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The Life Of A Blogger Child

| On
Thursday, October 08, 2015
I started blogging when my oldest was eight months old. Of course, I started for the same reason everyone else keep my friends and family up to date on my special little snowflake of a firstborn. He was super special and don't anyone ever forget it!

And then I had another and then I realized I wasn't the first and only mother to ever create life and many had come before me and many would come after and even though in my mind, my spawns are amazing and special and groovy, their 5th snotty nose of the week is probably only cute to me. (And let's be honest here - gag me.)

But then, more people than just my mom and sister started reading my blog and it seemed like overnight offers and freebies and sponsor-related opportunities came rolling in. And I have no shame in admitting I'll accept almost anything thrown my way. Give me all the freebies!

Anyway. With great power comes great responsibility, so I had to up my blogging game. Which meant I had to start taking lots of photo shoots. Of myself. With my little handheld camera on timer mode.

When you spell it out like that, it kinda seems a tad pathetic, doesn't it...

At any rate, I did it. I do it. I take photos of myself and then put them on my blog. And if you know anything at all about picture taking, you know you have to take upwards of 60 or so in one sitting just to get a good shot. Hey, I don't make the rules, nor did I give myself a very unfortunate nose that only looks good from very specific angles. (Thanks for that Good Shepherd, by the way.)

I usually take my self-inflicted photoshoots outside. The lighting is better, there is prettier scenery and my youngest is almost always outside playing, so I don't feel like I'm out there all by myself which makes me feel a little less pitiful. And if a neighbor drives by or walks outside to water their lawn and happens to look over at me, I can just act like I'm being an involved mother taking photos of her little boy at play.

As if.

Anyhow, after I would take my photos, I would go inside, load my SD card onto my computer and start the painful process of choosing which perfectly curated picture would make the majority of readers think I had a supreme, perfect life. (Didn't you know? Bloggers are so much better than you.)

The first time I noticed it, I chuckled to myself a little and kept scrolling through, obviously thinking, "ew, that's not a very flattering photo." What am I referring to? As I mentioned earlier, my youngest is almost always outside playing. I figured he would just continue playing and not even really notice my stellar example of how not to be a raging narcissist by taking hundreds of selfies.

Except I think he totally notices...

and notices...

and notices...

and then it starts getting pretty ridiculous...

the window, really? And to think I thought he was safely inside watching Tom & Jerry.

and just when you think he's nowhere in sight...

Oh there he is.

I realize by showing all these photo bombing outtakes that I am also showing some terrible photos of myself that never made the carefully crafted blog world cut, but I'm here for more than just the free booze and chunky scarves (ok not really) but I did think it would be nice of me to put a little PSA out there for those of you fellow bloggers who have little kids running around and/or are thinking of joining the ranks...

Blogger kids:

they're always watching!

Oh and also, start saving up for their future therapy sessions.

They're gonna need 'em. 

Meet Dude

| On
Tuesday, October 06, 2015

Oh my gosh, I almost failed on my previous declaration that I am going to blog every single day. EVEN THE WEEKENDS! Seriously, it's day one of that promise and I almost didn't make it. Did I still make it in time for you east-coasters? I can never remember who is ahead of who, and by how many hours. I'm sure I've already failed the New Zealanders (isn't it tomorrow there already?)...but chances are high no one in New Zealand even reads my blog so I should be safe. 

Anyway. I got a dog.

His name is Dude.

Dude Garritt Smith, to be precise. 

He's cute, already potty trained and is scared to the heavens of our cat. 

See, Dude was originally rescued from the pound by my mom. Who then immediately took him over to my sister Rachels house to "show her the new puppy." Except she ended up leaving Dude there and my sister raised him for the next six years. And he's an awesome dog. He had a great time with my sister and her three girls, but Rachel felt Dude needed a little more attention, more room to run and play and get all his little doggy energy out.

So now I lock Gunner, Colt and Dude outside for hours at a time. And seriously though, do the pictures not look like he - and my kids - are having an amazing time? And we're close enough that Rachel can bring her girls over anytime and they can see their doggy Dude whenever they want.

It's a funny thing, dogs are. I swore when Savi died that I didn't ever want another dog. It was too painful and sad and why would I want to go through that again, eventually losing a dog, a member of the family? But I guess, much like childbirth, you forget the hard, painful parts and remember the happy amazing parts. And then you want to do it all over again.

I realized I really missed having a dog around. Having a dog to hang out with and keep you company when you're home alone. Having a dog to snuggle with and bond with and create new memories with. I'm sure I'll cry buckets the day Dude goes to doggy heaven, but for now, I'm going to focus on the good parts. Which, aren't they all good parts when it comes to our four legged angels?

Welcome home Dude.

Life Update and Blogging Goals

| On
Sunday, October 04, 2015

Alrighty so I've decided I'm going to blog every single day for the entire month of October...even the weekends gasp! I know I'm a bit behind (being that it's the 5th already) but I need to commit to something when it comes to blogging. For a long while there I was totally not into it. I still kinda feel totally not into it but I want to feel into it so I figure forcing myself to blog every single day (did I mention even the weekends?!) might get me back into the groove. I mean, that's what they say about sex, right? The less you have it, the less you want it, the more you have it, the more you want it? How much different can blogging be...

so every single day. I can't even imagine how ridiculous and pointless some of the posts will be but just getting something on paper (er blogger) is better then nothing, right? Ok sure...

My kids are back in school. Gunner is in first grade (still having a super hard time with it, not gonna lie) and Colt is in Kindergarten. I originally signed him up (and stood in line for two hours) just to get him into AM kindergarten and the same public school Gunner was attending, but at the twelfth hour decided to put Colt back in the private school they had both attended last year. It kills me that my kids are getting older. I kid you not when I say that I would give anything and love nothing more than for my kids to stay 3 and 5 years old forever. Granted, that would also put me at 31 and not a day older forever, so that may have something to do with it, but still. How many times can I lament "I want a baby!" before one magically appears in my non-functioning uterus.

As for the working world, I moved my office home for the summer and now that school is back in sesh, I spend most of my working hours at the actual office. However it's nice to have a second station at home if I want to, say, spend the morning volunteering at my kids' school and then come home and work or say, come home right after dropping my kids at school, take a nap for four hours and then get my work done.

Remember back when I said I was going off my meds for good? I'm happy to report that I'm still free and clear. I haven't been back on or attempted to get back on my anxiety helpers since. HOWEVER...let me tell you it has been a battle. So many times where I was thisclose to calling my doctor, begging him to get me back my security blanket. But every single time, so far, I have held out. I talked myself down, telling myself the moment will pass. And it always does, until the next moment arises.

And at times it sucks so very bad. Many times, it sucks bad. I get it the most when I'm driving. I used to have to pull over to the side of the road because I felt I was going to pass out at the wheel, and I did pull over often. I remember when I lived in a tiny town in Oregon and worked at a ski lodge. Every morning, I would have to drive to the lodge in the snow. I was never scared of driving in the snow per say...I was scared more so of everyone else driving in the snow. I trusted my driving and abilities, it was everyone else's driving and abilities I didn't trust. So, I would pull over at every headlight I saw in my rearview. It was just something about the oncoming presence of another driver behind me, in the snow, and I got the anxiety ridden feeling that I couldn't go at my comfortable pace and I would literally pull over to the side of the road thirty times on my 8 mile drive to work.

I still feel it, but I talk myself through it. It's all I can do, besides going back on my anxiety medication. I get it bad with driving, but I also get it bad at night. I lock the doors (all five of them) and then check and re-check them every single night. Then I usually re-check them one more time for good measure. I also check on my kids upstairs in bed at least three times a night. Noises scare me and I'd be lying if I didn't say I pour one extra drink just to help me sleep. Hey, we all have our demons, right? Mine just happen to give me a good time and transport me to a happier place.

I've gotten the question a few times on my instagram account (username @ravenasmith), what am I doing to lose weight and look thinner? And I wish I could give you an answer! Besides, like, being totally stressed out from anxiety and not having an appetite and drinking my dinner...because other than that I've been eating pizza and worrying my way into a size smaller.

These life updates aren't all bad news! I got a new dog! (check back tomorrow for all the details on Dude Garrett Smith) and I discovered Zulily...who just now discovers Zulily??! Seriously, Zulily has saved my life! (However I kinda suspect Zulily has just temporarily relieved me of my constant anxiety...since when does spending money not help with inner personal issues? Exactly.)

In other news, I'm pretty done being a blonde. I say that now, but I think I kinda mean it. I'm turning my weight room area into a yoga studio and I still eat Cheetos when my husband isn't looking. I'm reading an amazing book series (post to come soon also) and seriously I want to lick and eat and make love to my books. But like I said, post to come later.

Other then that, it's a Monday and I think we can all agree that Mondays are pretty stupid.

See you back on the much better cousin known as Tuesday.

Differences Between My Husband and I

| On
Tuesday, September 29, 2015

I know to outsiders, it may seem as if my husband and I have the most amazing, loving, supercharged harmonious relationship ever. I mean, I shave his back and he gives me enemas, how much closer can you get?


But I swear on our awkward joint vlogs that we aren't perfect. I know my flawless looking weave and Rob's manscaping say otherwise, but we aren't Nick and Jessica ala the MTV glory days. We're more like Britney and K-Fed on meth. Proud of it, may I add, but hot methes none the less.

We have our good points (his money, my boobs) but we also have a few variances, such as...

An inherent difference between my husband and I is that he cares - a LOT - what others think. And neither is better or worse than the other, but I don't care a lick. (As I've previously stated in depth here, so we don't really have to get into that just right now.)

For example: Rob always has an issue when he perceives someone doesn't like him. To be fair, most people really do like him and he's a pretty stand up guy. In other news, he always has a problem logging onto our Chase credit card account online. Like, every single freakin' time he tries to log on, it denies his request. He enters the correct username and password (or so he says) yet one thousand percent of the time, no bueno. It rejects his request and he gets so upset. Like, he literally acts like I do when the cashier at 7-11 is the fifth person that day to tell me I look just like Kirsten Dunst. 

I was at my office the other day when he called me on the phone in despair because the computer once again didn't recognize his most likely incorrect inputting of the password. He called me up to bitch and complain that "why does this always happen to me?!"

I responded with, "I don't know Rob, maybe the computer just doesn't like you."

And just like that, with the snap of a band, he shot back, "please Raven, everyone loves me. There isn't a person on this planet that doesn't love me."

And he said it with vigor. Anger. Distress. Pure authentic emotion. 

He was completely offended that I would dare suggest an electronic piece of plastic didn't view him in a positive light. I'm not even kidding...I had to hang up the phone on him because he was so distressed by my dismissal of him as a human being because the damn laptop didn't take kindly to his advances. 

Hey Rob, my left sock doesn't like you. In fact it called you names that I can't dare repeat right now. I don't know what you did to piss it off, but this totally soft fuzzy inanimate object thinks you are literally one of the preposterous humans alive.

And I kid you not, that would offend him. I guarantee he would reply with, "please Raven, everyone loves me, There isn't a person on this planet that doesn't love me."

A frickin' sock.

Something else that sets us apart is Rob doesn't snack while cooking and preparing a meal. I'm talking he doesn't even lick the spoon to get a taste for what's to come! This was probably one of our biggest hurdles we had to cross - and the reason I almost called off the marriage - because who doesn't snack whilst cooking a feast?! I grew up and lived my precious life eating a meal before the meal just from snacking!

So now, I sneak the food when Rob is the one cooking. Not even kidding, my stealth skills have gotten pretty incredible. I snatch a piece of bacon staying warm in the oven when his back is turned slicing the cheese. I snatch a piece of cheese when he's checking on the bacon in the oven. And I drink straight from the bottle late at night when he's sleeping so there's no one there to tell me I have a problem.

There's more, too.

I want another baby. He doesn't. Rob gives second - and third - and fourth chances. I cut you off at the slightest hint of betrayal. Rob hates tattoos, I have nine, with plans of like, oh, 13 more. He is a cheery piece of sunshine in the morning. I am the most crude, vile expletive ever in the early hours. He thinks most people are good, I'm positive all of ya'll are satan's redheaded stepchildren.

He's 50, I'm super young and taut-skinned.

And yet...we still barely make it work.

Pssshh. Show me a couple that doesn't have any differences and I'll show you a vodka bottle that hasn't been popped in my freezer.