Tuesday, December 3, 2013

The Stepmom's Guide to Snagging The Girl, Part 1

What? You think all advice should only come from mom or dad?  Sometimes the person you least expect to have the best advice is the one you should seek it from because they can look outside the perimeter.  This person has a rare glance because they weren’t born with the unconditional love of your parents who think you could do no wrong.  Oh don’t doubt their love, in any way shape or form, but you weren’t automatically granted that through birth with them.  


Any woman/girl worth her weight will look at one thing very closely when she is checking you out.  No, it is not your looks.  Sure your looks and personality might grab her attention at first, but guess what is going to keep her attention on you?  The way you treat the woman who in your life every single day, lets her know exactly how you will treat her in any relationship.  Whether it is your mom, stepmom or grandma, she will look and listen to the way you treat this very important woman in your life.   If you constantly bad mouth her, disrespect her and don’t show love and respect towards her this girl will take note. Even off handed comments will make her wonder.  Disrespecting this very important role model in your life can have consequences that you might think goes right back to your looks.  


Being, ME ME ME all the time with your parents, also shows a woman/girl how you will treat her.  If she constantly sees you complaining about always wanting, and it always involves your wants and how everyone is mistreating you because it’s not being done instantly shows her she won’t be even close to #1 in your life.  Look around you, does it ALWAYS have to be about you?  Or do you take the time to make someone feel appreciated who deserves to feel that way.  Your parents work hard for you, and always being ME ME ME is a huge turn off for any prospect you might have.    


There is much advice to be given, so until next time...

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

My sweet thoughtful son

There are some moments in a stepmom's life where she constantly wonders where she fits. She gets too caught up in her role and forgets to just love and let live. We can get so uptight because life isn't going the way we think it "should". Should is such a dangerous word. The word has been listed in my official cuss word list, just like shut-up.

 I spent yesterday in bed sick. That is way out of my normal, as I'm use to running from the time I get up until the time I go to bed. My oldest stepson came home from school, I needed to talk to him so called him in to my room. It was then he showed me the tea he bought me with his own money and told me about the movie he had rented so we could watch as a family. I love the fact that he did this for me. Tanner will text me during the day to tell me things he needs to complain about, and often he doesn't want me to fix anything he just wants to be able to complain. When I try to fix something, he will tell me that he just needs to complain. Our communication with each other is growing leaps and bounds. The fact he thought to bring me something to help me feel better is a priceless blessing to my heart.

 Even though I said I'd never offer up advice, here it is. Stop thinking about what "SHOULD" happen and just let things happen. Quit looking to the internet for your answers, a wise doctor told me you will always find information to support how you are feeling. You will find the information that fuels your fears. He told me get off the damn computer and live life, it happens more natural that way. My blessings far outweigh any problems I think I'm having. That statement is very true the more I figure out how to laugh and just live life. My quiver is full...

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

A Stepmom's Jealousy

There seems to be a lot of confusion for some spouses about why their new wife has jealousies.  They have a false sense it’s about the other woman’s looks or body.  It’s simply not the case, in mine anyways.  Here are a few things that I find myself jealous overAs bioparents, who never divorce, you have lots of little moments that your child makes you proud.  You get to look at each other and say “We did that”, “We made that together”.   You have the planning of and birthing of children together.  There is a joy, you experience as the third generation of you is born, a grandchild.  As a stepmom, who marries later in life, none of that will you ever share with your spouse.   Watching the creatures that your spouse and someone else created you wonder, what would it have been like to share those moments?


As stepparents our children are born to us under different circumstances, through our heart.  We share no genetic details, or quirkiness.  A lot of times we feel like we are on the outside looking in.   There is an abundance of people who tell you that you have no rights to that child, they aren’t really yours.  I’m here to tell you though, that your thinking is flawed.  My thinking is flawed.  My stepchildren show me this, sometimes daily.  


Hunter is quick to coach me, in being a stepmom.  He will say something to get a response from me, and then he will ask, what are you going to do if I don’t? So I will give him a consequence.  After that, he will tell me, see? That’s how it is done.  It’s no different from the child you gave birth to.  Tanner, will be gone most of the week, the one thing he probably looks forward to most about being home is what I’m cooking for supper.  Just like my other kids.  


Genetics are not what make kids yours.  You will come to findout, your quirkiness rubs off on your stepkids just like your biokids.  You don’t think so?  Wait.  There will be a time; your son will spout off a phrase that comes out of your mouth often.  Your husband will turn and look at you and say “See what you’ve got him saying now”?  Just like if you had given birth to that creature.  You rub off on each other.  


When you are feeling left out or jealous, really stop yourself and reflect over what you are telling yourself in your head.  Is it really real or is it just your Ego, needing stroked.  Ego get the behind me, you are a pain there anyways!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

A good step mom

A good stepmom will always put her kids above herself. Not out of being a martyr but because she cares more about their emotional well being, than she cares about being right about something.

To honor my sons wishes, from now on I will try very hard not to bring up any ex issues I may be having. He was the one most hurt by actions beyond our control. I can control the hurt from my side and will excercise that right to protect him above all else.  

Oh, he let me know I could tell every one I'm a good stepmom. It's now on record and he can never ever take it back.

I love you Tanner, more than you will ever know!

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Mending Fences

A phrase that often flies from my son’s mouth is “Normal moms or Normal families do so and so”.  So many times I have wanted to scream at him, our family is far from normal.  We are a blended family.  With statistics staggering even higher that blended families are becoming America’s normal; why aren’t we acting like normal families then?  He’s right.  We bring too much drama to the table to live life normally.


As Biomoms, we think we are slighted because of our ownstinkin’ thinkin’.  We think someone is trying to replace us, or better yet out do us.  There is a sense of entitlement like we OWN our children.  There is not much anyone, including the other parent, can do right in our eyes.  I really urge you to go read my blog about Biomom reflections from both sides of the fence.  


As stepmoms we have no clue where we fit in as far as role.  Throw in being the custodial stepmom and BAM, it’s a double whammy.  Stepmoms are discriminated against, on a large level.  You won’t see any civil rights protest for us, because most Biomoms will not stand for it.  There are a few select Biomoms though who understand what it is like to be on both sides of the fence, actively. They will try hard to be a referee between the two sides, only to find she is attacked by both sides, because obviously their side is worse than the middle ground could ever imagine.  Been there, done that, said that. (The discrimination topic is one for a later blog).


Stepmoms, I’m going to call you out for a bit too.  We have a tendency to run down the Biomom.   As women we should know better.  Not everyone is meant to learn their lesson with their first husband.  Sometimes it takes a few times to get it right.  If you are marrying for the 2nd, 3rd or 10th time, you of all people should know this.  People make mistakes, and we think they are supposed to act a certain way because that is what society has ingrained us to do.  Peggy Nolan of thestepmomstoolbox.com nailed in right on the head the other day.  We hold on to “should” way too much, it only sets us up for resentment that is not our place to feel.  Her blog on this subject is a must read for ANYONE!  Biomoms included, because they take on saying the stepmothers “should” do this or that too.  


We read all the time, it’s okay for a stepmom to not feel love right away for her step children.  Guess what?  Some women are incapable of loving their children the way you think they should.  Just like a stepmom.  This just gives you an opportunity to support a tribe member; to grow up fantastic little tribe members who are well rounded and capable of so much more.


In the end, we are woman with hopefully the end goal of making sure our children are brought up in love, to have wonderful senses of humor, being bright and capable to do better than what we have shown them in our roles of bitter exwife and jealous stepmom.  The change starts with us.  We need to figure out a way to support each other for the sakes of our children.  We are grown adults only responsible for us and what we show our children.  Where one might fail they other might flourish, nurture this.  You are valuable tools to each other. The sooner we start the better our children’s futures will be.


What could you do differently?

 

Sunday, October 13, 2013

With Trembling Hands

This was Kendall and I's weekend getaway without the kids. There wasn't anything going the way it was supposed to, but we had each other. Life has been piling lots of cow patties our way lately. Knowing we have each other helps us keep on trucking.

It's our ritual to have breakfast before heading back home. Golden Corral was close so we stopped there. Kendall had left to make himself a plate, when he came back he told me of an old man the next section over. This gentleman was a retired WWII veteran. He was all alone, his hands trembling as he set the table across from him. He carefully laid out a napkin and gently laid silverware down. He placed a plate next to that with a full glass of water. Kendall watched him the whole time. After setting the table up, he sat on the other side eating and drinking coffee.

Kendall has such a soft heart, we started talking about how short life was knowing full well we will never have 50 years together. We found each other way to late. So we enjoy each other and celebrate silly little things along the way. 

As I went to make my plate, I watched the gentleman. It was very touching. My love for Kendall is different than any I've felt before. I honestly can't sit here and tell you I could go out to eat without him if he was gone. Seeing that empty place setting tugged heart strings hard.

When I returned to the table, I told Kendall that's the thing you read about but never see in real life. Knowing I would blog about how true love never dies. Just about this time Kendall starts laughing. An older gentleman sat down at the empty place setting and started eating.

There went that blog! 

Happy Sunday!

Friday, October 11, 2013

Little Things

Take a good long look at your partner.  This is the man/woman you chose to be with you when your children are gone out of the house.  What happens when they leave and you have all this time on your hands and you figured out you don’t know your partner other than in her/his role of parent? It is especially important to ask yourself this when the rate of divorce in blended families is 73%.  


What is one way to start changing this statistic?  In my house, we choose to take time at least every other month for a weekend away.  We don’t go far, but we stay gone and with each other only.  This time is spent focusing on each other.  Not discussing bills, or why the kids won’t clean up after themselves, and especially no discussing the ex’s.  It’s about dreaming our future, things we would like to do together to the house to make it ours.  Plan things we would like to do together in the future.  Just truly enjoy each other in ways we forget to do on a day to day basis.


Kendall bought me the sweetest birthday card, it talked about how he forgets to sweep me off my feet and make me feel special on a daily basis.  Yet, he feels honored I’m his.  On our weekends together, this man makes me feel like I am the one and only woman on the face of the earth.  He holds my hand, or puts his arms around me while we are walking.  He opens doors,he surprises me with sweet little things for us to share that evening.  The things he sometimes forgets to do daily that make me feel like I’m the only woman that exists to him in the most important way.


It refreshes our spirits when we spend this time together.  We can go back home, united and ready for those issues of the kids not picking up after themselves or the fact so and so needs more money for something else.  It allows us to renew our connection in a way we forget to do.  I’m just as guilty of letting little things slip.  It renews me to find the time to slip him notes in his briefcase, in his bathroom drawer, or simply give him a squeeze for no reason at all other than I love him.


You picked each other for a reason.  It’s up to you to make sure you nurture each other so when the kids are gone, you look at each other and are ready to play not fight about each of you changing in ways you didn’t notice.  


Enjoy each other, you only live once and time runs out way to quickly!

 

 




Thursday, October 10, 2013

A Year In the Life...From Girlfriend to Stepmom

A year ago, I would not have told you the road you are about to embark on would be dark and scary.  I would have happily told you that all things can be overcome with love and lots of it.  I wouldn’t have told you that your life really will be like the wicked stepmom fairy tale you read about.  I would have told you that all the story books had it wrong.  Little did I know a year ago, how drastically different my life would be. What I will tell you before you get to the end of the story, is there is light at the end of the tunnel.  The scary part, you have to find it and turn it on yourself.  You however, are not alone no matter how alone you feel.


Kendall and I started dating officially in October 2012.  He flat out told me I was his girlfriend and who was I to argue.  We talked about everything we could think of that had gone wrong in our previous relationships. The stage was set for an instant family, or so we thought.  While dating, I would drive 1.000 miles in a weekend to come spend time with them about every other weekend.  Before I left each time, I would leave the kids a special note.  One time in particular, Hunter thought I didn’t leave him one because he had been at a friend’s house.  His dad texted me saying he was frantic and upset.  Just tell him go look on his pillow I told him.  I hid it in plain sight.  I knew at that moment that Hunter was already mine.  


When Kendall told Tanner that I was moving to Saint Francis, the malarkey started to hit the fan. Anything and everything I did stepped on his toes.  I accidentally let two cuss words slip out because I was mad while we were shooting, suddenly I wasn’t a good enough Christian role model.  Never mind, he had posted “FO Lisa” on twitter.   His behavior was excused because he was a child of divorce.  I wish I would have known about Greg Laurie and his message of just get over your dysfunctional family, because everyone has one.  Amen and Hallelujah! (That’s for your Garrett) Anything that he did not like about me, he took to his dad in a secret conversation.  He thought because he was his dad’s son, that he outranked me and tried to pull the‘I am more important than you card more than once.  The Bible tells a husband, that his wife comes before the children.  A goodman, will live by that and include his partner in everything.  No secrets.


Add in Garrett to the mix, who was torn between two women.  It was easier to be mad at me than feel guilty for having feelings for me. So he tried everything he knew to push my buttons, sadly, I let him.  Then Kendall would be upset with me, because I was having such a hard time with him.  He didn’t realize how hard moving into a house he created with another woman, with children he created with another woman was on me.  There wasn’t much in the house that made me feel a part of it.  I had two kids who loved me, and two who wanted nothing to do with me.


Garrett and my daughter Joani, wished on a star the first weekend they met that their parents would get married to each other.  They had such a good time with each other, which was until we got married.  Without warning, a switch was flipped and they could not get along for anything.  There was a huge jealousy fight between them.  If one was in my lap the other was glaring and the minute they got up the other was in their place.  This went on, until Joani went for the summer with her dad.  


Garrett decided he wanted to spend a lot of time with his mom in the truck over the summer.  For a time, our relationship declined even more.  When he was home, he brought a huge attitude.  About this time, I began searching for some light in my dark tunnel.  I felt all alone, and everyone was mad at me because I was the adult.  I read every blog and message board I could.  One lady, who I wish I could give credit by name, had a quote at the end of her post.  It was along the lines if she would have realized just being her husband’s wife was so peaceful she would have done it much sooner.  My switch flipped on.  There was freeing truth in those words.  


Nothing but extreme joy comes to me, when I think about only being my husband’s wife. My focus is being the best wife to him that I can.  Once I started focusing only on that and nothing more, things started changing.  Sure I take care of my stepkidsjust as I would my biological kids, and get on to them just the same too.  The pressure of being some perfect replacement mold is broken though.  I go at every single situation out of love for my husband first and foremost.  You know that Gandhi quote about you must be the change you want to see in the world, I took that to heart.  I can’t change their behavior or attitudes, but I can control how I react or respond.  It starts with you. I can tell you that things have gone full circle. From Like, to hate, to resentment, to like, and to love.  I know that in each of my kids hearts I have a special place that no one else can fill, just like I can fill no one else’s place.  I am me, I am theirs but most of all I’m his!


So a year later I will tell you, there are dark moments and you wonder what on earth you did.  There are moments you feel like the evil stepmother in so many fairytales.  There are times you are hated and resented.  Turn your light on and shine bright and be a beacon for your family.  You are not a role; you are a person plain and simple.  Be special to you first, and show everyone around you just how special you really are.  This too shall pass.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

The Boy In the Milo With A Smile

There's a boy in the Milo, his smile steals my heart. Even before his dad, Brayden crawled on my lap and uttered the words, I love you. He is my youngest son.

When Kendall and I married, he proudly announced he had two moms. There is no fight about who is or isn't his mom, we both are and he knows he is double loved. I'm called Lisa, which means beloved. My mom and dad named me appropriately for the stepmom roll. When you are called by your name as mom, and your name has such a special meaning, you can't help but feel proud.

Oh I know someday he will be a teenager, and the road might get rocky but I know he knows he is loved.



Friday, September 27, 2013

Grandpa's Views - Why Did God Make Snakes and Teenagers?!

My grandpa was the kindest most loving man besides my dad that I knew.  He was 1 of 21 kids.  His family was the Duggersof his time, and was even in the Joplin paper because of having the largest family around.  He grew up on a farm, and when he was in 3 rd grade had to quit school to work on said farm.  He couldn’t read or write.  That man could draw you a picture and “read” you his story and captivate you; all while holding you in his lap with his strong arms around you.


I’m pretty sure he knew that he wouldn’t be around my whole life, and every chance I got to be alone with him in his little yellow Chevy Luv pick-up he always imparted his wisdom on me.  He would admit to never being book smart, but that man had more common sense and life knowledge than any school boy could ever have.  


He never would pass a stray dog up wandering on the highway either.  We would always stop; pick up whatever dog needed him at the time and head back to the country. Grandpa said that dogs, like teenagers would fall on hard times because they were being difficult and people wouldn’t know how to love them properly.  He would take them and nourish and doctor them.  I can remember going to help him feed them in the kennels he had out back.  


Grandpa also said that no matter who you are, any boy that reaches the age of 16 is going to try his parents.  Even to the point of a physical confrontation.  He said to know that and be prepared for that, because you might just have to whip them to show them who is in charge.  I wonder if he knew I’d end up having 7 boys later.  He told me he ended up in the barn more than 1 time with each of his boys.


True to his words, every single one of my oldest 3 boys went through that stage. At the time, I would have bet you money I would not come out the other side alive or with any of my brains left.  Oh how those boys tried me in every possible way.  There were not a lot of proud moments to remember from that time.  I lost my cool and let them know they had the upper hand.  Now my 4th son, 1st stepson, is in this stage.  He pushes his dad's buttons, because he knows he can. His dad asked me "why is it when a kid turns 15  they lose their wings turn red and sprout horns out of their heads?" While it’s particularly hard on his dad right now, I sit back and remember how hard my struggle was with my oldest boys and try to encourage him that this too shall pass.  Seventeen will come quicker than he thinks and he will start to get his mind back to him.  Just like grandpa said, we just have to figure out how to love him a little different through this rough patch.


Teenagers, show us as parents what we are made of.  They can either break you or make you stronger and ready for the next 4 to reach this stage.  


My Grandpa never shared with me why snakes were made.  He let me down on that one, I keep seeing more of those than I ever cared to now I’m on the farm full time.  Snakes scare me worse than teenagers.  Why didn’t you prepare me for this one grandpa?  Oh yeah, you left that up to grandma and her shot gun.  Wonder if that’s why my aim is so good when I’m scared or mad. SometimeI might have to tell you about the time grandma chased grandpa around the house with the gun, which I still find hard to believe.


When you have a teenager or snake chasing you, hold steady and aim, with love at the teenager that is; this too shall pass.  


Here’s to 17 coming quickly…

Thursday, September 26, 2013

125 Pound Difference

There's a lot of mention on losing a 125 lbs on this blog. No time like the present to show you the difference eating in moderation and working my butt off makes.  It probably doesn't hurt much I'm happy as I can remember being in a long time. 

 Forgive the no make-up and hair not done. Kendall had bought two dresses for me as a surprise, and I just had to try them on after work no matter what. The dress is from www.elusivecowgirl.com 

My ever so sweet husband gives me sweet surprises all the time, I'm one lucky girl!


Bio kids vs Step kids - a little reflection time

My children I gave birth to, got the raw end of the deal if you ask me. I was such a control freak, expecting perfect creatures at every moment. The thought of them getting dirty and not being able to change immediately terrified me. Most of their growing up years, I was depressed and weighed over 300 lbs. I was too tierd to ever be as good as I needed to be as a mom. My dad would call it being lazy and he's right.

After the end of a 12 year marriage spending the last two years apart, I started working on myself. Happiness started coming back to my life and the weight dropped. The energy levels of losing 125 lbs is unbelievable. You start to realize just how much of life you missed.

Knowing after the failure of 2 marriages, you better be really specific with what you ask for from God. I laid it out, the exact man I wanted in my life. One month after my divorce I first met my now husband. We thought we were too far apart to make it work. So we just went on our way, a month later I emailed him just seeing how his life was going and if he had found anyone yet. Almost a year later now, we are married and have one big blended family.

Back to my point, with my husband I also was blessed with 4 step kids. What my step kids don't realize is how laid back I can be with them. When dad gets uptight I can just sit in reflection and remember how I use to be when my oldest 3 were growing up. My mom said its a lot like being a grandparent. You get to love and spoil them but for the most part you aren't responsible for the upbringing before you.  The only part not like a grandparent is I don't have the option to give them back. Mind you I never would.

Not long ago, we went on a fishing trip. Three of the kids decided they didn't want to fish but wanted to swim. I let them get in the water fully clothed and the youngest in his Spider-Man undies. With my children I gave birth to, I would have fussed about getting everything dirty, because of no towels or change of clothes.  Yes boys, I know it's not fair.

My main point I guess, is live life. Don't be so uptight you miss the truly fun times to just enjoy each other. Kids clean up and so do vehicles. Life is so short, and Karma is real. It doesn't always smack you in a destroy your life kinda way. Sometimes it shows you the mistakes you made in the past, and how much better you could have done things. Those lessons other people can't see but you feel deeply. 

Enjoy life!


Wednesday, September 25, 2013

The Supper Table

For as far back as I can remember, my family has always eaten around the table.  Though we are all grown and have children of our own; you will find the whole clan of 23 (30 if we have traveled home) band forces and eat at moms every Sunday.  Around that table, there have been fights, lectures, support, lifting up, truth, but most of all love.   No matter the differences or who is upset with who, gather around that table and you will feel the love that radiates around you. 

Anyone who has been a part of our tradition always comments about how lucky we are to have that.  When I took my step kids home to meet their new family, of everything, I think being around the 2 large tables it takes to support us all was their favorite memory.  They were welcomed into and initiated into the family with the old “you snooze you lose”, or Brayden’s now favorite saying “move your meat, lose your seat.” Thanks Aunt Shine & Aunt Breezi!

When you are at the table, it’s all laid out.  Everyone has their moment to share what’s going on in their life.  I firmly believe that this is where the foundation of proper communication between family members begins.  You have the audience that most kids crave.  This makes them feel important and loved, and most of all heard. Mind you there are now so many kids; we have an adult table and a kids table.  Even sitting at the adult table, if we sit still and quiet enough at the adult table, you will hear the kids discussing life adventures and problems with each other.  You hear them offer up suggestions on how to deal with it and their willingness to gang up on someone if need be.

There is so much togetherness when you take the time to sit at the table and eat.  You feel more bonded as a family.  When I was in the pre-marriage stages with my husband, I told him how important this very tradition is to me.  So as we watch Duck Dynasty every Wednesday night together as a family, I appreciate the fact that their family sits around the table at the end of every show and prays and discusses life.  It’s a tradition that America needs to take back, to be purposely driven to bond each and every night.  If it just simply won’t work because your husband is in the field, or you have to work the night shift, just chose 1 night a week that you purposely make this tradition happen.  You might just be surprised in the response and the change of attitudes in your house.

Food is a symbol of love, and sitting around a huge table with those you love most eating food that you enjoy, and communicating, that right there is priceless.

What is your favorite family tradition?

 

 


Tuesday, September 24, 2013

10 Things A Yuppy Might Want to Know About Marrying A Farmer

1.  You will always be a constant source of entertainment for your Farmer Husband.  There is so much “farm” life stuff you don’t even have a clue about. No use getting hurt feelings over it. Laugh at yourself, it will help you through it.

2.  Your husband will watch weather radar like it’s his favorite team during football season. This includes catching him at 2:30 in the morning in his underwear and boots watching the sky.
 3,  You better learn North from South and East from West real quick.  He will be highly amused when you call him and ask him where the south west field is, and just laugh.  He will probably even holler YUPPY at you.

4.  Suddenly you will realize you know directions by barns and house colors and silos, or you will pretend you are at Bingo and learn roads by Bingo combination. Yes, this is how I know how to get to our West fields.

5.  You are often 25 miles away from a grocery store.  Learn how to buy in bulk and keep a well stocked pantry.  This will often only take one time of forgetting something important.

6.  Your husband does not have regular hours, which means neither do you.  Even if you work outside the house.  He has to work very hard, farming is becoming a lost art.  Your job is not to harass him about how hard he works, but support him in every possible way.

7,  Your calendar of events will be around farm seasons, just like hunting.  If your husband is both farmer and hunter, camo up ladies.  You, in camo, in the woods with your mouth shut turns your husband on quicker than anything. ;)

8.  A farmer knows how to make ends meet.  He is loyal to a fault, and loves like no other.  He understands nourishing a crop for it to thrive and that carries over into your relationship.

9.  A tractor and ¼ section is a good amount of time to solve things together.  Don’t take yelling or anger to the field with you though, you don’t want to pass that on to the crops.

10,  Learn to appreciate every bit of precious time you have with him.  He is a rare gem, as are you if you are woman enough to be his woman.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Life on the farm in pictures

Fake? I don't think so....

Drilled Wheat




Gorgeous Milo



My Chariot



Headed West




God's cool creation

Sunday, September 22, 2013

My Hard Working Farmer....

Seems there was another blog started, same name different spelling after mine. She claims to be the real one because she was raised on a farm didn't just find the name swanky.  This is my real husband who has farmed for 29 years.

I married the farmer, and spent all weekend in the tractor. Pretty sure that makes me the real deal, moving from town to the country to live on an actual farm.  Just keep reading my blog, the yuppy in me strikes all the time! 

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Yuppy strikes again...

Recently my son’s car broke down.  My husband and I had to go to town with the car hauler so we could bring it out to the farm to fix it.  Let me tell you, we had a time getting that car on the trailer.  First, it wouldn’t even stay started so my husband would reload the ramps, turn around to jump it, turn back around and put the ramps down again only to have it die before getting to the ramps.  We did this a few times.  My husband’s vocabulary remained very peaceful, it was a little surprising.  


When we finally started to get the car on the trailer, my husband said he needed more weight on the pickup.  So I ran to the pickup jumped up on back and stood there waiting for directions. After losing 125 pounds I was noticing the truck didn’t go down as far as it used to, so I wasn’t sure I was going to be much help.  My husband yells, YUPPY! I was confused what I had done wrong this time.  


Apparently needing more weight on the pickup means you need to be far enough up on the trailer that the back of the pickup starts to squat from the weight.  This keeps your trailer for swaying and getting out of control going down the highway.  


There are times I think I’m here merely for my husband’sentertainment value as a yuppy. With much to learn about life still, he should have a lot more laughs coming his way.  All I can do when he tells the story laughing so hard is smile.  I brought a bit of funny happiness to his day that day, and that’s a lot to be thankful for.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Ego get the behind me


 Not long ago, one of my best friends was struggling with her walk with Christ.  She said she didn’t do such and such and therefore was unworthy.  I told her, girl tell your ego to get behind you because that is the only thing standing in your way.

As I sit here and think back to that conversation, I find it fits my stepmom struggles too.  What is the biggest thing that gets in the way?  My ego gets way bigger than my britches some times.  When they say mom does this or makes this better than anybody I know, my ego gets in the way.  What’s wrong with how I do it?  Not a darn tootin’ thing.  If you give me two plates of fried chicken, one my moms and the other the neighbors,I will tell you every time my mom’s is the best hands down.  Nobody can compare to our mothers.  Now granted, I lived with my mom, she wasn’t an occasional every other weekend visitor in my life.   Still though, my ego tells me that because I’m there I should be the one with the praise.  Tell my ego to step aside, and my heart tells me nothing could ever replace certain things my momma makes.  Even with them telling me these two certain things she makes better than anyone, send them away for a week without my cooking and they will tell you they missed my biscuits.  Stepmoms have things they can cook way better than anyone else too. Take your glory when it’s yours, and share it with her when it’s hers.  Now if they ask me to make her specialty, I simply say why don’t you ask mom next time you are with her to make it for you, and then it’s that much more special.  I don’t say it with a twinge of not feeling good enough, because there are things I do better than good enough too.  

As I was telling myself I needed to tell my ego to step aside, an old song we use to sing in church came back to mind. The song where if you want joy, you must ______ (sing, clap, laugh) for it.  That song always makes me happy.  So I sang it to myself in my head.  Which lead to my next conclusion, yes this is getting dangerous.  It’s so easy to harp on the negative, which we all know leads to just more negativity.  So what if I did something that made me happy and reevaluated the situation before commenting on it?  Maybe it’s just as simple as singing that song to myself in my head.  We have to do something for ourselves that makes us happy, when we are happy we share happy.  Happy breeds happy just like negativity breeds negativity.  

Little baby steps, make big changes…so here’s to more baby steps!

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Biomom Reflections about both sides of the fence

Biomoms who will wander onto my blog, please understand one thing very clearly.  I was first the Biomom and exwife for 22years.  Only now am I a stepmom so I can tell you how each side of the fence looks in my view.  I will also admit that shortly after being a stepmom for a few months, I publically apologized to all 3 of the stepparents that were in my life.  It’s a lot like after giving birth to your first child, and you call your mom crying and apologizing for all the terror filled ways you filled her life with.  You know, especially at the teenage level.  

My insecurities from life made me think very ugly at times.  I thought each of these people were trying to take my place.  Just go back and read my blog about seeing your son with another woman for the first time.  One of my very first pieces of advice was from a dear friend Janet.  We were in cosmetology school together.  She told me the hardest thing I was ever going to have to do was walk into a grocery store my first time without my kids and see my kids with the other woman.  No matter what under this circumstance was I to go to the cart with my kids, but quietly depart the store and cry.  Let me tell you, this moment catches you off guard.  You had no idea, even though you should, that your child has huge love that can go past you.  Your children are resilient creatures, they get over life crisis quickly especially at younger ages.  Coming from a mom with all boys for 11 years, all who were momma boys, that blow is hard to take.  These creatures that you labored for and pushed out of your body, turn on you.  In hind sight, they don’t turn on you,only expand their world with love.  

Sure, there are some wicked stepmoms out there, and honestly, they give most of us a bad rap.  You know, the ones who stole dad from mom.  Not those of us who came by our husbands honestly, after you guys divorced.  None the less, we are all looked upon the same way.  Even though my first experience of having a step in my boys life was after their dad cheated on me with a stripper, I have a lot to be sorry for.  I acted in a way that was unfair to my boys.  Why couldn’t someone else love and care for them?  No matter what the circumstances were.  I did the whole “don’t you dare ever call another woman mom” How silly was I?  Mom is just a title, we think it entitles us to act like we had a golden uterus, that just because we grew them in our belly and then pushed them out of something the size of a lemon that we are owed something.  People, it takes a village to raise a child.  Guess what?  When you have  a stepmom to share the duties with, you get to look like the angelic angel as mom and sometimes she gets to look like the angelic angel.  It’s not a contest.  It’s a long haul journey to raise our kids up in an all-around loving environment.  

Who are we to think we are God?  I’ll be the first one to admit, I sure thought I should be as a Golden Uterus Mom.  Looking back, my boys didn’t solely survive because of me.  They survived and became who they are today because of my parents, my ex-husbands, their stepmoms, their aunts, all of us, it was a group effort.  Sure I’d love to take all the credit, but it would be a lie.  Each of these people loved them and supported them in a different way than I could.  They are awesome people in spite of how I acted as Biomom.  

So while it may be awkward at times, love your kids enough to start to realize, stepmom isn’t trying to take anything away from you.  She’s struggling herself in her new role of where she fits in.  Her sole purpose in life is not to terrorize you, but figure out how to be an asset in your children’s lives.  You might not understand her position, and she might not yours but I promise you if you both work on your own attitudes, the next chapter of your life can be more amazing than if you go it alone.  


<script type="text/javascript"><!--
google_ad_client = "ca-pub-1224175861897545";
/* YupFarmGirl */
google_ad_slot = "7874363919";
google_ad_width = 728;
google_ad_height = 90;
//-->
</script>
<script type="text/javascript"
src="//pagead2.googlesyndication.com/pagead/show_ads.js">
</script>

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Inflections that don't belong...

Yes, you read the title right.  My great feeling of freedom to just be me and release titles was smashed to the ground yesterday.  There had been progress being made with my 16 year old stepson, but it felt like we took 2 giant steps backwards yesterday.  


We were texting back and forth and he sent me a text about being late to school because we both thought it was late start day.  It wasn’t.  I asked if I needed to call the school to excuse it, because Dad is off on a trip this week.  He sent back No, I will handle it.  The inflection I read into that was: quit trying to be a mom to me, I can do all this without your help.  You haven’t been here the last 2 years we were alone and I sure got along fine without you.  So I replied Ok then.  I honestly felt like I had a pile a bricks dropped on me.  


Saturday, after dad and stepson left for trip, I took the rest of the gang 2 towns over for bowling and Chinese buffet.  We had an awesome time together, even the 16 year old went and seemed to be having a good time.  I helped him get new guitar strings and picks, my bio kids all play and I have been so use to finding picks in the dryer.  Now the older are off at college, I haven’t had that happen.  When I find one now from Tanner’s pants, I just smile.  It brings back fond memories that I didn’t think were so fond back then.  


So yesterday when I read his text, I was right back to confused about our relationship.  I told him; Look I’m not trying to be anything other than dads wife right now.  I’m trying to meet you where we are and build from there. He said ok, thanks.  So later he texts wanting more money, lol yes he’s really more than my husband’s son but that’s ok.  I’m meeting him where he is.  I love him far beyond what I could ever express and him understand right now.    When his grandma and I met him for the pick-up, he was fine and said he would leave it up to me if I wanted to call the school.  I was once again confused.  This morning, he needed me to pop his back.  After doing so, I got to thinking.  Yes, I know, that can be very dangerous.  The inflections we attach to text messages can often not be the right inflections or tone of what is truly being said.  I was so ready to just assume that he was instantly going to smash me because I was trying to take care of something for him.  I’m beginning to realize, he wasn’t.  I’m so use to that being the case, but we both are honestly seeing each other in a different light.  It’s easy to jump to conclusions from past behavior, but we have to stop it.  Change won’t come, if you can’t look forward.  


Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Baby steps will set you free

Progress is sometimes baby step blessings, which end up being one of the biggest blessings in your life.  Are you ready to appreciate the baby steps, or just stuck on seeing the big picture?  I challenge you today, just be.  Don’t need a title, don’t need validation from anyone other than yourself.  When you go stand before God, he isn’t going to go “well, lets see, maybe I should talk to your stepkid(s) to see if they think you deserve to go to heaven.”  He’s going to see how you validated yourself to yourself and judge you by that.  


Last night, it was meet the teacher night.  Suddenly since I entered the picture as the custodial stepmom, the kids mom has decided to take a more active approach in the kids life.  I applaud this; they need her just as much as they need me to be present in all aspects of their life.   I welcome the help in co-parenting.  I don’t want her to feel I’ve excluded her from any aspect of their life.  It’s weird for her when I contact her for mom things, and that’s okay.  We have to figure this co-parenting thing out for the kids.  It’s not always comfortable, but we always manage to make it through.  Last night my 3rd in command stepson’s speech teacher asked if I was Brayden’s mom.  I smiled very huge, and said No, I’m the stepmom.  I owned being the stepmom with huge pride.  It was very freeing for me when Hunter’s reply was I was his the other night, it allowed me to not care what a title implied about me.  The speech teacher repeated stepmom with THE weirdness in her voice.  It didn’t even phase me.  I smiled and said, yes!


I realize that most sites will tell you, that the stepmom should never be the one to communicate with the biomom.  Why?  We are an active part of our children lives, especially when you are the custodial stepmom.  We need to learn to be adults with eachother, we have 18 years together to figure this out.  We can’t avoid each other, otherwise all the family occasions are going to be bitter.  I know that I will only be going as my husband’s wife, and nothing more.  Being my husband’s wife is an honor  I cherish.  Just knowing I’m his, will carry me through all the weird times.  Even if she has the golden uterus syndrome you read about, you have to pull up your big girl panties and be an adult.


Quit playing into the role that other people make for you.  Define it for yourself.  Sure, we all get caught up in the struggle.  Choose to make an active decision to make it something better, even when it’s small baby steps.   We are not any title that needs to be defined by anyone other than ourselves.  Empower yourself to think freely and feel freely, and not be pressured by outside sources or yourself to be more.  


http://www.thestepmomstoolbox is now offering guiding sessions, and Peggy is a true blessing.  I suggest you go sign up with her.  She will open your eyes to a different view, and that my folks is what its about.  Changing your own mind to do better, be better and live better.  Go check her out, you won’t regret you did.


Monday, August 26, 2013

Who needs a title?!

My husband and 12 year old step son have hit the road to go bear hunting in Canada again.  If you will recall, I said they could never leave me out on a bear trip again, but they did.  In their defense, I couldn’t miss work.  It’s harvest time, and for us in QC, that means no breaks until it’s over.  They were texting from the road until they no longer could.  Kendall told me that Hunter said there were lots of hot girls there.  I asked if Hunter was trying to trade me in for a hotter model.  About 10 minutes later I receive, “no he could never replace you, you are his.” Que in the tears, I’m his.  


That simple statement had me pondering, why on earth did I ever care what they called me.  No title could be greater than those words, I’m his.  It doesn’t matter what I am to him as far as title.  I’m his.  We often tie too much of our identity to a title.  A title doesn’t mean jack flip.  I can say this after coming home the night before they left and my s-son wouldn’t leave my lap.  That has become the biggest term of endearment with him to me.  I know probably in just a few months, he will suddenly think he is too big for that.  I secretly hope he never does.  


He has his mother, whom I never can nor want to, replace.  As step moms though we often wonder how they see us, how they feel about us, what they secretly call us when no adult is around.  I don’t even care anymore, he sees me as his, and folks that’s all I need.  Honestly.  It’s that simple.  


I’m his go to lap after a game, I’m his go to lap watching a movie, I’m his go to lap when he is going to miss me on a weeklong bear hunt.  I’m his. Sowho honestly needs a title?  They are highly overrated.

 

 


Friday, August 23, 2013

What If??

What if for one day, we looked at our husbands and told them something we think they are doing wonderfully.  Do everything we do in a day just with their peace of mind in thought.  Get out of bed, and make it.  Set the tone for the evening, by making it as pretty as you would want to feel for him.  Do the 5 sinks full of dirty dishes, just from breakfast for him.  Pick one room in the house and make it as spotless as you possibly can.  Push the kids/step-kids out of mind, and do everything with love and from the heart for the one man you promised to love til death do you part.


Thinking about the resentment homework from http://www.thestepmomstoolbox.com  got me to thinking about what things make me feel resentful.  Not feeling appreciated by the kids was one of them.  I’ve been going at this all wrong.  Somehow I was making it all about the kids; the dishes, the housework, the laundry, the cooking, all the things I do in a day.  I was feeling resentful because they don’t appreciate it.  Guess who does appreciate it?  My husband does.  Guess who else does too?  Me!!

When I look at it from the point of doing it to ease stress from my husband’s shoulders and give him peace of mind when he walks through the front door, suddenly the not being appreciated by the kids doesn’t even matter.   I’m coming to the situation out of love.  Love is the key, and it conquers all.  


What if the next day, you did it only for yourself?  For all the same reasons you did it for your husband.  Giving love to yourself instead of beating yourself up or concentrating on something you really can’t control.  You can’t control the way the kids are going to feel about you.  What you can control is going into any situation from an angle of love.  You are giving yourself your own power back.  


Feeling very empowered today!!  Grab yours, it’s there, you just have to change your own mind.


Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Reflections of the stepmom about the words she speaks to herself and others

When I first started talking to my now husband, and knew it was getting serious I asked him the question of what kind of stepmom he wanted for his children.  Knowing myself and how I respond to life, I knew if he didn’t want a stepmom who was going to be present and in everyone’s business than I was not the girl for him.  I’m not the type of person who can sit back and not have something to say or do.  It often gets me in trouble, but it’s me.  


Little did I know that on this journey even early on, I am realizing there are some things I have to just sit back and keep my mouth shut.  I say that after seeing the pain in my husband’s eyes after his ex has done something that hurts the emotional well- being of my step children, and I forget he is dealing with it to and lash out at him because of her.  While I have every right to thoughtfully say how I feel and see how it’s best handled, I have no right to lash out at him because he married and divorced her and now I have to deal with her. Just a fact, jack!


Being a stepmom is a lot of reflection.  I make mistakes, and I have to own those mistakes.  It shows my stepchildren and my husband that I am human.  I talk a lot about unconditional love and loving them as God loves me, and my whole family is a lesson in that.  Each day I am given a new opportunity to learn, love and grow in the awesomeness that God has created for me.   No folks, you are never done until you die.  


The lessons are hard ones to swallow sometimes.  When I look at them from the angle of where I’m supposed to and not the harshness of it, I’m blessed beyond measure that God trusts me to learn these lessons with my forever husband and 8 children.  

People life is what you chose to make of it.  Is it really the situation or the way you are looking at it?    


Monday, August 19, 2013

Second Best or just another bump in the road?

http://thestepmomstoolbox.com/

My new favorite blog is thestepmomstoolbox.com she is point  on and shares from being a stepmom herself.  She posted a blog the other day about being different than the biological mom. “She is a peach tree – you are a pear tree” My first response to reading that was why does she get to be the pretty juicy peach and I’m just the pear tree.  Yes, petty I know.  It goes along with self-pity and feeling second best.  Myself, I like pears better.  They have the better figure and taste better.  I just had to get over my self-induced pity. 

Both trees provide vitamins and soul nutrition for growth of a healthy body.  While they both provide different things, they are both a huge asset.  When working together they can do amazing things.  Wait, you mean it’s my own attitude I had to adjust? Oh yeah, that’s right, the only one I can control is myself. Just because I’m a pear tree doesn’t mean I’m second best.  It means I provide nutrition to my subjects differently.  Where one might fail the other thrives, and vice versa. 

The stepmom road can be bumpy, but we can control ourselves and the amount of bumps we bring to the situation. 

 


Monday, August 12, 2013

It just got real...

A boy I use to babysit, made a big commitment and moved in with a girl he's been seeing for 10 months. He posted about it today on Facebook. He said there are adjustment periods of really seeing each other for what they are.

Got me to thinking about my own marriage, Kendall and I use to live 500 miles apart. Our cell phones were how we bonded, we talked about day to day life, but not always the down and dirty. We talked about things that kept us tied to each other from 7 am to 11 pm. I'd send him pictures of when I looked really good, or particularly sexy.

Now that we are married for 5 months, I look back and it has been a huge adjustment. We are living together what we use to talk about, but now stuff has gotten real. 

We have to figure out bills, kids, and work, we don't get to just play and tease. It's all real.  Somehow even through the struggles of real life, when I'm particularly low I can sit here and think about why we fell in love, our first date, which was extravagant, how we spent 3 days together holding hands, truly enjoying each other.  The way his eyes light up and he smiles when talking about the kids, the way he blushes when I flirt with him..the real stuff doesn't seem so overwhelming.

Life is a game of money, it's all about how well you play the game and the people you have on your team. My husband is the best man for the job, he's my rock and the one person I know I can count on to be there at the end of the day.  I don't want to play this game without him.


Thursday, August 8, 2013

Custodial Step Mom Rambles...


I read a blog yesterday about being a step mom.  She said it was purely her thoughts, but in her situation talking about being a step mom while in the midst of it, is like going through divorce giving advice to someone else.  While I do think there are some things you shouldn’t discuss, I also think that as step moms we struggle.  It’s not a struggle that every mother can relate to, especially when you are the custodial step mom.  There are often times I wish there was someone who understood; that I could talk to and seek advice.  I come from a long line of long married folk. My 3rd time the charm, came with 4 step children.  


I love them as my own, from the moment my husband I started talking about them I knew in my heart there was no way I couldn’t.  Now that I’ve lived with them for 6 months and the honeymoon phase (yes, there is a honeymoon phase with the children) is over, I learned 70% of all blended families fail.  People that rate is higher than normal marriage.  We only have a 30% chance to make it.  Well guess what?  I’m in it for the long haul, and in that I have to talk.  


You will not find me doling out advice; I don’t have any.  What you will find is my open and honest feelings about what I (me personally, no one else) is going through.  By doing this, I hope that just one person will not feel as alone as I do sometimes.   Your husband doesn’t know what you are going through, your mother-n-law doesn’t know what you are going through, and only you do. You may be the only one that understands it the way you see it, but I guarantee you are not alone in this.


As custodial step-parents, we often spend a considerable amount more time with our step-children than both their biological parents.  We often cook, clean and do more laundry than both their biological parents.  Yet, we are the first ones looked down on as only being a step parent.  While a majority of step-parents are non-custodial and get to take on more of a “fun” parent approach, custodial step-moms take on a lot of responsibility, with more times than not any appreciation.  Sure, maybe someday the appreciation will come, but it might not.  The one thing you have to realize though is your step-children deserve a constant in their lives, whether they realize how important it is at the time or not.  


I am more than just a cook, maid, laundry mat, health insurance provider, and money provider.  I am not just a step, I’m an asset.  With all those duties, I get certain perks of the job, I get to expect my house runs in a certain order, I get to expect you to learn how to do chores and help out, I get to set limits on when you can come in and out of the house, not just your biological parent.  I also get to earn your love.


Guess what as a step child you are missing out on realizing by only concentrating on negativity?  As just your step-parent, when you are already 16, I don’t have to take any responsibility for the way you were raised. There is no pressure on me for the way you behave.  They screwed you up, I just get to love you the way you are.  I get to gang up on your biological parent and be a voice to say what you want to say, but don’t have the ability to know how to say correctly. I get the chance to be the fun one, who will listen and stand up for you in a way you can’t.  I’m not trying to take the place of another parent; I’m just trying to love you.  I will be a constant love for you.  I will get on to you out of love, and I will love you fiercely. I will be an asset not just a stepping stone.  


We are going to go through a lot of learning curves, because we are both new to this whole thing.  You may never come to love or like me…but God taught me to love you as he loves me….and I will.  Always.