Sunday, October 28, 2012

Sunday Story: 10 Activities

We are in it now: crunch time. The season of hustle and bustle. It begins in October with fundraisers, festivals, and numerous school activities. Once we get a breather from October, November will be peeking around the corner. That includes Thanksgiving - then the Christmas rush!

Life has been fun, but busy to say the least. To help me keep up with posts, I am starting my own Sunday Story. Eleven weeks. Based on an incredible prompt list from Daring to Live Fully, where I will eventually have a list of 100 things I love.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Mothers are unique

Mothers are like snowflakes, no two are exactly alike. 

I am a mother of one, reveling in the eccentricities of a girly girl.

I worry in my own way and I laugh inside (but not always out loud).

I have little fear of junk food, but I understand moderation.

I work sometimes, play sometimes, and rest much less than I used to.

I know another mama, a laid-back chauffeur and cheerleader to sporty boys.

She keeps Band-Aids on hand and tends her fair share of bumps and scrapes.

She is here and there and everywhere, always on time and looking sharp.

I think fashion is her link to a feminine world. 

Mothers are masters at adapting, accepting, and adjusting.

We become who we are as we watch our joys learn, live, and grow.

We are powerful within our family cocoons - and unique to the world.

- - - -
 Linked up to Mama Kat's Writer's Workshop: "Write a post in just 12 lines."

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

#WW: Hiking fashion from a princess

No matter the occasion or activity level, sparkle hairbows and frilly skirts are always a plus. This fashionable little lady hiked two miles up a mountain (and back down again), stylin' and talking all the way.

Monday, October 22, 2012

The right kind of silence

Now, this kind of silence is another story. Last week, the daytime silence had me uneasy. This morning, I find myself noticing the quiet again.

The wake up clock sits dim in her room, awaiting its moment to activate the soothing green glow. Her body is still, her chest gently rises and falls without a sound. Sheets, rumpled and tangled, rest at her feet while stuffed animals lie askew next to her, on her, and on the floor.

I am showered, my hair has been dried. I have nine minutes. Nine minutes to catch up with the news of my world through a quick scroll of Facebook. Maybe put a word or two on the blog. This is the best kind of silence. Cool air outside means a cozy blanket on my toes. A peaceful sleepy head in the other room means a moment to breathe for me.

Wake up time will come soon enough, bringing with it the chaos of yet another school day. For one more second, I turn my head and listen. To nothing.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Disney Update: We're going!!!

Today's Disney update is a personal one -- we are going back to the Magic Kingdom!

At the end of December 2011, we stopped at the Wilderness Lodge and had dinner with Cinderella and Prince Charming at the Grand Floridian.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Expert advice: Parenting for your child's self-esteem

This guest post is written by a real-life friend, a Licensed Professional Counselor and Nationally Certified Counselor working in the field of mental health since 2006. She shares some valuable advice for parents who want to build self-esteem in their children. 

Hilary practices at Reflective Counseling Services, LLC, with counseling services in Marietta, GA.
- - - - - -  

Kid Problems are REAL Problems
Hilary Delman, LPC

As parents, it’s easy to look at our children’s “problems” and shrug them off.  We, after all, are busy worrying about bills, planning meals, getting the house clean, laundry…we are worried REAL problems.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

What do to with quiet?

Every now and then, I find myself on a work-from home day with Amelia at school and a very light work load. I run an errand or two, investigate the latest coupons, and get the laundry started. I refresh Facebook and my work email every few minutes, looking for a new conversation or task. I watch the clock.

These days are really slow.

Amelia is in extended day school because I work several hours per day - sometimes in the office, sometimes at home. I do not pick her up until 4:00. On days like this, my body feels lazy. My mind is sleepy. By brain has no idea what to do with all of the quiet.

It is funny how I often find myself begging for some alone time with no responsibilities and no pressures. But when I get it? I have no idea what to do with myself!

Snacking and TV are not going to cut it. Three loads of laundry are already clean, dry, and tucked away in various closets or drawers. The carpet is sporting brand new vacuum lines. The sun is shining... perhaps I should go for a walk? If I burn more calories, maybe I can enjoy a cold ice cream treat with my girl this afternoon.

It is not often that life and work both reach a quiet place. I should enjoy it, I suppose. But I miss my chatterbox, a perpetually singing and dancing little wonder. My ears have grown used to having her around. 

What am I supposed to do with all of this silence? 

Monday, October 15, 2012

Mommy & Me: Autumn Mountains

Mommy and Me Monday!

This past weekend, we visited family in the North Carolina mountains. The past couple days have been gray and dreary, but Saturday was gorgeous. Sunny and bright blue skies. We all piled into a van and took a ride up the Blue Ridge Parkway to see the lovely fall color. In the highest elevations, we missed "peak" by a few days. Around 4,000 feet, the color was beautiful.

Here we are at Water Rock Knob!

Mommy and Me Monday at Really, Are You Serious?
Hosted by Krystyn at Really, Are You Serious?

Saturday, October 13, 2012

A culture of bullies

Many of you probably heard of 15-year old Amanda Todd this week. She committed suicide after suffering bullying, reaching out for help via a video, only to be bullied more. She also suffered from drug and alcohol abuse from a lifetime of feeling down and alone. It is truly a tragedy. And unfortunately, one that is all too common today.

Kids and teens have access to technology these days. Hurtful words no longer travel only by mouth; they can sting from across space, broadcast to millions in a matter of moments. Stupid decisions can be posted on the Internet, never to go away. Secrets can be blown wide open in more dramatic ways than ever before. It is a tough lesson to learn, especially for teens.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Disney on Ice: Rockin' Ever After

What a magical evening! We had a special family night out, a trip into the city to see Disney on Ice: Rockin' Ever After. Amelia counted the days beginning weeks ago, and the show did not disappoint.

This was our second Disney on Ice show. Last October, we oohed and ahhed throughout Disney on Ice: Dare to Dream.We pointed excitedly as each princess appeared on the ice and we clapped along to the music.

This year's show was no exception. If last year received two thumbs up, this one probably deserves two thumbs and an extra finger. We really enjoyed it.

Five rules to live by

My take on living the good life.

Understand that all people are different and accept them for who they are. 

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

#WW: Loves to learn

This is one of my favorite all-time videos of baby Amelia. She is now a 4 1/2 year old smarty pants. She was a smarty pants back then too! She has always loved to learn and succeed.


Happy Wednesday!

Monday, October 8, 2012

How to compliment someone

My child has glasses. And she looks awesome in them. Compliments are always welcome, but experts say there is a correct way to serve up praise. Apparently, the way compliments are given can directly affect the child's own feelings about wearing their glasses and consequently, affect their self-esteem. When I read the advice, it made sense. And I find it applicable to anyone in any situation, not just adorable bespectacled kiddos.

Experts say that we should not compliment just the glasses (or the shirt, or the hair), but the person him/herself. For instance, instead of "Those glasses are so pretty", we should say "YOU look so pretty with your new glasses". For a child with glasses, a properly-phrased compliment is more effective because it is not just about the object being worn, but about them. They are not defined by the object, but can embrace who they are as an entire, whole human being.

This makes so much sense! People like attention. They enjoy compliments. They like to talk about themselves. I am going to take this advice and try to apply it more often in real life.

You look lovely in that shirt. 

You really look nice with your new haircut.

You are awesome for finishing that race.

 Give it a try - compliment someone you love today!

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Spooky spooky! Halloween decor

"Spooky spooky spooky! Our house is spooky!"

This is the new song in our house. Amelia and I pulled out all the Halloween decor the other day. We have pumpkin rugs grinning up from the floor and a flowing white ghost chilling out on the door. We have a bouncing vampire on a spring, bobbing by the window with his buddy, a springy skeleton. Jack-the-Lantern gleams from the mantel and a giant spider rests on a gnarled, black "spooky tree".

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Measure twice, cut once - another sumbission to Little Four Eyes

Posted a summary of our anxiety-ridden eye journey on the Little Four Eyes site!

It is my second post for them - I cannot thank them enough for including me. I have already "met" some moms with a similar rare outcome like ours, and I even have a new question or two for our doctor when we see him again next month.

Send over some support to this great site:
Measure twice, cut once: Our tale of strabismus surgery 

A blur of rainbow colors

Busy week! I did not get anything written, so I am reviving my post from exactly one year ago. Enjoy!

Wind and a blur of color

T-shirts and sneakers whiz by in a blur of rainbow colors. Heat from sun-warmed metal radiates through our clothes. Wind lifts my hair, tangles it. The volume of her voice rises and falls as we, too, rise up and glide down, around and around.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Daddy is hilarious

Unless he is working late or traveling, my husband is in charge of Amelia's bedtime. He loves spending time cuddled on her bed and playing silly games.

We still have a baby monitor in her room because even now, as of age 4 1/2, she does not leave her room. She has gotten out of bed perhaps four times in her entire life. Instead, she calls for us.

"Hey Mom-MY... Hey Dad-DY..."
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