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Updated: Oct 14, 2018

Do you find yourself repeating the same sayings constantly — especially if you’re a mom?


My current season as a mom to a 4-year old is pretty cool because as her vocabulary expands, so do our conversations. I think we’re understanding each other on a deeper level and it’s exciting to see.



Just like you, I’m figuring out this motherhood business as I go. Despite not having a background (or even good grades!) in Psychology, I still understand that our voice becomes our kids’ inner voice as they grow up. So of course I feel a responsibility to be as positive and encouraging as possible.


In no particular order, here’s what’s been on repeat lately:


1 | WE CAN DO HARD THINGS

Anything from waiting in line to cleaning up a big mess, this is my response if she gets all whiney about a task. It’s so imperative that she believes that she can overcome the initial doubt or hesitation that we all feel sometimes.


2 | IT'S NOT A MESS WHEN WE CLEAN IT UP

One day at the library, a couple of kids were playing with some legos that they had scattered all around. Gigi loudly complained that they made a mess.


I’m glad their moms thought it was cute – I was slightly mortified. Around that time I had read somewhere that kids don’t see their play spaces as messy, like we do. They see an island being invaded by pirates or an intergalactic space kitty expedition.


As an artist, I want to foster a healthy imagination in my child and never make her feel bad or guilty for doing what’s natural to her. So, as long as we clean it up before moving on to something else, it’s not a mess.


3 | DIFFERENT IS OKAY

I know I won’t have the perfect response for everything, but when Gigi points out a person because she’s curious about them for whatever reason I want to have an answer. With this simple phrase, I hope to instill in her a foundation for acceptance and compassion.


4 | I KNEW YOU'D FIGURE IT OUT! or I KNEW YOU COULD DO IT!

This is my alternative to “good job!” which I’ve read is too vague a response for anyone – especially a little one. Paying attention to whatever our kiddos are working on will give us the response that will be most helpful to them. It is my hope that when she's older, on her own, and faced with challenges, her inner voice will be cheering her on.


5 | WE’VE GOT TO WORK WITH WHAT WE HAVE

I said this at a Cracker Barrel when my toddler wanted the peg game at the next table instead of the (perfectly fine) one she was holding. I offhandedly told her, “Sorry babe, you’ve got to work with what you’ve got” and my aunt praised me for good parenting. Um... really? I brushed it off at first, but after further reflection, I agree with her. That simple phrase is teaching her to be resourceful and to find contentment in her present circumstance.


6 | IT’S NOT ON OUR LIST

I fully intend to be upfront and honest about money and how I make purchasing decisions when G’s a bit older. But for now, when she wants every shiny object that catches her eye, I tell her it’s just not on our shopping list. Sometimes, I’ll snap a pic and tell her we’ll put it on her Christmas or birthday list. This has helped avoid those dreaded middle-of-the-aisle-full-body-screaming tantrums.


7 | ONE THING AT A TIME

I recently read that multitasking is not a thing. I (stubbornly?) still think I’m able to do it, but not well. I say this in a few different scenarios like when she’s asking me to hold her when I’ve literally got my hands full or she's having a meltdown because can't color at the dinner table. This is one I’ve heard her say back to me and it’s quite cute: “One thing at a time, right mom?”


8 | A PLACE FOR EVERYTHING AND EVERYTHING IN ITS PLACE

I think if each family member – not just the kids – are aware that every single thing has a home, clean up is much less of a struggle.


9 | TELL ME ABOUT IT

This is what I say when she shows me something. Instead of giving a knee-jerk approval ("I love it!"), I want to give her a chance to tell me about her creation. This is also great for when you have no idea what they're showing you ("Oh, it's not a bear? It's a dust storm? Of course...")! This also gives me a moment to give her meaningful feedback: "I love how you used the color blue to make the raindrops!" and "You worked really hard on those swirls!"


10 | YOU DO YOU, BOO

A sweeter way of saying, "Let your freak flag fly!" I think it's important for all of us to know that our individuality is our power. To help build her confidence, I want her to know that as long as she's not mean or hurting herself or others, she can be or do whatever she wants.


Your turn! I'd love to hear what's on repeat in your home.

Updated: Oct 14, 2018

You know when you hear an old song and you're instantly transported to a specific time and place? You get all the nostalgic feels, then somehow the lyrics resurface from the depths of your memory and all of a sudden you're belting out an almost perfect rendition of Karma Chameleon in the checkout line.


Aren't our minds amazing?? I've been thinking a lot lately about my first memories because I think they occur when I was about 4 years old, which is how old my daughter is right now. I'm constantly wondering what about our days she's recording and what will she recall decades from now.


With that in mind, I felt it would be a fun project to create a kind of soundtrack to her childhood since music is an integral part of our lives. I've been testing out my playlist for a few weeks while at home and on the go and it's so interesting to hear what Gianna likes (Paul Simon!) and what she's not quite ready for (The Who).


Since buying albums and listening to each track in succession is a thing of the past, and since the radio (IMO) is subpar, I think curating a specific playlist for our children is an especially loving gesture that they'll appreciate for years to come and perhaps transport them back to a cherished place and time that you intentionally created for them.


Another bonus: being able to tell stories about the songs that have meaning to us and share them with our kids, which I think strengthens our bond even more.


So here's how I did it and you can, too!



1 - BRAINSTORM. Grab this worksheet (coming soon!) or the nearest piece of paper and think about artists and songs using these prompts for inspiration.






"Here comes the sun in the form of a girl / She's the finest sweetest thing in the world.." Hole, Heaven Tonight






2 - DECIDE on the platform/app. I use Spotify and you can check my playlist out here.


3 - CREATE a new playlist, give it a name, and begin adding the songs from your brainstorming session in Step 1.


4 - PLAY it often. At home or on the road, let these songs soak in during those precious and seemingly mundane moments.


Elsewhere on the interwebs:

What Music Do You Play for Your Kids

136 Songs Your Kids Will Love (That Won’t Drive You Insane)

School of Rock: 88 Classic Songs All Kids Need to Hear

Tell me what songs your kids should know by heart and share your playlist, too!

Updated: Jul 15, 2018


Y’all... I’m finally doing the thing. I’ve talked about starting a [another] blog as much as I’ve talked myself out of it.


My motivation here is that I have a head full of ideas I’d like to share – from my experience as a creative professional and now a homemaking mom – but I had no central place to easily share all. the. things. Until this very moment, that is...


HI, I'M BLOGGING NOW.


I also have a new obsession: I'd really like to know how you do life. I am intensely curious what traditions bring your family together, what celebrations you enjoy, and how you’re making memories with your special people. I think it would be awesome to start a little community here where we can share goals, achievements, and any frustrations.


So the posts are intended as lifestyle inspiration for all things crafting, parenting, eating, traveling and whatever else. If there's anything you'd like me to explore, send me a message; I can't wait to get to know you!

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