28 November 2016

Best Holiday Wassail

One of my most favorite Christmas traditions is enjoying a warm and delicious mug of Wassail.


I was introduced to Wassail a few years ago by my friend Melissa who brought it as a treat for an office holiday potluck. I immediately fell in love with the hot beverage, got the recipe and have made it every year since. Actually, I like to enjoy this drink during all the cold winter months but especially during the Christmas holiday. I turn on my Christmas music, decorate our home, cook and bake and in the evening, snuggle up on the sofa with nothing but the lights from the tree to keep me company. It's fabulous, and it will make your entire home smell like the holidays.


One of my most favorite Christmas traditions is enjoying a warm and delicious mug of Wassail. This hot beverage is the perfect cure for a cold winter night or is a great companion to a good book or movie. Snuggle up on your sofa with a mug and enjoy!


Here's What You'll Need:
8 cups apple cider
2 cups orange juice
2 cups pineapple juice
1/2 cup lemon juice
12 whole cloves
3 cinnamon sticks
1/2 cup sugar


Here's How You'll Make It:
You can combine these ingredients in a crock pot, Dutch oven or large stock pot. I prefer to use a Dutch oven because it is the perfect pot for this batch size.


First, combine all your liquids.
Then add the cinnamon sticks, cloves and sugar.
Bring to a bubble, stir and reduce heat to simmer, uncovered.
Keep burner on simmer and enjoy.




This hot beverage is the perfect cure for a cold winter night or is a great companion to a good book or movie. Snuggle up on your sofa with a mug and enjoy! 



23 November 2016

8 Alternatives to Black Friday Shopping Guaranteed to Make Your Soul Happy



Corporate America, the stores, the TV and the radio have been programming you for weeks. It’s coming…


The headaches. The fighting. The crappy attitudes. The long hours stuck in the car fighting traffic to get from store to store. The violence. The financial stress and strain.


Is this how anyone really wants to enjoy the start of the holiday season? 


The final straw came for me on Black Friday a few years ago. As I watched the news that evening, the only thing I found myself thinking was how ridiculous and pathetic we’ve become as a society that we would literally stampede through a Wal-Mart, Target or Best Buy like it’s the running of the bulls in Pamplona all for a good deal. Do you really need a computer, iWhatever or camera so badly that you are willing to kill someone for it? That night on the news, it was reported that an elderly man who worked as a greeter for Wal-Mart was run over and killed by a mob of people trying to get in the store when it opened. And let us not forget about the parents who died in a California Toys R Us that same year because two shoppers decided to shoot it out over toys.


Right then and there I vowed to never be a part of Black Friday again or be forced to feel like less of a person by not being extravagant in my purchases or gift giving. I'm over it. I'm tired of corporate America's ploys and tricks of trying to convince me that the spirit of Christmas is in the price tag. I'm tired of being made to feel that I have to put myself and my family in financial limbo for others. It seems like everyone expects something regardless of an individuals’ circumstances or finances. I can't think of a single thing that I absolutely must have and if I do find something, I'll buy it myself. The only thing I truly want or need for Christmas is to be with my family; to spend time with them and enjoy their company. That’s a gift that is invaluable to me. You can't put a price tag on those kinds of memories.


I know we all celebrate the holidays in our own ways and I by no means take anything away from those who choose to get involved in Black Friday. I’m not judging and I honestly believe to each their own - it’s just not something for me. I think what bothers me the most about Black Friday is how the meaning of the holiday spirit gets totally and utterly lost. It's really about gaining some perspective.


Having said this, I’ve come up with a list of 8 things to do in place of Black Friday shopping when thinking about how you want to spend your Thanksgiving holiday: 


1.        Instead of spending money in a store, make a donation to a charity whether it be online or in person.


2.       Volunteer your time to an organization. Get your kids involved, too!


3.       Go through your clothes and old items and donate them to a shelter. There are so many children and families in need right now.


4.       Visit a rest home and give your time and attention to someone who no longer has a family to share the holidays with.


5.       Make your own gifts and get your kids involved in the fun too. This is what I do and it brings the spirit of Christmas alive so much more than shopping in any store, plus I have ZERO debt when it’s all said and done. Need some ideas to get you going? This blog post detailing how I made all my Christmas gifts for my family one year for only $17 should do the trick! 


6.       Bake or cook for a family or elderly couple/person that isn’t able to do it themselves.


7.       Donate a gift basket to your local animal shelter. 


8.       Donate your spare change lying around in your car console to the Salvation Army bucket.


There are so many opportunities to share in the true spirit of the holiday season that don’t involve getting caught up in the Black Friday madness.   


I know my thoughts are not of popular opinion but I’m okay with that because they are just that – my thoughts, my opinions. At the same time, I can’t help but wonder how much brighter our world would be if we backed off the materialism just a little bit…just for one day…and opted for peace instead.

What other ideas can you add to this list? 

21 November 2016

The Best Homemade Stovetop Potpourri

Aside from decorations, baking and gift-giving, nothing screams holidays and Christmas more to me than homemade stovetop Christmas potpourri. 


For me, the holidays just aren’t complete without the delicious aroma of Christmas. A homemade stovetop potpourri is a quick and inexpensive way to make your home smell like the holidays in just minutes. 


For me, the holidays just aren’t complete without the delicious aroma of Christmas. A homemade stovetop potpourri is a quick and inexpensive way to make your home smell like the holidays in just minutes.


 Here's what you'll need:
{1} whole orange
{1/2} cup cranberries
{1} Tbsp. whole cloves
{3} sticks of cinnamon
A few drops of vanilla extract
A sprinkle of grated nutmeg or cinnamon


Mix all ingredients together and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a low simmer and keep on your stovetop as long as desired. 




One batch of stove top potpourri will stay good for weeks {the mix will turn brown, but it will still smell delicious}. Just add water as needed to your pot and don't be afraid to experiment! Throw in berries, grapefruit, lemons or all spice berries. Adding a few sprigs of fresh balsam or pine is a great additive as well. 



Enjoy! 

15 November 2016

It's Okay to Celebrate Christmas NOW!

To those of you who are currently celebrating the holiday season I say: Wave your Christmas flag high and proud. Slap up those wreaths and blast that Christmas music. Bake till your little heart’s content and whip out those holiday crafts with the kiddos because really, what you’re doing shouldn’t matter to anyone else but you, and your actions are hurting no one.



I’ve noticed an interesting trend happening lately in the social media world that I’ve come to dub as holiday shaming. 


Over the past couple of weeks since Halloween, I’ve witnessed a large number of people going insane – I mean, losing their shit insane – over the mere presence and mention of anything to do with Christmas or “holiday” related items, whether it be the sighting of a hanging wreath, to radio stations playing Christmas music, to stores decorating for the holidays, but especially, friends posting their own holiday and Christmas decorations on Facebook and Instagram. And those poor folks? Those poor guys are taking a beating. 


Lately, I’ve read comments on pictures that have been posted by those who’ve decided to start celebrating Christmas and the holiday season to include:


Are you serious?! Christmas decorations already? Um, hello crazy! We’re not there yet!”

“Maybe you’re too dumb to read a calendar but it’s just November.”

“So disrespectful and rude!” (Made in reference to a picture of a wreath hanging on a friend’s front door)


Aside from my sheer disbelief that anyone could be so riled up over something so silly, what baffles and upsets me even more are the responses from those being trolled. These people are taking down their decorations, turning off their holiday music and deleting their festive photos. What’s worse, they are apologizing – yes apologizing – for simply exercising their right to celebrate what they believe and the ones who stand their ground and post pictures anyway feel the need to preface their photos or shares with comments like, “I know, I know Christmas is still a month away” or “Don’t judge” or worse, “Okay you guys, don’t get mad at me but I was so proud of myself for making our wreath that I wanted to share this picture!”


Why are we doing this to each other?


I get it. Christmas can be materialistic. The meaning gets lost in the commercialism of it all. Let’s get through Thanksgiving first.


I hear you.


I truly do.


However…


How is someone else’s joy in celebrating the holiday season (And it is a season. That’s important to note. November through December is the holiday SEASON) impeding on your life? How is someone’s choice to hang a decoration here and there affecting what you believe and how you carry on your day to day life? So your neighbor sets up and decorates their Christmas tree. 


So what? Whatever happened to the simple concept of live and let live?


Here’s a little confession for you guys: When we set up our Christmas tree last year, I kept that baby sparked up until the end of June. Why? Because it made me happy, it made my daughter happy and it brought joy to our home, plain and simple, and I make ZERO apologies for it because here’s the thing…


I never wanted that good feeling to end. Yes, in the times we live in, the holidays can be stressful and consuming but I’ve often found far more joy in the holiday season than bad. It’s the one time of year where you can actually see the good in humanity come out. People extend beyond themselves to reach out to others and often times, you will witness many a “Christmas miracle” happen. I love the joy and wonderment in our children’s eyes as they marvel at all the season has to offer but most importantly, the season centers me and makes me feel whole as a human again. It does, it really does. I’m reminded of how eternally blessed I am and how I have the opportunity to bless others’ lives as well. It is truly a miraculous time of year. 


And honestly, with everything going on in our world today, couldn’t we all use a little more joy and peace on earth? I think so.


Do you want to know what I think? I think we are a country full of people just looking for any reason at all to be offended. I think there are people everywhere who crave an opportunity to complain. I also think we are bogged down and overrun with bullies.

That’s right – bullies. Holiday shaming bullies.


I take nothing away from those who feel the celebration of Christmas shouldn’t begin until December, I really don’t. You're entitled to believe and practice what you want. What I do have a problem with are the actions these same people take in making others – who have the right to celebrate when and how they choose – feel bad about themselves and their choices and quite honestly, if you’re one of the Judgy McJudgersons reading this who think it’s fun to holiday shame, you should probably know that your actions of anger, judgment and belittlement towards another say far more about you and your character than the people who choose to celebrate. 


#justsayin


To those of you who are currently celebrating the holiday season I say: Wave your Christmas flag high and proud. Slap up those wreaths and blast that Christmas music. Bake till your little heart’s content and whip out those holiday crafts with the kiddos because really, what you’re doing shouldn’t matter to anyone else but you, and your actions are hurting no one. 


More importantly in your joy of celebrating the holiday season, don’t forget to…


Share the true meaning of the season with those you love and those who might be a little harder to love. Donate to the less fortunate and give to those in need. Volunteer your time and resources to an organization in your community. Feed a hungry family. Provide toys and clothing for Christmas morning for children who are less fortunate. Visit the elderly and the sick. 


Revel and immerse yourselves into the true meaning of the season because trust me, our country can use all the love you have to give. To quote the Vince Guaraldi Trio:




“Oh that we could always see such spirit through the year…”

14 November 2016

4 Disappointments I'm Thankful For

With Thanksgiving coming up, we’re always encouraged to take stock of all the things we’re thankful for and the positive blessings we have in our lives like family, financial stability, children and jobs.


But what about showing gratitude and thankfulness for the things in our lives that may be challenges, disappointments and let downs? How do we handle those?


Throughout my life, I’ve often found that some of my biggest blessings have come about because of mistakes, disappointments or life just sucking in general. It’s true. If you stop and really give some thought to a few of your biggest flounders and let downs, you can probably find the silver lining and blessing in each of them. 


Allow me to start. 


With Thanksgiving coming up, we’re always encouraged to take stock of all the things we’re thankful for and the positive blessings we have in our lives like family, financial stability, children and jobs. But what about showing gratitude and thankfulness for the things in our lives that may be challenges, disappointments and let downs? How do we handle those?



My Divorce. 
No one ever goes into their marriage with the expectation that it will end but in 2009, mine did and looking back, it was one of the best things that could have ever happened to me. Once I was able to leave the dead weight behind, my life blossomed and more so, my dreams, hopes and goals began to take shape. If I hadn’t left my ex-husband, I would have never met Michael, had our beautiful daughter, have my writing take off, and be as successful as I am today. I was so mired down in the crap that was my marriage that a large part of my soul, and everything along with it, died. To break free from it was like a rebirth.


Lost Friendships. 
Friendships in a very small way are like marriages – it takes a lot of time and effort to make them work. Unfortunately, not all friends feel the same way and in fact, some friendships become toxic. Whether it’s because you no longer see eye to eye on a specific issue, have grown apart, have a falling out or simply just wander away from one another, friendships that end can be hard on us. 


Or are they?


When I think back to what I thought were my best friendships, and if I’m being honest, I often remember more of the issues and not enough of the good things. I also remember how it felt to have the weight of such a bad friendship lifted from my shoulders and am thankful because if I hadn’t lost those friends who weren’t truly good for me, I may have missed out on the friends that have come into my life since that have been true and lasting friendships. 


Lost Job Opportunities. 
We’ve all been there at one point or time in our career: you interview for the “perfect job.” Everything seems to be going great in the interviewing process and then BAM. You don’t get the job. 


I’ve had this happen to me a couple of times.


When disappointments like this happen, it’s easy to fall into the “Woe is me” trap and carry feelings of defeat, frustration and anger. I’ve done this myself but honestly, those missed job opportunities have all been blessings in disguise. After losing one particular job offer, I found out a few months later that the company I interviewed with was going through horrible financial distress and was laying-off over half of their workforce – the job I interviewed for included. By the time I found out this information, I was already happily employed elsewhere but I still shudder to think what would have happened if I had gotten that job. Thank goodness for unanswered prayers! 


Fights with my Spouse.
You’re probably scratching your forehead on this one, right? I mean, who really feels blessed after fighting with their spouse?


Hear me out.


I don’t know about you and your spouse/partner/significant other, but when Michael and I argue, it’s usually because of some misunderstanding or point of view the other person doesn’t understand. Once we’re able to get past our own emotions and actually put forth the effort of truly listening to each other, we learn far more about one another and what each of us needs in order to thrive in our relationship. I’m thankful for those weak moments that make us stronger and a more united couple. The making up from fighting isn’t a bad thing either. 



What are some unanswered prayers or disappointments you have to be thankful for? 

09 November 2016

If You're a Parent Asking, "What Do I Tell My Child About The Election?" These Answers Are a Good Place to Start

This election has been one unlike any other. Most election years, you can count on your sphere being filled with the back and forth rhetoric and the jabs and low blows from both the opponents and the public, but this year? This year was different.


There’s simply no possible way to sugarcoat it. This election was a brutal affront to women, Muslims, Jews, people of color, and basically anyone who values tolerance, kindness and inclusion. As a nation, we opened our arms and accepted a man who ran on a platform of bigotry and divisiveness, a man who made fun of the disabled and slurred and demeaned war heroes. A man who openly and proudly admits to treating women like dogs and as a result, now has the allegations of sexual assault and a recording to prove it.


Indeed, this election has been difficult for everyone, especially parents or as a person responsible for raising a child. As a parent, a grandparent, a teacher, or a caregiver, we spend the majority of our parenting time teaching our kids about the importance of inclusion, kindness, acceptance and compassion each and every day. Regardless of who you support, how do we explain to our children the success of a man who has made their career about, and found success in, being a bully while literally bashing every single person who doesn’t look or think like him? How do you explain to your child that instead of right and justice winning out, bigotry wins? Hate wins. Bullies win. Sexism wins.


What do we tell them?


We tell them that hate and bigotry is not a democratic value and is never tolerated.


We tell them that while we accept the results of the election, we do not agree, and that we will continue to stand on the side of equality and inclusiveness.


We tell them that we stand by our Jewish, Muslim, Latino, Native American, Black, Same Sex and Immigrant family and friends. That our gay, lesbian and trans students are assets to this country, their schools and their communities.


We tell them that everyone is entitled to love who they wish and marry who they want. We tell them that healthcare is a basic human right, and not a luxury. We tell them that every woman has the right to protect and make decisions for her own body and that it’s no other person’s right to do so.


We tell them to always speak up for what is right. We tell them that silence is dangerous. We teach them how to speak up when something is wrong so they are empowered.


We teach them how to love one another, how to respect each other, and how to peacefully solve conflicts. We teach them how to live in a world filled with diverse individuals and that it’s those same diversities that make us unique and great. We teach them how to live in a world with such diverse and conflicting ideologies and that just because someone is different, doesn’t make them bad or one to be feared.


We teach them about our democratic process and how they can be involved to help bring about change. We teach this at a young age and continually develop their awareness to politics, social issues and justice. We educate them to be informed citizens of the world we live in.


We teach them the importance of thought-provoking and intelligent discussion, not for the sake of winning or being right but for understanding and to be understood by our peers.


We tell them that it’s okay to be sad and disappointed. We also tell them that it’s those same emotions we use to channel into turning bad things into good.


We tell them that one of the benchmarks of our democracy is the transition of power every four years so that nothing is ever permanent.


In this election, Trump appealed to our worst impulses, thoughts and fears… and he won. It is now time for the rest of us to roll up our sleeves and begin to do the hard work of proving that his platform is not all that America is. We are called on now at this time to rise above and face down bigotry and hate in a rational and civil way.


Now is not the time to lick wounds, complain or point blame. Now is the time to act. Now is the time to shine light into this dark world. Now is the time to continue exposing the abuses of power and privilege. Yesterday is gone. Yesterday is in the books. What’s done is done. We do not have the luxury to wallow in our disappointment and allow it to consume us. Now is the time to act in a positive and productive way.


And how do we do this?


Above all, we tell them that in our homes, love, compassion, and acceptance are still our core values. On this, we do not waver or make excuses. This does not change.



It all begins in our homes.

04 November 2016

My Month in Numbers :: October 2016



600
The amount of money I spent in one week to fix my car. Car troubles have to be the absolute WORST. To add insult to injury, I paid my car off in June. It’s a 2010 Nissan Rogue and has always been a reliable, trouble-free car… until now. Isn’t that the way it always goes? Pay off your car, celebrate having no car payment and then BAM. All of a sudden shit starts breaking everywhere and money goes flying out the window. Case in point – just yesterday while getting my car inspection and emissions test done, I found out I have to shell out around another $2,000 for repairs. God, I love adulting.


4
The number of pounds lost in October. It’s certainly better than nothing but not great either. I feel like when I lost my original 40 pounds, I mentally stopped my weight-loss journey. I can’t even tell you why. I think it’s because I pushed and went at it hard for so long that I just…stopped. Honestly, I got to the point where I was tired of thinking about everything I put into my mouth and the constant thought process that goes along with diet and lifestyle changes. What am I going to eat today? How will this affect my weight-loss goals? Am I getting enough exercise? The constant questions and mental/emotional feelings are draining. I needed a break, and that’s okay. Maybe I needed time to regroup and collect my focus again, who knows? What I do know is that this battle with my weight and working to keep the weight off is going to be a life-long relationship. Some days will be good, other days will be bad. In the end, it will be okay.


3,258
The total number of emails I received in October between work and my personal account. This breaks down to 105 emails a day. Y’all. That’s just not okay. I mean, really??


30
The number of nights Maddy slept through the night. If you’ve been following me for a while, you know that Michael and I basically haven’t slept in five years due to sleep issues with Maddy. Having said this, ever since she started Kindergarten, we’ve seen a huge change in her sleep for the better. She only woke up in the middle of the night once in October and I’LL. TAKE. IT.


90
The number of minutes we spent trick or treating. Maddy wanted to hit all. the. houses. We tried to skip a few here and there but home girl wasn’t having any of it. If a porch light was on, she was right there holding out her bucket.


24
The number of homemade chocolate chip cookies we made last month. This may be a contributing factor as to why I only lost 4 pounds last month. I regret nothing.


500
The number of photos I cleaned off my phone.


30
The number of work meetings I had in October. Again, ya’ll. This is not okay.


60
The number of House Hunters International and House Hunters episodes watched in October. It’s safe to say I’m slightly addicted.


Uncountable
The number of glasses of wine consumed in October. Cheers, y’all!



How did your October shape up?

02 November 2016

When Did Making Our Kids Cry on Purpose Become Entertainment?

I knew they were coming. They do every year at Halloween and every year, I’m forced to bite my tongue and try my best to scroll through and ignore the endless amounts of videos that parents, entertainment sites and news sites post of parents picking on children by pretending to eat all their Halloween candy while leaving said children in a puddle of tears and hysterics and every year, I shake my head and wonder…


When did we decide that it’s okay to intentionally make children cry and play with their emotions and then package it all up as permissible because it’s “entertainment?” Tell me again what's so funny about intentionally hurting a child's feelings to the point of hysterics?



When did we decide that it’s okay to intentionally make children cry and play with their emotions and then package it all up as permissible because it’s “entertainment?” Tell me again what's so funny about intentionally hurting a child's feelings to the point of hysterics??


If you’ve been reading my blog for a while now, you know that I am by no means a stick in the mud nor do I make it a point to keep a broom handle wedged up my rear end. As tempting as that sounds, it’s just not my bag of chips. For the most part, I tackle life and parenting with a lot of sarcasm and laughs while always trying to find the humor in any situation because let’s be honest – if you can’t laugh at yourself and take things with a grain of salt in parenting, you’re fucked.


But picking on defenseless kids? I can’t understand why grown adults who should know better, think this is great comedic fodder. 


Let’s look at it from this perspective: You bring your Thanksgiving leftovers to work. You stick your lunch bag in the fridge as you blow a kiss to your mother’s homemade oyster stuffing, promising to see it again soon. All morning, you think about your grandmother’s homemade green bean casserole and how good it’s all going to taste in a few short hours when you’re able to stop and eat lunch. It’s the perfect treat you’ve been waiting for all morning. 


Lunch time arrives and you’re starving. You go to the fridge for your food but, SURPRISE! It’s gone. All of it. You search frantically for your lunch bag but can’t find it anywhere. Your initial gut feeling is panic which turns to anger which then quickly turns to sadness and desperation, all within a matter of minutes. What will you eat for lunch now? 


But wait! It’s just a joke! Your coworker thought it would be a hysterical idea to take something of yours and make you believe that it was gone. Something of value to you. Something, that to you, was important. Not only did he pull off such a “hysterical joke,” he made sure to video your response and blast it all over social media for the world to see, laugh at, poke fun of, belittle and mock.


Not funny, right? Anyone who’s ever had their lunch stolen, eaten or taken at work knows how this is so not funny. It’s also less amusing when it turns out to be a joke. Now, imagine how your child feels about their supposedly gone or eaten candy. 


It’s easy to say, “It’s just candy! Get over it!” but that’s really not the point. We’re talking about children, young children. To them, their Halloween candy is a big deal. In the mind of a child, they worked hard for their candy and in some instances, were probably threatened to not have the chance to go trick or treating for their Halloween candy if they didn’t follow X, Y or Z rule and behave. In the mind of a child, that bag of Halloween candy is a source of pride; something they hold value in. It’s just as important to them as a new outfit, car or anything else of value would mean to an adult. What I wouldn’t give to see the look on some parents’ faces if their child were to tell them (jokingly, unbeknownst to them) that they ruined their new outfit or did something to their brand new iPhone. I feel pretty confident in thinking that most adults would flip out, too. As adults, we have a hard time dealing with our emotions being played with so carelessly, so why would we expect our kids to be any different? 


It’s a crazy concept, I know. Respecting others; even if it means they are half our size. Here’s a news flash: Kids! They’re actually people! 





I’m also the kind of person who wouldn’t hide a coworker’s lunch and tell them I ate it, allowing them to get angry and worked up for a few minutes to the point that they wanted to hit me and then tell them it was, “just humor.” No one likes that, especially children who lack the mental development to deal with their emotions properly. 


It’s science. We expect our children to behave like adults, even though they lack the ability and apparently, their role models have no idea what being an adult means either, and at the same time, we treat them as second class citizens and act like we’re superior in some way because we’ve been sitting around on the planet for more years than they have. 


“Oh, Courtney, get over yourself. It’s just for fun. Make sure you pick up a bag of humor from your local grocer’s freezer section on the way home from work today.”


Oh! Is that all it is? Well that makes sense. I had a hard time finding what I needed because I didn’t recognize the label, “How to Be a Complete Bitch in a Bag.” Wow. It’s really working! I suddenly think making children cry is hilarious! Maybe I’ll throw some handicapped women out of their wheelchairs, kick an entire litter of puppies and then for more shits and giggles, I’ll stop by an adoption agency on the way home to pretend like I’m interested in adopting some children but SIKE. I’m not. Man, its fun to be one of the cool, funny kids. What fun things do we have planned next? Stealing all the Jell-O from the senior citizens at the local retirement home and telling them they already ate it? Wooooo! What great fun! 


I admit, maybe I’m becoming a softie in my old age. More so, I’m sure having a child of my own turned me into a big ball of sap. I don’t know, but whatever it is, seeing a child cry, especially for no good reason just isn’t my jam at all. I mean, really. Who wants to hear a child cry period let alone giving them a reason to? 


No, that’s not my scene at all. And let’s just be honest – pranks as a whole usually suck. I can’t think of any prank that I’ve been privy to that really amused me. I’m usually left thinking, “That’s some really dumb shit.” But when it’s a prank concocted by a parent that a child trusts? No thanks. If that’s what it takes to be funny these days to get a laugh, then I guess I’ll just stay old and unfunny. 





Or here’s a thought to consider…


Find ways to be humorous that don’t include playing with a child’s emotions or picking on them. Find a way to be funny that isn’t degrading. Find a way to be funny that isn’t mean. I hear so many people say how mean kids are these days a rule of thumb and how kindness has all but gone to the wayside. Well, what do you expect when you are modeling mean behavior? 


I hope that as my five-year-old grows up, she understands what is truly funny and how to share her quick and brilliant wit with others in ways that aren’t hurtful. There are so many ways to make people laugh that don’t have to be manufactured by meanness. More so, I hope she knows what it means to be truly kind and thoughtful of another’s feelings because really, that’s what’s severely lacking in our world today – kindness and thoughtfulness to others.


I never want my child to think its okay to laugh at someone else’s distress, whether it’s real or made up. As her parent, it’s my job to make sure it doesn’t happen. We’re all responsible. I know we can do and be so much better than this. 

The world already has plenty of assholes. How about choosing kindness for a change?