Amber

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Amber is wife to her elementary school crush and mother to three kiddos, ages 10, 7, and 4. Having recently moved to Portland from California, Amber is embracing her “new normal” as she navigates parks in the rain (bring a towel), the line outside Pip’s Donuts (it’s worth it), and where to find good Mexican food (still searching). As bio mom to her two oldest and adoptive mom to her youngest, special needs child, Amber understands and appreciates the importance of “mommy-time." Amber is also a grad student and soon-to-be Marriage, Couple, and Family Therapist. She shares the highlights and gems of what she's learning on her Instagram: @learnandliveproject.
row of bikinis on rack

I Modeled Bikinis to Teach My Daughter a Body Image Lesson

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One night, while passing out plates of chocolate cake, my seven-year-old daughter's favorite, she refused, saying “No thank you. I’m feeling a bit fat today.” My jaw dropped. I asked her to clarify her...
Yellow school bus against blue sky with clouds

Please Be Nice to My Son: A Mom’s Thoughts on the First Day of...

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As I walked my youngest into his classroom on the first day of school, I was eyeing the kids inside and silently begging, “Please be kind to my son.” His sweet teacher must have...
mom in therapy

Going to Therapy Makes Me a Better Mom

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As moms, we spend a massive amount of our waking hours listening and responding to others. The incoming conversations change over the years, but they take up a lot of brain space, nonetheless. When...
resume

Can I Put “Mom” on My Resume’s List of Skills?

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After ten years as a stay-at-home mom, I've begun taking steps towards my dream career. Three years ago I enrolled in a graduate program, and course by course, credit by credit, I'm making my...
pto

3 Reasons to Join Your School’s PTO

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When we moved to Oregon, I was desperate to meet other people and feel connected with our new community. I decided to try a parent-teacher organization (PTO) meeting at our new school. Thanks to...
splash pad moms

5 Types of Portland Splash Pad Moms

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We don’t live near an outdoor community pool (and swimming inside feels offensive to the season), we’ve become familiar with the local park’s splash pad. My kids enjoy having the option of playing in...
recovery

“Mommy Juice,” Wine Tees, and Other Ways We’re Not Helping Our Friends in Recovery

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I attended my first AA meeting a few weeks back. I am in graduate school to become a counselor, and one of my class assignments required me to sit in on three different 12-step...
simplify summer

Simplifying Summer: 3 Tips for Ditching Mom-Guilt and Enjoying the Break

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When my kids were younger, the start of summer felt like try-outs for some “world’s best mom” competition. Facebook was filled with pictures of friend's refrigerators covered in hand-lettered “Bucket Lists,” chore charts with...
thirties

How Getting a Nose Ring in My 30’s Made Me a Better Human

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I blame it on my nose ring. I always wanted one but never had the guts to pull the trigger and do it. By the time I was in my twenties, I was married...
social media

Dear Mom: Please Don’t Walk Away From Social Media

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I recently overheard a group of mom's having a conversation about social media. It went something like this: “I’m so over Facebook. I’m deleting my account.” “Me, too. I shut down my Instagram last month and...