Vision Board

visionboard1

I did a thing this week.  I made a vision board to show what it is I wanted my life to look like.  I actually used a notebook that I always have with me so I could keep looking at it as often as I wanted.

I had heard of people making these before.  Targets and motivations to strive for and that emphasize the power of the mind.  The photo above was one of  the photos I chose.  I won’t share the rest here…yet.  Maybe never.  I am not sure.

What I do know is how happy I am to have used this photo and then realized that I am living this part of my vision board out loud; in present time. So many times I hear people tell me they wish they wrote, or they want to write, or they do write but they won’t put it out anywhere in the world.  I am proud that I do.  I am proud that in this vision, my writing is not just a vision.  Its not just a wish.  Its not a someday if I weren’t so busy.  I am a mother of 4 (3 of whom are completely dependent), I work part time at my children’s school, I work at my husband’s business, I have 2 children in travel sports that we have 5 days a week and 2 times each day of the weekend.  Our little Spicy is a swimmer so that is sucking up time.  I also run a part time online business plus I run a household….Can I get an Amen to that?  Bills, laundry, dinners, all lunches packed, groceries, cleaning, etc.  I get busy. Believe me!  Yet, I still find time to be what I believe God calls me to be.  A writer.  Who actually writes.

I encourage all of you to create your own vision board.  A tangible one is best. One you can craft and hold and see each day.  BUT, if you are even too busy for that, make one on Pinterest.  Start making a plan today for what you say you want.  Have your vision become reality.  It is empowering.  And don’t we all just want to feel a little stronger in our own skin?

XOXO

 

“Come to meet his mom…”

I have been sick over these hazing stories and deaths that keep coming up in the news.  I wrote about it.  I pray for peace for all families affected.  It is just so tragic.

 

Come to meet his mom  by Jennifer Woolford

 

She kept him safe from harm

Holding him by the arm

for Oh so long.

Don’t talk to strangers, keep close to home.

A mother’s usual repeated song.

 

She watched him grow into a young man

with dreams and hopes and wants

Headed off to college

to make them all come true.

Then he met you.

 

She heard about you right away

on his very first day.  He said,

“Mom, I met this cool kid.  I think we’re gonna be great friends.

He’s gonna help me fit in.”

 

She felt a sense of calm.

With friends looking out for him what could go wrong?

He now had people on his side

Just how she’d been all his life.

 

Come and meet her.  Come to meet his mom.

She’s the woman hunched over in black.

Tell her you’re the reason

Her son is now part of her past.

 

“You can be our brother

If you have another.

A few more things you have to do

For us to think you’re worthy and for us to like you.”

 

Its called hazing and it makes you feel so superior.

Makes you feel like men.

But when his mother is gripping his coffin

Where are the big boys then?

 

Come and meet her.  Come to meet his mom

She’s the woman hunched over in black

Tell her you’re the reason

Her son is now a part of her past.

 

You’ll brag about it, the hazing.

Laugh about it

Thinking it makes you so cool.

Its pathetic and cruel

Playing Russian Roulette with someone who looks up to you…

 

We each make our decisions

That’s how you’ll skirt any blame.

God forbid your generation

feel any obligation or shame.

Yes, he decided he would do anything to be your friend.

You really showed up, didn’t you?  A “friend” to the end.

 

Come and meet her.  Come to meet his mom.

She’s the woman hunched over in black.

Tell her how you’re the reason

Her son, her life, her everything is now a part of her past.  ~JMW

 

 

“Mommy, will you sing my song.”

music-notes

Clever came to us in August.  He was well passed his due date and if you saw me, you would have thought I was getting ready to deliver a football team!  I was as round as I was tall.

I went to the hospital to be induced.  Hours passed and nothing happened.   I remember my husband asking, “Is the baby really big?” and the doc telling us no.  He had delivered thousands of babies and this particular one was not big.

More time elapsed when the doctor realized this child would not be coming out on his own OR with the help of my body.  So, I was prepped for an emergency c-section.  Funny, I wasn’t happy about it at the time, in hindsight- its the way to go!

The baby, Clever, came moments later.  After I was “stitched up and ready to go”, we were taken to a recovery room.  My hubby went out to tell waiting family the fabulous news- that Clever had arrived!  All 10 pounds 5 ounces of him!  Good thing the doc was right about his size- NOT!

As I laid in the room, just me and this amazingly cute little boy, I was overwhelmed by EVERYTHING.  I had been so nervous JUST THAT MORNING that I would never be able to love another child as much as I loved Studious.  Yet, here he was.  A little (well-maybe not little by baby standards but as far as the whole human population went…) boy who was captivating me.

I began whispering in his ear all the sweet nothings we tell our children.  And I sang a song to him.  Within the first few moments of his life, I softly sang, “Baby Mine” from Dumbo.   And I kept singing it in the precious moments when we were alone during our 5 day hospital stay.

When we got home, even through all the commotion and emotion of a new little one, I KEPT singing Baby Mine to him- everyday at nap and every night before bed.  It was such a special thing to me.  I looked forward to it nonstop.  That little moment where we would snuggle close and I could whisper-sing (its a thing) into his ear this song that summed up our life together.

I knew these times were special to me and Clever certainly loved any and all snugglin’.  But, I remember the day I realized our song meant as much to him as it did to me.

He was about 18 months old, he was running and playing in our living room, distracted by all things little boys are when I started singing his song, “Baby Mine don’t you cry…” from the sofa.  He STOPPED in his tracks- I mean complete halt- and RAN to me- hopped up into my lap and instantly snuggled up to me for the duration of the song.  It was amazing.  So much so that I kind of treated it like a trick for a while.  When my hubby came home, I said, “You gotta see this!” and sure enough, each time I started singing it, Clever would come at me wide open from wherever he was, climb onto my lap and lay his head on my heart.

That is the heart of the good stuff, you guys.  This is what makes it ALL worth it.

Today, six years into life and Clever is still going strong with his song.  Each night, I kneel next to his bed, we say our prayers and he says, “Will you sing my song?” and every night, I do.

He tells me when he is 101 and he lives with his wife, he will still call me over at night time to come over to his house and sing “his song”.  Of course, I will be happy to oblige!

This was such an amazing thing for Clever and I that when Dapper and Spicy came, I did the same thing with them

Dapper’s song is “Close to You” from the Carpenters and Spicy’s is “I just called to say, I love you” from Stevie Wonder.  The best part is, they have the SAME exact reaction as Clever.  It is our special thing and they ask for it ALL the time.  It is one of the daily practices I started that I am SO VERY THANKFUL for.  It has just created such a special moment for us each day.  It lets them know how special they are to me.

“Mommy, will you sing my song?”

Always my little loves. Always!

XOXO

Marlin in the House…Literally…

Marlin has been low-key this year.  Well, at least low-key in comparison to how he usually rolls.  I am not sure if it is the fact that he is getting older or if it is the fact that he is gearing up for some wild times during this crunch time before Christmas!  I sincerely hope it is the latter!  I love this elf and the true magic he brings!

One day, Dapper touched him (and you know this means potential magic loss) and then Marlin stayed in the same spot for 3 days (key doom music- DUM DUM DUMMMMM).  We were concerned for his well being and were paranoid that it was the end of Marlin.  Luckily, he has since recovered and is back on the move!  Whew!  I know Dapper is happy and I see a huge sense of relief in Spicy’s eyes so I am pretty sure she also made contact with Marlin.

 

Throwback to Marlin Flying a Commercial Airliner last year…It happened.  We landed safe!

marlinplanemarlinfly2

 

So, this happened yesterday…

Driving through our lovely town in Maryland, I came across this:

freelib

An adorable Little Free Library.  This made my heart so happy.  Overjoyed, really!  I have heard about them but this was the first I ever saw in person.

It made me wish there was one in every neighborhood.  A ‘Take One, Leave One” free library where we could all benefit from the joy of a new book.  New to us at least.  Anyone who knows me and even those followers on here who do not “personally” know me can attest to the fact that I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE books for all ages, on all topics.  I believe so deeply that reading for enjoyment is equally as important as reading for knowledge.  I believe this in my core.

Back to this Little Free Library, I showed the hubs this photo and said, “I want one in our yard”- naturally.  But as he very wisely pointed out, we live on a road which gets basically zero traffic and therefore, our library may be a little lame.

It is cute though, right?  This glorious little box that is the epitome of sharing, knowledge and neighborhood kindness all in once adorable Little Free Library.

Build one.  Share it with me.  I may even have a donation to add to it in a few months (HINT TO THE BIG NEWS REFERENCED THE OTHER DAY).

XOXO

 

A Big Thank You to Our Elf, Marlin!

Dearest Marlin,

How did you know this week was not one for crazy hoopla and shenanigans?  It was almost as if you were well aware that we are planning for a huge Christmas Party this weekend and you didn’t want to overwhelm me.  THANK YOU!  Thank you for being the strong, silent type elf this week.  I am POSITIVE that once Saturday night passes, you will be back to your wild and carefree ways.

And I, for one, am super excited about it!

XOXO

 

Throwback to 2012: When you Toilet-Papered the boy’s room in our old house!  Good times!

 

Helpful Hint for Holiday Food Prep

blogpic.JPGHey there.  As you know from my earlier post, I am changing my eating habits in an effort to get healthy and hot.  🙂  But it is hard, right?  Especially during these upcoming holidays.

We have tomorrow- Thanksgiving- which is the day where it is socially acceptable to gorge ourselves with any and all food products (and even some questionable “food” products) and it is totally cool.

I know we personally have a huge Christmas party the following weekend and then of course, Christmas day.  I am nervous thinking about it.

Tomorrow we are lucky enough to go to family’s for dinner.  I volunteered to bring an appetizer, a dessert, sweet potatoes and rolls.  To help myself with one little thing, I decided that I was going to add Pecans to the sweet potatoes.  I realize to many of you, this is normal.  I, however, do not like pecans and would typically not make the casserole with them so I could gorge on them (see above).  However, by making the small decision to add something I don’t particularly like, I have taken sweet potatoes off the menu for myself- no cheating happening there.  Its a small victory, but I will take it where I can get it.

Now to be clear, I am not telling you to ‘jack with the food’ so that it doesn’t taste delicious to family and guests.  I am merely saying- perhaps bring popular items that you aren’t a fan of and serve them.

For example this weekend we are having a small Christmas Tree decorating party day- I bought 2 flavor pies that I don’t care for.  They will still be decadent to my guests, but it takes the temptation away from me.

It helps me and if it helps you, well than, that’s awesome!

Happy Thanksgiving!