I challenge you to burn the machine.

I’m a teacher, right? Yeah. That’s right. I teach kids. Which is often considered hilarious because I kind of still look like a kid (even though my ever-multiplying grey hairs would disagree).

But I do. I teach high school kids.

I have a really unique opportunity with them, you know? Like I get to see and hear them in ways that few ever do. Sometimes they don’t know that I’m listening or looking. But I am.

And you know what I notice? Adults aren’t fair. A LOT. Like, as adults, we pass a lot of judgments and generalizations off on kids. We spend a lot of time telling them that their generation sucks or that they’re snowflakes for getting upset about something. We don’t ask them about themselves or what they’re going through or why they feel that way. We just decide how they are because we’re older and we can do that.

We were young once, too.

But when we were young, we wanted to be asked why we did things or why we felt a way. We wanted to be trusted. We didn’t like it when older people told us we sucked or that we were fragile because we took a stand for what we believed was right. It just made us rage.

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Young. Prettied up for our first real dance.

And here we are, perpetuating the cycle.

So recently, I’ve been seeing our kids catch a lot of crap for things that I think should be encouraged. I’ve been watching us old people (yeah, dude, we’re old already), tell young people that they should shut up and be quiet. That they shouldn’t question authority because the old people “said so” and that’s how it should be. That somehow speaking up about how the feel is “wrong and disrespectful”. And yeah, maybe the way kids say things sometimes could be…improved…but they’re kids for Christ’s sake. They don’t have the benefit of experience to know how to express themselves and they’re trying their best–shouldn’t we, as their “elders” or whatever, help them do that?

Dear Young Kid,

I think you’re doing a great job. I know exactly how hard it is to be a kid–you’re at a really weird place where you want to have a lot of responsibility and also no responsibility. You wanna be a grown up SO bad. You have a lot of feelings about the things going on around you but any time you express them, someone is telling you that they don’t matter because you’re “just a kid”.
Well you’re not.
And those feelings? They matter.
Because here’s the deal, kiddo, one day you won’t be so young anymore. You’ll be the old person writing this letter and you’re gonna have a choice about how you treat those youngins around you.
So I’ve got some advice for you: a challenge, if you will.
I challenge you to challenge things. Challenge the system. Ask questions. If you’re unsure about how something’s done, ask. I don’t care if the person you’re asking is annoyed or is rude to you. GET YOUR EXPLANATION. Don’t settle for “it’s just the way we’ve always done it” or “because I said so”.
Those are lazy answers from lazy people who don’t care enough about the question. Demand answers and if the answers don’t satisfy you, develop new ways.
Stand up for what’s right and trust your gut–if something FEELS wrong, it is. Don’t let the glamour of fun or popularity influence you to walk away from the right choice even if it’s the hard choice.
If you feel something, SAY something. So many of you walk alone in your lives. In your loneliness and fear. You think that no one understands you or what you’re going through. But so many do and they WANT to help you. Find the good ones and hold onto them, they’ll hold onto you back.
Do not be afraid to be wrong, but more importantly, do not be afraid to be told that you’re wrong. Sometimes, YOU will be the one with the outdated ideas and ways–AND THAT’S OKAY. But when someone brings you something new and different, consider it. Give them credit and say thank you. They are making you a BETTER person because you now know more than you did 5 minutes ago.
I challenge you to do things with love–all things. And love challenges. It challenges hate Challenges hearts. Challenges ideas. Love challenges because it wants things and people to reach their full potential. I challenge you to stand up for each other, stand with each other, encourage each other and know that you are the ones who have the capacity to change the hearts of the people around you.

I know that there are some old people (like me) who believe in you, have faith in you, and know that you’ll make yourself and everybody proud.

So let’s do that.

Love,
An Old Person

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Senior Year, 2006. New York. Yeah dude, we were freakin’ SENIORS doing this. But we still wanted to be taken seriously.

White Horses and Cruising

Remember being little and dreaming of your “one true love”?

I do.

I watched a lot of Disney movies as a kid. Sue me.

I spent a lot of days imagining what that would be like; finding my one true love. He would probably ride a noble white horse and carry a sword. He would be tall. He would wear boots. He would be strong. He would slay a dragon and come wake me with true love’s kiss to save me from eternal sleep. (okay, maybe I watched Sleeping Beauty a lot more than I thought)

I still watch Disney movies but at some point, I grew up. And while I still love Disney movies, my idea about what my love is has changed–especially since I discovered that riding a horse everywhere in a city is wildly unrealistic. Also carrying a sword in public is generally frowned upon. Additionally, where the hell are you gonna find a dragon to slay? And why would I be stuck in an eternal sleep?? I mean, I have a lot of questions.

Either way, I hoped that he’d be funny–like laugh out loud, give me headaches funny. And smart. I hoped he’d be a nerd like me and know how to cook the things I don’t know how to. I hoped he’d be strong and handsome. I hoped he’d listen to country and rap. And metal. And 90’s pop radio. More than anything, I just hoped he’d be my best friend. I hoped that beyond being my “one true love”, we’d be friends. The kind of friends that take care of each other. That will hold my hair back if I’m sick and that would still kiss each other with morning breath.
Ultimately, I hoped he existed.

Somewhere along the way, I gave up looking. It was futile. And stupid. Prince Charming isn’t real. There are no white knights or dragons. I’m not a princess waiting to be saved.

But then, he was there. Not Prince Charming. My best friend. And he was always there.

Since we were 14, he’s been one that makes me laugh until I cry and will debate me on things that no one else will. Who knows how to make caldo de res and who nerds out to Star Wars. Who sings along to Breaking Benjamin and then to Intocable and then to Blake Shelton (don’t tell him I told you). He’s handsome and strong. He’s tall and wears boots. He isn’t so great with his words all the time and he isn’t perfect, but neither am I. He doesn’t slay dragons but he’s saved me from splinters in my feet, from having to get my hair wet in the rain, and from the most awkward, hurtful situations.

And while he isn’t a prince, and I’m not a princess, we are best friends.

Disney got it wrong, the whole Prince Charming thing (BECAUSE YOU CAN’T MARRY A GUY YOU JUST MET, ANNA). Because you don’t live happily ever after with some douche on a horse with a sword, dancing a waltz in a ballroom.

But if you’re lucky, you get a pretty legit life, rapping Dr. Dre and singing Evanescence, cruising around in a truck, holding hands with your best friend.

And that makes for a way better story.

 

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Left: 2004, Right: 2018

Mama Nancy and Daddy Carlos answer your questions

Y’all know how much I love my parents. Really love them. I don’t go a day without talking to one (most of the time, both) of them. They’re fantastic.

I am super lucky that my friends love them, too and value their advice. So when I came up with the idea of letting my mama take over my blog as an “Ask Mama Nancy” thing, my friends were totally into it.

Well, folks, y’all have blown my socks off. We got so many great questions and I am especially grateful that Mama Nancy AND Daddy Carlos have chosen to answer them for you.

Without further ado…

1. What is your skin care regimen?-Miss Carrie

Mama Nancy: Because I don’t have a specific routine that I follow involving morning creams, cleansing, nightly creams, cleansing, etc. with expensive anti-aging creams/lotions/etc. (although I probably should), I do use products containing moisturizer as much as possible. Most of my life I have used Ivory soap for baths and to remove makeup.  Within last five years have begun use moisturizing hand soap for baths and hand washing (buy the large “Soft Soap” bottles of Honey and Cream).  I use Suave body lotion (Baby Powder scent) after bath. Cetafil moisturizing cream on my face as my base before applying makeup, and do not wear makeup on the weekends (unless we are going out).   

 
Daddy Carlos: coffee, drink water, and take my vitamins.
 
2. What’s the worst thing Aislinn ever did as a kid?-Anonymous

MN: Sneaking out of the house at age 13. Aislinn snuck out of the house via her bedroom window late at night after we had all gone to bed to go joy riding with some friends.  Given the hour and her means of exiting guessing she believed I would never find out. WRONG!!!!  Momma’s can feel it when their kids are up to something.  I woke up during the night.  Checked in on her and found her not in bed and the window slightly raised and the screen removed.  I replaced the screen; locked the window; turn off the lights in her room, and waited.  At around 2:00 a.m.  I heard her at the window.  She knew she had been found out and was in trouble.   I opened the front door, stood on the porch and waited for her to come to me.  I told her I was extremely disappointed in her. Through this one thoughtless act she had endangered herself and lost my trust, which would take a considerable time to earn back. She was grounded for a month, and I mean grounded.  She never, ever did it again.

She failed to tell y’all how my daddy kept me up the entire night and the rest of the next day doing housework and mowing the lawn because he said “you wanna stay up all night? Okay. We’re gonna stay up alllll night.” Damn right I never did that again.
 

 DC: Kiss a boy in the computer room. Poor guy, I made him so uncomfortable that he had to leave. Well, that’s what daddies do.

 
3. Do you ever worry about Aislinn getting hurt at CrossFit?-John

MN: All the time.

DC: Yes, I worry all the time because she does not listen.

 
4. What is the most embnarrassing thing you witnessed Aislinn do during high school?-Chad “The Judge” Judy

MN: I can’t recall Aislinn ever doing anything to embarrass me. I do recall her “yearly fall” in the upperclassman halls while in junior high and high school and even the first year of college.  Had I fallen in a crowd as she did, I would have been supremely embarrassed.  So each time I learned about a fall, I felt embarrassed for her (but only after ensuring she had not hurt herself). But she wasn’t really embarrassed, either.  Her reaction upon falling flat on her face in a crowded school hallway (or in front of the LSU Student Union) was to laugh at herself.  (Good for her!)  Inevitably, the good looking guys would run to her rescue. (Maybe that is why she was never embarrassed?)

DC: Floor (knock out) one of the boys cause he would not stop bothering her and trying to kiss her.

5. What was the greatest unrealized fear you had while Aislinn was growing up?-Kristie
MN: The late night call to tell me she has been harmed/hurt in some way.  That fears stays with me, and I hope it stays unrealized always.
 
DC: That she grows up to be one of those who falls in the category of “Help! I have started talking and I can’t shut up”.  A car accident.
 

6. What was Aislinn like as a baby? Was she ever dropped on her head?-Jarrell
MN: Beautiful, inside and out, quick to laugh, inquisitive, bright, and absolutely the light of my life (I swear she has to say this, y’all. She’s my MOM).  We never dropped her on her head, but she did sustain a fall when she was about a year and a half hitting her head on a carpeted concrete floor. She opened her mouth to let out a scream that did not come. She could not breathe. I felt overwhelming fear and panic run the length of my body as I rushed to pick her up. Thankfully, my husband did not panic.  He told me to blow in her face.  I did.  She let out the loudest wail and I felt relief, but not for long.  I immediately called the pediatrician to ask about signs of a concussion.   Although she seemed fine and exhibited none of the signs of a concussion, I lay awake with her cuddled next to me throughout the night while she slept, just in case.  She’s had her falls and spills (see #4 above), but I learned fear and panic can wait, when it comes to your baby, it was more important to stay calm and do what is needed.

DC: Dude, anyone can see she has “Dain Bramage”.  Dude where have you been? (Thanks, Daddy)
 
7. What’s your favorite food?-Anonymous
MN: Beef fajitas and guacamole.

DC: Aaahhhhh anything that tastes good and if I am allergic to it…well I will just have to deal with that later.
 
8. Why isn’t Aislinn named “Nancy III”?-Anonymous
MN: Because she would not have been a III (Junior, maybe, but I didn’t like my name enough to saddle my daughter with a “junior”), and I really liked the name “Aislinn” which is Gaelic for “Beloved Dream”.  I was given both my mother’s legal name (Aurora) and her nickname (Nancy).  Nancy a nickname?  Let me tell you a story.  When my mother was born, my grandmother named her Nancy. My grandfather liked the name Aurora.  In those days, with home births, birth certificates were completed at the county courthouse.  My grandfather did the honors. Guess what name he put on the birth certificate?  Right!  Not Nancy. When my mom needed a copy of her birth certificate at age 18, the courthouse personnel were unable to find it under the name Nancy.  But they did find an Aurora with her date of birth and parents.  (My grandmother gave my grandfather an earful about this, according to my mother). Mom, nonetheless, was always and forever known as Nancy never using the name Aurora. 
I loved the name Aislinn.  First saw it in a book by Kathleen Woodiweiss called “The Wolf and the Dove”, a book I read after finals my senior year in college in 1974 (13 years before Aislinn was born.).  Loved the beauty and the strength of the character named Aislinn and the name itself.  Thought then about naming a daughter Aislinn, IF I ever had one.  In 1987, when my husband and I learned we were going to have a baby girl.  He readily agreed.  He selected her middle name Alysse. 

DC: I guess for the same reason girls don’t use their mother’s wedding dress.  From what I can see…naming the kid after you/wearing the mom’s dress seems to be the mother’s wish and the daughter tries to let her down gently by saying ” But Mom, the last time you saw this dress it was on yourself.  Why would you want to ruin that vision?” (Is that a left handed complement?) Way to reference my post, daddy. Haha.
 
9. What’s your favorite thing about the ranch?-Jarrell
MN: Sitting under a mesquite tree drinking ice cold beer. Eating the fajitas, mojellas, and pinto beans cooked over an open campfire. And leaving.

DC: No one to bother me and can “Crop dust” all I want or as more sophisticated people like to say “drop a Rose” Farting, guys. He’s talking about farting.
 
10. What’s the best piece of advice you can give to high school girls?-Anonymous
MN: Wow!  That’s a tough one.   Given all the pressures of high school (which unfortunately continue to some degree or another thereafter, too), I think the best advice is to know your values, live your values, and know you have value.  AND when and if you have any doubts or are in any way uncertain, talk to your parents.  We were young once, too.  The challenges of growing up don’t really change that much. 

DC: Support yourself women have the last word on sex.  You can always borrow a guy for the night cause it is less expensive.  And go on about your business and don’t hold your breath and girls should stop thinking that being married is the ultimate thing in life.
 
11. How do you make your hair so perfect?-Anonymous
MN: Trust me, it is far from perfect!  (Wavy with frizzies) But when it does look “perfect” it is because of the precision haircut by an excellent master haircutter named Helen at Visible Changes in Memorial City Mall who over the past 15 years has come to know my hair and what it can and cannot (or should not) do.  AND a Chi straightener.

DC: I don’t.  It’s too much work and if you’re ugly like me, what difference could it make? Perfect guys hair is like when I see people who dyed there hair and now they really look dead…sorry, that is not one of my aspirations.
 
12. What’s your best advice about dealing with boys?-Jill
MN: See answer to # 10 above.

DC: Just treat us like your dog (hope you’re a good owner).  Yes, we will tell you what you want to hear but you must understand that we do not really mean it ’cause…’cause well, we weren’t made that way!

13. What are your top 5 favorite southern sayings?-Lacey

MN: “If I tell you a rooster can plow, hitch him up.” (My favorite!)

“Love does not go begging.”

“One day, I hope you have a child just like you.” (Her mama “blessed” her with this curse and she did the same to me. Safe to say…I’m not planning kiddos) 
“If you want it done right, do it yourself.”
“Never get involved with anyone that has less to lose than you do.”
 

DC: “Wow, that chick is hot.” 
“Does it taste good?” 
“Does it come with fries?” 
“Have it your way”
“Thank you”
 

14. What’s the best advice you’ve ever given Aislinn that’s been passed down from a prior generation of your family?-Miss Dulcie
MN: Despite my having vehemently insisted I would never repeat it to my children because I hated hearing it, the best advice is, “Because I said so!”  Your parents are the ones who will always love you unconditionally, have only your best interest at heart, and are determined to protect you from all things including yourself and to help you learn to be the best you can be. When they say, “Because I said so,” it is after consideration of all of the above.  The hope is that once they are adults, they will have come to that realization and make decisions for themselves they have learned to love themselves unconditionally, act in their own best interest, and make decisions that makes them and their lives the best it can be.

DC: If you don’t stop kissing that boy in the computer room, I am going to beat you both with a chancla (sandal. In Spanish). Aislinn will say the same thing to her nieces ’cause she is not allowed to marry. Okay, she can adopt a dog.
 
15. What’s the best original advice you’ve ever given Aislinn?-Miss Dulcie
MN: Truthfully, I can’t think of any advice I have ever given that is not in some way derived from something I learned from my mother or my father.  Maybe that is the way it should be.

DC: I’m proud of you for decking that boy to the floor.  Oh, don’t listen to your mother she’s a girl.
 
16. As a mama, can you put into words the amount of accomplishment you feel for Aislinn?-Xavier
MN: I feel the same overwhelming sense of joy and wonder today for Aislinn as I did the first time the nurse put her in my arms 26 years ago.  She was a wonder then – my first and only child, with 10 perfect fingers and toes, my nose, her daddy’s eyes and chin, and my mom and dad’s first grandchild.  Throughout her life, I have seen wonderful traits and characteristics I can trace back to my mother and others within the family. To this day she continues to amaze me with all her talents, skills, her passions and compassion, and all she is capable of doing, has accomplished, and is likely to accomplish in the future.  She truly is a composite of all that is the best of both her daddy and I and all those who came before her.  We are blessed.

DC: My wife would say “Thank you Mija for not listening to your Dad”.  Sorry guys, girls don’t understand that things work better in reverse…she listened to me kind of a lot and she came out purtyyy good.
 
17. How high do you have to count before responding to sass from Aislinn?-Miss Dulcie (lol!)
MN: I don’t.  I immediately give her “the look” which she has come to know from an early age, means stop it NOW, or I say, “You don’t talk to me that way,” and walk away.  Either way, she knows she is in trouble and it will cost her something she values.

DC: First I will slap the biscuits out of you and conserve my energy for something more rewarding than counting.  Counting, really?  Who the hell started that?  Could not have been a guy.
 
18. How can you let your daughter join the Marines?  Is it because she’s an adult?-Anonymous
MN: You answered your own question, but I’d like to elaborate a bit.  Aislinn is an adult who is responsible for making her own decisions regarding her life and its direction.  Thankfully, she still asks our opinion and considers it . Aislinn comes from a family on both sides who have served their country.  Her grandfathers on both sides and ALL of her great uncles WWII veterans.  Several of her uncles and cousins, also on both sides of the family, have served and continue to in the military. (One even graduated from the Air Force Academy.) That she would consider the military is not a surprise given the value we place on service to country and community.  However, we are also very aware of the inherent risks of military service.  We trust she will consider all aspects of any commitment she may choose to make to serve in the military, and if in the end she decides to make the commitment, then I like my grandmothers, aunts, and my mother before me, will pray every day that she be kept out of harm’s way and sees her safely home.

DC: Sounds to me like someone does not think the Marines are a good organization.  This falls under one of many categories but the first and most pressing is “success or failure on your terms or mine”.  Only after the decision has been made and there is some history behind it will we know if it was the right decision or not.  Any one coming out of the forces and says it was good is saying they were successful.  If a person says the experience was negative then we’ll know it was not successful.  The idea is life is to line up what you will be involved in in a manor such that it is leading you toward your goals or accomplishments.  I remember when she was a kid and set up a lemonade stand.  She was disappointed to say the least.  So I asked, “what did you learn?”  She started with these people are this, that and the other.  So I told her “No. What you learned was: that Lemonade is not what sells around here, bone head!!!”  Oh don’t worry she did many other things and succeeded.
 
19. What is your exercise regimen?-Anonymous 
MN: Zumba!

DC: Work at the ranch and have a can of Bud Light in each hand.  You should see how well developed my…


…stomach is.
Did you really think I was going to say arms?
 
20. Does Aislinn get her determination from you or from Daddy Carlos, or both?
If its from both, how do you guys get along?-Anonymous

MN: Probably from both of us, but Aislinn is her own person and perhaps represents the best of both of us.  As for my husband and I, we have been happily married for almost 28 years. So far; so good. (At the time of our engagement, my husband jokingly set out the terms of a marriage contract as he envisioned it – a 50 year term of marriage with an option to renew every 10 years thereafter.  Even after 28 years, fully expect to fulfil the terms of the contact and then some!) 

DC: Mostly I am amazed at how smart Nancy and Aislinn are. Me, I don’t want to be smart. It’s too much responsibility. Of course, when we get pissy we say things like, “well, you’re just like your uncle so and so!” but that doesn’t last long ’cause then I get hungry and decide that eating is more important than being pissy. Hey, what do you want? I’m a guy, remember? The way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. Duh. Where have you been?
 
21. Are you a regular reader of Eat Pray WOD?  As I said before, the genius of Aislinn’s blog is that we can all see a little of ourselves in her experiences.-Anonymous
MN: If checking Aislinn’s blog every 2 or 3 weeks or so and reading all entries to catch up equates to regular, then yes, I am a regular reader.  I’m glad you think Aislinn’s blog is “genius”.  I think she is pretty awesome myself.  I love her sense of self and humor. She makes me laugh (most of the time.)

DC: Us guys don’t even read instructions when they are provided…what would ever make anyone think that I would read a blog? Hell, I was busy installing a “Solar powered water pump”.  Do you really believe I have time to read a blog? Goodness. HAHAHAHA He makes a valid point.
22. Will you adopt me?  I can always use some sage advice.  Its okay if Aislinn is your favorite.-Anonymous
MN:  You know, after we had Aislinn, my husband and I wanted more children.  We tried and sought medical help, but after a while we decided to leave it in God’s hands. God’s answer was, “No.” As is often the case, we sometimes do not know the “reason” behind God’s plan for us.  Now that we have seen Aislinn through elementary, junior high, high school, college, graduate school, and all of the attendant costs, challenges, etc. we now know the reason — ONE CHILD IS MORE THAN ENOUGH!!!!!   Please do not take offense.  We are just too far along in years to start over.   Nonetheless, will give you one piece of advice — you have only to look homeward for sage advice.

DC: When I see parents putting up with their “little tricycle motors” (babies), I am sooooo glad that I am older than dirt and past all the child raising. When you get old you get very selfish with your time. I guess if I had a lot of money, I would do it, but don’t hold your breath. I am not in the mood for putting up with more stuff.
 

23. What happened to flight 370?-Jill and Steve
MN: It never arrived at its destination and has disappeared.  Beyond that, it is anyone’s guess.
 
DC: Oh yea, the dam plane.  I’ll tell you what happened to the dam plane…it’s MISSING!
 
Thank you to all of you who wrote in questions. This is hands down the funniest post I never wrote. And thanks to my wonderful parents who indulge me in every crazy, harebrained idea I have. Even when it involves me calling them in the middle of the night begging for them to take over my blog for a day.

Meet Axl!

It’s pretty well known that I love animals.
So when this guy came into my life, it was love at first sight.

Meet Axl.
He was found on the highway wandering, completely oblivious to traffic.
He was badly matted, so badly even, that the cable that used to be around his neck was matted into his fur. So he got all shaved up. 

Oh. 
And he’s deaf.

According to the vet, someone loved this little big guy once. 

I put him in a shirt because I felt like he was too naked. He was all the way over my photoshoot.

So far, Axl likes:
Car rides, napping with me, wagging his tail, being petted all the time, all food and treats, sleeping with a paw on me, and drinking out of the toilet.

Axl dislikes: 
being ignored, the ceiling fan, stink bugs, and strangers. 


We’re working on signs for “sit”, “come”, “crate”, and “toilet”. I think it’s safe to say we’re both learning a lot. 

This is how Axl sleeps on me. Who needs blankets?


Happy Mother’s Day! Guest Post from Mama Nancy!

Happy mother’s day!

In the spirit of mother’s day, I asked my wonderful, adorable, all-knowing mother to guest blog for me on Eat.Pray.WOD!

If you’ve read my stuff or you know me in real life, you know how much I love my mother. LOVE HER. I talk to her absolutely everyday and I couldn’t have possibly been blessed with a better mentor, life coach, and role model. She loves me enough to do the things that hurt her because she knows I’ll be better for it. 

She’s incredible, pretty much.
Mama Nancy believes that there are some things that every mother should have taught her child, 5 things, to be exact.

SO here it is: a mother’s day post from Mama Nancy herself.

***********************************************************
5 things every mother should teach her child
by: Mama Nancy

1. “Can I tell you a secret?”
As a lawyer, I’ve seen all kinds of bad people and as the mother of a little girl, I always want to protect her. One easter weekend, my younger brother, Sonny, told Aislinn “you know, your mother is as old as dirt. But don’t tell her I said, it’s a secret.” Promptly, Aislinn ran to me and yelled, “MAMA! Uncle Sonny says you’re as old as dirt!” 

Darling, isn’t she? 

My brother said, “I said that was a secret!” to which Aislinn replied, “Mama says that ‘a secret’ means to tell mama.” 

At that point, I knew I had done right. Never would I have to worry about someone sketchy “telling a secret” to my daughter because she knew to share secrets with her mama. Even if the secret is that I’m old as dirt.

2. Mama may be mistaken, but she is never wrong.
This is one of my favorites. While Aislinn was growing up, I had to deal with listening to her problems and then, when I tried to give advice, she’d say “you can’t possibly understand what I’m going through!” 

I’m so sure.

And I’d give my advice anyway and Aislinn would say, “whatever, mom, you’re so wrong.” 

But sure enough, right I was. Everything happened just like I said it would and she would come to me and say, “you were so right. Everything happened just like you said it would.” And I got the immense joy of saying, “your mama may be mistaken, but she is never, ever wrong.”

3. Mama always, always, always knows
I’m not sure what made her think it, but Aislinn always thought she could get away with things. And yet, I always knew. Snuck an extra diet coke? I saw that. Took a trip to San Antonio without telling anyone? I knew that, too. Call it a mother’s intuition. Or maybe my daughter just wasn’t fooling anyone. 
I learned that a mama always knows when I was a teenager and my mama taught me. My brother Sonny and I were playing a game where we would flip each other the bird when Mother wasn’t looking. Each time she turned her back, one of us would flip the other one off. We thought we were so sly, knowing this hand sign that our mother didn’t know about and it was so insulting! Until, at dinner, we looked up and ever so slowly, a sly smile crept over Mother’s face as she lifted her hand and then lifted her middle finger at my brother and I. Needless to say, we were shocked and chose not to play that game again (at least until we were adults). 

4. Always say please and thank you.
Manners are big in my house. It’s important to make sure that you let people know that you appreciate them for what they do. Which is why it’s always necessary to say “please” and “thank you”. If you know my daughter, you know that it’s important to her to send thank you notes to those who have done something for her. Remember to always show your thanks to those who have helped you. You never know, your kind words may have a bigger impact than you think!

5. Always wear clean underwear.
It shouldn’t have to be said, but, you should always put on clean underwear when you leave the house. Why? Because wearing dirty underwear is gross. And because what if you’re in an accident and they have to cut your clothes off? How embarrassing for your mama when they have to let her know that your underwear was dirty! Save your mama some embarrassment and put some clean undies on. And while you’re at it, wash behind your ears and brush your teeth. Make your mama proud. Don’t let your smelly flag fly in public.

Bonus: When you think it’s a compliment, it’s really a curse.
I taught this to Aislinn, but I learned it from my mama, Grandma Nancy. Growing up, I was your typical teenager: headstrong and stubborn. I ran my mother ragged. One day, when she was particularly frustrated, she said to me: “one day, I hope you have a daughter just like you.” At the time, I believed this was a huge compliment…until I had Aislinn. All of a sudden, I had my own stubborn, headstrong daughter and I realized that my mother’s “compliment” was actually a curse! 

As a mama, I couldn’t have been blessed with a better daughter. I am so thankful that she is so determined and strong. I don’t know what I would do without her daily calls and texts. I thank God and St. Jude for my miracle baby everyday.

Happy mother’s day to all the mothers out there! Enjoy your day!
**********************************************************
Sha. My mama is the sweetest. And blessed am I to be a woman in this wonderful lineage. My mama (and my grandma) are made of some kind of invisible steel. I can only dream of being as strong as they are one day. 

We hope y’all had the best mother’s day and treated your mamas (or got treated to!) something super special!

From Left to Right: Grandma Nancy Sr., Mama Nancy Jr., and yours truly! I know, we’re triplets. Creepy, right?


Well, this is real life, so…

I got an email saying that I talk a lot about CrossFit and I share my crossfit life, but I only rarely share things about my real life. And that kinda bummed me out. So here we go. Real life shiz.

Things I love:
Night storms
Warm socks
Grammar
Sweatpants that are just big enough
Walking barefoot
Sloths
Tank tops
Mailing letters
Silences that aren’t awkward
Silences that are awkward
Writing love letters that I wouldn’t dare mail
Reading about everything
Watching the history channel
Rhinestones
Slow dances
Dresses
Work boots
Country music
Any music
The smell of books
Long talks with my mama
DIY projects with my daddy
Cows
Texas
Louisiana
Forehead kisses
Kept promises
Pizza
The smell of 4 am
Geometric patterns-especially chevron
Neon bar lights
Alliteration
My siblings
My puppies (who aren’t puppies anymore)
Hot showers
Crab hunting
Fully dressed beers (but not Miller)
My family
The History Channel

Things I hate:
Tomatoes
Dentists
Obnoxious people
Broken promises
Strawberry ice cream with the seeds
Cilantro
Things that are intended to be funny, but aren’t
Overly sensitive people
People who want me to be overly sensitive
Things that just aren’t logical
Bad hair days
Finding scorpions in my shoes
Misbehaved children
Misbehaved parents to misbehaved children
Failing

Ways you can tell the school year is coming to a close: my hair’s been up in a ponytail and/or bun all week. 19 more school days!

{What are some things that you love or just can’t stand?}