We have a winner!!!

Mary G won the $50 toward her Biscuit Bag!!!   Have fun shopping Mary!

Margot and Kanesha

$50 toward a Biscuit Bag going once…twice…

Time is running out – leave a comment at here or at

https://itsafullnest.wordpress.com/2010/09/20/a-multigenerational-business-i-love-it/

to be entered into the drawing for $50 toward a Biscuit Bag!  Time runs out at midnight, September 25!

Tell us, “What is the oddest thing that you carry in your purse?”

My mother-in-law is a mobile phone paparazzi

by Kanesha

When I’m at work, focused on a task, and forgetting about the outside world, my mobile phone will buzz.

Picture message!

There are other times I’m in a meeting that has gone too long. I’m glazing over and going brain-dead. I’m instantly jolted back to life when my mobile phone buzzes.

Picture message!

My mother-in-law often sends picture messages to me so I can have a quick peek into what my kids are doing while I’m away from them. I love it! I especially love that my mother-in-law initiated this picture-taking practice, about two years ago, without me prompting her to do so.

The pictures allow me to instantly connect with the kid as soon as I enter the house. I can ask them to explain what they were doing when my mother-in-law captured them with her phone.

I think it’s very sweet that my mother-in-law takes the time to snap pictures because she thinks (and actually knows) I will enjoy seeing my kids while I’m busy at work. And yes, I always enjoy it.

Here are my recent favorites:

My mother-in-law and my son were at the library. He picked out this magazine because he’s fascinated with the Eiffel Tower.

Chilly soccer practice

My mother-in-law was picking up the exhausted middle schooler. Look at all that stuff.

My mother-in-law is creating a Halloween costume with my daughter – made of Duck Tape.

To be continued…

My mother-in-law is helping my little artist learn the difference between his right and left hand (instead of the right and wrong hand).

Raising Hope = multigenerational dysfunction

by Kanesha

The fall 2010 TV line-up is underway and our DVR is being put to work.

I was so excited for all the new shows and returning favorites that I made a viewing matrix for this week. (I know, judge me!)

We do not watch a huge amount of television (no, I’m not going to define huge), but we do like to watch some shows as an entire multigenerational family (e.g. Dancing With the Stars).

Tonight, my nuclear family and I decided to watch Raising Hope (FOX). I’m a fan of Greg Garcia and I enjoyed his work with My Name is Earl.

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I was not at all prepared for what I saw. When I was wishing for more multigenerational themed TV shows, I wasn’t exactly talking about this.

The Chance family is a multigenerational family with a whole lot of crazy going on. (See show’s summary.)

As I watched the zany, jaw dropping, and wacky interactions of this family unfold, I laughed hysterically. Yes, I was totally into the potty humor and tasteless jokes of this sitcom.

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I guess you must have a good and sometimes obtuse sense of humor when you live in a multigenerational household.

As Jimmy’s grandmother, “Maw Maw” (Cloris Leachman), walks around in her bra, smoking a cigarette, yelling at her dead husband, and going in and out of lucidity, I inserted myself into this lunacy and imagined Maw Maw being my mother-in-law. What in the world would I do with my real mother-in-law if she was, in reality, that nutty?

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Then there is the grandmother to Hope (Jimmy’s mother), Virginia Chance (Martha Plimpton).

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Her smoking, trash talking, and tossing baby Hope around in the backseat would have me loosing my mind. I’m not sure if I would prefer Virginia or Maw Maw being my mother-in-law. Either way, I would have to drink heavily all day, install a nanny cam, and perhaps consider a divorce.

My multigenerational reality vs. Multigenerational chaos with the Chance family

When I went back to work after being on family leave, my little guy refused to take the bottle. Here my mother-in-law was living with us for only a month, still in transitional mode, and her three-month-old grandson would not take the bottle. I wonder if Jimmy Chance’s rubber glove method would have worked better than the cry your head off hysterically until you finally yield to taking expressed milk in a bottle.

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Then there was the time when my mother-in-law took my son to infant swim class. She received the “polite” stares and eyes that were secretly asking, “What’s this white lady doing with this little brown baby?” Someone even asked my mother-in-law from what country had her son (my hubby) gotten this baby. I’m glad my mother-in-law ignored those people, focused on singing Wheels on the Bus with her grandson, and didn’t have to explain anything about being in the penitentiary and not knowing the song’s words.

I’m especially glad my mother-in-law has never puked on my son due to a toxic and poopy diaper. There my mother-in-law was yesterday, at the recreation center, meeting her trainer for the first time. My son was in childcare and just as the training session was to begin, the childcare folks informed my mother-in-law that her grandson pooped in his pants, and yet, she did not puke. My mother-in-law handled the situation like a pro. She cleaned him up, sent him back to play time (albeit commando) and finished up her workout with the trainer.

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I’m not sure how long we will stick with this show. I suppose we’ll watch until it’s just too ridiculous to maintain our TV watching dignity. I definitely don’t have any plans to encourage my mother-in-law to watch it. She would be overly irritated on so many levels (the top issue being the portrayal of Cloris Leachman as a mature woman).

What’s on your must see list for the fall TV lineup?


a multigenerational business – I love it!

Who among the female readers of this blog do not love purses?  I sure the heck do and in Superior, CO, where I live, there is a local mom who gets my business.  Beth Shogrin is owner of Biscuit Bags.  She has an amazing eye for mixing patterns and colors and I love her creations – different sizes, styles, fabrics – her work is fabulous!

For mother’s day this year, I got my mom one of her waterproof bags – perfect for aquatics workouts and lazy days at the pool.  And I have given friends a variety of different bags – totes to evening bags.  And while talking with Beth one day, I learned that her Mom is a part of her business!  Viola – a multigenerational business!

To honor another aspect of multigenerational lifestyles, Beth has graciously offered a reader of our blog a $50 credit towards one of her bags.  And dare I say what you are probably already thinking – the holidays are around the corner and it is never too early to think about gifts for the fashionable (or not so fashionable) women in your life! 

To enter the drawing, leave a comment below and share the following:
“What is the oddest thing that you carry in your purse?”

The drawing will be held on September 25.  Good luck!

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Reflections on summer travel and fun – multigenerational style

by Kanesha

When Friday came around, I was absolutely thrilled!

Hubby was back from work travel, my daughter was heading to a sleepover, my mother-in-law was going for a night on the town, I had a dinner date with a great girlfriend, and I was actually looking forward to tackling my mega home-chore list.

(Oh, the little guy was hanging out with hubby on Friday – boys’ night!)

When Saturday morning came around, it was raining a bit and overcast. Forget about that mega home-chore list. It was time for some scrapbooking.

I love taking pictures. I enjoy sorting and categorizing them. I especially love putting the pictures in a scrapbook and retelling a story and reliving those fun moments. (This is a common interest my mother-in-law and I share.) And that’s how Saturday and today went as I scrapbooked.

Here is a glimpse into some of the summer memories of our multigenerational vacation time.

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National Working Parents Day…I’m all over this

by Kanesha

Today is National Working Parents Day, and nope, I won’t turn my nose up at this one.

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No, I’m not making this up! No, I do not spend all my “free-time” searching for random and made up holidays. (I might start doing this, though.)

Here’s what happened…

I work with some great folks in my office, and we try not to take ourselves too seriously, even though we are doing serious business. We work hard, we work a lot, and we try to have a fun celebration every now and then.

When I returned to my office from a “way too serious meeting”, I asked my assistant to Google wacky September holidays. We were overdue for some wacky office fun (yes, we multitask!).  And on the list my assistant found – National Working Parents Day.

Fantastic! Time to celebrate!

I quickly texted my mother-in-law and told her the party was on! Hubby is away on business travel and we (me, granny, and the two kids) were going out for a night on the town.

Translation of “night on the town”…We were heading to a local eatery with mediocre food and an awesome play area – and we would skip tinkering in our own kitchen! Since my mother-in-law likes to eat dinner on the early side, we would benefit from some happy hour libations as well.

As the kids played Wii in the play area (I know!), my mother-in-law and I sipped our beverages and talked about books and movies. She reads lots of nonfiction and biographies. I read about education, leadership, puberty, and Richard Scarry’s Busy Busy Town. We both enjoy biopic movies. I’m obsessed with who the actors are, how they fit into these roles, and awards they have won. My mother-in-law often cannot remember the names of the actors, but she can tell you what other roles they have played. I like to read books before they are turned into movies. She tries to keep her own book visuals from clouding the book-into-movie visuals.

We had a great time watching the kids play and talking about adults things (like cute actors). I like sitting around with my mother-in-law chewing the fat. It’s casual and relaxing and it’s what we do as a multigenerational family. I can let my hair down and I don’t need to do any pretending. Same goes for her.

If you are considering multigenerational living, you have to prioritize authenticity. Showcasing a representative of yourself will not work and you’ll be overly exhausted. You have to cultivate a relationship that is real and comfortable, otherwise you’ll be miserable and resentful. You need to spend time finding out what common interests you share so that you can continually discover gems about each other.

National Working Parents Day will for sure go on the family calendar!

(It’s also National Guacamole Day – but let’s not get crazier!)

The other ice cream cone picture is currently ...

Image via Wikipedia

As far as the wacky office celebration…

We will be celebrate the invention of the ice cream cone on September 22. Yup, my co-workers do put up with me, and so does my multigenerational family!