Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Handling the Holidays With A Blended Family

Happy Wednesday Ladies!  Normally I do What I Wore on Wednesdays, but I was MAJOR slack this week with taking pictures, so instead of reading about what I wore today, I am going to share with you how we handle holidays, and other events as a blended family!  

I love this!!!

For those of you who did not know that I was divorced and remarried, you can read more about that here .  I share so much of our life on Facebook and Instagram, and over the past few years I have gotten tons of emails, FB messages and comments of people saying how great they think it is how my ex-husband and I do what we do for our children, and many have asked how we even tolerate each other, let alone be in the same room with one another...because most divorces are messy, nasty and the couple that was once was united and together is now in constant battle mode, and wishing ill-will on the other.  I am very happy and proud to say that my ex-husband and I do NOT fit that category!  Obviously we got divorced for a reason...but it was very important for me to never ever have a messy, hate-filled divorce, and I absolutely would NEVER make it so my children were put in the middle and forced to ever choose sides.  Back in 1990 is when I met my now ex-husband, and we started out as friends, and once we decided to divorce, it was important to me that we end as friends.  I wanted that for so many reasons, but mainly because during the course of our marriage we brought 5 children into this world, 5 children who did not ask for their parents to get divorced, 5 children who needed love and support from both their mother and father, 5 children who did not deserve an ounce of heartache due to our failure.  Now before I go any further, I fully understand that some people are just mean and cruel, and a friendly divorce just isn't possible, but I do strongly believe that if the two parents always keep the children front and center, it can be alot friendlier than they would think.  I was very fortunate that the father of my children is a very good man, even though we are divorced, he still meets all his responsibilities as their father, you can imagine how terrified I was being a single mom to 5, even in divorce, I was able to continue to be a stay at home mom, my ex-husband knew that paying a higher child support, so our children would not have to come home to a babysitter, or I would not have to go back to work full time and put my 1 year old in daycare, was important not only to me, but our 5 children, I am truly forever grateful for the sacrifices that he made to ensure the happiness of our children.  

So, we got off to a pretty good start, and just as I was adjusting to life as a single mom, I met a pretty wonderful, amazing man, who is now my husband.  It wasn't long after meeting Mark that I knew he was special, and that falling in love with him was pretty much inevitable, but then I came back down to reality and thought, "yea ok, he is a great guy, but seriously Kimm who is going to want to get involved with a woman with 5 kids?????"   I know woman say all the time that their husband is the greatest, but ladies my husband is truly wonderful, we fell in love pretty quick, and him and my children fell in love with each other even quicker.  Any woman who has gone through a divorce understands what I am talking about, it is so scary introducing your children to someone, and hoping there is a connection, because we have all heard those horror stories of "evil step parents", and I seriously wake up and go to bed every single day thanking God for the life that I have.  

Up until I had met Mark my ex-husband and I had a pretty decent relationship, my intention was to keep it that way, for the obvious reason we had 5 children together, 3 of which were still little and need us to "get along", so I was very honest with Mark, even though I knew he may get a little freaked out of the relationship I had with my "ex", I needed him to not only be aware of it, but to be "OK" with it also...and well like I told you before he really is wonderful, and he was totally fine with it, you see,though it isn't ideal and considered to be the "norm" to have the friendly relationship my ex and I do, Mark understood it and felt the same as I did. So, of course the first time Mark and Kenny were going to meet, well you could say I was a little ALOT nervous....and about 5 minutes into the meeting, they were cracking jokes and laughing...yup there I was standing in my house with my new partner, my ex-husband and all 5 kids running around and it wasn't akward, or just felt normal....major sigh of relief on that one!!!! 

My ex and I had discussed how we were going to handle holidays, etc when it came to the children, and well right away I knew that there was no way I was ever giving up my children on Christmas, like over my dead body that was gonna happen, and then I thought neither one of us should not be able to enjoy these moments with our children, and our children shouldn't have to choose who to spend holidays with, so I spoke to Mark about it and we agreed that Kenny would always be welcome to spend the holidays here with us, and well 4 years later that is what we still do.  My ex lives out of state, so when he comes to visit the kids, he stays here at our house, sounds crazy right....but it works for us, we all truly get along and I cannot even put into words what this means to our children.  You see our youngest is only 6, so we have so many more years of parenting together and milestones such as graduations, weddings, holidays, etc that we will all need to be together for, so for us, getting along is just the only way to do it.  

   A few years ago on Christmas, all of us together making stockings

This is probably one of my favorite pictures, I mean look at this, Olivia with her father and step-father, what a lucky little girl to be loved by two wonderful men

No matter what we are still her parents!!!

This past spring, we all vacationed together, us, Kenny, his girlfriend and her children, yup we vacationed together, no one killed anyone and we all had a blast!

AJ super excited to have Daddy here for Easter (and incase you are wondering that is Harrison dressed up as the Easter Bunny....major good sport!!)

Clearly there is no mistaking the love they all have for each other in this picture...this clearly proves that blood does NOT make family....but love surely of my favorite quotes, "A step parent is much more than just a parent; they made the choice to love you when they didn't have to " #weareblessed

My heart could burst....words cannot describe how much I love my people!!!


So as you can see we all do really get along, and I always love when I read a comment or someone sends me a message saying how wonderful they think it is that we do this, and that I must have married a saint to put up with the ex husband staying at our house, and sharing our holidays...but here is the isn't always easy, I would be lying if I said none of us ever argue, disagree or fight, but we always get past it.  You see, we do what we do for the fierce love all 3 of us have for these children, there is nothing more important to any of us than their happiness and sometimes that means putting our happiness off to the side to do what is right for them.  So many people I talk to say they "hate" their ex, hate is such a strong word, and yes we did get a divorce for a reason, but how on earth could I ever hate someone who gave me the greatest gifts I have ever received?  My husband isn't a saint, he is a good man, who loves my children like they were his own, he respects their father and who he is, he isn't trying to replace their dad, we have no competition over here, my ex husband is grateful that I married a man who truly adores his children and doesn't treat them as "step children".  

I learned alot going through a divorce and having to start all over and one thing I learned that anything can happen, and if you truly have faith, things will work out in the end.  I can only speak for our family, and though it hasn't always been easy, I can absolutely say it has always been worth it.  

I know not every divorce can work out this way, but so many people have asked me about how we do it, and I don't have a concrete answer other than the fact that no matter what our children will always always always come first, our new significant others knew going in, we are parents first, and even though we aren't married to one another anymore, we still have 5 children who need their mom and dad on the same team.  We have had some kinks we have had to work out along the way, we are all still learning.  It of course makes me so sad for my children, I never thought they would be one of "those" kids whose parents got divorced, but I have 5 very well adjusted, happy children...some days are harder than others, and some days you wonder is it all worth it, am I doing things right, and then one day out of the blue your 10 year old says "Mom I am so lucky that I get to have two dads and they both get to watch me open my presents from Santa"....and it's at that moment, I know I am not perfect, but I am doing something right, all the ups and downs that we sometimes dealt with are all worth it, because my 5 children know how much they are loved and they realize how truly lucky they are!!!!

Thank you so much for stopping by today...I know this post is not the normal every day happy go lucky post, but its a part of my life that I am not ashamed of, but rather I am proud of, I am proud of how we handled our divorce and I am proud that we put our children first, always no matter what!!!  

Have the BEST day!!!  Happy Hump Day


  1. That is amazing!!! Props to all of you for making tha happen for your kiddos!!

  2. Your best post yet! I loved your honesty. Keep writing like this and you will have loads of readers very soon!

    1. Thanks Blair!!!! Thank you so much for reading. Have a great day!!!!

  3. Hi Kimm: What a great post! I have no point of reference as I am in a different stage/state of life, but I I can feel that you and your family work very hard to keep a balance for the ENTIRE family - what a vacation you described! So many can take an example from your story! Bless you all!

    1. Thanks so much Laurie!!! Have a wonderful day and thank you so much for reading !!!!