Time to Start Again…

Just the word Strut brings an image of someone moving to your mind.  Whether it is a model moving across the runway, a nurse striding down the hall to respond to a patient page, a mom pushing a stroller, a dad carrying his child on his shoulders or a celebrity making progress down a red carpet, each person moves in their own particular way.

Strutting implies so much more than just walking.  A strut is purely personal and specific to each human and animal.  It is attitude and a person’s confidence or lack there of.  Just watching how someone moves creates a picture in your mind of their personality.

After having made a large life change in the last month, I realized just how much of my personal self I lost in the last 10-11 years.  As I sat thinking about the word prompt for today, I realized that loss of knowing myself reflects in my movement.  There is no personality behind my walk.  It is simply a function of the everyday tasks that I feel need to be marked of my list for each day.

Today’s Challenge:  Find your own strut or lack there of because we are all unique and our movements reflect that.  Then, own it and if you don’t like, then change it.  You are not a tree.


Mommy Uniform

Growing up, I always hated to wear that plaid jumper Uniform to school.  The only good thing was that once I got to 6th grade, I knew I would get to upgrade to the skirt and that was way cooler than a stupid jumper.

While it has been “many moons” (thanks Bill Engvall) since I wore that uniform, I realized that we all have uniforms we were that depend on the role we perform for that moment or day.  As a stay at home mom, I know my uniform options for the day have fewer restrictions.  My only basic requirement is, “Is it clean?” and then follow up for that is, “Just how clean is it?”.

For the working moms like my sister, sister-in-law and best friend, their work uniforms must meet more guidelines since they have to get up every day, run around and get everyone else read while getting themselves ready and trying to make sure when they leave the house that their clothes are presentable and clean because I am pretty sure they do not want a co-worker asking about why their shirt is on backwards, what is that spot on your shoulder, or any other seemingly innocent questions that mean they did not make it out of the house without taking a hit to the clothes.

As a stay at home mom, your children even show they are aware of your uniform by how they respond when you deviate from it.

Sometimes, uniform does not necessarily refer to your clothing but your actions.  Certain situations trigger a learned reaction or response, good or bad.  You give canned answers to questions like, “How are you today?” or “Nice weather”.  The automatic response represents a surface reaction because sometimes the answer to “How are you today” is not a simple OK or fine. It is the furthest thing from it but spouting that out to a stranger is typically not a person’s first reaction.

Today’s Challenge: Make a change to your daily uniform today whether it is a change to your clothing or how you respond to everyday inquiries from co-workers and acquaintances and even family.  Take note of how it makes you feel, changes your outlook for the day and if it changes your attitude and mood with those around you.


Traces of Me…

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Shadows of me

Traces really

Nothing substantial

Just a whisper on the wind

Feelings of how I used to be and feel

Nothing concrete anymore

No sense of charging ahead into adventure

Just day to day survival

Start at A

Charge forward to B

C comes next

D is not far behind

The energy begins to fade on the way to E

Soon the day fades into F

Keep going forward to G

Hoping H is not far behind

Intently looking to move quickly through I

J, K, L leap right past in the rush of mid afternoon

Pushing quickly through M, N, O, P

O through X is a mystery that melts into the nightly routine

Y is so late in the days journey

To Z, sometimes it seems it never gets asked much less answered.

Soon, the Trace of the day settles

Into the dark of night

You know you made it through

How? you are not sure

You simply know that the journey starts in the morning

Again with A until

Z makes it’s appearance

Today’s Challenge: Enjoy all the little moments that make you feel love, that make you laugh because above all else the trace of that joy and happiness should be what you and your loved ones remember for the day.

Temperature vs. Feeling…

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Lukewarm is that temperature that means your nice, piping hot, fragrant, french vanilla creamer flavored cup of coffee sat to long.  Maybe you got busy making breakfast for you and your family, or the simple diaper change for your 1 month old turned into a full out washcloth bath with new clothes plus a new diaper because the projectile spit portion of the day arrived despite your fresh cup of coffee waiting for you.  Either way, depending on your mood, that tepid cup of coffee either passes muster and you drink it anyway or you sacrifice it to the kitchen drain because it just doesn’t seem worth the effort and calories of drinking it because it just isn’t right.

Sometimes, you make iced coffee with lukewarm coffee.  Depends on the day.

And sometimes, it best describes your mood.  Lukewarm describes how you feel about getting anything remotely productive accomplished, how you feel about important relationships with others or with yourself.  Sometimes, it’s the mood you get where there really is nothing wrong with anything in your life but you feel like everything is messed up beyond reason, nothing can go right, why bother trying to get anything done when it won’t matter if it’s done or not because whoever may notice the accomplished item will have some criticism of it and if they don’t the negative little monster sitting on your shoulder that hijacked your day will have plenty to say.

Today’s Challenge:  Tell that negative shoulder sitting monster to go find somewhere else to be because you have joy, laughter, and fun to invade your mind and control your day. 

Close your eyes and imagine…

No picture needed

Bring your own to mind…

Fluffiest of pillows waiting

Puffiest of clouds floating

Richest chocolate melting

Softest silk gliding

Deep green grass pressing through toes

Silkiest of petals caressing

Lush springs seasonal

Eternal in memories

close your eyes

think of the word lush

what memory comes to mind

what feelings spring forth

enjoy it for the moment

pull it out as needed

The Art of Clean…

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So many things spring to mind when I think about the word Clean.  As a child, it meant Friday nights where I got stuck dusting because my older sister picked the easier cleaning option of vacuuming.  It brings to mind my Aunt sitting on the floor in my bedroom helping try to find my missing wallet that I could only assume got tossed in the one of those giant black trash bags by my dad because he was tired of getting on me about cleaning my room.  In college, clean definitely always depended on my cohabitants in the residence halls I lived in and the day of the week.

Now, as a mom of three boys and wife to someone who takes clean to a new level in my perspective, my clean is my husband’s dirty and his clean is my spotless.  Talk about each person having their own definition.

As a post-partum obese mom of 3 weeks who started this blog last year in an attempt to cope/deal/process/self-motivate my weight loss journey, clean also brings to mind clean eating.  As I think about my food choices in the last 2 weeks since coming home from the hospital with my preemie baby who passed all the tests and got to come with me, I know my food choices have been better but not stellar.

The biggest lesson that people have told me about but never truly sank in for me until this January as I challenged myself to responding to 25 Gratitude Writing prompts during  the month was that despite not journaling every day like I had planned, as long as I keep with it and finish it, that is all that matters.  The same thing applies to the food I put in my mouth.  Some days are good days and I eat fruits and vegetables like I know I should and I skip the coffee.  Other days, I live off coffee and I try to satisfy the mother load of all chocolate cravings even though I know there is absolutely nothing I can think of that would satisfy it.

Clean is a state of mind no matte what in your life it refers to.  Sometimes clean is good and sometimes it’s overrated.

Today’s Challenge:  Find the joy in the clean and messy moments of the day!