I won the lottery!!!!

On February 19, 2019 I WON THE LOTTERY.

I married one man, who came along with six kids.

Those six kids, are my instant jackpot – turning me into an “insta-mom!”

For the first year and a half we had our kids 50% of the time, but by 2020 we started to have the kids 100% of the time.

There was no way for me to be prepared for being an insta-mom.

When my husband and I were dating, he’d often say, “are you sure you want to get involved with me? Are you sure you want to take on all of this??” He thought I was a little nuts.

I really had NO idea what it meant to step into the role of being a mom, to grown children.

Children I did not raise from birth. My (bonus) kids were ages 3, 5, 7, 8, 10, and 11 when I became their (bonus) mom.

In my first year of marriage, we had our kids every other day.

Every other day I was doing six lice checks, making six school lunches, folding a few loads of laundry, working 10 hour days and then coming home to make dinner for our family, cleaning up from the day, teaching the younger girls how to shower, and teaching all of the kids how to properly brush their teeth and when to change their clothes.

I had received a jackpot of kids with undiagnosed learning disabilities, a lack of motivation, lack of stability, bed wetting, delayed emotional development, horrible tantrums, violent behavior, abandonment issues, eating disorders, and more. And, I had ZERO preparation for this.


Well, I wasn’t thinking. Clearly, I had always envisioned myself having a large family, a loving husband, and a warm home. And these were the glasses I had on, up until week one post marriage. That was when my “picture perfect family” glasses broke, and the real work was about to begin. I realized I was in WAY over my head. I decided I didn’t want to have any kids of our own, because we had enough to work on with the kids we already have.

Then I found out I was pregnant.

It was now my job, to take care of my tribe. To give my husband – the man who had been carrying almost all parental responsibilities, on his own for almost 11 years, a chance to work on himself, and build his career.

I felt ready to take a step down from being the entrepreneurial woman I am, to growing into the mother I had instantly become.

So, that’s what I did. I closed the café I had been running for the previous three years, and focused my attention on our home.

My blog is going to give you a little peek into the complex, very full life I am living – and explore some of the really large challenges I’ve dealt with in being a (bonus)mom.

To read more about my journey, subscribe to my website at www.chefrawraw.com and be sure to like my facebook page @chefrawraw and my Instagram @intrastrong

Do you have questions about my life? Feel free to ask them!

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