from PokemonGo to the Holocaust to living in tents

When it comes to raising our children, we all have goals along with our wishes and hopes and dreams for our children. Mine is very much influenced by my upbringing and past, as well as current relationships with some family members.

To my family who follows my blog, yes, this part might be about you…then again, you might be wrong in assuming so.

As a mother, one of the biggest things I wanted to nurture in my five was to think for themselves…forge their own opinions…express those thoughts and opinions. I wanted them all to know that their thoughts are their own and are definitely okay, in fact, they are perfect because they are theirs. I also wanted them to understand that they are well within their right as a thinking person to express what they are thinking…even if it disagreed with someone else’s…even if it was Mom or Dad’s. Especially if they disagreed with Mom or Dad. Of course there was the proviso that they must be respectful and kind because it’s Mom or Dad, or their friends, or their teachers, or any other thinking human being because I was also trying to instill in them the importance of, well, The Golden Rule. Be kind. Be respectful. Anyone who truly knows me would likely understand why this was important for me to have for my children. Yes, yes, yes, this has made my parenting adventure rather challenging because my five are fierce and very much strong-willed; kind of like their Mom and Dad.

Yes, Hollie, we were cursed as children too.

But, in spite of the years of challenges, I like that my five are fierce and I like that they can think for themselves and can and do, almost all the time, express their thoughts and their opinions.

In the news recently was the request for people to stop playing PokemonGo in The Holocaust Museum. “Playing the game is not appropriate in the museum, which is a memorial to the victims of Nazism,” Andrew Hollinger, the museum’s communications director, told The Post. “We are trying to find out if we can get the museum excluded from the game.”

What’s The Holocaust, Mom?

And so began a conversation with my 14 year old about what The Holocaust is and what happened to more than 6 million people just because of their religion or ethnicity or sexual orientation at that time and he interrupts me drawing a comparison to a certain candidate. His thoughts. His thoughts based on what he sees and hears and reads all around him. His thoughts expressed. I shared his thoughts (no names mentioned) with friends and family on Facebook just like that because, wow, that. My son’s thoughts. Thus began commentary and conversation, as we often do on Facebook and other social media platforms; which, in my opinion, is more than okay. Agree, disagree, more than okay. Just be kind…on my personal space because we absolutely, positively can agree to disagree on pretty much anything as long as we are at the very least respectful. Don’t believe me? Ask my darling husband. Well, except that he believes Pepsi to be a superior soft drink over Coke. Oh my darling husband!

Take note here, don’t blast my Facebook wall telling me Coke is not better because it is. Okay, fine, you can. Just be kind. I might not agree with you but that doesn’t mean that I have been decieved or tooled by the media because, I promise you, I am absolutely smarter than that…so are my Fierce Five. We don’t have to agree. We both can look at one another’s opinions on just about anything and think to ourself, what the actual fuck?…I do it literally ALL THE TIME looking at some postings of some family and friends on Facebook and then I move on because BABIES! KITTENS! AMAZING VACATION PHOTOS! FUNNY VIDEOS! And I move on because we don’t HAVE to feel the same way about current events or who we believe will make America great again. And yes, this is a beautiful thing for me and for the beauty of America where we can still think freely!...Isn’t that ironic?


My dear blogging friend (and fellow awesome grandparent), Susan, asked about the chalkboard bubble prop used at Holly and Ben’s baby shower. It is a fun prop to help break the ice at an event such as that, to get people to interact more with the camera rather than just striking a cheesy pose or, worse, be a part of a really bad, unflattering shot because you have a stick up your butt and forgot to remove said stick before you arrived at the event where many pictures will be taken.

No, I wouldn’t be talking about anyone attending the kids’ shower…certainly not certain in-laws of my daughter’s! But if I were talking about certain in-laws I would have to wonder why did you even bother to show up and be all pissy and rude…in my house?

But back to the prop. It is a great prop. Best photography-related purchase I made this year. I wish my best photography-related purchase I made this year was an amazing Canon Rebel T3i.

Alas, no.

But the chalkboard speech bubble is the best and I found it at Photojojo.

As promised, it does give confidence to the meek, liven up even the dullest of shots and really does make your photos talk.

Oh heck! It’s fun!

Unless your subjects are in a pissy, rude mood.

For the more crafty types, it can be made with your own two hands all easy-peasy like.

Here are some other great photo props ideas that will definitely make your portrait taking fun and more creative. When people compliment you on your clever, creativity just smile demurely and say thank you…then snap away!


Having had the privilege of seeing countless babies be born over the last two decades, I have also been privy to the good, the bad and the “WHAT?!” of names for these beautiful babies. This experience only serves to affirm my belief that there needs to be a name police force. Of course I am more than willing to step up and take this job. I’m a giver that way. The way I see it is you just never know what someone will think of someone with an unfortunate name like Get A. Grip when they encounter them.

Who would name their precious child a name like that really?

Apparently Mr. & Mrs. Grip would.

In all seriousness, here on MY blog I do have a comment policy.

  • You can say what you like.
  • You certainly don’t have to agree with me.
  • You do have to be respectful because what you put out there on the internet is very easily traced right back to you (even when you cleverly think that you are anonymous)…especially when you have a name like Get A. Grip.

done for the day

It’s been that kind of day!

Anyone who follows me on Facebook might have caught the drama, as my friend Diane called it, on my Facebook page. It serves me right! I deserved it! I mean what was I thinking to actually post a recent quote from the Rev. Billy Graham after he met with and prayed together with President Obama?

As we approach the National Day of Prayer on May 6, I want to encourage Christians everywhere to pray for our president, and for all those in positions of authority, and especially for the men and women serving in our military.

Graham has met with and prayed with now 12 consecutive presidents dating back to President Harry S. Truman and as always, walked the talk of a man after God’s own heart keeping his political views to himself and focusing instead on spiritual matters during his visit. I found the news of the meeting inspiring and historical considering the possibility that this might be the last US president to meet with Graham. And feeling inspired and hoping to perhaps unite some of my friends after seeing a hateful joke circulate on Facebook I shared Graham’s quote with my Facebook friends. I respect that my friends have opposing political views but why couldn’t we united on one thin g, Graham’s call to us all to pray for our leaders and our troops.

I know…what was I thinking!

I was thinking that my friends could see that this was not a political statement but rather a call to prayer. I was thinking that my friends could put aside their own political agendas and righteous I’m-right-and-you-are-wrong-stupid-and-clearly-going-to-hell way of thinking and just focus on this simple act.

It started out nice enough. Then one “friend” just had to leave a snarky comment that waved his dripping tea bag all over the idea that we should/could pray for those who serve our country. What followed was childish, churlish, ridiculous and completely disrespectful.

Um, thanks friends. Truly. Thank you! Your political street fight is now deleted and if you can’t take it elsewhere I’ll delete you too. Don’t like it? I don’t care. Delete me. I don’t care. I am disgusted, disappointed and done, done for the day.

come out, come out, wherever you are…

By way of one of my blogging idols, Kelly, it has come to my attention that we are in the midst of (Inter)National Delurking Week here in the Land of Blogs. So in my very best Glinda the Good Witch of the North voice I am calling:

Come out, come out wherever you are…

Come out and say hello. Where are you from? What brought you here to the Big Top?