Lisenby Week In Review

HELLO! Ok so this past week has been a handful!  I sat down numerous times to chat with you and just couldn’t get out what I wanted to share.  The past two weeks have been well challenging but then we have also had some really great days.  Unfortunately those great days came DAYS after the treacherous ones!  Isn’t that life?!

S has decided that not only does she want to be five but she wants to be the most independent, demanding, at times rude, mother challenging daughter!  I sooo was not expecting this I was the mom that said “Terrible Two’s are a joke!” as really we moved to three and it was labeled “Treacherous Three’s”.  Then we arrived at four and well we around here refer this age to “Flippin’ Fours” as Four really wasn’t bad but S could flip on a dime IF SHE wanted to.  Luckily, it really didn’t happen too often.  NOW, we are on to Five!  Isn’t this supposed to get easier?  I’m going with “Ferocious Five’s!”  HOLY COW this girl can make a sane mom crazy.  Lucky for her I’m already crazy so she can’t push me much further.  Over the past few weeks I have been watching her behavior and asked for feedback from my lovely mother for times when I’m not around on S’s behavior.  I have come to the conclusion that when I’m around she 100% is a different child when there are others around.  If you are a parent you may be saying well aren’t most kids or at least we hope they only act up when we are around and are the precious angels when not.

At my parents recently S had a sleepover.  She received rave reviews from Grandma and Papa on how good she was.  I arrived to pick up but planned to stay and craft and have dinner the following day with K.  Multiple times during the time that I was present she was mean to K.  She would say things to me like “I’m not doing that” or “Leave me Alone”.  My mom knows we VERY well and with Joe working so much I am the primary disciplinary in our home.  IT’S EXHAUSTING!  Especially with a child that wants to challenge everything you say.  So my mom a few times would ask S why the behavior when we were so good prior to my arrival.  Or correct S for mis-behaving for say climbing over the back of her furniture.  I’m completely ok with this as well we are in my parents house and she needs to respect that and second sometimes Grandma’s words come across better than mom’s.  Well I don’t spank I just don’t think it does anything.  As my mom says when I was a child she used to tell my dad “don’t spank her, it’s what she wants!”  My father never once spanked me but my mom said it was for her own benefit.  As I as a child would wear her down to not knowing what else to do.  But guess what a spanking to me meant I won!  Well, S exhausted me to this point during our visit.  I brought her in the bathroom and she received three swats.  I don’t even think a tear fell!  She looked at me with a look of nice try is that all you got!?  I immediately saw the look and realized you idiot Amanda you gave in to her actions.  Why didn’t you just stick to your words of one more time and we are leaving and not having dinner here.  I know why I didn’t want to leave!  I wanted to stay and enjoy dinner with my parents.  When we drove home I let S and K as he wasn’t my sweet little guy himself but the difference is he follows her leads know how they acted made me sad.  K knew I was upset literally crying to myself thinking where did I go wrong? How am I going to fix this.  He said “mama I’m sorry I will listen better.”  S on the other hand struggled to apologize and in my house if you can’t apologize from the heart don’t apologize at all or wait until you have had time to digest and understand why an apology might be necessary.  When we arrived home S continued…She ended up being sent to her room as I told her we needed a break and during her break I wanted her to put her laundry away and her three bags of sleepover gear (aka toys).  She screamed, she yelled, she snuck in K’s room and told him “tell mom she’s the meanest mom ever.” He of course reported this to me then hugged me and said “your not the meanest your the best mama ever.”  So after all was calmed down S and I talked, hugged, and moved on with the evening which was very short as it took her until almost bedtime to calm down.

That evening I started my research.  I was not going to allow my mini me to take over my home.  But how was I going to do this.  I of course resorted to Pinterest for some articles on strong willed children.  As I read some descriptions and S fit the profile almost to a T.  I have shared a few links below of the ones I have found most useful.  I’ve learned that I was doing a few things that for a strong willed child are very difficult.  For example don’t leave things to them to decide give them two options.  I’ve been doing this for almost everything lately food, daily activities, discipline; this more means when we have to get ready for school I will say “S can you please get your gear on so we can be on time?” I will follow it up with “Or do you need me to assist you in doing this?”  8 out of 10 times she says she wants to do herself.  For lunch I have a terrible habit of leaving this decision up to them or saying “what do you want?”  They are first toddlers and second she appreciates a little direction.  Now I will offer two things.  For snack time I allow one of two snack times to be a treat and the other has to be a fruit or vegetable.  You get the idea again the article below I found really helpful.

So the following day we were driving and S comes out and says “Mom you are really lazy.” I almost ran off the road.  I said “really, what do you mean?  What makes me lazy?”  She said “You sleep a lot, you’ve been sleeping since I was like 3!”  Ok my head is spinning with so many thoughts and emotions.  I mean I know I’m tired often but does she really think I’ve been transparent in her life for three years?!!!!  Then there’s the other side where I’m thinking what a little brat!  How dare she say that I do stuff with and for them everyday!  So I first just responded with “Thank you for sharing how you feel” I left it at that for about five minutes and took deep breaths.  I then said “you know S you telling me I’m lazy really hurts my feelings.”  She replied “well you say things that hurt my feelings.”  I said “I do?  I’m very sorry for that.  Why don’t we come up with a plan to not hurt each others feelings?”  She said “OK” So we agreed that each day we would say two things nice two each other weather it be about what we were wearing or something kind we did.  Anything but it had to be nice.  I can honestly say we have been doing this for over a week and successfully done it everyday.  S looks forward to what I am going to say and I equally look forward to it.  So I guess that bratty comment resulted in a gain for both of us and a step forward.

Last thing I do want to share is that we have also adapted a star/sticker chart for each kid since all of this started.  There are a ton of them you can print off pinterest.  I simply wrote their names on top with each day of the week listed.  We agreed on the number of 8 for a goal.  Once they meet their goal they get to pick a reward.  My rewards I wanted to be more creative then give a $1 toy or something.  So they include: Having a sleepover in your siblings room, Having ice cream at lunch, staying up 30 minutes past bedtime; on a school night!, picking out the movie for the weekend.  These are just a few but again no cost and things that kids love but I think should be earned.  So far it is working and they love the rewards.  Neither has achieved them as I haven’t been giving stars for just anything.  But looking at their boards it looks like if today is a good one we might be picking one!!!

Ok well I know this was a long share today but I felt like it was necessary.  Many times strong willed children are viewed as brats.  Really they just need a little more guidance/direction to be successful as they really are pretty darn smart if you think about it!  I hope you and your family have a fantastic Tuesday!  Cheers


Lisenby Week In Review!

Hello Everyone,

I hope your week has been great!  The weather has been beautiful here over the past few days which has helped with the mood of life these days!  Getting outside for a great run, start of some painting projects and the kids enjoying the fresh air and their playhouse again.  Signs of spring can put anyone in a better mood!

Unfortunately, S has come down with THE FLU!  I was just discussing with my mom how I’m pretty sure my family has been sick the ENTIRE year so far.  S has been hit pretty hard as she hasn’t gotten off the couch since Friday morning.  Today is the first day fingers crossed we have been vomit free.  I know TMI but there really isn’t an easy way to share the joys of the flu.  I’m hoping we can get back up and running by this evening as I hate to see her miss school but I also hate to have her bring the bug to the classroom.  Let’s talk about more exciting news!  What do you think?


Let’s talk food first as we haven’t shared any history making recipes recently!  I think today is the perfect day to talk about two delicious dinners I made so far this week!  I am loving when I try a new recipe and it is a hit by everyone in the house.  I know I have said this before but I am a firm believer that if you have your kids help you in the kitchen they will eat what they have made until their tummies are full.  The other thing I’m finding especially with K is that he loves to smell and try each item as we are adding them.  Then trying the final product tasting how it all came together makes him sooo happy!  So up first we made Grilled Cilantro-Lime Chicken with Avocado Salsa.  Earlier in the day S had wanted mashed potatoes so we whipped (no pun intended) these up to go with it.  This dinner was light before we added the potatoes 😂.  The kids absolutely loved this chicken they had the salsa on the side so it played the role of their vegetable.  Imagine this S didn’t touch the mashed potatoes.  She said they were disgusting…Joe ate four servings and K had two so I guess as it goes different strokes for different folks!  Any who, I absolutely would recommend this as a weeknight dinner.  It is also a great getting the kids involved as we are only teaching them skills that will benefit them now and later!  The next dinner I’m excited to share was that of Skinny Lasagna Rolls.  I was hesitant on this one more so of how it would go over for my meat and potatoes husband then anyone else.  This is a vegetarian dinner at least I made it that way as the sauce I used was also a vegetable pasta sauce.  The kids well S was iffy on this one but ended up eating enough to get her dessert and lately I’ll take it.  I must have said it a few times as she is completely under the impression that you don’t know if you like something until you have tried it at least eight times.  So this gives me seven more times to prove to her she likes spinach! LOL!  This would be so easy for a busy mom to whip up while the kids are eating breakfast cover and put in the fridge so it’s ready to pop in the oven when you get home!  The longest part was making the noodles so 12 minutes but within that time I mixed up the filling.  You could even make the filling the night before and make noodles when you get home.  So here you have it two pretty healthy and quick dinner recipes!

Now after we have filled our bellies with delicious food we have to mention that great thing called exercise!  A year ago I wouldn’t catch myself typing the word let alone doing the actual act.  Well I started my new me journey on the 2nd of January of this year.  I completed Jillian Michaels “Ripped in 30” about a week ago.  I did do a few of the weeks for two weeks as it felt right.  After completing her workout I researched other programs to do at home.  I have been still running but typically I can only get out twice a week:( I wanted something that would continue to challenge me but I also didn’t want to spend a ton on a program.  The program that I have started is Fitness Blender.  I’m doing it via youtube which is great as I actually set myself up in my office as you can do with no equipment but since I’m on marble I use my yoga mat and I add my weights so items that cost little $7 to be exact as my mat I got at Five Below and my weights I bought at the Goodwill!  Fitness Blender is free with PLENTY of workouts and challenges to do.  So for all of you still sticking to your new year new you commitment I strongly suggest checking out Fitness Blender! (I was not paid for promoting any of this either)  Here are a few shots as I am still doing my daily pics and sharing them to be held accountable.

WE ALMOST FORGOT!  Valentines celebrations and MY BIRTHDAY also happened this past week!  With the passing of my grandma last week honestly was kind of a blur. S & K were also fighting the flu so celebrating wasn’t a priority but when you have toddlers you have to put your focus on them and making it special.  So here are a few pictures of how we celebrated.  The kids made banana bread just before the weekend to enjoy for the holiday! On Sunday we made cookie cutter bird seed hangings as we are soooo ready for spring! Sid and I created her Valentines day box and last I did a variety of things from lax and mimosa’s for the morning of my birthday to oysters and Rum Chata for a birthday dinner celebration!  There were a few fun things in between too including phone and text messages throughout the day and fun gifts of flowers, running gear and of course Starbucks!  The best gift I received had to be that from S & K!  They went and picked out cards for me and filled them out themselves.  They were super sweet and were honestly all I needed to make my day great!

I have so much more to share but think I will stop where I am!  I’m looking forward to sharing some of Joe’s recent work accomplishments in my next post and a few fun crafts I have been working on!  Have a wonderful day!  Cheers🍻


Lisenby Week In Review

We are 15 days into 2016!  Can you believe it I feel like we were just toasting and saying “Happy New Year!”  With that being said lets review what’s been going on in our parts this past week.  If you read my last post you know that my blog alarm went off and I hit snooze three times!  But I’m here and so are you so that’s what matters.  So let’s get on with it!

Last week I mentioned K wasn’t feeling well.  WELL that turned out to be an understatement.  That evening he was soooo very sick.  That night Joe was up sick all night.  Wednesday morning S came to my room and within minutes I was rushing her to the bathroom avoiding projectile vomiting on my bedroom floor.  I felt like I had been hit by a bus but thankfully hadn’t gotten sick.  K woke up and was exhausted but was done being sick.  S was sick in every sense the entire day.  Joe was on the job thinking he was going to die.  He said “this is the worst flu I have had in my entire life!”  That evening we were all in bed by 730pm.  Bodies feeling like we were just beat up by someone triple our size.  My fingers are crossed that we are done with our round of the flu for the year!   Hey one can wish/hope/dream right?!

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I have been active and kept to my promise to myself to strive to feel confident in my own skin.  Sending pictures to my sister daily after I bust my butt with Jillian!  I just printed a 30 day ab challenge I am going to add to my workout.  Keep you posted how it’s going.  I’ve struggled a little with my meal plan but also know this is new and it’s going to take time to get my body acclimated to this new way of eating.  If you too are getting after a new you keep it up!  You can do it!! As you can see below some days are easier than others!  But after its done I know I’m doing something that will show results!

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Sid had her first social calendar event last weekend which she counted down to.  It was very cute and I learned quite a bit about being a mom to a toddler on the social scene!  One I may have mentioned I wasn’t planning to stay at the party as I had K and Joe was working.  Honestly, I was having a rough few days prior and just wanted to go with K and grab a Starbucks and digress.  We arrived to all the kids at the party with their moms there to stay.  Joe ended up getting done early so I called him and I ran and met him so K and he could go do boy things… you know wander around The Home Depot!  I don’t know if S even noticed I ran out and came back but it was good to talk to some of the moms I hadn’t yet met and get a feel for how the social side of classmates parents was going to be.  I may have mentioned we have open enrollment in Wisconsin so the school we go to is not in our town.  It’s one of the trendy towns among a few others competing to be the best within a county.  No joke we live in an area that is full of summer homes/second homes/etc.   So those that live within full-time have or sometimes can feel a need to be presented as better than the one next door.  It’s crazy to me as we chose the school as it is rated one of the top in the state and in the country.  I did worry about the social side of this choice as I came from a larger school.  Joe came from a very small school and this was his last worry.  As he said we are sending her for her education not to fill her social calendar!  LOL!  Anyway, back to it… almost all of the moms are new to school as I am so it was a very level playing field and felt great to get out and socialize with other moms.  At the end of the party one of the moms said “well here is the beginning of our little ones social lives blowing up!”  She meant it as three days later we received an invite to another party in a week!  One week after that is S’s 5th birthday! Holy Moly it has begun!

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With S’s birthday on the brain we had to decide our plans for that.  If you are a longtime follower of my blog you have read my birthday posts.  I take birthday’s very serious!  Joe thinks I might take it a bit too serious but I don’t care.  It is a special day we all have once a year to celebrate just us!  Yes there are millions of others that were born on the same day but not often do you end up friends with one of these people.  It’s a day everyone let’s you know you are special weather by calling with birthday wishes, texting, e-mailing, or sending a note.  Yes, I did say a note as one of my mother in-laws sends us a special letter each birthday sharing why our day is special.  It’s very sweet S’s arrived just the other day.  I will hold on to it until her day!  On this day Joe and I like to do a little special thing for each of the kids too.  On S’s birthday I purchase a card and write her a note reviewing the past year and her accomplishments, challenges, changes really how she has grown.  Joe does it for K.  They each have a box that we place them in.  When they turn 18 we will give it to them on their birthday to enjoy reading.  I make notes throughout the year when the kids say funny things but I don’t typically place these in the card though this year I may have to.  These two have said some pretty darn funny things!  S had asked to have her birthday at Chuck E Cheese this year and I cringed.  In years past it has been at our home and I go all out with the theme of the party from decorations, to food, to entertainment!  She said “I want to have it at a place everyone can have fun!”  She has only been to Chuck E Cheese one time but it clearly had an impression.  Joe laughed at me and said “it’s her birthday, not yours.”  I believe my mom had the same response when I went to her for sympathy!  As I did research I ended up finding a place that was more than just games.  So we have decided on this location which they will do games, a two-story ballocity climbing, and a heist; having them go under and over lasers to capture the gem!  Followed by pizza and juice.  Way cooler than just games.  I should note at this point I’m not bashing chuck E cheese at all.  But again as a mom who is used to doing it all for the special day it was a little crushing to have her daughter not want that and want GAMES over what I was planning.  I will also say having a party at the place we have chosen over Chuck E Cheese was cheaper and offered more overall.  So that’s the plan; oh ya and S has requested I throw in some Monster High details of course!  This girl!

On my note of humor and these two I think sharing a bit of their humor would only benefit you.  If you are a mom you LOVE and NEED these moments.  If you’re not a mom I’m sure you have heard little ones say things that make you laugh inside!  Like I said as soon as they say something or as soon as I can get to my phone I pull up my notes and plug it in!  So here you go, enjoy!

Oh No the Honey!  (me) But the honey’s not important mom!  What is? (me)  The Bears Are

-S at beginning of Paddington

K farts and says Mom I’m just like a gas tanker, I have a tummy full of gas and I fart!

-As we are driving behind a gas tanker trunk.

Santa please do you hear me?  Please give us our toys back!

-S after both kids lost two favorite toys each for hitting.  In the middle of the grocery store

I know you guys are up to something…what are you doing?  

-S busting Joe and I in the act! YIKES

I don’t like that word you just said.  What word?  BALD!  I say well how do you think Papa and Uncle Robert feel they are bald?  She says terrible!

-S as we are discussing a baby picture of her and the fact that she has no hair.

“We can’t put out peanut butter cookies for Santa” says K.  I say “why?”  “He’s allergic, I know that!” Who told you that? (me)  “Oh I just know” says K 

Now that my kids have provided you with a few LOL moments I will reserve the rest for another special day!

Lastly, Joe and I shared/celebrated our six-year anniversary yesterday!  We have been together nine years and it has been one crazy ride!  Started out with me dancing on a speaker as he was the bouncer at a local bar!  Yes I have a bit of a wild side.  But so does he just doesn’t display as much as I!  All resulting in two beautiful kids, two beautiful German Shepherds, a beautiful home and a life I wouldn’t trade for any other!

On this note I wish you all a beautiful weekend with your loved ones and heck go get a little wild!  Cheers!

A Little of This and a Little of That…

So the past few weeks have seem to fly by and the weather has been all over the board.  Which this has matched whats been going on in our house!  Kole has started to attend preschool/daycare two days a week, Sid has graduated from 3K, my fingers and feet are almost 100% green from the gardening going on, Joe is averaging less sleep time then I could imagine being able to do anything on let alone run a company and when he has a free window building the kids playhouse!

First things first…K started his two day a week preschool two weeks ago!  So far he is absolutely loving it and they are loving him! His teacher told me last week that he is “the sunshine to her days!”  She said “he is such a good kid and makes her smile often!”  As a mom who enrolled him in this program as I was concerned for how he would do among his peers in the fall at Montessori.  As we were having many days of battles and when we attending playgroup he was having a hard time; not always but often.  My sweet little boy was changing so drastically before my eyes I wasn’t sure what to do.  Our good friends immediately said he needs seperation and they weren’t meaning from me.  They said all he knows is S and she manages him and he’s moving to an age of showing his independence.  Which having a sister that is four wanting to provide direction for all you do all the time even know it’s usually out of love can get to be frustrating.  I of course immediately thought of when I was a kid and how to this day my little sister and mom remind me of how much I managed her in all we did!  Well as the saying goes the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree!  As my grandma said when I shared with her what K’s teacher said she said “Well mom, this is your report card saying you are doing something right!”  It was sweet as my grandmother isn’t doing well and I have tried to have weekly brief chats with her as growing up all of us where at her house and now for various reasons she only sees my kids on holidays or special occasions so I think she enjoys hearing about them grow.  So it seems these few days for K to find himself and meet others his age without S there to assist him is just what he needed.  The tantrums and frustration still show up but not nearly as much as we were facing before.  A little breathing room is good for everyone, right?!


S finished her first year of school and as she says now it’s time for her to go to “BIG kid school”!  She is super excited for this change.  Many of the kids she bonded with at Montessori will not attend  the same school for 4K as S but that is ok this year has been great!  She learned so much from her teachers and peers.  Sharing, spelling, counting, alphabet, writing, organization, cleaning…just a few and yes you may say well she’s now four she better be able to do these things.  Yes, she went in knowing her ABC’s and could count to ten but as most kids at three they don’t always do perfect skipping numbers or letters or mixing them up.  Now, she is confident in them and the biggest is how she loves to be organized and neat in what she does.  We have her chore chart which we have altered from time to time but currently she is working towards a new Elsa doll!  So daily we get ourselves dressed in the morning and night, brush our teeth, clean our room if played in that day, clean the playroom, and feed the dogs!  She has been so great at this as the days she says she would really rather not do I remind her of the goal she is trying to reach and she doesn’t miss a beat on starting them!  Which has been really refreshing!  She too has said some things to us lately that crack us up but of course we hold a straight face at the time.  She was putting her dolls to sleep the other night and Joe brought up her favorite doll.  She says “You can just set her on the bed, I’ll take care of her when I’m done!”  Like really ok!  Then she tells me “Mom, I have a red bowl with no strawberries left in it, can you come remove it from my hand?”  I was like umm no you can go put it in the sink! I’m not your maid and your dad is not your servant!  K and her lost two of their favorite toys as they were hitting each other so S stands at the garage door and says “Santa do you hear me?,  please give us back our toys!”  She thinks he is god and speaks to him often.  Usually on shopping trips when she is told we are not buying today she says she is going to have a talk with him so he makes sure it’s on her list for Christmas this year!  We are very excited to see what “BIG kid school” brings in the fall for Ms. S!


I have realized this spring that our yard is ALOT of work and it must have been due to the fact that last year was when we really got in to gardening and getting the property looking how we wanted so we didn’t experience the maintenance of all the planting we had done.  Let me tell you I am daily in the yard tackling some section!  I did do my vegetable gardens again this year.  But I scaled back a bit.  But I decided to try things I have not tried!  We have the usual variety of tomatoes, bell peppers, and jalapenos, but I have also planted romaine, snap peas, broccoli, basil, brussel sprouts, science fiction blend of carrots as well as one blueberry plant!  We will see how it all does I see it as if I get enough to enjoy for the summer it was all worth it!  If I can can some and freeze some then I did it right!  Keep you posted as it’s all starting to flourish!  I also had the treat of re-doing three of our beds.  As we had planned to start renovations on the backside of the house and complete them before our 4th of July party but due to Joe’s work schedule we have decided to put this off until after.  Which I am completely fine with except when I was given a date that this was all to begin I went through my back gardens and transplanted everything!  Well, having three mud spots now for the dogs and kids wasn’t going to work for me!  I have simply put in some marigold and cone seed that was given to me as well as the cheap spring wildflower mix.  S picked out a few bulb plants too!  So fingers crossed these areas will flourish into great little gardens at a very low price before our party!


Joe has been crazy busy lately between his companies accounts he handles during the day and those he has taken on as side jobs. Currently his side job is doing the stone work for a restaurant opening next month!  This is a different job for Joe as he usually does residential work.  The owner is someone I’ve know for ten years and he really wanted Joe to do the stone as he appreciates his work and passion.  Joe was excited to be a part of this as our friends current location due to his rapid increase in demand in his few short years of being open it was necessary for him to build a bigger place!  A farm to table restaurant in Illinois and for those in the area should definitely look his location up but I will say go earlier as there is typically a hour minimum wait by 6pm!  The name is Ad-lib Geocafe in Lindenhurst, Illinois!  Anyway, back to Joe!  This and other business has meant very long days for him.  But we committed to getting the kids a playset but after we researched and looked at them for the price we were looking to spend Joe decided it was best to build his own.  So here we are a few weeks in and man this project has been challenging but as of yesterday we are at the point that the kids can play on it safely.  We still have to change out railings, do the interior both siding and decorating, paint the outside and hang the swings but funny enough the slide and excitement alone has been a blast for these two!  I’m so looking forward to a summer with something for not only our kids to enjoy but their friends and cousins too!



I know there is more to share but time to get to cooking as these two crazy kids are starting to get hungry!  I hope you all had a wonderful Memorial Day Weekend!


I look forward to sharing with you the final of our current projects very soon!  Happy Tuesday to you all and thanks for checking in!

I Think I Have A Case…

I think I have a case of bubbly mouth! Is what S tells me after bath this morning! Between comments like this and K multiple times utilizing “oh gosh!” In the appropriate context I am quickly realizing that these two are quite hysterical and I need to appreciate theses moments and even the moments when I think I might loose it they go by fast. A few weeks ago I mentioned turning to natural mood health vitamins from my prescription to manage the ever changing moods/personalities of being home with two toddlers.
Three weeks in to using the natural product which it is noted to take up to four weeks to notice a difference I felt myself loosing my cool over everything. I felt myself feeling like the mom I didn’t and don’t want to be. I am very fortunate to be able to stay home with S and K. But if I can’t be home and appreciate them and manage my emotions how was I a benefit to them. As to them going to a daycare where these people signed up to manage little ones and all that comes with their different personalities. I had to figure this out.
As a mom we are typically the rock in our little ones eyes but we too are human. It’s how we handle situations is in turn what provides our kids the tools they too need to handle situations tough or easy. How I was handling situations wasn’t how I wanted S and K to react to their peers or elderly so I made an appointment with a new local nurse practitioner as my doctor had retired weeks prior.
Before I get into my visit I do want to share what exactly was happening here at crazy town! I went from being a mom who was managing outbursts, freak outs, spazzing out whatever you want to call how our little ones react to different things throughout their day from sharing, to nap time, to simply getting dressed with an attitude that they are only two and three and I was holding firm on the 1-2-3 second rule. Or they had a favorite toy taken away for a period of time. So looking back I don’t know why I thought getting off my prescription was a good idea except that I thought I was to the point that I was able to manage these situations without. I had also read a lot about using natural products.
Week three I felt like I lost all those go to disciplinary actions. I was reacting to everything. S wanted to carry in a certain grocery and it was too big after the container started to open I was frustrated and took it. She threw a huge tantrum which I responded by letting her have it then she was whiny/cries that she needed help go potty which by this point I was making lunch and over it. As to helping her I started yelling at her to go alone. She was pleading which she is very able to do this alone but from tantrum right into this I’m sure is what caused it to be a huge deal. I continued to yell then scream to go as I wasn’t cleaning up an accident. Or both S and K turning the task of getting into car seats a game EVERY time we were getting in or out of the car. I found myself climbing around our truck talking through my teeth threatening spankings if they didn’t listen. Certain situations I did find myself giving a spanking out. Yelling, screaming, threatening, spanking! Who was I? I know a mom of toddlers but again weeks prior when it was to this point I had learned leave the room and take a breather or stick to the consequences of taking away a favorite item. Those things were working this was not! I noticed my two little ones feeding off my craziness. They started hitting each other or being rough around other little ones. The saying they are sponges and take all you say or do in is so very true. It was time to talk to someone.
My NP was great after talking a while she expressed how she had been here too and besides trying a new medication but I needed to get back in to things that were important to me including running which I was doing very little of, taking time for myself maybe going to the local coffee shop one night a week for an hour or two to read ALONE, she also mentioned MOPS (mothers of preschoolers). I knew even with Joe working seven days a week we had to figure this out. I also started taking a new prescription.
So far I am happy to say things have almost completely went back to normal. I started to run again, I ran in my first 10k this past weekend. I had a sitter come watch the kids so I could go spend some time with my mom and enjoy lunch with my brother and nephew and my uncle has taken the kids for me once so I could go Christmas decoration bargain shopping! I will continue to run and hope to do another 5k in two weeks and I’m talking to my local MOPS organizers to do a visit. As far as kids go I’m still working on the hitting of each other but it has decreased drastically. Now that I’m going to their level and talking as to yelling they are responding to requests much easier and quicker!
You may wonder why I thought writing and sharing this was necessary or appropriate. I will tell you there are a lot of moms, dads, step parents, and guardians out there that feel the overwhelming stress of being a parent and feeling helpless at times when their little ones act out. I in no way am saying natural mood health vitamins or a prescription are necessary. What I am saying is you are not the only one in the fight to be a great parent! Take a deep breath or five and keep staying positive and remember to take time for you. Weather you stay home or are part of corporate America life in general is stressful our little ones are going to push. You are the parent so remember your guidelines weather timeout or three second rule or whatever works in your home. In the end they will respond to you quicker when you are calm and collected rather than screaming and crazy! Thanking you and some day asking what worked for you when they are in your shoes! Until then let’s enjoy these crazy little ones that are the loves of our lives and more often then not have us smiling and laughing!

Everyone ALWAYS Has an Something to Say!

As a mom of two toddlers I’m finding more and more people feel the need to provide their opinion of the perception of your life. I say perception because usually those providing their opinion are complete strangers. I most love when someone who appears to be around my age toting no children with them provide “the look”. You know the are those both yours, are you crazy look! Or that double ended comment “they must love you as their nanny!” This one gets me for a few reasons. Yes it’s very sweet of this stranger to think I couldn’t possibly be old enough to have two toddlers. There is also the are you crazy yourself to think I would choose to be bossed around by two toddlers all day?! Then you have the local shop that has a bowl of candies on the counter. When your toddler asks for a piece they respond “that’s not good for your teeth, have your mom buy you a beef stick!” I’m seriously laughing out loud at this as it just happened a few days ago and S looked at me so confused. I told her those were a treat for after lunch. Then I said take three we have your brother and cousin with! I know terrible but I was purchasing beef sticks as we always do along with our other beef and poultry items. Maybe they should have beef stick samples out as to the candy because I can guarantee my kids would love that treat! Anyway, one more on this same subject…don’t ask the parents with the kid standing right there if they can have candy or something sugary! Umm how do we say no now?! If I sit here for a bit I know I could provide more!
So with all this being said I have really started listening to myself lately! YIKES! I am so one of those people not to strangers more to friends or friends of friends! Sharing my opinion of what the inappropriate amount of McDonald’s is your two year old should consume or telling an expecting mother and father how not to make sure they allow their first born to be a kid! Which in my defense I am a mom and those that I usually say something like this to know me and know I too have faults or am saying these things as I have already been there. But some comments or suggestions are more of me concerned and only wanting the best for those I loves kids. McDonalds is crazy high in sodium alone along with so much more our little ones bellies don’t need. Of course any snack is ok in moderation or when it’s what option we have but when it’s a multiple times a week snack it’s now part of their diet. I feel the same about this as I do when I see a complete stranger thinking they are punishing their toddler by taking them out of a store into the cold with no hat, mittens or appropriate coat. Telling them you aren’t going to cry when you are cold outside! Who is the adult here? So your wondering if I had something to say. I did I was so sad for this little guy and thought what a POS adult the guy was. So he stood outside his car with the little boy cold and crying. I looked over and said you should at least put his hood up its too chilly out. He replied he won’t even keep his shoes on. I said I’m sure but that’s why you are the adult and he’s the child. He put his hood on! Some things are just common sense.
I guess my thought or wrap up is I do think it’s ok to have an opinion of others weather you do or don’t have little ones. But before you do say something make sure you aren’t coming across curt as I’m sure when you thought it your intention wasn’t to offend.
One last thing when you see a mom at a store and her little one is acting out understand if she packs up and leaves all her goods there she one didn’t get her shopping completed and two the little one got exactly what they wanted. So next time do as I do remind them we have all been there and it can only get better 😊

That’s Fine…I just won’t play with you then!

Says the little girl who lives with us and loves to manage all things when it comes to playing!  If I hear this once in a day I’ve heard it twenty seven times from S to K.  Typically the poor little guy just wants to play with his diggers and dozers but S needs someone to play Barbie dolls with her right now!  She knows his sweet personality will give in if these words come out of her mouth!  I started today each time I hear this getting down to her level and asking her when her friends say this how does it make her feel. The response weather 7:30am or 5:00pm is the exact same…SAD. In turn how does she think K feels hearing this? EXACTLY!!! SAD in case you didn’t catch where I was heading!! Which honestly either I started tuning it out or really after we discussed it did subside…for at least a few hours.  Speaking of friends we have been hitting the books hard for a few weeks now! Lol!  Ok I’m still struggling to get out the door in a timely fashion for pre-k for S!

But school for S is going well I had a moment or twenty after I dropped her off today with her fresh wavy hair from braiding it wet before bed last night and little purple slippers at Montessori it’s what they do. Anyway, I realized how these two days a week are truly changing my little girl.  For one she has accepted that boys are actually ok to be friends with.  That using colors other than pink and purple are ok and those other colors can be really fun too!  If you get hurt yes it’s a big deal but if there’s no scratch or blood you are ok…ok after I wrote this one I realized that was likely Joe or I as she did get a pretty good rug burn today and I asked what did the teacher do…she said one asked what she could do to make it better if anything, S said she told her no then her other teacher asked if an Ariel freeze pack would help; which anything Ariel will make any problem better.  Independence has also been showing up and the good I still love you mom but I’m three and will get ready for bed by myself and when done put my clothes in the hamper independence!  Appreciating what those around do for her as tonight she went in the freezer to get a freeze pop and a glass mug fell out and shattered, after I swept it all up she said mom you really do a great job cleaning up messes I make!  The list goes on and yes cracks me up as some of these things I truly have struggled to do well.  I do think my personal wiring is still on corporate mode sometimes and as S comes home with these changes its making me realize there are so many great ways to handle situations and not everything has a direct, point-blank answer with toddlers.  With deep breaths I move onto naps!  Or the elimination of!


Since 615am at the latest was becoming S’s new wake up time I decided I had to take drastic measures! Lol! My only thought is she’s getting too much sleep between nap and night. So two weeks ago I held to my plan and cut out naps. By day three she was delirious and passed out five minutes in to quiet time! The days following waking up went from way early (for me) to between 730am and 830am! Yipee I don’t think I mentioned that on day four we went on a mini get away to a water park resort as the week before we had to cancel and reschedule our family Disney trip. So mom and I took the kids for a two night get away. More on that in a minute. Well this week has been going great. The past two mornings have been 7am which of course I’m hoping doesn’t stick but again anything is better than what we were at. I have done nap two times as she has been a mess and did I mention I have decided to move to a natural mood vitamin from prescription? More on this too but let’s say when the naps have happened it’s been necessary for both of us to be able to appreciate how wonderful our personalities are until dad arrives! So overall I’m very happy with my decision to take nap out of our routine for S. K still requires nap of some sort daily. On to our mini get away!

Well due to our businesses crazy busy schedule we decided to move our trip to Disney to January! Bummed at the time but then remembered its freezing here in January and S’s birthday is that month so it will be great! Anyway, giving the short version. Arrival day S and K thought that as we were getting ready to go to dinner they would check out the resort on their own leaving the room while I went to the bathroom and mom got her purse packed…Ten minutes later mom and I sweating, scared and angry these two were found giggling up a storm at the end of the hall.  I was so upset both the panic and fury type of upset. As my mom and I said if Joe was here this would not have even been a thought…you know that dad’s presence is enough to keep you scared and honest! That evening and the following days were much better sure we had our moments but reminding myself they are two and three helped with these!  I think the trip prepared us a bit more for our Disney trip and things I want to make sure I avoid.  Most important they are two and three keep it simple.  Doing every activity offered in the area is NOT necessary what is necessary is doing activities that are appropriate for the day. Like arrival day plan nothing but checking in to the resort and enjoying on property amenities. Try to do big activities every other day slipping in naps and low-key activities on the off days. Just these few things result in happy babies which I learned in San Diego a year ago but again only away two nights I wanted to do it all.  The I part was the problem.  I’m mom now it’s about what they can handle each day creating positive memories for all.


I have so much more to share from the shop to crafts to my decision to move off prescription mood changing meds and on to natural ones.  Please check back soon to hear all about!



When Will Sleep Be Appropriate?

I’m not sure what is up these days but between nightmares and simply waking up at random hours these two have provided Joe and I with little sleep lately.  This has led Joe to increase his morning cup of coffee from two to three and I am just going with it!

We moved S into a big bed a few weeks ago. Which had her switch rooms and K went in to her toddler bed.  I honestly thought all would be easy peasy as S was allowed more animals in her bed and K is just a great sleeper, once in he passes out.  Well I was wrong…

S has woken up these past two weeks every other night having crazy dreams!  First she told me there was a bull head on her chair!  I said what is that as I didn’t think she knew what a bull was.  She said you know bigger than a cow with big horns and an earring in its nose!  I thought oh crap she does and I’m freaked imagining this in the room.  Then it was ghosts and witches flying around and last the triceratops on her dresser was moving its head and tail.  These are the extreme ones!  I remember being a kid and having nightmares but nothing like this!  So I thought what is she reading, watching, playing that is resulting in these dreams?  But I truly can’t figure it out.  The bull Joe said they talked about them months ago while driving and seeing some.  Halloween is just around the corner so witches, etc are on display.  We play dinosaurs often but none of this has been a bad experience so I’m still stumped.

K on the other hand is totally playing us!  Or should I say playing Joe!  Joe with all the shop work is exhausted and can’t do the cry out method. So K belts out a few cries every three nights and then finds himself a cozy spot in our bed!  A big UGH to this!  I love my kids but K loves to flail in his sleep so I’m often provided with feet to the ribs and smacks to the face throughout his precious sleep experience in our bed!

I just wonder when sleeping a sound night and by night I will take five hours even though I truly would love eight will be found appropriate?  I have even thought of trimming nap time…nope!  Keeping them up just a bit later…nope!  Making them run/jump/skip/dance the entire time we are up…nope!

One thing I can be sure of is this just like every other parenting complaint at the moment shall pass.  But one thing I know is I won’t miss this one!

Now its on to fall decorating, baby shower preparing, shop completing and enjoying all the moments these two crazy toddlers provide us!  Until next time, be well!

Lisenby Week in Review

Ok so this week has been pretty great with my management team! S and K that is!! The weather has been all over the board which has stunk but we are managing! K is still in love with shouting out “I don’t care, I love it, I love it!” and S has a standard response of “Oh my Gosh Mom!” to almost everything so status quo there. Our yard is planned to start taking on a new look this upcoming week so the kids will be terribly upset to see the mound of dirt gone but I’m sure a water feature going in will make for them to think we have put this in for their enjoyment! I look forward to sharing pictures for now we have just put in the final plantings in the retaining wall and last of stone path.


We met up with a girlfriend this week at a great little place I definitely recommend checking out if you have kids ages 0-4. It is called Yu Kids Island, LLC! Yu Kids Island, LLC. They totally have this toddler entertainment thing down! All bright-colored, soft activities including merry-go-round, bouncy slide, a space that’s filled with balloons flying all over the place and a slide that is made of a plexi glass type product with water under it! S and K could stay all day and the set up I will say allows for mom/dad/grandparents/caregivers to take a break and sit at a half counter and watch the kids. The girls working are great helping the little ones get on a little taller stuff and constantly cleaning the area.




On to a fun product we tried this week!  The Got Milk Straws! Yes they have been around for years but we are just getting to try out!  S and K spotted these while grocery shopping and of course my initial thought was “I’m not spending money on something we buy squeeze bottles of for much less” but then I thought “ok they are being good and I would rather spend money on something to go in their milk as to them asking and likely me arguing over not buying a dollar toy”. So in the cart they went…some may say I just bribed them and you are 100% correct but is it really bribery if it’s food?!  We recently introduced chocolate milk to them so when S saw strawberry she couldn’t wait to try!  We’ll after all the excitement I will say K loves these as he thinks it’s candy so it’s a no brainer for him.  S on the other hand prefers fruits and veggies so she hasn’t asked for it again.  I tried and will say yes it does the trick but to get the full chocolate effect I had to break up the little chocolate pieces.  So for now I think we will stick with the squeeze bottles or at least until we are in another grocery store that does genius product placement of the product!


A few other things for the week! We got a jump start on dad’s Father’s Day gifts.  The first one we did was I interviewed S with a serious of questions about Joe.  I will type it up on cute paper and frame it for his day.  I will start this with K next year!  We also did a cute “We Love You” gift which I wish I could share the step by step process with you but my computer crashed and away went those pictures so once complete I will share!



Last I created each of the kids their own email address!  I read about doing this somewhere and each month sending them an email and when they turn eighteen give them the password!  I love this idea I think I will share the address with grandmas and papas too!

OK have a great Sunday everyone! I’m headed to take part in the Cancer Assault Challenge that includes fifteen obstacles of mud, water, etc.  wish me luck and I will share the experience tomorrow!


(I was not paid or hosted to provide feedback on any of the above products.  This is only my opinion and my experience)

Toddlers take on Napping and Potty

There are a few things I wanted to check back in with you on. Including nap time and potty training with S.
Nap to start has been a little all over the board with S. I have decided we just have to try different things as she is three and definitely needs the rest but I think maybe a smaller window of time. So for the past week I have determined our nap each day based on a few things…1. What time did she wake? 2. What do we have planned for next 24 hours 3. Her temperament that day. So far we have we have done nap in her bed two days but just a shorter window, nap one day on sofa and two days nap has been on the road due to play dates and her waking at 5:45a.m. by 11 she couldn’t stand to be up! In regards to naps I have come to the conclusion we are all so different and I’m honestly ok with each day being different. So if you are at this point I say give a few things a whirl before determining what’s best for your little one!!
As far as potty training this past weekend was kind of a breaking point as she had three accidents with Joe Saturday and one Sunday. Joe was ready for pull ups but I can’t just give up especially as I felt she was doing well before so something has changed. I was determined to fix this. But first I called the person I reference when I am questioning my parenting skills or direction I’m taking…my mom! She raised four of us and we turned out pretty good, I think:) her advice take the stress out and do pull ups. S cried when I said this was the game plan as my mom said you are the parents! Well S and I talked and our deal is any accidents except of course at night and we go back in pull ups or if it’s an argument to go. She agreed and I’m happy to report we have been dry since Sunday evening. She has only woke up one morning damp so of course I have praised a ton and done my silly happy dance which only your kids can appreciate! Fingers crossed that all she needed was encouraging and reminding which we will continue to do!