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Rain, Rain Go Away Giveaway Hop

A few years ago, my kids’ beloved Art teacher passed away. I remember trying to explain the loss to them and they didn’t quite understand. I tried to minimize the harsh reality that their teacher had died. That’s what we tend to do sometimes as parents. Fortunately our school counselor had plenty of resources to help us parents help our kids to understand the loss and help with the grieving process.

One of the resources was a book titled “The Memory Box” by Joanna Rowland. I recently saw the book is still available and now has an accompanying journal. A place to document the memories of a loved one. Joanna’s book helped me guide my children through the grieving process and the fact that the school counselor recommended it made me feel even better. What a wonderful pairing. Not only can you learn about tools to help with the grieving process but you can also create memories to help with the process. Healing through words AND actions.

Thanks to our partners at Beaming Books we …
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A Few Minutes JUST for You

The kids are home under the most unusual of circumstances and although there are no after school practices or extracurricular activities to worry about, unexpected breaks from their regular routine bring about a unique set of challenges for families like ours.  

This is shaping up to be quite a stressful time for all of us. Folks crowding into grocery stores, helping the kids with homework, working from home, worrying about finances, our health, the health of others.  It can be a little crazy. 

With everything that's going on it's so important that you take care of your mind, body and spirit so you can take better care of your family.  

I've said it often there's power in just being able to soak in the bathtub for a few minutes.  Trust me, I cannot count the times I had to cut a bathroom visit short because one of my kids broke into tears once I was out of sight.  Or even worse a whining puppy scratching at the door. 

1.  Hot Refreshing Bath or shower
A 15-20 minute soak in…

6 HEALTHIER Tips to Beat End of the Day Energy Zaps

Last week was a busy one. Days started early and ended late and by the afternoon, I was completely exhausted. I have never liked the flavor of those so-called “energy drinks” and drinking coffee late in the afternoon usually throws off my regular sleeping schedule so I needed a few ideas to avoid the end of the day energy zap. You know that when you’ve got so much more to do and not enough energy to power through. Whether it’s working all day and then having to get ready for afterschool activities or meetings with the teachers or in my case trying to get everything done before heading away for a weekend social media conference, there are days when I’ve got more to do than energy to do it with.

Over the years, I’ve learned some tried and true tips to help beat the end of the day energy zaps.

1. Get some fresh air
Nothing like a breath of fresh air to energize you mind, body and spirit. Now that the chill of Autumn is in the air, that cold air is sure to give you a little boost.…

Quick Last Minute New Year's Eve Party Ideas

Can you believe 2020 is almost here!
Happy New Year!

I have been a little under the weather since my return from Atlanta but I couldn't let the day go by without making at least one traditional New Year's Day dish.

I remember my great grandma soaking black eyed peas, pork chops and greens.  These were traditional dishes meant to bring good luck and prosperity all the year through if eaten on January 1st.  I've often shared the story of my great grandmother coming to visit us from November until March.  She lived in West Virginia and the winters were harsh so each winter we drove to West Virginia to pick her up and she stayed with us until her birthday in early March.

She was a lady of few words.  I can't recall every hearing her say "I love you" but I have very fond memories of watching her work magic in the kitchen. She was the best cook ever.  

Funny thing she would make something and it was delicious.  I'd have the same dish somewhere else and I would gag. …

Sesame Street Live! Make Your Magic! Coming to a City Near You

Sesame Street Live! Make Your Magic! playing the Paramount Theatre in Oakland December 28-29, 2019 and San Jose Civic January 4-5, 2020!

We love Sesame Street and take the kiddos to Sesame Street Live! whenever it's in town.  I grew up watching Sesame Street, my kids grew up watching Sesame Street and now my nieces and nephews enjoy it as well.  It's hard to believe my favorite Sesame Street characters are also THEIR favorite Sesame Street characters.  
Be sure to check out Sesame Street Live! Make Your Magic! when it comes to a city near you.  S.F. Bay Area family and friends heads up as Sesame Street Live! Make Your Magic! is coming your way.  Playing the Paramount Theatre in Oakland December 28-29, 2019 and San Jose Civic January 4-5, 2020.
Use code INF1 and save 25% on your purchase of tickets to the show! Who's YOUR favorite character?

Perfect New Year's Eve Party in 5 Steps

Looking to throw a New Year's Eve party without a lot of fuss? 

Okay, I've got everything you need to do it in 5 easy steps.  Seriously, it doesn't take much to host a party that will wow your family and friends.  

First things first.  Create a guest list.  Just a few of your favorite gal pals or family and friends.  Don't go overboard.  This is a last minute gathering so you want to minimize YOUR stress.  

2.  Send invitations.  Be sure to include the time, location and if you're feeling really fancy include a theme.  Not feeling all that creative, no worries, choose a template that reflects YOUR style.  Again, no stress.
3.  Create a signature drink.  It's always best to have both an alcohol and a non-alcoholic beverage for your guests.  Champagne Punch is always a winner for NYE celebrations.  Just a bottle of champagne, fruit juice and some fresh fruit and you've got a banging punch.  For the non-alcoholic version just switch the champagne and vodka with a …

Truth Moment: Mammograms

I couldn’t let the year go by without sharing at least one post about breast cancer. I’ve always been pretty vocal when it comes to encouraging loved ones to get their annual mammogram. Let’s be honest mammograms can be uncomfortable but truth is they don’t hurt. So when I stood crying uncontrollably at my recent mammogram, shortly after the tech snapped the first image and the plates lifted form my smushed breast, the tech assumed I was in physical pain. However, my tears were for my dearest friend who lost her battle with breast cancer.