Sunday, December 30, 2012

Sunday Story: 10 Apps

Week number nine of eleven - almost complete! Sunday Story - based on an incredible prompt list from Daring to Live Fully, where I will eventually have a list of 100 things I love.

I am changing this one. Instead of 10 websites, as shown in the prompt, I will share my top 10 apps. Six for preschool/kindergarten age, and four that I enjoy myself. 

10 Apps (iPhone and/or iPad)

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Post-holiday break

I am still working on photos from a wonderful Disney World experience and a sunny southern Christmas. The past couple months have been a whirlwind of activity! I'm taking this time to regroup (and figure out where all the new toys will go!). Happy new year!

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

My Christmas Wish

I love Amy Grant's version of My Grown-Up Christmas List. These days, our world seems consumed with anger, violence, greed, and hate. If we all had one magical Christmas wish and poured our energy into love and peace, maybe we would have a chance.

(song lyrics)

Do you remember me?
I sat upon your knee;
I wrote to you
With childhood fantasies.

Well, I'm all grown-up now,
And still need help somehow.
I'm not a child,
But my heart still can dream.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Sunday Story: 10 Paintings

I missed a Sunday last week. I felt it was important to leave my Sandy Hook reaction post up for a couple days. I continue to remember and honor all those who lost their lives, and I ache for the survivors who are forever changed.

So this is post number eight of eleven. Sunday Story - based on an incredible prompt list from Daring to Live Fully, where I will eventually have a list of 100 things I love.

10 Paintings
  • Two I made myself. I recently discovered those painting class places that seem to be popping up everywhere. So much fun! I now have my very own Santorini and a Halloween whimsy tree.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Bright & cheerful

(Original post from Dec 2011) 

Chaotic holiday glory

Our upstairs guest room is transformed the few weeks prior to Christmas.

First, it is cluttered with shopping bags and purchases.

Next, it becomes bright and cheerful, with festively-wrapped gifts all over the bed. The joyful paper and bows detract from the giant a pile of bags, paper scraps, and packaging cluttered on the floor.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Your greatest thing ever

(This week, I am giving myself a holiday break and pulling up some favorite posts from 2011. Enjoy!) 

Thank You Bear

In my advertising life, I spend hour after hour searching for the best places to reach the most relevant audiences. Every client, every product has a target audience. You don't speak the same way, or to the same people, for every brand out there. I have come to realize, especially with the power of social media, that we are all our own brand. We all have a "unique selling proposition". We all have an audience.

This morning, I was reading a book to my little sweetie. It is more than just an adorably-illustrated children's book. I think it has a very useful life (and business) lesson:
know your audience.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Atlanta: Theater for the Very Young

Families of small children, this is a fantastic opportunity for some special fun! Get your tickets for a fun holiday break activity at the Alliance Theater. I'm taking Amelia in a couple weeks; we can't wait!

Waiting for Balloon

December 27-30, 2012, Thursday-Sunday, 9:30am & 11:00am
January 3-6, 2013, Thursday-Sunday, 9:30am & 11:00am
January 12 & 19, 2013, Saturdays, 9:30am & 11:00am

Two childlike hobo-clown characters are waiting near the railroad tracks for "balloon."  The problem is that neither of them knows exactly what "balloon" is.  Through delightful trial and error, exploration and interaction with the audience, the two clowns piece together what makes a balloon a balloon and celebrate all that is discovered while we "wait!"  An introduction to gentle clowning and the joy of creating puppets from found objects.  Waiting for Balloon is a Theatre for the Very Young production, developed for children ages 18 months - 5 years old.  

"Theatre for the Very Young engages both parents and their pre-school children in creative experiences. The fourth wall is dissolved as young ones willing become part of the experience," says Director, Rosemary Newcott.

Tickets for Waiting for Balloon are $10 per person, no matter how young or old.

Tickets are available online at Alliance Theater Waiting For Balloon

Fun alert: Radio Disney Noon Year's Eve

Twenty cities will party along with Radio Disney at exciting family events on December 31st. The events welcome kids and families to their favorite locations including zoos, museums, and shopping centers for family-friendly celebrations. Kids will have the opportunity to enjoy all the excitement of New Year's eve - before their bedtime!

Hosted by Radio Disney's local stations, the "Noon Year's Eve" events will feature the "Top 50 of 2012", interactive entertainment, and prizes.
Cities include Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Philadelphia, Houston, Detroit, Seattle, Phoenix, Tampa, Miami, and more! Check your local station and media for more information and locations! 

Happy Near Year (almost)!


Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Mental illness is not evil

My friend posted a very wise and extremely brave post on Facebook today. She gave me permission to share, although I choose to keep this anonymous.

I wanted to project her words beyond her Facebook friends, because this is a very important discussion that our nation needs to have. No more hiding this very real issue.

To my dear friend, you floored me today. I am proud of you and love you! 

- - - -
I am coming out of the closet. Not that kind of closet, another one. For the past 12 years I have struggled with a mental illness. It's been a "dirty little secret" I felt like I had to hide. I have a severe form of bi-polar disorder. 

Monday, December 17, 2012

What do I do with Pinterest?

Do you know that fine line between young and old, current and out of touch? I feel like I am on the wrong side these days. I don't recognize most of the artists on the radio, I have no idea what movies are out in the theaters (unless it's G-rated from Disney), and I am slipping behind in the social media sector.

Clearly, I was once an early adopter. I have been blogging for a few years, I'm an avid Facebooker, I tweet, schedule updates with Hoot Suite, check my Klout, and support blogging talent via Triberr tribes. But I am missing the boat when it comes to some of the newer social media sites/tools.

What exactly do I stumble? Or tumble?

Friday, December 14, 2012

The unspeakable

I am in pain. Heartbroken over the news coming out of Connecticut today.

Senseless, evil violence on innocent people...

Devoted teachers who were going about their day instilling values and knowledge into future leaders...

Beautiful, kind-hearted, YOUNG children who were probably looking forward to a weekend of playtime with friends, siblings, parents...

Parents who will have to decide what to do with wrapped gifts already under a Christmas tree...

Moms who can no longer complain about carpool line...

Too much Christmas

Santa visits. Singing. Christmas play. Parties. Wrapping gifts. Shipping gifts. Planning activities. Decorating the house - and cookies. I love Christmas festivities, but enough is enough. We are still 11 days away! And what does any of this chaos have to do with the real meaning of Christmas?

Add in surgery recovery for my girl and a very unexpected replacement of our entire water line from the street to the house, not to mention the job I feel like I'm completely neglecting. It's all too much right now.

I need a day of nothing. It is too bad our weekend is packed with obligations already. I need a day where I don't have to make or plan something for someone else. A day to enjoy the sound of silence, just me and my favorite fuzzy PJ pants and aloe-infused socks.

That's what I want for Christmas!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

#WW: She did it!

Amelia woke up on Saturday morning, 48 hours after eye surgery, in a bit of pain. But she wanted to dance. She had been practicing the winter recital dance with her two classmates for weeks, and had her heart set on performing. So we dosed her up with ibuprofen, helped her dress in her leotard and tights, and headed to recital.

She nailed it! So very proud of this tough little girl. She has just the right amount of sass to pull of this adorable dance. (She is in the center)

I have watched this at least 34 times. Can't get enough!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Pick a doctor like you would pick a spouse

I have another guest post up at today!

This time, I focus on our lesson in choosing a physician. I titled it "pick a doctor like you would pick a spouse", because the same important qualities really do apply.

 Trust. Listening. Respect.

 Please support this wonderful community of loving parents; click on over to read it there.

  Choosing a pediatric ophthalmologist 


Monday, December 10, 2012

I left my heart on that table

As a mother, I long to hold my little girl tight and keep her close. I stand prepared, ready to fight off the world's evils and dangers. I watch over her sweet heart, wary of those who might cause her pain. I want to shield her from lumps and bumps and scrapes.

Sometimes, though, being Mom means I have to step back.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Sunday Story: 4 Desserts

Week number seven of eleven. Sunday Story - based on an incredible prompt list from Daring to Live Fully, where I will eventually have a list of 100 things I love.

4 Desserts 

Only four? This list could probably be fifty long for me. I am a sweet tooth kind of girl! Here are four top favorites.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Disney Update: Monsters & Inside Looks

Tickets are now on sale for MONSTERS, INC. 3D which opens everywhere on Wednesday, December 19th! Mike Wazowski in 3d? Now that will be funny!

And in case we need more monster-iffic laughs, MONSTERS UNIVERSITY is coming to theaters on June 21st, 2013! The first poster was released last week:

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Surgery update

5:30 p.m. here, six hours after we left the surgery center. Amelia slept for a few hours but has since been very fearful and tearful. She has moments of calm and is eating a bit, so I know we're going to make it through this day!

Her eyes are their usual red after such a procedure, but otherwise looking great. A good night's sleep is going to work wonders on all of us. Then we begin the long 8-week waiting game. Last time we had a "perfect" six weeks, this time we need to make it past eight. Eight weeks until an all-is-well report. We are longingly looking towards that day for sure.

The day is here... again.

My sweet girl has eye muscle surgery again today. The first one was in January. The second was in March. In September, we tried bifocals for her. Surgery number three is our only remaining choice. Once again, we cling desperately to hope that this time will be "it". I am feeling good about it and look towards a happy day when all of this is in life's rear-view mirror.

Send us happy thoughts and prayers if you can spare a few today.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

#WW: Coooookies!

One more photo of our Stone Mountain Christmas fun.

My little cookie monster, hungry for a sweet snack after tubing excitement. She decorated it herself, then shoved it in her face. Yum!

Monday, December 3, 2012

How to have fun at Stone/Snow Mountain #Atlanta

Stone Mountain Park, Georgia's most visited attraction, is all decked out for the holidays!

Stone Mountain Christmas, presented by Humana, is open on select dates now through January 1st. And where else can you find SNOW on 60+ degree southern days but Snow Mountain, the region’s only snow park? Snow Mountain opened on November 22nd and will operate on select dates through February 18th.

I live almost an hour away from Stone Mountain, so we have not visited in many years. I was surprised by how much it has grown! It really is a theme park now, with almost never-ending things to do and see. It was our very first time visiting Stone Mountain for the winter/Christmas fun, and seeing it through Amelia's eyes was just priceless. 

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Sunday Story: 6 Drinks/Beverages

Week number six of eleven. Sunday Story - based on an incredible prompt list from Daring to Live Fully, where I will eventually have a list of 100 things I love.

6 Drinks/Beverages 

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Celebration anticipation

* * *
Our stockings are hung by the fireplace today.

Baby decorated the tree in her own special way. 

"Twas the Night Before Christmas" is ready to read, 

Final touches on our lights are all that we need. 

* * * 

We did trick-or-treat, 

We had our turkey to eat. 

Now December is here, 

Which means Christmas is near! 

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