March Madness

What does March Madness make you think of?

Basketball right? I would agree with that, up until I a few years ago when I realized March is the month where a culmination of things come together: the first flowers of Spring start to bloom, time change (Spring forward), St. Patrick’s Day, and, the NCAA basketball tournaments.

As a parent, this month always seems to go by in a flash. My boys and I were just admiring the first crocuses and daffodils of the season. Every year it seems these flowers come earlier than we expect. We braced ourselves for losing an hour of the day (and how that always seems to throw off our sleep cycle for a week) when the clock jumped an hour forward last night. The kids are excited about it being St. Patrick’s Day later this week. Always a fun day for our family to wear green, dance, be silly (by doing silly dancing in our house), and hope for good luck. And last, but certainly not least, there is the NCAA Men’s and Women’s Basketball tournaments. It’s not a family affair yet, more of something I like to watch, but my son’s are starting to show some interest in so there is hope it will become one in future years.

Before I know it, March will be over and we’ll be into April with another flurry of events: Easter, Spring Break and dreams of summer will begin.

I’m doing my best to enjoy the ‘madness’ and not let it pass me by. Smell the flowers. Check. Spring forward. Check (I had no choice). 🙂 Dance a silly jig with my kids on St. Patty’s Day. Looking forward to it. And enjoy watching the basketball tournament — Bounce. Bounce. Check.

How are you enjoying March ‘madness’?  What family activities make up your March?



Lucky Clover

When I was a child I learned that four-leaf clovers are good luck, and if I found one I was told I would have good luck for a day. It was never quite clear to me if it was the day you found the clover, or the next, but the promise of a good day sounded fantastic.

My children have learned from their classmates that finding a penny is good luck. They get very excited when they find change on the ground. They understand money buys things, but also realize there is almost nothing you can buy for a penny. It’s as though the penny represents more than one cent. It represents that something good happened to you. And if it happened once, it’s likely to happen again.

What is it about these signs of luck or good fortune that captivate us? The promise of happiness or good fortune coming our way expectedly, right?

Luck seems to help explain good things that are, well, unexplainable. A few examples of how I’ve experienced luck:

  • Winning a prize for a contest that I’d never signed up for
  • Running into an old friend in an airport thousands of miles away from where I grew up and where I currently live
  • The day I met my spouse

Now, I realize their are nay-sayers who might attribute these experiences to fate or coincidence, and yet others who adamantly believe we create our own luck. I have to admit any of these things can be true, but I prefer to think of them as luck. They were unexpected, there is nothing I could have done to influence them happening, and they brought me joy.

There are certainly instances where we make good situations happen for ourselves, but isn’t it nice to think there’s a possibility something good might happen outside of our efforts?

I’m happy my boys think finding a penny is good luck. The happiness it brings them is priceless, it makes me smile. So does finding four-leaf clovers.

What unexpected joy have you experienced? Did luck play a part?

Happy St. Patrick’s Day

Who’s Feeling Lucky?

March 17th. A day filled with thoughts of the Irish, the color green, shamrocks, rainbows ending in pots of gold, and luck.  While many will celebrate the day eating Irish-inspired fare, and participating in numerous St. Patrick’s Days events, I’ll be taking inventory of my own “pots of gold”.

For most of my life, I’ve given LUCK more credit than maybe I should of. I attributed luck to receiving an unexpected accolade, or being selected for a position I really wanted, or meeting my future husband during a philanthropy event.

Because of this, I’ve often dismissed or diminished my capabilities, achievements and contributions. Accepting a simple public “thank you” would almost drive me to the point of embarrassment. I’d think to myself doesn’t everyone know I’m not perfect and luck played a large part in being able to achieve this?  There was always another part of my brain fighting with this internal voice. It reminded me that I had worked hard, was qualified, and deserved happiness (everyone does!).  As I get older, I am more willing to accept this, and while there may be an element of luck in what’s gotten me to where I am, a larger part is due to opportunities I was given and what I did with them.

Instead of thinking about luck today, I’m reminded of my “pots of gold”—where I feel grateful for what’s going on in my life. Some of the things included in my list this year:

  • Raising my children—watching them and being responsible for helping shape them into the adults they will become continues to be humbling, challenging, and fun! What treasures!
  • Friendship—I am grateful to have friends I can connect with on an authentic level. Relationships where each of us can be “real” with one another is very fulfilling. They are my diamonds.
  • Love—It’s one of the most valuable gifts to give and receive. 
  • Other parents and you—connecting with and having a conversation about how we can be better parents to our children gives me energy.  Invaluable.

Are you feeling lucky? What are your pots of gold?