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Saturday, May 22, 2010

Smarty Mom: Lisa Witherspoon

By Rachel H

I hope everyone is enjoying a fabulous weekend! We have a new Smarty Mom to introduce you to today, Lisa Witherspoon. Lisa and her husband, David, have lived in Greensboro for about 15 years. Lisa grew up in Lenoir and also spent about a year in Nashville when transferred with her husband’s job. The Witherspoons have three children, Rachel, 7 1/2 - Megan, 5 and Emily, 2 ½.

Lisa is a stay-at-home mom who loves to organize and volunteer! She gives many hours to her church, First Presbyterian Greensboro. She also volunteers at the church preschool where her two youngest daughters attend. She also enjoys volunteering at her daughter, Rachel's, elementary school.

Lisa enjoys cooking and is always trying family friendly recipes (which is difficult because her family has very diverse eating habits). She enjoys writing and has begun to try to re-connect with that skill through her personal blog,

Let’s hear more from this week’s Smarty Mom …

With three daughters in the house, what has been your biggest challenge in raising them thus far?
Knowing that I am their biggest role model; I constantly tell them they are beautiful just the way they are, but then I worry about my hair, my weight, etc. I also tell them they can do whatever they want (and I mean it), but, since I have chosen to be a stay at home mom, it is hard to show them that. It has been the right choice for me, but it is not the only choice. It is a lot of pressure to know that my choices will have such a HUGE impact on their future choices.

Did your mom share any good advice with you on raising children?
The best advice my mom has given me is to trust my instincts as a mother because I know my children better than anyone. More than advice, though, I value my mom’s support. She was and is a great mom. Hearing her say that she is proud of the mom I have become means the world to me!

What has been your favorite family friendly recipe you have found?
Spaghetti – because it is so versatile. It is quick, easy, and I can modify it to meet everyone’s different tastes!

Tell us more about your blog and the topics you try to write about.
I have always enjoyed writing. Being a mother and a wife, I find that I often have ideas and wanted to find a way to express them. Since most of my writings are more like personal anecdotes, starting a blog seemed like a good place to start. It is always interesting to see what kind of comments my blog entries generate!

You have lived in the Triad for 15 years now. What do you think is the best kept secret in the area?
That’s a tough one! I would probably have to say online grocery shopping (see my answer to the next question) or Lazy 5 Ranch. Lazy 5 is only about 45 minutes from Greensboro and is a one of a kind place – definitely worth the drive!

What is the smartiest way you save money?
Online grocery shopping! Although there is a small fee for the service, I save money in the long run. I do not pick up things I don’t need (or that my kids beg for). I get a running total as I go; I can still use my coupons and my customer discount card. It also saves time and sanity! I simply order online, drive up at the specified time, sign my receipt and drive away! The store employees do my shopping and call if tany products are unavailable. They load the groceries and still bring out cookies for the kids! At Harris Teeter, the first time is free so I would definitely recommend giving it a try!

What is your favorite family activity?
We really just enjoy “hanging out.” Often on a Friday night, you can find us having supper together and then just snuggling on the couch watching TV. Sometimes we play Wii, board games, or watch a movie. It’s mostly just about spending time together in a relaxed atmosphere.

Favorite “me-time” activity?
I love just being at home alone in the silence with the freedom to get things done or just sit and relax. I also like to go shopping!

Favorite place to eat dinner as a family?
At home! We try very hard to sit and eat dinner together as a family as often as possible. At home it is so much more relaxed – my husband and I are not as worried about the children’s behavior or messes and if someone has to go potty, I don’t have to stop eating to take them!

Favorite date night spot?
Avenue Restaurant in Downtown Greensboro. Great food, great service, and too fancy for kids!

Favorite book you have read?
I have just finished reading “Sacred Parenting: How Raising Children Shapes Our Souls” by Gary Thomas. It is a great book for Christian parents about how our experiences as parents bring us closer to God. He has a very realistic perspective on parenting. It is not another “how-to” book, but rather a book that examines the guilt, joy, frustrations, and sacrifices parents experience.

Best place to eat lunch with the kids?
We are still figuring this one out. My oldest daughter decided to be vegetarian about six months ago. That rules out most fast food places, so we have tried several different restaurants recently. So far, Panera, Jason’s Deli, and Zoe’s Kitchen are at the top of the list.

Favorite place to shop for children’s clothes?
Children’s Place, Belk, Kohl’s

What is the best birthday party you have attended?
My daughter, Megan’s, 5th birthday party. She wanted a Fresh Beat Band Party. They were so new, I couldn’t even find plates, etc. So, we improvised, and had about 12 girls at our house. They wore their pajamas; we made “groovy smoothies” and ate pizza; we sang and danced along to episodes of the show that I had recorded on the DVR; we played musical games; and we gave the kids musical party favors. The kids had a blast and it was a relaxed environment for parents, too. I did have to do a little cleaning up afterwards, but I did not have to haul a cake, gift bags, or gifts anywhere.

What is your favorite mom’s must have item for around the house?
Mr. Clean Magic Eraser – they really are magic!

Mini-van or SUV?

Favorite park in the Triad?
Beth Schmidt Park in Elon

Favorite or most helpful blog you have read on Triad Smarty Pants thus far?
The Importance of Playtime for Kids” by Dr. Satterwhite – As a former preschool teacher, this blog really hit home for me.

Best thing about raising a family in the Triad?
For us, it is the fact that we are close to our extended family. We spent a brief time in Nashville which is a great, family-friendly city, but we did not have any family close by. Here we have both sets of grandparents and several aunts/uncles that are just around the corner or a short drive away. When you are raising kids, that is priceless!

I could not live without my...iPhone. I use it for email and internet access all the time. I can keep my calendar with me wherever I go and I have a camera/video camera always ready. I also put games for the kids on it as well as music and TV episodes to keep them occupied at restaurants or waiting rooms.

Thank you for your answers today, Lisa! What enjoyed getting to know your family!

If our readers have someone who they would like to nominate to be a Smarty Mom or Dad, please email us at


Allison T said...

Hi Lisa! I logged on this morning and was pleasantly surprised that I knew the Smarty Mom. It's me, Allison Lemons Tobey, from Lenoir. I am part of the Triad Smarty Pants team with Katie, Rachel and Susan. I loved reading your profile and seeing your beautiful family. Hope your Mom and Dad are doing well - are they still teaching at HHS or have they retired? Take care and enjoy TSP!

Victoria said...

Enjoyed reading your profile! You have a beautiful family.

Tracy said...

I love the online grocery shopping as well. That $5 is worth every penny!

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