Mom Code

momcode

 

There is an unspoken code that all mothers should follow. Some things on my list should be no brainers and others are a little harder to accomplish. Regardless, this is a list of things we shouldn’t say to each other and things we should / shouldn’t be doing to ourselves.  Sit back, have some coffee [or wine]  and lets talk mom code!

  • A woman holding a baby may still look like she’s carrying a child. She may still have a “belly” forever after having a baby. Pregnancy does crazy things to our bodies! Never ask anyone when their due date is unless you’re 100000% you’re seeing a belly with a baby inside
  • Don’t lecture other moms on breastfeeding. Everyone has their reasons why they are doing it or why they aren’t. I don’t care why you chose what you chose, just feed your kid.
  • Sometimes after you have a baby you grow hair back a lot differently than before. I had some pretty noticeable sideburns after having both of my kids. They’re gorgeous. Don’t question a new mom on decision to now have bangs.
  • Don’t touch other people’s kids! You may see a cute baby and have the urge to snuggle and kiss it. STOP IT. You’re a stranger.  Hands off.
  • Speaking of touching, don’t ever touch a pregnant woman’s stomach. Believe it’s still party of her body and it’s not socially acceptable to just walk around groping people.
  • If you see a mother and her child has a dirty face, they’re both in pajamas, and she looks like she hasn’t slept in a month; don’t you dare judge her. Every mom has those days, weeks, and sometimes even years.
  • I know this is tough, but don’t compare yourself to other moms. Motherhood isn’t a game of who’s doing it the best; it’s a game of being the best mother that you can be. & Sometimes even harder, don’t compare your kids to other kids. You’ve heard it a million times, they’re all different. Every kid is different.
  • If possible, rely on your significant other and other people around for help as much as you can. It’s okay to need a break; ask for one!
  • Remember: It’s not good to wash your hair everyday and messy buns are totally in style.
  • Don’t automatically run and call child protective services if you see a kid with a few bruises and/or a black eye. My kids are extremely clumsy and are covered in bruises. Toddlers are destructive to everything in their paths including themselves.
  • Although you may want to feed your family (kids included) gorgeous and healthy home cooked meals, don’t be surprised if something like “eat your cheese it’s and then you can have a cookie” come out of your mouth *true story*

What kind of things are on your list of “mom codes?” 

Mommy & Me {a photo post]

A few weeks ago I noticed that a local photographer was doing some “mommy and me” mini sessions. I got to thinking about all the pictures that I really don’t have with my kids. I’m usually the one taking the pictures or things are just going by so fast that I don’t stop to photograph anything. Any of the pictures that I do have are really just made of snapchat selfies.

I decided it was time to change that.

These are the results. 

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My kids can be quite hams in front of the camera so a couple of solo shots were taken of them as well. I wasn’t about to complain because really, there are never enough pictures taken, they grow way too quick.

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I absolutely adore how they came out and feel like the candid shots really capture some of the fun times we have. They’re something that I’m going to be able to look back on and squeal “HOW’D THEY GET SO BIG?!”

I urge every mother out there to go out and do the same. Get some professional pictures done of you and your babies while their still your little babies.

Time Change Blues

timechange

We’re a couple weeks into the time change and the kids and I are having the hardest time adjusting to it!  It’s amazing at what just an hour difference makes in a day but I’m noticing it to the fullest.

First of all, Everett was a late sleeper before this happened. I was constantly having to wake him for school but now he’s up and ready 2 hours before his normal wake up time. The second the sun even thinks about rising, he’s up. It seems like he has more energy than ever before at this time too. He’s not just awake and ready to watch a little TV and relax while mom has coffee. He’s demanding breakfast and energetic play time.

Aria on the other hand is deciding to sleep in way later than before. I have to wake her in the mornings that we have somewhere to be which is disastrous. You don’t want to deal with the wrath of waking up the sleeping bear; which I’m having to do 3 days a week.

Nap time has become non existent for me. I’ll put them down and they’re just bouncing around their rooms and destroying everything site.  Before the time change I could always count on at least a 2 hour nap from both kids. This was crucial for me to get things done around the house and of course work on my blog. I blame this lack of nap time for my most recent internet absence.

Then comes bedtime. I’m ready basically as soon as the sun starts setting. My body is like “HEY, IT’S DARK! GO TO SLEEP!” This isn’t really practical at 5 pm, especially since 3 days a week my shift at work begins at 5. The kids don’t seem to care if it’s dark or if I tell them it’s time to start winding down, they don’t want to go to bed any earlier.

So, I’m sleepy and have less time to get stuff done with this “extra” hour of sleep.

Screw you daylights savings time. Arizona has the right idea. 

My First Tarot Card Reading

tarot-card

The other night while browsing Facebook, I noticed a thread about “the strangest things you’ve bought on Etsy.” Among tons of completely off the wall things there was a comment about a tarot card reading. I always had the stereotypical image in my head of what a tarot card reading would be like. You know, you walk into a dark room smelling strongly of pachouli and see a woman in full gypsy like dress with a crystal ball in front of her. Well, it’s 2016 and you can get a reading on the internet now.

I couldn’t help myself, I just had to try it. 

I contacted Tasha with Tarot Like It Is on Etsy to go ahead and give it a whirl. It was simple. I messaged her to tell her it was my first reading and sent her a picture of myself. She explained the process a little bit and said she would do my reading the following day and send me a message.

The Reading:

Hey Erin! I’m going to do your reading now. I really am excited ha. With my readings I personally believe I am connecting to your spirit guide through the cards. Some don’t believe that but I personally do and it takes a LOAD of weight off my own shoulders. 🙂

So when I refer to “them” or “they” that’s what I’m referring to.

So with this reading I’m going to shuffle and just allow them to give your four messages and see what they have to say to you.

The first card I drew is the emperor. Okay so generally what this card talks about is spirit is talking about you listening to your mind over your heart a little bit more. They’re saying you don’t always want to do it but sometimes you just have to and it makes for some of the best decisions in life. The logical part of your brain is what’s going to allow you more self control and bring more of the focus that you’re needing now. Also though this can talk about a literal man in your life, normally older, almost a fatherly energy who really has your back right now. He would be in your life to teach you have to have a calmness and a sense of order in your life. This shows him as a valuable asset to you and if not a literal person just the energy that you’re needing to really get things accomplished right now.

The second card I drew is the page of wands. Again spirit is talking about the energy of easy distraction so it appears it’s a theme in this spread so it should be a theme going on for you right now in your current life. However, I feel they’re also saying you’re warm and ambitious even if you don’t know the exact steps to get you to where you want to be. With this card spirit is encouraging you to follow a dream you may have thought of in the past. That would lead you to new adventures both for body and spirit. I see it bringing you a lot of peace and fulfillment. This could also be a dream you’re currently working on but had been imagined in the past. This is just a positive affirmation that they’re agreeing with you it is something great for you to do. Spirit is saying now is a creative time for you and they WANT you to dream and to hope and believe what the future can hold for you.

The third card I drew is the heirophant. This card can represent a drive to find your higher truth. To create harmony in your life and find balance where you may have been lacking in the past. This could be the project the second card said or it could be more metaphorical and in your head. That being said – this says you still struggle with the right thing to do sometimes or to know exactly what you’re supposed to do. They’re saying you do what is “right” for you. This card represents personal inner drive and the want to need to grow right now in some way. Again I feel this is there way of validating their approval.

The fourth and final card I drew is the nine of swords. The final message spirit wants to give to you – they want to address anxiety. First thing – they’re saying to pay attention to your breathing and it can bring more calm into your life. They’re asking you to really try and understand what you’re worried about or where these fears and worries are coming from. Are they things that are truly likely to come to pass or are you worrying unnecessarily about things? They want you to see yourself clearly in the roles of your life. Try not to blame others when something is not their fault and don’t allow them to place blame on your shoulders as well when things are not your fault. If you can be logical *maybe what the first card is getting at* and you can see with clear eyes – you can unload some of the anxiety you feel. If there’s nothing you can do about a situation basically – just let it go. The worries and the fears. This card is also saying now is a time to be cautious about self-medicating in any way. Had to throw in that last bit just in case!

My Interpretation and Reaction:

I had a blast reading what she had to say. Personally, even if I didn’t want to take it seriously, it was worth the small fee for entertainment purposes. Although, a lot of it is extremely relevant to my life.

  • I definitely have a tendency to make decisions based on my heart rather than logic. I’m not sure who the “fatherly” figure she talked about is but she’s right on with the fact that I need calmness and a sense of order in my life. I can’t get anything done if things are out of sorts and I need order to focus.
  • Distraction can be a huge problem for me. I’m currently writing this post and noticed my bed was a mess and had to get up and fix it in order to continue to focus on what I was doing. It’s hard to have my 100% attention on anything because of my toddlers so distraction is becoming a constant and sometimes it’s hard to adjust to that. I also have a pretty good idea of what that creative dream that the second card talks about is.
  • I’m always wanting a little bit more for myself. I always want to do something else or take steps to be the best person I possibly can. The third card make me feel like that isn’t a bad thing, it’s ambitious, and that’s awesome.
  • The fourth card really hit home for me! I’ve been overly anxious lately for what feels like no reason at all. It reminded me that I really can’t sweat the small stuff and just need to let things be. I can’t control everything so there is no use being anxious over that.

So, I had tons of fun with my first Tarot card reading and took a lot away from it! I would honestly recommend Tasha to anyone who has an open mind or wants to have a little bit of fun! You can view her Etsy page here.

*Note: I was not solicited to do this post, it’s just a post based on my personal experiences.

The Toddler Snacking Epidemic Must End

I write this post with so much sarcasm I can almost feeling it coming out of my ears. Yet, there is also so much truth behind it. I’m well aware that children need to eat. It would just be nice if mine would eat something that is even halfway decent for them or eat a full meal so they weren’t begging for a snack 10 minutes later. Seriously, the toddler snacking epidemic has to end. It’s an epidemic that is quickly killing off what is left to my parenting sanity.

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A few days ago I decided to keep a log of every time Everett (my 3.5 year old) ate / asked for a snack. I wrote down all his ridiculous excuses for not wanting what I gave him and so on.

These were my results:

8:50 AM: (shortly after waking up) I offer him a waffle. He doesn’t want to eat that waffle because his teeth hurt. I assure you his teeth are fine.

9:07 AM: Asks for a pancake instead. I give him the damn pancake.

9:17 AM: Asks for a sucker.

9:32 AM: Asks for watermelon flavored candy. I don’t think he’s ever even had watermelon flavored candy.

9:58 AM: Asks for a snack. I tell him he must eat the pancake. He refuses. I decide to make them some scrambled eggs in hopes of getting them to get some protein.

10:03 AM: Hand him scrambled eggs with a green fork. He asks for the blue fork.

10:05 AM: “Don’t forget I need some milk with my eggs!”

10:25 AM: He’s still at the table slowly eating the eggs.

10:40 AM: He’s finally finished the eggs with his blue fork.

11:05 AM: Asks for another snack.

11:10 AM: Asks again in a very nice tone so I gave him a Nutragrain Bar.

11:30 AM: Comes walking into the room with the pancake I gave him 2.5 hours ago. He’s eating it.

11:50 AM: False Alarm. I find the pancake crumbled into a million pieces on the carpet.

12:25 PM: Asks 4 times for cookies while I’m making lunch.

12:40 PM: Gave them lunch minus the cookies that I was so annoyed with hearing about.

I swear I'm not starving my children.

I swear I’m not starving my children.

12:50 PM: Doesn’t want to eat his lunch because he “doesn’t like the way the sandwich is cut”

1:30 PM: Finally finishes the entire lunch.

1:30 PM: Asks for another snack.

1:40 PM: “I need a snack because I’m cold.”

2:00 PM: He asked about 6 more times and because I couldn’t handle it anymore, he got an after lunch desert of one cookie.

2:07 PM: “I’m a little hungry.”

2:55 PM: He somehow found another pancake from this morning and was trying to eat it. I took it away since it was as hard as a rock and gave him some applesauce.

3:15 PM: Asks for a snack.

3:23 PM: Asks for a snack.

4:03 PM: He was running around chanting “I need a snack, I need a snack.” I gave him an apple.

6:00 PM: I left for two hours to go grocery shopping. As soon as I returned the hounding of “what food is in the bags?” commences. I put away everything and made dinner.

6:20 PM – 7:00 PM: He’s eating dinner. Complaining he doesn’t like it but eats most of it anyways.

7:20 PM: At this point I just started keeping a tally. From this time till his 8 PM bedtime he asked 12 times.

I swear I’m not starving him. He gets milk through out the entire day and has a cup of water at all times. He’s just constantly wanting a snack regardless of the amount he just ate. I know he’s not hungry because over half the time he won’t even eat snacks if I give them to him. I’m sure I missed somethings during the day but you get the general idea. He just likes to annoy me with constantly asking, or so I’d like to think.

I’m trying for more of a schedule to see if it helps at all. Breakfast, snack, lunch, snack, dinner. We’ll see if it helps to establish more of a “I know it’s time to eat,” type thing. I’m doubtful and feel like we’re too far down the rabbit hole of the toddler snacking epidemic.

Make Your Morning [ & Day ] Go Smoother

If you ask my husband, he’ll tell you that he thinks that self help books are just there to help people create problems in their minds that they don’t really need to fix thus selling more books. To a point, I can agree with him. I don’t think that what someone reads in any book is going to complete change their lives unless they adapt what they’re reading to themselves. You’re not going to read a book on how to fix your marriage and have every single thing apply to you, right? Well, recently I read a book called “The Miracle Mornings” by Hal Elrod and chose to take some of his tips and methods  and apply them towards my life.

morningroutine

I’ve never been a huge morning person. I almost always use to wake up with a bad attitude because I was still tired and wasn’t ready to start my day. Well, when you have two small kids, there is no choice in the matter anymore. You have to get up when your kids get up. So, that’s what I was doing for the longest time. I was waking up when the kids woke up and then starting my day.

I wasn’t getting any peace in the morning. From the moment I opened my eyes someone needed something and it was complete chaos. The kids were hungry. The dogs needed to be fed. Doing all that in a state of being half awake just plain sucked. So, I changed what I was doing.

So my first step is that I wake up earlier than everyone. It sounds counter productive to someone who doesn’t enjoy mornings but waking up and having my own time and my own little routine really helps me to wake up and be alert when the chaos of children starts to happen. Getting out of bed is really the hardest part but once I’ve done that I begin my little routine.

  1. Drink a big glass of water. No matter how much water you had the day before, you’re always going to wake up slightly dehydrated. I drink a big glass of water as I get my coffee / tea ready.
  2. Read for purpose. Wether it be a book that’s inspiring me at the moment or a news article, I read something that isn’t Facebook. I try to start out the day using my brain and think about things.
  3. Take a moment and sit in silence. Enjoy the quiet around you. Meditate. Whatever it is that helps you find some mental balance.
  4. Light exercise. This isn’t the time for me personally to go hardcore and run 15 miles [not that I have ever run 15 miles] I like to spend a few minutes stretching and prepping my body for general movements of the day.
  5. Planning. If you know anything about me, I like to plan. I write down what my “goals” aka shit I need to do that day are. I make a very loose plan for that day to help keep me on track.
  6. Journaling / Creative Work.  I’m obviously really into writing or I wouldn’t blog so i’ll sit down for a just a few minutes and write down some idea. I might journal about something that happened to me. I might doodle. I might color for a few minutes. This is kind of the spot where you have to find your own little creative niche. Just find something that inspires you and do that.

After all is said and done, it takes me about 45 minutes – 1 hour. So I find myself getting up at about 7:30 in the morning. Not too bad [yes, I have late sleepers] Once the kids are awake I already feel quite accomplished for the day. I don’t have to spend a lot of time worrying about things that I need to get done or wishing I had time to do something that I already did that morning. My brain and body feel energized and I’m ready to tackle the day.

Parenthood Induced Anxiety

Becoming a parent pretty much changes almost every single aspect of your life. It ranges from the simple things like how you go grocery shopping to the bigger things like the way you think about everything. For me, before children, I was pretty much one of the easiest going people I knew. I rarely worried about anything. After kids has been quite a different tale. Parenthood and anxiety are just two words that seem to go together oh so well.

parenthood anxiety

I now consider myself to be an anxious person. I don’t think I have any kind of serious disorder and it’s not anything that I can’t manage on my own. It’s just a complete 180 from where I was emotionally before I had children. There is so much more to worry about now and so much more to lose than there was before.

First, I worry about myself more. I worry about what I’m eating. I worry about how much I’m exercising. I worry about getting enough sleep so I’m not too tired to play with them or take care of them. Okay, who am I kidding? I am a mother of two young children. I could sleep for an entire week and still not be completely caught up. I just know that my children need their mommy and I need to make sure I’m taking the best possible care of myself to make sure that they have me for as long as possible.

Next, the anxiety with having children is just ridiculous. Just on a daily basis some of my concerns can be:

  • Did the kids get enough milk and water today? Are they hydrated?
  • Did they eat enough? How much of that food they ate was actually something reasonably good for them?
  • Is this toddler ever going to eat anything healthy in general?
  • Sleep habits are something that every parent deals with I’m sure. I have issues with crabby kids who won’t nap and then if they do fall asleep for a nap, it’s late and then they have trouble going to bed at a decent time. This is a cause of anxiety for me.
  • I want to go get the mail but I also don’t want my child to run out in the street and get hit by a car because sometimes he has issues listening to me.
  • I want to shower in peace but if I go in there and close the door they’re probably going to find some type of poison that I don’t know is in the house and drink it.

I feel like children are basically on a suicide mission and it’s our jobs as parents to try to prevent them from doing things like hanging themselves on the curtains or eating an entire bottle of pain relievers. You turn your back for 1/2 of a second and they’re into something they shouldn’t be. All of this is a huge cause for anxiety since you pretty much have you be on your toes at all times with toddlers around.

I’m sure it’ll get better as they grow. Actually, as I say that I think about all the stress parents go through when their kids are in school. Oh, and then when they’re driving. It’s a lifetime of worry from here on out.

Thank god for wine.

Guilty Pleasure Television

I don’t have a ton of time in my day to watch TV. Plain and simple, there are a ton of other things like children, pets, and a home that take up most of my time. It’s not that I don’t want to binge watch things on Netflix, it’s that I just can’t.

There are a few exceptions though. I have my guilty pleasure shows that I’ll record and miss sleep to watch. I’ll be the first to admit it,  they’re quite pathetic.

TVguilt

1 // The Bachelor or Bachelorette

bachelor

I’ll stay up and watch this show every single Monday night. If I don’t, I’ll end up seeing spoilers on Facebook and then I’ll be mad that I didn’t see it happen in real time. I have no idea why I’m so drawn to the drama and I’m not sure I really even really believe in “the process.” Do I believe in love at first site? Kind of. Do I think that you can convince yourself that you’re in love while the man you love is dating other women for the sake of cameras being in your face? Absolutely.

2 // Teen Mom

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It’s like a train wreck that I don’t want to stop watching. I’ll watch every single season that comes on regardless of how much I don’t really want to see it. I can’t help but follow the ridiculousness that is Teen Mom.

3 // Big Brother 

bigbrother.jpgBig Brother is one of my favorite parts about summer. It’s quite the commitment since it’s on 3 times a week but I make it work. I don’t know what it is about watching strangers in a house play games and kick each other out that is so fascinating to me. I love watching them form relationships then self destruct in order to try to win some cash. It’s amazing what people will do for a little bit of money and fame.

4 // Shameless 

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Shameless is by far my favorite “adult” show. If you haven’t seen it, go watch it NOW! It’s hilarious, heartbreaking, and totally screwed up. If you think your life is tough… This show gives you a run for your money.

So, as you can see I watch a bunch of garbage. I love it and that’s why it’s my guilty pleasure.

 

I’m 30.

30

If you’re reading this, I’m officially 30 years old. As of January 11th, 2016, I’ve been gracing the world with my presence for 30 years. I had quite the panic about this age for reasons that I can’t quite put my finger on. I’ve just kind of been dreading being out of my 20’s.

When I was younger, thirty always seemed so far away and so much older. I’d think of 30 year olds as these REAL ADULTS with mortgages, husbands / wives, children, careers, and responsibilities. Then in the past few months, I sat back and realized that is my life. I am a “real adult”  and have been for a while now. Nothing is changing except my age with this big birthday. I’ll still be the same person I was at 29.

I’ve readjusted my thinking pattern and I’m now excited for the next decade! In honor of my birthday, I’ve created a little bucket list of things that I want to happen in my 30’s.

  1. In my 30’s my husband and I will decide if we’re going to expand our family once again or call it complete with the two monsters we have.
  2. Take the kids to Disney as a family vacation.
  3. Go on a trip with just my husband and I as a very delayed honeymoon.
  4. Retire out our old piece of crap car and upgrade to something that doesn’t sound like a lawn mower.
  5. Learn to sew. I have the materials but not a clue how to use them.
  6. Do some major upgrades to our house. I really want a new bathroom, a new bedroom design, and IF we decide on one more baby, another room.

I have a feeling my thirties are going to be jam packed, completely chaotic and busy, but a complete blast.

Oh, and of course it wouldn’t be a 30th birthday without this video from 13 going on 30…

New Year, New You?

Here we are on the very last day of 2015. When we all wake up tomorrow morning it’ll be a new year and to some people that means a fresh start. I like to think of it as a small chance at a new beginning of sorts. Personally, it’s not about forgetting what happening the previous year but building on it and becoming that much more awesome the next year. I’m all about anything that brings positive motivation to people so why not use the new year as that advantage. Just be realistic…

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I can not stand the resolutions that are completely out of the realm of realistic possibly. I’m probably guilty of starting a few, but I feel like that it setting yourself up for complete failure.  For example, “I’m going to lose 75 pounds in January.” This is an actual resolution that I saw floating around on a thread. Setting a goal to get in shape and lose some weight is amazing but don’t be crazy. 75 pounds in a month is probably going to kill you. [I’m really hoping this was a typo]

Seriously, shoot for the stars and sayings like that are motivational, I just personally like being a bit more realistic about what my goals are. I don’t want to be completely stressed out about something in my life and drag myself down trying to get there. I’m not afraid of failure but I am afraid of wanting things that are not obtainable. Example: “I’m not going to yell at my children at all in 2016.” HA, that’s not going to happen. I’m human and the mother of two toddlers. My goal is edited to look more like “I’m going to have more patience with my children in 2016.” You see where I’m going with this?

So this is a look at my list of things for 2016 that I’m going to work on:

  1. As mentioned, I’m going to try to have more patience with my children this year. They drive me bonkers at time and I need to sit back and remember they’re toddlers.
  2. I’m going to make more time for myself and my hobbies even if it means losing a little sleep.
  3. I’m going to go to the gym at least once a week even if it’s just my yoga class. I want to be able to touch my toes by 2017.
  4. I’m going to get more organized with my blog and work out a schedule of when to write and what to post when.
  5. I’m going to spend more quality time with the kids doing things like crafts and playing outdoors when it’s nice out.
  6. I’m going to learn to be more efficient with photoshop.
  7. I’m going to learn how to use my DSLR camera on manual mode.
  8. I’m going to aim for a minimum of once a month date nights with my husband minus children.

I feel like all of these things are obtainable and realistic. Some of them are definitely challenging for me but hey, that’s okay. I’m up for the challenge.

I’m not trying to be a new me, I’m just trying to be a better me.