Monday, May 31, 2010

Mommy Profile: Jane Clayson Johnson

I mentioned earlier in my blogging that I had a difficult time making the transition of working mom to stay at home mom. This is the woman who inspired me to take the leap and every time I question my decision I listen to her talk called "I am a Mother." She is incredible and I love her story.

In 1990, Jane earned a Journalism degree from BYU and began her career working for KSL where she earned an Emmy for her work while reporting on American doctors who travel to China to assist disabled Chinese children. From there she went on to work at ABC on Good Morning America, World News Tonight, covering the OJ Simpson trial and the Presidential campaigns. She then went to CBS working with Bryant Gumbel, covering stories such as the Millennium, President Bush's inauguration, and the September 11th attacks. Her life was incredible, and she was about to be promoted to CBS evening news. Then, she made a decision: She left the world of journalism to become a mother.

“My life before was exciting and intellectually stimulating and stressful and overwhelming and sometimes all of those things all at once. I loved what I did,” she said:
“I left one wonderful thing for another incredibly wonderful thing.”

“Sometimes,” she said, “The challenges of mothering, the daily physical and emotional exhaustion and occasional self-doubts causes us to devalue what we do and to devalue it in the eyes of our children.”

She admits that once in awhile while she is on her hands and knees scrubbing the floor and looks up to the television to see one of her old friends doing a high-profile interview, she has a pang, but it is far overshadowed by the sense of satisfaction she has.

My favorite quote from Jane is: “The day-in-and-day-out of daily mothering is invisible, because so much of what we do doesn’t last, and we do it within the walls of our own home where it is not noticed. I traded in fancy lunches and fancy restaurants for something better. Still, there is no one to tap me or any mother on the back and say, ‘terrific diaper change.’ There’s no praise or recognition for the day in and day out of mothering. It is the little things that make the difference in our children long term. Because you can’t measure those things, mothers are sort of relegated to be considered as high-end babysitters. That’s not true. Mothering is the work of the ages. It is the most important thing that we could be doing."

You can read all about Jane's experience, and read quotes and antidotes from others in her book I am a Mother.

Thursday, May 27, 2010


In the next three days I challenge each of you to call, text, or send a note to at least one fellow mom and tell them something you admire about them.

If you want to kick it up a notch, call a mom who is maybe having a hard time, or struggling with something.

Don't forget to leave a comment about your experience!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Quote of the Week: Ruling the World

"Blessings on the hand of women!
Angels guard its strength and grace, In the palace, cottage, hovel, Oh, no matter where the place; Would that never storms assailed it, Rainbows ever gently curled; For the hand that rocks the cradle is the hand that rules the world"
- William Ross Wallace

Last year I attended a devotional for mothers. The speaker had just given up a high paying CEO position in a major company to become a full time stay at home mom. It was not an easy decision but she felt it was the right one for the family. When asked by a co-worker why she did it she replied. “It is said that the hand that rocks the cradle rules the world—so I’m just going to have to be satisfied ruling the world for a while.” Ever since then, this has been one of my favorite poems.

When have you felt your influence impact your children?

What things do you do to impact the lives of your kids?

Monday, May 24, 2010

Mommy Profile: Bree

"I think with all the chaos that happens in life, especially as a mom of multiples, it's easy to lose sight of the tiny things that make you happy. Life doesn’t make you content with huge moments but rather the little ones that make up your everyday life. I try to be the best mom I can, but I also take time figure out who I am as a person. Having my own company and my Etsy shop helps me feel passion and vigor. All these elements combined with the little things are what make me happy.”

Meet Bree: Wife, Mother, Student, Entrepreneur

I first met Bree back in the good old days of Jr. High. She is one of the most sincere, kind people I’ve ever known. She is also an amazing, talented woman. I asked her to introduce herself and give a little idea of what life is like for a mom of MULTIPLES!

Hi my name is Bree! I live in Calgary Alberta Canada. I am currently finishing my business degree online at Brigham Young University-Idaho. I am married to Brandon-one of the funniest, smartest, kindest man alive. I own an event planning company called MOD Events and Co. I love to create for my Etsy shop CoCoRoseCouture. I am also a mom to three beautiful kids- fraternal twin boys Greyson and Harrison and three month old Chloe. At one point I had three under two.

Bree has her hands full with these kids! To give an idea of what a given day is like as a mom to twin toddlers and a newborn she sent me her schedule. It includes four and a half hours of feeding/preparing food (and about five minutes of eating). An average of 10 diaper changes, 24 hours of praying, laundry, cleaning, refereeing, and running intervention. It takes one hour to leave the house from the time she puts CoCo in her car seat, pumps some milk, searches the house for four pairs of shoes, packs six diapers, snacks, bottles, and snaps in two (sometimes unwilling) toddlers in their seat, get a DVD going for them, and getting Chloe strapped in and then it takes another ten minutes at each stop to get the kids in and out of the car, into strollers. While she is out she struggles to find her debit cards (shuffled and lost by the boys), keep the kids entertained, and fed. She is grateful to make it out alive.

Luckily there is naptime. Bree takes about a five minute rest and then starts making necklaces for her Etsy shop, checking orders, answering emails, ordering flowers for events. There is time for possibly studying and doing homework. Moms have to work very quickly to get everything in that they need to do. Another load of laundry is started.

Luckily, Bree has a great husband who comes home from work and immediately kicks into daddy mode. While Brandon is home, Bree is able to continue to work on her studies, create beautiful necklaces and accessories for her shop, and work on her business. They also spend time together- Brandon is essential for Bree’s sanity.

Bree the Referee:

At Home: “At 8:20 I broke up my first fight over their little shopping cart that they both desperately want to have- even thought there is another one right next to it- same exact one- they always want what the other brother has.”

While out shopping: “Greyson sees the toy cars in the aisle (not good) and starts to cry. I switch him with Harrison who cries because I made him sit in the stroller. Now have 2 screaming toddlers in the store they are so loud they wake up CoCo. Luckily I'm prepared with the bottle. I hold the bottle and Greyson’s hand in the checkout line as I push the stroller up and down.”

Running Interference:I have to double check all the door handles in the house to make sure the baby locks are on tight. The boys figured out if one stands on top of the other, they can get the child locks off if they are loose. I make sure my computer is locked and put away and the Chloe is under her mobile in her room so they can’t get to her. Then I take a shower.”

The point is, she has crazy days. Happily, there are amazing moments that find their place amid the chaos. Some of these include watching her boys hug each other, giggling as they jump on the bed. Harrison wanting to comb his hair like Mommy. The boys loving CoCo with a kiss, knowing that Greyson knows what a candy bar looks like, Harrison getting excited when he sees cars, holding sweet Chloe and watching her watch Mommy, affection from Brandon, feeling sunshine after a cold Canadian winter, a husband who will let her escape with friends while he watches the kids and of course-- donning 80’s clothes and rollerblading to blasting music at a friend’s birthday party.

So the next time you see a mom with her hands full with kiddos--think of Bree enjoying the journey!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

When did you have "The Moment?"

In passing you always here those stories of moms in grocery stores, on airplanes, or at functions when their kids act up and the mom is put in the spotlight. How is she going to react to this disorderly child?

I had my

For the most part my darling daughter is a great baby--exceptional really. She doesn't cry if she is hungry or hurting but she has no tolerance for being tired and will act like any baby in a seemingly desperate situation.

Last night she was so tired and worked herself up so bad that she couldn't fall to sleep until 1am. For a girl who is used to getting 11 hours a night--5 just didn't cut it. She was really sick in the morning, still in good spirits but threw up five times throughout the day.

One of these moments of glory happened at the beautiful baby shower of one of my dearest friends. I was trying to wrangle her and eat when all of a sudden she threw up on the carpet. I went through so many emotions in a matter of a second, worry, shock, embarrassment, confusion--I didn't know what to do. I jumped up and first of all took care of Hannah. I wiped up her little outfit and her face and gave her a drink and a hug making sure she was ok. Then, I sprang in to action armed only with water, napkins, and wipes. I cleaned it up really good and then went back to Hannah.

Remarkably, we were in the corner so not many people witnessed it. I caught my friend's eye and half mouthed, half whispered "she threw up." Suddenly one of the girls at the table sprung up and said "This is my moms house, you need something to clean that up for real." Initially I was a little shocked at the way she snapped at me, but it was so quick I didn't know if I imagined the accusatory tone in her voice. I said "yes that would be great," and waited.

A second later, she is standing in the kitchen with a friend pointing to me, gesturing as if Hannah threw up all over, and getting out cleaning supplies. The friend she was talking to looked to me and rolled her eyes. Then she marched over and as I thanked her she said "In my house we don't allow shoes or food in carpeted area so that we can avoid things like this." As if I schemed the whole thing. As if I wasn't humiliated enough.

So when have you had the humiliating moment, when everything out of your control was your fault?

Friday, May 21, 2010

Guest Post: A Thief that Steals Motherhood

Our first guest post is brought to you by a fantastic mom Melinda. Melinda graduated in April 2004 in Music Education. She teaches Beginning Band in middle school. She married her husband in 2003 and in 2005 they welcomed little Samantha into their family.

“Don’t you just love being a mom?!” “I adore being a mom, I just love to sit and watch my baby sleep, don’t you?” “Having a baby is just the best thing in the world, isn’t it?” “I sure hope you’re enjoying this time, it goes fast!” Smile and nod. Smile and nod. The right answer to those questions is yes. I know the right answer to both those questions is yes. Why don’t I feel like the answer is yes? Maybe it’s like those books said; it takes time to “fall in love” with your child and it’s perfectly normal for a bond to take time; it’s not instantaneous for everyone, after all. But I couldn’t help but feel unsettled about it. The feelings would ebb and flow, the “baby blues” had long since passed as well as the usual “danger zone” for the onset of post partum depression (PPD) so mostly I was confused. Because the only thing I was sure of was that I did not enjoy being a mom. Not one bit. Let it be known, I have always loved my daughter, fiercely so. I fully understand the meaning of “mama bear” in every sense of the word because of this love. But that love for her could not make me love what who I had become when she entered my womb.

Shame. It overwhelmed me. I shouldn’t feel like this! I must have done something wrong to feel this way. There must be something I can do. I read more scriptures, I pray more frequently, I sing religious songs to my daughter to rock her to sleep (heck, they’re the only ones I can remember! What comes after the looking glass in that nursery rhyme again?). I receive Priesthood blessings of comfort, something my religion believes in. Specific thoughts and scripture verses come to my mind, you know the kind that should help and bring comfort and peace? Like John 14:27. It didn’t bring me any comfort. It didn’t change the fact that I didn’t like being a mom. And I’m afraid to tell anyone. What would they think? That I was crazy and not fit to be a mom-that I didn’t love my child? Would “they” try to take her away? Shame and guilt led to irrational fear.

Isolation. Those irrational fears drove me to pull inward. I had moved to a new neighborhood and did absolutely nothing to reach out to others, and being new, it’s sometimes hard for others to reach out to you. I was too afraid to go out on walks by myself. We have a nice paved trail 2 miles all the way around if you start counting at my doorstep. It led by a river. I was convinced that some wacked out stranger would pull her carseat from the stroller, throw her in the river and restrain me from saving her. I even isolated myself from my husband. I had horrible black white thinking that everything that happened to my daughter was a direct result of something I either did right or wrong, and if anything went wrong, I was automatically to blame. When I got tired of blaming myself, I’d shift the blame to him.

Ironically, at this same time, Tom Cruise made some infamous remark towards Brooke Shields about how depression is all in your head and all you need to do is take the right vitamins and exercise. Wow. I got so hot-headed and defensive about it that the light finally went on in my head. “Melinda, if you are so defensive about that statement, it must mean you have something to be defensive about.” My inner voice told me. So as much as I think he was an idiot for saying what he did, I am grateful he made it because it made me realize the cause of my suffering.

Courage. I got up the courage to tell my Bishop that I thought I needed prefessional help. I was still ashamed and kept the information from family and friends. When I got to LDS Family Services I filled out a survey of how I felt. Those who score above a 50 are considered severely depressed. I scored well over 100. It shocked me, really. After a couple sessions, I learned some cognitive awareness activities, but it did not quell as much as I needed it to. Having learned from my husband through his psychology degree that often counseling and medication paired together have the best results, I contacted my OB for an appointment to get on medication. This was around 2 ½ months post-partum, which is considered late on-set for PPD. Most times, I guess if it’s gonna happen it will rear its ugly head around 6 weeks when you have your post-delivery check up. They warned me that it could take up to a couple weeks for the medication to take affect. I received a miracle and it worked within a couple of days. I was scared to take medication for fear that I would never be “normal” without it, but I knew I needed it. The medication plus counseling worked for me and I began being more open about my condition, in hopes that I could maybe help someone else or at least just relate to someone else in a way that no one else could. But I had another unexpected guest.

Anger. As the title suggests, which is a quote from Cheryl Tatano Beck, a noted nurse-researcher, my PPD stole my motherhood. I was angry! PPD stole the first 3 months of my daughter’s life. It was supposed to be the happiest time of my entire life, and all I wanted to do was block it from my memory. The darkest personal hell I’ve ever been through before or since. I was not expecting the anger, I thought I had dealt with the depression and I could move on with my life, but I had to work through the anger. Following closely behind was jealousy. Even to this day I still cry when a new mother expresses her utmost love and joy of being a mom, because I never felt that way and never got to experience that. I feel cheated and have a hard time not envying mom’s who get that privilege.

To be honest, I only have a few vivid memories of that time, everything else is really like looking through a thick black cloud of pain. Of course there were some good days and good things and smiles and laughter, they just weren’t in the normal amounts. I never want to feel that way ever again. I was able to get off the medication, although I was obviously very sensitive to it, though it was just 10mg a day. If I did not take it at the same time of day every day, it threw me off. So when I weaned myself, I went from full doses to half doses to quarter doses and I chose not to complete the process until my daughter weaned 100% from nursing, since I suspected it to be largely hormonal. The next time I have a child I am opting for medication upon giving birth as a preventative measure. I have to admit that I sometimes feel weak by making that decision, but I am too scared to let PPD sneak in and take any more of my life away with any future children.

My daughter just turned 5 last April. And I can honestly say now that I love being a mom. And I’m not just doing the “smile and nod.”

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Just you Wait!

I have a great friend who is 8 months pregnant. She is elated. Ecstatic. She could not be happier. After trying for over a year to conceive she is only one month away from welcoming her baby boy into the world.

Since she has started trying to get pregnant we have a running joke about the comments people make without really thinking. Comments that I never really noticed until she started getting annoyed. Comments that revolve around the theme "just you wait."

Before she got pregnant she would express her desire to become so. "Just you wait," they would say "pregnancy is not easy."

After she became pregnant, the frequency of the comments doubled. "Just you wait until the morning sickness kicks in..., Just you wait until you gain 50 pounds and see how happy you are then...Just you wait until the third trimester, then see how happy you are."

As the time grows closer and she expresses her excitement--it has gotten exponentially worse. "Just you wait until the baby comes, you will have no time for yourself...just you wait until you are up all night, you'll wish you were still pregnant..."

How is she supposed to respond? "Oh you are so right, I didn't think of this before...I'm going to be so unhappy."

I too have experience the "just you wait syndrome" Just the other day I excitedly shared that my daughter was taking her first steps. "Just you wait a few weeks, she'll be into everything and you'll wish she wasn't walking." Sure as she grows, so will the work and effort of parenting. I understand that--but there is no way I would want to stop her progress in life to make it easier.

Sure--people don't mean any harm. It is very innocent--but we need to think about what we are saying before the words leave our lips.

There are several things wrong with Just You Wait Syndrome. First of all, are you saying it for the benefit of the recipient? Or are you trying to squeeze your way into the center of the conversation? More importantly, why do you need to take the joy out of the moment? Wouldn't a better response be: "That is so exciting, I'm so happy for you!"

I am guilty of J.Y.W.S. I've probably said this to many of my friends...but honestly, what right do I have? Just because I have experienced something before, doesn't make me an expert on the experience!

I think it is especially important in your circle of MOMS to be supportive. Be happy. Think about what you are about to say. Will you be a listener, someone people want to share with?


Have you ever experienced J.Y.W.S? Does it even bother you?
List at least one of your pet peeves, and if possible, a great way to handle the situation.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

{This Little Piggy went to Market}

Calling all working Moms:

I don't feel like I have enough experience on working outside the home while being a mother to blog about it. I would feel like a hypocrite. I worked full time for only the first 5 months of my baby's life and honestly, much of it is a blur. I need a mom to help blog once a month.

For this month however, I will share a story from when I was working. My awesome brother in law Addison was so wonderful to move in with us and care for my baby full time while I was finishing up student teaching. I am so grateful for this but I have to share this story from my personal blog:

I decided to come home for lunch...something I NEVER do but my student teaching friend was out sick so I didn't want to eat alone. I go home and park out front because I was just coming home for a minute and knock on the answer.

Hmmm...I decided to use my key to get in and entered with a "Hello?" I walked upstairs to see Hannah entertaining herself on Addison's bed.

Addison was on his computer with his hood pulled up over his head and headphones know...the big gigantic ones that ensure you can drowned out the sound of a crying baby.

I said "umm Hellooooo" and Hannah giggled, delighted to see her mommy. No response from Uncle Addi. So I did the only thing I could...I kidnapped my daughter.

We didn't go far...just downstairs until Addison figured out his client was missing. After ten minutes I started to get concerned. How long had he been on the long would he be on the computer? My daughter had just been kidnapped and he was playing video games. I let another five minutes pass and decided to text him.

Every once in a awhile I'll text Addison while I'm at school wanting a picture of my little angel. So I texted him "Picture please?"

It took another few minutes before I finally heard some shuffling upstairs. It sounded like someone was searching for someone or something in the bed area.

I heard him sneaking slowly down the stairs and peak his head around the corner.

There we sat. Hannah with a big grin on her face (I think she knew we were playing a game) and me looking incredulous.

"AAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHH YOU SCARED THE HECK OUT OF ME!" Addison shouted as he came down the stairs. "I thought their was an intruder in the house."

It was pretty epic. Addison, I fear, will never forgive me. I'll certainly never forget it.

Quote of the Week

"When the real history of mankind is fully disclosed will it feature echoes of gunfire, or the shaping sound of lullabies? The great armistice made by military men, or the peacemaking of women in homes and in neighborhoods? Will what happened in cradles and kitchens prove to be more controlling than what happened in congresses?"- Neil Maxwell

In searching for a great quote this week I came upon quotes from George Washington and Abraham Lincoln, both praising their mothers for all that they were. These presidents that shaped the course of our nation forever were giving their mothers the credit.Activist Olive Schreiner drives my point home when she said "There was never a great man who had not a great mother. That is hardly an exaggeration."

Moms: Let us not underestimate the power and influence we have on the history of the world. Some days our efforts may seem feeble at best but they are not in vain.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Mommy Profie: Molly Jackson

"I am a worrier.
But I'm also a warrior.
And I want to enjoy life.
Interesting that worrier and warrior are so similar. The same with the words
Daughter &
Just one letter difference."

Meet Molly Jackson: Actress, Wife, Mother, Champion.
I have been following Miss Molly's BLOG since hearing her story in May 2008. Since then, I have considered her a very dear soul, although we have never met. Her faith and strength expressed through her own words have been an inspiration as she touches lives and communities.
Molly, her husband Vic, and little Lucy lived in Park City Utah. Vic is an attorney and Molly is a homemaker. In May 2008, sweet Lucy passed away after choking on a bit of apple the size of a pea at 23 months old. Lucy donated her organs to help save the life of a 35 year old father of four and a 6 month old baby girl. Vic, Molly, and Lucy's story can be read HERE.

Since that tragic day, Molly has maintained her family blog which chronicles life after Lucy-- how her family has changed, and what she learns along the way. She has also started a website called A Good Grief: for those who have lost. Molly's website was established so that she could provide a way for people to reach out to those who lose a loved one. Donations can be made through the site which go directly to families who cannot afford headstones for the graves of their loved ones so that they will not be burdened with the financial responsibility of such a profound loss.

Molly continues to be a wonderful mother to Lucy in the way she gracefully conducts her life. She says, "I never thought I would feel joy after that day. I have. That is the miracle. Every day is a struggle. Every day I learn. Every day Lucy is with me."

Another miracle occurred after that day. On April 8th 2009 Molly gave birth to a son, Peter. In a letter she wrote to her son Molly lovingly said:"I am capable of hard things. And so are you. This life won't always give you what you expect and what you want. But there will be moments of sheer joy and moments of accomplishment after much working and waiting that will whisper to you that there is always hope."

I would ask that you visit Molly's website. Donate if you can. Feel her good spirit, come to know Lucy. Molly has taught me that life is not always easy, and it is not always hard. This week is the second anniversary of Lucy's passing. Let's honor Lucy's memory, and live up to Molly's example by baring each others burdens.

Friday, May 14, 2010

A few RANDOM Thoughts

Next week I'm hoping to get some GUEST BLOGGERS to post on Fridays. If you have any insight or stories ANYTHING about being a mom, knowing a mom, having a mom, please share and send your blog to I am a professionally trained teacher and I do NOT want to hear myself write all the time--I want to hear YOUR voice. My dear aunt called last night wondering if this blog is just for new mothers or if she could contribute as well--ABSOLUTELY! It is for mothers of all walks of life!

Sorry for the EXCITED YELLING!

Another thing, This week my daughter took her first steps at 9 months. My heart burst with joy as she took these first few steps. Later on I thought about all the happy things in my life and realized sitting on the kitchen floor knee to knee with my husband with our daughter taking steps between us topped them all. I love to watch her grow and develop and change into this little person.

What has your child done to cause you pure JOY?

Recently I was talking to a friend of mine who has decided to pretty much uproot her life and move because of a potential, but very real danger one of the children is facing. She said that it may very well break her family financially but they have to protect the child. I want to be that mom. To sacrifice everything because of potential danger, no matter the temporal risk involved for the sake of one precious, loved child.

Just a reminder: Monday starts our series of Mommy Profiles! I have selected an absolutely amazing, beautiful mommy and you will not want to miss hearing about her!

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Mothers Who Know

In The Book of Mormon, there is a story of 2,000 young men who volunteer to fight for their freedoms, and defend their families. A pivotal part in the story states "They have been taught by their mothers, that if they did not doubt, God would deliver them. And they rehearsed unto me the words of their mothers, saying "we do not doubt our mothers knew it."

You don't need to be familiar with the story, or even the Book of Mormon to feel those words hit you in the heart. How wonderful for those mothers to be able to share their strength with their sons, for them to have so much trust in the faith of their mothers that they would rise up in the face of death and fight for their freedom. They didn't doubt their mothers. Perhaps they didn't have a perfect faith for themselves, but they knew their mothers would never lead them astray.

There is a fantastic talk by Julie B. Beck who spoke directly of these mothers called "Mothers who Know". In the talk she states:

"The responsibility mothers have today has never required more vigilance. More than at any time in the history of the world, we need mothers who know. Children are being born into a world where they "wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places" (Ephesians 6:12). However, mothers need not fear. When mothers know who they are and who God is and have made covenants with Him, they will have great power and influence for good on their children."

She also pinpoints several traits of "Mothers who Know." My favorites include:

Mothers Who Know Are Nurturers
Mothers Who Know Are Leaders
Mothers Who Know Are Teachers
Mothers Who Know Do Less
Mothers Who Know Stand Strong and Immovable

I hope that my children will have enough trust in me to believe in my words when they have to face challenges in the world around them, that they will have knowledge and that they will not doubt their mother.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

On Becoming Lovely

I fully admit that the idea for this blog was born from another blog, one of my very favorites to read and follow called On How to be Lovely. This blog is dedicated to women in all stages of life.

Looking at my life you wouldn't know me to be a feminist. After all, I'm a stay at home mom, a full time homemaker. That doesn't exactly scream modern woman. Well, I am. I am an advocate for Women's rights and I believe wholeheartedly that women can accomplish anything they so desire. The tagline for Becoming Lovely is "Making your Life Monumental." I LOVE that. There are so many small and simple things we can all do to make our lives a little more monumental. So it's time to GO AND DO (not sit and stew).

I don't believe womanhood stops at motherhood. I believe every woman should embrace everything she is from quirky to sexy. Some people think that losing yourself in motherhood makes you a better mother. I believe bringing your own sassy flare to motherhood helps bond you to your children and helps you to seem more human in their eyes.

Today I want everyone to explore Becoming Lovely and to write down three things you want your children to remember about you. My three things (today) are:

1) That I am very passionate about education...not just about teaching and learning but the politics of it, teachers rights, crazy parents, etc.

2) That I love to read and that I make special, unique connections with characters and that almost every book I read makes me cry.

3) Otter pops rule and I will never deny myself when it comes to this icy treat.

What are your three things? Please comment! Don't forget to visit (Follow and become a facebook fan! You won't regret!)

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Quote of the Week

"Be a Mother who is committed to loving her children into standing on higher ground than the environment surrounding them.
Mother's are endowed with a love that is unlike any other love on the face of the earth."
-Marjory Pay Hinckley

How do you do this with your children? How to you teach them to stand on higher ground? I love this quote because rather than saying teach, or tell, or make, or any number of other verbs, she uses the word love implying that by loving your children you are shaping them through your unconditional devotion.

Homework: Grab a journal, write a blog, tell a friend about a time your mother guided you through love, or how you shape your children using love. I'd love to hear responses so post a comment or leave a link to your blog!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

How we roll...

Each week we will start with a portrait of a mother, someone who has gone above and beyond the call of duty, someone who may have a particular struggle or unique circumstance, someone who may view themselves as ordinary but who has touched the world in an extraordinary way. These mothers will be featured according to their particular circumstance or area of expertise. We will find these women by nomination which can be mailed to

Guest posts are encouraged. Each week I would love to feature a guest blogger. Guest posts will also be emailed to

Quotes, talks, chats on motherhood will be featured. This includes the good, the bad, and the ugly! I want to explore all aspects of living in da 'hood as it were. I want participation, comments, blogs of your own. This blog is for all mothers who want to participate (and I hope you will).

One idea that I got from a relative is to feature "This little Piggy." {Don't be offended}
Everyone is familiar of the five little piggies that participate in various activities like:
1) Goes to market (working moms)
2) Stayed home (stay at home moms)
3) Had roast beef (meal tips, recipes, etc)
4) Had none (on budgeting)
5) Goes wee wee wee all the way home (emotional/spiritual well being)

We will do a weekly rotation of each of these.

This blog is a work in progress so please be patient with me and help me create a fabulous blog!


Calling all mothers!

Hi, my name is Melissa and I am a mother. My daughter was born in the summer of 2009 and is the joy of my life. When I became pregnant I was beyond happiness, elated, beside myself. I may not have been completely ready (but who ever is) and I was never afraid to become a mother (terrified of the actually birthing process). I suppose the reason for this was in my mind I pictured that becoming a mother entitled me to a few things absolutely and automatically:

1) Immense wisdom, knowledge, and patience upon delivery.
2) Pure happiness and fulfillment at every turn.

Okay, okay, perhaps I didn't feel exactly those things, but I sure didn't expect to find myself lacking in either of these areas. Over the past several month (particularly after becoming a full time, stay-at-home mom) I have found myself struggling with these assumed aspects in different ways. There are times when I don't know if I am doing enough for my daughter, or if I am doing too much. Motherhood is the great balancing act. There are no right answers, everyone has an opinion but one person's method is another person's undoing. I find myself wracked with guilt in one moment and pleased with myself in the next. Perhaps I sound a bit crazy (and maybe I am). I assume I am not unique and that every mother struggles with some aspect of motherhood.

I have been surprised at how utterly lonely motherhood can be at times. No living being will ever love your child in the very same way that you do. They are your flesh, your hope, your legacy. In that way, your very private thoughts and feeling will only truly be between you and God. I wanted to start a blog that will help to alleviate some of the lonely aspects of motherhood, where people can go to feel uplifted to share wisdom and gain knowledge. To find respect and compassion and love, and support from fellow mommies.

Even as I type I worry that people will look at me and think I'm unhappy or unfulfilled. Each of these assumptions would be incorrect. I am very lucky to have a healthy, happy daughter, a wonderful, supportive husband who goes above and beyond the call of duty as husband and father. I am fortunate to be able to stay home since that is my desire and choice. It is a wonderful life but sometimes I feel, in some ways, like I have lost my voice, and I know I can't be the only mother to ever experience that feeling.

Today is my very first Mother's Day. Today I celebrate my mother, and my daughter. I dedicate this blog to them. To my mom who loved me perfectly, and my daughter who is teaching me to love perfectly--and to all of you mothers who are just trying to do your best for your children.