Brotherly HOGA

Brotherly-Hoga-web

One of the things I loved most about traveling with the kids last week was sharing a room with them and watching them share a room with each other.  Despite heavy protest from Thing2, Thing1 moved out of the bunk room a few years ago (“I need my space, Mom”), so sharing the pullout in our hotel room was a welcome change for T2 and a steep price to pay for T1.

We’ve all been there, right? My sister and I used to squabble over who got the bigger share of the blanket and who had crossed the imaginary line running down the middle of the motel bed.

T1 and T2 have slightly different dynamic.  T2 idolizes T1.  There is a fine line between hero worship and pestering, and T2 is willing to cross that line to spend as much time as possible with his older brother.  So far we don’t have any injuries to report, but T1 is literally marking off days on his calendar until he can graduate and move out despite our assurances that he really will miss his baby brother when he’s gone.

I tried to teach them a little brotherly HOGA, but, I suspect, like my sister and me, neither of them will really be into that either until one or both of them is out of the house.  Hopefully, dear reader, you’ll have better luck with your offspring than I did with mine.

HOGA for Voters

Electoral-HOGA-web

Our week in Iceland wasn’t just a break from work but a big break from the worst of this year’s electoral mudslinging. If you’re on any social media, you can’t escape all of it, but you can filter out a lot. You can’t filter it out forever, though, and because

Love is better than Hate, Peace is better than War, Dialogue is better than Diatribes,

because of everything an election season in a free democracy should be but rarely is, I respectfully suggest a little Electoral HOGA.

Instructions included.

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Winter HOGA

Hot Chocoholic Pose1. Fill Giant Mug with three parts chocolate and one part milk (milk is optional).

2. Heat mug until chocolate is in liquid form.

3. Add marshmallows and cinnamon as desired.

4. Stand facing HOGA partner on opposite sides of mug. (If practicing pose alone, prepare to hug mug with arms or hands depending on size of mug).

5. Wrap body around mug.  If mug is too small to accommodate full body HOGA, prepare second mug and wrap arms around partner.

Weekend HOGA – Family style

Weekend HOGA-new

So, apparently, I’m not the only person who believes in Meditative Hug Therapy.  About 900 people on Facebook and Picking My Battles clicked and shared and, hopefully, practiced a little HOGA with a smile.

Thing2 was really excited – it’s his firm belief that any negative situation can be remedied, or at least tolerated with an eye-popping hug.  We have set some ground rules for him – the hug-ee must be a willing victim.. uh.. participant, unless it’s a family member, in which case there are no rules.

The only time that causes a conflict is when eight-year-old Thing2 is ready for Weekend HOGA.  The Big Guy likes to sleep late.  I like to sleep later than normal too.  But our idea of normal and Thing2’s (who believes sleeping past sun rise is too much sleep) are entirely different things.

So here at the Institute for Meditative Hug Therapy, we have come up with a routine that makes Weekend HOGA an uplifting experience for everyone (it gets everyone in this house out of bed):

The hugger stands at the foot of his or her parents bed.  If the time alarm clock on either side of the bed starts with a 6, it is recommended the hugger slides onto the bed quietly, wedging himself between said parents.  If it is later in the morning, the hugger can leap into hugging position, since parents may need to get up for a few minutes at this hour anyway.

Once in hugging position, it is recommended the hugger begin hugging one parent at a time, gently putting the elbow in the other parent’s face as he administers hug therapy to both parents.  Well-hugged parents should begin to respond to therapy after accidental bumps to their bladders.

The hugger should continue applying hug therapy with a thorough inspection of each parent’s face until at least one parent is ready to hug back or lift themselves out of bed and make breakfast already.

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