Sunday, December 26, 2010

SHOPPING TRIP

 My stepdaughter and I went shopping today and had a really good time. We found some good after christmas sales which made it even better. She is learning to shop for bargains. That makes it that much more fun. After shopping we went out to eat,then to Starbucks for coffee and hot chocolate. Starbucks is our place for having good conversations and learning more about each other.We will be starting our bible study soon which we are looking forward to . I will post some of what we learn in the bible study on my blog.Continuing the Journey!



HOPE GOING SHOPPING


HOPE AFTER COMING HOME FROM SHOPPING

THE DAY AFTER CHRISTMAS

This morning in SC we woke up to a beautiful winter wonderland of snow! I loved watching the snowflakes fall. It reminded me of how God made each of us different and unique. There is no one just like you! Just like there are no snow flakes exactly alike.Our God is so awesome in all his creations!                                       






Saturday, December 25, 2010

MERRY CHRISTMAS-2010

Looking back over this Christmas day,I have such a feeling of thankfulness. This has been a wonderful holiday with my family. We have had lots of laughs and a time of being together. It's nice to slow down at this time of the year for the things in life that are the most important. First,reflecting on the birth of our Savior. I watched a movie tonight called "Christmas with a capital C" that was such a good movie about this and living life with a heart like Christ. Family is also so important. I am thankful for my  family who is there for each other regardless of the circumstances. That means alot. What a special end to our Christmas day of 2010-SNOW tonight!!!!

Friday, December 24, 2010

CHRISTMAS EVE 2010

LOTS OF GIFTS,DELICIOUS FOOD,AND BEST OF ALL FAMILY FUN!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

GRADUATIONS

This post is a mom's journey this time instead of a stepmom. I attended my youngest son's graduation today from college. My oldest son also recently graduated. I am so very proud of both of them. I was a single mom for many years and it is a joy being their mom. They have both grown into men that I am proud of. I love you both!! Can't wait to see what is next-looking forward to it all!   MOM

Monday, December 13, 2010

WHO WRAPPED THE GIFTS?

I received a great gift yesterday and today-my stepdaughter wrapped all the Christmas gifts!! This was such a big help! She actually liked doing this. I hope this will be a yearly tradition.This is photo's of Hope's tree she decorated. She is quite creative.Looking forward to Christmas!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

STEPMOM'S CHRISTMAS WISH LIST

After doing some research and through some of my own experiences, I have a stepmom's christmas wish list.Holidays can be stressful because they are important functions for families. Christmas and step families together can produce anxiety.Different situations can produce different types of stress.You have multiple home,multiple parenting,multiple grandparenting and in-laws with a step family. Stepmom's often feel the brunt of everything during the holidays because the planning often falls on her.My step daughters mother is deceased so I do not have to deal with some of the complexities during the holidays. When you are dealing with a biological mom,my advice to you during the holidays would be to be flexible,good communication,don't stress over the small stuff and make sacrifices when needed.

STEPMOM'S CHRISTMAS WISH LIST

1.Educate yourself-read a good book on step parenting and learn about the experiences of women with step children and about couples in remarriage.This way you will understand what I 'm going through and be able to listen and speak to me in new ways.
2.We are not a first family so we are not necessarily going to look,act or feel like one.To understand this would be a great gift.
3.Ask what I need over the holidays.Invite me for coffee,out to lunch,or offer to keep the children. Help me remember who I am-sometimes women partnered with a divorced dad gets so consumed in the role of step mom that they forget they are also a daughter,sister,friend,coworker,etc.
4.Try to listen without judging and understand that step parenting is sometimes complicated.
5.Please tell me sometimes that you appreciate what I am doing as a stepmom and you've given me a gift that I'll treasure for years.
In closing,remember stepmom's, to spend time during this Christmas season with the ONE who gives you strength in times of stress and seek his wisdom in all that you do. Also, I want to thank my sweet,understanding and wonderful husband who gives me so much support and is by my side in all that I do.Continuing the journey! Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

THANKSGIVING DAY

I am writing this a few days after Thanksgiving,but that's ok. We had a great thanksgiving with my husband's family. It was great to see everyone. There are some family members that we have not seen in almost a year. It seems as though we all have very busy lives with jobs, family,and other obligations.We often miss out on just being together with family and getting to spend time together and just talk to each other. It doesn't matter what you talk about,but it is important to talk to form relationships or to build on the relationships you already have.We need to put away our cell phones and IPODS and sit face to face with each other and just TALK.Whether it's your spouse,your child,brother,sister,parent,or friend. My stepdaughter and I did this just this morning.We woke up early and went to Cracker Barrel for breakfast. We were there at 630 am. For a 15 year old teenage girl that was awesome that she even wanted to get up and go at that hour of the morning.We have done this on several occasions.We sat by the warm fire,ate french toast and just talked. That was FUN even at that hour of the morning.We are growing our relationship-That is GOD at work! Continuing the Journey!

Friday, November 19, 2010

TRADITIONS

I LOVE Thanksgiving!!!! With Thanksgiving day a few days away,I think about the many things that I have to be thankful for. I am so very thankful for my family-my husband, my 2 sons, my stepdaughter, my daughter-in-law, my parents,sister ,brother and their families,and my inlaws and 2 sister-in-laws and many neices and nephews. I have the BEST family. My 2 sons are graduating from college and I am very proud and thankful.I am thankful for our health and jobs.I am thankful for God showing and teaching me how to grow a stepfamily.With God's guidance and alot of prayer,great things are happening.A few days ago my stepdaughter ask if we were going to do a tradition this year that we started the year she came to live with us-each of us would take a turn picking a movie to all watch together once a week during the month of December.At the age of 15, I wasn't sure she would want to continue this,but this has become a tradition to her.Traditions play a huge role in holidays. When family traditions are continued,they reinforce family identity.For my stepdaughter,this is huge. In stepfamilies you should usually create new traditions slowly while holding on to old ones. My stepdaughter and I are creating some new traditions. We have done 1 bible study together and will be starting another one soon. She has her own Christmas tree in her room to decorate on her own with her choice of ornaments.Holidays can be stressful times,but as a stepmom remember to keep your eyes on Christ and follow his example and this WILL have an impact on your stepchild. Continuing the Journey! Happy Thanksgiving !!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

ENCOURAGING MOMENTS

As a stepmom,I try very hard to continue building my relationship with my stepdaughter(Hope).She has been living fulltime with her dad and me for almost 3 years.A few months ago I started having some "encouraging moments".Encouraging moments are things that show me we are getting to know each other better and becoming closer.This kind of close relationship develops with time and ALOT of PRAYER.Some encouraging moments for me are that my stepdaughter loves my blog. She even has my blog on her list of favorites.She also has a photo of me on her facebook page.How cool is that!! She has complimented me on things like my cooking.She has even written me a few personal letters thanking me for things I have done for her. I feel that God is looking at our step family saying "Let me keep showing you how good things can be".Continuing on the Journey!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

A NEW DESIGN FOR BLOG

I love my new look for my blog. Thanks so much to HOT bliggity BLOG and Casey for all her work and creativity in the design. It looks FABULOUS!!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

BUILDING A RELATIONSHIP WITH YOUR STEPCHILD

My stepdaughter and I recently completed a bible study together entitled ' A Young Women's Guide to Making Right Choices' by Elizabeth George.This was an awesome bible study that I would recommend to any mother of a teenage girl. I can't say enough good about it. My stepdaughter and I would do the bible study together weekly and discuss the topic for that week. This led to many interesting conversations. We usually went to Starbucks to have the bible study.We even had a few people stop and comment on what we were doing which I thought was neat.In doing this study,I learned alot about what teenage girls are going through today. Also,I feel this has brought us closer together. As some of you know, Hope's mother passed away several years ago and it is really important for a girl to have a female role model. I pray that I have a heart like God to share with my stepdaughter in life's ups and downs.I know that God is in control, not me and  I know that I am right where he wants me to be.To be honest,when Hope first came to live with me and her dad fulltime, I was unprepared and overwhelmed by such a sudden change and responsibility.  In saying that ,what I have learned is that if God does not change a situation, he will surely change us.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

CONTINUING ON THE JOURNEY OF DRIVING

As a follow up to my last post ,my stepdaughter and I are continuing the driving lessons. The more she drives ,the better she gets. She has started to conquer the main roads and highways with some reservations but improving each time. This can be compared to being a stepmom or should I say learning to be a stepmom. The more you "practice" ,the better you become.The more you do together and get to know each other, the better you are at being a stepmom. When you begin to drive down the roads of life with them, it is on this long journey that you will experience many twist, turns and detours. You will also experience many joys, triumphs and accomplishments. Being a stepmom also comes with some reservations at times-wondering if you are doing things the "right way" at the "right time". Sometimes as a stepmom you feel as though you don't quite measure up to some of the worlds expectations. I continually look to my Heavenly Father for wisdom, guidance and strenghth to be a godly stepmom. Without him, I would drive down many dead end roads of life.I want to conquer the many highways of life with My God as the driver.AMEN!!

Monday, September 6, 2010

DRIVING LESSONS DOWN THE ROAD OF LIFE

My stepdaughter got her drivers permit a few weeks ago and I have been teaching her how to drive. Raising a stepdaughter is much like learning to drive. With both you have to have a huge dose of patience. You encounter many hills you have to go up and down with learning to drive and with raising a stepchild. Sometimes you make a wrong turn and go down the wrong road with both situations. You pray to our Almighty God for strenghth in either of these situations. I am really enjoying teaching my stepdaughter how to drive. It has really been fun and has allowed us to get to know each other even more. I feel that you have to have somewhat of the same attitude with raising a stepdaughter. I am enjoying raising my stepdaughter. She is changing into a beautiful, smart and confidant teenager. I strive to teach her to appreciate and enjoy each new day God gives to us. I want her to know that God is her strenghth daily and he will guide her as she drives down the road of life. I pray that God will mold me into a blessing for her. On this drive and journey I give my God all the glory, without him I would be nothing. Thanks for the abundant life you have given me!!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

GRIEF COUNSELOR- PART OF BEING A STEPMOM

When you became a stepmom, you also became a grief counselor.You may not have realized that this is part of your role as a stepmom, but it is.Stepchildren are grieving children due to the losses they have experienced in their lives.Losses due to divorce,loss of security,death of a parent and many other things.My stepdaughter lost her mother at the age of 12. She is now 15 and I am amazed by her growth and strenghth as I have daily watched her.I know that she is coming to terms with the reality of her loss and that life does not always seem fair.I know her sorrow lingers.Grief is a journey,not a destination.I am watching her take this journey.As a stepmom,you need to show compassion and understanding.Be there for them.You can not fix their pain and sadness from their losses,but God can.My heavenly Father is no stranger to grief or loss.I pray that God will help me to be a stepmom with love and compassion for my stepdaughter.That God will mold my heart to be like his so that I can be a blessing to my stepdaughter.Thank you God for helping me daily with my journeys of being a stepmom!!

Monday, August 2, 2010

A LOT GOES INTO BEING A STEPMOM

Stepfamilies are becoming the most common type of families in America. There are many issues that come with living in a stepfamily.As a stepmom, the job is much more complex than I imagined.I want to be able to influence my children and stepdaughter in a godly way. Being a stepmom is a difficult role at times. Here are some things to remember as you go along your stepmom journey that may help. Don't expect everyone to be happy all the time. Learn to let go of things that you can't control. Learn about normal stepfamily issues so you can make sense of circumstances that you are going through. stepmoms need to be flexible when possible. Stepmoms need to accept that being a stepmom is unfair and lonely at times. Stepmoms need to know that she may not see the fruits of her sacrifices until the children become adults. this process takes time and patience and alot of PRAYER.Know that you will never become the real mom to your stepchild.It's OK -don't go nuts trying to. In closing , learn to be warm ,trusting and available to your stepchildren, then hopefully your relationship will slowly grow for you and your stepchildren.I continue to pray for GOD to show me how to be the kind of stepmom he wants me to be.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

PRAYER

Today I want to share with you an acronym I developed for the word PRAYER. I believe that there is great power in our prayers to GOD.GOD is constantly at work in our lives every day all day long. He is in control of all our circumstances whatever they are. There are days as being a stepmom that I want to give up, but I came to the point that I knew I was totally where God wanted me to be. So all you stepmoms out there, let's hang in there and PRAY ,PRAY AND PRAY SOME MORE.gIVE THANKS TO God for all your circustances.

P-PRAYER PURIFIES US

R-REPAIRS US

A-AFFIRMS US IN OUR LOVE FOR GOD

Y-YIELDS US TO GOD

E-ENERGIZES US

R-REJOICES THAT WE HAVE AN AWESOME LIVING GOD TO SERVE WHO PROVIDES US WITH WHAT WE NEED AT EXACTLY THE RIGHT MOMENT! HOW AWESOME IS THAT!!!!!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

GOD'S PERFECT PLAN

This is a blog about stepmoms and step parenting. I am no expert by any means. I am learning

daily through trial and error and most importantly I am being guided daily by my awesome

Heavenly Father. I am the mother of 2 son's (25 and 27). I remarried 4 years ago and was

an every other weekend stepmom for the first year. After being married for 1 year and 4

months ,my every other weekend step daughter became my full time step daughter. This

happened very suddenly without any advance notice. At the time of this writing my step

daughter is a 15 year old teenager. Being a stepmom is a journey with struggles ,joys, and

hopes. As I travel this journey, God is my guide. He promises to give me strenghth from

moment to moment , day to day. Thank you God !! I give God all the glory for all that he

is teaching me. In closing, I know this is God's perfect plan for me!!

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