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Posts tagged ‘family unit’

Let’s Pin each other – Update for 9/30/2015

Hello all you wonderful pinning peeps! I have sadly been absent from Pinterest for too long. I logged in today and realized there are over 2000+ request to be added to the 2 Let’s Pin Each Other boards.  So here is what I will ask for TODAY ONLY (9/24/2015):

If you have previously asked to be added to either board and have not been added yet, send another request today. I will add you when I get the notification.

My problem adding people has been that Pinterest only shows me 2 names and then says “and 79 others” have asked to be added…so let’s try this again folks (because the 79 others are being left out!

Update for 9/30/2015: I am still only receiving notifications lumped together on Pinterest so help me out. Let’s do this:

Follow me and the board(s) Let’s Pin Each Other and/or Let’s Pin Each Other 2 and also leave me a comment below with your user name and I will do my best to add everyone as swiftly as possible!

I’m in an adding mood, so let’s do this.    And….go!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Love y’all,

Chrissy

Holidays, ODD & family visits

This article is part 11 of a series. If you have not read part 1, part2, part 3, and part 4, part 5, part 6, part 7, part 8, part 9 , part 10 – I urge you to do so if you are searching for help on this subject. If you’ve read along with me already, I want to welcome you into the next weeks of our journey and Knight’s recovery.

In the last article I shared Knight’s journey up to week 26. He was not doing the best with authority figures (especially in school) but I didn’t mention his grades yet. Before he came to live with us, he was a low C to high F student. He had failed many of his classes in the other schools he’d attended. Now, he was doing much better. The average grades he was bringing in were high B’s. Occasionally his grades would slip to low C’s or high D’s if he got lazy about turning in his work. We would issue reminders about his grades, offered him weekly updates on his progress and coax him into catching-up. By the end of his courses though, he would finish with a low A or high B. He really was doing better in this new environment.

Jumping forward to weeks 28 & 29, Knight completed 2 weeks without getting into trouble at school. I was extremely happy for him and attempted to shower him in praise. He was continuing his attempt to join the football team, but we didn’t have his paperwork complete at that point. He was pretty much benched to the side lines. His coach carried continued discipline into each practice and game if he’d been disciplined at school.  Football was good for him and in a few more weeks,  he would be cleared to officially join the team.

Knight was still hanging out with his friends and going to church regularly. He had attended Church camps, outings, retreats, and other special events  (which were all incredibly expensive). He would often speak about the Lord after these events and about how God was touching his heart. His friends were also encouraging him to stop cursing and doing the vulgar things which he had grown accustomed to in his previous life. Let’s face it, our kids will act one way around us and then another way around their friends. It happens. It’s just the way teenagers are. I was not blind to this. I was happy however that the friends he had picked were good enough to also issue him gentle reminders when he got out of hand in these areas.

Skipping ahead to week 32, this was the last week of the first semester for him in his new school. He had made it 4 weeks without acting out at school, but continued to tell me everyday that 2 of his teachers “hated him” and “had it out for him”. He was doing well in those classes though. On the last day of school, we all received a surprise visit from his mother. She drove in from out-of-state and said she wanted to take him for the Christmas break. He wasn’t ready to go just yet. She was traveling to another state also to pick up her daughter and agreed to swing by in a few days and pick him up on her way back through.

Knight left with her 2 days later, early in week 33. We allowed him to open some of his Christmas presents early since he would not be with us until after the New Year. We were all sad to see him go. Both of my boys kind of moped around while he was gone. They really did miss him. It was a realization for me that they truly had accepted him as part of our family now. Maybe they had done so much earlier than I realized? I don’t know. I couldn’t tell through all the arguments, disagreements, complaints from one boy to the next about each other. I was seeing obvious evidence of this now though.

Knight called often while he was away. He would give me an update on how he was doing (if he was being good to his mother and sister), and would tell me if he successfully avoided an outburst of anger. He also called to say that he missed us. By the end of the first week, he called to ask when he could come “home”. I reassured him he was not being punished and that his mother would be bringing him back soon – because school would start back soon. He said he wanted to be home by New Year’s Day so he could celebrate with us. I cried after our conversation. I’m not sure why I cried though. Maybe because I missed him too?

On the last day in week 34, Knight returned home. It was New Year’s Eve! He would get to be with us for New Year’s Day after all 🙂 A few days after Knight came home, Knight’s father received a call from Knight’s grandmother. Knight stayed at her house while he spent time with his mother and family. She remarked about the significant change in Knight. Actually, she was amazed that he was not the same boy at all! She said, “I’m not sure what you are doing with him, but keep it up. He was the most respectful child! He was a pleasure to have and he’s practically unrecognizable. You’re doing a good job. I’m proud of that boy!”

Even though this was not told to me, I found encouragement in her words. We were doing something right if others could identify a significant difference in him. I was happy for Knight and especially happy to have our family all back together again. 🙂

Theft & Drugs (O.D.D.)

This article is part 5 of a series. If you have not read part 1, part2, part 3, and part 4 – I urge you to do so if you are searching for help on this subject. If you’ve read along with me already, I want to welcome you into the next weeks of our journey and Knight’s recovery.

When O.D.D. strikes a child it appears as though their entire lives are going down the drain. Outsiders nonchalantly look on the child & their family as they whisper how pitiful it is that such a seemingly wonderful or normal child has gone so wrong.  Some will make open comments in public places, some will talk behind the child and family’s backs and smile to their faces.

The truth is simply that people on the outside looking in don’t have any idea what life is really like living with a child or teen affected by Oppositional Defiance Disorder. Whether people intend to or not, they judge the parents and certainly the children for the behavior. If you are a parent, you can’t let this get you down. If you want to change the oppositional behavior, you can’t give up, give in or let go. I know the tears you’ve shed. I know the impending doom you think you see & the failure you feel hover over you. There is hope & it’s layered in Love 🙂

When we left off in the last article, I was sharing with you our progress up to week 5.  Let’s move ahead into weeks 6 & 7 after Knight moved in with us.

Theft
Near the end of week 5, leading into week 6, odd items began to disappear. My pocket knife I kept on my hip always was suddenly missing. It was a treasured memory item for me & I had worn for many years when I first started hiking. I asked everyone to help me find it. Supposedly no one had seen it. Everyone searched for it. It wasn’t until I broke down in tears that it reappeared – in plain site on the coffee table everyone had walked by for days. Coincidence?

I smoke cigarettes. I know it’s bad for my health & one day I’ll stop. Anyway, my lighter disappeared the same day the pocket knife reappeared. I asked everyone to look for it & no one could find it. Things had never disappeared before Knight came to live with us. It was an odd coincidence… 😦

By week 7 my oldest son complained about his batteries disappearing from his gaming wireless controller. My youngest son was missing some clothes. My husband’s lighter was missing. Everyone was missing socks. $20 disappeared from the change compartment in my car. The steak knives started disappearing from the kitchen! Finally, I confronted Knight about all these random item disappearances. He denied having anything to do with them.
One day we were inside a local service station getting drinks & snacks. Knight asked me to buy an energy drink for him. I said, “no”. Not happy with my answer, he decided he’d just help himself to what he wanted. He looked around & slid the small product into his pocket. I walked over to him & asked him if he’d had the pleasure of meeting any local law enforcement officers. “No”, he huffed. “Well dear, I love you enough to let you meet those 4 fine officers right over there.” I said pointing to a group of local & state officers. Knight’s face turned red, “You wouldn’t!” I smiled as big as I could & told him I was serious as a heart attack. Plus, they’d already seen him do it & were just waiting for me to walk away so they could arrest him. “This is a point in your life where you make a decision Knight. Go to jail over something as stupid & petty as theft or come home with me. If you choose jail or juvenile, I will NOT come get you out. Choice is yours. When I step away, your decision should already be made.” Knight quickly took the item from his pocket & placed it back on the shelf. On the way back home we talked about that ever-so important respect he wanted from others & the fact that theft was the lowest form of deceit. I emphasized that I have nor ever will have respect for a thief. A few weeks later all the missing items began to slowly resurface. The odd disappearances weren’t discussed any further. Things also stopped disappearing…

Drugs
Knight spoke often about drugs. Sometimes he said he missed them and sometimes he spoke regretfully about them. We had no available “drugs” in our home and no one around him that he could easily bum weed off of. He’d told me stories of living around them, doing them, & selling them. There is no future in drugs. He is with me to build a future, therefore drugs are counter-productive. I told him where I stood on the issue of drugs – NO.  No drug talk. No Drug t-shirts. No weed jokes. No drug innuendos. No drugs period. I told that anything that can alter your mind causes you to be out of control and more than anything, he wanted to be in control.

By the end of week 7, our focuses were the same.

  • Maintaining open dialog
  • Pointing out annoying behaviors
  • Bringing lies to Knight’s attention (Taking Ownership of his Words & Actions)
  • Structure in his daily life
  • Consistency in discipline

Knight was almost ready to start working on his next step: Relearning how to communicate with people to earn respect.

Mother’s Day list Success 2013

I was so bummed out yesterday thinking about how much I love my kids & husband, how special they are, & how they weren’t even thinking about Mother’s Day coming up. I knew I’d made my list & posted it everywhere I thought they may see it, but I just didn’t see that it was doing any good 😦 This bag of trash sat in a very obvious place for 16 1/2 hours as I counted 37 trips they made back & forth past it 😦

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I woke up this morning and discovered I was alone. Odd. I filled up a cup of coffee & came back to the bedroom. Shortly afterwards my husband came through the door with breakfast & a large hazelnut latte! 🙂

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Soon after I ate a few bites my husband comes in & says, “Chrissy come with me. I’m fed up with these boys. Please, just…come to the kitchen.” Sadly I followed him thinking there would be a new sticky mess somewhere. 😦
This is what I saw 🙂

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All 3 boys were standing there 🙂 I got a hug from each one!
I came back to eat my breakfast. After a few more bites Nick said to come outside…

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*Gasp* The car was clean!!!

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**Oh!!!** 🙂 🙂 I wish these were scratch-N-sniff pictures because it smells sooooo good. You’d never know I taxi sweaty teenagers around 6 days a week!!! 🙂 🙂

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I’m in heaven!! It took him over 2 hours to clean out the car, vacuum it, & organize the trunk! He said the boys helped get their things out, but he couldn’t believe how much crap was tucked in & under places in the car. (Sounds about right!) He lectured the kids for me and definitely feels my pain.

Next, was the new flower garden 🙂 Everyone participated. They dug holes for me, helped me weed & even decorate. I’m now the proud owner of a sea shell garden only 200-250 miles away from the beach 🙂
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I’m one happy Momma!
Happy Mother’s Day everyone!!! 🙂

Ending a day with Pooh – wait, what?

A few days ago we had a family talk with the kids about being a stronger & united family unit instead of pointing fingers at each other & declaring “I didn’t do it” or “It was him, not me”. It went well. Each of us came up with something to do to take responsibility for our family’s success.
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Fast forward to the next day…

One of the boys took his part of the family talk serious. He decided he would do more things around the house to help out. We were all getting ready to go to supper & didn’t see him inside. When I looked outside, he was raking leaves in the front yard. 🙂 I smiled & was proud of him.

I walked over to where he was & told him I was proud of him. Nick came outside & saw him next. He also reinforced this positive behavior 🙂

We all went to supper & ate. In the truck on the way back home, I heard one of the boys talking about something stinky on the bottom of their shoes.

Fast forward again…
We are home, changed into our night clothes, and my son (previously praised for his good deed of leaf raking) is in the kitchen under low light scrubbing his shoes.

From the other side of the house, I hear Nick yell, “Chrissy!!”
It was pooh. [Pooh everywhere.] My son was scrubbing pooh off the tread of his shoes in the kitchen sink. The kitchen had tiny flecks of pooh and pooh juice all over it. There was pooh on the wall, the window blinds, the sink, the dish drainer, the “clean” dishes, counter tops – you get the picture?

My son had stepped in a massive pile of pooh while raking the leaves and he thought he was doing another good deed by cleaning the pooh off his shoes…in the kitchen sink!

We spent the next half hour with bleach in the kitchen cleaning the result of his shoe cleaning, which resulted from the good deed yard raking, LOL!

I love my boys, I love my boys, I love my boys!!!

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