Wednesday, November 17, 2010
So great to have you stop by. We've missed hangin' with you.
Holly & Charisse
Monday, August 9, 2010
Today's video will share some of our favorite stories that make us ask the question..."Why do people do that?"
Thank you whats around the next bend for the Sunshine Award. We just love it! Hugs and kisses right back at you:)
Love, Holly & Charisse
Monday, June 28, 2010
Have a great day,
Holly & Charisse
Monday, June 21, 2010
Monday, June 14, 2010
Just good old fashioned girlfriend time. Thanks for stopping by.
Holly & Charisse
Monday, June 7, 2010
Holly & Charisse
Monday, May 31, 2010
Have a wonderful Memorial Day...and a terrific week!
Holly & Charisse
Thursday, May 27, 2010
Monday, May 17, 2010
Thursday, May 13, 2010
Monday, May 10, 2010
Thanks for coming by! Have a great day:)
Wednesday, April 28, 2010
She walked away from her friends and gave me the "I need to vent" look.
I walked with her and listened.
Communication between us has changed, she needs something different now that she is older. I had a little time alone waiting for her race, and I just prayed that God would show me what to do.
I asked her what she needed from me in that difficult moment when she had been angry.
I asked her if she would let me know if she did need me to say something?
-She assured me that she would.-
As a mom it feels different.
It feels like it is my job to help her see her situation clearly, to comfort her, to talk her through it.
Moms don't stand by and watch their kids experience pain and say nothing.
I asked her if she could understand why I responded the way that I did?
-She said that really made sense now that I explained it.-
It was a light bulb moment for both of us. There is so much about this budding teen that I am going to have to learn. Here's hoping that you can indeed teach old dogs new tricks. She sure has a lot to teach me!
Tuesday, April 27, 2010
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
Thursday, April 8, 2010
Tuesday, March 30, 2010
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
Monday, March 22, 2010
Friday, March 19, 2010
This week we are double dipping. We are linking up with Friday Follow at Midday Escapades which is a networking bloghop. They have about 800 participants each week. A great way to meet new blog friends.
We are also hangin' loose with Aloha Friday. If you’d like to participate, just post your own question on your blog and leave your link below. Don’t forget to visit the other participants! This is hosted by Kailani at. Her Mister Linky draws about 100 blogs each week.
Have a wonderful weekend everyone!
Tuesday, March 16, 2010
Don't forget to make our day by leaving a comment! Happy Tuesday!!
Thursday, March 11, 2010
We love hearing from you.
Have a great weekend!
Joining "Friday Follow"
Wednesday, March 10, 2010
Hopefully tomorrow Charisse and I will not only have time to answer the dozens of questions about puberty on video for our Youtube "Ask Mom Series", but also tape a few new segments for our blogging buddies. That's the goal...we'll see! Have a great day:)
Monday, March 8, 2010
Last week we filmed our first "Ask Mom Series" of 5 videos. We linked an e-mail account to it and asked girls to send in their questions. If you wonder why we were quiet on our blog last week...that is why! Getting that up and running and answering their questions by e-mail has taken some time.
Why are these girls turning to Youtube for this information? As young girls we talked to our girlfriends and moms. Embarrassment about "growing up" topics couldn't override our need to discuss, face to face with people, how to handle them. That isn't the case today. The natural tendency for teens to turn inward, share less, seek privacy, and start to think for themselves is then coupled with the internet that requires no intimacy. This makes it so much harder for us as parents to reach out to our kids. Our kids can get answers (ones we may or may not agree with) without ever asking us anything.
In our videos we answer the questions and encourage them to take that information and talk about it with a trusted adult. One girl said that she sent a text to her mom when she got her period because she just couldn't get the words out. Does that make your heart ache? It makes me want to step up the quality time I spend with my 12 year old. Since we started this project, my daughter and I have had a date every weekend. I'm just seeing more clearly how I need to be a bigger presence in her life.
The quality and vulgarity of what is available online is horrible. This young audience is so vulnerable and hungry for information. How does this make you feel? Do you have any ideas to help us meet these needs in our videos? What would you want your child to know if they found our video series? We would love your input.
Wednesday, March 3, 2010
Thanks for coming by. Leave a comment. Have a great day.
Sunday, February 28, 2010
"The Ripple Effect."
Today we were challenged to take action through a movement called "Not For Sale". In Cambodia this group is...
*Rescuing women and children from human trafficking.
*Providing them a safe-house with medical and emotional care.
*They are taught how to be seamstresses.
*A factory is being built to give them jobs.
*They get stock in this industry.
*They are taught how to save the money, and helped when it is time to buy their own home.
*The recording artists...Third Day...has just contracted them to make all of their clothing to sell in stores and concerts.
YOU CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE TOO!
So as we sat in the pews we each pulled out our cell phones and sent the following text to donate $10 to help "Not For Sale" continue with their mission to end slavery. 30 seconds of your time reaches out to the hurting. Here are the steps.
*Get your phone and open up a new text window.
*In the "To" section type 90999
*In the "text" section type Respond
*A message will come right back to you. Type in response to this "YES".
*Another message will come back to you. You can select yes or no as a response.
*Your phone bill will show a $10 charge.
That's it! I will learn in church next week how much was collected, and I'll update our blog so you can see how you were a part of this movement to help others in need. If this is a topic you want to research more I would highly recommend going to the International Justice Mission site.
I couldn't listen and fail to respond to the plea of little girls everywhere begging us to make a change in our world.
How will you respond?
Thursday, February 25, 2010
As a child grows, staying connected gets increasingly more difficult. Another child enters the picture. Work, household chores, school, church, sports, all encroach on that precious time together.
Connecting takes some thought. It is an expression of who you are individually and as a family. This topic is so close to my heart particularly now as I see my twelve year old slowly moving into her own world. She doesn't share everything with me anymore. I miss the little girl that talked 24 hours a day about every little thing she thought.
I just try to be where she is. Hang out with her. I tell her about things I remember from being 12. Boys, friends, music, dancing, going to the roller rink. I try to say yes as often as I can...so my no's will mean something. I ask her opinion on things. She is dependable, inclusive, a fabulous student, a great athlete, and incredibly diverse in her interests. The other day I spent just a couple of minutes telling her, "It's normal for you to want your space, to have private thoughts and experiences. Just know that you are a super important part of my life. I always want to be an important part of yours too. Whenever you need me...I'll happily be there!"
First thing every morning I wake Ben and tell him that my day won't be great until I get his magic hug. Luckily he still enthusiastically gives it to me. His smile lights up my heart...something I often tell him too. Sometimes I tease him that if I was in 4th grade I would stare at him from across the room and think about how dreamy he is. I whisper in his ear how I love having an amazing helper. My "go to kid" when it comes to getting something done.
I tell them about their positive traits. Ben has a soft heart, loving, honest, a good friend, funny, a terrific athlete, and extremely generous.
Andy is 6 so he still needs tons of cuddles. Loving him means watching all of the amazing things that he does moment by moment. Connecting with him means understanding how creative he is and affirming that his love for color, texture, art, and beauty in the world...makes him just as much a boy as his sport loving brother. He still needs me to help him with things which also makes time with him more of a natural expression of my day.
In the evenings we have dinner together at the table. We always ask each other about the day. Often we cuddle on the couch and watch something everyone likes. That's when the holding hands, snuggling under blankets, and laughter fills the house.
At bedtime each child gets tucked in with their own special prayer. My arms surround them as I whisper in their ear. It is part of our private time. They tell me if there is something specific they have concerns about. I pray with them so that they can hear my hearts desire to raise them with Godly wisdom. To be the mom each of them needs. And some expression of how thankful I am that God gave me this job to do. The finale is the lotion I put on their arms and pillow. Sometimes lavender, sometimes vanilla...often it is what I wore during the day. A little bit of mom that stays with them as they fall asleep.
Sometimes we take them alone out on a date. There have been father & daughter dances. Mom and son walks. But, it's the day to day that I think holds the most impact. Finding one of them walking through the house and stealing them away to our bedroom where my husband and I lay on the bed and tell them all of the amazing qualities they have, and why we love them so.
My hope is that the seeds of love that have been planted in each of them grows into a beautiful garden that they will one day share with their spouses and children. There is so much that I get wrong everyday...writing this helps me put life in perspective and remember why this is such a treasured time to embrace.
So, maybe this could be a "comment discussion" about the meaningful ways you show love in your family. I'm always looking for new ideas. Please share...
Welcome Friday Follow Participants!
Wednesday, February 24, 2010
Leave a comment. Tell a friend about our blog. Have a great day!
Holly & Charisse
Monday, February 22, 2010
Once while entering a local juice bar with my son...a homeless man said he was hungry and asked me for one of the items on the menu. Happily I ordered what he requested...and together my son and I delivered the smoothie. As I reached out to shake his hand, I asked him what his name was. He looked at me and said, "Robert." My son asked him several questions and thoughtfully he answered them. As we turned to go he said, "Thank you for asking me my name...no one ever does that."
quote by Edward Everett Hale
I have to force myself to Stop, Look, Listen, and Respond. I see laundry, dirty dishes, unmade beds, groceries to buy, errands to run. Things that are undone and need to be made right again every day. Bigger more complicated life issues like injustice, hunger, and poverty feels beyond my reach. My joy in helping Robert was that he had a specific request, a simple need I could act on immediately. It wouldn't change his lot in life but maybe the act of kindness would fill his belly and give him an ounce of hope that the world still contained some compassion. As it so often happens...it changed me probably far more than it helped him.
I don't have to look very hard to see people in my path that long for a loving touch, a kind word, a helping hand. What I've learned is that responding to the need is always far more fulfilling than continuing on with my scheduled list. A year from now I won't remember the soccer practice that was missed, but forever I'll have the memory of listening to the mom that was feeling so overwhelmed with life, and asking her if I could pray. Hopefully, the few times I do get it right, my kids will learn from my actions to value people more than the other distractions of life.
Here are a few ideas of things you can do today to make a difference.
*Look for people in your path today that need encouragement.
*Talk to your kids about seeing the needs of others.
*Take a few minutes to think about what breaks your heart and Google search to learn more.
*For $6 you can purchase a bed net online to protect families against malaria. 1 million people die of this disease each year. Learn more
*Visit a nursing home.
*Instead of looking away...say hello to the homeless.
*If you love hospitality, offer to cook a meal for someone in need.
*Set up a lemonade stand with the kids and donate the money to a worthy organization.
*Think about how you are gifted and use them.
*The church I attend, Menlo Park Presbyterian Church, is doing a series called "The Ripple Effect". Opening our eyes to the pain of the world and responding to those needs. Our pastor is John Ortberg who is a nationally known author and speaker. If interested, click here...The Ripple Effect...to see the first talk in the series. It might just start something stirring in your heart.
Thursday, February 18, 2010
Friday Follow is hosted by One 2 Try, Hearts Make Families and Midday Escapades.
Charisse and I are totally new to this...but we gave it our unique Life Laugh Latte spin. We actually created and edited this vlog today. So hot off of the press you'll burn yourself. This is some of our best work. It's worth the extra time to watch it...I promise you! So sit back and learn a thing or two from the minivan masters. Enjoy!
Wednesday, February 17, 2010
You are valuable because you live and breathe.
God created each precious detail of who you are...and He delights in you.
So, in this moment rest in the knowledge that you are loved...and alive for a special purpose.
quote by Michael Vance
quote by Mitsugi Saotome
a listening ear, encouragement, and they are a reflection of your inner beauty.
Thursday, February 11, 2010
In case you would like to sing along with Charisse, here are the lyrics.
Little Crab by Charisse
"Little crab did you lose your mommy? With your pretty bobble eyeballs. Little crab where's your daddy. I love you. Now you're not so itchy anymore...little crab."
We hope you didn't miss out on the first two installments of our Aloha series. If you did, go check out Wordless Wednesday...From A Remote Location & MIA...Aloha
Wednesday, February 10, 2010
You won't want to miss our MIA...Aloha vlog from yesterday. More fun to come!
Hope it put a little hop, skip, and a jump into your day! Love, Holly & Charisse
Tuesday, February 9, 2010
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
In The Wednesday Sisters friendship is the expression of love that nurtured a belief in self. Leaning on each other, taking turns being strong, stepping in to fill the gaps where family should have been responsible.
In The Help I read about love through justice. Doing what is right to help people on this Earth with no voice. It often puts us outside our comfort zone. It might require us to turn away from beliefs passed down to us by our culture or our families. We might find that a precious few share our convictions, or are willing to do anything about the injustice they perceive.
Hotel On The Corner Of Bitter And Sweet reminded me of the connection that many cultures share requiring obedience as the ultimate symbol of love. In this story obedience was taken to the extreme and was incredibly oppressive. I think most people cringe at the notion of obedience. We turn from it the moment we are born. Human beings want to wander through life at their own whim, making their own decisions, without any consequences. We want love without sacrifice. At the root of obedience is trust. That's a hard thing for a lot of people to do. To me, without obedience the world becomes shades of gray with no real right and wrong. It devalues life experience, the wisdom of those that have traveled the road before us, and leads to a life where we become our own god. Obedience isn't limiting, it is loving and unselfish and wise.
Snowflower And The Secret Fan painted a picture of "Mother love". Life is hard, and so they loved their daughters by teaching them to endure through hardship. Although I couldn't disagree more with this being their only way to express love. It struck me, as I read the book, that I often error on the side of gentleness and compassion. I also want to be the mother that isn't afraid to let my children experience some of the hard edges of life, and be consistent with enforcing responsibility and duty even when it is difficult for both of us. It also painted a beautiful and often painful picture of love through loyalty, even when undeserved.
Love is certainly a rich topic. I wonder what thoughts about love this post brings up for you?
Have a wonderful day...Holly
Tuesday, January 26, 2010
Show us the love...leave a comment. Have an awesome day!
Thursday, January 21, 2010
The devastation is so great...unimaginable suffering. Many people have died and many are trapped. Families have been destroyed, children are alone. The elderly and sick sit uncared for in the streets, nowhere to go. The poverty is immense and there is no end to this in sight.
Open doors and clear all obstacles so that many people can respond to the tugging of their heart to reach out to the people of Haiti. Help our nation to see examples of generosity that far surpass what we have been capable of in the past. Touch the souls of the desperate and give them peace and a hope to cling to. Remind us to pray, to act, and to remember.
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
Reading your awesome comments is like a triple shot latte in an IV...that's right folks...it's like a piece of heaven! Have a great day. Holly
Saturday, January 16, 2010
Here is the "Movie Club" vlog we did for The Blind Side.
Hope you are having a terrific weekend! Leave a comment...or we might cry...no one needs to see that!
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
So, today I'm looking at the most disturbing aspect of the book which was the foot binding done to each little girl between the ages of four and six. I'm trying to imagine the reality and pain of life lived on 3" feet. This was considered beautiful, erotic, a symbol of obedience. It showed the family you married into that you could endure hardship with grace. Binding was tradition, sometimes a way out of poverty for you and your family. Mothers put their daughters at risk of infection and sometimes death while whispering to them that this was meant to be, and one day they would be grateful.
It's hard to imagine isn't it? Watching your child suffer at your own hand knowing that they would be a servant for life if they chose not to do it. Having once endured the pain yourself, you know exactly what you are inflicting. I spent time online looking at these bound feet...trying to make sense out of a lifetime of physical suffering. I'm attaching a link that gives a tasteful description of the history. Worth a look if you have a strong stomach. (Article/photographs)
My initial reaction is to judge the culture for making these choices. I sit with that thought awhile and see a huge red flag signaling me to find the bigger question to ask myself. Where in my life am I bound? Like it or not we all wear bindings. It may not be on our feet, but we tie them on in some area of our lives and it cripples us. Is it striving for perfection? Is it beauty? Is it success? Is it the idea that our children or our spouse need to be a certain way? Could it be your thought life...constantly criticizing yourself? Maybe it is intimacy or fear of failure or a childhood experience that has shaped your thinking in a negative way?
In my life I seem to go through cycles of bondage. A couple of months a year it is about my appearance. I'll work out more, eat less, and strive for that lower size. Eventually that feels shallow, and I'll turn that energy to something else like blogging, parenting, volunteering or homemaking. No matter what it is...it always starts innocently enough and then gets exaggerated into something bigger than it ever should have been. Before I know it the ropes are tight, I'm struggling, and it's time to get perspective again and break free.
I wonder where you go when you have a bondage to be broken and healed? For me I run desperately to my faith. When I'm there reading scripture, praying honestly from my heart, listening to music that builds me up in the knowledge of who God is and how much He loves me...I'm able to finally let go. I feel the bindings loosening, falling away, and God speaking to me in whispers that quiet my mind.
Important stuff to think about. This is a remarkable book about Chinese culture, family, love, friendship, duty and obedience. It will make you cringe, cry, laugh, think, and feel so very thankful for the freedom and opportunities we now enjoy as women!
if you have already read this book what you loved about it.
You can purchase the book in the right column of our blog in our Amazon store.
Have a wonderful day!
Sunday, January 10, 2010
Thanks for coming by...and please don't leave without saying hello!