Alexa Is A Ray Of Sunshine After The Storm

We never turn over our blog to someone else, but today is different. We feel so honored to share the message from Alexa today. We hope everyone will support her incredible cause.

Take it away Alexa…

For most mothers, Mother’s Day is a day to be spoiled by their children (and maybe husbands.) It’s a day we look forward to. A day that we, the mother, gets the one day that we are acknowledged for everything that we do as moms. And mothers should be honored. All mothers.

For many mothers, Mother’s Day is a source of pain. A constant reminder of what is no longer here, or what will never be.

It’s a very difficult day for grieving mothers. I know, because I am one of them.

“A mother is not defined by the number of children you can see, but by the love that she holds in her heart.” ~Franchesca Cox

A few years ago, CarlyMarie of Project Heal began International Bereaved Mother’s Day. This day for mother’s to talk about the true meaning of Mother’s Day, and celebrate our children, both with us and not. Do you know why Mother’s Day was begun?

Anna Jarvis officially founded the traditional Mother’s Day to honor her mother Ann who experienced the death of 7 of her children and somehow through the years it has turned into a commercialized mess that corporate companies make millions of dollars from, but the worst thing is that bereaved mothers are completely forgotten. ~CarlyMarie

International Bereaved Mother’s Day is now the Sunday preceding Mother’s Day. So this year it is May 5th.


Inspired by the actions of CarlyMarie and so many others who make it their mission to bring light to grieving parents, I wanted to do something as well. Last October, in time for Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day on October 15th, a group of bereaved parents and I published our book Sunshine After the Storm: A Survival Guide for the Grieving Mother. It is our stories and our best advice and tips on surviving the loss of a pregnancy, infant, or older child.

Fueled by the positive feedback and the positive impact it was having on other parents who have suffered the death of a child, we went one step further and created a nonprofit, Sunshine After the Storm, Inc, to raise funds to donate the books to hospitals, bereavement groups, and organizations that support bereaved parents.

As Mother’s Day approaches, I wanted to do something special. So we decided to start a special “Mother’s Day Campaign.” The goal is simple: raise money to donate as many books as we can to hospitals and bereavement groups for Mother’s Day, and use a portion of the funds to make a special Mother’s Day contribution to the organizations that support bereaved parents, infant death, pregnancy loss, and research for children’s health issues.

I also reached out to different people, including some well-known authors on baby and child loss, such as Sherokee Ilke and Teske Drake; to CarlyMarie (who creates the most beautiful artwork for bereaved parents on her Shore of Remembrance) and many others. I asked for donated items and services so that we could offer a wonderful incentive for those who decide to find it in their heart to make a donation. The response was amazing, and on May 4th, International Bereaved Mother’s Day, we will have a giveaway of 15 incredible items. And more may be added!

We just ask for one thing. A very small donation. $5 (or more if you’d like!) It costs us about $8 to donate each book. One donation will get you entered for a chance to win all of these amazing prizes!

But more importantly, you will know that you have directly impacted the life of a mother who is hurting on Mother’s Day.

Direct link to donation:


Would You Rather: Puke Inside The Car Or A Big Ding On The Outside?

Many of our blog posts start with an incident from our real lives. Isn’t that the old adage? To write what you know?

Whenever Emma and Lucy are away with our hubbies for a special Y-Guides weekend, the remaining Taylor/Farnham clan gets together to do something fun. Despite their age difference, Abby and Bobby are delightful company together, and obviously, Lisa and I have fun wherever we go!

I always drive us around on our adventures, because I am a bit of a control freak about driving. A couple years ago, the four of us spent a fun-filled spring afternoon checking out the local, outdoor art festival. We then returned to my car to head off to dinner. About two minutes into our drive, we noticed a really disgusting smell. The kind of smell that instantly makes you roll down all the windows and attempt not to hurl the funnel cake you just ate all over the side of the road.

It was quickly discovered that Bobby had accidentally stepped in a mess that a pet owner had neglected to pick up. Oops. A couple grocery bags later, we had the culprit shoe all bagged up and stowed away in the “way back” of the minivan.

Bobby then apologized with a line that made all of us cry with laughter.

“Sorry for pooping up your car Ashley!”

After reading this post from our friend Shell the other day, we decided we had to take it a step further and make it a would you rather question. See, Shell’s kids have a propensity towards car sickness and that has unfortunately led to some really terrible incidents involving puke inside the car.

We started talking about the fact that as bad as it would be to have vomit in your own car, what if it was in your best friend’s car?

So here is the scenario…

Your car is in the shop for the day. Your best friend, knowing you have a full day of errand running/appointments to do offers to loan you her car for the day in return for you getting all the kids in carpool. Totally above and beyond the call of friendship, but that is what makes a bestie so great!

It should be noted that your best friend’s car is nice. Not brand new or anything, but nice. On the outside AND the inside. You try not to be *too* jealous as you drive all over town getting all your stuff done.

You pick up your youngest child first. Within minutes of driving away from the carpool line, it becomes quite clear that the fruit punch/cookie cake combo of today’s class birthday celebration did not agree with your little one’s tummy. You know this because your child proceeds to empty the contents of their stomach ALL over your best friend’s car. It is on the floor, on the seat belt, in between the seats…you get the idea. You have exactly one hour before you have to get the remaining children and take your BBF’s car back to her. Yikes.

No amount of cleaning is going to take the smell out. Even as you plan to spring for the world’s most expensive car detailing company to come to her home, you know that this vague odor of puke is going to last forever in her car. Every time she gets in, she will get a faint whiff of vomit.




Same scenario. Your bestie loans you her car for the day. You are making it happen as you speed (I mean, except you are not speeding, because duh, it is not your car) all over the place feeling like a total errand running rock star.

Because she has totally done you a solid, you even carve out enough time before school pick-up to grab her a little thank you gift in the form of her favorite Starbucks beverage and a bouquet of roses. It really is the least you can do, amiright?

As you are walking back to her shiny, pristine minivan you see what is happening, but cannot get there fast enough to stop it.

A runaway shopping cart.

Her van side door.

The rest as they say is history.


There is a full-blown dent in the side door. You are returning her minivan to her in less than an hour. So there is nothing you can do. I mean, sure, you will get it fixed when you scrounge together the $1000 that it will take and of course arrange for your bestie to be car less herself for a few days.

However, in the end, you are returning her a car with a dent in the side. Totally noticeable for the entire world to see.

What say you Dose Peeps? Would you rather borrow your best friend’s car and return it with puke on the inside or a big ding on the outside?





Pinterest Nightmare #446: Cheers To You!

Some days you just can’t win.

While at your annual skin cancer screening, your dermatologist asks if you are “finally ready to do something about all of those spider veins”.

Your 3rd grader asks you the difference between the mean, median, and mode, but you can’t answer until you discretely use your smart phone to Google their definitions.

You spy a haggard woman across the escalator and secretly feel glad that you aren’t the worst dressed person at Dillard’s, only to realize you were looking at a mirrored panel.

Your teenager asks if “that smell” is what you are having for dinner.

Life can be brutal. It can really take a toll on your self-esteem and optimism.

What can you do when you need a little pep talk? There *is* one person you can always count on to tell you you’re beautiful and smart, but lately your mom doesn’t answer the phone because 60 is the new 40 and she’s at hot yoga.  You are just S.O.L.

Unless you follow us on Pinterest

Pinterest Nightmare #446: Cheers to You!


as pinned from

This audio experience contains 8 different tracks of applause and adoring words to raise your self-esteem while the simulated clapping and cheering of over 30,000 people plays in the background!! It’s Cheers to You!–your own applause track!!!

A mere $24.95 will get you over 15 minutes of classic affirmative words of praise and encouragement like “Great Job!” (track #2), “Success Is Yours!” (track #5), and “Hooray for You!” (track #8).

Can you imagine what it would feel like to hear 30,000 people clapping while a narrator with the smooth vocal tones of a slightly more nasal Sponge Bob Square Pants gives a variety of reasons for your greatness?

Well, you don’t have to imagine if you click the video below! (It doesn’t look blurry once you press play….and you are going to want to watch the entire thing to get the full effect. Trust me.)

Did you catch the part of the commercial that states:

We guarantee you’ll feel better about yourself and your life after listening, or we’ll give you your money back!

You know, IT REALLY WORKS! I actually *did* feel much better about myself and my life after watching that guy in the commercial! A lot better!!

My birthday is next week and I could really use the gift of encouragement and confidence as I hit the back side of my 40s. I could pop Cheers to You! in my minivan for a particularly spirited drive to carpool. I could listen to slightly more than 15 minutes of kudos while writing blog posts. I bet I could even upload “Weeee Believe in Yoooooouu!” (track #3) to my cellphone and use it for a ringtone. The sky is the limit when you are filled with self-esteem!

With Cheers to You! you can find out it feels like to be a winner! If you’re buying this CD, you probably haven’t had that experience before!

Oh, Pinterest. No…just no


Fashion Woes & Wacky Weather in the Springtime

According to our calendars, it is officially spring, which means spring is in the air. Or at least it should be. However, according to the outside temperatures, winter has decided to stick around a little longer. Needless to say, this weather phenomenon has reeked havoc on our already lacking fashion sense. And let’s be honest, everyone, we don’t need any more struggles when it comes to our clothing.

This is about the time of year when we would normally be about to begin to chore of organizing our closets into winter clothes, spring clothes, summer clothes and clothes that actually fit. But with each passing day where we find ourselves debating between boot cut yoga pants jeans or capri length yoga pants jeans and deciding whether we need a light sweater or our full, heavy coat, we are kind of over it.


It is actually quite exhausting, if we are being completely honest. Add in the ever rising pollen count, and we are miserable over here.

It is no secret to any mom out there that actual “sick days” don’t come with this gig. You may be able to sneak in a quick nap on the couch when you are feeling under the weather, as long as you count a nap as being something that happens where you don’t actually sleep. Kids don’t see mommy trying to rest on the couch any differently than mommy being at their beck and call. Snacks don’t make themselves, you know.

So we are finding ourselves sucking on HALLS® (sugar free, y’all…see above for ill-fitting clothes situation) day and night. Lisa is totally loving the black cherry flavor and will only buy those. Ashley, on the other hand, is going between the citrus blend and the honey-lemon. The honey-lemon are especially soothing on her throat at night after a full evening of attempting to just make bedtime happen already.

Spring is in the air, which also means it is in our noses and that is making us sneeze and cough. Thank goodness we have HALLS to the rescue. Now, if only HALLS could help us with our clothing situation!


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