It was a bitter sweet day today being the last day of school. I love holidays. I love the more relaxed routine. However after our holidays while starting a new year, I will be taking our littlest daughter for her hip surgeries. 2015 will start challenging. In the meantime while preparing for our new year challenges, we have been busy. To date we've raised $3000.00 dollars for our daughter's stroller. We managed to smoke fish! AND I managed to check off another bucket list adventure. I don't know if I'm going through a mid-life crisis (ha ha) or I'm just "on a roll" living in my forties. Loving myself, and openly sharing it. Recently I went on a photo shoot. A photo shoot that went from fully clothed to not so much......My main reasons for modelling was to build confidence within myself. Then to be brave enough to share it. To have the courage to come forth and express a piece of me that I hide A LOT. My love for tattoo art. As the quote states, "Don't judge a book by its cover" well - that's definitely me. Here I am, a mother of sixteen. I home school. I can save lives. I advocate for adoption, I support families and I'm compassionate to everyone. Believing that we should all accept each other and our differences. Our uniqueness makes our world so interesting. So here I am, this rebel that influences my children to live their lives to THEIR fullest. To be happy. It doesn't matter if some of my children grow up and love the same sex, or if they get tattoos (like their mother) or they become a tattoo artist, or a operation room nurse. As long as they're not harming themselves or others, and are living respectfully and compassionately - I've accomplished raising successful children. I hear too often "I won't be happy if my child is...or does..." Honestly.....it doesn't matter, does it? Life is too short. Here I am in my forties "FINALLY" able to feel comfortable in my own skin. How I want to be and not to care so much what others think. I want my children to witness their mother independently living her life too. Courageously. I'm in the public eye. I think being a mother for so many children there is this expectation that surrounds me. I have to be this perfect roll model. Then I question it...."What is the perfect roll model?" I honestly believe that no parent is perfect, however I truly believe a parent understandably should stand by their child no matter their life choices. Sometimes we might not agree but even as a parent, it's not our life to lead. I've learned from the moment a baby is born, it's our baby forever but it's their life. All their trials, tribulations, mistakes and triumphs is theirs and we are here as parents to embrace. "That's me" Other parents might not agree, I don't know..... I've also noticed either individuals love me or dislike me and I've learned that that's ok too. I know why I'm here. I'm here to lead. To teach. To educate that individuality needs to be accepted. If all us parents thought this way, there would be less suicides. There is so many teenagers, and young adults committing suicide because they're "different" and are afraid to just love and be themselves. It's so very sad and our world can be more forgiving and understanding then this. This is one reason why I've stepped out as I have.... I'm not worrying about judgment anymore, and I will advocate for others to be themselves too while I'm being "Carrie" and a unique mother to my children living and experiencing life to our fullest. Here I am. Tired of hiding. I have the best husband in the world because he loves everything about me, my independence, my beautiful tattoos which represents my husband and I, my life, my children - our story, and that's just the outer exterior.