When I grow up

Lil: mom what do you want to be when you grow up?
Me: A mommy
Lil: No mom for real, what do you want to be.
Me: ….

When I was younger if you asked me that question I would have said a Veterinarian. Then when I got into college to become a Veterinarian, and realized the likelihood of that happening (too much chemistry) I decided to be a teacher. I graduated from college, and was gonna be a teacher then realized ehh I don’t like the rules and regulations; I decided to become a ABA Therapist. I loved that job. And sometimes miss it.

But then I had lil

And I finally finally figured out what I wanted to be when I grew up…

I wanted to be a mommy. I wanted to stay home and take care of my kids. I wanted to be there when they left in the morning, and came home after school. (Mind you this was before the homeschool decision)

So when he said that I don’t know why it stung. Because it did. Maybe because my hubs goes to work and he’s still a daddy, or because the neighbor goes to work and she’s still a mommy is the reason he was wondering?

I get that, but this IS what I want to be. I guess I feel bad, and deflected because he doesn’t see me as he sees others? I’m not as good as everyone in his eyes.

I know this is the path I’m supposed to be on, but what do I tell my children, so that they think it’s great also?

I’m still pondering this.

All I know is that when I grow up, and look back on this, I want to be the best darn mommy I could have possibly been. Always been there when they needed me. Gave them what I didn’t have in a mom. To have been firm, and compassionate, but most of, to have been loving. For them to be proud to have me as a mommy.

So I guess if that’s not a job to have when you grow up, I don’t know what to do.

As I’m showing hubs video of our hum drum day (I thought it was a lazy day)

Hubs: I love you…
Me: I love you too…. What was that for?
Hubs: because you’re a good mom.. You’re fun.. Our boys are lucky
Me: (*blush*)
He totally made my week

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Breastfeeding image

When you think of breastfeeding what picture pops into your head?

Are the pictures of the woman and baby that you see of women who are Caucasian?

If you answered yes, it’s ok you are not alone. Those are the same pictures I see also. As a matter of fact besides my mom and sister I have never seen a picture of a minority breastfeeding.

All of the pamphlets I received in the hospital are pictures of Caucasian women breastfeeding. Do you know how discouraging that can be as a new mom of color? As a matter of fact if I didn’t do my own research I wouldn’t know the wonders of breastfeeding and just how great breast milk is for babies.
(DO NOT GET ME WRONG HERE! How ever you get food to your baby is a wonderful thing. And a decision YOU must decide for yourself. So I’m not here trying to bash nor start a formula verse breastfeeding war. I understand both sides of the coin a believe you have to do what your have to do. Happy mommy, fed baby, all is well in the world)

Coming from my background it was never pushed to breastfeed. My earliest memory of breastfeeding is of my mom feeding my little sister, and that didn’t last long. As soon as she could my sister was switched to formula. (I think she was 4 months? Maybe younger) I don’t think my mother was educated enough to know to know the benefits of breastfeeding.

My next memory would be of my older sister breastfeeding. And bless her heart, she tried to make it to a year, but with the demands if her job and pumping and breastfeeding laws up in the air, I think she made it to 9 months, which is still a great thing.

So when I had my first, I was determined to make if to a year, yet with me being sick right after we left the hospital, a baby with jaundice, and him also having reflux, formula was being pushed on us left and right. We used formula with him several times. Lucky for me I had a baby who didn’t do so great on formula, and really didn’t like it. So when he could he went straight back to breastfeeding.

Breastfeeding saved my life. It is what helped me get through PPD. At the time I thought I was doing EVERYTHING WRONG as a mommy. Those were the thoughts that went through my head thanks to evil PPD.

The thoughts would tell me that I’m a horrible mom, that I shouldn’t be a mom, that I was stupid, failing and my child was better off with a different mother. That’s what PPD can do to a person. Lie.

The one thing, the only thing that I knew/felt I was doing right was feeding my baby. When ever I would feed him those thoughts would dissipate. This gave us a bond that I couldn’t get with him at the time. I am very thankful for those moments.
I made it to 13 months breastfeeding my first. With knee surgery and the meds I was on, we ended up stopping, and I morn that still to this day.

This baby was different. With more knowledge, the support of my hubs, and a wonderful doula, Sharon Goulay , I got to watch the miracle of nature happen. They put my baby boy on my chest, and I got to watch him instinctually crawl to my breast and naturally latch on. With no help or intervention from me or anyone else. What a beautiful thing to see. We have been feeding ever since.

I am more confident in breastfeeding this time around. I don’t hide it anymore. I breastfeed anywhere and everywhere we are, and I’m not ashamed of it. I’m gonna feed him until we both are ready to be done, not forced by any medical reasons. I have even educated my big 3 year old that breast are for feeding babies. That babies need mamas milk. So that when he sees other breastfeeding moms it’s just as natural to him as a baby being fed a bottle. So that he can grow up and be a supportive partner/friend/family member.

I found out about a project being held here in my town. A group of wonderful women are trying to promote breastfeeding in the minority community. They are taking pictures of minorities in their homes breastfeeding their babies. To show that hey it’s just as natural for us as our Caucasian counterpart. I got to be a participant. They came to my home and took beautiful pictures of baby and me. The pictures are then going to be used in an exhibit to raise awareness in the minority community during breastfeeding awareness month. (August)

So please check out their site, and enjoy pictures of me and my baby and another mommy with her baby.

They are looking for more mommies. So if you are a breastfeeding minority who lives in the Columbus, Ohio area please feel free to contact them if your spirit moves you.

http://happyelyafter.com/blog/2014/5/27/shades-of-nurture-personal-2014-breastfeeding-project

Going back

This weekend I have had to come to my mother’s house to get my car repaired. Everything was going good until last night when we dropped the car off.
Apparently I was suppose to be paying for this…. Long story short, my mom took my car to a “friend” to get my brakes fixed a few weeks ago (they needed to be done but it wasn’t urgent) ever since this friend “fixed” my brakes my break fluid has been leaking and we have had to refill it every other day. So my thinking is he made it leak so he has to fix it.
I guess my thinking was wrong because my mom totally went off on me.
What I thought I had gotten over I guess I hadn’t. While she was yelling at me I felt like I was a kid again.
All the emotional and verbal abuse came back. I wanted to cry But I didn’t, I kept it in, I wouldn’t cry in front of my boys. She would not have that satisfaction. (I don’t have a problem crying in front of my kids, they need to know mama has feelings too) and now I’m trapped. I’m stuck here because my car is getting worked on. I’m reminded of the reasons why I left. Besides the physical abuse, my mother was and still is great at emotional/verbal abuse.
I’m 30 years old and she still has this effect on me. When will it end? I don’t want her to have this hold on me anymore. And I know many of you would say talk to her, but unfortunately there is no talking to her. She just denies, and place blame back on you. So I don’t know what to do.
Do you ever really get over something like this? I know it has effected my life, and the way I parent my own kids, But do you really ever get over this? Especially when the abuser is still in your life?
Would love any knowledge on this.

A lot of Love and Faith

This month has been a really trying month. Things are being thrown at us all at once it seems.
The life style we have choice to live has shown us really what it could and will be. And I’m telling you now I have wavered. I really truly have. I say all the time that the way we live many people couldn’t wouldn’t do it. And this month has given me times where I wasn’t sure if I could do it.
Then after my moment of panic. I sit and just listen. And listen again… And I realize with greater faith than I had before that, YES, this was/is the right path for us.
Being at home taking care of my family, educating my kids, loving my husband is what I KNOW I was put on this earth to do. God wouldn’t have filled my heart with this much love if it wasn’t. sorry I went religious
This month has been a struggle. Bigger than the previous ones, but through these struggles have came big rewards.
This house for example. No it’s not ours, but it feels like it. And knowing that we will have a roof over our heads is a feeling that is so humbling. Through this, my MIL and I are becoming more closer. I think she understands me more, and she knows that I only have unconditional love for her son.
This past week we ran into some MAJOR financial issues and trying to explain to my son why things are happening was very heart breaking as a mom. Because who wants to look into those eyes and say we don’t have any money. That’s was hard for me. And I know he doesn’t understand fully but it really broke my heart and made me second guess this path. Hubs and I figured it out, and our family is closer from this. And today lil took our hands while we were window shopping and sung a I love my mommy I love my daddy song. I could have cried. Tonight when he thought I was going to work he made it clear that he didn’t want me to go. Not unless he was going with me.. I know this is the right path. I’m doing something right
Tonight we were hit with some news that we weren’t expecting. That really upset me. As I sat in the bath in tears hubs came and held my hand. Told me “it’s ok, maybe it’s time to start a new tradition. We have each other we can do this.” He’s SO right we do have each other. We have a funny, smart, trying, loving, wonderful, 3 year old who knows that he is very much loved. And besides the regular3 year old things, he is a very happy boy. We have a baby growing and kicking inside of me. Who is healthy, and is already showing their personality. And we have this incredible love between us that many could only dream of having.
I have a husband that is my rock, my security, who gives me strength, and courage. Who gives me unconditional love, and makes me so incredibly happy.
So I think he’s right. Maybe it’s time to start our own tradition. Can’t depend on others to make us happy. So we shall make our own happiness.
With that knowledge I have almost figured it out…besides this new tradition will only bring us closer.

I’m learning, all it takes is love and faith.

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Last and final

This is the last and final time I will explain our choice to homeschool. So don’t ask, judge, criticize or anything else that’s not positive. We are and will be homeschooling our children no matter how you may or may not feel about the subject. These are our kids. Not yours. You have or are raising YOUR children the way to want to. So leave us be.
Let me start off by thanking all who have supported us in this decision. It is truly a decision that wasn’t made lightly. It was thought about and discussed countless times before it was made. So thank you. Also I am no way trying to shame or put others down. This is OUR decision for OUR kids. We are doing what WE think is best for them, just as you are doing what you think is best for yours. Which as a parent that’s all you can do. These are OUR opinions and thoughts, for OUR circumstance. Which may be totally different from yours. So I do not want to see hate replies about how you work, or about your kids school. That works for your family and I support you and respect you in those choices as I expect the same in return.

Now that we got that out of the way. Goodness. If only we didn’t judge others I could eliminate a whole paragraph.

As I stated before this is the last time I’m explaining to those around us why WE choose to homeschool our children.
First lets just start off by saying no we didn’t make this choice because of religious reasons. While religion will be taught and is a part of our curriculums, it won’t be the over all basis. The curriculums we follow or put together will be very much math/science based. Yes Hubs and I are religious to a certain degree. But we believe religion is a journey a person has to take for themselves to figure out what works best for them. We don’t think its something that can be forced. We both have taken a long and hard journey separately and together to get where we are today. Yes we both believe in God. We both believe that he flows through everything we do today. But our belief with him is about LOVE. That is it. All he ever wanted was for us to believe in him and to love. Know that he loves us NO MATTER what we have done, or haven’t done. No matter who we are or who we aren’t. And through that love we are to love ALL the same way he does. The same way his son did. And that’s it. With all of that being said. Hubs and I know that God gave us a great power of thought. And with that thought came science. And even though we believe in the higher power, we believe way too much in science. We believe in the big bang theory, we know that evolution DID and still is happening. But unfortunately the world as we know it isn’t ran by science. Dude if it was, could you just imagine the differences? The wars that wouldn’t have been fought, the people who still would be alive. The freedoms we ALL could have. Its not though. Its ran by many different religions and beliefs. So that is why we will be teaching religion in our curriculums. Our children need to know the truth in all religions so that they are able to make the best decisions possible about their lives. We won’t be only teaching about Christianity. We will be hitting upon All religions, at least the best we can, with the information we can find.

So why then are we homeschooling? Because we have no faith in the education system as we know it today. It is too test driven. Too money driven. And I’m sorry but my child isn’t there to make your school district money. He is there to learn everything he can possibly learn to make him THE BEST citizen he can be. That’s not the route the school districts have taken. So lets just address some concerns.

“I don’t think you should homeschool because your children won’t be socialized very well.”

To that my response is yes they will. Lil gets to go to church every Sunday and he hangs with those kids. From there we go to different play areas that have many, many different kids his own age. I also have a really good friend who’s daughter is his age. He gets to hang out with, and if that isn’t good enough, I have spoken to several different homeschool groups that he will be joining as he gets older. That paired with sports, and other activities I’m pretty sure he will be plenty socialized.

“I’m a teacher and have had plenty of homeschool children. They are always behind and aren’t very well behaved. Their parents don’t really teach them anything. Then when they come to school Its such a hassle to get them up to par.”

First off who do you think I am? You must not really know ME. I graduated with an education degree. Granted it concentrated in Agriculture, but none the less it was still and education degree. And I wanted to become a teacher. Then I was educated myself, and realized it wasn’t like it was when I was growing up. You have been a teacher for 20 plus years. Things have changed. You didn’t have to worry about your job because lucky you, you had a tenure. So if your students failed tests, and didn’t make the district the money they needed, they still had a hard time firing you. I can’t bank that my children will get a teacher who is in the exact situation as you. Most likely they are going to get a teacher who is fresh out of college, and after 2008 they are very lucky to have a job. They are going to teach to the test. They NEED Their kids to pass the test so they have a job next year. That’s just the fact of the matter. They may be the best teacher in the world, but because of a lovely president…BUSH… They are going to follow every rule to keep their houses, and car payments. There is SO much more out there to learn than just what a test wants you to learn. After talking to a teacher that hasn’t been there as long, But I trust this teacher with my LIFE, and the knowledge I have, the students have NO think for yourself skills. They have to be told and hand held though every grade level. Because they learn and memorize what is on these test, and anything else is SO foreign to them. Then these same children grow up enter the work force, where my lovely hubs is a supervisor to them. And because of this hand holding, they had in school, they have to be hand held in the work force. They have to be told step by step what to do and how to do it. The are like little robots. I don’t want that for my children.
My hubs didn’t get to finish college, but he sure as heck didn’t get to where he is in that company by his hand being held. He took charge on his own. His boss knows if there is a problem, he will figure it out on his own, if they give him a project he will complete it with out their help. That’s what companies are looking for. They don’t want to be there helping you every step of the way. That’s the values I was taught. I didn’t get where I did in my job by my boss telling me what to every step. I saw the problem and worked to help fix it. If she had to tell me what to do every min, she would have never hired me. I want my children to have that. I don’t want them to be sheeple. I want them to take charge, I want their bosses to know they can be depended on. I want them to think out of the box so that maybe one day They will be the CEO’s. But with the way the Public schools are going that’s not what they will become.

Also if you really knew me you would know that I’m not in anyway lazy. My brain just doesn’t work that way. Yes I am a stay at home mom in all since of the word. I clean clean clean. I make sure the dogs, and my hubs are taken care of. I make sure the house is running smoothly, I cook, and did I say clean? I run all the errands that have to be done during the day when hubs is at work, I go to appointments and schedule appointments. So while hubs is at work he can concentrate on that. He doesn’t have to worry about what is going on here. All that being said my number one role, The thing I wake up everyday doing and thinking about before I go to bed, is to take care of our children. What are we going to do today, make sure its educational so that even if they don’t know it I know they are learning. Making sure they are happy, that they know that no matter what Mommy and Daddy love them and will always always be there for them. Making sure they know they matter, and that their thoughts and emotions mean something. As much as I would love to watch my soaps I don’t get to, because their needs come first. As much as I want to be some great blogger, or some big time leader or fighter for something, I’m not because their needs come first. And they will always come first. Besides that do you not know your son? He came from a money driven home. You all raised him that way. Do you honestly think he enjoys not being able to make payments on time? Not being able to own HIS own house? Not being able to own the newest tech gadget out there, or being able to play the new video game the day it comes out instead of a year after it came out. Not getting the sifi channel because we don’t have cable? Because after 10 years of knowing this man, I know for a fact that he SO wished our money situation was different. And It could be if I was working a job that paid. We sacrifice in order to make sure our children are cared for by us. His biggest pet peeve is when someone says to him “oh I wish we could do that” Because you could. Its all about what are you willing to give up for your children. Technically we cant, and if you lived the way we did, you would be running back to your jobs. But its what we do so that we insure our kids get what we think they need. So we do it. So do you think your son would let me sit here and do nothing all day, living the way we are living? I don’t think so.

I hope I have answered all your questions. If not too bad. We will and are going to be homeschooling our kids. And so far I think and I know you know we are doing a Damn good job at it. Lil is 3 years old working at a kindergarten grade level. So back the F up. Because I got this and won’t let my child fail. That’s not an option.

I have a dream

So today marks the 50th anniversary of Dr. King’s “I have a dream speech” and I know, as a black woman I should be excited about this.

I’m not.

As moving as his speech was, and the intent behind it all it does is make me sad. Sad that after all these years I feel like we still are far far far away from what Dr. King was talking about.
It’s 2013 and racism still is very much around. Little black boys and girls still can’t play with little white boys and girls. Not too long ago a little girl out with her father at a park we were playing at straight up told hubs and I that her mother said she wasn’t aloud to marry a black person. Her father said nothing.. And let’s not even bring up the Zimmerman case. It’s 2013 and instead of telling my son watch out because you could get hung because you are black, I get to tell him watch out because you could get shot only because you’re black… Not much has changed between the conversations each generation in my family has had to have since the speech.
You might question me because I happen to be married to a white guy, but what you don’t understand is the struggle it was to get here. To deal with prejudices on both sides of our family. To still have to really worry about rather hubs side of the family truly is gonna except lil and baby duck as one of their own. According to one person in that side “black people are up to something and we better watch out.” Told to my hubs at Christmas one year shortly after lil was born. Yes we were there. What the heck is that suppose to mean? And if he thinks like that is he going to be giving my kids and I the side eye every time we visit?
Dr. King preached about this dream of having this freedom, and equality, yet today I’m dreaming of that myself. To not be judged by the color of my skin. Just to have that would be a dream come true. For someone to actually have to get to know me before they decide rather or not they like me would be AMAZING! To be able to move to a nice neighborhood and not have the white lady send people down to check up on me to make sure I’m not gonna cause problems would be great.
yes this happened just last week Mrs. Rodriguez you get the side eye from me

So as great as his speech was as wonderful as this dream would be… We are not there yet. And all it’s done was left me to dream.

Dr. King’s I have a dream speech

How I feel in someone else’s words

This was written by a beautiful woman who I am SO lucky enough to call my friend. She has written exactly how I feel exactly what I ever wanted to say.

Please take a look.

Addy THANK YOU for you beautiful words. Thank you for putting the truth of the matter out there, and thank you for allowing me to share.

America’s not here for us

Guess I won’t be that mom

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Lil one and I went to the splash pad the other day. splash pad is a giant sprinkler, that has water shooting from all different kinds of directions. I like it because it’s hard for lil one to drown, but most of all its free. Just the gas to get there and back is all I’m paying.
Well when we got there, there wasn’t many people there. SCORE!! So lil one and I run around through it having a jolly good time.
As it gets later more people start to come. So I step back letting lil one play with the kids. Did I say lil one is 2 1/2?
So even though I’m not with him I’m with him.
Let me just stop a moment I promise this has to do with the story.
I have 3 siblings. Some step ones but manly the three. There was always someone to play with. My parents rarely played with us. Which to me is kinda sad. Some may say that’s why you have siblings, but it would have been nice. I do play with lil one. Call it the kid in me, maybe it was from my previous job? I don’t know? But I’m the mom that I guess isn’t the “cool” mom. I read some blogs that call moms like me out. I’m that mom that is playing on the playground with her kid. I mean have you been on some of these playgrounds? Way better than what we had as kids. The mom in the sand pit building things, and yes the mom running around the splash pad. My lil one loves it! He now expects it. Yelling “Mom play wit me! Play!”
I do encourage him to play with others. I “take mama breaks” so he has to play with them. And no I’m not a.. “Helicopter mom” why do we have all these labels? Why can’t we just be moms?
My boy is very friendly, and will ditch me in a heart beat when another kid “friend” as he calls it shows up. But if he’s had his fill of the other kids or they just don’t want to play with him. Which lets face they don’t always want to play with each other. I will play with him. I will run, jump, and participate in whatever imaginary thing he is doing. Period!
Ok back to the story…
Lil one has had his fill of the other kids and wants me to play. So we go back to running through the pad having a grand ol time…. Then I look up…. And realize I’m the only “adult” playing. Even those with kids much younger than lil one aren’t in the water.

Talk about self doubt moment.

So I start to distance myself. Maybe parents aren’t suppose to be in here? I go back read the rules… Doesn’t say anything about only certain ages. It does say no street clothes which some adults are wearing… why I don’t know you’re at a place that u get wet yet others do have on their bathing suites/itty bitty bikinis. And they aren’t in the water.. So what’s up? Yeah they are talking to other parents, or on their phones. And that’s when I realize, I’m not that mom. I don’t belong to a moms group. I like being free, don’t want to be obligated to be out. That gives me anxiety like no other. Talking to strangers is another. I don’t ever think ill be the mom sitting on the sideline socializing. Even if lil one has a sibling or two. As long as they want me to play, I’ll be there. Cause one day they will tell me to get lost.
So yes you WILL see me playing with the kids, and you can like me or not for it. Label me as “that mom” stink eye me if you need to that’s fine. I’m here for my lil one not for you.

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Mean kids

Lil one is 2 1/2 now and with everything that comes with the terrible twos he has hit a stage were he is realizing feelings, both his and others. He has started pouting. I know just wait til he’s older but, dang. He pouts when he can’t get his way, and he pouts when his feelings get hurt. That’s the worst. His feelings getting hurt.
We live in a condo and lucky not really us our back yard is the playground. yeah really sucks! Any who, there is this boy who is older than lil one. I wanna say he is 4 or 5. And this boy is very mean towards lil one. He won’t share his toys with lil one, even though he lets others play with his toys, he doesn’t want lil one playing with him on the playground and he’s constantly tattling on lil one about things that haven’t happened like lil one came into his room and took one of his toys when that couldn’t have possibly happened.
Now I’m learning just like lil one is. My parents never got in between any scuffles we had with our peers unless it was physical. And I agree with that to an extent. I just don’t know exactly what to do. I want lil one to be able to feel people out and learn his way around others. Want him to make friends on his own. But this boy is always mean to lil one which hurts his feelings. I mean head down and pout, hurt his feelings.
I tell lil one to go play with someone else, I explain that it’s not very nice that the little boy isn’t sharing. And how you should share with others. I tell him that the little boy doesn’t want to play with him so play with others.
Lil one doesn’t get that. He’s a VERY friendly boy. sometimes not to my benefit He calls everyone “friend”. And he wants to play with everyone.
So how do I explain to him that that’s not how everyone is when I really want to tell the little boy off.
How do I help him with these new hurt feeling?

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That’s his cousin. We say they are cousin/brothers. They are REALLY good friends.

Imagine the way

pure imagination
Growing up I can remember the imagination I had. It was so much fun! Now a days my imagination just gets me into trouble with worry but I guess that’s a part of growing up.
The cool thing is that my lil one has entered the imagination stage and it’s so much fun to watch and participate in. I’ve never lost my imagination. It’s how I come up with ideas for dinner, or crafts or school. I love it. I’m excited I get to bring it out of hiding.
Here is one of the things we did. I set up his Thomas carry set for the trains and had his cars go on the real train track. We also got out his Dino’s and we used them in our play.

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Yes that box is a make shift tunnel I made for him. But it’s not just all “boy” play around here we encourage him to play with whatever his heart desires. The cool part… My hubs is on board.

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He’s playing dress up in my clothes. I love it!
Have you seen dateline NBC’s what would you do?
Well here’s a clip from it from HLN
Barbie for a boy?
My hubs would totally buy it and I think that rocks!
I think it’s SO important that he explores all areas of imagination. The world doesn’t become so untouchable with a great imagination. We may not be able to take him places or show him everything, but because our imagination is SO grand, we can still provide him all the things he could ever ask for.
I don’t mind that he watches TV, or plays video games. I know what he’s watching and playing. All of which are educational. Besides lord knows I did my fair share of that growing up and I think I turned out pretty well. The thing is, our technology wasn’t as grand as it is now, so we still had to come up with things to entertain us. When I was young my friend and I were Olympic ice skaters and we got all dressed up and roller skated in the court, and we beat DeeDee and Luka everytime our imaginary competitors. Or we were on the gymnastics team and did our floor routine in the front yard. With string we tied to the grass in the shape of a huge square. yes DeeDee and Luka lost.
Now thinking about it, because of my very imaginative generation why we have this technology.
It’s not all book smarts, someone had to Imagine it first.
I want my son to have that kind of imagination, so far he’s on the right track. But unlike my parents I’ll be right there with him, encouraging and imagining every step of the way.
What cool things did you do when you were younger?