Join me in my daily walk through the joys and struggles of parenthood. Share a word of encouragement or be encouraged. Cry a little, laugh a lot, but know it is all in divine order.

Friday, November 30, 2018

Fun Friday – 5 Silly Situations That Can Steal Your Holiday Joy

Photo Credit: Ministry Matters

The scent of pine fills the air, twinkle lights illuminate Christmas trees, and Holiday movies fill T.V screens - all are signs of the joyous season. I love this time of year. Then there are situations that make you wonder what is going on.

Tradition at my home is to put up the Christmas tree the day after Thanksgiving. Mainly because I like looking at the lights, it’s relaxing. Close your eyes and visualize a Christmas tree in a picture window with still colorful lights.

Curtains are open, no other lights are on in the room besides the tree lights. The sun has disappeared for the evening, replaced by a quarter moon. You sit curled up on the sofa in a fuzzy robe and a cup of hot chocolate. Ahh…serenity.

Before you can get to that serene feeling, you must set the atmosphere. You begin by pulling all of you Holiday decorations from their yearly hibernating spot. This is where the trouble begins.

Below are 5 silly situations that can steal your Holiday joy if you let them.

1.      Your pre-lit Christmas tree only lights up around the middle of the tree.
2.      Your twinkle lights no longer twinkle.
3.      Your artificial poinsettias have lost several leaves.
4.      You discover that your favorite Holiday movie is missing from your collection.
5.      You notice that someone ate all the candy canes from the Christmas tree…except one.

In the grand scheme of things we have to remember the real reason for the season. Jesus.

The big take away thought for today…things don’t have to be perfect for you to have joy.

As the scent of pine fills the air and twinkle lights dance around a window sill, cherish the magic of the season.

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Words of Wisdom - Inspiration

"When you are grateful - when you can see what you have - you unlock blessings to flow in your life."     Suze Orman

"Don't rely on someone else for your happiness and self-worth. Only you can be responsible for that."
Stacey Charter

"Patience is not just about waiting for something...it's about how you wait or your attitude while waiting."   Joyce Meyer

Monday, November 26, 2018

Motivational Monday – Becoming You

I sat in bed reading the preface of Michelle Obama’s book Becoming. In the background, Pandora was playing Encourage Yourself by Donald Lawrence and the Tri-City Singers. Scenes from my younger years flashed through my head like vignettes of my life.

It was only weeks before graduation that the seniors gathered in our high school auditorium. We waited for our name to be called, then went to the stage to review our accounts with the senior coordinator.  I had butterflies, we were going to receive our cap and gown.

My name was called, Ms. Simms searched for my name on her typed list of seniors. She found my name and said, “Oh, you still owe a payment on your senior dues.”

In a soft voice I said, “I paid that a couple weeks ago.”

“Do you have the receipt?”

“No, I don’t know where it is.”

Ms. Simms told me I needed the show the receipt before I would receive my cap and gown. Deflated, I walked off the stage as tears began to form a well in my eyes. My best friend came over and asked what happened. After explaining my conversation with the senior coordinator, my friend spoke to the teacher on my behalf.

My friend was able to convince the teacher that I had paid all of my dues, she was with me when I paid. The teacher allowed me to take my cap and gown and asked me to search for the receipt at home. She knew that I was a quiet A/B student who didn’t cause trouble and I was trustworthy.

That quiet eighteen-year-old girl that I was back then, had not yet begun to blossom. She did not yet have the confidence to speak up for herself. I was still becoming. I applied to several colleges and selected the one my best friend was attending. It was a college that wasn’t far from home, not far from my safety net. I was still becoming.

Over thirty years later, with many accomplishments under my belt, I am still becoming. I have learned to enjoy the journey and celebrate the small things that come my way. I am a mother, a writer and a child of God. I am becoming, an author, a speaker, an entertainer.

In this land of the free, we can become whomever we want to be. Set your sights high, if you believe it, you will achieve it. Reflect on your life’s journey, celebrate the peaks and valleys that you’ve traveled. All paths lead to becoming you.

Tonight I will sit in bed, snuggled under warm blankets and begin chapter 1 of Becoming, by Michelle Obama. Hmm, isn’t that amazing, not even into the first chapter of Mrs. Obama’s book and I’m inspired.

Become the best you that you can be.

Friday, November 23, 2018

Fun Friday – Home for the Holidays

A throwback memory
The Holiday season can be crazy busy with people dashing here and there. It is also an opportunity to appreciate the little things that bring great joy. Family home for the Holidays satisfies my immediate joy, in an amusing manner.

College Kids
College kids. Can we still call them kids if they’re in college? Anyway, both of mine are home. I had temporarily forgotten what it felt like to have both my young adults home. It didn’t take long for the flood of memories to resurface.

My house is well lit on the inside, with lights on in every room…rooms that are unoccupied. I guess this is my gift to the utility company. Perhaps the lights were left on so I could see the stack of empty pizza boxes that never made it to the trash.

Before I make it to where the pizza boxes reside, I stop along the way to pick up sweatpants, a hoodie and one sock. The bending and stooping serve as a prelude to my exercise regimen. It’s wonderful to have my offspring home, but I believe they’ve forgotten the house rules.

A few of the rules are fairly simple…

--if you take it out, put it away.
--turn off lights when leaving a room.
--take care of other chores as assigned.

The sound of a T.V. blares from a bedroom, there are sounds of grunting and bumping against a wall, and lots of laughter. My college kids are home for the Holidays, creating more memories.

Another trip down memory lane

Mama’s House
Ahhh, Mama’s house, always a place of comfort; moments filled with laughter, watching movies and napping after dinner. Before to trekking off to my mom’s house for Thanksgiving dinner, the following conversation ensued.

My brother (to mom): What do you want me to bring to your house on Thanksgiving?
Mama: A hammer, nails, screwdriver and a plunger. I have a lot of things that need to be fixed.
Me:      I’ll be there after all the work is done.

A short while after this conversation, I received a text from mom that said, “Your brother will bring tools and make Kool-Aid.”

I said, “Is he using the tools for the Kool-Aid?”

The tools were not for the Kool-Aid. My mom got her home repairs, we ate a small feast and enjoyed everyone being home for the Holidays.

Wishing you a season of all things joyous.

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Words of Wisdom - Thanksgiving

Oh give thanks...

As you sit down to a feast with family share the things you are thankful for, both large and small.

YouTube Video Credit: coachingandgrowth

Happy Thanksgiving

Monday, November 19, 2018

Motivational Monday – About last night – An Evening of Elegance

Beautiful Body Transformation Celebration
A-Train's SuperFit

Twinkle lights hung near the ceiling, tea light candles flickered on each table and the aroma of barbecued chicken filled the air. A chorus of laughs could be heard bouncing from various sections of the room. Our women’s fitness studio was transformed for an evening of elegance. What were we celebrating? Accomplishments.

For eight weeks many of the women from A-Train’s SuperFit took on a challenge called Beautiful Body Transformation. They set goals, dedicated themselves to a fitness routine that worked for them, and ate healthy. There were no losers, correction, there were many losers. There were women who lost 13 pounds, 20 pounds, and just a few pounds.

Every woman who participated in the fitness challenge walked away a winner. They were winners because they made a positive change toward a healthier lifestyle. There were some who stood on the sidelines (me) and cheered on those in the challenge. As a sideline cheerleader (this time), I am motivated and encouraged by the success of my SuperFit Sisters.

The evening of elegance was an opportunity to come together in fellowship, friendship, and funship (okay, I made that one up). Women shared their talents (Superpower), some entertained while others displayed their entrepreneurial side as vendors. There was a photo booth (vendor) to capture the joy of the evening.

Photo Credit: Golden Image Entertainment
Golden Mirror & Halo LED Photo Booths

About last night (Saturday night)…

Alisha singing His Eye is on the Sparrow

Strong women. Healthy women. Motivated women.

Are you ready to kick your fitness journey up a notch? Check out A-Train’s SuperFit.

Friday, November 16, 2018

Fun Friday – Kids say the darndest things…at church

Kids have a way of warming your heart, causing you anxiety, and making you laugh, sometimes all at one time. It usually happens when you least expect it. Here’s what I mean…

Sunday School Teacher:  Sarah was really old when she had a child.
Eight-year-old youth:  She probably had wrinkles. I’m not ready for wrinkles. I’m not ready for puberty either. It will probably hurt.

In a conversation at the end of Sunday school class…

Nine-year-old: I like designer shoes.
Sunday School Teacher:  I bought a pair of Gucci sandals on sale at_______
Nine-year-old:  Oh, yours are fake.

There is never a dull moment when you work with children. What has a child done to bring a smile to your face lately?

Monday, November 12, 2018

Muffins with Mom – A menopausal moment

As I write this post, it’s been one of those days where it’s hot one minute and cold the next. It’s not a result of the crazy Michigan weather. It’s a result of my crazy menopausal body temperature.

How do you recognize a menopausal moment? Below are my top 5 signs that indicate you may be experiencing a menopausal moment.

1.      Your young adult son is searching for his razor and you realize you had it last for your mustache.
2.      Your friend says, “Oh, I’m turning into my grandmother.” Your response is, “I’m turning into my grandfather…same beard and everything.”
3.      You’re riding in the car with the heat on and the window slightly down.
4.      The eyebrows you drew on to cover your grey hairs, begin to sweat off.
5.      You take a supplement for hair, nails and skin; your hair begins to grow strong…under your chin.

If you experience any of the above signs of menopause, you are not alone. Make a deliberate effort to uncover the humor of the situation. Know that this phase is only temporary. Remember this mantra, “a chuckle a day, keeps stress at bay.”

Don’t sweat the small stuff…literally and figuratively speaking.