Try Breaking the Ice Like This…

  • niceice

Ever been on an ice rink?  With ice skates?  It can be challenging.  Ever been on an ice rink, without ’em?  They have.  Don’t worry.  They didn’t desecrate the rink, we made sure to get permission.  Invited to a private party, these boys took advantage of a rare opportunity to do the unexpected.  While there was a previously determined mode of operation, they struggled a bit.

But while many others went with the standard, they broke out of their comfort zones and considered the possibilities.  What a way to break the ice! What transpired next could be only be categorized as relentless excitement; pint-size, but pleasant pandemonium – and an adventure to remember.

So often, we find ourselves in situations that may be foreign.  Perhaps, your background is not the same as your peers or associates.  There are certain elements that you recognize, but maybe you struggle a bit.  Perhaps your challenge lies in the fact that you haven’t considered the possibilities beyond face value.  Maybe there’s another way you could look at it, that would still give you the leverage to excel.

Am I saying break the rules?  No.  I’m saying, explore your options.  Think differentlyPursue diligentlyStrategize incessantly.  Sometimes it’s not asking questions that matters.  It’s the questions that you ask!

I enjoyed a wonderful conversation with a friend on yesterday whom I’ve known since elementary.  He’s a passionate, prolific family man who has a wonderful career and a beautiful wife and children.  While he’s done considerably well in his profession, he’s pursuing another lifelong passion that he placed on a back burner while life happened.

Unregretful of his decision to table it earlier, he’s now ready to pick it up and move forward. So he’s preparing!  My favorite part?  He’s conditioning himself mentally for his new pastime/future career in a manner parallel to how he prepared himself as a middle school, high school and college athlete.  He’s molding his mindset.

He’s allocating designated time to dedicate to the development of his craft.  He’s researching, studying and practicing for perfection…because he has an end goal in mind.  I’m convinced he’s going to get there…because he’s not afraid to step out of his comfort zone and get on the rink with an approach that perhaps others – haven’t seen yet.

If you take a moment to consider success stories you’ve seen and heard, rarely do they achieve the unthinkable by majoring in the mundane.  They think differently.  They pursue diligently.  They strategize incessantly.   I’m positioning myself to do the same in order to catch my dream.  Are you ready to catch yours, too?  Break the ice…and Leap with Me.  Adventures await… #imsmiling

#pursueyourpassion, #betheone, #catchyourdreams, #Leap2017, #breaktheice

Caption:  Brown Boys shattering the status quo.  Mommy Brown to follow suit…





My Final Four – Boys, Blessings, & Big Dreams

A Growing Gift

Amidst my former hope of joining #teampink, I finally delivered my fourth (and final) healthy boy – and I am elated. I’m still wrapping my mind around the idea of being in the house with five males; glaring at the toilet seat that is still up at times when I want it to be down; trying to ignore the waning desire for tea parties and tiaras and yet cherishing the throne that remains all my own as the reigning Queen (smile).

What sticks out most however, is that I am thankful.  Like any parents, there have been days when I longed for the serenity that comes with an empty house.  I’ve joked often with my friends and told them my favorite day (pre-Jonathan Paul [the newborn]) was haircut day, because all of the “boys” were gone.  With such an active household, it’s nice to have peace – and to be able to enjoy a dessert alone – something rarely done in a home full of foodies!

Admittedly, I’ve cringed at the rough-housing inherent with little men.  I’ve fussed about broken trinkets and misplaced socks and shoes.  Nevertheless, I’m filled with reflection of what it means to have a family, as I find myself nostalgically immersed in the magic that is motherhood all over again;  but, sometimes, I find it bittersweet.  Why?  Because I see it in so many contexts now.

I consider the baby I lost that will never be forgotten.  I’m acutely aware of the anguish that comes with parenthood – and not being perfect at it.  I’m pained by the hard lessons you watch them learn that you wish they didn’t have to, seeing their missteps with each turn they make, and I am grieved by the tragedies that befall other parents that are simply inconsolable (and there are far too many of those lately).  Each and every element reroutes me to the bliss of being a mom.

I hear parents with empty nests tell me, “Oh baby enjoy them while you can.  They won’t be young forever.”  I realize, unsurprisingly, they are so right!  I laugh about my comparative experience with my first son, now 11, and I almost want to tell the clock to rewind so I could do it all over again.  He’s going to middle school next year, and I’m not ready.  Like many, I’ve put baby pictures side by side, marveling at the similarities and doting on the differences. I’m ultimately thrilled that they’re all healthy, happy, and whole.

I remind myself often of the games I’ve been to; their pivotal moments and fondest experiences, and I’ve endeavored to savor everyone.  Because having gone to more funerals than I would have ever imagined so early in the year -the hardest being my father’s; being blown away by the iconic things my brother has been sending me from the 70s and 80s era that we adored as kids and being thrown back into history with the loss of celebrity greats – I’m proverbially reminded…that our families…are priceless.

*                  *                *                  *             *                  *                *                  *

I dream.  I hope to create legacies that my children can embrace, espouse, and extol.  When my today becomes their yesterday, I want them to recall it with a fondness that would warm the hearts of their great-grandchildren.  I want them to remember the laughter at our dinner table; the feel of their father’s calves as they wrapped around them with their whole little bodies; what it was like to sing and dance in front of the TV with their brush-turned microphones and horrible Michael Jackson impersonations.

I dream that the love that we’ve worked so hard to impart – on their best days and their worst – will flow through them fluidly, not only to their children, but in the form of kindness to others – as they share their faith, their convictions, their fervor and their friendship.

I dream that my boys will share an inseparable bond – a kinship that makes them as much brothers as they are friends – that they will know that what they had with their family is unlike any treasure they’ve ever known, rivaled only by the love of God.

I dream that each reader of this post will not only share in the joy that our family has, but will remember how important it is to treasure – and make right, if you haven’t already – the relationships in families of their own. Life is a gift.  We seldom take advantage of all it has to offer.  While it’s too short to be angry, we wait too long to rectify what’s wrong.  Remember to live life to the fullest, and love the ones who love you most.  Don’t forget, we’re the models for the tiniest of all.  Dream big.

Love, Carla

Caption: Feeling full with my Final Four – and thanking Him for the gift of each and every one.

#pursueyourpassion, #catchyourdreams, #bethe1, #dreambig, #loveispriceless


Chase Your Dreams? No…Catch Them!


SPOILER ALERT:  (Real) Reference to Beyonce’!

While wrangling my crew of three lively boys for breakfast and balancing my other super hero duties, I received the most delightful of calls.  A colleague of mine had an essential epiphany about bringing home the bliss.  Let me explain!  We had a hot and heated (but amicable) conversation not too long ago about this amazing passion she has for baking – but she’s not a chef by profession.  Nevertheless, when not on the job, she’s creating, experimenting, tasting, researching, posting, and spending incessant – but energized – hours in the kitchen.  Her homework (from me) was to pursue this!  She was to get her very inexpensive dba (doing business as) as the first step to stop squelching that desire and bring it to reality. She insisted she wanted to do this beyond a leisurely hobby.

Nevertheless, her last check-up indicated she had abandoned the plan, or rather that her “but” got in the way.  “I was going to do it, ‘but’…”  “Well, I had started to, ‘but’….”  My but in return?  “But why not?  What are you waiting for?  Excuses…”  Well, she proved me wrong!  Yesterday, she wanted me to know that Bakers’ Lane has officially been born.  She stood in line.  Filled out the paperwork.  Followed the directions and added her name to the list of budding entrepreneurs who don’t just dream about what they want, they catch those dreams – one by one.

Does this mean she has saved thousands of dollars that she’s ready to use to fuel a national marketing campaign for her amazing product?  No.  She doesn’t have to.  Most small businesses are bereft of the huge cash injections easily at the disposal of multi-millionaires; but, they make up “99.7 percent of employers.”  Who says you have to be rich to get an idea off the ground?  You need merely to be passionate, persistent, and productive!  I think she can check all three of those off her list.  High Five to you, Madam!

Some may question the difference between pursuing and chasing.  Honestly, they’re similar in concept.  I think the better question is, “When do you use them?”  Your passion is that burning inside that drives you insane with pleasure.  It’s the feeling you have about doing what you enjoy so much that you could do it in your sleep/with your eyes closed!  My passions?  Speaking, writing (and eating)!  I have one friend whose gift of sewing is at such a level of excellence that she’d find a shoe she liked – and create a matching outfit.  Her style is haute couture (she made her first dress at nine), and she once toyed with the idea of taking her ridiculous talent to the masses…

One client and friend took his grind to the pavement by way of faith and foot traffic!  After dropping off a (very simple) flyer – of a picture of his abs – to Tina Knowles in her Headliner’s Hair Salon (and a host of others) over a decade ago, he landed a job as the personal trainer to Destiny’s Child (was subsequently invited to travel with them on the MTV TR1 tour), and later trained Beyonce for her Dangerously in Love solo debut and Austin Powers movie.  The thing is, one of these individuals may still be toying with the idea.  The other took a leap of faith.  His grind didn’t stop after returning to Houston.  He’s still a trainer – to both celebrity and non, and now he has a growing, profitable product line!  He’s not chasing his dream because he has too many.  He’s catching them, one idea at a time.  Is your flame flickering?  #pursueyourpassion #catchyourdream

Picture:  Me on top of the world… #watchout

Wanna contact my Trainer to the Stars (you included, of course):  E-mail him at gcf2wbd@yahoo.com  WARNING:  You will feel the burn!  Ask me how I know!  But it will be worth it…you’ll be…dangerous 🙂