Any bonus moms out there with some advice?

So I've been with the boyfriend for a little over a year and a half. In that time I've learned to love and care for his daughter like she was my own. She's the coolest kid out there. She's smart, creative, and if she could get a dime for every time she does something silly, she'd be a millionaire.

We've spent a lot of time together, however, our dynamic has changed. We're now all living together in our first home. While it's the best thing that's happened to me, it's also a big change to that "step-parent life".

My bonus kid and I get along REALLY well, but sometimes-like every parent- we have to be parents. It's not in my nature to "punish," I'm more of the "let's-talk-it-out" kinda person. That's where my problem lies.

The other day she did something that REALLY REALLY upset me. I'm sure my facial expression gave it away and she instantly knew she was in the wrong. But, instead of being a parent, my non-confrontational self walked out of the room without relaying some sort of punishment.

Her dad was in the room...he saw what happened, and he tackled it. But after the apology, and MY "talk-it-out" method, I felt like I did us both a disservice. I know that parenting isn't always fun and games. It's about putting your foot down, and not letting them get away with everything because they've mastered the "pout."

I'm getting there. It's tough, but I'm getting there.

A lot of people told me it would be too hard to date someone with at kid. "It's too much baggage," "There's too much drama," I'll say this much...with every learning curb -no matter how hard it is- I WOULDN'T CHANGE IT FOR THE WORLD.

There's no manual for how to do this, I'm not looking for one. But I would love to hear about your experience and maybe some methods that you've used with your little ones.

Thanks! In the meantime, I'll work on my poker face ;)