Dzien Matki — Mother’s Day in Poland

I am pretty sure I just ate candy my son gave me from his grubby fingers—and I am not sure the last time he washed his hands.  Or went to the bathroom and forgot to wash his hands.  I am actually gagging a little bit right now.  Really.  My stomach is not feeling so well.  Hashtag “truemom”.  EATING NASTY GERMS FROM GRUBBY DIRTY FINGERS.  Sigh.

Therefore, let’s just say that I am VERY VERY VERY happy to be celebrating the upcoming day about ME in Poland.  Dzien Matki.  May 26th.  Mother’s Day.

In Poland, Mother’s Day is the same day year after year after year.  Kind-of like Women’s Day, Wigilia, your birthday, your anniversary, New Year’s … MOTHER’S DAY!  It is set in stone and NEVER GOES AWAY!

Kind of like our kids, eh????!!!! (smile and wink)

Anyhow, this upcoming Mother’s Day I think that I am going to set expectations for my kids:

  1.  I am going to expect for them to make me frustrated.
  2. I am going to expect for them to make a mess.
  3. I am going to expect for them to NOT leave me in peace when I have to pee OR merely pick up the phone—EVEN THOUGH, moments before, they had forgotten about the very existence of me.
  4. I am going to expect for them to cry over their hair styles or crust.  YES—the crust on their bread.
  5. I am going to expect for them to have a small accident in their underpants—just enough so that they will not want to wear the same pair and not enough to make a mess on the floor.  The in between stage of wet.  Enough, however, where they will then declare that they must STRIP NAKED and be.  For the rest of the day.
  6. I am going to expect for my toddler to wake me at 3am.  Or 5am.  Or 6am.  And not at all appreciate that they day is about ME!
  7. I am going to expect for the pre-teen (nastolatek) to give me grief.  I don’t know about what.  About the volume of my voice or the fact that SHE CANNOT WEAR MY SHOES.
  8. I am going to expect for them to fight and argue about the 1 block.  On the floor.  When there are 1 million and 12 other blocks right next to the 1 block.  And there are 500,000 of those 1 million and 12 blocks that are exactly the same as the 1 block that they are rowing over.
  9. I am going to expect them to stub their toes, blacken their eyes, break their teeth, or scrape their knees.  I know this because it will happen.  My three year old currently has a black eye and a huge forehead mark from tripping onto the training wheel bike tire and also falling on the side of the trampoline.  All in a day’s work.  So I am going to expect a trip to the hospital, a broken bone, or a bandaged knee.  It will happen.
  10. And, lastly, I am going to expect a gazillion times over for them to tell me that they “Love me the most!”  And fight over it.  And cuddle me.  And then fight over cuddling me.  And then fight once again about who loves Momma the most.  Because it will happen.  I expect it.

And number 10 makes up for 1-9.

As I expect it should.

So, you see, Mother’s Day in Poland is really no different than Mother’s Day anywhere else in the world.  If you come from a dirt floor or a mansion that touches the sky, being MOM is full of a million and one expectations that always start with DISASTER…But that one moment (#10) will make up for all of the tornadoes that will come in and hijack your day.

In the end, however, you don’t mind.  Because it’s a nice feeling.  Being mom.

But NOT eating the grubby food from their fingers.  Leave that behind on Dzien Matki.  I am pretty sure that is not a nice feeling.

Not at all.

Happy Mother’s Day from Poland to YOU!

Celebrating in Poland!

Okay.  I am not kidding.  Tonight was my rockstar moment.  Forget that I am a 4-0 mother of 3, two of those being toddlers, I mean…really…this just happened!

For my 40th, people, basically my family in this foreign land, joined us at a restaurant where you eat in complete darkness.  It is an awe-experience because you can’t even see your finger on your nose if you touch it—you get to feel your food, taste it in the extremes, and understand others lives as you experience only a sightless celebration.  It is a must try.

And, in the atmosphere of the dark, you also communicate with great fun as you “hear” your friends more keenly.

Anyhow, after your meal, you return to the semi-light in an outer room while the chef comes and shares what you ate.  Oh. Yeah.  You don’t know what you’re eating in the dark!  Plain cool.

After the chef shared and we all laughed through our obvious culinary know-nots, we gathered for a group photo where the girls—yes, the girls—hoisted me in the air, singing Sto Lat, and then throwing me up and down.

Beasts they are!

You go, Ladies!!!!


It definitely made for a rockstar ending to a fantastic 40th birthday celebration night.

Here’s to 40+ more!

Sto Lat to me 😉

Momma Beast Mode


This is called 250 pounds of coal post coffee this morning.

What a Momma will do for her family, eh?

#mommabeastmode #heatedhouse #warmbabies

But let’s not stop there…then I obviously needed to shower—so my littlest asked to join me.

Why not?  I’m a good momma…

As my littlest then proceeds to poop in my shower.

You saw my photo, right?  If anyone needed a shower—it was me.

But now there is poop.

Just as it gets cleaned up, my middle then decides to jump in.

Momma beast mode went away—momma desperate for clean mode just wanted to come out to play 😉

In the end, I got clean.  Kids got clean.  Shower got clean.

And we have heat.

Chalk one up for a good #mommabeastmode day.

***

In case you missed the video earlier, here is the #mommabeastmode at work.  Enjoy!

https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Fbrooke.h.nungesser%2Fvideos%2Fvb.729244049%2F10154075004344050%2F%3Ftype%3D3&show_text=0&width=560

 

Had I Known…

Had I known that my husband’s knees would go out on him this year, I would not be living in this house.

Had I known this fact, in advance, there is no way I would have even considered living in this house—nor be in the process of purchasing it.

I mean—this house is a second marriage to start.  It requires endless renovations.  And it’s okay—but we knew that going in.  So THAT (the need of endless renovations) was upfront with us and quite visible.

As was the coal furnace.  But I am married to a man that takes care of the coal for me.

But then life hit us and sat my husband down.

Which has left me lifting 200pounds of coal every couple days.

This morning, my hair did not feel like hair.  It felt like ashes.  It smelled like coal.  And my nose still blows black.  Wonder what the doctors would make of that?

You see, though—This thing “HAD I KNOWN” is just what we don’t know.

And, therefore, we enter life with a whole bunch of unknowns.

Perhaps you have so many HAD I KNOWN moments in your life:

Had I known my marriage would not work…

Had I known my loved one would not be here this year…

Had I known my health would not always be with me…

Had I known my job would not be secure…

Had I known…Had I known…Had I known…

My friends. We don’t know.  And that’s a certainty we can be sure of.

Sure, in some situations in life, we can be aware that something may go in a certain direction…But in many HAD I KNOWN situations in life, we just don’t know before it happens.

So the question is—What are you doing about it?  What are you going to do about it?  What will you keep doing about it?

You are here.  In this place of HAD I KNOWN and now it’s your turn to realize that you can’t look back and change the past…You are here.

What are you going to do about where you are?

Encouraging_Bible_Verse_LHT_Strength_Psalm138_3_472_446_80

Mud Boots


There was a time in my life—barely six months ago—when I couldn’t get out of my car without first changing my shoes.

You see.  We live where it is VERY muddy.  Mud mud mud.  Everywhere.  All day.  Everyday.

And we didn’t have any sidewalk.  Therefore, I had to put on my mud boots to exit outside, while carrying my shoes for the day.

I traipsed back and forth from the house to the car, loading all 3 kids, so they wouldn’t get stuck in the mud…

And then, before putting my muddy boots in the car, I would sit in my seat and slip on my every-day shoes.

After that, I would have to figure out what to do with those muddy boots, eventually placing them somewhere in the car, usually getting mud all over everything.

Mud muddy boots.

But you see—I had to do this.

I had to wear mud boots.  I had to carry my children.  I had to then change shoes again.

I didn’t have a choice.

If I didn’t have my mud boots on, I would get stuck in the mud.  Our other shoes would get destroyed.  And there would be endless mud everywhere.

We lived like this for five years.

Five years of changing in and out of our mud boots.

But this past summer changed EVERYTHING for us.

We got a sidewalk around our house.  And a gate that opened, leading to our front door.

And our life, although muddy, became a little less so.

Friends, in life, sometimes we feel like we are deep down stuck in the mud.  And it does not seem to get any easier.  Nor does it seem to go away.

You feel as if you are trudging, daily, through the mud—not just for yourself but also for your loved ones.

And you probably are.

It is messy.  You must be strong.  And it is daily.  Daily.  Daily.

But, I am here to tell you, be patient.  Be persistent.  And trudge through that mud.  Because a day will come when you no longer will need to slip on and off those mud boots.

Encouraging_Bible_Verse_LHT_Hope_Jer29_11_472_446_80

 

Mom Struggling Well

thesweetestkisses

I was in a made-for-my city-tv movie when I was in high school.

It’s true.

I had to dress the same (or similar) each day—and run down hallways pretending to be afraid of something and scream at nothing when opening a door.

It was really weird for me because I didn’t understand how television or movies are made.

And I probably did a horrible job.  But it was with a couple friends from high school and was made for our personal city’s television channel.

I actually never watched it—because there was no way I was going to watch myself running down an empty hall screaming in fear at basically nothing.

I am sure, if anything, it was good practice for my friends making the film—and great entertainment of horrible acting by anyone that actually spent time watching it on actual television.  Haha!

Since, I have been on the radio.

On one program (KFLR) where we had the opportunity to talk about building the New Life Center, I was asked the question, “What will your role be at the New Life Center once it is opened?”

What’s the New Life Center?  It’s a transitional center my husband and I opened to help men out of homelessness.

Okay—so let’s get back to my answer, “Uh…I guess I’ll pick up a shovel and shovel…dirt.”

Yes, I did.  I did say that, “…shovel…dirt.”

Goes to show how suave I am at anything in the communication world.

A time before that I was actually taking a Communications class at university (Arizona State University, Baby!) when my professor approached me after what I thought was an amazing speech.

Guess what she asked, “Brooke, do you mind if I use you as an example for the class tomorrow?”

Golly Gee!  Of course!  So, I totally agreed—just completely flattered at the request—thinking my speech was just complete ROCKSTAR!

When the next day in class, it happened.

What?

“Class—Brooke gave her speech yesterday, and I would like to point out 5 things that you should NEVER do when giving a speech…”

Where she proceeded to point out a million and one flaws (felt like a million more than 5, at least) in my speech giving and how they don’t have to make the same mistakes that I did.

So flattered to be used as a bad example 😉

Good thing I am made of apparently EXTREMELY thick skin.

Believe me, these are just a few stories.  I shan’t repeat more.

Anyhow…

All of these stories are brought up to basically share with you the fact that I had the immense honor of being interviewed for one of my favorite podcasts Mom Struggling Well.

And here is the interview.  I hope, if you can get past the initial awkward recording of my computer loud voice, that as you listen it will encourage you—-as it charges into many subjects that are close to my heart and soul and I found myself laughing and crying through it—even though it was me (oddly enough).

Episode 10:  Mom Struggling Well

I hope that you will have a chance to listen—and that in some small way you, too, can be encouraged throughout.

xoxo b