life events

When Commencement Commences: Celebrating the Graduate

This month both of my children will be graduating–one from elementary school and one from middle school–and entering a new phase. It’s an exciting time that comes with anticipation, reflection and even a bit of sadness.
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April Roller Coaster Recap – 6 A-Ha Moments

It’s hard to believe it’s practically May and I haven’t written a post in almost a month. April was a bit of a roller coaster for me–emotions and decisions, new opportunities and (my personal favorite) change. Any and all of this could reasonably account for my loss of time and lack of word count–but if I’m being totally honest, there was also some recreational time packed in there for relaxing and enjoying a week off with my family (more on that later).

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Forget Resolutions, I’m Setting 2014 New Years Goals

20140102-001215.jpgResolutions are so overrated. They are fraught with emotional booby-traps begging to be broken. If I’m being fair and totally honest, some have worked out well for me–this blog was part of a resolution a couple years ago…well, actually it was the sibling of this blog, but that’s a whole other story–but most resolutions don’t end as well intentioned as they began, which defeats the whole point of a resolution.

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Non-Couple Engagement Gift Ideas (Let Me Explain)

20130421-171206.jpgI’m seeing a friend today, and since we last were face-to-face, she’s become engaged. Now, what you also need to know is that her engagement was no surprise. Every time she’s even spoken of this guy, she simply lights up and the few times I’ve seen them together, impulsively and without warning, the phrase “meant to be” invades my mind space–this coming from a slightly-jaded, often guarded, once divorced (albeit now remarried), New Yorker.

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Looking Back: Birthday Celebrations For My Son

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Spring is almost here and in my house, that means it’s almost time for a birthday party…for a little boy–my youngest, no less. Every year he gets excited about six weeks beforehand and starts dropping not-very-subtle hints about what he wants for his birthday, and where he wants his party. This year he is turning the big 1-0 and he’s all about computers and baseball–if you can’t catch it or code it, it’s impossible to get much of his attention for very long. He wants a robotics and game design party–yes, this exists–but maybe because it’s a landmark year (ten feels special and monumental to me) this got me thinking about all the different parties we’ve had over the years (don’t worry, I’ve omitted any duplications).

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Gifts That Encourage Courage

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Arsen Kurbanov
“David and Goliath”
152×152 cm, oil on canvas

We all know those four-letter-words that shouldn’t be said, at least not within earshot of our kids, parents, grandparents, in-laws, clergy, teachers… you get my drift. In my experience, the most destructive word of them all isn’t one the aforementioned list at all. Simply said, it’s fear. Fear is crippling, it’s blinding, it makes you believe things that aren’t real and question things that are true. But cheer up, it’s not all doom and gloom.

What is brilliant and not-so-bad about fear is that the opposite doesn’t have to the the absence of it–courage by it’s nature usually means still being afraid, but acting IN SPITE OF IT. So anyone can have courage. It’s an equal opportunity state-of-being that’s completely opt-in. Such great news, right?!? That said, it wouldn’t be Gifting Whisperer without a list so here are gifts that encourage courage and acknowledge when someone you love is finding the fight in spite of fill-in-the-blank. We’ve all been/are/will be there sometime.

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Gifts To Celebrate A New Job

20120928-004753.jpgWe often say things like “it’s only a job” but try saying that to someone who just scored a new one or is the recent recipient of a well-deserved promotion. So before that pink cloud dissipates, here are some ideas to show your upwardly-mobile recipient just how proud you are.

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Celebration Ideas For Entering Womanhood

So it’s been a while since my last post, I know. But this one is a doosey I can assure you and may explain my absence in part… “Entering Womanhood” means different things to different people and in different cultures and I will spare you the gory details of what it means in mine but suffice it to say it’s one to be celebrated. I meant to write this earlier in the weekend but I kept crying every time I started.

However this moment is “checked off”–as a social occasion, a rite of passage, or a biological one–it’s bound to be emotional and one you don’t want to forget. So remember the day, month and year and do something special together. The idea is to do something experiential, open the lines of communication and begin a new dialogue that hopefully will continue as she–and you–embark on this new period (pardon the pun) of her life together. Most importantly she will come away knowing she can come to you and that you’re there for her no matter what. As my husband and I say to each other: All in, as is. In my experience, that’s what love is, any way you slice it.

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