For my Amazing Single Mom on Father’s Day

“…in spite of incredible adversity, you are both my mother and my father.”

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Three-hundred and sixty-five days a year, you are my parent. You sweat, toil, and work for me every moment. Alone and doing the job of two, in spite of incredible adversity, you are both my mother and my father.

You’ve wiped my tears, patched up my scrapes, read to me, helped me with homework, and have always freely given hugs, love, support and advice. Feeding my body and nourishing my soul, you’ve been the pillar upon which I leaned, embraced, and pushed against while I struggled to understand myself and the boundaries of the world around me.  Continue reading “For my Amazing Single Mom on Father’s Day”

5 Fun Date Night Alternatives to Beat the Blahs & Reconnect with Your Spouse

“…I completely forgot about my daily responsibilities. I didn’t worry about the children at all. I rediscovered the fun version of myself again…”

Life is busy, and when you’re a parent it can be difficult to find time alone with your spouse to reconnect. It’s so easy to fall into the rut of a daily routine filled with work, school, packing lunches, laundry, doctor’s appointments, soccer practice, grocery shopping, ballet lessons, more laundry…well, you know what I’m talking about. Last week I was feeling a little down about all this monotonous drudgery, and confessed to my husband how much I missed the days when he and I were less fettered by obligations and able to enjoy each other’s company, like when we were dating. With two kids and very limited babysitting options, it is rare that we are able to have a date night.

Later that evening Tropical Storm Colin rolled onto the shores of Florida, bringing buckets of rain, downed trees, and flood waters to our town. The next morning my husband surprised me at breakfast by asking if I wanted to ride around and look at the storm fallout while the kids were in school. Continue reading “5 Fun Date Night Alternatives to Beat the Blahs & Reconnect with Your Spouse”

Why the Woman Crossed the Road

“…it was just expected that if you were female, men would holler at you.”

The news this week has been filled with headlines about Brock Turner and rape culture.  As a woman and a mother of two girls, it has been a stark reminder of what it is like to live in this world dominated by violence, sexism, and “good ‘ol boy” attitudes.  Growing up in the South, I’ve been groomed to accept that I should always take a man with me when negotiating car sales, arranging house repairs, or hiring lawn maintenance crews.  I automatically park in well-lit parking spaces as close to the store as possible if  grocery shopping at night and I lock my doors as soon as I get in my vehicle to leave.    I’m not surprised when my husband calls to check on us when the girls and I walk home from the park at dusk.   As a teenager and young adult, I was never surprised to hear the catcalls of men driving by while I was jogging near the road – it was just expected that if you were female, men would holler at you.   Continue reading “Why the Woman Crossed the Road”

8 Ways to Give Your Child a Positive Body Image

“By the time I reached third grade, I refused to wear my Kmart Wrangler jeans because I thought they made me look fat…”

Feature photo credit: Lisa Wixed

As parents, we’ve often heard how our approach to health, food, and our body image can indirectly impact our children’s views of themselves.  Children emulate what they see and hear around them and strive to be like the adults they admire.  So how can we, as parents, give our children a healthy body image?  I’ll address this further in a moment, but first, let’s take a peek into what can happen when we don’t consider how our approach to diet and exercise affects our kids. Continue reading “8 Ways to Give Your Child a Positive Body Image”

Cats & Dogs: A Commentary on Marriage

GoodLuck
Illustration credit: Trinity Moss

I must admit, it’s been a rough weekend.  Albeit the Facebook album of our kids, standing on the sidewalk smiling and cheering at a parade in the sunshine of a beautiful spring morning, may portray a different image.  Trust me on this though – it was two days filled with constant irritation, frustration, nasty looks, and sarcastic comments between my hubby and me.  As he put it (during one of the many arguments we had in 48 hours), “We are like two gears that should be rotating together to help each other, but instead we are grinding against one another.”  Going to the grocery store, attending the parade, what to feed the children, how to manage the behavior of our firecracker preschooler we call “the baby,” – we just couldn’t agree on anything, no matter how small.  Continue reading “Cats & Dogs: A Commentary on Marriage”