Friday, September 30, 2011

Bright Side Friday! Opportunites and Hope


This week's Bright Side Friday has to do with opportunities. When things are looking bad, all I hope for is an opportunity to make things better. As everyone knows, the economy hasn't been that great lately. It has really impacted my business, which my husband and I both work at, and hence our family counts on income from.

Lately we have been noticing more and more new customers. When we ask how they found us, sometimes it's by accident - they were just passing by, and other times it's because one of our other clients recommended us. Now that's a feel good. It's not just that they HAVE to use us, there are competitors fairly close. They CHOOSE to come to us AND tell their friends to do the same! Awesome!

Having business pick up a little bit is a relief to us, but having the opportunity to gain clients is wonderful and renews our hope.

Just last night, a friend asked if I could design a logo for our local travel soccer team. I still need to get her a quote, and I'm not guaranteed the job yet, but it's another opportunity. It makes me happy that the opportunity was presented to me. If I get the job, will it make me rich? No. But it gives me hope that more opportunities will come our way.

What opportunities have come your way that were unexpected or made you feel good? Here is hope for you, that even more opportunities will come your way. Make the most of them.


Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Weird Word Wednesday - retroussé


Today's weird word is retroussé. It is a word used specifically for the upturn of a person's nose. You know, like the famous Bob Hope slope? Umm... you never heard of Bob Hope? Great. I'm used to kids making me feel old by not knowing things, like what a rotary phone is, but now even adults are even making me feel old. Oh well.

Here is some more information I found about a turned up nose:
" Turned Up Nose
Also called a celestial nose, a turned up nose runs in a smooth line right from the eyes to the tip of the nose. The fall line of the nose ends in a slightly peaked tip with a delicate outward curve, though it is not pointed."

Just for taking the time to classify the types of noses, I'd like to thank:

The SUN did a whole article on what the shape of your nose says about you. The article can be found here: This is what they say about a turned up nose.


FAMOUS EXAMPLE: Marilyn Monroe

Cute ... Marilyn Monroe's turned-up nose
Cute ... Marilyn Monroe's turned-up nose
NOSE NOTES: Those with these types of cute, turned-up noses are mostly kind, optimistic and full of character.
They usually have nurturing personalities and like to provide love and support for their friends and family.
People with this nose type often have an endless enthusiasm for new things and experiences.
Often a sign of the sexually adventurous but at the same time a person with a turned-up nose usually takes well to marriage."

OK, well I'm not sure that I would want to read that much into the nose shape of a potential future spouse, but hey, who am I to judge? 

My computer added this information to the definition: "(of a person's nose) turned up at the tip, esp. in an attractive way."

Here is the Merriam-Webster definition.


\rə-ˌtrü-ˈsā, rə-ˈtrü-ˌ, ˌre-tr-ˈ\

Definition of RETROUSSÉ

: turned up <retroussé nose>


French, from past participle of retrousser to tuck up, from Middle French, from re- + trousser to truss, tuck up — more at truss
First Known Use: 1837

So next time you see someone with a turned up nose, you'll think "I know there's a name for that... some famous guy I never heard of had one, oh ya, and Marilyn Monroe did too... can't for the life of me remember the word for it though. Gotta go Google Venti With the Girls and look that up!"


Monday, September 26, 2011

Monday Vent - Mother Guilt

Since having children, I am frequently plagued by guilt for making mistakes, bad judgement calls, being short-tempered, not preparing the most healthful food, etc.  All of this guilt is completely self-inflicted.  I get that and I am working on it. 

My newer experiences with mother guilt come straight from the mouths of my sweet cherubs.

Example #1 While at a park, my son wanted to try the monkey bars.  I told him no and said they were too high, but I walked over to help him.  As soon as he was hanging on the bars, he immediately said "help me down mommy, it's too high".  So, I helped him down and went to my other son who needed help on the swing.  I no sooner turned around and my son had gotten up on the monkey bars again. As I walked quickly toward him to help him, he fell and hurt his arm (it ended up being broken).  He immediately started crying saying "Mommy, where were you?  You should have been there to help me."

Example #2  My little one started kindergarten.  I went with him the first day, stood in the kindergarten line and went to the orientation for his classroom.  He seemed fine and comfortable since this is the same school his brother has gone to for the last two years.  I had just started my new job at a different school, so I was not there with him the next day in the line.  He became upset and cried until he got to his classroom.  When I got home he quickly told me that he cried in the line at school that day.  When I asked him why he cried, he said "Mommy, all the other boys had mommies with them holding their hands and you weren't there.  I missed you and I was scared."  I actually put my head down and cried.

Example #3 I am trying to go to the gym after dinner and before the boys go to bed so that I can put them to bed.  They were happily playing when I left.  When I returned home, my little one says, "Mommy I need to snuggle with you.  I didn't see you all day and then you went out and I didn't get to be with you."

My question is, how do they know exactly what to say that is going to hurt me the most because they are voicing the fears I have in my own heart? 


Probably every mom has moments like these. What is yours?

Friday, September 23, 2011

Bright Side Friday! My Network of Support

My Bright Side Friday this week is about my network of support. I am surrounded by so many people that are willing to help me out if I need them to. Looking at others around me, I see that I am really lucky to be in this position.

This morning, I contacted a PTO friend about my volunteer position on PTO. Not only did she offer to do something for me that I NEVER would have asked anyone to do, she followed through with it and went above and beyond to make things better for me! I couldn't believe it.
This evening, I was supposed to coach a soccer game, most likely in the rain. But, my co-coach stepped up and told me that I didn't need to go, he would coach for me. Yes, my son is injured and wouldn't be playing in the game, but still! Someone actually took something OFF of my plate instead of adding something. Of course, that time slot was quickly filled, but that's besides the point.

My schedule is crazy and I can always be available to get my kids to here or there. Yet there always seems to be a friend that offers to pick up or drop my kids off when I need it.

I'd like to think it is a mutual network of support and I hope they do too. I do try to reciprocate whenever possible.   A friend once offered to help and I told her that I wouldn't be able to reciprocate in that particular situation. She told me "Don't worry about it. I had to be there anyways. Besides, you've done plenty of other things for me." That made me feel really good. Finding friends that don't keep score and you can count on because they can count on you... now that's perfect. Not sure how we would navigate without this network.  The quote "it takes a village" sure rings true for me.

Hope you have a network too. It might be just a person or two, a family member, a sitter, or a whole bunch of friends. Don't be afraid to ask for help when you need it and offer help when you can. Some of my best friendships have blossomed from my network. Please share your stories of times you've helped out others or others have helped you.


Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Weird Word Wednesday - Aeolist


This weeks Weird Word Wednesday is Aeolist. The definition is a pompous person that pretends to have inspiration or spiritual insight. Doesn't sound like something I'd want to be called, but a few people that I know come to mind, when I think about that description.


While looking up information on Aeolist, I was amused to find a BUNCH of businesses and products that, for some reason decided to use the name for their business. Really? Didn't they look up the meaning of the word prior to choosing it? Assuming they are men, they do know that it has nothing to do with areolas, right?


There is a design firm as well as software, that has used Aeolist in their name.


*Legal Disclaimer: I am not trying to get into a legal battle with any of the above referenced businesses or product manufacturers. I am only shedding light on the definition of the word you chose to represent your company. Perhaps your marketing team was unaware of the definition when it came to picking names out of a hat. Or, after much debate and trying to convince your boss to choose a different name, at 2:00 in the morning you would agree to anything. Regardless, just trying to educate. One more free service I provide.



aeolist (plural aeolists)
  1. (rare) A pompous person, pretending to have inspiration or spiritual insight.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Bright Side Friday! Perspective

My Bright Side Friday has to do with perspective. It seems every Monday, it's SO easy for me to think of a Monday Vent. Friday's I tend to struggle to find my Bright Side. I guess it's probably true for most people, that they get overwhelmed with all of their own chaos, that they forget to appreciate all of their gifts.

Today is one of those days when I have been given the gift of perspective. I'm going to look past my chaos to appreciate my gifts. I just found out that a classmate, of one of my closest friend's kid, just died this week. He was playing The Choking Game. He was a good kid. He didn't mean to kill himself, but he did. PLEASE watch this (Also above) if you have never heard of it. Add it to your list when you have a conversation with your child about drugs and alcohol. I can't even imagine what that family is going through right now. In spite of that, they have posted on his obituary page, that Youtube link, in hopes of saving someone else's kid.

Which brings me to my Bright Side, if I can even call it that right now. Perspective. My kids are safe, healthy and alive. I know I should appreciate that daily, but it's news like this that makes me realize that I'm taking it for granted.

My niece lost her life at 13 months. That's is as close to the feeling of losing a child that I want to get. My husband's twin had severe medical problems since he was 9 years old and passed away at the age of 42. I pray that is as close as I'll ever be to having a child with medical issues. Just listen to the news, sadly, the list goes on.

Slow down and get a little perspective. Grab your kids, hug them tight, smother them in kisses even if they resist. Appreciate the moment. Smile and tell them that you love them. They already know it, but tell them again.

Sending you all a little perspective, love and hugs.


Monday, September 12, 2011

Monday Vent - Candy for Lunch

It was a Sunday, and after church, I had a meeting to attend.  My husband was going to run to the hardware store and then take our boys out to lunch.  Sounded like a good plan to me.  I arrived home a few hours later to be pounced on by my boys who were "starving".  When I asked my husband what had happened, he explained that at the hardware store the boys saw some candy that they wanted.  So, he gave them the choice of getting candy or going out to lunch.  Guess which one they chose?  That would have been fine if he also gave them some REAL food also.  When I questioned him further he replied, "what do you want from me, they wanted the candy!"  This goes back to other blogs we have written when seemingly normal, intelligent, independently functioning men do really STUPID things and then wonder why we're irritated.


Now it's your turn. Can you relate?

Candy image borrowed from:

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Monday Vent - Take A Number! (repost)

Now Serving: 

What is it about women that we put ourselves aside to meet the needs of everyone around us and then we don’t have time to do what we actually want to do?  I know that I signed up for this when I became a wife and mother, but sometimes I just feel annoyed.  I have spent the last two weeks working at a new job every day and then coming home to continue working to keep my children and husband fed and happy, the kitchen clean, laundry done, etc.  I have been so tired that I have not found the time to exercise, read a book, or even watch a little TV.  At night, I consider putting the TV on just to catch up on current events, but I realize that all I really need is sleep.  Now I just feel pulled in all directions, tired, and out of shape.  I know, it’s universal, but I just needed to tell my girlfriends who understand!
S -)

This was originally posted last Saturday, but it REALLY needed to be a Monday Vent.
Are you feeling pulled in all directions too?

Friday, September 9, 2011

Bright Side Friday! A Little Peace

My Bright Side Friday has to do with having a little peace. As a busy mom, a little peace can make a huge difference.

After hiking in the U.P. a few weeks ago, my SIL and I pulled out the cooler with the food we had packed. Due to the bugs, and our exhaustion, we some how squashed the cooler between us in the front so we could dole out the food bug free and seated. Once we had the kids settled with their sandwiches, drinks and snacks, we finally both were able to grab our sandwiches. Almost in unison, we sighed as we ate the first bite. And then we laughed. There we both were grubby as can be from a hike, exhausted from corralling and cajoling children, each with less than a full seat to sit on, wedged between a full size cooler and the door, and we simultaneously enjoyed the peace. A moment when everyone was content, no one was in need of our assistance, and we were in one of the most beautiful places on earth. A moment of wonderful peace.

Now, if you have read my Monday Vent, you will know that the start of school has been anything but peaceful for me. However, things have started to fall into place, all of the Open Houses are over, there is no Friday night soccer game tonight (we play Saturday morning), and in the midst of all of this chaos, I have stumbled on a moment of peace. It is wonderful. Yes, I just heard my cell phone battery die, and I should be shutting down the equipment here at work, and left the office 11 minutes ago. However, just for a minute more, I'm going to enjoy a little peace.

Wishing you little peace too.


What's your Bright Side? Have you been lucky enough to find peace?

Note: I have noticed a lot of traffic to this post for people looking for a peace sign image. It made me realize that I did not credit the site that I borrowed it from. My sincerest apologies to that site as they deserve full credit for the image. The peace sign was originally on:

Monday, September 5, 2011

Monday Vent - School Started!

So, my girlfriend S-) wrote a Bright Side Friday post about school starting. Hopefully, you had a chance to read it. When I read it, I was reminded once again, that even though S-) and I are good friends, we are not the same. Perhaps that is partly why we are such good friends. But honestly, I could not share in her optimistic view of school starting. At the time of her post, I promised a Monday Vent with the opposing view. I think it speaks volumes that it took me another week to finally be able to write this.

When school starts at my house, chaos starts. It doesn't just mark the beginning of the school year, it marks the start of a million other things too. S-) is happy for the routine, while I'm frazzled by the additional places and things we are expected to be at or do at certain times.

- Sleep: I like staying up late. The kids and I slipped bedtime a bit later over the summer. Convincing my tweens that it is time to go to bed is super difficult, when they are not tired and I want to stay up and watch my late night shows. This becomes a bigger problem when it comes time to wake them up and I don't feel like waking up at 6:00 a.m. This past week, my internal clock has been waking me up a few minutes before my alarm, but I'm not happy about it. They have been better than me at jumping out of bed to get ready for the day.

- Packing lunches: I always have to feed my kids, but now I have to make sure that we have their packable lunch items. Do I have fresh fruit for today? Do I have fresh lunch meat for today? Did we run out of bread? Any non-school day, no big deal if we do or don't. On school days, I need to provide my kids with a decent lunch, that they'll eat AND will keep them energized for the school day. As I'm typing this, I am remembering that I need to buy apples for tomorrow... ugg!!!

- Soccer: I volunteer to coach soccer every year. This is obviously something that is optional for me, but I enjoy the sport and spending time with the kids. Problem? It starts the same week school starts. What's the rush? Oh yes, we play late into November! This becomes a 2-3 time/week responsibility. Thankfully, I'm co-coaching this year, so it's a bit more flexible.

- PTO: I am on the school PTO Board. Most of the year, I have very little to do. However, the first week of school is insanely busy. Again, another volunteer position that I could have just said "no" to, but I didn't. In another moment of weakness, I agreed to take over their e-mailings to the families of the district. Of course, a ton of those happen at the beginning of the year too.

- Homework: This ultimately should be my kids' responsibility, I am aware of that. Some how I still needed for setting up projects to be printed, purchasing supplies for projects, helping with the confusing questions, and reminding them (on weekends) to get their work done. Then I worry how they are doing, encourage them when they are worried about tests and quizzes, and become their cheerleader.

- Band: This also starts at the beginning of the school year. Of course, they both needed things for their instruments and I had to make a special trip to the only music store open late on a Sunday so they would have it. Back to "encouraging" them to practice and remembering to put their instruments at the front door and music in their backpacks. Again, it should be their responsibility, but I really don't feel like making the drive to school when they call and say "Mom! I need my instrument!" And I could, do the whole "natural consequences" thing, where if they forget it, they just don't have it that day. However, my kids get thrown so easily. Not being prepared for even something as simple as band, would mentally screw them up for their entire school day. Just not worth it in my book.

- Bus: Making the bus is something that my older son wants to do daily. The younger one would love it if I drove him to school everyday. I encourage making the bus. Mostly because, aside from it being a huge waste of gas, I'm usually still in flannel pants at that point. I have been there, where I thought, "who will see me?" Only to have to get out of the car with my uncombed hair, flannel pants and over sized t-shirt because my kid needed me to sign him in. Awesome. Just don't speak, or they'll know you didn't brush your teeth either.

So, there you have it. I am probably one of the few moms that don't look forward to school starting. I love being able to relax and have fun with my kids. I like letting them do their own thing or to up and do something cool just because we have time to do it. When school starts, all of that changes. I get the same sick feeling in my stomach that I did when I was a kid and the school year was starting.

When's our next day off?

p.s. The photo is from our fun, relaxing, no-schedule, trip this summer to the U.P. of Michigan. That's the stuff that summers are made of.


Now it's your turn. What's your Bright Side? Is the start of school a Vent or a Bright Side at your house?