Don’t Sleep On Small Surprises

I have read many articles about how we are all trying to figure out this thing called parenting. And we can all agree that no one has it all figured out. That’s because each child is different, though they may share similar interest. I think we can all agree that at the end of the day, if we can hear our child say, “Mom, you’re the best” Then we are still winning. We are not trying to blur the lines between parenting and being our child’s homie…. And we want to make sure that there isn’t just a fine line in between either. We want there to be a noticeable difference so that we can establish boundaries and respect.

While parenting is not all about pleasing our children and catering to their want and needs like we are their servant, we still want to hear those words, Mom, you are the best, thank you mom, I appreciate you mom, I love you….To hear those words are encouraging to parents. They are inspiring. They are just what you need to hear on some days when you are pressing on to be the best parent you can be. The simple things in life… in exchange for something so empowering.

It is true that we doubt ourselves at times, even when we know that we are doing the absolute best that we can. We do this because we are constantly trying to make sure that our children have all the essential things they need to excel. So, when they even so much as remotely show signs of unhappiness, we are back at the drawing board trying to figure things out. If you are a parent, just remember not to beat yourself up.

My son reminded me that I was the best and for the remainder of the day, I felt as though I was wearing a crown.

It was last week, leading into Independence Day, when I was online searching for some fun in the city. Something local and affordable, where he would be able to watch a fire-works show among other things to maximize our time together. I found out that there would be all-day activities for kids; including an inflatable waterslide, discounted prices for Museum Entrance, face painting, bean bag toss contest, food, drinks and more along the waterfront at one of the local attractions. I began to plan for the event that would also end with a fire works show over the water.

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Upon our arrival to the park, the first thing that my son noticed was the inflatable water slide. His eyes widened, as I kept watch on his reaction. As we got closer and he was able to get a better look at it and saw the other children playing, he said ooh, mom! …then he said never mind. I asked, “What?” all the while knowing what he’d seen and what was going through his mind. He responded again, “Never mind… I would have to have swim clothes so it’s ok.” Just before we got to the water slide, I asked him to step into the bathroom. Once in there, I reached into my bag and pulled out his swim trunks and a tank. His face lit up! It was the highlight of my day. He said, “You the best mom!!!” These moments are what I live for. To surprise him with something so little and he be so grateful.

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Spending time with my child this summer has been most rewarding, even when out of spite one day he told me that my dress made me look fat. LOL. It was a funny story and I wish I could remember what exactly it was that he wasn’t getting his way with that day, which made him say it. But it reminded me of that sour patch kids commercial… (First, they are sour then they are sweet) Whatever it was, he had me standing in the mirror second guessing what I was wearing to church that day. I took it with a grain of salt and laughed because he wasn’t totally lying. However, he did take full advantage of the moment to make his opinion known.

https://www.facebook.com/NDKENNY/videos/10215987556579714/?t=1

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But anyway… We have a few weeks left in the summer. Here’s a few things you may want to keep in mind as you continue to make it the best one yet; while in the process, pull off a surprise of your own.

Always being prepared: Use your trunk for things like a cooler, an umbrella, one to two lawn chairs, a picnic blanket, a thermos for coffee or beverage of your choice and a cup for the kiddo. Take snacks with you to save on spending at fast food restaurants along the way or on expensive food trucks and food stands that are often set up at the park or venue and attraction.

Leaving ahead of time to give yourself ample time to arrive, park, make provisions for traffic and accidents which may have caused a delay on the highway.

Search for all the free or low cost local attractions and attend those rather than spending the bank on traveling away. Take advantage of what’s in the city.

Save on parking: If off street parking is cheaper than parking in a garage attached to an attraction, explore that as an option and use the time walking, to sightsee

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Checking ahead of time: This one depends on the attraction. I only thought about it because you have places like Urban Air and other trampoline parks where there are a lot of parties being planned on the weekend. If you have time during the week or earlier in the day to visit these establishments it may be worth it rather than going while they are jam-packed or when a party is going on where they will have certain areas blocked off for a party, limiting your child’s activities while being there during this time.

Taking one for the team: Being outside in that heat, turning three shades darker, sweating and sitting… consider this: Take an enjoyable book or earphones to listen to music. Talk to people around you who may be able to swap ideas on what to do.

Covering the basics here, is what sets the stage for you to pull off a great surprise!

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A “GETAWAY” is Not Always About “Getting Away” From Something You Don’t Like

beach, lady, laptop

Some of the best travel experiences I have had included Las Vegas, Nevada. Yup, right here in the United States. The first time I traveled there was in 2010, on assignment during the time I spent writing for Examiner.com. It was a media assignment to cover the Floyd “Money” Mayweather and “Sugar” Shane Mosley Boxing match.

Floyd Mayweather vs. Shane Mosley was a boxing welterweight non-title super fight, in which Mayweather won by unanimous decision with two judges scoring it 119–109 and one judge scoring it 118–110.

I visited again while writing for Examiner.com to cover another fight: Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Manny Pacquiao, billed as The Fight of the Century, or the Battle for Greatness, was a professional boxing match between undefeated five-division world champion Floyd Mayweather.

While I had a strong interest in the sport of boxing, being in attendance for both the weigh-in and the fight, along with the activities and events that surrounded the weekend; it was the time I spent sightseeing in my free time that I was able to fully enjoy being in the city. So many things to do and so many things to see was what inspired my third trip simply because I couldn’t pack it all into the first two.

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Getting off the plane on that third visit to Las Vegas was majestic. It was hot as tamales of course, with temperature up to 110 when I arrived, but once I kicked the layers off, threw on some shorts, sandals, a tank top and tied my hair back, the rest was history. This time, I was still on assignment but was writing with a media outlet where I had more freedom to explore the city and share with my readers all that Vegas had to offer. So, while I was still working, I was having fun doing something that I loved to do. I had found a way to combine work with play.

Vegas is truly like one super-sized adult theme park on steroids! From the architectural designs of the buildings/hotels to the layout of the famous Vegas Strip. A sea of lights and it’s no wonder it’s called the city that never sleeps!

The highlights of my trip included:

The Mob Museum: Officially the National Museum of Organized Crime and Law Enforcement, is a history museum located in Downtown Las Vegas, Nevada.

Las Vegas Observation Wheel: High Roller is a 550-foot tall, 520-foot diameter giant Ferris wheel on the Las Vegas Strip in Paradise, Nevada, United States of America. It is owned and operated by Caesars Entertainment Corporation

Freemont Street Experience: Sprawling 24-hour mall featuring a huge LED canopy, casino & restaurant access & free entertainment.

Aerial Photography of City during Evening

The Shark Reef Aquarium at Mandalay Bay is a public aquarium located at and owned by the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada. Its main tank is 1,300,000 US gallons, one of the largest in North America

Madame Tussauds Las Vegas: a wax museum located in the Las Vegas Strip at The Venetian Las Vegas casino resort in Paradise, Nevada. The attraction opened in 1999, becoming the first Madame Tussauds venue to open in the United States.

The Grand Canyon Tour: Papillon Grand Canyon Helicopters – This magnificent helicopter ride provides stunning aerial views of Hoover Dam, Lake Mead, and Grand Canyon West. Additionally, passengers will experience an exhilarating landing at the bottom of the canyon on our private plateau overlooking the mighty Colorado River. Upon landing, guests enjoy a champagne picnic with refreshments and have ample time to explore the awe-inspiring grandeur that is the Grand Canyon.

Vegas Shows: Baz! Set in a modern and intimate cabaret, BAZ is a celebration, a mash-up of music, and moments from the greatest love stories imagined by Oscar, Grammy, and Tony Award-nominated director Baz Luhrmann. Theatregoers follow the romances from Luhrmann’s iconic films: Romeo + Juliet, Moulin Rouge, and The Great Gatsby as the lovers discover whether fortune is in their favor.

Las Vegas Strip Signage

I encourage everyone to do a little traveling in their lifetime. Even if it starts with visiting the next state or over from them. There is so much more out there to see. But here’s why I think that part is important: It broadens your horizons. You meet new people. It connects you with people. You learn about culture. You become more versed in communication.

Being knowledgeable/aware of different things helps you understand different people and with that understanding, it organically generates compassion in the vessels of the heart. Depending on where you go or how far you travel outside of your comfort zone, it opens your mind to the things going on around the world, in which you will most likely relate to or at least have more insight into.

I came across a post on twitter recently, where the twitter user referenced “people who have to getaway” It read: “People are always talking about getting away and taking a getaway. If they didn’t hate their lives and were to create a life that they are happy with or if you were a happy person, there would be no need for a getaway. You don’t need to getaway if you are happy.” She then referenced hotel and vacation advertisements that use the word “getaway.”

Now, I am not fully sure of her understanding of a getaway and the purpose that it serves for most people, but on the surface; it sounded (at least to me) as if she was confusing people who are in an unhealthy situation who are always talking about one day getting away from a certain situation, with people who have a natural desire to simply want to getaway to a different place to broaden their horizons.

adult, book, business

I thought to myself that this was probably the most least profound thing that she could have said. Especially being a motivational public figure… (that’s the title individuals give themselves when they have a lot of followers on twitter) LOL

It’s not always about “getting away” from something you don’t like. And just because you take a vacation, (A Getaway: a place suitable for a vacation; a vacation especially of brief duration) doesn’t mean it’s so that you can leave a life behind that you hate. A getaway is just relaxing. For some, it’s therapeutic. For writers, it’s inspiring to have a change of scenery. Sometimes you just want the adventure of exploring new sights, sights unseen… going to unusual places because you cannot live in 100 places all at once.

Who doesn’t need a break from time to time anyway? Are you telling me that you can never go to enjoy the fruits of your labor because if you do, it means you hate your life? If you can show me someone who says they don’t want or need a getaway, I will show you a liar.

But for now, I digress. I would rather balance the universe by stating that it’s perfectly OK to want to getaway. It absolutely does not mean that you are unsatisfied with your life. It means that you are open to discovering the world and that you are realistic about the common day to day life that invites the idea of wanting a break to enjoy the other side of your front door.

7 Simple Summer Must Haves for Every Savvy Girl

Springtime is saying goodbye quicker than it came to us this year. With that, Summertime is Bo-guarding’ it’s way into our lives faster than we can pack away the clutter.  Have you thought about how you will be spending the summer? It’s OK if you haven’t. So long as you have thought about the things you will need to get you through the Summer, it doesn’t matter what you end up doing or where you end up going. Here are my suggestions:

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A great pair of sunglasses: Every Savvy girl needs a chic pair of sunglasses to protect her eyes from the sometimes-dangerous sunrays and overcast. Not to mention, accessories are a wardrobe staple and just what you need to top off that glamorous look that you will be sporting; whether its in your yoga pants while making a run to the store or headed out to brunch with the girls where you’ll be soaking up the sun from the rooftop deck or patio of some mouthwatering establishment. But listen… Some of my favorite sunglasses cost $5-$10, so you don’t have to spend upwards of that to achieve the look of a small fortune. When you keep the cost between $5-$10, you can splurge a little on a few more pair for the summer. If you are a hat person, top off this look with a nice one. Summer always has room for a Diva Hat! (Big Floppy Hat)

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Sunscreen: If there were any lessons taught to me on my trip to The Bahamas, it was that the SUN did not come to play! When it says its hot outside and the sun is out, that is fair warning that you need to protect your skin. After one day in the Bahamas, I was already 3 shades redder. My face is still recovering from the sun, as I made the mistake of laying out without any coverage. It only took about 20 minutes for the burn to occur. Tanning is great, but I don’t think anyone wants to be burned. With adequate sunscreen coverage, you can accomplish your bronzing without the pain of a lingering sunburn. Not to mention, your skin will thank you years later. Pack a small bottle in your purse if you plan on doing any outdoor activities including but not limited to, the beach, the pool, the park, walking and hiking trails. Since were on the subject, don’t forget to pick up a lip balm with SPF 30 to ensure that your lips also get the coverage and moisture that they need for protection against the sun.

Red

Conditioner: Speaking of the damage that the sun can do, you will want to invest in a good hair conditioner for your hair. Whether its long and straight/wavy, short, curly or coiled or a combination of all; moisture is what it will need to keep from breaking or becoming brittle and damaged. This may vary across the board of course. The key is finding the right one for your hair type and there are several out there. I have found my fountain of luck in The TRESemmé Flawless Curls collection for Naturally Curly hair and it has worked wonders in keeping my curls hydrated! I have also used Garnier Fructis Butter Cream, which is a 3-day moisture for defined frizz resistant curls. These products lock in moisture and keep my hair safe against the sun while maintaining the look I am going for throughout the day. When consistent with using it, your hair builds up strength against the weather.

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Sandals/ flip flops: Yes! Remember that “look” I talked about. Never underestimate the power of a good walk in a comfortable pair of sandals or flip flops with a long sundress, a sleeveless jumpsuit, or romper. Every Savvy girl must have at least one pair heading into the summer. Wonderful thing about flops and sandals are that they come in many neutral colors and can be cross-worn with a majority of your summer wardrobe selections.

A lifesaver Bag: A few years ago, I proposed a blog challenge to readers called “What’s in Your Purse” The idea was to discover the things that women carry in their purse and by what’s in their purse, we could tell them what they were ready for. IE: If you had a B/C Powder, you were prepared for a hangover. It was a truly funny assignment in seeing some of the non-sense that we carry around and when faced with the question of, “Why in the HECK do we have that”, you really should have heard some of the creative stories we came up with. But anyhow, I poured out the contents of a bag that I carried and couldn’t believe the things that fell out. I was appalled at how prepared I was for the world to come to an end. LOL. JK…. But I truly was prepared. From that, I aptly began to call it “The Lifesaver Bag”

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This bag has come in handy on some many occasions. From being stranded in airports on long layovers, to being out late and having to stay over at a friend’s house, to last minute trips where I would not have to shop for items I already had at home. So, what exactly goes into a lifesaver bag? Whatever you need that will fit into a small bag that you can throw into the trunk of the car. I just use the largest purse I have. In it, goes the travel sized hygiene kit/fem products and travel size items that can be easily slipped into a pocket, such as: Lotion, Deodorant, B/C Powder, Tweezers, Tide Pen, Gel, Hairspray, Wipes, Body Spray, Powder, Soap, Razor, underwear and a change of clothes. Seriously, just trust me on this one. Keep it in the car always.

Trunk Kit: So, the above blog challenge didn’t stop at the “What’s in your Purse” Challenge. It extended itself to the “What’s in your trunk” Challenge. Both challenges worked the same, so without further ado: An Umbrella, Pic-Nic Blanket and a Lawn Chair were the three things that I always keep in my trunk as I never know when my child will want to stop and take 6 solid hours in the park. I must always be prepared! Perhaps you don’t have

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A GOOD Drink: What kind of Savvy would I be if I did not mention a Summer Cool Down! This is not limited to Wine… Liquor, because I do realize that there are people who refrain from drinking. And while I am not one of them, because I take my wine red and prefer a glass or two each week; I can suggest many cold Teas and Lemonades that will keep you refreshed this summer. Don’t forget a good Alkaline water and if I had my preference for any water, it would be Essentia or Fiji. Ahhh…. Refreshing and hydrating…Now, you are ready!

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Teaser from the Book “Order in the Courtroom” pt. 2

I’m going to tell you the story about a girl who was arrested May of 2013 by the Fort Bend County, Sheriff Department.

During her normal routine of meeting the father of her child at a Valero gas station located at the entrance of Sienna Plantation, a sub division in Missouri City, Texas, in which she lived; the peaceful drop was interrupted.

Allow me to pause and rewind: they were meeting at the gas station, at the court ordered request of the girl, who had been harassed many times and assaulted by her child’s father. She requested a mutual and public meeting place due to the previous harassment being done in private. She thought that meeting in a public place would work as a deterrent against the constant harassment. She thought that the public meeting place would make it harder for her child’s father to carry out any threats on her life he’d made. She was happy that he was finally ordered to meet her in a public place, even though it pissed him off more that he had to do so. She was happy that she finally got the order to meet in a public place, after she requested it for 2 years. 2 years that she was denied the motion, in addition to not only being denied that request before, she was ordered to give him her address to her safe haven for pick ups. Until one day……. (Pause: Will be right back)

Back to the day at the gas station: she hugged and kissed her son as usual, before walking him to his father. Once her, then 2.5 year old son, whom had been in her care and custody since birth, was in his fathers arms, she was approached by 2 police officers, as she got back in her car. One on each side of her vehicle. One stood at the front passenger side, demanding that she roll her window down. The other stood at the driver side window, demanding the same. She rolled her windows down and was asked her name. The same officer demanded to produce her identification. After she questioned the officers about why they were asking for her information, and more importantly, why they seemed so aggressive, she looked in her rear view mirror and noticed the father of her child in the car, along with her child. The child’s father was laughing/smiling. She then knew, he had something to do with it. She flashed backed to the email she had just received from him, inciting an encrypted message about something that was “about to happen” it was a joke to him and a warning at the same time. It was a reflection of his ways, in that he’s always had a trick up his sleeve and he’s too narcissistic to let you go without letting someone know that he was the mastermind.

Right about that time, she was demanded to get out of the car and was given no reason why. The police reached inside the car and unlocked the door and began to pull her out. After she tried to make several calls from her cell phone, before being pulled from the vehicle, the police opened her door and began to pull her out.

She told the police that she’d like to call her attorney. The police told her no. One officer, demanded that she hand her cell phone over and that he would call her attorney. She said, “No, there’s a lock on my phone as well as personal information that you do not need to see or have access to.” The police told her that if she does not give him her password, he will not allow her to call anyone. Under duress, she surrendered…

You won’t believe what happened next! Stay tuned for my next teaser.

https://www.amazon.com/Niedria-Kenny/e/B00JION5EC

Something For Moms Everywhere

I was searching for the words over the weekend to share something that I was not sure if I should even share at all. Then, the more I thought about it the more it became clear to me that I had to. Because sometimes the very thing thing we went through, are the very things that someone else is going through. This is the time that we may have a word, which may help and assist someone else who’s going through something similar, even if just by letting them know that they are not alone.

As mothers, we are often criticized when we take on careers outside of being a housewife or a stay at home mom. Sadly, this criticism comes from other women and mothers sometimes. Even more sad, it can come from people that we are close to or share a past with.

These careers may come with the requirement of travel, where you are away for up to a 2-weeks period. It may come with the requirement of attending weekly events or conferences and being out until 10 P.M. on some evenings reporting on them (if you are in journalism) It may require that you have an after-school program in place for your child to attend, as you are not able to pick him/her up from school every-day. It may require moving away altogether, when the situation is that you are a mom with a portion of responsibilities that require you to accept work out of town, to meet the terms of those responsibilities.

For some 1930’s reason, there are many people who still think that women who do not stay at home with their children or are not able to be with their children everyday are less than worthy of being called a “good mom” whether it was by their own choosing or force through minimal options available which would have otherwise allowed them to stay at home with their children all the time.

Perhaps we should examine the meaning of the phrase “good mom”

Does she love and care for her child? Does she show and tell her child that she loves him/her? Does she provide for her child? Does she show her child that she has a vested interest in his education and success? Does she teach her child right from wrong? Does she instill values in her child and build moral? Does she support her child in ways that show her child that she is devoted to his/her mental and emotional needs? Does she feed her child and make sure he/she is eating healthy? Does she clothe her child and make sure he/she is clean and groomed? Does she listen to her child? Does she engage in bonding activities with her child?

So, she does all the above, but she happens to also work.

Does her child have an age appropriate understanding of why his/her mother works and that mom must work, to continue to provide the most basic thing that he/she need for survival? IE: Food. What about shelter? She must provide that as well, right? What about the things that go into that shelter and the things that are needed to maintain that shelter, such as electricity, gas and water. What about the additional things that are needed for the child, such as Shoes and Clothes. What about all that fun stuff he/she wants to do on the weekend? IE: The Movies, The Trampoline Park, Chuck-E-Cheese?

So, again… she has done all of this and makes it clear to her child as she re-iterates the importance of her having to work. Wouldn’t you say that’s a pretty good mom? If theability to do all of these things exist, and are being done…. I’d say she’s nailing this mom thing.

So why is it that people only concern themselves with the “picture” or the “image” of a good mom only being one that is with her child every day? What does it mean when someone says that you are “not there for your child” when you are doing all the above?Sidebar -RE: Divorced Parents – Have you factored in the naked truth that when a child is assigned to live primarily with one parent, it can be relatively impossible for the other parent to physically be there every day? And that is far from saying that someone is not there for their child, when they aren’t being allowed to. I think this is something that parents, men and women, should consider, as well as those who are judging the situation.

What I think people in the world often do to one another that is so wrong, is that they make you feel forced to make them understand why you have made every decision you have made in your life. Your responsibility is not to make them understand. But if it doesn’t make sense to them or if they “think” they would have done something differently, they can’t accept it. It’s unfortunate, because the way that they deal with the inability to understand is then to criticize.

This is what I say to mothers and career women: You should not consume yourself with trying to appease everyone with an explanation about why you have chosen to live your life the way that you are living it. It’s your story for a reason and everyone will not understand that. You may be on a different path than they are. You have a separate set of circumstances. Your destiny is not the same as everyone around you, and so your journey will not be the same.

Whether you are a stay at home mom, a career mom, a mom who does it all, a recently divorcee, a mother who’s going through the most trying time in her life… don’t let anyone tell you that you are a bad mother for doing something differently from what they would have done.

1. Don’t allow people to steal your joy by making you feel guilty about the healthy decisions that you have made in your life.

2. Don’t be afraid to take that job, embark on a new career which may require travel. People are going to have something to say, regardless. (If you did not work, they would talk about that too)

3. You are not leaving your child. You are a great mother. You are a mother who is making yet another sacrifice for your child. You have demonstrated this to the one person who matters… your child.

4. Don’t set expectations high for anyone to see this. People will discourage you. They will try to break you down. They will tell you that you are wrong. They will judge you.

5. Don’t be afraid to love and be loved. Don’t feel guilty about loving or being loved. Sometimes people will not applaud this. It won’t sit well with people who are not rooting for you to love or be loved.

But for everyone that is telling you that you wrong, there are more that will tell you that you are right. Sometimes in putting your child first, you must make that move. You must cultivate a healthy life so that you are healthy for your child and so that you can consistently provide a healthy environment for him/her.

I absolutely loved the time I was able to stay at home with my child even though I was a single mother. I chose assignments that did not require me being away from him at all. I chose assignments where I could bring him along with me. I incorporated mommy-hood/parent-hood into my career. But those were the options I had at that time in my life. As your child gets older, things change. The need to change his diaper every 4 hours dies out. The need to warm his bottle, rock him to sleep, and feed him will begin to fade. As the need to do those things dissipate, the need to do more will materialize. His needs are different, so quite naturally we adjust with the times to ensure that those new needs are being met. My child is older now and in school, he’s more independent and able to speak for himself. If we are maximizing the time that we do have with our children in loving them, caring for them and supporting them, we are all good mothers. You are a GREAT MOTHER.

I’ll Drink To That! In 2018, what are you drinking to? Reader comments encouraged. Share and Re-tweet

I’ll Drink To That! In 2018, what are you drinking to? Reader comments encouraged. Share and Re-tweet

It’s time for a little fun and reader engagement! Don’t you just love when there’s an activity that gets everyone involved! Here’s your chance to participate.

We are drinking to success in the new year, success from previous year, goals in the new year, achievements and milestones in the new year. We are drinking to dreams coming true and for blessings and a prosperous year ahead. We are celebrating by raising our glass victoriously, to what we’ve accomplished in the past as well as to what we anticipate accomplishing this year as if it’s ALREADY done. It’s an exercise about speaking things into existence or to visualize it so that you can achieve it.

It can also be what you are doing in the present moment that you have been waiting to do, in which you will drink to. You are free to be as humorous, as serious and as sarcastic as you’d like to be with this exercise. I just ask that you keep it clean and G-Rated. Keep in mind, this is something that YOU are speaking into existence, if it’s not something that has already been done or being done in the present moment. If you think about it, you probably have more to drink to that you could imagine. Whatever you’re excited about having done or doing, lets share!

It’s not about being unrealistic and forcing people to get their hopes up just to be let down, its an exercise about the power of life and death resting in the tongue. If you see it as real, then that’s what counts! If you have done it, celebrate! You must speak over yourself sometimes, be encouraged and say give yourself an applause when done. It’s an exercise about speaking positivity and light into your life, seeing dreams manifest into something real and being excited about what you have done.

Take it a step further if you like and play this game while you’re entertaining guest at your home or while you’re out with your friends this weekend. Go around in a circle and rattle off things you would drink to. See how long the game goes on.

So, pull out your wine, whiskey, cognac, coolers, beer or sparkling grape juice. Below are a few responses I received already. This is what we are drinking to!

Just closed on my Dream home – I’ll drink to that

Just opened a homeless shelter – I’ll drink to that

Passes my Physical Exam – I’ll drink to that

Just refinanced my house- I’ll drink to that

My son just passed 11th grade – I’ll drink to that

My son got a job – I’ll drink to that

I am in great health – I’ll drink to that

Just completed budget for 2018 donations to various Charities – I’ll drink to that

My clothing line is in several stores across the country – I’ll drink to that

He liked it and he put a ring on it – I’ll drink to that

I was able to give to those in need – I’ll drink to that

My business is a total and complete success – I’ll drink to that

My largest Bill is paid off – I’ll drink to that

You’re not paying me what I am worth, Bye – I’ll drink to that

My credit card % usage is less than 30% – I’ll drink to that

Confirmed my trip to London – I’ll drink to that

Just furnished my new home – I’ll drink to that

Started a new job who pays me well – I’ll drink to that

My blog just went viral – I’ll drink to that

I’ve been asked to be an Ambassador for the ABFF – I’ll drink to that

I just got a phenomenal raise – I’ll drink to that

Just got invited to Turks Island – all expense paid – I’ll drink to that

Just made my first million – I’ll drink to that

The judge awarded me custody – I’ll drink to that

Headed to Dubai with my son – I’ll drink to that

Getting married in Monaco – I’ll drink to that

Just got married – I’ll drink to that

Just sold a house – I’ll drink to that

You must pay me alimony – I’ll drink to that

Pay my momma Bills, I go no time to chill – I’ll drink to that

My son made the A- Honor-Roll – I’ll drink to that

My son just got a full scholarship – I’ll drink to that

Won my lawsuit – I’ll drink to that

Paid off my school loans – I’ll drink to that

He finally paid his child support – I’ll drink to that

Lionsgate just requested my manuscript – I’ll drink to that

My Move across country was the best move I made – I’ll drink to that

My son is the teacher’s favorite – I’ll drink to that

Debt Free for the first time – I’ll drink to that

Hit the lottery – I’ll drink to that

My son just wrote a book – I’ll drink to that

Got Master’s Degree, finally at 62 years old – I’ll drink to that

My mom is looking stunning, standing next to the ride I just sent her – I’ll drink to that

The Battle Is Over – I’ll drink to that

My son gives a dam – I’ll drink to that

My son doesn’t get in trouble in school anymore – I’ll drink to that

My sex life is revived with my husband – I’ll drink to that

I am on the Best-Selling Author list – I’ll drink to that

I completed another book – I’ll drink to that

My screenplay just hit it big – I’ll drink to that

I have a sex life – I’ll drink to that

He made a promise and he kept it – I’ll drink to that

I said yes – I’ll drink to that

My health is renewed – I’ll drink to that

Cancun is looking lovely from where I am sitting – I’ll drink to that

I paid all my back taxes and got rid of the IRS – I’ll drink to that

The IRS got hacked, all records lost – I’ll drink to that

Headed to the Netherlands with my son – I’ll drink to that

My son has his own side quarters in our new house – I’ll drink to that

New Home construction finally complete – I’ll drink to that

How Your Unsolicited Public Relations Role Can Have Negative Impact In Your Child’s Life

My son will be turning 7-years old in December. I am guilty of looking at him sometimes and only seeing my precious little toddler who needs his mother to hold his hand in everything he does. I cringe when he swings too high on the swing set, for fear of him falling. My heart beats a bit faster when he charges across the Monkey Bars, what if he misses a step? What if he scrapes his knee? What if he bumps his head? What if he knocks his teeth out? In the past I have been known to run to him, attempting to prevent the inevitable. Sometimes I’d run when there was no possibility of an accident, because I could always ‘imagine’ a possibility. Think about the term imagine for a moment, I will come back to that.

My beautiful baby boy is growing up. He does not need me to step in and catch him from falling on the playground turf made of rubber mulch.

What am I teaching the other kids about my child when I do this? I am teaching them that my son is dependent on me. What I am doing can quite possibly in his eyes be interpreted as showing all his peers that he needs his mommy, he can’t do it without his mommy, he needs mom to hold his hand, he’s incapable of doing this and he will likely fall because he’s not skilled.

He then appears disabled or even crippled and somewhat impaired. When the truth is, he crosses the monkey bars better than I do. He has more energy and resilience than I do. He’s a beast on the obstacle course. No one gets to see this if I am there showing/telling/suggesting to people that he needs me to do it. I also steal away the moment for myself to see what he’s capable of doing, so long as I am standing in his way.

When I watched my son take on the monkey bars one day I was in total and complete awe! I didn’t even know he could. I was happy to have caught it all on a video. More so, I was proud that he was not only great at it, but that he was showing the other kids how to do it.

If you are standing too close to your child and watching their every move, you won’t know what they can do. Even if you have doubt, you don’t have to tell the entire world. Because when you do, you shape and mold the perception that everyone begins to have about your child. And then you end up putting something in their lap to overcome or prove, which they didn’t ask for.

For Example: What if I am out there on the playground watching my son while having small talk with the other parents and I am saying things like, “Oh my child is so clumsy… Oh I must watch him, He’s a dare devil. I have to keep my eyes on him, because he might fall.” Do you see how that translates into a perception that someone may gather about my child? It would speak volumes about my lack of confidence in my son.

There have been times where my child has missed the step while I was standing back, after-which I watched him get up and continue as if nothing ever happened. But when he notices that I see him and that I am hurt or uneasy- it affects him. He is hesitant to try new things or to be as daring- because he’s worried about me. So, I am inadvertently teaching him not to be a risk taker and I am showing him that I don’t believe in him. I think he will get hurt. I think he can’t do it. I am lessening his self-confidence. I watched him take off on a scooter one day and because it was a wobbly start, I panicked and screamed, “jump off, get off, let it go.” He let it go alright. And he fell on the ground only because I caused him to panic, when all the while he had it. He refused to get back on. So, all his courage to give this scooter a try and to keep holding onto it even while it was wobbly, I had completely crushed. Lesson: Have a little faith in your children. Or at least, have the faith in them that they will do it, like you have faith in all the people you talk to about your child when you think telling them something about your child will be safe with them and that they possess a skill to help your child. Have that same faith and trust in your child.

In the same Breath: It thinks it’s fair to say that by nature, moms will always possess the innate desire to think, speak and act on behalf of our children when it comes to protecting them But it can go left if we don’t stop and think it through

Parents: As parents we sometimes take it upon ourselves to not only speak on behalf of our children, but we speak about our children. We don’t realize that we should be mindful about the energy we are entertaining. We need to be mindful of what we are putting into the atmosphere about our children.

(Adult Children/Parents) Sometimes parents without all intentional purpose of putting their child in a bad light, take on the role of Public Relations without note given to whom they are sharing intimate details, private affairs and personal information about their child. At the same time, because they feel comfortable with the people they are sharing the what’s-what with, they speak very passively about their children. For example: The parents friend may ask, “So what’s Amanda up to these days?” The parent may reply, “Same old Same old, she’s going to get it together soon” following with a smirk, a laugh, maybe even a shake of the head. Seems innocent, right? Especially since they are speaking to a friend and they didn’t exactly dog the child out. And while saying “they will get it together soon” could mean that you’re hopeful and that you are co-signing the fact that they are moving in the right direction, you are also implying that they “don’t have it together.”

So now, your child’s reputation precedes them before they have an opportunity to carve out one of their own. They are viewed as the child who doesn’t have it together.

I know parents who’s children are having a hard time, but you still won’t hear that parent saying anything negative about them or in any way putting them in a bad light regarding the way people see them. It clearly shows that you can keep your child lifted in the eyes of others until your child “gets it together” so that in the process their reputation is not tarnished. And so that in the meantime, people aren’t discounting their abilities or reducing them to the child that doesn’t have it together. This way, when they do get it together they have a fair attempt at doing something right. They have a vote of confidence from their peers.

However, when they walk around feeling plagued by an impression that their own parent has shaped for them, they feel hopeless and giving up seems easier because no one can unhear all the things that they have “heard” from the parent, since people view a parent’s opinion of their child as law. IE: If their own mother said it, it must be true.

Furthermore: It’s even more damaging when the parent speaks off assumptions. Meaning the information is not even true-or it’s information created by the parents who are entertaining their own thoughts. “Imagine” Because parents always imagine the possibilities.

When you assume that the child must be hurt from the fall they took earlier, because they are walking slow- you call 911, create a scene, the paramedic arrives only to determine that the child was just dehydrated, and it had nothing to do with a fall. Something you could have determined before creating a scene if you bothered to ask or even notice that the child hasn’t had anything to drink or eat all day.

Parents sometimes speak about problems that don’t exist. In turn it creates one more issue for the child. Overall what ends up happening is the child is walking around not even knowing what has been said about them. People will move a certain way, based on the information that they have. All the while, the child knows nothing.

There is a scientific notion: Formally stated, Newton’s third law is: For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. The statement means that in every interaction, there is a pair of forces acting on the two interacting objects. The size of the forces on the first object equals the size of the force on the second object.

Picture this: You walk into a room very excited and you can’t wait to see everyone. You have eaten a great breakfast and last night you had the time of your life. Once you get into the room, you’re being the social butterfly that you’ve always been, and you make your way around the room to hug everyone and share your contagious smile. However, people are giving you half hugs and side eyes and you soon realize that they are also whispering something about you.

You cannot tell me that this would not influence how you then react. Suddenly your fun-loving spirit withdraws, you are deflated, and you begin to wonder what the hell so going on. In some cases, no one in the room will believe that your smile is real, due to the information that they have about you. In some cases, no one on the room will want to be around you because of the information they have. And because they haven’t had the opportunity to get to know this child outside of what they have been told, that’s the authentic impression that they have. So, they are looking for that type of behavior and when they don’t see it- they don’t end up saying, “oh momma must have lied- this child is awesome.” Instead, they say, this child must be putting on a show.

Last Thing:I have a home girl who had her adult daughter living with her while she was transitioning from job to job, finding her place in the workforce. My homegirls’ daughter stayed with her for about 7 years. All I knew at the time was that her 29-year old daughter was living with her. I never knew the girl was unemployed and I never knew she was struggling to find a job. While I could assume, those assumptions were never confirmed from her mother. That’s because her mother was careful about the information she shared about her daughter. She was mindful about the impression she would give anyone about her adult daughter living with her.

When her child did find a job, it was an awesome job. The best part about it is that I didn’t look at the situation as, wow you got a job? (as if you were incapable of working or finding a job or being worthy of anyone hiring you) My understanding of who her daughter was and my perception of her abilities and quantities were never warped by anything her mom said. My perception of her was that she was always capable of securing such an awesome job, because her Mother never made her feel like she was less than what she was.

In my opinion and experience with this close friend, she never shared with the world the information that she had pieced together from possibilities in her own mind that came to exist about what her daughter could have, may have been thinking or going through and she never tainted it with her own diagnosis.

I have had to put many things into perspective about the details of my child’s life that I too, have shared.While I think it’s my story because I am witnessing it along with him, I have been unintentionally reckless about how it may be viewed later in his life. So, I get it. And once you know better, you do better. I have learned to stand on the sidelines while my son is at play. When and if he falls, he will let me know if it’s bad enough. That’s when the momma-bear comes out. Other than that, he got this!

Article Originally published on Mom Bloggers Club