I Want to Get Away….I Want to Fly Away

30 10 2009

As I write this, my 21-month old is crying and banging on the door of her bedroom. You see, she has mastered the art of climbing (or falling) out of her crib. I mean how long can she really cry?

Yes, I am having one of those days, or weeks, or even months where I just want to walk out the front door and not worry about a screaming kid, dirty dishes, an article deadline, a shrinking bank account, and a sore back and neck. (Happy hour anyone?)

When I am having days like these, I take a few deep breaths and try one (or many) of the following happiness helpers:

  1. I inject silence and calm into my day whenever possible, especially during nap time.
  2. I close my eyes, breath in and out, and picture a place I like to be. For me, I usually picture being on top of a mountain with the warm wind blowing, the fluffy white clouds floating by, and no one around for miles. (Guess what, this is a form of meditation–and you thought it was just for monks and hippies.)
  3. I take a shower or bath.
  4. I do Thai Chi, Qi Gong, or Yoga to stretch and relax my mind and muscles.
  5. I take a walk. (In fact, I put the little one in the stroller and we both get fresh air).
  6. I count my blessings. Being grateful is a wonderful way to spark a happier mood. Thank God and the universe for providing you food, shelter, and life.
  7. I repeat positive affirmations. The mind can be an enemy or an ally. Tell yourself you are wonderful and today is a great day. Hey, it can’t hurt, right?
  8. I connect with my friends and family. I call my mom, I update my Facebook status, I write this blog, and soon enough I am feeling a little better.

Life is tough. Times are tough. But we have a choice. We can continue to curse the day or even the life we live, or we can choose to be grateful for what we do have and make this one of our best days.

Wait……what is that I hear? Silence. Sweet sweet silence. See, my happiness helpers are working already. Have your best day! Namaste.

Mountain of Happiess

Take a cue from the Hawaiians and just " Hang Loose"


No One Said Following Your Dreams Would Be Easy

16 10 2009

I don’t have an iphone, an ipod, or even a fancy TV. I don’t have expensive jewelry, designer clothes or a diamond ring. But I do have a family, good friends, nutritious food in the fridge, a roof over my head, heat on a cold rainy day, and water to quench my thirst. And one more thing…..did I tell you?  Have you heard? I am following my dream.

My cars were born before the turn of the century. They have dings, cracks, rust and a little rat-a-tat-tat. My hair is not dyed. My skin is not tan. But I have a beautiful little girl, who has taught me so much. She may be a handful, but I love her just the same. And one more thing…..I think that you know…I started Project Do What You Love, not very long ago.

Now all my days are not sunny, and I do whine and worry. My wine is not rare and my entertainment is rarely out. But I have no doubt, that I am doing the right thing. I guess I will find out.

Love and peace to all.

Mrs. Amber Scott

Screaming, Messy Kids: Give the Parents a Break

28 07 2009

OK, I admit. I used to say things like “Why can’t they control their child.” After having a little one myself, I now realize it is not as easy as it seems. Take this weekend in NYC. A toddler who just wants to walk around does not understand that you can not leave your seat on the subway. This leads to screaming, kicking, glares, and rolling of the eyes. I knew what they were thinking, but what could I do? She has a mind of her own. Do I just stay inside and never go out because my toddler has a tendency to throw the occasional fit? Do I not take her to a restaurant because she has not yet mastered the art of eating and tends to get almost as much on the floor as in her mouth?

Don’t get me wrong, I will admit again I was THAT waitress. Sweeping up under a high chair exclaiming that they should just stay at home, or control their kids, or clean up after them. It was not MY job to clean up after those devil children. I guess my point is, next time you are out and a child is acting up (as long as the parents are not condoning the behavior), instead of rolling your eyes at the parents, feel a little pity. And thank God it is not you.


Redefining My Role as a SAHM: Update to Project Do What You Love

4 05 2009

To be honest, the transition from a career-minded workingwoman to a stay –at- home mom (SAHM) has been tougher than I thought. It has almost been a month since I worked and this is the first week I feel completely confidant that I can manage this change.  Being a stay-at home mom is different than any other job. For starters, it is a 24-hour job, where you are almost always at work. I do not get to punch out. At 9 pm, I am still washing bottles, cleaning up after dinner and doing laundry. I thought I would be able to get more done in a day. Little did I realize that nothing keeps my little girl occupied for more than 5 minutes and enrages her more than mom being on the computer.

I have been feeling:

  • Too dependent on my mother for a break from child rearing, a chance to get something accomplished, and a car (did I mention my husband’s truck broke down).
  • Like I am a bad Mom. What woman wants to feel like she can’t hack motherhood? Women are natural caregivers, right?
  • Like I am making my husband jealous. And trust me, this is hard to do, I’ve tried. I feel like I should be able to get dinner on the table, clean up, take care of my kid, and put her to bed without complaining to him. “ I would love to stay home with her all day,” he said. “You know how much I miss her.”

As my good friend and once a SAHM yourself has said, “There is nothing like a mother’s guilt.” And I would know something about guilt; I was raised Catholic. 🙂

Don’t get me wrong. I don’t miss the stress of my old job.  I don’t miss trying to find meaning in my work. Because let’s face it- what could be more meaningful than making a difference in the life of a child? Sometimes I need reminding of this, especially when I am tripping over toys for the third time today, or cleaning up mashed food off the ground for the third time today, or fighting with her just to change a poopy diaper. But I also get all the smiles, giggles, kisses, and hugs to go along with the dirty work.

I am not the only one affected by this change

My 15-month old was also making a transition. She was used to seeing her grandmother a couple times a week from the morning until dinner-time. She also had been sick for what seems like three months with one thing after another. She is finally rid of her latest cold, but I think I felt a back tooth coming in today. No wonder she is drooling and waking up before the sun rises, screaming. This being said, I think we are working ourselves into a routine and I think we have stopped testing each other.

Defining Success

In the latest issue of On-Purpose Woman, Angela Prudhomme, M.A., NCC, talks about redefining ourselves as a stay-at home-mom. She poses the question: How do you define success? Everyone defines success differently. Your definition of success changes with time as your personal situation changes. Perhaps, success is not a destination, but a journey.

Today I pledge to spend more time just playing and being with my little girl. Today I pledge to be more patient, kind, and to not raise my voice when things do not go as planned. Today I pledge to make my little girl the number one priority and not my To Do List. Today I pledge to use the computer and TV less as a mode of entertainment and pleasure. Today I pledge to accept my new defined role and at the same time, to never loose sight of the real and genuine ME by taking the time each day to do things that make me happy and feel good, including: yoga, reading, writing, QiGong, and being with the people I love. After all, connections make life meaningful. Namaste.

Rest and Relaxation: Life Lessons from Children, Part 1

8 04 2009

Life Lessons from Children will be a series in which I discuss what I learn from my little girl. Children have a voice too, but we seldom listen. As we get older and life’s challenges and monotony set in, we forget the simple lessons we learned in childhood. The first lesson in part 1 of this series is the importance of daily rest and relaxation. 

According to Dr. Maoshing Ni a Yahoo! Health Expert for Alternative Medicine and author of Dr. Mao’s Secrets of Longevity,  a parent can anticipate their children’s emotional breakdowns when they are acting tired, hungry, or hurried. In the same way, stress can affect adults. This is why everyone needs to find time and activities for rest and relaxation. Take a cue from your child, story-time and a warm bath are wonderful ways to relax. Make it your own by reading a book that you want to read (don’t forget to get adult books when visiting the library with our child) and make a soak in the bath extra special with candles, essential oils, and some at home spa techniques.

If my 14 month old does not get a nap every day and stick to a bed-time schedule, she can become irritable to say the least. Give your body the same respect you would give your child. Make rest and relaxation a part of everyday. Go to bed before 10 pm every night (even weekends) and wake up around the same time each morning (without an alarm clock whenever possible). Catching up on sleep on the weekends does not always work out. Deep sleep is an important time for our bodies and minds to rest and restore. Besides, long-term sleep deprivation has been linked to disease and obesity-Yuck! 

As always, feel free to leave a comment and let others know how you find time for rest and relaxation everyday. Namaste.

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