New On The Blog

Mother’s Day is quickly approaching! As a busy mom, Mother’s Day can sneak up on you with the chaos of end of the year school activities, home projects, and travel plans. Moms have a heart of gold and do not have expectations of presents, but we still love the gesture of gifting to make the day special and show our appreciation for everything she does for the family.

“We read a lot of articles and books about how to get through the engagement process, but no one ever talked to us about what it would be like the first year of our marriage. I wish we had known what to expect,” said one of the couples my husband and I mentor. This is a common comment, and if you find yourself having similar feelings, do not fret! You are not alone. The first year of marriage is fabulous, but it can also be difficult. Two people learning to become one does not happen overnight.

We all like to think we have good manners in marriage, but with the people that are closest to us, we can sometimes find ourselves slipping a bit. As stated by Cindy Grosso of the Charleston School of Protocol, manners are not about a bunch of rules. Manners are the outward manifestation of the condition of our heart. If we have a heart that loves, honors, respects, and cherishes our spouse, then these traits will show in how we behave.

Society is opening and people are resuming long overdue vacations. This is great news! I recently posted some tips on making your travels successful, but let’s focus on dos and don’ts of traveling with friends.

 

1. Boundaries: When traveling with others, set guidelines, boundaries, and expectations before leaving town. If you know you and your husband want one night to yourselves, express this up front. If a quiet breakfast in bed is necessary to start your day, see if this fits with the group’s schedule. 

The world is opening, and it is time to celebrate! One of the first things people are doing as they exercise their recaptured freedom is heading out of town to new destinations. I thought a few refresher tips on travel might be good for all of us.

Walking into the room, my husband pauses in front of the TV. Turning to me with a spoiler alert about my favorite Hallmark movie he says, “Hey Lisa…they get married.” And you know what? He’s right! The girl found her prince charming, and the couple has a happy ending, every time.

How many mornings have we left home in a state of utter chaos? Breakfast was late, children were crying, and we hurriedly throw on clothes from the night before only to realize how wrinkled we look. This mad dash makes for an unpleasant parting from our family and it is usually caused by a disorganized approach to our routine. So much of the bedlam we experience at the beginning of the day can be avoided if we are willing to implement a few tasks the night before.

The mamor (mother-in-law) and damor (daughter-in-law) relationship is meant to be beautiful and strong. In parts 1 and 2 of our series we learned why women in these roles might have certain feelings in their new family dynamics. Once we learned the “why” we then explored practical steps we can take to strengthen these special bonds. As we bring our series to a close, I want to impart some words of wisdom we all need to hear, and be reminded of, to ensure we create a healthy, life-long bond between the mamor/damor.

In part one of our series on the mother-in-law/daughter-in-law relationship we learned why the women who find themselves in these roles often experience emotions ranging from pure joy to hurt and sadness. Once we discovered the answers, our understanding of this special relationship came into focus. We had an “aha” moment which makes our path forward easier to navigate.

Do you remember the movie Monster-in-Law? It starred Jennifer Lopez and Jane Fonda in a romantic comedy centered around the tumultuous relationship between a bride and her future mother-in-law. If you have not seen it, you should. It will keep you laughing but, sadly, may hit closer to home than you would like to admit.

As Texas plunged into single digits with multiple days of a windchill below freezing, millions found themselves stranded with no power or water. Living along the Gulf Coast we have weathered hurricanes and endured power outages for much longer periods, but somehow this seemed different. Maybe for those of us close to the shoreline it was the unusual sight of snow we experienced as opposed to the natural disasters we usually face that arrive with rain, wind, and sweltering heat.

Our son and daughter (in law) were finally able to take a long-overdue honeymoon to St. Lucia in December. Cecelia interned one summer for a travel agent so naturally called the company to book their trip. What an incredible experience they had, and I was reminded WHY using a travel agent is worth the expense. Fees range depending on the service, but most charge between $300-350 to plan a vacation somewhere in the Caribbean Islands. 

Q: I will be a new mom soon, and I have been preparing for life “after” a newborn. There is a lot of information on raising babies, and how dads can support mom, but I cannot find much on how moms can support dads. A lot of my mental preparation has been around my marriage. Specific questions: How do I preserve my marriage? How do we embrace the changes? How do I maintain my husband as a priority when we have a tiny human demanding everything? How can I help my husband bond with our new child?

Want to set your children up for success? Then look no further than the habits of successful people you know, whether that be in the corporate world, media, or within your own circle of friends. Experts agree that there are certain common traits all successful people possess. This is great news because it means we can emulate those leaders that have come before us. 

Many of us grew up learning multitasking was a hallmark of a productive person. While sounding good in theory, this practice has proven to be incorrect. Studies now reveal that multitasking is nothing more than switching back and forth between tasks and it lowers our productivity. Below are 5 points that deal with the facts behind project hopping and the lack of performance that occurs when we allow seemingly innocuous interruptions to occur in daily life.

  • Alina Gersib

29 Journal Prompts for Growth



These are unprecedented times. In the midst of the uncertainty the world can feel incredibly unfriendly, or it can feel like an opportunity is just on the horizon. We have a choice in the matter. A shift can be made in the way we look at the world and in the way our thoughts exist within our heads. I find that journaling is a powerful tool to assess our mental state and re-establish priorities.

It can feel intimidating to sit down in front of a blank page so here are 29 journal prompts which will help guide your process. Let these be a jumping off point for your own needs. If you feel resistant to the process that is okay, just press in and write. I find the times I least feel like writing are the times I usually need it the most. Once you start you may find a dam is released and you cannot stop. That is great, let things flow. Embrace the process and where you find yourself today.

1. On a scale of 1-10 how do you feel physically, mentally, and emotionally?

2. How did you sleep last night? What did you dream about?

3. If you close your eyes, do any parts of your body feel extra sore, painful, or weighty? Write about those areas.

4. What are 3 things you have coming up this week that you are excited about?

5. Write down 5 things you see, 4 things you feel, 3 things you hear, 2 things you smell, and 1 thing you taste. Now write down 3 things you are grateful for.

6. When you think of your childhood what is the first memory that pops into your head?

7. What do you love/think is unique about your personality?

8. Do you have any goals for this next year, the next 5? What are they and do you feel like you are taking the steps to accomplish them?

9. Are you happy?

10. What color makes you instantly smile?

11. Write about a special memory you cherish with a family member or friend (bonus, mail it to them, it will brighten their day)

12. What was an activity you loved as a kid? Do you ever do it now, as an adult? If not, what’s holding you back from trying it again?

13. Who was your favorite teacher growing up? What did you appreciate about them?

14. What makes you feel safe and taken care of? How can you get more of this in your life?

15. What is an artform that speaks to you? Have you ever tried creating in that medium? If so, what was the experience like?

16. What were your parents like while you were growing up?

17. What would an ideal weekend look like for you?

18. What is one thing you could do today that would take some stress off your life?

19. When do you feel most at peace? What activities are you doing? Who are you with, or are you alone?

20. What is your favorite thing to eat? Who introduced you to the dish, or what about it do you love so much?

21. How often do you read? What do you like to read?

22. Where is home to you?

23. What activities make your heart come alive?

24. What is something you have always wanted to do? What is keeping you from doing it?

25. When was the last time you felt incredibly loved and seen?

26. What voices come into your head when you are making a decision? What is their tone, are they excited, judgmental, supportive, negative, etc.?

27. What is one thing you would change about yourself? Why do you want it to change? What are you lacking now without it?

28. What is something you have been putting off? Why are you putting it off?

29. Where do you go for support?

I hope these journal prompts can give you inspiration and direction to dig a little deeper with yourself and spur on a time of growth and healing.


Alina Gersib