To My Friend With The Broken Heart…

 

Hey beautiful,

I see you standing there; your arms crossed tightly across your chest as the tears stream down your red cheeks. I see you wipe them away and attempt to smile despite the immense amount of emotional pain you are in. You are gazing off into the distance; replaying in your mind memories of the time you and him spent together and shaking your head in disbelief.

Yesterday you two were sitting on the couch together; snuggled under the blankets watching a movie and today – today it’s suddenly and surprisingly…Over.

The future you had envisioned has disappeared right before your eyes; snatched away from your grasp and you are left here questioning everything you’ve ever believed to be true. You are asking me what you did to deserve this. You say you feel broken; and are wondering why you aren’t enough for him. What could you have done differently to make him want to stay. I need you to hear me when I say this; nothing – there is nothing you could have done differently.

Because he was not the one for you…

You are special. You are unique. Your eyes, your nose, your hair, your laugh and your smile – they are all so special. God has created you perfectly. He knew what he was doing when he made you; and he knew that one day; you would be with the one who loved you completely and unconditionally.

You are a treasure worth cherishing and unfortunately for him – he didn’t recognize the gift he had been given in you. His rejection- is God’s protection.

Him letting you go; is Gods way of freeing you up so that his grander plan for you can unfold. This man was a chapter in your life – but this is not how your story will end.

You will need to experience the pain and sadness, as you mourn the memories and comfort that came along with the familiarity of that relationship. It will be hard as hell; and there will be moments of weakness – but I need you to remember that there is a much bigger picture here; one more beautiful than you can begin to imagine. It has been hand painted by the Lord himself to perfection. This pain won’t last forever; and once it is over you will look back and realize that the end of this chapter- was the beginning of the best one yet.

You value is not measured by a mans inability to see it. Your self worth is not defined by whether or not you are someone’s “Woman Crush Wednesday”. It starts from within; and once you recognize your worth-it will make it much more difficult for you to give it away to someone who can’t afford it.

This life is so short my friend; and you should never have to question someone’s love for you on a regular basis. The right man will cherish you. He will spend each day ensuring that you know how special you are to him. You were placed on this earth not to be betrayed and taken advantage of; but to thrive- to love and to be loved. You are strong; you are beautiful; and you are worthy of that love. You deserve that kind of love.

I’m not saying you should move on right away. What I am saying, is that you should envision moving forward. It’s okay to feel numb, sad and weak – but don’t live there. Grieving is a process of healing and coming to terms with the loss of what could have been; while adjusting to how things are now. He was a huge part of your life; and it will take some time to get past this – there are no deadlines here and it’s important that you know that it’s okay to not be okay. As your friend I promise you though; that you are not alone; and I will be here holding your hand every step of the way on your journey to the next chapter.

I love you and I am so sorry that you are hurting. But I know in my heart of hearts that there will come a day when you and I are sitting on the back porch of your beautiful home; looking through the window as the man that God has made for you chases your beautiful children around the house while they laugh hysterically. That day will come and when it does – you will realize that this man letting you go – was the greatest gift he could have given you.

You will get through this; I promise.

Tiffany

P.S. Let me know if you want to go egg his house – I’m totally down….

 

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The Incident.

Listen. I know it’s Wednesday. On Wednesdays I usually post about my time behind bars but I have decided to put it off until next week because we don’t have Wifi here so the laptop won’t work. 

But something happened tonight-and I’m about to use up all my damn data to tell you about it. Because I can’t sleep. I’m too scared (and angry); and I’m hoping that if I talk about it, it will help me.

Check it out. It’s my second night in my glorious new house (which I adore). I have had an exhausting day that consisted of opening boxes, folding clothes that had been lazily thrown into garbage bags, and moving furniture. 

I was beyond grateful when my husband turned to me tonight and said “You wanna go to bed early ?”. “Um, hell yes I do you friggin genius. That’s the greatest idea I’ve ever heard” I replied.

I slipped into my comfy jammies, washed my face and brushed my teeth..

(Okay those last two were lies, I just put pajamas on and got in bed; I was too tired to worry about personal hygiene and I knew for a fact that no making out was about to be goin on).

Anyway, there I was, snuggled up next to my boo; my mind running through important things like: Did I turn the stove off? I wonder what college Kaiden will attend. Too bad I didn’t go to college. I wonder if Chloe will go to college. She will probably get a scholarship for basketball cuz she’s so damn tall.. when all the sudden my husband shoots straight up in bed.

“What babe? Are you okay?” I asked checking to see if I pissed my pants because he scare the shi* out of me.

“Yeah, sorry. I thought….Nothing I’m good”. He said, lying back down.

I immediately assumed he had been attacked by an invisible ghost. Or he had a bad dream, or maybe he heard an ax murderer outside the window who was coming to kill us any moment now. 

“You sure you’re good honey?” I asked once more. “Yes. It was just a bad dream, I love you.” He said.

“I love you to booger bear pumpkin patch peanut butter pie pants”, I said, as I rolled back over.

I snuggled back into a comfortable position and felt myself begin to drift off. I was in that weird state between conciousness and sleep.

That’s when it happened…

I felt the hair by my face begin to move on its own. Then I felt something gently tickle my cheek. When my cheek twitched in response, its wings began fluttering right next to my ear. My hand shot up to my ear with lightning speed-just in time to feel the crispy motherf*** palmetto bug as it flew away somewhere near my head into the darkness.

It was in my f***ing hair. I touched it with my f***ing fingers. And now-it was gone. Somewhere. It was alive and well somewhere in my bed.

I let out an animalistic howl and shot out of bed as if it was on fire. I began hyperventilating; frozen in fear.

“What babe?!” My husband jumped up and asked. How dare he ask me what. He knew. He  already knew. He knew because it touched him first; causing him to jump up in bed.

Instead of telling the truth and saving me from this traumatizing event; he played it off as if he had a bad dream. I WILL MURDER HIM.

There was a roach in my effing hair.” I said, still frozen in place. “Durrrr, uhhh, ya I thought I felt it too” he said in a dumb stupid voice.

I walked to the living room and sat on the couch; attempting to hold back my tears…

*Side note: I had an incredibly traumatizing experience as a child involving hundreds of palmetto bugs. Shortly after that I began having night terrors daily; so much so that my father thought I perhaps needed counseling. If someone offered me 1 million dollars to touch a roach- I would have to pass on the money. I am not kidding, it is not a joke. I would chose death over a bathtub of roaches*

Anyway. I was choking back the tears; because my past experiences with bug encounters had proven that if I began crying, I would be unable to stop.

My husband came out to the living room almost immediately after me and began scrolling through his phone.. 

I blinked twice to clear my vision; because I knew his ass was not out on this couch instead of hunting down that bastard and murdering him and everyone he loved.

My eyes were not decieving me. Homeboy was scrollin without a care in the world.

“Um, so, I’m not trying to be an asshole here, but that roach is still in there. So.. why …Why are you out here and not in there looking for it?!” I asked, genuinely baffled.

Any man that has ever known and loved me, knows how deeply rooted this irrational fear of mine truly is. They know that it actually mentally f***s me up if they don’t present the corpse of the bug for me to view prior to flushing it. So why was he acting like he didn’t care?

“What do you want me to go look for it? You probably scared him away.” He said, not glancing up from his phone…

Me: *stares blankly in shock*

Him: scroll, scroll, scroll.

Me: *realizing the more seconds that pass the harder it will be to locate this unwanted guest*

Him: scrolly scroll scrolllll

“Drew….Are you f***ing kidding me. Yes I want you to find him or I will never be able to enter that room again.” I said.

“Jesus Christ” he said, slamming his phone down and heading to our room. 

After 30 seconds had passed; he came back to the living room and began scrolling….

Me: “So, no luck?”

Him: “Yeah, he’s gone” *not looking up from phone*

Me: “Say you swear to God”

Him: “Dude, I’m not playing this game right now.”

Me: ” Say it, say you swear to God”

Him: “I already told you-”

Me: *shouting* “SAY IT!!!!!!!”

Him: “You’re ridiculous…I’m going to bed”.

..And he did….He got up…And went to bed. In the roach room. He didn’t swear to God which means he didn’t kill it. It’s alive…And it’s in there.

I want to go dump water on my husband. I want to stick a mousetrap to his ballsack. I want to shoot him in the ankle with a BB gun. Because he doesn’t love me enough to kill the roach. 

He’s snuggled up all comfy in bed and I’m crinkled up on our leather couch with no pillow or blanket- in fear for my life. 

If he loved me he would still be looking for it. He would look all night until he found and slayed the beast for his lady.

I know I’m being emotional and irrational. But I feel like a man’s duties include: taking out the garbage, lifting heavy things, opening jars and killing bugs. Like, it’s in the job description of a man. If I wash and fold your mother effing underwear- you need to kill roaches for me. Plain and simple.

I can’t sleep in that room ever again and it’s only my second night here .. he thinks I’m joking but I’m literally going to sleep in Aubreys bed with her from now on. Maybe switch it up some nights and sleep in Chloe’s crib with her. I’ll sleep in the f***ing bathtub. But I’m not sleeping in that room until Roger the roach is history.

If you guys are watching the news tomorrow and there’s a report of a woman smothering her husband with a pillow….You never saw this, Kay?

Too tired to think of title.

Hello my friends.  So, to be completely honest with you, the last thing I wanted to do today was write.  The reason being – I am freakin’ exhausted.  However my husband is watching basketball; and I’ve already seen this episode of Shark Tank twice, so I figured I’d hop on here and tell you about what’s been going on lately in the Jenkins household.

WE ARE MOVING!!!!!!

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Yup, we’re moving this week.  My stepfather and stepmother have chosen to relocate to Georgia.  Before making the decision to purchase the house in Georgia; they first had to find someone to rent their incredible home here in the heart of Sarasota…

They thought of our family and the moment he extended the offer to me; I had to pull over my car before I crashed it into a gas station from excitement.

Currently; we are a family of 5, living in a 2 bedroom house.  The 2 smallest children sleep in the master bedroom with Drew and I; while Aubrey sleeps in her own room; which doubles as a toy storage facility.  We have all shared one bathroom, and it has been fine.  We started out with nothing; worked our way into a tiny apartment; stepped it up and got our own home with a back yard and now- it’s time once again to expand and move forward onto bigger and better things.

Each place has been a stepping stone and we have remained grateful throughout each stop on our journey…

BUT THIS HOUSE…..this house……is SUCH a blessing.

It’s a 3 bedroom; 2 bath home.

It has a massive (I mean, massive) yard.  There is a playground, a large deck, a separate patio, and 2 sheds.  In addition to the 3 bedrooms – there is a gigantic playroom in the back and a separate parlor (where I intended to light incense, burn candles and do my writing!)

I will take more photos once we are settled and share them with you all.

The home is so bright and open – when I walk in my soul immediately feels at peace.  Todd and Jennifer have truly blessed us with the opportunity to rent this home and my family is so excited to be able to stretch our wings and run freely with all this extra space.

Another reason I am super excited to live her is because my stepdad has left behind some furniture and knick knacks that belonged to my mother.  My family will be sitting on the same couches that I sat on as a child.  I somehow feel closer to her when I enter those doors.

So stay tuned for the tour once we get settled!

Having said all this. MOVING EFFING SUCKS! It is so tedious, and time consuming and stressful and my brain hurts and my arms are sore from lifting dressers and it hurts to type I need sleep I’m going to bed I love you goodnight.

 

 

120 Days In – My Time In Jail. Chapter #8

 

Hey Friend!
There’s good news and there’s bad news. Which do you want first? I’ll give you the bad news, because by now you already kinda know… This blog series is no longer available on this website. I’m sorry! I have always dreamed of writing and publishing a book, ever since my Dad bought me a typewriter on my 6th birthday.
The good news is, It’s finally happening! My book is in review on the Amazon Kindle website, and within the next few days will be available for pre-order! I know you are probably still mad at me, but I hope that you understand that this a huge goal, that I am actually about to freakin’ accomplish.
I will post a link to the book here as soon as it becomes available, as well as share it on my facebook @ http://www.facebook.com/jugglingthejenkinsblog
Thank you for being interested in my stuff, it really means more than you know. And thank you for being a part of my journey. You may not realize it, but it’s people like you that inspire me to get my lazy ass out of bed each day and create content.
Me love you long time…
Tiffany Jenkins

3 Things I Do As A Wife; To Improve The Quality Of My Marriage.

 

*Disclaimer: These are all things I do personally. I am not a psychologist, marriage counselor or guru of any kind. So take my suggestions with a grain of salt. Every couple is different; and different approaches work for different people. These things have worked wonders for me; so I wanted to pass them on*

Happy Monday friends! I would first like to give a shout out to Mr. Martin Luther King Jr. for being so brave; we sure could benefit from his peaceful leadership these days. The difference he made in this world is the only reason I am not annoyed that I have 3 children currently running around my house instead of at school.

img_20160722_185248Anyway, ladies -this post is for you today; annnnnd you’re probably not gonna like it. (I’m sorry in advance.) The reason I feel it might rub you the wrong way is because, some of the things I am about to say; probably go against some of your beliefs – rather; some of your “habits”.

I want to talk about being a good wife. We spend a lot of time focused on what our lazy ass husbands/boyfriends/ baby daddy’s could do to improve; but do we ever take a good, hard, honest look inward to see if there is anything we could be doing to improve the quality of our relationship? I can only speak for myself here-but if you were to ask me “what I would like my husband to work on” I would promptly pull a long scroll out of my back pocket, unroll it, and spend the next 10 minutes listing off various quirks and habits I would erase permanently if given the chance.

Yet; if someone asked me what “Ipersonally’ need to work on”, my answer would probably be; “a tan, that’s about it.”

img_20160722_211147I am not a perfect wife; not even close. I have many character defects that I attempt to rid myself of daily. My husband has tried to give me “constructive criticism” in the past; and my eyes immediately turned black, my claws came out, and vulgarities shot out of my mouth like bullets from a gun. He decided it best that he keeps his opinions about me to himself from then on.

While it does help keep the peace; it robs me of an opportunity to grow toward being a better wife for him. Sometimes I walk around with the idea that “I work so hard around the house and take such care of our children; he should be thankful for me and everything I do.” And while this may be true; I must remember that it wasn’t my ability to wash dishes and change multiple diapers simultaneously that attracted him to me initially.

It was my silly personality, my spontaneity, my smile and my laugh (okay probably not this 13-13one, my laugh sounds like a cow being tickled).  So now; if more often than not, my fun loving personality has been replaced with an anxious, frenzied disposition and my smiling face looks like more like a character in a scene from “Night Of The Living Dead”; I have somewhat cheated him out of the person he fell in love with.

Below are 3 things I do to ensure, that I am being the best partner I can.

 

1) Don’t let yourself ‘go’– Strangely enough; I actually received this advice from my father. His exact words were, “Whatever you do; don’t let yourself go. Make sure you make an effort from time to time to look good for Drew-don’t let having a ring on your finger be an excuse to stop working on yourself physically.”

Okay, so at first I was offended. I was all like “Ummmm, thanks dad; I wasn’t planning on turning into Shrek after we got married, cool advice.” Over time, however, I realized how imperative this advice actually was. Kids, exhaustion, and time constraints all make it pretty difficult to take care of myself. I am too busy giving my all to 4 other people; ensuring their needs are always met. This leaves me with little time to workout and doll myself up regularly. Besides; I rarely leave the house;img_20161219_184754 so what the hell is the point of wearing makeup and brushing my hair?

 

 

20 pounds later I found myself waddling through my hallways with my hair looking like a birds nest while donning sweatpants and my husbands t-shirt.  I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror and thought, “Okay I know love conquers all, but there is no way this look I’m rocking right now is a turn on for my husband.” Most days; I attempt to throw some mascara on, slap on some lipgloss and wear real pants… (most days).

img_20160909_155152
A little bit of effort goes a long way

Not only is my husband all like “Dayum girrrrl!”, but more importantly; I feel better about myself. At least until one of the kids poops on me). In my personal experience; when I push myself to exercise a

little and make better food choices; I am a much happier wife; exuding positive energy instead of nervous, hostile energy.

2) I have mastered the art of biting my tongue – Okay, this one is tough. I regularly feel inclined to follow my husband around the house, lean over his shoulder and critique his every move when I feel he isn’t doing something the way I believe he should. Something my mother once told me that I keep in the back of my mind at all times is to “pick my battles”.  Imagine if your boss followed you around at your job and pointed out everything you were doing wrong; and insisted on showing you the correct way to do it. Now visualize him giving you a progress report of your performance multiple times a day. It would drive you nuts. cam00344

A home should be a man’s sanctuary.  The place he goes to unwind after a long day of work. The last thing he needs is to feel like he is still on the clock; after he comes home.(I know, moms never clock out, that’s what makes us superheroes). I try to take it easy on him. I want him to enjoy being around me, so I generally let the miniscule things that bug me go. He does so many wonderful things; that I find it petty to make a fuss about trivial issues.  Now I’m not saying to internalize your feelings of anger and resentment. What I am saying is; if it’s imperative to the foundation of your relationship – by all means- discuss it, calmly. But if he leaves a dish in the living room for the thousandth time when he knows I hate it; I let it go. That dish is not worth inviting unnecessary turmoil into my life. It’s not as if he is trying to drive me nuts purposefully; (men are just…erm…forgetful.)

I know you are probably saying to yourself “but, but, but; he is so lazy, he could do more, he’s not as involved as he should be; etc.” I get it, I really do. But he already has a mother; he20160125_182044 doesn’t need two. I am his partner, friend and lover. We are a team.

It may feel like by expressing my wants and needs on the spot constantly, I am helping him become my ideal man. In actuality; all I am doing is making him feel like he isn’t good enough, and nothing he does is right. Instead I try building him up; encouraging him, respecting him, complimenting him, and being vocal about my appreciation of him. It is my job to love him; not “fix” him.

3) Have fun – life is not that serious – I am going to wrap it up with this. There was a time; when I became so caught up in schedules, housework, school and raising children; that I actually forgot that life only happens one time. You get one go round – that’s it. You don’t get to hit the reset button and start over whenever you want. When our time on earth is over, it is over. (unless you believe in reincarnation; but we can get into that another time.)

img_20161008_215151When I realized that there is so much more to life than working, paying bills, changing diapers and counting down the days until the kids reach their next milestone; so that they can be more independent and “things will get easier”- everything changed.

It is up to me to find joy and happiness in each moment. It is my choice whether I merely “exist”; just going through the motions of my day to day; or if I grab life by the horns and make it my b****.

I like to mix things up around my house.  I burst out in song while cooking my husband dinner,11178277_10153181972770428_6150296687537354471_n I have an impromptu dance party when a commercial comes on with music. I interrupt my husbands “Facebook scrolling” with an idiotic series of knock-knock jokes and I jump out of hiding spots to scare him when he least expects it.  In return; he squeezes my water bottles when I’m mid-sip; soaking me in water. He locks me out of the car when I return from getting something from the gas station and drives away while the kids laugh hysterically.

I can’t peacefully take a shower, because I have a deep-rooted fear that my husband is going to burst in at any moment and dump ice on my head; because he has done it 7 times and counting. I have gotten him 4 times; unless you count the time I missed and flooded the bathroom; in that case I got 5.

img_20160603_170100My point is, take a second and shake off the mundane routine. Take a moment to remember what it was like in the beginning; before all of the responsibility of marriage and raising kids became a reality. Strive to recreate that time with your significant other. My husband and I belly laugh with each other at least once a day. We create those silly moments for ourselves to enjoy. It is up to us to keep the passion alive –because no one else is going to do it for us.  It takes two of us to make our marriage work; and I try to check myself each day to ensure I am doing everything within my power; to be a kick-ass wife..

ALSO!

If you haven’t read The 5 Love Languages by Dr. Gary Chapman; you absolutely should.  His New York Times best-selling book has transformed millions of relationships. Or- you can take The 5 Love Languages quiz here and  find out yours. (I swear he didn’t pay me to say that; I just really believe in the benefit of his book… However if you see this; Mr. Chapman and wanna toss me a couple bills I won’t be mad.)img_20160722_185248

120 Days In-My Time In Jail. Chapter #7

Brandi was sitting on the edge of her bunk and I noticed her foot was tapping the ground rapidly as she waited for me to begin my story.

“When I was arrested, I was arrested at my home.  I shared that home with my boyfriend, and he is a Deputy for this county.” I said.  I watched as her jaw hung open as she inched closer to the  edge of her bed.  “I had been doing pills, everyday behind his back…..for 2 & 1/2 years.  When it got really ba-” My story was interrupted by a sudden flurry of movement in the corner of my eye. I looked to my left and noticed all of the girls were running full speed back to their cells.

Our bunkies ran into the cell where Brandi and I had been seated and swiftly began making their beds, a look of horror on their faces. “What the hell is going on?” I asked, standing up and glancing down at my bed, wondering if I should fix mine up too for some reason.  Brandi looked out into the day room and I watched as the realization of what was happening washed over her face.

“Um, hello? Can someone please tell me what is happening? Why is everyone freaking out.” I asked straightening the edges of my sheets. Brandi looked up at me from the floor where she was suddenly straightening out the contents of her bin and said only one word…

“Riggins.”

“Huh? Riggins? What the hell is a Riggins?”

“No one told you?!” She said

“No, can you? Please? Is my life in danger? Like, what the f*** is going on?” I asked, simultaneously confused and terrified.

Before she could answer I heard the door of the dayroom slam shut, and our entire pod fell silent. I could hear a set of keys jingling and a pair of sneakers tapping the floor as the person wearing them jogged up the stairs. I sat on the edge of my bed observing my cell mates.  They were frozen in place, a look of terror on their faces – it was as if the president of the United States had just walked in and was hand selecting people to go to war.

“You nasty hoes wash your P***y’s today?!” The guard yelled from the top tier. “I know some ah ya’ll stank bitches is on day 2 of no shower witcho nasty asses.”

Um…..What?

“Ay! Da f*** I tell you about making sure deez beds was made when I came in? Ohhhh ya’ll thought Deputy Flower was on tonight, huh? That’s why you just said f*** it and let ya shit stay messy. Well surprise motha f***ers!”

The guard was making her rounds across the top tier when she suddenly came into view across from our cell.  I expected a man beast of a woman to come bounding around the corner.  This lady was 5 ft 2 in. but something told me her size was irrelevant.

I watched her move quickly past the cells, analyzing the state of each one.  She began jogging down the stairs and heading straight for our cell, a look of determination in her eyes. For some reason, I suddenly felt like I was about to s**t my pants.

She glanced into our cell and continued walking, but then I heard her sneakers ‘squeak’ as she stopped short and backed up.  She looked in our cell again and began laughing as she unhooked her keys from her belt and opened our door.

She was laughing and shaking her head as she entered and then she stopped …and stared into my eyes with a look I can only describe as the look your mother gives you when she’s about to beat your a**.

“Well, well, well….what we got here? You must be new.” She said, talking to me. “Man that’s messed up, ya’ll didn’t give her the heads up? Ya’ll didn’t educate her bout Riggins didja?” She said, looking at my cell mates. “Well I’ll just have to introduce myself then. What’s up crack head, I’m Riggins, and I’m gonna make you wish you never stepped foot in my jail.”

She walked toward me and bumped me as she ripped the entire mat off of my bunk and threw it into the middle of the dayroom.  I could feel everyone’s eyes on me, and my face began burning with embarrassment.  “Ima teach you how to make your bed right. Come on.” She bounded out to the dayroom and stood with her arms crossed, waiting for me to exit my cell.

I walked over to her and stood above my mat, I wasn’t sure what exactly she wanted me to do. “So should I make my-” Before I could finish she leapt over to where I was standing and got about an inch from my face, and began screaming at the top of her lungs while looking me dead in the eyes.

“Did I mother***ing ask you to talk mother***er? No, I don’t think so. Don’t say another mother***ing word unless you want me to throw your nasty ass in lock. Now close your mouth, and make your G**damn bed, hoe.” She said, stepping back to give me room.

I could feel the tears forming in my eyes and tried with everything in me to not let them fall, to no avail.  I began sobbing as I got down on my hands and knees in front of every woman in my pod and began making my bed. It was incredibly demeaning to have to get down on the floor like a child and make my bed in front of my peers. I secretly hoped she would realize that I was new here, and give me a break….. She did the opposite.

“Oh my God. Look at this.  Hey ya’ll, hey! Look down here right quick.  This girl over here cryin’ bout makin her damn bed.” I heard a few snickers from the women and I cringed, thinking about how I was trapped with these people for God knows how long, and now they know what a p***y I am. “This bitch here probably ain’t used to havin’ to do chores.  She been too busy getting high and s***in dick on the streets to worry bout making her damn bed at home.” She leaned down and placed her hands on her knees, getting eye level with me. “Your in my house now, hoe.” She said, sneering at me.

“I would like this whiney little junkie to be an example to all ya’ll.  You bitches wanna act hard out on them streets, but when your in here, you ain’t shit. Right now, I want all ya’ll to take your sheets off your bed and make them damn beds perfectly – you know how I like it- when your done, take the sheets off again and remake them.  You can stop when Inmate Johnson here makes her bed right.  I’ll be back to check on ya’ll in a few, don’t be comin out them cells till your done” she said walking away. I heard the women begin groaning and pulling their sheets off, cursing and talking about how they were going to beat my ass when the doors unlocked.  Deputy Riggins had almost made it out and stopped.  She turned back around and began walking toward me as silence once again fell upon the pod.  I felt myself tense up as she leaned close to me, putting her mouth right next to my ear.

“I know what you did Johnson, Chuck is a good friend of mine.  You shouldn’t have done him like that when he loved you.  Best believe I’m going to make sure that while you are here, you are gonna pay for what you did.” She said, roughly patting me on the back and heading toward the door. “One more thing”- she yelled over her shoulder as she walked out of the pod-“Make sure the minute those cells unlock for you to come out, ya’ll let this girl know how much you appreciate her, for making ya’ll make your beds over and over” She laughed as the door slammed shut behind her……..

 

 

Cheap Indoor Activities For Kids, For Moms Who Suck At Pinterest.

zaIt’s Saturday and you’ve got big plans for the day, you are taking your rambunctious, restless, energetic kids to the park. As you start getting their shoes on to head out the door;  you hear the first few drops of rain falling from the sky and landing on your front stoop.  You glance out the window in terror as you curse the skies, because you immediately realize this means one thing, and one thing only….

You are trapped.

Trapped in your home with wild little creatures who are hopped up on Capri Suns and gummy bears – and there is nowhere to escape to.

FEAR NOT my friends! I have a solution. I have a “magic closet” loaded up with tons of supplies that I picked up from the Dollar Tree, and I pull them out when the kids need something to keep them occupied, and I need a mini break.

I have made a list of some of the cool stuff we have done, that is super easy and incredibly cheap.  Check it out below!

 

Sensory Bottles

This one is pretty cool because you can use stuff that you have lying around your house.  The idea is, you put different items inside the bottle, and the child gets an opportunity to see how those items interact with different ingredients.  I have also used these as “calming bottles” -when a child has lots of tense energy built up, you put some calming music on and add sparkles and color.  Here’s what you need to make these….You can get all of the ingredients at the Dollar Tree – minus the bottle.

Supplies Needed:

Clear plastic bottle-( I like the Voss bottles)

Water

Vegetable oil

Food coloring

Anything else you want! Example: Beads, sparkles, pipe cleaners, straws, tinsel, craft puffs, water beads, etc.

To Make Sensory Bottle:

Peel the label off of bottle so it’s completely transparent.Now you have a couple options…

A) Fill half of bottle with water (Add a couple drops of food coloring if you’re feeling crazy, and fill remainder with vegetable oil (Add some food coloring to oil before putting in bottle) and BAM. Lava lamp.

B) Fill bottle almost all the way to the top with water ,add food coloring and tilt back and forth until it blends. Then you can add sparkles, water beads, etc and then close the lid.  You can seal it shut with glue if you need.

C) Combine the 2 ideas….or do your own thang, you really can’t mess it up.

 

Pipe Cleaner Flower Garden

 

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So check it out, this lil project only cost me a total of $3, (we already had pipe cleaners and tissue paper). I stayed and made sure she got the hang of it – then I dipped out and watched Dr. Phil.  It took her about 45 minutes to finish and she had a blast!

Supplies Needed:

Dry floral foam rings  (Dollar Tree – $1)

Pipe Cleaners -(You can get 45 for $1! Whaaaaaaat?)

Pony Beads- Like This. ($1)

Straws (Cut at different lengths).

Tissue Paper.

Planters- Like This

To Make Pipe Cleaner Flower Garden:

Take the round Styrofoam and set it flat on table.

Poke a hole (with a pen, skewer, etc) then place pipe cleaner into the hole. (I found it difficult to make the holes with the pipe cleaners alone so I had to MacGyver it with something sharp.)

Show your kiddo how to put different patterns of beads and straws onto the pipe cleaner to make the stem, be sure to leave a little room at the top of the pipe cleaner because you will need that space.

Grab some tissue paper and cut 3 small circles, then push the pipe cleaner through the center of all 3 circles and secure with another pony bead. Also you could basically crumble the tissue paper up and wrap the damn pipe cleaner around it somehow so it resembles a flower – again, they are kids and will think it’s cool either way.

Continue doing this all the way around the Styrofoam circle until your kid is tired of doing it, or satisfied with their work – then pop that bad boy in the planter and you’re done. Boom.

Homemade Disney “Frozen” Silly Putty

Ya’ll this was my favorite project that we’ve done – mainly because I totally felt like “Bill Nye The Science Guy” when I was showing the girls how to do this.

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Supplies Needed:

1 bottle of clear school glue (147 ml)

The same amount of water (147 ml)

1/2 Teaspoon of Borax. (Wtf is Borax? Here ya go)

1/2 Cup HOT water

A few sprinkles of silver and blue glitter ( or a s**t ton of glitter – its up to you)

A few drops of blue food coloring

To Make Disney’s “Frozen” Silly Putty”:

Step 1 – Pour bottle of glue into bowl.

Step 2 – Fill the empty glue bottle up with water and add to bowl.

Step 3 – Stir it until it’s combined.

Step 4 – Add a few drops of blue food coloring and stir again.

Step 5 – Add sprinkles and keep on ah stirrin’.

Step 6 – Get a separate cup, and put 1/2 cup of hot water into the cup.

Step 7 – Add 1/2 teaspoon of Borax to the hot water, and stir until it is dissolved.

Step 8 –(So many damn steps) Pour this solution into the bowl and stir – this is when the cool stuff starts happening! The kids will watch in amazement as it turns into silly putty right before their little eyeballs.

We took it a step further and grabbed some kitchen utensils and started putting jewels into it (See picture) We brought it out to the sun and it looked awesome.  It’s a lot of work, but your kids will think you are a magician….Totally worth it.

 

Build a Fort – Because Forts Are Awesome

 

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Supplies Needed:

I mean, this is pretty self explanatory, right guys? Kids love forts, I literally have no idea why, but they do.  Throw some blankets and sheets over chairs, if you wanna get wild – tack them to the wall with thumbtacks, throw in some pillows and books and Booyah! You just bought yourself at least 20 minutes of alone time.

 

Popcorn and a Movie FTW

 

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Supplies Needed:

Movie, popcorn, children.

This is my go-to rainy day activity when I’m feeling lazy, but its something about a freshly popped bowl of popcorn that makes watching a movie 10x more exciting for them. When they start getting restless I bust out my secret stash of Twizzlers and that buys me a few extra minutes.

Bake Cookies!

Supplies Needed:

Let’s just keep it simple here and buy premade cookie dough, kay? Because ain’t nobody got time to be measuring sugar and flower. (Also, I would have to Google how to make cookies from scratch because I have no clue.)

Sprinkles.

To make cookies:

Open package, pull apart pre – made, pre-sliced cookie dough.

Have your child space them out on pan.

Decorate with fun sprinkles.

Put them in the oven for however long the package tells you to.

High five them and pretend you are excited that they are baking, when really you are just excited that you get to eat cookies.

Eat Cookies.

Indoor Bowling

 

 

This was so much fun, and it helped Aubrey practice math! I don’t want to brag buttttt….I was pretty proud of myself for thinking this up.

Supplies Needed:

10 Water bottles

Water

Food Coloring

Ball

To Make This:

Fill bottles with water, then drop different color food coloring into bottles. Each color had a point value – Green – 1 pt Red=2pts

Have the kiddos take turns rollin the ball across the living room and have them total up the points of each roll, based on the colors they knock down.

Neon Bath

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Supplies Needed:

Bath

Bath Bubbles

Glow Sticks (Dollar Tree)

Children

Water

How To Have Neon Bath Party:

Run Bath

Put Bubbles in it

Put children in it

Turn lights off

Toss in glowsticks -Party Time!

(Techno/Rave music optional)

Diversity Is A Beautiful Thing.

“Do what you feel in your heart to be right – for you’ll be criticized anyway” – Eleanor Roosevelt

Hey friends! As some of you may know, The Daily Mail contacted me.  They had seen one of my blog posts on Bluntmoms.com and wanted to do a story about my recovery from addiction, and motherhood.  I debated for awhile about whether or not to do it, as I had mixed emotions.

Part of me was worried what people might say about me, I haven’t always managed to accept criticism gracefully (I’m working on it.) However, the other part of me felt like it would be a great opportunity to show those who may still be struggling, that a life after addiction is possible.

I chose to do the interview, and it went live the next day.

I swore I wasn’t going to read the comments people wrote about me on the website featuring the article, and I actually held out for awhile.  However while re-reading the article, there was a button on the side that read “14 comments”. and I couldn’t resist. It was almost as if my hand was moving without my brain’s permission. I began reading what strangers had written…….

This was a BIG mistake.

Lots of people apparently ate a big bowl of righteousness that morning and decided to be a bunch of Hateful Harriets.  I immediately felt obligated to defend myself, as the majority of rude comments were based off of things left out of the article, somewhat important things that explain more of the “after” addiction. People chose to focus on my skanky drunken before pictures and the things I had done while using, completely missing the point of the story.

I popped in and left a tasteful

comment, clearing a few things up that these strangers seemed to be confused about, and I haven’t been back to the comment section since, and the reason is simple…

What others think about me, is none of my business.

I put myself out there to be judged, and the results were as expected. If someone didn’t get something positive out of the article, than the article probably wasn’t meant for them.

It was meant for the person alone in their room, with a needle in their arm, and sadness in their heart.  The person who feels as if there is no hope for them, that they are a lost cause incapable of escaping the grip of addiction.  The person who needed to see just one story of hope, one person willing to put themselves out there with their truth about hitting rock bottom, and climbing their way out into the light.

That was who my story was for, not the judgmental woman who has never lost a loved one to drugs, or experienced the desperation that comes along with addiction, therefore, her comments are irrelevant to me.

I searched for the most wholesome story on that website, and found one about a boy and a puppy.  I went to the “comments section” and my suspicions were confirmed; even a story about a boy and his dog, had hundreds of negative comments written by toxic people with nothing better to do than sit behind their keyboards and release hateful energy into the universe.

One of the “12 Traditions” in the program of NA refers to how we must remain anonymous, and for good reason.  I completely understand the need for anonymity for some people; in my case, I find it difficult to remain anonymous.  It was such a large part of my past, and has shaped me into the woman I am today, so it’s important for me to be able to share my journey with others, so that they know they are not alone.

The amount of messages I have received from people reaching out for help for themselves and their loved ones is overwhelming and reiterates the importance of being honest about my journey. I think that one of the main problems today, is the amount of active users, far outweighs the stories of success being shared, which makes it difficult for those who are struggling to see a light at the end of the tunnel.  I want my story to be that light.

I am no better than anyone, in fact there are people in the recovery community who are much more involved with service work, recovery and helping others than I will ever be.  These people are unable to talk about the wonderful things they have overcome and accomplished due to work obligations and the stigma that comes along with addiction, but there a hundreds of people among us who are true miracles and making a real difference in this world, yet remain anonymous.

I will close with this: I am never, ever, ever going to be able to please everyone, and no matter what I do, there will always be those who don’t agree with my perspective, but this is what makes our worlds such a wonderful place. Different opinions bring fresh ideas, and encourage others to branch out from their normal way of thinking. Two people can look at the exact same thing and see something completely different, so I have chosen to embrace the diversity that exists and continue on in my journey without looking back for approval.

Any adversity I will be forced to face by choosing to share my story, will be well worth it to me if just one person sees it and feels inspired to make a change.

 

 

 

120 Days In – My Time In Jail. Chapter #7

 

Hey Friend!
There’s good news and there’s bad news. Which do you want first? I’ll give you the bad news, because by now you already kinda know… This blog series is no longer available on this website. I’m sorry! I have always dreamed of writing and publishing a book, ever since my Dad bought me a typewriter on my 6th birthday.
The good news is, It’s finally happening! My book is in review on the Amazon Kindle website, and within the next few days will be available for pre-order! I know you are probably still mad at me, but I hope that you understand that this a huge goal, that I am actually about to freakin’ accomplish.
I will post a link to the book here as soon as it becomes available, as well as share it on my facebook @ http://www.facebook.com/jugglingthejenkinsblog
Thank you for being interested in my stuff, it really means more than you know. And thank you for being a part of my journey. You may not realize it, but it’s people like you that inspire me to get my lazy ass out of bed each day and create content.
Me love you long time…
Tiffany Jenkins

120 Days In – My Time In Jail. Chapter #6

Hey Friend!
There’s good news and there’s bad news. Which do you want first? I’ll give you the bad news, because by now you already kinda know… This blog series is no longer available on this website. I’m sorry! I have always dreamed of writing and publishing a book, ever since my Dad bought me a typewriter on my 6th birthday.
The good news is, It’s finally happening! My book is in review on the Amazon Kindle website, and within the next few days will be available for pre-order! I know you are probably still mad at me, but I hope that you understand that this a huge goal, that I am actually about to freakin’ accomplish.
I will post a link to the book here as soon as it becomes available, as well as share it on my facebook @ http://www.facebook.com/jugglingthejenkinsblog
Thank you for being interested in my stuff, it really means more than you know. And thank you for being a part of my journey. You may not realize it, but it’s people like you that inspire me to get my lazy ass out of bed each day and create content.
Me love you long time…
Tiffany Jenkins

 

10 Life Changing Pieces of Advice I Learned From Recovering Addicts-That Apply To Anyone.

As most of you know, I have been in recovery from addiction for 4 years.  What you may not know, is that I didn’t stay clean all that time, by myself.  There is a community of people just like me, that knew the secret of staying clean.  I leaned on these people as I began learning to navigate the unknown territory of sobriety.  The world is different when you are only accustomed to seeing it through a foggy haze, and if you don’t know your way around, you will most likely end up back on the path that is comfortable to you – the path of getting high.

These people were my lifelines, and they had something I wanted, they knew how to live clean. So I observed them intently, I listened to things they had to say and I watched how happy they were without the use of drugs. While listening, I have overhead countless clichés, advice and tips.  Some of it went in one ear, and right out the other when I realized it didn’t apply to me, however some advice – struck me like a lightening bolt, and it changed my life.

I am going to share some incredible advice from some of the wisest people I have met. People who have been to hell, and risen from the ashes into a beautiful new creation. This knowledge has helped me to overcome countless obstacles,  setbacks, and disappointments. These don’t only apply to addicts or alcoholics, I believe the following list can help anyone who is looking to evolve and better themselves.

 

 

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Be gentle with yourself – We are often times our own harshest critics, we tend to beat ourselves up over something, before anyone else has a chance to.  If I make a mistake, I don’t let my inner thoughts allow to me to believe you are a failure.  Mistakes and accidents can and will happen.  Embrace them, learn from them…and move on.

 

 

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Look down at your feet– Someone in recovery told me this at one point and it has stuck with me ever since.  He said “Look down at your feet, that is where you are at this moment in time.  You are not in the past, you are not in the future – you are right here, right now, in this moment, the next moment is not promised. Focus on where you are at this point, and stop worrying about where you will be 10 minutes from now.” This changed me.

 

 

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“When you talk, you are only repeating what you already know.  But if you listen you may learn something new.” – The Dalai Lama said this originally, and obviously he didn’t say this directly to me.  A counselor at my old rehab center quoted him and it made a huge impact on me.  In a conversation, I used to anxiously wait for the other person to finish speaking so that I could say my piece, which means I wasn’t listening to a word they said, just waiting for my turn to talk. I wonder how many important things I missed in doing so?

 

 

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You can’t pour from an empty cup – Self care is so important. You can’t expect to be any good to anyone, if you are drained mentally, physically and spiritually.  This is also why on airplanes they say to “First put your on your oxygen mask before helping others.” Because if I run out of oxygen, I can’t continue to help anyone else.

 

 

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Learn to let things go that you cannot control- This one is huge, and while I truly understand the significance and truth to this statement, I regularly find myself having to verbally remind myself of this in certain situations.  Trying to control things beyond your control does nothing but create relentless inner turmoil.  I must Recognize I am powerless, take a deep breathe, and exhale the responsibility of fixing the situation, releasing it into the universe where a power greater than myself can bear the burden of sorting it out.  I am always amazed at the weight that is lifted during that exhale.

 

reflection

 

“If you fuel your journey on the opinions of others, you are going to run out of gas” – Steve Marable – This author and behavioral scientist said this originally, but someone in the rooms shared it with me during a personal bout with low self esteem.  This one took a lot of practice,  because the need to be liked by others is ingrained in my DNA. I regularly need to remind myself that “my value doesn’t decrease based on others inability to see my worth.” (Another favorite of mine, although I’m not sure who originally said it, as there are conflicting reports.)

 

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Resentments are like setting yourself on fire, and expecting the other person to die of smoke inhalation – This one really hit home with me as I am the queen of holding grudges. After hearing this I realized “my enemy” was probably going about their daily life, not thinking twice about me – meanwhile I was stewing in anger and hatred for the person. It was destroying my inner peace and achieving nothing.

 

 

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The only difference between good days and bad days, is your attitude – They say life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it. This is so true.  If I get a flat tire, I can either allow myself to fill with rage, calling the tire company to curse them out and tell them how incompetent they are, spending the remainder of the day reflecting on my bad fortune – or – I can take a breathe, laugh at this misfortune and realize the tire has popped and that is now in the past. Then I can begin to calmly come up with a plan to amend the situation. One of these choices will result in a ruined day – and it is all up to me.

 

 

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Play the tape all the way through – If you are in recovery, you have probably heard this saying countless times. What this basically means is “Before making the decision to use, don’t just think about the part that seems fun then shut the tape off, play it all the way through to see how it ends – usually in jails, institutions and death.”  However this doesn’t only have to apply to using, it can apply any time we find ourselves on the brink of making an impulsive decision. What does the end of the tape look like, and will we be happy with the results.

 

 

lookingintothefuture

Stop projecting! – This one is my favorite, because it is so important.  So many of us spend our days looking toward the future, worrying about things that haven’t happened yet. The dreaded “but what if” causes fantasies of imaginary situations that are purely hypothetical and result in nothing but stress. We are projecting.  We are looking ahead, instead of being present and we are meeting our problems halfway, instead of waiting for them to come to us.  This advice has allowed me to spend less time worrying, and more time living.

I believe that I am a better person today, than I ever was, even before addiction.  The reason being that today I live by a specific set principals, principals that I was taught through the program of Narcotics Anonymous.  In the program, we don’t just learn how to stay clean, we learn to live a meaningful and purposeful life.  We learn how to be the best version of ourselves possible.  I believe that if we as people – addict or not – remain teachable, than there is no limit to the ways that we can grow, and the things we can  achieve.