Wednesday, January 28, 2015

To The Lady who Stole My Photos and Stories and Pretended to be Me


Dear Jenna Marie White,

I suppose I should start out by saying thank you. Clearly, you felt that my life, story, and pictures were worthy of sharing with the world. And I have to agree that in my early pregnancy stage when I had just quit working out and was definitely counting how many oreos I inhaled, I was a darn cute pregnant woman. Nauseous beyond belief, but cute! The fact that you want to mimic any part of my life is....well, flattering....I guess...

But honestly, I'm kind of disturbed by it. You see, the stories that I write here on my little blog, my photos, my life....they are just that. MINE. And I don't appreciate learning that they have been downloaded and then re-uploaded to several different websites under the pretense that I am actually you.

In the event that this doesn't make sense to you, please allow me to clarify.

My pictures and stories are NOT to be used without my permission. In fact, everything on this website is protected by copyright. You stole my story and photos, and then when you uploaded them to FaceBook and Baby Center and went around telling people that the woman in the photos was you, you committed identity theft. What you have done is against the law and can be fully prosecuted. Maybe you didn't realize that, but that's a true story. As true as all of the other stories that I write and post on my blog.
I don't know if your end goal was attention (actually, I'm pretty sure it was) or money/donations (more than likely), or something else, but you used my stolen pictures to attempt to further lie to and steal from others. Really?? What is wrong with you?! I am curious what you were going to do once you "carried" MY babies far enough in pregnancy. Were you going to suddenly miscarry them? Or were you going to start posting pictures of my babies and calling them your own as well? At the same time that I was trying to get your account taken off of FaceBook, another quad mom gave birth to four beautiful, healthy babies and passed away without ever getting to see or hold them. So your attempt to masquerade as me and gain the goodwill of people doubly hurts right now. We have a very real quad family that just lost their wife and mother that need real HELP, and you are out trying to make a name for yourself and see what you can get out of it.

I feel that I should clue you in on something. You should know that I am in an awesome network of quads (and more) moms. We reach clear around the world and are in every state in the US. We are tight, and we know each other's kids well. I also have a wonderful community of readers here on A Beautiful Ruckus who know my kids well. In fact, it was a reader who realized that you were masquerading as me in one of her FaceBook groups, and it took my quad mom friends about 30 seconds to find your profile once they realized what was going on. This sort of identify theft has happened before to moms in our group, and believe me when I say that the group has become experts on finding the perpetrators.

You do not want to mess with me or the other mamas. I promise. We will find you. Every time.

Jenna Marie White. Or is it Jenna Corcoran? Or is it something else entirely different at this point? Whatever your real name is....you are sick. Really ill. Please go see a mental health professional. Whatever is making you rationalize behavior like this is not okay. Do you even understand the severity of what you've done? This isn't a game. This is a criminal act. Talking to a doctor is very appropriate at this point. I want you to get better, but you have to take the first step to get help. Preferably before you steal from someone who will press charges. Now is a good time to turn your life around.

Mostly though, I just feel pity for you. Pity that you think your life is so boring that you would take mine and make it yours. Life is what you make it. I didn't ask for quadruplets, but I've chosen to embrace life and all of the ups and downs that go with it. My life is no more important or special than your life. Maybe you are hurting because you want a baby yourself, and you can't have one. Jenna, I've been there. I get it. I know the tears and the pain and the frustration. But you can choose to make the most of what you have and bless others rather than stealing from them. The best advice that I can give you is to go figure out how to live your life and enjoy what God gave to YOU. Find the beauty in it. I promise it is there if you look.

Anyhow...*sigh*...you wanted attention? Here you go. This post has gone out to thousands of people and you can count on them seeing the photos that you took from my blog and called your own. So far, my friends have reported your profile and had you removed from FaceBook twice. I even sent you a message asking you to remove my photos, but you didn't respond before FaceBook deleted you the second time.  I know that all you have to do is set up a new profile with another new name, and you can easily upload my photos or another moms photos again, so I want to make sure you understand what I'm saying:

DO NOT STEAL MY PHOTOS OR STORIES AGAIN.

And that goes for every other quad mom, triplet mom, twin mom, singleton mom, or other human being on earth who has photos and stories that you have been eyeing.

This is your warning. Please take it and move on.

Have a great life....your OWN life,
Rebecca

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Sunday, January 25, 2015

Letters from Dad: #22

(Once a month, I invite Sean to take over the blog and write a little note to our kids. I love that he is willing to leave little nuggets of wisdom for them to look back on when they are older! While many of the posts on this blog are written to share our lives with you, the reader, Sean's "Letters from Dad" series is truly written to our kids. You are welcome to peek in and see what he wants them to know!)

Dear Children,

I once read that if you want to marry a certain type of woman, then you need to be the type of man that a woman like that would marry. Pretty good advice. Somehow, mommy still married me even though I’m a flawed individual.

A good friend of mine used to say “friends will come and go, but enemies accumulate”. I imagine the advice on how to get the right woman would work the same on how to get the right friends. Be the type of friend that you would like to have. I’m not the best at being a good friend, and yet, somehow daddy manages to have friends. Daddy has really great friends actually.

I’m often telling you to be good to one another. I think this is one of the first things one should do to be a good friend. Sometimes, you’ll need to be nice to people who aren't nice to you. Sometimes it sucks, but it’s just the way it is.

Try to be good to people, kids. It’s good to have friends. You never know when you might need someone in your corner. Also, try to live this song.

Love,
Daddy

8 There was a man all alone;

    he had neither son nor brother.
There was no end to his toil,
    yet his eyes were not content with his wealth.
“For whom am I toiling,” he asked,
    “and why am I depriving myself of enjoyment?”
This too is meaningless—
    a miserable business!
    because they have a good return for their labor:
10 If either of them falls down,
    one can help the other up.
But pity anyone who falls
    and has no one to help them up.
11 Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm.
    But how can one keep warm alone?
12 Though one may be overpowered,
    two can defend themselves.
A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.


Two are better than one,
--Ecclesiastes 4:8-12
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Wednesday, January 21, 2015

The Little Things Thursdays: #99

This post may contain affiliate links. Thank you for supporting our family and blog!

Welcome to The Little Things Thursday!!

If you are new, we like to take a minute to look back on the little things that brightened our week. So often we get busy and forget all of the things that we enjoy as we go through our daily lives. This is an opportunity to stop, remember, and enjoy those things! Nothing is too small...in fact, the smaller the better! That's the whole point! If you have a blog, leave a link in a comment below! If you don't blog, I'd love for you to participate by leaving a moment in a comment anyway. Ready?


1. To the Library We Go
We went on BIG adventures over the weekend! Probably the least crazy was taking four 3-year-olds to the library. Oh wait....that's still crazy. :)

We let the kids each pick out a book to take home. I don't think they really get the whole "browsing" thing yet. They each picked up the first book they saw and took a seat. It was cute and (relatively) quiet for about 10 minutes. And then it was definitely time to go voluntarily before it became a forced eviction.
Abby picked out the biggest kids' book she could find.

Caleb was the first to sit down with his book. He is definitely a book lover!

Elijah couldn't make up his mind, which is exactly in keeping with his personality.

Ellie wanted to pick out more books, but her brothers cut our visit short.

2. The Big Weekend Adventure
Ellie, Elijah, Caleb, and Abby

We did it! We actually took our kids on a weekend trip to St. Louis. BIG ACCOMPLISHMENT! I'll be writing a whole post about our adventures, but it was major enough to be mentioned in our Little Things Thursday post as well!


And because anecdotes are always fun....

3. Caught Red Handed
This week, Sean caught Ellie taking off with his loose change.

Sean: Ellie? Are you stealing my money?
Ellie: Yes!
Sean: What are you planning on doing with it?
Ellie: I'm going to take it to school and buy lemonade and books from the library!


4. The Monster in the Night
Last night, Sean and I were peacefully sleeping in our room. The rest of the house was also sound asleep. But then a small little boy crept up beside my husband, got really close, and then went,

RWARRRR!!!


It was like 3am! I think the thing that makes me love this so much though (besides the fact that Sean screamed like a girl) was that it was Caleb who pulled this stunt! He just about died laughing after scaring Daddy out of a sound sleep! This week, he has really been finding his sense of humor! Although he isn't "cracking jokes" he keeps doing little things like pulling the stack of coats away from Sean just as he is reaching for them and then bursting into laughter. You can tell that he thinks he's hilarious! It's adorable! :)


5. Christmas Was So Last Month
The other day, after we put the kids down for bed, we heard crying in their room. Sean went up to investigate:

Ellie: *crying*
Sean: What happened?
Ellie: Abby pushed me! And she hurt my leg!
Sean: *gives it a kiss* Is there anything else that I can do to make it feel better?
Ellie: You can give me a present!!


6. Household Convention Center
Who doesn't like a good convention center that is easily accessible? I think Sean pretty much summed up our lives as parents when he came downstairs after trying to use the bathroom,
"Going to the bathroom. It's a family affair."



Now it's your turn! What Little Things brightened up your week? Link up your post in a comment below and make sure you come back next week to play again!




This post may contain affiliate links. For more info, please see my disclaimer page.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

The Little Things Thursdays: #98

This post may contain affiliate links. Thank you for supporting our family and blog!

Welcome to The Little Things Thursday!!

If you are new, we like to take a minute to look back on the little things that brightened our week. So often we get busy and forget all of the things that we enjoy as we go through our daily lives. This is an opportunity to stop, remember, and enjoy those things! Nothing is too small...in fact, the smaller the better! That's the whole point! If you have a blog, leave a link in a comment below! If you don't blog, I'd love for you to participate by leaving a moment in a comment anyway. Ready?

1. Well, They ARE Stockings!
Abby

Christmas is mostly put away at this point, but we did miss a couple of things. Namely, the kids' Christmas stockings. So Abby decided to start the year off strong in the green department. She upcycled a couple of stockings to keep her feet warm. What can I say? I like the creativity!

2. This Handsome Boy
Elijah

Check out this handsome boy! I'm so very proud of him and his sweet heart! We are going through a "No! I no do that!" phase, but overall, he is a really helpful, good kid. Nothing much to say about this photo other than that. :)

Oh, and that I'm hoping his future wife likes "hat hair" because this boy takes it to a whole new level!

3. Prepared for Some Intense, Unknown Activity
Ellie

I'm honestly not sure what is going on here with the snow hat and safety goggles. Maybe a secret wish to go skiing? She's so goofy! She even wore this head ensemble during dinner!

4. Sometimes Life is Tears and Wailing
Caleb and Abby

We've certainly had better commutes home from school. I don't know what's gotten into these kids lately. I think they want to hibernate as much as I do. It's way too cold to be out. This particular day, Caleb wanted his doggy (lovey) and Abby had just been busted by a teacher for misbehaving in class and knew that she and Daddy were going to have a talk at home. So for those who think my life is all sunshine and roses, this is proof that we deal with stuff too!

Parenting is not for the faint of heart!



Now it's your turn! What Little Things brightened up your week? Link up your post in a comment below and make sure you come back next week to play again!




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Sunday, January 11, 2015

The Top 14 Posts of 2014

When the year ends, I like to look back and see which posts were the most popular. It gives me an idea of what people like reading, plus, it's a nice way to remember highlights from my year. I used to be an avid scrapbooker. You know, back when people were snipping paper, cutting shapes, and sticking stickers all over hand assembled layouts. Then I moved to doing a couple of digital scrapbooks (SO much easier and faster!). But I think my favorite way to document memories is through writing. You can capture details in writing that are so easily missed in just photos alone.

Whoa, tangent.

Anyhow, in honor of the close of 2014, below are the 14 most popular posts...or at least the ones that had the most hits. :)  (and feel free to pin any of these that catch your fancy!)

14) Mommy Tip: Fix for a Diaper Rash
I've actually found an even BETTER fix for a diaper rash....but I haven't written the post yet. For now though, this is an awesome trick that a nurse gave us when our babies were little!


13) Homemade Chocolate Chip Bagels (with bonus Asiago Bagels!)
Specialty bagels are so expensive! Try these homemade ones for pennies. They freeze beautifully too!

12) Review: Parent's Choice Overnight Diapers
Cheap diapers that are still absorbent enough to get through the night. These are what we use!


11) When Toddlers Attack: Preschool Germs Unite
One of my least favorite days as a mother dealing with preschool germs. I hope you have a good laugh after reading this one. I think moms must sympathize, because this post was shared (and I'm sure laughed at) many, many times over!


10) In Which I Talk About Surviving Bill Gothard's Cult
Oh....just read the post. I could try to summarize it, but it's just easier if you click over.


9) How to Make Your Own Personalized T-Shirt
Save your money and make your own! They turn out so cute! :)


8) Essential Oils: The German, British, and French Schools of Thought
It took me awhile to wade through the different schools of thought surrounding essential oils. I've complied what I've learned about them into this post to hopefully make it easy to understand.


7) Essential Oils: To Ingest or Not to Ingest?
It's a big question in the essential oils world. Is it safe to ingest? Or should ingesting be avoided? This is how I arrived at my conclusion.


6) Recipe: Mini Chicken Pot Pies
A fun twist on chicken pot pies! Perfect for school or work lunches or easy dinners!


5) Mommy Tip: Just Bring the Feet
I don't take my kids shoe shopping. WAY too much work. Instead, I use this nifty strategy to get what they need without battling the shoe aisle with kids.


4) Essential Oils: How I Saved Money By Switching to....
I poured SO much time, energy, and research into this post. I kept a drop-by-drop list of which essential oils I used and how much it cost. Read my results! Truly amazing and life changing for our family!


3) How to Make a Homemade Tutu Skirt
Aw, Baby Abby! It's an older post, but still very popular especially in September and October when Halloween is coming up. The best part about this tutorial? You doesn't require ANY sewing!


2) Essential Oils: Which Essential Oil Company is Best?
I spent several hundred dollars trying to find a good essential oil company. Read pros and cons of the brands that I tried in this post.


1) Essential Oils: Do They Really Work or Is It All Just Hype?
I started the year 2014 as a total essential oils skeptic. I truly believed it was just a scam. This post was the top post that I wrote last year. I had an insane number of hits on it as it seems I wasn't the only one questioning the legitimacy of them. Hopefully, a few of you found answers by reading the rest of the series as the year went on! (and if you haven't read this 5 post series, it was my favorite thing to write last year...so head on over!)

Thank you for being such an amazing community of supporters. Our family has been beyond blessed to count each of you in our corner....from the time that we found out quadruplets were on the way to now. Hugs to each of you and wishes for a wonderful new year!

Need more top posts? Check out the top posts from 2013 and 2012!

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Wednesday, January 7, 2015

The Little Things Thursdays: #97

This post may contain affiliate links. Thank you for supporting our family and blog!

Welcome to The Little Things Thursday!!

If you are new, we like to take a minute to look back on the little things that brightened our week. So often we get busy and forget all of the things that we enjoy as we go through our daily lives. This is an opportunity to stop, remember, and enjoy those things! Nothing is too small...in fact, the smaller the better! That's the whole point! If you have a blog, leave a link in a comment below! If you don't blog, I'd love for you to participate by leaving a moment in a comment anyway. Ready?

1. Official Christmas 2014 Photo
Caleb, Abby, Ellie, and Elijah

Or about as official as it's going to get anyway. Lol! At what point do they start holding STILL for photos??? 

2. The Boys and Their Toys
It's not that the girls didn't like their toys (because they love them!), but the boys were giving me all sorts of decent photo opportunities, so I grabbed them!

I was very excited to find out two weeks before Christmas that my friend Julie had a car rug that she was willing to part with. It was a gift for all of the kids, but I knew that one little boy in particular was going to be extra happy to have roads to drive his cars on. 
Caleb and his new-to-us Car Rug

Elijah got this nifty tool set from my parents. He likes to bang on things anyway, so at least now we are moving him toward a positive use of those skills. Aren't those goggles a riot?!
Elijah

I actually don't know if the boys did this or if one of the girls did it, but....I thought it worth letting the world know that Elsa can drive a bulldozer. I thought she just used her magical powers to move mountains of snow, but I guess a little mechanical help doesn't hurt anyone.
Elsa....driving a bulldozer

This cracks me up! The girls were given a dollhouse by their Cousin Marissa. She was finished with it, and thought our girls would enjoy playing with it. They LOVE it! But the day after Christmas, this is what I found while the girls slept in. LOL! So many new toys, and the boys were both busy arranging furniture in their sisters' dollhouse.
 Caleb and Elijah


3. Castles


I just thought that this was a cute photo of the four of them. Uncle Nathan gave them two pop up castles to play in. The kids drag their sleeping bags in and camp out for fun. Hours of enjoyment! But I caught this quick photo as they were roaming back and forth between castles.

4. A Better Multi-Tasker Than I Am
Caleb

So I guess this means that I need to stop lamenting that I don't have a third arm to keep up with these kids? Apparently, heads work just as well!

5. I'm In a Book!
This is kind of fun! A couple of months ago, a new book called The Wonder Within You came out. It was written by a local woman, and I just now made it to a bookstore to see if I could find it. While she was writing it, she was looking for personal pregnancy stories to fit between the chapters. A mutual friend gave her my info, and after chatting with her on the phone, I agreed to write a short snippet of our story to go in her book. My page is about finding out that quadruplets were on the way. If you get a chance, pick up a copy! My little part is on page 71!

6. New Room to Roam
We finally took our very last gate down! Our last gate was in the kitchen to block our kids from getting to our open pantry. I just didn't want to chase cans of green beans around the house, you know? Last week, we finally decided to take it down and see what would happen. Thankfully, after the first day or so, the novelty wore off and it's mostly left alone. But of course, before that happened, everyone had to stand on the previously forbidden ground to celebrate!


7. Handmade Lotion and Lip Balm
I thought these turned out so cute! I made Homemade Organic Lotion and Lip Balm for my mom, sister, mother-in-law, and sisters-in-law this Christmas. Not only did the products turn out really well (okay, I might have gone a little heavy on the cinnamon bark), but I thought the packaging I ended up with turned out so cute! Yay for working with whatever I had on hand! :)

8. Elijah's Amazing Aroma Complete!
It's HERE! Back in October, I hit a big milestone with Young Living and earned this amazing set of essential oils. $2000 worth of oils!!! EEEEEK!! It came last night...all 120 precious oils to use with my family. What a huge gift! I thought I was excited, but you know who was WAY more excited than I was? Elijah. Elijah is pretty sure that Young Living sent those oils to him. Lol! He spent some time looking through "his" new oils and was delighted to pose for a picture with them. He cracks me up! I just hope that he lets me use them on occasion!


Now it's your turn! What Little Things brightened up your week? Link up your post in a comment below and make sure you come back next week to play again!




This post may contain affiliate links. For more info, please see my disclaimer page.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Christmas Recap 2014

December is by far the most stressful month out of the year for me. It's one of those things where I really have to just put my head down and keep going until I get to the end of it. As much as I enjoy time with family on Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day, I'm always VERY grateful to see January arrive. It's like I can finally take a big deep breath and get back to normal.

BUT, with that being said, the lead up to Christmas was more fun this year than it has been in the past!

Last year, the kids didn't fully "get it". The year before that, they were clueless. And the year before that, they were still infants. This year, they definitely knew what was going on! Age 3 must be the magical number!

It was so fun for me to see them excited about the Christmas tree! I did have to explain a few things about it though, like when we were headed home from school one day...
Ellie *in the back seat* When we get home, we are going to get another Christmas tree!
Me: Uh, no Ellie. Just one tree per Christmas. Otherwise we will end up with an entire forest in our living room.
Ellie: Oh, okay...

Then there was the lead up to Christmas. How many times can a set of 3-year-old quadruplets wish everybody "Merry Christmas" in one day? Turns out that there is no limit! Lol!

And then there were these four cute little faces at the top of the stairs on Christmas morning.....and secretly, I was just as excited as they were to see them open their gifts. I start Christmas shopping in August every year, so that is some serious anticipation for me!

Christmas day itself ended up being a pretty busy for us. After letting the kids open their gifts from us, we headed over to my parents' house for cinnamon rolls and gifts. My brother and sister both came into town, so it was nice to have the whole family together again!



I have to share a quick photo of the best Christmas gift we gave this year. We always draw names on my side of the family, and Sean drew my brother Mike this year. When I called Mike to ask what he wanted for Christmas, he gave me absolutely no ideas and said that he didn't need anything. So Sean and I were sitting on the kitchen table about five days before Christmas with still no clue what to get him. Somehow, National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation and the Jelly of the Month Club came up. Since the exchange had a $20 limit, and Jelly of the Month Club subscriptions start at $35 per month, that was out, but then Sean glanced down at the Bama brand grape jelly sitting on the table, and an idea was born. My conservative brother, Mike, ended up getting a year's supply of Limited Edition O-bama Grape Jelly. Haha! It was great!


Then we headed over to Sean's parents' house for gifts and Christmas dinner. His brother also came in from out of town, so by the end of Christmas, we were able to each see all of our siblings and spend time with them. Quite the feat!



The kids received SO many gifts between both sides of the family. I wish I could better explain to them just how blessed they are to have such a generous extended family. These kiddos have had so much fun playing with their new toys in their last week, and they are STILL wishing everyone they see or who we talk to on the phone a "Merry Christmas!"

So from all of my kids to you....MERRY CHRISTMAS!!! (They have no idea what New Year's Day is. Ha!)
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