Awful Day!

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We had an awful day today…

Then at supper my girls started singing, “I love my mom, I love my mom, I love my mom, she is so brave”

I have no idea where this came from, perhaps lyrics to a song they heard? They couldn’t have been talking about me, it couldn’t have come from today, it couldn’t have come from the events of this day. Everyone cried today, everyone yelled, screamed, fought, hit, and made messes only to refuse the clean up time at the end of the day.

They know how. We clean up EVERY. SINGLE. DAY.

I yelled today, I cried today; I counted down the minutes until bedtime today. I didn’t wash a dish or fold a single load of laundry, instead I dug out towels from the bottom of the dryer for bath time and I made lazy meals all day, PB and J anyone? I didn’t sweep the floor, not even under the table where it really needs to get done after each meal. I ignored the nagging feeling inside that said I should take them outside, the one that says if they get out there they might burn off some of this fighting energy and the day might go better, it was beat out by the exhaustion I was feeling inside.

I had lost control, it was three against one and they were winning the day. I took 4 time outs for my self and gave out even more. I drank a whole pot of coffee to myself; and then I contemplated something with a little more kick. We had a “family meeting” half way thru the day about listening and getting along, sharing and turn taking, all things they are normally so much better at and yet still it continued, they managed to beat me at today, today!

So how? How were these tiny little monsters that invaded my house today managing to sing a song about loving me? How were they finding these words to express bravery after my behavior today seemed so cowardly?

Because, they are my children, they love me unconditionally, for now! They are three and two years old they are learning understanding of their own emotions, they are not judging mine. I might not always be a good example of emotional regulation, which is likely why we butt heads sometimes. They are often behaving exactly as I have taught them, along with other typical toddler behaviors like hitting your sister with a giant block just to see what happens! And some days having three of them gang up on me with all that learning gets the best of me.

So what do we do? We talk about a re-set, we figure out a plan for the next day, I apologize for my behaviors and acknowledge the things I could have done better and we move on. We read a story before bed we snuggle in early and say good night, we say I love you and we talk about the fun things that the next day has to offer.

Then I contemplate my actions, the things that I have done differently, my reactions to the days events, and where I need improvement and then I too move on.

Will we have more bad days? Yes

But that is okay, we can’t be perfect, we can’t be on top of everything100% of the time. These little people are tough, we want them to be tough, we want to raise strong willed, emotionally ready, and able humans who are going to go out there and shake this world up, so we have to know that it isn’t personal, its just learning.

They are going to get the better of me some days but I wont give up, I will keep fighting to make sure they keep fighting too, fighting to be the best they can be.

-A

In My Opinion…

img_9740.jpgNot that you asked for it.

I read something recently that made me very sad, a lady wrote about her marriage and insinuated to many things about the obligation of women in marriage that I just could not get on board with.

In fact it made me sad! 😦

– I changed my last name with honour

– I moved into our home and had equal choice and decision in the purchase of our home

– I “left” my family for education first, not him, I met and chose to spend my life with him, we built our life together for us not him!

– I got pregnant for me/us and our growing family

– Pregnancy changed my body because it did an amazing thing, it grew and cared for three beautiful children that are just as much mine as his as ours and I AM NOT FAT ( I refuse to use that language to describe my pregnancy during or after)

– The delivery and recovery was worth every minute for the beautiful children we created, and not one minute was it specifically for him

– My children will proudly grow with OUR last name and carry it on how they see fit in their adult lives!

It is my house too, they are my children too, we both have parents that may need support one day too, I do not do anything for someone else at a cost to my own health, beauty, or hobbies! My husband and I are a team we chose each other we love each other and we will create this life we have chose together! I feel appreciated and I hope he does too!! 🙂

I hope they others are living the life they have chose and not one out of obligation!

-A

 

To the Moms who got me thru!

 

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We might not get together as often now, we may have busy life’s, work, and growing children all going to different schools and signed up for different activities.

But you were and are so important to me.

Our lives intertwined so closely for a period of time. My children are better for these friendships I have and having met you when I did

It was tough transitioning from high heels to running shoes, from dress clothes to stained t-shirts and yoga pants. It was a struggled transition from meals out at lounge enjoying a beverage, to babies screaming on the “family side” of a restaurant. With boobs exposed feeding a baby or two all the while choking down the last cold bites of the meal ordered over an hour before.

But you were there with me for it all.

Our lives were simpler before children, we had all the time in the world, and we could connect with anyone, any time of the day. Our schedules were our own.

When my babies arrived I swore nothing would change, I told everyone “I’m pregnant and going to be a mom, I’m not dying and leaving this earth.”

Naïve!

I know without a shadow of a doubt that I am lucky to have had a couple of amazing women by my side, new moms too.

One I met while working, her and I became close because of how close our jobs intertwined. We were both pregnant and I count myself lucky to have shared part of our pregnancies together. The other I met at a baby yoga class the first and I signed up for after our babies were born. We became fast friends, making sure to keep each other accountable to get out of the house, even in our yoga pants.

It would have been so easy becoming a new mom, especially to twins, to just camp out at home isolated and alone. Leaving the house was hard, it was a lot of work, but these ladies didn’t let me come up with excuses, they encouraged me and made sure I made it in for our weekly walk, or swimming lessons, baby book club, baby yoga, anything mommy and me we could find, the list goes on and on. We supported each other to brave the restaurant and the grocery store. We supported each other through tough times in our parenting journey, we figured out how to do it together.

I know I am a better mom because of these women. I know my children got the best of me during a time that was scary and new because I got to navigate the scary parts with two brave women by my side.

To both I thank you from the bottom of my heart. I know that no matter how busy life gets, I will never forget the support during that time in my life.

 

Happy New Years Resolutions…

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I have taken a year off blogging. Intentionally or not I have stepped away to live this life rather than write about it, and although it was a wonderful year I miss this outlet of writing, and sharing so here I am, back at it! I have spent my time writing to my children in the form of their journals. I have written journal to myself thru calendar and notebook. We had a busy year, full of lots of fun and adventure. But I miss this. I miss the forum to write thoughts about random ponderings, I miss the outlet for parental thinking and collaboration, I miss sharing my recipes, crafting, and travel adventures, and I miss sharing with you what we have been up to here on our little farm.

New years always come with new years resolutions. Even if we don’t come up with specifics, or write it down January 1st is the ultimate Monday. So here I am back at writing. I guess I am writing it down so maybe it’s a “new years resolution”, maybe its just a plan to get back to my blog and spend a little time, what little I have, doing something that I truly enjoy!

For those of you who are new here I thought I would start out the year sharing a little about me, and a little about why I write!

I am a mom to five-year-old twin girls and a three (soon to be four) year old boy yes they are close in age – 16 months apart. For those whose jaws are down right about now, yes this was planned, yes I am busy, and for those in the same parenting boat, yes we love it – not every minute, of course that would be a lot to ask, but most of it!

I love wine! See above Nuff said! I have amazing family and friends who are my support system above all else.

I am a wife to an amazing man, who encourages and supports me; I couldn’t live this crazy life without him! Even on the days I complain I know I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else but here raising our family in our own little wild world on this farm!

I have journaled since I was in grade 3 when my grandmother gave me my first blank note page book with a beautiful flower print for my birthday. At that time I wrote things about my friendships, sleepovers and daily things that came up and were important to me. Nobody read it so I could write anything! As time went on so did my writing, I kept a Journal or Diary for the rest of my life, I still do now, although now its less journaling and more private thoughts and emotions that I cant share or am not ready to share here! Since my children were born I began journaling for them, a compilation of first times trying or doing new things, funny things they have done and said. Mostly letters and notes to them as they grow, these books I will leave to them when they are all grown up, kind of a keepsake of their lives thru my eyes.

I believe in reading, reading to our children, reading to ourselves, and reading about anything and everything that interests us. I feel strongly that when you read you grow, I love watching my children “read” now it melts my heart when my son flips thru a book reciting lines he remembers from the time I have spent reading to him, it is one of the most amazing things to watch.

I am actively involved in our small community, because I believe in the power of a community, a community that comes together and accomplishes amazing things. I believe giving of my time teaches children to think of the big picture, the world and other people around them. We can go nowhere alone, everything we do in life we do thru and with other people.

-A

 

 

We are stronger together!

Stronger Together
We’ve all heard it, some of us have thought it, and some have even dared to say it out loud, even right to the face of a parent just trying to parent…

You spend too much time away from your kids because you work!

How can you be fulfilled JUST being a stay at home mom?

You took your baby out in public in a sleeper and didn’t get her dressed?

Wow that outfit looks elaborate why didn’t you just let her wear a comfy sleeper?

I can’t believe you cover your baby while you nurse her how stuffy for her!

Uhg cover up while you feed him you are in public for crying out loud!

Formula is so bad for your baby, don’t you know what’s in that stuff?!

You should be using formula you can’t make enough on your own for your baby to grow!

How could they sleep with the baby in the bed, how long are they planning to live like that?

How awful that baby is all alone in his crib all night?

That baby is so spoiled being picked up every time he cries.

How could she use the “CIO” method, her baby should be held and loved all the time.

Why wont they just give that kid a sucky? Do they like listening to her cry?

How old is that child? Why would they still be using a soother?

They just left her baby with someone to go out by herself, how lazy/selfish can’t they just take the kid with them?

How does she spend every waking minute with her child, doesn’t she need some alone time, it makes for a better parent/child relationship?

Her kids don’t nap anymore; they are too young and need their naps they aren’t going to develop properly.

Why are her kids still napping? She can’t get out to do anything during the day still.

Why is she leaving so early, she is so tied to her children’s bedtime.

Her child is STILL awake it’s so late; doesn’t she know how much sleep children require?

Look at her organic, free range, non GMO, etc. etc. snacks she is giving her kids what a crunchy mom!

Oh no did you see her open that bag of Cheetos, how could she fill her kids with all those chemicals.

Why is she STILL nursing her child he’s too old for that!

I can’t believe she quit nursing so soon he didn’t get all he needed from her!

And so on and so on….

 

I know just as well as anyone else that there are some situations in this world that require attention. This world is not butterflies and rainbows; I don’t burry my head in the sand trying to ignore the fact that sometimes there is a need for intervention and support. There are dangerous or unsafe conditions that require this, but that is not what I am talking about here. I am referring to the day-to-day judgments, or differing of opinions on child rearing, the unsolicited advice given to parents as they navigate this world of raising tiny humans. To concern ourselves with trivial things when there is no danger is wasteful of our energy. Energy that could be spent on our own families and ourselves!

And I do mean unsolicited, because sometimes we need ideas, other opinions, other people to jump in and say “hey this is what worked for me!”

For the most part I believe we as adults often forget that most of us are just trying to do our very best, that we genuinely care for our families, and we usually have put enough second guessing, guilt ridden, worried time ourselves into the decisions we are making, we really don’t need the extra stress wondering or hearing out loud when other people think we are doing something “wrong.”

We all have expectations going into parenthood, things we are going to do, things we will never do… and we all have had some or all of those expectations shattered by reality. Sometimes things don’t work out the way we’d wanted and sometimes we beat ourselves up for that, we don’t need the judgments of other people to pile on top of all that we already feel!

We can’t win!

So let’s stop playing the game!

We have all done it, maybe not out loud but we have all passed judgment on another parent for choosing a different path than ours, lets all just admit it and then move on and stop!

Its tough not to judge, its hard when we have put time and energy into making a decision for our families, or our children, only to see that someone else is doing it differently, we put hours of worry, research, and thought into something only to see that someone is succeeding, or failing in some cases, by doing things different. It’s a hit to our ego, a jealous reaction, a grass is greener, or high and mighty feeling we all get at some point while we parent.

Don’t tell me you’ve never stood in line at the store and listened to a screaming child feeling pride looking at your own quiet child in that moment; maybe because (god forbid) you’ve handed your phone over to them, or maybe because your pocket snacks are doing their job. It’s okay to feel pride; it’s not okay to judge the other mom because her method isn’t working today. You know your little bundle has been there or will be there at some point so instead you look over and say we’ve all been there! Solidarity Momma!

We are all working our best to provide, take care of and love our families, how we get there or what creates that life we strive for is not up to anyone else’s judgment! We can never know the whole story; every situation and circumstance is unique and we don’t know what someone else is going thru. We all see challenges in different ways, and all handle them different too! Children and parents included are all different; we all have different skills and abilities.

We spend enough time as parents judging ourselves and worrying about our parenting abilities and we don’t need others to join us in the process. We need others to build us up, we are all parents in this together and we need to cheer each other on, be a shoulder to cry on, and ear to listen, or a spread a word of encouragement. We need camaraderie knowing that someone else has gone thru it, is going thru it or is about to.

We are stronger together!Untitled design

-A

Seafood Feast

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The last time we got together with our neighbours was a great time. Of course getting together with everyone when we can is always fun, we have a lot of great laughs and always seem to stay up way too late enjoying a few beverages but this time we filed our bellies with tasty seafood too. Jen makes an amazing spread. She cooks up all the seafood, the crawfish, shrimp, crab, and lobster, she mixes it all together with veggies like corn, mushrooms, potatoes, and carrots. sprinkles on the pomegranate and squeezes out the lemon. Then she places a candle in the middle of it all laid out on the table and we dig in. This is a meal we all look forward to her making. It is so much work for her but the attention to detail is amazing right down to the desert that of course none of us are hungry for but can’t say no to! Even full of food we all look forward to the next time she makes it again!

Is Spring Here?

I keep asking myself “when it is coming”, I keep looking for signs of its arrival, I know somewhere buried under many feet of snow there is grass waiting to grow, and flowers waiting to bloom!

But for now I can only wait. And maybe start some seeds inside!?

Yesterday we had a great day finally warm enough to spend some significant time outside, you know the time that is longer than it takes to get ready to go out! In fact the kids have spent the last few days outside and we all love it! Steve headed out in the morning to build an epic sliding hill and we took out the toboggans and proceeded to climb and slide and crash and laugh and enjoy the bright sunshiny day!

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The kids even convinced me to trek thru the back yard to the play structure, which I have not been keen on doing since the last big dump of snow, mostly because when the snow is waist deep on me which means it’s a lot of work to get them where they want to go! … But we did it made it out there and tramped a path around so they could use the equipment, and once again climb and slide!

Hot chocolate and cookies were to follow an afternoon outside and sleepy tired children who fell asleep almost immediately after their heads hit the pillow… that is what I love most about the outside world and fresh air! So we hope the weather keeps up staying warm now so we can enjoy being outside more.

With nice days it is so much easier to get out and work on projects, for us in February that means snow removal, snow removal, feeding animals and oh right snow removal! But after yesterday Steve accomplished most of the barnyard snow removal, we can even swing a few gates again!

I have to say that by far this is the most snow we have had on our little farm since we moved out here and I am worried about the spring! A few years ago THIS happened and I am certainly concerned that after the run off last year washed out the culvert in the barnyard that there might be an even worse fate this year! We will be keeping an eye on everything as the melt starts to ensure our animals have safety away from the flooding areas!

What are you doing while you wait for spring?

-A