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What motherhood has taught me….

A mom shares lessons learned as she juggles her family and career….

Month

December 2015

When your husband proposes a weight-loss challenge….it’s GAME ON!!!

Having never fully lost all of the baby weight I gained with my daughter (yeah she turned two several weeks ago), constant snacking throughout the day (such a bad habit I somehow picked up), and eating meal proportions beyond what is recommended (don’t want to let food go to waste) – all this coupled with limited workout opportunities, getting older, and of course holiday food temptations – have left me feeling very dissatisfied with my physical self.  It’s not just the extra poundage that has impacted how I am feeling, but also my body proportions, my lack of tone (hello flabby arms) and the overall physical changes that my body has endured after having three children.  Maybe I am being hard on myself, but I  want to feel healthy and fit for me; and attractive and sexy for my husband – and right now I do not feel any of these.

As busy mom of three, it has been very challenging for me to find the time to work out and stay in shape.  Throughout my life I have always been a fairly active person; yet between my job, home responsibilities (i.e. laundry, cooking, cleaning), the kids busy schedules, etc. it is often impossible for me to put aside a half hour to an hour for some “workout time.”  And when I do find this time,  I have my toddler in tow.  Forget joining a gym – that’s something I have no interest in doing because I quite frankly have neither the discipline nor the desire to go.  My workout passion is actually walking.  I love to get outside whenever I can and log some mileage just by going for a nice long walk.  Of course with the weather (finally) turning cold, those bitter temperatures have greatly put a damper any walking opportunities, when they do happen to present themselves.

In an effort to combat this rut I have found myself in, when my husband asked me what I wanted for Christmas I, without hesitation, told him that I wanted a treadmill.  At least with a treadmill I could walk whenever I wanted to and there would be no excuses on my part as to why I couldn’t sneak in some exercise.  I had asked for one last Christmas but I think my husband must have thought I was joking because I never got one.  But this year I insisted on one, and a few days before Christmas one showed up at my door – though it is currently in a big box that is now sitting in my living room just waiting to be assembled.

Of course having the means (once it’s assembled) to now workout is not enough.  I need the motivation – as if standing in front of the mirror with nothing on isn’t enough motivation in and of itself….(Shudder…lol)  My motivation came just last night when my husband, who I can pretty much guarantee was tired of hearing me complain about my physical self (especially when he tells me that I am beautiful), challenged me to a little friendly weight-loss competition.  The challenge is simple – which one of us can lose the most weight between now and March 1st.  We both weighed in yesterday to establish our starting weights and now it’s anyone’s game.  While we haven’t decided on a “prize” so to speak, the challenge itself has already been a great motivator –  for I will never live it down if I lose to a man who does not exercise and will have to rely on healthy-eating, and healthy-eating alone (not one of his strong suits either) to beat me.

So just this morning I got up and walked 4.25 miles (in the cold mind you since my treadmill is still not assembled – and now in light of this challenge might never get assembled as an attempted sabotage tactic – lol) and made it a point to, throughout today, eat healthy, eat the correct food proportions, and limit my all-day snacking habits.  I started utilizing my workout/food app as a way to track and hold me accountable as it pertains to both my caloric intake and active minutes.  This is only day one, there is a long road ahead – one that will take willpower, self-discipline, and self-control.  While I don’t plan on becoming a fanatic about every little calorie or exercise opportunity, for me I need to, in light of past bad habits, maintain a heightened awareness about my whole self.

So, when your husband proposes a weight-loss challenge – its GAME ON!!! Here’s to kicking his butt and regaining the body I have been longing for….

 

I gave my kids “The Gift of the Know” for Christmas…

As my boys get older, I wanted to give them something for Christmas that was more than toys, or clothes, or tangible materialistic items to be unwrapped.  So I gave them “The Gift of the Know.”  The Gift of the Know is something that I made up and put in rhyme form, but reflects the most precious gift of all that can be given….

Yes, I gave my kids the gift of time in the form of tickets to a football game and an overnight at an indoor waterpark – both experiences that we will do as a family as a way to spend quality time together and make memories that we can cherish for a lifetime.

 

Merry Christmas to all!!!

Savor the moments that will soon be just memories…

Time is an elusive concept.  We wish we had more of it, or it flies by to fast, or then we take it for granted, or it drags on…..  With the holidays fast approaching, I am once again reminded that time, for me, is moving way to fast.  My boys are growing up fast and my little one, who just turned two, seems to demonstrate a wisdom well past those two small years.  Soon all that is the present will be nothing more than memories of the past…..

As a mom I find it very challenging to be cognizant of and appreciate my kids when I am fumbling through homework time, running each of them to their respective after-school activities, trying to be their mom and enforce the rules, or just trying to stay on top of the business of their lives.      It’s hard not to feel bogged down in the task-orientedness of motherhood.  How can I enjoy my kids when the list of motherhood-to do’s is so overwhelming?  And how can I enjoy my kids when at times their responses are less than appreciative, less than respectful, and less than helpful.  Yet there needs to be a balance AND I need to be the one to create it, to foster it, and to maintain it – somehow, someway… I need to embrace the present and make the time, to enjoy this time.  I need to make more a conscious effort to relax and go with the flow.  I need to laugh more, yell less, and shrug off a few more things than I do.  I need to not be so serious, so regimented, and such a “stick-in-the-mud” as my grandmother would’ve said.  Easier said then done when there is so much required of me, yet it is apparent that how I am and how I react affects the functionality of my household.

Time marches on as I try to figure out motherhood.  Time will continue to do so regardless of whether or not I adjust and adapt.  So once again, at this holiday season, I will remind myself to savor each moment, to slow down, and to appreciate my blessings because they are fast becoming nothing but memories.

Questions I ponder as both a wife and mother….Part 3

  1. Why, if you are going to complain about all of the laundry that is piling up don’t you go down to the washing machine and throw a load in for me?
  2. Why if you are going to complain that all your clothes are dirty and that you have nothing to wear, don’t you read #1 on my list?
  3. Why do I practically have to drag my children out of bed on a school day, but on the weekend they voluntarily get up at some ungodly early hour?
  4. Why can’t my house stay clean for longer than a hot 5 minutes?
  5. Why, if the morning routine is the same every single day, do my kids look so surprised when I ask them if they have brushed their teeth?
  6. Why can’t someone in my family just answer my questions with  polite responses rather than snotty retorts?
  7. Why did I sign up to be the craft mom at my son’s Holiday Party when I could have so easily read the class a story instead?
  8. Why don’t my kids realize that I can’t be late to work any more than they can be late to school?
  9. Why is it not acceptable to feed them chicken nuggets and french fries every night ? – at least I know they will eat that…
  10. Why must my toddler peel a banana, take one bite, and then tell me she doesn’t want it?
  11. Why don’t my kids eat the fruit I pack them?
  12. Why can’t anyone in my household rinse the toothpaste foam that they spit out of their mouths and into the sink, down the drain?
  13. Why is there only one volume of noise in my house – that of loud?
  14. Why can’t all of my children be good at the same time?
  15. Why when I forget to do something is it a monumental and catastrophic issue but you forget to do something it’s my fault for not reminding you?
  16. Why can’t all of my children be in a good mood at the same time?
  17. Why can’t my family look more put together and less dysfunctional when we are out in public?
  18. Why can’t I have nap-time? (probably because I still have that laundry to do)…
  19. Why do I bother putting my kids clothes neatly in their drawers if they are just going to grab their clothes out and stuff them back in without a care?
  20. Why can’t anyone find anything in this house other than me?

Questions I ponder as both a wife and mom – part 2

1.  Why is nothing I do ever important enough to not be interrupted, but when I am summoned by anyone in my family I’m supposed to drop whatever it is I’m doing and rush to their side for immediate assistance? 

2.  Why the moment I step into the bathroom does everyone else suddenly have to go as well? 

3.  Why, even after I have just done a food shopping, does everyone complain that there’s nothing to eat?

4.  Why do my kids think that giving me attitude is acceptable but that being punished for their attitudes makes me unfair?

5.  Why, despite a room full of toys and other activity outlets do my kids constantly complain that they are bored?

6. Why do foods that my kids love one day, they suddenly hate and refuse to eat the next?

7.  Why do my kids tell me that they’re full and cannot possibly finish their dinner, and then half an hour later complain that they are starving?

8.  Why is everything a crisis?

9.  Why does asking you to do your homework result in your having a meltdown? 

10.  Why do my kids expect me to tell them the answers for their homework?

11. Why does my asking for help around the house from anyone in my family result in eye rolling, moans & groans?

12.  Why, if you can make a mess, can’t you clean it up? 

13.  Why, when my husband finally helps clean up around the house does he suddenly feel the need to point out and comment on all those things I have not yet put away or gotten to?  

14.  Why is my stuff clutter and junk and your stuff priceless treasures?

15.  Why does my husband have to shave right after I just cleaned the bathroom sink?

16. Why does your lack of planning constitute an emergency on my part?

17. Why doesn’t motherhood come with real superpowers – Like the ability to read minds or fly? 

Questions I Ponder as a Wife and Mom…

1.  Why am I the only one who can change the empty roll of toilet paper? 

2.  Why am I the only one who can do laundry, and do it correctly – that is, separate the whites from the colors?

3.  Why am I the only one that can seem to come up with “what’s for dinner?”

4.  Why, when the baby poops, am I the only one that can seem to handle the messy disaster?

5.  Why am I the only one that can load the dishwasher correctly so that everything actually fits?

6.  Why am I the only one that can find things that are conveniently missing right in front of my children’s faces? 

7.  Why am I the only one who notices that the kitchen garbage can is full and needs to be taken out?

8.  Why am I the one everyone comes to with their problems but when it comes time for me to share my frustrations everyone scatters?

9.  Why do my kids expect me to answer them from two rooms away but when they are right in front of me and I ask them a question I am met with blank stares and the sounds of crickets?

10.  Why can’t I ever just “take a sick day?”

11.  Why does my family keep thinking that some magical fairy cleans up their crap when they see me toting around a broom all day? 

12.  Why does my family not realize that if they’d help me out a little more around the house I might not be so darn bitchy?

13.  Why am I the only one who finds it unacceptable to leave dirty clothes on the floor and wet towels draped on the furniture? 

14.  Why am I the only one who thinks that brushing your teeth more than once a day isn’t cause for a meltdown?

15.  Why does my asking you to make your bed result in a battle of wills?

16.  Why am I the only one who thinks that the bathroom hand towel should be for just that – your hands, not for you to wipe your mouth on after you’ve brushed your teeth. 

17. Why am I always the last to sit down to eat dinner?

18.  Why do I have to kill the gross bugs that you find on your bedroom ceilings?

19. Why am I the last one to go to bed but the first to wake up?

20.  Why don’t I start drinking more wine? 

Childproofing your chocolate stash….

Very rarely do we as moms get to enjoy some small food indulgence (usually that indulgence is candy) without feeling the longing stares of those multiple pairs of little eyes boring into our very beings – silently pleading for a bite, a taste, or a lick of whatever it is we are attempting to enjoy.  Ultimately, because we are moms, we end up sharing whatever it is with our children (assuming we can) – but let’s face it – sometimes we just want to selfishly savor something without having to divide it up a million different ways.

Or quite possibly we don’t even get to the indulgence because someone in the household has already taken it upon themselves to eat it right out from underneath us.  Yes, there is nothing worse than looking forward to that candy bar (a treat that every so often I will crave) only to find out that tiny vultures made off with it just prior, leaving nothing but an empty wrapper on the kitchen counter to showcase “their kill.”

My girlfriend recently shared with me her “mommy chocolate protection vault” as I will call it.  I think it’s rather ingenious and give her kudos for her creativity.  Since there is a good chance it will also keep her chocolate safe from her husband maybe I should instead call it the “mommy/husband chocolate protection vault.”  Either way it’s awesome and very effective in her household.  So go for it moms – find that secret place and stash your stash…..

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