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Month: May 2017

Take a Compliment!

Take a Compliment!


Does receiving a compliment make you squirm or cringe? Yeah, me too. And I’m sure the rest of the world agrees with us. 

But, what if we said a simple, “thanks” and then stowed those kind observations away to examine later when we were alone?

Can you remember a recent compliment someone gave you? Maybe it was that you were funny, that you showed initiative, that you hit a homer with that work project, that you looked sharp, whatever comes to mind. Now, take those words and imagine they are a marble. Weird, right?

Now find a quiet place where you are safe and alone. Pull out one of those word marbles and examine it. Hold it in your mind and try to find the grain of truth in it. And now, here’s the really tough part, sit with that truth until it doesn’t feel ill-fitting. Then, tomorrow or next week or next month when your confidence feels low, take out that marble and remind yourself of your strengths. 

Sounds strange, right? Let’s practice together.

If marbles aren’t your thing, try a gumboil approach!

The compliment: “You gave an amazing presentation.” 

The reaction: Squirm, cringe, blush, and a mumbled, “Oh, it went on too long…thanks, though.”

The marble: I gave an amazing presentation (which I know is the truth because that person has no incentive to lie to me AND I spent ten plus hours making that presentation…well…great!)

The quiet analysis: I worked hard and it showed. My hard work was acknowledged by someone I respect.

See? Not so painful. In fact, next time you start the prep for another challenge, that marble may give you the confidence to start strong.

#FridayFood – Ballpark Treats!

#FridayFood – Ballpark Treats!



Ballpark tacos are much smaller than my dog in his taco costume…

Major League Baseball. It’s all about the food for me. 

Sure, I watch the game. But, with ninety games in the regular season, I don’t think the Mariners miss me when I step out for a half-inning here or there to graze on ballpark food. 🙂

There’s nothing better than a ballpark hotdog. Sure, the stadiums change up (see what I did there?) their menus annually. My kids try the new stuff and I usually mooch a bite or two off of them, but I always come back to the classics, hotdog and Coke. 

Safeco Field also has incredible tacos and garlic fries. The garlic fries, though, need to be a full-family commitment. We must all agree to have stinky breath together, or none of us can. 

I hope this coming weekend finds you in a ballpark noshing something delicious. Share it with us, okay?

Hangry (hungry and angry) at the ballpark? Impossible!


On a hot day at the ballpark, there’s nothing better than this!
I mean it looks good, but does it FEEL good to eat a burger at the ballpark?
#TuesdayTruth – Be real with your kids.

#TuesdayTruth – Be real with your kids.

The best antidote to the distance you feel from your tween or teen is truth. Lie and that distance will grow exponentially. 

Straight outta the 70s – a photo of me as a kid that’s filtered

My youngest daughter is thirteen. Last night she told me some stuff. I guess I should put “stuff” in capital letters. When she was through talking, she said something I will never forget. And I thought I better pass it along to as many people as possible.

Her exact words were, “Mom, you’ve always been authentic with me and that’s why I can tell you anything.”

Yes. I’ve told both of my daughters the truth. Sometimes they’ve asked about it. And sometimes it’s just felt right to share. They know about my uglies and mistakes and personal bloopers. And no. I’m not going to share my stuff with you. 🙂

I was raised to be real. Thanks to my father, Gary, one of my biggest role models,  I am rarely filtered. And when I became a parent, I watched other parents with admiration and scrutiny. Park visits, malls, school events, and friendships – like NSA – I was always watching. And what I noticed is that many parents weren’t real with their kids. Their children asked them questions and parents didn’t answer honestly. I was struck with how destructive that could be to their relationships. That’s when I set my intention to be real. If my kids asked, I’d be open and upfront. 

My unfiltered self has been well-catalogued on my thirteen-year-old’s social media threads. And her friends think I’m goofy and crazy. And yet, her friends hug me when I see them at school. They sit in the backseat of my car as I’m driving them places and speed-gossip loud enough for me to hear. 

Recently, kids at my daughter’s school have struggled with depression and they’ve talked about it in earshot. And I’ve found myself sharing some of my stuff with them, too.

Those are important conversations. These are important people. And they deserve to see the people they love and respect in bright, glaring lights – not as perfect adults that were perfect, law-abiding, parent-obeying, abstaining teens. 

And I’ll leave it at that.

As always, I love you and hope you have a kick ass week.     – Jennifer



Killing Your Babies – Editing Is Tough…

Killing Your Babies – Editing Is Tough…

Editing is tough. It’s described as “killing your babies” for a reason. It hurts to cut out passages and (ugh!) chapters  you worked hours to craft and polish.

Here’s something that helps me. Take the passage or chapter you are about to ax and preserve it in a new Word document. Copy, paste and save. Somehow, this makes it easier to do the inevitable. Because the words you crafted still exist somewhere, preserved for that day you need the perfect description of cats or coffee or murder they contained.