Mother's Day. While I certainly hope someone is showering you with love and handmade scribbles on scrap paper (and maybe a few extra minutes of sleep), why not give yourself something lovely to celebrate? 

Here's a list of ten wonderful things you can do for you this mother's day:

1) Take photos with you in them. This article or this article or this one explains exactly how we feel. Children find a sense of belonging in looking through photos of themselves and their world. You are a huge part of their world, and having a photo together - even an imperfect snapshot - is so meaningful to them now - and for years to come. Get in the photo, you'll be glad you did.

2) Take a hike. Get out in nature and accomplish something new, or just sit and be: go early and watch the sunset at the top of a mountain; splash in a river; sit on a blanket and rest while the kiddos collect flowers and sticks and rocks. Prepare a head and pick a spot where you can just relax and not stress, and then do it! 

3) Stay up late and watch the stars. There is nothing as calming as nature - and few things quite as breathtaking as a sky full of stars. If you can't see them where you live, consider a little trip out. It may be that open skies are close enough for a short pre-bedtime drive.

4) Fly a kite. If the wind is good, the rewards are even better. Plus, you can get the kids singing "Let's Go Fly a Kite," and you might just find yourself feeling a little Mary Poppins spring in your step.

5) Throw a dance party. Don't invite the kids. Just turn on your favorite tunes and start dancing around the house.  They'll join you. Or at least they'll laugh. Either way, it's a win and everyone will be smiling.

6) Tell a story. There's no better way to celebrate you then to wow your kiddos with stories of your life and passions. Maybe it's their birth stories, maybe your wedding or when you met your partner for the first time. Maybe it's an adventure big or small, or a favorite childhood memory. Just don't expect them to let you stop at one.

7) Make some ice cream. However you roll (vegan, veg, dairy free, WAPF, or Frappyhour) you can Pinterest your way to a great frozen desert recipe that will have everyone singing your praises and asking for more. Our current favorite? Pineapple Ginger - we just make the smoothie a bit thicker and call it ice cream ;) That works around here, mostly because it's so good - and leaves you feeling great too!

8) Build something impressive. Define impressive? Well, my audience (and co-workers) are 5 and 2... so, I'm thinking of dragging a bunch of our empty boxes out on to the yard and piecing together a top notch box-fort-slash-tunnel to beat all box-fort-slash-tunnels. If you're fresh out of three dozen boxes, you might try a blanket fort, a marshmallow and toothpick bridge, or a laundry pile big enough to dive into. (What, you already have that? You over achiever!) Added bonus, the kids will get so into it, that you can soon leave them to it and take a moment to read that new magazine that came in January.

9) Let them butter you up. Tell your kids what you do for them. Ask them to help list stuff too. You might be surprised at what they think up! For example, Thea always remembers to mention that I help clean up poop. Apparently I am pretty darn good at that. Then tell them how you want thanked! "I love it when you thank me by giving me hugs!" or "It's so special to me when you tell me 'thank you.'" It's the little things, Momma. They add up. So encourage them to thank you (and not just on Mother's Day!)

10) Lead the rebellion. Strike up a song. Stand on your head. Do yoga on the sidewalk. Eat breakfast for dinner. Yell into the wind. Shout ECHO in the parking garage. Turn up the music. Whisper softly. Start a pretend game. Sit in the closet with all the glowsticks you forgot to bring out on the 4th of July (fyi: they barely work anymore anyway, so just crack them all.) Chew some mint lifesavers while you're in there and watch the sparks. Surprise your kids. Make them laugh. 

You might just surprise yourself too. Sometimes, we just need to remember that we're doin' good.

Happy Mother's Day!

- Jess

Tags: Parenting