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Welcome to WE BELONG

Health, Love & Money-- in that order.

If I was to summarize my philosophy of life, that would be it.  As I will say many times, if we don’t have our health, nothing else really matters.  Look at the life of Apple executive and business icon, Steve Jobs.  He seemed to have everything one could hope for, including love and money, but unfortunately he did not have good health.  Sometimes we can’t control the genetic time bombs that may hide within, so all we can do is fuel our bodies with the best internal army to fight off what we can.  Lance Armstrong is a good example of a body that was so fit that it could handle more powerful cancer fighting drugs when the drugs themselves would have destroyed most people.

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Fatso!

The line is fuzzy between freedom of expression and bullying.

There are times to keep opinions to yourself.

Wisconsin news anchor, Jennifer Livingston, enjoys the same advantage as Taylor Swift. A public platform to get revenge against someone who offended her. Enter Taylor Swift’s life at your own risk because if you end up on her bad side, you’ll live with your indiscretions on the radio for months. Offend a news anchor and she will have the last word on air at your expense.

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Anchors Away: A Key To Ending Conflict & Triggering Peak Performance

Mastering the skill of anchoring and change virtually any area of your life.

Remember your first love? The phone ringing was enough to send chills down your spine. A positive anchor so strong that your beloved could display a dozen bad habits and you wouldn’t even bat an eye.

Why do some relationships that start out so good turn south and never come up to see the bright sky again? Why do our kids roll their eyes and do just the opposite of what we ask when we’re only trying to protect them?

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The 5 Directives of Friendly Debate

Disagreement can enhance a friendship if you handle it the right way.

Debate doesn’t have to get personal.

Facebook has had me shaking my head the last few weeks. Silently witnessing discord between “friends” with words driving wedges between them. Social media has that unique ability to make people feel protected while being exposed. Much like an outraged driver who’s inside his car yet completely visible.  Some contributors forget that the internet is not a cloak but a spotlight.

During the Republican and Democratic National Conventions, Facebook reminded me of a hurricane. While hurricane Isaac was threatening the RNC, another storm was brewing on Facebook. The more comments and “likes” on brutal political commentary, the more the storm gained momentum. Like fanning a fire, posts turned to vicious personal attacks. Not toward their enemies. This was friendly fire.

I believe debate can be constructive, beneficial and enjoyable. Especially amongst friends. Disagreement can stimulate ideas, widen your horizons, and help solidify strong relationships.

An evening out with another couple where conversation goes beyond “Who won the soccer game?” to “What do you think about a flat tax?” creates an engaging discussion that enriches friendship.

We don’t compromise our values by respecting others’ views.  As long as we follow these directives.

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From Babies to Buddies

The time to become friends with your kids is after they leave the nest.

It seems like just a short while ago, we found out we were expecting a baby. Igniting our will to give him or her every opportunity imaginable. We would build a fortress to protect our baby from harm, disappointment, and all of the tough challenges we knew he or she would have to face in this world.

I spent plenty of time envisioning the kind of mom I wanted to be. The one whose children would come talk to her about anything. One of those cool moms. The best friend kind that always shows tolerance and understanding.

I wanted our house to be the “go to” shelter. With an awesome basement and super cool parents, surely all the kids would want to hang out at our house. That way I could insure their safety and be a part of things.

It didn’t take me long to switch the channel from Leave it to Beaver to Gilligan’s Island, where survival depended more on leadership and compromise than popularity.

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Spare the Hammer But Not the Wrench

Spanking should be abolished entirely.

I was spanked as a kid. I guess I turned out ok.

Think you needed a good whippin’ to learn your lessons when you were little? I imagine a lot of heads shaking with a “Yes, ma’am”. There’s a good chance you “Yes, ma’am’ers” believe your children deserve the same.

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What the Olympic Rings Mean To Me

Competitive sport is only one aspect of the Olympic games.

I proudly admit I have an obsession with the Olympic Games. Even on vacation the first week, I won’t miss the prime time Olympic coverage. Doesn’t matter which sport or what heat, I have to watch.

Is it because I was one of those little girls with Olympic dreams? I think that’s part of it. There’s always something intriguing about watching others achieve what I couldn’t. As I watch Jordyn & Gabby flip on the balance beam, I can smell the chalk and feel the apparatus as though I’m 14 again.

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Should You Workout on Vacation?

It's up to the parents to make fitness a family affair.

A recent trip to Austin, Texas to celebrate our daughter’s 21st birthday included a few family style workouts. Including exercise when you’re away from your normal environment and routine is a challenge for even the most steadfast athletes.

Consider these 5 FIT tips when vacationing with the whole clan.

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Love Notes

A love note is the perfect way to communicate affection.

My first love note was in 5th grade. I can remember the thrill of reading a few words on wide-lined notebook paper. As good as it gets.

Have love notes been replaced with texting (sexting)? Hopefully not. Love notes can send a powerful message to those you love because they meet a basic human need.

The need to be appreciated. 

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My Kid Made a Bad Choice So How Come I’m Punished?

You can create consequences for misbehavior that don't penalize yourself.

Parents resort to physical punishment of children because they don’t know alternatives that really work. No doubt, you need to have a plan of action ready.

Effective parenting requires consequences that fit the crime. Not consequences that make you suffer.

Here are 4 tips that insure you’re not the one feeling the pain of your child’s mistake.

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Parents Need To “Shape” Up

Invert the triangle and you'll be headed in the right direction.

If a parenting manual came with every newborn, I’m not sure it would be that helpful. Written directions telling me how to raise the perfect kid. Heck, I don’t have enough patience to read directions on a help screen! I’m more of a “click it until I get it” kinda gal. I always find exceptions in instructions, something missing, or “I already made the wrong turn so what do I do now?!”

Some of us need cause and effect scenarios in plain sight. Kids are perfect teachers. Their feedback is instant, in your face, relentless and uncensored.

I prefer to talk guidelines and strategies when it comes to raising our offspring. Leaves you room for interpretation and adaptation. Every family is unique. Every child is different. But we all want them out of diapers and paying their own bills eventually.

Here’s a principle that may help you transition from wiping snotty noses to handing over car keys.

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