Category Archives: Parenting

I Bought Them Shoes

My oldest daughter was born when I was working full time for Banfield Pet Hospital as a field trainer, managing the training of 17 hospitals and over 300 employees. I was making almost more money at 25 than my mom was after 36 years at Shell. I felt accomplished, important, like I was on track with a professional career I could retire from and was happy with my work. When she was 6 weeks old I was notified that I was being laid off.

From that moment and for the next 4 years money was extremely tight. We were behind on rent and other bills more often than not. There were times when I fed my kids and ate only what they didn’t eat. I’d sell things in beg/buy/barter sites for cash when I needed gas money. Those were years where stress was extremely high and spirits were extremely low. I didn’t like my life and I didn’t like who I was.

Last year on the way out of my marriage I was actually told, “You need me to provide for the girls.” I took it as a challenge.

In January I started grad school, and next May I’ll graduate with my Masters of Science in Agriculture with a high school teaching certification. Last December I met the love of my life and finally know what true love is. In March I bought a better car for us that’s reliable. This July my oldest daughter turned five and I registered both of my girls for dance. Tonight though…tonight I bought them shoes.

Mamas, I know this may not sound like much, but for me I had to hold back the tears on the way home. You see, after years of not knowing always where our next meals would come from, to be able  to go to the store and comfortably buy both of my girls TWO new pairs of shoes and a pack of socks each absolutely meant the world to me.  Money isn’t tight until the next paycheck, and my girls will start school this year with new shoes. My sweet Joni will walk into her first day of kindergarten this Wednesday with new shoes that her mama bought her.

Today was the one of a handful of days where I really felt like I’m on the right track because….I bought them shoes.

Wonder Woman Rocked my Socks

Ok, I know I’m probably several weeks late in expressing my absolute FABULOUS review of the Wonder Woman movie, released earlier this month, but better late than never, right?

When my boyfriend asked if I wanted to see that movie shortly after it came out, I’m pretty sure my response was, “YES!!!” Ever since seeing the first preview I’ve been anxiously anticipating its release. I don’t consider myself a feminist, because I think that word, by definition, has been degraded to some form of modern woman that I don’t want to associate myself with, but I will say that I felt a sense of pride in being female when I first heard they were FINALLY making a female lead character action movie like this. There’s just something about being a single mom and considering myself to be a strong woman in general that made me absolutely elated and wanted to see her kick some Marvel ass! Pardon me…I’m getting excited again.

After seeing the movie I was Totally. And. Completely. Blown. Away. I was expecting the high intensity action that the movie clearly achieved, but what really got me right in the feels was the display of compassion, grace and love from Diana – Wonder Woman. I’m not the only one who took note of this either. Take a read here! And get out to see the movie this week!

Where Have You Been?

It’s been almost six months since I last posted! You may be wondering what all the hype was about when I announced that Mockingbird Baby is now a landing page for my Arbonne business, and then went MIA for months on end. Allow me to digress, if you will.

A LOT has been going on. Last fall I was accepted to grad school at Sam Houston State University – Eat ‘Em Up Kats! I started my first semester towards my Masters of Science in January, and grad school as a single mom has been NO JOKE! So far I’m doing really well, and my goal is to just keep that same momentum going to get me through the next 1 year and 4 days until graduation. Not that anyone is counting or anything. Now that the semester is ending there may be an influx of posts coming from me.

I started dating again last fall and after several frogs and disappointments I think I’ve found my Prince Charming! His name is Doug, he’s amazing with my kids, he listens deeply and cares compassionately, and I think I finally know what true love means! I’ll share a separate blog post on my thoughts around that one another time.

My mom has been really sick since October; in and out of the hospital more frequently than she can stand, treatments working, then not working, then changing treatments, surgeries, changes, etc. She’s exhausted. I think we’re still in the midst of trying to navigate through what the doctors are going to say next, but the only thing I know how to do right now is just support whatever direction she wants to go. Quite honestly I’ve been really bad at these emotions because it’s a first for me. A scary first that I don’t like. I feel like I don’t know what to say, I’m not sure what I feel half the time, and also I just want to finish school so I can spend more time than I’ve been able to with her. We’d love your prayers in this area if you wouldn’t mind!

My girls are finishing another pre-school year and my oldest, Joni, is officially registered for Kindergarten! Class of 2030 here she comes!

So yes, to say I’ve been busy could possibly be an understatement, but you know what? I’ve never been happier in so many areas of my life! I learned so much about myself last year and I’m ready to see what the future holds! Here’s to being back online!

~Amanda

What’s going on here?

What has Mockingbird Baby become?

You may be visiting the Mockingbird Baby site confused, because, after all, didn’t this used to be a natural family boutique with cloth diapers, soaps, lotions, carriers and other baby items? You’d be correct! In September we had to make the very difficult decision to close both our retail and online stores as I finalized my divorce and made other decisions that were in the best interest of my family. So what now? Well, Mockingbird Baby has transitioned to be a landing page for my Arbonne business as well as an outlet for my Journey of a Single Mom. I’ve learned so much over my 30 years here, especially this last year as my life took the biggest transition I’ve ever experienced. Blogging has become my way of sharing lessons, stories, funny happenings and just allowing you to step into my life on occasion. I can honestly say as I stand here today that I’m the happiest I’ve been in 10 years. It hasn’t been easy, nor fun, getting to this point, but I’m loving it. I hope you’ll follow along with me and enjoy, possibly even learn from, what I share.

~Amanda