Saturday, March 23, 2013

Karate Yellow Belt Testing

We woke up on this snowy spring break Saturday to go to testing for Cooper's yellow belt. After 2 1/2 hours of testing (YES! That long!) he is passed the test and is a new yellow belt.

 He was tested on technique, form and focus.  

He was also tested on weapons.

And sparring. 

Cooper loves to "tuck like a turtle" (above) and protect his head for safety if he's ever attacked.  Ladders (below) is his favorite exercise.

His little smirk when they told him he passed.


On a side note, I have been doing photography for the studio so I was allowed out on the floor. There I am :)

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Fabulous Forty

Thursday, March 14, 2013

A letter to myself before I turn 40

Dear Ann-Marie

40 is approaching on Saturday and it's time to talk:

1) You never will lose your baby fat.  You have never been thin and never will.  The next 40 years aren't going to see you turn into a size 8 so just remember who you are and love it. Just be healthy, that's all that matters.

2) You can't please people.  Ever.  You have done well with this one lately but you need to keep remembering what other people do/think/say isn't your problem. At all. How you act is all you have control over.  End of story.

3) You have A LOT to be proud of.  In the past 40 years you have done a lot and I know you feel like you are just getting started.  Keep that fire, but remember who you are. You love to write, do photography, be creative, have fun, laugh, change and grow. You don't mind change but you don't like the feeling of insecurity.  You will be fine. You always have and always will be.  You have a great kid, great family and friends and you always will. They will never leave you. You've done well in that department.

4) You suck at relationships with men.  It's true. You want to fix people and be the saving grace.  Stop.  You deserve to be cared for, loved and cherished by someone healthy.  Keep your eyes open for that, settle for nothing less.

5) Stop being so serious.  You should have more fun, take more risks and let loose more. Life is too short. You have never been a wild child and never will be but sometimes you are too judgmental and this stops you from having fun.  Loosen up.

6) Let the past be the past.  Grief, loss, failure, you have had it all but it's over. The rear view mirror is broken and you can't look back, it's all new territory up ahead.

7.) Forgive yourself more often.  You are harder on yourself than you ever would be to anyone in person. Give it up.  You deserve to treat yourself better.

8.) Take more time for yourself.  Part of your "martyr" genetics tells you it's selfish and wrong to care for  yourself or rest.  That is not true. You deserve it so put yourself first.

9) Be more present.  These moments are all temporary.  Nothing is forever and nothing is guaranteed. Embrace the details of your life in sight, sound and smells.  Stop to literally smell the roses more often and look up at the sky more to see the stars.  Stop taking things in this life for won't last forever.

10)   Take more risks! You packed up your whole life 8 months ago and moved across country, keep it up.  Life won't come to you , you have to show up ....keep showing any age.

I hope you remember this list, remember to love yourself first, to be confident more often in who you are and what you believe in.  The next 40 years has a lot to live up to to surpass the last 40 but I know it will!  There is NOTHING you can't do. 


Sunday, March 3, 2013

Mud Cakes, Spring Pictures and misc

Today was a small glimpse of spring, temps in the 50's and the sun was warm and bright. Late afternoon I caught Cooper and Brad making a mud cake, they had taken a hike in the backyard and then got the great idea to turn on the hose. Very little snow is left on the ground from last week but a little more may come tonight. 

The kids have been loving the warmer weather these last few days, "ITS SUMMER" Cooper has declared and it makes me laugh thinking of how in Florida this "warm" weather is winter.  You can see from the pic above, they have been out collecting deer bones ..oh these kids.

In my news, I turn 40 in 13 days.  I have been contemplating about that a lot and have this overwhelming sense of gratitude for all I have done in 40 years. When I think it can't be and I still feel like in my 20's I realize, nope, I've already done all that. I sense another post about it coming on :)

Cooper had spring photos taken at school a few weeks ago, like a good mom I only ordered the class photo and took illegal cell phone shots of the rest of them. Clearly it's the same shot with different backgrounds edited in...not paying for that.

In other news, I also took on a part time work from home job working for a mom's website locally called  A  nice little way to add extra income and be with Cooper after school and on weekends. I love it so far and laugh that my first article was about the Catholic Church and what I think the new Pope should do about the sex scandals.  
Way to start out on a heavy note right? ha

I haven't posted cell phone pics in a while so here are some fun pics of what we've been up to. A few highlights: The Chick Fil-A cow came to school, Dr Seuss week at school, dentist visit with the class bear (amazing kids dentist office I may add), my first big driveway shovel, Cooper walking his little girl friend to her bus etc.