Sunday

It's a Girl! Observations of Dads Who Really Wanted Sons
Some fathers can't hide their disappointment, they anticipated boys and didn't get what they wanted. Therefore, they reason they can still have their boys by creating "Tom Boys" of their daughters. Article explains.
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Exposing Cinderella, Snow White, & the Little Mermaid: What Are We Really Teaching Young Girls?
Some Disney books have decades of sending the wrong messages to young children, yet we continue to let our children read them. Article addresses some widely popular books for girls that could aid in future problems.
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Monday

The Five Lies of Motherhood

Within the past fifty years, motherhood has gone from exaltation to embarrassment. Instead of being proud to claim motherhood as a career, we cower in the corner and mumble out a feeble, "I'm JUST a mom!" Just a mom? Give me a break! This entire mentality wasn't even present in our culture until recently. The media is a powerful force! It can discredit motherhood with its lies and we just gulp them up like hot doughnuts. So, what lies are you living?

Lie #1--You need to take a load off. Have you heard this lie lately? It's subversive because there is so much truth in it that is being distorted. We see it in magazines, commercials, talk shows...moms are being stretched so thin, trying to do everything under the sun. Sooner or later, there is going to be a straw that breaks the camel's back. Before it's too late, mama, you had better take a load OFF! Well, here's the truth in it. Yes! We often do too much, but think for a second about what we're doing. What is eating up so much of your time that you can't do the really important stuff like raise your kids? How many television shows are you watching during a week? How often do you try to beat someone's high score on a Facebook game? How long do you spend talking on the phone? When today's culture tells us to take a load off, they mean to drop the kids off somewhere and take time for YOU. I'm ready to tell you that you need to take a load off where it really matters. Find those pointless time wasters that are pulling you away from the family and drop those from your life!

Lie #2--Your job is temporary. I know you've heard this one. It's the lie that our culture tells us over and over. Motherhood is just a little thingee to do for now. So, take a deep breath. You won't be stuck in this trench forever. It's the lie that gives you a temporal perspective on the whole family thing. Without even realizing it we begin to focus on relief from our circumstances rather than glorifying in our responsibilities. We begin to believe the lie and think that life will be good '..when the little ones finally get in preschool,..when the summer is over and the kids are back in school,..when the teenagers are finally out of the house,..' Do you see the danger here? Our culture has us believing that we need to look forward to a day when we finally get our days back! I'm ready to tell you that your job is eternal! The moments you are investing in your family today will build up in time to reward you in ways you could never imagine. THIS is your life and you need to enjoy it NOW. If not here, where? If not now, when?

Lie #3--You could do a lot better. We see this lie everywhere in the media. It's that twenty-something picture-perfect model with the little kids that seems to have it all together. It's that stunning actress posing with her family. It's the business mogul that manages to balance family and a burgeoning business. This is a lie! You cannot serve two masters. One will have your heart and the other gets the leftovers. Our culture has taught us that motherhood is failure...it's only for those women who didn't really get a decent education or can't hold a good job. It's for women who aren't creative or don't have any drive. This is a subtle message but one that certainly has rocked our ships way off course. The lie tells us, "C'mon, mom, really? Couldn't you do any better than that? Where's the glory in motherhood?" I'm here to tell you that the glory is inside of you. It's how you look at the world. When you look at the world through earthly eyes, you see it all extrinsically. Everything is outside. It's the kind of car you drive or the house you live in. It's your career title or your circle of friends. But when you look at the world through heavenly eyes, you begin to see it all intrinsically. Everything is inside. It's the contentment when you hold your baby or the pride when you see your teen succeed. It's the love that grips your heart and won't let go. And believe you, me, you cannot do any better than that!

Lie #4--You need fulfillment. Every message that the media delivers to moms is filtered through the "not enough" lie. This is an awesome tactic by the media because it works so well. You can sell anything if you create a need for it. And unfortunately, moms are buying into the lie that we don't have enough. We need it easier. We need it cheaper. We need it quicker. We need it now! If our culture can convince moms that they need fulfillment, then they have created a huge population of eager shoppers. There's only one problem here. If things make life easier, then why does it seem to be harder than ever? If things make life cheaper, then why is the average family drowning in debt? If things make life quicker, then why can't we get enough done in an average day? I'm ready to tell you that fulfillment doesn't come from without. It comes from within. Until you find fulfillment in your life where you are right now, you'll never find fulfillment where you're headed in the future.

Lie #5--You don't need to take it so seriously. Our modern culture feeds us this lie that motherhood and homemaking is just something you do on the side. And we are now seeing firsthand the results of this belief--broken homes, disparate families, failing marriages, and rebellious kids. And at the heart of it all is a mom who thought she didn't need to take it so seriously. I mean, it's not like it's a real career or something. Well, they're right about that. It's not just a career. It's a calling. When God called you to be a mom, He wasn't kidding around. I'm ready to tell you this is NOT a job to be taken lightly. This is a career that requires every bit of you and more. It is something you do with your whole heart. Stop believing the lies that our culture feeds us. See through the methods our media uses to discredit motherhood. Do it now before you waste another moment living with less than the best. The world keeps telling moms to do just enough to get by. But God sets a higher standard. He demands excellence. Motherhood is an eternal investment. You may not be able to see it now, but when you give it your all, when you approach this profession with the respect it deserves, when you stand up tall and profess loudly, "Yes! I AM a mom!" then, and only then, will you see the blessings of this consecrated career unfold before you.

Now, it's your turn. What do you think? Has our culture been handing us lies? Are you believing any of them? I want to hear from you!

Hannah Keeley is the founder of http://www.hannahkeeley.com and the mother of seven kids. She is the author of "Hannah's Art of Home" and "Hannah Keeley's Total Mom Makeover," and has appeared on the Today show, Fox and Friends, and the Rachael Ray show. Her national television show, Hannah Help Me!, is currently airing in its second season.

Alibris

Sunday

Why Mothers Cry
Frustrated veteran mothers, angry new mothers, resentful stepmothers, and other types of mothers can relate to a newly published book by Nicholl McGuire, "When Mothers Cry." Visit whenmotherscry.blogspot.com or amazon.com
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Wednesday

Football, Basketball, Soccer, Hockey--Don't Let it Take Over Your Home

Nowadays more and more women are sitting in front of the television along with the men watching the game. I tend to compare television sports to the soap operas I use to watch with my mother and grandmother as a child (especially WWE.)

Years ago, I remember the mood of the room changing when my relatives discovered that one of their soap opera characters was being attacked. Sometimes their negative attitude lingered away from the television screen for part of the day as a result. The child that was allowed to sit and watch soaps with them would then be told that she was "in the way...go play..." WOW! The impact of television! Mom would be in a bad mood and so would grandma. It was the same negative sometimes angry-filled emotions that I also had to cope with over the years after my mother watched her beloved Steelers lose a few too many games.

I recall many Sundays smelling a dinner consisting of: a great rump roast, peas, carrots, mashed potatoes, greens, cornbread, and homemade gravy along with a pound cake dessert or sweet potato pie slice. You would think with a great meal like that it was a pleasant, peaceful Sunday, right? Nope, not when the Steelers were playing. Mom was screaming, yelling and telling us children (my sister and I) to "be quiet the game was on!" and sometimes I did pray the team would win so she would be in a good mood. My dad wasn't as emotional and usually stayed away from all of us on Sundays because another work week would begin the next day. From age five until teen years, I witnessed my mom, who to this day is still a huge fan of the Steelers, scream at the TV about bad calls. She has had her share of VIP passes to watch the games, thanks to my Dad's former employer's connections.

So why am I bothered by the football, basketball seasons or any other sport seasons when it comes to the family? Because of the distractions and the negativity surrounding them. People drink during games (thank God my already hyper mother doesn't do that,) some cuss, fight, hit their women, spank their children more, and cry over games!

Just like the soaps, I know what I am about to say will ruffle a few readers' feathers, they are scripted. That's right I said scripted! You may say, "How do you know?" I would have to say, "Conduct your own research to prove that I'm wrong." Yes, there are genuine referee mistakes, serious injuries etc. But then there are also events that are created to get more people to tune in to certain games, picks, etc. ie.) Check out SuperBowl 2009 and you will learn that it was the most watched in television history, hmmm. Think about all of the events that led up to the Saints winning that game. Then think about all of the events that lead up to other cities winning the Superbowl. Think: There's a lot of money needed to run a city!

I read articles where event organizers are trying to figure out ways to get more women to watch sports on TV. If you know anything about sitting in a room with a group of women, they love drama! The marketers know what women like and they also know what men like so why not find a way to make the masses happy, right? If they can't get women to tune in, they sure know how to distract them. For example, why not put a series of Denzel Washington movies on several different cable stations like they did in Los Angeles not that long ago to keep women away from the men while the game was on.

If you ever watched a sports game on TV, you have seen the bad calls or heard your male relatives yell about them. They are referring to something unfair that happened on the field while the ref pretends as if he didn't see something or makes a call that never should have been made allowing the other "favored" team to catch up. With all the TV cameras watching the event, you would think the camera has final say with all of the calls, but it doesn't. I wouldn't be surprised to start seeing some tricks with the television replay. You thought you saw one thing, but once it is replayed (unless you have your VCR recording) you will see something totally different. It's coming, if it isn't already going on now. One's eyes clearly saw that a rule wasn't violated, yet the refs will call a foul anyway. Well, how do you think a bad call plays out in the real world in that little house or apartment in the small county of XYZ with the drunk uncle, angry spouse, or temperamental teen? There is arguing, fussing, bad moods all day, and a host of other negativity in the home just because of a d*mn game! A game that the average man will never play in! A game that doesn't help one spiritually, mentally or physically. A game that robs a father's time with his wife and his children. A game that upsets people for nothing more than the dollar bill! A game that has become a modern day idol! Then some wonder why God doesn't answer one's prayers.

Speed up to decades later and now I am a mother with sons who are passionate about the games they play in school. I am starting to see the same passion is carrying over onto some of those scripted sports games on the TV screen and yes I am concerned--very concerned. So I have been talking with dad about what we should say to the children when the team picked to win doesn't and how are we going to tone down the growing excitement for sports (scripted TV sports that is)?

I personally believe it's okay to watch some sports (that's right only select ones are watched by my children,) but what I don't believe is allowing sporting events or any events become an idol in one's household. How many banners, trophies, numbers, certificates, etc. does one have to display? I like what one father said about the numbers on the back of the young boys shirts. He said, "I would never let my son wear another man's number. I want him to wear his own numbers." I have personally witnessed and took a few physical assaults behind a temperamental viewer's obsession over a scripted game. Those orchestrated bad calls and behind the scenes sports betting may create more viewer interests, but the truth is there are families hurting because some just can't handle being hyped up about a certain team only for that team to suddenly have a great fall for no good reason!

I encourage you to do your own research on past games. Pick your favorite sports and you will see a pattern of foolish calls by refs. Interesting enough, during some of the most important games. You may have asked yourself, "What is going on?" while witnessing one unfair call after the other. But kept on allowing yourself to be mind controlled into believing that the team wasn't doing well, thanks to the announcers and your sports journalists.

Bad calls have happened so much over the years, that when you bring an argument like this to a sports fan, he or she just shrugs his or her shoulders as if no big deal. But when you say, "You know those games, some of those events are scripted." Watch the anger that grows in his or her eyes. The fan says, "Prove it." But the truth is, they can't handle the truth! Rather, when you show them the patterns of games in the past, the history of sports-betting, the tell-all books out there exposing the industry, and the commissioner, team owners and agents affiliations, they don't want to hear it. Unless you are one of the elite, even after researching, you still won't get the whole story, but you will at least get enough knowledge to make a determination whether it's even worth watching the game much less getting emotional about it.

In closing, if you are a mother who cares about her children, tell your children the truth and remind them that everyone can't be "The next great..."there is only so much space on the team. Rather, encourage your children to be the best they can in whatever their destined to become! Your child's talents can be found in this life by getting him or her involved in a little bit of this and that and not just sports!

Nicholl McGuire

Tuesday

Mom's Time Out!

Taking Time Out For Yourself

As women how many of you take time out of your day everyday for yourself? Statistics show very little actually do this small task that has huge benefits. So when this was proposed to me my immediate reaction was "I don't have time." Then I was asked "What do you think you need to do to take time for yourself?" This brought up some interesting ideas - massage, facials, pedicures, dancing, beach camping, friends... What we really are asking is do you take a "Timeout." Yes, just like the one we give our kids. Do you take time out for yourself everyday? I bet the answer is still no.

Something we need to realize is we need to recharge just as much as our kids need to. I don't know about you, but I'm not Super Mom, I need help with everything that goes on in my household. I also need to know when enough is enough. The dishes will be there in the morning as will the laundry. Tomorrow is another day to look forward to and finish the tasks that were not done the day before. Ultimately what is more important? Your sanity or the laundry?

Taking time out for yourself can be as simple as taking a bubble bath... that sounds like fun actually! Reading a favorite author you haven't read in a while, meditating, Floating in a swimming pool, Taking a steam bath, sauna, or jacuzzi, Taking a pleasant walk, Weekend getaway/break from the home, Listening to your favorite music, Girls night out, Evening meal at your favorite restaurant, Taking up a hobby, Finding a favorite leisure activity, Joining a club, Developing new interests. Anything in this list would benefit you and qualify for taking time for yourself.

Conscious vs. Unconscious. Reduction of the conscious mind (sympathetic nervous system) activity brought on by relaxation has the benefit of allowing the rest of the body to recharge it's self. Letting your subconscious mind (parasympathetic nervous system) bring us to a more peaceful state of being.

Affects On The Body. Strengthening the immune system, Slowing your heart rate, lowering blood pressure, slowing your breathing rate, reducing the need for oxygen, increasing blood flow to major muscles, reducing muscle tension, fewer heartaches and back pain, fewer emotional responses such as anger and fear, more energy, improved concentration, and a greater ability to handle problems in our lives. Sounds good, doesn't it!?

Practice, Practice, Practice... Use Techniques Regularly.
At first relaxation will feel foreign, but with daily practice you will begin to become aware of your own muscle tension and other physical sensations of stress. The goal is to know what the stress response feels like, and make a conscious effort to relax and to prevent stress from gaining control of your life. These are skills that over time will become automatic for you. Be patient with yourself, stay motivated, and reduce the negative impact that stress brings to your body!

My favorite leisure activity is reading, I love knowledge. What is your favorite leisure activity that takes time out for you?

Mendy Baker is a LifeStyle Trainer who uses a new proven program to build her organization and mentors others to do the same. Go to http://www.mendybaker.yolasite.com to get more information about LifeStyle Training. You can learn more about her and get your FREE 3 Steps To A Wealthy Mindset Workbook at http://www.MendyBaker.com

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About Me

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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