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, August 30, 2019

Feel Good Friday – Kindness is contagious – 3 Ways to spread it

Photo Credit: Leading Your Life with Kindness

What does it cost to be kind to someone? A smile and an encouraging word are sufficient payment. It was college move-in day and I didn’t know what to expect, nor did my son. The extent of our knowledge was that we had a four-hour drive. It was a drive to a town I had never heard of, in a state I’ve driven past only by way of highway signs.

We arrived at my sons’ new place of residence, a corner house with enough paved parking for five vehicles. As we approached the door we nearly bumped into a couple of young kids running in our direction. Their smiling faces greeted us, followed by the introductions of their parents. The rambunctious boys were siblings to the older guys who were to be roommates with my son.

As we crossed the threshold of the front door the coach extended his hand and introduced himself. The large living room was filled with friendly conversation, laughter, families, and players eating pizza. These were the players of the college basketball team and their families, getting to know each other.

Kindness is contagious. How do you spread it? Here are 3 ways.

1.      Share your smile – people like to see a smiling face, it can change how they’re feeling
2.      Let someone go ahead of you in a crowded grocery store line
3.      Share a word of encouragement with someone
Kindness is contagious, it warms your heart and the heart of the person on the receiving end.

After shopping for a few items for my sons’ new living quarters, we took our items to the register to pay. The smiling cashier engaged in conversation with us. When I presented my driver’s license with the payment she said, “Oh, you’re a ways from home.”

“My son is here for college.”

The cashier look up at my son and said, “Do you know anyone here?”

His response was, “No, not yet.”

“Well, my name is Marsha, now you know me. Stop by the store anytime and say hi.”

My son and I both left the store with a smile and a warm fuzzy feeling that makes your heart smile.

Well, that was my sentiment, not sure my son would use those words.

What does it cost to be kind to someone? A little bit of time and a whole lot of smiles.

Monday, August 26, 2019

Motivational Monday – Do you argue for your limitations?

Photo Credit: Pinterest

You may have 10 reasons why you can’t do a particular task. All you need is one determined reason why you CAN. Don’t argue for your limitations.

In a blog post on The Morning Nudge, the author said there are ways to identify whether you argue for your limitations. The article said if you consistently use words like can’t, don’t or won’t, you’re focusing on what you think are your limitations.

If you are using these words to indicate why you can’t move forward with your goals or why don’t want to try, stop now. Turn this thinking around and list ways you CAN move forward with whatever it is you seek to do.

Don’t talk yourself out of going after your dream. Don’t argue for your limitations.

Your possibilities are endless. Instead of arguing for your limitations, have a “Can Do” attitude.

I can (and I will) achieve what I set out to achieve
I can (and I will) succeed
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me

There’s no tome like the present, go get your blessings.

Friday, August 23, 2019

Fun Friday - 5 Friendly questions to ask a new college roommate (A parent’s perspective)

My college roommate (on our way to a high school reunion 25 yrs?)

It was college move-in day for my son and my car was packed with blankets, backpacks and storage bins. I trailed behind my son who also had a car loaded with boxes, bags, and books. I believe the only reason I was invited on the journey was to transport goods. He certainly doesn’t like it when I become too inquisitive.

My son will learn soon enough that he may want to ask his owns set of questions to potential roommates. These are questions beyond what the rental office or another landlord may ask. Quite frankly a parents list of questions may be a tad different than that of their college student.

I didn’t walk around with a clipboard and checklist, nor did I do a white glove test (for dust). The roommate came home as we were moving in and I had the opportunity to chat with him briefly.  I asked where he was from and how long he was going to school there. Before any more questions rolled from my tongue, my son glared at me.

These are the questions I would have asked…

1.      How often do you clean up…does this include the stove and fridge? Some college students have a different interpretation of cleaning than adults (my son included).

2.      Do you smoke…weed? Not judging, just wondering.

3.      Do you have friends who might visit and stay, night after night, after night? If so they need to be included on the lease and share in the rent.

4.      Do you have a pet? If so, the expectation is that you will take care of it and not leave it for others to do.

5.      Do you have reliable transportation? If the answer is no, be mindful and not ask for a ride somewhere at 5am.  It would be great if gas money is offered as well.

Have you experienced any of the above situations with college roommates? What would you add to the list of questions to ask of a potential roommate?

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Words of Wisdom – 5 Things to give up if you want happiness

Photo Credit: Thrive Global

Are you in pursuit of happiness? Take a look at this list of things to give up if you want happiness.

1.      Give up the need for control – let go of some things. You don’t have to do it all.

2.      Give up negative self-talk – your mind believes what you tell it. Evict negative thoughts from your mind.

3.      Give up on your fears

4.      Give up the past – don’t harbor on past mistakes, consider the learning experiences and push forward.

5.      Give up living your life to the expectations of other people – create your reality.

This list was adapted from world observation online.

What would you add to the list of things to give up if you want happiness?

Friday, August 16, 2019

Fun Friday – National Tell a Joke Day

It’s all about the funny. National tell a Joke Day is celebrated on August 16th. Is there anyone among us who does not like to laugh? Celebrate tell a joke day by telling a joke, reading something funny, or watching a romantic comedy (oh wait that’s what I like to do).

Is there a joke that you remember from your childhood or one that your child likes to tell? From my childhood, I remember Dixie cups that had jokes on them. In my grandmother’s kitchen, there was a red, hard plastic cup dispenser screwed into the wall. It was low enough for my 3ft younger self to reach.

During my sons’ childhood we slurped on purple, red and orange popsicles, sometimes biting them, to reach the empty stick. The end of each Popsicle stick had a joke engraved on it. Below are a few of those jokes I found online.

·         What does a tree do when it’s ready to go home?                It leaves.
·         How does a computer catch a fish?                                      With it’s internet
·         What did Mr. and Mrs. Hamburger name their daughter?     Patty
·         Why did the teacher jump in the pool?                                  To test the water

Please don’t hold me accountable if you didn’t find these jokes funny. I’m pretty sure they are more appealing to a child than an adult. You may find that some of the jokes and humor stories in Reader’s Digest tickle your funny bone. Below are jokes compliments of Reader’s Digest.

·         A man tells his doctor, ”Doc, help me. I’m addicted to Twitter!”
The doctor replies, “sorry, I don’t follow you…”
·         What kind of exercises do lazy people do?                Diddly Squats
·         How does Moses make tea?                                      He brews it
·         Hear about the new restaurant called Karma?
There’s no menu: You get what you deserve

Your turn. Share a favorite joke you’ve heard (keep it clean).

What are your suggestions for celebrating National Tell a Joke Day?

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Wordless Wednesday - How do you praise?

Every day is a good day to sing praises of joy and thanksgiving. How do you praise and give thanks for all that you have?

Today we can praise together through song. I don't own the rights to either of these songs.

Monday, August 12, 2019

Motivational Monday – Top 6 ideas to enjoy on Relaxation Day

On your mark, get set…relax. It’s time to hurry up and relax. Relaxation Day is celebrated on August 15th. Time to do something special for yourself. You work hard, don’t talk yourself out of making time to do whatever you want.

Below are my top 5 ideas for you to enjoy a day of relaxation.

1.      Sit near a waterfall and absorb the scenery – ducks playing, a turtle on a rock, people person fishing
2.      Watch a sunrise or sunset
3.      Sip a cold beverage sitting poolside
4.      Schedule a spa day
5.      Have a picnic in a park
6.      Engage in meditation

If you’re not convinced that relaxing is important. Here’s what the experts say are the benefits to relaxing.
1.      You have increased blood flow to your muscles, which gives you more energy, better metabolism and improves memory
2.      You rejuvenate yourself
3.      Improves your skin by easing acne problems

There you have it, relaxing is important.

How will you celebrate relaxation Day?

Friday, August 9, 2019

Fun Friday – 3 Hobbies to begin during menopause

photo credit: World of Female

Do you have a hobby? Have you ever said, “I’ll start a new hobby when I retire?” You may have heard me say this before, but menopause is a season all on its own. Why not have a hobby related to this less than popular season?

Just for fun, here are 3 hobbies I recommend during the menopausal season. If this season does not apply to you, feel free to share the information with a friend or loved one.

1.      Art – drawing, painting, sketching, these are all good skills to have in your repertoire. This skill will come in handy when it’s time to draw on your eyebrows. You may need a little extra creativity is there are grey hairs present.

2.      Heating and Cooling – learn as much as you can about heating and cooling. On cold days you’ll be hot, on hot days you’ll be hot. Every now and then you’ll also be cool. You will need to be sure you can find balance in your home, your car, work, wherever you travel.

3.      Gardening – plant a garden of natural foods that may help ease some of the symptoms of menopause (night sweats, hot flashes, etc.).

Now that I think about it, don’t wait for the season of menopause to begin a hobby. Start now, try something that you’ve always wanted to do. You can always tie it into the menopause season later to help take your mind off of any discomfort.

What out of the ordinary type of hobbies would you add to the list of hobbies to begin during menopause?

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Words of Wisdom – Book Lovers Day

photo credit: askideas.com

What book titles are at the top of your reading list? Grab a book, find a cozy spot and celebrate Book Lover’s Day. This national day is celebrated on August 9th. Take a book to the beach or find a spot in the shade somewhere else to relax and read.

Did you have a favorite book as a child? What made it special? Instill the joy of reading in a child. Give a book to a child as a way of celebrating Book Lovers Day.

Monday, August 5, 2019

Muffins with Mom - All I need to know I learned in kindergarten

Today’s blog post does not contain the antics of one of my sons, it reflects someone else child that I have worked with. None the less, kids speak their mind, especially in kindergarten. Let’s go back to school so you can see what I mean…

This is a blog post from several years ago.

“All I need to know I learned in kindergarten” is a poem by Robert Fulghum. Last week I experienced that poem in real life. I was a substitute teacher in a kindergarten classroom.

I was a sub for this same teacher, Mrs. B., last year and it was a great day. I didn’t mind going back. I was only working a half day (afternoon), so I had a chance to converse with Mrs. B before she left for the day.

“You’ll have your hands full today,” she told me. My smile faded and my lip twitched as I said, “Oh.”

“But I have two Para Pros who will be here to help you,” she added.

Relief came back and we chatted a while longer. As I sat at one of the “kiddie” tables to review the lesson plan I bumped my knee on the edge of the table. That was after I attempted to sit in one of the “kiddie” chairs with fancy little armrests and my butt wouldn’t fit. I felt like Goldilocks taking over Baby Bears furniture.

As we talked, Mrs. B shared a story with me about how she explained to the class about how she had a mommy, but didn’t live with her. Mrs. B explained that she was also a mommy. One child asked her, “How many kids do you have?”

“Five,” was her reply.

Another little girl said, “Dang all of those kids came out of your private parts?” At that moment I had a pretty good idea what my day would be like.

Here is a summation of what I learned in kindergarten that day:
  • Everybody wants to be the leader (line leader, second in command, teacher’s helper). As I picked the kids up from lunch one boy said to me, “I’m second in command, I have to hold your hand.”
  • Most of the kids want to hold your hand or give you a hug.
  • Kids tell everything – “My sister tried to poke my day with a pencil. He told her to stop, but she wouldn’t listen.”
  • Be firm, but loving.
  • It’s ok to act silly sometimes.
Below are the things Robert Fulghum said he learned in kindergarten:

Share everything.
Play fair.
Don't hit people.
Put things back where you found them.
Clean up your own mess.
Don't take things that aren't yours.
Say you're sorry when you hurt somebody.
Wash your hands before you eat.
Warm cookies and cold milk are good for you.
Live a balanced life -
Learn some and think some
And draw and paint and sing and dance
And play and work everyday some.
Take a nap every afternoon.
When you go out into the world,
Watch out for traffic,
Hold hands and stick together.
Be aware of wonder.

What lesson(s) have you learned long ago that still stick with you?