Category Archives: Fun & Entertainment

Summer planning

Hey IAFN Readers,

I made this video last week and I’m just posting it. Yeah, I got behind with the kids getting out of school and the Memorial Day Holiday.

So…our multigenerational nest needs some summer ideas!

Help us out. Let me know what fun, creative, easy, and exciting plans you all have for the summer.

I shared, below, our summer planning grid. Feel free to use it if you think it’ll work for you.



Mom Enough

I was talking with hubby and some friends about the May 21 Time Magazine cover.

When I initially saw it, I knew people would go nuts.


Breasts are oversexualized.

Breastfeeding, surprisingly to me, is still controversial.

People don’t want to feel uncomfortable.

Parenting styles are always up for debate and scrutiny.

People are thrilled to point out what’s wrong with others – and fail to take care of their own stuff.

We all have opinions – just like everyone has an a……


I giggled at the parodied magazine covers that were funny and shook my head at the ones that were questionable.

I was inspired to create my own magazine covers from my multigenerational/daughter-in-law lens because, hey, it was fun!

I applaud Jamie Lynne because she wanted to send a specific message and she did.

All the rest that’s going on with this – well, I’ll continue to wait and see.

What do you think about all this?





Hey IAFN Readers,

I’ve been writing like crazy – super determined to finish my eBook on nurturing in-law relationships.

I’ll write something- and think I’m done – but then a coaching client with bring up another gem that should for sure BE in the book.

This is indeed a labor of love – which I liken to the time, energy, patience, and openness that goes into nurturing a thriving a multigenerational nest.

And with that…I’m listening to my oldest play Lady Gaga Fugue on the piano – before my mother-in-law whisks her off to piano lessons. I also have a snugly person on my lap which is making typing this a pleasant challenge.

Yup, a quick peek into our this multigenerational nest on an average Tuesday.

I leave you with these lovely nests – that I Googled and found on Pinterest when I was relaxing my brain and taking a writing break.




My cake decorating skills kinda don’t exist. But, I’m thinking my multigenerational nest would love to create these cupcakes.

source – Martha Stewart


Loved that Leslie, my friend, captured this beautiful picture – tucked in the eaves at her home.

source – Leslie Bixler


Looks yummy and easy to make, yes?



Just imagine the names from our multigenerational nest – engraved on these rocks.



This would be fun to make with my kids and my mother-in-law, but I don’t want to distract my mother-in-law from making my new Wonder Woman apron.



How I feel about our multigenerational home.



‘Nuff said!


Mad Men – Season 5

Slow start to this Monday due to ringing in the season five premiere of Mad Men. Thank goodness it’s spring break!

As usual, I got together with my wonderful group of Sunday night ladies. The icing on the cake is my mother is in town – so she tagged along for the crazy antics of Mad Men fanatics, 60s inspired nibbles, corks a popping, and muddling madness for a proper old fashioned.

My mother-in-law knew I was prepping for this event (I mean, we waited for 17 months!) and she wondered why we weren’t making another dress this time around. Honestly, I started my prep a bit on the late side – so I just went for simple crafting that did not require too much supervision.

(Hubby did step in with his T-square to help me line up the letters – so I guess that was some supervision. And yes, we are a fun, crazy, and over-crafting, multigenerational house – 24/7).

The season five opener, for Mad Men, was totally juicy. There was so much to digest, analyze, relate back to previous episodes, and swoon over.

5 juicy takeaways for me:

  • Megan Draper has solidified in my mind – I need to get back to learning French.
  • Lane Pryce was in love with the Black Playboy Bunny  – but can’t trust the Black cab driver with a wallet.
  • Pete Campbell  is a cry baby and can’t get out of his own way.
  • Roger Sterling wants to be Don Draper – and Jane Sterling wants Roger to be Don Draper, too.
  • Joan Harris needs my coaching on how to work with her mother and benefit from a granny nanny. (Roger being the baby daddy and smoking while holding his son – well that’s a completely different blog post.)

Even though Joan is a fictional character, she does represent a lot of challenges mothers and working mother experience. I mean, my group of friends and I did a lot of yelling at the television when Joan was completely exhausted, called her mother out for needing “granny formula”, stressed about being replaced at work, and the overall overwhelm that comes from having a baby.

If I could call Joan up and coach her a bit on creating a positive “granny nanny” relationship, I would encourage the following:

  • Invite your mother to be a caregiving partner (use that language). That’s a different expectation than being your mom and being the grandmother of your baby.
  • Establish some norms. Tell your mother what type of mom you are trying to be for the next 3 months – and ask her, directly, if she can help you do this.
  • Admit your fears. Tell your mother what you are fearing the most as a new mother. Ask her to share her fears when she became a mother. Look for the commonalities – then use this as an opportunity to grow and build a stronger caregiving partner bond.
  • Exercise some healthy selfishness.  Ask for what you need – so that you’ll be able to take care of yourself – and then do a great job taking care of your baby.
  • Focus on the positive and stay in the moment. Many interactions will be stressful, tiring, and annoying. Come up with a phrase your mother and you can say (or shout) to bring you back to the present moment when you are going down a bumpy road. Suggestion: Martini time!

What other suggestions do you have for Joan?


Valentine’s Day – 2012

Yes, we have a crafty love fest going on in our multigenerational nest.

Without even saying it, we all decided to make our own love trinkets for each other. My 4-year-old was the only one requiring assistance, and everyone else pretty much worked on their lovely gifts alone.

This morning we stashed each family member’s gift in various areas of the house. This seemed to set the tone for a serene, easy-moving, and happy morning routine.

Love is in the air for us – and we hope you enjoy the quotes and songs we’ve selected to share with you.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

“Like music on the waters is thy sweet voice to me.” -Lord Byron

“All Love is sweet. Given or returned. Common as light is love, And its familiar voice wearies not ever.” -Percy Bysshe Shelley

“In real love you want the other person’s good. In romantic love you want the other person.” -Margaret Anderson

“In dreams and in love there are no impossibilities” -Janos Arnay

“We are all born for love. It is the principle of existence, and its only end. -Benjamin Disraeli

“It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.” -Antoine de Saint-Exupery

“Paradise is always where love dwells.” -Jean Paul Richter

“Love distills desire upon the eyes, love brings bewitching grace into the heart.” -Euripides

“At the touch of love everyone becomes a poet.” -Plato

“The most powerful symptom of love is a tenderness which becomes at times almost insupportable.” -Victor Hugo

“Listening is an attitude of the heart, a genuine desire to be with another which both attracts and heals.” -J. Isham

“To love is to receive a glimpse of heaven.” -Karen Sunde

“Since love grows within you, so beauty grows. For love is the beauty of the soul.” -St. Aurelius Augustine

“One word frees us of all the weight and pain in life. That word is love.” -Sophocles


Leaping into age 40

We’re celebrating another birthday in our multigenerational nest, and it’s my big 4-0!

I’ve had friends tell me that I’m approaching 40 so positively – but really, why wouldn’t I?

I mean, I feel good. My family is thriving. We are all healthy and having fun. And hey, another birthday means another year to do great things and blog about it – plus the extra day, during leap year, to do – well, whatever!

Following in the footsteps of hubby and my mother-in-law in celebrating birthdays, I have crafted my 40 and fabulous list to commemorate this birth milestone.

1.  Moon dance whenever you want – but especially on the night of a full moon.

2.  Embrace your stretch marks.

3.  Indulge in Girls’ Night Out. When you come home, you’ll get lucky.

4.  Buy really good beer for your mother-in-law.

5.  Have a fun “sit-down” with your mother-in-law, after you have purchased good beer for her. You’ll learn a whole bunch.

6.  Be an active listener. The benefits are too great to explain – so trust me.

7.  Leap into the next phase of your life. It’s fun, scary, and exhilarating – all at the same time.

8.  Have car concerts, where you seat dance and sing as loudly as you can, daily.

9.  Start a blog even if you don’t know how.

10.  Buy some red boots and wear them WHENEVER you want.

11.  Hire a cleaning service for your home – use Groupon or Living Social if you have to.

12.  Take a telecourse that is “outside” your box.

13.  Visit the hot springs.

14.  Get a proper bra fitting. You will be thrilled!

15.  Get dropped off at the mall – buy some coffee – and doctor it up with Bailey’s or Kahlua!  (Yes, that’s what big purses are for.)

16.  Go on a multigenerational vacation – and rent a house/apartment.

17.  When a random person asks, “So what do you do?” Tell them you live with your mother-in-law and see what happens.

18.  Teach someone you love, who is 50-years-old (or older), how to internet date.

19.  Watch the Twilight Saga movies – and relive your first love moments.

20.  Ditch your kid (leaving them with grandparent/s) and go on a “during the day” date with your spouse/partner.

21.  Ditch your kid (leaving them with grandparent/s) and go on a mini-vacation.

22.  Get caught doing PDA, with your spouse/partner, by your in-law/s.

23.  Be the daughter-in-law who will ask any kind of question of your in-laws. (Yes, I need supervision.)

24.  Eat cookies in bed – on your partner/spouse’s side of the bed. (Yes, I said this before – and it’s so fun to do!)

25.  Be honest about dying your hair. It’s not that big of a deal.

26.  Don’t compare and despair with the lives of your in-law siblings. (I haven’t done this – so that’s all I can say.)

27.  Find a fun cookbook and work your way through all the recipes. Yes, those math skills that have been dormant will be put to use.

28.  Take professional family photos – every other year.

29.  Moms should be happy, and not feel guilty, to ask for help. (I mean sh*t, the POTUS has a whole entourage.)

30.  Put yourself in time-out when you need to.

31.  Let go of childhood pain. It’s no longer serving you (not that it ever did.)

32.  Take a day off – at least once a month. Go do whatever you want – and ditch the guilt.

33.  DVR trash TV and then watch it while you fold your laundry. Yes, this helps you check laundry off your chore list.

34.  Do not watch the local/national news in the morning. It’ll skunk your groove.

35.  Shift happens.

36.  Speak your truth –no matter what.

37.  Surround yourself with people who fuel you – not deplete you.

38.  Stay open.

39.  Get enough sleep – and screw your “to do“ list. It’ll get done eventually – IF it’s important or critical.

40.  Be 40 and fabulous!