Friday, June 13, 2014

Father's Day--Which I Prefer to Call Mother's Fun Day

Ok, this will may be offensive to some people so if you get touchy about divorce and stuff, don't read it.
And if it upsets you, I have some Peace and Calming essential oil, or maybe Forgiveness, that will help you out. But here I am, in rare form. The Carrie that I have tried my hardest to keep hidden while working at HISD. I guess my tell it like it is attitude offends people.

But back to what I was saying…It is Father's Day Weekend. I love my Daddy. Yes, I'm a little girl and I use the word Daddy. He is amazing. And I will do my very best to show my appreciation. But now that he is diabetic, that can't be in the form of cookies, or cake, or any of my other favorites. For a while I was on a sprinkler kick. He waters a lot. He finally told me it had to stop. For every holiday, birthdays, Christmas, father's day, he was getting sprinklers. For several years in a row. He is a good daddy and told me he would be fine with just a hug. But please, no more sprinklers. Fishing lures were a bad idea too I guess. Apparently certain fish require certain lures?? This is just nonsense in my land. It should make sense because I will eat your face for trying to make me sew with threads that aren't mercerized. I prefer Mettler mercerized cotton threads. 

So, Father's Day weekend. In years gone past, that meant nothing unusual. Make an effort to make the kids do something nice for their dad. Cook something. Plan on not having a single second to myself. Sort of like every other day. Mother's Day usually meant eating some kind of nasty ass food that would make me try not to hurl, and maybe an hour to myself if I got super lucky. NOW Father's Day takes on a whole new weekend. So does Mother's Day. This year for Mother's Day, from my children I got a big fat nothin'. Two of them told me Happy MD. I tried to make the others work, but it didn't work out so well. My perfect, amazing husband got me a bottle of special Crown Royal. And let me tell you, with the end of the school year and all the mother's day hullabaloo I needed that!

But now it is Father's day. Father's Day weekend! Which means I get the weekend to myself!!! Even better, to myself and my husband!  My husband has no children and was thrown into the chaos of a home with 4 of them. He will get some sort of prize this weekend. More than likely, a nice little bottle of crown and some chicken strips. Nothing makes the man happier. The children are spending important quality time with their father bitching at him instead of me. I love the darlings beyond belief. But they need time with their father to make special memories, and I need a damned weekend off.

For what it's worth, I don't really get a free weekend. I am responsible for 50% of the children. And since it's cooler its unlikely that they will take off out of this "hell hole" where I won't turn on the air conditioning and go stay at their dad's. Last night, Keegan was looking up power company rates trying to find a way to save money so I would turn the a/c on. I really wanna see how long we can go with no a/c. We can be like pilgrims, pilgrims with wi-fi. BUT, I am responsible for kids. These kids are pretty easy though. One of them is laid up in the bed with a stomach virus….but her makeup looks great. 

I want to throw in a special thank you to my husband. Being a step dad isn't easy. Especially when you are thrown in with teens who have some issues. It makes my heart nearly burst that Kevin is the man that my children call first in any sort of emergency. Ok, so mostly they know he is the automotive guy, but they know he can fix just about anything. 

So to all of you Moms who might have felt a bit ripped off on Mother's Day, have a good weekend! 
'Scuse the spelling errors.  It's been a long day :)

Edited to add…
Passing Keegan and Aiden's room really sucks because I keep hearing "mom?" or speaking to them and then remembering that they went with their dad and I have a small vacation. I'm not a cold heartless bitch, just a tired one at times….

Monday, June 9, 2014

Carrie's Beginner's Guide to Aromatherapy

I will talk about my own history with aromatherapy in a later post. I have used it a long time and love it. I am getting a lot of questions about the Essential Oils my mom and I have started selling, as well as a couple other local people. I was skeptical when I saw this company I am using. Skeptical in a major way,  rolling my eyes about how they had to be crap because they aren't my beloved Aura Cacia brand.  My mother tried them because my sister in law is using them and I tried mom's, with a sour look on my face like a stubborn toddler. 
And…I like them. 
A lot.
I hate being wrong. 
But yes, now I am selling them. 
And I have made public apologies for being a skeptical horses arse. I am answering a lot of the same questions from people who want to start using aromatherapy so figured I might blog a bit. If you want to get started, here are a couple places to start. 

Step 1---Get a book...
I highly recommend this one. It is about $12 at Amazon. I have a worn out copy with pages falling out that I loaned a friend. I have a digital version on my iPad and iPhone. And I have a new copy in the mail to my house. It's a good book. 


The book below is the first book I ever used. It came with a little kit with soaps and massage oils for kids. The book is simplistic and sweet. It will be more difficult to find than the above book though.


Step 2---Get some oils…
There are a few that I can't live without. The first is Lavender. Next I love tea tree (also called melaleuca by some companies) and lemon. 

Step 3---Start playing…
Oils can be used singly or mixed together in synergistic blends. I like making my own blends, but usually I am missing one or 2 oils that are needed for a blend. Young Living sells single oils and blends, and I am totally digging the blends. So far, I have used Lavender, Peace&Calming, and Thieves and En-R-Gee. I have mopped and cleaned with Thieves. I used Purification in the diffuser. 

I signed up to sell oils so that I could get the starter kit. The bottles are pretty small though. I burned through mom's Peace&Calming in 2 weeks and already bought a full-sized bottle. 


About Essential Oils
They are extremely strong and should be used with caution. Both the Young Living and DoTERRA brands do not caution against some oils not being used undiluted on your skin. Oils should NOT be used neat on babies and small children. Make sure you do your own research and don't ever just take someone else's word for something. 

I have long mopped with lemon, tea tree and lavender oil. I fill the kitchen sink with water and put in 2-3 drops of tea tree. It sounds like nothing would happen, but it cleans like nobody's business. Now I'm using Thieves for that. 

I am a smell snob. I finally decided I can handle some Scentsy stuff. It was hard to admit it though. I hate perfumed lotions that smell fake. Your sense of smell will change greatly and you won't be as easily able to settle. Use this to your advantage. Use oils that smell like the don't go well with sweets if you are a sugar junkie. Vanilla might make you want cookies, but grapefruit and tangerine will make you not want anything sweet. 

I'll give more information about my own experience of different oils later. The thing to remember is that you get what you pay for. Every type of oil is a different price. Some are cheap because they are easily made. Rose and Jasmine are super expensive because only certain parts of the plant can be used to make them. If you ever find a good deal on expensive oils, look closer because likely its very diluted in jojoba or something similar. 
   
Carrier Oils
A carrier oil is what you put the essential oil in. I prefer Sweet Almond oil. Grapeseed oil tends to go rancid pretty quickly. Even Vitamin E oil is a carrier oil, as is the currently trendy Coconut oil. Jojoba oil is a carrier, but is thick and more like a wax. It is good to add a small amount of jojoba to a lighter carrier. You only need a few drops of essential oil to ounces of a carrier.

Using a Diffuser
I just got my first diffuser. It came with my kit. It is shaped like a lotus flower. Maddy came in a couple days ago and asked  "Mom! Why do you and Grammie have things that look like vaginas just SITTING ON THE COUNTERS?!?" 

Lotus flower Maddy, lotus flower….

You don't really need a diffuser. I put drops of essential oil on my light bulbs. I mix up spray in a mister bottle. I sprinkle it on the vacuum filter. I put drops in the washing machine and dishwasher. I also just simmer water on the stove with a couple drops. I got brilliant over the weekend and bought candle making stuff and put soy wax chips in my Scentsy burner with some oil. Drip oil in candles is another method.

You can escape buying a diffuser, but I've gotta say, my diffuser rocks. I really love it and feel like I need 7 more. 

Free Samples
People love free samples. I can't promise to give them to you. This stuff can be expensive. You can come smell my stuff any time though and if there is something specific you would like to try, I can give you a few drops. But even the teensie bottles for giving samples are expensive. I'm not selling oils to get rich. I'm just doing it because I get a better price for myself, and I just love aromatherapy. Even the product guide booklet is expensive as crap. At least, too expensive for this unemployed mother of 4 with a mortgage to be giving out. 

Contact Me
If you have questions, please DO NOT HESITATE email or text.
My cell is 254.784.4232 and my email is carriekuklies@gmail.com. If several people are interested and want to get together to drink wine and smell stuff and talk, I'm completely game, just tell me. 

If you find something you need to order in the product guide above, let me know and I'll get you taken care of asap...

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Engaged!!






- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Those Other People I Love...




Kade is a junior now. He is in denial over the dress code for hair for boys. I am not dragging his rear end to get it cut. His hair, his choice, his consequences for breaking the rules. I'm pinning my hopes on the fact that if he goes to ISS, he won't get to see his girlfriend.


Madalyn Grace is a sophomore. That bothers me to say. Note the sarcastic smile. And the boy behind her being funny. We went school shopping. She couldn't find anything that fit right and she liked so she is wearing my skinny clothes since I don't need them.


Keegan is in the 7th grade, on his way in the locker room for football. His plan is to warm the bench. He was really happy about this photo as well. He had just realized also that he forgot his instrument for band and may be in trouble.

My poor children. Not a stitch of new clothing on in any of these 3 pictures. We resorted to online shopping and are still awaiting the UPS truck. Apparently this family was in denial over the end of school.

-- Posted from my iPhone

Second Grade, Part Deux




Between his dyslexia and missing nearly a month of school due to the ruptured appendix (along with several weeks a year off and on from preschool up bc of every virus that ever goes around) Aiden was very far behind in school last year. He is also a bit of a baby since he IS the baby of the family.

We decided to retain him and this is his second year of 2nd grade. I was dreading school starting. I knew his little heart would be broken and he was going to howl and blink tears out of those big brown eyes and baby calf eyelashes. Initially he was just ticked that they will graduate before him. An explanation of how kids can graduate early in high school and he could end up with them seemed to settle that storm. Last year, more than once, I was the mother dragging my super humanly strong 8 year old with past the principal, superintendent, and various other members of the community as he screamed in rage "I'm not GOING to school and you can't make me!", "I HATE this place!!", "I'm so tired and you didn't make me go to bed last night!", etc.

Needless to say, I was pretty nervous about what was going to happen when he saw his buddies moving on and he stayed behind. Oh my gosh things are soo not what I expected. We are 2 for 2 on fit free mornings. He seems soo much happier. His most amazing teacher asked him to help her with some things last week and he just knows that these new kids can't really do it without his guidance. I'm feeling pretty lucky and grateful.

Last week he hung out and swam with a girl in his new grade and he didn't even get one single cootie. Yesterday he told me about a couple new friends he had made. Today he came to my room and announced "I made a new friend! I don't know his name, but he has on a gray shirt!"

He says he is sad, but doesn't want to talk about it. I think it was the right decision.

I don't know how you can do the same things with 4 different children from the same gene pool and wind up with such different results. It confirms my opinion that this business of raising children is just a crap shoot. You weigh every decision carefully, try to consider every single outcome, make the best possible choice you can, and then get smacked in the face with the unexpected.

A dear friend was talking about her children as they became teenagers. "With Child #1, I was strict and spanked him/her, questioned everything he/she did, and he/she lied to me and did what he/she wanted. With Child #2, I tried trusting him/her, gave him/her some freedom and was less strict, and he/she lied to me and did what he/she wanted. With Child #3, I tried yet another tactic, and he/she lied to me and did what he/she wanted!"

-- Posted from my iPhone

Sunday, February 26, 2012

I Love This Boy

 Both of them. They make me very, very happy.

Here is that little one again.  Diligently doing his homework. He set the timer on his phone so that he could time himself without any help.

 
This is another one of my babies. Miss Annabelle, the kitty that I bottlefed from her very first day of life. She is pretty sweet. 

My step-kitties, Kali & Tigger. They are pretty darned sweet also.

These are all the pictures that I have taken lately. Cats. And the one picture that Keegan took of me. I'm going to try to do better with this picture taking business. But first I'm going to have to go back and make 2 little boys stop fighting and just go to sleep.




Thursday, February 23, 2012

Well...

That was short lived. You know, that blissful period with my smallest child. I was the mother trying futilly to get my 48lb 2nd grader into school. Here is how the story unfolds...

Yesterday was perfect, no problems in life at all, relatively speaking you know. Aiden came home from school, did his homework, played with his phone, played with Lego's, etc. Dinner time comes and he isn't hungry. I tried to get him to eat, but nope, he wasn't interested. Remember that he is a night owl. 9:00pm rolls around and he is trying to tell me something about a game he wants to get. He doesn't know much about this game according to his 12 year old brother who harps about this fact for 5 solid minutes, all while Aiden is trying to tell me. Finally Aiden goes nuts, runs to his bed and covers himself up. Just so you have the visual, his skinny little butt is wearing a pair of too small blue boxer briefs and one sock. It's always just one sock. So, he is laying in the bed howling. I try to talk to him, no luck. I gripe at Keegan, he is just annoyed by his dumb little brother, who has a cold and is sniffling ever 2.3 seconds. All day, just sniffing. He won't take any medicine. He is tired of medicine. Little brother is still having a fit 20 minutes later and kicks Keegan out of their room.


Aiden: I hate you Keegan! Get outta my room!!!
Me: Aiden, get in your bed and go to sleep. It's his room too.
Aiden: NOT anymore!

How do you respond to this?
What is the proper parenting technique?
Or rather, an effective parenting technique.
For real, I would like advice. Logic sure as hell didn't work. Trying to calm him didn't work. It is next to impossible to get Keegan to shut up and not make Aiden feel like dumb. I'm not going to spank him, not that I'm opposed to spanking, it just doesn't work on him. He becomes very angry and the situation escalates, not the result I want. Plus, wrestling his tiny little body is much more difficult than it should be.

Around 45 minutes into this, Aiden decided that he is hungry. Three seconds after I dumped the rest of dinner into the trash can, I was still scraping. He howls because the food is gone. I offer him a sandwich. Not happening. Cereal? Nope. I forgot about corn dogs in the freezer. He finally decided he wasn't hungry and went to bed. He fell asleep around 10:30pm. I told you he is a night owl.

Morning comes along. His alarm clock on his phone buzzed from 6:50-6:53am. This pissed him off apparently.

Maddy helps a lot in the morning.
Maddy: Aiden, wake up, it's time for school.
Aiden: School?! I'm not goin to school!
(more prodding from Maddy and myself)
Aiden: I said I'm NOT GOING! I'm so sleepy. I'm just tired. That stupid phone kept me awake all night with zzzzz zzzzzzz zzzzzz. All the time!! zzzzzz zzzzzz zzzzzzz STUPID SCHOOL!!!

We get as far as the car with the child still howling that he isn't going. I've had to even pull up his pants to dress him. He just needs help. He is also wearing a green t-shirt that says "Not a Morning Person" with a picture of an alarm clock in a fish tank. So apropos.

All the way to school he tells us he isn't going in. Amazingly enough, he forgets to complain about the radio. That is the usual morning temper fit. Apparently Fleet Foxes is soothing and doesn't set him off. I must remember this.

We get to school and he won't get out of the car. Finally we get him out and he is griping the whole way that he isn't "GOING TO STUPID SCHOOL!" The lovely trip continues down the hallway. Other adults, teachers and staff members, try to help. He basically tells them to get away. We got to go past the principal and superintendent during this spell. Thank goodness his teacher is an amazing lady and handles him. "I've never seen this side of Aiden!" I told her to count her blessings. I give her the child and run for my life, passing all of the administrators who got to witness the fit of the teacher's kid who hates school. Of course in my head I'm justifying that being that kid worked out okay for Roger Waters. Our counselor talked to me for a few minutes about what was upsetting the child. If it is something about the day to come, or just a fit. I guess I should be glad nobody from CPS was around to witness the scene.

About an hour into the workday and I get a call from his teacher's classroom. My heart sinks and I decide he has continued and made himself puke. She was calling to tell me how happy he was and how his attitude had changed, then she put him on the phone to tell me about what he was going to research today. That was so wonderful and I cannot express how much I appreciate what she did today.

Later on in the day I talked to a friend. We take comfort in hearing one an other's woes of parenting. She asks if other people's kids do this stuff. She says "I just wanna know if   is flipping her momma the bird?!" It made me laugh. 

I feel the need to explain to people. My first two kids were still perfect at this age. I was freaking WonderMom way back then. Things happen and just when you think you have it figured out, the 4th kiddo comes along and wrecks everything you ever thought you knew. And you just don't know anything about parenting until you have a small child at the same time you have teenagers. It's a whole different ball game, folks. And I don't do sports.



My advice is don't ever think, even for a second, that you have got this stuff down and are doing a perfectly fine job. Not even in the deepest recesses of your own mind that you wouldn't dream of acknowledging to anyone. If you do, it will surely bite you in the ass.


That's all I've got for now. I'm off to cook dinner, which translates to calling El Jardin for chicken tacos. It is the only way I can be certain that the Sweetest Boy in the World will eat dinner today. Speaking of, he just showed up to mow my yard. See?? How sweet is that?! And every Tuesday he brings my trash cans back from the curb. Not because they bother him at the curb. His stays out at the curb. He brings them back because it bothers me when they stay out there. The first time I came home to trash cans put away, I burst into tears. I like that boy. A whole bunch. He hasn't slept more than 4 hours total in 2 days because his mom is in the hospital and he is staying with her at night, but instead of napping, he is mowing my yard.