Amazon Fulfillment Tour

Amazon Tour


Are you an Amazon fan? Does your front door seem naked if it’s missing one of those iconic brown packages? 

If you love everything about the famous smile logo and enjoy learning how things are ordered, processed, packaged and shipped, you should go on the Amazon tour! It’s a FREE 60-minute interactive, guided walking tour at the Amazon Fulfillment Center right here in Chattanooga – known as CHA1! 

History Tours are Hidden in Ghost Tours


My husband and I figured out an easy and super fun way to get our kids interested in history and I’m going to let you in on our secret. History tours are hiding inside ghost tours. 

Unisex Names (or Hijacked Names Taken Over by Girls?)

Surprised boy


Who comes to mind when you hear the name Alex? Taylor Swift or Taylor Lautner? What about the name Carson? Cameron? Morgan or Reese? What about names like Peyton? Dylan, Riley or Jordan? Are they unisex names or names that you think are predominately female? Do you think of Drew Barrymoreor Drew Brees? Blake Shelton or Blake Lively? Consider this: Blake Lively named her daughter, 

7 Ways to Rebel Against Earth Day (and be a Bad Role Model)

Multi colored recycling bins

What’s the point of Earth Day and doing “good” for the earth? Earth Day represents universal support for the environment, its protection and a reminder to care for the ground and air and water we use. Be eco-friendly, cohabitate responsibly or some nonsense. Yawn. It’s not like I’m going to use this ecosystem for longer than 100 years anyway. Earth was here before I arrived and it’ll be here after I’m gone. 

Family Laughter Ever After

Mom laughing with young kids

 Our family four-pack is a happy bunch. We laugh early and often. We are a cheerful and jovial people. We sometimes get asked “What makes your family different? You seem to get along with your teenagers when so many parents struggle to connect with theirs. What’s your secret?” To which my husband replies, “I don’t know any of these people but they won’t leave.” And so it goes. (Har-har.) 

Doctor’s Orders: Take One Vacation Without Your Family

Doctor holding patients hand

Last summer, my sisters began planning the first ever vacation with just the three of us sans husbands and kids. It was to be an exciting sister adventure — leaving our worries and cares behind and traveling to the Bahamas in February for what my middle sister coined #SistersCruise2019

We’d never taken a trip together before so this was really a trip of a lifetime.

Teens, Tech Boundaries

Girls with cellphones on a bench

Parents and teenagers debate many issues but technology and social media usage is one of the hottest, hot buttons I’ve discussed with my parenting friends. The time spent on phones, tablets and computers is overloaded with conflict and many differences of opinions. Social media usage and even how much time parents themselves spend scrolling and posting affect our kids and demonstrate what we value as important. 

Christmas Memories Your Kids Will Miss (and the Ones They Won’t)


So far, I’ve spent 16 Christmases with my children. I wish I would’ve known what they’d miss and wouldn’t miss about the holidays because all through those years, I wore myself out playing Santa trying to make it magical and special for them.

Have You Heard What Your Daughter’s Teen Friend Said…


My teen daughter does not confide in me every single thought she has, but she did tell me something you should know. We’re parents and mom-bonding, and if you have a tween/teen daughter, you better pull up a chair while I get a pot of coffee going.

Parenting Style: Am I Cautious or Just a Cynic?


 As a mom of two teenagers, I can’t tell if I am protecting them or if I’m polluting their own valuable life experiences. Am I emphasizing caution and teaching them discerning skills or am I just too cynical? I think most parents instinctively guard their children against obvious dangers, but when are we using our own experiences to color our kids’ view of the world? 

Couple’s Dermatologist Appointments Are a Thing Now


 It was raining hard on a Thursday afternoon when we stepped into the dermatologist office. I shook off our umbrella and left it by the front door next to a dry one that must have been forgotten. As my husband took my raincoat, I walked towards the reception desk to check in for our couple’s appointment.  After signing us in, I sat next to my husband and smiled an exaggerated, animated grin, “Are you ready for this?” He rolled his eyes and looked back at an email on his phone, “No.” 

When Parenting Ideas Change (but Strong Opinions Remain)


I had so many parenting ideas before I actually became a mother. Bet you did, too. The word NO seems a lot easier to say when you have imaginary children. When was the last time you caught yourself doing something EXACTLY like your parents did or allowed that one thing you swore you never would? I shake my head and laugh when I think about my inexperienced, pre-parent self. All the times I firmly said, “I’ll never allow…” or my defiant, “When I have kids they won’t…” Riiiiiiiiiiiight. So. Funny. 

Caring for Tricycles to Wheelchairs :: Moms Caught in the Middle


 I watched my friend’s profile as she spoke. The subtle way she bowed her head. Her nearly translucent eyelashes blinking away the afternoon sunlight. Her hands silently wrapping and unwrapping a Kleenex.

Comforting and caring for a friend was the easiest thing in the world for Lena. I was moved by her voice, the words she communicated to me and her body language. 

The Lasts are About You — the Firsts are About Your Kids


 When did we switch from acknowledging our child’s firsts, to focusing on their lasts? At what point did we stop lining their baby book with their first words, first bike ride, first sleepover and move to the last of everything? Last bottle, last night in the crib, last day of elementary school.

It’s almost as if we’re making ourselves sad on purpose.

Parent Gender Roles Aren’t What They Used To Be…and I’m Glad!


Parenting roles aren’t gender specific anymore. Nowadays, it seems that the majority of parents believe that “teamwork makes the dream work.” Responsibilities that once were handled by one parent or the other, now have a blended, all-hands-on-deck approach. 

In our home, we are a community of doers. If a chore needs doing, we just do it instead of waiting for the parent that normally handles the task.

Quiet Children in a Noisy World – Surviving Sound Stimulation


When the kids were around six and eight, we thought they would be old enough to not only enjoy but also remember a Disney Cruise family vacation. 

They remember it, but not for the reasons you’d think. That one magical trip was a defining moment for me as a mother. It is THE vacation I discovered something hidden in their budding personalities. As a parent, you don’t see differences in your children until someone else reveals it.