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.

Easter… We have got this!

As Easter approaches I find myself unsure of how I feel. I am excited to still be able to watch my kids hunt for Easter eggs, because thankfully our bulk barn did online pick up, at the same time I find myself a little sad.

I am sad that I wasn’t able to get the ‘Extras” new books, or skipping ropes and bubbles. Normally I like to get them some sort of outside toy to celebrate spring time. It is in the back of my head that I feel I am failing as a mother because I can’t get the things that I normally can, but at the same time I know that I am doing the best I can in this new world that we are living in right now.

I am sad that we wont be able to do our big family dinners that we normally do with the extended family. Dinner at my moms with the big turkey and the big Easter egg hunt that she puts on every year for the kids. My dad’s where he always gets them so much outdoor toys to keep them entertained for the spring and summer. My grandma where her hugs can cure anything I swear.

I am sad that when my youngest keeps asking “Why can’t we go see them for just a minute” “I promise I wont get close to them” then I have to continue to remind him that we just simply can’t right now and explain to a 4 year old, who really doesn’t understand how a virus works.

I am sad that all my kids birthdays will be effected from this virus and there is nothing I can do about it. I can’t stop it. I can’t say “go away, so that my babies can have their birthdays” I am going to do my hardest to make sure that they have the best birthdays under the circumstances but I know that it just wont be the same. Bowling and space dance parties without their friends.

I am sad that I canceled on friends before this because I would give anything to see them right now, I need them.

As parents, we are going to have to figure out how to adapt to the world that is falling apart due to a virus that is just taking over the world. As parents we have to make sure that we protect our kids physically and mentally, but well let’s face it we have no idea what really is going on ourselves. We have to at the same time protect ourselves physically and mentally in order to protect them.

Stay positive

I get it, trust me it is really hard to stay positive when you are so scared yourself. Not to mention your kids driving you up the wall and back down again. Thinking about how a cabin in the woods, just you and nature would feel right about now. I find what work’s best here is using my words wisely and they will more then likely work… so instead of saying “Ugh, stop making such a mess” say “Can you please pick up your toys” They are just as stressed as you are. Their tiny lives have been flipped upside down too. Yelling at them will just make you upset and them upset and everyone’s crying and stressed.

Structure

Everything is up in the air right now, and no one know when this will end. Letting everyone just go hog wild in the house for months, is just going to cause everyone to be a hot mess and you drinking out of the wine bottle. I know as parents, moms. We want to sleep in. We dream about more sleep. I found if I set my alarm got up and had my coffee before the mayhem started I have a better day. I have started to get my body back to normal routines. Get your kids up, have breakfast, their showers and their school work. Have their meal times and bedtime routines as normal. Children have a healthier life with a structured life.

Behaviour

Kids are going to be testing our patience a lot more during this time. They know what set’s us off. I get that this time is stressful for them, but at the same time we need to make sure that they know that their behavior is now okay. We have always been their teachers even while they were in school. We need to make sure that they grow up to be respectful human beings. Consequences help teach our children responsibility for what they do. We will hear a lot of “You aren’t my teacher, I don’t need to learn that” they will have more break downs because they are stressed and are still learning how to use their emotions. Small body big emotions. Teach them how to express themselves and let us know whats going on in their little minds because negative outbursts.

Always take a minute for yourself. If you feel like screaming, if you feel like you are about to loose your cool. Go take a minute. Breathe. and come back to it.

You are not alone

Millions of parents out there are trying to figure this out too. Contact your mommy friends and vent to them. Tell them “Girl ima sell these kids to the zoo” I am 100% sure they will agree and say “maybe they will do a deal with more kids, I will drop mine off too” go on some mommy support groups.
Take a break. When the kids are asleep. Have that nice relaxing bath. Go sit outside with a book. Avoid social media with all those news outlets, people sharing all these things about the virus that is sending your blood pressure out the window. You need to separate yourselves from hearing about it all together to settle, to destress.

Talk to your kids about it

I know we are all trying to figure it out. We don’t know whats going on either. Your kids look to you for safety and reassurance that everything will be okay and that everything one day will go back to some what of a normal life. Being silent and not talking about it does not help your child. Listen to their questions and answer them to the best of your ability. Ask them open questions about how they are feeling about this whole situation. If they don’t feel like talking about it, that’s okay. Just let them know that you are here when they feel like talking.

We are all in this together. We can get through this, I know it. It is after 6 so it is time for wine!

Cheers parents, Stay safe, we have got this!

What day is it even?

Day 23… Maybe? I can’t remember what day we are on at this point or better yet what day of the week it is. All the days are just jumbling together.

How is everyone else doing out there? I think what the hardest part about this is being a parent when everything is happening. Not only do you have to look our for yourselves, you have tiny humans to think about too.

I feel like at this point they have had way to much screen time to last them awhile. My coffee in the morning and wine at night have just jumbled together and I may have had wine earlier then I should. My laundry keeps piling up faster then I can do it. Not going to lie someday’s i just don’t want to do it.

I have been finding myself looking back at pictures in February, saying to myself “wow you have no idea what was about to happen” The world was about to completely stop and or go into full panic buying all the toilet paper out of the stores a few months later and you are building snowmen.

Online schooling has started this week, yesterday was a complete hot mess, one child knew exactly what to do but the other 3 were asking me 230842039482 different questions what to do and honestly I was learning just as much as they were. Today went a lot smoother. I have always respecting teachers with everything they do. I just have 4 kids and I have no idea how they do it with 21 and sometimes more students. Props to the teachers.!

Trying to get groceries right now its a nightmare. No body wants to leave their houses which I get, but my normal online shopping has now become stressful. Trying to find a time slot, trying to remember what we did or how much of it we should get because lord knows when we will get another time slot.

I guess this is our new norm. For how long I am not sure. What I do know is we all need to stick together. Call your neighbor or family if you can and ask if they need something, share resources . Make skype or facebook video calls. Keep in touch the best you can. Try your best and say busy with anything around the house because it does look like this will last a bit longer.

Stay safe.

Make time, because time doesn’t wait for us.

The past few weeks, it has really hit me that time does not wait for anyone. That it just creeps up on you realizing that it goes by so fast, you blink and its 30 years later. It clearly doesn’t work that way but that’s how it feels.

Growing up it feels like you have all this time. Time to think of what you want to do when you’re older, all the time with your parents. But flash forward you are 30 and married with 4 kids of your own to raise.

You’re parents raise you to the best of their abilities. As a parent myself I have realized that is no easy task. One of the things I have learned is that the moments of reassureness, relief and pride are far in between. When you think you have everything under control something comes creeping in out of no where. It is hard to feel like you are really ‘Succeeding’ at this whole parenting thing.

As I said time doesn’t stand still as we get older so do our parents and I feel like many of us forget this. Many of us say “I am too busy to visit I will soon” Sometimes that soon never comes.

Life should come full circle. Your parents take care of you when you’re young, you should take care of them when they are older. Even if its just by visiting, bringing them tea/coffee. Just by showing them that you appreciated everything that they have done for you and continue to do for you.

You are never too old to want to make your mom proud and I am so happy that mine is proud of me. I am so happy that my mom raised me the way she did because that is helping me truck through being a mom myself. Being a strong woman.

Every day, that we doubt ourselves, they doubted themselves.

But hey we survived, we are here. Repeating everything they have taught us. I got so much by being their daughter. Learning from them, watching them is now a rippling effect with my children.

They taught me not only by teaching and telling but by just being themselves. They showed me how to be happy, how to live a productive and meaningful life. Giving us the ability to survive and thrive.

They taught me before you leave this world to make it a better place for our kids, and to teach our kids to do the same. My parents live every day doing things without wanted gratitude or praise just by doing the right thing giving to others, being their for others. Treating people the way you want to be treated.

Our elders have been through it all and we are just starting. No its not the same world and we may have to tweak it a bit but they gave us the building blocks and we need to build from it.

So much of who we are is because of them. The good, the bad, the ugly. But that all has made us stronger.

The past few weeks I have realized that time is not always there. That with a blink of an eye they could be gone. That we will wish that we did more things. That we had more time.

So make that time now. Go for that coffee. Go for that chat about god knows what. see your parents more. They went from seeing us every day, making our meals, coming to our events. To barely seeing us at all. To be honest thinking about my kids growing up and doing the same would kill me. I want them to visit me as often as they can.

So make the time. Time doesn’t wait for us.

Elf on the shelf

It is almost that time… that time of the year…the time I am super excited for and probably more excited then my kids!

ELF ON THE SHELF!

I probably kick myself in the butt but I try to do something crazy and different each time I change his spot. Our Elf on the shelf is called ‘Steve’ Don’t ask I have no idea why they came up with that name, but it stuck. Honestly I like it better then Sparkle or some sort of Elf name lol It’s just super random.

Here are some idea’s that I used for Steve, you are welcome to use some of these ideas!! I know that coming up with ideas are hard!

Drawing on the Bananas
Zip lining
X’s and O’s
Spider man
Reindeer poop!
Santa Hat’s on the pictures
Steve in space!
Camping
The Floor is Lava!

What ever you do have fun with it! Channel your inner child and go wild!!

Let them believe in Santa

As it gets close to Christmas, all my kids can talk about is Santa. The excitement just fills the house, and of our Elf on the shelf Steve.

Christmas is one of my favorite holidays, the lights, the food and the love that just fills the house, makes me all warm inside.

Some things have come to my attention about letting your kids believe in that jolly ol’ man that is dressed in red. Some parents are questioning if they should tell that little white lie to their kids about Santa being real or not.

My opinion: Yes. Because why the hell not??? Not only is it just amazing to see the magic on their faces when they see him, or hear about him or see presents just appear and magic all around them but it also helps them with their imagination and helps with their emotional development and conjunctive development.

When you child wakes up and sees that Elf on the shelf in different spots, they use their minds to figure out how did it get there? Or be so excited to go to bed because they cant wait to see what crazy nonsense “Steve” will be up to tomorrow. It makes them happy and hearts full, as well as mine.

Why should we be the ones to break the news, instead of them using their beautiful minds to figure it out on their own time line… As the kids get older yes they will get less and less amused by all of it and start to realize that Santa is not a magickal being and more that its your parents love for you that kept him alive for so long to see their excitement, but until that day comes, let them believe!

When you put out those cookies with your kids and Santa eats them or you write “From Santa” on the presents in your own handwriting once your kids begin to doubt that their is a Santa they start to become detectives and put their heads together to find clues and brainstorm together or even do experiments by setting traps for Santa they become little scientists.

Let your kids figure it ourselves, I promise you it is way less heart breaking then you just bringing it up one day saying “Hey kid he is not real” It is way more exciting to them that they know, that they can be “in on the secret” and feel like they are growing up, because that’s all kids want to do is grow up one day, but grow up on their own terms.

In the end the whole family wins, not only do you get to be a kid all over again and use your imagination and fun to get them thinking and to also live in your childhood, they also enjoy it by using their imagination, and figuring life out on their own.

Let your kids grow up on their own, don’t push it… because they grow up way to fast, so hold on to what you can.

What I wish I heard before I was pregnant

“You will have a beautiful glow, and love every minute of it”

At this point I am expecting an amazing experience… what could go wrong right?? No pain, I hold my pee when I sneeze… not

Don’t get me wrong, I am forever grateful that I made a human being inside me, and I love them to death.. and I am sure there are people out their that loved their pregnancies.. but for me I wish someone told me a few more things about it… honestly

Just Eat

When I was pregnant I craved subs… all of the meat plus anything sour, and guess what I.ate.all.the.things. Don’t get me wrong I felt guilty that I was not eating more healthy, but guess what happened?? I gave birth to 3 healthy little bumbinos. Yep, 10 fingers, 10 toes. Cutest little button noses. Perfectly healthy. So girl you have a craving dig in!!

Park that butt if you want to!

I get it, there is so much to be done before the baby comes or you want to get that pile of work on your desk done, the house is a friggin mess… but hey, you earned this, you are creating a human being inside you, your body is already working over time. Take that well-earned break that you need. Sit down, eat all the things and relax.

Hand me downs are okay!

It is your first baby you want to buy all new clothes. You want your baby looking amazing in everything he or she wears. Guess what second hand clothes are amazing and I promise you a lot of it are brand name! Babies grow so fast and they will continue doing that. Like bad weeds in the garden.

You need help? Ask for it!

Do not feel guilty because you need an extra hand! Parenting is not easy, I promise you that. It is really hard being a first time mom, heck even a second or third time mom its hard. It takes a village to help raise the children, ask for help when you need it. Your feet hurt, your back hurts, everything is friggin hurts. That’s what family and friends are for.

Sexy Time!

A girls got needs. I get it you don’t like the way your body looks. Trust me neither did I. Plus sometimes I was so tired I couldn’t even get up off the couch. If you are feeling it, go for it and no, your husband will not poke the baby in eye… even though some of them might say that. Feeling that connection with your Significant other is amazing.

Where what you feel comfortable in

You want to wear those sleep pants.. do it You want to wear track pants do it. You want to splurge on maternity clothes GO FOR IT. You are already feeling extremely uncomfortable in your body why would you make it worse by wearing something that just isn’t right. DO YOU!

Pregnancy might not be the most pleasant thing in the world, or maybe you will enjoy every minute of it, we are all different. But one thing I know is that once you are holding that beautiful baby in your arms all the things that happened will just go away, the minute you see that face!

I Suck at being a friend right now

It’s almost the afternoon here and I am freezing. It’s a cold winter day, and I and curled up with a blanket and a cup of warm coffee.

I have something on my mind and what better way then to blog about it.

I suck at being a friend right now.

I remember when I was younger I had all this free time to do whatever, “Hey want to come over?” “Sure!” I could stay out as late as my parents would let me, and just have fun with nothing holding me back, relaxed and care free.

A friend will message me and saw remember when, or tag me in a photo of the old times and I could see the smile on our faces or they ask if I want to do something. Of course now its more let me check my scheduled. Between school things, and sports and birthday parties and everything but the kitchen sink my time is extremely limited.

I feel guilt rushing through me, because sometimes it takes me awhile to reply, oh I will get to that when I get home… but then life gets in the way.

As a parent of young children, 4 of them it just tends to get a little crazy around here. If I am not getting children dressed, changed, fed, bathed. I am doing the mounds of laundry, the dishes, errands, appointments, running around getting them to sporting events, quality time with them. There is always the time where you are about to sit down at the computer and someone wants you to draw with them, play with them, so you get back up and be with them.

Not only all that, then exhaustion kicks in once the day it over… there is still stuff that needs to be done around the house but you used all your left over energy to get that cranky, over tired toddler into bed. Raising tiny little humans to be well mannered, amazing adults one day is a full time job on its own.

By the time i can finally sit down and answer these messages, they are short and trying to make plans to see someone, that it has to be within my schedule its just hard. “Can you come over and hang out here?” “Would it be okay if we hang out after 12, because dropping off the kids at school then I have some running around to do” “Would it be okay, if we went somewhere near the house so that I can still be home to put the kids to bed?”

The thing is when we finally do hang out, I am frazzled thinking of all the things that I just didn’t get done today, or I am already yawning and so tired because I am finally relaxing that my body is just taking over.

I just want to say that I am sorry… I am sorry that I am not a good friend right now, but I promise you that it wont last.

I am buried in deep sand of this parenting thing, who need me for a lot right now, because they are all still young. But this stage in life wont last forever.

One day they wont need me as much, they grow up so fast and I just don’t want to miss anything, or mess anything up. One day the will be able to make their own breakfast, be able to get themselves off to school.

As crazy as I sound, I want to hold on to what time I have left of it. Time goes by faster then we think, and I want to be there for most of the things that they do. I want to be there to raise then to be amazing adults one day. I want to remember their tiny little voices. I want to soak up in as much of it as I can.

One day I will have more time on my hands. I will eventually know how to balance it all. One day I will be able to get more sleep at night, a better sleep at night so I wont be so tired. So I promise I will be come a better friend. I will be the good friend that I want to be, and the good friend that I am.

I am still here, no matter what and I value our friendship so much. When you do message me or text me, or ask to hang out… I will respond. Just be patient with me.

If you can hang on just a little longer, ill be there… I promise.

MISCARRIAGE your pain matters

I was 8 weeks pregnant, I heard the heart beat. I was told the heart beat looked amazing.. so why was I bleeding? Why was I in so much pain if everything looked okay. so why did I loose my baby.. if everything was okay?

The feeling of loosing a baby, no matter how far along you are. No matter how ‘formed’ the baby was is the most wrenching feeling a woman will ever go through. Going back over everything that you did once you found out you were pregnant trying to put everything together as to why this has happened. As to why my body failed me.

This is not a feeling that will ever go away, it is something that a woman will forever live with. Will forever think about.

While we are dealing with this pain. This horrible worse then heart broken. We don’t want to hear.

“Well at least it was early”
“Well I guess it just wasn’t meant to be”
“Well you can always try again”
“Everything happens for a reason”
“At least you werent THAT pregnant”
“You are so young you can try again”

It doesn’t matter if you were 6 weeks
It doesn’t matter if you were 12 weeks
It doesn’t matter if you were 16 weeks
It doesn’t matter if you were 20+ weeks

Your grief matters, Your pain matters, your tears matter, YOU matter.

I felt ashamed, I felt like a failure. No matter how much support you get from family or from friends, from your partner, the pain it just unbearable.

No it was NOT your fault.
No you do NOT need to get over it.

I just want you to know, that you ARE a Mama. You will never stop thinking and cherishing the life that you carried. No matter how hard or how difficult your journey is, please don’t feel guilty. You will forever spend your life wondering the details. What would the baby look like, would it have been a boy or a girl. Would it look like mommy or daddy. That’s normal, that’s natural. You feeling this way goes to show you how tender and loving your heart is.

I promise you, you’re not alone! Don’t be scared to talk about it constantly when you are feeling sad. You CAN do this!

Motherhood & Anxiety

I am a mom with anxiety.
No, I can’t just shut it off, No I can’t just wake up one day and it just go away.

Anxiety isn’t something that we can pick and choose what days we have it and what days we don’t.

It is not a choice.

Some days we can have the best day, we are free from it and everything is great. Some days it just creeps up on us unexpectedly and we are just left to deal with it.

We can’t just choose to be happy, or chill out when it is happening, its just not that easy, not that simple.

You will never know how it truly feels to be someone with anxiety unless you full on walk in our shoes. You will never know how it feels to be hit with darkness in the middle of something that should bring happiness, but you remembered something and it just hits you like a tons of bricks.

So before you come at us and tell us “to just chill out” please remember that anxiety is a mental illness. It is not a cold that we can just get rid of in a few days or weeks. It is not a cry for attention.

If we had a choice to not have this cloud over our heads we would. If we had a choice and could stop it from happening we would. Trust me, we would “chill out” if it were that easy.

There are so many things that I get triggered with, that just send me in a down word spiral. Which I tend to just hold in and let it unload on my husband.

Am I doing this right?
Most the time I have no idea what I am doing, I have been a mother for 10 years now and I am constantly learning new things. How do I know if the decisions that I am making are the right ones? Which bottle do I use? Crib? Co-sleeping? What foods?
what doesn’t help is everyone else shoving opinions at you like its confetti and you have no idea who is right or wrong?

  • When you think this way, remember… There is no right or wrong when it comes to parenting. Everyone has different opinions they are going to be coming at you left right and center. It is your life. Keep being you!

Is my baby / Child okay?
How do I know that everything is okay? there is a new bump? or they are not walking yet? Why are they talking yet? They are not hitting all their milestones when they should be?

  • When you become a mother you get this thing call mothers intuition, trust that because its rarely wrong. If you are having concerns about something contact your doctor to make sure nothing is wrong.

Mom guilt at its finest
Am I spending enough time with them? I spent a little to much time on my phone will that effect them? I am not buying all the cool toys that are in right now is that bad? Am I handling it right when they have tantrums?

  • I promise you, you are enough! All they want is you. Anytime that you spend with them is enough. They know that you love them. They know that you will always be there.

Comparing myself to others
Well Nancy feeds all her kids organic foods should I?
Those kids are dressed better with all name brand clothes and some of my kids are hand me downs is that bad?
They go on fancy trips and have all the neat outdoor climbers am I not giving them their best life?

  • Social media can be the devil… most of the time everyone is posting just the fun parts of their life and never the negatives. Focus on you and your family and nothing else.

There is just not enough time, they grow up so fast
I feel so guilty when I have those days that have just been so long that I am counting down till it is bed time… but they grow up so fast. Does that make me a bad mom?

  • Counting down the time till bedtime doesn’t make you a bad mom, it makes you human. Motherhood is intense and some days we just need a minute and that’s okay!

So before you come at someone with anxiety and tell them to “chill out” Maybe sit down with them and ask them what is going on. Be a listening ear and let them know “Hey I have those fears too” Let them know that you are there no matter what. Don’t make them sound like they are crazy for something that they cannot help.

Let’s do our best and leave the guilt behind and let’s do our bed to make sure to let someone know that you are there no matter what.