Saturday, March 18, 2017

Two wrongs DO make a right!

But how do we know when it's right?

We're living in a very scary reality of a future generation that has no idea how to be an adult. Our children are being raised by phone addicted adult-children who believe responsibility means learning how to use the government as a crutch and a school system that's corrupted by common core teachings and high-rating motives.

Last week I was out shopping with my kids. My oldest, who's suddenly become THE connoisseur of fashion, was spending a lifetime in the changing room. Fortunately, this left some one on one with Hailey who was currently curled up in the shopping cart. An aftermath of wearing her first pair of "heels" during our long afternoon of shopping, I presume. She looked up at me with big blue eyes and said, "Mommy, I'm scared." Immediately my brow creased with confusion. "About what sweetie?" I asked. "About being an adult. What if I do it wrong?" As you can imagine, my first reaction is to think my parenting skills are severely lacking if this is the concern of an 8yr old but the beautiful nature of this question quickly flooded over my insecurities.

For the last 9 years, I've had a goal. (As can be seen in my previous post "30 kids and counting" many many years ago). It's wavered and distorted itself from time to time. On numerous occasions, it's taken flight then slipped through my fingers in the blink of an eye. It's even lost focus for a while, mutating inward. However, the overall passion and motivation have remained the same. This new generation is subconsciously crying out for help. They need guidance. They need an outlet. And they desperately need stability. 

These last few years of my 20's have been humbling at best. My resources have faded and I've burned a number of bridges along the way but the knowledge I've taken away from them were crucial in sculpting me for what's next. I finally see the tunnel that leads to where my true purpose is headed and I will not quit until it's fulfilled. -- Bursting with pride, I looked down at my doe-eyed little angel, put my finger under her chin and said, "There's nothing wrong with doing it wrong as long as you keep aiming to do it right." 

My dearest family and friends, I know over the years I've disappointed many of you and for that I am truly sorry. I come to you today with a humbled heart in knowing God still has this plan for me. If you feel so inclined, please keep my little family in your prayers as we take on this next chapter of our lives. And if anyone feels this same burden and is interested in knowing more, please please pleeeease feel free to contact me. As momma-Sue would say, I'm excited to finally put "the next right foot forward".

Monday, March 13, 2017

Walking for the little lives that matter

As most of you know I have been blessed with two of the greatest parents on this planet (Be peanut butter jealous). My father, a 6 foot, gargantuan-handed, wisdom-overloaded teddy bear of a man is the epitome of a Man of God. He's the proud pastor of a thriving church PAID IN FULL called Grace Emmanuel Church and currently venturing on his newest journey of becoming an author. The backbone to this hero of mine is my dearest "Momma-Sue". A nickname my oldest brother dubbed her with as a bratty toddler (that's right, I said it). The inspiration this woman instills in me on a regular basis is groundbreaking and let me tell you friends, this past weekend was no exception!! 

My Wonder Woman of a mother is the executive director of Carenet Pregnancy Services. A locally organized and funded outreach that provides a variety of free services anywhere from free pregnancy tests to parenting classes and baby clothes. This past Saturday was their 28th annual Walk for Life. 

(What a turnout!)

Held at the Jensen Beach High school, as you walk through the entrance you're immediately greeted with the glorious sight of cotton candy and the aroma of grilled cheeseburgers and hot dogs. I could almost hear the food whispering sweet nothings in my ear. Personally, I saw no need to walk any further, but the tugging of limbs by my tiny humans forced me begrudgingly onward.

Before we even made it to the track to start our sponsored exercise, Hailey had wasted no time finding a seat sitting face to face with a face painters brush. Styling her new favorite pair of glittery cat ears, naturally she kept with the feline theme. Elijah, finding a real kindred spirit in Batman these days, chose to sport the symbol across his face like the masked vigilante himself. 

Face painting was just one of the many great side attractions to wildly distract my kids from our objective. There was livestock to pet, games to play, bleachers to run up "Rocky style" and of course (it deserves a second mention) fooooood. Alas, after many (many) failed attempts, we made our way onto the track and did our due diligence. 

Proudly prancing over the hot asphalt with belly's full of juice-flavored ice shavings, I looked over at my 16yr old niece who was walking with us. This sarcastically, pure-hearted young lady was the catalyst to my mom discovering her purpose with this wonderful organization. What a testimony this is! It's one of the biggest inspirations I take away from my mom. Staying true to her motto "one right foot in front of the next" she allowed God to take a very scary event in our family's life and turn it into something so much more beautiful than she could have ever imagined. I can only dream to be half the woman she equals up to when I'm her age.

I leave you with this. Keep your joy intact and never lose sight my friends. It may seem impossible at times but you are in the loving hands of a Heavenly Father who has a plan for your life. If you choose Him and let Him have the reigns, your first domino is one "scary" nudge away from colliding forward into a true purpose.

Friday, March 10, 2017

Guess who's baaaaack?

I find it no coincidence that exactly 6 years since my last post, I'm suddenly bursting at the seems to start this back up. Timing is everything after all. That last post feels like a lifetime ago. A lifetime that was flipped upside down into a parallel universe of molding sludge, dragged through a field of smelly socks and hung up to dry in 102 degrees of unforgiven heat... I won't even sugar coat it, my 20's sucked. But! With every blow, we pushed back with doubled-up strength. Those challenging years prepped this little family for the big leagues. Fortunately for me, even in the midst of all those changes, some things remained the same...

Elijah (now 10) is itching with the urge to shoot stuff as much as he's itching with the urge to cuddle up on you and exclaiming over how beautiful you are. His heart is as genuine as they come and as an added bonus his humor is as dry as my own. I often find myself wondering how I got so lucky to be blessed with such a beautiful soul.

Hailey has now graced me with 8 glamorous years of an adorably ornery existence. Her personality is as eccentric as her fashion sense. She is forever questioning how things tick and succeeds at anything she puts her mind to. Good luck getting anything passed this mini prodigy. Those little wheels of hers are on overdrive all day every day. 

As life would have it, we are now a strong little independent family of three. A family that is on the precipice of some very life changing adventures. Welcome back to this beautiful mess we call our life. 

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Supermom to the rescue!

My partners and I recently found out that Aftershock Dance has been chosen to be interviewed for an article on inexpensive youth activities for Spring Break by a local news station .  (Try not to be in awe of my newly acquired celebrity status. I'm just a normal person like everyone else.) I'm sure it's only going to be a simple silly two sentence blurb. However, I still feel like a little kid who just annihilated a neatly wrapped present to discover a new pup inside.

The interview was today. They couldn't give us an exact time, but they said it would be between 12 and 2. Well, in my sheer excitement I was compelled to do what any sensible female would do in my shoes. Shopping! Now in past experiences this has not bode well with my mischievous children. However, this time I came prepared... or so I thought. I packed snacks, sippy cups, diapers, a change of clothes for Hailey and the key component to making this work, our gaming system's! For the record, I do not believe it's okay to allow your children to become socially inept by drowning their brain cells in video games but one day couldn't hurt, right?

All in all, my crooked plan appeared to be a success. We had gone through our first store and made it out without one shirt being ripped off it's rightful hanger and onto the dirty floor. Unfortunately, there was one minor unexpected drawback. We were in the car on our way to the next destination when Elijah urgently requested a "potty". Usually when he does this I have 10 maybe 15 minutes to swerve through 4 lanes of oncoming traffic and into the nearest rest stop but apparently he is far less aware of his bodily functions when he's immersed in his learning system because I had no more turned on my blinker when he announced, "It's okay, I'm better now." In all my preparations, I hadn't once considered packing a change of clothes for Elijah so inevitably that ends up being the one thing that I need.

I still hadn't found a new outfit for the interview and it was already 11:00 which left me no time to go all the way home and grab a new pair of pants for the boy. So in a desperate attempt to make this spontaneous trip work I totally went Macgyver on these babies! I stripped him down to his birthday suit, opened up all the windows in my car, rigged the phone dock to be used as a hanger and finally blasted the heat directly into the jeans. Leaving the pants to flap like the proud pee jeans they were. I am Macgyver wearing a supermom suit!

Monday, March 7, 2011

Going old school today

I thought I would post something I wrote about 5 years ago. It's a bit random and spastic... I suppose 5 years doesn't change one as much as we might hope.

The Kool-Aid Man has always struck a chord with me in terms of being a standout amongst the plethora of old television commercial protagonist oddities. He is simple, yet infinitely intriguing. 

There has been a long running debate about a certain "Kool-Aid Man". The question is "If you drink the contents of the Kool-Aid Man, would he cease to exist?". Many argue that the kool-aid is his blood. That he is a pitcher.... full of kool-aid.... without the kool-aid he is just empty inside both literally and emotionally. He would cease to exist, at least on some level. He is, after all, the "Kool-Aid" Man, and therefore without the sugary red liquid substance defining his name as well as the vast majority of his identity - at least in terms of his recognizable commercial image - he would existentially cease to be the Kool-Aid Man. He would just be an empty pitcher. 

One might also ponder whether he would, as a mere empty pitcher, still have the ability to spontaneously burst through walls and proclaim his trademark, "Oh yeah!" just in the nick of time. Others stand firm in their belief that the Kool-Aid Man would still exist even without his sugary red liquid substance, because the kool-aid man is a pitcher defined by whatever he contains. Not a pitcher defining his contents. I.E.- if the Kool-Aid Man were full off Jell-O he would be the Jell-O man OR if he were full of bats he would be a Bat man. Not to be confused with the Batman. He would be a Bat man, "The Pitcher That Is Full of Bats." How does he keep the bats in, you ask? I do not know, for he would be a super hero with supernatural powers beyond our understanding.

So the pending questions of the day... Would the Kool-Aid Man cease to exist due to some eager greedy kids? What if they did empty the Kool-Aid Man but he lived? Would he still be the Kool-Aid Man, or just an empty pitcher? And would this mere empty pitcher still have the ability to spontaneously burst through walls. Is the Kool-Aid man really bat man?!... All these questions to ponder, but what of the answer.... Screw it, I'm going to bed.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

If momma ain't happy....

All my life I've heard stories about moms with elusive eyes in the back of their head giving them the ability to "see all and hear all" (because apparently a second pair of eyes enhances your hearing). It left me to wonder if after becoming a mom I would magically sprout my very own second set of eyes. I think now would be a good time to set the record straight. There is no whimsical set of eyes awaiting you after child birth. You are stuck with your simple, boring, solitary set of eyes the rest of your life. We've. Been. Jipped!... This realization only made yesterday all the more ruthless.

The kids and I decided to take a spontaneous trip to the farmer's market.  The last time we went to the farmer's market, Hailey was still young enough to be left in her car seat and then propped on the shopping cart. Needless to say, I was completely oblivious to the endeavor I had just taken upon myself. The moment they were taken out of the car the hellion in them was released! Any smart mom would have taken the hint and bowed out gracefully, but not this mom. I'm too stubborn for logic.

When we neared the market, the first thing to touch your senses was the wonderful aroma of manure. The kids began waving their hands in a world renown gesture typically known for saying, "What is that godawful smell???". As I'm sure you can imagine, the conversation to follow left them both in a fit of giggles. However, these giggles did not hinder them. They still managed to sniff, poke and yes even lick everything their grimy little fingers could reach. After half an hour of utter chaos, Elijah stopped abruptly and began to complain that something had gotten into his shoe. I turned to help him for a split second... a split second! That was all the time Hailey needed to grab an orange, take a crater of a bite out of the peel and spit it on the floor. Which was, of course, the finally straw for this stubborn, illogical mommy. I scooped up my children and ran for the hills, but not before Hailey succeeded in grabbing one last item and leaving an avalanche of boxes in her wake. I doubt that farmer's market will ever greet the Brogan's with open arms again.