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Thursday, April 26, 2012

An Easy Solution to the nagging kid question "Where are we going NOW?"

I came up with this today. I'm pretty happy with the easy design. I could have done this on the color printer, but my daughter is only 3 1/2 and still tends to destroy things on occassion. So I'd rather be able to just reprint pages if need be, then to worry about how much color ink I'm using. So here's the scoop. Every time we get in the car to go somewhere, I hear "Where are we going NOW mommy?" about a million times. And once we finish at one destination, it's "where are we going next?" and "and then where?" so I came up with this easy idea that will save me from answering the questions over and over again. You will need: A 3-ring binder, any size rings Sheet protectors Printed pages representing places you go regularly The cover of my book:
Then the pages look like these:
Just google the places you go, and copy the pictures from the websites. I even found pictures of my kids' real doctors! Then google your address. I easily found a picture of our house from when it was last sold on the market. Of course you need a page that says it's time to go home! Now once you get the pages inside the sheet protectors, you can easily create an instant travel plan for your child in a matter of seconds before you load up into the car. They will always know where you're going next!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Answering questions about my religion

Original email to me:
Dear Mama Em,
I know you identify yourself with the Pagan/Wiccan religion. Yet sometimes I see you post [we are fb friends] about celebrating Christmas and Easter, etc. So what exactly do you believe? I'm confused.

My Answer:
The short version: Christmas, Easter, and many other holidays that are widly accepted as Christian holidays are all versions of what were first Pagan rituals, practices and holy days.

The expanded version: I grew up in a non-pushy, non-denominational Christian household. My mom was raised Roman Catholic, my dad was raised Prodistant. As kids, we were never forced to go to church. As we got older, my siblings and I all explored different churches for a while, trying to find our place. The questions I asked due to things about the bible or the sermons that I didn't understant led me to be politely asked not to return to many of those churches. I just couldn't find my place. My sister found a church that she liked so much that she wound up there almost every day, and eventually even worked there. Christianity worked for her in leaps and bounds. My brother decided all religion was total BS and you'd be wise not to even ask him his beliefs - trust me. Just save yourself the headache and argument. LOL But, back to me... I kept trying to find something that I could fully believe in, without question. I read books and studied teachings of many different religions. By the time I hit my freshman year of high school, I had so much paranormal activity in my life that I started to put the religion search on the backburner and study everything I could get ahold of dealing with the occult. (NOTE: The word "occult" is commonly confused with devil worship and black magic. The actual definition of the word is: Supernatural, mystical, or magical beliefs, practices, or phenomena - Of, involving, or relating to supernatural, mystical, or magical powers or phenomena.)Along the way, I stumbled onto the Wiccan religious beliefs, and studied them at length. I knew I had found myself there, but some of the practices were a little too out there for me. I decided to go back further and study the ancient Pagan practices, and that's where I knew I belonged. So I do identify with both pieces (It's like the Christian faith - you can be Lutheran, Baptist, Methodist, etc but they're all just divisions of Christianity. So falls Wicca under the Pagan religion.). So, back to the original question. I do celebrate Christmas and Easter, because (and you can do your own research as to how) they are both based on Pagan holy days. Paganism came long before Christianity, and any hardcore Christian knows that Jesus wasn't born on Christmas, so do the research. Instead of celebrating the birth of Christ and the resurrection of Christ, I celebrate the kids aspect of it publicly (Santa, the Easter Bunny, egg hunting)and the religious part of it privately. And before you ask, (LOL) I do intend to let my children find their own faith, as my parents did with me. So they will not be forced to follow anything that I believe or practice. But my daughter's obsession with the moon leads me to believe I've got a little witch on my hands! So I'll leave you with some common misconceptions about my religion, and hope that you got your answers!

Common misconceptions:

Do you worship the devil?
No. I don't even believe in the devil or hell. I joke that I am going to hell and that I already have a room booked overlooking the lake of fire, but in all reality, I don't believe in heaven or hell. I believe that we all go "home" when we die.

Do you sacrifice animals?
No way! I love animals. My husband often jokes that one day I'm going to get bit or attacked by something beacause I seriously see and animal and run right over to pet it. I don't sacrifice any living thing, nor would I ever.

Are you in a coven?
No. I practice alone in my own ways. I have never been a part of a coven or group. Think about what it means to be a Christian. Do you HAVE to go to church in order to be a good Christian? Nah. Neither do I.

I thought you were supposed to 'live in secret' and 'tell no one' about your beliefs?
That's the old way of thinking, and many newage witches still go by that. I refuse to live my life in secret in the shadows. And after all, the best way to put to rest all the rumors and questions about my faith is to help get the truth out there, right?

Are you anti-God?
Oh no! I believe in God! I just believe in a different way than you do. That's the broadest way I can explain it. And I'm not anti ANY faith. We are all entitled to believe what we want, and I would NEVER try to argue with someone about their faith, or try to convert them to mine. That's not how I roll. You wanna hear something funny? My favorite Christmas carols are ALL about Jesus. LOL And I will sing along with the radio or carolers on my porch! I accept all religions, and all I ask in return is that you accept mine.

Until next time,

Mama Em

Why the heck am I jealous?

Good morning readers! I actually dealt with this topic last week, and then I had two emails regarding the same type of situation, so I'm not going to post the original letter this time, I'll just explain and then answer.

The problem: You break up with someone you've been with for a while. It doesn't matter why or how it ended, but eventually you wind up on good terms as friends. Then that person starts dating someone new. You KNOW you don't want to be with them anymore, but you still feel jealous of the new person. Why?

Here's my very non-scientific explaination : In my experience, the jealousy only occurs if one of two other factors come into play.
Factor 1 - You were honestly and truely in love with your ex at one time. That doesn't mean you still are or that you want them back, but you did love them at one time, and so that protective nature that comes with being in love sticks around and makes you feel like the new fling is allllll wrong for them. And you could sit there all day and pick that person apart, knowing in your heart that they are probably a really great person and you're happy that your ex is happy, but still finding a zillion things wrong with that person and ultimately deciding that you hate them. That's the jealousy talking. You can't help it! It's part of all of our molecular makeup to think that nobody could possibly ever do better than us. Nobody will ever love or care for your ex like you did. Period. That's how you feel, and that's what you'll take to your grave.
Factor 2 - You really do regret the breakup (maybe it wasn't even your idea), and you want another shot. So in your head you know you'd do whatever it takes to make your ex see the light that you are obviously the better pick, and may even stoop as low as actually trying to break your ex and the new interest up in order to get what you want. Please understand, I advise fully against that. You wouldn't want it done to you, so don't do it to someone else. Karma, like me, is a bitch.

So those are my thoughts and theories on post-breakup-trying-to-be-friends jealousy. And as I've said before, dear readers, women are all crazy, it's just to what extent. So for all you females out there, please think before you act when you're starting to have those creeping jealousy feelings about your ex's new girlfriend. Don't go deciding (and spreading rumors) that she's an idiot slutbag golddigging whore unless you have actual proof. It just makes YOU look like the trash in the equation!

Until next time,
Mama Em