Sunday, June 16, 2013

My kid's Dad is the greatest guy....

Above is my favorite picture of a Dad of all time.  This is when my son was less than a week old.  He was 8 weeks early and we couldn't hold him for 3-4 days due to his immature nervous system.  My husband made sure I held him first for 10 minutes and that was all he could handle that day, this was the following day, the first day Daddy held him.

My husband has always been an involved Daddy.  However with most of our newborns, it was really up to me to care for them (especially in the night...I was breastfeeding so he couldn't do much).  That was fine with me because I LOVE newborns. Newborns aren't really his "thing", he absolutely loved our babies, but liked them much more as they got old enough to play with.

However with our 5th baby things were different.  They had to be, I had some health issues after birth that didn't resolve quickly like we were hoping they would.  If I didn't get sleep, they were significantly worse.  This baby of ours was not easy.  He had an apnea monitor which LOUDLY let us know if he wasn't breathing.  Plus our #5 had terrible acid reflux even with medication.  He would arch his back and stop breathing when it happened.  He was very fussy and the only place he liked to sleep is propped up on Mommy or Daddy's chest.  So for MONTHS my husband slept propped up on the recliner with a baby boy on his chest.  He never complained, he just did what had to be done.  He got up and went to work and provided for our family.  He came home and often had to cook dinner, bathe children and put them to bed because I was too exhausted and/or was dealing with a fussy baby.

That period of time 3 years ago showed me my husband's greatness.  It proved that he was willing to sacrifice whatever it took for his kids (and for me).  I know he was exhausted in every way, but he still did it.  He is one amazing Father to our kids and they are so lucky to have him, they don't even realize it  yet.  I am so incredibly lucky to have him in my life and sometimes I forget how blessed I am too.

Happy Father's Day to all of you men who sacrifice time, sleep, money and yourselves to provide and protect and nurture your families. You make our world a better place, in fact our world would be so different if more men were willing to be a little less selfish and sacrifice for the good of their families.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

It's a cruel, cruel summer....

My kids get out of school tomorrow (can I hear a HALLELUJAH for no more driving 30 minutes one way to school!  Next year we will live across the street from the school) and I know a lot of other kids are already out of school.  So what are your plans this summer??  There are some great ideas out there on the "net" so I thought I would put a post together to have a bunch all in one place.

This post on Power of Moms, has a TON of links and ideas
Possibly my favorite idea for this summer 7 Steps to beat summertime whining
Recipes for sidewalk chalk, paint, bubbles etc
The "Mom I'm bored jar"
Ideas for a summer schedule 
Another idea for a summer schedule
A great blog about creating adventures for your kids (LOTS of fun boy ideas)
Shawni of 71 toes  (one of my favorite blogs)has a whole blog post with a lot of great ideas

There's some things to get you started.  There are a TON of ideas on Pinterest.  We had a talk tonight with our kids for their input on our expectations/rules/limits on screens/jobs etc...for this summer.  I think if they have input they will buy into it more easily.  We are writing up summer contracts with expectations all spelled out beforehand so the contract gets to be the bad guy, not us.  They are each setting goals in 3 areas, physical, mental and spiritual.  They will all read every day and maybe occasionally do worksheets etc. (I don't do a lot of structured academic time during the summer as I don't want to battle it...not to say we don't learn anything, but it's much more hands on).

This summer I'm teaching my older boys how to do their laundry and iron.  My 3 oldest boys will all help plan and cook a dinner once a week as well.  It's called Life Prep 101 around here :)

Oh we are moving.  So that will throw a wrench into my well laid plans, but at least we are trying and at least they won't be staring at a screen 24/7 and really turn their minds to mush.

What are your best summer ideas?  Any great websites I have missed??  Please share!