12 Days of Christmas – Christmas Stockings

Christmas Stockings

Christmas Stockings

Welcome to Day 5 of my 12 Days of Christmas posts. Today I’m sharing the Christmas stockings for the kids. Christmas stockings weren’t big in my house when I was growing up.  As a matter of fact, I’ve never had one and I never purchased one for my daughter. My how things change when grandchildren enter the world.    


I decided to purchase one for my grandson when he was born.  The first picture shows the first stocking that I purchased for him on the left and a stocking that Xavier made. Isn’t it adorable.  
My daughter decided to try her hand at making his stocking the second year, the stocking in the middle.  I thought it turned out great, she’s not the craftiest person so it was a major endeavor for her.  We used that for several years, it was special.  I picked up the third stocking at a craft fair when he was  four.  


When Zarriah was born, we decided to purchase these adorable stockings in the bottom picture and have their names embroidered on them.  I love how they turned out, so they have become their permanent stockings.   

The best part about stockings is searching for the little stocking stuffers. My favorite place for stocking stuffers are the bargain bins. Check out my list of ideas for toddler boy’s stocking stuffers.  Do you use stockings for your children or grandchildren?  

Cool Gel N Cap Giveaway – Perfect For Kids With Fevers

Welcome to the Cool Gel N Cap Giveaway

Hosted by: SaraLee’s Deals Steals & Giveaways 

and

                                   Mother 2 Mother Blog

Sponsored by: Cool Gel N Cap

Naturally soothes boys and girls ages 1+ head bumps, bruises,  fever symptoms, migraines, headaches, ear infection symptoms, and more in a fun, easy, and effective way with the Cool Gel N Cap. Why buy just ice packs, cold packs, or warm packs when you can have a Cool Gel N Cap? The gel packs that come with your Cool Gel N Cap can be used ANYWHERE it hurts, inside or out of the cap, anywhere on the body. AND… the non-toxic, latex free gel packs can be used cold AND warm, unlike conventional ice packs or cold packs. This gives you the benefit of both a cold compress & warm compress for anywhere it hurts AND a cozy cap! The Cool Gel N Cap is more comfortable on the head for the child than a traditional ice pack, cold pack, or especially a bag of frozen vegetables as the fabric is not only designed to be cozy, but also remove the sting of ice packs on the skin while letting the cool and warm therapy still get through. The cap also is designed to eliminate the condensation associated with cold packs and ice packs. Works perfectly as a cold compress or warm compress, soothing pain and reducing swelling. The cold compress of the Cool Gel N Cap is great for little ones suffering from Hemophilia, as it slows the flow of blood to the affected area. The Cool Gel N Cap is also a cozy solution for kids suffering from Dravet Syndrome as it is a comfortable way to keep cool during a fever.

Now for the giveaway: One lucky person will win a Cool Gel N Cap of sponsors choice. This is open to US and ends 11/11/14 @ 11:59 pm est. To enter, Simply do the tasks on the Giveaway Tools widget below and you’re set to have a chance to win! Remember you can’t win if you don’t enter. It only takes one entry to win!

Good Luck,  Thanks for entering!

Disclaimer: Please note that SaraLee’s Deals Steals and Giveaways are not responsible for prize fulfillment.

Remove The Bull

I went to visit my little darlings this past weekend so we could pick out pumpkins for Halloween. We decided to go to a different pumpkin patch this year, oh my.  When we arrived, we decided to jump on the hayride, which was quite different from what we were used to when visiting the other pumpkin patch we normally go to.  The idea was to take us on the opposite side of the farm where the kids could play on the haystack slide, bounce house and other activities.  





As we were riding along, I spotted these beautiful horses.  So cute with the foal taking a nap, but my grandson spotted the huge bull in the above picture heading over to the wagon to say hello. It didn’t go over well, as you can see my grandson was not a happy camper and ran to Mawmaw to rescue him.  The driver explained that the bull weighed 2,000 pounds, but in my grandson’s mind it was 5,000 pounds. The driver was courtesy, when he saw that my grandson was upset he drive away.  The funniest thing was his 3 year old sister telling him that the poppa cow just wanted to kiss him.  Xavier wasn’t having any of it.  He just wanted to move away from that huge monster of a cow that wanted to eat him.    

These were happier times.  We hoped off the hay wagon and headed to the teepees and pumpkin patch.  Xavier soon forgot about the bull and had a great time inside the teepee and Zarriah in the pumpkin patch.  

This was our first visit to Taylor Farms in Virginia Beach, VA.  We had a great time and will return. If you’re visiting or live in the Hampton’s Road area, be sure to pay them a visit. This pumpkin patch is a great family spot, easy parking, it allows many photo opportunities to capture memories and it’s designed to fit a limited budget.  

 

Where Is My Daddy

When you’re a single parent, you always feel like there’s a piece of your life missing.  You wake up alone, you go to bed alone.  You maintain your home alone, you take of your child alone.  Alone becomes a part of your daily routine.  One day your child asks for daddy, the missing piece of the puzzle in their mind. How do you handle their question?  

We end up as single parents for many reasons, death, poor choices, abandonment or immaturity either on our part or our partner’s. It can be a devastating experience being left to raise your child alone or choosing to raise your child alone because you know you’re better off. Whatever the reason, it requires stamina and endurance when you find yourself alone.  It also requires you to think before you speak to your child/children on daddy’s or mommy’s whereabouts. I read a post from a blogger who said she told her child you don’t have a daddy. That response affected me deeply.  It affected me deeply because I felt her pain.  I understood where she was coming from, but I wondered if she really understood what she just told her child. 


I want to share how I handled the situation with my daughter with the single moms out there. The first thing that I decided was that I would never speak negatively of my daughter’s father in her presence.  Now I would let that SOB have it during phone conversations or when I was speaking to a friend, but never in my daughter’s presence.  What good would that do?  I made a decision to not project my anger or pain onto my child.  When you tell you child that they don’t have a dad that’s exactly what you’re doing.  Regardless of how we feel about the absent father, our child didn’t get here by a stork.  They were conceived, so they do have a dad.  He’s simply MIA.    


I decided to tell my child that dad wasn’t here when she asked where he was.  A simple “he’s not here” often did the trick at least temporarily.  I would explain that it was just the two of us and we would be just fine. I also told her that he loved her, because he did and does.  He wasn’t in a position to show it at the time.  I don’t know if it eased her fear or pain of not having him in her life, but I knew it was better than telling her that he didn’t exist. I also thought it was best for me to leave the door open for him to reappear. People do grow up and have a change of heart. I thought it would confuse her even more if he decided to be a part of her life down the road and I had told her he didn’t exist. I didn’t want her to think negatively of me because I had lied to her or look back and realize that I was an angry, bitter person because he wasn’t there. As single mothers, we don’t want things to backfire. We must accept our situation and move forward with a positive attitude.   


As she got older, I explained my relationship with her dad. Through it all, I never spoke negative of him.  I explained that things just didn’t work out between us. We went our separate ways and I didn’t regret it. I reinforced that she was the best thing that ever happened to me and the years that he had missed was his loss.  I wanted her to form her own opinion.  I knew one day their path would cross and he did exactly what I thought he would do, he came back into the picture when she was 15.  This is why I believe that as single mothers, we should never tell our children that they don’t have a dad.  How do you explain to your child that you’ve lied to them if they do resurface? Daddy made you do it?    
  
As my daughter got older, I eventually build a relationship with his mom, aunts and cousins. My daughter became close to his family members too; however, she flipped the script.  She dismissed him.  She choose not to have a relationship with him, he ended up on the outside looking in. Isn’t it amazing how things work out.  She continued her education, married her college sweetheart and had 2 beautiful children while he suffered because he was not a part of it. I think it’s important to be honest with our children and allow them to make their choices and form their own opinions when they get old enough to fully comprehend the situation. Either they will work it out or they will continue to go their separate ways.  


Just as important, letting go of the anger and bitterness of a failed relationship frees you to see things clearly and it allows you to become a great mother. Don’t spend time wondering why they don’t want to be a part of their child’s life.  Don’t spend time wondering why they didn’t love you.  It is what it is. Life deals us a hand of cards and we must play them.  There will be times when we will have a winning hand and other times we will have to fold. Lay that bad hand on the table and wish them well.  


God places us in the positions that we need to be in.  It takes time to figure things out, but you must have a clear head so you can see where you need to be.  He could have placed you in your position to be a leader for other single mothers, so be the best single mother that you can be. He could have placed you in your position to strengthen you for another use in this life; I don’t know.  I do know that negativity is an obstacle and it will make your journey difficult if you don’t get rid of it.  You must rise above your situation ladies, rise above it.   


Photo courtesy of stockvault.net





Looks Who’s Seven

Time flies.  It is hard to believe that it’s been 7 years since my first grandchild was born, Xavier.  I remember it like yesterday,  The first picture is Xavier coming out of the delivery room, the second is my first time holding him, and the third the first time he sleep in his new nursery.  Oh what a glorious day for me!  Especially since I never believed that my daughter would have children.  She never liked being around kids, never baby sat and until she met her husband never thought of having kids.  She was an educated young lady armed with a degree and a zest for travel and life.  


My experience with Xavier’s birth was quite different from Zarriah. I was able to experience every grandparent’s dream, waiting at the hospital for his arrival, seeing him rolled out of the delivery room, and being able to hold him for the first time.  I didn’t have that experience with Zarriah.  She was a preemie and almost 4 months before I held her for the first time.  We were also enduring Hurricane Irene when she arrived, so it was days before I could make it to the hospital to see her.  So I treasure these memories with Xavier.



It’s hard to believe that by big boy is 7.  I’m so grateful that he still loves snuggling with me, spending time playing games with me, tells me about his problems with mommy and daddy, and enjoys my special pancakes, waffles, and brownies. I know it won’t be long before his interest changes to sports, girls, cars and hanging out with his friends. 




I gave him a Kindle HD for his birthday gift and he was thrilled, but I think he loved the cake more.  I had a picture of him from one of his football games scanned onto the cake.  I’ve always wanted to eat him up, and I finally got the opportunity. Happy 7th Birthday Xavier, Mawmaw loves you.  

15 Things Read Dads Do

There are many men who neglect their duties as a father.  We hear about them everyday, you know those who deny their child/children, those who fail to pay child support and those who just don’t care.  There are others who are excellent fathers, but we don’t spend time acknowledging them.  My son-in-law falls into the great dad category and that’s what I’m going to focus on in this post.  I’ve watched my son-in-law with my grandchildren over the years and here are a few things that Real Dads Do:    


  1. They provide for and protect their children. 
  2. They give baths and read bedtime stores.
  3. They bandage boo boos.  
  4. They lead by example.
  5. They love unconditional.
  6. They support emotionally and financially. 
  7. They make pancakes, waffles, cookies and cupcakes.
  8. They attend parent and teachers conferences.  
  9. They shop for clothes, shoes, food and anything else their children need.  
  10. They take off training wheels and teach their children to ride bicycles. 
  11. They put toys together Christmas Eve and any other eve.  
  12. They rock their children to sleep and wipe tears. 
  13. They drop their children off at day care and school.   
  14. They change diapers, fix bottles, and spoon feed their children.  
  15. They take their children to doctor’s and dentist appointments.  

I could go on and on with my list, but you get my point.  I take my hat off to my son-in-law and every other dad who takes their role as a father seriously, and hope that many others will follow their lead.  Who would you nominate as a great dad and what would you add to the list?      

6 Things To Do Go In Atlanta for the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game






Heading to Atlanta to watch the West Virginia Mountaineers play the Alabama Crimson Tide game this upcoming week-end.  Kick off is Saturday, August 30, at 3:30 PM at the Georgia Dome.  While you’re there, here’s a list of Things To Do.  If you can’t fit all of them into your schedule, check out a few:




6 Things to Do in Atlanta for the Chick-fil-A Kickoff
Game

1)     
Fan Days at the World of Coca-Cola are August 26 through September
2. Buy your tickets here
and receive $3 off general admission to get a glimpse inside the world’s #1
brand and see what the fizz is all about.
2)      As a
football fan, how could you not visit the new College Football Hall of
Fame? The attraction is going all out for its Grand Opening on August 23.
Celebrate the rich history of the game and make memories of your own with
historic and contemporary artifacts, interactive multimedia displays, children’s
activities and more.
3)      For
some free fun, grab your fellow fans and hit up Tailgate Town on the West
Plaza. How can you resist food sampling, games, giveaways and a BBQ cook-off?
4)      If
you want to take your tailgating up a notch, purchase tickets for the
Mountaineer Madness Team Tailgate at the Georgia World Congress Center.
Yes, that’s an air-conditioned tailgate featuring pregame entertainment and a
delicious buffet.
5)     
Refresh yourself with an ice-cold drink and cheer on your favorite team
at its Pep Rally when you visit the FanZone presented by Coca-Cola Zero.
Don’t miss out on the dozens of interactive games and sponsor
attractions.
6)     
While walking down the Atlanta streets, it’s likely that you’ll find
yourself in the middle of a science-fiction scene. That’s because Dragon
Con
is returning to Atlanta this Labor Day weekend. For
some fantastical fun – and lots of Storm Troopers – check out the annual
parade.



This list was provided by The World of Coca-Cola.  To celebrate the Chick-fil-A Kickoff, Mother 2 Mother will be giving away 4 tickets to The World of Coca-Cola on Saturday.  Be sure to return and enter this awesome give away.    




Guest Post – 5 Reasons Family Is Important

                

                             

We may not like some of our family members and they may not like us at times, but we can’t change who we are or the fact that we’re connected by a bloodline for a lifetime.  Some of our experiences with family have been different. Some of us come from single parent homes, alcoholic homes, or two parent homes that were loving or not so loving.  We can ignore, stay away from or disown our family, but we can’t get away from who we are.  That is a fact.  


Read More of my guest post at A Peek Into My Paradise.  


5 Benefits of Godparents

All of my children have been dedicated back to Our Lord and Savior.  Having children Baptized is an important event in my family. When you’re blessed, you return your blessing back to God.  It is expected by the time the children reach the age of 1 or shortly thereafter, no exceptions.  


This is Xavier being blessed 7 years ago.  He was a perfect angel during the ceremony.  










                                My daughter, Xavier and his Godmother




                              My Son-In-Law and Zarriah on Christening Day






                               
In the picture above, my daughter and Zarriah’s Godmother and Godfather, my nephew. My nephew is also Xavier’s Godfather.  Zarriah was also a perfect little Angel.  



My daughter was dedicated 35 years ago, so she understands the importance of the dedication. My best friend is her Godmother and is still a big part of her life.  I am proud to say that my daughter and both of my grandchildren were dedicated in the same church, what a blessing.  


Some people may wonder about the role of the Godparents.  Some families may have different goals, but in my family the most important roles are:


  • Spiritual Guidance
  • Friendship
  • Mentoring
  • Role Model   
  • Providing Security

I think it’s important that parents have assistance in their children’s upbringing, and the children know that they have someone that they can always turn to.  Godparents are expected to attend birthday parties, graduations and other significant events in the children’s life.  Most importantly, they accept the responsibility of raising the child if the parents are unable to fulfill that role.  


Have your children/grandchildren been dedicated?  What were you expectations of the God parents?





My Little Diva – Beach Fail

My Myrtle Beach vacation is over.  I could use another one, this time without the kids. They require energy, lots of energy. The weather was beautiful for the majority of the week, we had a great time.  


Things didn’t go as we had hoped with my little diva. She’s modeling her new bikini in the photos above, but that is as much use as she got out of it.  In a previous post, I talked about how Zarriah wasn’t fond of the beach. Well, she’s still not fond of the beach.  We attempted to take her to the beach twice during our vacation.  The first day, she lasted about 30 minutes. She decided that she wasn’t interested in building sand castles, she rather munch on chips.  After a few handfuls, she wanted to return to the condo.  Thank goodness her grandfather was there, he’s not fond of the beach either so it worked out.  He was happy to babysit while we enjoyed the beach.  






The second day out we took her out in her new bikini.  It didn’t end well, she said a fly got on her sandcastle and on her belly.  She wasn’t having any part of it.  She insisted that she be returned to cleanliness and she wanted the bikini off immediately.  What’s a diva to do?  This one decided to eat a peanut butter and jelly sandwich and watch cartoon network.  She was perfectly content, and later decided to take a nap.  After all a girl needs her beauty sleep.  


Needless to say the beach is not working out with this diva.  We’re looking at the Disney cruise for next year’s vacation.  Do you have a diva?  How do you handle yours?