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How a Bucket List Eliminated My Mom Guilt

June 7th, 2017 | No Comments | Posted in Encouragement
Last summer, I’m going to be honest – I dealt with a lot of working mom guilt and jealousy. Guilt that I was schlepping my kids from camp to camp because my husband and I needed to work. Jealousy when I would see status updates of moms enjoying the pool with their kids in the middle of the work day.

Of course, these feelings were completely self-induced. My kids had a great summer and didn’t seem to resent my 9-5.

Only I did.

With summer break looming (my kids only have 11 school days left, but who’s counting), I have made a commitment that those feelings are not allowed to rise up this year.

How am I going to combat them?

A summer bucket list.

This week we wrote ours out on a piece of poster board. It has a glitter boarder because glitter makes all things better. On that glittery stock, we listed all the big and little activities the kids want to do this summer.




The drive-in

The children’s museum

In total, we came up with 32 things we want to do together.

When we finished it, I said to my kids, “Are we going to have a good summer?”

My nearly 6-year-old daughter Adeline joyfully said, “No, we are going to have a GREAT summer!”

As I read over the list, I was reminded that the idea of what a perfect summer looks like was something I had created in my head and did not align with my kids’ ideas of a perfect summer. Their desires are simple. A family day at the zoo. A water balloon fight. A canoe ride on the river near our home. These are things we absolutely can and will do – even with me having a traditional day job.

It will be a GREAT summer.

If you have ever looked at another mom’s Instagram or Facebook feed in the summertime and thought, I wish that was my summer, I want to encourage you to change your thinking this year. Eliminate the mom guilt and jealousy.

It isn’t about what time of day you go to the pool, it’s about getting in the water when you go.

It isn’t about flying to another country, it’s about doing what makes sense for your family – even if that means a simple drive on the country roads near your home.

It isn’t about spending a lot of money, it’s about being together.

20 years from now we will look back on these summer months and not remember the stress of juggling camps and work, we’ll remember the splashes at the pool and the nights spent roasting marshmallows with neighbors.

Pay attention now to the moments that make summer great for your family.

And maybe, make a summer bucket list.

CHRI Summer Splash at Camp IAWAH

June 7th, 2017 | No Comments | Posted in Events
Click below to learn more!

The Perfect 3-Minute Mug Brownie

June 7th, 2017 | No Comments | Posted in Lifestyle
If you need a fabulous mug brownie recipe done fast {like 3 minutes fast!} you must try friend Claudia’s Perfect recipe. It is so delicious and will fill your late night chocolate cravings.

Yield: 1 servings

Prep Time:

Cook Time:

Total Time:


  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • pinch of salt
  • splash of vanilla
  • splash of coffee extract
  • sweetened whipped cream {optional}


  1. In a small bowl {or mug} stir flour, sugar and cocoa powder together so everything is evenly dispersed. Add in wet ingredients and stir to create batter. Spray mug with nonstick cooking spray and pour batter in. Microwave 1-1 1/2 minutes until cake if just baked. Turn out of mug onto a plate and top with whipped cream.

10 Things Your Teen Loves to Hear

June 7th, 2017 | 1 Comment | Posted in Advice and Tips
Some parents might grit their teeth and bemoan the drama of the adolescent years, but I can’t think of anything more fun than hanging out with teens. I liken the teen years to a roller coaster. Once you’re on it, there’s no getting off until the ride’s over, so you might as well stay positive and enjoy it. After all, having teens at home probably means you can have kitchen karaoke parties, or someone who pretends your home is an Indian takeout restaurant when he answers the phone.

Of course surging hormones and adolescent angst can sometimes cause your teen to explode. He might know how to push your buttons better than anyone else, but positive communication that affirms your teen can improve your relationship and help lessen conflict.

Here are 10 things our teens love and need to hear from us:

Photo credit: ©Thinkstock/zdenkam

Rumana Monzur, blinded by husband, graduates from law school in Canada

June 7th, 2017 | No Comments | Posted in Good News Story

Rumana, 38, has come a long way since her then-husband savagely attacked her and gouged out her eyes, permanently blinding her in 2011, said Catherine Dauvergne, dean of the school.

It took two years to recover from the brutality, and then she started studying law at UBC in Vancouver, Canada.

On Wednesday, she graduated from the Peter A Allard School of Law.

When Rumana was guided to the podium to give a speech to fellow graduates, a hush fell over the crowd of more than 1,000 people gathered at the Chan Shun Concert Hall, according to the CBC News.

“As a result of this horrendous attack, and life-threatening attack, I became blind. I never saw the world again,” Rumana told the assembly. Her 11-year-old daughter was also present at the graduation ceremony.

Rumana, however, spared the audience the graphic details of her husband’s attack which was witnessed by her little daughter six years ago.

“Many people helped me after the attack but UBC gave me direction when I was lost,” she said in her speech. “It would not be possible for me to get through law school without the support of my UBC family.”

One person, Rumana thanked, in particular, was Catherine Dauvergne, dean of the law school.

“It was exciting this morning. I cried,” the dean said after the ceremony as she praised Rumana.

“She’s unique, she’s forged her own path forward, and I can’t think of another person who could’ve done it in the same way.”

Outside the concert hall, Rumana embraced the students she had come to know over the course of the programme.

Many of her classmates dedicated their time to guide her to class or help her find her professors’ offices.

The attack on Rumana came after her husband grew enraged because she had told him she would be returning to Canada to continue her education. At the time, she was taking a master’s at the University of British Columbia.

Rumana made international headlines after she spoke about the attack from her hospital bed in Dhaka.

When she returned to Canada with her daughter, she learned her husband Syed Hasan Sumon had been arrested and had died of a ‘heart attack’ while awaiting trial.