It's October 8th and we have officially entered busy time. Macaiden has football games every Tuesday night, getting us home around 8:30pm and having dinner at 9pm. For three nights now he has begged to decorate our Haunted Gingerbread house but we have been too busy. Last night I didn't care what time it was we were going to jam out to some Halloween music and decorate that house!
Again, time is fleeting before our eyes. Stress tends to get a hold of us. Getting super frustrated that the house would not stand, I began to laugh. I tried and tried to get the kids to calm down and help them. Pausing to think, "do I want them to get worked up because the house is falling down but we want it to look perfect for our pictures?" OR "Chelsea, laugh about the situation and let them know everything can be washed if it gets messed up and lets just have some fun!" I chose the second option. Yes, pictures are great but they do not need to interfere with memories if they do not turn out perfect. Let those non perfect pictures actually display the memories that are taking place! Laugh and go with it!! We have some past pictures where everyone is smiling but I distinctly remember what was happening before the shot. Not this time!
The house challenge was so fun and as always, they like me to post it on social media to take a vote which side of the house is "better." We usually let it stand for a couple of days but since it collapsed after the pictures were taken, we indulged in it!
My Repurpose for the day : Allow the pictures taken display the true memories.
.Well days 3 and 4 of October are here. I made a new batch of Pumpkin bread and made sure to add baking soda this time. It was amazing. The kids wanted to make cookies so I found white chocolate pumpkin cookies and oh my gosh, they were so good.
My wonderful coworkers know me quite well. Upon walking into work yesterday I found a frightening (what I thought was a child) doll! It scared the living daylights out of me! They have been warned to sleep with one eye open.
Tonight is the homecoming football game and tomorrow is Maddie's very first homecoming dance. I cannot help but feel happy and sad at the same time. My baby is growing up before my eyes.
Homecoming dress shopping 101...here it goes. Let me just say that Maddie was an angel compared to how I was with my mother. The fighting and arguing about which dress was real when I was a teenager. I began to tell Maddie that if I am the one buying the dress, respect is mandatory. Yes, I got the eye rolls when I held up a dress that was not fitting to her likeness, but, overall it was good. There is one thing I think and that I would almost say is the most important when it comes to these type of events : image. I had an extreme image problem growing up and still to this day struggle with it. That is a whole other blog, but is very real. I saw this for the first time in my beautiful daughter. Maddie has always held herself high and honestly, I have been jealous of her many times. She has amazing confidence and self respect. She also has beautiful curves. Trying on dresses to fit her perfectly led her to use words like "I am so fat," "I am not going to homecoming anymore," "I hate this." Trying to persuade her that she is perfect broke my heart. Offering other dress options that I thought might be more becoming on her she FINALLY gave a shot. She grabbed a hold of me and said, "I trust you mom." I promised her we would have her hair and make up beautiful but... she was already beautiful.
Tricks on me when it came to thinking she had perfect self image. What was I thinking? We all struggle with this at one time time or another. We bought two dresses for her to choose from. I continued to tell her that she needed to feel confident in the dress. Forget what anyone else would be wearing. It is HER night to shine and to have so much fun remembering her very first homecoming. I want her to glow and feel like she is worth a million bucks.
I had to stop and think about how I hold myself to Maddie. She is watching it whether she realizes it or not. She trusts me enough to help her with her dress. She even frequents my closet on a regular basis. I must remember to watch what I say about myself and accept compliments from Justin or anyone else (this is hard for me).
My Repurpose for the Day : Have patience, understanding, and acceptance with myself and Maddie.
For those of you who know me, you know I LOVE Halloween and the entire month of October. I love the smells, pumpkins, decorations, weather change, and of course my birthday. For several years now I have done the 31 days of Halloween. It seemed so easy when the kids were little. We played bowling with small pumpkins, we did yarn projects, we made a scarecrow, and so much more. Now that they are 14 and 12, the "mom ideas" are not that popular anymore. I have mourned over the fact that those sweet, innocent days are gone. Then, I realized that if I keep mourning over those days I am going to miss the ones in front of me. So....I am going to continue the 31 days, they just might look a little different.
Yesterday I raced home after work and piano lessons to ground the meat and make spaghetti sauce. Macaiden had a football game at 6pm so I knew I had to be quick. The first day of Halloween was going to be spaghetti with snake breadsticks. I had a few minutes to spare so I decided to make pumpkin bread for day 2 of October. I make mine in the crock pot (best recipe ever...see below for recipe). I was so proud to have done all of that and make it to Macaiden's game on time!
This morning Justin had to take Maddie to basketball practice. She had to be there at 5:50am. I was still upstairs getting ready when I looked at a text message I received from Justin. It said, "something is wrong with the pumpkin bread." I continued to get ready and began to think he was either wrong or did I leave something out?! YUP! As I began to walk down the stairs I realized I left out the baking soda! I walked in the kitchen and yelled "haha You've been tricked!" Halloween is all about trick or treats right?! Justin, knowing I had clearly messed up just went on with it.
I ended up with my normal breakfast, 1/2 an English muffin with peanut butter, but I did eat it on my Halloween plate! I will be making a new batch of pumpkin bread tonight when I get home. I was also going to find another thing to make up for my mistake of day 2 of October but realized I had already fulfilled it....tricking. :)
With our crazy schedules between sports, chorus, and the thousand jobs that Justin and I have... time is too short to worry about getting everything perfect. So what? I messed up! But! I am trying to learn to turn my silly mistakes (the ones that are so pointless and a waste of time getting upset over) into life lessons for my kids. It is okay! I LOVE that I messed up the pumpkin break. Don't get me wrong, I am a little upset about the money that I just wasted because I had to throw it all away, But, I was able to show my kids it is okay! I can start all over again.
My Repurpose for the day : Not everything turns out as good as what I see on Pinterest. Remember the way I react to a situation can possibly be modeled by my own two kids.
Yesterday was the beginning of Lent. Many people use this as a time to reflect, give something up, and repent. I am using this time as a period of reflection and repentance, but instead of giving something up I am giving. As I mentioned before, we are a very busy family and with time flying by I am giving more of my time to my kids and things that really matter most to me. You say that this doesn't sound like something that is truly lent? This is a big deal for me. With me and my husband both being teachers, having a side business, giving piano and guitar lessons, and being a travel agent to pay our bills, this is very big. I am giving my time to my kids and more time to God. I guess you could say I am giving up something else I would be working on and giving that time to something else.
Last night after coming home from our Ash Wednesday service, my son asked if we could all stay upstairs since candles had to be made, he had to work on a project on the computer (which is upstairs), and all he wanted was for Maddie and myself to be up there too. We did. We ended up in my bed together watching a basketball game. You think this is normal for kids to be in bed every once and with with their mom and dad...well, my two kids are 14 and 11. The fact that my son wanted us to be together was a big deal. It was an even bigger deal that my daughter agreed to it. So...I decided no more work for the night. My job was to be there. Be with my family.
Again, this might seem strange to everyone or you may be thinking we work too much and should have done this a long time ago. We have always made a point to put our kids first, ALWAYS. With the way things have gone for the past couple of years, it has been hard to stop. It has been hard to stop and just be. So, yesterday was a time of being together in our bed watching a basketball game. Tonight, we are going to dinner and Maddie and I are going to a concert. I might be dragging tomorrow at work, but I know this is important to her. I am going to make the most of this time with my girl.
My Repurpose for today : Stop and be there again. :)
It has been a long, two years since I have blogged about anything. I am going to be as open and honest as I can, however, so much has happened, it will probably take some blogging therapy to even get it off of my chest.
The summer of 2016 my world came crashing down when my parents got divorced. They say divorce is hard on young kids. They are trying to figure out where they fit in now that their world is turned around. I will never argue with that statement. However, having 31 years of memories (at that time), thinking "were they all fake?", left me in a time of depression. My mom moved in with my sister and my dad moved in with me and my family. Having two children asking questions was another very difficult part of the equation. Not only could they not understand any of it, I had to do my very best job to still be "normal."
During this same time period, my husband's mother was going through a very difficult stage of substance abuse. I thought our entire world was crashing down before my eyes.
I still have many questions and still wonder about a lot. When I think back on everything, my two kids pushed me through. Whether they know it or not...they give me a strength I only gained when I became a mama.
Realizing I have our Maddie only 5 more years til she goes to college, I had a change of occupation this year. My goal is to really be there for them more. We have made a pledge to get off of electronics beginning at dinner until bedtime. We take walks, play games, even pull up our favorite songs and make ourselves look ridiculous singing and dancing to them (it is awesome to pull up "old" songs and have your children look at you like you are crazy!!).
Bare with me as I begin to journey back into this world of blogging. I am super excited and nervous at the same time.
My Repurpose for Today : BE THERE.
As a Repurposed Mom it has always been my goal to make sure my kids know that they are my purpose in life. The good times, the hard times, the sad times, the learning times, and the memorable times are all times that are important. A couple years ago my husband and I started a at home business repurposing items. We decided to name it after our kids...Macmaddies.
The whole idea of this business was to be able to spend more time with our children. Although we are not there yet we have done a lot of praying, wishing, and hoping to expand the business to make our dream come true... maybe one day. From furniture to candles it has been so much fun creating.
I am saying all of this because the situation our world is in has saddened me greatly. I am a mom trying to keep my kids safe and I know that innocence is something that will not last forever...it has been broken a little in our home.
This week any Freedom candle that is purchased a dollar will be donated to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund. On top of that any other purchase 10% will also be donated. Lets light a candle and remember each officer that is in the line of duty to protect us each and every day. Please visit us at
My Repurpose for Today : to remember "a hero is someone who has given his or her life to something bigger than oneself." - Joseph Campbell
I remember my mom waking me up at what I thought was midnight, but was probably more like 8:30pm or 9:00pm at night to see my first firework show. I was living in Ohio. I was little and thought I was cool as anything to get to be awaken to watch my very first firework show with a bunch of grownups.
For the past several years we have done something opposite than what I was brought up doing. My kids' dad LOVES to set off his own firework show...and it is awesome. Don't get me wrong...I sit in the corner with my kids trying not to show fear but it is what he loves to do. (and he would never put any danger to our kids)
I couldn't help to think of certain things tonight. Traditions. My traditions were to go see fireworks, we would spend time with our church or... would be busy figuring out what needed to be done before the night ended. I always thought my "old" traditions needed to be made with my family or what was done in the past....I am so wrong.
Many of you might be reading this thinking, "what is wrong with keeping up with your past traditions?!" There is nothing wrong with past traditions....however, as we grow and experience life....we are able to learn and create our own traditions based on "our past experiences."
History repeats itself. Is that not a little bit about what the 4th of July is all about? Traditions? Freedom? Independence?
History repeats itself. With my past experiences in life....I have things I will repeat but I have things that I will recreate or.... change to create my own experiences. My memories will be ones that I can never erase nor will never be able to get back. My memories with my kids will be ones that will be remembered and created based on MY OWN PAST EXPERIENCES....I have learned and will not let some of my past experiences repeat themselves.
Just like America has it's ups and downs....every family has its own. I will one day look back on this post and read it and think YOU HAVE GOTTEN THROUGH IT! Just like America got through it (okay...maybe not the exact same)....but....I will not let history repeat itself in what I am thinking.
My Repurpose for Today is....if this has helped anyone....know that the 4th of July is INCREDIBLE...BUT...YOU CAN BE THE ONE FOR HISTORY TO NOT REPEAT ITSELF.
Summer is here. School is out. The kids....they get bored very easily. I have made plans for them for the next three weeks, however, kids being bored isn't a bad thing. They are always on the go. They always have a set schedule. I have made a point for them to "be bored." Little do they know that with their boredness, the imagination will ignite. I want their brains to rest from electronics and to think of something to do!
I have had each of them set a summer "bucket list." I LOVED watching their faces as they think of new ideas. Here is a small list of my two kids things to do this summer. I can't wait to do them either!
Make a fort the size of a room.
Go to the local water park to overcome a fear.
Design my own lamp and have dad help me put it together.
Have breakfast for three meals in one day.
A family camp out downstairs all night!
Have a girls vs boys nerf war.
Play hide the kids....girls against boys.
Mom, dad, Maddie, and Macaiden spray each other with a hose.
PJ party with pizza and mom and dad.
Game and food night.
I am making this public so I hold myself accountable. A lot of times I say I am going to do something then life happens and we never get to it. I want my kids to know that we do not have to go on a trip in order to have fun (don't get me wrong, trips are awesome). With love, imagination, and being together we can have so much fun and make memories that will last.
My Repurpose for Today : Remember that my kids have great ideas! Make the time to make them happen!
A day without my kids let me wake up later.
A day without my kids led me to pack two fewer lunches.
A day without my kids led me to extra time with no homework help.
A day without my kids led me time without stopping arguments.
A day without my kids led me to a full day of work without taking time off.
A day without my kids made me take over their chores.
A day without my kids leads me to questions I have to answer on my own...without their childlike faith.
A day without my kids leads me to feeding our dogs.
My two kids are spending a week with my parents. I KNOW that they are in amazing hands. They are having the time of their lives! However, when life gets a little crazy (especially during the school year), this is a reminder to me that a day without my kids is...another day.
Okay, before you judge me....Another day means...another day in their life and mine. My perspective is so different than theirs. A day without them doing their chores or a day without them asking for homework help is another day when I don't get a "thank you for your help mama," or "goodnight mama, I love you."
One of the hardest things that is yet to come is the day that I have to face all of these things on a permanent basis. I know that they will no longer need my help with homework. I know that they will leave and I will need to feed the dogs. I know that four lunches will turn into two.... forever. I know that the "stopping of arguments" will turn into advice needed. I know that the extra hours of sleep I will get will turn into prayers... that... they are okay wherever God leads them in the world.
This week my kids are with their grandparents. They are okay.
This week in years....are too soon.... and my kids are leading their own life and I pray to our God that with their dad's and my help, we will guide them to...
pack their own lunches, feed their dogs, wake up earlier to begin their day, knowing arguments are minute, and knowing that every minute counts.
My Repurpose for Today : when I get my kids back...don't get mad if they forget to feed the dogs.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XzCtatDyVRc (love the background music it is a good one for my two) :)
Maddie and Macaiden, it is the end of another school year...your 5th and 3rd year grade has come and gone faster than any year yet. This was the first year that daddy and I were not at the same school with you. We dropped you off in love, in hope, and yes...a little fear.
This past year not being at the same school as you (for those of you reading...Justin and I have been teachers for the past 10 years and have had the joy of having our two babies with us every day), led me to tears, led me to worry, and led me to a sense of pride and joy.
Maddie, as I sit here tonight, YOU are about to go to Middle School. How on earth has this happened so fast? I remember being in church when you were a month old. Strangers would come up to me and say, "cherish these times, they go by so fast." I didn't realize it at the time....they flew by...maybe not to you, but they did to me my sweet girl. I watch you. I watch you when you have questions. I watch you when you see something that is unfamiliar. I watch you with your daddy. I watch you when you want to please. I watch you with your new friends. Please, please remember the narrow road. It is so hard. I am here! I am here to tell you that I have chosen the wide road many times, it was easy, it was what everyone else did. I am still tempted, whether you realize it or not right now...the wide road looks very enticing at times and on more than one occasion...I would rather choose it...the wide road. Maddie, choose the narrow one. Choose the road that might be hard but in the end makes you happy. Do not listen to everyone else but your own heart. More than anything, follow God. Follow God when it is hard. Follow God when no one else does. Follow God when you are in doubt and when you have no one to turn to. Explore. Make your dreams come true. Keep your worries small...know that your book is not finished. You are my Godsend Madelynn Renee Weise. God will use you. Catch the ball Maddie and don't drop it. Write your story.
Macaiden, you are finishing third grade. I just got finished with a Mother's Day ceremony with you at school. I don't know where to begin. You have asked me...."if Morgan would have been born, would you have been alive?" I truly believe God brought you into our lives for a purpose. Morgan is in Heaven and God wants you here. God knew what He was doing when He placed you in my belly. Macaiden, I look up to you. Remember, when I have questions or when I don't understand what you are asking, it is not because I do not want to know...it is because I want to...so badly...I...want to know what it is you are asking. I want to get into your brain... and I want to understand on some level what you are thinking. You have brought me to understand an understanding of "what is" more than I have ever known. Things are "easy" for you. However, you are not showing off. It still bothers you. You want me, you want daddy, and Maddie to understand what you are thinking. I treasure this about you. Catch the ball Macaiden and don't drop it. Write your story.
My Repurpose for today : remember the rest for you...for both of you... is still unwritten.
Dear owners of my grandparent's house,
I do not know you, but I know that the house you are living in is one that is full of memories. The house that you are living in was once filled with a yard full of tulips. The house that you are living in was filled with smells of eggs, bacon, and toast smothered in apricot jam. The house that you are living in had a small TV room where me and my sister would play Barrel of Monkeys and my grandparents would sit and watch us while eating peanuts out of a jar. Please, please take care of memories. Take care of the house that my daddy grew up in and that me and my sister created new memories that I will cherish forever. Do you know that you have a responsibility? You have a responsibility to take care of something that technically is not yours. It belongs to a long line of memories. It belongs to a family who cherishes it. It belongs to something more valuable than you and me. From the moment you chose it until the moment the time is to depart, you are held accountable to a masterpiece that someone built from wood. Don't let it rot. Don't forsake it. It is precious to me and I pray it is more precious to you.
Dear owners of Colby, my family dog which we had to leave,
I think of you often. I have two new dogs now. But...I am in constant thought of my dog...my dog Colby. I remember saying goodbye to him. I held him in a fountain of tears saying goodbye. He had no idea why I was crying but he stood there and he let me hold him. He always knew when something was wrong. He would find my Pappy, who had Alzheimer's, when he left the house. He would play mom's silly game of "putting his toys away in the basket." Did he succeed? Rarely, but mom was super proud when he did. Do you know that you have a responsibility? You have a responsibility to take care of something that technically is not yours. He belongs to a long line of memories. He belongs to a family who cherishes him. He belongs to something more valuable than you and me. From the moment you chose him until the moment the time is to depart, you are held accountable to a masterpiece that someone built from nothing. Don't let it rot. Don't forsake him. He is precious to me and I pray he is more precious to you.
Dear Husband of Maddie and Wife of Macaiden,
Today is Mother's Day, 2016. One day you will know what it is like to have babies. You will one day know and understand the sacrifices, the sweat, the worries, and the hope that you have in your children. You will understand that when your kids hurt... you hurt more. You will know that when someone brags about your child... you have a sense of pride. You will understand that everything that you do... it is for them. YOU HAVE A RESPONSIBILITY. Do YOU know that YOU have a responsibility? You have a responsibility to take care of something that technically is not yours. It belongs to a long line of memories. It belongs to a family who cherishes them. They belong to something more valuable than you and me. From the moment you chose them until the moment the time is to depart, you are held accountable to a masterpiece that GOD built from me and their daddy. Don't let them rot. Don't forsake them. They are precious to me and I pray they are more precious to you.
Love and with complete sincerity,
Chelsea, grand-daughter, dog-owner, and the mom of the two greatest kids ever.
I don't know about you... but, I try to instill into both of my children values and morals. I try to teach them about responsibility, integrity, courtesy, our Lord, and so much more. For some reason the things that seem most important to me seem to be "the biggest" lesson in our home. I am one of the biggest OCD people that I have ever met. You would never know this about me unless you really "know" me...yes, I am pretty sure this is the biggest thing that Justin does not admire about me. I want tidy. I want neat. I want cleanliness. I want things IN ORDER.
I have laid out charts. I have shown both kids how I want things done. I have modeled. I have yelled. I want things done a certain way. This is a weakness....if you look at it a certain way I guess. In my opinion, why wouldn't you want a clean house? :)
Okay...so I want things clean. This comes out more at home than any place. I try so hard to exhibit these qualities in my children by demonstrating....
Lately...I have been proven wrong. I mean way wrong.
Another weak quality I have (if you want to look at it that way...for now anyway) is frugality. I do not like lights on just to have lights on. When we leave to go out for the day, the thermostat better be set to a certain temperature. I am one that has multiple apps on my phone for coupons and schedule my grocery shopping around coupons and deals. I have never vocalized any of this to my children...or so I think.
The other day, my youngest asked me if something was too expensive. He didn't want to go out to eat because he was worried about the bill. My oldest.... just two days ago, did not want to purchase a $12 shirt because it was not on sale. Now...let me just say...deep down....way to go! They are learning how to save! They are learning how to be frugal shoppers. But...
I HAVE NEVER shown them when we were worried about paying a bill. I have never shown them me being worried about the electric bill. OR SO I THOUGHT.
I need to tell you...all of you moms out there. I am sure a lot of you are figuring this out. OUR KIDS LISTEN....they know a lot more than we think they do.
Our kids listen to us! They know our body signals. They know when we are stressed. They listen when we think they are playing their Wii, PSP, Nintendo, or board game. Our kids are listening.
My kids have heard me. They know that saving money or spending money is a big thing to me....WHAT!? All I wanted was for them to pick up their clothes for their OCD mom.
We as moms have a lot on our plates. AND... our little ones...or now that my oldest is almost in middle school...want OUR approval. They want to know that what they are doing is what we want...even if it is subtle. They want our attention!! They are listening!
My Repurpose for Today : My Repurpose for today is to tell all of you moms (including myself)....our kids know more than what we give them credit for. They are listening.....MY repurpose is to make sure my words and actions show that what I am saying is worth having "little ears" listen to.
Pallets are by far not the most attractive things. They are used to deliver goods then tossed aside, dropped, abused, and forgotten about. Pallets represent one of the lowest cost considerations in the product life cycle of distribution. However, they improve efficiency in delivery in the supply world. After researching a little about pallets (sound boring?), I found that the quality of a pallet is very important. The type of pallet can determine safety, product quality and even cost. They come in many different shapes and sizes and choosing the right one can be very critical in the manufacturing world.
People everywhere are taking these pieces of wood and not only using them to help transport supplies, but are turning them into their own creations. You have seen it, there are thousands of posts on Pinterest on what to do with pallet wood.
We got sucked into this as well.
A couple of years ago, Justin and I decided it was time for a new hobby. We thought we would take a whack at creating something new from objects that are old or no longer wanted. We also decided we would begin utilizing the "ugly" pallet and try something new with it.
It started with my sister's front door to a house they were restoring. They were installing a new door and getting rid of their old one. I immediately asked them if we could have it. Now, that door is my dining room table.
With the school that Justin and I worked at shutting down last year, starting new careers, kids at a new school...life is very different than what we are used to. Going through things in life makes you stronger right? As awful as some things can be, I am here to tell you that they do get better. Having working part time now I have been able to spend more time with my two kids, and focus on what I love...MacMaddies.
Today we launch our very own website. From all of those pallets and old items we have had an etsy store for a little while now. Today...we are www.macmaddies.com !!!!!!!
I tell you all of this because we are taking a leap of faith. We are trusting God to bless us and to even guide us as we take on this new journey. I think of a pallet as a way or walk of life. We all start out as, well, just us. Maybe not as unattractive as a pallet, but we are here. We have a purpose. We were not made to be tossed aside or forgotten about, but, we come in different sizes and shapes, and yet we are all very critical in our everyday world. We can be built emotionally, physically, and spiritually to do great things and become great people. As insignificant a pallet might be to some, it is a work of art to others.
My Repurpose for today : My pallet will be carved to determine the quality of how I live life.
On the way to school today you asked me and daddy a question...."which would you rather do, go back to the past or travel to your future?"
My first thought was, "Wow! What a question coming out of such a young person's mouth? How on earth am I going to answer this one?"
(Being a parent...we all know...we answer hundreds of questions per day...mostly ones that ask the question..."why?")
I have to tell you sweet things....after you automatically answered your own question by informing me you would rather go to the future to see what will happen, my heart sank just a little. You see, I once thought that. I once thought..."who will I marry? what will my kids look like? to be completely honest...what will sex feel like?" I couldn't wait for my future!
My answer is different today. This morning I told you...I would rather go back to the past. You asked me why. Why? Why...because I have done things that I regret so so much. I have seen things and done things that I wish I could have changed. I wish I could have made different decisions. However....my sweet, little, wise ones before your years....IF I were to go back and change all of those things...there could be a huge chance that I may or may not have you. And if that were the outcome of me changing the past...well...I would choose to just live in the present.
I say all of this to you because that is what I want you to do. I want you to not reflect on your past. I want you to know that your past can help shape who you are today. You will be better. You will learn. You will overcome and be strong.
But, please, please do not wish for the future. I have found when wishing for future, you will miss out on the present... and.... the present eventually turns into the past. I just got finished telling you not to live in the past. The past brings tears. The past brings happiness. The past brings "I wish I had enjoyed the moment!" Enjoy the moment my sweet one.
You deserve the world and only you can control what your past, future, and present will hold. Live in the present...because IT WILL determine what you past and future will become.
My Repurpose for today : To remind you to live in the present by living in it myself.
Webster's Dictionary defines the word repurpose as : to change (something) so it can be used for a different purpose.
So...5 years ago one of my daughter's friends, Victoria, had the unexpected happen to her. It happened to a sweet, innocent child. It impacted her life and the life of her two amazing parents. I asked Victoria's mom if she would share a little bit about their experience...
"I was asked to share a story with you concerning something many of my friends didn’t even know. I won the lottery 5 years ago. I had been playing it every day since 2004 when my daughter ,Victoria, was born so my odds at this point were pretty decent. ..1 in 226. What or how much did I win you may ask?...My daughter was diagnosed with brain cancer.
You see, not all lotteries are good to win. I never even knew I was playing it honestly, until the dreaded announcement. No signs or symptoms. Just a single event and my world as I knew it changed overnight. I have several facebook friends who have won the lottery too. They didn’t wish to play it either.
Are you playing the lottery? Do you have children? If so then yes, you too could possibly be the next winner but I so truly pray you do not. In fact, I hope to see the day when no other family ever has to accept the winning golden ticket. If I did win the real billion dollar lottery, I would give it all up just to have my daughter not to have had to go through all she has.
Each day 43 children draw the ticket and childhood cancer remains the leading cause of death by disease among children in the United States. The cure rate (of only 5 years) is 80% which means if a child gets cancer at 5, they are considered cured at 10years. If they relapse after that, it is still considered a cure. Many of the drugs and treatments go on to cause lifelong health issues like cataracts, growth issues, hormones issues, and …..even other NEW KINDS OF CANCER! Yeah for the “cure” right?
Winning this lottery has taught me what things in life really do matter. It is not what car one drives, or what one does for a living. It is not how one looks or ages. It is not anything material or tangible. What matters in life is what we do with each day we have. Many times I have thought, “Lord, you could have given Victoria to any other parent at any other time, yet you chose me. You don’t make mistakes and you knew before ever creating her the path we would take. “ As much as I love my daughter, He loves her even more, just as He love us. Raising her to know the love of the Lord and show that love daily to others is what matters.
I don’t know what tomorrow may bring. I know other families will win a game they never knew they even played. I know the path has been hard but I am a better person because of Victoria. She is my hero. September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month….Go Gold to increase awareness and show support to those who won this lottery."
Victoria is a repurpose. She changed. She changed several times. She changed physically and she changed spiritually. She changed to be used as a different purpose. Whether that purpose was to make people like me hold my kids even closer, whether it was to be an example to others, or whether it was for God to use her in an amazing way...she changed to be used for a different purpose.
I wish that this sweet child could have been changed a different way, but God has reasons that we do not know. She is an example to so many and is an amazing witness.
September is childhood cancer awareness month. Victoria is a miracle. There can be so many other miracles as well. Justin and I want to take this opportunity to help raise awareness for childhood cancer. If you have a loved one who has or is experiencing childhood cancer, or... just want to help make another miracle happen please click on the hyperlink above in the pictures or go donate on the childhood cancer site.
Have a childhood cancer story to share? Please share in the comments below. Prayers will be lifted your way.
My Repurpose for today: To remember the definition of "repurpose."
Four nights ago I was chased by someone who maybe was on drugs. Maybe he was crazy. Maybe he was going for a run himself. When it is all said and done...he was chasing me...and...I was scared.
I went for my normal run. I saw a man walking. Within 30 second of seeing him, he began to run. He began to run behind me. He began to pick up speed when I did. He followed me until some stranger picked me up on the side of the road. A stranger picked me up. She asked me if I was okay. She gave me a ride home.
Okay...this sounds crazy. This sounds like something from a movie, but... I am lucky. I just want to make one thing clear. I have no idea whatsoever what this guy's motive was but I am so grateful that on this evening...I wasn't it...or so I think.
I run on a regular basis in a neighborhood in downtown Jacksonville, FL that I absolutely LOVE. I love the people. I love the dedication that people have for our neighborhood. I love the houses. I LOVE that people look out for each other.
Justin and I are busy. Again, don't get me wrong...I know we are all busy. We have two kids. We both have jobs. We are the all American family who is trying to be...well...the "All American Family." I juggle exercise with cooking, homework, dusting, changing sheets, vacuuming, and well...you get it. I want to be more involved with our neighborhood...but...again, I am busy. I say this because most of the people in my neighborhood do not know me....because of our busy lives. Sad, but true.
I need to tell you all something. People that do not have hope in mankind...listen up. Four nights ago I was chased by a man while I was running to the point that it brought me to tears. In the end, we called the police.
MY neighborhood came together. People who I have NEVER met came together to find the man who chased me...ME. I was notified with pictures (after the fact), people on the hunt, by car, by foot, searching for this man. People who have I never met found the man!
I just want to say that I have found hope in people. Again...don't get me wrong...I will always be cautious. My husband has now made a rule that I only run with Pepper Spray. I also need to give major credit for my dear friend Sharon for running with me tonight. But....people....with all of the wrong in the world... in the last 4 days... I have found some hope. I have found some hope... that people care.
Just know that with everything that is going on...I... I hope that you...you can find that people close to you...or like me...maybe not so close to you....will be music to your ears. Find hope that music can spread. People can make a difference. I have witnessed it first hand.
My Repurpose for Today : Be the music to someone else's ears.
Today: I woke up and stayed home with my baby girl who has a horrible toe injury.
Today: I witnessed the power of childhood cancer to the point of tears and felt guilty crying so much because I have been blessed with healthy children.
Today: My husband went through old memories left to him...and shed some tears.
Today: My husband found a paper written by his father that was graded by an amazing educator who was recently murdered.
Today: I was chased by a man who I have no idea what his intentions were.
Today: I was rescued my an angel who picked me up from my run who took me home to my family.
Today. Right now I am reflecting and holding others close.
Today: I can't finish the whole blog.
Today, My Repurpose for TODAY : Remember I have TODAY.
Okay all you moms....yesterday....I did what every mother dreads....I had "the talk." I had "the talk" with my almost 5th grader. I don't know about you...but things are happening a lot faster nowadays than when I was a kid....kids these days know waaay more than I did at that age and I am fed up with it. I am fed up because... I need my daughter to hear the actual facts from her mother!
If you have read my blog, you know a little bit about my past. I know that every mama dreads "the talk" conversation but I was reeeallly dreading it. Before we began I opened up in a word of prayer. I wanted, no, I neeeeded God to help me get through with what I was going to say to my baby girl. I also wanted her to know that God was and is involved with everything...including sex.
After asking her what she already knew...yes....she had heard "the word" before (as well as other things), she was way off. But...that was okay. I was ready. I had my book, I had my Bible, I had MY baby girl. With her head under the pillow multiple times, her face getting extremely red, and her repeatedly asking me..."you are telling me, people enjoy doing that?" I was ready.
I went through it all. I talked to her about sex. I talked to her about STD's. I talked to her about rape. I talked to her about...well pretty much everything. Again, I wanted her to hear it from me. After asking her if she had any questions...she of course said no....and wanted to end it all right then and there....I told her I needed to tell her one more thing.
I explained to Maddie that sex is a gift from God and is a wonderful thing. But as my eyes swelled and tears began to fall I had to tell my sweet, innocent child, that she was early. She was not a mistake, she was early. I told her that daddy and I had sex before marriage and I became pregnant.
Before I go on...please understand that I am not judging or casting any type of stereotype on anyone. I know the world is different than it was 100 years ago. I know the world is different than it was 50, 20, or even 10 years ago, however, I still have strong beliefs and I needed to tell her what happened before she figured it out on her own (and maybe bottled it up inside) or her friends figured it out for her and was... maybe... made fun of.
I needed her to know that she is a gift from God. She is my little, hero baby and... saved her daddy and I from making mistakes we would have probably regretted.
As she sat silently, and her red, silly, smiley face diminished, I had to ask for her forgiveness. I expressed to her that she was something that was not a mistake but a miracle and gift from the Lord. Maddie is my angel.
After an hour talk, we hugged, I gave her a kiss, and what I thought would be a normal rest of the day...well...was not. She was quiet. She was not herself.
She WILL know that she is loved and... thank goodness...today was better. She was thrown a lot of information. Again...I needed her and wanted her to hear it from me.
My Repurpose for today : To let Maddie know she IS a purpose.
I bought a Groupon. Today, after trying to redeem it, I was told "only new customers may use them." What? Are you kidding? Then, after what I'm sure to them seemed a look of hate from myself, they asked me..."didn't you read the fine print?" Fine print? Fine print?!!!
Why is "fine print" so dinky?! Why is fine print always at the bottom of the page?! Why is fine print...at least to me...so hidden?!
As I really began to think about this, I began to think of life, a life I do not want to live and learning how to overcome..............For the past....well, let me just say a while...I feel like I have been living the "fine print" life. I have had a job that needs to be done, I do it, but have this part of me that is small, left at the bottom of the page, and is hidden. I have portrayed a happy, and if you ask me, a job well done life, however, I have had a hidden part that has secretly yelled, "one more time and I will explode!" "Only... only if I can get help!" "Does anyone see that I also have a life and two children that need me?" "I'll say yes... if... you let me get to the doctor for blood pressure medicine."
The "fine print" of me... for the last....a good while...has had an impact on my life. The Groupon that I cannot use is non refundable because I didn't read the "fine print."
People have not read my "fine print." Why? It was not read.. the same reason I did not read the bottom of the Groupon. It has been small, at the bottom, and hidden. It has been unhealthy, heavy burdened, and tiresome. I am through.
So why? I'll tell you why. IF I had read the fine print....I would probably not have done it. I would not have purchased that Groupon. IF people had read MY "fine print" would I have been chosen?
I am no longer going to have "fine print." I want to be BOLD. Put it out there right underneath the title. There is no "fine print" left, because, it weighed the paper down....hearts were hurt... lives were changed.
Let me set this straight....I have learned my lesson....I will always read the "fine print..." I cannot get rid of this trait that companies use...deceitfulness is something that cannot be overcome and will sadly, be forever present....we need to be mindful of this and not ignore it. But....I will not let myself become a victim of this. I do not want myself or more importantly, my children to be living in the "fine print."
My Repurpose for Today : "My fine print will only be small if it's not worth reading."
(listen as you read...click below)
So...I am watching the SAG Awards. Why do we watch movies? Why do we "escape" our every day lives and watch a movie? Do we watch to laugh, do we watch to cry, do we watch to scream, do we watch to relate? Why do we watch movies?!! I would like to say we watch movies to "escape" from our every day, busy, hectic, lives. We have our normal routine.... why not sit and watch a comedy? A drama? A romance? A horror film?
As I am sitting on my couch watching THE most famous actors and actresses in the business I cannot help but to stop and think that they are merely actors! They are acting out the lives that we live. They are making themselves become a character who loves, a character who kills, a character who scares, a character that dies, and many times a character that actually exists or one time did exist. They have become the masquerade of our lives.
We live, we scare, we make others cry, we cheat, we love, we act. WE ACT. These famous "actors" are merely acting. We watch them. Many times we want to become them....but yet, we are, many times we are what we are watching. Don't get me wrong... there are the movies where we actually do escape with the films that are animated or even the ones that make us laugh because we think... "that would never be us..." but many movies that are created are movies that are based on the human being.
Why is the human masquerade something that is enjoyed acted out by others or better yet, acted and watched by US? We hide, we put up our masks (don't get me wrong...I am 1000% guilty)....Maybe, just maybe it is because we can't be our own hero. Maybe we need a hero. Maybe we need to escape and see what will happen in another's perspective. Maybe we need to be inspired. Maybe we are just longing for a hero. We are weak. I can admit it. I want to be a hero, however, I need help. I need the chance. Maybe, just maybe by watching movies, watching fantasies, watching "true stories" we can aspire to be something greater.
Have you ever thought that our roles might be hard for others to play? Some lives that are lived and characters that are created are difficult to play or act.
I am challenging you, I am challenging myself that MY character will be a role that will not be difficult to play. Maybe the hero that I need to be is the one that I am fighting. Maybe the hero I need to be is one that no one else can be. Maybe my hero can be myself. Just maybe my thoughts, my desires, and dreams will make me a hero. I need a hero. I need to be MY hero. I do not need to be YOUR hero. I do not need to be anyone's hero except... my own.
My Repurpose for Today : "To remember the only hero that will fulfill my longing is....myself."
A book by it's cover? Isn't that how we choose a book when we are picking it off of a bookshelf?
Whatever....people always say "don't judge a book by it's cover," basically....referring to us. WHATEVER. If you have actually overcome that ..... congrats to you.
I would sadly say....we are judgmental. We judge the way people look, we judge the way people dress, we even judge the way people eat. Judge a "book"by it's cover? How dare us!?
Let me start off saying...I am guilty. I have judged and I do judge. But.....with that said....I promise you, the moment I begin speaking or judging, my brain stops me and begins to think about what that person might actually be going through. I have no idea. I have no idea what THEIR story is all about.
I am a book. YOU are a book. YOU and I are writing our own story. As I went through grade school, middle school, high school, and college, I was taught to write an introduction, a body, and then your conclusion. I am 30 years old and honestly, I think I can now begin to write my introduction. This might seem crazy to many of you. I have a story of the past. I have a GREAT story of the past. I have the best childhood memories, I have regrets in areas in which I can learn A LOT, and... I have many memories that need to be written down, but......I have another story.
It is still January. I made a goal to myself to be happy. I made a goal to myself to think about my family.
I AM WRITING MY OWN BOOK. I AM WRITING MY OWN STORY.
My past is my past....which I am truly grateful for....however, my future is my future....which I can change and become whatever I want it to become! I cannot change my past. I can learn from it, but cannot change it. My new story begins now! Even tho the new year is going very fast... very, very fast, I am still in control of my story. I am still in control of my life. I am still in control of MY STORY.
If you are scared, if you are timid, or you are tired, you can, I can, live my (your) life. I was reminded today that we have one life to live. This might seem like something that is said over and over again, but have you actually thought about it? Have you thought about the last 5 years of your life? Are you proud? If yes....GREAT! Continue on the path of greatness! Continue making your story amazing! If not....think. What will the cover of your book look like? What is your introduction? What is your body? How will your conclusion end? Although we may not know our conclusion... we never know what life will bring us, but maybe, just maybe, you can say, you gave it your all. Maybe (again, I do not know what will happen), maybe you can say "I did everything to make me happy. I did everything to make this world a better place."
My Repurpose for Today : "Remember that my book cover is, right now, blank. I will remember, I am not boring, I am NOT finished, my cover IS blank, my cover IS developing, and my cover...will be GREAT."
It's January 2nd people!!! So....hopefully most of you are still sticking to the "new you...." The number 2 is a great number. Think about all of the things that get second chances...and or... come in second place :
I would absolutely take a silver metal
The Vice President is second in command and has a pretty big job
A second date is pretty important...you at least were interested enough to give them another try
The second time you got on your bike from a fall
A second birth from your second child...you obviously were able to give childbirth a second shot
A second chance at a food that you used to hate and now love because you tried it again
Salutatorian is a pretty big accomplishment
A "W" even has the chance to become and "M"
Remember the phrase..."first is the worst, second is the best?"
The number two is a great number. There are so many things that come from doing something all over again or coming in second place.
Here is a picture of the kids giving wrapping paper a 2nd chance by making up a game where they would hide, then jump out of the paper! How simple, but how fun!?
As my weekend approaches and work will again start back up....I am reminding myself to remember second chances are so worth it. I am reminding myself that second chances are all in MY control. If you read all of the second chances or second places listed above....they are all done by people who never gave up. If the ambition or continual goals were quit....well..there would be no second anything. So...heres to being second! Let's keep January 2nd just as important as January 1st. Let's keep the goals we made yesterday last so that we remember that we kept them up on the second....the cool thing is....second chances can come on the 3rd, 4th, and 5th...just don't give up.
My Repurpose for Today : to remember how many things much like wrapping paper can be fun by giving it a second chance.
Today is the first day of the year 2015. This blog is called, "The Repurposed Mom," this is the year to get a "repurpose."
I could not help but to think about the life changes I have had in the last decade. You have read many of them. Now as I am in a new decade of my life and a new calendar year, I am making resolutions. Every year I seem to make the same resolutions...but...like many... either forget about them or never do them. Instead of making resolutions I am making a list of things. I am making a list of things that I want to be remembered for. Now....the things I want to be remembered for are not things that I am very good at. If today was my last day how would the world, my friends, and family portray me? Thinking about how I would want to be remembered, they are all things that I strive to be... but again...not very good at...so here we go!
10. Learn how to say "no." Let me say that I do not want to be remembered for saying no to everything. MY ENTIRE LIFE I have been afraid I was going to hurt someone's feelings if I were to say "no." I have always been afraid for a job if I were to say "no." I have always thought someone else could not do it how I would want it done if I were to say "no." I am praying for help. I must say "no." I need to say that word so my kids know that they are before anything. I need to say that word for my own health. I need to remind myself and "know" that "no" is a good thing.
9. I want to be positive. Sadly, the world we live in thrives on gossip and everyone else's business. I remember the day I found out I was pregnant (before I was married), my parent's received emails, phone calls, voicemails, and so much more from people who they didn't even keep in contact with anymore. There were many that cared. There were many who wanted to see if "the rumors were true." Why? Why do we get a rush out of gossip and people's misery? I want to spread positivity.
8. I want to give. Granted...being two teachers our pockets are not very full. I tell Justin all the time that if we had lots of money, I want to give back to others. Maybe I cannot give with money (as much as I would love to), but maybe I can give with time. I don't mean time with things we do all of the time but other things....help feeding at a homeless shelter, taking the kids to a humane society to help...I don't know, but I need to give to others. I am blessed.
7. Learn to accept things I cannot change. I think this one explains itself. I know I have so many things that will happen in my life that I will be disappointed....they have already happened. However, it will probably do me a lot better if I accepted them in a different way. This doesn't mean that I approve of what is happening, but does mean that the way that I handle it can make a difference in my life.
6. Be proud of my body. Yes...I said it. I am a very insecure person. I always have been. I have done things to myself to make myself "feel better," but in the long run hurt it. I have compared myself to so many other models or even my friends. I am finally starting to understand that feeling better starts with yourself not the way others see you. Confidence is something I lack at but strongly want...I will have confidence.
5. Know and remind myself that my kids and husband are not the same person I am. I am a bit of a perfectionist and like things a certain way. I love sports. I love pretty things. I love music. I love performing. I love love things neat. I know that they do not all share the same things I do...and that is okay. Hey...we would be a boring family if we were all the same. I need to understand that the expectations that I have of them are great...but their expectations of themselves might matter more and might help me put into perspective my expectations.
4. Laugh at my faults. I get so upset sometimes when I do not meet expectations of others (weird I just said that of my family). I need to understand that I am who I am and no one else can do what I can do whether it is great or a little messed up. I have a lot of moments where I say the completely wrong word, have no idea what people are talking about, or make myself look like a complete idiot. Thats okay, because that is who I am and if the people that love me thinks its funny than I need to too.
3. Remember my kids are growing up. I would do ANYTHING for my two kids. They make me breathe. It saddens be beyond anything to seem them grow. It saddens me when they begin to learn about "the everyday life." It breaks my heart when they are hurt, when they experience pain or hardships. I want them to be little forever. They are becoming AMAZING people. I am learning from THEM. They, not knowing it, are teaching me life lessons and I need to accept and I need to let their little wings soar.
2. Be happy. Yes...I am happy. I am happy that I married the man of my dreams. I am happy that I have two healthy children. I am happy for my family who raised me. But....do I come across as a happy person? When something bad, sad, or even unexpected happens, whether it is as little as something as a situation at work or everyday life....maybe I don't really handle it in the best way. Yes....when it is something devastating...I have every right to be unhappy...but when it is something that is an everyday occurrence, maybe my happiness depends on how I react...or....how long I stay in that situation.
1. Think about me. Again, please don't take this wrong. I (as you have already read) think about what so many other people think....maybe this is the year that I think about what I need. I want to be with my kids more. I want to be able to come home without stress and make a meal for my family. I want to not be in a bad mood as soon as I get in the car from a stressful day at work. How can I make me happy? This one might take a little more thinking but I am going to make it a goal.
Well...I have been honest. Not that you need to hear all of my goals, but I decided I really need to write my "resolutions" or "goals" or how I want to be remembered out in the open. Happy New Year to everyone and I pray you have the best 2015.
My Repurpose for Today : To have a "repurpose" in the year 2015.
Please stay forever. Please let me meet Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner, and Blitzen. Will you let me into the North Pole?"
Our Elf on the Shelf's name is Frosty. I have two kids. One who is on the verge of not believing and one who is trying to convince the other that Santa is real. Our youngest wrote this above question in a letter tonight.
We have watched the movie "Miracle on 34th Street." One of my favorite lines is..."If you can't believe, if you can't accept anything on faith, then you're doomed for a life dominated by doubt."
That line really stuck out to me. Why are adults dominated by doubt? Where does the point from childhood from adulthood happen? Why do we all of the sudden doubt?
I have to say, it really makes me think. Every human being has the right to wonder, doubt, dream, create....but where is the line between pure innocence and wonder? Let me explain. Sadly, I think I was one who always wondered...my oldest thinks this way. But...my youngest just seems to know. Why is faith such a complicated thing?
A person who would play devil's advocate would say..."well...if you are doubting...it cannot possibly be real." I would have to rebuke that statement. If I did not have my faith...I honestly do not know what I would hold onto.
So...I am going to preach to the choir here....Why do we doubt? Why do we as adults wonder how we can make our child's life better? Why do we constantly try to figure out what we can do to make our lives better? Why are we always looking for the next best thing? After realizing the truth why do we still tell them lies?......
When did we stop believing? What age were you when you realized that it was impossible for a man with a white beard to travel the world in one night?
Why? We miss it. Why? We want to savor childhood. Why? We want them to have the memories we once had. Why? We remember the scents, the laughs, the moments, and the smiles we all shared.
Its okay. It is okay. I honestly think it is okay for kids to be kids. It is okay for our kids to know that dreams and imagination exist. Dreams can become reality. I am not saying that my kids will make Santa real, but I hope and pray that my kids will realize one day how blessed we are and they will show love, show devotion to others that will have a spark to less fortunate, and know that the man behind the "red suit" can be them.
YOU as a mom or a dad have a HUGE responsibility...again...talking to myself...help me! Help me show my kids that we are blessed. We are grateful and need to give back to others who are less fortunate.
If you are doubting tonight....know this...Santa is real.. He can be real in YOU. Give a smile. Give a meal, give...just give, and let your little ones see it. YOU, YOU are the example to them, not just at Christmas time, year round. Help them. Help their lives not be dominated by doubt.
My Repurpose for Today : Live a life not being dominated by doubt...even if it is...remember childlike faith.
I am an everyday mom who likes everyday things. I love taking everyday items and giving them a repurpose. Our number one seller is our candles!