Meet the New Signature Mommy Bloggers: Teresa Tower-Sousa

By: Teresa Tower-Sousa

My name is Teresa Tower-Sousa and I’m a stay-at-home mom. My husband and I have been married for 11 years. We have a beautiful, 7-year-old daughter named Caylee. My husband also has a 14-year-old son, Dakota, from a previous relationship. Unfortunately, Dakota lives quite a distance away with his Mom in another state, so we have a long-distance relationship with him.

artMy daughter keeps me busy with her various activities. I’m also a student at Massasoit Community College. I’m in the process of earning my associate degree in Fine Arts. Art has always been a passion of mine. I love photography, painting, drawing and – one of my favorites – home decorating. I’ve always enjoyed expressing myself through art and writing. I think my daughter is following in my footsteps, since drawing and writing have become two of her favorite past times.

I’m really excited to be a part of the Signature Mom Blog group and can’t wait to share some of my experiences. I’ve had lots of ups and downs in my life, but I’m always finding new ways to overcome the struggles of life. I hope someone can find inspiration through my blog posts.

Posted in Mommy Blog Contest, Teresa Tower-Sousa | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Everyday Evidence

By: Martianne Stanger

As my children grow, there are two sights I rarely tire of and continually marvel at – their backs…

Signature Moms Blog

… and the tops of their heads.

Signature Moms Blog

In fact, sometimes, seeing my children huddled together, heads bent at some simple task actually brings me to tears. Happy tears. Grateful tears.

Signature Moms Blog

They are mine. They are home. They are safe. They love one another.

Yes, as two of my children sit on the couch doing a hidden picture puzzle together, tears well in my eyes. How blessed I am with this moment of quiet.  With this sense of thanksgiving. My children’s heads bowed together speak in such a simple, yet powerful way of their development, their bond, their natural inclination to learn and to love one another.

On another day, watching the backs of my three children exploring ahead of me on a trail overwhelms me with delight. I close my eyes for just a moment to take a deep breath, to smile and to whisper with every cell of my being, “Thank you.”

Signature Moms Blog

My children are growing.  They are adventurous.  They are beginning to find their own ways – literally and figuratively – in this world.  Yet, they are still connected to one another, to me, to my husband, to the virtues and values we hold dear.  May they always be so and may none of us ever forget how beautiful life is.

At least once a day, I am taken aback by a moment where my children’s heads bend forward as they whisper to one another, experimenting, exploring or concentrating.

Signature Moms Blog

It stops me short. I marvel at how the everydayness of a moment – three kids deciding to blow soap bubbles with straws – echoes of something miraculous.

Signature Moms Blog

Three children gifted to my husband and me, given breath of life and the depth of love. Our responsibility. Our privilege. Our dependents for years that will go too quickly. Our delight.

Signature Moms Blog

May they continue to grow in wisdom, stature and fun and may they never question: they are loved!

What everyday evidence of miraculous beauty and gratitude do you witness in your life?

Posted in Family, Martianne Stanger | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Meet the New Signature Mommy Bloggers: Kathy Trainor

Born and raised in the South Shore, Kathy is a teacher by day and blogger by night. She’ll offer fun ideas for local family activities. Meet her in this video.

Posted in Kathy Trainor, Mommy Blog Contest | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Have a Fun Fourth of July!

By: Alicia Tapp, Guest Contributor

July 4th

Unsure of what to do this 4th of July? The possibilities are limitless, but it’s important that you and your family stay safe while celebrating with loved ones. To keep your family entertained, try these fun-filled activities!

1)    Patriotic Ice Cream Cone Wrapper

Looking for a fun way to entertain the kids, while adding flare to your average cool-down treat? This project will surely keep all your loved ones occupied and will fit in perfectly with your holiday decorations. It requires few materials and is easy for even your youngest kids to do!

http://www.marthastewart.com/264431/patriotic-ice-cream-cone-wrapper

2)    Plan a Patriotic Sing-a-Long

Let’s be honest- who doesn’t like to sing? The fun really starts when you bring your favorite patriotic songs to your holiday gathering. Make sure everyone gets involved by printing out the lyrics to classic songs such as “The Star Spangled Banner.”

http://www.usa-flag-site.org/songs.shtml

3)    Patriotic Cake

What’s more patriotic than a flag-designed cake? This fun and delicious dessert will liven up the party and encourage your guests to remember what the 4th is really about! Your guests won’t get enough of this fun dessert, so be sure to make enough for seconds!

http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/American-Flag-Cake/Detail.aspx?evt19=1

Posted in Activities, Holidays, Recipes | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Untruths

By: Heather Desmond O’Neill

HeatherThere are definitely two teams in our house.

Us against them.

We have to stick together.  If we don’t, our children may realize that ultimately we really have no power.

There are fabrications that we have told our children to keep the upper hand.  After the kids are in bed, sometimes my husband and I sit and debrief on untruths we may have told our children throughout the day.  Here are a few:

1.  Santa Doesn’t Bring Ride-On Toys – When my oldest son (now 6) was 3, he desperately wanted a John Deere tractor for Christmas.  We couldn’t afford the $400 to purchase the battery powered one, so Santa brought the pedal tractor.  It was much less expensive and he could use it whenever he wanted.  We weren’t a slave to the charge of a battery and he was getting exercise, so it was win-win all around.

2.  Ride-On Toys Don’t Cross The Street …. Or Leave The YardEver.  We live on a busy road and the fear of my kids riding into the street or venturing out of our yard is very real and constant.  We have relentlessly echoed this statement every time we are in the driveway on the toys.  This has been stated as fact and told them that if a toy does leave the yard it will be left at the end of the driveway for someone outside of the yard to take and enjoy.

3.  When The Music Is Playing On The Ice Cream Truck It Means They Are Out Of Ice Cream – Again, we live on a busy road and there are a few trucks that ride by blaring their annoying music right around dinner time.  Unfortunately I think they are catching on to us because we’ve seen a few trucks doling out cold treats to children of all ages and those trucks play music.  I’m not sure how long we’ll be able to get away with this one.

4.  I’m Really Only 25 Years Old – Let’s face it, at 6 years old, there are no secrets.  For some reason my son is obsessed with telling everyone how old I am, so I started telling him I was 25.  He has no concept of how old this really is and what’s wrong with him telling random strangers that I’m only 25?  I’m good with it.

5.  Mamas Know Everything.  There is nothing that my children will do that my husband and I have not done or tried to do.  Especially in these few short years.  My son gets his “Irish” whispering ability from his father and doesn’t realize that I can hear him from the other room.  Or that you can see a reflection in the sliding glass doors or windows.  It’s wonderful catching him in something he knows he shouldn’t be in and he has no idea how I caught him.

I don’t feel that these untruths are ones that will hurt my boys in the long run.  As parents, we need to keep one up on them as long as we can.  There’s nothing wrong with #TeamMomAndDad winning a few rounds here and there.

Posted in Family, Heather Desmond O'Neill, Mommy Advice, Parenting Advice | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Summer Safety

By: Alicia Tapp, Guest Contributor

June is National Safety Month, a great opportunity to reinforce healthy and safe behaviors for your family. This month, adopt these tips to ensure your loved ones stay Summer swimminghappy and healthy- both inside and out!


1) 
Master water safety.

Avoid swallowing water you swim in.  Accidental indigestion of pool water can lead to recreational water illnesses, such as diarrhea. It is also beneficial for you and your family to shower before jumping in to reduce the amount of germs spread in a public setting. And make sure to take frequent bathroom breaks with you kids to avoid potential accidents.

2) Keep the pesky bugs away.

We’ve all experienced the unpleasant stings and bites of summertime bugs. To lessen the chances that you or your family gets bitten, avoid using scented soaps or perfumes, which can attract unwanted critters. On summer nights, be sure to wear long sleeves and use insect repellents containing DEET.

3) Bicycle Safety

Summer days call for relaxing bicycle rides! Before joining the family on a fun trip, be sure that your children wear helmets. By continually reinforcing this behavior, you encourage your child to develop personal safety habits. If your child is resistant, try modeling it yourself. They learn by example! If your child is getting his first bike, may sure it’s the right size, since oversized bikes can lead to injury.

4) Be aware of sparklers

-You may be tempted to set off your own fireworks this summer, but leave it to the professionals. Fireworks can lead to severe injuries, such as burns and disfigurement. Even sparklers, which are incorrectly thought to be safe, can reach temperatures close to 1000°F and can pose risks for the user and bystanders.

5) Avoid heat-related illnesses

Never leave children alone in a car. Even if the trip is short or the windows are cracked, illnesses can occur. Dress children in lightweight, cool clothing and be sure to drink plenty of water. If you or your child shows symptoms of heat-related illness (such as heavy sweating, weakness, nausea,) be sure to seek medical attention immediately.

For more summer safety tips, visit the links below:

American Academy of Pediatrics: http://bit.ly/1uTXSZc

CDC: http://1.usa.gov/1wu0UEa

Heat-related illness: http://1.usa.gov/15B92qe

Water safety: http://1.usa.gov/1sD1h0M

Posted in Health, Parenting Advice | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Free Fun Fridays

Looking for a way to beat summer boredom without breaking the budget? Check out Free Fun Fridays, which provide free access to great local museums and cultural spots. If you attend any of the events, let us know! We’d love to hear if your family enjoys one of these great local resources.

Free Fun Fridays

Posted in Activities, Brockton, Community Events | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment