Boston Mom’s Blog; Lake Attitash Adventure Series: Skating

 Boston Mom’s Blog

Lake Attitash Adventure Series: Skating

Lakeattitashadventureseries_skating

 

Check out my newest post on Boston Mom’s Blog! (Click on the picture above!)

~Erin

Positive Parenting this Winter: Keep Sick Kids at Home

Please check out the release of this story on WiLab!

mom-with-sick-baby

Winter Woes. 

With all the recent snow in the Northeast, it is not easy being a career mama and trying to get to and from work, manage school closings and then on top of it all, potential illness in the family. Most companies only offer a limited amount of PTO, and Massachusetts this year has passed new law to include an additional 40 hours of “Earned Sick Time” that can be used for yourself or an sick family member, which will help in most cases attempt to battle the long drawn out winter woes of managing a family and career on top of a multitude of variables. This will be effective July of 2015, and hopefully will make a difference for most of next winter. It is to say the least, a step in the right direction.

Until then, do us all a favor, and keep your sick kids home! I have been at the other end of the spectrum and I agree that it is totally annoying to have to miss another day of work when your child is sick. It comes full circle, your kids are sick, you get sick, you miss work, your kids go to school and other kids get them sick, you miss work, everyone is healthy —and round and round you go again.

My advice is, get over it!

We send our child to daycare and posted on the walls are a variety of potential infections in the school; strep throat, stomach bug, flu, etc. It is horrifying to think that parents are having their infected children attend school or in general, bringing them to the grocery store, playgrounds and other public places! Most schools require immunizations, but with the recent influx of parents claiming that it is their right to choose whether or not to vaccinate their children, claiming non-medical exemption and/or religious reasons, the gap has widened to a real dangerous situation.

It is not your right to infect our children. 

I was a new parent once, and I get that the link to autism and vaccines is a scary thought. I asked my pediatrician for advice and she was outright angry at my question. I did my own personal research and determined that the risks outweighed the rewards of not immunizing my child. These diseases are REAL and DEADLY. We changed pediatricians to a family friend (the same Doctor that cared for me and my siblings when we were young). The entire tone changed when we discussed immunizations, and there was a sense of trust. We just went for it, and  immunized our son with the MMR shot. Unfortunately, he was the 3% of the population to exhibit Measles symptoms of a temp of 103+ and spots all over his body for 2 days straight.  I can remember his fast breathing and nursing him with a cool cloth throughout the night, scared $h!tless at what was happening before my eyes. But the truth is, it was a MILD version of the full blown disease and it was scary! I cannot imagine denying him the immunization with potential for contracting this deadly disease later in life or even worse, spreading it to other children who have not yet had immunizations. He just received the 2nd round MMR vaccination this past week with no issues.

Vaccinating the Baby, From a sketch by Sol Eytinge. Photo from the holdings of Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine—Harvard Medical School.

Immunizations are essential to a healthy community & society.

Cynthia Leifer, is an associate professor of immunology at Cornell University and a 2015 Public Voices Fellow at the Op-Ed Project. In her most recent article in CNN, she explains a valid point;

The unfortunate reality, however, is that more and more parents are choosing not to vaccinate their children for nonmedical reasons. Some refuse vaccines on the grounds of religious beliefs; others refuse on the repeatedly disproved argument that vaccines contribute to autism. Their high-risk decision not to vaccinate endangers not only their children, but also those who can’t receive the vaccines, and even those of us who have had the vaccine a long time ago, and depend on herd immunity.

Regardless of the reason why parents choose not to vaccinate their children, it is important for the rest of us to realize they are making the choice for all of us, too. By not vaccinating their own children, they increase everyone else’s chance of getting a preventable childhood disease like measles, whooping cough or even polio. Just last week, a 25-day-old baby died of whooping cough, which, like measles, is also spreading unnecessarily in the United States due to the decrease in vaccine rates.

Just like the drunk driver who makes a socially irresponsible decision that can endanger not only his life, but also the lives of the other drivers and passengers on the road, parents who choose not to vaccinate their children put everyone else at risk.

We can each play a part in protecting children by making sure parents understand their responsibility to vaccinate their children and the potential consequences on all of society if they don’t.

Positive Parenting.

We often look for simple solutions when parenting, managing a career and trying to coordinate childcare. Throw deadly diseases in the mix and it can seem daunting. Blissfulmamas outlook is to remain positive when trying to “balance it all” but we are realistic in understanding that we can’t be positive at every moment, and all the time. We can however, make positive choices when parenting our children. I personally have made the choice to immunize my children and keep them home when they are sick to reduce the risk of infection for others. To me, its a no brainer.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: BLISSFULMAMAS

dsc_0013Blissfulmamas is inspired by living in the moment, embracing the chaos and enjoying the crazy wonderful ride of motherhood. As working professionals, we really do have it all! Come as you are and embrace it. Families are like snowflakes, each different and unique, no two the same. The antiquated idea of the perfect roadmap to raising a family, balancing a professional job, and everything else in and between is long overdue for a make over! Blissfulmamasis a networking community for working mamas with a positive outlook, looking to collaborate with each other on career advancements, job opportunities, managing and organizing family life, without forgetting about the long overdue personal “me” time. Our goal is to act as a positive outreach for working mamas and be a place where working mamas can collaborate & find resources, all available on the go!

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Read more about and from the author: BlissfulMama’s WiLab Profile

Boston Mom’s Blog!

We are proud and honored to announce that we will be contributing to the Boston Moms Blog, part of the City Moms Blog family!! The official launch date is February 18th, but in the meantime please “like” Boston Moms Blog on Facebook! We’re so excited to be part of this fabulous group of local moms and look forward to sharing more details as they come!

Thank you to everyone who has supported us and Blissfulmamas!
Much love,
Erin and Becky

MA Conference for Women: Why Hillary Clinton is the Most Influential Woman of Our Time.

Check out the release of this story via WiLab! ~Erin

After attending the MA Conference for Women in Boston last Thursday, December 4th, it took me some time to process what I had just experienced. In a sea of over 10,000 women, how do you decipher the takeaways?  For me it was easy. Hillary.

Photo via Getty Images at nypost.com

Photo via Getty Images at nypost.com

Amid the surface level discussions of leaning in, work-life balance, and how to become a super negotiator, the conference was riddled with key note speakers who had something important to say: Today we stand with women of all cultures, different professions, and we join together to celebrate our success.

The Former Secretary of State, Hillary Rodham Clinton joined the conference poised and ready to discuss current events. She touched upon the Brown Ferguson tragedy in addition to the Garner case, noting that “these are our sons, our brothers” and the most important thing that each of us can do is to try harder to see the world through our neighbor’s eyes. She was distinct in her positioning on the fact that weapons of war have no place on our streets, yet thoughtful in her words on how these events affect our lives, our children, our future.

…I know that a lot of hearts are breaking, and we’re asking ourselves aren’t these our sons and brothers?….We have allowed our criminal justice system to get out of balance…These are our streets, our children, our fellow Americans, and our grief…

When raising a boy, the crash-bang-boom of it all is silenced when you see a tragedy like this. Could this happen to my child when he grows older? How does his skin color protect or portray my child in a way that makes him dangerous? It’s a tough pill to swallow.

Hillary traversed into crediting our founding Massachusetts mothers, my personal favorite Abigail Adams, who was a pioneer for women’s rights. She quickly uncovered the raw truth in how the gender pay gap continues, the difficulty in balancing motherhood and work, and how women get the motherhood penalty, while men often get the pay bump. The ringing truth of these challenges faced by all women who remain focused on their career in addition to having children, is a sound reminder of the enormous work that lies ahead. Massachusetts is only the 3rd state in the country to require paid leave for personal or family member sick time.

…Paid leave is absolutely essential in the work world….We need to get paid leave provisions on every state ballot by 2016…

The thing I most appreciated was the honest dialog, her resonance in talking about the hard issues that women face today and the criticism we all receive for having these conversations. As women continue to have these conversations, we are enabled to grow with a resounding voice. The world needs more Hillary Clinton’s. We need women who have a voice, and offer their insight into important issues. The platform for these topics must be broached.  This is our opportunity to propel this movement into the 21st Century, and influence each other in a sense that we can experience the change first hand, rather than waiting for generations to come.

In my final notes on the keynote luncheon, I found the following quotes;

…Talent is universal. But opportunity is not….

…When women and girls are given opportunities, Nation’s prosper…

…The women of Massachusetts have changed history time and again and I believe they can do it still…

…There is a special place in hell for women who don’t help other women”… via Madeleine Albright

You can see Hillary’s speech from the 10th Annual MA Conference for Women here:

 

The Guide to Creating Your Own Self-Care Revolution

Blissfulmamas!

We are so excited for our dear friend Angie Andrews and her recent publication; The Guide to Creating Your Own Self-Care Revolution in the Huffington Post

Please check out her article here and tweet it to all of your friends! 🙂

Have a fantastic night,

Becky & Erin

The Guide to Creating Your Own Self-Care Revolution

Angie Andrews is a mama, wife, yogini, entrepreneur and a radical self-care revolutionary for women. Her mission spreads the word to women all over the world that they are enough and they are worthy of copious amounts of radical self-care. She supports women through private coaching, public speaking, and soon to be born destination retreats. Angie can be found at www.angieandrewsinspire.com, on Facebook and on Twitter and Instagram @AngieAndrewsInspire.

I am starting a revolution. In this revolution women know their innate and intrinsic value. In this new world the concept of caring for oneself first is not only acceptable, but embraced. I dream of the day when women see their daily self-care practice as a non-negotiable part of their routine. I live for the day when loving oneself deeply is not seen as selfish or arrogant, but necessary.

My call to action for any woman reading this: Stop running around and keeping busy to drown out the cry of your soul. Stop putting others needs ahead of your own. Stop caring for others at the expense of your health and your happiness. It doesn’t have to be this way. There is another way. It all begins with the decision to love yourself deeply.

Perhaps you are thinking, OK that sounds great, but how the hell do I do that!?! I am going to tell you what I have learned. In the not too distant past I was working way too many hours in a job that was sucking my soul. I was always on the run between commuting and chauffeuring kids to and from school and activities. I became more and more uneasy and resentful. I felt stuck. I felt overwhelmed. I was exhausted. But yet, I kept on going. I did this for years, until my heart and soul just couldn’t do it anymore.

I was at my chiropractor’s office one day and he could tell I was exhausted. He knows me well and is aware of my propensity to care for everyone but me. He said, simply, “Angie, where do you go for support and comfort”? That day, something clicked and I realized things had to change. I started reading books and blogs and all kinds of personal growth material. Eventually I went on a retreat that for me was a catalyst for change. The act of investing in myself and time spent really reconnecting with myself; kick started an insane period of transformation and growth.

I want to share with you a distilled version of what I have learned that has allowed me to really engage in radical self-care and fall in love with myself for the first time.

The mantra for my business is: Where Love, Gratitude and Connection create Miracles. So let’s break this whole thing down to actionable steps based on this.

Here is your guide to start a self-care revolution.

1. Love

• Love your heart. Listen to it intently. Speak to it. Ask it what it desires and needs. Then take action in the direction of what you hear.
• Make caring for yourself a priority. Shower yourself with love. Only by loving and caring for yourself deeply will you be able to fully give to others.
• Let go of old thoughts and ways of being that no longer serve you.

2. Connection

• Be still. Just be. Give up the doing all the time. Learn how to say no when something isn’t going to serve you. You’ll be amazed at what you might hear and what you might feel.
• Find your form of meditation. Meditation does not need to be sitting on a pillow chanting. Any activity that leaves you feeling connected to yourself and your higher power is meditative.
• Move your body! Walk, run, dance, hike, swim, do yoga. Do whatever sounds good to you. This will stimulate the production of hormones in your body that will leave you feeling amazing.
• Create a tribe of like-minded, supportive friends. Surround yourself with people who get you and will lift you up. If you current tribe is not serving you, consider cleaning house. Be kind. Be gentle, but do not allow those people who are bringing you down to remain in your tribe.
• Nurture you creative side. Paint, draw, write, decorate or garden. I could go on and on. Get out of your comfort zone and get creative!

3. Gratitude

• This is a BIG one. Cultivating gratitude in your life can be a game changer! Yogi Bhajan said, “An attitude of gratitude brings great things.”

• In the morning, evening or both, take some time to write down five to 10 things that you are grateful for that day. In the beginning you may find that your lists will be similar each day, but as you get into a gratitude groove, you will find there are so many things to be grateful for each day that you won’t be able to write them all down.
• Make your gratitude practice a ritual. Buy yourself a beautiful blank journal that inspires you. Make it a special time for you. You deserve it!

Radical self-care is a practice, meaning it needs to be done over and over again until it becomes part of your lifestyle. But here is the most important step to living a life of self-care and self-love, self-forgiveness. Please, be kind to yourself. Be patient. You will fall off the wagon. You will have days where you just can’t bring yourself to practice self-care and you will slip back to your former way of being. You will have days when you don’t really love yourself the way you feel you should. On those days, it is especially important, to practice kindness with yourself. Talk to yourself like you would a close friend or your child. I saw Danielle Laporte speak recently and she said, “Be fierce, but be flexible”. Be fierce in your desire and your practice of self-care. Fall madly in love with yourself and your life. But when you have one of those days where you just fall back into complacency, be flexible. Know that you can get right back at it the next day or the next week. You will do it because you deserve this. Love and joy are your birthright! So go out there. Start a revolution. I am SO excited to see what a difference it will make in the world.

You’re Invited! Our upcoming Featured Mama, Lizzy wants you to check out her Mommy Energy Group Coaching Session!!

“YOU’RE INVITED!!  Join Lizzy every month for a free-for-all Mommy Energy Group Coaching session. Her next session is TONIGHT at 9PM EST.  Want to learn more about Mommy Energy?  Come listen to Lizzy’s teleclass, “7 Reasons Why You Want More Mommy Energy” on November 7th at 9PM EST.  If you’d like to ignite your Mommy Energy book a Complementary Mommy Energy Coaching Session.”