What I Do When I Am Child-Free

My three girls went to NY for the weekend to have some quality time with my family. I met my mom in PA on Friday and am picking them up on Sunday afternoon. This has never happened while I was off of work, probably because I am only off of work once a year basically. When my mom asked to have the girls for the weekend my mind raced with the endless possibilities as to what I would do not only child-free but also off of work. Shopping, binge watching Gilmore Girls, lounging with a margarita, gardening… what to do??

Well this is what I did:

  1. I came home and promptly realized that Amelia and Moira’s room is a complete disaster area. Seriously, these two girls are dirt collecting, stuffed animal hoarding, clothes piling little fiends wrapped up in cuteness. So not only did I clean their room but I rearranged it so that the beds and the dresser have new homes.
  2. Well because I cleaned up the hoarders, I mean my darling daughters’, room I had piles of laundry to do so I started some, cleaned up around the washer and dryer, wiped down the table where the cats eat, threw out some empty containers.. ya know, lol, just went down to do laundry!
  3. I cooked myself a yummy dinner of dill tilapia and broccoli, while that was cooking I did the dishes, cleaned the counters, and tidied up the kitchen.
  4. I finally realized that it was late and no more cleaning was required. So I binge watched some Gilmore Girls and painted my nails, then went to bed.
  5. Saturday morning I woke up bright and early to lots and lots of dog puke. Apparently Spooky had an upset stomach… enough said. Big dogs equal lots and lots of puke.
  6. I headed to Target (yay!!!) for some more cleaning supplies and to browse at my leisure while being kid-free. It was glorious. Made even more glorious by the iced coconut milk mocha macchiato.
  7. Came home and gave the dogs water… which ended up with more puke… ugh!
  8. Klint and I then headed out to run some errands and eat lunch at one of my favorite places- Slymans… how did I not know how awesome corned beef is until recently? I managed to convince Klint to take me to Michaels and Anthropologie too while we were out so major win!
  9. We came home, Klint had to go to bed for work, and I decided to cook Spooky some chicken broth and rice. (My tried and true solution to dog puke)
  10. My final act of the night was cleaning out my awesome blue Ikea cart and organizing it. It was a mishmash of nail polish, Posh products, craft supplies… topped with cat hair.

Here are some pics of my adventures… not the puke because that would be gross!

Tomorrow is my last morning child-free…. who knows what I will do?!

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The Big 1-2!

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How Gabby greets each day =)

Today my oldest is officially 12. How?? Seriously people,. yesterday she was learning how to ride a bike and teaching herself to read!

Gabby is a super silly, extremely responsible, interesting and unique kid. She knows what she likes and sticks to it, not caring if it isn’t the popular thing. She finds kids who are in need of a friend and befriends them, caring only that people aren’t lonely because they are different. She cares about animals, especially dogs, and hasn’t swayed from the idea of becoming a dog trainer and an artist. German Shepherds are her favorite dog breed, she melts when she sees them! Legos, Five Nights at Freddys, Jurassic Park & World… these are her favorite things. IMG_5400

 

I am so proud of how mature Gabby is. Klint and I have a lot of overlapping job obligations and so Gabby has picked up the slack a lot and watches her sisters almost every day for a little bit. (She gets a generous allowance as compensation for this, her time is worth something and it is important that she recognizes this) She also has become a really great cook and makes a lot of meals for the family. I love seeing her get excited about learning a new recipe!

I can’t wait to see what this year brings for my oldest girl, more opportunities to learn and grow for sure!

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My Mighty Girls

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Moira: “Mommy, can you make me look like Malala?”

 

Yesterday we went to the beach where there was an incident that really upset Gabby and I. At this particular beach there is a break wall and on the other side it is as shallow as on the beach side. Gabby, being almost 12 and a great swimmer asked if she could go on the other side. I said yes, knowing that she doesn’t go far out and that the water wasn’t rough or dangerous- plus I was keeping an eye on all three. However, a second later she came back and said that a man told her she couldn’t go there. I told her that that was nonsense and to  go back, but she refused, stating- “But he said no.” I asked why he said she couldn’t go there and it was not for her safety but because “it was set a bad example for his kids who wanted to go there!!! I sat in stunned silence for a moment, then I exploded. How dare this man restrict my girl simply because he didn’t want to deal with parenting his kids?! So I jumped up, walked her to the edge of the water and watched her go past the rocks. Sure enough, as soon as she crossed the break wall, the man’s daughter (who was much younger than Gabby) pointed to her and his head whipped around in preparation to yell at her again. However, me being in full on Mama Bear mode, yelled to him that not only did she have my permission, but that she shouldn’t have to limit herself because his kids weren’t allowed to go there. He tried to argue with me, and even after I walked back to my blanket he was glaring at both Gabby and I.

That incident upset me for a whole other reason than the obvious fact that some random guy tried to tell my kid what she could or couldn’t do for his own convenience. It upset me more that Gabby blindly listened to him, without challenging who he was or question his motives for telling her no. We had a long, deep conversation at the larger meaning behind her blindly listening to a stranger. Someone who wasn’t a police officer or a fire fighter, looking out for her safety. We talked about why kids get tricked into dangerous situations by blindly listening to grownups, the importance of listening to your “tummy voice”, and that it is ok to ask questions and to get help if you don’t feel safe- even with someone you know.

I’m sure that this incident will lead to many more conversations, but necessary ones because I’d rather have my girls get in trouble for standing up for themselves than get in even more trouble for blindly listening. I want my mighty girls to have a strong voice, inside and out, that will help them navigate this world where women are blamed for their own rape and told that their worth lies in how they are viewed by men. I want them to push and push, talk back, question, be loud, take up space, be fearless. And most importantly, I want to set an example for them by doing the same!

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Let’s Try This Again…

IMG_6223Hello!!!!! So I am going to try to resurrect the blog one last time, if anything to help me keep track of all the cool things that the kids are doing now that all three are officially homeschooling. Also, because sometimes I feel like sharing all of the fun stuff that we do on Facebook is just a bit too much for everyone, lol.

So here is a running list of where everyone is at right about now:

  • I am still teaching dance at Dancexcel and loving it! I teach all levels and all ages, which is perfect for me since I like variety. Last summer and this summer I am working at TrueNorth Cultural Arts as choreographer, again a perfect fit for me since I am a musical theatre kid at my core. AND I am working for an organization called Reach Out and Dance (aka ROAD) which goes into public schools and pre-schools and teaches dance in lieu of their normal phys ed class. This is just during the school year, although I will be handling their social media soon. Lol, oh and I am still graphic designer for Dancexcel and run their Instagram page. (And yes, I still have time to do stuff with the kids, craft, and have a life… although I have no clue how!)
  • Klint is still at the Federal Reserve as a corporal with their police department, but has picked up wood working and is KILLING IT! I will definitely be posting about some of his creations as I am so proud of him (and am getting lots of beautiful pieces in my house!) And for anyone who has been here long enough… Klint is pretty much symptom free as far as his depression is concerned. *If anyone would care to read about it, I will write another post as it is an incredible story.*
  • Gabby is almost 12 and officially 3″ taller than me! She is a drawing, reading, dog loving machine who has a talent for cooking and a very big help to me. She is tossing around the idea of starting her own blog about video games and such so I will share when that happens.
  • Amelia is almost 9 and a source of a lot of antics here at Casa de Krebs. She has toned down the destruction and has developed a love of math and rollerskating. She takes dance at Dancexcel and has really grown into her talent. She loves horseback riding, swimming, the beach, and audio books.
  • Moira has really grown up… and has the real potential to be a serious super villain! Seriously people, she is one lab accident away from taking over. She takes dance as well and horseback riding from a fellow homeschooling family, loving every minute of being on a pony her size. She has a personality that is so big, I can’t believe she will be 6 in December!

So that is where we are all at. We’ve got a zoo (literally people, to say we love animals is a gross understatement!), fill our days with trips to parks and museums, and are really just loving life. (If you want to catch up via pics- check out my Instagram: DaliMama32) I’ll try to resume posting regularly, so check back in a day or two!

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Money Smarts

One of my goals this year is to get a real hold on our family finances. We have made a lot of dumb choices in the past and while we have learned from those mistakes there is a lot that I know we could improve on. Getting the kids on board with cutting back on expenses is part of this goal so I decided to create some printables to help the girls actually see how savings and spending works.

The girls have jobs that are non-paying as they are for the good of the family as well as paid jobs. While Gabby is very good at saving her money, she often forgets how much she has. And Amelia lets money run out of her hand like water, more often because she doesn’t have a saving goal in mind.

Feel free to save these for your own use and let me know how they work for your family!

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¡Hola!

Hi friends! It seems that my blogging inspiration comes in spurts, lol. Anyhow, we’ve been super busy with weddings to attend, vacations, and tons of dance. I’m excited for the recital, sad for the year to end, but definitely looking forward to giving these knees a break.

Now that Cleveland finally got with the program and Spring has arrived we have been outside gardening a lot. I’ve been a HUGE fairy garden kick and together with the kids we have created not one but 3 fairy gardens!!! (If you are interested in creating a fairy garden be sure to check out my Pinterest board here!)

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This is one part of the garden, where the fairies have picnics and play on the tire swing!

Also, what fairy garden would be complete without a dinosaur petting zoo?IMG_1317 IMG_1325

This is where the fairies can go camping… I would love to camp here!

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And at night, the fairies can canoe while paddling down the jeweled river.

IMG_1356And finally, this is the fairy home! It has a hammock, a mail box, and is conveniently located next to our koi pond. Ambience is important to fairies! 
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 This is a bigger photo of the playground/dino area that we lit up… I love how it looks at night with the fireflies out!

Gabby even got in on the action by making a dragon garden!

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 **I’ve entered the Magic Onion’s 2014 Fairy garden contest!! You can check out all the entries here or enter your own!

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It’s hard to believe that in about 3 months this pretty girl is going to be 10! She is already planning her big birthday party, complete with her BIG present from us- a Bearded Dragon! (Long story short, my plan of trying to show her that pets are a big responsibility backfired and I have to keep my promise that she gets a dragon lol!)

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We spend a lot of time looking for worms these days, Moira is fairly obsessed with them. I feel pretty bad for the worms however as she insists on carrying them around in her hands clutched tight. Trying to convince her that the worms are sad doesn’t work so there are worm remains all over the outside area.

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I’ve been busy gearing up my students for recital. I have 10 dances in the recital, plus Amelia’s and Moira’s AND the teacher dance. Whew! My students are all really excited and I am ready to share their immense talent with everyone. It’s been a crazy year and it will be a pleasant break once the first week of June is passed.

So that’s what’s going on here at Casa de Krebs. Hopefully I’ll be back sooner than later!

Growing Up Mighty

Today was a day I hope my girls will remember. A day where they got to see and hear me stand up for their likes, individuality, and for others like them. Today was another building block in their childhood that will help my mighty girls stand tall when others try to censor them.

This morning we were driving in the car, listening to a morning talk show, when a story caught our attention. It was about a little boy named Grayson Bruce who was bullied for liking My Little Ponies and carrying a Pony lunch bag to school. Instead of the school solely dealing with the true problem of the bullies, they told Grayson he had to keep his special lunch bag at home. Essentially asking him to align his likes to what the bullies wanted.

Now mind you I have heard about this story the past couple of days. But it was what one of the DJ’s was saying that made me really upset. He basically agreed with the school that if your child is being bullied for a specific reason then eliminate the cause to save your kid the hassle. Ugh!!! Not what this mama was wanting to hear!

So I did something out of my comfort zone… I picked up my phone and I called the radio station. I tried a couple of times and when I got through my heart was racing! What was I going to say? Was I going to sound stupid? How could I put into words that this DJ’s line of thinking was basically victim blaming. But I waited for the DJs to get to me, hand shaking, and found my voice when I heard the cue.

I told them that it was wrong to make a child change because someone doesn’t like their lunch bag, hair, shirt, house…. that there is a flip side to this. There are little girls out there who like ninja turtles, super heroes, zombies, and other “boy” things. This issue is not about just about a My Little Pony lunch bag, it’s about children being allowed to like whatever they want, without fear of being bullied for those likes. Making a child leave home their favorite things only gives bullies more power. It tells them that they control other kids and to keep up the behavior.

That’s was as far as I got before the DJ said his piece disagreeing with me and then went to commercial. It was over quickly but at the time it felt like forever.

I hung up and looked at the girls. Gabby had such a look on her face, like she couldn’t believe I was just on the radio and she actually got to hear it! Lol, she’s used to her mama being outspoken but never like that. I quickly realized that what I just did wasn’t a simple opinion blurb on morning radio. I showed my girls, firsthand, that if you believe in something strong enough you need to take whatever action you can. Maybe what I said will make one person think a little differently about this boy who likes My Little Ponies. And for my Ninja Turtle loving girl, it reaffirmed to her that I’ve got her back!

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