the balancing act…is there really one?

I’ve had so many people ask me recently…how do you do it all? Like most people, I have multiple roles in my life. Mom, wife, sister, daughter, friend, employee. But recently, with my daughter starting kindergarten, it seems a bit more concentrated on mom and work.

I’ve tried to remain active in the school…taking time off work to help out the teacher, zipping over to help for the 20 min lunch period (those lunch periods are crazy!), volunteering for the classroom holiday parties.  Then there are playdates. Then homework. Then lunches.  All the same stuff that all families go through with their kids in school.

The truth is, I have help. I have a nanny who helps out at home a TON, and let’s face it, she does more for our family than just watch my kids and get my daughter off the bus on days that I’m working outside the home (I work from home a couple of days a week). I also have a pretty involved husband. And the other secret? I feel like I’m always dropping the ball on something. Like when I’m at work, I’m not caught up at home…and when I’m at home, I feel like I missed the mark on something at work.

So I feel like I’m not really balancing at all…more just juggling. And, at times, I feel like I’m just catching the ball that’s closest to hitting the ground.

I guess that’s a bit of what motherhood can feel like, maybe?

Date night

Hubby and I do a pretty good job with our date nights.  We try to go every other week when possible, and it’s something we both look forward to.

This past Friday we went to Flemings, one of our favorites.  A little nicer than we sometimes do, as we were celebrating our 11 year anniversary. It was nice. And, we’ve gotten to the point that although we discussed the kids (when should we start C in preschool? Do we want S to continue learning over this summer between kindergarten and first grade?), we also discussed many other things.

We’ve gotten pretty good at making the time “us time” on date night but it wasn’t always like that. When S was little and we first had our scheduled date nights, we’d spend the evening talking about her. Then gradually as we got used to the concept of heading out without her and using it as time to actually reconnect, we made a conscious effort to use the time to really talk to each other. So much of our day to day adult interactions are coordinating parenting tactics (can you take S up for bath? C didn’t eat well at dinner, let’s see if he will finish his milk before bedtime) that this time really helps.

So this date night, we talked about work, about our parents, about the recent vacation we had just taken, what we’d want to do for our next family vacation, and a bunch of other stuff. And it was nice!

What are your date nights like?

daily prompt – inkling

I think when you have kids, your sense of having “inklings” goes up dramatically. I was always an intuitive person…early on, I learned to listen to my gut. Whether it was fear, dread, or eager anticipation – I could feel it.

Now with kids, that sense is even sharper. Except it doesn’t always manifest itself in my gut – sometimes, it’s just a thought. Whether it’s that strange quiet that descends on the playroom when the kids are out of sight or that quietness that my daughter exhibits when something happens at school, I sort of know when something is up.

I think it comes with having kids. You develop this sixth sort of sense, that guides you. That tells you when your child is about to get sick. That tells you when something made them sad at school. Part of what being a mom is all about!

via Daily Prompt: Inkling

Why is it so hard to RSVP?

I came across this post on the Love What Matters Facebook page. And my heart broke.

It’s a mom talking about the importance of RSVP’ing to kids birthday parties. And I completely agree with her. I’ve been there….you send out invites to your child’s classroom of 24 and you get 4 people that RSVP. Then you wonder, are only 4 people coming? Did the rest not get their invites? Should I plan for a few more just in case they show up? How many kids should I make favor bags for? Is my kid going to have enough friends at her party?

Although in this post, the mom in the video is also talking about parents who chose not to send their kids to the party of a special needs child; the other parents also didn’t have the courtesy to RSVP. So the party mom had zero kids show up. Zero. I just don’t get it.

My kids may not make every party we are invited to. But anyone that sends me an invite will always know if they can count on us joining in the fun or not!

‘tacking

This was what dinner looked like today for little C. A stacking game. But, who cares? When you have little ones, you sort of realize that messes and play are all a part of it. So he took his three bowls and stacked and unstacked. Stacked and unstacked. And while he did, he ate every morsel of his spaghetti, green beans and strawberries.

Decent amount of clean-up….but again, who cares?

disney cruise…with kids

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We just returned from the most amazing trip.  I’ll write more about some details/tips later, but I am so amazed that WE DID IT!  Anyone that has traveled with two small kids knows it is no walk in the park. There are those amazing moments when your kids faces light up and you realize it’s all worth it. Then, there are those moments when both kids are screaming, you didn’t sleep well because the youngest kept trying to climb over the bedrail in the middle of the night, and you wonder, should we have waited a year?

I’m glad we didn’t.

This picture above is from Castaway Cay, Disney’s private island. It was the last stop on our one-week cruise and it was the most amazing part. That hammock right there? I got to lay on it (after nearly falling out twice trying to get in) while my kids played in the sand and water. The water is SO shallow – S could go out all the way to the rope and it was only up to her hips at high tide.

So for anyone considering a Disney cruise – do it!  I’ll write more later. But for anyone thinking through family vacation plans on a Sunday morning like today, it’s well worth it.

Now off to unpack and do laundry!

there really is no strategy in parenting

Posting for the daily prompt challenge and I realized, I have no strategy.

I mean don’t get me wrong…I want to ensure my kids are healthy; that they’re being raised to be kind people, help others, and that they do well in school. That they think about their future and how they can contribute to society.

But I don’t have a strategy.

I read a lot; I talk mommyhood with fellow parents.  I try to gather as much information as I can, in order to make the decision that is best for my family. But as far as what sports they will play? That’s up to them (I rotate my kids in activities so they can pick the one that is the best fit for them. Plus, they’re nearly 2 and nearly 5 1/2, so still early). What sorts of careers I will nudge them towards? That’s up to them. I’ll make sure to discuss pros and cons with them when the time comes. How to deal with today’s meltdown? Again, I read tips and see what works.  How to make them eat their veggies? I’ve learned to negotiate. 🙂

I guess it’s not as much not having a strategy; as I write this, seems my approach is to gather the info and then do what works best for my kids.  Is that a strategy? Maybe it is!

via Daily Prompt: Strategy