Friday

Poem: Cliques

Bound to a group.
Tied to one another by common interests.

Cautious not to let outsiders in.

Chained together by past experiences,
they walk
to
a
meeting
place
hidden from the world
dependent on one another.

Nicholl McGuire
http://www.twitter.com/motherhoodtips

Thursday

Poem: How Soon They Forget

How forgetful some are!
when you've tried
when you given your all
and they say, "I don't remember."

How forgetful they are!
when money was low
when illness struck
when tears fell
and you were there
and they still say
"I don't remember."

But you recall it all!
Still when their hands are out
and mouths are open
YOU ARE THERE!

Nicholl McGuire, Content Producer, Blogger, Author, & Poet
http://associatedcontent.com/nichollmcguire

Poem: What Kind of Woman - An Unpopular Cry of Mothers & Their Girlfriends

A best friend to a few
a stranger to some.

Graciously she gives
to her circle of friends.

Never failing to offer
her advice, her help
employed, intelligent
attractive
conniving, selfish
ugly.

She sits at home alone
dwelling in her haves and have nots.
All the while that she gives,
she wants to be thin,
to have money,
to be loved
by your man.

And she'll risk the chance
to lose you to win him!

Jealous emotions started gradually
your smile, your thoughtfulness,
your wealth, your words, your children,
your wedding photographs.

Your best friend was steadily falling
deeper and deeper into your life
your home
and your bedroom.

Somehow you knew,
somehow you suspected.
But you lost track of time.
You forgot to rid yourself of her.

So here you are
and there she is
and you ask,
"What kind of woman?"

Nicholl McGuire
http://www.twitter.com/motherhoodtips

Induction Into Motherhood - Laughing at Sleepless Nights and the Naivete of First-Time Moms

I don't think I've had a decent night's sleep in about five years...since the birth of our oldest son, JR. Actually, it has probably been longer than that because the last few months of pregnancy are horrible. Everyone says, "Get some rest now, before the baby comes." That's such a crock (at least in my experience.)

By the time I reached the eighth month, my hips and lower back were so sore that no position was comfortable; rolling from one side to the other was like making a seven-point turn. Getting up from the couch even made me out of breath. When I said this to anyone, they smiled and responded, "Oh, that's just getting you prepared for when the baby comes" Wink, wink.

I typically find comments like that annoying, but I found it especially obnoxious at the time because my ankles were swollen, (well, I think they were. I couldn't exactly see them anymore past my belly), my back was killing me, I was peeing every ten minutes, my skin was a mess, and my hormones were raging.

It was all worth it, of course, when our precious little boy was born. Every newly expectant mom envisions what that moment will be like; the moment when you see that new little person for the first time. You think it will be perfect; angels singing, harps playing and beautiful photo ops of you and the baby.

Okay, so maybe that's not exactly how it all went down.

In reality, of course, my feet were up in stirrups for what seems like hours while the doctor stitched up a tear roughly the size of Texas. My breath, my husband, Joe, later told me, smelled rancid from all of the medicine in my I.V. (At the time, I thought it was so sweet that he kept kissing me on the head, but he later confessed that it was because of my toxic halitosis) Joe, like any first-time dad, was excited to cut the umbilical cord (which he later compared to hacking through a garden hose) and our wrinkled little son was covered in all the schmutz that accompanies birth. It didn't matter, though. In our eyes the moment couldn't have been more beautiful.

I couldn't wait to sleep that first night because I could sleep in any position I wanted. I had big plans of lying on my stomach and sawing logs through the night.

Ah, the naiveté of a new mom. Those nights in the hospital were anything but relaxing. Nurses came and went from my room at all hours of the day and night. My blood was drawn so much that I wasn't sure I had any left, and one nurse had to stick me three times before blowing my vein and having someone else do it. I went home actually more tired than before I went in labor.

Little did I know, that was merely the beginning...or, more appropriately, the end of sleep. No one told us that parenting a newborn was pretty much a third-shift job or that JR would soon test the very fabric of our being, the strength of our relationship, and the staying power of coffee as we entered into this crazy world of parenthood.

Fast forward almost five years, and now I am a very busy wife and stay-at-home mom of four little ones ages four years to seven months. I spend my time lovin' on my family, working at my church, picking up toys, changing diapers, refereeing fights, cooking seventeen meals a day, and kissing away boo-boos! In my "free" time I blog about the craziness of this thing I call my life at http://www.mandypmommyof4.blogspot.com

Wednesday

Motherhood and Career - How to Juggle Between the Two

I have been a mother for the last 8 years. I gave up my career to be a full-time mother to my children. Motherhood has been a thoroughly enjoyable experience with its share of vicissitudes. Yes, there were times when my sons threw tantrums when I wanted to escape and run away. There were times when I wanted to sleep but had to stay up putting a cranky baby to bed. There were also times when just a full-throated laughter, a smile, or the smell of my baby's skin could melt my heart and lift my spirits. A roller coaster of emotions, I guess, is part of normal motherhood.

Keeping up the daily routine of being a mother, the one question which was always at the back of my mind, "what about my career?" A well-educated MBA, it always tugged at my heart's strings that years, which could be spent in building my career, were flying by looking after kids. It did hurt me to see batch mates and colleagues climb corporate ladders while I was being a mother.

The pragmatist in me knows how important it was for me to be at home, for one parent to be always around and available for the kids. However, that little thought gnawed at the back of my mind that I was wasting my education. The successful career that I had pursued earlier seemed like a distant dream now. But that niggling thought never went away.

So, what was the way out? What did I do? I worked around the circumstances. I have always had a flair for writing. So, I began writing a blog as a hobby. And, slowly built it into a career of freelance writing. It was not easy; it still is not. And, it will never be easy to juggle career and motherhood. But, I am getting there. I am happy that it is satisfying; and I am doing my own thing.

That point about wasting my education - I realized that education is never wasted. Education has made me the logical, analytical person having the skills that I have today.

So, all the mothers out there who have taken time off their regular work to raise kids -- kudos to you! Remember, there can only be one mother to your children -- you! You have made the right choice. There is a career option waiting for you to pursue in your spare time, or from home. All you have to do is find it, when you feel you are ready for it.

Meanwhile, enjoy the motherhood; career can wait!

Rachna Parmar is a Content Developer, Blogger, Article writer, and owner of her Consultancy Smart Solutions. A passionate reader and a mother of two sons; she loves working out, cooking, blogging, traveling, raising her two sons, and writing. She loves making friends and sharing notes.

Blog: http://rachnasays.blogspot.com/
My website: http://www.smartsol.in

Monday

4 Play Tips That Will Strengthen Your Mother-Child Bond

Being a mother is a wonderful job that most women hope to take on some day. But, most mothers have that fear that their children will grow up and forget about them, or have minimal relationships with them. The best way to strengthen your mother child bond and to keep it strong is to play with your child on a daily basis. Make them laugh and giggle and show interest in their lives. Here are some great playtips that will help you bond with your child:

1. Your child likes to be involved in what you are doing. So involve them: Let them help you clean and cook and make it fun and teach them while you do it.

2. Play "make believe" with your child. They love this game and this really helps with their imagination. The two of you can act out and be some crazy characters and build lasting memories

3. Spend some time outside with your child. They love to collect leaves, bugs, flowers; many of nature's wonderful things. Do this with them and teach them about these objects as you go along.

4. Always ask your child about their interests and activities. Show interest and listen to them. They have a lot to say and have a lot of questions. Make time for these conversations on a daily basis.

These are just a few tips that will help you to play with your child and strengthen that bond. Keep doing activities and showing interest in your child forever to keep that bond strong. You are their mother, and they want to learn and to be just like you when they are children. Give them love and confidence, and your bond will stay throughout your life time!

Robyn is a mom first and foremost! She is the owner and CEO of Life Balance and has a website dedicated to moms. For more helpful play ideas and answers to your mom questions, please visit her website at http://www.topmomsplace.com

Friday

The Powerful Secret Your Mother Never Told You

Power. Say that word out loud. Roll it around in your mouth. How does it feel? Does it excite you? Or do you feel the "OW" in the middle?

Successful people know how to express personal power on a fairly consistent basis. Yet for most of us, we fear power because we are at the mercy of someone else's power. This isn't surprising: As children, we learned to submit to other people's rules. We were told to eat food that we didn't like, to follow a schedule not our own, and to override our individual sense of inner knowing and self-determination. As children, our compliance was a matter of survival. We may even have forgotten how to hold on to personal power because giving it away was so automatic.

It is easy to find examples of giving away your power. Not speaking up when someone tells an offensive joke; not offering to lead a group at work or in the community; not voting; not expressing your preferences in your family. Finding your power means listening to the inner voice that longs for freedom and light.

The current "Us against THEM" mindset, like a revolt that demands to be heard, is what some people consider "taking Power." Yet fighting against something without vision or understanding is something else. Personal power does not mean aggression. David Hawkins makes a clear distinction in his book "Power vs. Force," page 132:

"Because force automatically creates counter-force, its effect is limited by definition. We could say that force is a movement-it goes from here to there (or tries to) against opposition. Power, on the other hand, is still. It's like a standing field that doesn't move. Gravity itself, for instance, doesn't move against anything. Its power moves all objects within its field, but the gravity field itself does not move.

"Force always moves against something, whereas power doesn't move against anything at all. Force is incomplete and therefore has to be fed energy constantly. Power is total and complete in itself and requires nothing from outside. It makes no demands; it has no needs."

To live in the world as a fully expressed human being requires personal power. You grow your personal power when you listen to the voice of clarity, freedom and love within you. Power comes from setting deliberate boundaries and eliminating unconscious limitations.

INCREASING YOUR PERSONAL POWER

Practicing each of the following steps will increase your power:

Open your heart to your dreams. Dare to picture what you REALLY want (whether you know how to get it or not). Your inner voice may have been smothered by years of neglect. It takes belief in your ability to dream to reawaken the authentic YOU.

Imagine that all you want already exists. After all, the picture in your mind is the first step of actual creation. Because you can see it, you can believe it, and with belief, you can create it. Every great invention, every successful company, every piece of art, began with a thought. If you can see it and hear it and feel it in your imagination, you can create it.

Be grateful for your life as it is today. If you focus on what you don't have, you focus on lack. You surround yourself with the sense that everything is scarce. You become unhappy and often beat yourself up for being in a "predicament." When you are grateful for what you have, you can sense the fullness of life in its giving you so very many wonderful things.

Accept everything that happens as a gift that moves you forward. Become an inverse paranoid. No matter how things look in the moment, believe that the world conspires to make you successful. Losing a job may open you to get a much better job, or to go back to school or start a business. Traffic jams saved some people's lives on Sept 11, 2001 because they did not get to work on time.

Set boundaries to define your values. Continue to gain clarity on what is important to you. Set your priorities around your clarity. Expect excellence-and expect that your vision is supported by others. Think BIG. Sequential thinking is small. For quantum growth, you must be willing to think out 5 to 10 years and see a massive organization. Once this goal resonates with you, the steps to get there will become clearer.

Listen and feel the resonance of YES. Success feels GOOD! If you find yourself miserable, overwhelmed and unhappy, you have fallen into an old pattern of giving up your power. Why is that? Well, if you don't have power, you can blame someone else for the problem. The trouble is that you have to acknowledge responsibility for your life. What we don't see when we take the easy way out is that we allow all our power to leak away, like water through a sieve.

With these attitudes, you can expand your personal power. Read about great leaders, volunteer for leadership roles, do every task with excellence. Before long you will find many goals magically showing up. Behind every successful human is a vivid dream whispering "yes..." Be willing to step up, over and over again. The path you really want is at the top of the heap. Keep stepping up.

Are you tired of struggling for success? Carole Hodges provides the kind of guidance that business owners need in this busy world. Get your Special Report - 15 Attitudes that Complicate Your Life and Paralyze Your Business and simple tips to make change NOW.

Thursday

Becoming Your Mother's Mom

It's hard to have a parent with dementia. Not just for the obvious reasons -- the dementia. However, the other really big difficulty is the change in relationship.

Dementia takes away a number of very important abilities. That's exactly why the many dementing illnesses, of which Alzheimer's is only one, are so hard for families.

As adults, we make our own decisions. We plan. We follow through. We pay bills. We shop. We keep doctor's appointments. We drive to our friend's house for dinner. We live our life. At some point in the course of dementia, all of that will be stripped away.

The stripping usually begins item by item. Each step of that process poses a new dilemma for you. When do you take over each part of your Mom's life? How do you know if it's too soon? How do you know what you should do? When do you become boss?

For the outside person, a professional caregiver like me, it's much easier. So you could always start by asking yourself a few vital questions that we outsiders would ask.

Five Questions to Ask Yourself:
1. Is Mom safe in all she does?
2. Is she eating, drinking, bathing and dressing adequately?
3. Should she be driving?
4. Does she take her medicines properly?
5. Is she safe in the kitchen?

If you can't answer a resounding YES to all these, you do have a problem. Or rather, you have a dementia trend which results in problems, some of them very dangerous. Time to intervene.

Usually, already when families have the question -- when should we intervene with Mom? -- the answer is already "Now"! Family members are asking the question because they have already noticed signs of things not being okay.

It's always helpful to list the issues. The things you've noticed, the signs of decline, the factors that worry you. Run my Alzheimer's test: see what fresh foods are in the refrigerator, run your finger along the stove and see if there's the dust of an unused appliance, check washing machine and dryer to look for signs of
laundry in process, ask Mom what she did yesterday, sneak a look at her mail for unpaid bills and too much junk mail.

I know this sounds underhand, and it is, but for a very good reason. You want to know if your Mom needs help and she won't admit it. Two reasons: one is she doesn't remember the chaos her life is descending into and two is that she's too afraid to tell you.

Five Things Your Mom Hides:
1. That she can't manage;
2. That she's very frightened;
3. That she's confused;
4. That she can't remember;
5. That she's not willing tell you her needs.

She's in a very difficult stage of her life. She's a responsible adult who can't be that any more. So now she's a responsible adult with childlike fears and adolescent attitudes. That's why your relationship is getting complicated.

You are now the boss of her. But you must not boss her. You must support, nurture, protect and tiptoe forward subtly to pick up her slack with tact and kindness. Do not turn anything into a battle. You will both lose and it will be emotionally wrenching.

Five Things to Do Right now:
1. Bring meals over (or have them delivered);
2. Organize help with the housekeeping;
3. Dementia-proof her environment;
4. Call a family council;
5. Make a family plan.

Be kind to your Mom. That's the only way she'll trust you.

Frena Gray-Davidson is a longterm Alzheimer's caregiver and her latest book is "Alzheimer's 911: Hope, Help and Healing for Caregivers", available from http://www.amazon.com. Go to her website at http://www.alzguide.com/ and sign up for her free monthly email newsletter for caregivers.

Monday

Worry

As mothers we worried about everything from where our sons and daughters are to how soon will we see them again. When we find ourselves thinking about everything that could go wrong with our children while they are way from us, we ought to also think about everything that could go right!

Most often worry can be defeated by changing thoughts.

Nicholl McGuire
http://organizerhome.blogspot.com

Feeling Loved and Accepted

Sometimes mothers think that the only way they can get married or find someone new is to make the man feel obligated to them by having more children. If you were to step outside of your mind and become the man for a moment looking at you, what he would see is a frazzled woman, cooking, cleaning, hair undone, no makeup, and caring for children, I can almost bet you that’s not what he really had in mind. Instead, he sees the beautiful woman he first met complete with hair done, nails polished, waxed, trimmed, and perfected in the image of whatever he fantasized.

One way we can feel loved and accepted not just by a man but ourselves too, is to model positive, strikingly beautiful women inside and out while maintaining the personality that caused him to fall in love with us. When you feel good about yourself, the world will indeed take notice with comments like, “You look nice today, your hair is pretty, where are you going…can I come?”

Nicholl McGuire
http://tipsdatingoldermen.blogspot.com

Friday

A Simple Tip to Keep the Children & Teens Busy on Weekends

I don't know about you, but I don't like to see my children waste a weekend playing video games all day! So what I do is make plans for them on weekends especially when the weather is not good.

The first thing I do is get the notebook and pen out and I create a time chart based on their waking hours usually I make it neat enough to hang up or I write notes on a dry erase board that in the past I hung up in their room before we relocated.

Basically it looks something like this...

I include action photos, stick figures and stickers for the little ones who can't read.

8:00 - Wash face, brush teeth, and put your clothes on.

9:00 - Watch television, computer time, or play video games using ear phones.

10:00 - Breakfast

11:00 - For older ones read a book, complete homework, or do practice math and reading worksheets. The younger ones: color, toys, stack blocks, or other age appropriate activity.

12 noon - nap time for the little ones and "do nothing" time for the tweens.

During this time I encourage the older ones to reflect on their day, the past, present and future. Since I am a praying mother, I encourage them to use this time to talk to God quietly in their minds. Its like a form of meditation and it works when they are lying down on their beds usually they will go to sleep too.

The remaining part of the day is usually planned out as well. Sometimes we deviate from the schedule because we may have errands to run and places to go.

I provide enough time between activities and projects for them to complete them during the evening since the day begins to slow down for me, but pick back up for them since they are energized. I encourage any parent to relax while the household is quiet. Rather than participating in physical activities that will only leave you tired and irritable and not recharged to deal with the children during the second half of the day, do those tasks (like exercising) while they are awake. Get them involved. Let the older ones do chores and use an incentive program for their assistance such as: pizza, money, or a new toy, game or article of clothing they really like.


I noticed that with a well-planned weekend, the children's behavior was much better and I didn't have to discipline as much. After awhile they get used to your plan and they just start doing things without your asking. My one son (who stays with his dad but comes during school breaks) doesn't have to be told anything. He use to come over and look at his schedule, now he just does things automatically including dusting!

Hope this works for you!

Nicholl McGuire
http://www.twitter.com/motherhoodtips

How to Get Along With Your Mother-in-Law

'As If and if only' (As if - is for the possibility of getting along with her. If only - is, there have been innumerable suggestions given on perfecting the balancing act and yet there is need for more...). That's a 'big IF', mind you on both counts. World over if at all there is unity among women it is about 'the m-in-law' factor. It is the bane of every woman who sees her macho male go putty in his mommy's hands much to our dismay. For the mother (in law) it is her ultimate achievement, her crowning glory to be in control of her son. She knows to push his buttons and that necessarily need not be in favor to you. So how to win over this matron (some would call her the wicked witch! I wouldn't go that far, because I too have a son!)

First and foremost, don't get into the marriage with any preconceived notions. Bias is very often the culprit for souring relationships. Keep an open mind.

When talking to your m-i-l dear, approach her with kindness. Empathy goes a long way in softening even the strongest of hearts. After all, she too has been a d-i-l once. Having said that, this does not mean you are a door mat. You need to look after your self esteem too.

In case of a tug of war (especially one of word clash) - being silent is your biggest weapon. By keeping quiet you are not weak rather you are smart, people savvy. By not saying anything you are giving less fodder for her verbal duel. It takes two hands to clap. So keep mum. I know the provocation would be too much to resist. You might be goaded to retaliate. Don't do it. Clamp your lips. Clench your teeth. As a last resort, bite your tongue. Do whatever it takes to keep your mouth shut.

Trust me this will go a long way in maintaining peace at home. After all, how much can one person talk without a reaction?

By ignoring her tirade you are reinforcing the message that you are unperturbed by her ramblings. Carry on with your work as usual. Jain saint Mahavira once said, 'Tolerance is the best form of punishment.' That's philosophy. On a more practical note ignorance works better to make people toe the line, especially if their behavior is unwarranted.

Nobody likes to be slighted. The need to belong and be cherished is the latent need of all relationships. So, make an effort to be amicable to your m-i-l. After all she is your hubby's mom. For you to like him, she must have done something right.

Credit her with good upbringing if not for anything else. Every body loves a compliment. Make your m-i-l's day by praising her skills. Keep the flattery as close to truth as possible. Anything too sugary can be seen outright as lying and seen suspiciously.

If not for anything your m-i-l has seen more in life than you have done. Accept her point of view but you don't have to follow it. It's all about how you say the words. Be polite yet resolute. Be kind yet firm.

This is your life and how you live it is your prerogative. But, if there is something that can enhance the quality of life through her suggestion take it. It's for your betterment. That she might say it for the welfare of her son is secondary. By being married to her boy you are also entitled to benefit from it.

Admit it your husband is the apple of his mom's eye. I know sometimes it does get overboard and can become your eyesore. But look on the positive side, by getting your m-i-l on your side you not only have harmony but also approval from your husband.

That his wife is getting along with his mother could actually grease the wheels of domestic life and make it more enriching and rewarding.

If you are living separately and only visiting your in-laws - hurray you don't have the hassle of 'm-i-l syndrome' on daily basis except for the weekly rituals. The cardinal rule would be to go along with your husband and play the role of the dutiful daughter in law. By visiting them despite you knowing they are ignoring you and they knowing that you know it too... you will win their grudging admiration in the long run. Even if they don't shout it off the rooftops, there will be silent acknowledgement of your efforts to be included into the family fold.

You need not famously get along with your m-i-l, at least try to have a working relationship for the sake of your husband; more importantly, for the sake of your children.

Children have these antennae to pick out 'stress signals'. Their uncanny ability to radar out strains in the relationship can be detrimental not only for their emotional well being but also hamper their bonding your m-i-l (their grandma).

The Freudian theory is that the wife and the mother are in love with the same man. It is a kind of triangular love relationship, hence there is bound to be this constant power struggle as to who has an upper hand with the guy. The tussle has nothing to do with rationale and everything to do with emotions. It is this striving for one 'upmanship' that is the root cause for the m-i-l to be called monster in law (see the movie of the same name * ing Jane Fond and Jennifer Lopez). You'll understand what I'm talking about.

But at the end of the day, both of you love the same guy. So learn to call a truce if not able to make peace with your m-i-l. This will absolve you of later regrets and future guilt. By learning to forgive the past misgivings you not only heal faster inside but will also be able to move forward positively in your relationship with your husband. That is what marriage is all about - forgiving and moving forward as a team.

By Sandya Dev
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

BlogRoll Center

Submit Blog & RSS Feeds

VideoBar

This content is not yet available over encrypted connections.

BlogCatalog

Mom Blogs - BlogCatalog Blog Directory

Loaded Web

parenting Blogs

Blog Top Sites

Blogging Fusion

Blogging Fusion Blog Directory

About Me

My photo

Over 20 years office work experience, six years completed college coursework, background in print media and communications, recognized for exceptional attendance and received merit increase for past job performance, self-published author and part-time entrepreneur, Internet marketing and social media experience. Interned for non-profit organization, women's group and community service business. Additional experience: teaching/training others, customer service and sales. Learn more at Nicholl McGuire and Nicholl McGuire Media

When Mothers Cry Blog Archive