The Importance of Taking Care of Yourself!

I’d love to eventually start a “Thoughtful Thursday” post, to add specific things that have been on my mind throughout the week aside from the day to day. Today, I am thinking about this accurate photo I stumbled upon this morning:

 

I love a few good minutes (or hours) to myself once and a while; what mom doesn’t?! Especially because when you have two little ones and a toddler who would love to poke his sister’s eyes out (in a loving way), leaving them alone together is not an option! Therefore, I bring one of them  everywhere with me at all times, including the “potty” as James would say, which has become one of his favorite places recently! Oh the glamour of motherhood…

Today was a busy day; by 9am we were out the door to playtime, and within 10 minutes driving both babies had fallen asleep! Ella always falls asleep in the car, but as soon as the car stops she wakes up and hates being in her carseat. James almost never falls asleep, except when it’s past his bedtime or when he’s extremely tired. Today, he was overtired. I decided to take it as a victory and enjoy my time driving while listening to Christmas music while glancing at the two adorable sleeping, peaceful faces in my rearview mirror. As a stay at home mom, I cherish these moments!

Before we got to playtime, I gave them a call to make sure they were open (sometimes if they don’t have a volunteer, they close the playroom) and unfortunately they were closed. I debated driving around for a while and then heading home, but instead I chose to try a new storyhour at a library pretty far from our home – don’t ask me why – I was feeling ambitious! If you have little ones, especially two under two years old, you know how hard it is to get both in the car and have a successful trip in public, so I was taking a big chance! James could wake up cranky, Ella could be starving when we arrived, but hey, you never know unless you try.

Fast forward a few hours, we were on our way home after having a great time! Trust me, I always get looks when I’m out in public, and people often look at me like I have 10 heads when they learn that my kids are 13 months apart, but confidence is key. When they see my ability to literally get two babies in and out of the building in one piece, their jaw drops. Trust me, I’m not exaggerating! Especially when James just learned to walk confidently a few months ago and doesn’t understand how to walk nicely next to me holding my hand. Word to the wise – always use a backpack for a diaper bag in these situations! To my surprise, this outing proved to be a huge success. Both kids were in great moods and James was totally into the books, toys, and music during storytime. That kid LOVES to dance and sing!

When we got home, of course both kids were starving, so I quickly prepared lunch (quesadilla) for James and fed Ella while he colored in his highchair. By noon, both babies were napping – James in his crib and Ella in her swing upstairs. Once you get a coordinated nap time down mamas, all is right in the world. It actually didn’t take much work for me; turns out my kids’ schedules line up at about the same time, and thank goodness for the second child and my good sleeper, Ella Bells. I usually use her swing for this nap so that it is a long one. She tends to catnap throughout the rest of the day, probably because the world seems to revolve around her brother, so I want to make sure she gets a good few hours in when I can. She is also resisting the swaddle a bit now, so I am considering buying a sleep suit for her. Anyone have experience with this? James has always been a crazy sleeper, but I blame myself because I held him, rocked him, fed him to sleep, co-slept, you name it and we’ve tried it. I don’t regret any of these but it is definitely easier to create a more independent sleeper with the second baby, purely out of necessity!

Anyways, I usually have about an hour to myself each day after getting both kids down, which flies by! Today I was starving, so I sat down in front of Top Chef and had myself a bagged salad. I know, not exactly the most exciting lunch, but it’s easy, healthy, and delicious. This salad had dried pears and nuts, with a pear gorgonzola vinaigrette.

I also make sure to drink lots of seltzer throughout the day and I love trying new fruit flavors. I’m not a huge water drinker, so this really helps me enjoy staying hydrated. It’s important to take care of yourself and sometimes I forget that sometimes! I often find myself eating the remains of James’ lunch and snacking on pretzels by the afternoon, realizing that I haven’t yet had a proper meal. I hope to change this in the next month, when I start exercising again and eating better! Did I mention that I’ve joined Beachbody and I am in a challenge group starting in a few days. I will definitely let you know how it goes. I’m super excited for the meal planning, workouts, and Shakeology.

Well I know I’ve gotten on many tangents this post, but the most important thing today to remember as a stay at home mom, is to try to take care of yourself as well as your children. Trust me, when you are happier, the kids are happier, and can definitely tell when you are not in a good mood. Throughout the week (but certainly not every day) , things that make me feel good include:

  1. Showering
  2. Eating healthy
  3. Coffee
  4. Wine after kids are in bed 😉
  5. Taking an hour trip to Target by myself
  6. Taking a walk

Chris and I are enjoying a date night tomorrow night plus some Christmas shopping. What could be better?! If you’re like me, your kids consume you 24/7, and it truly is your full time job. Sometimes, though, you need to take some time for yourself, and around the holidays is the perfect time to do so! See ya next time 🙂

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