Back to School Reminders

text message photo In our house, today marks the last day of care-freedom. For two of my five, tomorrow the alarms will go off. Tomorrow snooze buttons will be pressed. Tomorrow catatonic bodies will no longer be sleeping late or hanging around the house with friends. They will be sitting at desks trying to coax their brains to consider Calculus, Chemistry, Dostoyevsky and the likes. And Mom will be right behind doing what we do, encouraging and reminding – “You can do this,” “Don’t sell yourself short,” “You’re worth more than a bad decision,” “Take the high road,” “Look for someone to encourage today,” … and so much more. The kids may act like they don’t hear us, but they do. This is a mom’s seed-planting/fertilizing time of life. We plant,

Special Perspective – guest post by Gini Florer

the-lego-movie-movie-still-11 Today, I’m so thrilled to share something written by my friend Gini Florer. She’s been such a sweet encouragement to me and to pretty much anyone who knows her. Ten years ago Sunday, Gini & John’s road took a detour, in the most wonderful and uplifting way – adjectives that at the moment were a bit hidden behind a veil of unexpected. As this couple held a new baby in their arms, they began a journey down a road that didn’t quite look like what they imagined. But who knew, that in the midst of different, joy and happiness and contentment would come with a special life. Gini, knowing my beef with comparison and interest in contentment, told me I could share with you the following update she posted to her Caring Bridge yesterday. I hope her words encourage you in whatever place you might be – whether

Detour Driving

Change - Blue Button Sometimes life happens and the road on which you were so happily traveling takes a detour. Detours, in the form of change, are part of life. And the way we handle them has a huge affect on our outlook. We can either be miserable, frustrated and complainy… or we can make the detour a high-road excursion. Unwanted change doesn’t have to land us in a ditch. On Tuesday, Fury stepped on a bee. He screamed and wailed so loud, one of the neighbor kids told me yesterday, “Yeah, I heard him from my front yard.” (Embarrassing.) Fury is actually a pretty tough kid. But, that bee nailed him right in the tender spot on the bottom of your foot; and the sting just kept coming. I quickly removed the stinger and put a baking soda paste on the spot to calm it down. We tried to distract him with a game of Mexican Trains. And all seemed well.

Required Summer Reading … and other product-pull that can sap joy from the process

required-reading It’s that time of the summer – at least for homes with school-aged kids. These are the days when we look up and see Summer’s end creeping ever closer. (boo-hoo-hoo, sob, sob, sob!!) And I watch my kids try – okay I chide them to – complete their Required Summer Reading, I know that a lot of the wonder that could accompany such a task gets lost in the completion of it. “Required reading” tends to be done rather than savored => product over process. The books my kids have on deck this year are actually terrific. Each of them, in their unique genres, has something to offer any reader. I picked one of them up, The Sufferings of Young Werther, and have found myself annotating. I know I’m a complete geek. I’ve even had to order that kid another copy since I’m now keeping his. But will he savor
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