Wednesday, February 29, 2012

2/29/12 Wonderful Wednesday

Wonderful Wednesday-because for a mama, the best gift ever is when your children do well!

Recently a FB friend who I knew back in high school many years ago won a prestigious award and he posted how he grinned like a little kid when his mom said she was proud of him. What he may not realize because he is a husband and father, not a mom, is that for a mom, the best thing ever is when your children do well. As mothers we sacrifice EVERYTHING for our children. We worry when we breastfeed, when we change diapers, when we cart them off to school. Mothers want their children to succeed and to do well in life. People who read my blog know when my children succeed I am happy, thrilled, and excited. If I have a choice between yarn (which I can never have enough of) and one of my babies accomplishing some goal, the kid's dream wins every time. I am proud of my children. My kids laugh at me because when I get notice about something they have done well, I cry like a baby, I am overwhelmed with joy.

Over the past week my children have brought me to tears on several occasions with some amazing accomplishments, awards and honors. They show them to me or tell me about them and wait for the tears. "Mom are you crying again?" My answer is a hearty "YES!" Then I start with the hugs and kisses. The bottom line is that motherhood is a hard job. One of the hardest in the world and the reward we get from it is pride and joy when our children do well. So today I celebrate Wonderful Wednesday and the success of my children.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

2/28/12 Terrific Tuesday

Terrific Tuesday-because when you get motivated to kick your mama game up a notch, that is terrific.

Yesterday I worked hard all day, here is a small sampling of what I have done:
1. got the children up and out for school
2. got the husband up and out for work
3. laundry
4. dishes
5. helped the husband handle various business correspondences and negotiations
6. worked on my book
7. lunch for twins
8. dinner for five
9. helped with homework
I did these nine things while keeping active four year old twins entertained, occupied and smiling.

Then I did the following:

10. attended a school meeting on improving the school for my son

I attended the meeting at the end of a long day when I was tired and just wanted to sleep. Let me start by saying my son, attends Gladwyne Elementary school, one of the best schools in the country. Whatever awards a school can earn for excellence- teacher quality, staff ratio, quality of lunch, quality of administration, the school wins, all the time, every time. This is the kind of school, no it is the actual school that people dream of their children attending. This meeting was headed by one of the school's reading specialist, a third grade teacher and in support the school principle and one of the home and school association presidents. The meeting leaders called it a conversation, a continuing conversation and last night was not the end of the conversation, but a continuation of a continuing process. The parents and I in attendance talked about real things that the school, students, and parents can do to make school better. It was such an amazing meeting. Everyone listened. Everyone participated. Everyone had good ideas.

It was really incredible. I came into the meeting not knowing what to expect. I left excited and looking forward to the next meeting. So many times we hear complaints about how teachers don't care and the administration doesn't help. At this school, after a long day, on a Monday evening, teachers, administrators, home and school and parents were together talking, making plans, getting comfortable with one another and identifying real ways to improve our children's lives. We talked about things that will help them not only in elementary school, but in life. I even learned a few new problem solving and writing tricks that are going to help me. I sprang them on my teenager when I got home from the meeting. I am requiring her to start using them effective last night. In short, the meeting left me excited and enthusiastic. I have been motivated to kick up my parent game a notch. Additionally, because of what I learned at the meeting, I have the tools to do the kicking!

P.S. If you get a minute send me an e-mail and ask me about RUPSL and CUPS. They may change your life!

Monday, February 27, 2012

2/27/12 Magnificent Monday

Magnificent Monday-because the start of a new work week gives us an opportunity to see if absence makes the heart grow fonder.

On the typical Monday morning, parents go off to work and children go off to school and everyone meets at the end of the day for dinner. Often we have spent wonderful weekends enjoying one another's company, creating treasured family memories. Then by Sunday night everyone is sick of each other and ready to get back to life. What if instead, we looked at the work week and school week as a break from real life - from family life. If we spend more time treasuring family time and enjoying the treasure of time with our loved ones and children, on Monday mornings when everyone departs, we would anxiously await the good time - Monday evening when we all come together again.

So here's to Magnificent Monday and missing my family until we are all joined together again.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

02/25/12 Sensational Saturday

Sensational Saturday-because 16 years ago I gave birth to my miracle baby, my prayed for miracle, Euphoria. The best job I ever had is being a mama.

Everyone talks about motherhood. Pop culture is full of jokes about mothers pushing their kids buttons best because the mothers installed them. Psychologist blame mothers for children becoming neurotic. I am choosing to ignore all that and think only about a consistent factor between all mothers- responsibility. Once you carry life inside you and bring it forth into the world, you are responsible for that life. My Euphoria is sixteen years old today and she is still a sweet sixteen. I thank God for that. Yes, she hates to do chores and thinks cleaning her room is something only aliens should do. However, she still watches and enjoys Sesame Street with her little sisters. I am not going to mention how much money my husband and I have spent on her the past thirty days. It is incredible how many times I have cancelled hair appointments, shopping trips, yarn buying and the like because Euphoria wanted something or needed something. It happens over and over almost every day. That is not the funny part. The funny part is that I do not mind. Euphoria is my baby, not my youngest, but still my miracle baby. I am responsible for her. Her smiles make me happy, her tears make me sad. When she started getting letters from colleges asking her to consider them I was thrilled for her. When Brown University asked her to think about adding them to her list of possibles, I jumped with joy and told all my friends. I lived vicariously through her accomplishment. She's my baby and I am responsible for her. At sixteen she thinks she knows everything worth knowing, it is my responsibility to hang around and help her until she actually does.

Happy birthday to my Euphoria. My daughter, my daughter, I love her more than water. Happy birthday Euphoria, the thing, the person that truly taught me about responsibility. I love you Euphoria.

Friday, February 24, 2012

2/24/12 Fantastic Friday

Fantastic Friday-because the end of the work week is the continuation of life and the best part of life is we can choose to make it fantastic.

Typically we work Monday through Friday for at least eight hours at some place of employment then come home and live our real lives. You know what I mean- the spouse or significant other, the children, the pets and the extended family. When we get to our outside jobs, if we want to succeed, we work non-stop often working overtime and giving our best efforts. What makes Fridays fantastic is the fact that we can choose to work overtime on our real lives. We can choose to pay extra attention to our spouses or significant others. We can play those silly video games the kids love but we hate. We can play silly games we can't understand the name of with our little ones. In other words, we can put in overtime in our real lives and work with a desire to succeed and make life better for those in our inner circle. Aahhh, fantastic Friday indeed.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

2/22/12 Wonderful Wednesday

Wonderful Wednesday- because I am enjoying following my dreams and rising to the challenges those journeys bring!

When I was in high school my track coach said every woman should run a marathon by age 45. I turned 45 on February 17, 2012 and I plan to run the Philly Marathon this November. I have always thought Sun Tzu's book The Art Of Warwas an interesting book full of possibilities and I am writing my own book based on its precepts. Both these endeavors are extremely challenging. I am out of shape and on a new diet and exercise program that are working well. I have four children, a husband, a fledgling consulting business and want to restart my law career. These are all challenges to accomplishing my goals. My response to that is a hearty, "So what!" Life is hard and these two things I want to accomplish are lofty and admirable. My children would be able to say their mom is a marathon runner. My husband will love my new in shape body and brag about his marathon running wife. My book will be interesting and my family will be proud to see it in print. I will feel like a million bucks. Well, not the day after the marathon, or after an all nighter writing, but I will feel good having accomplished these things. So I think the point of this rambling blog post is that we should go for our dreams, but realize the going will be tough, but worth the trip.

Monday, February 20, 2012

2/21/12 Terrific Tuesday

Terrific Tuesday-life is hard work, so we might as well work at something we love.

I have spent tens of thousands of hours working at laundry, dishes, making beds and wiping noses. All of these things are important, but hard work. Today I am celebrating working at something I love - writing. I have set my mind to working on my book, details later, and getting it done. It is hard work, the research, the writing, the putting everything together and finding a publication resource. But, my name is Janeane Davis and hard work does not scare me. In addition to doing the work I need to do, that I must do, for my future, I am working hard at what I love.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

2/20/12 Magnificent Monday

Magnificent Monday-because sometimes you have to cheer for your self because the crowd just isn't behind you In that case cheer for yourself and keep it moving!

I have spent all my adult lfe with a wonderful coach, i.e. my husband, cheering me on and telling me that I can accomplish anything to which I set my mind. I admit it got me spoiled. I have grown so accustomed to hearing him cheer me on and believing in me, I am surprised when the rest of the world doesn't act like my personal cheering section. Recently I told two people about a current pet project. One person acted interested and peppered me with well thought out and probing questions designed to help me move forward with the project and to get it done. She even talked about how my project made her want to complete a project of her own. I discussed the project with another person and she acted as if I was trying to accomplish something that not only was ridiculous, without merit and a waste of time, but beneath her consideration. Two very different reactions. The second person was a closer friend so I was upset at the lack of cheering. I always cheered for her and always encouraged all her efforts, period. I am a good coach.

I was upset about that second reaction for quite some time, then I realized I did not need that friend to cheer for me. It would have been nice,but I would get along fine without her cheers. I have learned that sometimes you have to cheer for yourself. I stopped worrying about why she did not cheer, I stopped caring about why she did not encourage me to reach for the stars as I had done for her on numerous occasions. I am free and saved and grown. I do not need others to validate me or to acknowledge my dreams in order for them to be real and achievable. I need to realize that like I teach my young children, sometimes you have to cheer for yourself because the crowd just isn't behind you.

Friday, February 17, 2012

2/17/12 Fantastic Friday

Fantastic Friday-because turning 45 is fantastic, today I thank God for life!

Today I turned 45 years old and it is fantastic! I have never been one to lie about my age. I have tried to grow older gracefully and happily. I have taught my children that it is a blessing to grow old and that not everyone experiences that blessing. I have been saved since I was 12 years old. I have been married 22 years. I have been a mama for 16 years. In short, I have been blessed and have experienced wonderful things that far outweigh any temporary down turns. My life has been fantastic thus far and I am looking forward to what tomorrow will bring.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

2/16/12 Thrilling Thursday

Thrilling Thursday-a day to look for the good in things because sometimes the thrill is hidden.

Today I have to do some chores and go on some visits I do not want to make. In fact once of the visits I am not happy to have to make. But I am getting up, getting dressed and getting a good attitude because the job has to be done. I am going to behave as though I am thrilled to do all I have to do and look for the thrill, the secret good thing in what I have before me. Often we put off things we don't want to do or avoid seeing people for things we think will be unpleasant. Perhaps in those actions we miss the blessing God has in store for us. Today I shall look for the hidden thrills around me and I am confident my life will be better as a result.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

2/15/12 Wonderful Wednesday

Wonderful Wednesday-because the day after does not have to be a let down, everyday can be wonderful, hold onto the after glow.

Many people across America spent yesterday celebrating Valentine's day. Some were thrilled because they received a trinket of perceived affection. Some were heartbroken because they were absent the desired token. Many of the thrilled are today feeling blah because the build up is done, the holiday is over, the chocolates eaten and the flowers starting to wilt. These once thrilled are the ones on my mind today.

Often we look forward to holidays, birthdays or other special occasions. Once the big day is over, we move on with our lives and the joy and excitement of the big day are quickly forgotten. Perhaps life would be better and more fulfilling if we remembered how happy the big day made us. How life would be different if we tried to hold on to our feelings of joy, happiness and childlike excitement about things to come and things enjoyed. So today I look forward to celebrating the day after, and letting the after glow linger as long as possible.

Monday, February 13, 2012

2/13/12 Magnificent Monday

Magnificent Monday-there is something magnificent about waking up surrounded by loved ones.

There is strength in numbers if those numbers work together in harmony of purpose. Perhaps that is the magnificence of family working together. There is also the scripture from the Bible that tells us that where two or more are gathered together in the name if God he is there in the midst. My take away from this is that if a family is working together in harmony for a purpose approved by God, the enterprise will succeed.

Today is magnificent Monday for me because I am surrounded by my loving family and we are working together for a purpose approved by God.

Friday, February 10, 2012

2/10/12 Fantastic Friday

Fantastic Friday-because there is nothing more wonderful than the return of a loved one after time away, can't wait to see you husband.

It is often said that a dog is man's best friend because a dog is always happy to see you return home. A dog does not care if you have been gone an hour or a month, the dog is always happy to see its master return. Perhaps we should learn a new trick from the good old dog. We should celebrate and become filled with joy when we see our loved ones after an absence. Just think of how many people sit at home waiting for return of a loved one that never happens. How much would our lives be improved if like the family dog, we jumped for joy and greeted returning family members like returning heroes at the door at the end of the day?

Welcome home husband, the children and I anxiously and joyfully await your arrive.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

2/9/12 Thrilling Thursday

Thrilling Thursday-because every opportunity is thrilling if we choose to see it that way!

I am up early in the morning looking at a house that is a mess and a to do list that seems impossibly long. However, I have decided to have a good attitude about it all. I have a husband, four children, a home and the opportunity to do something with my life. These are things that some people spend all day praying and wishing they possessed. So as I sit here and plan how to clean, get 100 things done, handle the kids ,the homework and all the other work that needs to be done, I have decided to be thrilled, happy to have the opportunity and happy to meet the challenges ahead.

I am not naive enough to think the to do list will disappear or the house will clean itself or that the children will automatically do their chores and homework. I am however, changing my attitude so that I am happy to be busy instead of overwhelmed and disheartened. So, what I am doing this Thrilling Thursday is seeing if my husband is correct when he says, "A merry heart does good like a medicine."

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

2/8/12 Wonderful Wednesday

Wonderful Wednesday-to some getting up in the morning is nothing, but to me it is a wonderful blessing that many do not get to experience. Today I am celebrating life and the fact that I have a life to live and a wonderful family to share my home. The husband and kids might be crazy, but they are mine and I love them.

Recently my grandmother (in-law) died. She was 97 years old and has been a share cropper, a mother, a widow, and so many other things. The one thing I remember about her as that she enjoyed life and thought that life was a blessing. as I go forward, I want to remember that long life, any life at all is a blessing that many people do not have. Each day I have a chance to be a better wife, a better mother, a better person. If I seize those opportunities and get better, my life has not been wasted and I show God I appreciate the life He has given me. If I sit and wallow in misery and how things are not what they could be, I waste the gift of my life. So today I resolve to look for the wonderful in each day and to appreciate life.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

2/7/12 Terrific Tuesday

Terrific Tuesday-instead of complaining about the weaknesses in others, today I will make sure those weaknesses do not have a home in me. Today I pray for strength and courage.

Yesterday I was talking with my husband and we were upset about the weaknesses and problems with someone we see on a regular basis. For a while we were discouraged and angry. We spent a few minutes complaining and detailing about how horrible things were. then we started talking about how we can work with and around those weaknesses and still be happy, still get our desired outcomes. After that discussion, the rest of the day was better. The weaknesses did not disappear, nor did our disappointment. What changed was our attitude. Once we stopped complaining about other people we were able to figure out solutions to our problems and to be creative in fashioning a game plan for the future.

I thought about that this morning and decided to check my own behavior. I have some form of the behavior I was not happy about and I need to get my act together. So today, I am working on making better decisions, not procrastinating and taking the feelings and needs of others into consideration as I carry out my duties.

Monday, February 6, 2012

2/6/12 Magnificent Monday

Magnificent Monday-it is a blessing to be busy and to have a long to do list. There are many people lost with nothing to do. I will treat my to do list like a friend and look forward to our visits.

Before this morning, I would look at my to do list with dread. Even if I wanted to do all the tasks on the list, or if there were fun things, I knew the bad stuff, the hard stuff was there and there a lot. I looked at my to do list as something to get through, something to put up with, something to just deal with. Today I realize there are people everywhere who wish they had something to do. There are people at home who cannot get up and go, who have no control over themselves or their lives. I realized there are people in jail on lock down who don't control any major important aspect of their lives who would like the challenge of dishes, laundry, children, spouse, homework and traffic. I now realize my long to do list is a blessing, a gift and something to look forward to rather than hide from. It seems life really is about perspective and how you look at things. I have decided to make this Monday Magnificent by making that to do list a friend.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Keep Juggling

Keep Juggling!

A few years ago,the movie "Hustle and Flow" the story of a struggling pimp and his crew was popular in theaters across the country. One of the songs from the movie was well received and has resonated with me ever since. The following is the part that resonated for me:

It's hard out here for a pimp
When he's trying to make the money for the rent
For the cadilac and gas money spent
Cause a whole lot of *** jumping ship

I have repurposed the song's rythym to better fit my life as follows:

It's hard out here for a mom
When she's trying to keep her family clean and fed
For the school lunch and shoe money spent
Cause a whole lot of kids acting up.

It seems to me that the most crucial skill needed to be a wife and mother is that of juggling. Time has to be spread around between the husband and the children. Then each invidual child needs special, personalized attention. The homework needs to be checked, the laundry done, the dishes washed, the projects completed for work, the board meetings attended and the list continues. I do not get any extra hours for these duties, but must fit them all plus many others into the same 24 hours everyone is allotted.

Each day I am saddened by the things I did not accomplish, but I am amazed by all I did mananage to complete. I juggle the hours, the people, the jobs and the money. Usually I keep all the balls and apparatus in the air. On the days when some things fall to the side, I do what I tell my kids, I fake it till I make it and keep my eyes in the prize.