Happy New…Wait, What Year Is It?

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So, I told this story to a friend today and we laughed and laughed and then she insisted I blog about it so I listened, because she’s brilliant. 😊  While the following is quite entertaining and ridiculous at the same time, I also believe it’s a testament of my age and the fact that the New Year’s celebrations each year are pretty much the same…lots of people, lots of alcohol, lots of dancing, lots of confetti, some awkward moments…I may be sleeping, I’m probably sleeping, oh, I’m sleeping… and the ball drops.

This year, like several before, we decided to play it safe, light a fire in the fireplace, chill a bottle of champagne for ourselves and white grape juice for the kids and have a relaxing night in the comfort of our home. Don’t yawn yet, we did add a little excitement and play some 2000s Trivial Pursuit. To others, this may sound lame, you may even call me old, but to me, this is the perfect night, hanging out in my pjs, drinking some beers and getting my butt handed to me in a board game.

During our night of debauchery, like every New Year’s Eve we at least like to watch the live broadcast of the countdown. However, Trivial Pursuit was intense and I lost track of time, so at about 11:30 I scrolled through YouTube, because we only have the fire stick because cable is highway robbery, looking for the live broadcast, found it, clicked it and continued our question and answer battle, commenting on the different New Year’s hosts and venues of the evening.

About 20 minutes later my daughter, laughing out loud, somewhat obnoxiously, says, “Mom, why do they keep saying 2018, are you watching the last years New Year’s parties?”

Of course, my initial reaction was “No don’t be ridiculous, I purposely and consciously made sure I clicked the current live broadcast…” long pause…

“Oh, this is last year’s”.

Yep for the last 25 minutes of 2018 we were watching the last 25 minutes of 2017.

Thankfully we caught it about 5 minutes before midnight, while if we tuned in sooner, we would have watched the exact same ball drop in New York for the second time this year, we did catch Chicago ringing in 2019.

Once again, Happy New Year and may it be filled with so much laughter (and intense board games) you only see the sunshine and not the rain.

Much Love,

Lisa J.

Tales of a Three Year Old – Blue is the Color of the Sky, and…

kids color
Photo by Pixabay

Ever since my daughter could hold a crayon, she loved to color and draw. Not only did she love it, she was pretty dang good at it. Out of both my children, I consider her my artistic, creative child (my mini-me). When she got older, the coloring had turned into writing and illustrating, and she continues to inspire me.

As early as two and three years old, my daughter started to find her creative side and I never wanted to limit this creativity. I always wanted her to  feel she could express herself in that way so I never put a ton of boundaries on her imagination when it came to her “projects”.  If she didn’t stay in the lines, or wanted to paint the sky pink I celebrated the uniqueness instead of correcting or boxing in her ideas. I did, however, have rules as to what she could draw on, and she always abided by that rule. (Except maybe one time at my parents’ when she had a little party with a black marker. In my opinion, she was protesting the wallpaper, and I couldn’t argue with her on that point). Besides that one instance, I never worried about my walls being covered in crayon rainbow murals or wood table sketched with pencil stick figures. I did find out however, that being specific regarding the details of this rule is quite necessary to a three year old.

It was a quiet even, nothing out of the ordinary, and I had tucked my daughter into bed, sang her favorite song and kissed her goodnight. Later, before I called it an evening, I went to check in on her. I could see from the doorway how adorable she was, breathing softly, curled up on her side, looking like an angel. I walked closer to make sure she was covered up and noticed something on her hand. Curious, I flipped on the hallway light to not wake her, and went back to reexamine things more thoroughly. To my surprise her hand was colored completely blue. I immediately check the walls and they were untouched, but as I looked closer at my sweet blonde princess, I realized that by allowing my three year old to express herself with no boundaries had backfired. Not only were both her hand graced with her artistic skills, but her arms, legs, cheeks, nose and forehead were an ocean blue. She looked like one of the Smurfs. I was in awe and wanted to be upset, but she so looked so ridiculous I couldn’t help but laugh and went to get the camera.

My three year old obeyed my rule of what not to draw on, so how could I be upset, I just never imagined that I would need to be much more specific on the proper use of a marker. I was taught another valuable lesson that night, and could do nothing but shake my head and chalk it up as one of those three year old moments.

Much Love,

Lisa J.

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The one time we did let her paint the wall 🙂 Blue seemed to be her color!

Tales of a Three-Year-Old – Let’s Eat Out They Said, It’ll Be Fun, They Said

 

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Innocent right?! Ha 🙂

Isn’t it so very entertaining how there is no one who can turn such a proud moment into such an embarrassing one quite like your three-year-old? Going out in public was like playing Russian roulette, it could go smooth and easy, or you could be shooting yourself in the foot. You just never knew, which made for a rollercoaster of emotion that could lead to walking out of a restaurant with your head held high or slinking out the emergency exit praying nobody saw your face.

One morning while on vacation, we decided to eat breakfast at the hotel buffet. As the waitress seated us, we all were drooling over the spread filled with eggs, bacon, sausage, potatoes, fruit, pie and donuts. It was a breakfast lover’s dream, and being drawn in by the smells, it never occurred to me that being seated directly next to the food may constitute some worry. Fortunately, my three-year-old snapped me out of my trance and I would never make that mistake twice.

As we were sitting in our booth discussing how it is inappropriate to play with the ice in your water glass, and after the third or fourth time I requested that my son sit in his seat, and stop sliding under the table, he jumped up into a standing position, his eyes wide as saucers, his arms out and stiff as statues and without moving an inch due to what I can only explain as panic, announced to the entire restaurant, including the people in line at the buffet….

I HAVE TO POOP!!

It was like the whole restaurant went silent and all eyes were fix on the four of us. I was horrified and felt the sudden urge to get in line and pretend this was not my family. However, my son made it quite clear he knew who I was as he jumped up and down on bench, suddenly not so paralyzed and directing his focus in my direction, as he continued to repeat himself over and over again until I had no choice but to snatch him up and carry him to the nearest restroom, shushing him and praising him under my breath for telling me, as he laughed all the way there.

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So lucky he was cute 🙂

Rising Strong with Brene Brown and Audible

Rising Strong

So I have a ton to write about, between walking through doors that continue to open revealing my true path in this life, and my experience at the Chicago Marathon as a volunteer, I am full of insane emotions and lots of thoughts and words in my head I want to get on paper. However, funny enough, I chose to write about my 4-1/2 hour drive to a work conference in the next state over. Not as exciting right? Well, while the scenery wasn’t breathtaking, I did have the company of my Audible app and I am over the moon inspired by my new find.

It’s my understanding that Brene Brown has been around for some time and I have had people recommend her books, but something always got in the way of me picking one up. Today the Universe worked in the wonderous way it does and I “stumbled” onto her live conference in Audible and I couldn’t be more grateful.

Even though I feel I’ve been on an incredible path toward my truth, I have definitely been tested along the way. Somehow when I feel this way – lost, impatient, confused or doubtful, I get a gentle reminder to stay the course. That reminder happened once again today with Rising Strong as a Spiritual Practice. This is a book available as an Audible live interview where Brene discusses how spirituality continued to show up as an underlying theme within the research of her original book Rising Strong. Not only are the components of Brene Brown’s theory of Rising Strong — the Reckoning, the Rumble and the Revolution, research based for those who have the need to know the numbers, relatable to those who need down to earth explanation, she is also an entertaining and humorous storyteller.

She took the sometimes confusing and difficult subject of Spirituality and applied it to her research for Rising Strong, everyday life and how practicing can help us through. I highly recommend this book, particularly the Audible version in order to get the author’s personality behind the words, especially if you are seeking inspiration, motivation or a swift kick in the direction of your truth.

Much Love,

Lisa J

Spirituality is recognizing and celebrating that we are all inextricably connected to each other by a power greater than all of us, and that our connection to that power and to one another is grounded in love and compassion. Practicing spirituality brings a sense of perspective, meaning, and purpose to our lives. – Brene Brown 

Tales of a Three-Year Old – Are You Smarter Than a Three Year Old

kid with candy
Photo by Pixabay

Before my son was born I knew he was bound to be a handful. My pregnancy was not exactly glowing and, due to his impatience, I was ordered on bedrest for three very long months. Needless to say, it was not a surprise when he came into the world full of energy, with vocal cords that put lead singers in heavy metal bands to shame with the same ability to party all night without sleep.

As difficult as the first two years were, it was still bittersweet when my son turned three. He was finally out of the all-night cry fests, and I was adjusting quite well to sleeping for more than a few hours at a time. On the other hand, my little bald-headed, baby-faced toddler with big blue eyes was slowly growing into a little man. Instead of wobbling while he walked, and falling down out of clumsiness, he was running full throttle, and literally crashing himself into whatever was in his way.

In this transition, potty training had begun, or at least the attempt to potty train. The concept did not completely sink in with my son until a couple months after his third birthday. It took a lot of patience and constant reinforcement, but when he finally got it, it stuck. Especially once he learned that he earned candy after each successful trip to the bathroom.

While this is one of many stories that have taught me to never underestimate the intelligence of a child, it was one of the first that made me question my own intelligence. It was the holiday season, and my kids and I were visiting with friends. After they had consumed a package of Pez each, and a few pieces of chocolate, I advised them that there would be no more candy. My son, being the sugar fiend he is, was displeased with my decision to cut him off. When the puppy dog eyes didn’t work, he resorted to attempting to break my friend, however, she, of course, backed me up. After an extended period of begging and pleading, his eyes suddenly got wide as saucers, and his face brightened, as if a light bulb went off in his head.

My friend and I stood waiting to see what would happen next and how far he would go to obtain his sugar fix. He rushed to the bathroom, and after he finished his business, he stood at my feet and as I looked down, he smiled and said, in his sweet, innocent but conniving voice, “Can I have candy now peez, I went potty”?

He used our very hard work against me, and I was outsmarted by a three-year old. He got his candy that day, not just for using the potty, but also for leaving two adults rendered speechless with no viable defense.

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This one is actually my son, running as fast as he could in the opposite direction he needed to be. We were fools to think he would retrieve the ball on the other side of the fence without incident. He was three and he was sure entertaining 🙂