The Big Girl Bed

I've been trying to figure out if it's time to put Maddi into her big girl bed for the last couple of months. We've had the twin size bed in her room since day one... made it easier to lay down with her without waking up the other spouse in the middle of the night. Lately, she's been waking up several times a night and extra early, making for rough days.

It seems as though, you're either for the big girl bed as soon as possible or you're for keeping her in the crib as long as possible. A quick poll on Facebook showed a pretty even split.

So, during this past weekend, I rearranged Maddi's room. (The big girl bed was right next to the window and I didn't like that much). I put her crib right outside her bedroom, just in case. After I was done, I had her come up stairs to check it out. Here's her reaction...

"Wow!" "Wow!" "Wow!", in an almost whisper voice, with her arms out and her hands open.

Once I finished laughing at her response... she climbed into her big girl bed. But the real test had not happened yet...

She took her nap there on Sunday... I was not home, so it was all dad. I happened to call him during her nap... he says "I'm laying down with Maddi to get her to sleep". To which I yelled... yes, I yelled, "Don't you dare do that! Do you have any idea what kind of monster you'll create?" Yes, I know, a little over dramatic, but I'm the one usually at home with her and I WILL NOT lay down with her every time she goes down! So, anyway... he had to put her back in her bed 12 times... LOL!

That night, I put her down, thinking that it would be Round 1 of 10 or so. Nope, she snuggled right in and went to sleep! And she slept all night until 7:30am! Ah, success!

Today, she snuggled right in for nap again! Dale just put her down about 10 minutes ago... cross your fingers!

So far, mommy is LOVING the big girl bed! The sad part is that she's not so much a baby anymore.


I wonder if life presents us with tough times to humble us? I've never been an extravagant person, but since we're struggling so much right now, it reminds me of how blessed I've been... and still am. Even though it seems as though we are fighting for every scrap for the time being, we're very lucky in so many ways.

Dale's family didn't have much when he was a kid, but he had a very loving home. My family didn't have much either, but I didn't come from a loving home. There is such a difference... things aren't as important... it's all about loved ones.

I don't care about living in a big house, driving nice cars, brand-name clothing or big jewelry... all I care about is that we're together, as a family. So, even if we can't climb our way out of this mess and lose many of our material things, it doesn't matter. That's not what life is about.

We have no cushion to help us out. None. Zip. Nada. Zero.

We've lost about $20k on legal fees fighting my husbands PEW on various issues... usually, it's because she feels she is "entitled" to more money, and that won't end for 8 more years (another story for another time). Dale has been laid off from work 3 times since we've been married, but this is the first time that I'm really worried. This job market is so saturated! One call back in the hundreds... yes, I said hundreds... of resumes he's sent out.

So, now we're both looking for additional work to help make ends meet. Labor, consulting, graphic design, nannying... anything to bring extra money in! Even Hannah is pitching in with babysitting money <- of which, we'll pay back!

Think good thoughts.
Speak good words.
Take good actions.

Three steps that will bring more to you than you can ever imagine.

Today is a good day!

I woke up this morning, feeling... good... actually good! I even smiled first thing in the morning, BEFORE having coffee! Now THAT is a good start to the day!

My house is almost entirely cleaned and organized... there is still stuff on the counters in the kitchen, like most people's homes (I think). You know, the mail stacks up... keys... camera... phones... ... etc... and I don't think there's a lot to do about that, but I'm going to try!

Yesterday, Hannah babysat for a neighbor... while doing so, she ran into another neighbor who is looking for a nanny for the summer! How great is that? She'd prefer to nanny over any other job, so she's super excited!

This morning, I got a response to my nanny posting on, which is also very exciting. We're all trying everything to earn extra money while my hubby is not working!

Today is just a feel-good day! No real good reason. The sun is shining! Wahoo!

I'm just going to keep smiling, thinking positive, and good things will come our way!

Wordless Wednesday

Me and my baby girl having fun at the beach!

iPOD and Sensei GIVEAWAY now!

iPOD and Sensei GIVEAWAY now!

Enter to win an iPod Touch and 6 months of Sensei before June 26th!!

Rockstar Dad

One of the first things that attracted to me to my husband, was his good nature with his children. At the time, they were 6, 12, 14, and 16 years old... I know, quite a load of kids! That was my first thought too!

Dale has the most patient, calm and mellow mannerism towards everyone he deals with... but, most importantly, his teenagers. Let me tell you, I don't know how he held his composure on occasion... anyone with teenagers can understand what I'm talking about.

When Dale gets home from work (well, right now, he's not working, but usually), he spends quality time with Maddi, playing and cuddling with her. When she hears the garage door open, she squeals with delight. It's their ritual to have him put her down to bed each night too. On Saturday mornings, she is so excited to see him home. It is going to be so tough when my hubby goes back to work! She's so used to having daddy around all the time.

Dale, I love you and I'm so proud to be your wife. I can't imagine any other man being my husband and the father of my daughter.

My very first award!

Thank you to Ness from A Military's Wife Mayhem for This Honest Award! This is my very first one... I'm so excited and gitty... I sound like the father from "A Christmas Story" with his "prestigious award"... "it must be italian, it says FRAGILE"... LOL.

So, my next step is to follow the rules and tell you 10 things about myself that are true and then pass this award on to 5 other bloggers.

Okay, so 10 things about me:

  1. I am a self-proclaimed, Chapstick addict.
  2. I am looking into becoming a Discovery Toys consultant.
  3. My favorite food to make at home is Asian, spring rolls, pho, and curry dishes.
  4. I secretly like Hannah Montana... shhhh, don't tell ANYONE!
  5. I am working towards my Associates Degree in Early Childhood Education.
  6. My fantasy vacation is to go some place tropical (Hawaii, Belize?), where I can swim with dolphins.
  7. My husband was recently laid off from his job, so if you know of anyone looking for a CFO/Controller type of person... let me know!
  8. Needs a momcation... just a weekend is all I ask.
  9. I have absolutely no patience, and I'm not exagerating!
  10. I have the most amazing step-daughter ever in Hannah. <- She told me to write that one... not that it's not true, but still funny!

Whew! That should not have been that hard!

I'm passing this award on to the following bloggers:

Karla of Confussion Never Stops

Mister M of The Psycho Ex-Wife

Melanie, Sian and Susan of Girl, Get Strong!

Redneck Mommy of Attack of the Redneck Mommy

Baby Rocas Mama of Last Shreds of Sanity

Again, thank you, Ness!

Nothing Special

We went camping through the weekend, so no online access. Ugh... What on earth did we do before the Internet? My goodness, it's quite pathetic of me! I made it through and it was so relaxing, we ended up staying an extra night! I have to get our pictures uploaded and posted soon!

I had a feel-good appointment this morning, which set the tone for the day... being excellent! We didn't really get much accomplished, but Dale got 7 more resumes sent out!

Last night was miserable... Maddi had a difficult time sleeping, or lack there of. I decided to try to sleep with her in her big girl bed, but then I didn't get any sleep. The end result is that Maddi got to sleep and Mommy did not. I woke up with bags under my eyes, literally. Make-up didn't even do a good job of covering it! Yikes! No nap... couldn't sleep... too much on my mind. So, hopefully, tonight will be better!

Please excuse my zombie post!

100 things I'm grateful for...

On May 26th, I wrote about the "Secret Daily Teachings" and the teaching for that day was to write a list of 100 things I'm grateful for. With all of the drama since then, it's taken some extra time, BUT I DID IT!


Being a mom.
My home.
Having the best Mother-In-Law in the world!
That I have the means and ability to further my education.
That I can stay at home with my daughter.
My dear friends, old and new.
My daughter’s curiosity.
To go on an annual vacation with my family.
Having such a strong marriage.
My pets… they make me laugh almost as much as Maddi.
That Andrew is doing so well in the Army.
Watching my daughter grow and change every day.
My gorgeous and fabulous neighborhood.
That my daughter will have a better childhood than me.
The way my husband looks at me.
My Chihuahua “blinking” at me.
The feeling of happiness that long alluded me.
My morning cup of coffee that my loving hubby makes for me!
Lessons learned.
For the health of my family.
To provide Hannah with the female, adult guidance she so desperately needs.
When my daughter blows a kiss at me to say “I love you”.
To help my friends who’ve helped me so much during my times of need.
Facebook… not just for the video games, but for the people I can now stay in touch with.
To have a relationship with my brother, Sean… finally!
His girlfriend, Julia… hopefully, I can call her sister-in-law some day!
To have not experience the loss of someone I love… yet.
Having a little more patience than I used to… still working on that!
Finding the right doctors and medications to help me through my PPD and anxiety issues.
Reduced Fat Oreo Cookies!
Losing 25 pounds so far… still a work in progress.
Waking up in the morning hearing the birds twittering.
My love for reading.
To have the wisdom to cool off before arguing with a loved one.
My daughter has such a wonderful and involved god-mother.
That my Oma and Opa are so good to Maddi.
To have so many moms in my life.
My mommy time every morning before Maddi wakes up.
My daughter’s laugh… most children’s laugh for that matter.
The uncooked tortillas from Costco.
That Dale is such a good father.
Wireless Internet.
To have Hannah home, safe and sound.
The FREE hot tub we had delivered on Thursday.
Everything Bagels <- the best ever!
When my daughter cuddles with me for no reason.
To everyone who worked so hard to get Hannah home.
My daughter's smile... missing teeth and all.
Captain Morgan and Diet Coke
Our beautiful flowers in the backyard.
When Diesel cuddles on my lap.
My husband's ability to provide for our family.
Our tent trailer.
All of our scheduled camping trips for the summer.
My new netbook, Dale gave me for my birthday.
That Maddi already says "thank you" at the appropriate times.
When my daughter "helps" with chores.
My wonderful mommy friends.
Safeway's chocolate cake... the moistest cake you'll ever have!
The "Secret"
The "Twilight" series and movies.
My daughter's love for the outdoors.
Waking up in the morning to sunshine.
Palm trees.
Coupons... saving money is always good!
When is snows enough to sled down our hill.
Dark chocolate.
Imagination Movers... they can entertain Maddi for 30 minutes!
Watching my daughter dance... although, it's usually "Poker Face" or "If U Seek Amy" playing!
The frogs we play with in the backyard.
Craigslist... we have found some amazing deals!
The smell of coconut, especially during the summer.
When my hubby gives me a mushy card out of the blue.
Finally going to college!
Tahiti Village.
Being so lucky.
Being free of glasses and contacts.
Hannah being Maddi's big sister.
Having Hannah here to babysit on date nights!
A well-deserved pedicure.
When my daughter "talks" on the phone.
My daughter being able to know her big sissy now.
Victoria's Secret undies.
Someone else making coffee in the morning.
My hubby always standing by my side.
When my daughter "sings" and does the hand motions.
Grey's Anatomy
My life.

Who moved my... EVERYTHING?

Why is change so hard?

Even good change... I am having a very hard time adjusting to Hannah and Dale being here during the day. Today is really only the 2nd day of this... how sad is that? Two days of having more people around and I want to just get back to the way it was.

Don't get me wrong... I love Hannah and I'm VERY happy to have her here, and I love my hubby and I looked forward to him coming home each afternoon!

I just have routines with Maddi that are disappearing rapidly. I'm used to having things "my" way during the day... I don't have to worry about anyone else, just me and Maddi. Yes, I am somewhat of a control freak. I didn't even consider this adjustment period. I don't like it. I don't like it at all.

I'm sure Hannah is going through her own adjustment period too... she just went through a very tough time, and I know she was scared. Now, she's separated from her boyfriend... and I truly feel for her, I do. I hate seeing her just sitting on the couch with the laptop, hoping to chat with her boyfriend online. She's always there like a lump on a log... sometimes sleeping. I don't know how to help her... I REALLY hate that.

Since Dale was laid off, he doesn't have much choice. His job search really started yesterday... we just didn't have any additional energy to get that going while trying to take care of Hannah, who was thousands of miles away. The good news is that he's getting good response to his resume... and he's been told by 2 recruiters that they've seen an upswing in job opportunities this month. Whew! Timing IS everything!

My hope is that we'll find counselors to help us all through this difficult transition... at least it's a transition we all wanted! Otherwise, it could be so much harder on all of us.

Today, I'm just plain grumpy... I want to just hide in my room and not talk to anyone. It's not any one's fault. Everything seems off... nothing is where it's supposed to be... and my sense of time is completely a-wall... Blah!

the FUN part of dysFUNctional

So, our vacation wasn't all bad... we had a lot of fun too! Maddi made sure we had plenty of laughs during our roller coaster of a vacation.

The gorgeous palm trees by the pool.
The pool... the building is the one we stayed in.
The view from our room...

Maddi LOVED the pool!

Maddi had so much fun flirting with every passerby...

Maddi and her "ba-ba"...

I'm quite proud to say that I took this pic...

Maddi having more fun in the kiddy pool...

This was so funny... this grasshopper hitched a ride on Maddi's hat, taking 4 laps with her...

Friday morning, Maddi got her very first pedicure! It was so funny to watch her walking around looking at her toes... we would just comment on her "pretty toes" and she'd get so gitty.
I'm ready mommy...

Pretty toes...

Look mommy!

Maddi enjoyed her very first Oreo Cookies... mmm, mmm, Mommy's favorite! It was definitely not a clean experience, but it was tons of fun to watch!

Maddi is finally at a fun age, when you can enjoy watching her experience new things. While we were gone, she got to have many firsts... I'm glad I got to capture them on camera! Looking forward to taking her to Disneyland some day... she's such a ham!

Can I get a Do-Over?

Dale, Maddi and I returned from Las Vegas yesterday afternoon. It started out well... nice and relaxing. We arrived last Wednesday evening, but late Saturday night, we got a million phone calls regarding my step-daughter, Hannah. Including calls from her, herself.

Hannah's mother reported her missing at 12:30am Cayman time... and only after not talking to her for a matter of hours. I believe this is in response to Hannah wanting to return home to live with her dad and me. Since finding out that Hannah wants to do this, she has treated Hannah horribly... she has dealt with mental abuse for years, but it has recently escalated. So, Saturday, Hannah decided not to return home for any further abuse. The police got involved that night and finally helped her get her things on Monday night.

After many International calls from our cell phones (OMG, it's going to cost an arm and a leg!), several emails, and many sleepless nights... we've finally gotten Hannah home! Today has been a recovery day... we are all so emotionally and physically exhausted.

I feel just awful for Hannah... besides the fact that her mother has treated her so horribly, Hannah has found many of her belongings missing. Can you believe her mother actually stole personal items from her? I will never understand her thinking regarding this situation... and I'm actually glad I can't understand... meaning, I'm not crazy!

Dale and I didn't get a chance to work on his resume or search for a job, as Hannah became a higher priority. So, we will be working on that tomorrow. Before leaving, I was trying to list 100 things I'm grateful for... I got to #52. I need to get back to it this weekend! I wanted to get all of this off my chest tonight, so tomorrow, I'll tell you all about how much fun we DID have on vacation!