Lifestyle, Relationships, Uncategorized

Has your girl been dropping subtle hints about date night? Here are some suggestions to help prevent a fight

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Has your girl been dropping subtle hints about date night? Here’s what you need to know, to prevent a fight.

1. Date nights with your partner are important to the relationship. It doesn’t matter if you’re courting someone and looking for it to blossom into something more, or if it’s your wife of many years, your girlfriend of a few months. All women want date night.

2. Date nights aren’t exclusive to one idea. Meaning, dinner and a movie aren’t the only two choices for spending time with your partner. Change it up- go to a concert or a play, make it a night at the museum, or a dessert bar instead of a 6-course meal.

3. Date nights are your opportunity to get the fire burning, keep the fire burning, or both; under the discussion of intimacy in the relationship. Intimacy isn’t just sex. Intimacy extends in mental stimulation, touching, holding hands, being affectionate and paying attention to your partners emotional needs.

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4. Try to make your date night happen, with as few distractions as possible. I realize if you’re on call as a medical profession, you may need to keep the pager on your hip. And I realize emergencies happen, where the sitter interrupts for instructions. Aside from emergencies, turn the phone on silent, put it in your purse, get off social media, put down the emails for this special evening with your partner.

5. Date night does not have to be on the weekend: Of course, it depends on schedules. Some couples take advantage of mid-week opportunities to steal away for a few hours and enjoy one another’s company. If you are looking at weekdays or weekend as an impossible solution, you’re only using one side of your brain. Date night is whatever day you make it and the schedule for it can change weekly/monthly. Just make sure it happens.

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6. Date night does not have to entail a fancy evening, which would cost north of$200.00. Especially if you are doing date night once a week, like most women have expressed they want it. It is not always necessary to roll with a white linen table cloth evening, which would also require dressing the part. Date night can consist of fashionable denim apparel or whatever you make it. BBQ, Concert, Special Event, Chipotle, Chili’s or even an exclusive bar for drinks and appetizers.

7. On very rare occasions, should you double date on date night with your significant other. Some couples want the luxury of having that private moment to discuss private affairs, as well as keep the conversation going, on things that matter to them, when it comes to strengthening the relationship. However, some couples consider the double date, because it kills two birds with one stone, when allowing them to spend time with their friends.

8. Do not take your parents on date night. On rare occasions, couples have that kind of relationship with the in-laws. However, in a lot of cases, they don’t. Even if they do, when parents are present, it somewhat limits the topics of discussions, as you may want to maintain privacy in the relationship, as it pertains to intimate affairs, including: finances, health, children, family, sex-life. Then again, some people value the advice they get from their parents. So, use discretion.

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9. Date night is that private moment, where you keep the love alive. It’s dating each other, as you did when you met. Its blowing life into the expression: What you did to get her, you will have to do to keep her. It keeps things fresh. It makes her feel like she’s still wanted and desired, and still worthy of your time to be taken out on a meaningful date, where you are trying to woe ad impress her.

10. If there are serious matters that need to be discussed regarding finances, please do not absorb the entire date time in doing do. Speak on it, get to an understanding and move on, with an understanding. If you can’t, then carve out some time for later in the week, or the next day to discuss if it must be done in private, away from the kids.

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Note: Statistically, one of the number one reasons that marriages end in divorce, is over finances. I remember going out to eat many moons ago, with my boyfriend in college. I remember overhearing the older couple in the booth next to us, argue about finances and who pays for what… so on and so on. They appeared to be around their early 40’s. It was funny to us, at the same time, but it was a glimpse of what life could easily become if these things as such, were not discussed. We vowed that if we were to stay together, we would not do this. We would give attention to the subject and be financially conscious. At the end of the day, we would not find ourselves in a booth at Red Lobster, arguing about who will pay the bill.

All that to say, date night could also be spent in the privacy of your own home, without spending much at all. Be creative. Make it intimate. Keep it fun. A nicely prepared meal, done together, can create the atmosphere for the perfect date; which still ignite/reignite the fire. In other words, don’t break the bank and cause the ship to sank’.

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Lifestyle, Parenting, Relationships, Travel

5 Ways My Life Has Changed, Since My Son Has Been Living With His Dad: The Pros And The Cons

  1. My schedule is random unless my is visiting on the weekend. When he’s home with me, I provide the stability and the structure as well as discipline that he needs, by following a schedule to keep him on track with bed time, dinner, breakfast, play time, reading etc. It was a schedule that I implemented for him long before he was living with his dad. Now that he’s gone, I sleep in, I eat out, I cook less, and I eat whenever and whatever I want. I take longer naps, make runs to the store at any time throughout the day, no matter how late. I can travel more if I’d like to and not worrying about who would take him to school and pick him up, or even the fact that he would have to miss school. I can take last minute media assignments, make last minute plans, and spare of the moment trips out of town/ in town or even out of the country. Overall, I have free time to pursue many endeavors.
  2. Anxiety: For a while, I had my anxiety under control. I did not experience anxiety on this level at all, prior to having a child. It was not until my child was taken from me, over an accusation, proven to be false; which left me in such a helpless and anxious place. It was because I could not help my child. I could not do anything to give him what he asked for, which was to stay with me. That is when I began to experience anxiety again. The decision on who he would live with, did not rest in my authority. It was not in my hands and no one asked my son where he wanted to be. The reason the anxiety heightened and escalated to the place where I am today, is because over the last 4-years, I became aware of things that were taking place, when my son was not in my care and after hearing so many things, it caused my anxieties to soar through the roof. While most of this, is a thing of the past, it was traumatic for me, and I still live with it, constantly finding ways to cope; reposing in the assurance that everything happens for a reason, and I have seen some of the advantages and blessings come out of it all.

“Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow has not yet come. We have only today. Let us begin.” ― Mother Teresa

  1. Parks will never be the same: One of my son and I favorite pastime was to go to the park. We discovered just about every park there was, in the city. We settled on two, to call own, which were closest to the house. I spent many flex-days there with him and while he would play, I caught a spot under the tree. Today, it’s hard to drive by those parks. It’s hard to sit in those parks, work out, run around or walk around those trails. It’s a real challenge to be there, if other children are there. I have been in a place, where I couldn’t watch the other kids play, without breaking down. Though I am getting better with regards to seeing other children, I have yet to overcome the anxieties of going to those parks without my Bambino. When I do have him, we still make the most of our time. I found another park to create memories at, until the time comes…
  2. Insomnia: In other words, I cannot sleep at night…. Literally. (due to the anxiety) At times, I have been up 48 hours straight. That had a lot to do with the anxieties as well. Constantly worrying about where my kid was, who he was with and if he was OK. I had been fed some things by the Amicus on our case, in which she thought to be disturbing. Naturally, it disturbed me at that point as well. For 4 years of constantly hearing more and more, I was finding that my nights were getting longer and longer. Time passed like molasses. I would lay down with every intention of sleeping, but couldn’t make it happen. Still, to this very day, I have nightmares, terrible dreams that wake me from my sleep, where I fall to the floor and pray that my child is OK. He may be doing terrific! And that’s what I hope, but until I can get over the thought of anything happening to him, I will be woke.
  1. I have more Me Time: Me time has showed to be my best friend. It’s A time to get back to me, and focus on improvement. There’s always room for improvement, right? And since I do have severe anxiety and insomnia, it gives me the opportunity to work on getting myself back to a place, where I am rested, refreshed and refined. It allows me the time I need to “talk” about why I can sleep, why I have so much anxiety, why I stopped traveling as much, why I don’t leave the house as much, why I can’t sit in the park and watch other children play, or why I cannot do anything about what has transpired, but that I can find ways to cope with it. Me Time, gives me the space and time I need to do my make up again, do my hair again, celebrate myself again, in all that I do. Me Time helps me get back to the business of this empire and to pamper myself, heart, mind, body and soul. Me Time has encouraged me to get out of the house and to get active in the world again.

Article Originally posted Here, On Working Mother

Lifestyle, Parenting, Relationships, Travel, Uncategorized

5 Things That Every Super Single Mom Can Appreciate!

When it comes to showing a Super Single Mom, that you care about them, there are so many ways to do it. Vacations out of the country, expensive gifts, which include jewelry, such as: Promise Rings, and the Tiffany Diamond Pendent that she has been looking at, are nice, but are sometimes not affordable at the time and other times, the timing is just all bad.

When thinking about what to give that Super Single Mom, who happens to be a co-worker, your best friend, your relative, or your business partner, the gifts may also vary. You don’t always need to break the bank, to make grand gestures. When they are heart-felt and much needed, they are also appreciated! Here are some universal, fool-proof things, that every Super Single Mom can appreciate.

FROM A MAN:

romantic tripA Romantic Day Trip: (If you’re romantically involved) In which, she may stop calling herself “Single.” As stated, a full-blown vacation may not be possible or even feasible at the time, with regards to work schedules and raising kids. They take time off and proper planning, whereas a day trip is well within reach.

Pick her head on things she would like to do and local places she would like to visit, such as: The Botanical Gardens, The Arts Museum, etc. Plan a picnic, a walk in the park, or a boat ride to follow. For the day, make her feel like she is out of town, and away from the madness, even though it is just 10-30 miles away.

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A little handwritten note: Notes are perhaps the most sentimental thing you can do for a woman. Here are some ideas. Just tell her something that she has not heard in a while. Remind her of how you feel about her. Let her know how much she means to you. Be willing to be vulnerable. “You’re beautiful” “You are appreciated” “You look great today, as usual” “You are a great mother”

breakfast in bed

Breakfast in Bed: Nothing says, “Good-Morning” like breakfast in bed. Waking up to a home-cooked breakfast, is in the mind of every super single mom. If you are dating, to the point that you are occupying spaces together, the kids are getting along, and they spend an inordinate amount of time together, as the two of you pan out blending the families, whereas things are getting serious; this will earn you major cool points.

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A Surprise Lunch/Brunch or Dinner: Surprise her with a date to one of her favorite restaurants. It shows that you’re interested/still interested in dating her, in that you even remember what her favorite restaurant is. Take care of the arrangements beforehand, so that she doesn’t have to think.

Women who have been working, thinking and making all the decisions at work and at home, all day, just want someone to finally say: “I made reservations for lunch, at The Walnut Cafe. I am picking you up at 1:00 P.M.” Or, “We have dinner reservations. I will meet you at the house, and we can go from there. I have made arrangements for a sitter. The kids will have dinner ready when they get home from school.”

bath and massage

A Massage: Schedule a massage or DIY. But do it good. If massaging is your thing, why not save on the masseuse, crack those knuckles and put those palms into action. Use some lavender, peppermint oil or eucalyptus oil, after she has taken a long, hot bath. She has been running around with the kid(s) all day, and she just wants to come home and relax. You can help her achieve this, by addressing those pressure/stress points in her neck, back and shoulders.

FROM FRIENDS ETC.

spa dayA gift card to the spa: A trip to the Spa, one evening on her way from work, is the best. If it’s coming from the company, it’s all around winning situation for the employee and the employer, when the employer gives her the 2-hour early dismissal from work, so that she can make this possible. If she cannot do it during the week, she will at least have the GC, so that when she carves out enough time or when an impromptu situation arises, where she can break away to use it, she will appreciate it.

family night

A gift card for family night out: Show your friend and Super Single Mom that you have thought about the fact that she does all the picking up and dropping off the children, at school, after school practice, sporting events and gets them ready for school and prepared for bed. Allow her a free night from the kitchen and give her a GC that will take care of dinner for her and the kids for a night.

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A coupon for a cleaning service: You should have thought of this one before. How many times have you heard a Super Single Mom talk about all the cleaning that she must do when she gets home? How many times have you heard her complain about having to run behind the kids and clean up mess? Take care of one of those times, by giving her the gift of a cleaning service for the day.

bottles of wine

A bottle of Wine: I realize I could just be speaking for a small group of people, as I recognize those who may not drink wine. However, for those who do, and you know who they are (as I raise my hand, really-high) they will appreciate it, more than you know. Contrary to widespread belief, mommies do like wine. Wink-Wink. Working Mothers do like wine and when they have a moment to do so, they do sip. Guilty as charged.

wash car

Wash and Detail her car: That’s right! She doesn’t have time to do this. It needs to be done. She will appreciate it. There are French-Fries every-where, that match the little hand prints all over the windows.

Well, there you have it! Find one thing from the list above, and show a Super Single Mom, that she is appreciated.

Article Originally Published on Working Mother

Lifestyle, Parenting, Relationships, Travel, Uncategorized

Why Moving Out Of My Home Was Bitter Sweet and Why My New Situation Is Sweet As Pie

I moved into my home, in the Sienna Plantation Subdivision of Sugarland, Texas; in April of 2012. I had every intention of making it home for at least the following 5 years. I wanted a place for my son to grow, to call his own and to run around with all the freedom a One-Year old could want. I wanted a community, where extra-curricular activities, in a family-oriented environment and a family-friendly neighborhood; were in plethora. I wanted the security of knowing that my son was in a safe neighborhood (as safe as it could be anyway – little to no crime) and in a home where he had a large backyard, to run wild in the grass. I thought of that land that our home sat on when I was in grade school, and how we could go outside in the backyard and have the time of our life, without being in harm’s way. I wanted this for my child.

I accomplished that when I picked out the house, April of that year. Even though the move was a sudden and quick move, only looking at two other homes before deciding on this one, I was completely satisfied. I found the house on a Friday and I had moved in within a week. When I looked at this house, I saw myself in the kitchen being able to see the entire backyard, as my child was playing outside.

As I walked through the downstairs, admiring the open kitchen and bar area, the entertainment living room, which had floor to ceiling windows that stretched over 16 feet, allowing natural light to illuminate the entire downstairs area; I settled at the fireplace. I gazed over the backyard, from corner to corner, while standing indoors, at the fireplace. The whole back of the home, was wide-open. I envisioned a flat screen TV above the fireplace, accompanied by fancy art, which would anchor both sides for symmetrical purpose. I am a person who often seek balance, and it penetrates each part of my life. The living room was just one. I fancied the idea of raw paintings, that would adorn the collar bones of the home.

The walls had yet to be painted. Just the way I like it… A blank canvas. I knew that I wouldn’t paint them either, because there’s something about the look of clean, white walls, throughout a wide-open home. I took noticed the multiple options that I had, for placement of family portraits and moments, which would be captured between my son and me, for the duration of our stay.

I moved beyond the living room, into the downstairs Master Bedroom, which had a window seat and another large, open window area. It was just the right size, just what I was used to. The Master-Bath was to my liking, as well as the walk-in closet that would support alllll the clothes, shoes and purses that I would be bringing. From there, I moved throughout the breakfast area and dining room, just before heading upstairs. Once upstairs, on the catwalk, I had a choice to go left or right to decide which room would suit my son. But I took a pause, for that breath-taking moment, as I looked down, over the living area. The tall windows allowed me to see beyond the fence in the backyard, into the bayou. The privacy was just what I needed.

I took the right… Headed right to the room that I knew would be perfect for the little one. It was just off the open play area, where if I were downstairs in the living room, I could look up and see him always. The other side of the house, seated two additional bedrooms and a full-sized bath. So, there I was. 4 bedrooms, large walk-in closets, plenty of room, open kitchen, entertainment living-room, dining area, breakfast area, large laundry, open floor plan with lots of natural light, large, fenced-in backward, 2 car garages and the home was located at the end of the street, last house in the circle… on Story Book Trail. I was good. I was home.

Fast forward 5 years later, after I had hung my coat, and settled in over the years, making this home my resting place; I wondered through some old photos. It reminded me of the first day that I moved in. I sat in that timeless moment of nostalgia. I cried, I laughed, I danced. I thought about the reality of it being March 2017, and how the close of my custody trial had also brought a close to my story, on Story Book Trail. I would be moving out of the home in a week. I needed to get away. I thought about some not so great moments that happened in the home, which caused me to view to home a little differently, 1-year into being there. I loved the home, but shortly after I moved in and only after I revealed my address, some random acts of vandalism began to occur. At that moment, I wanted out of the house, but I had to make the best of the unpleasant situation and remain put, until the time was right to leave.

I was getting so much negative energy about being able to live in such a lovely home, (how could she afford it, that’s not her home, who’s paying for her home, it must be a rental or did she purchase it, she doesn’t have a job, she needs to get a job). (And the best one of all, “she’s using child support money to pay for it” ALTHOUGH, I wasn’t getting child support, I was paying child support) and all of this was creating a ball of hate, which was beginning to grow legs, arms, eyes and vicious teeth. It was hovering over my life unwarranted. It was crawling through my home, disturbing my peace. It was killing the spirit of joy throughout the walls of my home. Every time I looked around, something else was occurring.

It was almost like watching an apple decay. A beautiful apple, turning from red to black. From plump, to a soft and fetal position. A series of events were tarnishing my home. From break ins while I was out of town, to tampering with my phone lines and security systems, to people showing up disguised as delivery services and phone company representatives, who only wanted to get inside my home to plant wires… to the home being rummaged through while I was away. Even installing a security system didn’t work, because through the phone lines and my computer, my space had been invaded, violated and my privacy was destroyed.

But then I thought to myself, this is the 5th year, and all that I had planned for. Everything that was pushing me away from that home, was pushing me into the direction of something so much greater. I did not understand while it was happening. But I understand it now. I understood it while I was packing up and getting ready for greater. I had my last dance with the home, entertaining my son and his friends as they ran about outside, playing in water wars and washing the cars. I had my last rendezvous with the home the last night over a bottle of wine. I had my last affair with the home as I sat in the soaker. I walked the home corner to corner, as I had done when I moved in, taking in all the precious moments that were spent there- from room to room. I sat in each room and prayed. I walked upstairs and downstairs closing all the doors, as you would, a book once finished. I turned off all the lights, disconnected all services, closed all the blinds and locked the door for the last time. I was smiling and I never looked back, as I drove away.

Had I moved, prior to the season for me to move, I would be in a repeat situation. I am convinced, that it was by purpose, that I remained in that house until all the court hoopla came to a head, where I was then able to move at my leisure, unbothered and unfollowed. GOD is still good.

“There is always a sign that Precedes the move of GOD” That was the sound of those doors locking, one last time. That was the sound of me driving away from Story Book Trail, as that story was over.

Walking out of the house, I could hear only “One Sound.” That was the sound of “The Anthem” featuring Gospel Singer, William Murphy and the Full Baptist Church. Halleluiah, you have won the victory. You have won it all for me. Death could not hold you down, you are the risen king, seated in majesty, you are the risen King! I am grateful that GOD kept me in the valley, hid me from the rain… forever, he will reign.

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Lifestyle, Parenting, Relationships, Travel, Uncategorized

My Personal Lifetime Bucket List of 4 realistic Places to Visit in the near and 3 in the distant future.

My Personal Lifetime Bucket List of 4 realistic Places to Visit in the near and 3 in the distant future. Below are the places that I hope to visit in the near future and more of where I look forward to visiting in the distant future. As a blogger, I have had the opportunity to take media trips all over. However, below are the places and things that I have yet to experience. I anticipate writing about the following:

Dubai – Just for a visit. Well, a sabbatical. Dubai is considered the fifth safest city in the world. I would love to stay for 30 whole days, so that I can take my time uncovering the beauties in this place. I would love to pace myself in discovering the culture, experiencing the architecture and to visit all the landmarks and trademarked palaces of Dubai. Such as: Emirates Towers, Burj Al Arab – The Tower of Arabs, Burj Khalifa, Palm Jumeirah, Al Sahra Desert Resort Palm Islands and the Dubai Fountain which is set on the 30-acre Burj Khalifa Lake, and is the world’s largest dancing fountain. It can shoot up to 150 metres (492 feet) in the air!

Dubai is one of the most popular weekend destinations, even exceeding Paris, and is probably why it’s Number 1 on my comprehensive list of things to do before I am carried away in the wagon. I may not get to Dubai before I do some of the other things on this list. Nonetheless, it is still the single most important thing for me to do at some point.

Cruise – A cruise really doesn’t deserve to be on my list, because as I blogged before, it’s not something that is out of reach. It’s something that I have passed on before because I either did not want to go with the person/people who invited me, or I did not want to take one of those singles cruises. Also, as the opportunity to go, has been in plethora – It seems like something I would enjoy more with a person or people who I know I love, trust and adore. It’s like a big step for me.

So yes, I am a virgin to cruises, for this reason and it would take someone special to take me on one. I would like to take a 14- night Caribbean Cruise, on the Caribbean Princess. I can see myself now indulging in the buffets that I always hear about and swinging out to the sweet sounds of a live band, before enjoying a night cap with the perfect Knight, while gazing at the open sea. Ok. Let me not get carried away. There will be a time and place for all of that, because this one, just might be getting marked off the bucket list real soon. *Hint *Hint.

Skiing in Colorado – When I was a child I said that when I grew up, I was going to live in either California, New York or Colorado. I have visited New York on Multiple occasions. I would not like to live there, full time. It’s way too busy and congested for me, and I absolutely cannot deal with the subway. I am not one for taxies and I cannot stand the cold. I found that out after living in Minnesota. I mean, I can deal with it, but not for as long as it last in those Northern States. I also visited areas of California and decided that this was where I am going to live.

The weather is great, the people are Gnarley and the food is indescribable, the things to do are endless. So, this is how Colorado end up being on the list. I know I cannot live there because of the Winters, but I do know that I want to Ski. Colorado is known for their snow-capped mountains and luxurious Ski Resorts, so why not! I could mark this off the list and never look back.

Croatia – Who doesn’t want to go to Croatia? My hands are down, because I will jump on the first ride that’s headed that way, when I get a chance to. Croatia wasn’t always on my Bucket List. As I market down things that were, I also added more and Croatia was one. I guess it’s true, you never stop living until you are dead. So, you end up maintaining a bucket list of things to do and places to go. I hear that it’s easy to reach, as some Greek islands take four hours to reach by plane. The Canaries? More like four-and-a-half. Hvar, Split, Dubrovnik and Pula are all just two-and-a-half hours away or less.

I hear that the beaches are impeccable! That was enough to nominate Croatia as a must see for me. I love the water, I live for the beach, and I swear I must have been a sea animal in a before life, because when I am in the ocean I always lose sight of the shore. I become one with the water and everything else around me is just a blur. I am in my happiest state when I am swimming in the ocean.

Zhangye Danxia landform in Gansu, China – The rainbow formation is the result of red sandstone and mineral deposits being laid down for over 24 million years, according to the Telegraph. ″Zhangye National Geopark″ is located in Sunan and Linze counties within the prefecture-level city of Zhangye. It covers an area of 322 square kilometres (124 sq mi). The site became a quasi-national geopark on April 23, 2012 (provisional name: Gansu Zhangye Danxia Geopark). It was formally designated as ″Gansu Zhangye National Geopark″ by the Ministry of Land and Resources on June 16, 2016 after it has passed the on-site acceptance test. Known for its colorful rock formations, it has been voted by Chinese media outlets as one of the most beautiful landforms in China.

In 2005, Zhangye Danxia was voted by a panel of reporters from 34 major media outlets as one of the most beautiful Danxia landform areas in China. In 2009, Chinese National Geography magazine chose Zhangye Danxia as one of the “six most beautiful landforms” in China. The area has become a top tourist attraction for Zhangye. A series of boardwalks and access roads have been built to help visitors to explore the rock formations. In 2014, 100 million yuan was invested to improve the facilities in the Binggou area. Source: (Wikipedia Media & Tourism)

Swing at The End of The World – Ecuador) Deep in the Ecuadorian wilderness is a seismic monitoring station in a tree known as Casa del Arbol. Its purpose is observing Mt. Tungurahua, the nearby active volcano, from its precarious perch. While the treehouse itself is a sight to behold, the real attraction is the crude swing hanging from one of the tree’s skinny branches.

With no harness, net, or any other safety feature the swing (nothing more than a plank suspended by two ropes) arcs riders out into the air over the canyon. It is unclear where the swing came from – perhaps it was set up by a whimsical seismologist.

Adventurous swingers of all ages are welcome to take a ride at the end of the world, but at their own discretion. Source: (http://www.atlasobscura.com/places/swing-at-the-end-of-the-world)

Sea of Stars on Vaadhoo Island in the Maldives – Alas! This is a must, before I take my final bow. It is the most surreal place of all. I would exhale in Maldives. The most beautiful thing I have ever seen and read about in places to go. The photos are breathtaking.

What may appear as a mirror image of the stars above, the bioluminescence in the water is due to marine microbes called phytoplankton. The effect it has on the shore is breathtaking. (Buzzfeed)