Puzzling!

Fun facts of the day!

According to an article by usatoday.com, did you know that by doing jigsaw puzzles:

You improve your visual-spatial reasoning skill sets such as:

Driving (helpful with parking), packing suitcases and boxes, and using a map!

Puzzles also help improve your short term memory that allows us to remember shapes and colors. Connections within the brain are also strengthened.

So, the next time you’re bored, get to “puzzling”!

“My son, leave them smiling”

Today, my “little boy” is 11 years-old. How fast the time has gone by. He amazes me and makes me laugh every day. He called me a “funny” mom one day, and I gasped a bit because, at the time, that was the highest compliment I had received in a long time!

What issues we dealt with at age four are different than today’s woes but still just as real. I mean, when you’re four and you lose your blankie that’s a BIG deal. When you’re approaching 11, and you lose your best Rubik’s cube that…is an even bigger deal.

Do you have children? What are some lessons they’ve taught you? Have they perhaps taught you to put a certain fear aside and be brave? Have they unlocked your inner child again through imaginary play?

What about certain virtues? My children have taught me it is much better to be patient, thoughtful, and kind – to laugh things off and also kindly said, “Mom, maybe you should just pray about it.”

In closing, I hope my son never stops making people smile and that he always helps them find their inner glow.

Happy birthday.

Love,

Your “funny” mom

Abundant Kindness

So this is love

So this is what makes life divine

So this is the miracle I’ve been dreaming of…

So This is Love lyrics Cinderella ©️ Walt Disney Music Company

As my daughter read her first bedtime book to me in April of 2018, my eyes started to well with tears. The “waterworks” turned on a little more when she read the page that said only three words. One glass slipper. However, she said “shwipper”! I refrained from correcting because I was so proud she was doing so well!

Who makes you proud? Maybe it’s your spouse, child(ren) or grandchildren, or close friends? Who brings a smile to your face when you see them? Tell them you love them and please, do it often.

My challenge for you IN ADDITION to a minimum of one act of kindness a day for the next week: send a quick text, leave a note for a co-worker (get the idea?) with a few kind words.

Friends, I think you AND the other person just might have a better day because of it.

Until we meet again.

Remember that time?

Remember that time we played endlessly in the sand box?

Remember that time you helped me with all those math problems?

Remember that time you built sand castles and I “smushed ‘um like a big giant”?

Remember that time you did three puzzles and two books with me before bedtime every night?

Remember that time you took us all skiing out West a couple times? What about the Caribbean?

Remember how you taught me how to parallel park?

Remember how you taught me how to get over my fear of baiting my own hook?

Remember how you always told me when it was chilly, “I’d bring a jacket if I were you”?

Remember when you walked me down the aisle and told me to keep…your…pace.

Remember how you now love and cherish my children so?

Dad…

Always remember, I love you so incredibly much. You and Mom, together, raised us with such love and unconditional affection. I cherish all these times and more. Just as the song goes, “You make me happy/when skies are gray”.

May the blessings and peace of God be upon you. Love, Annie

Relationship Heartbeat

Some of you may know, others may not, but my immediate family has you covered in terms of caring for your heart. Both my father and older brother are practicing cardiologists at the same hospital, my eldest brother sells pacemakers and defibrillators, and my older sister is a cardiac cath lab nurse!

However, this post will not be a medical lesson in stents or balloon angioplasties, but rather how to keep the romantic heartbeat of your relationship healthy and at a strong, healthy rhythm. Shall we?

1. Make time to talk in person to each other – DAILY

Folks, some of us lead incredibly busy lives. But, do you have at least 15 minutes to talk to your significant other (put your phone or other device down) and be engaged while communicating? Every night, when we wind down Aaron and I simply talk – about what’s going on the next day, the highlights of not so terrific parts of our day, even if that night’s supper was good? Communication is so key to a great relationship.

2. Do an act of kindness – DAILY

Nothing humongous, bring out the fireworks. It could be an encouraging message on a notepad for example. Doing a chore that the other normally always performs, etc.

3. Remember your manners

“Please” and “Thank you” are typically appreciated by the receiver. Also, be mindful to avoid being overly demanding or looking to “always getting your way.” Compromising is another pillar of a great relationship.

And finally…

Sometimes, all of us just need a hug. Whether it’s out of celebration, consolation, or a long embrace giving your significant other a hug might, just might…brighten their day all the while your romantic heartbeat is growing stronger and stronger.

Until we meet again.

Just for Fun

Today, friends, my blog post will be a bit different. It will be humorous yet somber at times but in the end my hope is that you’ll be smiling. Shall we?

10 things you may not know about me:

1. I finished college faster than high school.

2. I used to love dogs, but I’m actually a bit afraid of them now

3. Don’t give me anything containing shrimp-I’m allergic!

4. Purple should be a primary color

5. Orange skittles are yucky

6. I’ve beaten Zelda TWICE (1980’s version)

7. I want to cry happy tears every time I see, talk to, share a laugh with my father-a several time cancer survivor

8. I got kicked in the ear when I was swimming at the YMCA pool when I was younger. That’s probably why I’ve had problems with my right ear

9. I just got stung by a wasp for the first time at age 33

10. I stayed cavity free until age 28.

As always…until we meet again.

Teach a Man to Fish

Many “moons” ago, I was taught accelerated Math by a very wise and very intelligent teacher. Along with our daily math lessons, she would incorporate life lessons as well.

As we wrapped up the day’s lesson, she relayed to us a story that some of us were half listening to because we were packing up our books. But, my ears perked up immediately when she said, “Folks, give a man a fish…he will eat for a day. Teach a man to fish, and he will eat for a lifetime.”

What a brilliant statement! I thought to myself. It only fully and literally resonated with me 20 years later on one humid May evening.

My family LOVES to fish. In late May, my father and I joined my two nephews at a private pond. The sun was shining and the weather was perfect. Little did I know what great joy I was about to experience.

Nephew No. 1 had a friend, “Paul”, who I quickly determined A. Was not having much fun because B. He had no idea how to fish! (I could almost hear my Math teacher, “Teach a man…)

Had I ever met this young man? Did I know his name? No to both. But, my heart was full of compassion as I watched him catch nothing and I knew I could DO something about it. So, I taught him how to bait a hook, cast, and finally set the hook. The rest was up to him. As I walked over to the other bank I heard, “I GOT ONE!”

Paul had successfully hooked and reeled in his very own fish. To say he was beaming, is an understatement.

Believe it or not, folks, Paul caught more fish than me that day. Why? “Give a man a fish…he’ll eat for a day. Teach a man to fish, and he will eat for a lifetime.”

Until we meet again.