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I am Thankful for My Family - Audrey McClelland
I am Thankful for My Family - Audrey McClelland
MONDAY, MAY 17, 2010

I'm thankful for my family - my husband and my 4 sons.  I'm one of those people that always wanted to be married and have a family.  Ever since I was a little girl, I would doodled my "kids names" on paper and draw hearts around it.  I never envisioned 4 boys!  That's the beauty of life... you never know what you're going to get!  I'm thankful for them because they love me, unconditionally.  It's the kind of love that you just feel blessed to have in your life.  My husband and my sons are my inspiration for every single thing that I do.  I want to make them proud.  I want to make them happy.  Every decision I make in life is made with them in mind, and I'm thankful for that.  I'm thankful for the smiles they give me.  I'm thankful for the "I love yous" and the hugs and kisses.  I'm thankful that they believe in me and that they want the best for me.  I'm thankful that I have these beautiful men in my life... my family... it's what I always wanted and dreamed of. 

Audrey left the fashion world of Donna Karan International in NYC to raise her brood of boys (4 of them, 5 and under) in her home state of Rhode Island. She’s learned that you can take the girl out of the Fashion District, but you can’t take the Fashion District out of the girl. Audrey brings her fashion expertise and mom experience to Mom Generations. On momgenerations, Audrey is "MOM".


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What I am Thankful For - Shelly
What I am Thankful For - Shelly
FRIDAY, MAY 14, 2010

"Rain drops and roses and whiskers on kittens. Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens.  Brown paper packages tied up with string.  These are a few of my favorite things. “ These are the things that made Julie Andrews happy in the Sound of Music, but I recently started to reflect on the things that make me happy.  Of course the first thing that comes to mind is my family and that they each make me happy in their own way.  Then I started to reflect on the little things in my daily life that make me happy.

My favorite place to go is the beach.  The thought of sitting with my toes in the sand and a good book makes me happy.  There is something about the sound of the waves in the background and a light breeze that melts away any stress. 

A good cup of tea and a new magazine makes me happy any day.  I love having a nice, warm cup of tea made just the way I like it with a good creamer and lots of sugar.  And having the chance to thumb through a new fashion magazine in peace and quiet.  Ah, the luxury.

Getting packages in the mail makes me happy.  There is something about getting a package; especially if it is unexpected that makes me happy.  Don’t you love the thrill of opening up a box that has been delivered?  It’s like Christmas throughout the year.

Stealing kisses from my boys after they’ve had a bath.  I love smelling their sweet little wet heads and kissing their soft clean cheeks.  If you could bottle up that clean baby smell you could make a million bucks.

Laughing with my husband.   One of the things I love is that my husband and I have the same sense of humor.  And with long days and fussy kids, laughter is one of those things that helps us get through.  A good belly laugh melts away the stress and always makes me feel good.

So these are just a few things that make me happy.  What makes you happy?

Shelly is a blogger from Virginia who is married to a great guy and is busy raising two boys under the age of three, as well as chasing after her beloved boston terrier, Miss Zoe.  When not swinging from the chandeliers, she loves to follow fashion and try her hand at crafts.  Blogging at the Chic Crafty Chick Blog, she shares fun finds, cool crafts, recipes and more.  She describes herself as a "chat with your girlfriend" kind of blogger. 



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The Magic of Baseball
The Magic of Baseball
MONDAY, APRIL 19, 2010

My 12 year old son’s baseball season started recently. So, for the last couple of weeks, we’ve been going out back and throwing the ball around almost every day. Just me and him.
He’s decided that this year, he really wants to take pitching seriously, and is willing to put in the time and effort by practicing. I’m his catcher. We take the bases out back, measure off the distance and start throwing. He’s doing great. I think he really has potential. (I know, what mom wouldn't say that, but I'm serious here.) It’s not easy for me to get in the catching position though. I am 43 years old and a little out of shape. But at least I still have my arm.

So he and I go and we throw the baseball. Really throw hard. And we laugh. A lot. About really silly things, like how the way I crouch down to catch his pitches makes my butt stick out.
Will started playing t-ball when he was 5. For those first few years, he would stand in the outfield looking at the clouds and the butterflies. But I couldn’t wait for the day to come when he and I could play catch together, really play catch. It happened two years ago. I was still using my old softball glove from high school. (I am proud to say that I was Co-Captain of my high school varsity softball team.) The leather in the glove was a little thin and I sprained my finger when I caught a ball in the wrong spot. I had to get a new glove.

There’s a parenting metaphor in here somewhere between his changing skill level in baseball and his changing need for his mom. In the beginning, in t-ball, he needed a lot of teaching and patience. He couldn’t do it on his own because he was just starting out, didn’t know how to throw or hit. At home, he also had a very physical need for me, making his dinner, helping him get ready for bed, lots of time spent reading together.

Now, he’s on the cusp of surpassing me with his skills and his physical strength and, of course, his height. In baseball, we’ve become even in many ways. We can both throw the ball hard and accurate. But I can’t pitch. He still needs me on a daily basis but in a different, less physical, way. He needs my guidance, my encouragement and some urging (get your homework done, clean your room, hang your towel up). He wants me to hug and kiss him, but not when I pick him up at school. He can make his own dinner and when he showers and gets ready for bed, he locks the door. Though I still kiss him goodnight and tuck him in when he’s done.
In another year or two, as his skill increases and he goes to high school, I imagine he’ll need me less. He’ll be stronger than me and a better ball player. Hopefully, he’ll still want to play catch. He may even teach me a thing or two. I hope he cleans his room and hangs up his towel without me having to ask. And, by then, I’ll have taught him how to do his own laundry. He’ll still need his mom, but in a more cerebral and emotional way. And that’s okay with me. As long as he still lets me hug and kiss him. Giving our children their independence is probably one of the best things we can do for them.

So, for now, I’ll play catch with him whenever he wants me to. And when he throws the ball so hard that my hand stings, I’ll grin and bear it. And I’ll be happy to be sore in order to spend this kind of time with him. Just the two of us. He thinks it’s cool, and so do I.  He says he doesn’t know any other 43 year old mom with an arm like mine. The time we spend together is better than any words that I could say to him about growing up and becoming a teenager, and it is in these moments I experience pure joy--a feeling I wish I had more of. But pure joy is hard to come by, not with the trials and tribulations of everyday life: viruses, broken wrists, bad days at work, mean girls in fourth grade, a troubled economy. That's the magic of baseball though. If only for short while, it lets us forget everything else.

Jen Cullen is a 40-something pseudo housewife, divorced and re-married with 2 kids, one stepdaughter and no pets. She writes Life’s Dewlaps: Musings From An Underused Brain (http://lifesdewlaps.blogspot.com) where she unburdens herself of the many thoughts in her head. It’s not as ominous as it sounds but she likes to explore random topics ranging from using at-home hair color and playing baseball with her son to taking Milk Thistle to prevent hangovers and using arousal gel.

 


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Thankful
Thankful
THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 26, 2009

I am so fortunate that I get to write a post that goes live on Thanksgiving Day.  This year has been an amazing journey with the normal ups and downs that are a part of being alive.   Overall though, I can’t/won’t complain.  My good moments have outweighed my bad moments.  I definitely have so many reasons to be thankful.

Rather than write about the latest fashion, beauty or other type of product, today I just want to focus on gratitude.  As such, here are the top reasons that Thanksgiving 2009 is special for me:

1.    My faith: Sometimes, when I read the news (i.e. about little Shaniya Davis)  or hear of random things that happen to wonderful people (i.e. Anissa) it makes me depressed for a moment.  If I did not think that there was more to life than this existence here on earth, I truly believe that I would be a very melancholy person.

2.    My family: What can I say?  I hit the jackpot.  I both love AND like my husband and two sons.  (You know that it is possible to love someone and not really like their character, right?)  Anyway, I am happy that I get to start and end the vast majority of my days with them.

3.    My friends: As I get older, I appreciate my true friends so much more.  Age teaches me the difference between good acquaintances and true friends.  I am fortunate to have many of the former and a special few of the latter.  People who know me completely, but love my unconditionally/in spite of me  I cannot ask for more.  There are few greater gifts than that.

Now it is your turn…who (or what) are you most thankful for this year?

Kimberly Coleman,
a wife and mom of two sons, writes and speaks about parenting in the NYC Metro area.   She is also the founder of Mom in the City (www.mominthecity.com), a blog for moms of toddlers and preschoolers

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