It’s Mother’s Day. Let the Birds do the Tweeting.

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Posted by kellycarcione | Posted in Kelly Carcione | Posted on 10-05-2013

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A few weeks ago, I took my kids to a birthday party where I didn’t know many of the parents. They all knew each other and everyone was very pleasant. Yet, I noticed something odd about ten minutes into the party. The moms were all still talking to each other, but every one of them had an iPhone out, scrolling through who knows what in the midst of conversation. Quaint dings and dongs were going off, pretty little heads were bobbling and there was an occasional, “Oh, look, I have a picture of that right here!”

Once I noticed it at the party, I started noticing it EVERYWHERE. The mom at the playground nodding away her child’s, “Look at me, Mommy!” on the monkey bars. The patient checking in at the OB/GYN office, texting while whispering her name and birthdate to the receptionist. At the spa, in the bathrobe, fresh from a massage, ON THE PHONE. Women leaning over shopping carts while kids grab cereal boxes off of store shelves. Nannies walking down the street with toddlers ambling half a block behind them, completely oblivious to their surroundings. And yes, moms in the car with kids, on the phone while driving past the elementary school! (With a Baby On Board bumper sticker, to boot!)

I know we are all pulling our phones out to carry us through dull moments in our day: elevators, waiting rooms, long lines. We take videos, find directions and retrieve immediate pop trivia answers that linger on the tips of our tongues. I understand why teenagers do this at boring family functions.

I’ve given an iPhone to my kids in restaurants to make it through the meal.  I get it. Tonight, I will probably download an app to keep track of my contractions. And I bet I’ll be tempted to reach for that phone not ten minutes after this baby is born to call home while nurses are cleaning up my newborn, if I can wrestle it away from my husband snapping a hundred pictures a minute. Technology is woven into the very fabric of our culture and daily lives. Really, I get it!

But moms! Come on! Can’t we have old-fashioned adult conversations and look each other in the eye? I know we are multitasking all the time but this is an unhealthy compulsion. We need to take the lead on this before our kids start expecting the instant gratification of youtube or angry birds before they even hit preschool.

I challenge you all this Mother’s Day to actually stop and enjoy this day devoted to you. Resist the urge to send out cheesy e-greetings to your closest 500 mom friends while checking for witty comments to your posts with Pavlovian fervor. You do not need to “like” every scalloped-edge poem about the joys of motherhood, or scroll through endless albums of mother’s day mishaps. Hello! Your kid spent an hour making that adorable card. Look up from the screen! The most important relationships you have are with the people here. With you. Now.

Come Monday, when you update that Facebook profile with a beautiful picture of your family post-brunch, you can be sure that those smiles are authentic. And then you can tweet about it.

Happy Mother’s Day, everyone!

What Makes a Mother?

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Posted by webmaster | Posted in Miscellaneous | Posted on 06-05-2011

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Well, it’s Mother’s Day this weekend.  And I’m heading out to visit Mom tonight.  She just had cataract surgery on Wednesday.  My sisters spent a couple of days with her and I’m going to go take care of her for a day or two.  She’s worth it.  After all, she’s my mother.

Without bragging or putting my mom up on a pedestal or anything, I have to tell you about a memory of her.  The entire time I was in elementary school, my mother was the classroom mom.  Hand picked by all the other students in my classroom.  Some kids today might think that”s a horrific thought.  Having your mother come and work with the teacher in the classroom whenever the teacher needed her.  Holidays.  Birthdays.  Special events and fundraisers.  My mom was there.  I didn’t see it like a lot of other kids – as a chaperon, a spy, an embarrassment.

On the contrary.  My mom was a patient saint when I look back.  I loved having all the other kids tell me how cool she was.  I never got jealous that they hogged her to themselves whenever we went on field trips.  I rarely sat with her or walked with her.  She was holding hands of the other kids, making them laugh, and showing them by example that it paid to be honest, have integrity, and compassionate.  My mom made me proud.  I was her son.

When we all graduated to junior high school – no elaborate elementary school graduations here – almost the entire class cried when the teacher gave my mom some flowers.  For all of her years of service.  We had grown up in front of her and she was beside us the whole way.  Only the girls cried though.  Okay, a lot of the boys did too.  See?  My mom still weighs down on me to tell the truth!

My mom has been through a lot.  Thrown from the back window over 100 ft from her car when she was hit in a high speed unmarked police chase in 1979, she was in a coma with a broken neck, hip, arm for 5 days and she came back to us, she burped, and said “Excuse me.”  That’s my mother.

I could go on and on about how she beat cancer, how we were broke when I was a child and on Christmas Eve, she was determined to give us a Christmas, so she drove us, my sisters and myself, in the pouring rain, and at midnight, hopped a cyclone fence at a nursery in San Carlos, and threw a tree headed for the shredder over the fence and on top of the car.  We decorated that tree with popcorn strands and one string of lights and it was one of the best Christmas’ ever!!

I could go on, but I won’t.  My mom may not be proud of some of those moments because they may not have been the right thing to do, but that determination to do what moms do best – deliver the goods – every time; well, that’s who she is.  And always has been.

What makes up my mother is now part of my makeup.  I learned I will always provide.  I will always survive.  I will try to show my children by example.  I may not always be proud of the ways in which I do things, but…

but, I know, my mom always will be.

Happy Mother’s Day to all of the Mommies!!

Even Selfless Moms Need a Moment

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Posted by Gina Perkins, Pre-School Mommie | Posted in Gina Perkins | Posted on 10-05-2010

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Perhaps it was the lack of the sleep, the surge of monthly hormones, or the foiled celebration of my first ever Mother’s Day that did it – but I woke up on the wrong side of the bed.  I woke up feeling deflated, under-appreciated and overworked.

Not only has DJ sprouted her first two teeth, but she has also learned how to crawl AND walk.  Though the walking is of course assisted, she still has the concept of one foot in front of the other down pat.  This means that she is cranky and active.  With these new skills, she is hell-bent on running the show.

This morning, I sought solace in my usual place – the shower.  Even though DJ sits in there, staring at me from her bouncer chair, my hands are free and I can close my eyes while the hot water melts the tension from my shoulders.  Not today, though.  DJ decided to grab onto her chair’s canopy to gain momentum while arching her back in an attempt to launch her lap out of the safety belt and touch her feet to the ground.  My haven became a cordoned off circus – overnight.

The tears were instant.  Mine, not DJ’s.  If I didn’t have my showers, what did I have?  Where could I go to be alone?  Where could I go to relax, to find peace?  Was I now going to have schedule my own shower around my husband’s schedule?  Great, a schedule within a schedule…..sounded paralyzing.

I did what any woman would do – I packed up DJ and went to the mall.  I figured that I could get out of the house and away from my barking dogs, while DJ was preoccupied with bright lights, bad music and doting strangers.  I walked into a few stores without the intention of purchasing anything, which was a good thing because I thought that everything was dreadful.  I stopped as I passed a mirror – I was dreadful.  I was so frumpy.  Why did I even leave the house?

With my damp ponytail coming loose from it’s rubber band, I made a bee-line for the Mac counter.  The makeup artist looked at me and asked, “What can I do for you?”  I said “I need help.”  Little did he know the gravity of my answer.  He then spent the next 30 minutes teaching me how to apply a “smoky look” to my eyes.  DJ started crying midway through and I looked at her and sternly said, “You can wait.”  And I meant it.  It was the first time in 8 months that I really felt like I had to put myself first.

I’m about as low maintenance as they come.  I get pedicures twice a year, never get manicures, I shave and pluck rather than wax, and I push my hair appointments to every 8 weeks.  I don’t buy designer clothes, and I rarely wear anything but my flip-flops.  However, I think I have allowed that to translate for others into me not needing to take time for myself – and that couldn’t be farther from the truth.

I am a selfless mom.  I habitually put others first – that’s my nature and for the most part, I don’t think twice about it.  But, there does come a time when I just want my moment.  Whether it’s a hot shower, cooking dinner with a glass of wine, going for a long walk or listening to some really depressing music – I need to quietly celebrate the woman that I am….by myself.

While my eyes did end up looking smokin hot, and I spent way too much money on products (Happy Mother’s Day to me!) – it was truly my soul that received the makeover.  Through those few moments of allowing the focus to be on me, I gained the patience that I will need to make it through my day (I think….it’s still pretty early).