These stories and experiences are meant to help people gain a little perspective on what's important to them in life, and not worry so much about what others are thinking or doing, but to focus on what's important in their life. These self-improvement posts are meant to bring a little humor, a smile, and the occassional tear (when needed).
In our youth, fresh out of college we are all so eager to
enter the “grown up world” and start our careers. Which usually turns out to be
our first job out of college, very rarely is your first job, ever your career.
But if you are one of those lucky souls that steps into your dream job, which propagates
into your career, then so be it.
Bright eyed and eager we are willing to do most any sort of
job, just so we can start earning that paycheck, pay rent, and hopefully have enough
left over after bills to have some great fun on the weekends, or as it may be
in some cases, during the week.
But after reading the following job description, who in
their right mind would apply for this job, nay career?
1.Must be able to work 135+ hours a week
2.Ability to work overnight, associate needs are
3.Willingness to forgo any breaks or vacation time
4.Work mostly standing up and/or bending down
5.Must be able to lift up to 75 lbs. on a regular
6.Ph.D. in psychology or real-life equivalent
7.Crisis management skills a must
8.Ability to manage a minimum of 10-15 projects at
9.Ability to communicate at all levels (basic to
10.Ability to improvise
11.Proficient in handling sticky situations
(literally and figuratively)
12.Ability to coordinate multiple, often
13.Ability to make independent decisions on behalf
14.Ability to work with associates with minimal
15.Ability to work in a chaotic environment
16.Frequent travel; larger vehicle driving
experience a plus
17.Excellent interpersonal skills and a
18.Flexible when it comes to surprise requests
19.Demonstrated knowledge and experience in
negotiating, counseling, and the culinary arts
21.Understanding of social media, mobile devices
and video games
22.Understanding of finance
23.Understanding of medicine
24.Strong autonomy and Selflessly driven
25.Valid driver’s license, CPR certification and
Red Cross membership recommended but not required
26.Ability to wear several hats, professional and
27.Positive disposition at all times
If you answered yes to obtaining any of those abilities,
then you just might have found your ideal career or profession.
Oh, but the one thing that was left off that list was the
pay….the pay is $0. That’s right you get absolutely no pay, no benefits, just
lots of hugs and kisses, cuddle time, and the occasional “Thank You”.
Think you might be interested? If though there is no
monetary compensation, the rewards are endless…
So when applying for this position, in the subject of your
email, just enter the word “Mom”. That’s right, this is just a partial
description, yet a very thorough description of just a single day in the life
of a great mom. Remember to thank your mom today for all she does for you,
because she doesn’t walk around the house asking for your appreciation, she
just does was needs to be done to keep the household moving and functioning in
a proper fashion.
Although it is absolutely the most rewarding job on the
planet, it is also the toughest. So remember that next time you ask your mom or
your wife if your socks have been cleaned and folded…run down the check list
first to see what else she has had on her plate for the day…quite possibly it
slipped her mind to wash your stinky ol’ socks.
It’s official, I have decided to not bring any of my nice
decorative pieces out of hiding until my last one is off to college. I may not
be able to see my collectibles, due to deteriorating eye sight by that age; but
at least everything will be intact.
Don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t trade my boys for the world;
and as I have always said I don’t think I could handle having a little girl.
But must they destroy everything that gets in their way? This past weekend
within a 24-hour period they managed to rip the lid off my stainless steel
trash can, and put a huge scratch down to the metal in the back of my car. I’ve
learned to accept it…I try to stay calm, but seriously?? Can I have nothing
nice out to view and enjoy? Oh well, the joys of being a mother of boys (and
Even though they are rough and tumble on the outside, they
are all still just little boys at heart, and they all have a special place in
their hearts for their mommy and daddy. And I feel that sometimes in today’s
day and age of rush, rush rush, go, go, go…we forget to sit down and just talk
to our boys; give them a hug, or let them know that no matter what is bothering
them they are free to cry, open up, or just lean on our shoulders.
Stereotypically, boys feel they should keep everything bottled up inside; but
that is doing nothing but harming them.
I had the best conversation with my oldest son last night
driving home from Dallas, and sometimes that’s all it takes, is an hour of
alone time, and they are like a massive dam, once one drop of water breaks
through, the communication dam is broken and they just start spilling all their
thoughts and feelings like a flood.
I’ve modified and enhanced a list of things all boys should
hear from their mothers, but mainly their fathers (step fathers, uncles,
grandfathers…whoever their male role model is in life)…it’s important they know
some of these things. These boys are our next generation of men; and what we
expect out of them as men, husbands, fathers, and grown sons. This list may
help them understand how to navigate through life, or it may be a way for you
as a parent to start a much needed conversation with your son:
1.Go for a woman that you perceive to be “out of
your league.” You may be pleasantly surprised.
2.Never make love with anyone that doesn’t want it
as much as you.
3.Never throw the first punch, unless they are an
4.Sex is a personally decision, it should be
between two consenting people; not the men’s locker room.
5.Never make your first date to the movies…be
6.Learn to wet shave & shave with the grain on
your first go-around.
7.Nothing looks more “badass” than a well-tailored
8.Always look a person in the eye when speaking to
9.Always be the first to extend your hand for a
proper hand shake, and stand up when doing so.
10.Every hat should serve a purpose.
11.Buy a plunger before you need a plunger.
12.Brush your teeth before you put on your tie—BUT never
wear a clip on tie.
13.A small amount of your paycheck should go into
your savings…every month.
14.Call your parents every week—no matter how old
15.Always…compliment her shoes and/or her handbag.
She put a lot of effort into her ensemble…take notice and say something. She
did it for you!!!
16.Never leave a pint [of beer] unfinished.
17.Fake confidence, it will come…but don’t be
arrogant. There IS a difference.
18.Be aware of your body language.
19.Speak to her as you would want to be spoken to.
20.The only reason to ever point a gun at another
human is if you intend to shoot them.
21.Never lend something you can’t afford to lose.
22.Reach for her hand more than she reaches for
yours—it’s not a competition.
23.Ask more than you answer. Everyone enjoys
talking about themselves.
24.Surprise her every once in a while.
25.Buy high quality tools—you’ll only buy them
26.Keep a change of clothes at the office.
27.Manliness is not only being able to take care of
yourself, but others as well.
28.Go with the decision that will make for a good
29.Nice guys don’t finish last…boring guys do.
30.Never cheat…if you want to end it, end it! Be a
man---better yet be a classy man! Karma baby, Karma!
31.No matter their job or status in life, everyone
deserves your respect.
32.The most important thing you can learn is
personal responsibility; bad things happen, it’s your job to overcome them.
33.Never stop learning
34.Always go out in public dressed like you’re
about to meet the love of your life—even if you already have met her, dress
like it…she’ll feel valued.
35.Don’t change yourself just to make someone
happy, unless that someone is you!! (this goes for the girls too)
36.If you’re the smartest person in the room...you’re
in the wrong room.
37.Women find confidence sexy as (well you know…);
but you must recognize the difference between confidence and arrogance.
Arrogance is the biggest turn off for women…just FYI!
38.Do whatever you want to do in life, but be the
best at it.
39.No one is on their deathbed wishing they had
spent more time at the office…Enjoy your life!
40.Find the love of your life…she’s out there. Hang
on to her, and tell her every day she is in fact the love of your life.
Remember, waking up to her is your greatest accomplishment.
My boys are my whole world (including my husband). They are
my everything. They are my future. I am raising them to be the kind of young
men that any girl would be proud to take home to her parents. I know I have
succeeded as a mother if my boys find the love of their lives, are happy in
their careers, and raise good, kind caring children themselves.
We are all in such a rush these days that time is passing us
by and I don’t even think we realize it. This year our family decided to stay
home for Spring Break and have a “stay-cation”. I had such feelings of guilt
not taking our kids somewhere, because we love to take every opportunity to
expose them to the world, but it just wasn’t in the cards for us this year.
But after the week got started, I had this inner peace come
over me that I haven’t felt in a long, long time. It was a feeling of solace
and comfort. For the first time in a long time we were all home together, with
nothing on the calendar, no agenda, and no certain plans. We could be lazy all
day around the house, or go out and find an activity to do. It was wonderful.
My husband was home the entire week, and the oldest didn’t have a million plans
with friends, and the middle dude wasn’t stacked up with activities.
We had the best week together. We laughed, we played, we had
friends over, and we just spent much needed down time together as a family.
When you are caught up in the rat race of life you don’t realize how much you
need it and your kids need to just be home, and be quiet without any plans,
activities or “Hurry up, let’s go, we’re late!” being yelled at them from the
It warmed my heart to see my boys outside playing together,
laughing, wrestling, and just being boys. I think kids sometimes forget how to
be kids these days. They have so many activities, video games, and other
distractions that keep them from just being kids. My husband and I are huge
outdoor people, we actually get cabin fever if we stay in our house too long
during the day; and it has definitely rubbed off on our boys. The minute we pull
in our garage, they all fly out of the car, grab their respective scooter or
bike and hit the concrete.
I remember growing up and we were out the door the minute
Woody Woodpecker and our bowl of cereal was finished; and we wouldn’t come home
until the street lights popped on, or we could hear our moms yelling for us. We
used our imaginations all day long, we rode bikes, we played under the streets
in the culverts that the creeks ran through, we played hide and seek, we built
forts; you name it we did it.
We didn’t sit around inside and play video games, we didn’t
text on the phone (mainly because cell phones didn’t exist), we got up and rode
our bike to our friend’s house if we wanted to see them, and our mothers didn’t
call us every five minutes to see if we were okay, bcause they couldn’t reach
us. During the summer my mom would drop me off at the pool and I would swim for
hours, play some tennis, and she would come get me when the pool was closing.
All my friends were out there, and so we just swam until we were exhausted.
I feel bad for this younger generation sometimes, they are
in so many leagues, and on travelling teams that sometimes I can see it in
their eyes that they just want to be at home, be a kid, and take some time off
from their hectic schedules. It’s good though that kids are in activities, it
keeps them out of trouble, and I know childhood obesity is on the rise, so I
guess it is better that they are in these activities. But sometimes I feel that
just being a kid and staying busy outside and burning off their calories that way
is what they want and need to be doing.
I suppose I am just a sentimental sap; I am trying to change
with the times and be flexible, but in my mind a kid will always be just a kid,
and they need that time with their faithful furry sidekick Sparky, that helps
them solve crimes, and put the bad guys in jail in the fort you just built
together in the backyard, not only for bonding with their pets, but using their
I guess you could say I am stuck in the 70s and 80s—but in
my defense it was a much simpler time. A time when families were families, and
kids were kids, and dogs were sidekicks.
You would think by the year 2014, we could all wrap our
brains around the fact that some women stay at home, and some women work. No
one is a better or worse mother because of it.
I can personally speak from both sides of the fence on this
particular topic. After college I was in the corporate world for a while until
my first child was born; when my oldest was little, I was a stay-at-home mother
with him, until he went to school. Then I unfortunately encountered a bump in
my personal life, a divorce, which in a backwards sort of way “forced” me back
into the work force.
Once I re-entered the work arena, I realized how much I had
missed it. It was hard for me to admit it out loud, I felt like such a horrible
person, saying that I loved to work. I love using my “adult brain”, but I adore
spending every single spare minute with my babies. Holding them, teaching them,
and caring for them. But I’ll be honest, it took me into my 30s until I felt
comfortable enough saying that out loud, and admitting it to myself; that I do
in fact love to work.
I am one of those people that is constantly doing something,
creating something new; if I don’t have nine projects going at once…I am bored.
But once my other two little ones came along, I internally struggled with the
battle—to work or not to work.
Luckily, I was fortunate in two areas, when it came time to
make my decision…I found the most wonderful lady to care for my babies while I
went to work; she is family to us. And so are her kids…we have all grown so
close that she is literally an extension to our family. We love them all so
very much. And my other fortune was that I left the career I had to start
working and training under my dad. So for now our deal is that I work three
days a week until everyone is in school, and then I will go to five days; plus
I get to pick my oldest up from school every single day. I am truly blessed to
have such a great situation.
But nonetheless, even as ideal as my situation is; it was
still a struggle for me. I stayed home with my oldest, so am I jipping my
little ones from my attention, my love, and my devotion to them? I don’t think
so. I feel like I am a better mom because of it. Because once I was able to admit
that I loved to work outside the home; I am better able to focus my attention
on my little ones, when I am with them. It sounds kind of funny, but I have the
best of both worlds, I get to use my “mommy brain” and my “adult brain”, so I
feel like a normal person.
I made a promise to myself (post-divorce) that I would never
not be able to support myself or my family ever again; no matter what may
happen. Who knows, my husband could get injured and I would need to step up and
support our family, but I wasn’t able to do that during my divorce; so I promised
myself that I had been given a gift of a wonderful college education, and I
would never let myself be that vulnerable again.
But with that said, I was also once a full-time stay at home
mommy. And let me just say that is the toughest job you will ever encounter;
college degree or no college degree. You are on the clock from sun up to sun down.
You are the caregiver 24/7—you are the nurse, the teacher, the doctor, the boo
boo fixer, the housekeeper, and the chef. Plus you still have to maintain
enough energy to be happy when your spouse returns home, and remain upbeat for
your child, so they know they are loved and being raised in a positive
environment; not a grumpy, tired, exhausted environment.
But I think the struggle that still remains today is…if you
are a stay-at-home mom; what do you do all day? And to that I answer…what don’t
we do all day?
And to those who question the mothering skills or devotion
to their children of mothers who work…to that I say…I think working mothers are
more in tune with their kids and want to devour the time they have with them,
because they are away from them a good portion of the day.
So until you have walked the walk, don’t talk the talk. It
is a struggle that sadly women must battle daily. They either need to work or
want to work; or they need to stay home or want to stay home. Either way it is
their prerogative. As long as they are good mothers, good wives, and devoted to
their families; I don’t see why it matters what they do in their personal time.
I also don’t understand why it is the year 2014, and there
are some women out there that are CEOs of major corporations; female jet
fighter pilots; engineers; surgeons; I can go on and on…my point being, girls
can do anything boys can do. So why in the year 2014 are we still being
questioned for what we do with our lives, when it involves our children?
Trust me, as females, we are the best ones to put the guilt
on ourselves (we don’t need any outside help from society to do that for us)…should
we work and help contribute to our household income? Or should we stay at home
and raise the kids? It is a burden that we carry around with ourselves every
single day. My question is, why in 2014, are the men not asking themselves the
I am all for tradition and saying traditional wedding vows.
Marriage to me is a sacred covenant that I think some people enter into too
lightly. Please don’t misunderstand me, I am not belittling or making light of
the traditional wedding vows that are said in front of God, family, friends,
and everyone. In fact my husband and I had the traditional wedding vows at our
wedding, in addition to vows we wrote ourselves.
So please understand that I do classify all wedding vows,
traditional or not, into the same category…BINDING.
But if you aren’t willing to stay with that person “until
death do you part”, or “for richer or for poorer”, “in sickness and in
health”…and if you aren’t willing to stay faithful to that person for the rest
of your life then A) stop reading this & B) you shouldn’t have gotten
Marriage is a commitment, a promise, a lifetime of sharing
yourself with another person. It is not a temporary act that you enter into
lightly, and when the tough gets going…you bail. No that’s not marriage, that’s
dating, or dating around, for lack of a better term. If you don’t already love
that person enough to stay with them when they lose their job, or get sick or
you all hit a rough patch; then maybe that person or marriage isn’t for you.
So with the basics of matrimonial promises aside, there are
a few additional vows I feel we should let our betrothed know in advance. And
these are the same things we should continue to tell them on a daily or weekly
basis, just to let them know we love them for who they are, the person they
have become, and the person they want to become.
You have to be a fool if you think that bright eyed little
co-ed you took to your fraternity formal isn’t going to change into a mature
and nurturing woman once she enters the work force and becomes a mother.
Hopefully she will change for the better, but you must understand that we all
grow and change. That is what life experiences are all about…growth and change,
and you as a spouse need to understand and accept those changes, and hopefully
you all will grow together.
These promises, I feel, will add to, or increase your
1)I love and adore you for the person you are today, and
the person you wish to become, and hope to become in the future;
2)I will promise to always treat you with autonomy, and
realize that you are still you; I know our lives will become intertwined, but
you are still an individual;
3)I promise to never talk disrespectfully to you, you are
the person I chose to spend the rest of my life with; I will always keep you on
a pedestal, but still recognize that we all have our faults;
4)I promise to understand and honor your deepest
thoughts, wishes, dreams, and aspirations; and be supportive of you to obtain
5)I want to meet your needs and desires, not out of
obligation, but because your happiness is my happiness;
6)I may not always agree with your thoughts or visions,
but I promise to keep an open mind and an open ear to hear your side;
7)I will never abandon you in your hour of need, and only
be there for you in your moments of achievement; I promise to be there for both
misfortune and triumph;
8)I will be willing to understand your likes and
dislikes, still remembering you are an individual; but somehow managing to make
them a part of my life as well;
9)I hope to keep our lives together full of excitement,
passion, and fun;
always want you to know that waking up next to you every morning is my greatest
assure you that no matter what life tosses our way, we will endure, fight, and
overcome any tribulation as a team;
promise to put your feelings before my thoughts, after all compassion trumps
logic, any day;
promise we will never go to bed angry, we will stay up and work it through; and
I will tell you every day exactly what you mean to me.
Marriage is challenging, marriage is work, and marriage
takes effort. But if you put as much time into your marriage as you do
yourself, then you are set for life. This is a choice you made, not a job, not
a chore, an obligation…a choice. You chose to be with this one individual for
the rest of your time on this earth. So let them know what they mean to you
every single day you take a breath. Because I promise…one day, you could wake
up and it’s gone in an instant.
Cherish your partner, because at the end of the day, they
are who you tell your deepest darkest secrets to, they are the one that is
there when the house is empty and quiet, and they are the one that is there for
you when you need them the most.
As we all know Lent began yesterday. We hopefully got all of
our playing and “sins” out on Mardi Gras (“Fat Tuesday”)…you were able to cut
up, let loose and get all of our urges out of our system to maintain our purity
throughout the Lent season. Even though Lent is more heavily connected to the
Catholic religion, it seems that everyone, not matter their religion, is trying
to sacrifice something during the season of Lent; either to better themselves,
to break a habit, or just to see if they can give something up for that
Whatever the reason, good for you. Sacrifice is never a bad
thing, in fact it is a very selfless act. But I have decided maybe we should
look at Lent a little differently this year. Instead of giving something (or
somethings) up this year; let’s try going about this another direction. Let’s
see what we need to not give up.
Let me explain…we are always saying “I am going to give up
chocolate for Lent” (well, first I must applaud you…because chocolate and
French Fries are my Achilles Heel)…but instead of giving chocolate up; for Lent
this season, let’s maintain the strength not to give into our weaknesses and
desires. Which leads me to my entire point of this article, stop giving into
our weaknesses, and learn to stay strong, learn to always be a better person.
Make all your weaknesses a daily reminder of the negative person
you are trying to avoid becoming; and make them aides-mémoires of the person
you want to be. Another example, if you have the urge to speak with a sharp
tone or in a degrading manner; use this season to train (or re-train) yourself
of how you should actually speak to others.
Another example is honesty; instead of trying to stop
yourself from telling a little “white lie” so you don’t hurt someone’s
feelings, or just don’t want to create a situation; try using this season of
Lent as your time of honesty. Process your words and thoughts before you tell
the truth, but nonetheless, be honest and truthful. In the end you will be so
much more thankful, not only to yourself, but to the situation as well. You
won’t have to keep compounding lie on top of lie to cover your original lie.
Just be candid from the get-go.
Gossip…now that seems to be everyone’s Achilles Heel,
whether we want to admit to it or not. But as I have grown older, I have
learned that I don’t say anything about anyone that I couldn’t say to that
person’s face. So this season, instead of trying to break the habit of
spreading gossip or talking about others; let’s use this time to talk about
others…yep I said it…talk about anyone and everyone! But let’s praise them.
Instead of saying negative, let’s just be crazy and out of the blue say nothing
but positive about people. I know it sounds crazy, but let’s each try to make
this world a little more positive place to live…who knows it may just catch on.
So instead of talking about someone’s weaknesses, or
downfalls…let’s lift them up in praise and talk about their strengths and the
positive attributes that they bring to our world and lives.
Here’s another task you can do during Lent. Instead of
running from the unknown, face it front on. We all use Lent as our time to
refrain and avoid…let’s use it as our time to confront and face new challenges.
For example, if there was always a hobby you wanted to start, then start it. Or
if there is that one person you don’t know very well, but have always heard
your friends talk about; instead of partaking in the gossip, go introduce
yourself to that person, and make your own conclusions about them, instead of
“following the crowd”. Who knows, that person could be your next new best
friend. Or if there was an activity you have always wanted to try or were
scared to do; then make yourself do it.
I always tell me kids, don’t worry about what other peoples’
actions are; it’s our reactions that we need to be concerned about. And that is
what I want you all to do during this season of Lent. Stop worrying about what
everyone else is doing, and take this time to try something new, instead of
partaking in the negative, go full force into the positive; and face your fears
head on, stop running and go forward.
As I sit here surrounded by my plethora of anti-aging
wrinkle creams, my year books, and tons of memories. I am preparing myself and
my old classmates for our high school reunion…dare I say…our 20th!
It’s not really my age that is bothering me, because I don’t feel near as old
as the number says I am on my driver’s license; I think what is bothering me is
it doesn’t feel like it has been two decades since I walked the halls of the
old Blue and Gold—filled with Tiger Pride.
At the ripe old age of 18, I couldn’t even fathom where my
life would take me. I couldn’t imagine not walking the halls of Corsicana High
School, not seeing the faces I saw every single day, smiling, laughing, and
stressing over exams and projects that we had forgotten about.
The days when that cute boy walking down the hall would
throw that simple cool smile your way, and your stomach would flip and your
cheeks would emulate the color of a tomato. Or the pressure of keeping your grades
up to remain in the top 10%, or even top 5%, of your class to ensure that all
the avenues you might want to pursue after graduation, were open to you.
Or the times when you thought your world was ending, when
that boy you thought was the ideal boy, completely shattered your world by
talking to another girl in the hallway before 3rd period; or losing
the hard fight you fought running for student council to an upper classman.
Oh how those trials and tribulations changed our lives
forever and molded us into the adults we are today. Whether or not we knew it
then, we were learningabout life as we
walked those hallways, threw our books into our lockers, and faced the daunting
world of being a teenager with all of our insecurities and flaws…but we did it
with gumption and pride. Unfortunately we weren’t bright enough, or our brains
weren’t developed enough to always make the “best” decisions, but thankfully we
all pretty much came out unscathed.
If we had known then what we know now, we would all be such
different people. So maybe the course we were set out to follow is in fact the
one we were intended to conquer. Because I know that the insecure, tall, gangly
teenager that I once was…was not strong enough to overcome some of the horrific obstacles
that have been thrown in my path of life. But those hurdles made me the
resilient, independent woman I am today. If my high school self had known what
was “to come” along my path of life, I am pretty sure I would have curled up in
a ball and never climbed out of my locker.
But that is the beauty of the unknown…you must face life one
step at a time and overcome any glitches that may come your way with strength,
persistence, and poise. The stresses and pressures we thought we endured in
high school were nothing compared to life’s issues and problems today; but I
don’t belittle the problems we all encountered in high school, just because
they happened during a simpler time in our lives, doesn’t make them any less imperative.
Because they, too, were learning experiences that we all overcame and struggled
through, making us better, stronger, more empathetic people.
So as I reflect on who we all were in high school together,
I remember the fun days of all piling into each other’s cars and heading out to
the lake on a hot summer day; or meeting up with one another at the “Shell
station” for our typical Friday night fun. And of course who can forget Texas’
5th season…that being football season.
You knew everyone, who lived within the county lines, would
be sitting in the stadium hoping their Tigers would bring home another victory.
The crowd was filled with mothers hoping their babies wouldn’t get hurt out on
the field, some were cheer moms there to encourage their daughters on the
sidelines, some were other students (like myself) that played other sports
rooting for my friends and classmates, and some were just there for the Friday
So as we all get older and carry heavier burdens and navigate
through the complications of life, we have to remember, that in every stage of
life things get more complicated and unfortunately more stressful; but it’s
always good to reflect and remember the simpler times of our lives, no matter
the age we were. Those problems are no less significant than the once we have
as aging adults, they just procure a different perspective through our eyes as
we travel through life.
Sometimes it’s nice to sit back and remember the simpler
times; its endearing to remember that all those people you grew up with, those
that know you better than anyone, those that knew you in mother’s morning out
all the way to graduation, through all the good hair styles and the bad
ones…will be your friends for life, no matter how many years it has been since
you all last spoke or saw one another…they are your high school classmates.