Remember Yourself

Happy Saturday!  I hope everyone is having a great day.  We’re spending our day staying warm inside watching movies.  I’ll have to get motivated to go out for a few errands later, but for now, we’re enjoying family time.

Just a reminder to everyone, for as much as we should be helping out others in their times of need and/or distress, don’t forget to also do things for you.  Having too much stress in your own life isn’t healthy and your health is important too.

I myself have made two life decisions this week and somehow after making those decisions things feel less stressful and overall I have a feeling of peace.  The first decision I made was to start TaeKwonDo again.  I had to stop in April because the kids’ baseball took up nearly every day.  I was going to start this week but forgot we had several commitments already.  Rather than stress about fitting it all in, I called the instructor and told him I’d be starting the beginning of December.  The second decision is something that I’m not going to do for several months, so at this time I’m not going to share.  However, just making the decision seems to have taken a great burden off my shoulders and has left me feeling at peace.

Have a great rest of the weekend and remember to Relax just like Purrdy!

relax

Packing a Shoebox for Operation Christmas Child

The boys and I spent some time shopping last weekend and this past Sunday we packed up our shoebox for Operation Christmas Child.  This is our first year participating in this event and the boys thought it was fun.  I did something different for this blog entry, I did a Vlog.  This is the first time I have tried this, so I hope you enjoy.

Just click play below.

The boys mentioned Bigbrotherlittlebro in the video, which is their youtube page. 🙂

If you are interested in looking into the organization you can check it out at https://www.samaritanspurse.org/operation-christmas-child/

Life Goes On (And Seems To Fly By)

Where to start?  It’s been a busy couple of weeks, full of changes.

We have added a new member to our family.

Purrdy GirlHer name is Purrdy Girl!  She’s 6 months old and we adopted her from a nearby humane society.  Cutie, our other cat, has taken fairly easily toPurrdy and fishtank her.  He is still a bit nervous, but he is not aggressive to her at all which is great.  Purrdy, for short, is very curious and keeps us on our toes.  She spends a lot of time trying to figure out if she can catch the wrass in our 60-gallon saltwater tank and watching our parakeet flap around in his cage.

 

Last weekend we celebrated Vincent’s 11th birthday.  How do I have an 11-year-old already?  I can’t believe how fast time has flown by.  He designed his cake this year.  We spent the early part of that week baking his cake.  Friday night and Saturday before his party we decorated his cake.
Vincent's cake

As part of his Some of Vincents Friendsbirthday, he wanted to bring a group to  Feed My Starving Children.  I’m so proud that he’s already thinking about ways to help those less fortunate than us.  We had 15 friends and family join us for packing at our nearby permanent FMSC facility.  Everyone had a lot of fun!  Everyone who participated in the session helped to pack 152 boxes of food, which is 32,832 meals and will feed 89 kids for a year!

When we finished packing, we headed back to our house where we had pizza and cake and a pretty good silly-string fight (even the adults took part). silly-string
Vincent’s new thing is a youtube site he’s had for a couple of months.  He had fun recording various events from the day and put it into a vlog for his site.  If you are interested, you can check it out by clicking here.

I’ve got some changes happening in my professional life too.  Monday, my boss announced she’s leaving.  With what I’m doing at work, I have been working very closely with her.  I’m so sad she’s leaving, but happy for her and the opportunity she found.  She will do great things where ever she goes!  What that means for me is that I have the next 3 weeks to download all her knowledge and make a plan for where our project should be going forward.  This will also be an opportunity for me to challenge myself and it will help me grow.

With everything that’s been going on, as well as Ian having swimming 2 days a week, fitting in carving pumpkins, a school Halloween dance etc it’s been very busy.  I’m happy to have had enough food in the house to make some pretty decent dinners this week because I didn’t get to the store at all.  However, I’ve been suffering on the breakfast smoothie and lunch prep.  So I am thankful that even though we will be busy toting the boys to a school Halloween dance, a church dance and a friends birthday party this weekend still seems to have at least a little free time.  I would like to get my salads prepped and breakfast smoothies ready for the week.

One thing I’m learning is things will never slow down.  We can only do as much as we can do and that’s ok.  It’s taken some time for me to get to a point where I’m ok knowing that I’m not going to get everything done.  I just need to decide what’s important to get done and what’s not.  It’s ok for somethings to wait, it doesn’t all have to be done right now.  It’s hard to let go and not have control over everything, but it is soooo necessary if you don’t want to drive yourself nuts.  I’ve learned this lesson the hard way and it’s with years of trying and failing and trying again that I’m just starting to get to a point where I can do this without major anxiety over the things I’m letting fall by the wayside.

I’m sure all of us moms are looking for new ways to get through busy weeks easier.  Please share below some of the ways you get through your busy week in the comment section below.  Like and share if you know busy moms who can relate. 🙂

 

 

When you try to avoid the proverbial brick wall….

Have you ever been so busy that you see the proverbial brick wall in the distance and know you are headed right for it?  If you’re like me, you probably think you can avoid it, even go around it maybe.  But then wham!  Suddenly it’s right in front of you and there’s no way to avoid it.  Not only that, but you’ve run right into it.

That’s what happened to us last week.  We’ve had a couple of busy weeks recently and had baseball almost every night for the last two weeks.  The weekends weren’t any better as we had a birthday party to prep for after baseball on Saturday and the actual party on Sunday.  Then last week most of our games were late and the kids didn’t even get to bed before 10.  Two of those game nights we had team pictures and if course the pictures overlapped the game times.  Thank goodness we have two cars, we were able to run one to pictures and bring them to their siblings game later.

I was hoping to avoid it, but Thursday I ran smack dab into that proverbial brick wall.  Exhaustion completely overtook me. I couldn’t push myself to do anything extra. (I’m a few days behind on my 30 days of fitness.)  I could barely get through work and scrape dinner together.  Even sitting through the baseball game of the evening was rough.  I always think I can avoid the brick wall that is exhaustion, but at some point my body always says, “Enough!”.

The boys had also been doing pretty good, until Thursday.  Vincent has been working so hard and keeping is emotions in check during his games (we’ve had some problems in past years), but Thursday he just couldn’t do it anymore.  He completely lost his composure and was way to hard on himself and spiraled into one of his meltdowns.  There was no stopping it.  It’s rather embarrassing at the age he is, but it comes with the territory of raising a highly emotional child…we can only continue to help guide him so he learns to manage them in a healthy way and work with his pediatrician, who says it’s a normal thing as their brains still aren’t developed all the way in certain areas.  But, to be fair, he did pretty good since he was up at 6:00 every day to get to summer camp on time and baseball kept him up past 10 all week.

Thankfully we have a lighter load this week and this past weekend we were able to relax a bit.  Saturday morning, I was able to get my meals planned and made plans to buy items for my morning smoothies, I have really missed those this past month.  Later that evening we were able to go take in the summer festival that my hometown has.  We even got to stay up for Fireworks!  Sunday we had a lazy morning for Father’s day and my birthday and then decided last minute to buy some tickets for the local baseball game.  It was a fun family day.  I didn’t get my smoothies prepped for the week, but that’s easy enough to do tonight.
Next week will be busy again, we will have a heavy load of games.  We will have games almost every day of the week since the following week is 4th of July and many families will be out of town all week.  So, wish us luck!
Mantra Monday: ‘There are no problems, only situations’
The post that preceded was intended to be put up over the weekend, but we as a family, decided to take it easy this weekend and relax and do some fun things.  That is my successful use of my mantra this week.  Not to push a deadline and stress myself out, but to take the time to enjoy the family.  I can write any day and I’m sure my audience doesn’t mind if I take a slow approach to posting sometimes.  Especially since I’m spending that time with my family.

Mantra Monday: It’s my party and I’ll cry if I want to….or not.

“There are no problems, only situations.”

This weekend I had to use my mantra quite a bit.

On Saturday, the boys had back to back baseball games.  We were at the field from Noon till around 4 pm.  There were two ‘situations’:

1) it was supposed to be in the 90’s with a heat index of 100 What is one to do about lunch for both boys?

2) The first game was at lunch time and I have to make sure my boys eat somewhat healthy.  If they have too much junk food or simple carbs, they process it too fast and get hungry, cranky and poor attitudes when the game doesn’t go their way.

A cooler was the answer to both issues.  We packed a cooler for all of us.  We packed a ton of water and some Gatorade for the boys to keep hydrated.  We also put lots of good food in the cooler for the boys.  We packed, strawberries, watermelon, trail mix, bananas, etc.  We made a (somewhat) healthy lunch by buying a hotdog from the concession stand and filling in the rest with what we brought.  One of the boys ate before his game and the other ate when he finished his game.

My other ‘situation’ was party preparation and clean up.  We’ve been so busy with baseball that I hadn’t had time to shop for food or clean the house.  Normally shopping and cleaning would have taken me through the night since I got such a late start and I would have been panicking about how everything had to get done and be just so.

We got home from the game around 4:30 And my mom and I hit up Costco, then proceeded to Aldi, Wal-Mart, and another local grocery store. We didn’t get home until after 7pm.  After dinner and getting the boys to bed it was after 9.   We prepped some of the food and then I decided we’d have to clean as much as we can in the morning.

The next morning we got most of the cleaning done.  Floors didn’t get washed, they got picked up and vacuumed/swept and bathrooms got cleaned.  The party went great and clean up wasn’t too bad.  It’s the first party in a long time I’ve hosted for the kids that I didn’t end up until midnight getting ready.  I felt so much more relaxed and less anxious.

I’m really liking  telling myself things aren’t problems or big deals and just finding the best alternative that works the best for the time I have.  It’s really helping cut down on my anxiety.  How has thinking this way about problems helped you?  Do you have a mantra you follow?  Share with us in the comments below.

 

 

 

My New Mantra!

Hi Everyone!  Sorry for my absence the last couple weeks.  I recently took a trip and have spent this past week shuttling kids between baseball games and practices.  I finally have time to put into words what I have been thinking about all week.

Last week I went to Jamaica with my husband and our friends.  We went to a beautiful all-inclusive resort where I didn’t have to run errands, plan dinner or clean up after anyone.  All I did for the week was relax and have fun. It was such a blast!   Jamaica is absolutely beautiful.  I don’t know exactly what I was expecting, but I was surprised that it was so green and mountainous.  We spent a couple days down by the pool and did some offsite activities as well.  The first offsite activity was a catamaran trip that included snorkeling and a stop at ‘Margaretville’ where we got to go down a waterslide from the patio into the ocean.  How cool is that!

We spent the next day at the ‘Good Hope Plantation’.  We went ATVing, ziplining, tubing down the lazy river, through the challenge course and then spent time with the crazy parakeets in the aviary and ended the day with a bit of rum tasting.  It was so much fun and all of the guides were great!

Everywhere we went we met people from the island and they were so nice.  They seemed genuinely happy to be talking to you and spending the time doing what they do.  The bartenders were laughing and having fun with the patrons.  The boat crew was partying with the guests, the ATV and Zipline guides were having a grand ole time.

Every guide who drove us around pointed out the 4 basic phrases we needed to know:

  1. The definition of/when to use Yeah Man (Yeah Mon as we all hear it)
  2. How to say OK or I’m Alright (Irie)
  3. How to say no. (E-E.  Sorry I have no idea how to phonetically spell)
  4. There are no problems, only situations (Hence the phrase No Problem Man)

The last one is what I am making my new mantra.  There are no problems only situations:  To me, this means something might be happening right now, but it will work out.  We don’t know how yet, but we can let it play its course or we can choose to find the best way out of the situation at the time.

If you know me, you know I’m wound a bit tight.  I suffer from anxiety, so sometimes small situations seem big to me.  I stress out over the big stuff, but also over the small stuff.  I’m noticing sometimes my kids are starting to be bothered by some of the small issues too and I want them to be able to handle things better than I do.  I need to be a good role model on how to take things in stride.

I also don’t want to be stressed out all the time.  I want to be more like the people in Jamaica and take things in stride.  I also want to be relaxed like I was when I was there.  So I’m going to adopt the mantra, “There are no problems only situations”.  The hard part is that it’s not something I can just turn on.  I wish I could just flip a switch and be like, “oh well, it’s not a problem only a situation, relax and it will work out.”  If only!  The busyness of life creeps in and I forget to be mindful and because I’m not mindful, I forget about the mantra.  So in an effort to remind myself that there are no problems only situations, I’m going to start posting on Mondays.  I’ll call it Mantra Monday.  I’ll be posting on how I mindfully lived and acted on that Mantra over the prior week.  Right now is the perfect time to start this as right now we are crazy busy with the boy’s baseball.  We spend a minimum of 4 days a week with baseball, some days both boys have games.  I’ve got to keep the house up, make meals and make it to games each week and I’m going to use this mantra to change my mindset from stressing out and panicking, when things interrupt the plan I’ve set for the week so I can just enjoy these times I have with my boys because they are growing so fast.

So in an effort to remind myself that there are no problems only situations, I’m going to start posting on Mondays and call it ‘Mantra Monday’.  I’ll be posting on how I mindfully lived and acted on that Mantra over the prior week.  Right now is the perfect time to start this as right now we are crazy busy with the boy’s baseball.  We spend a minimum of 4 days a week with baseball, some days both boys have games.  I’ve got to keep the house up, make meals and make it to games each week and I’m going to use this mantra to change my mindset from stressing out and panicking, when things interrupt the plan I’ve set for the week so I can just enjoy these times I have with my boys because they are growing so fast.

So, I invite you to check out some of the pictures from my vacation below and join me on Mantra Mondays.  Do you have a mantra?  Share it below.

Jamaica trip

Sometimes we need to celebrate small victories

As a working mom, with two boys who keep me busy, it’s very difficult to keep the house clean.  I constantly find myself apologizing to our guests for the mess.  I never seem to have enough time to get to everything done.  I get one room clean and by the time I have time to clean the next room the first is messy again.  It’s a battle to keep the house in the least messy state possible. 🙂  Which is why I celebrate small victories! Continue reading

Meet Chip the cat! He’s a bit quirky, but we love him anyway!

When I graduated college, I adopted a cat I named Nala.  This past June I had to put her down, she was 14 years old.  It was a sad time, but she had cancer of the mouth with a large tumor that was affecting her ability to eat and her immune system wasn’t functioning well so her overall health went downhill fast.  We knew we were eventually going to get another cat because we still had Cutie our 3-year-old orange tabby. Continue reading

Letting Our Kids Go

This past weekend my boys and I ran in a fun run 5k for a school district fundraiser.  It was the first 5k  as a family and the first the boys have ever done.  I was nervous because I was not familiar with the area where it was held, we all ran at different levels and I didn’t know how crowded it would be.  So my solution was that we needed to stick together and run at the pace of the slowest runner.  My oldest was the faster runner of the three of us.  He would run ahead then jog in place until my youngest and I caught up.  He wanted to be able to tell his gym teacher that he, “ran the whole 5k without stopping”. Continue reading