Friday, December 11, 2015

To My Daughters..

Tonight as we drove home from Aunt Kasie's house, you asked Dad and me who has been harder to raise.. boys or girls. Dad told you that none of it is easy and you all had your pro's and con's.
 My answer was different, my answer is more complicated. My bond with you was not as easy to form as others and took far more patience on my end.. and lot's of those day's I had very little patience at all. The weeks were short but some of those days in the beginning were long.
 There is something I want you to know though and I mean this from the very bottom of my heart. I have loved you from the very beginning. I knew I loved you before I knew I was in love with your Daddy. I knew that my life wouldn't be easier with you in it but my life would be more complete then I ever imagined.
 In the beginning, you two held me to an un achievable standard. You held me to the standard of your Mommy, something that I will never, ever live up to and something I can't ever be. Do not mistake those words or take them as a statement of, "I'm not your mom nor do I want to be." But I will never be your Mommy. I will never know what it was like to grow you or carry you in my womb. I won't ever miss the sounds of your first cries because I was not there for those moments. However, I am so lucky to be an addition to your Mommy. I am so lucky to be your "Momma K", or as you so lovingly refer to me, your "bonus" Mom.
 I have been blessed to be apart of so many of your milestones.
 Madison, I got to help get you ready for your first day of Kindergarten, I have had the pleasure of being present at your awards ceremonies, your parent teacher conferences and we have had so much fun building our own family traditions.
 Aubrey, I had the pleasure of doing your hair and make up for your very first dance, we have had very meaningful conversations about my childhood, the grandparents you'll never know and I have also had the pleasure of being present for so much of your schooling milestones.
 I have been a fill in for sick nights, I have cleaned your vomit out of carpet, I have shuffled you to Dr. appointments, dentist appointments, play dates, back to school nights, science fairs, dances, sleep overs and countless vacations and even our trips to the local store are mostly enjoyable. What's most valuable to me though is how much I have gotten to watch you grow. I have watched you both come into your own, to have your own real thoughts and personalities.. you both are becoming beautiful, respectful, smart little women.
 What I want you to know and understand more then anything is that even though those beginning day's were hard for me I know they were just as hard for you.
 You guys went from being a family of four to being shuffled from parent to parent. You barely had time to adjust to that and really enjoy your daddy before Riley and I came into the picture. Then came Cooper! It was a lot of change, for all of us.
 The last five years have been fun, challenging and exhausting but worth every minute. I wouldn't trade any of you for the world, I would move mountains for all four of you and I can't imagine my life without any one of you. I am thankful for you, each and every one of you and I love you all so much, for so many reasons.
  Aubrey, you are so talented in so many ways. You are athletic and artistic, you have a beautiful singing voice and your confidence is admirable. You're so smart and beautiful beyond words. I am enjoying this part of your life and watching you learn how to build lasting friendships with your peers.
 Madison.. Oh Madison. You are also beautiful beyond words and incredibly intelligent. You are strong willed and independent. I pray that those two qualities take you down positive paths in your life. You make me laugh and listening to you talk tonight about how you would do anything you can to protect your brothers made my heart smile.
 My life is better with you two in it. My heart is full and I am looking forward to being present for so many more of your milestones..
 Our life might seem messy to a lot of people from the outside looking in, Hell.. some days it looks messy from the inside to.. but one thing is for sure, I love this life of ours, I love our family of 6 (8 if you count these mangy mutts).. but mostly, I love you. All of you..

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

This One Will Make You Laugh.. #krististories

As I was on my knee's today for an undisclosed amount of time.. I had time to think. (I assume that most women, in this position for multiple hours in a day, do the same thing..) Get your mind out of the gutter, I was tiling Aubrey's room. So anyway.. I happened to be thinking of my friend Melanie, how we came to be friends and what a crazy time that was for kids like me.
 If you are not lucky enough to know the thrill of covering up a dial up modem, to log into AOL without getting caught, then you my friend, have not lived. Back in the 1999, 2000 days.. I spent a lot of my evenings and or weekends holed up in my room, on a dinosaur of a computer, chatting away in chat rooms.. saying ridiculous things like, "BRB I'm upping it right now!" FYI, that wasn't exclusive to pictures of myself, it could have been a picture that was made out of letters or !, MP3's or any other various-ness that us 13 year olds could get our hands on. If you were ever invited into a private chat room with other exclusive members.. then you were the equivalent of the "it" crowd. Look out world, there were mean girls before their was a movie.
 Back to my friend Melanie, I think we happened upon each other in a private chat called "the cLiQuE" or "PoOl PaRtY".. I'm pretty sure it was something like that, or worse. Anyway, back in those days, you had "handles" or if you weren't "known" enough, just a screen name. Duh, it was safer to not know anyone's real name. I spent my time chatting with lots of people.. Tom from Texas, Melanie from New York, Tracy from Cali (or sometimes Utah), R0cky from New York.. ect. You get the point.
 One day.. before the day's of daily reported internet abductions, my friend Melanie (from New York) and I had devised a plan! I would fly, from California to New York in December! By myself!!! The even crazier part, our parents went for it. My mom called her mom and the next thing I knew, I had plans to go to New York.
 OMG, that happened IRL. (In real life, for you newbies.) Now, lets fast forward to today's world. I don't take my kids to target without a low jack and a microchip on them. I don't let them go to anyone's house I don't know and I'll be damned if I let them fly across the United States, unaccompanied, without a chaperone of any sorts.. by themselves. The eff was my mom thinking?
 Lucky for me, Melanie was not a 40 year old man who planned to chop me into pieces and scatter me along the Canadian border. She was a teenage girl, like me. She had an awesome Mom, a step Dad and  a brother. She had cool friends and went to a school that blew any of ours out of the water and she had a cool accent. I was amazed that New York had things like, icicles. I was in aww that her town had more cows then people but mostly, the accent.
 Since my AOL days, I have forgotten my AIM password, I wouldn't know what to say in a chat room and I grew up and found things like, friends, a career and a husband. I got a good laugh today and it  was kinda fun to sit and think of the cool relationships that came from those days. I have since met Tracy from Cali (and once upon a time, Utah.) and her beautiful daughter Molly. I have maintained contact with Melanie (from New York) all these years and its super awesome to think that she's closer now, living in Vegas. Sometime soon, I'll make my way out to see you, Mel.. I promise.
 I also had some not so great relationships/friendships thanks to good old AIM.. but mostly, it was a fun way to pass the time. I discovered cool music and sometimes, escaped the crap storm that was my home life.
If you were lucky enough to have your heart broken by an AO-boyfriend (someone you never met in real life), make lasting friendships with people you met in a chatroom or were cyber bullied before it was a real thing, you might have been a kid growing up in the late 90's, early 2000's. You might have even been kinda nerdy, like me.
 So, for you parent's out there, worried about your kids well being because they spend to much time texting, snap chatting or face booking.. their is hope. That's this generations version of AIM chatting and chat rooming. They're going to be ok.