I'm a Guest at Mothers & More's Sparkly New Blog! AKA Donut Fueled Boot Camp?

Come visit me at the NEW & IMPROVED Mothers & More Website & blog!  I'm writing about Boot Camp and the YMCA, Donut ruled exercise and the super fit woman in front of me I want to tie up & feed donuts.  

Yeah, those are my deep thoughts.  Read more now!

The Parenting Secret Your Kid Should Know

I gave up yelling for Lent.  It's not going so well.  We use Love and Logic and I cannot say enough good things about this technique, but still, we all have our days.  Mostly when my kiddos are going ape I can ask "Do you want a Sweet Mama or a Yelly Mama?" They answer the obvious choice and usually change course.  Sharing the Big Parenting Secret also helped. 

What?  You do not know what The Big Parenting Secret is?  I shared this at church for the Children's Moment after unleashing it at the dinner table to my daughters:  

All Parents Want To Have Fun All Of The Time.  

I went on to explain that there is work to be done, but Mamas and Daddys really do wish we could have fun all the time. I said if our family is unhappy, that is not what we want.  We want to have fun by eating favorite foods, but someone one has to do the work to plan, grocery shop and make the meal.  We like to wear our favorite clothes, but unless someone washes it and folds it and puts it back in the drawer, the fun of wearing it doesn't happen.   Basically all work helps us to have what we want: More Fun!

 I encourage my family to work together to that end as often as possible.  We often sing and play together as we do our house cleaning, AKA Fly Lady's Home Blessing.  We race to see who finishes a task first.  I reward the girls unexpectedly, by calling them to me not for a task, but for a treat.  They get to spray my room freshener in the squirt bottle,  or choose the napkins for a meal, or maybe get a cookie.   Just because it's fun.

Or today I said to Portia, 
    "You know what?  You aren't pestering me and you and Libby are playing so nicely together so I can write this post that I won't ask you to unload the dishwasher right now!"  
She beamed.  She felt appreciated and free from a normal daily task she does. She had fun instead.

I can feel the weight of maturity, marriage and parenthood upon me.  So I follow my husband's lead and throw an impromptu dance party.  We paint polka dots on our finger nails.  We eat donuts for dinner.  I know the Secret of Parenthood, but sometimes I need to be reminded too: All Parents Want to Have Fun All Of The Time.  

We have one life.  Maybe One day.  One family.  One sunbeam to frolic in thisverymoment.  I'm going to dance while I put away clean dishes, thankful for the joy in a clean kitchen and the fun of messing it up again with a family meal.   Then I'm going to get a list of other things done, reminding myself to Find the Fun in the work, and smiling out loud.

What kind of fun can you have today?

Here's a Quickie: Top 3 "Let it Go" covers from Disney's Frozen Movie

I had never heard of Alex Boye' till now.  This gives me CHILLS.

Also these Parents Lip Sync "Let It Go" from the Disney Movie Frozen

(of course it isn't us singing, silly.)

Find even more "Let it Go" versions here at Entertainment Weekly's Top 10 collection...better than mine and we agree on first place!

Am I the Only Mama Who Loves Frozen but DOESN'T Love The Mouse? #Disneyside Mama Drama

OK, let me  be honest:  I do not love Micky Mouse.  

I will wait while you gasp in horror.  


I have not been to Disneyworld since I was a small child and I do not remember anything but the teacup ride.  I do want to go with my two little girls in the next few years, where it may be Most Magical, but we would probably only go One Time. Go ahead and gasp as you may.  Again.  
Not Sure of this Princess Thang?

I just do not get the magic.  I love Disney movies, especially the latest bit of cinematic perfection called "Frozen". My little girls and I (and even my hubby!) have been singing the songs, went repeatedly to the theater to see it, own the e book, the soundtrack, the dolls.  A certain adult lady in the Novak household may even have purchased a decorative Olaf pillow for my living room.  For herself.  Seriously.  

But I do not wonder much about Disneyland.

I have friends who go practically every year.  I have friends who have gone as adults before they even had children.  They went for themselves.  The cost alone keeps me from planning a trip anytime soon.  $4,000?  Seriously?  To stand in long lines and whaaaat?  

But then I see the glint of joy in my little girl's eyes.  A few conversations about taking a family trip to meet The Princesses and suddenly most conversations are punctuated with "When we go to Disneyland..." for weeks.  I got caught up in planning, attended a library meeting on doing Disney frugally.  My husband and I spent hours online comparing options.  Driving ten hours or just buying plane tickets?  A cruise or Disneyland proper?

Then I got the #Disneyside party opportunity for the blog.  They would send me everything I needed to throw a Disney themed party, and all I had to do was write about it.  WHEEEE!  Portia's 5th birthday was going to fall within their parameters so I applied and was invited in.

The extremely generous hostess gift was a lovely rolling suitcase from American Tourister.  I haven't had new luggage in decades, so this nifty little jobber was GREAT.  It's wheels turn and roll so you do not have to tip it and bear the weight at all, it just walks next to you like a well behaved child.  I'm jealous my husband got to take it on a trip before I did.
American Tourister is AWESOME.

The rest of the items in the suitcase...."everything I needed to plan my party" were not as exciting.  I'm going to sound ungrateful but I want to be honest...it was all Mickey Mouse themed and that was not what I would have wanted if I was planning a party theme.  Goofy tattoos?  Yellow balloons?

The 'party favors' were more like leftovers from the Disney Marathon; wristbands about the run,  signs to write messages to a runner on (if you were a spectator for the run.)  Uh...I'm not watching the marathon, I am planning a little girl's party.  She likes Minnie Mouse well enough, but that would never be a theme she asked for.  
Mickey Mouse Heaven, if that is your thang!
Disney Marathon bumper sticker?

There were other things in the package that were cool like Mickey Mouse cookie cutters and enough HP Photo Card packs to give away as prizes.  Unfortunately my three attempts to use a pack myself for party invites failed and I just did an online invitation.
I was a disaster with the photo cards, but I loved the idea.
We decided to go with a Disney's Frozen theme. I posted about our Frozen Party here. I just bought all the things I would usually buy to decorate and throw a party.  We had a family party of about twelve people and I handed out the photo card packs from HP.  I did use the craisins and Disney Marathon wristbands as they were blue and 5 year olds aren't discriminating.  We also had a Frozen playdate party with cupcakes for fifteen including adults.  I used the Mickey Mouse cups etc at Portia's preschool party for her 22 classmates and that will fulfill my obligation.  

I wish I was wowed with more Disney Magic.  There are lots of AMAZING women posting about their #DisneySide and I love their excitement and creativity...I guess mine is just "Frozen".
Our Frozen theme goody bags , #Disneyside HP Photo Card Packs to give away