Friday, December 28, 2012

Christmas 2012

Our family had the BEST Christmas EVER!!! Although it wasn't Lanes first Christmas it was his first real Christmas where he was aware of what was going on. He had so much fun opening all the presents.We had so much fun just sitting around watching the focus all on Lane it was the best Christmas ever.

Lane got so many presents from all of his wonderful aunties and his grandparents that he had to open half of his presents on Christmas Eve and the other half on Christmas day.

For the rest of us adults we decided to draw names for the first time. What a blessing that was for us because we didn't go overboard this year. It was a lot of fun and a relief on our pocket books.

We took advantage of Cory having the long weekend off and we converted one of our spare bedrooms to Lanes new  Mickry room. Especially with all his great new toys!

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Week 4 Family Fit Challenge

Sometimes post are pleasant to write, read or post but, sometimes that is just the way life is. I debated on how to broach the subject, but this is our life and so this is what I submitted as our Week 4 entry. So you can choose to read our not..... (That's my disclaimer) :)

As we begin phase 2 of the family fun challenge I was already prepared to start with some family background as to give the judges some insight as to why this competition has been so beneficial to our family. We are a blended family. When my husband and I were married 2 short years ago I also became a full time stepmother to 3 kids as my husband just a short week before our wedding had been awarded emergency custody of his kids.

I recall VIVIDLY our first shopping trip to the grocery store together. As my very type A personality shined through, to plan ahead my meals for 2 weeks and grocery shop accordingly. My husband and his kids shopped with their eyes and pretty much with a “whatever sounded good attitude” honeybuns and Hawaiian punch for breakfast, banquet frozen dinners for lunch and mac n’ cheese with cut up hot dog in it for dinner and soda to wash it all down. My heart sank. How could anyone eat like this, this amount of sugar, this amount of sodium and processed food? I had married into this processed food meat and potatoes Oklahoma family, and this big city health food loving vegetarian was shocked! Where was their source of fresh vegetables or water for petes sake?

I decided to make them dinner that night, something easy, I figured. I made a grilled chicken breast, a medley of steamed vegetables in olive oil and rice, I even made white rice not to scare them off right away with my brown rice (haha). They did ok with the chicken, they insisted they had to dip it in ketchup, they didn’t want to touch their vegetables and they ate very little rice. Baby steps I thought… WOW how far we have come in 2 great years……

And how far we are about to go…..

In the past 2 weeks our family has encountered another change… As I mentioned above we were awarded custody of 3 children. A year ago due to severe behavior challenges we had a tough decision to make and had to send our oldest to live with my husband’s mom to receive mental health treatment back in Oklahoma where they are originally from. My husband in Native American and so are the kids, they receive excellent medical care from the tribe there. It was sad to see her leave our family, but yet wonderful to see our daughter thrive in her home town and get the help she needed. This past 2 weeks her biological mom was finally granted custody of her daughter back. She also was granted visitation of the other 2 kids that have been living here with us for the past 2 years. Since this has happened our 7 year old son has asked us to go live with his mom. This sweet little boy we have been raising for 2 years and we have watched grow and thrive THROUGH the HELP of the BOYS and GIRLS CLUB, playing flag football, basketball, soccer, spelling bees. So sadly he won’t be continuing with us on the family fit challenge.

This has been a rough week for us. This challenge has helped us though, it has helped us to stay on task, and we have been in a sort of depression, watching our little guy go back home so to speak. We really could have blown this week off and not participated. Especially me, I am such an emotionally eater, luckily I have been able to not over eat!!! The giant bowl of Halloween candy that is hidden in the cabinet is still intact!

This challenge has helped my husband, Kiley and I and the baby too pull together and continue to do things as a family as we have been doing which is helping us. I think we feel a little abandoned in a way since he chose to leave, and this challenge is helping us to pull together because we know that we have to do an activity daily as a family instead of going into our rooms and feeling alone.

Mindy and Kiley at the Nutcracker

A few highlights this week, a few positives that did happen, we had a busy busy weekend!! On Friday night we were invited by the Boys and Girls club to attend the Nutcracker. I have attached a picture of our daughter who is growing up too fast with our soul coach Branch Director Mindy Elias!! The very next morning at 545am, Kiley was chosen to go winter shopping with the Elks club and the Boys and Girls Club. After the kids were done shopping all the families were invited back to the Elks lodge for a big breakfast and Santa came and passed out gifts to the other siblings who didn’t go shopping. I am emailing in a picture of our 1 year old with Santa, it is a classic 1 year old with Santa, and it will give you a good laugh. After a long nap we then met back up in the early evening at the Boys and Girls club to walk in The Chandler Light Parade we decorated our Boys and Girls club bus with over 2000 lights, it was so much fun and our family walked together representing the club over ¾ of a mile.

The Chandler Light Parade representing the Boys and Girls and Girls Club Chandler Compadre Branch

So after a trying time, the weekend wrapped up with fun events by The Club really helping to mend our family’s heart in the end. The Triple Play Fit Family Challenge has truly challenged our family in spite of whatever challenge we were faced with this week to overcome it and continue to eat right and come together as a family. As I reflect back on this week, I can now see what a blessing this challenge is and what a blessing that is to show our 2 other kids that despite what life throws at you, you continue to take care of yourself and your family. Thank you BGCA and BGC of the East Valley for helping us with such a valuable lesson.

Lane meeting Santa at the Elks Lodge Chandler Compadre Branch winter clothes shopping for the kids.

Great News!!

Great News,

We were selected by Boys and Girls Club of America to continue in the Family Fit Challenge to continue in the challenge through phase 2!! Out of over 200+ people we were selected to be 1 of 10 families to continue on with the next phase of the competition. If we are selected to be 1 of 5 families we move on to the competition which is held in California! Our family will be flown to California for an all expense paid trip!! We are so very excited!! YAY US!!! WOOOO!!!