Arbitrary Rules…

I just read this on Quora and really liked the lesson

RUN THE DISHWASHER TWICE.

When I was at one of my lowest (mental) points in life, I couldn’t get out of bed some days. I had no energy or motivation and was barely getting by. I had therapy once per week, and on this particular week I didn’t have much to ‘bring’ to the session. He asked how my week was and I really had nothing to say.“ What are you struggling with?” he asked. I gestured around me and said “I dunno man. Life.” Not satisfied with my answer, he said “No, what exactly are you worried about right now? What feels overwhelming? When you go home after this session, what issue will be staring at you? ”I knew the answer, but it was so ridiculous that I didn’t want to say it. I wanted to have something more substantial. Something more profound. But I didn’t. So I told him, “Honestly? The dishes. It’s stupid, I know, but the more I look at them the more I CAN’T do them because I’ll have to scrub them before I put them in the dishwasher, because the dishwasher sucks, and I just can’t stand and scrub the dishes. “I felt like an idiot even saying it. What kind of grown ass woman is undone by a stack of dishes? There are people out there with *actual* problems, and I’m whining to my therapist about dishes? But my therapist nodded in understanding and then said: “RUN THE DISHWASHER TWICE.”I began to tell him that you’re not supposed to, but he stopped me. “Why the hell aren’t you supposed to? If you don’t want to scrub the dishes and your dishwasher sucks, run it twice. Run it three times, who cares?! Rules do not exist, so stop giving yourself rules. ”It blew my mind in a way that I don’t think I can properly express. That day, I went home and tossed my smelly dishes haphazardly into the dishwasher and ran it three times. I felt like I had conquered a dragon. The next day, I took a shower lying down. A few days later. I folded my laundry and put them wherever the fuck they fit. There were no longer arbitrary rules I had to follow, and it gave me the freedom to make accomplishments again. Now that I’m in a healthier place, I rinse off my dishes and put them in the dishwasher properly. I shower standing up. I sort my laundry. But at a time when living was a struggle instead of a blessing, I learned an incredibly important lesson: THERE ARE NO RULES. RUN THE DISHWASHER TWICE!!!

As I read this it really sunk in… we have all these ‘rules’ but who gave us these rules? It is like we read it somewhere or our parents told us this is how its suppose to be and now they are just imbedded in our heads.

I have always made a meal together with the family even if I had to make separate meals because the kids wouldn’t eat what I was making but I made it all together regardless last night, I made the kids dinner first then mine and my husbands later when he got home from work, It was amazing… I was able to eat my whole meal without being interrupted several times. And the best part was…. my dinner stayed warm the whole time I was eating it because I wasn’t getting up several times to help the kids!

We set the bar so high for us that, rules so high to follow that we just mentaly cannot take it anymore.

How about today you do something different, live on the wild side.. throw out some rules that you have been doing for many years for reasons you have no idea why but because you felt you HAD too…

Dishes need to be done right away after dinner…. why? the dishes will still be there later. Watch that show before the dishes get done…

Laundry cant pile up… why? The laundry will still be there later… read that book that you have been dying to read.

run the dish washer twice…. because life is too short. Stressing over these arbitrary rules…

Drink wine in the morning and coffee at night… 😉 rules….

Respect is the new ‘R’ Word

It was a beautiful day, the sun was shining and we were all outside having a good time. The kids were playing on the trampoline and my husband and I were working away on our trailer. 

My daughter comes into the trailer all upset. “The neighbours just yelled at us” my husband and I just looked at her in disbelief. What do you mean they just yelled at you? My daughter told us they told them to shut up. They are being too loud. 

Of course, that was a no go, my husband went over there and spoke to them. The neighbour said “There is something wrong with your child, I think he is ‘retarded’.

My heart sank. My son was in earshot. He heard these complete strangers call him a name. The heartbreak on his face was just devastating. 

Are they serious? Are they really upset to hear kids in the backyard playing? My mind was racing. How low can people be to call my child names? How low can people be to yell at children for playing in the backyard? I am disgusted.  

Growing up in the 80s the word ‘retarded’ was thrown around like confetti. It was the popular insult of that time frame. 

“I used the wrong font on my essay, I am so retarded” back then it just seemed to the best and easiest way people would use to describe when they did something stupid. 

Back then I would fluff that word off like it was just another word, it certainly never sat well with me, but I never gave it a second thought till I had kids. Till I had a child with special needs. 

Hearing this word now kills me. It runs through my body like a bunch of knives being throw at me. This word to me is a swear word. This word needs to go. 

Every day a mother was a special needs child struggles. We struggle with everyday living needs of the child. We struggle with trying to understand why our child, our beautiful baby has to have such a hard life. We struggle with how this is so unfair. 

“I think he is retarded” It’s just booming in my hears. At this moment I stop breathing. I wanted to lose it. The mama bear in me wanted to tear those people apart limb from limb.  My kids were watching me, like hawks. So I quickly scooped them all up and went inside and let my husband handle it. 

After everything settled down, it really sank in. I should have been harder on them, I should have stepped up and told them that the “R” word is not okay. Maybe they would think before they threw that word out there, maybe they wouldn’t, but I just wanted to get my kids out of that situation. 

My son who is 9 years old, has ADHD, High functioning autism, social anxiety and a learning disability. He is smart and funny and full of life. I wouldn’t change him for the word. These labels do not define him. When I look at him I don’t see these labels, I see my beautiful baby boy who makes my heart melt every day. 

Many people don’t see firsthand what it is like to have a child with a disability. I do my best every day to educate people. In hopes that one day these words that people throw around gets thrown in the garbage. That one day instead of judging from afar they would just come and ask questions. I promise you I won’t get offended I encourage it. 

Since my son is high functioning, just by looking at him you wouldn’t know.  Some people would think since it is not severe they have it easy. The reality is quite different. 

What people see in their eyes is a boy that has behavior issues. They just assume that he is just not being raised properly and that, of course, is all their parent’s fault right? This is what happens when you don’t ask questions you just assume. 

My son has extreme sensory issues. He does not like loud noises, crowds, extreme tastes like sour or spicy, bright lights or weird touches to things like slim.  

My son has no social clues. In his mind when he is having a conversation he has no idea what is a civil conversation or when someone is making fun of him. He has no idea what too loud is. He has no idea when it is okay to speak or wait his turn. 

My son has anxiety. When something is new he doesn’t know how to react to it. When something is changing he doesn’t know how to react to it. 

My son lacks planning skills. It is hard for him to plan, manage and cope with the tiniest scheduling change, in school and at home. My son can do many great things, but if there is an obstacle or something goes wrong. He doesn’t know how to handle the situation. 

My son has difficulty following simple instructions. My son CAN do a lot of tasks, but when told verbally, sometimes things get lost in translation. “Clean your room then you can play on your Nintendo” What he may hear is “Clean your room” or “You can play on your Nintendo” Breaking down how you word things with him really helps. 

To a person that doesn’t see these things first hand, to a person who doesn’t have these difficulties could assume these are things someone can get over. That these things are easily ‘fixed’ I promise you, these are not behaviour issues. These are his everyday struggles and will probably have these struggles for the rest of his life. 

This word is never okay to use, in any situation. This word needs to be wiped out of your vocabulary. Knowing 1 child with a disability doesn’t mean you know them all. It means you know that 1. Each child with a disability are their own person, they have their own struggles and their own gains. It is better to ask questions then just stare and make rude comments. 

Just because one child doesn’t learn the same way as other children, doesn’t mean there is something wrong with them. It just means that we as parents or caregivers or family need to find a different way to teach them. 

You as a parent will learn how to thrive and grow and change to understand the needs of your child. Yes, you will feel frozen at times, just know it will get better and it will get hard but you will figure it out. 

It is okay to feel sad. That your child will not have a ‘normal’ childhood. It is really hard, but know that you can make their life the best possible way to make sure they are happy and healthy and smiling. 

Be thankful for the little things. I am so thankful when my son puts his shoes on the right way, I make a big deal about it, “Amazing job buddy” Or when he parts with a stuffed animal that is broken because he gets so attached to things. 

Try not to read into what people say to you. I know it is hard and I find myself really overthinking what people say. You will find yourself annoyed with peoples positive attitude because it may seem like they are minimizing the magnitude of your child’s challenges, you may find yourself annoyed with peoples negative attitude towards your child because they don’t recognise your child’s progress.  

I am grateful for the times that we live in. There is so much new information out there that helps people educate. We now live in an age with the internet. We can now connect with other moms that are deal with the same things we are. We have support when we feel like we are all alone.  To share our experiences. 

My hopes are that one day, people will ask questions. My hopes are my son will not have to live in a world where people are so mean and so quick to say hurtful words.  

My hopes are that respect becomes the new “R” word.

Distant Memories

When I was younger I felt the days went by so slow. Sitting at my desk in school, watching the clock, tick tick tick. Waiting for the bell to ring, then booking it out of the school as fast as I could. 

Summertime, daydreaming when I am finally old enough to do all the things that only adults can do. Daydreaming  by my big willow tree on my farm. It was my favorite place to be. 

Now that I have kids, I want it to slow down. Life seems to be going 100 miles per hour. Like driving in the fast lane with no cars. Never in the slow lane. 

Just busy parenting, keeping the house in order and working. I find myself often just sitting and watching the kids play in the pool. Thinking “Where did the time go?, I swear it was just yesterday they were babies” 

I will be the first to admit that I struggle to stop and smell the roses. I will be in the middle of laundry or dishes and the kids ask to play “Let me just finish these” The dishes and laundry will be there later, your kids grow up so fast. 

A first birthday is so exciting, yet you mourn the fact that your baby is growing up. To be honest for me, it seems to be every birthday. Even with 4 kids you would think that I have learned by now, they do in fact have to grow up. Not stay babies forever, since my oldest is 11. 

The pain of childbirth and holding your new baby in your hands. 

Watching them take their first steps and eating solid foods for the first time. 

No sleep and sore nipples. 

Them exploring the amazing adventures the world has to offer. 

Becomes a distant memory. 

I know I cannot stop time. All we can do is soak it all in because one day, I will miss the house being a mess, I will be sitting in my living room missing the sounds of little feet running in and yelling “Mommy, look what I did” I will miss cutting the crust of the sandwiches. I will miss this. All of this. 

I am going to try my best to take it all in. When my son wants a random hug, I will get down to his level and give him a big hug and hold him there for a minute, even if he squirms. When they ask me to play, I will set down the laundry or dishes and go and play with them. 

Don’t get me wrong I am excited to watch them grow into amazing adults and see where life takes them. — To watch their little personalities grow to be big ones. To see their drive to get their dream jobs. 

I hear people say “Make these the best days of your life!” But I don’t want these to JUST be the best days, I don’t want to be sad when it’s all done and my best days are behind us. Instead I am going to make these days happy and fun and full of life. I want to continue to have the best days when they are older too and have kids themselves. 

I am going to continue to help my children have the best tools to be able to grow up and be respectful, caring adults. 

I am going to have more movie nights with all the fixings, popcorn, chips and candy. 

I am going to put my phone down and computer down and soak in the laughter. 

I am going to make more time for myself and my husband so that we have enough energy to keep up with them. 

I want to look back at these days and remember that I enjoyed every single moment of them being babies and small kids and teenagers. I don’t want to look back and regret that I didn’t put down my phone or laundry to look at what they were doing. 

I want to look back and know that everything I did, helped shape them to be amazing adults. 

SPAGHETTI stuffed peppers

Lately I have been feeling like I am making the same things over and over again. I decided that I wanted to try something really different that I have never made before.

We had left over spaghetti in the fridge from my mothers day dinner and it was amazing. So I wanted to add that to the dinner but to what?

As I am standing in the fridge I saw the peppers and a light bulb went off in my head! Hmmm spaghetti stuffed peppers? Why not!

Cook the spaghetti the way you like it, How we do ours is;

In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook the pasta according to the directions on the package. Drain set aside.

In a large skillet heat up and add some oil, about a teaspoon. Add chopped up onion. Cook the onion until soft. Then stir in garlic. Then add the ground beef. (Or turkey, or chicken) Break up the meat with a wooden spoon. Cook until the meat is no longer pink.

You can even add crushed up tomatoes to this one, that is also good!

Take off the heat and add the cooked pasta.

Take the oil and drizzle on the bottom of the baking sheet. Cut the peppers in half and add them to the baking sheet. Drizzle the peppers with more oil. Put some salt and pepper on top of the peppers. Then fill the peppers with the spaghetti and add some grated cheese on top.

Bake that for 20 minutes, in a preheated oven at 400 and until the cheese has nicely melted on top.

Tasted amazing!! Even more so with a glass of wine !!

Ingredients

Cooking spray, for pan
1/2 lb. spaghetti
4 bell peppers, halved and cored
2 tbsp. olive oil, divided
1/2 large onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 lb. ground beef
1 tsp. dried oregano
salt
pepper
Crushed tomatoes
1/2 c. grated Parmesan
1 1/2 c. shredded mozzarella

Pros and cons of breastfeeding & formula feeding

Well it’s May and it snowed. Yesterday we were all thinking about what to plant in our gardens and today we are shoveling snow. Can we just all say 2020 is a wash? I guess only time can tell.

There are still some controversial debates going around and have been around for many years. Since the internet has been such a big thing for awhile now, these debates have been massive. One of the big ones are breastfeeding vs formula fed.

Let me start off by saying I did both for my kids. My first child I am not sure why I was just not producing enough and had to do both. My second child I was producing a lot, but he was just so hungry I could not keep up with the demand and had to do both. With my last I did a little bit when I found out that he was allergic to dairy products and had to get it out of my system so that he could breastfeed properly without getting and upset tummy.

There are a lot of reasons you choose to do either. You are not able to produce, you feel like formula is too expensive or you need to do both.

There is a lot of breastfed is best and fed is best, but I want to dive into each one and look at their pros and cons.

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Breastfeeding

Pros

Natures natural baby food. If you are able to exclusively breastfeed your child, that is amazing good on you! Breastfeeding is really hard. Cracked nipples, biting and sore boobs come with it. It also comes with the boding experience with your child.

Breast milk comes with the immunity building antibodies. It is believed that scientist have yet to make that exact formula to put into anything else. Breast milk is full of vitamins and protein and fat a perfect blend to help your child grow. This formula helps your baby fight off virus’s and bacteria. Breast milk also helps your child lower the risk of allergies as well. There are some tests saying that it highers your IQ but I know some adults that are extremely smart that have been formula fed and are doing just fine, so I am not 100% behind this one.

There are even some benefits for the mother when breastfeeding. Burning calories it releases hormone Oxycontin. This helps your uterus go back to its normal size. They also say it lowers your risk of breast and ovarian cancer.

It does also save your money. Since you don’t have to buy formula and bottles and nipples.

There is more ease and convenience to breastfeeding. You are able to feed your child anywhere, no need to warm up a bottle or make preparations before leaving the house.

Cons

I know I can hear you saying, there are no cons of breastfeeding but I promise you there are pros and cons to mostly everything.

Some mothers and children just get it right off the bat with breastfeeding and just ease into it like they have been doing it for awhile. There are some that it takes long to master and there might be some barriers in the way that make it difficult to do so.

Issues with milk supply which I did. I had both way too high and way too low. Cracked and sore nipples. I use to cringe when mine would latch it was so painful. The pain level was up there with having 3 c-sections it was terrible.

Adjusting your sleeping schedule to your babies feeding schedule can be difficult, the constant demand of caring for your baby and yourself, it can be extremely challenging.

Your baby is attached to you, all the time. You are the the supplier of food. Woman may feel like they are loosing themselves. Body image, sex life and self-esteem issues.

Right now, more and more stores are making it easier for moms to breastfeed their kids but some places still struggle with that, even more in the work place environment. It can be difficult to still breastfeed in public. When you are at your friends house and they don’t have kids yet, mothers may feel the judgement of it.

Your spouse or partner will not get that bond feeding their child, and the mom may feel the lack for support when it comes to the child in that aspect.

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Formula feeding

Pros

You can buy your supply. A lot of woman including me for my first child you struggle with producing milk, sometimes you may produce a little and some can’t produce any. The convenience of being able to go out and buy more when you run out.

Having time to yourself to get your body back, with the fact that you can make a bottle and get someone to help you feed your child you can have a minute in the shower, or at least brush you hair. You can drink that bottle of wine no problem and just lush yourself.

You don’t have the nipple pain, you may experience some enlargement pain while you body dries up the supply but that will go away in do time.

Your spouse and even your parents will get the shared experience with your child. That amazing closeness and bond that you get when feeding your child, you can share that with your other have. You are able to get some well needed sleep that you longed for.

No lopsided boob. This was a big issue for me when I was breastfeeding. My kids would rather one side over the other and then the nipple pain was more on one side so I tended to use one side over the other, which made one boob bigger than the other.

Those weird pads that you put in your bra, the ones that make you look like you have a third nipple, you wont have to use those because no leaky boob!

Con

It can get expensive. Depending on what type of formula that you want to buy for your child or what type of formula that your child needs. For example for sensitive tummies.

The judgement you might get do to the fact that you are not breastfeeding. Even more so from your parents or your grandparents. When you go out for dinner and you order that glass of wine, people will be looking at you with your baby beside you “wow are you still breastfeeding and drinking” then you tell them “no I formula feed” then the judgement gets worse “how dare you not breastfeed your baby”

You may not burn the calories that you would if you were breastfeeding, with breastfeeding your body helps you do some of the work.

Dishes Dishes Dishes… Okay we all hate doing them, sometimes I feel like just throwing out all the dishes and using paper everything, but yes… washing all the bottles and the nipples and all the things that come along with it that you need to wash.

You know that amazing smell, when you open a coffee can for the first time and it hits you like amazing pot of gold. Yeah that won’t happen with formula the smell alone is just I don’t even know how to explain it. It stinks.

Pro for both

YOUR BABY IS FED!

As a mother finding what is best for both you and your baby is hard. All the judgement and all the info that get’s crammed in your face can be alarming. The right choice is what is best for you and your family. Talk to your doctor or health care provider and talk with your spouse. You shouldn’t have to feel you are alone in making this decision.

Homeschooling

Day 56…

Every week my youngest who is in JK, the teacher will do a student of the week. Who has been working really hard online. Getting all their work done. They get a trophy with their names on it and a “Huge awesome work” from their teachers

Don’t get me wrong I love seeing other little ones working hard, but for me it’s a reminder that mine are struggling.

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Now I do understand that their work is not being marked. This is just to keep their brains fresh. Every time I read it I get a knot in my stomach.

It’s a reminder that I am not doing my 100%. It ‘s a reminder that all these other parents are doing an amazing job at this home schooling thing and I am over here behind.

My son throws a huge tantrum every time he has to do work. Of course why would he want to he’s at home, we don’t do school work at home and even though we have been at this for awhile. He still does not want to do it.

Every now and then he will want to do something, I have done everything I could possible to get him to do it. He is just not feeling it.

Honestly I don’t think any parent has really mastered this. It is knew to everyone. Knew to the parents, knew to the kids, knew to the teachers. This is a big step in learning and we are all struggling.

We have to make sure that we are not getting lost in the due dates, and the marks, and the other parents getting more done then you are. Kids all work at different paces and different emotions. We have to take all this with a grain of salt and day by day.

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Most parents are stressed about all this. Most parents are saying they have no idea what they are doing and trying to do their best. Kids just want to be home and play, not do work.

We are all being forced to be teachers and parents at the same time and kids just don’t understand why they have to because they are not at school.

Take it day by day. If you made it through the day then you did it! If your child did ONE thing on the computer then you did it! They did it!

I think we all need to stop being so hard on ourselves, we need to stop comparing ourselves to other parents and our kids to their kids. We are not all the same.

Keep rocking this mom life, drink some coffee, drink some wine. Rock that shit!

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‘unwanted’ parenting advice

Here you are holding your new bundle of joy. You feel happy, scared and excited and who knows what other emotions are brewing inside you because this is intense. You and your partner just made a tiny little human!

Your new adventure has just began. Wondering what you are going to do, how are you going to raise them. All these new never done before moments.

Let’s be honest you have no idea what you are doing and of course you will get the ‘unwanted’ parenting advice from all different walks of life parents out there.

I wanted to talk about the ones that I received when I had my first baby, heck I still get it after having 4 kids.

Don’t get me wrong some of the advice I received was great, I could use it and other ones were just went completely against what I felt was necessary to have a connection with my child.

So grab your coffee and let’s get started

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1. Don’t hold your baby too much

Your baby was inside your belly for 9 months, then comes out into this huge world, it has no idea what is happening. It’s nice warm comfort zone is gone. You holding your baby, is giving your child that comfort zone. You cannot spoil your baby. The attention you give your baby is the foundation for thriving, emotionally, physically and intellectually!

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2. Treat your child the way they treat you

In other words, they give you attitude, you give it right back. They speak to you in a rude tone you speak back to them in a rude tone. Monkey see Monkey do. You want your child to know what they are doing is wrong. If you come back at them with the same tone or attitude, they will just continue with it. “Well mommy does it so I can” It is a better idea to be a good role model. You want to show them better ways to react to situations that you don’t like. Instead of getting mad when they are frustrating you, say “wow, I really loved that you did what I asked of you even though you were upset”. Get them to talk about why it upset them in the first place, children are just learning how to express themselves in the right manner and we need to teach them the right way.

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3. Spank them when they misbehave

This is one of them that bothered me the most. Your child looks up to you. You are their safe place. You start spanking your child, you are no longer their safe place. At the same time, you are telling your child “we do not hit each other when we disagree with what they are doing” yet you are doing it to them when you don’t like what they are doing. Words. Words are more powerful then a punishment that will scar their self-esteem. If your child refuses to do their school work because they want to play games, then tell them if you refuse to do what I ask then you don’t get to play your games. The one thing that I found worked best for tantrums was just walking away, not only does it help you calm down, it helps them. Giving them some space, when they realize that you are no longer giving them that attention they will calm down and stop what they are doing.

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4. Be a helicopter mom if you want to keep your child safe

This one lately I have been struggling with, because I feel like their is a fine line with over parenting and letting your child figure out life. If you never let your child figure out their own mistakes. You are constantly there hovering over them so they make 0 mistakes, when something comes along and you are not there they will have no idea how to deal with that situation. Tell your child about your experiences as a child, “when I did this, this is what happened, this is how I dealt with it” We are not always going to be around our kids, we need to teach them how to live in the big wide world. So that means, they will fall and get hurt. They will make a mistake. Being a good mom, doesn’t mean you have to be a perfect one. Since that doesn’t exist.

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5. Don’t ever give your child junk food

This means no pizza, no cake, no cupcakes. Not even french fries or burgers.
While eating healthy is very important, but all the time with no cheat days isn’t really practical. What if your child get’s invited over to a friends house for a sleepovers or birthday parties? I personally feel like it would have more of a negative effect on your child’s social and emotion development. You are telling your child that they can’t have these things at birthday parties or gatherings but all the other kids can. They will potentially feel like an outcast. Obviously if your child is allergic to something yes, of course they shouldn’t.
Yes, having your child have healthy food more than junk food is important, but teach your child the difference between junk food and healthy food. Allow your child to eat junk food in moderation. Show your child that healthy foods can be just as fun and inviting.

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6. ‘Cry it out method’ is best

“This will help them learn to be more independent”

“This will help mold their lungs”

There has been studies that have proven that this can have a negative impact on your child. One study shown that your child would become more dependent on you. Your child just cried himself / herself to sleep, which means they tired themselves out from crying and gave up hope thinking that you will be coming back in. Hearing this one goes against everything that I believed in. Knowing that my baby just gave up on their comfort zone.
What we did for this one was, we waited till they were at least 6 months old and could sleep through the night to change them over to the crib in their own rooms. As for transferring your child to a toddler bed and they keep getting out. What we did was sat outside the bedroom door. Every time they would get out. I would put them back in reassuring that I was there but it is bedtime this is where you sleep now. Showing your child that no matter what you will always be there is key. Letting them know that it is bedtime but you promise to me there when they wake up.

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Note:
These are just my opinions on how I feel about the advice I was given. Get your own opinion on each one. Take the advice with a grain of salt. Some things may work for one family but they may not work for all.

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Most important love you baby with all your heart. Show them all the love you can give them. Enjoy this new adventure. Days will be harder then others but you have got this!

TOMORROW I will do better

I am all touched out.

I am all talked out.

I am all schooled out.

I am all cooked out.

I am stretched thin.

I took a minute in the car today. I told everyone I needed a minute. I went to the car and I sat in the car silence. No phone. No music. Just the sound of nature and my coffee.

I started to cry. I have been pushed and pulled in every direction. I have cooked breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks. I have heard “Mama” “Mom” “Mommy” so many times, I feel like I am the only one on this planet that can help them. Because we all know that not being able to open fruit snacks is the end of the world.

They will completely walk past their father and go all the way to the end of the house just to find me or scream for me while I am in the bathroom.

Do they know he too holds the power of opening fruit snacks and finding things around the house. Even though I am sure he will yell for me too asking where to find it.

In the car I thought about all the things that I was going to do with my life. I was going to have my own animal rescue. I was going to be the towns go to place when they could no longer take care of their animals and needed a place that they knew the loved pet can go. A place for people to bring the animals that they find that needs that extra love. I was going to go to school to become a vet. Take care of the 4 legged family members that we all love so very much.

Instead I am watching all the people that I grew up with enjoy their dreams. Become who they always wanted to become and I am here drinking my cold coffee because I have been running around trying to help 4 kids with their online schooling that I left it on the counter. I am here trying to convince my 4 year old that if he eats his veggies he will grow up and be big and strong. I am here telling my 11 year old that bossing her siblings around is not okay. I am here running around like a chicken with its head cut off.

I am to the point where I am about to give in. Sure have ice cream for breakfast, Sure watch that whole season on the TV, sure play mine-craft all day. Because honestly I am way too tired to have the energy to process life. Way too tired to try and win these battles.

I promise you I love being a mom.

My kids are my everything. I could not imagine my life without them. I would give them the shirt off my back if I had too, but I would be lying if I would give anything to also have more time to myself. To hang out with my friends without getting up every 2 seconds to tend to a little version of myself.

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I am constantly being touched, hung on, climbed on. My personal space no longer exists.

Their needs are never ending

Their questions are never ending

My sanity, is for sure ending

I am always tired. Like permanently tired. At this point I feel like that It’s normal. This is just me now. I know one day, when they are all grown up. I will miss this. I will miss their questions and their moms I need yous. The house will be too quiet.

But today I needed a minute. I needed a minute to let it all out in my car alone. I needed a reset. I needed to show myself that I am still human and not the energizer bunny. I reached the I AM DONE point.

Then they go to bed and my world is silent. I look at them while they are sleeping and I question myself as to why I even needed that minute because they are so cute and cuddly. These tiny little humans that I created made me completely loose my mind that I went to my car and cried and questioned my life. I feel the guilt set in. I feel guilty that I yelled “Mommy needs a minute”

I kiss them on the cheeks and whisper, Mommy is sorry. Mommy was not her best today.

Tomorrow I will do better

Where is the balance.

The realization how times have changed from when we were younger. We roamed freely. We would walk to the store along when our parents had enough of us and gave us some pennies, to grab penny candy.

We rode our bikes with our friends without our parents being right there. We wanted to walk up town for lunch, no problem.

Our parents would sit on a bench and let us play freely on the playground while reading a book or talking to their friends.

Now, modern parenting is a whole different story. It makes it hard for us ‘None helicopter moms’ we feel that we need to be RIGHT there in case of judgement.

Now parents even with older kids are hovering by the playground “oh honey, you shouldn’t use the monkey bars just in case you fall” “I will stand here while you ride your bike in the driveway”

Yes, I do realize that we are now more aware of kidnappers and people whom are bad because of social media, they were always around.

Allowing your teenager to go to the mall alone with her or his friends is out of the question. You feel guilty, you feel scared the whole time.

I find myself trying to find a balance between permissive parenting and helicopter mom.

I want my kids to be able to make those mistakes and learn their lessons but at the same time I am scared for being judged that I am not doing enough.

I struggle with all the rules that is set in place now. How our generation is ruin our kids because they should have 0 screen time, spend every single moment with them that you have, sign them up for every single spot even if they don’t like it. Celebrate every single holiday and buy them huge gifts. Wait, when did Easter become the new Christmas?

Your kids don’t get enough outdoor time. Um, I promise you if my kids could live outside in a forest they probably would.

I want my kids to have somewhat of the same childhood I did, even though I know it’s not possible now. To be completely honest trying to find a balance for that is stressing me out.

As social media gets bigger so does all the information about how we can and cannot do this and the information is back and forth.

How are we suppose to figure all this out when everything is so conflicting.

You shouldn’t have them on technology for long, yet in school that is a huge part of their learning.

You shouldn’t tell your kids that their homework is wrong, let the teacher mark it, yet you need to teach them the right answers.

You should be outside with them in your OWN backyard watching their every move, but that’s when I get my peace and able to get my housework done.

Where is the balance… where do you balance… when do we step back a little and where do we come in?

I find myself comparing everything I do to other parents, just to make sure I am doing thing’s right. Even those I know that is silly. It can drive a person mental.

The stakes are too high. There is so many rules I feel like I cannot keep up with them. I feel they are only going to get worse from here.

I can’t help but wonder if I am doing the right things, I can’t help but think am I ruining the kids by not doing or am doing these things?

Where do I find a balance?

Being a perfect parent is overrated

When I had my first child, I had it in my head that I was going to do everything right. I was going to buy her all name brand clothes, I was going to do all organic foods or even make all my own baby foods in the jars with the perfect little labels and dates. Honestly I tried my hardest to do all those things. Life got in the way of that. I got lost in the trying to make a sweet, crying every night baby happy. Waking up several times at night to breastfeed, that I was way too tired to even think about baby food or jars. Sometimes I was way too tired to even remember if I ate that day. 

I read all the baby books you can think of. Googled everything under the sun. All great books, but nothing can prepare you fully at becoming a mother. At this point it is really “How to keep your child alive without fully losing your damn mind in the process” which scared the crap out of me because I could barely keep a houseplant alive how can I keep a tiny version of myself alive. 

Second child came and I was more laid back. I came to the conclusion that all name brand clothing was just not going to happen. They grow like weeds. I swear they grow every time they put one scoop of food in their mouths. Side note: WHY ARE THEY ALWAYS HUNGRY!

My kids food schedule;

Snack, breakfast, breakfast snack, snack, lunch, lunch snack, snack, sometimes too full to eat dinner, complains they didn’t have dinner, dinner, dinner snack, snack, bedtime snack, snack… thinking about food while they are sleeping… Repeat.  

Third child, at this point he’s like a free range chicken. I have been there and done that and bought a t-shirt. To say that I am a pro at parenting no, because I don’t think that is even a thing. What I can say is that I do know the just of it. I am not trying to be that perfect parent that I set out to be because it does not exist. 

There are so many rules. What you can and cannot do as a parent. So much judgement out there. What grinds my gears is the parents shaming parents. Kids eating cold french fries off  the car floor HAPPENS. You will be driving and hear “Cold french fries taste yummy mommy” while they fish for that fry that you missed out of their car seat. They will stand at the big bay window in the living room and wave to your neighbor butt naked, with a shirt on their head because they are like ninjas and sneak away while you are finding something for them to wear. They will fart in a restaurant while the waiter is asking what would you like on the menu.

They will become a thirsty, hungry philosopher at bedtime, because they refuse to go to sleep. JUST in case they miss something. Nope all they will miss is me eating a whole cheese cake with a fork, binge watching grey’s anatomy.

All these things do NOT and I will repeat. DO NOT make you a bad parent.  It makes you a real one. Stuff happens. Kids have no filters. They are these balls of stressful, wonderful joys. That will make you wonder about every life choice you made. There is no way to be a perfect parent because I promise you, your kids won’t let that happen and it does not exist. 

One thing I do know. Is that you are perfect for them. They want you. Every little piece of you. While you are in the kitchen getting them several snacks. While you are in the laundry room changing the laundry over that you smell because you totally forgot to change the laundry over. Banging on the bathroom door because all of a sudden they have several questions and fruit snacks for you to open. 

They just want YOU. So rock that perfect imperfect parenting. We are all in this together.