Where We’d Go and What We’d Do, in 6 Words

passport-lede
photo credit: DocChewbacca #26 Let’s go surfing II via photopin (license)

Passport awareness to me means knowing where the dreaded thing is.

GAD GRAPHICIt’s a viable fear, losing my passport in another country. Not that I jet-set. Were it not for Red Ventures’ annual company trip, the extent of my worldly travel could be summed up in a drive down Charlotte’s Central Avenue, with its Mexican bakeries and Mediterranean restaurants.

I compile a monthly post called “6 Words.”

Ernest Hemingway inspired it when he said any story can be told in six words. I ask bloggers, friends, strangers, and a few strange blogger friends to respond to a prompt. September was National Passport Awareness Month.

Continue reading “Where We’d Go and What We’d Do, in 6 Words”

The Challenge of Blogging Now (Even When You Don’t Blog)

finally
photo credit: valiant aja First Order Stormtrooper via photopin (license)

Blogging happens even when I don’t blog.

Take the week that was. I met deadlines, commitments. I found myself at midnight, ready to write and read, yet short on midnight oil. One can’t burn what one doesn’t have. The writing mind kept sentinel, though, when my waking mind could not.

Strife swirled all around.

My city caught fire. Fellow citizens rose up and spoke out. Those of us who didn’t, wanted to. We felt, perhaps, shame in our voice. Undeserved shame. All voices warrant value. I held words in and wore my Broncos cap and saw connections between strife and tension.

Continue reading “The Challenge of Blogging Now (Even When You Don’t Blog)”

Parenthood, in 6 Words

photo credit: Kalexanderson via photopin cc
photo credit: Kalexanderson via photopin cc

Parenthood.

It exhilarates, exhausts, disgusts, and lifts us like nothing else possibly could.

How would you sum up the journey in six words? Inspired by Hemingway’s assertion that a story can be told in six words, I asked that to parents around me – at soccer practice, in the blog world, even at the grocery store.

Here are 55 responses … from the anxious to the delirious to the simply joyous, all honest, all from the heart.

1. “Having my heart outside my body.”

Hannah H.

2. “Fulfilling, enduring, exhausting, challenging, thrilling, proud.”

Andrea P.

3. “The most humbling experience in life.”

Matt C.

photo credit: demandaj via photopin cc
photo credit: demandaj via photopin cc

4. “The craziest ride of your life.”

Brittany R.

5. “Heart, bigger. Brain, hurts. Arms, full.”

Alison, author of Writing, Wishing blog

6. “Best job you’ll do for free.”

Amanda P.

7. “My greatest love, joy and anxiety!”

Tara G.

8. “Love, care, teach, manners and values.”

Lamar H., author of Inspirational Basketball blog

9. “One crazy rollercoaster of a bootcamp.”

Erica W.

photo credit: Lotus Carroll via photopin cc
photo credit: Lotus Carroll via photopin cc

10. “Parenthood is elation, exhaustion, heartbreak; repeat.”

Lesley M.

11. “A life turned upside down instantly.”

Christine Carter, author of Mom Cafeblog

12. “Life with kids is beautiful chaos.”

Erica G.

13. “Exhausting sacrifice which brings innumerable blessings.”

Kris B.

14. “Joyful, painful, most rewarding hard work.”

Jennifer H., author of Living in Graceland blog

15. “Days go slow, years go fast.”

Rebecca C., author of The Unsteady Path blog

16. “What the heck was I thinking?”

Kelly S.

17. Never ending, mostly joy-filled adventure.”

Lori C.

18. “Best thing ever happened to me.”

Janet C.

19. “How blessed I am by God!”

Donna H.

cocktail20. “Hand me a very large cocktail.”

Megan M.

21. Selfless, frustrating and rewarding learning experience.”

Beth. H.

22. Love, frustration, anger, humiliation, ache, angst.”

Leslie P.

23. Leaving a legacy by changing diapers.”

Laura O., author of Mommy-Miracles blog

24. “Parents are very loving leaders.”

Rebecca Scarberry, Author of YA novella, “Messages From Henry”
(pigeon hero)

25. “Love, with a side of chaos.”

Ashley T.

26. “Sometimes you just have to laugh.”

Jillian L.

27. “Hurt him and I’ll cut you.”

Renee J., author of “Renée Schuls-Jacobson” blog

28. “What could possibly happen again today?”

Holly Homer, author of June Cleaver Nirvana blog

29. “Extraordinarily humbling, challenging, rewarding lifetime commitment.”

Debbie H.

30. “It’s the most wonderful experience ever!”

Jamie J., author of Kreyv blog.

31. “Instantaneous love combined with eternal worry.”

Lacey E.

32. “Tangible selfless love, an unexpected gift.”

Mandrile Y., author of the Polished Before Shined blog

33. “Most precious gift I could receive.”

Kimberly S.

34. “Learning and growing every single day.”

Tricia, author of Raising Humans blog

35. “The hardest but most fulfilling job.”

Deanna M.

36. “One of the hardest jobs ever.”

Chelsea W., author of MS Mummy of Two blog

37. “Always Be there for your kids.”

Kevin D., author of Sports Dad Hub blog

38. “Rewarding, ever changing, maddening yet satisfying.”

Rhonda S.

39. “The craziest rollercoaster you’ll ever ride.”

Renae Christine, author of Rich Mom Daily blog

40. “Buckle up, and enjoy the ride.”

Kimbra, author of Mommy’s Rambles blog

photo credit: rAmmoRRison via photopin cc
photo credit: rAmmoRRison via photopin cc

41. “Motherhood called me. Leave a message.”

Jen, author of Life on the Sonny Side blog

42. “Re-evaluating what is important in life.”

Tina S., author of One Mom’s Battle blog

43. “Chaos reigns in some sane insanity.”

Teri B., author of Snarkfest blog

44. “The hardest job you’ll ever love.”

Leslie B., author of Time Out For Mom blog

45. “Parenthood is a fantastic rollercoaster ride.”

Brigitte M., writer for Fragrant Man blog

46. “Hardest and best job in life.”

Danielle D.

47. “Keep an eye out; don’t hover.”

Michelle N., author of A Dish of Daily Life blog

48. “Colorful, crazy world of unconditional love.”

Rosey A., author of Mail 4 Rosey blog

50. “Watching your heart walk outside yourself.”

Mehgan B.

photo credit: thejbird via photopin cc
photo credit: thejbird via photopin cc

51. “My life is better with kids.”

Frugie, author of Frugalista Blog

52. “Relentless pressure released by random hugs.”

Cindy R., author of The Reedster Speaks blog

53. “Parenthood is what gives me perspective.”

Jen B., author of Another Jennifer blog

54. “The most beautiful and terrifying adventure!”

Grace, author of Arms Wide Open blog

55. “The biggest, hardest, greatest job ever.”

Sheri Lynch, co-host of “The Bob and Sheri Show

56. “Your reward is becoming a grandparent!”

Pamela K., author of “A Renaissance Woman” blog

57. “First 20 years are the hardest.”

Laurie, author of “The Trophy Mom” blog

58. “Teaches unconditional love and abundant patience.”

Stacy J., author of Stacy Uncorked blog

59. “Teach them compassion and financial survival.”*

Jesse W., author of Do Your Job blog

60. “Gives me plenty to blog about!”

Eli P., author of Coach Daddy blog

What would your six-word sentence read? And which of these do you most associate with?

*-Jesse later added, “I ran out of words, but I would have added: “and then kick them the f*** out of your house.” 🙂 🙂

Raising Humans Guest Post: 5 things I Never Thought I’d Do (That I Do Now Because of My Children)

Hello, friends,

Please join me as I welcome Tricia, author of Raising Humans, as a guest blogger today.

Tricia combines masterfully a tender heart and inquisitive mind on her blog, as she examines the journey of motherhood that has recently expanded to two kids. Tricia has a wonderful ability to both live in the moment, and contemplate what it all means in the grand scheme of learning to raise humans.

Please check out her blog. You’ll be glad you did!

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There is always such a stark contrast between one’s life without children and one’s life as a parent. As a child-free adult, I had no reason but to think that I could make all of my own decisions and do only the things I really want to do because I’m an adult now and nobody is the boss of me and why would I do anything different than exactly what I want?

And then my children arrived, proving before they were even born, that they are now the masters. And what I want to do (or don’t want to do) has little role to play in the course of our day.

And so, I share five things I never thought I’d do that I now do regularly, because of my children.

1. Lay my hands on raw chicken

Yes, raw chicken seems like an odd place to start any list. But earlier today, I stood in my kitchen, cutting a raw chicken breast and preparing it for dinner. And this post was born.

Raw chicken and I don’t have much of a history together. Because of the consistency alone, not to mention the occasional vein and a fear of salmonella, I’ve kept my distance. At most, I’d slide one of those little slime balls from its package to a plastic bag for marinating – all without ever coming into direct contact. Usually I just made pasta. A lot of pasta.

But little bodies need protein and exposure to new foods and flavors and, as much as my daughter would love it, we can’t eat pasta every day. And so for her, and someday her brother, I now touch raw chicken on at least a weekly basis.

2. Blog

My roommate in college kept a ‘web log’ (remember when that’s what we called it?). At the time, I remember thinking that writing on a web log seemed like such an odd thing to do. Why not just keep a journal? I was convinced, then, that my life would never be interesting enough for people to want to read my words about it.

And then, my children arrived, bringing with them stories to tell. Suddenly, it was all I could do not to write for people to read and connect. Suddenly blogging went from odd pastime to my primary method of making sense of this wild and crazy journey of motherhood and connecting with others on parallel journeys.

3. Cry at everything (including commercials)

I’ve never been one to cry at movies or books. I walked out of The Notebook with dry eyes and my makeup all in place and a bit of concern that maybe I am just all cold inside.

Then I had kids. And suddenly, I see two kids running through the park on a sunny day and I’m blinking back tears.

The world becomes a much more emotional place once the littles that you carefully nested inside you, arms circling around big bulging belly, and then lovingly pushed into the world, screaming and helpless, begin wandering around on legs of their own. Suddenly you are raw from the emotion and exhausted from the psychically taxing and overwhelmed with the love and everything scratches more easily and deeply than it used to.

And so when that Dad hands the keys to his Subaru to his little girl who has been adorably playing with the seat belt while he tells her to drive carefully and then suddenly she’s a teenager? I’m a puddle.

4. Eat healthy foods

Before kids, the delivery people at several local restaurants did not need directions to get to our house. They knew us well.

Now? Now I hold little contests for myself to see how many super foods I can cram into one meal. I’m well versed in when to buy organic, what develops little brains the best, and what a balanced diet should look like. Wholesome dinners and carefully packed lunches and I wonder where I spent all my time before, when lunch was a cup of coffee and dinner required little more than a phone call.

5. Celebrate every moment

For my children, even Monday mornings are a reason to celebrate. Please don’t let them enter the grind of week days spent pining for the weekend and saving the special dress for the special occasion or keeping the fancy stickers for a special project. I’ve lived so many days waiting and reserving for a more special day. And so, for them, I now throw reservations to the wind. We go out for milkshakes to celebrate that it’s Wednesday and we wear our fancy party dresses just because it’s Thursday. Because of my children, I look for the good in Monday morning.

And, because of them, more often than not, I find it.

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Tricia is a mom and a freelance writer, finding opportunities for growth in the most amazing places. Read about her growing triumphs and pains as she walks along this journey called motherhood on her blog, Raising Humans.

On The Road Again – This Time, at Raising Humans

humans lede
photo credit: IMG_0030 via photopin (license)

I promise, someday, I’ll write on my own blog again.

I have cool stuff to write, like my Christmas wish list, a rundown of favorite injuries Grace and I made from the waiting room in the children’s urgent care a couple of weeks ago, and my girls’ ideas of how they’d spend my paycheck if they could each have one.

I’m on the road again, at Raising Humans. Tricia has an awesomely written blog about motherhood (check out her well-written, thoughtful posts), and she asked me to write a guest blog about growth this week.

I decided against writing about the growth caused by pizza buffet visits. Maybe another time. Seriously, I wrote all serious over there.

Continue reading “On The Road Again – This Time, at Raising Humans”