>When I was a child, I adored every bit of my mother, from her kinky blonde hair to her bumpy thighs. Not the most flattering description, right? On the contrary—I truly thought those parts of my mom were lovable, wonderful and perfect! Let me explain.

Now that I am a mom myself, I find myself with choices everyday. Clean the kitchen floor or go to the pool? Work out or play a game of Hungry, Hungry Hippos? Spend an hour cooking dinner or swing on a swing alongside my daughter?

The answers are obvious, right? They are to me. I’ve come to the conclusion that cooking and cleaning is a waste of my kids’ childhood. And while before guests arrive, I do often engage in furious rounds of throw-the-toys-in-the-basket and silently curse the results of my “let it go” attitude, I know that I keep a clean-enough house, a healthy, if non-gourmet kitchen, and a whole lot of savored moments with my daughters.
I learned all this from the mom I grew up with.

These days, her hair is smooth and well-coifed. I know this is the way she prefers it, but I am grateful that when I was a kid and wanted her to swim with me, she was okay with letting the pool water and humidity cause her some frizz. Likewise, I vividly recall the days she dedicated to taking me and my brother to baseball games and children’s museums, but don’t remember a bit whether our house was clean or messy on any given day. Neither did it ever cross my mind how her figure compared to those of other moms. I do, however, remember thinking that the bumps in her thighs were so soft and hoping that my legs would be just like hers when I grew up.

These days, cellulite on my thighs is no longer my fondest wish. Yet, knowing that I loved everything about my mom—and that she loved me enough not to let bad hair days and imperfectly-toned legs keep her from sharing in the things my brother and I loved as children—still makes me want to be like her in every important way.

My dreams for 2011 are big! Along with the honor of raising the two most interesting people I know, I am under contract to write a book about helping kids and teens develop skills for assertive anger expression. Writing this book is a life-goal come true! The challenge for me—and for most women I know—will be in finding a healthy balance between all of the things I want to do and all of the things that need to be done.
As a New Year dawns and I think about the kind of person I want to be throughout the inevitably busy-crazy days, the first item on my 2011 Resolutions List will the mom-inspired mantra:

You are a human being, not a human doing.

All the rest, I feel certain, will fall imperfectly in line.

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“I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network blogging program, for a $50 gift card. For more information on how you can participate, click here.”