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my thoughts on making the most out of all of life's minutes…


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Thursday’s Take….GMA where did you go?

I love Good Morning America.  Well – – I loved Good Morning America.

That is…until it changed.

And I’m not talking the change from when Charlie went to the evening news and then when Diane left and went to the evening news….I actaully like Robyn, Sam, Josh and George.

But I guess their ratings aren’t doing all that well….so they are resorting to TMZ type stories that they feel are “news worthy”.  Sadly – I’m not really all that interested in what’s happening in Hollywood or what the famous people are doing.  And when I saw Nancy Grace on the show the other morning – – I thought – well, good gravy- they must be doing poorly in their ratings if they think they need that gal to help stir things up.  For me, that was an all time low.

I get it – I understand why they are turning their methods towards Hollywood and “trending now” stories.

When I was in college, in every Marketing class I took we seemed to be given the same example, it went like this:

If you move to a tiny little town and there is a bar on three corners of Main Street…what are you going to build on that fourth corner?  

a. A 24 hour gym?

b. A Four store restaurant

c. Another bar. 

Do you know what the answer is….

If you guessed C – you are correct.

Why do you ask?  Because obviously bars do well in this little town.  And that’s how marketing works.

If it sells – it must be what people want.  So let’s sell more of “it”. 

This is why we see duplicates of the same show on different channels.  Just how many show are about cooking challenges, talent contests, shows on hoarding, shows on pawn shops, and all those reality shows.

The theory is – – if it is popular – that must be what the people want.  And they are right.  People watch these sorts of shows and find similar ones and watch those on the different channels.

The sad part is for people like me – I don’t always want to watch the same thing over and over.  I like variety and I seriously don’t like what the choices are these days.

Don’t get me wrong, I’ll dive into some Hollywood gossip every now and then – I’m not that much of a prude.  But I also like good reporting and good shows that make me laugh or think – not just roll my eyes and shake my head.

I guess it comes down to….I just miss Good Morning America.  When they travel to see different parts of the country and report on different aspects of American life.  I love the Made in America series they did a few years ago.   When they did good, quality reporting – that was really news worthy.

Come back Old School GMA.  Come back!

Happy Thursday, everyone!

~Amy

PS – today marks the end of my challenge to sell 100 copies of Making Time for Dinner.  We didn’t quite make it to 100, but the good news is – it is still for sale and you can buy your copy at any time.  Thanks for all who purchased a copy  – I love the support.


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Thursday’s Take….Thoughts on Attachment Parenting

I’m guessing that most people read the recent Time magazine article about Attachment Parenting.  Or maybe if you didn’t get a chance to read it, you certainly heard the buzz around the cover and got from comments what the article was about.

I don’t normally read Time, but I was curious about this article, so I picked up this issue.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here are my thoughts on Attachment Parenting…

I don’t like labels.

So for that matter, I don’t care much for labels like “Tiger Moms”, “Grizzly Moms”, “Soccer Moms” and “French-style Mothering” and whatever other labels there are out there.

I think the reason I don’t like to subscribe to one dogma of parenting style is because it is too limiting.  I don’t want to be placed in a box and only be able to determine what is best for my kids based on a few  guidelines.

My style of parenting is called “Tim and Amy Parenting“.  (Tim is my husband and the father of our two sons – ages seven and three.)

What I have learned from my two sons is that both are very different and both require a different approach when it comes to parenting.  And to try to fit them into a prescribed method, doesn’t seem fair to them or to me as a mother.

Here’s our approach when it comes to parenting:

  • Consistency is key.
  • Flexibility is key.
  • Don’t approach every situation for every child, the same way.
  • Trust our instinct.
  • Take examples from our parents and how we perceived our childhood – what we liked and didn’t like about it and apply them to our children.
  • Take examples from our sisters, cousins and friends – see what works and doesn’t work for them and determine if it might work for us too.
  • Children need lots of love, patience and understanding, but they also need a dose of firm discipline every now and then.
  • Communicate with each other what works and doesn’t work and try different things – always adjusting.

I am lucky to have two really good friends in my “village”.  One is a teacher and the other, a family and child therapist.  I strongly recommend getting some friends like these.  I have a Business degree and we didn’t learn one thing about the development of the brain and how children process things.  (But I can tell you all about how supply and demand works with kids…..it is very simple, really –  if they demand it – you better supply it!).

Seriously, my two friends are a source of expertise that I routinely rely on. They offer my insight from their experience and knowledge that I’d have to find else where if not for them.   If you don’t have friends with this knowledge, I suggest books or search for other sources of help like your family doctor or your pastor.  I’ve read many parenting books and always walk away with some sort of new knowledge or new tool in my belt.  I even learned something from the Time article.

For me – I don’t want to be put in a box and then try to cram my kids in there with me too.  I feel I owe it them to listen to their needs and watch their personalities and work my molding of them in ways that they will respond best.

Good luck with that parenting thing!

Happy Thursday!

~Amy

Thursday’s Takes are my personal opinion on current events or just random thoughts.  I’d love to hear what you think…leave your comments below.


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Thursday’s Take….suck it up!

WHEW!  I don’t usually like to say things like this but….

Man, I’ll be happy when this week is over.

You know how in addition to writing this blog and doing time management consulting, I also do contract work for a little animal rescue non-profit.  One of the projects I work on for them is their annual dinner/auction.  I’m charged with overseeing all the details and organizing the event.  It is a pretty big task with about 1267 little details.

The auction is this Saturday, the 19th.

And this week has sucked.

This week is when all the little details start to come together and now it’s crunch time.   And while when people say “don’t worry, it will all work out.” – sure – that is true….but at some point, someone is going to have to make it all work out and sometimes there are just times when you have to suck it up and make it happen.

That’s been this week for me and the rest of my team.  I’ve been thinking of how could we have done this week differently.  Thinking with my time management guru hat on, I’ve been pondering….how would I advise other people to make this week easier or less hectic.

I think what it comes down to is…no matter how hard you try to not have everything happen all at once, there really isn’t any other way around it.  There are just situations and projects and deadliness like this one where crunch time is going to happen and no matter how hard you try to avoid, you just have to dig deep and get ‘er done.

 

It’s sort of like finals week during college.

Or filing your taxes.

Or getting a pap smear.

You just have to take a deep breath and say “this is going to suck…but it will only be temporary….and we’ll get through this.

And that’s exactly what I did….on Saturday afternoon I allowed myself to acknowledge that this week was going to be tough.  (An added hiccup is my husband had to go away on travel, leaving me to tend to our sons…not an added dread at all…but definitely adding challenges to my already crazy week.)

And even though this week has been tough, I have to say, it hasn’t been all bad.  That’s not to say things didn’t aren’t going perfectly smoothly…yesterday alone I stopped by three places to tend to details and none of them were ready….leaving me to have to make another trip today to each place. Time I don’t have…now I have to repeat steps.

I think having adopting the attitude of “it’s gonna be a tough, but I’ll get through it” makes it better.

This is not to say, that I’m not exhausted.  Because…. I am.!!!  And I’ve missed writing everyday and keeping with my other routines.  But today is Thursday and tomorrow is Friday and then Saturday will be about an eighteen hour day and then Sunday…there is a pancake breakfast in our little town that we’re attending  – – after I sleep in.

Happy Thursday everyone!  I look forward to getting back on track again next week!

Hey- I tried to think of a male equivalent to something that you have just have to suck up like getting a pap smear – – what would that be?  Any ideas?

~Amy

PS (not sure I’ve ever written something and referred to a pap smear and today I did it twice….three times if you count this one.)


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Thursday’s Take….Just to be clear – I’m not criticizing this mother

I just want to make it clear  – – this is not about blasting another mother.  But I wanted to share and give you my view-point on this….

A couple of weeks ago, my son came home with this note:

I will admit, at first I was taken aback and a little irked by this note.  I felt immediately sorry for M.  I even had to ask my son who M was.  Because there was no address or other information, I didn’t realize it was our new neighbors who had just moved in about two weeks prior.

I thought about this note for a very long time, it haunted me.  But after awhile, it finally hit me.  And I immediately felt sorry for the mom.

The society that we live in these days put a lot of pressure on us.  I think moms are harder on other moms, especially if we don’t know them very well.  I think we personally put too much pressure on ourselves.

Here is what I know about M’s situation.  They had just moved into a home in our neighborhood two weeks prior.  M is in the first grade.  He has a three-year old little sister and an eight month old little brother.

So the line about “I can’t find the invites” was probably right on!  I’m sure her house was a mess and very unsettled at the moment.

Yet she still felt so much pressure to throw a party for her son.

I wish I was a closer friend to her or I wish she had hired me as a time-management consultant, because the first thing I would have said to her was “M’s party is going to have to wait.”

Why is it that we put so much pressure on ourselves to be perfect?  Why do we put up this front that “I can do it” and then kill ourselves trying?

I truly believe it would have been totally OK for M to have his party a month late.  I think it is OK to share with M something along the lines of “life has interrupted the normal routine and your special day will still be very special, it’s just going to be on another day this year.”

Please Ladies, fellow moms, friends….let’s stop doing this to ourselves and to each other.

What do you think?  I’d love to know!

~Amy

PS – Will you help me sell 100 copies of my eBook, Making Time for Dinner this month?  Buy your copy today and ask your friends to do the same.  And thanks!


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My Take on Thursday – the Friday edition –

I can’t think of what to write for this week’s My Take on Thursday.  Even now – it is Friday and my mind just won’t commit to any ideas.

They say – whenever  you are stuck about what to write, just start writing.  So that is what I’m doing.

Here are a couple of thoughts on what I thought I wanted to write about.

 

I sent out a request to a group I belong to on Linkedin looking for people who would like to be featured as guest writers for my blog while I’m on vacation next week.  I asked them to send me a link to an article they would like featured that might fit in with my overall theme.  I got a couple of really good suggestions, but I also got a couple of people that said “You can take anything off my blog.”

Well…I’m not going to be featuring those people, I can tell you already. I specifically asked for articles – not invitations to go read their entire collection of  blog posts and pick my favorite.  

Hint:  If someone offers to do something for you that will benefit you or your business – dont’ make them do more work.  Help them out as much as possible.

I was also going to write about:

 

An email I got from a co-worker that was obviously mid-thought on her part.  She was requesting some information, but her request was so vague  – I really didn’t understand what it was that she needed.

I ended up having to email her back and admit my shortcomings of not understanding what she needed and asked for more information. 

Hint:  Even if you know the person you are emailing knows what you are emailing about – it is best to still offer some additional details and background information to make it easier on the receiver.

One last thought:

 

On March 1st, I turned my programmable thermostat down one degree on all settings.  It is my attempt to save a little energy and reduce costs overall.  What I didn’t anticipate was March being colder than January.  So as I sit here typing, my fingers are cold and I’m about to bump of the heater a couple of notches.

Hint:  Don’t adjust the thermostat according to the calendar, use a thermometer instead.  

Well – look at that – – I started writing, admitted I was stuck and took a different approach to the process.  Originally, the posts were getting long and naggy  and quite honestly – boring.  But I like the way these turned out – short and to the point.  And three hints are a bonus!

Happy Day Everyone!

~Amy