My son is not B-A-D! {.047}

This afternoon I was sitting on a bench outside enjoying the sun and attempting to do some homework on my laptop when a Mother and her young {five years old} son came to sit next to me. We started talking about the weather and how her son’s summer was going so far, you know casual conversation. As the boy’s Mother and I got deeper into conversation, he started to wander off away from his Mother {mind you there was a busy street near by}. His Mother kindly asked him to return to the bench – he did.

Then, the cycle repeated itself. Conversation starts between her and I, the boy wanders off. This time he told his Mother that he didn’t want to come back, started dancing around near the street, smiling at her, and telling her he wanted to see the cars “now“.

Her response was “He doesn’t usually act like this!”. For the next fifteen minutes her son “acted like that” and her next response was “He likes to play too much, he’s not B-A-D, he just play too much. He’s like me, I play too much”. Basically admitting that he does always act like that {which isn’t always the case}.

I was embarrassed for her because it was clear that her son had no respect for her. There were no consequences, no parenting, no nothing. I’m trying to establish some better deciplinary tactics for my son as well. Even though everything might not work all of the time, you can’t knock a girl for trying! This Mom just didn’t try.

Has there been a time where you were out with your little one and he/she really did act out of character? How did you handle it?

The great end of education is to discipline rather than to furnish the mind;

to train it to the use of its own powers, rather than fill it with the accumulation of others.” 

Tyron Edwards

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Own Your Ambition {.46}

Lately, I haven’t been feeling very ambitious. I haven’t been feeling myself. My computer has been acting wonky the last two days and instead of fixing it, I’ve just been going to bed. No homework getting done, no blog posts being written, nothing being read.

The crazy part of it all is that I’ve had a lot to say & a lot going on! But after a couple of days of self reflection and stumbling across sources of strength and encouragement I finally broke out of my funk.

This morning I turned on the TV and it was on one of those church shows. Usually I turn the channel because they’re  asking for a whole bunch of money and have a 1-800 number at the bottom of the screen or something, but for some odd reason I didn’t change the channel.

There was this middle aged man sitting in a chair staring into the camera saying “God doesn’t love you because you are worthy of being loved or you are a great person. God loves you because you need to be loved. Jesus didn’t sacrifice His life for us because we deserved it, but because we needed to be saved. Forget all of the other commandments. God wants you to walk in his love and show others the love that He has shown you.”

I was meant to hear that. God wanted me to hear that. It is so true and I feel it everyday, but at times I feel myself running from his anointing, running from his blessings because I’m scared.

A couple of minutes later, while ironing mine and Jayden’s clothes for the day, I went on YouTube to catch up on my subscriptions. I came across Marie Forleo‘s new video about finance and I decided to watch it. She was interviewing the creator of dailyworth.com and the last step she mentioned in the video “3 Steps for Building Serious Wealth” was “own your ambition”. Basically, don’t limit your capability. Don’t limit your success out of fear.

Both of those things that I “just so happened” to watch changed my life. Success is scary. It changes your life no matter how much you want it to stay the same.

I’ve been running. My entire life I’ve been running from success. I’m good at a lot I things and I’ve started I gain popularity and success in a lot of things and as soon as it comes about – I back down.

I’m afraid if change. I’m afraid of quitting a job to start my own business. I’m afraid of the hate that comes with success. I’m afraid of the time away from family. I’m afraid of “fake” people after everything you have but your genuine friendship. I’m afraid of burning bridges because of a business decision I make for myself or my family.

But, I can’t be anymore. I have to live the life that I was blessed with and give my talent my undivided attention and dedication. This is the only way I will find peace and happiness. I refuse to live in fear for the remainder of my life. I’m going full speed ahead. I’m going to hit some road bumps, but I’m not going to stop.

For the first time in my life – I believe in myself 100% and that’s a pretty damn good feeling. All I can say is – thank God!

In order to succeed, we must first believe that we can.
Michael Korda

Salads and Flowers {.45}


Today is the first day in a long time since the nice weather has arrived that I have actually had the energy and time to go outside with my little munchkin. It was so much fun! We didn’t do much but play in the grass, but that was the best play-in-the-grass fun I’ve ever had. Jayden made me a “salad” {out of grass and a stick}, I tried to teach him how to ride his bike, he picked flowers for me, we watched the cars ride by and ran back and forth in the grass like maniacs. Making lists, giving myself a bedtime, and sticking to a schedule has really helped me out so far when it comes to having time to just enjoy life. I just pray that I can keep it up because spending all of this extra time with my little munchkin is priceless.

“How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives”

Annie Dillard

Bath time {.44}

Last night I almost had a nervous breakdown.

I let Jayden play with his bath toys for 8 minutes or so before it was time to get ready for bed. When I said to him “Okay, it’s time to get out!” He said, “I don’t wanna get out.”

Oh my goodness, Lord! I could scream my head off right then there because he is a stubborn as a mule {his sign is a Taurus}. The crazy thing is: right before I put him in the bath he said that he didn’t want to take a bath, so I thought it would be relatively easy to get him out of the bath. WRONG! Wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong, and double wrong.

This is also the same little boy we are talking about who changes his mind 15 thousand times a day and who I still don’t think really understands what “Yes” and “No” mean when those words come out of his mouth. He just says and does whatever and rolls with the consequences.

Voices in my head: Okay, Nicole. You can do this. Lay down the law. He can’t do whatever he wants, whenever he wants and get away with it! Enstill some type of order! Tell him to get out of the tub!

“I know you don’t want to get out, Jayden, but it’s time for you to go to bed.”, I explained.

“Uhhhhhhh.”, Jayden wailed.

I started to let the water drain while he was still playing. He was trying to stop the water from going down with his toy.

At this point I was scared of a melt down. All I could think about was “Man, he really didn’t want to get out of that tub. I better let him stay in for a little while longer”.

I didn’t listen to myself (thank goodness). I thought quickly and I turned water going down the drain into an event.

“Loooook! The water is going down the drain! Bye! Bye! Water!”, I started to wave.

At first Jayden looked at me like I was crazy, then he started to wave as well.

“Buh, bye wata! Buh, bye!”, he smiled as he waived.

PHEW! I did it! If I could, I would give myself a Mommy metal. I usually crack and let Jayden do whatever he wants {those puppy dog eyes are intense}, but if he’s going to be a well rounded responsible adult, I have to lay down the law sometimes. Doesn’t mean we can’t have fun, he just needs to listen to Mommy.

“Half of the troubles of this life can be traced to saying yes too

quickly and not saying no soon enough.”

Josh Billings

Peace out weekend {.43}

Another one flew by, but I can’t say it wasn’t productive. I have gotten a lot of things done. More mentally than anything else. Just think about what I want to do with my life, personal goals I have set for myself and just a vision of the exciting things life has to offer my family and I. A pretty simple weekend, but so rewarding at the same time.

The simplest things are often the truest.

Richard Bach

Can I have 28 hours in the day? {.42}

There aren’t enough hours in the day to do everything I want to do {including relax with my family}. If it did it all everyday I would go to sleep no later than 3:00AM and have to wake up two hours later to do it all over again. I’d love to do it, but I want to be around for my family and living like that is a sure way to shorten your life span. Sleep is more important than most realize.

The obvious answer to the feeling like there isn’t enough time in the day is to prioritize. Here is the moment of truth for me, as much as I try and as much as I make lists… I am not good at prioritizing. There I said it. In fact, I’m horrible at it!

Some days I am on point, other days you’d wonder if I had a brain. I’ve tried composing a daily list of things I should do before the day is out, but everyday is different and my family’s needs are going to be different everyday. I work like a machine, I like things to be structured and pretty much the same everyday. Life doesn’t work like that and I’m not having the easiest time adjusting. But, something has go to give.

Last night, I fell asleep at 7:30PM. That is a record for me and it’s not a good thing. But, I got a lot done the day before, which was great! I went to sleep at 1:00AM which wasn’t horrible, but there were so many things going through my mind even as I was laying my head on the pillow. I was mentally drained. I was thinking about what I could have done better, maybe I should have done the dishes before homework, that could have left more time for me to read blogs…It never stops.

 

I’m taking action. I cannot live like a frazzled chimpanzee anymore. It’s not a good feeling. I’m always on edge and always thinking about what’s next and who needs what from me. I want my mind to relax a little, but still get things done. I want to have my weekends free of cleaning and other things I could be getting done during the week so I can enjoy that time with my family. I’m making a project for myself. I’m making a list of all of the things I have to do during the week big and small, what is the most important, and a schedule of when I should have it all done. The most important thing that I’m doing {that my cousin taught me but I never listened to} is I’m giving myself a bedtime. Yes, I am going back to grade school and cutting myself off from doing stuff that I could do the next day. I’m putting my list on a timeline. I get so caught up in the details and making everything perfect, I take way too long to do simple things. I notice that when I set a timer or when I have to go somewhere, things get done so much faster.

So, it’s on – I’m taking my sanity back. We’ll see how it goes.

 

“No matter how busy you may think you are, you must find time for reading,

or surrender yourself to self-chosen ignorance.”

 

– Confucius  

Government Name {.041}

About three weeks ago, Jayden had his three-year check up. He’s healthy,  smart and all of that good stuff. Such a blessing. As the apointment was ending his doctor instructed Quentin and I to start teaching him our full names, how to survive in the wild {how to gather food, fight off hungry lions, etc} and all of that good stuff. Seriously though, you know stuff you should know if there is an emergency; addresses, phone numbers and all of that helpful stuff.

We didn’t waste any time and started teaching him what our names were right way. Let’s just say that within one day he had it down pat. I think he was a tad bit confused because he would ask if he got our names right. I mean, can you blame the kid he’s been calling us “Mommy” and “Daddy” since was only 6 months old. I could only imagine what was going on in his head when we told him what our real names were. To him, we are probably impostors.

“Mommy, thatsss Quentin!?”, he would say with a confused look on his face.

“Yes, that’s Quentin, Jayden.”

“Oh. Hi Quentin!”, he would wave as if he was meeting a new person.

Days went by and we would try to refresh his memory and make sure he didn’t forget our “new identities”.

One day I was in the bathroom, doing what people do in the bathroom, and Jayden knocked on the door {He doesn’t like when we go to the bathroom and leave him outside of the door. Go figure. Parent’s don’t deserve privacy.}

“Nicole? NICOLE!? NICOLE WHITEHALL!?!”, he wailed.

“Yes, Jayden.”, I said through my laughter.

“I come in?”

I couldn’t even answer him I was laughing so hard.

I found it so funny that he had already made the connection that “Nicole” was my “new” name. It was almost as if he thought we were telling him to call us something else from now on. I later explained to him that I was two people {this is making even more sense now}. He’s gotten the hang of knowing who Nicole Whitehall is and that she is Mommy too. I’m sure he doesn’t get why I have two names. But, it’s just the cutest thing to hear him say my Government name. What a sophisticated young lad.

The beautiful thing about learning is that no one can take it away from you.
B.B. King