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Saturday, April 13, 2019

April is National Poetry Month Y'all!


 So April is national poetry month! To celebrate I’ve written two new poems about my two favorite people:

Ellie:

She’s so wise
A shy wonder
Her perceptivity a marvel
Her resiliency surprising

Bouncy brown curls
An open grin
A flash of small white teeth, laughing with me now


Arms shaking
Eyes narrowed

Taking what she wants

Curled in close
Holds my leg with her delicate, perfect
Fingers

I hold her tight, too.

Benji

Dragons on the floor (ouch)
Hand soap in an out-of-reach cabinet (right?)
A closed bedtime door (is it still closed?)

He’s an adorable maniac
A generous, giving soul

A
Bundle of energy
Chaos incarnate

Does this
Etched glass shatter when I push it
From the kitchen table?

Yes.

His laughter
Peals around him
Like a halo

See? It doesn’t have to be Shakespeare or Maya Angelou or even Robert Frost or Nikita Gill. It just has to make you feel. And it can be about anything. I wrote about my kids because as a parent of young children I am boring and obsessive about them.

Anyway – April is also Donate Life awareness month and distracting driving awareness month. So if you’re driving distracted make sure you sign to be an organ donor – someone should be benefiting from your mistakes.

That’s it, it’s a short one this time – if you’re in the Woodlands, I’ll see your kids at my kids yoga class tomorrow at Yoga Pod at 11am! If you're in Canada - I hope the snow melts again soon. If you're in the Woodlands, enjoy mowing the lawn! I know Benji sure enjoys it.




Sunday, March 31, 2019

THE RETURN OF THE BLOG



Alright my peeps I’ve been on hiatus for a bit working on some side projects called…

Angela Goes To Mexico and Angela Finishes Her Book and Angela Does Kids Yoga! BAM!

The sun was grand (ouch) the waves were cool (ahhhh) and the kids were angels for most of the time. I would do it again in a second and I hope to do so next year as well. I can’t explain the feeling that came over me while I was watching the kids playing in the sand, relaxing with my oldest and best friend in the world. There’s nothing like reconnecting with friends who have known you since you were a kid - they remember the magic times, the amazing, full of potential and possibility times. They remember the ‘you’ you were before. Before husbands, before kids, before jobs and careers. The ‘you’ that may have gotten a little buried alive under all the layers of life. But she popped out in Mexico. She waved her arms around ecstatically and shouted, ‘I’M STILL HERE!'

And so, to my book. Some people refer to their books as their babies. Mine is a rebellious teenager but I love her anyway. I wrote the book about elves and handsome assassins chasing Maya, the Queen of Voldaria, about nine years ago. I’ve been polishing it ever since. I send it out, it gets rejected, I polish, I change, I re-work, and I re-send. I’ve been doing this for about ten years. Maybe most people would give up? I refuse. She’s a good book and she deserves to be read by the next generation of girls who are expecting to get to know a kick-ass heroine who saves the world.

Recently I found an editor I really like, Joan Dempsey, (https://joandempsey.com) and she’s right now taking one final look over the book from end to end. Once we’re done working it over I am going to send it out again, but this time, I gotta admit, I’m feeling lucky.


Meanwhile my Kids Yoga class is switching to Sundays at 11am at Yoga Pod - Woodlands Parkway- starting next Sunday. The age ranges so far have been Ellie’s age (four) to ten years old. It’s a lot of fun and at the same time mom (or dad) can go to the PodFlow class with Mary-Catherine (only my favorite yoga teacher in Texas!)


This summer I’m going to work on my book and focus on getting that out of my head and into real life, and into YOUR hands, ha ha ha ha ha. Yes. You. I’m talking to you.

That’s it for now folks, thank you for taking the time to read me, and stay tuned two weeks from now for the next installment of ‘The Return Of the Blog’ - but with video and more cool pics, yah? As per the other Queen I love, Beyonce, 'I'm gonna upgrade ya...'

Monday, March 04, 2019

Being A Better Angela Right Now, Eh? Or, at least, a happier one.


We’re driving home today from school and my little guy starts fussing.

“Jacket (pause) OFF, Mommy.”

I glance in my rearview mirror and he’s pulling at the hood of his big, puffy green winter jacket (it was 34F here today!) and struggling with his car seat buckle and making adorable grunts of frustration. He's spitting out the fur getting in his mouth from the hood.

“Baby we’re ten minutes from home, can’t you wait?”
“NO! Jacket (pause) OFF!” Tears and adorable snorts ensue.

Now normally I would just roll my eyes to myself and assure him he’s going to be just fine until we get home, I’m not pulling over just to take his jacket off.

And then I remember this podcast I was listening to about being in the present.

About bringing comfort and joy, as much as you can, pull it all in, right here and right now. Not in ten minutes or ten hours or ten seconds. If there’s something you can do to make yourself feel better now, do it. Now! What are you waiting for? I mean, don’t get fired or anything, but if you can do little things to make it better until you can get off work or get home or get to your happy place, do it!

I admit, I am the worst for this, the absolute worst. I am the Queen of ‘just get it done’ and speeding through and bearing down and putting that shoulder to the wheel and pushing until the job is done or I collapse with Pneumonia. (Hello three weeks ago).

So I turned up my car seat heater (what was I waiting for?) and we stopped at the Pet store so they could look at fish and when we get back in the van we take his jacket off and had a very pleasant rest of the drive home. That is, until we got home and he wanted to play outside and I said no because he smelled like his poo had poo'd. Dude needed a diaper change and I needed a Hazmat suit.

Once he knew I wouldn’t budge though, he said; ’Okay’.

After I picked myself off the garage floor I wondered if helping him be more comfortable now, when he needed it, helped him be in a better state of mind when he didn’t get to do something he usually always gets to do and enjoys very much, playing outside as soon as we get home.

I was certainly in a more patient state of mind having not listened to him fussing all the way home.

I love being a mom for a million reasons but one big one is that they push and pull and make me a better Angela. There is no shadow of your heart that goes untouched when you have kids – no unhealthy habit or old conditioning that isn’t working for you anymore that they won’t shed a light on.

So, thank you guys, I know you can’t read this yet but you make me better, just by being you. That goes for you too, Kait and Dyl.

Lastly, I have this print out poster from ‘Big Life Journal’ (biglifejournal.com) about raising resilient, kind and confident kids.  I use them quite a bit to help bridge the gap in my parenting knowledge.

Anyway – I have this print out framed and set up in front of the stove where I am sure to see it at least twice a day, and it includes phrases that will help build a more resilient child. Phrases like, I love you, You can Do it, I Love Spending Time With You, etc.

Funny thing is, when I’m having a rough day, I say these things to myself and I feel better. It doesn’t make the screaming fits less loud or the fights over who gets the big basketball to play with any less annoying but it helps remind me I’m a smart, kind person and I may not be doing this perfectly but I’m doing my best and it’s enough. I’m enough. And so are they.

Monday, February 25, 2019

Bringing Big-Picture Love to Small-Picture Life


My kids go to a mommy’s day out program twice a week (when they’re not contagious). So like once a month, I pile us into the van and I drop them at this place that loves kids, everyone’s kids, and takes such good care of them and it feels wonderful and relaxing.

Then I either drive around like a crazy person running errands all day, or I drive home and I write, or clean, or eat. Alright I ALWAYS eat.

All the stuff I don’t want to share or can never seem to finish while warm with two babies in the house. Ahhh, the steam rising from my tea mug and the butter melting into the blueberry muffins and the sharp tang of fresh blueberries with a sprinkle of cinnamon? Oh, heaven, there you are.

And then you know what I do? I hang onto my phone and obsess over the pictures they send me of the kids and I marvel at their perfection, at their beautiful, sweet faces and I am amazed I get to be the one who calls them mom. I am so, so lucky and I can feel all the love, a tidal wave of love, crash over me so intensely I finally, finally understand how a mom can lift a car when her child is in danger. What could I not do with this love coursing through me like an overflowing river raging through my heart?

What if I could hold onto that feeling while they’re pulling out each other’s hair over who gets to play with the blue bouncy ball they found under the couch, covered in dog fur and dust?

Well, this is my goal as a mom. Bringing my big-picture love into my small-picture every-day life.

How to do that? Asks every mom, ever, throughout all of time past and future.

I start by letting go of my need to reach this goal. Because being a loving parent starts with knowing it isn’t about perfection. It’s about finding my own space and peace first, getting myself in this aligned state of big-picture love. Everything else flows from that.

I need a little solitude to get into that grateful-love space where I feel I’m the best ‘mom’ I can be, and once I let go of the inner critic that says I shouldn’t need it, I feel great. I feel open and free and ready to be the kind of mom I want to be.

A mom who makes her children feel like they are really seen and understood, and loved so much they could never, ever doubt their own intrinsic value. And I want them to feel that every day, for as long as I am alive and after that too, eh?