Saturday, February 28, 2009

Potty Time!

I have had quite a few emails and questions concerning me starting up my own business so I thought I would give you the quick version of what I have been up to. As many of you know I am a Licensed Educational Psychologist. I work 2 days a week as a school psychologist in the public schools but with my license I have the ability to open my own private practice. While developing my website and literature for marketing I was given a contact from a good friend of a child advocate attorney. I scheduled a meeting with her and had no idea what to expect. After talking with her about what she does and the needs the court systems has for someone with my skills, we came up with this Educational Custody Evaluation. It basically is an educationally based eval that focuses on a dispute or question that affects minors involved in custody situations. For example, if one parent wants their kid to go to the school by their house and the other doesn't think the kid can handle the change, I would come in and evaluate the situation and then make recommendations to the courts. It expands to one parent thinking the other parent is not keeping up with their responsibilities (not having kid do homework or late to school or just being flaky) and subsequently the student is doing poorly in school. I would either be hired by one party and do the eval to bolster their case or I would be ordered by the judge to do the eval to help the judge rule on the case. That is a very quickly explanation but basically that is the eval.
So, I have been meeting with the child advocate attorney and I developed these awesome trifolds and marketing literature and this past Tuesday night I met with a bunch of attorneys to market my eval. They all were very receptive and liked my product. The next morning (Wednesday) I met with one of the judges at the court in our city and she too was very receptive and loved my product. I plan to do a lot more marketing and thought it would take a while till I got my first call but all of a sudden on Friday morning I got a call from an attorney who had just been in front of the judge (the one I had spoke with) and the judge had ordered the attorneys to have my eval done. They gave the attorneys my trifold and now I have my first case.
I am totally excited about this whole thing and I am mostly thrilled that there seems to be a need that I am filling within the courts. Anyway, this first eval will be difficult because I am forging a totally new path but I am motivated and have literally worked all weekend long on creating my parent and teacher questionnaires (specific to this eval. I have my school district ones but these have to be totally different) and release of confidential info. Literally my whole weekend has been spent doing this but I am really excited so I have no problem spending all this time on this. Anyway, for all you who were interested, there it was. For you who were not, sorry for the long post-- :)
OK, I know these pictures are a little bit questionable but if you are wondering what Miss Mia is up to these days, here is what she loves to do-- sit on the potty. She strips the whole bottom half of her outfit off and takes off her own diaper and then literally climbs up onto the potty. She absolutely REFUSES to let you help her in anyway and she must do everything from climbing up to wiping to flushing all by herself. Holy Cow Little Miss Independent!! Anyway, I know these pictures might be in poor taste but they are so what Mia is up to right now. This was Mia after she woke up this morning-- note the crazy bed hair!!

And the climb begins

Positioning herself just so

And she is on

Smiles for the crazy mommy taking pictures of her daughter on the toilet

Needing some TP

And the dismount

It really is quite funny to watch her do this. By the way, while on the potty, she does nothing. She does not pee or poo she just sits there and then wipes. I think of it as training time but she totally does not do anything-- totally funny!!

Sorry to be kind of absent this week. I have been really busy with work and I have been not only a bad blogger but a really bad blogger friend. I am so sorry I have not been on all of your blogs much but work has been really demanding. Usually I work 2 days a week and I ended up working almost everyday last week. Another psychologist in our district is out on medical leave right now so we other psychs are having to pick up the slack and then my business is really getting going. I met with a judge this week and a bunch of attorneys and my evaluation seems to really be a needed product but also most of them were very excited about the possibility of using me. Anyway, I met with the judge this past Wednesday and on Friday I got a call from an attorney who said the judge ordered their client to have one of my evaluations done! My first client!!!! I am just so excited!! I have a lot of work to do but I am just thrilled that what I have spent so much time working on and creating really based on a leap of faith is needed, useful and that people will use me. I am thrilled! So, I need to go so I can start working on getting all my ducks in a row.

Have a great weekend!!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Disneyland With the Lucky Mamma's Club!!!

Disney time again!!!! My wonderful group of Lucky Mamma's went to Disneyland again. Poor Tanya and Gracie were feeling under the weather so they were unable to attend but us other Lucky Mamas had a blast!! We rode a few fun rides and spent a lot of time relaxing and hanging out. The following collages are of the kids playing by the Mexican restaurant where we ate lunch.

Mia jumping off the stage!

Guess who started walking by herself???? Yes it was Becky!!!!

Beautiful Kailee was our little climber of the day. She always has so much fun!

And then there is our handsome little man Ryan! He is such an amazingly smart and fun little man!! It is great to have a boy in the group.

So pretty!!

Just chillin on the stage.


Kailee was off climbing but the others were willing to sit for a picture-- kind of.

Eating some gummies

The amigos

Lots of shadows but I thought it was a cute picture and even better in sepia.

Even while waiting in line for rides the kids found ways to entertain themselves. Mia decided to swing on the rails.

Miss Becky picking her sucker

Mia eating her sucker after the poo ride (kind of our tradition-- go on poo and then get a sucker) and all of a sudden there Tigger was-- right in front of us. She was so excited.

After poo we headed out and half way down Main street we realized all the kids (minus my little night owl) all had fallen asleep. We had to take a picture.

The three sleepers. Check out Becky's sucker stuck to her chest-- too funny!!!

Our only non sleeping child-- with sucker all over her face.
We had a blast and cant wait to get together again. I think we have plans in two weeks once our traveling mommy (heading to Florida and then Cabo-- now that's a lucky momma) is back.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Fountain Fun!!!!

We bought a fountain for our front courtyard a couple weeks ago and Mia was fascinated with the water spouting out. We were trying out the water and I decided I would attempt to take a few cute pictures of the little one-- and her dog.

Curious-- both of them.

Checking out the water. In front of the french doors we plan to put a sitting are. We have not bought the furniture yet but hopefully will sometime soon.

Loving the water!!

Yes she was getting quite wet at this point.

One of those sideways pics. I love her little stern face in this picture. Too pretty!

Yes this is kind of gross but the water was fresh but I don't think Mia would have cared either way-- she just loved licking it!


She officially was soaking wet at this point. What a cutie!

I don't remember what she was showing me but she looked cute!

Attempting to dry off the very wet Mia.

I have some cute Disneyland pictures I still need to download but will hopefully do that tomorrow.
Have a great week!!

Friday, February 20, 2009

Hockey Time!!

Hockey season is well on it's way and our boys are just smitten by this sport. They just love the game and are doing very well. About 3 miles from our house they built this huge community center that has a water park, a skate park (the one the boys go to) a new roller hockey rink and lots more. It is such an asset to have so close to home. One day we were there and the boys were playing with their cousins just playing some hockey (they got sticks and blades for Christmas) and a bunch of team players showed up and the director of the program told us about their hockey league and suggested we enroll the boys. Well that was it. The next day they were enrolled and now they are active members of the league and are on the same team-- The Ducks! They have been practicing for a few weeks now but this week games started and they were just so much fun. Hockey is so fast paced it just is really entertaining. The boys did amazing and both of them scored a number of goals and were the only scorers on their team. Both boys seem to have a bit of a natural talent on skates and for never playing hockey before, the coach is very impressed with their abilities (sorry to brag a bit but I am proud of the boys). I think they are getting in touch with their Canadian roots :) Ethan is #8 and Owen is #6 (they wanted me to write that).

Ethan is the center forward on their team so he always does these little show down things-- sorry I don't know the term-- I'm totally new at this sport.

Owen is just a little whirlwind in there. He is soooo fast that he is at one end of the rink and then is down getting the puck within seconds. He is really talented and last night scored 2 goals!!!

Mia loved chilling on daddy's shoulders. The games are always at 6pm and Kevin doesn't get off work till 7pm so he will have to get off early once a week or so to be able to attend the games. Kevin is loving that the boys are playing hockey because he grew up playing with his friends in the street-- remember he grew up in Canada (Vancouver area) until he was 15 so hockey was a part of the culture.

Owen is such a scrapper and really gets in there that on his first game he got a penalty for roughing (whatever that means). This is him sitting in the penalty box-- it was so funny and cute at the same time. Basically he was skating towards the puck and didn't really slow down and and bumped into another player. It was pretty innocent but I think the refs are trying to get them to understand the game and what is allowed and what is not. It was funny!!

Ethan after scoring a goal. He was so proud of himself!!!!

The boys did awesome and I am so happy they are enjoying this sport. I really thing between hockey and soccer we found our boys sports. They love the fast paced action and both hockey and soccer offer that and they are both sports they are good at. Good job boys and I cant wait to see you play next week!!!!
Mia and I are off to Disneyland to meet our adoption friends there. I will post pics soon!!!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Thanks and Arrowhead

Guys, I totally want to thank you for your support regarding my last post. It really means so much to me that there are so many that support me and just made me feel better. This whole thing has really got me down so thank you so much for allowing me to vent but also for sharing your words of encouragement. It means so much to me.

Onto Arrowhead. I wanted to post these pictures of Arrowhead this weekend. My cousin Margie and her family came up and spent the night and it was a great time!!

Mia totally got into the snow this time. She loved it. The first day was sunny and bright. The next day it was totally snowing and cold.

This was the second day when it was crazy snowing. You can see the snow coming down in this picture of Ethan.

This collage is of Kevin shoveling snow off the deck-- check out the ice cycles and of my boys on the left and Margie's boys Austin and Zac on the right.

Owen loved the sledding. It was so funny to watch them sled. Kevin built them these huge jumps and they would totally get air. They just loved it!!!

Ethan is in midair in this picture-- totally cool pic!!

Mia from day 2-- loved the snow!

I have so many more pictures to post from other things that I have taken pictures of over the last week. I have some cute ones of Mia by our fountain and some of the boys hockey game. I will get those posted soon.

By the way-- loving American Idol and all three of the people who made it tonight I totally knew would. They were my favorite 3 from last night-- love the roughneck and Danny (the one who lost his wife) is awesome and the girl that got through has a great voice and just has that thing that will get her far. Anyway, loving IDOL!!!!

On the American Idol issue, I just read this on my friend Debbie's blog. Hannah has been basically in and out of the hospital with Aplastic Anemia since Thanksgiving. Hannah has had a few rare complications with the treatment and has not been able to eat for a couple weeks and she is really down right now. Please read this and if anyone thinks they can help, please go to Debbie's blog here. Thanks and here is the post from Debbie's blog.

Do You Know ANOOP from American Idol, Season 8?
So, we watched American Idol last night at the hospital & Hannah's absolute favorite contestant is the young man from North Carolina, Anoop. So, I was thinking ... do you know Anoop? Or do you have any connections with the folks at American Idol? If so, could you do me a HUGE favor & see if Anoop would make the drive from Hollywood to Fontana to meet miss Hannah?!?!? After 2 weeks with no food & 11 weeks in & out of the hospital, I think Hannah certainly deserves a big time emotional "pick me up". Wouldn't that be cool for Anoop to show up & surprise Hannah & sing her a song?I really think it could happen for Hannah ... so think, who do you know that might know Hannah's favorite Amerian Idol contestant, Anoop!?!


Do we bloggers only let people see what we want them to see or are we transparent?

I don’t know how to answer this. I try to be transparent on my blog but obviously I don’t want to put all the negative in our lives otherwise people would never want to come to my blog—too much of a downer. I think there are some bloggers out there that want to make their lives look as perfect as they can to the outside world and in some way maybe that makes them feel better or gives them what they need. Other bloggers—like me and most of the blogs I read—try to put a mix of what they are going through in life but tempered with the happy things that go on as well. I try to do this and I have always thought I do it well and that people know my life is not perfect and that I struggle with MANY MANY things but yesterday I was told (not by a blogger friend) that I try to make my life look perfect to the outside world and that everything in my life is about how things look. This was shocking to me as I have always worked at being transparent. I try to be real and let others know that I really suck at many things in my life. But to say I am all about looks really hurt.

I have spent the last day thinking hard about this negative comment- coming from a negative person—and I have struggled with my feelings. Each of us struggle with different things. Some struggle with weight, some with finances, and some with raising their kids. I happen to struggle with all those things plus many more. I sometimes become robotic in my interaction with my family. Not that I don’t love and care for them but in the day to day of our lives, I become robotic—pick up, clean this, do your homework, put that away, get your hockey gear on, etc. I do the robotic thing out of the need to get things done and I see how that disposition can translate into maybe an uncaring air. I think if someone came over to my house everyday while we were doing homework and getting dinner made they would think I am a dictator. That is the time that things are getting done—when I am on my last leg just trying to get homework and dinner and all the other prep stuff done so I can get the kids off to hockey or whatever. It is not a pleasant time of day for us and I totally admit I am not the most pleasant during those hours—but I have never claimed to be. I don’t try to make myself look like I am this perfect Suzie Homemaker cooking my four course meal while kissing my hard working little homework warriors on the forehead. No, that time sucks and it is all I can do during those hours not to scream at my kids (which often times I do). But here is the deal. You cant judge a person based on a snip of their life. Yes, I tend to be less emotional than some but I care and love my kids and I show them this daily. My kids are loved and my life is not all about how it looks from the outside. I read some blogs and think I so wish I could be more like that mom—but I have no idea what their life is really like. That mom may seem wonderful on the outside but may struggle with issues just like I do.

The person I had this discussion with pointed out that I am not emotional and that someday I am going to have to deal with my emotions and when I do that my facade that I have built (being perfect) will come tumbling down. My response to that is this: I am not a super emotional person and am not super in touch with my emotions (surprising since I am a psychologist). I have never been super emotional—not sure why but I’m not. I am a “get over the emotions type person and lets get things done” type of person. I don’t think because I am not an emotional person that I am holding in some pent up issues that will eventually erupt. There are just some of us who are not super emotional. I prefer to deal with things I know I can change. I don’t like mulling over my emotions for no good reason. Do I need therapy? Sure we all do and I am sure someday therapy will be very useful but for now I have 3 kids and a husband to take care of and work. I have a full plate and while getting those emotions out would probably be cathartic, I'm just not ready to make the emotional, financial and time commitment that would be necessary to do so. I think it would be selfish to take that much time and finances away from our family for my own selfish gain. Yes I am sure I would get a lot from therapy but I just cant make that commitment now—maybe when the kids are older but not now.

So, if I put up a perfect front (which makes me laugh even typing it) I want all of you to know I am about as far from that as I could possibly be. I struggle with many things in my life and I get mad at my kids and get frustrated and yes, I even yell at my kids. I struggle with finances, I struggle with my weight and I struggle with work. My husband and I do not have a perfect marriage and we work at that as well and I am for sure not an award winning mom. But, with all that I still think I am a good person who is flawed. I think I am a giving person who loves her family dearly even though I may not show it 100% of the time. I am a real person with real issues that struggles like so many moms out there do. What I have trouble with is someone who has absolutely no responsibility other than getting themselves up out of bed each morning and maybe walking their dogs psychoanalyzing me. Someone who thinks they are a mock therapist because they have had to be in therapy for so many years judging my parenting and my connection with my kids and my husband. Someone who gets flustered after spending 2 hours with my kids and then has the audacity to judge my interaction with my kids based on their limited exposure. Not understanding that I spend 24/ 7 with my kids and that not every interaction is sheer bliss and will result in loving embraces. I have big time issues with anyone who forces their unwanted, uneducated, uninformed, holier than thou opinion onto another person who did not ask nor wants their pitiful attempt at being a mock therapist. A person who in their cloud of overindulgent emotions thinks with fervor that their analysis of a situation is correct and that anyone who doubts this is just pushing away the truth. So, to this person (who does not read my blog but I had to vent anyway) take your opinions far from me because I do not need your negativity nor your review of my life based on your own inadequacies. I don’t need your 2 cent analysis of my life when you cant even handle your own. I don’t need you bringing me down and hurting me like you do almost every time we are together. Just like Kevin asked me last night “when are you going to realize that you do not need this person in your life?” When am I going to? Well, I guess I will answer his question —Today!!!

Sorry to vent but this was greatly needed.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Our Friday

Oh crud!! I just read my first comment and totally realized that I posted pictures of the boys not wearing their helmets. I am soooo sorry for that but understand that they literally pulled them off the truck and these pictures were taken within a minute of that moment. I think none of us were really thinking they were riding the bikes-- just that they were going to do a lap or two to try them out. Really, it never crossed my mind and I am so sorry for this. They rode for maybe 5 minutes and then we were done-- so please know my kids don't ride motorcycles without helmets (except for when us parents blank out). Please don't flame me!!
We have been up in Arrowhead for the whole weekend but before we left we picked up the long anticipated motorcycles for the boys. Because of the new law regarding kids things and lead, all kid bikes under 120cc engine are not allowed to be sold anymore. Basically it took the kid motorcycle and quad market and destroyed it. The boys decided they wanted to move to motorcycles from quads so we sold off their quads a few weeks ago and the last day dealerships were able to sell kids bikes we snatched up a few. Because it was the literal last day they could sell kids bikes, we got a really great deal on the two motorcycles. I think they are Kawasaki KLX 110's and Ethan got the green one and Owen got the white one. They are heaven!!

Ethan trying out his motorcycle. Chuck and
Kevin in the background-- they love them as much as the boys.

Ethan showing his skills

Owen showing his skills

Mia and Hannah watching on from the back of Chuck's truck


Poor lighting but the kids playing around.

Mia and Ethan!

We went to Arrowhead for the long weekend and we had some crazy snowy weather. It was beautiful the first day and then the storm rolled in and it began to snow and wow did it snow. It was like a winter wonderland. My cousin Margie (whose home we always go to in the central valley of CA for Thanksgiving) was down with her family for a soccer tournament for one of her sons and we were lucky enough to have them over for dinner on Friday night and then Sunday after their last game they came up to the cabin and spent the night and we all left today. It was a great time and I have a ton of pictures of the kids playing in the snow so I will post those pictures tomorrow.