When did Christianity Become a Dirty Word?

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I know many dirty words, most of the of the four letter kind. I have often stood in the middle of a room yelling such profound language to make a point. Because you know that when you are making a point nothing gets the other person’s attention like scream at the top of your lungs…..FUCK YOU!

Never in my wildest dreams did ever think the world would start scream “I’m a Christian” at the top of their lungs to get their hateful point across. In fact my usual reply to this is…”no you’re not you’re an asshole!”

Lately being a Christian makes me cringe. Not because I don’t hold true to my faith but because some groups have turned Christianity into a powerful sword. Wait that is not true it hasn’t been just lately. Christians have a long history of being the religious group that takes up arms. From the crusades to the Westboro Baptist Church or reputation for being the biggest bullies continues to spread.

What would happen if we lived our lives according to the way that Jesus lived his? I mean come on that was the point in the whole Messiah thing right?? He led by example and somewhere we veered to the right never to look back.

My daily prayers do not include wiping out the gays or getting rid of the Muslims the Jews or the Hindus, my daily prayers always include helping bring love and joy into everyone’s lives. That is was I was taught about being a Christian.

I would like to live in a world where my faith isn’t considered a dirty 9-letter word. One where I can proudly say to my multicultural, multi-religion, heterosexual and homosexual friends that yes indeed I believe in the teachings of Jesus Christ. I want Christians to stand up and let go of all the hate that surrounds things we don’t understand and replace it with love, tolerance and respect. That is what Jesus would do. Instead of wearing bracelets and t-shirts lets actually live it!

I am Christian and I do not hate!

I normally write about significant others and how to have the best relationships. Today I needed to write about the relationship we have with others and ourselves.

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Romantic Playlist…. Fireside Chat List

 

  1. Dear      Mr. Fantasy- Traffic
  2. What      You Thought You Need- Jack Johnson
  3. Son of a Preacher Man- Dusty Springfield
  4. All My      Love- Led Zeppelin
  5. The Sound of Silence- Simon and Garfunkel
  6. Drops      of Jupiter- Train
  7. What a      Wonderful World- Louis Armstrong
  8. Set      Fire to the Rain- Adele
  9. Sweet      Caroline- Neil Diamond
  10. One-      U2 

10 Ways to Create Sneaky Bonding Time with Your Older Child!

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Raising kids is a constant guessing game. It is easy when they are little to spend time and keep them engaged. What happens when their friends, video games, school and jobs start to compete with your bonding time? Well you have to find clever ways to sneak it in of course!
1. Turn off the video games. Yes I know they complain but if you turn them off they will start to talk. In our home we turn them off at 6pm weekdays. We also create a video game free day on Sundays.
2. This one is in my opinion the most important, eat dinner together at the table..turn the TV off! Remember childhood? Where did we eat? Until the invention of the TV tray most American families ate at the dinning room table. What would happen if we all took a page from the history books? During this valuable time ask them how their day went…without judgement! Oh and no cell phones at the table!
3. Turn off your phone. Like most parents I transport my children back and forth to school. They are forced to pay attention to me for at least 10 minutes..I take this seriously, seriously goofy that is:). I see too many parents driving around their children with phones to their ears. You are missing a captive audience right in your passenger seats. My children use this time to play slug bug and yellow banana. Yep that’s right it is still fun even as an adult!
4. Movie night and pizza. This is the only time my family eats in front of the TV. So it is special and fun. They never miss movie night, in fact my freshman in college asks me if we can have a movie night when he comes home. It’s simple I know but very effective.
5. Family day. Most families do this already. Ours in Sunday mainly because of church and its video game free day. We play cards, board game, go for walks, bike, fish…list goes on and on.
6. Let them choose the movies, books and music. You will be surprised in their tastes. I allow my sons to add music to my workout playlist. What an adventure! It allows me to open up conversation about their interests. I also have been known to read a book because my kids loved it so much.
7. Bedtime is talk time. Create a bedtime ritual which includes walking into their rooms every night. I use that time to tell them how proud of them I am and also to tell them I can’t wait to see them in the morning. If you are aren’t telling them how amazing they are then who us? I also sneak in some personal conversations about people they may be interested in. It’s great how much they will tell you at bedtime.
8. Social media seems to get a really bad rap but as an engaged parent I use it to send them little reminders of how much I love them. I Facebook upcoming events, tagging them in the posts and wishing them luck. I text them that I love them..like modern day sticky notes in their lunch box. Do they roll their eyes? I’m sure but I can’t see it and I know that they read it!
9. I made a deal with my children, if they help cook or bake they don’t have to help clean. I have many children so this works well. One kid helps cook. One kid helps bake (on Sundays) , one empties the dishwasher and the other helps clean up. Both the cooking and the clean up seems to turn out really fun. We turn in a fun playlist, dance, sing, snap each other with towels and have aluminum ball wars! They don’t seem to mind this time.. It’s better than giving them a choir and fighting them about it. They have a choice if what they want to help with so they have the power.
10. Workout together. Go to the gym, take a walk, bike ride, play a team sport by putting one parent on one team and the other on the opposite then divide the children…funniest memories happen here. Don’t miss out!

If given a choice some children would not spend time with their families. That is why it is important to create some family rituals they love. We get busy but the key is to always make them feel like you are never too busy for them. It’s never too late to start.

Pink Moscato Cupcakes

CozyCouples ™

May was a month of many emotions, my oldest son graduated high school and I tried to laugh while crying. The one thing that helped my emotional instability was baking. The clever boy asked me to homemake cupcakes for his special day.. this meant days of baking and decorating mini cakes for our guests to enjoy. One cupcake he wanted to make sure hit the desert table was Pink Moscato (I use Bare Foot because it is cheap and sweet).

NOTE: I am very lucky to have many women in my life who helped me make all the cupcakes and too drink lots of wine the day before the graduation party. Thank you lovely ladies:)

I first invented these dreamy cupcakes I March 24, 2013. My boys have been asking for them on a regular basis since…ENJOY!
Cream together 1/2 cup of real butter and 1 1/2 cups of sugar

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Aching in Anticipation

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The United States Marine Corps owns my husband. He made this honorable sacrifice when we were 18 and still new to life. As his wife, I’ve stood behind him for five years and seven months. In the time John has been in Afghanistan, I have graduated college and found an amazing job as a teacher in our hometown, fifty minutes from an Air Force base. He knew he would be deployed, so he made an effort to keep me home near my family.

As a military wife, I know that I come second to the United States government. I have never complained, given ultimatums, or threatened him about his service to our country. It just wouldn’t be fair. It is our way of life. He gets papers, and I wait and hope he returns to me alive.

During stolen moments together over Skype, I keep a positive attitude and make sure I have stories to make him laugh again, even if it is only for fleeting seconds. I haven’t washed his pillow since he left. I spritz his cologne daily as a reminder of his scent. The days without him are impossible, but the nights after his return are so amazing our marriage just grows stronger.

John is coming home tonight, which will break my evening ritual of crying myself to sleep. He has been stateside for a month but hasn’t landed in our city, which has driven me absolutely mad. I ache to feel his touch, to smell his neck and to lace my fingers through the back of his hair. I want to feel him everywhere.

Earlier today I paced through the house and cleaned, dusting every inch of dirt that could have possibly been left from the year. The bedding, including his pillowcase, has been washed in lavender and misted in sandlewood. Everything is new again.

I’ve prepared a simple dinner of salmon, steamed vegetables, and rice. For dessert, I’ve made homemade red velvet cupcakes with cream cheese frosting, his favorite. A bottle of Moscoto chills in the ice bucket. Two empty crystal glasses stand waiting. The candle flames dance with joy. John is coming home.

I hear the car door shut, and I feel his presence. Each footstep puts my senses on full alert. My heart plays a drum line in my chest, and my body responds in anticipation. The jingle of his keys gives added depth to my orchestra of emotions.

My dreams of this night finally take center stage. The handle turns, the door opens quietly, and I see him. I take a deep breath and try to maintain my balance as he stands before me. I take off in a graceful sprint toward the man I have missed for over a year and leap high into his arms. His bags drop to the ground as his arms wrap completely around me like a warm blanket. My long, thin legs slowly enclose his waist.

The emotions open the floodgates from my eyes, and I begin to cry. “I’ve missed you,” he whispers into my ear, still holding me so close I can feel his heart race against my chest. I can’t speak. I can only be right here, in this moment. Nothing else makes sense. I take a deep breath, inhaling every piece of John that I can.

John gives me a soft, gentle kiss. I could drink him in and still need more. I love everything about this man. I lace my fingers through his hair at the back of his head. He doesn’t bother putting me down. He just follows the candlelight into the bedroom that I have prepared so carefully.

Written by: Rachel Sorensen

CTFD Explored

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Contemporary rendering of a poster from the Un...

I’ll admit it, I borrowed this idea from someone else. A FB friend posted this the other day. Apparently, it’s gone viral.

Here’s my take: In a relationship, sometimes you need to remember CTFD. Not everything is life-altering or earth-shattering. CTFD.

Sometimes, we need to simply let things go. Let them hang like shirts drying on a line in the wind.

If you ask couples the secret to a long marriage, I bet they’ll say something like CTFD.

If you find yourself getting all riled up because your mate left the &%R^# seat up  — again, or the cabinet doors are swinging open waiting to smack you upside the head, remember — CTFD.

It’s not that serious. Go get naked and have some fun.

KDM

Careful

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From the moment she was nine months old and learned to walk, my daughter has been accident-prone.  I don’t know why she walked so early; I myself was 14 months before I took my first steps, my brother waited until he was 16 months old.  Speed doesn’t run in the family; I guess she was in a hurry to fall off of things.

I vividly remember the first time she hurt herself. We had just moved back to Omaha, when one night she sat on my husband’s lap, and decided to take one of those strange upper body dives. Her forehead slammed against the edge of the dining room table, which made for two spooked parents and one seriously interesting bruise.  Little did we know that it was merely the beginning of many years of falling, hitting, and stumbling.  Since then, she has burned her hand on an iron, fallen off my in-laws porch (4 stitches!) and had more bruises then I care to count.  We’ve had summer days when –in spite of triple digit weather- I’ve refused to dress her in shorts.  One time I counted 13 bruises on her legs, potentially sending the message that we pinch her just for fun. thebook-g

The truth is, my daughter walks into a room as if she is the queen, and the furniture her loyal subjects.  The dresser that’s been here for as long as she can remember?  Of course it will move of its own accord, doesn’t it see her coming? And why would those toys lie in the middle of the floor? It’s not her fault she trips; it’s the eternal onslaught of things, which don’t put themselves away when they should.  She finds her salvation in grammar: “The bed made me fall” as opposed to “I fell over the bed.”

When we found out she badly needed glasses, we were relieved. All of a sudden things made sense. Of course she was stumbling all over the place; she couldn’t see where she was going! We bought her some very cute glasses, and looked forward to a bruise-free existence.  I fantasized about all the skirts she could wear, without showing a purple map of South America on her legs. From now on, we reasoned, she could see where the furniture was, and she would walk around them; we could stop stocking up on band-aids.

How wrong we were.

Just like before, she kept bumping into things; just like before, weird loud noises would come from her room.  We still found ourselves yelling upstairs: “What on earth are you doing?” approximately five times a day.  We finally had to admit: her ‘accidents’ had nothing to do with poor eyesight. Our daughter is simply a natural born Klutz.

Keeping children safe is a challenge; the key is knowing when to panic, and when to relax. Learning to avoid small accidents now might make her more safety-conscious during her teenage years. If you start a dialogue with your child about why some insects are dangerous, and why you shouldn’t put certain toys in your mouth, maybe it won’t be such a big leap to discussing teenage drinking and other exciting things that are ahead. Although, I’d rather not think about that just yet.

Written by Annette Wright

 

10 Ways to Create a Bad*** Relationship Now!

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Who wants a badass relationship?

You want a Badass relationship!

When do you want it?

NOW!

Be yourself. Always.

Life is too short. Most people agree with this statement. Take a page from Auntie Mame’s playbook:

Allow room for personal growth.

Be honest.

Anyone who doesn’t take truth seriously in small matters cannot be trusted in large ones either.

Albert Einstein

 

Be compassionate.

Sometimes we forget that the people closest to us need empathy and understanding. When we’re willing to treat strangers with more compassion than our mate, then it’s time for a reality check. Besides, showing empathy is hot.

Listen.

Easy, right? If it’s so simple to do, why is there so much research about how to do it? Check out Skills You Need for more tips.

Exercise.

The better you feel, the better your sex life. Period. Get moving. If you can find a way to exercise together, then do it! There’s nothing sexier than watching your mate get stronger (not just physically, by the way.) Exercise doesn’t have to be the traditional ‘go to the gym routine.’ Learn to dance together. In Omaha, NE there’s Jitterbugs Night Out. I bet there’s something like it where you live. If not, pick something else. Go hiking, swimming, walking, jump on a trampoline — the possibilities are endless.

Eat healthy food.

You know the saying: Garbage in, garbage out. Eat, drink, and be merry some of the time, not most of the time. Drink lots of water. You don’t have to be a saint about it. Remember that you want to be around playing with your mate as long as possible. You can’t do that if you eat a lot of crap. Bad food jams your system, makes you feel sluggish, and then you can’t enjoy sex.

Share.

If you’re married, then there’s no such thing as “mine,” “his,” or “hers.” Everything is “ours.” Yes, couples may jokingly use those terms to describe “his” kitchen or “her” tools. At the end of the day, the stuff belongs to both of you, including the problems, happy times, money, and, if you have wall-crawlers, they belong to both of you, too. Is sharing natural? Check out the clip:

Be your partner’s biggest fan.

Laugh. A lot.

Watch this! It’s worth every minute. I laughed so hard, I cried.

Are there other things you can do? Sure! For now, just do these 10 things and you’ll have a badass relationship.

If you need more encouragement, watch this:

Good luck!

KDM

 

 

 

I May Be Big But My Kids Are Not

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I was happily walking the other day when a friend stopped me and said, “Wow look at you getting your workout on!” Quite a compliment considering I haven’t workout out in any serious way since January of this year.  I replied back, “Ya I have to loose this extra ass shelf I have gained! I look like our moms and grandmothers used to.”  We both laughed a bit then looked at each other.  She said back, “You know what you are right.  My mother had the same physique I do now.”

When did our society get to a point were adult women care more about their own health then the health of their children? It seems to be a growing trend to allow children to eat unhealthy and play video games whilst the parents workout and eat low fat, low carb foods.  We stay away from soda but allow our children to make it their primary source of fluid intake.  We eat a salad while they partake in double bacon cheeseburgers and French fries.  Smoothies are made while ice cream malts are served to the children.

Maybe health should be a family priority and not just the priority of a parent who doesn’t want age to catch up with them.

I jokingly replied back to my friend, “in order to work full time and raise four kids I need to throw them some Burger King for dinner to make time to work out the way I need to be skinny.  I refuse!”

Don’t get all uptight…. I still believe a person needs to stay healthy.  I believe a family should commit to physical exercise as much as they can.  I just take issue with parents who don’t think their children need the same rituals.

Working out can be a wonderful coping skill but it can also be the main source of guilt…You know guilt, that little voice inside your head that tells you that you suck every single time you miss your workouts or the little voice that yells about your weight when ever you step on the scale after you have missed said workouts.  If its a family ritual their will be more than just you encouraging involvement.

I say LET IT GO.  Workout when you can, eat well the majority of the time but please consider the health of your children full time! I am not %100 pleased with the way I look but oddly enough I look just like my mother and grandmother used to while they were raising their own children!  Be kind, life is too short!

Pink Moscato Cupcakes

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May was a month of many emotions, my oldest son graduated high school and I tried to laugh while crying. The one thing that helped my emotional instability was baking. The clever boy asked me to homemake cupcakes for his special day.. this meant days of baking and decorating mini cakes for our guests to enjoy. One cupcake he wanted to make sure hit the desert table was Pink Moscato (I use Bare Foot because it is cheap and sweet).

NOTE: I am very lucky to have many women in my life who helped me make all the cupcakes and too drink lots of wine the day before the graduation party. Thank you lovely ladies:)

I first invented these dreamy cupcakes I March 24, 2013. My boys have been asking for them on a regular basis since…ENJOY!
Cream together 1/2 cup of real butter and 1 1/2 cups of sugar
Add in order 2 tsp. baking Powder
2 cups unbleached flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup Pink Moscato set out in room temp for about an hour (this also releases some of the bubbles
1/2 tsp. vanilla (real not imitation)
Fold in 4 egg whites that have been beaten in a bowl till soft peaks form
Mix well ..
Line 2 (12 cupcake) cupcake pans, divide evenly into 24 cupcakes. Bake 350 degrees for 20 minutes.

Cream Cheese Pink Moscato Frosting
12oz of cream cheese (1 1/2 blocks softened on the counter for several hours) cupcakes
1 stick of soften butter (again on the counter for hours)
1 (2lbs) bag of confectioners sugar (I prefer C&H brand)
5 tsp. of Pink Moscato (microwave for a minute to release the alcohol- make sure it is cool before mixing into the frosting)
1/2 tsp. vanilla
Mix all ingredients then add the sugar. Beat till creamy place into the fridge for 1/2 hour.
After cupcakes are cooled decorate at will:)

Refrigerate the cupcakes and serve cold! That is the best way to eat them.

***I added dark chocolate chips to the ones pictured.. great when they were hot but not so great when chilled.  I didn’t like them enough to repeat the chocolate chips.