Confessions of the Real Me: Crazy Hair Day

confessions of the real meConfessions of the Real Me. a series on my blog where i share the not so perfect bits and pieces of my life. because in reality…our lives are not always the perfect pictures that we share on social media channels. i know mine isn’t….but i’ll take it.

Crazy Hair Day at School

now you may think that i’ve got it together, but as i have written before, i don’t. we live in happy chaos, which seems to be okay with the whole family. some how, some way, we get what needs to get done.

some may call my methods procrastination. however, i call it, doing things in order. when you have so many things to get done, sometimes things don’t get done early…things get done the night before…and even minutes before deadlines.

let’s talk about Crazy Hair Day.

once a year our school has a week long spirit week for Red Ribbon Week to celebrate saying “No to Drugs.” i’m sure many of your children’s schools do the same. this is torture to me, as every morning i either forget to make my boys wear their pajamas to school, or i have them wear a Team Jerseys on hat day, or vise versa. i mean…i’m all for saying “No to Drugs”….but my mom brain just can’t handle all of the extras.

and that brings us to Crazy Hair Day.

my sons were super excited about Crazy Hair Day….which was surprising to me, as they have never wanted to participate in it before. this is a big step for him, he was finally confident enough to to look silly…something he could never do before.

i promised them i would go to the store and get some colored hairspray for Crazy Hair Day. they wanted to wear their hair as they normally would, but have their hair be fun colors like blue and yellow.

my sons reminded me every day to get the colored hair spray, and i kept promising that I WOULD HAVE IT in time for Crazy Hair Day.

but, i never made it to the store.

the night before Crazy Hair Day, i was reminded sweetly by my son about my promise to get the colored hairspray. i told them i would run to Target once they went to bed. but as the night went on, i got busy….and forgot.

5:00 am

wide awake. OMG, I FORGOT THE COLORED HAIR SPRAY.

no problem, i would just get the kids ready early, and we will stop by the drugstore and get some….PRAYING THE DRUGSTORE HAD SOME. it was Halloween time, so hopefully i would be in luck.

we left for school with barely enough time to get the hairspray. we all ran into CVS and to our happiness, there was colored hairspray. except….

it was all clear glitter colors. the boys wouldn’t have it…no glitter for them. we searched and searched and were able to find one can of white. DARN! but it would have to do….unless….

LET’s RUN NEXT DOOR TO VONS. maybe, just maybe will have some.

we ran inside…over to the Halloween section. and YES! they had some…in lots of colors. i let the boys pick out two each and we ran over to check out, urging the cashier to hurry because we were almost late for school.

colored-costume-hairspray

we got into the car and headed to the school. when we got to school, i parked and had the boys run over to my side of the car. i heard the first bell ring….we were  almost late. AHHH!

i told the boys to start shaking the cans to get ready for me to color their hair. then i opened the lid and started to spray.

i was so happy…i did it…my boys would think i was the awesome mom who let her kids color their hair for Crazy Hair Day.

UNTIL….i started spraying.

IT WASN’T HAIRSPRAY….it was SILLY STRING!

#fail

 

wanna read more Confessions of the Real Me? 
Confessions of the Real Me: Picture Perfect Mom?  |  Free Printable
The Day I Got Stuck in a Museum Exhibit
The Best Meal I’ve Had All Year
Crazy Hair Day
The Hottest Week of the Year

Confessions of the Real Me: I Had My Best Meal This Year at Denny’s

confessions of the real me

Confessions of the Real Me. a series on my blog where i share the not so perfect bits and pieces of my life. because in reality…our lives are not always the perfect pictures that we share on social media channels. i know mine isn’t….but i’ll take it.

The Best Meal I Had This Year.

as a blogger, i feel blessed to be able to try some amazing food at events and launches i have been invited to. dishes i would have never dreamt of….food carefully prepared by top chefs and amazing cooks.

but sometimes, having an amazing meal isn’t all about unique entrees you can’t find anywhere else, or fancy plated bites of food. sometimes the best meal you’ve ever had, has to do with the experience…the calm and joy it brings you, and being able to share it with the ones you love.

a couple weeks ago, i was driving home from a baseball game with the boys. let’s be honest, this baseball season has been kicking my butt. with 3-5 practices and 3-4 games per week, i am barely keeping up. dinner prep has almost been non-existent, and i find myself dreading dinner time. the time was already seven o’clock, and my husband was still at work and wouldn’t be coming home for dinner. i had no food at home, nothing prepped for dinner, and i had already decided i wasn’t going to get fast food. i wanted to have a home cooked meal…there was not way we were going to eat out again.

but…

as we made our way home i began to feel more anxious with every minute that passed. my boys were telling me how hungry they were…which is rare. my kids never are hungry. i knew that once we arrived home, it would take at least 30 minutes to prepare dinner, the chances of me making something everyone would like was practically impossible, and i knew meltdowns were going to occur…if not from them, then by me. so i made the split decision to go to Denny’s.

the kids noticed that we had suddenly changed our route and were no longer going home.

“where are we going mom?” 

“we are going to go to Denny’s” i told them

[cheers of delight from all 3 boys] this is one of their favorite restaurants.

as we walked inside, we were greated by Sergio, a nice server who has help us many times in the past. he remembered us and directed to our seats. he gave the boys their menus and some crayons and we all sat down. at that moment, i could feel the stress and tension leave my body. a warm peace came over me as i looked at my children sitting there…happy as can be.

the boys were excited about the new menu which featured National Geographic Kids, with lots of facts, activities and “weird but true” facts about animals. they were having so much fun with the new menu, and i was happy to see how much healthier the menu was…it didn’t even have fries as one of the menu options.

they all wanted hash browns…Denny’s is definitely the place to go for those. and Sergio helped them (with a SMILE) create meals around all the items they wanted….even having the cooks make an entree that was no longer on the menu for one of the boys we ended up with Pancakes and Apples, Hashbrowns, Bacon and Scrambled Eggs and an Inside Out Grilled Cheese with a double order of hash browns.

dennys-kids-menu

the dinner came out so quickly, and the boys went to town enjoying their food. there wasn’t one whine or complaint out of my boys, they were happy as can be.

dennys-family-friendly-restaurant-kids-eat-free

dennys-pancakes-meal-kids-eat-free

and what did i get?

i originally ordered a chicken sandwich because i was too frazzled to look at the menu. but then i saw a stack of the “build your own skillet” papers on the table. it looked really good, so i reluctantly asked Sergio if i could change my order…even though i knew he had put it in the system.

he said it was no problem, and quickly changed my order happily without a fuss. it was so nice…and i was really happy to try a skillet entree….

dennys-breakfast-skillet

i am so glad i did. here is what i got: hash browns with fresh tomatoes, green peppers, onions and jack cheese, with a fried egg over the top and a side of bacon (which i gave to my boys). it was really good and the perfect comfort food to end the hectic day with. breakfast for dinner is just what the doctor ordered.

dennys-diner-kids-eat-free

and if you want to know how my boys enjoyed their meals….this is what their plates looked like when we were finished. they ate everything! a great feat considering they aren’t big eaters.

dennys-family-friendly-restaurant

when Sergio brought us our bill, i looked at it in disbelief. to my surprise it was kids eat free night, which i forgot about….each adult meal purchase qualifies you for two free kid meals. that meant i only ended up paying $13 for the entire meal. i feel bad even saying how much it was, as i feel this meal was worth much more money.

i left Denny’s that evening happy and calm and feeling so blessed to have had such a nice meal time with my kids. we all had full bellies and smiles on our faces….i having the biggest smile of us all, as there was no mess to clean up or dishes to do. NOW THAT’S WHAT I’M TALKING ABOUT.

the best meal i’ve had all year was at Denny’s!

true story.

 

wanna read more Confessions of the Real Me? 
Confessions of the Real Me: Picture Perfect Mom?  |  Free Printable
The Day I Got Stuck in a Museum Exhibit

Confessions of the Real Me: The Day I Got Stuck in a Museum Exhibit

confessions of the real meConfessions of the Real Me. i series on my blog where i share the not so perfect bits and pieces of my life. because in reality…our lives are not always the perfect pictures that we share on social media channels. i know mine isn’t….but i’ll take it.

The Day I Got Stuck in a Museum Exhibit

it happened with the best intentions. however, those intensions quickly turned into shear panic.

sometimes people make bad decisions….or should i say, sometimes i make bad decisions. i’m a mom, and sometimes decision making is clouded with child rearing, wanting to make my kids happy and lack of sleep.

during spring break, i took my boys to one of our favorite children’s museums. we spent the entire day there and were having a blast. as we were wrapping up our visit, we wanted to stop by one last exhibit we hadn’t seen yet. my older two boys went together with their friends to see one part of the exhibit, and i took my littlest, Vann, to explore the other side. at our last stop, we found ourselves in a room with a game call Belch-a-Frog.

Belch-a-Frog  is a game where basically, you shoot fist-sized plastic balls from a froggie shooter into holes on a game board. the balls that make it into the holes, gather below the game board and roll into a gathering basket where you can grab another one and play again.

belch-a-baby-game

when we arrived at the game, there were only two balls to play with. once my son shot those two balls into the holes, there were no more balls to play with.

we checked the basket below the game….the balls that fell into the holes, should have been in the basket. we looked, but there were NO BALLS.

where did they go?

i looked down into one of the holes on the game board and to my surprise, saw that there were about thirty balls stuck inside the game. the incline of the game’s  bottom wasn’t tilted enough for the balls to roll down into the gathering basket. thus, all the balls we just sitting there.

my son wanted to play, and since it looked like a easy fix, i figured i could reach down and brush the balls into the gathering basket. super simple.  

so i thought……

the holes on the game board were all different sizes, so i decided to reach down the largest hole…as they weren’t that big and my arms aren’t that small. but i didn’t think i’d have any problem reaching down and pushing the balls. i’m tall and have long arms.

WRONG.

as i reached my arm down the hole, i realized the balls were a lot further down then i thought…and the hole was smaller than i thought. or maybe my arm was just bigger than i thought. whatever the case, i felt the sides of the hole around my arm get tighter and tighter. however, i continued to reach farther and farther.

BINGO! i finally felt all the balls, and then brushed them towards the gathering basket. you could hear a rush of balls rolling down the incline. AWESOME! i fixed the game. woo who!

AND THEN……..

i went to pull my arm out and nothing. i yanked again. nothing. i stood up high and pulled as hard as i could…it really hurt, but my arm didn’t budge. my heart immediately stopped. MY ARM WAS STUCK!!??? seriously.

i looked around and no one was around except for my son, who didn’t even realize what was happening. thank goodness, because i am pretty sure if anyone would have been there, security would have already been called and i would have been the laughing stock of the entire museum.

images of rescue crews and ambulances coming to cut my arm free, flashed through my mind. and the thought of the evening news featuring a story about “A Mom Who Got Rescued from Getting Stuck in a Museum Exhibit” started to freak me out. WHAT WAS I GOING TO DO!!!!

my heart was racing….I ALMOST PANICKED.

then, a little voice told me to stop.

calm down…..

and stop trying to yank my arm out of the hole. the weird thing is…at that moment, i remembered watching a story on the news about a man who….gulp…got a “body part” stuck in the water jet of a hotel pool and rescue crews had to chisel him free. because that “part” swelled up so much he became stuck. i know….gag. i’m dying right now as i am not sure i should be revealing this part of the story….but that is what happened.

anyways, i realized that if i kept trying to pull my arm out, my arm would swell up and just make things worse. so i decided to take a different approach. with my free hand, i used my fingers to push my “arm fat” down and away from the sides of the hole. then i wedged my fingers into the whole next to my arm and yanked my arm as hard as i could.

OOOOOOOOUUUUCH!

and YAY! my arm painfully pulled out of the hole. i didn’t even care that it hurt SO BAD. i just wanted to be free, and at that moment, i finally was.

what. a. relief.

within seconds, another woman and a child entered into the room to play with the Belch-a-Frog game. i grabbed my son by the hand and mumbled to the lady “whatever you do, don’t stick your arm down the hole” and got the heck out of there. i grabbed my other boys and left the museum.

never again will you see me sticking my arm into a museum exhibit, or into any sort of hole for that matter. and just in case you want to see the aftermath of what getting your arm stuck in a museum exhibit looks like…i’ll show you…..

arm-bruise

the end.

wanna read more Confessions of the Real Me? 

Confessions of the Real Me: Picture Perfect Mom?  |  Free Printable

 

Confessions of the Real Me: Picture Perfect Mom? | Free printable mom quote

confessions of the real me

Confessions of the Real Me. a new series on my blog where i will share the not so perfect bits and pieces of my life. because in reality…our lives are not always the perfect pictures that we share on social media channels. i know mine isn’t….but i’ll take it.

Picture Perfect Mom?

as a blogger, a big part of my life is an open book. things i do with my children, daily happenings and photos of our lives are shared across my social media channels. i often hear; “you guys are always doing fun stuff,” “you have the best life” and “my kids wish i did more things like you.”  in fact, i hear things like this multiple times a week, which often makes me a bit uncomfortable. i sometimes wonder how others perceive my family and i. do they think we are always out doing fun things 24/7?  i would hate for someone to think that they don’t measure up to me. so sad.

although my family does get to do a lot of fun things (which i never take for granted) and i love my life, things aren’t always rainbows and unicorns over here. we are just a family with normal problems.

there have been times when i have talked to friends about getting together and they have said to me, “i am too embarrassed to have you over because my house is a wreck. i have seen how beautifully clean yours is and i need to clean mine up before i have you over.”  WHAT?

they have SEEN mine?

when have they seen my house….the one that is beautifully clean?

well, they have SEEN mine. on instagram. on Facebook. on this blog. that’s where they have seen mine. but, they have NOT REALLY SEEN mine.

the second that i heard this comment come from my friend’s mouth, i actually had a sad feeling in my heart. not because her house was so messy (because i am pretty sure her house was much cleaner than mine). but sad to think that she had to feel that she didn’t measure up to what she had seen on my social media channels.

because in reality, my house is opposite of that. it is ALWAYS messy, just ask my friends (except for every other Monday when i am lucky enough to have my housekeeper over). that’s just how it is over here. even my son’s friend mentioned that my house was WAY more messy than his. yep, that felt great! but with me being a full-time mom and full-time work at home mom, i rarely have the time to keep my house sparkly clean.

i guess what i am trying to get at is this…

the pictures we see, and stories we read on our social media feeds are just snippets of our lives, pieces of the big picture. for most people, the BEST parts of our lives. i don’t often love sharing my sink full of dishes or piles of laundry. when i take photos for my blog or instagram, i HIDE the clutter, zoom in on the clean areas and only show the happy parts. i enjoy sharing happy smiles and happy things. my instagram profile is my happy place. it’s where i put my best photos, the ones i love and the happy times. the good stuff i want to remember, not the bad. i am pretty sure most people do the same.

social media has made sharing our lives with one another easy. instagram, facebook, blogs and even pinterest are constants feeds,  showing what people are doing all day long.

“look what i am wearing”

“look what i’m doing”

“look at my kids”

“look at my yummy food”

“look where we are”

it can be really fun seeing everything going on with the people we follow.

how many times have you seen something shared on social media and wished you had the same? whether a beautiful home, yummy meal, happy kids, opportunity, exciting vacation. i know i have many times. but thats the beauty AND the ugly side of social media. because it’s really fun to see what everyone is up to, but sometimes we see these pretty pictures and think wow, “their lives are perfect” or “i would be happy if i had that.” which is not always the case…and what’s perfect for one family, doesn’t alway work for another.

just last week, i was telling my friend how i couldn’t believe all the stuff parents did for Valentines Day and St. Patrick’s Day. i was feeling bad that i didn’t do anything extravagant for my kids. even though my kids were fine with it, i was just seeing all the photos come through on my feeds and comparing myself and what i didn’t do. 

no, i am NOT trying to bash social media at all. i LOVE it, and use it daily as many of you know. but i just want to remind you that it’s just PART of the picture….that, we as moms are TOO HARD ON OURSELVES. and sometimes can compare ourselves to other moms and to each others lives, just trying to keep up. it’s only natural that we do this.  but please, please stop beating yourselves up about not doing enough. because you ARE AMAZING just the way you are.

we all have our weaknesses and strengths in life. but in the end, it all balances out….and at the end of the day, our kids are happy.

i have seen this quote many times throughout the years. “Good moms have messy kitchens, piles of laundry, sticky floors and happy kids” i love it because it reminds me of ME! i have it on my desktop as a little reminder, since i often beat myself up about not having an empty kitchen sink, that toys are scattered around the house, or that i made my kid wear pants out of the dirty clothes hamper because i didn’t get to the laundry that day (or week or month).

and i’m not saying that if your house is clean your kids aren’t happy either…all i am saying is that it’s okay that our lives aren’t always the pretty pictures we see on social media.

at the end of the day, its not how clean our houses are, or the fun places we went, or if we made a homemade meal or got takeout instead. what matters most is…that we even got through the day…that we did the best we could and what we could to make our families happy.

they love us for it.

and always remember that YOU ARE AMAZING!

good-moms-quote

p.s. just in case you want to be reminded of this, i have included this a free printable for you to download. all you nee to do is print it out (at 100% scale) on a piece of card stock and place it in your favorite 8 x 10″ frame.

click here for the free printable mom quote

wanna read more Confessions of the Real Me?
The Day I Got Stuck in a Museum Exhibit
The Best Meal I’ve Had All Year
Crazy Hair Day
The Hottest Week of the Year

 

The time when we almost lost our house to the Freeway Complex Fire

confessions of the real me

Confessions of the Real Me. just a series on my blog where i share the not so perfect bits and pieces of my life. because in reality…our lives are not always the perfect pictures that we share on social media channels. i know mine isn’t….but i’ll take it.

The time my house almost burned down

when i woke up yesterday and turned on the news, images of the Colby fire filled my television screen. but before I knew this footage was of a fire burning in Glendora, my heart skipped a beat. this could have very well been images of fire in Anaheim Hills…where i live.

as a resident of Anaheim Hills, fires are known here all too well. we have had several fires near our home since we’ve moved into our home ten years ago, that’s what you get when you live near hills with dry brush. the most significant fire was the Freeway Complex Fire in November 2008. we actually came close to loosing our home in this fire. and since i have never shared about that day here, i thought i’d share about it now.

it all began in that November morning, we smelt fire blowing in from Chino. the neighbors and i were in our backyard trying to see where it was. we could see houses across the freeway in Yorba Linda on fire. i had a weird feeling that there was a big possibility our home could become threatened by this fire.

the wind was STRONG…..blowing directly towards us.

i knew this was not a good sign, especially since the fire wasn’t contained at all. if the fire jumped the freeway, my home would be in it’s path.

the unsettling feeling became stronger.

my hubby and i decided to pack up some of the necessities just in case. we went around the house and grabbed the safe with the important documents in it, unplugged and packed up the computer, and grabbed keepsakes and photos off the walls. we put everything by the front door in a bunch of laundry baskets. we also pulled out the cars and parked them facing out so we could leave as quickly as possible if need be.

we continued to watch news, and everything seemed to be on fire across the way. my uncle called around 2:30 and said the fire had hopped the freeway.

SCARY.

we started to receive phone calls asking us how things were going. i was talking with my friend, when the doorbell starting ringing.

ring. ring. ring. ring. ring.

that was it, i knew it was time. the fire was coming.

when i answered the door, it was my neighbor.  he said “COME OUTSIDE AND LOOK!”  i actually wasn’t prepared for what i saw.

freeway-complex-fire-anaheim

the sky was black and glowing flames surrounded our house on all four sides. the flames actually looked as if they were hovering over our house. it wasn’t like this just 30 minutes prior. the three palm trees in our front yard seemed like they could catch on fire at any moment. cars were fleeing the neighborhood. the situation was tense.

freeway-complex-fire-triangle

it was time to leave.

at this time, my boys were five and two years old, and they didn’t understand what was happing. they were crying. everyone was running around shoving stuff in cars. and my other neighbor’s son, who lived in the apartments that back up to my house, drove up yelling at us to get out. his house had just burned down and the fire was almost here.

as my husband and i loaded up the car with the items we had prepared, i buckled in my crying boys. they wanted my to get their fish. but there was no time for that. i looked over at my husband and saw tears in his eyes. he was scared. scared for the boys and our safety.

i ran in the house one last time to see if i should get anything else. i tripped and sliced my arm open as i broke a picture frame. blood was streaming down my arm. that was it.

we didn’t NEED anything else. it was okay…if the fire took our house, i would be okay.

freeway-complex-fire-yorba-linda

as we drove out of our neighborhood, all i was thinking was…get me out of here. firetrucks didn’t even arrive until the last moments we were there. you would be surprised at how many cars and how fast traffic can build up.

it took us a while to get out of harms way, we had to drive on the wrong side of the street just to get out. fire flanked our neighborhood on all four sides. i felt that for sure, that would be the last time we saw our house standing. there was that much fire.

but at that moment…..

I WAS AT PEACE.

i had my family, i had some sentimental items and i was out of harms way.

here is video footage my neighbor one door down took in our front yards of the fire. it was pretty scary, and it doesn’t even show the flames to the left of us. at minute 2:20, the video moves to my front yard. we have the house with the White SUV.

luckily, our house was spared. thanks to the firemen and some neighbors who refused to evacuate, our house did not burn. we came home to a yard scattered with fire extinguishers and the fence between our neighbors house and ours was charred and burned. whenever a burning ember came close, those neighbors doused them out with the hose. and someone took guard on our swingset, hosing down our backyard with water. we were so grateful.

the Freeway Complex Fire burned for more than 10 days. the aftermath included 187 residential structures destroyed, 1 park destroyed, 127 residential and 47 commercial structures damaged. it was a devastating fire…and i know many of the families who lost their homes.

the reason why i wanted to share this experience with you now, is because this year, with my word being FOCUS, i have been focusing on family…making sure we are prepared for a disaster. food storage and emergency plans are important for any family. i almost cried when i heard a reporter on television ask a man if he had thought about what he would do if the fire approached his home. the man said he never even thought about it.

how scary is that!

i just want to make a point of how important it is to have a plan for your family in the case of an emergency. i know first-hand that things get crazy and  scary when a disaster strikes. your mind can go blank when you are scared. i would have never imagined all the traffic in our neighborhood during the fires. our kids need to know where to go if they get separated from you, and having a family plan for all disaster scenarios is very important.

there are many resources online and pages you can print-out and fill-out with information you would need in the case of an emergency. there are also ideas of what you can pack in emergency kits and carryout bags. in the upcoming weeks, i will be sharing with you some of the ways i have prepared my family for a disaster.

you never know when it will happen to you.