Cheezin'

Cheezin'

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Life Lately and Loss

     It's been a long time, y'all. A long ass time. So many things have happened this year and I'm just kind of done with 2017. Anyone else or just me?  This year has had some great moments and some of the hardest I've gone through. I'm not going to talk about every little thing but kind of skip around to the big things.

     Okay, so first of all, Ariel started first grade back in August. She was adorable as always. She went from having a teacher that texted us literally multiple times a day about the kids and requested supplies and events and everything and everything, really, to a teacher I barely know the name of because we don't hear from her. That was an adjustment but whatever. She's not adjusting to school and fully immersed at this point so it's really fine. She is reading like crazy! I think it's her strongest subject so far. She started off first grade reading at a second grade level and blows me away constantly at how quickly she's progressed. Take today, for example. I'm sick and don't have much of a voice so I said she could read to me. She read destination, substitute, bothered, adjusted, telescope, and complaining without sounding any of them out. I was blown away! She's 6!

     She is also a super cuddly, snuggly, sweetheart. A few months ago, she said, randomly, "I feel like you're my mom." As a stepmom, I can't tell you how wonderful that is to hear. Then last night, I was giving her a shower and she said, "I kind of want to call you Mommy." I (being of no voice) whispered in her ear "You can if you want to. That makes me happy." She had just written I love you Erika on the shower door but after our little chat, she changed it to I love you Mommy. I am still elated over that. It's always been my dream for someone to call me Mommy so it feels indescribable.

   ...

   Along with the great things this year, there has been an absolutely horrible event that has happened. I lost my dad last month. My family and I are still going through an entire range of emotions over it. Let me back up.

     Back in the late spring/early summer of this year, my dad randomly had a giant cyst sprout up on his thigh. He went to the doctors and they first gave him some medication to try to see if it would shrink away. When it didn't, they scheduled a surgery to get rid of it. He had the surgery and rehab for it but he changed. He turned into a completely different person in that time. He was always a very loud, obnoxious person who would joke with everyone, tease everyone, but also make everyone feel like family. The person he was after his surgery was quiet, withdrawn, and like a ghost in the room. He no longer was loud, he no longer had any interest in people, including his wife, kids, and grandkids that he had previously treasured. It was just so bizarre. He lived with my mom and didn't even really talk to her. It was just bizarre and we were just waiting for him to come back. The real him. We will never have that back because on November 1st, a few days after my mom's birthday, she found him not breathing. He had taken his life. Loss is already such a hard thing to go through but when someone takes their life and they're close to you, you start wondering what you could have done differently. If you could have done something, anything, to have been able to save him. As hard as it is for me, I can't imagine what my mom must be feeling. I would give anything to take her pain away, to have him back. I want her to be happy and she is really depressed and I just wish I could do something.

It's not fair.
None of this is.


...

It's been an interesting year full of good and bad. I really hope 2018 will be better but I feel guilty going into it without my dad. It's not okay. I'm not mad at him. I don't think he was weak. I don't think he was selfish. I think he was depressed because of a chemical imbalance. I'm not a doctor but none of it adds up so that could be why it happened. We'll never know. And it sucks.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Innocence. Shortest Post Ever.

     When your kid runs up to you, teary-eyed, saying she has an owee, sometimes your first instinct is just to giggle and pull out your phone. No? Just me?



I'll just see myself out then.

Friday, March 3, 2017

February 2017



I really am awful at keeping up with this thing. I am trying to be better at it. I made it a point in my bullet journal to post in this blog, as well as my dance blog, twice a week. Yeah. School started up for me almost a month ago and can you guess how long it's been since I opened my bullet journal? Yeah. A month. Ha.

Things have been crazy around here. We have all been sick. Again. Back in October, I got some sort of cold and lost my voice. In December, I got laryngitis. Not sick or anything, but I had nothing above a whisper (as far as voice goes) for TWO WEEKS. I'd never previously had laryngitis so it was interesting. Since I love to sing more than almost anything else, this really sucked. It took around a month to get my full voice back. Around 4-5 weeks ago, I caught another awful, worse cold of some sort. I'm finally over it but in the process, I apparently coughed so hard, I bruised a rib. This happened around a week and a half ago and it's one of the most painful things I've ever had to deal with. I'm a dancer and this has definitely affected my ability to dance or, you know, function as a human being. Sleep is rough. Breathing hurts. Forget about lifting anything (like a 40lb 5 year old...or my giant purse/bag).

So yeah, you can say 2017 has been rough so far. But it could be worse.

Ariel is doing very well in Kindergarten. And in general. Would I love it if she would eat a wider variety of foods like, you know, fruits and veggies, maybe even meats? Absolutely. Yes, please. But she's doing well in just about all other areas.

She is bursting through her word lists given to her by her teacher. It's so wonderful to experience someone learning to read. Frustrating at times too. But wonderful. She is being read to every night (at least at our house. Can't say I know for sure about her mom's house, but I hope so.) She got her most recent report card and a note on it said that the teacher would like the kids to start reading beginner level books to US now! She is doing mostly well with that but does get frustrated easily, though I suspect that is probably normal. "She has a ball. She plays with her ball e...e...ev...IT DOESN'T MAKE SENSE!" "Sound it out." " "Eh...v...eh...r...yuh...IT DOESN'T MAKE SENSE!" "Every." "...every day." That's pretty much a daily occurrence, but it's coming along. She has a problem with "y." She pronounces them as "yuh" instead of "EE" and as much as we correct it, this has been a thing for months now. I'm not sure how else to help with it. Maybe flash cards with only "Y" ending words? Hey, I might do that.

This has been the month of saying goodbye to baby teeth. On February 6, Ariel lost her first baby tooth! She lost it while at school and the next morning, woke up to $5! I also printed out a "First Lost Tooth" certificate that I found online and hung it above her head while she was sleeping. She was so excited! Then, February 27th, she lost her second baby tooth. So cute with the missing teeth!









Side note: I always thought they lost teeth around 7 years old, not 5 and a half. It's so soon! haha.



The other morning, I went to wake up Ariel and she was soooo tired that she actually fell asleep sitting up on the coffee table. We were about to get her dressed for school and she just checked out right there. Of course I had to take a picture. The second picture is when she realized what had happened. She found it just as funny as I did.




Zzzzz






Yesterday, Ariel's school had Dr Seuss Day. Her favorite Dr Seuss book is Daisy-Head Mayzie so her grandma made her the cutest costume ever. Major props for that! It turned out adorable.

How cute is that?

Well, that's about all there is here. I'll try to come back sooner. I really am loving this age. 

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

It's Been Too Long...Whoops

So, I really suck at keeping up with this thing but I made a bullet journal for 2017 that will mock me if I don't keep up from now on. 

So, I now have a beautiful 5 year old. She is just as sassy as before and getting sweeter by the day. 

Since I last wrote on here, Ariel has had a 5th birthday, started kindergarten, dropped ballet and tap, added jazz and tumbling, and then re-added ballet after she stated how much she missed it. This kid is still a source of what seems like endless energy. She is maturing so much lately. I can't seem to keep up. She loves to ask questions and asks what many words mean. I love it. But there is still so much baby there. She still loves Mickey Mouse Clubhouse (WHY) and has traded falling asleep to a cartoon movie with asking for me to play lullabies on my phone while she sleeps (I leave my phone there for like 20 minutes tops and she is out). She is doing really well in kindergarten. She HATED homework at first (I mean, who can blame her?) but has gotten much better at busting it out quickly. She is learning to read and has 50 sight words under her belt and sounding out the rest. Why is English such a difficult language? lol. It's ridiculous. She is writing and it's one of the best things ever to get a card that says "I love you Erika. Love Ariel." It just melts my heart. 

I don't know what to write without making this like 90 paragraphs long. SO much has happened but then not too much. I'm loving this age. I really am.


Karate Kid

Next to her cousin after they had just passed testing in karate and got their new belts!


Someone graduated from Pre-K!
Her flowers were as big as she was!


Recital costume pictures!


I love this girl.

Post-swim picture.


Halloween with her cousin, my nephew Cole (3). Yeah, they are that similar in size. 

I just love this so much.

Around a week before Christmas, listening to a story. My little snuggle bug.


Perhaps my favorite of all. The three of us. <3


I will update more. I'm aiming for once a week. I don't want to forget anything! I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday. I know we did. :)














Thursday, August 20, 2015

The Witching Hour


     I know you all are very familiar with the dreaded Witching Hour. Technically, the Witching Hour is around 2-3am, but I'm talking about children here. For my little one, this is typically between 3pm and 4pm. 



     Ariel hasn't napped regularly since last summer, the summer she turned three. I remember the naps with fondness, because kids have a ton of energy but that energy runs out sometime. For Ariel, it's always around 3pm. Today was no exception. She gets cranky, even more impatient, and today, grandma wasn't here so she thought she could get away with acting all kinds of crazy. I'm not even sure why that is, because she I don't let her get away with acting a fool either. 


     It was a fairly normal morning (the exception being that it was her grandma's birthday). So when her grandma needed to go to the store and then to pick up her cousins, Ariel was totally cool with staying with me, but then changed her mind. After getting Ariel ready and heading out the door, grandma realized she had no carseat for her, so Ariel ended up kicking it with me instead. We always have a good time, so it was cool. I wanted to finish cleaning before the boys came over, so I streamed The Powerpuff Girls (her current fave) from my phone to the tv via ChromeCast, and went about my business. 


     I dusted. I vacuumed. I put dishes away. It was good. Ariel and I screamed the show's theme song at the top of our lungs. Normal. She asked for a banana, so i cut it up for her and gave it to her on a plate. She decided it was cuddle time. Though she does love a cuddle, I should have realized the order. But I didn't. After cuddling for 3.5 minutes, she asked if she could play on her tablet, but then gave it to me, saying she was going to make a tower with her dominos and then we'd trade. Okay, fine. I kind of zoned out, trying to figure out how the heck to even use the thing, but kind of half-assed. Then Johnny/Daddy came home. YAY. He was off work a few hours early, so I jumped up and hugged him and we had a "family hug" in Ariel's words. Cuteness.


     Then it happened. I reminded Ariel that she had her banana and she told me "I'm building my tower right now." Okay. 


"I know. Keep building. I'll just put the banana right next to you so you can do both."

"But I'm building right now."


"You can do both. Take bites in between building. You asked for this banana not that long ago, so I want you to eat it."

"RAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA"


Okay, that's exaggerating, but not by much.


She jumped up and was stomping her foot, with her arms crossed, saying she was building. I told her to not stomp her foot at me, and she whined, and stomped it again. So I told her to get her little butt into time-out (we don't spank), and said I was taking her dominos away and she could get them back later, because she wasn't being nice. 

She lost her shit. She started screaming, and Johnny/Daddy jumped in, telling her to knock it off, and to put her nose to the wall as I'd told her to do, and she was yelling, crying, and basically, she was pissed. 

After a few minutes in time out, she was sniffling, and cuddly. Weird how that happens. Every time. 




The rest of the day was awesome. 


Before that, while Johnny was at work and Grandma was gone, Ariel had grabbed some jumbo marshmallows from the pantry, and after we had each taken a bite out of ours, I taught her the "lick and stick," sticking mine to my nose. She laughed and did the same. Four year olds are fun.



...

Later in the day, Ariel's grandma returned with her boy cousins (Ezra, 7, and Eli, 3) in tow. They all went swimming and it's always so fun to watch them. It's awesome to swim, too, but I was just wanting to watch and take pictures today. Good thing I did! Today Ariel was very brave and jumped off the diving board on her own for the first time! She adores and looks up to Ezra so he really influenced it, I think. But once she did it, she didn't want to stop!


It started with Eli kind of assisting her and shadowing her to make sure she jumped out far enough.


 Until she really didn't need him to.
"That was all her!" -Proud big cousin.

 Look how happy she was!


I love how adorably tiny she is! (She was a preemie and at 4 years old, only weighs 33lbs). Her little pre-jump position is just too cute for words.


Mid-jump. 


 Flying.


 That smile though.


Through all the new sassy attitude, the tantrums, foot stomps, etc...just seeing her smile...seeing her happiness...feeling the unconditional love I have for this little one makes eeeeeverything else completely worth it.


Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Bloglovin' ...Follow me!

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Saturday, July 25, 2015

In 5 Years

     I first saw this topic on PinkyPersistence's blog and then again on DispositiveMotion's blog and thought it looked like fun so I'm going to do it too. :)



In five years:
  • I will be almost 35 years old. I turn 30 in September (the horror).
  • Ariel will have just turned 9. My heart can't take this. 
  • My sweet nephew Cole will be about to turn 7!! Gahhh. He won't be a baby anymore :,(
  • I am hoping to still be performing every chance that I get (dance concerts and musicals).
  • Hopefully Ariel will have 2-3 siblings. I'm really hoping this happens.
  • I will (crossing fingers) own my own dance studio/performing arts company and be teaching dance still as well.
  • I will be married to my sweetheart. I'm sure this part will happen. We have been together for over a year and a half now and are each other's forevers already. 
  • I will be a homeowner. I have done more than my fair share of rentals (rooms, apartments, and houses) and I would love to own a home.
  • I will have car payments. haha This sounds funny/odd, I'm sure but I have only bought used. I want a new car.
  • I will have graduated from a University. I have only taken a zillion classes at a junior college. I actually have mostly just been dancing (classes and performance) at our local JC for several years now. I'm close to graduating...I just need to do it, even if I still do dance shows at the JC. I am a performer at heart. I need it like air.
  • I will maybe be homeschooling. I'm torn with this. I want to but I don't think Johnny wants Ariel homeschooled. I get that, but I also fear all of the school shootings and love teaching.
  • Johnny will be an English teacher. I believe this 100%. He is about to graduate from the JC in the next year and has inspiring motivation and dedication.

So there it is. I encourage you to do this as well! This is your "tag." Now hop to it!