Thursday, June 30, 2011

Fun with Legos - If You Can Imagine It, You Can Create It.

Almost every evening, my 4 year old says, "mommy, close your eyes, I have a surprise for you!"  He then leads me to his Lego creation. It is so challenging to get kids, especially boys, to sit and focus on a task that I am so happy that he can let his imagination run wild with his Legos. Often, I have no idea what he has created but he knows and he had a great time creating it. 

A few more

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Boy in the Mirror: Celebrating Fathers Who Create a Positive Reflection

Happy Father's Day! It is a sentiment that I have rarely had a chance to express to my own father. He was in and out of my life for many years and when he was in my life, it felt strange to say it. Happy Father's Day seems like a special statement to be reserved for the most special fathers, you know, the ones who were around to change diapers, wipe tears, give great advice, lecture that boy taking me out on my first date,  and walk me down the aisle during my wedding.

Friday, June 17, 2011

25 + 5 Random Things About Me

Remember a few years ago when “25 Random Things About Me” was abuzz on Facebook? This morning I stumbled upon the list that I wrote in 2008 and surprisingly almost all 25 remains true.   Since I couldn’t make any major changes, I decided to add 5 more to the list and repost for all my new friends, so here we go. 
25 + 5 Random Things About Me
  1. My glass is always ¾ full.
  2. As a Virgo, I am judgmental but I try really hard not to show it.
  3. I dream about the house that I grew up in Dalvey, St. Thomas, Jamaica almost once a week
  4. I wished that I started having kids younger because I secretly yearn for at least six.
  5. I have a crush on Angelina Jolie

Friday, June 10, 2011

Boys of Summer: 10 Activities to Keep Your Super Hero Happy This Summer

New Smyrna Beach
My son just graduated from kindergarten. Yea!!! This is the first year that we have had to makes plans for 10 weeks of summer fun.  After some mind-numbing research into summer camps and activities that are fun but also educational,  below is a list that works for kids of all ages, especially boys with lots of energy to burn. 

1. Legos: I want to kiss the hand of the genius who created Legos. All the boys need are a few Lego pieces and their imagination and the result is hours of fun. Give them an entire box of Legos and you may have to check to see if they are alive. Make sure that the pieces are age appropriate and don't panic when he asks for help in building a battleship or spy airplane. Don't forget to gush over the resulting masterpiece. Soon you will also be able to take them to Legoland

Wekiwa State Park
2. The Beach: Any beach will do. Kids just love water! Sand between the toes, sand castles, running on the beach, beach volleyball, wave dodging are all activities that the kids will love. The great thing about the beach is that the entertainment is already there, you just need to bring sunscreen and snacks.
3. Bubbles: Bubbles are inexpensive and awesome for younger kids. All my boys love them, even the 6 year old! If you walk through your local mall, you will likely find a vendor selling a bubble gun. I was hesitant to spend the $12 but it has provided hours of fun. 

Sunday, June 5, 2011

A Random Act of Unkindness Inspires 14 Words of Wisdom For My Boys

Tree of Life
Yesterday, as I was taking a leisurely stroll to the gym, I noticed a pickup truck driving through my neighborhood.  It was noticeable because it was a 2 seater with about 4 kids, mostly young boys crammed into the front seat.  As it drove by me, a boy in the passenger seat who looked between 15 to 17, looked at me and yelled a racial epithet, preceded by a 4 letter word.  My immediate thoughts were "Did I just hear that?" and "How weirdly random was that?".  Although I have dealt with prejudice based on race, I am fortunate to have gone 41 years without experiencing overt racist behavior.  One of my favorite quotes is "It is not about what happens to you, it is about how you react to it that matters".  With that in mind, I took a deep breath, exhaled it out of my system and refocused my energy on getting a good workout at the gym. 

Although I was able to free my mind from the ugliness of the act, as a mother, I couldn't help thinking about the young boys and what would cause them to be so angry at such a young age.  I don't know these kids but I wish them well.  As a mother of 3 boys, I know how easy it is for our children, especially, our boys to go down the wrong path in life.  As I tried to pour some positive energy into the incident, I thought about some lessons in love and kindness that have inspired me over the years and that I would like to share with my own boys.
  • If you live by only 1 rule, choose this one: Practice self love and then love your neighbor as yourself.
  • We are all created by love and with love. When you are feeling angry at yourself or the world, take a moment to reflect and reach within; you already possess all the love that you need within yourself.
  • Different does not mean deficient; embrace each other's uniqueness. 

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Becoming the Happiest Mom: Love Your Love Life

Congratulations, we made it to the final chapter of the Happiest Mom! Thanks to all my friends, old and new, that have been following for the past 10 days.  I started this journey because I discovered that I had not read a book, just for fun, in at least a year, and wanted to jump start my love of reading and writing. Mission accomplished! I carved out the time to read a chapter every day and I blogged about it every day, even though quite a few of the blog posts were posted close to midnight. Before I started this project, I would get the kids to bed between 8 and 9p.m. and I would either fall asleep with them or shortly thereafter; I could never find that second wind to stay up and accomplish a few things before bedtime. I discovered that having a clear goal is what motivates me.

Are you loving your love life? If not, this is the chapter for you. Meagan talks about the challenges of raising young kids and the impact on her marriage. It is a sweet story with a happy ending.  Before I had
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