  I began panting and whining.  I knew that I had to gain control of this demon inside of me.  As I struggled with this demon, I was whining, snorting, and crying in my sleep.  Just as I gained control of myself, my husband woke me up.

That was the scariest dream that I had ever had.  But, it has taught me something very important about my true self.  For many years, I had been held back by certain men in my life.  I have fought them off and gained my freedom.  But, I haven’t gained control over my true self.  This nightmare has made me realize that I am strong enough to take back myself and be everything and everyone that I want to be.  So, with that being said, I have ventured out into the big world and started my own business.  I can be mom, wife, and Consultant all at the same time!  And, I can be great at all three!  I am finally free to be me!

My dreams are the ties that bind me to my true self.

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Is chivalry dead? Nine out of ten boys don’t come to the door to pick up their dates. Most of them sit in their vehicle and honk the horn to let their girlfriend know that they have arrived. Or, better yet, they pull into the driveway and call her or text her to let her know that he’s there and ready to go. How rude is that? I find it very demeaning and rude for these boys to be treating girls in such a manner at such a young age. If the boys are like this now, what will they be like as an adult?

I know what you’re probably thinking about me. Well, she doesn’t have any sons. She’s only got daughters and can’t see it from the other viewpoint. Well, I’d have to say that you’re wrong! I have two sons and two daughters. My sons are not of dating age yet. YET! But, by the time that they’re ready to date, they will understand the importance of treating a woman with respect. I teach all of my children that respecting others gains their respect for you in return. Whether or not they get respect in return, it is still important for them to respect everyone; within reason.

My daughter has had other “dates” before. And, out of respect for those other boys, she has introduced them to our family when they started dating. But, when they would come to pick her up they stopped coming to the door. Most parents today don’t teach their teenage boys to have respect for women and vice versa for the girls.

With that being said, my daughter has been talking to this boy for quite some time now. She has been out with him bowling and to other places with mutual friends. They have been talking on the computer non-stop. When she told him that she had never been on an official date, he asked her if he could take her on one. She, of course, said yes.

Which brings me back to my subject, Is Chivalry Dead?~Not Necessarily.
I was almost convinced that chivalry was dead until this boy came along. He is sixteen and the son of very religious parents. My daughter has shown me the messages that they send each other on Facebook. He truly is a gentleman. I couldn’t wait to meet him! I definitely wanted to know if he was for real or if it was just an act. So, to my surprise, when he pulled in to our apartment complex I didn’t hear a beep or a telephone ring!

The knock on the door actually came! Both my sons ran to the door at once. My twelve-year-old son got there first and opened the door. The boy on the other side asked if my daughter was home because he was here to pick her up. As my son let him in the house, my daughter walked over to greet him. I set my magazine down and got up off the couch. When I looked up, there stood a very tall, shy boy.

“Mom, this is ________,” said my daughter motioning to the boy.
“Hi, I’m Erica, Casey’s mom,” I said reaching out my hand to greet him.
His large hand reached out and shook my hand.
“Wow, you’re tall,” I mused, “How tall are you?”
“Six foot,” he replied with a smile.

I then introduced him to my husband and sons. Hmm…so far so good. He chatted with my sons and daughter while I threw in a few questions here and there.

“Okay mom, are you done questioning him,” she asked with a grin.
“Yes, I was just making conversation,” I replied.
“Okay, I love you,” she stated. We then gave each other our usual kiss on the cheek and “I love you” and they walked toward the door. As the two were heading out the door, I gave them my usual be careful, have fun, and be careful speech. I can’t wait to see how their date went!

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