Don’t tell me it’s never happened to you before. Okay, maybe it wasn’t the cell phone. But you were looking all over for the glasses on top of your head. Or you searched the house from top to bottom for your car keys (oh, the irony, as you will see). Or how about tearing the car apart for the coins for the toll that you “just had in your hand”?!
And then there’s plans. Double booking appointments. Forgetting meetings not written on the calendar. Or one of my new personal favorites, planning an entire child’s birthday party … at the wrong location. Because you’re too busy, things are too crazy and you are doing entirely too much.
Yep, you read it right. A real life situation. The names have been omitted to protect the overwhelmed (no worries, she encouraged me to use her story for my blog lol). A friend of mine called frantic, a few hours before her daughter’s birthday party. She’d done her due diligence – sent out invitations timely, coordinated decorations, planned fun and exciting games, and assured every detail was set. She just forgot one small thing … to double check the location. The invites she sent were to a rock climbing facility all right … just not the one where she paid for the party. So here we were, hours before the big event, calling, texting, even frantically Facebooking (is that a real word?) people to get them to the right address at the appointed time. We can laugh about it now. But last weekend, before it started, I assure you she was not laughing.
Nor was I, when at the end of the party, I couldn’t find my keys. In my rush to make calls, get there early to help set up, and be ever so helpful, I’d put my keys down somewhere. And when everyone left, they were no where to be found. I was stuck waiting for hubby and his spare set to come to the rescue. Too busy. Too crazy.
Stop. Relax. Cut yourself some slack. Breathe. Nine times out of ten, whatever you are stressing over, is not as unto death. It ain’t that serious. Take a moment. Refocus. So you won’t be stuck looking crazy like we were … trying to do too much. 😉
In honor of Throwback Thursday …
So were planning for my son’s birthday party and were considering having just boys. He vigorously objected. When I asked why, stating the name of a few girls who are his friends that he wanted to come. I knew all but one. He brushed over her name again. I let it slide. A few weeks later we were at a school event and he saw this same little girl. He started hiding behind me, being silly. I asked what was going on. He said he just gets this funny feeling when he sees her ….
The funny feeling.
Initially, I think it’s cute. Aw, he’s got a little crush and doesn’t even realize it. Then mom mode kicks in. He’s only 6. He might not know what that feeling is now, but soon enough, he will. When do “the talks” need to begin? How much do I need to find out about this girl… and on and on and on.
The funny feeling.
Ah, and so it begins…..
I had scripts to write, carpets to vacuum, laundry to fold, dishes to wash and rooms to clean. There was also food to cook, floors to mop, creative ideas to develop and shopping to do. So how did I spend the day before my birthday?
Going for a massage, having a lunch date with my hubby, dancing around with the kids, laughing and playing, running and jumping, enjoying life. I want to say goodbye to one year and greet the new one with the same attitude … one of gratefulness, thankfulness and joy!
I’m Happy! Here’s to another year of blessings!
I can hardly believe it. Here I am on the precipice of yet another year. Another year older, or another year wiser, as I like to say. As I take a look at where I am in life, where I thought I’d be and where I want to be, I can’t help but be exceedingly grateful. I am so grateful for this life I live. No, I am definitely not at the point I envisioned in “my” master plan, so to speak. Yet I am so thankful to God for how richly He has blessed me. This past year of life was absolutely amazing.
– I had an incredible birthday celebration, courtesy of my loving husband
– We spent time with a number of our family members
– I was privileged to provide help and assistance to my mother
– I watched my baby start his non-profit organization, hold a drive to help foster children and win a school spelling bee
– I had a number of awesome freelance writing assignments
– My hubby and I celebrated 12 years of marriage
– I learned that slowing down, saying no and pulling back are not signs of weakness; but rather of strength
– I can love and accept people for exactly who they are – no more, no less – and not try to change them
– I grew to appreciate even more the lady I see in the mirror
Happy Birthday to me!
My baby is growing up so fast. He’ll be three this weekend. I have got to be the sappiest mother in the world. I get so nostalgic when my kids’ birthdays approach. I walk down memory lane, sometimes with tears in my eyes, as the three men in my house found it hilarious that I get so emotional.
Anyways, in light of this momentous occasion in his (and my) life, here’s a look at what my 2-year-old has taught me.
1. Messes can be fun, as long as you don’t have to clean it up.
2. Singing and shouting at the top of your lungs is fun.
3. Folded clothes need to be placed up high.
4. Car rides can be exciting.
5. Crayons are not a good mix with: mom’s clothes, the walls, photographs, the rug (you get the picture)
6. Milk tastes better warm before bed.
7. You can never get too many tickles.
8. Make pretend inspires creativity.
9. Watching TV so mom can rest is a brilliant idea.
10. Sometimes you just need a good nap.
My husband and I threw my son an awesome birthday party. My son and his friends had a blast, it was relatively low maintenance, but here’s the best part … the location was free!
I thought I’d just share a few of the secrets I use to take full advantage of any deals and bargains I can find. Parents know how astronomical prices for kids’ parties can get. A kids’ “jumpy place” (as I officially call it) can run upwards of $300 for about 15 friends. No food. No drinks. No cake. Just jumping. Yikes.
So armed with this pricing knowledge and determined to spend nowhere near that much, I started a brainstorm session. Where can kids go to play that may not be considered a “party venue”? I was flooded with thoughts – and pursued many of them. A YMCA rec room? A church with a nice-sized gym facility? Maybe a craft store? I did come across some other cool, unique venues, but they were costly. And that’s not what you’re reading for. You wanna know how I got the free goods. I finally hit the jackpot when I called … Home Depot.
Now, I must issue a MAJOR DISCLAIMER – All Home Depots do not allow you to have a birthday party. And for some that do, there may be a cost. But more important than the location is my method. Here’s a few quick steps to having a party, or doing pretty much anything else with kids, for cheap.
1. Ask what they offer. I cannot believe how many people are afraid to just ask. I’ve always had the attitude that the worst they can tell me is no. And I’ve been told no plenty. But I’ve also scored free stuff.
2. Always be honest. Tell them exactly what you’re looking for and why. Trying to play up your cause or shading the truth just isn’t worth it. Honesty truly is the best policy.
3. When it comes to attending an event or getting coupons, I exhaust every option. I once wanted to take my boys to an expensive event. Well, with my hubby there were four of us. I called the group sales to find out if we could get group pricing for my family with four people. Turns out we could. You have not because you ask not.
4. Keep your eyes peeled for “free days”. The Children’s Museum of Atlanta has free admission on Target Tuesdays. Fulton County residents can get free admission to some museums on the first Saturday of the month.
My children have had exposure to some incredible events and opportunities. And I’ve been blessed to provide it … for a lot less than most ;).
Happy New Year!
My oldest son turns 7 tomorrow. Seven! Where has the time gone … the phrase uttered by mothers worldwide. Sometimes I just watch him – the carefree joy in his laughter, the innocent curiosity when he doesn’t understand, or that face he makes that reminds me that he is truly my child. I’m in that contemplative state where I’m awed by the miracle of God giving me this joy, and this blessing. My life. My love. As I reflect just before he crosses that threshold, I think about all I’ve learned from his precious life.
What my 6 year old has taught me …
1. My job is to help him be who God created him to be, not who I think he should be.
2. Listen to what people have to say. It could be interesting. It could teach you something.
3. Friends make it more fun.
4. The words “I love you Mommy” NEVER get old.
5. You should not gain weight for eating too many cupcakes or cookies (ok that’s partly me, but he agrees).
6. Moms give the best surprises (sorry Dads).
7. It can be very difficult to let your child learn hard lessons.
8. Their pain is worse than anything you could feel for yourself.
9. Ice cream always makes a day better.
10. Skipping makes you happy.
11. It’s bad enough that there are things about me I can do without. It’s worse to see those traits in my child.
12. Kids know a whole lot more than we give them credit for.
13. Sometimes the best thing to do is just go outside and play.
14. You can never laugh too much.
15. Books are a great adventure.
16. Catch a cold from the hubby – no biggie. Catch it from the kids, it’s like the plague. Their colds are the WORST.
16. It is a privilege to mold and shape a young life.
17. It’s an incredibly beautiful thing to watch your child grow. Equally as beautiful is to realize how much raising them has helped you grow.
Do you have any others? Please post them to my blog. Don’t forget to click “Follow”.