How I Survived an Embarrassing Mother (and Became One Myself)

I never intentionally set out to embarrass my children (well, okay, I might have kissed them on the cheek or yelled, “Mommy loves you,” a time or two while I was dropping them off at their junior high). But despite my best efforts to be the “cool mom,” I’m sure my kids often wished their mother wasn’t the crazy lady screaming encouragement from the bleachers…or writing little notes on their lunch napkins…or hanging around far too long during a practice or rehearsal.

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“But You Don’t LOOK Sick” – The Burden of Silent Disease

“It’s easy, see?” My friend showed me for the ridiculous-th time how easy it was. No matter how I tried to explain that I get how to do the thing, but I cannot physically do it. The it in question was to unlock a chain on the gate, but because of Rheumatoid Arthritis, my hands do not have the strength to twist and turn just so to get the darn thing unlocked.

And my friend didn’t get it.

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Aging Without Shame

Age tends to change not only our emotions, but also our bodies. Wrinkles begin to show, arms wave bye-bye after the hand has already stopped waving, and weight can go up and down. In today’s youth-obsessed, media-driven society, aging at times is assaulted with shameful thoughts and words. Commercials promote age-defying creams and regimens all the time. Why is there a shame factor attached to aging?

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What Pinterest Taught Me About Family

I hung new curtains in my living room. Woohoo! This wouldn’t be such a big deal if it weren’t the first curtains that have hung on those windows, and we’ve lived here twelve years. Twelve years! Without curtains! There always seemed to be something more important to spend time and money on, and home décor kept getting pushed farther down on the list, but now that we finally determined to make our home look as though we enjoy living here, we’re having a LOT of fun.

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Shanty’s BE YOU Challenge #10 – Write about something that made you happy in the past year

When I first began to write this post, I thought it would be easy. It is about something that made me happy in the past year. I am typically a pretty happy person and tend to find the joys of life. But like any other woman, I also have good and bad days, as well as doubts and insecurities. So when it came down to it, I wasn’t sure what I wanted to write in this post because sharing about myself on a personal level on a blog is a bit out of my comfort zone.

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Shanty’s BE YOU Challenge #9 – Draw a Picture of YOU, Being Kind to Yourself

The task? To draw a self-portrait. Sure. No problem. And there sat the drawing paper and pencils for weeks.

Drawing a self-portrait should be easy for a person holding a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. But my artistic mind runs more to the 3-Dimensional; ceramics, costuming, jewelry making and clothing design. Painting and drawing are flat, two-dimensional – not my forte. Is that why it’s so hard for this artist to draw my own likeness?

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Shanty’s BE YOU Challenge #8 Name Three People Who Could Use a Hug

I’ve been noticing a plethora of articles lately about the science of hugs. How beneficial a hug can be, the optimal number of hugs required for a better day/month/life, and how a lack of hugging creates all of the negative energy in the world. My philosophy of hugging?

I will not play at tug o’ war.
I’d rather play at hug o’ war,
Where everyone hugs
Instead of tugs,
Where everyone giggles
And rolls on the rug,
Where everyone kisses,
And everyone grins,
And everyone cuddles,
And everyone wins. –Shel Silverstein

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Shanty’s BE YOU Challenge #7 – List Things For Which You’re Thankful

When we are discouraged, overwhelmed, or feel worthless, it can be very difficult to find any good, either in ourselves or the world around us. Being thankful just doesn’t cross our minds.

During my recovery from an emotionally abusive relationship, I did just as Shanty challenged. I started listing things for which I was thankful.

At first it was hard! She didn’t call it a challenge without reason! I was so accustomed to focusing on my own failures and inadequacies (or what I believed at that time) that I didn’t even see all the good around me.

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