Perfect Beauty…

Perfect Beauty…

Please share this with your daughters, nieces, granddaughters, sisters, neighbors, friends, mothers, coworkers, oh hell…share it with everyone you know!

I have often felt that the problem with “the beauty industry” isn’t the products they sell, but the fact that they have been allowed (for decades) to brainwash the public into thinking that they NEEDED the products they sell to reach an acceptable level of “beauty.”

Let me say, whoever you are:

You are perfect.

You are beautiful.

All that you need to do or acquire in order to achieve perfection or beauty, is to simply live.

Love yourself, Be kind to others, Be gentle to your soul, Don’t listen to those who make you feel bad about who you are.

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Five Hours of Gates-led Kindergarten Common Core MAP Tests! #TESTHearingsNow

Teachers' Letters to Bill Gates

Dear Bill and Melinda,

You are making history, Bill and Melinda.  You have now reached a new level of notoriety.  You two can now be known in history books as the American billionaire couple — with your seat on Air Force One and 80 senators in your pockets — who are forcing 5 year olds to sit behind a computer screen taking a Common Core MAP test for 5 hours.  As the richest couple in the world, you have the hubris to think you have that right?

You can now be infamous for pushing a testing system of adaptive Common Core MAP tests down to the early childhood level.  You are accountable because you have used your power and wealth to force feed the Common Core to the Department of Education, the State School Officers, and the state Governors with what amounts to as a whopping $2.3 BILLION as discovered…

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group 7! – MEN!!! (nope, not women) men: raw. honest. loved.

I have been following this project since the beginning.
One of my best friends was part of the 1st group, I was asked to contribute. I have since become friends with the blogger/photographer. My friend’s daughter was part of the teen group, my Nana & I were in the 55+ group, now my friend’s gorgeous husband is in the MEN group!!
If you are not already following this blog, you should be! Go back & read them from the beginning. They are all amazing!
Read. Follow. Love. Share.

alana t photography

ashfinal allenfinal nickfinal ianfinal joshuafinal

Men.
My eyes have been opened.
As I was prepping to leave for this particular group, my boyfriend’s words to me were this: “The only advice I have for you tonight is, don’t be surprised.” I didn’t quite know how to respond to this, except to admit that I actually had no expectations. In all honesty, with each group that has taken place, I have learned to have no expectations. Things seem to go along the same, and things seem to go along different. I learn things with every group and I was MORE than ready to learn things with this one…and learn, I did.

When I started this project, it was with the primary intention that women discuss insecurities, stop with the trash-talking and tearing each other down, and instead, start building one another up.
Soon after the first group, I began to receive inquiries from both men and…

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Screaming, Flying, Monkeys…

Kids are great! *forced smile*

No really, kids are amazing. I have 3 of my own & many whom I proudly “momma bear” even though they are not of my womb.

My oldest, “R”, is nearly 16 years old. He is on the autism spectrum, a sophomore in high school, loves video games, Godzilla, zombies, rock ‘n’ roll, goofy youtube videos, & those silly inflatable dancing guys that the used car dealerships use.

Next in line, “JON”, is almost 13. He won a fight with lymphoma a couple of years ago. He loves comic books, The Walking Dead, Mine Craft, riding his bike, Smosh videos on youtube, listening to music on his iPod, & comedy. Here’s one of his favorite’s (keep in mind that he’s 13, don’t judge):

This brings us to number 3…my screaming, often flying monkey…”CC” will be 3 at the end of April. She is adorable and loud and opinionated and funny and sweet and today, very, very 2!

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I like to think that I am a patient person.

I like to think that I am a good mother, a funny mother, I generally enjoy my children. We have fun together. But I have to admit…the toddler years can be hard! There are days when these funny little sweeties go from angel to freak show 30 seconds. These are the days when this mommy needs a time out!

I think that there are things that experienced moms often fail to convey to expecting or new moms. This is one of the areas where we, as women, fail each other!

This morning while my sweet baby girl was transforming into a possessed howler monkey because I was working at my laptop for 10 minutes while she was enjoying her favorite show on Sprout & I didn’t notice that her show was over and she was ready for lunch. Then we got calmed down with a small snack (because I really had to finish what I was doing before I could make lunch), when Daddy came home on his lunch break, one of the perks of working 5 minutes from home. She, naturally, was excited to see him! She was not very excited that he couldn’t spend his whole lunch hour (about 40 here) holding her due to the fact that he did need to eat. So…the screaming resumed!

ALRIGHT!!! Lunch time it is!!! We heated up some soup, put it in a bowl, sat her at the table, next to her Daddy, & enjoyed 5-8 minutes of relative quiet before Daddy had to prepare to leave the house to go back to the office.

This pattern continued while I attempted to complete a few other tasks, including a phone call (that was enjoyable with her wrapping herself around my legs & trying to stuff her head up my shirt!).

These are the things that we should be sharing with other women! (These & the scream I just heard from CC’s bedroom while typing! HA!) I don’t do the toddler years well, there I said it! It is H-A-R-D! While I’m being honest, let me talk about other things that we’re not supposed to say out loud…I am not good at potty training!! I have all of the tools & skills, I just suck at it! I am not patient! Once I know that a child KNOWS I lose my mind when they refuse to use the bathroom! Occasional accidents I can deal with, but let me give you a fun little example. CC is starting to recognize the feeling in her tummy pre-poop. She tells me that her tummy hurts, I ask her if she thinks she needs to go poop in the potty, she says yes. It’s a pretty good system! A couple of weeks ago, all signals were go…she’s sitting on the potty, I’m out in the hall, outside of the bathroom.

She says “Me all done!” She has only been in there a minute. I know she hasn’t gone yet. So I say, “I don’t think you’ve been in there long enough yet honey, why don’t you look at your book again?” She hops down, pulls up her leggings, hides behind the door & starts to close it.

I stop the door from closing, “What are you doing?”

“Me pooping!” I look at her pants behind her & sure enough, she has a lump in her pants!

“CC! You were already on the potty, honey! Why did you get down to poop?”

“Cuz that’s how big girls do it!”

“That is NOT how big girls do it!”

I lost my fricking mind! So, she went down for a nap…I had a cup of tea.

Ladies, you need to be able to lose your mind, put your child in a safe space (whether that’s a crib, swing, playpen, or gated safe room) & know that they will be fine more than 10 feet from you for as long as you need to find your mind again. And please find a friend that you can admit your imperfections to! None of us are perfect! The lady on the block whose home looks immaculate ALL OF THE TIME is hiding something crazy in a closet somewhere & probably needs someone to talk to too, I guarantee it!

People tell you all of the time to savor these precious years….they told me that with the boys too…I get it, I do…I savor the totally done with potty training, don’t need gates on the stair anymore years! I admit it! I hate touching bodily fluids, when that sweet baby girl can blow her own nose, I will not miss wiping it! I don’t miss wiping the boys’! There has never been a day when I’m wiping her snotty little (adorable) nose & thought “I miss when I had to pick boogers out of R’s nose”…NO! Thank God they grow out of certain stages! Potty training, 2’s, boogers, throwing unwanted food on my floor….get me past these years with whatever grace & dignity I have left, then I will savor the rest!

I don’t want to discourage any future mothers out there. Being a mother has honestly been the biggest joy of my life, & I honestly wouldn’t trade it for anything. I couldn’t imagine the person I would be if I hadn’t become a mother. But its okay to be honest about the days that we struggle. Its okay if everyday we don’t feel like we’re doing everything right. Its okay if some days you gotta put that screaming monkey in her (safe) cage (crib) & let her scream it out for a minute so that you don’t lose your mind. We’re all on the same team here.

Raising future adults is an important task. These are the people who will one day take care of us. If we don’t take care of ourselves while taking care of them, what does it teach them about valuing themselves. We learn by example.

I think CC’s finally asleep. I better eat some lunch before round 3 starts!

Have a wonderful day.

If you are out there reading this, & your day is anything like mine…stay strong, take a break, talk to who you can, & know that you are doing your best.

Shalom