A great gift for Mother’s Day…


I read this beautiful parable and was so touched by the beautiful images and emotion that it holds. This would be a wonderful gift to share with your Mom this Mother’s Day. Blessings to you and your family.

Parable of Motherhood

Temple Bailey

this was originally published in Good Housekeeping Magazine in 1933

The young mother set her foot on the path of life.  “Is the way long?” she asked.  And her guide said, “Yes, and the way is hard.  And you will be old before you reach the end of it.  But the end will be better than the beginning.”  But the young mother was happy and she would not believe that anything could be better than those years.  So she played with her children and gathered flowers for them along the way and bathed them in the clear streams; and the sun shone on them and life was good, and the young mother cried, “Nothing will never be lovelier than this.”

Then night came, and storm, and the path was dark and the children shook with fear and cold, and the mother drew them close and covered them with her mantle and the children said, “Oh Mother, we are not afraid, for you are near, and no harm can come,” and the mother said, “This is better than the brightness of day, for I have taught my children courage.”

And the morning came, and there was a hill ahead and the children climbed and grew weary, and the mother was weary, but at all times she said to the children,  “A little patience and we are there.”  So the children climbed and when they reached the top, they said, “We could not have done it without you, Mother.”  And the mother, when she lay down that night, looked up at the stars and said, “This is a better day than the last, for my children have learned fortitude in the face of hardness.  Yesterday I gave them courage, today I have given then strength.”

And with the next day came strange clouds which darkened the earth, clouds of war and hate and evil–and the children groped and stumbled, and the mother said, “Look up.  Lift your eyes to the light.”  And the children looked and saw above the clouds an Everlasting Glory, and it guided them and brought them beyond the darkness.  And that night the mother said,  “This is the best day of all for I have shown my children God.”

And the days went on, and the weeks and the months and the years, and the mother grew old, and she was little and bent.  And her children were tall and strong and walked with courage.  And when the way was rough they lifted her, for she was as light as a feather; and at last they came to a hill, and beyond the hill they could see a shining road and golden gates flung wide.  And the mother said, “I have reached the end of my journey.  And now I know that the end is better than the beginning, for my children can walk alone and their children after them.”  And the children said, “You will always walk with us, Mother, even when you have gone through the gates.”

And they stood and watched her as she went on alone, and the gates closed after her.  And they said, “We cannot see her, but she is with us still.  A mother like ours is more than a memory.  She is a Living Presence.”

Ideas to make Mommy Day special.

Image“Being a mother means that your heart is no longer yours; it wanders wherever your children do.”  -Unknown

It’s Mommy week!! Cheers to all you Mothers out there who do your best to make each day a little brighter for those little ones in your life. Mother’s have this amazing job to take a little piece of heaven, nurture it, teach it, watch it grow and tenderly love it through every life challenge, every moment of frustration, every turn of events, every tear, every joy! That is the gift of Motherhood. So please take a special moment this week to admire, recognize, thank, hug and squeeze your Mommy. She needs it!! So send her some love. Here are some ideas to do just that…

Tell her you love her by saying Thank you: I can’t tell you how my heart sings when my little daughter says thank you for something I have done for her. A Thank you goes a long way.

Personalize it: Make a gift that is especially from you…write her a song, dedicate a song, make a cd with music she’ll like, write a special letter, create a 50 things I love about you list, make a card, a page of history, write her a poem, take a photo & frame it, Personalized mug, ring or necklace with her birthstone, Make a scrapbook page, Frame artwork from the kids, do a fun photo poster or calendar (walmart) with a collage of your family favorites, Make a recipe book, Make her a personalized rice bag to warm sore muscles, Make a fun letter that has a variety of ways to say I love you in different languages,

Give some service: do chores without being asked, help in the yard, baby sit, clean & dust the house, make her breakfast in bed or a fancy, candlelit dinner, clean her car, clean the fridge or oven, fold the laundry, change all the baby diapers for the day, etc.

Other great gift ideas: Take her out to dinner, Buy her flowers with a special meaning that is personalized for her (i.e.: May is known for Lily of the Valley which means sweetness; humility; return of happiness. There are specific flowers for each month, so you could also do flowers from her birth month–google flower meanings), Make her a special piece of jewelry that is truly one-of-a-kind (have every child pick out a charm at a craft store–something that symbolizes mom & put them all on a necklace or charm bracelet), Go shopping with the kids & pick out a special outfit perfect for mom, Have everyone pick out a favorite flower & plant them in a special pot & create a cute planter pick signed by all the kids, Give her a spa day–a new robe, new slippers (with love notes & lotions tucked inside the big pockets) & some alone time, Make her a garden grow gift–get a big pot & put gloves, shoes, small garden tools, seeds & special notes of thanks for ‘helping us bloom & grow’, Have a fun night of dipping fruits in chocolate, Make special ‘Reasons I Love you’ notes & put them in a special bottle or jar, Buy a plain phone case & have the kids sign & decorate it (with sharpies, gemstones, good stickers, etc), Buy a cheaper yoga mat & have the kids write a love note on the mat edge with sharpies, Buy her a new bag & fill it with her favorite things (magazine, lipgloss, snack, water, book, movie, etc)

More Unique Gifts: Try uncommon goods.com (they have unique gift ideas), Redenvelope has tasteful, special gift ideas, Personalizationmall.com (personalized gifts), Walmart has lots of fun photo gift ideas

Make this Mommy Day Memorable. She is one of the most important people in your life.

-Make it Great!!  Heather

Summer Bucket List to do with your Family

ImageWith less than a month before the kids get out of school I thought it would be fun to compile a giant bucket list of fun summer things to do. Summer inspires FUN!! Everyone needs SUMMER FUN no matter where you are or where you are going…so here are some fun ideas I created, came across, thought would be fun, thought you may enjoy!!!

Make smoothies with fresh, summer fruit . fly kites—even homemade ones . play card games outside on a blanket . take a paddle boat ride . have a outdoor movie (always fun) . make old fashioned frozen pops (with punch & toothpicks) . have a day where you have a family read-a-thon and read books all day . go on a nature hike . have a chalk art day where you invite friends and family to do a chalk art sidewalk show & have the best art win fun prizes . make smores over an open fire . have a picnic under the stars & learn about constellations . make tin foil meals over a fire . make a hopscotch with duct tape or chalk & play . Have a day of old school games like jacks, dice, marbles, jump rope, pick up sticks . Make a fun fort outside or inside (forts are always fun!) . make homemade sno-cones . Visit a zoo, but turn it into a scavenger hunt where you look for different objects & animals . go on a family bike ride & take along a picnic . play night games like flash light tag . go to the river & find skipping rocks, come home & paint them with funny faces, patterns or inspiring words . Get family & friends together and have a giant hide & seek game at a local park . make home made ice cream . Find a local waterfall to hike to . girls pick out a cute sundress & then paint your nails . Plant something–have every member of the family pick out their own flower & plant it, water & take care of it (family flower garden) . Have a family pizza night & make everything from scratch . Go on an overnight camp out . Have a day (preferably bad weather) & have a movie or series marathon–veg out & watch the shows (non-stop) for the entire day (i.e.: Star Wars, Harry Potter, Back to the Future, etc) . Have a pillow fight night- but first make the pillows (buy fleece & make knot pillows for each person in the fam) then have a fun fight . Make something and share it with someone . Leave the windows open & feel the breeze (plus it helps the planet cut down on energy use) . Have a creative ice cream night where everyone mixes all their favorite mix ins & shares their one-of-a-kind flavor . Find a pool & go night swimming . See the sun set over a lake . Find a special spot to see the sun rise . Have a fun yard sale & get rid of old toys & things you don’t need & then give the money to a charity or someone in need . Play in the sprinklers . Buy cheap cameras for everyone & visit a local garden, have them take personal pictures, create a fun gallery, assign family ‘best’ awards . Have a storytelling contest–get friends & family together to share stories & give fun awards for ‘the most creative’ ‘the funniest’ ‘the best characters’ ‘the shortest’, etc . Make pinwheels & put them in your yard . Have a fun ice age day, freeze toys in ice cubes & chip them out while you watch the movie Ice Age . Have an all day Pajama day . Have a squirt gun fight . Make summer journals . Make & decorate wood cars & have a fun, family race . Make & mail summer cards to friends from school or relatives who live far away . Visit a local nature center & learn something new . Make bird feeders, get your binoculars out & do some bird watching . Visit a local flea market & give each family member $5 to spend & see who comes up with the greatest find . Have a fun foreign word or phrase for each week–see who can remember it at the weeks end . Have a specific day each week where you unplug (no television, games, electronics, etc) . Have special Art days where you create special works of art inspired by master artists . Go take photo booth family pics . Do a 500/1000 piece puzzle together over the summer months . Take a specific number of pictures over the whole summer (i.e. 300-1,000) . Try something new like canoeing, rafting, rollerblading, kayaking, paddleboarding, etc . Go to a community fair . Find a local scenic route you have never taken the family on & make it a fun family drive together . Have a weekly cooking class where you teach the kids a special meal to make (they cook it) . Have a fondue night . Have a crepe night where you make sweet & savory crepes . Have a paper airplane contest . Go to a parade . Visit a local farm . Go to a pottery place & make a fun summer piece that is personalized . Plant giant sunflowers . Go see and outdoor concert or play . Ride a train .  Camp in the backyard . Make ribs on the bbq . Do yoga in the backyard . Make play dough . Visit a museum . Finger paint  . Take a tram or gondola ride . Ten acts of random kindness .

Well, I hope these ideas get you thinking about all the FUN you can have with your family this summer. Summer is a great place to create memories, make the days enjoyable by learning something new, being together and having great moments together!!

Happy SUMMER!!

Protection, Purpose, Gratitude, Love


Wow, my heart skipped a beat as my husband called and told me about a shooting at the Houston airport. “Are you okay? was anyone hurt?” I inquired. “Yes. they kept us on the plane for over an hour till they had everything contained. There was a guy shooting off rounds and then shot himself. It was crazy. There were police and chaos everywhere.”  “I am glad you are okay. I don’t know what to think about these numerous times where you have been close to shootings. Should I be worried,” I said light heartedly. “I know its unbelievable. Its crazy.” I was grateful he was safe.

I instantly thought about another business trip my husband went on not too long ago when there was another shooting at the mall across from where he was staying. He was on his way over to the mall to buy me a gift for our upcoming anniversary, but when he arrived, there was chaos and everything was closed off to the mall.

Situations like these you never think will happen, but it always makes me stop and give thanks…thanks he is in my life, thanks that he was not in the wrong place at the wrong time, thanks that he was safe and protected for another day.

My husband and I have been listening to the audio book “The Traveler’s Gift” by Andy Andrews—great book. There is a statement in the book from the bible…hedge of thorns.  In the book the author describes the hedge of thorns as protection, that nothing will harm you until your purpose has been fulfilled.

I envision angels of protection, guardians who stand by you till your quest is at its end. I thought about this visual and wondered what lives we truly would lead if we had our blinders of fear removed, began to know our innate greatness, our daily purpose, the gifts we are given to move us forward to our greater self, the greater part of us that changes the world, lives fully, sees clearly the vision of who we truly are.

I am grateful to imagine and feel of a powerful protection, a safety net that harnesses us to life, an understanding that what happens to us, around us, between us, is meant to be. There are lessons, monumental moments, heroic action, chaos…for some purpose. Whether it is to bring forth faith, gratitude, guidance, love or the mere understanding of another, there is a reason.  I was again reminded of this—to give thanks for the ones you love in your life, to not take them for granted, to tell them how you feel…to share a prayer of thanks.

Please find something to share with those you love, a hug, a kind deed, words of gratitude, I love you’s, xoxo’s, a sweet note, a cherished moment that will not be left undone. Don’t wait.

Peace and love to you.  -Heather

Lessons learned from another time.


This week my daughter’s grade has been celebrating ‘Pioneer week’ and has challenged the students to eat home lunches, wear dresses, not watch television, walk home from school, eat oatmeal for breakfast and the list goes on. We have been noticing everything in every detail we do…brushing our teeth we imagined what the pioneers used—horse hair and animal bone handles, we have talked about how they took baths, washed their clothes, how they didn’t have refrigerators or ice to keep things cold, how they didn’t have running water and had to use an outdoor hole to go the bathroom–no toilets.

It has been a week of thanks, even in the tin-foil dinners we prepared by fire last night. I wanted to try and make a memorable meal over coals, so my daughter would have a better idea of what the pioneers ate, how things were prepared, how things were done. It was a great lesson. She looked at the pile of potatoes, carrots, hamburger, onions, garlic, soup and said “yuck.” She was determined not to eat it, but with some loving nudges, she tried it & enjoyed the experience. She even had seconds. It made us truly appreciate the love that went into everything.

Even though we have so many excessities (my own word) it made us appreciate so many things we take for granted. We have music & television in every room, every car, we have running water, warm showers, running toilets, fruits & veggies (groceries) readily available for the taking, numerous pairs of shoes, more than one outfit, phones that call from anywhere, computers that do so much, cars that drive us anywhere we need to be…the list goes on and on, but this week has been a great lesson in remembering where we once were, where we have come and what we truly should and need to be grateful for. We are blessed daily with sooo much.

My mother is a wonderful story teller & has studied pioneers for years & has many amazing stories she can tell, she researched her own pioneer history & has told stories of children freezing, families selecting what little items they could take on the long journey, children making the journey without their parents, families leaving their dead loved ones behind, lots of illness and death.  It truly humbles you to think of the severe winters, the hardships, the small handcarts that held their life treasures & necessities, the sacrifices that every family made to travel so far (some from distant lands like Australia & Europe) and then arrive in a desert land to begin again…to build, to till, to try and create a new life. It’s humbling because we are given so much, so freely & we take it for granted so easily.

Take a moment and think of your rich ancestral heritage. Where did you come from? What stories are held within your family? What sacrifices were made? What can you learn from them? What can you teach your children about their history? Lots to think about.

Here is a beautiful tribute I came across that has amazing images and a gorgeous song. It made me truly imagine the long walk that the pioneers took to find a better place to live.

Life is like this…a beautiful journey to a higher place. Peace & Love to you.