Monday, July 30, 2012

Back to School!

                We are a little less than a month away from the beginning of the 2012-2013 school year! I am so mixed emotion about this year as I realize that all 3 of my girls will be in school, and the only year all three will be on the same campus. Boo will be going to Kindergarten and it so very ready! She got only a few months in preschool in Alabama before we moved to Arkansas last October. Lo is going into the 3rd grade, though I keep trying to put her back 2nd (She thinks I am dumb, I just cannot believe she’s already in 3rd) and Koda will be going into the 5th grade! This is the last year of Elementary school here in Arkansas and then she is off too… that’s right… MIDDLE SCHOOL!

                I know that when kids get older their appetite for education and school seems to diminish. As a mom I think and know that education is important and I do not wish for my girls to HATE school like so many do now days. I am 27 and recently went back to school and LOVE IT! There is something about educating yourself that does something for the soul.

                But back on topic... I wanted to try something a little different this year for the girls, and if it is a hit I will do it for every year. I am making them a mini “survival” kit for school. This is still in the works but I had to share it, I am excited about it!

                I went to Target where they have these ADORABLE lil baskets, great for gift giving and it dawned on me I needed to do something with these! So I came up with the mini survival kit. With school supplies on sale I decided I was going to give them a few lil extras of the stuff that you know they will always need for homework. So far in these kits I have, pencils, (Boo has Mickey Mouse, Koda has Monster High, and Lo Tinkerbell) jumbo erasers that match their pencil themes, crayons, markers, and a few note pads. I want to add personal germ x for sure, and maybe a new nail polish or two just to make it a lil more fun!

SPECIAL NOTE: These have been done for less than $5 each!

                We have a cabinet that is generally used for outdoors that I have made into their game/arts and crafts keeper. There are 4 shelves and each shelf is labeled to what item goes in that space: It is has follows; 1 and 2 are for games and puzzles, 3 is for homework station, paper and pencil boxes are already there with glue sticks, pencil sharpeners and other homework must haves and shelf 4 is for Arts and Crafts. This is a great way to keep things organized and out of sight J

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Birthday Shout Out!

Today  6 Years ago my oldest sister Crystal gave birth to her second child, and first daughter Summer LeAnn. From the moment we all say her we knew she was Crystal's mini me! They look just alike! Until we moved to Arkansas I have been around her since she was itty bitty! I miss her and love her bunches!

Birthday Girl!!

Summer with my Middle Daughter Lo

Summer with my youngest Boo

Summer with my oldest daughter Koda

Crystla's 3 kids... and one on the way... My Godbabies!
Happy Birthday Sum-Sum!!!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Rebel without a Cause

I have been called many things in my life, some good and some bad. One that sticks to mind is rebel.

                This is something that I can remember being called since I was a teen but I am sure that it is something that has been with me since the time I could act on my own.

                I am unsure why I am this way and I wonder if there is a cause behind my actions. Then again I have always been told things happen for a reason so who knows right?

                To lay this out for people who do not “know” me let me give you some examples, and I do mean some…

I was working at Wal-Mart and wanted to pierce my nose, I was turning 21 and this was the gift I wanted to give myself. The rule book stated that we were not allowed to have facial piercings. I outright asked the store manager if this was something that I could have done and replace the piercing stud with a retainer after it had healed. His response; “If you do, you will be fired.” I mind you I had been with the company for almost 5 years when I left the company. SO what did I do...? I went and did it anyways. I was 21; it was my money, my face, my life right? Needless to say, I was not fired.

Back when my mom left my step-dad I decided I wanted to have my lip pierced, something I had always wanted but never did because my mom would have had a fit, so when she left, I decided I was going to do it and send her a picture just to freak her out! Of course this plan back fired on me, she liked it! I was shocked! I still have it pierced and I like it myself but the point of the matter is I did it to rebel against my mom.

                I have also been told many things of what not to do and what I should do by people and of course I do the opposite and then realize “Dumb ass!” if only I would have listened to so and so, I would not be in this mess, but pride and independence and downright defiance gets my better judgment and there I am rebelling against the simple facts.

                Things like this are something I have always done. I am not sure why I do things like this, but I am to the age now to where I wonder if this is something that has caused some of my life headaches? If this is going to be the thing that causes me to self-destruct? Am I in fact a rebel without a cause?

Thursday, July 12, 2012

The 24/7 Job!

               There are times in your life when you get a big slap in the face and you finally realize what you were told as a child is in fact and sometimes unfortunately true.
                I was told by my mother and my grandmother for years that being a mother was a 24/7, 365 job. After having 3 of my own I have come to receive that slap! There is never a dull moment in my house even with the girls being older now. 
                As a mother we wear many kinds of “hats”. We are the maid, the taxi driver, the tutor, the nurse, the chief, the baker. Then there is the organizer, the book keeper, the personal shopper, the interior decorator, the photographer, the stylist, the hair dresser, the counselor and the principle.
All of these “hats” to wear for one goal, to have raised your children to be successful, honorable, loving, person. You want these children to want be a great addition to the world that they will one day truly enter as adults. These children are our future. 
                My mom was a stay at home mom and I never understood how she liked it. I no longer work and am now a stay at home mom who gets to be around her kids more than I ever have before. I miss working, the people and the conversations I would have with my co workers and friends, but I do love being able to watch my girls grow into their personalities and their selves. It is a miracle that these children will eventually be my age and maybe with children of their own, though when that time comes I will still be “on call.” I truly hope that time is about 20 years away or so (laughs).
                As of August all 3 of my girls will be in school, so I hope to be able to find a job that will work around their school schedules.
Boo (5)

Lo (8)

Koda (10)
                It is amazing how things you took for granted, and the things you didn’t realize as a kid can come bite you! Awwww the 24/7 job! But it will be SOOOO WORTH IT!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Staying Strong

                Yesterday was a rough one. I woke up to find out that my grandmother was in the hospital. She had been having pains since Friday morning and after she could no longer take it anymore she woke up my biological father (Rene) and asked him to take her to the hospital.

                While there they found out that her gallbladder was full of stones and opted to take it out. So off to surgery she went and there they found out that not only was her gallbladder full of stones but it was dead and on top of that had gangrene. She was kept in the hospital overnight to keep antibiotics going, she was to be released this morning.

                When this morning came around they decided not to release her but to keep her another night. They found some signs of infection still in her blood and wanted to keep her there one more night to make sure that they can keep antibiotic in her system and hopefully beat this infection.
My Grandma and Me; May 2012

                If that wasn’t enough I received a phone call from my godfather Terry asking me to bring food by the ER to his mom, because his father Ken (my sister Crystal’s godfather) had suffered another heart attack. Ken has been in the family over 30 years at least and he is very much a part of our lives. So my husband, Boo and I ran to KFC to get Norma something to eat.

When we got there Terry told us what was going on. ER had told them that Ken was having heart flutters, but when the Cardio Dr. came in they said that he was in fact suffering a massive heart attack, the kind that you drop dead from aka the Widow Maker. The rushed him up to surgery where they placed another stint to help with the blockage, there they found out that he had major blockages in 5 other arteries and needed to be transferred to the heart hospital.

                He was transferred after he was stabilized and this is where is still is. As of right now they are deciding what is the best course of action, either more stints or another bypass surgery. Both are risky with Ken’s health. 
Ken & Norma; Feb 2012

                I ask that everyone helps us with prayer for these two wonderful people. They are both carry special places in our hearts and loved tremendously. I appreciate any prayers given to them for fast healing and their families to keep staying strong.

To my Dad’s if you read this know that I am here for you, to vent, to cry, to talk etc. I have been so blessed to have 4 fathers in my life when so many don’t have a single one! I love you all!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Shall we Uniform our Children?

“Shall we Uniform our Children?”

                There is a great debate between parents and the school systems that has been ongoing for generations. This debate is the fact questioning if our children should in fact have to wear school uniforms. Though this debate has been around for generations and some schools do require their students to wear such things, it has yet to sweep across the nation to be something that is in fact enforced in the school districts. There was a child that grew up in the 90s generation who had grown  up not having to follow a uniform wardrobe which in turn produced a woman of creativity and a self-thinking individual in the society. This child who was a straight A student in her early high school career, but in the  later years when  the uniform became a requirement after moving to another state this all American girl became an ant in an ant colony of the high school in which she  attended . Her grades had slipped; she in fact had become just another number. How is that a good way to go with our children, and our future generations; making them blend in with their surroundings and not allowing them to become the people they are meant to be?

                These are in fact some of the issues that the school districts have to look at when it comes to the major decision of what to do with our youth and their school attire. They have to gather the pros and the cons and weight them out and see if what they think is right is in fact actually what is best for the future generations at hand. The people for the uniforms in our schools have a strong back in their corner. Thanks to President Clinton’s speech in 1996 where he stated “I challenge all our schools to teach character education, to teach good values and good citizenship. And if it means that teenagers will stop killing each other over designer jackets, then our public schools should be able to require their students to wear school uniforms.”  This debate has been heated back up and school districts are looking in to what to do.

                Though some do not agree with the ex-president and statistics show that the cons of the situation out weigh the pros at this point in the debate. Some cons of uniform-ing our children where plainly stated by Marian Wilde:

 “Opponents contend that school uniforms:

 •Violate a student's right to freedom of expression

•Are simply a Band-Aid on the issue of school violence

•Make students a target for bullies from other schools

•Are a financial burden for poor families

•Are an unfair additional expense for parents who pay taxes for a free public education

•Are difficult to enforce in public schools” These are just some of the concerns that the parents have for their children and our future generations. There were many websites and resources that repeatedly stated that if there was a national disaster that spotting your child in the crowed school or identifying them would be almost impossible. As a mother you cannot help but think about the what-ifs and the fact that you cannot find your child in a sea of children because they are all dressed alike would be a nightmare coming to life.  The debate on them is in fact one that many people should research and have educated opinions on. It was stated on that “School uniforms are often unsafe and highly impractical. It is unfair to make School uniforms are often unsafe and highly impractical. It is unfair to make kindergarten students wear button down shirts and ties, both of which could be unsafe for them. Besides, uniforms are rarely comfortable in all seasons.  This should be a major focus, the safety of these children, and the effects the uniform have on them. also said that “Uniforms restrict the ability of kids to accommodate those who do not have same style, taste as them. This can be problematic during adult life, where you have to work with people with diverse personal tastes and styles. Implementing uniform policy may not be the answer to resolve the issues at schools. Instead, students should be made aware of the issues and encouraged to find the solutions on their own. They should be taught to be proud of what they are and also respect others who do not share their style. By Jayashree Pakhare” Another point well made. In the “real world” people are not made to wear uniforms in all jobs and yet they expect the future generations to be taught everyone will look the same. These are the differences that the United States are built on. We are in fact the “melting pot” country because of the fact we have many cultures and types of people here and the foundations of this country are to embrace differences and not hid them and cover them up like the school uniform is intended for.

            With all great debates there is always another side of things. Not that any of these are in fact true and unbiast but when making a life altering decision they are in fact issues that need to be uncovered and examined by many people, specialist and communities in order to make a good educated decision when things like this arise.  So of course there are also a lot of pro’s listed in this debate but with each one there is a simple solution or answer to these on why the uniform requirement is still not needed in the districts. A few of these pros where listed on “School Uniform Debate and Poll” Website. It was stated on this web site that the pros are as follows: “PRO 1: School uniforms would save parents money.”  The real answer is that it in fact doesn’t save money. Now parents are required to buy school uniforms and street clothes for weekends and breaks and even if the clothing is purchased on sale, hand me downs etc. There is now twice as much laundry to do since the children will now not wear one but two outfits in a day. The next pro was “School uniforms would save parents time. Kids in the morning would not have to make up their minds on what to wear.” Solution: Have children lay out their clothes the night before, that way all fighting is not done in the morning and time is still saved.  One other pro that was listed was “Uniforms make it easy to identify kids who belong in the school and those that don't.”  Though some may agree with this point it may in fact be easier to notice who does and doesn’t belong but the fact is that there are solutions to this fact as well. Some ideas are have the students and staff members wear something identifiable on them like a “VIP” card or ID card around their necks while walking on campus.

            All of these offers an easy solution to these so called “pros” can be found if it is what the people and the school districts truly wanted to do. If they wanted to keep the children in a creative state and allow them to learn in comfort and understanding there would be ways to allow them this. Someone would just have to stand up and fight for the future and our survival in the world. Uniforms should not be allowed in our schools since the benefits do not out weight the cons and if they have not after so many years of debating and wasting time and money, now they will not later in the near future, there are problems in our schools, no doubt about it but if the people of the school districts and the parents of these children would find logical solutions and not “Band-Aids” to cover them up, then we could concentrate on getting the children to graduate and be our future leaders. The money wasted in the debates and the time that is taken for these can be used in areas in the schools that will not only better benefit the children in the generation but will in the long run better benefit this country and the American people in the future. The student body is probably thinking to themselves “All they are worried about are our clothes and not about us.” What kind of message does that send to our future leaders? Is that what we want? To be worried more about clothes than if we can get graduation statistics back up? There is too much at risk her to be worried about Guchi and Baby Phat. This is the future we are talking about and this is our lives. Though some may say that the two have no relation but is it really that far of a fetch? Some will say no that they are in fact tied together in the long run and while some want to sit there and battle out something that doesn’t need to be battled at this point. Since we do live in America and have the right to be individuals and think on our own accord, think of this and only this. The choice is ours and ours alone.

Works Cited:

Wilde, Marian. "Do Uniforms Make Schools Better?" GreatSchools. Web. 29 Feb. 2012. <>.

“School Uniform Debate and Poll." Political Debates and Polls Forum. Web. 29 Feb. 2012. <>.

Pakhare, Jayashree. "Facts against School Uniforms.", 12 Dec. 2011. Web. 29 Feb. 2012. <>.

Clinton, William. "President Clinton's 1996 State of the Union Address as Delivered." Welcome To The White House. Web. 29 Feb. 2012. <>.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Coffee Amoung the United States

In 2000, 54%of the adult population drinks coffee on a daily basis in the United States alone. ( With this said there are many places to get your coffee fix from Starbucks, to Dunkin’ Donuts to the local gas station at the corner even in the security of your own home. In the fast paced world that we live in coffee has taken over the towns and cafés have been posted on every corner or so it seems to be. This caffeine filled drink has taken the world into its grips and doesn’t look to be letting go any time soon, from the student to the stay at home mom, coffee has become a part of our daily lives.

The most popular place to find a high end café is in your local book store. Weather it is Barnes and Nobles with their temptation of Starbucks. Some say that this is by far the favorite among the caffeine world. Offering many drinks hot and cold coffee based and non-coffee based. With there ever so popular Frappuccino they have taken the world by storm. Their coffee is great, though the prices are a little much when you can go to your local grocery store and purchase their coffee to make at home.  That is the problem with Starbucks verses some of the competitors they have their drinks everywhere. Grocery stores, gas stations, book stores, Target, and in standalone buildings in shopping centers. Then you have other book stores; Books-A-Million is one that is also popular for the coffee population offering the same “spread” as Starbucks but at better prices, even offering discounts for their club members on this highly consumed product. Another popular bookstore with the café feel is Hasting’s featuring their Hard Back Café as their café, which also features a very similar menu.  With these high end café’s there is an endless possibility to the combinations you can have in your coffee, from coffee to espresso to the flavors of caramel, chocolate, vanilla, hazelnut, raspberry chocolate, Irish crème, just to name a few.  These coffee places are popular for many students, career people and teens alike that enjoy a relaxing environment for their coffee experience.

Another popular place for the 54% of Americans to consume their coffee addictions is stand-alone companies. These places are located in high traffic areas and are usually easy to access of main roads to and from work places, some of the most popular ones include: Starbucks, Dunkin’ Donuts along with other small businesses that offer the caffeine fix. These usually offering drive thru features give it a convenient way to not having to waste time getting out ordering their coffee.

Another place guaranteed to have a coffee fix is in fact a restaurant, there is few if any that do not in fact serve coffee. You can always be sure to be able to get a cup at most restaurants and they themselves have even started to carry specialty coffee offering flavors and or flavored creamers for their coffee addicts. Though these flavored coffees are less than grand they usually work because a coffee consumer is not usually picky when it comes to this matter, some say coffee is coffee. Some require the fancier flavors and combinations in order to consume their coffee.

The most popular among these would have to be the convenience of the gas station. The reasoning is simple, consumers stop to get gas or what have you on their way to work and there it is. They notice the coffee pots and the cappuccino machines setting there and they still feel half asleep and grab a cup while they wait to pay for their gas, snacks, etc. They smell the aroma of the coffee and they are hooked.  No need to wait for a fancy cup like in the other places when a cup of hot Joe is right there just waiting to be poured by them.

Though all these places are popular places to go and grab a cup of your daily fix, there are people who stay home and actually make a pot of coffee. Local grocery stores have expanded their coffee isle and now offer hundreds of brands, flavors and roasts to fill the needs of every coffee drinking American.  It is not uncommon for the grocery stores to offer bags of coffee from places like Dunkin’ Donuts and Starbucks. These offer their great taste at a better price then going out to get a cup from the actual café’s in their town. Coffee is also a great drink to have on hand for parties, guest and other entertaining purposes.

Coffee is the 5th highest ranking drink in the United States for 2010 (Zmuda).  With this drink widely available and in most people’s daily lives, it is safe to say that these statistics will rise as the world as yet to slow down.

Works Cited:

Monday, July 2, 2012

We Own the Night!

The Opening Screen

                Lady Antebellum 2012 tour we own the night was on their last week of touring and made a stop at the Verizon Arena in North Little Rock. They have been on the road since January and we were lucky enough to go see them while they were on town. The concert was 4 days after mine and the hubby’s 5 year anniversary! Thanks to my dad Rene and my sister Shi Ann they joined gifts and gave us a night of just us! We have not had one of these since our move to “The Natural State” and it was long overdue! (FYI concerts in the middle of the week sucks when you have to work and take care of kids the next day but worth it!)

Shi Ann was gracious enough to request some days off at work and come down to spend a few days with me and Boo. The night of the concert she took Boo to her favorite restaurant IHOP and a lil shopping at Wal-Mart where they got strawberries (Boo’s fav) and a dinosaur coloring book! Plus they spoiled me with lots of new ribbon! So blessed to have such sweet people in my life!

While they had some bonding time, the hubby and I went to the arena to park, we were about 3 hours early (parking sucks even that early) so we walked across one of the many bridges to have bite to eat in the river market district of downtown Little Rock. We decided to go to Sticky Fingerz which is a rock and roll themed restaurant with couches and ottomans etcetera instead of the typical tables and booths. After our meal we walked back over the Arkansas River and went in to the Arena.

This was both of our first concerts and I would like to say I can’t believe what I was missing! We grabbed our drinks, bought me a shot glass (which I collect from everywhere I go, that sales them), and headed to find our seats.

We were on the floor row 20 and thankfully on the outside row! At first I wasn’t able to see much at all thanks to the guy who was about 6’4 in front of me!  (I am 5’4). The opening act was Thompson Square and I can say they sounded GREAT! (I couldn’t see at this point).

After their set my hubby swapped seats with me so I could be on the outside and take a few pictures and videos with my phone and camera.

Darius Rucker was the next set and he was Amazing! If you were lucky enough to catch this tour you know that his skills for preforming are out right amazing! He mixed it up with his country hits and the past Hootie and the Blowfish smashes! He even did a cover of Prince’s “Purple Rain and it was beautifully done! Darius had won over the crowd and that was made very apparent when they all joined the stage together towards the end!

Lady A was also amazing! They were all about the people who have allowed them to be there, the fans mostly and even had a little 8 year old girl go on stage to help sing “American Honey”, though you could tell stage freight had taken over the poor lil soul! They were non-stop and kept the atmosphere going and pumped! This was defiantly a great first show! I think I am now addicted!