Episode 29: All the Women Around the World

When Leslie, the co-host of the Mama Bear Dares, traveled to East Africa late last month with the NGO she contracts with, she realized she had a great opportunity to introduce listeners of the Mama Bear Dares podcast to a Tanzanian mother. Her international colleague at Empower Tanzania, new mom and program manager Efrancia Nzota, graciously agreed to be a guest on the show. After a long, hot day of training Maasai women as Community Health Workers, Leslie and Efra sat down at the Nzoroko Hotel restaurant, shared a Coke, and discussed the ways their lives as professionals and as mothers are similar and the ways in which they are different.

The conversation that listeners will listen in on in Episode 29 may point listeners to this: Our joys and triumphs as mothers and women are universal. We can sit with friends in our own communities and find out that we have much in common, and we can travel across the world, sit down with friends there, and learn the same thing. This transformative realization is one hosts Leslie and Tesi hope listeners will never look back from.

Leslie and Efra also discuss:

  • Efrancia's birth story
  • The challenges and joys of new motherhood in Tanzania
  • The Improving Women's Health Program that Efrancia manages for Empower Tanzania
  • The universality of the work/life balance and the struggle of caring for the Other Self

Links:

Check out Empower Tanzania and Empower Tanzania's health programs! Want to donate to Efra's program? Click here.

Jennie Peakin (Episode 11) took photos for Empower Tanzania. Follow her on Facebook for a peek!

Check out Malala's story: Memoir | Young Reader's Edition | Her Foundation

Mama Bears, we’re online! Here’s where you can find us:

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram and let us know what you’re thinking!

Don’t forget to subscribe on iTunes. We are having so much podcasting and really appreciate you listening!!

Help support Mama Bear Dares by shopping with us! Here are our affiliate links:

Do your Amazon shopping here. It costs you nothing and we get a bit of change from Amazon with each purchase! Yay!

Today’s episode is brought to you by Audible. Get a FREE audiobook download and 30 day free trial at www.audible.com/mamabeardares.

Thanks to Wunderkind for the beats!

Episode 27: This is Going to End in Something Beautiful

On today's Mama Bear Dares episode, Leslie and Tesi interview the fabulous life-coach and founder of Shiny.Happy.Human Gervase Kolmos. The women dive into a conversation about the whole human experience and the flavor that motherhood brings to a life. All three are candid and honest about the ups and downs of raising tiny humans and its impact on life in the trenches of parenthood.

The conversation continues as Leslie and Tesi talk to Gervase about leading a life of celebration and taking the time to notice and applaud victories, both big and small. The women also dig into how to disappoint others honorably, the danger of capping joy, and the beauty of living a life of celebration. Overall, this honest conversation encourages listeners to live well and embrace this one incredible life!

Also discussed:

  • C.S. Lewis says this: “Friendship is born at the moment that one person says to another, ‘What? You too? I thought I was the only one!” Gervase calls this the “Me Too Factor” and explains exactly what she means and how this plays out for new moms. It's a way to drop the façade of perfection and express to others that we’re all in this together.
  • Gervase talks about giving birth and three months later going back work. She realized shortly after that something wasn’t right. After seeing a therapist, she could see that she was suffering from postpartum depression. She helps listeners understand what postpartum is, how to identify when it’s time to reach out for help, and why the stigma surrounding mental health can be dangerous for new moms.
  • All three women are pro therapy! Find yourself one and start today! Or find a modern mystic, a spiritual advisor, or a life coach. There are many people who can help you be your best.
  • Gervase talks about the importance of a Soul Tribe and how important it is to surround yourself with a community that loves and supports you. The women discuss how to find this tribe and what it looks like in their lives.
  • Leslie and Tesi talk about how Gervase decided to let go of the perception of what success looks likes and dove into sharing the full spectrum of what she was experiencing within the rich experience of motherhood. ShinyHappyHuman was born!
  • The women talk about a redefinition of self-care to include the mind, spirit, body, and soul. Pedicures are great, but what else might we do to take care of ourselves?

Obsess Sesh:

Gervase shares her current love of the following:

·      Yogurt parfaits (Greek yogurt, jam, walnuts)

·      The Snoogle

·      The power and intrigue of crystals

Here's where you can find Gervase:

ShinyHappyHuman.com

A special invite to Mama Bear Dares Listeners! Join the Mommy Soul Tribe private Facebook group by clicking here!

Follow her on social media: FB, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube

Mama Bears, we’re online! Here’s where you can find us:

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram and let us know what you’re thinking!

Don’t forget to subscribe on iTunes. We are having so much podcasting and really appreciate you listening!!

Help support Mama Bear Dares by shopping with us! Here are our affiliate links:

Do your Amazon shopping here. It costs you nothing and we get a bit of change from Amazon with each purchase! Yay!

Today’s episode is brought to you by Audible. Get a FREE audiobook download and 30 day free trial at www.audible.com/mamabeardares.

Thanks to MCSquared for the beats!

Episode 26: Beyond the Resume

On this Mama Bear Mini, our mid-week episode, Tesi and Leslie talk about the quest for virtue and a life well lived in a segment called We Read It, We Loved It, Let's Discuss. Here they tackle all kinds of questions about what it means to be a good person and how we might all seek to find the glow of selflessness. After a heavy and hopeful conversation, Tesi and Leslie dive into their very own Obsess Sesh!

We Read It, We Loved It, Let's Discuss

Find the article discussed here: "The Moral Bucket List" by David Brooks, New York Times, essay adapted from his book The Road to Character.

Here are a few of the experiences highlighted on the way to the richest possible life. We encourage you to discover and dissect them all:

  1. The Humility Shift
  2. Self-Defeat
  3. The Dependency Leap
  4. Energizing Love
  5. The Call Within the Call
  6. The Conscience Leap
The place God calls you to is the place where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.
— Frederick Buechner, Wishful Thinking: A Theological ABC

Other books/resources mentioned:

The Life Changing Magic of Not Giving A F@*k by Sarah Knight

Everything by Brene Brown, but especially:

The Gifts of Imperfection | Daring Greatly | Rising Strong

Go back and check out our interview with Jody Landers. It's Episode 3: Doing it Scared on iTunes, Stitcher, or wherever you listen!

Thanks again to MCSquared for the beats!


OBSESS SESH:

There are so many cool things in the world! Here's what we're currently celebrating:

Tesi—

 Vimmia and Heather clothing (from Anthropologie) | Backpack lawn chairs | Kitten & Flower Boutique (Kalamazoo, MI)

Leslie—

Her front porch | Mark West Pinot Noir | Rifle Paper Co.


Mama Bears, we’re online! Here’s where you can find us:

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram and let us know what you’re thinking!

Don’t forget to subscribe on iTunes. We are having so much podcasting and really appreciate you listening!!

Help support Mama Bear Dares by shopping with us! Here are our affiliate links:

Do your Amazon shopping here. It costs you nothing and we get a bit of change from Amazon with each purchase! Yay!

Today’s episode is brought to you by Audible. Get a FREE audiobook download and 30 day free trial at www.audible.com/mamabeardares.

Episode 23: On Immigration, Compassion, & Complexity

On this episode of Mama Bear Dares, Leslie and Tesi talk to Cynthia Vanderpool Garcia about immigration, advocacy, and neighborliness. Cynthia, mom to two young children and an immigration lawyer, explains what it's like to be on the front lines of immigration in America. Together, we dig into the immigration process, compassion fatigue, and the complexities of life in America. Cynthia offers a look into a fascinating world, gently educating us and encouraging us to live our lives well.

Other points discussed:

  • Body image after childbirth
  • Her journey and the draw to immigration law
  • The very real perils of compassion fatigue
  • The necessity of Mama Bear boundaries
  • Immigration in the current political landscape
  • A breakdown of immigration and a simplified answer to the question, How does it work?
  • Are community and connection antidotes to fear and rhetoric?
  • How do you begin to know your neighbor?

LINKS:

The novel Americannah, written by the fabulous Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, is a fantastic depiction of an immigration experience in our current culture. Read it! :-)

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichies has a few great Ted Talks. Click here to view a favorite!

Episode 17

Vanderpool Garcia Law Firm

Episode 3

American Immigration Lawyers Association

Cynthia mentions reading The Enchantress of Florence. You can find it HERE.

Mama Bear Dares is online! Here’s where you can find us:

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram and let us know what you’re thinking!

Don’t forget to subscribe on iTunes! Please take the time to rate and review us so that we can reach more ears. Thanks!

Episode 22: Stop Interrupting Me

On Episode 22 of Mama Bear Dares, co-hosts Tesi and Leslie riff on an article about the power dynamics of language in relation to gender. After discussing ten words that we should teach our daughters to say comfortably in conversation, they take questions from the Mama Bear Community and do their best to answer from the heart. They encourage you to recognize the power of your own voice and use your Mama Bear strength to assert your words in the world.

We read it, We loved it, Let's discuss

We discussed the ten words every girl should know:

“Stop interrupting me.” / “I just said that.” / “No explanation needed.”

You'll find links to the article by Soraya Chemaly in the following locations:

Amy Poehler's Smart Girls FB page

Role Reboot

The Huffington Post

Reppin the MBC on the MBD

Tesi and Leslie tackle versions of the following listener questions. Three great books are mentioned, they are:

Lean In | A Path Appears | Half the Sky

As a husband to a woman and a man raising a daughter, as well as a man in a top level position in his company, I was really floored by this article. I didn’t realize the truth of the article until I really looked at my own experience in the corporate world and the space in which my wife and daughter occupy. I believe everything the article says but am wondering, other than teaching my daughter to say “stop interrupting me”, “I just said that”, etc., how else can I help?

and

I’ve seen every one of these scenarios play out in my own life. But I feel like I’m just getting started on my own journey into speaking up for myself, how in the world do I start encouraging my daughter to do it when I hardly feel strong enough for myself?”

Mama Bears, we’re online! Here’s where you can find us:

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram and let us know what you’re thinking!

Don’t forget to subscribe on iTunes. We are having so much podcasting and really appreciate you listening!!

Help support Mama Bear Dares by shopping with us! Here are our affiliate links:

Do your Amazon shopping here. It costs you nothing and we get a bit of change from Amazon with each purchase! Yay!

Here's what Tesi's buying...

Leslie's just bought this watch!

Today’s episode is brought to you by Audible. Get a FREE audiobook download and 30 day free trial at www.audible.com/mamabeardares.

Episode 20: Mother's Day Mini—Let's Talk to Kids!

On this Mama Bear Mini, our mid-week episode, we talk about Mother's Day, interview our kids, and encourage YOU to do the same! As we celebrate nurturing women this week, we dare listeners to take a moment to be really proud of who you are as a mom or to cheer on the mom you will someday become. Regardless of what motherhood looks like for you, we think you're amazing!

Questions for the kids:

Here's the script we used to interview our kids. Feel free to use it however you please!

  • What is your favorite thing to do with me?
  • What is something I’ve said to you that has helped you in the past? A bit of wisdom that you think about even when I’m not there?
  • How would you describe me? Is there something about me that would surprise other people to know?
  • On the Mama Bear Dares podcast we encourage moms to be their very best selves. Can you think of a way I can support you better? How can I be a better mom to you?
  • Who is your best friend? What is it about this friend that makes them so great? What’s it like to see your mom with her friends? What do they do? How do they act?
  • You have a lot of aunts and grandmas in this life. This is really special. What do you like about having all of these women who love you so much?
  • Currently, what's your favorite thing to do? What are you obsessed with?

We want to hear from YOU!! We encourage all of you to sit down with your kids and ask these questions and record them!!! You don’t need high tech equipment, there are plenty of free apps that will record audio. Download one of those and carve out some time to talk with your kids and then send us the audio file! In a future Mama Bear Mini we will include some of our favorites! Email us at mamabeardares@gmail.com.

Special thanks to MC Squared for the music for today's episode!

Mama Bears, we’re online! Here’s where you can find us:

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram and let us know what you’re thinking!

Don’t forget to subscribe on iTunes. We are having so much podcasting and really appreciate you listening!!

Help support Mama Bear Dares by shopping with us! Here are our affiliate links:

Do your Amazon shopping here. It costs you nothing and we get a bit of change from Amazon with each purchase! Yay!

Today’s episode is brought to you by Audible. Get a FREE audiobook download and 30 day free trial at www.audible.com/mamabeardares.

Episode 18: It Takes Guts to Trust Your Gut

On this Mama Bear Mini, our mid-week episode, we discuss being an advocate for your health and listening to your body in our segment "Let's talk about health, baby." Tesi shares a recent health development and encourages listeners to value themselves enough to nurture their body when it breaks. We also tackle a new recipe on "When you know better, You do better" and conclude with a fan favorite, "Things We Should Probably Feel Guilty About, But Don't."

Today we dare listeners to take their health into their own hands. Give yourself that breast exam; learn to listen to every ache and pain. Tesi and Leslie don’t want to encourage you to fight death or aging tooth and nail, but they DO want to encourage you to embrace the one body you get in this lifetime and to take care of it the way your Mama Bear takes care of the children, pets, and favorite people in your life.

Let's talk about health, baby:

Tesi tells listeners about a recent health event in her life. Episode 12 (On Obsessions, Allergies, and Being Brave) is referenced. Find it HERE.

When you know better, you do better:

We encourage you to shake things up in the kitchen and embrace Meatless Monday...on any day of the week! You can find the fantastic Mac-n-Cheese recipe (it's vegan and plant-based!) we discuss in the show HERE.

Documentaries we discuss:

Cowspiracy

Forks Over Knives

Food, Inc.

Books we discuss:

We enjoy anything by Michael Pollan. Start with this one.

We also love Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer and a book called The History of Love by Nicole Krauss.

Mama Bears, we’re online! Here’s where you can find us:

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram and let us know what you’re thinking!

Don’t forget to subscribe on iTunes. We are having so much podcasting and really appreciate you listening!!

Help support Mama Bear Dares by shopping with us! Here are our affiliate links:

Do your Amazon shopping here. It costs you nothing and we get a bit of change from Amazon with each purchase! Yay!

Today’s episode is brought to you by Audible. Get a FREE audiobook download and 30 day free trial at www.audible.com/mamabeardares.

Episode 8: No-Nonsense Parenting

There are certain middle-class rituals that are so ingrained in us that we don’t really even stop to question why we do them. On today’s Mama Bear Dares, we discuss many of these rituals surrounding everyday parenting decisions that end up occupying precious brain-space. For instance, in raising children one can easily get caught up in the herd and find yourself making non-essential purchases and spending time, money, and a certain effort that you might really want to spend elsewhere. “No-nonsense parenting” is in some ways self protection from our busy, more-plus-more-plus-more culture and in other ways a philosophy that aims to teach independence and responsibility. Listen in as the Mama Bears discuss...and then join the conversation!

SHOW NOTES:

If you live in the Quad Cities, you should check out Junior Theatre!

Today’s podcast is a short, 20-minute Mama Bear Dares episode and it begs for your feedback! Reach out on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram and let us know your reaction! In what ways are you a no-nonsense parent? In what ways do show your kids your tender loving care? How do you manage all the water bottles? (Leslie truly needs advice in this area.) We’d love to hear from you!

Do us a solid and subscribe on iTunes. Or, if you're an Android user, find us on Stitcher.

We’re having so much getting to know you, Mama Bears! Let’s make this community thrive!

Episode 7: The Flow of Generosity

Image by Molly Sabourin Photography

Image by Molly Sabourin Photography

It’s funny how things speak to us differently at different points in our lives. Some people hear a bit of wisdom and are changed forever, while others hear the same and remain untouched. Some of us walk right by potential, while others take pause and soak it up. In Zen philosophy it’s described like this: When the student is ready, the teacher appears.

In this episode of Mama Bear Dares, we spend time in conversation with Beth Johnson and explore her unique journey, considering the way each of us is shaped by people, our surroundings, and what we consume. Beth shares her story of small graces and quiet action, encouraging listeners as she reflects on pivotal moments and influences in her life, and reminding us to be thoughtful with our lives and open to generosity in it all its forms.

Show Notes:

You will love the poet Mary Oliver. All of her poems are amazing. If you’re looking for a place to start, we recommend this book.

An interesting look into Cabrini Green, upon its demolition.

Beth threw a “pretend” shower and the gifts went to the Humility of Mary.

Don’t forget about our giveaway! For a chance to win a basket full of Leslie and Tesi’s favorite fair trade items, subscribe to us on iTunes, rate us on iTunes, review us on iTunes, Like us on Facebook and Instagram, and follow us on Twitter. If you do all of the above, you’re entered SIX times! We will announce the winner Thursday on our social media outlets!

We’re online. Here’s where you can find us:

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram and let us know what you’re thinking!

Don’t forget to subscribe on iTunes. We are having so much podcasting and really appreciate you listening!!

Episode 4: Tackling "Man" Tasks

*Listen through to the end of this episode for information on our first giveaway!!!

On today’s podcast sisters-in-law Leslie and Tesi talk about dividing up household duties in an intentionally non-gendered way. Tesi discloses her rockstar ability to change the oil in her family van and the goal she has set for herself to learn how to do more tasks generally carried out by the men in her life. The women discuss car maintenance, hanging picture frames, producing a podcast, as well as the impact this way of approaching household chores has had on their spouses and their children.

Thanks so much to our sponsor SIS International! Please go to their website to shop their extraordinary fair trade pieces. The hostesses of Mama Bear Dares go there first for any birthday or holiday gifts and know you won’t be disappointed! Here's the website: www.sisshops.com.

*Giveaway information: For a chance to win a box full of Leslie and Tesi’s favorite fair trade items, subscribe to us on iTunes, rate us on iTunes, review us on iTunes, Like us on Facebook and Instagram, and follow us on Twitter. If you do all of the above, you’re entered SIX times! We will announce the winner next week on our social media outlets!

This podcast is the first of many short, 20-minute Mama Bear Dares podcast episodes and each one produced begs for your feedback! Reach out on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram and let us know your reaction! How does your household work in terms of chore distribution? Is this something you think about? Do you know how to change the oil? What’s another “gendered” task that you or your partner completes that might turn some heads? We’d love to hear from you!

Don’t forget to subscribe on iTunes.

We’re having so much getting to know you, Mama Bears! Let’s make this community thrive!

SHOW LINKS:

Tesi’s “Man Task” Blog Post: http://tesiklipsch.com/2014/07/19/a-year-that-goes-beyond-diy/

Here’s Tesi’s tutorial on how to change your car’s oil: http://tesiklipsch.com/2014/09/02/3-wherein-i-learn-how-easy-and-deliciously-dirty-it-is-to-change-the-oil-in-my-car/

Jake’s post on Leslie’s Blog: http://farm-raised.blogspot.com/2011/09/home-improvement-with-jake.html

Link to post on Apartment Therapy: http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/reader-regrets-jakes-shortorder-door-202290

(Jake confirmed that he did indeed bake a cake after demolishing the door.)

And finally, Leslie wants listeners to know that she realizes that filling the tank to her van with gas is not a big deal and she has never expected a man to complete that task for her.

Episode 2: Meet the Hostess, Part II—Tesi Klipsch

Moms are complex creatures with incredible depths and layers of complexity. Even though Tesi and Leslie, the hosts of this podcast, have known each other for 14 years, each conversation reveals something new. Such are the joys of long friendship—it’s our oldest and dearest friends that we never run out of things to discuss over coffee, wine, or via Skype.

On this Mama Bear Dares podcast, we meet Tesi Klipsch. Tesi lives in Michigan with her husband Zach and five children—born to her by birth and through adoption. Tesi tells us about her interest in health, fitness, and helping others discover their personal best, as well as the challenges and joys of raising five children, three of them whom were adopted from Ethiopia.  Always quick to laugh, Tesi and Leslie enjoy a purposeful conversation that introduces you to one of the Mama Bears behind the podcast.

Follow along as Tesi explores mothering older children, her unique take on current events and race in America. www.tesiklipsch.com.

Mama Bears reading list:

Jhumpa Lahiri's Interpreter of Maladies.

Danielle LaPorte's The Desire Map.

Gloria Steinem's My Life on the Road.

Join the Mama Bear Community!

Please write a review and subscribe to the podcast on iTunes.

Follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

Episode 1: Meet the Hostess, Part I—Leslie Klipsch

In Mama Bear Dares inaugural podcasts, we aim to introduce you to the hosts of the show, Leslie and Tesi Klipsch. This pair of Midwestern women married brothers within months of each other and, for the last 14 years, have shared several life stages: the newlywed stage, the pregnant mamas-to-be stage, the new parenthood stage, and, most recently, a  move to the world of adolescent shepherding. Through it all they’ve laughed a lot. And talk a lot. And shared a passion of encouraging those around them to love the world.

Today we introduce you to Leslie, a mom to three through birth and adoption, a writer, and a woman who recently added a puppy to her life. Tesi and Leslie talk about believing in who you are, the ins and outs of everyday life and how it shapes you as a person, and the importance of self care amidst work and parenthood.

Watch for updates and the release of Leslie’s first book on her author website! www.leslieklipsch.com.

Interested in coworking in Eastern Iowa/Western Illinois? Check out the coworking space Leslie founded with her partner Amy in November. www.coworkqc.com.

Join the Mama Bear Community!

Write a review and subscribe to the podcast on iTunes.

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.