Jan 312012
 

As moms, it’s our job to protect our brood, guide little hearts, create productive citizens, all the while spinning plates and juggling life, as if it’s just another day in the park.  We don’t have to pretend to be perfect, rather a work in progress.  Just as our kids are going through new phases, so are we.  It’s our first time being a mom to screaming infants, wild toddlers & moody teenagers.

We do other moms a disservice by not admitting hard times.  Having coffee with a friend, a mentor, finding time to play tennis, golf, whacking a ball, is enough to set us back on track.  Even the toughest of jobs has a one or two day break; so take one for yourself.  Now, for the Top 10 Mom Confessions…

1) Our house is usually a disaster.

2) We don’t know everything and don’t always like to share.

3) If we never see another episode of Spongebob, Dora or iCarly, I’m sure we’d survive.

4) Playing games with our kids is usually not that much fun.

5) We love taking baths in peace and dream of a hotel room for one (OK, maybe two).

6) We love eating food someone else prepares.

7) We hate sticky things.

8) We occasionally make mistakes / Sometimes we’re wrong (though rarely LOL).

9) It’s hard to ask for help.

10) And drum roll please . . . When the baby’s diaper has a blow out, we sometimes say: Go Get D-A-D!

Hang up the Super-Mom Cape and make your way to the kitchen – as you step over race cars, Lego blocks and soccer equipment that’s set up like a mine field.  Grab yourself a coffee or a hot tea, take a deep breath, and realize you don’t have to be something you’re not.  Don’t create expectations you can’t maintain.  So as you’re taking a bubble bath and little notes are being passed underneath the door – because you told them not to knock – take a deep breath and know it’s happening to millions of other moms out there.  This is nothing new under the sun.  It’s job security and you are set.

Here’s to living the best version of YOU.  Don’t forget to BREATHE!

written for http://www.women.com

 Posted by at 11:59 pm
Jan 162012
 

Dr. Seuss said it best:

Everyone is Just Waiting,

Waiting for the Fish to Bite,

Waiting for the Wind to Fly a Kite

Waiting Around for Friday night.

Doesn’t waiting seem like a waste of time, a useless place?  Yet, in fact, there are lessons to be learned in the Waiting Place.  Waiting is defined as:  remaining stationary, in readiness or in expectation, to rest in patience.

I enjoyed a girl’s three-day weekend away from the hustle and bustle of life.  There were no techno gadgets, just nature, walking trails, lakes and Canadian Geese.  What a great time to clear my head, think and be.  I anticipated a quiet get-a-way of thinking and waiting in expectation for answers to questions.

But the transition from the “fast-paced-to the “slow-paced” was difficult.  Women are multi-taskers.  We shine best in a storm, when life is in turmoil, when chaos is at its peak, when lives are at stake.  Give us a day to think and wait, and it’s a little un-settling.  It’s in our blood to keep the balls juggling and the plates spinning.

After 10 minutes of waiting by the lake, hoping for a quick revelation to life’s ponderings, my mind filled itself with the infamous “To-Do” list:  buy groceries, fix the car, office deadlines, pay the bills.  My brain was full of logistics.  But as I sat there long enough, taking a deep breath, determined to do nothing but wait, something amazing began to occur; I began to smell the roses, hear the birds singing; my mind began to clear, and like the sun peeking through the clouds, I slowly began to see things differently, about my kids, my life, my goals and dreams for myself.

We hurry through life and forget that “Waiting” (remaining stationary) is a valid step to life’s processes.  It’s where new perspective, new ideas and new attitudes are formed.  Priorities begin to re-arrange themselves.  The important stuff seems to rise to the top and the “not-so-important” falls off the list.

Like death and taxes, laundry and dishes will be with you Always.  Our children won’t be young forever.  They won’t always be willing to hang with us, let us share in their disappointments and victories.

Embrace the quiet, live in readiness and expectation.  Don’t stray far from resting in patience.  For in the Waiting Place, life gains new perspective . . . And Oh, the Places You Will Go!

 Posted by at 11:12 pm
Nov 282011
 

A couple of months before I headed to college, my mom felt the need to write my name on everything I owned:  My clothes, my type writer (I know, a what???) my books, my suit case, MY underwear (nice) and anything else that couldn’t be nailed to the ground.

One night, during a prayer service at University, I knelt to pray.  As I was getting up, I realized on the bottom of each shoe, written with a Black Sharpie was my FULL NAME from toe to heel.  Sixteen letters!  If embarrassment could of killed, I would have died that night.

If I was lost, I was found:  all I had to do was look at my shoes, my underwear or my purse to remember who I was.  The only thing my mom didn’t write my name on, was an umbrella – and it was stolen on the first rainy day.

Do you know who you are?  Sometimes, we get caught up in the pressure of life, whether it be money, status, certain relationships, keeping up with the Joneses’, trying to stay ahead of the game, being something we’re not and we forget about what really matters:  our integrity, helping others, common sense, good character and remembering that the journey is WAY more important than arrival . . . because we’re never really there, we’re just on our way.

We get in a groove, a rut of sorts, living our nice little life, surrounding ourselves with our BFFs, enjoying “girl’s night,” sports night, placing our kids in every music class, on every athletic team and trying to maintain the status quo . . . Cause after all, we’ve gotta keep up appearances.

Don’t forget the person of adventure who used to try new things, the person who used to write letters to change wayward political views, the person who sought to help those in need, the one who used to ski, scuba dive or golf, but can never find the time, the once fit mom or dad who’s got the (I have a family and don’t have time to take care of myself” syndrome).  If we look at our TRUE Self, we may not recognize the current person in the mirror.  It’s time to RECLAIM Our Life!

It’s time to come clean, start exercising, writing, golfing, reclaiming date night, family night; go back to basics and talk to each other eye to eye, not text to text.  Don’t be the stolen umbrella of life, the person who is so far away from who you really wanna be, that your true identity has faded.  It’s time to reclaim who you Really Are, who you wanna be . . .

Just as those shoes had my name boldly written on them, claiming their owner, Be the Owner of Your Life. Find your True Self and Write Your Name on it.

 Posted by at 10:20 am
Oct 032011
 

15) When you can’t think of the word “VAN” so you describe it as that thing in the driveway full of chicken nuggets, cheerios and stinky socks.

14) When your brain cells left the building with baby #1 and have yet to return.

13) When you drive all over town, dropping off kids from here to there and think you passed yourself on the road.

12) When you wish your driving miles got you airline points.

11) When you haven’t been cold since 1986.

10) When you take your vehicle to the car wash and 8 more cars go through while they’re still vacuuming yours.

9) When you call one of your children by the dog’s name.

8) When you wear your pants inside out to the Dr.’s office and put them on the SAME WAY when you leave.

7) When you haven’t completed a full thought in 10 years.  Go get,  Stop. . . don’t touch . .Uh, what was I saying?

6) When you hide in the back yard to eat the last cookie.

5) When you create an outside distraction, to go the bathroom in peace.

4) When you realize at the dinner table, you’ve had a scrub pad hanging off your scarf all day.

3) When your stairwell has artwork drawn along the walls, by an unknown artist, in crayola.

2) When you drop 3 kids off at school, but only 2 are old enough to attend.

1) When you hear yourself say:  You can skate in the house, just wear a helmet.

If you have suggestions you’d like to share, we would love to hear them.  Here’s to celebrating moms.

 Posted by at 8:39 am
Sep 052011
 

I’ve been told that no matter how many kids you have, their personalities are different. I have 4 and have tried to raise them all the same, but each child calls for a different protocol.  They all have different likes, dislikes, quirks, talents, ways of dealing with stress, pressure, are they audio, visual learners, do they respond to negative or positive reinforcement and the list goes on.

I’ve never been a rules person, yet as a mom, I’ve discovered that rules keep everyone alive!  My 4 tend to push the envelope at times, so I’ve had to lay down the law.  My husband snickers from afar, wondering how I came up with some of the rules – and how long they’ll last, for that matter.  While some don’t make a bit of sense, it’s my duty to enforce the KEA Effect, “Keeping “Em Alive!  I’ll make rules off the top of my head to keep them in-tact for another week.

I have one child who excels at sports.  Baseball, soccer, tennis; he just picks it up quickly and thrives.  He’s our little Rock Star.  But if it’s not a sporting event, the child Trips on the Wind. He’ll be skating through the house, and before I know it, he’s looking at the basement stairs and boom, there he goes.  Feet First.

Last winter, the 7 year old asked to walk the dog.  It had been snowing. Mind you, him and the dog weigh about the same, so I knew it was more of the dog running – and my son flying behind him with one hand.  I made a rule: When there’s ice on the ground – You have to wear a helmet when walking the dog.  You should have seen the look on his face.  Are you kidding?

Sounds terrible, right!  Don’t worry, each child will be given money when they turn18, to use at their discretion, for either College or Counseling.  I love them too much and work too hard keeping them alive and well, to let the crazy dog “Take Them Out” on the pavement.  My husband shook his head, with a half laugh, as if:  Do you make up these rules off the top of your head?”

Yes I do, thank you.  That’s how I was successful in board meetings, thinking up well-spun marketing materials to sell products; my job has now become, (KEA!) Keeping ‘Em Alive . . .  and well, to live another day.The 7 year old came back and said:  Mom, Max took off and I hit the ground head first.  The helmet saved me.”  That’s awesome son, Now go tell your dad.

Life is funny and messy and exciting and complicated.  So whatever it takes to keep your kids happy, feeling loved, healthy, safe and whole – wing it with different creative ideas and “rules outside the box.”  If anything, it’s something to laugh about later, making memories as we go along.

Your rules may only last a few weeks, a few days, or only for that minute, but as our children grow, change, hormones kick-in and new attitudes form;  it’s up to us to re-route, change it up, become more creative and think outside the box.  Life is not perfect and there’s no SET Mold for how it’s suppose to play out.  Here’s To Living Life Outside the Box . . .  It Rules!

 Posted by at 9:29 pm
Jul 072011
 

I was reading an article on CNN the other day, and came across a topic that read:  5 Ways to Look Rich.  My 1st  thought was: what does rich really look like, and rich in what?  Personal Finances, Family, Character, Passion for what you do? My dad always said:  Never tell anyone you have money, or they’ll wanna borrow it.

It sparred my interest, just how many people want to be something they’re not; so I googled it and this is what I found:

How to Look Like a Big Business, when you’re really small

How to Look Sick to Skip School

How to Look like a Genius, When  . .

It’s All About Looking Like Something You’re Not.

Money, that little green paper, can buy happiness, to an extent.  It can buy you a trip to St. John’s, afford you top of the line automotives, offer you the lavish of life styles, but does it bring you the happiness, the peace, the contentment, you’re looking for.  The peace that alludes you in the night.  The guilt that won’t remove itself, like a monkey on your back.

Are you a faker?  A pretender? Are you trying to be, do, look like something you’re not? Why? Are your Facebook pictures, status quotes and tagged photo ops telling the full picture?  Or are you Authentic?

Webster’s defines Authenticity as:  Being Genuine, the Real Thing, not Counterfeit, putting on heirs, being fraudulent or deceiving.  Are you selling yourself out?  Like a snowflake, there’s no other version of the real you.  So don’t copy others and deny your uniqueness.

When you live your life in truth, it’s living a Life of Purpose, On Purpose.  Living a life of authenticity may not win you points with those heading down stream, but it will bring freedom your soul longs for. Tired of all the fake laughs, gossip and keeping your enemies closer?

Ask yourself, where do you place your focus?  Your attention?  Your time and efforts?   Live your life at your choosing, your direction, with no regrets.  At the end of your life, when you look back, will you be glad you focused on family, invested in your reputation and character, a legacy worth passing along to your children?

There’s freedom in being REAL.  You may lose a few friends, who weren’t actually your friends to begin with, but there’s freedom and libration, an unlocking, a release of sorts.  It’s like a rush of wind on the mountain top, with your hands held high.  You know that freedom.

So no more:  Seeking 5 Ways to Look Rich, 5 Ways to Fit In, 5 ways to Look like something you’re not.

Begin to access your life, and what makes you truly happy.  What puts a smile on your face, a kick in your step, a passion that knocks you out of bed in the morning?  Answer those questions and you’ll be well on your way.

Always be a first-rate version of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of someone else.  Judy Garland

Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life.  Proverbs 4:23

 Posted by at 12:24 am
Jun 062011
 

Do you ever feel like your carrying the weight of the world on your shoulders?  In my case, it came in the form of a purse.  I’ll buy this cute, sassy bag and before I know it, I’m stashing extra diapers, a pair of socks, my 10 year old’s DS, extra snacks, 9 Home Repair receipts and a big bag of change.

The very thing that was holding me down, weighing on my shoulders and hurting my back was a bag of change, $13 in quarters to be exact.

As I cleaned out my purse, it hit me, of all the junk I’m throwing out, receipts, a mis-matched shoe, the one thing I truly needed to keep – was the bag of change.  Not the endless quarters, dimes and nickels, but a BAG OF CHANGE.

I needed a Bag of Change.  What an Epiphany.  It was that simple.

We get in a rut and find ourselves driving to work without realizing the journey.  We walk down the same grocery store aisles looking for the same food, cooking the same meals, paying the same bills, folding the same laundry, when I realized, what I needed was a Bag of Change.

I needed to bring Myself back to the forefront of My Own Life.  Step outside of the “Same Ole Same Ole”, grab a new perspective, a new outlook. I was allowing chauffeuring schedules, science projects, work . . . my  kid’s needs to take the place of my own.

I replaced my own thoughts, needs and dreams for those in my household under 4 ft. 2, allowing their emergencies to become my own.

I’m hungry, I need school supplies by tomorrow.  My days were filled with:  Don’t holler, quit fighting, drink your milk, stop touching that, put it down and before I knew it, I lost myself.  I had become one of those items in my purse, weighing Me Down!

I wanted to be the “Leading Lady” of my own life, not the Best Friend next door.  So I began to give the kid’s more responsibilities.  They could help with meals, laundry and so on.  They began to appreciate how much work it took to complete a task. I began to hear:  Thanks mom and dinner was delicious.

I began to put myself on the “To Do” list.  Take tennis lessons, set aside 30 minutes a day to exercise – in PEACE.  Read an interesting book, listen to an inspiring message, put myself somewhere on the top.  Selfish you might say: If they see a haggard mom who’s chasing her tail from here to there, I’m teaching my kids that life is no fun, once you have children of your own.  Who wants that job?

Take Responsibility for Yourself.  Show your children that life is what you make it.

Shake things up.  Try new recipes, change your “Look,” try a new style, volunteer (look outside yourself).  Life is full of Color, Adventure and Opportunity.  You just have to clean out your “Purse of Life” and remember to Keep the Change.  Here’s to Living Your Authentic Self.

 Posted by at 12:31 am
Jul 222010
 

In February, it snowed.  So I made a last minute dash to our local Stuff Mart to buy warm gloves and the manager said: “Sorry ma’am we don’t have gloves anymore, we’re selling Spring items.  Bathing suits are on sale, 30% off.”  Now why would I wanna a bathing suit in February?  Maybe I could wrap the the bottoms around my hands to throw snow balls.  hmmmm.

As a mom, I value the organization that my little “to do list” slash scroll, offers me.  Laundry on Monday, Violin lessons at 3pm, buy groceries, pay the kids to find the stinky smell lingering in the car, and the list goes on.  What would you do without the list?

For whatever reason, it makes me feel ahead of the game, accomplished to be able to scratch something off that piece of paper, even though something else immediately takes its place.

I was feeling pretty good about my accomplishments, until I ran an errand the other day, and low and behold, they were selling Christmas trees in the summer.  There was a sale on decorations, pumpkins, scarecrows and holly.  Oh Dear God, it was Christmas in July.  I don’t know about you, but it took me 3 months to get over the Holidays.  From the weight gain, to the finances, to getting all the decorations and party supplies packed and put away, I sure didn’t wanna see Christmas in July.

I was just now enjoying the kids being out of school for the summer.  We were going on vacations, spending our time enjoying parks, pools and popsicles.  I finally felt relaxed, accomplished and at peace with myself – living in the moment.

No homework, no rushing around, just enjoying the present . . . until I walked into the local BoxMart and saw the Marketing Machines running:  Advertisements were everywhere:  Pick up Schools supplies now, hurry up and buy Winter Coats (they’ll be gone soon) Pumpkins are 1/2 off and bathing suits, well . . . you can’t find one now, it’s July.  Are you crazy, retail businesses are already thinking Fall & Winter.

What happened to living in the moment? It’s as if you are being set up for failure:  you can’t spin your wheels fast enough, juggle plates high enough . . . the bar continues to be set higher, the finish line placed further out.

We have to fight to live in the moment.  We have to place security around the borders of our life to keep “Peace of Mind” and Living in the Moment” protected from all the chaos this world brings.

I wanna throw out the black book that seems to direct our every footstep and keep us busier than we’ve ever been before, and embrace the small stuff, the free things, the simple things, the wind blowing leaves through the park, as you enjoy your time sitting on a bench.

Embrace those conversations with the kids over laundry, sports or cleaning up the back yard.  Kids grow up fast.  Some days it seems like Tick . . (cricket sounds). . Tock . . . and when they hit 11 and 12 years old, the hands of time won’t stop spinning.

Claim your moment now.  Live in the present.  Don’t allow the marketing machines to guide your life, rather you are the owner, the gatekeeper, the captain of your ship . . . you decide whether you’ll be throwing snow balls with the bottoms of a bathing suit or wearing ski gloves instead.  Enjoy all the moments, for the only person that can truly take away “living in the present,” is you.

 Posted by at 8:20 pm
Apr 272010
 

Yh

John and I decided to take the kids to the beach for a few days, last summer.  On the way home, we noticed that between the 3 boys, they were wanting to go to the bathroom every 30 minutes.  What had planned to be a 6 hour trip home was taking 8, so I got a bright idea. And oh – was it Bright!

On the last pit stop, we became the proud owners of a Yoo Hoo bottle, so I grabbed it up, told the boys, (ages 3 to 7 years old) “The next time you have to pee . . . pee in this bottle, we’re not stopping anymore.”

They looked at me like I was crazy, but sure enough, within 10 minutes, somebody had to pee, which triggered a “me too” effect throughout the car.  So one by one, the kids (with seat belts on, 1/2 standing) pee-ed in the Yoo Hoo bottle.  It made me a little nervous, cause, by the time it got to the 2nd kid, the bottle was 3 quarters full.

He then passed it to the third kid, who started to pee in the bottle, when his own little Yoo hoo came out and squirted the ENTIRE car – us, the baby, the beach towels.  Poor fella, as everyone screamed and fought the spray, he reached out to hand me the bottle and accidentally dropped it . . . IN MY PURSE!

Oh Lord, words can’t describe . . . I could have hollered “Dear God, rolled my eyes, thrown my hands in the air, pitched a fit, ( Oh wait, I did!), but no matter what . . that bottle of pee was STILL sitting in my purse.

WHAT DID I DO To deserve this? I blamed the “little guy” for dropping the bottle.  It’s funny NOW, of course it wasn’t then.  We can try to decipher what we did to deserve such chaos in the car.  hmmm Probably the fact that I had the dumbest idea ever, attributed to the pande-LIRIUMl!  It would have been brilliant if it worked, but it didn’t, and so it goes.

Sometimes with all the running around, laundry, lunches, non-stop questions, homework and chaos in the car, we have to run our family like a “boot camp with love.”  As moms, we try to take on the world and look fabulous at the same time, but we’re not always right, we’re not always correct in our assessments and sometimes, just as we train our own kids, we need to apologize.

If you mess up, just tell ’em you messed up.  “I’m sorry.” WHAT?  They may look at you like you have two heads for a split second, but it will make a huge impact on your kids if they see parents apologize for mistakes made.    If we allow our children to see that we’re human, fallible creatures that make a mess of things sometimes, it will allow them to take risks and know that sometimes we’re gonna fail, sometimes we’ll succeed, but it’s always important to try.  And when we make mistakes, own it and move on.

So . . . The next time you have to apologize for something, just think of my “Brilliant Yoo Hoo Idea” and it should make you feel really good about yourself.  Happy travels!

James 5:16
Confess your sins to one other and pray for each other so that you may live together whole and healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.

Colossians 3:13
Forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.


 Posted by at 11:06 am
Feb 182010
 

DSC_0078

Has your life’s Exclamation Point . . . become an Exasperation Point?  The highlights of life can be sabotaged by discontentment, discouragement and frustration.  Sometimes we have to re-arrange the way we do things, in order to boost the energy we need to catapult us to greatness.

When I worked in PR, everyday was crazy, exciting, unpredictable and full of “pats” on the back or “kicks” in the butt; one way or the other, you knew where you stood.  Raising children is a little different.  Often times, nothing too exciting happens during the day – from teaching them Math and having late night talks, to throwing in some “moral character” with a splash of discipline and fun activities.  I’ve worn the heels, gone from suits to sweats and am now somewhere in the middle.

On any given day, I find myself researching a new business venture, catching up on 6 loads of laundry, emailing friends to plan girl’s night out, having a conference call with other moms to discuss a class party, while thinking about how I’m gonna cook chicken for the 3rd time this week, when it occurred to me:  Is this my life?  Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy, the deep kind of happy that a few bad days or set of circumstances can’t steal.

But my life needed a tune up, like a musical instrument or attitude adjustment.  I love my husband; he’s very supportive, loving and fun to be around, and as a bonus, he’s good looking.  I have a small core of really good friends.  I have 4 kids that are loud, fun and interesting.  My life is full, but I knew with the tools and resources I had, things could be better.  I laid on the bed one day and just explained to John how I felt.

WITHOUT fear or threat that perhaps he had not provided a good life for us, he did a little research (another great quality of his – thoughtfulness) and by morning handed me a book, that has taken me on quiet an interesting journey, to fine-tune my happiness from mediocre to deep contentment, where people want to know why you’re smiling.   My quest began with:  The Happiness Project, a book by Gretchen Rubin.

I’ve heard it said:  When a student is ready to learn, the teacher will appear.  Happiness is a state of mind.  Per Webster’s dictionary, happiness is a state of well being, a feeling of contentment, joy, satisfaction or pleasure.

I felt this, but not to its full capacity.  My mom is always reminding me that my calling here on this earth (no matter what position I hold in or outside the home) is to invest in the hearts of my children.  It’s not about recognition, fighting for a position on the corporate ladder, the need to feel appreciated by the outside world or add another gold star to my collection, but it’s about devoting your time and energy into raising healthy, Godly, well adjusted children that will go into the world with confidence, knowledge, and a sense of community.

But in order to do this, Mama needs to be happy!  And if Mama ain’t happy, well . . . you get the gist.  The first category in the Happiness Project is:  To Boost Your Energy.  To be honest, I’ve never been so tired in my entire life.  Before kids, I trained for a marathon, raced in triathlons and had endless energy.  Now, it’s a different story.

The happiness project

“The Happiness Project” lists 4 things that are needed to “Boost Your Energy:

1) Go to Sleep Earlier

2) Exercise Better

3) Toss, Restore and Organize

4) Tackle a Nagging Task Early

I don’t know about you, but all my life, I’ve gone to bed late, put exercise on my “To Do” List (and rarely crossed it off).  I allow that pesky task to haunt me all day (hoping it will just go away – of course it gets bigger and steals my joy).

It’s like a perfect storm – just as the kids are saying “Mom I’m Hungry (after they just ate) you open the closet – and out springs jackets, scarves and a skate board into the floor, about the time the door bell rings and unexpected company has arrived.  Yikes.  You feel conquered, overwhelmed and under pressure.  Then comes the guilt . . . I’m a terrible mom, how will my kids turn out . . . whaaa whaaaa whaaaa!

1st Month’s Challenge

Challenge 1) Sleep Earlier:

I began going to bed earlier.  Can you say:  Hard.  I starred at the ceiling and noticed all the blinking lights in the room, from the phone to the clock to my lap top, it was like the “Vegas Strip.”  Some people count sheep:  I was counting loads of laundry.  Your body has to be reprogrammed.  But with my next challenge, sleep came earlier and sleep came easier.

Challenge 2) Exercise Better:

I’ve never liked waking up early.  My dad always said “the Sunrise is so Beautiful.” I figure the Sunset looks much like the Sunrise, so I’m ok with that.  But, in order to exercise better, I began taking the kids to school, so I could just keep going – head downstairs and begin working out.  The first week, I didn’t like it.  I felt angry, tired.  The “Work Out” guy’s voice on the DVD annoyed me. But then I created my favorite playlist on my ipod, for better motivation.  Now that I’ve created this routine, I enjoy the time for me.  Plus, when 6:30am rolls around, my eyes just pop open.  Your body gets use to what it knows, getting up and working out.

Challenge 3) Toss, Restore and Organize:

My bedroom closet had become  “Central Station” for things that didn’t have a name, a home or description.  Honestly, I found things I should have taken a picture of and tried to figure out its name on Google.

I had a hard time letting go of comfortable underwear – the kind your mom says you NEVER want to be wearing if you end up in the Emergency Room.  It was hard giving away those red shoes you’ve never worn, but are waiting to find that fantastic dress to match it.

I found parts to toys I didn’t know we had, books I’ve never read,  snack wrappers, gifts that had never been given. . . . and the list goes on.  It took 3 days to cleanse my closet, but in the process , it cleansed my mind.  I found 10 incredible outfits to choose from vs. dredging through piles and baskets of wrinkled things, to discover one sock, jeans I couldn’t wear or a bad concert t-shirt.  Difficulties like this, make your head hurt, especially when you’re in a hurry and need to be somewhere 10 minutes ago.

Challenge 4) Tackle a Nagging Task Early:

Between emails I needed to write, bills that needed to be paid, a conversation that needed to be had or a mess that needed to be cleaned, it haunted my thoughts all day.  It drove me crazy.  Now, I wake up, conquer the the task and feel good about the VICTORY, early on.

Motherhood is NOT easy.  Have you ever spun so many plates or juggled so many schedules?

Probably not, but it’s also Fulfilling and Fun.  Your cup is not full, it’s Overflowing. And if someone came in right now and said:  “I’ll take your place if you’re not happy”  We would karate chop them into a million pieces.  It’s ok to complain, but it’s most important to jump back on the saddle.  Lord willing, this position is for many years to come, thus we need to find that Deep Happiness and Contentment, so when we’re teaching our kids “Life’s Lessons” we’ll find ourselves – Whistling While We Work.

Wanna Boost Your Energy?  Start with you!  You are the family’s “Hub of Communication” the CEO of your household.  Take charge . . . GIRLS!  In cleaning those closets and exercising for you, you’ll feel Accomplished, Organized and Victorious.  Rid your life of Exasperation Points and Make them Exclamation Points to your Happiness! You are More than Conquerors.

Scripture:  Phil 4: 11-13

I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through Christ who gives me strength.

 Posted by at 5:52 pm
Oct 312009
 

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“Wrap Your Little One Like the Gift that She Is”

http://www.avaclaires.com

After having 3 boys, it was my mission in life to dress my little girl like a baby doll.  I’ve started a collection of little girl’s headbands, hats, flowers and bows.  All hair accessories come with a clip, making each item interchangeable with all hats and headbands.  Feel free to check out the website at:  http://www.avaclaires.com And  “Wrap Your Little One Like The Gift That She Is.”

 Posted by at 10:55 pm
Oct 282009
 

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Did you ever watch the Andy Griffith Show?  Remember when Goober was the gas attendant, marriage clerk and waiter at the local diner? He wore many hats.  Before he knew it, the gas attendant was writing up the marriage license and the waiter was pumpin’ the gas.  Too many hats can be overwhelming.  Even Mayberry couldn’t fix this.

Webstsers dictionary defines perfect as: Entirely without Flaw.  Pure, unmixed, correct in every detail.  Perfect is good on paper, but not usable in life.  Even if perfect existed, we couldn’t appreciate it, because we’re not perfect.  When we strive for the unattainable, it makes us fall short, feel like a failure, and only reinforces the fact that we’re not making the A+ Grade in life.

Is the house organized?  Is the homework done?  Do you have a weekly menu planned and ready to go on Monday Morning?  Do you exercise daily?  Are the kid’s clothes laid out and lunches made the night before?  Did you finish that strategic report for the office or PTA meeting?  Is your hubby happy? Is the car clean?  Wow, my head is spinning, just thinking about it.

Take one day or one week to organize, clean the car on Saturday, better yet have the kids clean the car for quarters or the garage for a day of fun. Take it one step at a time – one room at a time, one meeting at a time.

Moms have so many responsibilities and many hats to boot.   We try to keep all the plates spinning and all the balls rolling . . And for good measure, we make it look easy, so everywhere else will comment on “I don’t know how she does it.”

She makes it look easy, when behind the scenes, you’re a ragged mess.  Be real, let people see that you’re human, and change your phrase to “Practice makes Progress.”  We CAN’T do it ALL, but we CAN do it ALRIGHT.

In the end, God isn’t going to give us a “Big GOLD Star” in the sky for being the best house cleaner or money maker, but the question is:  “Did we spend time with our kids?  Did they feel loved?  Did we raise them to be full of character and good values?

We’re just one person with many responsibilities and a big hat rack.  Just Do Your Best. And Forget All the Rest!!  Here’s to “Progress!’

I can do ALL things through Christ who gives me strength.  Phil. 4:13


 Posted by at 12:33 pm
Oct 192009
 
September14

One day after hearing my girlfriends talk about shaking things up a bit in the bedroom, I thought I’d go get a Brazilian Bikini Wax. Not thinking very clearly, I decided to make an appointment with the full service spa next door to my video production company.

What I should have done was made an appointment with a spa in the next county and walked in mysteriously under an assumed name with a bag over my head and just went for it.  But oh no, I had to go next door to my office, where everyone knew me.  I walked in, not really knowing what to expect  It’s kind of like having a baby.  You go in smiling, you come out bargaining with God, promising anything if he’ll just make the pain go away.

I walked in, they put me on this waxing table and asked me to put a thong on.  Hmmm.  Red Flag. . . Next thing I knew she’s poured honey on everything and when she goes to Snatch, I shot off the table crying “Mother of God!”

She tried to distract me by asking questions, like  – how much does it cost to have old reels transferred to DVD?  Yank!!!!!!  and as I was giving the answer she snatched again.  She snatched twice before I could take a breath.  “Oh Lord Jesus, I can’t take this anymore.”  You can fool me once, but not twice.  I told her I didn’t care what it looked like down there, if the honey stayed or went, I was outta there.

I grabbed my clothes and left.  I’m sure they had a big laugh that day, as I headed next door to my office.  At the end of the day, I made sure I parked in the back just to avoid passing the front of their store.  There’s got to be a better way to shake things up in the bedroom, because I can assure you, no husband will ever appreciate the pain you go through, getting a Brazilian Bikini Wax.

When I told my husband what I had done, he fell off the bed laughing.  You know, men are not complex.  He said I didn’t need to go to all that trouble to Shake things Up.  But was wondering if I brought home the thong.  I said honey:  I think a piece of it is still down there.


 Posted by at 4:01 pm