0

PRIORITIES MAMA, PRIORITIES


As I’m getting ready to get the girls’ breakfast around Boo rushes over with a mug of water to put in the microwave. She says, “Your coffee has to come before our breakfast.” I say, “That’s really sweet, but you guys should get your breakfast before I get my coffee.” Boo gives me a half hearted grin and says, “No Mom you are so wrong!” I say, “Why shouldn’t I fix your breakfast first?” Boo chuckles and says, “Because you microwaved my corn flakes last week…. you need coffee before you do the things…priorities Mama, priorities…”

#keepinitreal #ionlydidthatonce! #reallifeatthestaleyhouse

0

So I was Basically the Mean Girl

Last week I took my three girls shopping for new bathing suits as the following week swimming lessons were scheduled to start. Because we live in a fairly small rural town we made a day of going to “the city ” (Lawrence, Kansas) -big but not the big city. 

We pulled up in the parking lot of Target and the traffic was fairly busy so I told my oldest daughter Boo, whom is 7, to exit her side of our Yukon and walk round to the front and stand close to me as I still had to unbuckle my two youngest daughters (Owl 4 years old and Bunny 3 years old) from thier car seats. Boo exited the vehicle as I’d instructed and starts to make her way round our Yukon when I notice a lady exit an SUV on Boo’s side. She is looking at Boo and I can hear her ask her a question. I’m unbuckling the two little girls and watching this unfold. Of course as a mom that frequently travels with all three of my young girls, I am very aware of my surroundings and alarm bells are sounding in my head. I am literally mentally shouting at Boo to quickly get round my side of the Yukon. 

Thankfully I have frequently had the stranger talk with my girls. And just as Boo and I had practiced she didn’t pay the lady any mind and high tailed it to my side. I did a collective sigh when I had my hands on her shoulder. But then ! The lady from the SUV continues to walk round to us standing on our side of the Yukon and says to me, “Wow, you have a whole crew there!” I commenced to nodding and paying her no attention. I look up expecting her to have gone but she’s standing at the end of the Yukon just staring. If my alarm bells were yelling before they were utterly screaming now. There is no way this woman could be up to any good. 

She then proceeds to say, “Nice Yukon, it looks much newer than in your pictures.” Meanwhile I’m thinking what? I don’t know you! What scam is this?! 

I’ll tell you what happened next. I became 😡 angry. How dare someone think to threaten the existence of me or my daughters. So I did what any insane mother bear would do, I became the mean girl. I squared my shoulders, tucked my girls behind me and lifted my shirt enough to reveal my shoulder holster and pistol. And I said, “I don’t know what you’re going on about but I don’t know you and I’d be obliged that you respect the space of me and my girls.” I didn’t draw on her or anything of the like, but I wanted to send a very clear message. 

The color commenced to drain from her face at an alarming rate and she put her hands palm up in mock surrender and said, “I’m supposed to meet a lady with a black Yukon for sale.” 

Before I could say anything more a black Yukon, identical to mine with a few more bumps and bruises pulled up next to her, rolled down the window and asked if she was so and so that agreed to meet to look at the Yukon for sale…..

I tipped my hat and took my brood on in to the store. In the moment I didn’t think much about the whole experience, just the fact that I was relieved this woman whom I’d thought a threat truly was just meeting someone and it was a case of mistaken identity. 

But these few days later it appals me that I even feel the need to behave in such a way in today’s society. I grew up where everyone left doors unlocked, where everyone said hello and offered you a cup of coffee even if you weren’t a familiar face. And here I am today in a public car park with my three girls armed to the teeth and ready to push back if threatened. Has it really come to this? 

I don’t want to teach my girls that the world is a place to be scared of. I do want to teach them to be prepared, aware, and minimize themselves as a target or victim of crime. In today’s world how do we do this without going overboard? 

So today I’m praying for knowledge, the knowledge to lead my girls and raise them into independent women that can protect themselves, but yet be the person that still offers a friendly word to a stranger in a car park. 

How do you raise children in today’s society to toe the middle of the road between safe, yet still personable ?

3

What do you want now, my blood or my soul? Five Easy Ways to Take Back Time for Yourself


Do you ever have those moments as a parent that you just want to shout, “No! No! No! ITS MINE YOU CANT HAVE IT TO!” Because your children 👶 suck the ever loving life right the hell out of you? I mean really I gave up my body, my personal space, my time… I gave up sleeping in (ooooh I miss this one), eating candy outside of the pantry (because really the kids can hear that friggin crinkly wrapper a mile away) , and the list goes on…. My point? Well, sometimes in my parenting journey I just want to have something left for myself. As you can see from the above picture I can’t even eat a buttered sweet potatoe without someone pleading with thier eyes to share with them. Oi vay!

Here are a few simple ways I take back a little for myself even in a busy stay at home mom way of life:

  1. Write yourself into your schedule! Do you keep a planner? Block off some time just for yourself to read a book, pull weeds, lockbox, or whatever it is that you do by yourself that recharges you. All to often I get so wrapped up in everyone else’s schedule of needs I forget to make time for my own.
  2. Embrace nap time 😴! If your kids still take naps STOP ✋ trying to dash around like a crazy person trying to get all those chores done “while you have time” and they are asleep.  I know it’s tempting but really, just leave the clothes and dirty dishes were they are. Take the time to recharge your own battery. Catch some zzzzzs! If your kids have outgrown nap time, implement quiet time were all electronics are off and it’s books and quiet toys only.
  3. Get up early or go to bed later than you usually do. Don’t get me wrong sleep is important! But even fifteen minutes to yourself sometimes makes all the difference.
  4. Limit your extracurriculars. All those activities that have you running kids back and forth all week? Yeah those! Sit down and really consider which ones to keep. I tell my girls one sport or extracurricular at a time. Less time on those makes my girls really appreciate the activity they choose and value it. They get so much more out of it and it frees up so much time! 
  5. Ask yourself “What can I delegate?” My seven year old can unload the dishwasher. Will she do it exactly like I would? No, not at all! And sometimes I’ll have to deal with my favorite coffee cup being put way in the back. But my point is she CAN do it, and it frees me up from doing it and it teaches her responsibility and basic life skills. And I always try to tell my kids hey let’s get our team spirit on and get the chores knocked out first so then we can ALL PLAY! 

So when I’m on the verge of mommy melt down time I try to take a step back and reimplement these tips. I re-evaluate and more often than not if I’m following my own advice I feel so much better! Hope this helps!

6

Ain’t Nobody Got Time For That!

Going to have a bit of a rant here. Will try to make it constructive. Possibly…… I’m. Just going to throw this out there. I have realized as time goes by that I have less and less time for people and their drama. I have no time to entertain other people’s fantasy crises. I have no time to ponder the should have/would have/could haves with people unless it directly effects me.  I find myself not answering phone calls, emails, messages, and even the door when it is someone whom I feel like is going to suck more energy from me. I mean really  ain’t nobody got time for that! Sound selfish? 

Maybe it is. But really I put one hundred percent effort into my family and farm, and frankly, there just isn’t much left to go around after them. I don’t feel an ounce guilty about focusing on myself and my family (and the small group of friends I consider family).  Because really at the end of the day energy spent elsewhere is just a waste. Now, I’m not talking about volunteering, church, being part of my community, etc. I’m talking about the relationships that just plain suck you dry. The ones that take valuable time and attention, and you foster them because you feel like you have to or you feel obligated, or you feel sorry for someone. 

I have to admit for a long while I was always the person that tried to be nice and attentive to everyone else. I tried to tiptoe lightly, not rock the proverbial boat, tried to always consider everyone before myself etc. and you know where that got me? Tired. That’s where it got me. Tired.

So today when I received a text message from someone I knew was a complete drain, instead of entertaining them with few worded , half hearted , agreeable responses, I simply text back. I’m sorry I am not able to talk right now, I am cooking and busy making memories with my girls. And you know what? 

They didn’t text back AT ALL. 

What a relief! So cheers to no more unnecessary distractions, cheers to cutting dead weight. Cheers to more energy and time spent where it needs to be. 

Take your bullshit elsewhere cuz really AINT NOBODY GOT TIME FOR THAT!

2

HK Bar Water Adventures

Y’all it’s been hot. Like sweaty, nasty, swamp bra hot here on the HK Bar! I haven’t ridden horses in a week because of it. I walk out to the barn and the horses are all covered in sweat just standing there. 

So what do we do in 100° F day after day heat? We play in the water…..ALOT. Like as much as we can. And I always cringe when I get my water bill in the mail, but hey a high water bill is better than a hospital bill caused by heat stroke, right!?! 

And of course our hill Billy tendencies show. Example one would be the mineral tub we use as watering holes/kiddie pools for the kids and horses. Bunny was loving it!

Yet another example of hill Billy tendencies. Owl and Bunny enjoying a dip. 

And we forget hosing off the horses three times a day. Queen Jo loves her spray down ! 😍

So that’s what we have been doing. Lots of water activities to stay cool. How do you stay cool during the summer blaze? 

From the HK Bar to the world, stay cool! 

0

What Are the HK Bar Cowkids up to?

Swimming! Lots and lots of swimming!

image

Bunny, Captain Boo and Owl (from left to right) waiting on thier lessons

image

Captain Boo with her swim instructor

This morning we were at the pool by 0830, and our last lesson finished at noon! Holy cow I’m going to have three little fishes soon!

I love the water, and I want my girls to not only love the water, but to be safe! Our rules are:
1. No running!
2. Life vest on! And in eye sight of parent/adult.
3. Wear sunscreen!
4. If you can’t touch bottom then you shouldn’t be that deep! (For now since my girls aren’t independent swimmers yet)
5. No horse play! Someone could get hurt.
6. Drink lots of water.
7. No peeing in the pool! (Added by Owl)

We are also starting the summer reading program at our library today. (After my little swimmers wake up from thier nap). I think it is so important to keep my kids reading and interested in books. They continually learn and progress. And it will make back to school time easier. We want to make it a good habit now!

Another fun thing Captain Boo, 6, is doing is writing letters snail mail style! She currently writes to a friend from school, a cousin, and one of her Great Aunts. It is a great way for her to practice writing, reading, and connecting with other people in a different medium. (Other than phone/computer/etc.) She loves sending them off and who doesn’t love getting
things in the mail???

Along with riding horses and gardening these are our big summer time activities. We are always on a shoestring budget. I want my girls to learn life skills while they are having fun ! And these are a few ideas that won’t break the bank! Need ideas for affordable summer fun? I encourage you to check with your local library, recreation commission, or area chamber of commerce for ideas!

6

Spring Health

Yesterday my oldest daughter, Captain Boo, and I spent the afternoon with two of the HK Bar horses at the veterinarians. Shakira J LO “Jo” and Romeo received dentals, vaccinations, and had a coggins drawn.

image

Waiting load up time

image

Waiting on the vet Dr. Fred

image

A very interested Captain Boo watches Dr. Fred work on Jos teeth

image

Next was little Romeos turn. Captain Boo told me not to take any pictures as she was embarrassed for him lol ❤

image

Then it was back home for the very sleepy pair of horses. Captain Boo and Romeo