Ask Toi: Valentine’s Day Edition: My wife states she doesn’t want a Valentine’s Day gift should I not get one?

Getting a gift for Valentine’s Day just because you are married is not mundane. I dislike people making the excuse that if your husband loves you he doesn’t have to show you love on Valentine’s Day. If your spouse loves you and wants to shower you with a gift on that day he can.  If you as a couple have come to the conclusion that you don’t exchange gifts that is fine too. Just be sure that when you state you don’t want a gift you are mature to make that decision and not give your spouse Hell come that day because you made a decision to be something you aren’t.  It’s okay to be married and exchange or not to. I encouraged that man to honor his wife’s words, by getting something and not giving to her that day but finding another day to give her a gift. This way if she by chance is one of these women who say things but don’t mean it he will still be covered and if she is standing by not wanting to exchange, he has a gift to give her as a thinking of you gift.

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Photo by Ricardo Esquivel on Pexels.com

Ladies, I want to encourage you if you can’t stand by your decision to not give gifts, do NOT ever tell a man something you can’t stand by 100%.  This is the same thing when you get into an argument and you tell that man to leave the house and you don’t want him to leave. Or you get mad and use the big “D” word out of anger. This is a larger principle of not saying things to either look like the “cool” wife or to say things out of anger that you can’t back up.  Out of all of the times that I have argued with my husband I have learned not to say what I don’t mean. If you want a gift, it’s perfectly ok to say you want to exchange on Valentine’s Day.  What’s not okay to do is to play games or say things you think they want to hear. This will disappoint you in the long run.  This you should have known mess that people pull in relationships shows lack of maturity. Relationships are about communication and saying or acting in one manner that isn’t who you are makes it hard for either one of you to walk in love because you spend more time recovering from idle messages!

 

How to Handle Love Week When you and your Love are Beefing

Valentine’s Day is this week and it would be nice if all couples were in an a sea of love and like. That is ideal but it’s not always real.

These man-made holidays don’t always have timing on point. Remember just like no two people are the same; no two couples are the same as well. There is no way that couples can be in the right head space when Valentine’s Day comes.

So how do you manage when you really don’t want to show love to your mate?! You show it anyway. You do not do for someone based on merit. The same way you feel about them they could and probably have had the same feeling towards you. Marriage and relationships aren’t perfect in any way. We have to let go of this ideology that couples marry and ride off into this happily ever after. That happens in television and movies. The real happens after the vows are said.

Now with that same proclamation there is always a disclaimer. No flowers or candy will change the issues that took place regardless of a holiday or not. I think about my first marriage anniversary. In my head weeks leading up to it I expected the day to be filled with little surprises all day, little text messages of how much love we had for one another and ending the night with amazing sex. The reality was days before and even the day of we were arguing. I had one of my postpartum fits and our dinner had more silence then a good flow of conversation. I don’t remember if the night ended in sex or if it was filled with the reality that we had kids to take care of and stress was at an all time high.

There’s a difference of expectation that can be damaging to a relationship if realism isn’t at the forefront. This is why candy and flowers shouldn’t be the basis of how one apologizes. Give whatever gift you had intended but work more on your actual issues without having to have Hallmark attached. Working through the moments when you dislike your mate will make the gifts that much more sweeter trust me.

If I could go back to that first anniversary dinner I would have laid the charges down because the mere fact that I can’t tell you why we’re reacting proves that in the long run it didn’t matter. So ask yourself is the issues are really worth ruining any time that you have with your loved one?! Most likely not. Take some time to work through. The off days and the days of dislike are going to come. Trust me live a little they will. But if you’re friends first and have a strong foundation you can work through anything. Don’t ruin any day. Ask the widow or widower how they feel and I’m sure they would love one more day to be in the arms of the one they love. Each moment is fleeting. Don’t spend the little moments we have wrapped up in things that won’t build a strong relationship.

What does a Blogger like me want for Christmas?

I was asked this question and at first I was like would anyone want to know that.  First let me say that this is not a blog to get a thang! I am good.  Nor is this blog to help or aid my husband in any of his gift giving endeavors.  He already gives the most amazing gifts and listens to me when I talk.  Not only that I have kindly made him a little cheat sheet a few weeks ago.

So for me I am a creature of habit and a creature of comfort.  I like the things that I have been eyeing all year-long over trendier items. If the item is in trend it has to align with something I was already thinking. Last year I wanted a laptop so I could bring more content and I got that.  I would have been super happy with that alone. Laptops ain’t cheap but the investment into my blog made it feel like it was a good idea.  It was.  My husband as he always does went above and beyond. Shout out to Marques for always thinking of me.

This year I made a list all year-long of things I wanted.  I got some of the items myself.  Like for instance I wanted some Daisy Perfume by Marc Jacobs.  One my most recent girls trip I got a bottle.  I had been eyeing it and made the decision of why not.  So that is how I like to enjoy holiday gifts.  I really make a list of all the things that mom guilt has told me to wait on and get them at the end of the year if I haven’t done so during the year.

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So things like new clothes or specific pieces that I may had my eye on.  I like things that are about comfort and will cost me less money down the line.  For instance gift cards to go to Soul Cycle sessions.  Gift cards are never a tacky thing for me.  I shop like I am rich after Christmas and you can’t tell me a thing.  So for some its an issue with me never.  I love stores like Starbucks, Target, Ulta, etc Anything where I can get what I want and not what someone things I want is always a nice thing.  One year I got over $350.00 in gift cards and you couldn’t wipe the smile in my face.  I felt like I was a shopping goddess and I had a lot of things that lasted.

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I love things that like gift cards to nail salons or facials.  Anything where I can zone out and make an excuse to increase me time.  When I go I make it my business to leave the little folks behind with their dad of course and I over extend my me time to the fullest.  Like walk every aisle with coffee really slow type of shopping. I don’t even like going to stores unless it’s after the holidays.  Other than that I get my typing fingers ready so I can make sure that I get the good deals too.

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This Christmas I am still in the comfort business.  Anything soft like a new throw pillow, pajamas that feel great, beauty products, etc I love.

The holidays aren’t about getting but if I am going to get I like it to feel like it’s the end of the year comfort party, but honestly the events of the holidays are what I really enjoy most.  This time is magical I plan on taking it in gifts or not!

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Ask Toi: We got some questions

Is it okay to air out a grievance about a company or individual who didn’t offer a good service or a faulty product? 

If they have a social media page for their work than yes.  Business is business.  In this social media age, how you deal with folks will air itself on social media.  So if you got to Toys R Us (I say them because last Christmas I aired them out) and they failed, reach out to their customer service.  If that gets you now where its fair game.  I find often times you can get them to respond better if you drop a dime on them on social media.  Make sure when you do that you are okay with others seeing it.  Most times these are not private comments.  To business owners, it would be in your best interest to make even mistakes right, social media has been known to end a business as customers have been known to drag someone for filth.

Is it okay that a grandparent doesn’t babysit a child? 

Yes grandparents are not expected to baby sit.  They are not the golden ticket to your social life now that you are a parent.  Many grandparents are out here living their best lives now that they are no longer tied down to kids of their own.  However grandparents should be involved in their grandchildren lives in other forms.  This means supporting them in school functions, attending birthday parties, holidays, etc A grandparent who doesn’t do these things should be held to a higher standard than them not simply wanting to babysit at will.  If you are experiencing other issues where the grandparents have checked out, it may be some deeper issues. I know some grandparents who do not and miss out on a lot of experiences and it comes out in how the kids interact with them.  Again they will lose precious time, try not to forget that.

How do you deal with a mate who has checked out emotionally?

One you have to communicate and find out why.  Find out if that mate even knows it.  Sometimes they may have things on their hearts and minds and makes it hard to even know that they are missing in action. You are not a mind reader, simply ask. If there is resistance.  Give it some time and space.  However you will have to revisit and if the resistance is still there, try counseling.  Do NOT nag them.  Trust me no one wants that. You are both grown so talking and communicating although not easy still has to take place.

Do you have to exchange gifts for the holidays with your mate?

I think I may have talked about this before but no.  This is something that is between couples.  Some couples do so much all year-long that they don’t see the value in giving gifts to one another. They not only give gifts but they invest in their mate, i.e taking them to the things their mate likes, getting them gifts for no reason, bringing flowers just because its Friday, getting tickets to their mate’s favorite team-overall thoughtfulness. I would opt in some other tradition.  I think that couples should build together.  Maybe instead of gifts you make a new pot of savings.  Maybe make the pot a vacation together, purchase a house, etc. You can decorate it, and place money from both partners.  This way you have something visible to show that you are moving towards goals. However as many complain about these commercial holidays many don’t find out their partners love language and definitely do NOT show them they love them all year. Love is not gifts.  Love should be how you speak, how you protect, how you engage.  Do not give your mate the excuse of not giving gifts on top of an already raggedy relationship.  What is the point in losing all the way around?  No a gift will not mask things but everyone likes to receive.  Its better to have a solid relationship than a bunch of stuff but its horrible to have nothing both in gifts and treatment as well and then try to hide under the no holiday guide as well.  Do better in how you love and show love.  All the ones complaining about getting all year, don’t mean they AND their mate feels that they are being loved on all year-long. Only you know that, also if your mate still wants to give don’t make them feel bad or pressure them to have the same mindset as you do.  Give them a gift because they want to for the holidays.  Relationships isn’t about being one-sided or going along with the dominating mate either.  It should be mutually respected and enjoyed by all.

 

 

 

Mother’s Day Do NOTS

So yes it’s Mother’s Day and the day can be super beautiful however there are a few things you don’t want to do:

  1. If a woman isn’t pregnant or at least hasn’t confirmed it with you, do NOT ask her when she is ready to have some.  Not every woman wants a kid.  This day can actually be hard for women who have been trying to have kids and for whatever reason can’t.  It’s simple, don’t ask about another woman’s uterus.  Let me help you out further, its called MIND YOUR BUSINESS.  It doesn’t matter if it your daughter in law, cousin, etc do NOT ask.  It’s non of your concern.  You are not helping by asking.  You are being OFFENSIVE.  I said it and it’s true.  MIND your own business.
  2. Don’t call mom-everyone knows you have to at least call.  So for those who still have her here, call her.  There are moms who have strained relationships that don’t get calls from their kids even on these types of days.  Its unfortunate.  You and your mom don’t have to agree but you can agree to say thanks and hi.
  3. Please refrain from male bashing.  I know it’s mom day and its a day of reflection. Some use this day to come at the father of their kids to remind him of what you do. Let me give you some advice, that man knows and some how will not care.  Stop wasting your energy on him.  Enjoy your day.  Yes you do a lot or even all of the work, but coming at his neck won’t make him realize the error of his ways. Tagging him all day on social media won’t either.  If you have been fine this far without him, keep it pushing.  Why even give him your energy?!
  4. Do not give your kids a hard time about the gifts gotten.  There is a mom would love your portion.  Stop with the pressure.  Not everyone can afford to lavish their mom with diamonds.  I love my mom and if I had it like that I would give her the world. However some moms make it a big extra where the giving comes from a place of not wanting to hear your mouth over real desire to show love.  Take it easy on your family and loved ones.  It’s not a competition.
  5. Chain mom posts.  We are beautiful mom, the tag a beautiful mom is not needed. We all work hard.  We all provide constant love for those who choose to.  Do not send chain texts.  We ALL know what day it is.  I am surrounded by a lot of amazing women in my life and a great network of mom friends.  I actually send them individual texts if I don’t call.  I know they are all being loved on but individual texts makes it more personal.  Not only that 9 times out of 10 you don’t even change the name and they know.  If you love them like that, them send them amazing text messages and leave it at that.

This is a simple list.  There are probably a dozen more things you SHOULD know.  Rule of thumb is to make sure you do for mom what you want someone to do for you.  That is the golden rule anyway.  Love on mom and leave drama at home.  Even if you and mom aren’t in full speaking terms its best to call or drop by and leave than to stay and mess up both of your day.

Lastly Mother’s Day is always best when dads who are around participate.  Nothing is more beautiful than a man showing his children how they need to honor their mother. My husband has lost his mom but the kids saw what they needed to do to honor me even at the point of death.  Teaching is always happening.  It’s important for kids to know how to make it work.  So do your part!!

Continue reading Mother’s Day Do NOTS

Mother’s Day Gift Giving Guide

Mother’s Day is around the corner literally and the struggle to get mom the perfect gift is on.  I have a few suggestions to help you along the way, but first let’s think what would mom want.  The gift that you give should be about making mom smile.  No amount of gifts will ever pay your mom or even can contribute to the amount of love that your mom gives to you and has given to you.  But be creative and think about HER.  This is the time to make her smile.  Do not get your mom anything related to health unless she has requested it.  I am a fit mom or trying to be it would not offend me because I am actively on that journey.  However showing up with a fitbit for a mom who is not ready for that or hasn’t expressed it could send mom into a whirlwind.  She may need it but the day is for things SHE wants.  Tread light on gifts that could be offensive.  Moms are still women and women and their body image is an issue.  Let mom get to a point than support her but Mother’s Day may not be the time.

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  1. Flowers-even if your mom gives you the whole I don’t want or need anything nothing says thanks than a flowers.  They are a simple but thoughtful gesture that makes everyone’s day.  There are flower stands all over the place even some along the road.  Don’t go to moms without any.
  2. Hand written notes even in cares are still appreciated.  Moms want to know what’s on your heart.  Cards are beautiful and a lot of moms save them but your words are best.
  3. Gift cards-If you get them and they can be gotten just about anywhere at least make sure they are stores she likes.  Please do not get her something that you want.  That is not cool. Let mom do her thing and shop and get what she wants.
  4. Macaroni Pictures-these are okay if your child is in elementary school, however if you are grown and you are making her something let it be from the heart and not something you scribbled down last-minute.  She is worth energy in your creativity.
  5. Upgrades-if you plan on getting mom a tablet or new phone do try to program it and spend some time helping her operate it.
  6. Church-moms love seeing their kids in church.  So go if you can.  Expect the parking lots to be full between Mothers day, Easter and Christmas these are high church times.
  7. Food-get upgraded favorites.  This is the time where mom can indulge in a few tasty treats.  Chocolate is good so make it a good purchase for her.  She would appreciate it.
  8. If you have small children and even if you’re co-parenting, she may not be your mom but you can help your child or children get her something nice. Kids don’t have jobs but they do understand getting mom something.  Don’t disappoint your child trying to “stick” it to your child’s mother.  You may not like her but you laid down and had a baby honor her for the work she puts in when you don’t have the responsibility of having to do most of the care for your child.
  9. Give mom a break-do you know that allowing her to go out WITHOUT the kids for a few hours is a gift in itself.  How about a nap?  How about dinner cooked if you don’t want to brave the restaurants?  Anything that takes the load off of her would be super appreciated.
  10. Pampering-if your mom loves a little manicure or pedicure or maybe she’s so busy handling it all that she doesn’t have the time, a certificate to get these things done is great, or make her appointment and take her there.  Relaxation is always a great idea.

The idea is taking some time to love on mom.  Don’t make it about you.  Make it about her.  Give her a break. Show up with flowers.  There are so many that wish they could give flowers to their mom and instead will have to give flowers on a grave.  While you still have her, shower her with love and gifts.  She deserves them!! Happy Mother’s Day to all the ladies that put in that hard work when appreciation is far and few!!!

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Let Love Be Great!

So this is the weekend when most people will take their significant others out and show them love.  Let me just say that everyone doesn’t celebrate this “man-made” holiday however let me encourage all in a few home keeping details.

  1. Just because you don’t celebrate doesn’t mean you have to do the whole “it’s not a big deal” on everyone who is celebrating’s social media pages.  I can’t tell you how many times it irks to see this.  I am not calling anyone who feels like this a hater because truth be told it is a man-made holiday, however stop being love killers because you either have love and don’t care, don’t have love, or just by your nature need to be a negative Nancy.
  2. Just because you do celebrate and you want to shower yourself, your loved ones in love do not shun those who do not celebrate.  Basically let people be great either way and do what works for you.
  3. This is not the time to jump on status that is not about you to tell everyone either way how miserable you are or less it’s an open-ended question, a poll, or you’re apart of a group that is asking.  This is code for stop with the unsolicited information so the world can know which side you are on.  Trust and believe if its unwarranted people don’t really want to know and that’s real.
  4. Married people, just because you live with you mate and you don’t make it a big deal in your home, its okay for other married people to indulge and vice versa.  This “holiday” isn’t just for those in the dating world and still trying to get “some.”  Some people need these types of holidays to be a bit more expressive than they would normally. Let folks live.  Marriage should be celebrated daily but let’s be real most don’t and little reminders of love in ANY forms can keep folks from the divorce line.
  5. Realize that the single folks that swore of relationships will showcase what they got just to let themselves or others know.  Guess what? Even if you feel a way about it, its okay for them to do that.  If one day our country can focus on spending a few bucks to tell whomever they want they love them, although love is free I say let them.  In this hate filled world I would rather see expressions of love than the hate that is quicky spread like wildfire.
  6. Pray for those who have lost love.  While some are looking down for those who do or do not celebrate there is a widow who misses the times when their significant other showered them.  Also the newly separated and divorced grieve during this time as well.  Learn to show compassion.
  7. Single folks try and this is a big try because let’s be honest its easy for me to say try when I don’t live that life anymore but try to find ways to celebrate you, celebrate in groups, or enjoy the day. I know that again its hard to do but don’t go batty for one day and putting your life and what life means into this one day. There will be a lot of flowers and candy going out to significant others who don’t even mean their mates well.
  8. Show love daily.  I love to hear the men especially complain about this holiday but if you ask them when was the last time they did the little things you can only hear crickets.  Do not be fooled into thinking that if you buy into this holiday that your relationships no matter which ones they are will be perfect because it won’t.  The thought behind the idea is to show that you love and want to do something nice for the one you love.
  9. LADIES, please get you man something.  Yes more than a sappy card.  Be just as creative as you want him to be.  What makes you think that just because he says I am good that he really is.  Try finding ways to make his day easier.  How about treat him too.  Too many men complain about what they do and they remember the times when it wasn’t given in return.  Men want to be shown just as much as we do. Step up your game this year.
  10. Be creative for those you love. I send things to my single friends, my grandmother, my nieces, parents, etc.  It doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg to say hey, you’re loved today and everyday.  Think outside the box.

 

Enjoy your Valentine’s Day weekend!!  Remember don’t find yourself loving on someone else’s mate.  This is not the time to be a celebrated side piece.  Remember side pieces gets ransacked candy and broken hearts.  Invest in someone who is all into you and you alone. Being a part of and being the only one are two different things.

 

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