Moms Play Many Roles – And Make Great Employees Because Of It

Getting Real With Tiana Green

Moms make great employees. As natural multi-taskers, we can get a lot done in a small amount of time. We are reliable and can remain focused on the task, getting things accomplished quickly and efficiently amidst complete chaos.

Moms are used to juggling many different jobs and playing many roles. We work full time, part time, in the house, out of the house, do laundry and dishes, provide taxi service and house cleaning, provide medical care, cut hair, and do just about anything else that comes our way (often without too much complaining)!

Honestly, there were definitely times when I went to work and it was actually a relief! My “real” job was much less stressful than the jobs that I had to do at home!

It is kind of ironic, really, when I was working full time and really had to stay on top of things, it almost seemed easier to be organized and I was able to accomplish a lot!

It is important to find a balance between work and motherhood, while still squeezing in some time to be a woman. For some women it is important to have a job outside of the work at home with the house and kids. For others, it is just as important to be able to be home and focus solely on the family and children.

What is most important is figuring out the best balance for you. Each woman is different and there are many options available. As women, we need to understand that the definition of that balance is different for each woman, and support each other’s choices rather than judge them.

We need to be supportive of each other, regardless of what that balance means to each individual. That is part of what is so awesome about our lives as moms and women: we have the power to choose and make the best decision to fit our own families and lives.

Favorite Things from Heart to Toes

Getting Real With Tiana Green

As I was beginning to compile my list of favorite things, I realized that I really have a lot of favorites!

One of my very favorite things is Facebook! I am from Idaho, live in Utah, and have family as far away as my sister, Shadra in New York. Facebook has allowed us to keep in touch and still be a big part of each other’s lives. I love being able to share everything from photos to the little every day happenings in our lives. Facebook allows us to keep in touch in our own respective time zones at our own convenience!

Another of my favorite things is Diet Pepsi. There is nothing more refreshing than a crisp, cold Diet Pepsi to quench my thirst. It just completes my meals (even breakfast occasionally). The extra boost from the caffeine is a plus too!

Something that I truly can’t live without is my Android phone! I am a recent Blackberry convert over to the amazing Droid world and have been amazed at the capabilities and all the apps that can do everything from scan a product and tell you where to find the best price, to tracking my daily workout and calories burned. I have always been completely dependent on my cell phone, regardless of the type, but the Android offers a whole new world of possibilities. I also love the combination of two of my favorites. I love being able to take a picture with my phone and upload it directly to Facebook!

One of my favorite things to indulge in is a good pedicure. I love having soft, smooth feet and pretty painted toes. The massage chairs are a bonus too. I usually get a pedicure with a girlfriend so we have time to catch up, relax, and enjoy each other’s company!

The End?

By Tiana Green

Well, here it is Sunday, May 22, 2011. The world did not end as predicted.

Seriously??

The same guy that made this ridiculous prediction also made the prediction that the world would end all the way back in 1994. I don’t think that people were any more worried in 2011 than they were in 1994. It really is just craziness! I am probably the farthest thing from an expert on the bible, but from the little that I do know, this man’s crazy prediction had no effect on how I spent my Saturday.

What was really interesting to me, however, was how all of this talk of the world coming to an end affected our children. Two of our children were at friend’s houses on Friday and we got calls from them both asking if everything was going to be ok. With a little reassurance we set their worried minds at ease, but it made me realize how much our kids really pay attention to what is going on in the news.

It also made me realize how important it is to instill a sense of faith in our children. Having grown up myself with no spiritual direction in my life, I have begun to realize how much I want to give that gift to my children. Regardless of your religious beliefs or what you choose to teach your children, the importance of having some sort of base or belief system continues to show an importance in my life. This could be as simple as moral and ethical standards that you teach your children to uphold, or it could be sharing a specific religion with your children. For us, it has meant exploring faith and spirituality as a family. It is a new journey for us but one that I am thankful to be on together with my husband and children.

The Oprah Winfrey Show

I must admit that I feel a very real and true sense of depression and sadness as everyone’s friend, mentor, and teacher Oprah, comes to the end of her 25 year legacy with The Oprah Show. For those of you that have been regular and faithful viewers, I am sure that you understand what I am talking about. For as long as I can remember I have watched Oprah. I used to watch Oprah with my mom just as my girls have watched it with me. I have laughed. I have cried. I have learned so much over the years from the various subject matter that she has had on her show. She has talked about nearly everything! She has interviewed all the big movies stars and covered life changing events that have happened throughout our world. A lot of us “grew up” with Oprah and the huge influence she has had on our lives. Honestly, I can’t imagine what life will be without her! The countdown is on and there are just a handful of episodes left.

I have never been so affected by a celebrity or movie star personality. But I think that is why Oprah has been able to reach so many people in so many ways. She is just so real. Oprah has the gift of being able to speak in a way that makes you feel so connected to her. We have all been able to identify and relate to the various guests she has had on her show as well as Oprah herself. She has done so many amazing things that have made the world a better place.

So thank you to Oprah Winfrey for being such an invaluable model and inspiration to so many people throughout the world. Your show will be missed tremendously, but I think we can all look forward to everything that will undoubtedly come in the future! Tom Hanks said it very well. It is like our favorite neighbor that has always lived just down the street is moving out of the neighborhood. We love you Oprah!

Guilty Pleasures

Guilty pleasures. I guess we all have a guilty pleasure or two. A guilty pleasure can be anything from taking the time to get a manicure or pedicure, to curling up with a good book in the afternoon and ignoring the mountain of laundry, to that little pint of ice cream hidden from sight of the rest of the family. It could even be taking time out of your day to read your favorite blog! Regardless of what defines your own guilty pleasure, it is just that little thing that makes life a little sweeter; a quick escape from your reality. I can admit it. I have a few guilty pleasures of my own. I love getting a pedicure. There is just something about sitting in that massage chair being pampered, and coming out with soft feet and cute toes!

My latest guilty pleasure (if it hasn’t actually crossed the line to obsession) is watching American Idol. I look forward to it every Wednesday night to watch the performances, and every Thursday to find out who will be voted off. I don’t know if anyone else out there has been following the show this season but there is so much amazing talent!!! It has actually become quite a family event in our house. We record the show so we can fast forward through the ads and I think the kids actually look forward to it just as much as I do. Guilty pleasure or not, it has brought our family close together those two nights of the week. We all have our favorites and the competition can get pretty intense but it is a time that we all look forward to every week. I know we all love the show but I think we love the time that we spend together at least as much if not more.

We all need to have things to look forward to. There is so much worry and stress in our lives it is important to find the little things that give us that reprieve. Sometimes it is the little things that mean everything and that help us make it to the next day. If you don’t already have a guilty pleasure then finding one should be at the top of your list of priorities!

Driving Safely

Safety is something that we often talk about with our children. We tell them not to talk to strangers and look both ways before crossing the street. I have always tried to be a good example for my children and show them that I do the things myself, that I ask of them. As time goes on and things change in the world, so do the things that we have to teach our children about especially with regard to being safe.

As unbelievable as it may be to our children, we did not have telephones with us 24 hours a day, 7 days a week growing up. Our parents did not have to talk to us about the dangers of operating a motor vehicle and using the phone, or more importantly texting while driving. I am quickly approaching the time that I will have a teenager in the house anxiously awaiting to take the step into the dangerous world of being able to drive. Ok, so she has already begun the countdown but I am just not there yet!

With this idea soon to become a reality in our house I have realized that I must set the correct example for her now. We have all answered the text or answered the phone while driving. What we have to remember is that it can happen in that split second. Maybe not the first time or the second time but the point is that we never know. Texting and driving is nothing short of deadly. What message would I be sending to her if I was telling her not to use the phone and text while driving if I were doing it myself?

There are a lot of messages, movements, and public service announcements that talk about not texting while driving. But just like so many other lessons in life our children learn what they see. As much as we may doubt it at times our children learn the majority of life’s lessons from their parents and watching what they do and say. This is one lesson that I have committed to leading by example for my children. NO TEXTING WHILE DRIVING. Our lives and the lives of those around us depend on it!

Friendship

Friends are important in everyone’s life but I think it is especially important for women to have friends to help put things that happen in our lives in perspective. We need to feel connected and have someone to commiserate with about life. Talking with close friends has always helped me work through various different stages in my life. I have friends that have been through so many things with me, from divorce and becoming a single mom, to entering the dating world that I had never previously experienced prior to my marriage at such a young age. Friends truly make the world a better place.

I don’t believe that I ever took my friends for granted, but when I moved to another state I realized the important role that they have always played in my life. Relocating my entire life has brought about so many changes. Almost all of them being amazing and great, but changes just the same. The one draw-back has been leaving my friends and everything I knew as my life. I have met a few great friends here as well but it is not easy to build new friendships after being in the same place for so many years. I had friends at work, in my neighborhood, and I rarely went somewhere that I didn’t see someone that I knew. There was always someone ready to go shopping or out to lunch. So many friends and so little time!

Regardless of gender, age, or location, developing and maintaining solid friendships is important to our health and well-being. Having good friends, as we all probably know from experience, helps lower stress levels and promotes overall good health. It may not always be easy to forge new friendships but it is a necessity to achieve the happiness and sense of belonging that only true friendship provides. And the payoff is immeasurable!

Inheriting Teenage Stepchildren

When you marry into a family and inherit teenage stepchildren, you will encounter a different set of challenges than if you marry into a family with younger children. Older children, particularly tweens and teens, are already struggling to establish an identity of their own and establish a place within the family that is more concrete and individual. When you come along as step parent and rock the boat, it can cause a great deal of stress for the teen.

One thing to realize when becoming a step parent to a teenager is that the more you can respect him or her as an individual and the better you are able to treat him or her like a person separate from the biological parent you have married, the more likely you will be to gain his or her respect.

Talk to and treat your teen stepchild the way you wish to be treated and talked to. Teens, biological and step alike, are notorious for being experts at making adults lose their otherwise even tempers, but the better you are able to remain calm or even walk away when you have to, the easier you will be able to manage a real relationship with your teen stepchild.

You have a real opportunity with your step children to develop the relationship that will take them into adulthood. Teens struggle with so many things — peer pressure, future life, self-esteem, school — that another positive role model in their lives can be very helpful. However, most teens will initally feel threatened by your presence, so be straight with them. Let them know that you respect them and aren’t there to interfere, that you want to be a part of their lives but that you don’t expect them to think of you as Mom or Dad.

Don’t try to win their admiration by being the “cool” parent who provides alcohol or lets them get away with everything. Be clear about supporting the expectations of the household, but be there, too. Be patient and allow the relationship to build slowly. Step parents are often the “safest” people teens have to talk to — and they may turn to you for advice on everything from relationships to school problems if you give them the chance.

Family Vacations

I will always remember the summer vacations that I took with my family while I was growing up. Not only did we get to go to some really neat places, but it was a time when my dad was not working and we were just spending time together as a family. I always looked forward to our summer trips. It didn’t really matter where we went or what we did as much as the quality time that we spent together. I will admit, however, going to the beach, Knott’s Berry Farm, Disneyland, and Hollywood were some pretty awesome places to go on a family vacation!

Regardless of where you go or what you do, family vacations are an important part of a child’s life. It reinforces what you value as parents as well as family values and traditions. We always went to Southern California to visit my wonderful grandparents. I can feel the anticipation of our arrival at their house like it was just yesterday. I feel the excited butterflies in my stomach just like I did all those years ago. My grandparents always made sure we had the best time while we were there. I loved my grandmother’s cooking, our trips to Del Taco and the arcade at the mall with our dad. We had so much fun!

For my family, we are Nascar lovers. Just after my husband and I got married he took me to my first race in Las Vegas. Once you see a live race, nothing can compare! So, we have chosen to make it a family tradition to take our children to that same race every year. Near the end of February or the beginning of March we load up in the van and enjoy a long weekend of fun enjoying the Nascar race and all of the other fun family attractions Las Vegas has to offer. Hopefully we are creating the kinds of memories for our children that they can look back on, as I do, of our fun family vacations!

 

Appreciation

Showing appreciation for our friends and family is one of the most important things that we can do for ourselves and those we love. When we show someone how much we appreciate who they are and what they do it makes everyone feel so good. In our busy lives it is so easy to take the special people in our lives for granted, it is more important than ever to put in the extra effort to let people know they are appreciated. The more positive things we do and express to the people in our lives the more positive the energy becomes all around us.

Our attitudes and how we express our feelings can play a huge role in our personal happiness and the happiness of those around us. I really believe it is all of the little things that really count. I always try to start the day with a smile, especially when I greet my husband and children for the day. I think this small effort on my part makes a big difference in the way our days begin! Trust me, it is not every morning that my children wake up with big smiles on their faces but when they see me smiling it makes it a little bit harder to greet me with a frown in return.

I want everyone in my life to know how much I appreciate the fact that they are a part of my life. I don’t ever want to lose someone that is important to me and wonder if they knew how much I appreciated them. I think when you lose someone close to you it makes the importance of appreciation of the time that you have had with them and others in your life become much clearer. If everyone, ever day, tried to do something to show appreciation for someone in their life I think everyone would be much happier. Show someone you love an extra bit of appreciation and see what a difference it can make!