Big Things

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Posted by peskypippi | Posted in Childrearing, Children, Connections, Emotions, Family, Life, Love, Motherhood, Mothering, Mothers and Daughters, Mothers and Sons | Posted on 21-11-2016

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It’s the little things in life that matter.

Whatever.

Around here, it’s the big things in life that matter…to me.

My husband. He is 6’3″ and his heart is equally as big. He is always up for a hike, buys me my favorite movies like Love Actually on Blu-Ray, and scrubs down the inside of the splattered microwave without me asking.

My oldest son. He is 6’4″ and tells me he loves me every time he walks out the door. At 17, he’s gone more than he’s home. School, work, friends, gym. So, I hear it a lot.

My daughter. She’s 5’9″, now taller than me. She is as fun as she is sweet. Kind as she is talented. Lovely as she is loving. All that and more.

My youngest son. He now reaches my chin, having grown three inches since summer. He is a joy to be around. The twinkle in his eyes indicates that he is up for an adventure. Or that he ate the last four Oreos.

My dog. At 115 lbs., he pulls me up the steep hills when we run together (whew!), takes up 3/4 of the bed when he stretches out, and is the best popcorn-catcher I know.

Big grocery bills. Big piles of laundry. Big smiles. Big laughs. Big hugs. Big love.

Big gratitude. Happy Thanksgiving!

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A photo posted by PeskyPippi (@peskypippi) on

Mud Girls

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Posted by peskypippi | Posted in Adolescence, Attitude, Celebrations, Childhood, Childrearing, Confidence, Connections, Encouragement, Exercise, Family, Life, Life Lessons, Metaphor, Motherhood, Mothering, Mothers and Daughters, Relationships | Posted on 13-09-2016

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I can’t think of a better way to kick off Mother’s Day weekend than to run a 5K Survivor Run with my daughter, navigating obstacles, slipping and sloshing through the mud, having a blast, and learning a thing or two about life lessons.

This race–complete with obstacles, mud, exertion, and fun–is a perfect metaphor for life.

You put yourself out there. You try your best. You face obstacles and overcome them. You find support. You laugh. You get dirty. You find your strength. You fall and you get back up. You learn independence. You are reminded that you can do it. You have fun. You are empowered.

What better lessons for a mother to bestow upon her young teenager?

It was not the medal at the end that made me so happy. It was the journey through the race, together. Through the ups and downs. (Up dirt hills and down into mud puddles!)

That Saturday, we were Mud Girls. In my heart, we are forever Mud Girls. Also known as Survivors.

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The Best in the World

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Posted by peskypippi | Posted in Childrearing, Children, Contest, Encouragement, Mothers and Daughters, Mothers and Sons, Sports | Posted on 19-08-2016

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I have been actively watching the Olympics each night. Actively, I say, because I yell on the sidelines sofalines. I cheer and yell loudly. My enthusiasm makes the swimmers stroke longer and the sprinters run faster.

YOU CAN DOOOOOO IT!

They can. They do. And they win.

My eleven-year-old had a track meet this spring, where all fifth graders from all five elementary schools in our town gathered and competed. It’s a ritual that’s been going on for decades. They perform all of the traditional track and field events. Except pole vaulting. Oh, and the discus is a frisbee. But whatever.

But the sprints? Sheer speed. It’s a nail-biter to see who the fastest fifth grader is in town.

My son competed in the 75-meter sprint. The gun went off and he flew. I couldn’t contain my cheering: GO! YOU’VE GOT THIS!

He went. And he got it. A blue ribbon. And a huge smile.

He is the best in the my world.

When it comes to sports, do we love our children more when they win? Or do we love that our children are healthy? Or do we love that our children are becoming independent and confident?

Healthy. Independent. Confident. As a mother, I want my children to be winners on the inside. But a blue ribbon from time to time doesn’t hurt. ūüôā

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If You Give a Girl a Knife

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Posted by peskypippi | Posted in Adolescence, Childrearing, Children's Books, Confidence, Cooking, Daughters, Encouragement, Food, Girls, Mothering, Mothers and Daughters, Teenager | Posted on 13-05-2016

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When my daughter was three, we gave her a mini kitchen with pots and pans and bins of plastic food. Pies! Peas! Corn! Sushi! Cupcakes! Fried Chicken!

She loved everything about food preparation and serving. She would “roast” a fake chicken, “bake” pies, and “chop” floppy carrots. For years, she would prep and serve us at her cafe. When she was older, she would write menus for us to order from. And she would expect payment.

Now at 13, her time spent in the kitchen has lessened and her cooking is infrequent. However, if you give that girl a knife, she’ll make a fruit plate in minutes. She chops vegetables like a Kitchen Knife Ninja.

On the sidelines at a recent soccer game, I was talking to some mothers about daughters and their lack of interest in cooking. I told my “knife story” about how my daughter is a pro with a knife.

One of the Moms looked at me like I was insane. You give her knives?? That’s scary!

Um. Pioneer women sliced open buffalo with knives.

It’s not like I handed my daughter a knife and ordered Chop Now! It began with safety skills. Duh. Don’t slice toward your hand. Watch those fingers.

Kitchen skills are about teaching confidence, self sufficiency, survival. Kitchen skills are life skills.

I mean, what would she do if she encountered pineapple?

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A photo posted by PeskyPippi (@peskypippi) on

Happy Mother’s Day

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Posted by peskypippi | Posted in Celebrations, Children, Love, Mother, Mothering, Mothers and Daughters, Mothers and Sons | Posted on 06-05-2016

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At a pool, on a mountain, at a beach, on a football field, in a kitchen, in a garage.

At a park, in a garden, at home, in a city, in the snow.

In the hospital, on a dock, on a boat, in a cave, in the forest.

Here or there, Happy Mother’s Day to mothers everywhere!

XO,
Pippi

A photo posted by PeskyPippi (@peskypippi) on

A photo posted by PeskyPippi (@peskypippi) on

A photo posted by PeskyPippi (@peskypippi) on

Love and Rocks

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Posted by peskypippi | Posted in Love, Mothers and Daughters | Posted on 13-02-2016

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I am loved.

Forget the heart boxes with chocolates by the pound. I have pounds and pounds of heart-shaped rocks that I have collected over the years.

My daughter finds them for me wherever she goes. These are my treasures.

Proof. Of. Love. All. Year. Long.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

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Teach a Girl to Bake Cookies and You Feed Her for a Lifetime

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Posted by peskypippi | Posted in Baking, Childrearing, Children, Cookies, Cooking, Kitchen, Life, Life Lessons, Mothers and Daughters, Parenting | Posted on 29-12-2015

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“Pippi makes the best cookies on Earth.” Everyone agreed. My soccer team agreed. My son agreed.

After years of baking and measuring and sampling and watching and learning, my daughter has learned the fine art of baking cookies.

Check out her gems!

The cookie-baking gene I acquired from my grandmothers has been passed down. This makes me happy.

"My Mom makes the best cookies on Earth."

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A photo posted by PeskyPippi (@peskypippi) on

A photo posted by PeskyPippi (@peskypippi) on

The Daredevil

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Posted by peskypippi | Posted in Adolescence, Daughters, Growing UP, Life, Mother, Mothering, Mothers and Daughters, Parenting | Posted on 01-12-2015

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My daughter is a daredevil.

At the fair, she rides the scariest rides.

When she grows up, she wants to work with lions and tigers and bears. Oh my!

One day we were talking about all the neat things you can do when you turn 18. Like voting, like getting a tattoo.¬†She said when she turns 18, the first thing she’s going to do is sky dive.

I can’t wait.

OMG. That's my daughter up there!

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Jaw-Dropping

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Posted by peskypippi | Posted in Childrearing, Daughters, Love, Mother, Mothering, Mothers and Daughters, Women | Posted on 15-10-2015

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Motherhood: I went from jaw-clenching to jaw-dropping.

When I gave birth to my daughter, I clenched my jaw so tight that I developed TMJ (Temporal Mandibular Joint) disorder. This required physical therapy. More about birth stories here.

I can still make my jaw pop on command, anytime. Poppity pop.

But the second I first saw my baby girl, my jaw dropped. It was love at first sight.

Besides my jaw popping, do you know what else that girl has given me?

A deeper¬†heart from loving her so much.¬†Laugh lines from all the smiling and laughing. Tears of joy when¬†I think about¬†our sweet memories and her milestones. Bursting pride when I see her so confident, smart, strong, and accomplished. Giddiness¬†when I greet¬†her after school.¬†Amazement when I see her shine, doing something she loves, trying something new.¬†Understanding, when we talk about problems. Sadness and compassion; whenever¬†her heart breaks, my heart breaks.¬†Forever friendship–some people say parents can’t befriend¬†their children.¬†(I think that’s crap.)

Happy 13th birthday to a young woman who has already given me oh-so much.

Happy birthday to my daughter!

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The Gift

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Posted by peskypippi | Posted in Love, Mothering, Mothers and Daughters | Posted on 28-05-2015

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Once upon a time, there was a girl who loved to swim.

One fine afternoon, she adjusted her goggles and dove deep into the ocean. She swam deeper and deeper and deeper, until she reached the bottom.

When she swam back to the surface, she opened her fist to reveal a gift. A heart-shaped rock. Which she proudly and lovingly presented to her mother.

She presented me with a heart rock.

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