My name is Annie. I am the mother of two free-spirted kids, a freelance writer, and the face behind LaughterandKisses.com. Laughter and Kisses is all about filling your home with love and laughing instead of crying over those hard-parenting days!
I spend most of my day chasing after these two blurry lightning bolts, I call my children. If I didn’t have my hands full enough with sippy cups and sticky mystery items, I am also on the board of directors of two non-profits. I am a freelance writer for multiple parenting websites; including Her View From Home and That’s Inappropriate. I have been honored to be featured on such sites as Romper, Pop Sugar, and Mummy Pages-UK.
I’m not going to lie, I consume a massive amount of coffee each day just to keep up with life. Even though my days are jammed packed, I would not have it any other way!
At the end of the day, after all of the struggles, I kiss my kid’s good night and it’s all worth it!
Yesterday morning as we drove to school in the dim light of the morning fog, a little voice asked from the back seat said -“mommy can I write a letter to Santa tonight?”
The tiny voice broke to silence of the early morning commute. Her voice full of innocence.
“Of course, baby. What are you going to ask Santa for this year?”
Quietly thinking to myself, I truly had no idea what she wanted or needed for Christmas this year. I had forgotten to really make a mental Christmas list in my head with all the other craziest going on in the world.
In these trying times we feel helpless- we see the world crumbling. We feel unsure for the future, we don’t know what it will hold. We are trying to make life as normal as we can for our kids but we feel like we fall short every day. We can’t control anything right now- we don’t even know if there will be school for our kids next week. We are all trying our best as parents right now.
We can’t control much right now as parents, however what we can control is how we react to this uncertainty. We can show our kids to choose faith over fear! We can show them how we bond together, to help each other, in these scary times. We can lead by example.
Doing something to help others can give us purpose right now, it can help us make a difference, it can give us hope.
There are countless baby registry list on Pinterest- pages of baby mittens, best bottles for newborns, and pictures of soft pajamas! You walk the aisle of Target, one hand on your growing belly and one on a scanner- you are feeling overwhelmed by the choices and the amount of stuff you will need. There are so many items that you will need for your little one- however these are some of my favorite items I still use to this day, that were never on ANY of those lists.
*** This happened last November during one of the many hospital stays we had with our son last year. Still to this day I hold this moment close to my heart!
By the dim glow of the hallway light, she kneed by the his bed checking is IV. She laid one hand on his tiny leg that was limp in the oversized hospital bed. She laid her other hand on his chest, as it slowly raised up and down as he finally slept in peace. She bowed her head, just for a few seconds, and prayed.
It stands there, a simple white tent. Something you may not have even noticed months ago, years ago. However, now that white tent makes our spines stiffen and our breath catches in our throat now.
Years ago, I worked in event planning. I have stood in dozens of white tents, breathing in the magical world within.
The white tent that held breast cancer survivors sitting around celebrating their personal victories. Pink feather boas hung around necks, bald heads where worn with pride. Laughter danced off the walls, and strangers embracing each other like long lost friends. You could feel the love and hope float in the air like a sweet smell, you could breathe in love.
We are all feeling alone- struggling to cope with this feeling of fear. A lot has changed in our world over the past few weeks! Grocery stores are now danger zones, we attend church over the internet, and we spend days at a time at home. It’s easy to feel isolated and alone.
The elderly population is even at a greater risk right now, they are at greater risk for the Covid-19 and feeling alone! Many of them are home alone- unable to see friends or the family they count on for help or socializing!
Yesterday my kids got to see their dad. For the first time in five weeks.
You see my loving husband is what we now call an “essential” worker. He is exposed countless times a day to the public, exposing himself to the virus in effort to serve his community. Since we have two kids with weakened immune systems, we made the discussion for me to move out of the house with the kids and in with my parents in effort to keep our kids safe until this pandemic is over.
Let’s face it- we love our furry four-legged friends. However, they can cost your family a pretty penny!
The cute puppy kisses are great but those vet bill can be like a toddler kick to the gut! The toys, beds, leashes, and gear all add up. Don’t even get me started on grooming cost- the dog can’t have a more expensive hair cut then I do!
So, here are some hacks on how to save BIG on your four-legged friends! These are all things I have learned over the years with our pups.
Yes, I am sure you’re going to hate me or have some strong opinions on this article. (I almost barfed even writing this… made me a little sick to admit.) Yes, some days I eye roll at myself also. However, there are many ways I am a fifties house wife and I love it.
In fact, it has helped my relationship with my husband and my kids. It has helped me feel better about myself. I used to roll my eyes at these kind of people- gag! However, I have started doing a FEW simple things to make me feel better about myself and they improved our family life also!