Wednesday, January 20, 2016

The End Of A Few Things

So right. This will be my last post on this blog. No more Teufel Hunden Farm.

It's a little sad. It's a little good. It's a little of everything.

It’s funny the way things happen. When you’re a young adult you think you have life all figured out and no one can tell you otherwise. I knew it all when I was 20 and decided to get married. I loved Micah. We had only known each other 4 months, but it didn’t matter. Because we knew how we felt.

But life is hard. And the babies came. And jobs were lost. And tensions were raised. And instead of working as a team, we drifted apart. And we yelled and fought and kicked our way through a rough marriage. It was never easy. Which in hind sight, is pretty pathetic. The rest was just our duty. Our duty to stay together for the sake of the kids we brought into this world. Our duty to keep our families happy. Our duty to fulfill our decision we made when we were far too young.

But I think after 13 years of marriage and 3 kids, we realized that we weren’t doing anybody any favors. Our kids shouldn’t have to grow up with parents who are still married for the sake of staying married but hate each other. So a good long while ago we decided to go our separate ways. You’d never know of course. We never let on that anything was wrong. I played the role of a loving wife with a smile stretched across my face for far too long. I only posted the good stuff on social media, never the ugly, because that's what was expected of me. But we live in a small town and people are asking questions, so there it is. There you have it. I’m not perfect. I don’t have the perfect fairy tale life. It’s been a rough few months. I have cried myself to sleep too many times. But I’m not crying over this anymore. It is what it is. Not every marriage makes it, and that doesn’t make me a bad person. It makes me human.

I have felt guilty for so long. Like if I could try just a little harder, maybe Micah would love me enough. We've been to counseling, I've read every book ever written on marriage, and we have stuck it out for more time than we should have. We were both too stubborn to actually do any fixing however. But at some point, you have to ask yourself, is what we're doing really the right thing? Don't our children deserve happy, fulfilled parents, even if that means they are no longer married?

I always said I would never do what my parents did to me, I would never just throw in the towel. I hated my mom for years for leaving my dad. But I get it now. I understand how you can grow apart from someone so much that you split up your family.

 Ultimately at this point it’s all about the kids. And Micah and I have made a thousand mistakes but we raised some pretty awesome kids, and I can say a lot about Micah, but I could never tell you he was a bad father. He loves our kids and I am completely confident that he will always be a part of their life. And we are going to be alright. It won't be easy, we have a long road ahead of us. I don't know how to change a tire or change my own oil. I don't know what to do if the pipes freeze on our farmhouse. I can't teach my sons how to shave their face when it's time, I don't know how to tie a tie. I don't want my daughter growing up thinking she should marry the first guy who smiles at her and then years later find herself alone.

But it's going to be alright. I'm a little scared and I'm a little fearful I'm completely destroying my children's future. But somehow it's going to be alright.

So to all you mamas out there whether you are happily married or widowed or single parenting your children, we're all in this together. Life probably threw us all a few curves. But instead of pointing the finger and judging each other, let's just accept that not all families will look the same and not all mamas are going to parent the same. I love my children. I'd do anything for them. And somehow, I know, that even after our separation, I can still be a kick ass loving parent. 

Monday, October 26, 2015


Today wasn't my best. It wasn't my shining moment. But maybe some days just aren't. I was running late this morning, per usual, I rushed my kids out of their warm cozy beds, I snapped at them when they didn't want my homemade English muffin and egg breakfast. I was short with my daughter when she asked me to put her hair in a bun (which takes infinitely more time than my go-to side braid). It was a Monday morning, that was for sure. And after school didn't get much better. My little man got an F on his assignment today (see my previous post), and we came home to cat puke in the living room and three tired, hungry, grumpy kids. And maybe a tired and hungry, grumpy mommy. Some days are just better than others I guess. My kids  weren't bad, they weren't, they really are great kids, and I love them to pieces, but today, well, today I lost my shit. I cooked dinner, I cleaned up after dinner, we checked homework, I unpacked and re-packed lunches and then I put a movie on for my kids and left them and their daddy for a bit while I ran through the woods behind our house. I'm not an evening worker-outer. I get up at 4 dark thirty to hit the gym so that I can have my evenings with my family, but tonight... I just needed half an hour.

And I felt guilty. The whole time I was running. Like what kind of a person am I? Why was I running when I could be cuddled on the couch with my kiddos? Why was I so stressed out today. I mean I just had a girls night out to myself, kid free a mere two days ago.

And maybe society is to blame. Maybe I feel so much pressure to keep it together and not lose my shit that on the rare occasion when I do, I feel like a failure.

But about twenty minutes in, I realized that taking a few minutes to myself doesn't make me a bad person. It doesn't mean I failed. It doesn't mean that tomorrow won't be better. It means I'm human, and sometimes I make mistakes. And it means that it's okay to lock yourself in the bathroom for 5 minutes every so often, or have a glass of wine after bedtime, or go run 3 miles at night, or go have a girls night every few months.

I'm not perfect and neither are you. We like to act like we are on social media, and that's okay. Nobody wants to put the messy parts of our lives out for all to see. But parenting is messy. And motherhood is messy, and being an adult is messy. It's okay to have off days. Really. But tomorrow is a new day. And I've already decided it's going to be better. I've also decided I'm going to stop for a 24 ounce coffee as opposed to my usual 16.

So here's to you mama. Life is rough, some days are crap, some days are awesome. But pick yourself up and put your big girl panties on after you've had a rough day and make the next one even better.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

This Parenting Thing...

I've said it before, and I'll say it again, this parenting stuff is not for the faint of heart. Just when I think I've got it figured out, I get thrown a curve ball. And maybe the good Lord is teaching me a lesson. Maybe I let pride get in the way, maybe I thought too much of my parenting skills, and this is my wake up call.

We made the decision to start kindergarten for my little guy last year when he was 4, about to turn 5. Even though others suggested holding him back one more year. But I said no, no, that I'd work with him and get him where he needed to be, but there lies part of the problem. I just assumed that he was like my other two children. We got through kindergarten, and this year first grade has been very difficult. Everyday his papers come home graded with less than stellar scores. I have struggled with becoming frustrated with him. I just couldn't understand what was so hard. My older two kids are scholars. They have always gotten straight A's, they have always been readers, they just get school.

But not my little guy. School isn't his thing. Give him a stick and a cape though, and he's content for hours. Throw a ball to him and he'll make a diving catch for it, give him a golf club and he'll make a great shot, put him in soccer and he'll pound down the field. Ask him to tell you a story, a
nd he'll create a masterpiece. Is he a great reader? No. Does he get good grades? Nope. But he has a personality that will knock your socks off. He is quick and witty and hilarious. He is loving and kind and compassionate. And this mama is learning to let go.

I'm learning to not freak out, to not compare my children, to not focus on the bad, but dwell on the good. Are my children the same? No, but do I love them more than anything? You betcha.

And maybe this is a life lesson for me too. People are quirky and different. But that's okay. I need to learn to meet them where they're at and love them for what they can do and not what they can't.

I'm going to work with my sweet boy and read to him more and help him in any way I can. But I'm also going to praise him for all that he does right. He's 6. He'll be okay. I'll be okay. It'll all be okay.

Just another humbling day in the neighborhood. Good night friends.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

The Journey Begins

Sorry for the hiatus again, it's been busy, busy around here. Our cow carrot is huge now, but she still thinks she's teeny tiny and that Rhubarb (a goat) is her mother. When it comes time to butcher her, well, let's just say, I don't want to be there. We just butchered a hog so our freezer is happy and full and we pretty much are eating our way through all the sausage. I have taken a break from crochet and painting for awhile since my kiddies are on summer break and I am trying to enjoy every darn minute with them. Come fall though, I will add more things to my shop again, and my fingers will happily be crocheting away... 

Now onto the good stuff, in my last post, which was a whopping 3 months ago, I mentioned I was doing a fitness challenge. Let's just say the ladies I did it with were awesome, the leader was awesome, the support was awesome. Me awesome? Not so much. Sure I got up and worked out here and there, but I really slacked off, and even when I did work out, it was just barely and any progress I made, I would eat my way through brownies and cookies to undo it, so in the end I lost only two pounds. But the last week of May my friend Alex asked me if I wanted to join a gym and I said hey sure, why not? Which is a big deal. I have never been one to put myself out there like that. I have always been pretty self conscience and so the idea of moving and shaking and having things jiggle around and sweat in places that I didn't think ladies sweat in, well it always terrified me. But over the last few years, I have become really comfortable with myself. I'm sure it comes with age and just not caring what people think anymore, but my husband has always been my biggest fan and has helped me though all my insecurities. So going to the gym, yah I can do that. It was when I went up the stairs to tuck my kids in and found myself completely out of breath, that I realized just how out of shape I was. Sure I'd love to squeeze into a bikini again, but more importantly, I want to be healthy. I want to be around to see my grandkids. I want to be able to run with my kids. I want to set a good example for them so that they don't grow up with all the baggage I did.

I'll never forget it. It was the end of my 8th grade year and we were in PE, and some kid, who will go unnamed, called me Sarah thunder thighs. At the time I laughed it off. But it stuck with me. I was 5'9" and 135 pounds. And in my mind, he basically called me fat. So the next year as a freshman in high school I refused to do PE altogether. We had to swim, and I wouldn't do it. I would say I forgot my bathing suit or I wasn't feeling well. My teacher told me I was going to fail, but I didn't care, I was not putting these thighs in a bathing suit in a co-ed PE class. So here's the thing. Kids are mean. Kids say things before thinking about them. The boy bullied me and bullied me and made me feel awful about myself my entire freshman year. And I let him. I wish I could back in time being the me that I am now and tell him just to piss off. It is my hope and prayer that I raise kind and loving kids, but that my children also are able to stand up for themselves. There is going to come a time when someone will say something crappy to my daughter and I hope she has enough love for herself to not let it get to her, to not allow someone else to dictate how she should feel about herself. And maybe punch him in the face. I'd be okay with that. She's got two awesome brothers who I'm pretty sure will defend her to the end as well, but I want to raise a strong woman who loves herself no matter what size she is.

And that really is the thing. No two women  are built the same. Sure I know that now, but I didn't know that has a teenager and I compared myself to the little girls bouncing around. I wasn't one of them. And I'll never be teeny tiny, and that's okay. I had to figure out how to be okay with me no matter what the scale said. So yes sure I am going to the gym in the morning while my family is still asleep, and yes sure I am more careful about what I eat, but it is purely because I want to be healthier. No matter what the scale says.

So let's try and be kind. Let's watch what we say to others. Let's not be so judgmental all the time.Let's not judge the big girl on the treadmill in the gym because you have no idea what she's going through, you have no idea how far she's come. Let's lift up and encourage other women and not try to bring them down. Let's not let stupid, insignificant people ruin our day. Let's be better than that.

There is so much negativity on social media these days. Let's just stop all this nonsense and accept people the way they are, and let's choose love. Always choose love.

So this is me. A month into my fitness journey. I could point out all the flaws in this picture, but I won't do that. My kids might hear me. So I'm going to enjoy the ride and make the most of it and not worry about how many squats the person next to me can do, how many miles they can run, or what the numbers read on the scale. I'm going to be happy with me right here and now. You should try doing the same. Happiness is a good place to be.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Spring Is Near {Thankful Thursday}

Holy crap today was lovely. The weather was amazing. The kind of day you file away in your memory as one of the good ones. It was nice to get outside and not freeze or step in mud or snow or freeze your tail off. It was just a simple, perfect day. And I am so thankful for that.

Rhubarb loves the weather.

The chickens love the weather.

My kids, well, duh, they love the weather.

And me, I love the weather too and it inspired me to sit down and blog. After my sweet friend reminded me last night that it had been awhile (love you Renee!) Life with kids on a farm is busy as usual. Basketball season has wrapped up, soccer is about to begin, and I have put down the crochet hook for awhile. I have also taken the plunge and joined a little online fitness group. It is running for 90 days beginning on March 2nd and going until Memorial Day. Although I was a little bit of a slacker and didn't start until March 4th. Oops. We are just suppose to post when we work out and maybe what we eat. It's a way for fellow busy moms to stay accountable to each other and help support one another. I have no desire to be a super model and refuse to have a scale in my house, but I do think I can take better care of myself and my family by cooking more healthy meals and incorporating more fitness into our lives. We shall see how it goes.

And one change I love is coconut water. I mean it's delightful. Who knew?

And with the change in weather, I am hoping to get out and start walking and I am absolutely looking forward to getting my hands in the garden and being able to eat from our own backyard again. I feel very blessed and thankful to live where we live and have the ability to do what we do. I remember as teenager living in an apartment in San Diego and just thinking that that was not the life I wanted. I never imagined I'd be homesteading in Virginia, but I am so grateful the good Lord led me to Micah and we ended up here. We don't have a perfect life and we don't have it all together, but we are thankful for all that we do have. So until next time blogger land, I'll be getting my tail in shape and I'll be staying thankful.

~ Sarah ~