My Spirited Life http://myspiritedlife.com Motherhood, Travel, Entrepreneurship...and Ghosts. Sat, 10 Dec 2016 14:38:57 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.8 Why we don’t “cross things over” http://myspiritedlife.com/2016/12/why-we-dont-cross-things-over/ http://myspiritedlife.com/2016/12/why-we-dont-cross-things-over/#comments Sat, 10 Dec 2016 14:31:31 +0000 http://myspiritedlife.com/?p=289 Every day after Kindred Spirits airs, I get the same message over and over again – some truly inquisitive – others indignant and frustrated, “WHY DIDN’T YOU CROSS THAT SPIRIT OVER?”

It’s a legitimate and understandable question. For years, we have been told by psychics, mediums, paranormal investigators and researchers that ghosts are somehow stuck here, that they need to be led to the light in some way. It’s a theory many subscribe too, but it is just that – a theory. Honestly, the entire paranormal field is nothing other than theory and speculation, but that’s a blog for another day. 😉

I first noticed it years ago on an investigation in Gettysburg. I had been told that a local home had been “cleansed” and the spirits had been crossed over. Yet, when I investigated the home, the ghosts who were supposedly long gone, were still very much there and they very much wanted to communicate. This happened time and time again. We’d be called into a house by desperate family members who had psychics, paranormal teams, etc come in and supposedly send these ghosts packing, but the activity continued and in some cases, increased.

For those of you who subscribe to this theory, please consider this for a moment. What if ghosts aren’t in fact trapped or stuck, but are here for a reason. Perhaps they weren’t ready to leave and they want to tie up some loose ends before they head off to where ever they go. Even if crossing things over did work, wouldn’t it be doing them a disservice to dismiss them without hearing what they have to say?

This is where our cases on Kindred Spirits come in. We wanted to showcase the fact that instead of sending out some intentions and telling a spirit it was ok to move on – that if you intensively and actively try to figure out WHY they are there and communicate it or provide a solution, the activity sometimes slows way down or ceases completely.

Is this set in stone? No. Nothing in this field is. But it’s something we’ve been trying for quite awhile now, and it appears to be working. In your world, feel free to conduct your investigations however you wish. But in our work, we will continue to research, feature intense investigations and try to give these families, and their ghosts, some closure.

Enjoy your holidays everyone! And thank you from the bottom of my heart for all the support and love you’ve shown Kindred Spirits. The show has been a great success for TLC and we couldn’t be prouder of the work we’re doing. See you all soon!

xoxo,

~ a

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Kindred Spirits – Episode 1 http://myspiritedlife.com/2016/10/kindred-spirits-episode-1/ http://myspiritedlife.com/2016/10/kindred-spirits-episode-1/#comments Sun, 23 Oct 2016 01:22:37 +0000 http://myspiritedlife.com/?p=273 Last night, Kindred Spirits premiered on TLC. I was a nervous wreck, as I knew we were doing something different, and I was so afraid people wouldn’t “get” it. That they wouldn’t understand the softer side of paranormal investigation. Boy, were my fears unfounded. The ratings aren’t in yet, but the messages, emails, comments, tweets, etc ARE – and they’ve been overwhelmingly positive. Literally, I think I’ve read less than ten negative things about the show – which is a WIN! Thank you everyone for watching and THANK YOU for being so supportive and warm. It’s just what we’d hoped for.

I have been getting a few questions over and over though. So, I wanted to address them for you here.

*Why does Adam identify as 33 and Lucy is still a little girl?

The simple answer is: we don’t know. We’ve seen it before however, and it’s exactly why we continue to do what we do. The paranormal field is never cut and dry and we definitely aren’t even close to having all the answers.

*Why didn’t you “cross them over”?

I can’t even begin to tell you how many cases I have been on, where someone claims to  “cross” someone over – but I return days, weeks or years later, to find that same entity or entities in the space. I realize some people have different thoughts on this, but I am just speaking from my experience. You’re welcome to handle your investigations any way you please of course. 🙂

In all my years investigating, I have yet to see any proof that crossing something over works and the last thing I want to do is instill a false promise in these poor people. What I have found though, is helping these entities with their issues and the WHY they are here, does greatly diminish activity. This is why Adam and I work tirelessly for an answer. We try to understand WHY this person is still lingering. Is it something left unsaid? Let’s say it for them. Is it unfinished business? Let’s finish up that business. Is it a mystery unsolved? Let’s solve that mystery. It’s not as easy as saying, “go to the light”, but I’ve certainly seen it work.

*I saw legs in the woods in one of the shots on the show.

That was a b-roll shot of the woods. I can’t say it wasn’t a ghost…but, since we shoot b-roll at the same time as we’re setting up for our investigation, it’s more likely it was a unintentional shot of Adam or me setting up cameras in the woods. 😉

That’s all for now! Can’t wait for you all to see next week!!! Again, thank you for the amazing level of support.

xoxoxo,

~ a

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Home. Finally. And I don’t know what to do with myself. http://myspiritedlife.com/2016/08/home-finally-and-i-dont-know-what-to-do-with-myself/ http://myspiritedlife.com/2016/08/home-finally-and-i-dont-know-what-to-do-with-myself/#comments Mon, 29 Aug 2016 12:32:36 +0000 http://myspiritedlife.com/?p=261 Sorry for the lack of blogs over the summer. My paranormal partner in crime, (and BFF), Adam Berry  and I were busy bees – filming our new television show, Kindred Spirits. It’s funny, I had purposely taken the whole summer off from my business and events so I could spend it in New England and enjoy living in one of the most beautiful summer destinations on earth, but clearly the universe had other plans. I couldn’t be more thrilled with the show though, I can’t wait for you all to see it!

I was alone on the roads for hours driving to Detroit. I watched the sunrise and it was stunning.

I was alone on the roads for hours driving to Detroit. I watched the sunrise and it was stunning.

Yesterday, I returned from one of my favorite conventions of the year, the Michigan Paracon in Sault Ste. Marie. My return flight was scheduled to get me home at midnight last night though, and with waiting for bags and my drive, I wouldn’t be home until 1 or 2 am. Being the crazy person I am, I explored options to get home sooner, and opted for a direct noon flight…out of Detroit….which is five hours away from Sault Ste. Marie. Where there’s a will, there’s a way right? And that’s how I found myself in a rental car at 4:30 am, driving through some of the most empty, beautiful landscape in the country and how I also found myself snuggled up to sweet Charlotte by 3:00 in the afternoon. I’d do it again in a heartbeat.

 

 

 

 

But here I am the next morning. No trips planned until October. I have SO much to do I can’t even pick what to do first. So far the beach is definitely on the itinerary today…I should get my nails done…I should sort through some clothes, pay some bills, go grocery shopping.

But for now, I’m just sitting in bed blogging while Charlotte lays next to me watching cartoons. I suppose I’m in no rush to move just yet. I’ll just enjoy being here…with nothing to do and nowhere to go.

xoxo,

~ a

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Back to work! http://myspiritedlife.com/2016/07/back-to-work/ http://myspiritedlife.com/2016/07/back-to-work/#comments Wed, 06 Jul 2016 12:30:16 +0000 http://myspiritedlife.com/?p=237 The last two years, I’ve been so fortunate to make my own hours and mostly stay home.  I have a local office I go into a couple times a week to work on Strange Escapes stuff, and once every month or two I travel for a few days for work. This has been amazing for my family and me as most of the time, I feel like a stay at home Mom.

Which is why I didn’t take returning to television lightly. My largest problem with TV before was the unpredictability of the schedule, which made childcare so difficult for us. Not to mention, leaving to do something I wasn’t all that crazy about anymore was hard.

As soon as Adam and I announced our departure from GH, networks and production companies came knocking to see what we were doing next. But really, the idea of being back on TV was anxiety inducing for me – until Adam and I made the decision that if we were going to do it, it was going to be on our terms. Meaning, it would be a show we created, with our own schedule and importantly, our own values.

So here we are with our baby, Kindred Spirits, (which is a working title.) I’m so glad Destination America announced yesterday so I could finally start talking about it! (And explain why my blog has been so quiet – we’ve been busy!)

Couldn't do this show without our crew. They've been phenomenal!

Couldn’t do this show without our crew. They’ve been phenomenal!

I can’t go into too many details yet, but this show is everything I’ve ever wanted to do within the paranormal. Now that I have my own family, the value of family has never been more apparent to me – which is why this show focuses on helping families, especially those who feel they are being haunted by a loved one. It’s been so fulfilling and rewarding to see this all come together and I can’t wait for you all to be able to see how transformative our experiences have been.

That being said, one of the nice things about Executive Producing and creating is being totally involved in the production process and making sure this is a project we can be proud of and that it is indeed something worth leaving home for every once in awhile. The other nice thing is, we don’t travel far, we keep everything to our area so we can be home with our families as much as possible.

I’ve worked so hard to make what I love into my living. Seeing it come full circle has been one of the proudest moments of my life, and to be able to help people, plus be here for my family at the same time has made sticking to my guns so worth it in the end. I can’t wait for you all to see some of this journey on screen.

Thanks for believing in me and for coming along on all this craziness!

xoxo,

~ a

PS. See Destination America’s official press release regarding Kindred Spirits here. While not in the press release, I’m hearing we should be premiering in the fall, but don’t hold me to that! 🙂

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Norovirus – I hate you. http://myspiritedlife.com/2016/03/norovirus-i-hate-you/ http://myspiritedlife.com/2016/03/norovirus-i-hate-you/#comments Thu, 03 Mar 2016 21:41:14 +0000 http://myspiritedlife.com/?p=221 Last week, we had a lovely, lovely trip to Disney World with some friends. The last three days of our trip, I planned to spend relaxing with my in-laws in their new condo in Florida. (Yes, I am capable of being with my in-laws AND relaxing at the same time, lucky me.)

Except, my few days of relaxation were rudely, rudely interrupted at 4am the day after our arrival to the condo with an onslaught of horrible gastrointestinal symptoms that were relentless and for your benefit, I will not describe. I can say with certainty, I have never been so ill. By that afternoon, I was in the ER, a bag of fluids pumping into my veins as well as what ever anti-nausea miracle drug the doctors gave me. It was there that I learned I had most likely contracted the dreaded norovirus.

The whole time I kept thinking – HOW. HOW DID THIS HAPPEN TO ME. I am the most OCD hand washer I know. My hands look like the hands of a 90 year old woman because they’re so dried out from years of hand washing and hand sanitizing. At Disney World I was frantically waving hand sanitizer at everyone the second we got off a ride, hoisting Charlotte up to sink after sink after we used the bathroom, and yes, even wiping down our eating areas with disinfectant wipes before we sat down. I even spray Lysol on our hotel phones and remote controls the second we arrive to the hotel.

So – let me tell you how I most likely caught the lovely norovirus.

First of all, norovirus is ridiculously contagious. It only takes 10-20 virus particles to infect you and for comparison, the average sneeze of a flu infected person contains 16,000 flu virus particles.

For the most part though, norovirus is not airborne. Except in vomit. Yes, if you are near someone who is vomiting thanks to norovirus, you can suck those particles right in. This could easily happen in public restrooms and I definitely visited a few of those, so that’s a possibility. The other and most common way norovirus is spread is virus particles, (most likely from fecal matter), on the not properly washed hands of an infected person.  I mean, I washed my hands and even used hand sanitizer after I was done in the bathroom as well as every other public area I was in…

WAIT. Guess what else? The jury is still out as to whether or not hand sanitizer kills norovirus. Hand washing is still the number one way to clean your hands, but if you’re in between bathrooms and touch something icky, and hope the sanitizer will save you? Think again.

We did visit some buffets, but again, I was pretty diligent with the hand washing. But, what about the people making our food? Another common way norovirus is transmitted is by food that was handled by someone with the virus who didn’t properly wash their hands. Personally, I think this is the most likely way I caught the virus, because no one else in our party came down with it. Including Charlotte, thank goodness.

I’m also thankful I got sick while I was with family so they were able to take care of Charlotte while I quarantined myself to a different part of the house. And trust me, when people would have you believe this is something that is gone in 1-3 days, that is simply not true. Yes, the major symptoms will be gone – but here I am, a full week later – eight pounds lighter and with a very sensitive stomach. My energy is zapped and my brain still foggy. If this had happened at the beginning of our trip, it would have been completely ruined.

Will this dissuade me from travel in the future? Absolutely not. But, I will always be prepared with plenty of stomach medicine. I’ve also researched which hand sanitizer is effective against norovirus and the favorite seems to be this Clorox one: Clorox 02174 Bleach-Free Hand Sanitizer Spray: 6-Pack of 2 oz Bottles – kills Norovirus (Feline Calicivirus). Bundled with a magnet.
It’s spendy compared to other hand sanitizers, but there’s no way I will ever travel without it again.

For the record, I travel almost monthly and have done so for the last decade, (including a number of cruises), and this is the first time I’ve ever come down with this. I’d say that’s a pretty good record. Stick with the hand washing and good hygiene, and odds are you will be ok – but you can never be too prepared.

xoxo,

~ a

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My return to television? http://myspiritedlife.com/2016/02/my-return-to-television/ http://myspiritedlife.com/2016/02/my-return-to-television/#comments Mon, 29 Feb 2016 14:48:26 +0000 http://myspiritedlife.com/?p=212 It happened. I am back on TV – well, for one night at least. 😉 As I’ve said in the past, it would take something very special to get me back on screen for any extended period of time – but I couldn’t resist this opportunity!

Please make sure to watch Adam Berry and me on the premiere episode of Paranormal Lockdown on Destination America this Friday, March 4th at 10pm.

We joined our friends and hosts of the show, Nick Groff and Katrina Weidman, during their investigation of Trans Allegheny Lunatic Asylum in Weston, WV. This is one of my most favorite locations, so when Nick called and asked if we’d like to come along, we jumped at the chance. I’ve investigated Trans Allegheny a few times over the years and have always come away with the craziest encounters and experiences – let’s suffice to say, this investigation was no exception.

The concept of the show is every paranormal investigators dream. Nick and Katrina actually stay in these locations for three days straight. Investigating and recording the whole way through.

I admit, part of me wondered if they stepped out to take showers or grab a real meal, but nope. When we arrived, we were greeted at the hotel by the well rested production crew emerging from their cozy hotel rooms – after they had all left Nick and Katrina on their own at the Asylum for the night.

When Adam and I arrived at the location, Nick proudly showed us where he had slept the night before: On a cot. In the middle of a decrepit wing that had once housed some of the most mentally ill and unfortunately, maltreated, patients.

CRAZY.

On location and super chipper at one of the most haunted locations in America. NBD.

On location and super chipper at one of the most haunted locations in America. NBD.

So, make sure to watch the premiere and be ready for other special guests coming up, including Grant Wilson, John Tenney and Lorraine Warren! And special thanks to Nick and Katrina for being such gracious hosts, you are going to LOVE their show!

xoxo,

~ a

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Hiring an Organization Consultant was the Best Decision I’ve Made in Awhile. http://myspiritedlife.com/2016/02/hiring-an-organization-consultant-was-the-best-decision-ive-made-in-awhile/ http://myspiritedlife.com/2016/02/hiring-an-organization-consultant-was-the-best-decision-ive-made-in-awhile/#comments Sun, 28 Feb 2016 13:13:39 +0000 http://myspiritedlife.com/?p=197 I moved into this house with Jimmy just over four years ago. We had decided to move in together and start trying for a baby at the same time. What we did not anticipate, was that the baby making would like, immediately make a baby.

So, as I moved all of my belongings from the west coast to the east coast, I was also traveling and filming Ghost Hunters, dealing with awful, awful morning sickness, and trying to get our house ready for baby’s arrival.

All this time, Jimmy continued to work two jobs and remodel the house and I continued to work, either for Ghost Hunters or my business, all while raising our boisterous little child. What ensued was a house that was disorganized to say the least. Every trip I took, I would tear through my closets to pack, after barely unpacking from the trip before. As Charlotte has grown, her clothes, toys and baby gear had barely been arranged and things were spilling out of drawers, precariously perched in closets and shoved in nooks in the basement.

We are not disorganized people. Especially Jimmy, he is borderline OCD and I could see the clutter and confusion truly taking a toll on him. I hated it. Even more so since he had so carefully crafted closet space for me. He had drawn diagrams, asked me about my clothes and shoes and took me shopping to help him pick out exactly what shelving I wanted.

I responded by throwing my crap in the closet and barely making sense of it. It wasn’t intentional, I just literally did not have the time or headspace to make it work.

Turns out I’m not alone. This world we have created of taking on too much has also created an entire industry: Professional Organization Consultants or Professional Organizers.

These are folks who walk into homes and businesses and maximize your space based on your needs. It’s about taking back control of your environment. Yes, these magical people are REAL and as I’ve learned, VERY effective.

Enter Hope. By Hope I mean Hope Turenne and I don’t think it’s any coincidence her name is Hope. Because that’s exactly what she gave me. When she walked through my door I wanted to hug her but I didn’t want to be creepy, so instead I just made really lame excuses about how my closets looked. Hope just smiled and laughed, she had clearly heard all of this before. Her one hour consultation was so refreshing. First of all, according to her, I wasn’t as bad as I thought I was…which maybe she says to everyone, but I needed to hear it. Also, each of my closets were only going to take four to six hours to reorganize.

Wait. Was she looking at the same closets as I was? These things looked like a week long task to me. Each.

But that’s because I don’t have a brain like Hope. As we chatted, she just kept casually mentioning organizational tips that seemed so obvious, but my overworked and overtired brain never would have come up with them. She also told me she had quit her job to be an organizational consultant and that she felt she was born to do it. So basically, she’s an organized angel, sent from heaven to save hopeless people like me.

After my initial consultation, Hope returned just over a week later. We devised a plan to handle my two closets first and within four hours, my closets were clutter free and all of my old clothes donated to charity or readied for consignment. As I watched her work, she had a focus and a clarity that I just do not possess, (at least not at the moment), and she made me accountable. Having her there forced me to answer questions about belongings I had long held onto, but really didn’t need. She also made an organizational plan that would work long term for me and that I could keep up with. She thought ahead and knowing my hectic schedule and frequent travels, took advantage of my two closet spaces. We moved my every day clothes upstairs, and we moved my off season and dress up clothes to the spare closet downstairs.

My guest room closet. Sorry, guests - Mama needs this space! ;)

My guest room closet. Sorry, guests – Mama needs this space! 😉

My upstairs closet. Jimmy installed all of this shelving for me and I love being able to actually use it properly now.

My upstairs closet. Jimmy installed all of this shelving for me and I love being able to actually use it properly now.

Two weeks later she came back and we reorganized Charlotte’s closet. Finally, my child could actually play with her toys. And I could pick an outfit for her without digging through unfolded laundry and clothes that she had long grown out of. When Jimmy saw what Hope and I had done, he became inspired and cleaned out and reorganized his own closets. He also started talking about future home projects again. I hadn’t seen him so relieved in a long time.

Charlotte's newly organized closet. Organizing her trains was no joke!

Charlotte’s newly organized closet. Organizing her trains was no joke!

Is this something I could have done on my own? Probably. But the time and money I spent to have Hope step in and take over was so well invested. It wasn’t that I couldn’t make the time, it was that I couldn’t even make the mindset necessary to get the job done.

These are all of my after photos. I wish I was brave enough to show you my before photos, but just trust me, it was awful.

Hope is a huge fan of Joy Mangano Huggable Hangers, so we changed all of my closets out to them. Having one uniform hanger makes things look much neater, plus they’re slim and take little space. Joy Mangano 34-pc. Huggable Hangers® Combo Pack – Black

What are your tips for getting and staying organized? Would you or have you ever thought of hiring a professional organizer?

PS. If you’re near the South Coast of Massachusetts, check out Hope and tell her I sent you! http://affordableorganization.com

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Why yes, I did score a brand new $2500 coat for next to nothing. http://myspiritedlife.com/2016/02/why-yes-i-did-score-a-brand-new-2500-coat-for-next-to-nothing/ http://myspiritedlife.com/2016/02/why-yes-i-did-score-a-brand-new-2500-coat-for-next-to-nothing/#comments Mon, 08 Feb 2016 23:32:49 +0000 http://myspiritedlife.com/?p=186 This is a completely unbiased, non-sponsored post and review about the thredUP service.

Use this link for $20 credit with thredUP to try it yourself!

As many of you know, I love clothes. I love purses. I love shoes. And most of all, I love a good deal.

Pair that with the fact that I have a three year old daughter who is growing like a weed, and I’m pretty much always in the market for something to help us both out.

This is where thredUP comes in. I discovered thredUP when I was looking for a way to clean out my closet. I donate most of my clothing, but there are some high end items that I consign so I can use that money to buy new items. I do this with Charlotte’s clothes a lot too, because many times she grows out of things after only having worn them a handful of times, or sometimes, not at all. With thredUP, you just send your gently used clothes to them and they give you a lump sum for what you’ve sent. Their site is also filled with AMAZING deals if you’re looking to add to your wardrobe. Like I am. All the time.

I ordered a clean out kit from thredUP and it showed up rather quickly. It’s a large bag that approximately a laundry basket worth of clothing can fit into. I sorted through my clothes and donated a few bags and put a few items in the thredUp bag. I sent it off and within three weeks, I had over $100 of cash/credit in my thredUP account. I could have cashed that money out, but I used it toward a brand new $2500 Max Mara coat – that was on the site for $140. I NEVER would have afforded that otherwise! I’ve sent in two bags since, and with that money, I’ve probably ordered seven or eight times. Clothes for me and SO many clothes for Charlotte. It’s safe to say, I am obsessed.

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This is me, in my glorious Max Mara coat. I’d pretty much like to sleep in it, but instead I’ve only been brave enough to wear it twice.

Let me show you my most recent thredUP purchase.

I had 56.64 in credit. I purchased everything you see below. The Alice and Olivia top alone originally retailed for $350. This is easily over $500 worth of clothing, that with my credit, I just paid $30.86 for. Make sure to have your push notifications turned on for your phone too, because they regularly send out promo codes that are good for that day only!

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Within a week, I had this box on my doorstep.

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As you can see, everything is packaged very well.

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And here it all is, opened up. As always, I’m thrilled with the condition of everything. The flats look to be brand new. The dress still has tags on it. The Minnie Mouse Stride Rite shoes will be perfect for our trip to Disney next week.

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My only complaint ever with thredUP is how little they pay out for clothes. So don’t send anything to them expecting to get top dollar. Personally, I pay the 12.99 to have the items they don’t list shipped back to me. But if you’re looking to clean out your closet with minimal effort AND make some money in the process, go for it.

Want to try thredUP? Use this link for $20 in credit to spend on the site. As you can see,a little goes a long way!

Have you tried thredUP? Let me know how it went in the comments!

xo,

~ a

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Guess what? It’s totally ok to travel without your spouse. http://myspiritedlife.com/2016/02/guess-what-its-totally-ok-to-travel-without-your-spouse/ http://myspiritedlife.com/2016/02/guess-what-its-totally-ok-to-travel-without-your-spouse/#comments Wed, 03 Feb 2016 19:50:49 +0000 http://myspiritedlife.com/?p=175 Being somewhat of a public figure, I find people are a little more interested in my private life than I’m accustomed to. Which of course, goes with the territory, and is totally fine.

However, there is one aspect of my private life that some folks have a little trouble getting a handle on. Plus, the more I’ve talked to friends in similar relationships, I find the questions I get aren’t just relegated to z-list celebs like me.

The matter at hand is this:

People who choose to travel without their significant other. This even further delves into those who choose to travel with their children – without their significant other.

Yes, this happens – and guess what? It’s totally okay. There are a myriad of reasons why this is the case and contrary to some of the negative things I’ve heard, it is not an indicator of trouble in the relationship and it’s not a red flag for bad parenting.

Before I go further, let me make it clear – there are some families who take every vacation together. When I was growing up, mine was one of them, and I completely respect and love that. It just doesn’t work for my particular situation now.

In our case, I own a travel business, (www.strange-escapes.com), make appearances and occasionally, film for TV. This means I typically travel at least once or twice a month. Since my daughter isn’t in school yet, any chance I get to bring her along, I take. My spouse, (Jimmy is his name), who happens to work two jobs, can’t just jaunt off on every little trip I take and I would never expect him to.

The other reason he doesn’t come with us? Sometimes, he doesn’t want to. Those who know Jimmy would know that a trip to Disney, or a week on a cruise ship would most likely be torture for him. It’s just not his bag. Now when we go to the Mount Washington Hotel in the White Mountains of New Hampshire? Or I have an event at the Stanley Hotel in Estes Park, CO? He is much more likely to come to something like that. He’s more of a mountain man than a touristy resort type person. Well, really, he’s like a normal person who can only take a vacation once or twice a year. But when you see photos of me bouncing all over the country with or without my daughter, no man in sight, it’s easy to imagine there is trouble brewing.

I could force the issue. I could tell him he is missing out on making memories with his daughter. But I wouldn’t do that to him either. I just have no desire to and it’s not so important to me that I would create an issue in our relationship over it. He makes plenty of memories with her, he’s an amazing Dad to her and partner to me. Him being miserable at Disney with us for a week is not going to be the deciding factor as to whether Charlotte turns into a decent human being as she gets older. If anything, that time apart is teaching her that as a woman, you can have a solid relationship while maintaining your independence.

But don’t take it from me. I wanted an expert opinion on this, so I turned to my friend Damona Hoffman, an online dating coach and relationship expert. She has some super helpful suggestions on how to make it work when couples travel apart, either by choice or by necessity.

Damona Hoffman, dating expert and host of FYI's #BlackLove

Damona Hoffman, dating expert and host of FYI’s #BlackLove

“As a TV host and speaker, I spend many weeks out of the year away from my family and my husband works as a TV writer and is often on set. With two young children, many times it’s not practical for us to travel together.

There are many tools that make it easier for people to stay connected while their love is away. My husband and I like to use the app Glide which allows you to send video text messages and see your sweetheart even when you’re in different time zones and on different schedules. Apps like What’s App allow you to text for free even if you’re out of the country. Then with Skype you can have a video date when you need to make a more meaningful connection.

Rather than focus on the time spent away, it’s important to make your partner a priority when you’re together. From Twitter, to Buzzfeed and blogs we now have so many things vying for our attention that the real crisis is not how much time you’re spending apart but rather how much time you are actually connecting when you’re together.

In my work I see that the couples who give technology a rest when they’re spending time together and make regular date nights a priority are more successful, even if they must spend time apart for work.”

I love her advice on making your time together really count. I think that’s why our family has been so adaptable given our different occupations and interests. And technology has made being apart so much easier, hasn’t it? We often utilize FaceTime or Skype while I’m away.

You can find my talented friend Damona hosting #BlackLove on the FYI network, and please, check out her web site. She has a trove of relationship advice and a successful radio show as well, www.damonahoffman.com

So, what about you all? What are some things you and your spouse tend to do apart and does it work for you?

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I workout in my pajamas. http://myspiritedlife.com/2016/02/i-workout-in-my-pajamas/ http://myspiritedlife.com/2016/02/i-workout-in-my-pajamas/#comments Tue, 02 Feb 2016 12:32:25 +0000 http://myspiritedlife.com/?p=170 I’m not a gym junkie. As a matter of fact, I’ll pretty much do anything to avoid the gym. Not because I don’t love working out. But despite what every gym goer will try to convince me, it’s such a time suck for me. I have to get dressed, get my kiddo dressed, pack us both snacks and water, get there, drop her in the kids area, pray she doesn’t cry when I do so, then go work out, pick her up, get home, shower, get ready…etc etc etc. So, despite my gym membership that I pay $30 a month for, I can honestly say, I haven’t set foot in that place in six months. (Don’t judge me!)

However, I do manage to work out at the very least, three times a week. Usually more like five. I try to make it a point to get at least a half hour of cardio in every morning, then in the afternoon I usually do some sort of stretching or strength training, (try the 7 minute work out.)

You know what finally got me over this fitness hurdle and pushed me to working this into my day? I stopped stressing about changing in and out of gym clothes and just hopped on my elliptical in my pajamas in the morning. Done. Over with. I can go about my day and not feel guilty about not getting a workout in because I couldn’t find a clean sports bra.

I know this sounds crazy, but when you are racing against the clock of your three year old waking up, every second counts. Not to mention, who the heck cares what I’m wearing when I workout in the privacy of my own home? I’m finally doing it regularly and that’s what counts.

Now I realize many folks find it easier to lay their gym clothes out the night before. Not me. I can barely remember to turn a light off when I leave the room. Getting fitness gear out is just not happening.

Don’t get me wrong, when the weather is nice, I never do cardio indoors. Those days, I force my ass outside. Usually with Charlotte, unless she’s at school. But when it’s rainy, or snowy…you can bet, I’m parked on my elliptical, sweating through my pjs and binge watching something on Netflix.

Here’s to fitness!

You have any fitness confessions? Share them in the comments!

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