Counting the Wins and Losses

 

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If there’s one thing about parenting that I feel I’ve reached expert level on, it’s riding the emotional roller coaster that is all the momma feelings. After a good long run with good sleep, the past five days or so has found us back in a place of a middle of the night to early morning wake up and my go to response has just been to bring our son into bed to snuggle with us. That will leave you feeling really annoyed really quickly, until your kid looks at you and smiles saying “smoochies!!” as he gives you kisses before snuggling up and settling back into sleep for a bit and then I feel bad for ever being annoyed. 🙂

So in celebration of experiencing those moments of bouncing back and forth between the feelings of I’ve got this to questioning the quality of your parenting, I present to you my most recent parenting wins and losses:

My kid spent the afternoon only wanting to snuggle with me, needing to touching me pretty much at all times! Except for when I tried to get this picture, then I had to give him a bear hug to keep him from running away…

Felt like a champ when my kid begged all week to go to the library of all places and every day I told him we couldn’t go, even on a day my husband and I took off work meaning we actually could’ve. We just had plans for him to still go to daycare so that we could go see a movie and then watch basketball all afternoon (still reminding myself that he’s rather run around with friends all day and that mom’s and dads deserve alone time every once in awhile!)…

But then took him to the library over the weekend and we got to have a great time. Such a great time that I had to bribe him with the promise of french fries to get him to cooperate when we needed to leave…

Enthusiastically agreed with my husband for the last several months that yes, swim lessons would be a great activity to sign our son up for and we should definitely do that – it’ll be so good for him! And then keep letting it fall to the bottom of the priority list to call places, mostly because I’m a procrastinator extraordinaire but also because a part of me knows I’d have to get in the pool too and the thought of being in a swim suit makes me cringe (the hunt for high waisted swim bottoms is on!)…

Was really proud of myself for managing to have a guilt free girls afternoon while my husband stayed home with the kiddo (this has been so hard for me for the longest time!), only to feel the guilt sneak in a bit when I found myself telling my crying, clingy toddler the next morning that “it’s ok, you’re just staying home with grandma and grandpa while mommy and daddy run to the store real quick, I’m not leaving you all afternoon like I did yesterday”…

Loving that our son clearly now has two best little buddies at daycare judging from the amount he talks about them at home and seeing how they interact at drop off/pick up, but then choosing to not be the bearer of bad news when we learned that one of them recently had their last day attending our daycare…

 

5 Things That Improve My Mood

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I let stress get to me last week, and by that Friday afternoon I was really feeling like I’d hit my limit. Thankfully I’ve (pretty much) bounced back, and here are some of the things that helped…

One: Snuggles from a lovey dovey toddler. Is there anything better?

Two: A really tasty drink to celebrate the arrival of the weekend. My current favorite is cucumber and lime flavored vodka mixed with some pineapple juice, sparkling limeade, and ginger beer. Yum!

Three: An outing with my guys. Usually weekend mornings are my one on one time with Jacob while my husband does his long work outs (the man is always training for some race, I wish I had his discipline!), but unfortunately a strained muscle kept him away from his usual run. But fortunately that meant he came along with us to the library, a place I’m pretty sure is Jacob’s new favorite because he’s spent the whole week telling us he wants to go every time we left the house to unfortunately have to go somewhere else that was much less fun, like to work or the grocery store. Definitely need to go back soon like I keep telling him we will before I turn right into a liar. 🙂

Four: Making cupcakes! I thought this would be fun to do with Jacob for exactly the reason my husband accused me of – I thought cupcakes sounded good. 🙂 Jacob has a dairy allergy so we used a dairy free recipe a co-worker told me about last year and I made a homemade dairy free frosting too. Maybe I’ll share that soon in case anyone else is interested?

Five: A little bit slower moving morning today because a certain little someone told me no every time I tried to get up and moving and then followed me around, hugging my legs and saying “got ya!”. Which was absolutely fine! Because the wonderful thing that is vacation days got us a 4 day weekend and as much as I love what I do, that will always improve me mood!

 

 

Feeling Lately

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Life lately has been a lot of the daily grind on repeat. Wake up, get ready for the day, daycare drop off, work, return home for the whole dinner/bath time/play cars, chase the toddler around the house because he finds it hilarious and you’ll do anything for that laugh routine, then go to bed and do it all over again the next day. And some days that feels perfect and I find myself so emotional and grateful that this is my life, like when the toddler who loves to be chased decides to run upstairs and insists that you lay down, close your eyes and go “night night” while he runs from you, only to have your husband wander up to see what you guys are up to and it ends with the whole family snuggling up together and laughing. That’s the good stuff right there.

But then there are the days where that feeling of restlessness creeps in and leaves me feeling like it’s time for some change! And maybe that’s because it’s nearing the end of winter and we’re all craving the opportunities to get outside, realizing today that it’s been over 2 months since we’ve left the city we live in and it’s surrounding suburbs, or maybe just because I gave in today and wore my old jeans I’ve held onto that are a size bigger than what I’ve been wearing. You know the ones – we all have them, right? And if you don’t, please don’t tell me. 😉

So here we go, I’ll be on a quest to figure out how the heck to snap out of it. Maybe I need more time to myself, to start working out again, maybe a wardrobe refresh like Anne? 🙂 Or maybe I just need to get out of my own head a bit! How about you? Any tried and true tricks you have when you just need to get yourself out of a rut?

7 Things

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1. We are lucky enough to be on the tour route for The Peach Truck, a fact I discovered way too late in the game last summer. I bought a bunch and froze them at the end of the season but haven’t used them like I thought I would. When my in-laws visited for the day last weekend I finally put some of them to good use and made this peach crisp recipe. So good!

2. The other night I had Pandora on, turned to the Kriss Kross station of course, and Salt-N- Pepa’s Push It came on. I turned it off right in the middle of the song, then turned around and realized Jacob was still singing it. I just about died laughing!

3. Life feels like it’s been catching up with me because I’ve been ignoring the projects on my to-do list because I just don’t want to give up precious weekend time doing weekend-y things with my guys to do things like organize my house. So I did the responsible thing and I put in for a vacation day conveniently at the start of March Madness, when I know I can have the morning to myself to tackle chores and then spend the afternoon hanging with my husband and watching basketball instead of working. 😉

4. But spending the day hanging out here sounds pretty good too!

5. I don’t like buying books for myself very often because they cost money and then take up space in my house (and I have plenty of other stuff to take care of that thank you), plus I rarely re-read a book. I’ve been getting everything I’ve been reading lately from the library which is great, except for when you are working your way slowly through a book and then the due date hits and you can’t renew it because there’s 30 some other requests in for it and you don’t want to get in the back of that line, so you buckle down and just finish it. Now that I think about it, maybe that’s a good thing since it helped get me moving on it. 🙂

6. They’re making an apartment complex out of old cargo containers here in Columbus as an option for more affordable housing. I kind of love that I live in a city that’s embracing an idea like that!

7. I know that last month I said I kind of wanted some pretty snow, but here we are a month later and Mother Nature did not deliver so now I’m ready to just move on to spring and the gift of weather nice enough to get outdoors on the weekend – we’re getting a little stir crazy over here! And even though I’m sure there’s tons of indoor toddler activity ideas hanging out over on Pinterest, I’m just the mom who would rather let her kid play with his cars and favorite race track for the 5 millionth time and thankfully he doesn’t seem to mind that either. 🙂

Linking up for 7 Quick Takes

 

 

 

Currently

 

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more like Tuesday mornings and coffee 😉
It’s time again for what is quite possible my favorite post of the month – the Currently link up with Anne from In Residence and this month’s co-host Carrie from A Stylish Fit!
Watching

The Bachelor! We’re doing a Bachelor Bracket at work which is fun, but for most of the season I’ve just been googling who went home and what happened on Tuesday morning and then maybe getting around to watching the episode on my DVR throughout the week with a lot of fast forwarding. Now that we’re nearing the end I’m paying a bit more attention though and actually watching the episodes on Monday nights. Rachel was hands down my favorite but now that we know she doesn’t win, I can’t decide who I’m rooting for! My favorite show right now though is the Gilmore Girls. I’m so late to the game, but I finally started watching it right after Christmas while I was off work for our winter break and I’m hooked. I’m on Season 3 now, so still some work to do!

Eating

I commented one day that a co-workers lunch looked good and he shared this recipe for Mississippi chicken. I’ve made it a couple of times and my husband and I have both liked it enough that it’s bound to become a weekend staple because it’s always nice to have an easy meal that just gets thrown in the crockpot. I realized I even made it simpler than what the recipe says – I forgot the butter and couldn’t find the peppers at the grocery store, so it literally was chicken in a crockpot with the au jus gravy mix and the dry ranch packet. Serving it over rice has been our go to option, but it sure does look good as a sandwich too!

Saying

Ok! To pretty much every toddler request, especially because the most common ones as of late are “carewie you” (meaning I want you to carry me), “snuggle me” (and then he’ll order us around and tell daddy to snuggle mommy, or mommy to snuggle daddy, or one of us to snuggle his car haha), and “stop it” as told to me the other night when I was doing dishes and he wanted me to stop and come over to play with him.

Wearing

When it’s not black or gray, I swear there seems to be maroon involved as evidenced both here and here. 🙂

Posting

With waaaay more regularity again and it feels so good. My first blog was only about personal style and after having Jacob I just didn’t have the same level of interest to keep that going regularly. I feel like I’ve hit a sweet spot again and using it as a space to talk about whatever I’m thinking about at the moment rather than just clothes and I’m really enjoying it!

And I’m excited to say that next month I’ll be co-hosting next month’s Currently link up on April, talking about what we’re accomplishing, feeling, needing, practicing, and pinning. If the Currently link up isn’t yet part of your monthly routine, please join in on the fun on April 5th!

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When to Say Yes

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tee (similar) / jacket (similar) / jeans / boots / necklace

When I find a good sale, it’s really hard for me to curb the impulse shopping and that’s one of the things I’m continuing to work on this year. Maybe about a year and a half ago now I did a pretty serious closet clean out and many of the things to hit the donation pile included these types of items, mostly because I got so focused on what a good deal it was that I would buy it even if it didn’t fit quite like I wanted it to, it wasn’t a color or maybe pattern that I loved, or if I had something really similar already although I still believe in exceptions for that one!

Thankfully they weren’t all misses and this $8 olive jacket I couldn’t say no to has turned into one of my most worn items over the 6 or so years I’ve owned it, with no signs of that changing anytime soon. If I would’ve found it now, it would’ve passed the new test of asking myself these two questions: do I like it or just like that it’s a good deal, and do I have something similar already? Not that this is a foolproof trick, as evidenced by a recent online shopping experience. While it worked to say no to this sweater that was on sale for $15 (I have it in another color and love it) when I had it in my cart but then reminded myself that I just got a long black sweater like this that I love for Christmas this, it did not stop me from buying my third maroon t-shirt because I just can’t help but argue that when you find a tee in one of your favorite colors for under $5 that it’s just irresponsible to say no. 😉

7 Things

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Linking up for 7 Quick Takes

1. Living that boy mom life…one day I got to work and found a race car in my back pocket! While trying to get out the door to run errands with Jacob one weekend I agreed when he wanted to bring “all the cars” and threw them in a ziploc bag for him and hustled him out the door. Well now he insists on this everytime we leave and most times we go upstairs to bed. What have I started?!

2. I’m steadily making my way through the Gilmore Girls and recently watched a Thanksgiving episode in season 3 where the best friend who is a chef gets upset because she relinquishes her control of turkey making to her husband and then is upset because he deep fried it and that’s just not how you make a turkey. Say what?! That totally had me craving deep fried turkey. My husband uses this recipe for the dry rub as a guide (but always ends up throwing in whatever else we have that sounds good) and it results in such a good turkey. We might be beyond the season, but if we get some more decent weather on the weekends coming up I may have to talk my husband into busting out the deep fryer!

3. Some unseasonably warm weather had me thinking ahead to shorts for the summer. I don’t like shorts, but I dislike wearing jeans in the heat even more so I think I need to find just one denim pair I really like. Distressed denim is my favorite right now so requirements include that plus a looser fit and an inseam that doesn’t make me immediately cringe at how long it’s been since I could call myself a runner. Maybe these will work?

4. Normally I’m ready to go to bed for the night by about 9:30, but last weekend I was hoping to finish the last episode of the most recent season of Game of Thrones when I came back downstairs from putting Jacob to bed so I drank a cup of coffee at about 7pm. My husband ended up being the sleepy one that night so we skipped watching the show and I still had no problem being asleep before 10pm hit. Does caffeine have no effect on me?!

5. I caught the preview for Disney’s Born in China and I would looooove to take Jacob to go see this when it comes out! He’s never been to a movie in a theater and he’s a couple of months shy of 2 and a half – if anyone has any advice or experience they have to share about what age they started taking their kids to movies and how they did, I’d be all ears!

6. Take the message to Garcia is a phrase that I loved from the book It’s Okay to Laugh (Crying is Cool Too), derived from I think some guy in the military who when asked to do something just sucked it up, figured it out and made it happen or something along those lines. It was something the author described as her father saying to them as kids and my takeaway is that it was a way of saying just effing do it. I’ve been having a serious case of the I don’t wanna’s this week, so I find that I have to keep telling myself to take the message to Garcia as a way to remind myself to just grind through and get it done with!

7. Jacob is creeping up quickly on a size change so took advantage of some Presidents Day sales to buy him some things. I missed a chance for free shipping for an Old Navy order by one day, but I secretly wasn’t all that upset about having to spend $50 to get free shipping because it was the perfect excuse to freshen up my black jean collection I rely on so heavily with this pair for only $15. 🙂