Chest Out, Chin Up!

Chest Out, Chin Up!

Tonight’s words of advice to my teenagers-Chest out, Chin up!

Words I heard 100 times tonight while watching my daughter at gymnastics… four hours worth.

It wasn’t until we got in the car to come home that these words resonated a different meaning to me.


Attitude is Everything

Recently I took a leap of faith and switched my daughter to a new gym.

We left a gym that was a part of our lives for 3 years.

The reasons for leaving were many.  Although a huge change and many sacrifices will be made, in my heart I know this was a change that needed to happen.

It wasn’t until the ride home however that I needed to give my daughter a real heart to heart.


As I was watching her tonight I could tell that she wasn’t giving her all in a sport she loves so much.  Granted, she hasn’t been feeling well, and maybe she was tired.  However, she has always been quick to complain about everything around her being the problem but not looking deep inside herself to find that the problem lies within her.


GASP!  You might be thinking I’m a terrible mother by saying this.  The truth is, she needed to hear the truth.

Moving to the new gym she could see that her skill level was behind.  Her quick answer was to blame everyone at the last gym.

I could only chuckle because isn’t this the answer for many? If something isn’t working right it couldn’t be me? It must be THEM.

The truth is she’s not giving it 100%.  What can you expect?


The REAL Truth


Maybe I’m way off base in my thinking and let me preface this is my personal opinion and what I see in relation to my own children…  smart phones in my kids hands are creating lazy, low self esteem, attitude monsters.  

My kids have become so dependent on this little device and it’s causing more problems than I ever imagined.

  • pure and simple laziness
  • lack of self confidence
  • attitude problems

Let me explain my issues… because it all ties into Chest out, Chin Up and believe it or not it ties into my stamping world as well.


My heart to heart with my daughter came to life this evening because of these very things I have written above.

My girl loves to lay on her bed and do absolutely nothing but watch YouTube video after YouTube video.  Resulting in ZILCH effort on her part of actually getting something done.  Brandon is in the same boat.


Tonight as I watched her on the bars, her arm strength was ZERO.  Yet she has no time to gain strength in her upper arms at home because she is sitting on her bed, watching a video of someone else gaining strength in their arms.  Not kidding.

When I explained that it would take work to build up her arm muscles, you would have thought I had 4 eyes and spikes coming out of my head.  I was immediately the worst mom ever.  The truth was hurting. There was no way this could be her fault.


Lack of Self Confidence

I’m not bragging, but my kids are smart individuals.  Honestly, I know for a fact it is not from my side of the gene pool.  I am amazed at the intelligence of my kids.  BUT… they lack every bit of self confidence they should have.

I hear the “I can’t do that…” more times that I can tell you.  When in fact I know they can.

Why would a smart phone tie into this you might ask?

I thought about myself.  When I look on Pinterest, or YouTube many times I feel less than a stellar human after seeing the amazing things people make or do.

I won’t tell you the countless Pinterest recipes I’ve tried and ruined and I can promise DID NOT come out looking like it did in the picture.

Don’t get me wrong. Please hear me out… I love both of these sites.  But can I tell you there are times when I watch or see something and I feel like a ninny because I can’t do the things these people do?

A perfect example would be a blogger I follow who posts the most beautiful pictures of her home all decked in WHITE and she has 4 beautiful children dressed to the nines every single day.  She’s as big as a stick and there is NEVER a mess.

When I first started following her I was amazed at her ability to keep her “photographed” home so clean and tidy with 4 children.  I felt like a lazy mom knowing I had a pile of dirty dishes waiting, nothing even planned to cook and there was nothing pretty to photograph around me.  AND definitely nothing WHITE.

Then it hit me…

My “Something is not right” ticker went off in my head.

Keep it REAL

I am guessing she too has dirty dishes.  Behind that camera she is in her pajamas, not showered in a few days and one of her kids is wearing a diaper soaked to the gills.  I mean really….

But you see how quickly I lost self confidence in myself?

Again, maybe I’m totally off base… but I feel like with my kids noses in a smart phone seeing all the perfection there is NO way they can meet the expectations of what they see.



Let’s Not Forget Attitude- It’s EVERYTHING!

It wasn’t until the handy little smart phone landed in my kids hands when the attitudes started flying. I’m not talking about a disrespectful attitude.  I’m talking about complaining, whining and the constant… I can’t do that syndrome.

It was the basis for my entire conversation tonight with my daughter.

Attitude is everything.  When we tell ourselves we can’t do something it will NOT be done.  PERIOD.

If you think you can’t, you won’t.

I have spoken these words for years with my own team of great women.  If your attitude is in the toilet, your business is in the toilet.  If you think you can’t stamp, you will probably never stamp. If you compare yourself to others it takes away all the joy you had for something.

Isn’t it amazing that when we want something SO bad, we will move a mountain to make things happen?

That’s my way of thinking, because attitude is everything.  If there is something out there that I want to do, or a new thing I want to try, I will work HARD to make it work.

Ahhh… Hard WORK.  That was the underlying truth that came out tonight.  Sometimes it takes hard work to see results.


Chest Out, Chin Up!

Tonight as I summed up my little heart to heart with my daughter my last words were- Chest Out, Chin Up!

In other words, stand tall with confidence and the right attitude. Keep your chin up in all the things you do.  Yes, you will have bad days and many falls.  The idea is to keep getting up and keep working hard.  You will soon see the results.

Obviously I need a quick fix on removing my kids smart phones from their sweet little hands too.

Let’s remember…

We can move mountains and accomplish great things with hard work.

If you are a crafter and you are struggling, I did too.  I kept working hard at it. Really hard!


One Last Thing… 

I could never leave without sharing a little something I created.  It’s not my favorite card at all, and it’s exactly why I’m going to share it.  Plus it had a mountain on the card and totally fit my conversation.  We can move mountains if we try and try again. Don’t give up and keep working hard.

Now, I really do have dirty dishes in the sink, laundry all over my living room floor and my stamp room looks like a storm rolled through.  I’m NOT kidding and keeping it REAL.


Chest Out, Chin Up, Stampin' Up!, Adventure Awaits


Chest Out, Chin Up, Stampin' Up!, Adventure Awaits

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There is Always an Adventure awaits… let’s move some mountains!

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67 thoughts on “Chest Out, Chin Up!”

  1. Thank you for realizing where the problem lies & doing something about it. As a grandmother of 10 & a great grandmother of 6 I see where the cell phone has taking over our lives. You are the first blog I go to every morning. Your cards are so beautiful. Chest out, chin up!

  2. Absolutely loved your post!! Truly spoke to me and I love your candor and honesty! Plus your card *is* too darn cute!!!! I hope that you always remember the Chest out, chin up (lack of confidence) for yourself as well because you are truly talented and should never feel less than!! 🙂

  3. Well said……thank you for the reality check and for reminding us of what is and what can be…
    I enjoy you sharing your life with us and love the projects you create…..thank you for that.

  4. what? I can’t live in a magazine? I have often thought the same of the homes photographed in magazines then reality kicks in and I think I wonder how long it took to clean the house and stage it just right – days I bet. Good post.

  5. Jennifer Newsome

    I really need to have a talk like this with my daughter. Thinks for the inspiration Kimberly!

  6. I am so glad that my kids were raised before smart phones; I constantly bump into folks (not just kids, either) so engrossed in their phones they could walk into the street and be hit by a bus. I think you are VERY smart if you take those phones away or set limits that you control. Thank you for sharing your family with us.

  7. Oh girl!!!!!! I needed to hear these very words today!! You are absolutely my hero! I’ve had the worst summer with my son and my lights are going off–why is there no one here with me to show them this?????? You are absolutely right on my dear friend!!!! And that lady with 4 kids and the White House does not exist in real life. She is a basket case with a paid photographer. Her life is like our “out of the camera shot” life. She just knows photoshop way better!! Love you! Thank you for this!! ??????????

  8. You are an amazing MOTHER!!! I love this message – it’s COMPLETE TRUTH!!!! I’m sharing it with my DL at a meeting this weekend. YOU INSPIRE ME!!!!

  9. Well said!
    I’m glad you took the time to write this and I took time to read it.
    I’m one of the lucky ones because my kids grew up before the time of smart phones!

  10. Well said Kimberly! Food for thought for sure! My ‘handy little device’ leaves me feeling insecure also at times, & that’s when it’s time to walk away. But I need to remember that my kiddo probably won’t do that & I’ll need to monitor closely. Great advice!

  11. I love this, and let my daughter read it. From time to time I completely remove the iPad, laptop, and any other devices she may have for a solid weekend or week. There was a time when she lost it for a few months. If at any point, I deem it necessary to be the “mean mom” and take those things away because it’s what she needs, so be it.

    At almost 12 she is one of the last that doesn’t have her own phone. I’m not in any rush to get her one. I told her she may not have a Facebook account and I would like her to focus on the things she’s most passionate about. The phone, iPad or whatever device changed everyone, it’s not just our kids. The next time you’re out and about in a public place, just leave your phone in the car and look around. It’s amazing how glued to the screen we all are.
    As much as I love these things like everyone else, it’s so important to just step back and live life outside the screen too.

    My mom always said, if “everyone” else is a problem for someone, it’s time to look at inward. This is great advice and it can apply to all walks of life.

    What a great mom you are!

  12. Great talk! Be the “bad mom” because, unfortunately the “I can’t do it” problems only get larger and have resulted in real tragedies on college campuses. Perfectly capable, awesome young people who feel they don’t measure up one way or the other because of their consumption of social media — not being mature enough to realize that what they are seeing isn’t everyday real and sometimes not any day real.

  13. You are a rockstar Kimberly!! This is exactly what my hubby & I were talking about this week regarding our daughter! Perfectly captured the impact…of not only smart phones but social media on our kids and young adults!! …now how do we change that?! …my daughter is older than yours and I’m not sure, but we gotta do sumthin’! God bless!!!?

  14. God love your honest heart! Even adults can learn a lesson from this post! I know this adult did!

  15. I think you’re pretty accurate but I hope you don’t ever think you’re a bad mom! You work hard for your family and I know they appreciate it .. like mine, they forget to say it every once in awhile. You’re right about Pinterest too .. we only see the most perfect looking homes, clothes, art, cards, tutorials, etc, but no one can live up to that. I wonder how many of that lady’s blog followers believe she has a perfect life. I guess we all want to believe we can have it all and do it all but it just isn’t realistic (unfortunately)! I still catch myself thinking sometimes that if only my house was like that, or if I looked like that, or if my kids had that,my life would be so perfect .. I think it’s human nature. Now is the time though to nip the ‘can’t’ attitudes in the bud .. speaking from experience ..

  16. Thank you so much for sharing “the hard truth”. I love that you share your heartfelt, true life with us! I’m a fellow demonstrator, and was so excited when SU announced the 2018 incentive trip. I want to go!!! At first I was super positive that I could do it. Then it started ~ the “I can’t do that!” syndrome. After reading this, I’m going to put my chest out & chin up and earn that trip! Love your card too!

  17. Oh, Kimberly, this is so spot on! My daughter is exactly like this with softball. She will watch video after video, yet not go outside and practice. It’s time we had this same heart to heart talk. Thank you so much for helping me see the problem. And heck, the whole perfection thing certainly applies to me! I always dream of my house looking like it is staged to be sold, but in reality, I have dirty dishes in the sink and sports gear all over the dining room. That’s real life, and it means a house full of loved, active children. (I’ll work on my daughter…) Thank you for always sharing the real you. It helps me be the real me.

  18. Thanks, needed to hear this! Web reliance has made us lazy individuals…I also see where signing onto a lot of blogs does the same…overload of perfection…where has my mojo gone? the toilet, for not seeing how fun creating and working hard on a card can be…yes, sometimes we will fail, no matter how hard we created, but it shouldn’t stop us short in our tracks, we should pick up and move on.
    So with that said…I am going to cut down on some blogs and just hit the blog hops to see others…don’t worry, I’m keeping yours!

  19. Kimberly – Thank you. Having a couple of hard days myself this week and everything you said totally hit home. Great motivation! Your children are really lucky to have you as their mom :} Thanks again

  20. I wish I could send this article to my kids on behalf of theirs. So beautifully and concisely thought out and written down. I, too, believe “devices” are dumming down and anti-socializing young and old. There is so little reading and writing and critical thinking going on. Hurray for your side. Thank you.

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  22. Thank you for this post! We just launched my daughter off to college and she had a bad day yesterday. Between hormones and lost keys and probably a little bit of stress, she was a mess. We’ll be having an attitude-check walk and talk later today. She isn’t a quitter but I can tell she’s discouraged. She doesn’t need to be, but we all have our moments. It’s all about how we rebound! Thank you, thank you.

  23. We definitely are the encouragers, right? Honestly, with my teenagers I find it can be a daily struggle, but it’s also a great reminder for myself. Keep on swimming… XOXO

  24. The devices are definitely a problem and an everyday struggle. Trying to get my kids to see that there is WAY more to life than inside those devices. XOXO

  25. Cheryl, you know I love you. I hope you were able to create something this weekend. It’s always therapy and when we can really get down to business and set aside the time we can accomplish great things. XOXO

  26. It’s always good to hear I have other mama’s in the same boat… I’m also a firm believer that keeping things real even on the ugly days is authentic. I see way too much “staged” lifestyles on the internet. I found my daughter posting something fancy she had staged on her Instagram account the other day. After having a little hissy fit I explained to her the next time I might be posting what her room REALLY looked like if I caught her staging something before her room was clean. Perspective… She will learn. LOL. Thanks for reading Jessica. XOXOXO

  27. Debbie- first, thank you for reading. I appreciate you. Second, you can do it. YOU can earn that trip. I have no doubt. It takes a lot of hard work, but once you write out your plan, you will know how you are going to get there. We always have to have a map (plan) to where we are going. Start by writing positive affirmations down and definitely download the tracker. When you see that tracker in front of you, you can see how the plan is unfolding. You are going to do it. Keep your eye on the reward. Believe in yourself, and if you don’t…. others will believe in you until you can believe in yourself. I’ll be cheering you on. XOXOXO

  28. Debra, I love you. I love that you always encourage me. Thank you. I’ve had a few moments where I’ve thought I didn’t win the mom of the year award, but… I know it’s just a season. Parenting is hard. Really hard. God gave me these kids as a gift and although they test me on a daily basis overall I think they are going to survive me. Ha ha ha. And yes, we have to keep our lives real. There are always struggles, but with the right attitude we can get through them. I have bad days, and those are the days I surround myself with others wearing their positive pants to get me through it. XOXOXO

  29. Girl, I am still trying to figure out the solution. The hard solution would be to take it all away and I’m struggling with that. Teaching them to be responsible and still have the device is my ultimate goal but I am not sure that is going to cut it. I almost feel like a good 30 days without it might open their eyes a little.

  30. SO SO SO true. It’s scary isn’t it? I know, I need to be the bad mom. It’s a huge struggle but I think in the end I’m only enabling them. That’s not good for them, or me. UGH. XOXO

  31. We most definitely have to wear the meanie mom hats and its good. I’m still on the search for the perfect approach with my kids and their devices. I want to take it all away to give my kids a big wake up call. I’m not sure exactly what I’m going to do yet, but both of them know meanie mom is on a mission. I’m hoping to prove it’s not mission impossible. I LOVE your mother’s quote. It’s so true. We are always quick to blame others on our problems. It’s when we can stop and take a good look at ourselves we can see the truth. That truth is hard to swallow sometimes, but I sure hope and pray that my kids will one day understand my motives.

  32. Sometimes even adults need to put those devices down and just reflect on our own greatness. Too many times we can quickly beat ourselves up after seeing what we think could be the perfect life…. there is no perfect. XOXO

  33. Pennie, Russ and I always say we wished we weren’t raising kids with these silly devices. It’s a struggle and can’t imagine what MY kids will have to deal with . Jeez… I can’t even think about that right now. YIKES. Thank you for reading. XOXO

  34. Oh girl. I love you. You know what I’m talking about because you are in the midst of this chaos too. The struggle is real and I’m struggling to find the solution. Actually, I kinda know the solution… a hammer to each device would be suffice but then I think about the money wrapped up in these stupid things. See… AHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!

  35. Susan, 100% truth. Take a look at humans out to dinner with each other. Taking pictures of their food like it was the last salad to be made. Now I’m on a mission to find the solution…. pray I can come up with one.

  36. LOL. If only we could live in a magazine. I laugh as I look at my living room coffee table that has cough drop wrappers, 2 drinks, 15 books (not kidding), necklace, neosporin tube and used tissues all over it. I wonder if THAT picture would make the magazine. Sigh….

  37. Thank you Amy. I give God all the glory for giving me the hands to create and the mind and heart to share it. I have days that make me think twice about sharing a project that didn’t quite meet my expectations, but I know that all creativity can be inspiring on all levels. I have to remember that perfection is not the goal. Having fun and enjoying the creative process is the key.

  38. WOW Connie. What a beautiful thing to have 10 grands and 6 great grands. What a blessing. I am sure you see what I am seeing with my own children. It’s time to take action. My kids need to see their own greatness instead of someone else. Thank you for taking the time to read. I really appreciate you. XOXOXO

  39. Seriously, you are amazing! I even read your responses! And others! I love your from the heart post and read it twice! Most of the time I just look at your adorable samples, but something tugged at me to stop and read! So many of us feel down and out on most days. We all needed a reminder to “Chest out, chip up” talk. Thanks!

  40. Renette Block

    I’ve been reading your blog since before your husband’s last deployment. You and your family were prayed for then. Thanks for the words of reality. We all get stuck sometimes and I’ve been stuck for ages now. I will Hold my head up high and get in my craft room and make cards. I’ve had some of that overwhelming “I can’t make those” moments lately and feel like I am wasting my money buying stamps and not using them, Keep up the good work and your daughter will remember your heart to heart with fondness one day.

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