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.

Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Wordless Wednesday - When Corona is Over

How will you react when the Coronavirus if finally over?

YouTube Video Credit: Global Outpour International

Monday, July 6, 2020

Motivational Monday – Do Not Give Up – 3 Scriptures to Encourage Your Success

Photo Credit: HR News

Don’t Quit
When things go wrong as they sometimes will,
When the road you’re trudging seems all up hill,
When funds are low and debts are high,
And you want to smile, but you have to sigh,
When care is pressing you down a bit,
Rest if you must, but don’t quit.
Author Unknown

Circumstances in life can make it easy for us to become discouraged. It’s easy to give up, but it takes courage and determination to stick with something when you feel challenged. Above is one stanza from the popular poem Don’t Quit. I like the line that says, “rest if you must, but don’t quit.”

When you feel overwhelmed, stressed, or just plain tired…pause…rest, and find something that encourages you. It can be difficult to focus on success with work, school, or anything else, when situations are less than ideal. Below are three scriptures that encourage success.

·         “Commit your work to the Lord, and your plans will be established.” – Proverbs 16:3 ESV
·         “Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.” – Psalm 37:4 ESV
·         “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” – Philippians 4:13 ESV

Each day build time into your schedule to pause, rest, meditate. Think about the direction you want your life to take, pray about it. Believe it and you will achieve it.

Do not give up. Don’t Quit.

Friday, July 3, 2020

Feel Good Friday – Do You Have Faith Like Fireworks?

Photo Credit: The Alpena News

Bursts of Red, White, and Blue illuminate the sky. Sparkles of light sizzle, fizzle, and pop into the night sky. Fireworks are mesmerizing. We should have faith like fireworks, exploding with joy, about our faith.

Now more than ever, with our country in a crisis, we need a stable foundation of faith. While it may be comfortable to keep our faith to ourselves, we need to let it bubble to the surface, then burst from our bodies with joy. Be on the lookout for opportunities where you can share your faith.

We all experience challenges at some point in life. It doesn’t feel good when going through “a rough patch” as my grandfather would say. You may wonder how you will make I through. Somehow you make it through your struggle, you make it to the light at the end of the tunnel and you burst with joy. That’s faith.

Photo Credit: Bible Study Tools

Have you ever been so excited about something, that you couldn’t wait to tell someone? Go ahead, let it out, share your faith. Someone needs to hear your story. Some things you experience are not for you, but for you to be a light to someone else.

Let your faith sizzle, fizzle, and ignite someone else’s sparkle. Get excited. Be faithful. And shine.

Monday, June 29, 2020

Motivational Monday – Summertime – 3 Ways to Combine Faith and Fun

Sitting on the front porch, sunshine warming everything it touches, and me, biting into an apple, squirting juice everywhere. Not far away are my sidekicks – a book of some kind and my laptop. It’s one of my favorite kind of summertime days. I love fresh fruit on relaxed summer days. As I read a magazine article, I was reminded of a different kind of fruit – Fruit of the Spirit.

The fruit of the Spirit include – love, joy, peace patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. You can share this fruit with those around you. Here are three ways you can share faith and fun.

1.      Pause and enjoy your surroundings
July is celebrated as National Parks & Recreation Month. Take a morning or evening stroll through your local park. Stop and observe God’s creation all around you. What do you see, hear, smell? If you enjoy writing, take a journal, and record your thoughts.

2.      Spend time with friends and family
Spending time with friends may look different than it used to. While the stay-home order was in effect in my area, a few friends and I dressed for our virtual church service, as though we were going somewhere. We took pictures at our individual homes and posted them on social media. It was good to see their smiling faces.

3.      Work in a garden
If you have young children, encourage them to play in the dirt with you (older kids welcome too). Plant flowers and hold a casual conversation about, “In the beginning, God created…”  As a reward for the fruits of your labor, slurp on an ice-cold popsicle or go out for ice cream.

As a bonus…
4.      Humor
What pictures have you seen, or statements you’ve heard, that caused you smile? Below is something my young adult son shared with me – a child’s prayer.

Photo Credit: Author Unknown

As you combine faith and fun, you can also exhibit qualities from the fruit of the Spirit – love, joy, patience, kindness.

Wishing you a summertime filled with living in an overflow of all things good.

Monday, June 22, 2020

Motivational Monday – Family Ties

What makes your family special, unique, or quirky? Think of a story, one situation with the kids, your parents, an aunt, or uncle, what happened that made you smile? Now share that story with another family member and let them experience your smile.

Did you know that in the “olden days” our ancestors used storytelling as a way of sharing family history. Today, with technology all around us, there are a variety of ways to share our family history. There’s blogging, vlogging, creating videos, picture collages, and poetry slams, to name a handful.
Quite often my sons provide fodder for my blog posts, it may be a funny statement they make or something off the wall that they do. Allow me to share a recent story.

I hopped in my car, flipped the sun visor down, turned the radio on and the air conditioner, and got on the expressway. I was ready for my 35 minutes excursion; except I drove right into bumper to bumper traffic. Construction. It took 25 minutes to drive five miles. An hour after I began driving, I finally reached my mom’s house.

It was an enjoyable day with mom, we had lunch, and chatted until about 9pm. It was close to 9:30pm as I packed away my laptop and headed for home. As I was backing out of my mom’s driveway, I heard my phone ding. I shifter the car into park and read the message. It was from my son.

“Ma, grab some laundry detergent from the store on your way home.”
I scrunched my face and talked back to the screen – laundry detergent?!  I called my son.
“Are you really going to wash clothes tonight? I am NOT stopping at a store. I may have to fight through construction on the way home.”

Did he really believe I was going to stop at the store, in the middle of the night (it may as well have been midnight in my eyes)? My son and I agreed that he didn’t have anything so dirty that it couldn’t wait until the next day. Besides, if he hadn’t used an overflowing cup of detergent each time he washed a small load, there would have been some left.

By the time I made it home, my son and I shared a few minutes of laughter about his request. Then it was off to a quiet spot for me and video games for him. Our day ended with a smile. It doesn’t always happen this way, but when it does, it’s refreshing.

Below is a collection of our family memories.

What family ties have you created lately? Go out and create a few smiles.

Friday, June 19, 2020

Fun Friday – Adventures in Yard Work

I have never proclaimed to have a green thumb but as Dr. Doolittle talked to animals, I’ve held a conversation or two with my house plants. My plants have been maturing quite nicely over the past year, so I decided – why not test my luck outside?

My Hosta’s plants bloomed beautifully with their two-toned green and white leaves. They shared the flowerbed surrounded by Red and Fuchsia Impatience – aesthetically pleasing to the eye.

Satisfied with my outdoor beautification plan, my confidence was boosted, and I was ready for a new project – coaxing my Brown grass to become Green. This project required the distribution of lime across my yard. First, I had to unbury the Spreader which was in a corner of the garage, wedged between the snow blower and old car tires. Don’t ask.

The Spreader

I pulled the light-weight Spreader into the open and dumped the lime into its base. Squeezing the handle as I paced back and forth across the grass, released tiny seeds onto the crunchy grass. That Brown grass was as wiry as my Grey hairs and equally uncooperative. Lime was my solution…for the grass, not my hair.

Front yard complete, it was time to move on to the backyard. The space was wide open terrain, except for the slight maneuvering around a barbecue grill and a set of stairs leading up to a sliding door. Fresh air penetrating my nostrils and sunshine darkening the hue of my skin, I was again on a mission – to return life to the grass in my backyard.

All was going well, I was walking the last section of the yard, felling proud of my savviness. Then something happened that changed the dynamics of my stride…a small black rodent shot across my path. I was momentarily stunned and stopped for a split second. Was that a mouse? I was not waiting around to confirm my belief.

I grabbed the Spreader, attempted to quickly dump the remainder of the lime. It wasn’t moving quick enough for me. I picked up the spreader with two hands and began swinging it around in circles, dumping the lime wherever it landed. There may be one patch of grass that won’t make it back to it’s normal state. I got out of that yard as quickly as my extra weighted quarantined body would carry me.
I’ll stick to house plants.

Plants in Waiting

When was the last time you had fun working in the yard?

Wednesday, June 17, 2020

Wellness Wednesday Music as a Balm

Photo Credit: Pinterest - placesinrhythm.com

Soothing, healing, relaxing...music can be an auditory balm. When you're ready for a relaxing, calming atmosphere check out the video below.

YouTube Video Credit: Yellow Brick Cinema - Relaxing Music

Photo Credit: Pinterest

Monday, June 15, 2020

Motivational Monday – Reflections – Looking Back and Moving Forward

A basketball slammed against the concrete in the distance. Green leafy garden plants swayed with the wind. Me, I was nestled against a plastic lawn chair in the corner of my front porch, absorbing my surroundings.

It was a lazy afternoon in my neighborhood – kids on bikes zooming past in one direction, and joggers in another direction. It was an ideal time for reflection. Can we move forward without looking back? Not need to dwell in the past, but it is part of the backstory.

What were you doing one year ago at this time? Did you have kids in school? Were you preparing for a vacation? It is 365 days later, and the world is vastly different. Our thoughts are different, our kids are in a different place emotionally, and there is a lot of uncertainty.

Yes, stores and restaurants are opening slowly in some areas, malls are reopening, but with caution and precautionary measures. Colleges are preparing for fall classes and planning for distance learning in an on-campus environment. My son asked me, “Ma, where am I going to live this year?”

We made many attempts to get out of the apartment lease, since the school year ended abruptly, and my son was not residing there. Dorms on some college campuses are making single room available to students, as well as decreasing class sizes. These things are in preparation for moving forward with reopening safely for students in light of COVID-19.

During this time of COVID-19 we’re dealing with racial tensions and social justice issues. It is a tough conversation to have with your child, but the elephant in the room must be addressed.  What do you say to your young adult child, your high school student, and younger children? Transparency and honesty will be key. It doesn’t hurt to pray about what you want to say.

Look back and reflect on positive, fun, family moments, and use those moments as a foundation for moving forward. As seasons change, this crisis that the world is going through will change as well. We must create positive ways to weather the storm. Be encouraged, you are not alone. Together we can.

Friday, June 12, 2020

Fun Friday – Humor is Serious Business

Did you know that laughter and humor have health benefits? They are excellent stress relievers. Laughter, and humor has been said to lower anxiety, is good for cardiovascular health, and laughing is plain old fun. Have you ever thought about writing humor or performing comedy?

It is time to take humor seriously. Make humor a part of your daily life. You will soon discover that humor is all around you. Think about a recent episode that made you laugh or smile. What was it about that situation that brought a smile to you face?

During this time of stay home orders, my sons and I have spent more time together than we have in a long time. Quite often we found ways to amuse ourselves. My younger college son stood in front of a mirror with me and made goofy faces.

We cocked our heads to one side, crossed our arms resting them on our chest, and stared at our reflections. I was the first to speak, “You know, we really do look alike. Same eyes, same nose, even the same thick mustache.”

Humor is serious business. My mustache was not really as thick as my son’s, on the bright side, neither were my sideburns. Finding humor is a matter of perception. I recently learned about an online comedy workshop. The workshops are interactive and “focus on writing comedy material and the business of comedy.”

The four-week workshop is taught through Zoom and taught by Dave Schwensen. Dave’s credits include Talent Coordinator for the TV show A & E’s An Evening at the Improv, The Hollywood and New York City Improv Comedy Clubs.

Find out more about the comedy workshops by clicking here. A new session is beginning soon. I do not receive payment or gifts for new students, but the class sounds like fun. Step out of your comfort zone, have fun exploring your creative side.

Write down your ideas when they come to you, they can disappear quickly

It’s time to get serious about humor, your health could depend on it.

Monday, June 8, 2020

Motivational Monday – Back to work after a quarantine – 3 Tips for a smooth transition

As I crossed the threshold into the facility where I work, I was greeted with a defining silence. There were no people walking laps. No members sipping coffee and chatting. Back to work was not business as usual.

I pumped a squirt of hand sanitizer into the palm of my hand and rubbed vigorously. Then I took my temperature and recorded it on the questionnaire. This was not business as usual; it was the new normal.

If you work outside the home, you will return to work soon, if you have not already.  Are you ready for the new normal due to COVID-19? Below are three tips to help you ease into a new normal.

1.      Keep a positive attitude – rules and policies will be different. Understand that it may take time to adjust change. Create a daily mantra or keep uplifting quotes at your desk.

2.      Be patient – this applies not only at work, but during your lunch break, while running errands, etc. There may be longer lines at the grocery store, the bank, and other places you frequent. Take a book to read while in line.

3.       Establish a routine – you are creating a new normal, it’s a good time to set a new routine. Perhaps there are safety measures you are responsible for daily, schedule them at the same time each day.

At the end of the day as the computer is powered down, and lights turned off, I take a final glance 
around the office before closing the door. As I walk away my thoughts follow me, Lord, thank you for this day, no matter what the future may hold.

What tips do you have for preparing to go back to work after a quarantine?

Monday, June 1, 2020

Motivational Monday – Healing

Photo Credit: Biblestudytools.com

We need healing in our country. Close your eyes and look through the lens of your community, your state, our country – what do you see? In my community a police officer was caught on video hitting a woman on the top of her head while attempting to restrain her. At our state capitol, people march openly with guns, in protest of the continued stay home order.

In Minnesota, a handcuffed black man died after a police officer retrained him by pressing his knee on the man’s neck. Many places people are protesting, some are friendly protests, others erupted in violence. We need healing. How has your family been affected? If you have children, what the discussion look like in your home?

As I walked through my house gathering dishes, going through the motions of my routine casual Saturday, my son called my cell phone.

“Ma, I’m heading to the protest.”

My heart sank and I let out a sigh. Do I tell him not to go because there could be violence? Do I suppress his desire to be a part of change? To do so may appear hypocritical. You see, I participated in a sit-in during my college years. My mother marched with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. when he visited Kentucky State. We need healing.

I told my son, “I don’t really want you to go, but be safe, and wear your mask.”
Not long after that phone conversation, my other son came through the door, “Ma, I’m getting ready to go to the protest.”

I simply said, “Ok, stay with your brother.”

Do I need to say, my sons are black? Our conversations have been different lately.

My son left the house one night to go for a jog. He was wearing a hoodie. The first words out of my mouth were, “Please don’t put the hood over your head.” Forget the fact that sky glistened with bright stars and the air held a gentle breeze. It was a great night for a walk, but I feared for his safety, in our middle-class neighborhood.

Let us press pause; Stop what you’re doing right now and pray for your community, your state, our country, our families. We need healing.

“Lord, be gracious to us; we long for you. Be our strength every morning, our salvation in time of distress.”     Isaiah 33:2

Friday, May 29, 2020

Feel Good Friday – What’s in your spiritual bank account?

Photo Credit: Jubilee Online Church

As we shelter in place, one day transitions into another without much delineation of what day it really is. I’ve often caught myself asking my son, “Is today Tuesday or Wednesday?”

“It’s Thursday.”

“Oh, that’s right trash day was yesterday.” Trash day was my identifier for the day of the week.

Our world is in a state of crisis. How do you handle a crisis? Each of us experiences pain, devastation, and emotion differently. One thing that is constant is that a Spiritual Bank account can come in handy. If you haven’t opened an account yet, it doesn’t take much to get started.

Make small, regular deposits to your account with consistent prayer as your currency. Pray over all areas of your life – family, finances, health. Build up a reserve that is ready for you in the event that a withdrawal is needed. Perhaps you set a low balance alert for yourself. This can simply be in the form of asking yourself, did I stop to pray or give thanks today?

I made a deposit into my account the other day as I ventured out of the house to visit my other. The last time I saw her was February when we got together for lunch. This time, we gathered for a Holiday, Memorial Day; a day set aside to remember veterans who lost their lives serving our country. It is also a time family and friends come together to embrace one another and create memories.

This year’s Holiday was different. Embracing family (outside of your household), and friends is discouraged. We took our chances, we hugged each other.  It was a brief embrace type of greeting, but it felt good to be with family. Don’t get me wrong, we took nothing lightly. There was constant hand washing and hand sanitizer available. And there was also Mama, a praying woman. This counted for yet another deposit into the Spiritual Bank account.

Your Spiritual Bank Account can include praying for others, praying for your community, and praying for healing. You decide your focus. During this time of the COVID virus, let’s take out this trash on Wednesday with the rest of the garbage.

As the adage says, It takes a village to raise a child; It’s going to take a village to fight against the crisis we are experiencing. Together we can do it. Keep a balance in your Spiritual Bank Account with prayer. Have a relationship with Jesus. Believe. Trust. Faith over Fear.

Make a deposit into your Spiritual Bank Account. There are no fees charges. Christ paid the cost long ago.

Monday, May 25, 2020

Muffins with Mom –Do you have a Do it Yourself Project for your child?

Have you ever prepared to leave the house, then spent the next 10 minutes wandering room to room, searching for your car keys? Stop by my house on any given day and you’ll hear someone say, “Ma, have you seen my keys?” 

After being around the house day after day, my son said, “I want to build something.”
I told my son he could rebuild the eight wooden steps outside our sliding door. I could feel his stare at the side of my head, which I’m sure was followed by eye rolls. “I guess that’s not quite what you had in mind.”


After a brief pause, I had an idea. “You could always put up that key hook I bought the other day.” I could tell by the nod of his head that this idea appealed to him. My son walked over to the wall, where he thought the key hook should be located. He tapped on the wall in a few places, with his knuckles.

“What are you doing,” I asked.

“Looking for the stud.”

It only took a few taps before my son found the stud (area of the wall he needed to screw the frame of the key hook into). I asked a few questions as he worked such as: “Why are you placing the key rack so high? Should you move it closer toward the door?”

My son stopped hammering, turned to me with a smirk on his face and said, “This is why contractors don’t like people to be home when they’re working.”

His sarcasm was rewarded with more tasks from me and the promise of a starring role on my blog. Neither of which he was thrilled about. One thing my son WAS thrilled about was he fact that his DIY project was successful, and he accomplished it on his own.

Our keys now have a place to rest, that does not require a treasure map to find them.

If you have a child at home who is looking for something to do, give him a creative project.

What DIY projects do you have planned?

Friday, May 22, 2020

Fun Friday – How do you party during a pandemic?

When was the last time you danced at a party with friends, attended a birthday celebration, or had a girl’s night out? As I reminisced, my mind landed in 1996 B.C. (before children). It was a time when folks my age could still drop it like it’s hot, moving all body parts like a well-oiled machine. Now we must oil those body parts to get them to move. Nevertheless, parties or celebrations are social interactions that connect us to others in a fun setting.

How do you party during a pandemic? You hang out virtually. An invite landed in my Messenger inbox on social media. Let’s have a Girls Night Out. What time works best for you 9 or 10pm? My first inclination was to ask if we can start at 7pm. The consensus was that 9pm worked for everyone. I looked forward to the gathering, but also knew I would have to fight to keep my eyelids in an upright position.

As it got closer to party time, I set up my laptop in a stationary location and dashed off to fix my face and hair.  I slipped on a stylish t-shirt, wrapped a silver necklace around my neck, then pushed my legs through my cotton pajama pants. My outfit was not complete until I added large silver hoop earrings. Five minutes before the party start-time I grabbed a bottle of my favorite flavor of Sparkling Ice water, poured it over a few cubes of ice and I was ready.

After a few clicks on my computer, I was accepted into the celebration. I was greeted with smiling faces, laughter, and subtle music in the background. It was a time of old friends connecting and new friendships established. We played the board game Scattergories. If you’ve never played this game, you must give it a try. You know, I bet the originator of this game came up with this name because you’re given a list of scattered categories.

We played several rounds of the game; the night began to slip away. I yawned a couple of times, then glanced at my phone and saw that it was 11pm. I shut my camera off and carried my laptop to the bedroom and slid under my covers. I must have been off camera a little too long. A friend who was still on camera sent me a text message that said, “Where are you?”

“I’m getting ready for bed.” I clicked my camera back on and rejoined the conversation (as I yawned a couple more times). Shortly afterwards, the host wrapped up the party. Everyone said they had a good time and would do it again. The best part about partying during this pandemic, was that it was a come as you are hangout. Be yourself, relax, and have fun.
Have you been to a virtual party?

Monday, May 18, 2020

Motivational Monday – How do you express kindness during COVID-19?

Photo Credit: Spreading Kindness Campaign

The teal bag with shiny gold polka dots rested on the kitchen table. An envelope peeked over the top of the handles. There was just enough room in the bag for the 16-ounce bottled water, a bag of chips, and the card. As I leaned over, glancing into the bag a voice echoed behind me.

“That’s mine,” said my son.

“Okay, I’m just looking.”

“I meant to tell you, one of the customers left that on their porch for me.”

My son worked for a company where he shopped for people, so they don’t have to leave their homes during this time of COVID 19. The customer who left the card, wrote my son’s name on the inside and a message that read, “thank you for making things a little easier for our family.”

A few words written inside of a greeting card, for someone you’ve never met, and may never cross paths with again, sent a strong message of kindness. Random acts of kindness, things not expected, but appreciated, can brighten someone’s day.

What are things you can do to spread kindness during uncertain and anxious times? Below are a few ideas to get you started.

1.       Leave a note of gratitude for your mail carrier.
2.      Write a note of thanks and tape it to the lid of your trash can on trash day.
3.      Offer to run an errand for an elderly neighbor.
4.      Send a letter or mail a card to someone you have not seen in a while.
5.      Send a gift card to your hair stylist, let her know how much she is appreciated.
6.      Write a fun message with sidewalk chalk – get the kids involved.
7.      Do a wellness check – spend time checking in on friends or relatives; a quick phone call or video chat may bring more joy than you know.

A teal gift bag with gold polka dots held simple contents, yet the message spoke volumes. Kindness.
What would you add to the list of ways to spread kindness?

Friday, May 15, 2020

Fun Friday – Have your clothes been in social isolation?

...that moment when you think, why do I still have these clothes?

Have your clothes been in social isolation since we have entered the national pandemic? My wardrobe rotation has consisted of pajamas, workout clothes, and leggings. My goal has been to continue a fitness routine. As I searched one of my drawers for a pair of workout pants, I stumbled upon a pair of shorts.

The shorts were buried in a corner, in the back of the drawer. I had to pull and tug, to free the Fuchsia colored spandex material. All I wanted to do was to work out in something different than I usually wore. I soon found out why the shorts remained socially isolated from my other workout clothes.

I pulled the shorts on, one leg at a time. I was instantly transported like I stepped into a time machine and dropped into the 1980’s; Me and my biker shorts. It was a sight more entertaining than cute. You remember the 80’s – Jane Fonda workout tapes, Michael Jackson’s hit Thriller appeared on the scene, and big hair was popular.

My virtual workout was energizing, and my body felt refreshed, but when I looked in the mirror, I was still in the 80’s. I started singing, Girls Just Wanna Have Fun (Cindy Lauper). I grabbed a plastic spatula from the kitchen counter and sang into my makeshift microphone. “Sometimes I’m just like my mother…(When Doves Cry-Prince).

As I sat down to breakfast, sipping a warm cup of coffee, my mind eased back into resent day. It was quiet in the kitchen, except for the low hum of the dishwasher I had turned on. Just me and my thoughts…and those shorts. It was a humbling experience wearing those throwback socially isolated shorts. Ewe. I have work to do, but I am not giving up yet.

While my clothes were in social isolation so was I, and I did not always make the best eating choices. Yes, I worked out regularly, but that needed to be balanced with my eating habits. If you find yourself in this situation, know that it will be okay. I know it’s a cliché, but I will say it anyway, tomorrow is a new day. You can reboot and start over. If I can do it, so can you. We’re in this together.

The next time I bring clothes out of social isolation, I’m not going as far back as the 1980’s. I will just go back a few months. Create a playlist of your favorite songs and dance around your house. When you finally emerge from social isolation, you will have transformed from a caterpillar into a butterfly.

Go out and spread your wing butterfly. You got this.

Have your clothes been in social isolation?

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Words of Wisdom - Momisms

Photo Credit: healthylivingwithplexus

Has your mom or grandma ever said something that perhaps she should not have said? No filters, right out of their mouths. When I was a young girl, I remember coming home with and friend and my great grandmother said to her, "you sure are skinny."

Readers Digest compiled a list of 12 of the Most Hilarious Things Moms Have Said. Check out the stories here, see if you have a favorite one from the bunch.

Do you have a story to share about a momism you've experienced? Perhaps you were the one who dished out the momism.

Monday, May 11, 2020

Muffins with Mom – Celebrating Small Parenting Moments

A mom and son memory

The front lines of parenting has it’s up and downs. During this time of a national pandemic, it can feel like you’re on a battlefield. The general (mom) lays out the plan to her unit (children) – “One of you can unload the dishwasher while the other folds clothes.” What she hears in return is, “I did the dishes last time.” Or, “My clothes are put away.” Murmurings.

Once we have time to go our separate ways for a while, in different areas of the house, we come back together refreshed. My son’s conversation volleyed back and forth like a tennis match. “Do you remember when Mama used to have to rub Aquaphor on your back every night because you had Eczema so bad?”

“It couldn’t have been as bad as the time you used Clearasil on your face in middle school and your whole face began to peel.” They both laughed.

“Yeah, it was so bad, my teacher pulled me aside and asked if everything was okay at home.”

Traveling down memory lane was fun for my sons and heartwarming for me. They surprise me when I least expect it. These are times to cherish and let go of the minor things that threaten your peace of mind.

Just the other day as I prepared to leave home and stop by my job, I opened the trunk of my car to toss my work bag inside. There was a bunch of random items in there that I had not put there. The tissue box that I keep on the seat was in the trunk, a few work papers that I’d left in the car and a crumpled hand towel. I immediately went into complaining mode. Why is l this stuff in here? Did they use my car without asking?

It was my turn to murmur, and I did a good job with it. Until, I leaned into the car and looked up at the ceiling, then at the seat that was once stained. I took a long inhale and the scent of citrus drifted to my nostrils. My car was clean. I sat in the driver’s seat to absorb my surroundings. What I absorbed was the dampness of my seat. I smiled anyway.

My son had taken my car to have detailed cleaning done; It was my Mother’s Day gift from both sons. I had been putting off having the car cleaned, always had an excuse – I don’t have time. I don’t know how much it will cost, and so on. They made it happen and it was a pleasant surprise. It was a parenting moment that I’ll remember for some time.

What parenting moment can you celebrate right now?

Friday, May 8, 2020

Feel Good Friday – 5 Ways to Make Mother’s Day Magical

Mother’s Day this year will look different than year’s past, but it can still be magical. As we continue to practice social distancing and self-quarantining due to COVID-19, it may not be feasible to visit our moms, grandmothers, or other mother figures. What can you do to make their Mother’s Day magical?

Whether you are near your mom or a significant distance away, consider these 5 ways for sprinkling a little magic dust on her day.

1.      Dance Party – create a playlist of songs, put on your boogie shoes, and face time your mom or set up a Zoom call. If your mom lives nearby drive by her house and dance outside. Dance as though no one is watching, although they might be.

2.      Send Flowers – there’s something about flowers that brightens a room.

3.      Have dinner delivered – does mom have a favorite restaurant? There are delivery services such as Door Dash and Uber Eats that are just a call away.

4.      Watch a mother-themed movie – you may have to be creative with this one. If you are able to visit your mom this is easy. If you can’t visit, decide on a time that you will both watch the same movie at the same time. Here are a few favorites to start with:
Freaky Friday
Imitation of Life
Steel Magnolias

5.      Buy a book – support your local independent bookstore, purchase a book, journal or special keepsake item. While you’re at it, grab a book for yourself. You deserve it too.

6.      Create a video – lights, camera, action…grab your phone and record you and your kids doing something silly or read a poem. Send your video to mom.
Above all else, create a lasting memory. What would you add to the list of ways to make Mother’s Day magical?
Wishing all of you who are mothers or mother figures an over-the-top, fantastic Mother’s Day.