Take a minute to check out what "tangledeutopia" means!

Thursday, December 31, 2009

If That's A Syndrome, I've Got The Plague

I've decided I'm going to break my goals for 2010 into 4 quarters. I can't seem to fathom having the attention span needed for an overall yearly goal.

All I keep saying to myself as I'm writing is "man, I hope I actually have the guts at the end of this, to publish what I'm writing."

I've never actually done that before. My goals have always been private.

Private because I know the weight of accountability that sits on the shoulders of such a huge step I would be taking. But remember that little post I wrote about Tangled Epiphanies?  The one I had on a road trip recently? The epiphany that gave me chills as I drove down the dark interstate when I realized (in my opinion and round about way) that God intended for us to have on-going mental battles until we understand that is the only way to PROVE and BELIEVE in:

photo courtesy of: vistawallpaper.org

I'll find a way to incorporate reaching the goal of GOING PUBLIC into one of the rewards I give myself throughout the year because well....


90 Days
45 lbs.
4 lbs. per week
I'm going to open a new account and deposit $10 for every pound lost so I can use that as my reward and go shopping for new clothes.

I accidentally found this GREAT website called:

And Fell In Love!

I wanted to highlight some of the Awesomeness David Concocts and YES, I'm totally going to let him know I'm quoting him so he doesn't think I'm stealing his stuff!

Read a couple of things he says, then go check him out!!!

  1. What are you not doing even though you feel you should want it?

  2. Where do you claim to want something but then let fear stop you?

  3. What aren’t you tackling because it’s too much work?

  4. Are you actively engaged or on autopilot?

  5. How many projects do you have on the go at any one time? How good are you at prioritizing them?

  6. Where are you choosing safe over happy?

***When I stepped back to look at my life objectively I realized that if I was to prioritize the things I do the order came out:...... And when things aren't going well, it's usually the fault of whatever's on the bottom of the list.

***When you set a “goal”, your subconscious mind tends to place it into the “someday” category, even if it’s a short-term goal you have every intention of completing. And while you may complete it as a short-term goal, the chances of failure actually go up when you label it as a “goal”… despite the fact that it’s good to have goals.

***You had an idea based on your desire, and you successfully executed it at some point in the future. Same as a goal right? The difference is, your mind is used to following through with plans, but may need much more training to follow through with “goals”, despite the fact that they are basically the same thing.

***How to Create Your “Plan”
Let’s do a quick exercise. All you’ll need is a pen, a piece of paper, and your mind.
 Take one of your big long-term goals that you hope to accomplish “someday” and that’ll be the only thing we label a “goal” for this exercise, and write it down on the top of your paper. Now, the sub-goals, or what would be called the short-term goals leading up to your big goal are going to be labeled “plans”.
 Write down your new short term “plans” and decide when they should be executed, and give an estimated time-frame. Put tentative dates, and make sure to plan on executing some of them very soon, in fact, as soon as you can. If it’s honestly a goal you really want, you won’t want to wait anyway.
 Below is a simplistic example plan to illustrate the exercise I just described. It’s for someone who’s always wanted to start their own online business but has previously put it into the “someday” category in their mind.
 Goal: Start an Online Business
 Action Plans:

  • Find a good resource and gather up the necessary knowledge.

    Date: 11/30/2009 (Today) – Complete by: 12/7/2009

  • Topic/Market Research

    Date: 12/7/2009 – Complete by: 12/14/2009

  • Create the website

    Date: 12/15/2009 – Complete by: 12/21/2009

  • Create the initial content

    Date: 12/22/2009 – Complete by: 2/22/2010

  • Create a marketing plan

    Date: 2/23/2009 – Complete by: 3/1/2010

  • And so on…

  • If you take the above example literally it will obviously have some flaws, but it wasn’t meant to help you start an online business, it’s purpose is to show you how to simply change the “goals” you need to accomplish as soon as possible into plans, so your mind actually queues the actions you need to take, rather than just letting them remain stagnant in the “someday” bin.


Wednesday, December 30, 2009

If You're The Vehicle, Why Does HE Always Have More Gas?

2009 was a roller coaster of a year in our family.
We had 1 cross country road trip,
2 close family members die,
and 3 life changing experiences that brought out the best and worst in us.

2009 was a massive year of growth in our family.
Growth usually comes from (hopefully) hard lessons learned and stumbling along the way.

In order to close 2009 and bring in 2010 with a BANG,

I've been gearing my family by constantly saying the words "January 1st" which insinuates not just new cliche' goals, but true vision, planning, and ofcourse tons of Faith for what God has planned in our lives!

To kick it off right, I've written each family member words that I feel need said before our new endeavor!

As you read, Just Remember:

YOU, as a mom,
 are the most important vehicle to get them moving in 
a more positive direction 
a more negative direction.





I love you.
I love you with every inch of me.
I love you more than I know how to say.

I'm so thankful that we decided to go on this journey together.
I'm so thankful that you've been open to anything I suggest.
I'm so thankful that you try and don't EVER give up.

I wish I could erase your past. I wish I knew the words to help you stop living your today based on your yesterday. I wish I could do that for myself.

I thank you for always reminding them, that we are in this for the long haul.
I thank you for always eventually being able to bring yourself around and see other points of view.

I can't tell you how much I hate when we have breakdowns in communication.
I can't tell you how much it hurts me during those times, that we let things get so out of hand without taking time to slow down in the moment.

I know this is a growing process.
I know that I have to acknowledge more the steps forward, rather than remind you of the steps back.

I hate that it seems those moments are far to easy to remember.
I hate that it seems some steps have gotten stuck.

We can't expect our kids to feel secure enough to allow us to guide them,
when they aren't secure that we are in fact an us. 

It doesn't matter that our grown-up brains understand exactly where we stand. It doesn't matter that we know a disagreement is only that, and not the beginnings of the end of us.
All they know is that it's happened before. Their home has been taken away. Their world torn apart. So our arguements are always a sign of the end in their mind.

We have to do a better job of making our home a safe haven for everyone.
In my opinion, that means it is our job to truly keep revisiting those issues that haven't been able to leave our minds.

You have the same complaints over and over.
You have the same issues with me time and again,
As I have with you.
How can we get past that?

I know where the answers lie.
I know what great strides we have made in joining together in making Christ the center of our home.
I also know how powerful our old ways can be.

I know how hard some of those days were while we journeyed through The Love Dare.
I thank you for talking about it the other day in the store, while we spent the whole day together alone.  It allowed us to be in our true hearts and minds without the stress of the house.

But the reality is, that our reality, IS our home.
It's our children, our laundry, our bills, our schedules and most importantly, our respect for eachother.
And as easy as it is to get caught in all that entails...

We have to have days like we did the other day.

We have to  stop. 
close the door. 
say sorry. 
don't say at all. 
keep our voices low.
remove some vocabulary.
remove some mindsets.
remember the beginning.
plan for the future.
 pray together.
 lean on one another.
give strength when the other has none.

Only then will our children feel secure with us.
Only then will they know what we've Always known.

We will always be an us.

Here's to a GREAT 2010 BABY!


Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Truthful Tuesday: My Kid Is Better Than Your Kid..

Last year, around this time, BFF and I drove through Starbucks (what's new?)
Starbucks Christmas Ornament Clear To Go Cup
and were told once we got to the window that the car ahead of us had paid for our drinks. I had never heard of that before and became overwhelmed with emotion at the thought of random acts of kindness not only still alive, but actually happening to ME!
Random Acts of Kindness Degree: Custom Gag Diploma Doctorate Certificate (Funny Customized Joke Gift - Novelty Item)
Of course, paid for the car behind us, and the barista informed us that the current stint of paying it forward was in its' 4th hour. That made my night as well as made my days brighter for days after.

But that was last year. While I've often thought about that night, I haven't spoken about it this year.

I'm on the tail end of working 12 straight days of a mixed up schedule that has left me beyond tired and tired. I had to write that word twice because I couldn't think of a better word to convey just how much my schedule sucks right now other than jumping through your computer screen and screaming it in your face while choking the sleep out of you......

 Last night I decided to wage war on the demons of all things tired and get the boys dressed to go look at Christmas lights.
Mult Color Changing RBG 100 LED Christmas Light string 2021
Miss Talks-A-Lot was at a slumber party and while I really enjoy spending time with all my babies, I have to admit the level of chaos is so much more DO-ABLE when Runs With Scissors is alone having only to compete with an 18 month old who laughs at every single word he speaks because said 18 month old thinks his older brother hung the moon!

Can I get to the point of my story please???

We're in the drive-thru and Runs With Scissors asks the barista what the total was for the car behind us. It was double the total we had just paid for our own drinks, but I want you to know, that baby pulled $10 out of his little 8 year old pocket, paid the bill, and instructed him to tell them Merry Christmas!
Merry Christmas with Ringing Bells Pin Brooch
I'm not sure I've ever had a prouder moment as a mom! I had no idea he had any concept of paying it forward or any knowledge about that becoming a trend at Starbucks around the holidays!

Baby, I hope you realize how you might have impacted someone's life. You never know who was sitting in that car behind us. You have no idea what was going on in their life. They could have been contemplating suicide all day and you changed their mind simply by showing that random act of Christmas Spirit.
Jingle Joy Christmas Spirit 18" Mylar Balloon
Jesus acted in that very same manner and I want you to know, while it is so much more important that YOU feel proud of you, I am proud of you.

More than words could ever be written in a blog. (That you have never read....)

I Love You My Sweet Babies!

Uh Oh. He's Had An Idea...

Do You See It? He's Scheming And I Caught It On Film

Oh The Love

She Always Gets Him Back

But He Always Comes Back Around

You Are My Sunshine


Sunday, December 20, 2009

Stop By And Feel Free To Bring A Gift To My Pity Party

Here's where my world is at right now:
Learning Resources 12-Inch Inflatable Globe
4 days a week I work midnight to 8am.
Those nights just happen to be the crappiest set of days I could work when it comes to the dynamics of my family. I leave my house at 11pm on Thursday night because the start of my shift is actually Friday.

I get off work Friday morning at 8am and head home only to sneak in the house quietly before Hootie hears me.

My brother. My brother....
My saving grace, is in college and doesn't have class on Friday
so he comes over and babysits so I can sleep.

I get up around the same time the big kids get home from school and have our normal life of dinner, homework, baths, and cleaning, until leaving the house again at 11pm to work my Saturday shift.

Here's where the chaos begins.

When I get home around 8:30am on Saturday morning, the children are just starting to stir and my sweet husband is trying to catch just 10 more minutes of sleep. (Which he deserves)

I put a load of laundry in, change the baby, start breakfast, straighten the kitchen, (because nobody cleans it like Mama cleans it) feed the baby, and by then....I've caught it. Or should I say, IT'S caught me.

My Second Wind.


About an hour into the morning, if Chief isn't stirring, I'm starting to wain. My head starts to hurt and all those great ideas I had just an hour before, about going to the park or grocery shopping or massive cleaning...

Well. Those ideas seem pretty unrealistic and far fetched by that time.

Now. One of two things happen at this point...

A. Chief gets up and starts cooking a big breakfast and we chat in the kitchen about what the day holds, while the baby throws his cup across the room from his high chair


B. Chief gets up and comes out of the bedroom fully dressed dressed with his agenda already mapped out in his head. I automatically know his agenda has something to do with being outside. Depending on the weather, it means cutting the grass, working on his truck, cleaning the outside, painting the house, or as I like to call it:

Piddling. Finding WhatEVER he can find to do as long as it's Outside and NOT Inside.
The Art and Science of Piddling; Voiding Habits of Man and Beast

Those are the days I know I may not get sleep. I plan to sleep. I really do. But as the day wears on and the kids have their own agenda, (which is never cleaning the house) sometimes I get to lie down at 4 or 5 in the afternoon. Sometimes not.

The days I come home and go straight to bed on Saturday seem to be better for sleep purposes, but Chief ends up letting me sleep ALL day and I wake up and it's dark outside. (Those are the days I have to ask him what day it is and I usually panic for a few seconds thinking I'm late getting the kids up for school unaware it's still the SAME day and they don't even have school that day.)

Umm Yeah. Those days suck just as much.

Whatever my Saturday has held, sleep or no sleep, I leave the house again at 11pm to work my Sunday shift. 

 I get home Sunday morning around 8:30 hoping everyone is already awake and on their way to getting breakfast ate and clothes on for church. I have exactly one hour to get myself ready and help Chief get the baby ready before heading to church by 10:15.

I totally forget I'm tired while at church because...well...that's just how Awesome My Church Is.
But I don't even get all the way to the car afterwards, and I start to drag. The whole drive home, which is 7 minutes, all I can do is contemplate about is how I wish the kids could cook themselves or should I give in and just pick something up. Lord Forbid if we've been invited to dinner. As much as I used to enjoy going out to eat after church, I simply can't think like that anymore.

Most of the time I have to spend atleast another hour or two helping Chief get the kids fed and the baby down for a nap, before heading to bed myself, feeling guilty about sleeping in the day AGAIN on the weekend. It's so much worse the weekends we have Sitting Bull. He lives 2 hours away and Chief usually leaves around 4pm to meet half-way. He absolutely Hates taking Hootie on this 3 hour drive because Hootie doesn't ride well and the big kids Hate sitting in the car for 3 hours. But if I keep the kids home with me, I don't get to lie down until around 8pm. I still have to leave by 11pm, so that means roughly 21/2 hours sleep....

That Kills me the weekends I didn't get to sleep on Saturday!!!

Finally my last night rolls around!!



I work my last night, which is technically Monday morning, and arrive back home at 8:30 just in time to take my brother to school. (His scooter, yes I said scooter, died on him and he's been waiting on parts for a couple of weeks now.) Hootie and I travel back home and are left to our own devices for the remainder of the day.
 Leo Vince Scooter ZX Exhaust Pipe 2004-2005 Yamaha Vino 50 2-Stroke

We spend the day cleaning, watching Sesame Street, tying to finish projects until the kids get home at 3:30 and Chief at 4pm. By this time of my week, my brain capacity has all but shut down. I can't remember to take something out for dinner. I forget to ask the kids if they have homework. I cry inside when I say No if they ask me about going Anywhere on that day.

 By 7pm, I'm complete mush. I either make a decision to shut down and give up, or I keep trudging along with the intention of seeing them off to bed before I finally turn in at 9pm.

But that doesn't always happen. Chief and I have just spent the entire weekend not fully engaged in one another. Passing one another while mumbling reminders about who needs to go where, who's had a bath, who hasn't, and who's going to win the on-going arguement about the kids riding to drop Sitting Bull off or the kids staying home with a sleepy mama.

By Monday night, I'm missing my man. Well my brain is anyway. My body wants to miss him but can't seem to remember what pile of laundry, her libido is hiding under.

And that's usually the part where my entire system goes into shut-down mode. I can't go any more.

And I finally sleep.
In my bed.
At night.

Only to wake at 6:30 the next morning...
Get the kids off to school, feed Hootie, feel somewhat refreshed and decide enough is enough. So Tuesday usually turns into:

 "See How Many Episodes Of Sesame Street I Can Get Away With Parking Hootie In Front Of ,
So I Can Power Clean Tuesday"

Is that not The Most Aweful Mama Thing To Do Ever????

But I'm in a pickle. I have one more day of work for the week.

I have to go to work on Tuesdays from 4pm-midnight. I have a timeframe I have to go by if I'm going to get anything accomplished before having to leave for work.

The whole weekend has just been spent with the kids half reading the "Daily Chore List" and more importantly, half doing it. 

I Have to get things cleaned the right way because I've been to tired all weekend to enforce that rule in our house that says: Never Do Anything Half-Hearted....

In Chief's defense, he's done his part all weekend of being Mr. Mom but for some reason those extra body parts that men have and women don't, like the *ahemmm* Adam's Apple....Well, those body parts seem to hinder men from understanding there's more to clean than just the kitchen, the clothes, and the living room floor.

AND. Those body parts also hinder men from remembering that part of cleaning the kitchen is wiping down counters and dining room tables in order for the kitchen to be truly clean....Just Sayin'...

And I'm not done. At 3pm I leave whatever ends up not getting done, drop the baby off with my grandmother and head to work. I get home about 20 minutes after midnight to a quiet house and Chief sleeping in his chair. I take a shower, wake him up and we head to bed. Both of us tired. Too Tired for anything but sleep. Again.

Wednesday morning comes and I usually don't hear the alarm clock.  Thank Goodness Chief is there once again to pick up my slack. He usually has the kids up and they are in the kitchen getting breakfast by the time I realize it's 7am and I only have 20 minutes to spend with the kids.

Keep in mind I have no idea what they are doing with their school work because:

A. I was so tired on Monday I forgot to ask.
B. I was at work on Tuesday when they got off the bus.

They run over to kiss me before rushing out the door hollering behind them, things they forgot to tell me the 10 minutes they got to see me. (5 minutes was spent going to the bathroom, 5 minutes getting Hootie out of the crib and changing his diaper, leaving me only 10 minutes.)

Things like "Don't forget about Axis tonight." (Wed. night church for the teens) and "I need glue sticks and my lunch account is almost empty."

I close the door and sit down in Chief's chair feeling defeated.

Feeling like the worst mom in the world.

And look at this house!
Did I not clean yesterday?
Why do they constantly fold the clothes and not put them away?
Oh wait. That was the pile of folded clothes I saw sitting on the floor in front of my closet. They were in Chief's way when he stumbled from the chair to the bed at 1:15 this morning after I finally finished my shower and woke him up to come to bed.

Atleast I got 4 hours of sleep....
At night.
In the bed at the same time as my husband....sorta....

The emotions of sleeplessness and fatigue come crashing down on my at that very moment.
Every Wednesday Morning.

And I cave.

I give in to it.

I retreat into my very own pity party where I am the VIP guest.

I hate being the only one invited.
So I instantly decide to hypothetically invite everyone in my household.
And they come. Well into my thoughts they come.

And as I look around the living room at the half-hearted attempt to

fold and put away clothes,

the cup left beside the snack wrapper on the end table next to Chief's chair,

the 5 lonesome socks thrown at the foot of the stairs with no mate,

and the firetruck sitting in the middle of the floor daring to be moved,

I start turning the VIP status over to everyone else that occupies our home.

 I let my mind start the blame game.

I give a name to every out of place article in the living room based on who I Know left it there.

 I start feeling over-whelmed at how much there is to do in the house because I've basically been M.I.A. for the past 5 days, either physically or mentally.

And I take the pity party back and encompass it around me because after all it's not their fault.

I'm The Mom.
And as The Mom, I haven't:

Been here physically or mentally to teach them how to properly clean.

To praise them for their efforts.

To go over spelling homework.

To cook something for dinner besides spaghetti, tuna helper, or whatever meat we have and the same 2 vegetables, corn and green beans.

To make sure the baby had a proper night-time routine of bath time and good smelly lotion to make his skin soft since it's so cold outside.

To read Runs With Scissors a book before bedtime.

To sit on Missy T's bed and gossip about her life in middle school before kissing her good night.

To curl up on the couch with my husband and forget what show we're watching because we have so much
to talk about before deciding to go to bed. Together. And Talk some more.

As much as I want to continue this One Man Fiesta, I'm torn out of my thoughts when I realize Hootie is still in his high chair in the kitchen.


Standing in his high chair.

Throwing his cereal to the puppy anxiously waiting at his feet.

And laughing.

And at that moment I decide the most important thing at that very second is not

Unloading the dishwasher.

It's not sweeping the floor.
(Echo can take care of that. He's already started with the cereal.)

It's not putting the clothes in their proper place.

The most important thing at that moment is about to fall backwards out of his high chair, and as his mom, my most important job at that very moment is to forget about the last 5 days and all my failures, grab him tight and smother him with kisses before taking him to the living room floor and pulling out every toy we can find.

With the t.v. off and our imaginations on.
Soyo SYXRT4791AB 47-Inch LCD HDTV

I spend the rest of the day going over homework, cooking dinner, pretending I'm a Stay At Home Mom.
A Good One...

Thursday is spent with a clear mind from enough sleep but a seeping guilt about not cleaning the day before.

And a nagging knowledge that whatever time I just had off to try and make up all the lost relationship building time, house cleaning time, striving to be a good wife and mom time, will be gone as of 11pm.

And it starts all over again.

And I hate it.


Friday, December 18, 2009

Friday Fumblings

Things I'll Only Admit Once...
(I'm pretending you aren't smart enough to know that once posted, you can read it over and over....)

1. Is it bad to give an 18 month old coffee? I guess we'll find out in about 10 minutes....

2.I walked into the Walmart bathroom yesterday and there was a dude washing his hands. I said to him, "Is it me or you?" (Meaning: who's the dork in the wrong bathroom?) He kinda giggles and says, "This is the mens' bathroom."

Push Pause.

Doesn't this fool know I'm a girl and I've come to this Walmart about 354 more times than him?

Push Play.

I walk back to the door, open it. Close it. Ask if I can see his boobs because if not, then him and his package are in the wrong bathroom....

Just Kidding. I don't think that fast on my feet. Really I just walked to the door to re-iterate, that atleast for today I wasn't crazy.

3. I can't seem to stop thinking I'm always right. I try. Really I do. But my ideas about how to solve something, how to fix something, or the way I think something should be always seem so RIGHT.


Sunday, December 13, 2009

Tutorial: DIY Ribbon Dispenser

I've been a BAD GIRL....

I can't seem to stay away from:

El Hobbio Lobbio...
(Hobby Lobby for those of you that can't read Authentic Spanglish)

I bought my very first Crop-A-Dile and I'm In Punchin' Holes & Stickin' Eyelets Heaven!!!

If you've never heard of it, go check them out here:
We R Memory Keepers

I went on their website to get some ideas for finishing my Christmas Cards and found an idea for how to organize all my ribbons.

Well Sorta.

I think it could be mis-construed as:
Redneck Can't Get A Real Craft Room kinda idea....
Whatever.    L

I've got baskets full of ribbon and have had to make a couple of these
ribbon dispensers.
I chose to make mine black so I could still focus on the ribbon when trying to make a decision.

In this tutorial I used an empty formula can and an empty margarine tub.

Memory Keepers didn't. They had the good stuff.
The Cute Good Stuff...

Whatever. I Love Mine....
Here's how I've been keeping my ribbon.
I have a 5 drawer rolling cart that works well, but when I work with my ribbon
at my kitchen table, everything becomes mumbo jumbo and disorganized.

There are a couple items that have really helped in my journey to becoming:

While at Hobby Lobby, I splurged because I had a 40% off coupon and bought this:
It's a 2 sided board. One to cut (with my new rotary cutter) and the other to iron on. (since I'm the queen of No-Sew)

The tool I'm Most excited about is my new
I've been dreaming all night and day about things I want to make holes in...
(Well...to be exactly truthful, I started dreaming only AFTER I went on the website and learned how to use it.)

Let's Get Started!
Materials Needed:

Empty Container. Preferably light weight metal or hard plastic.
Glue Gun and Glue Sticks
Fabric and/or Ribbon of your choice
Rotary Cutter, Exacto Knife, or Sharp Fabric Scissors
Crop-A-Dile Grommet Pusher or traditional grommet tool
Cardboard or other heavy board to protect work area

This old margarine tub is light weight but held up well to the heat of the glue gun.
Pick a starting point, add a thin line of glue and apply fabric.
Hold taught to decrease wrinkles and make a smooth surface.

Once you have the top glued, flip it upside down and hot glue the bottom. Cut off the excess fabric.

Take your gromment or embellishment tool and punch holes all the way around in the desired width apart. I set mine to 31/8" because the embellishments are tiny.

After you get all holes in place, apply an embellishment into each hole and use your tool to set in place.

I counted the holes and grabbed the appropriate number of spools of ribbon.
I took all the ribbon off the spool and stuffed it into the tub while pushing the end of the ribbon through the grommets. Once I had the ribbon pulled out enough, I put the lid on but DO NOT SECURE THE LID.
If you do this you won't be able to reuse the tub with new ribbon.