me time - tips for moms

Monday, February 27, 2017

"Me time"

The concept is quite simple really, time taken for yourself.

Time used to rest and replenish, whatever that looks like for you.

It's safe to say now, that prior to becoming a mother, I never realized how important 'me time' was. I took for granted the fact that I could come and go pretty much as I pleased. Sure, I had a job and people that counted on me for things but at the end of the day 'me time' never really seemed like something I had to work to obtain. It was kind of a given. Once I was done my obligations, the rest of the time was mine ALL mine.

Enter the little people.


"You don't know what you've got til it's gone".

#truth

I, for the most part, love being a mom. I've got myself some pretty adorable little people who keep on my toes.

It's not that the littles took any time away from me. It's that from the second they each entered this world and my role as mom grew and grew, I, myself, slid further and further down my own priority list. It seems that, as a mom, a parent, your obligations never really end.

So now, instead of waiting until all the things are done to take the time for myself, I'm tasked with having to make or take time for myself. Unfortunately, any time made or taken for myself usually results in the dreaded "mom-guilt".



"me time" tips for moms

  1. Lose the guilt (read: how to eliminate mom-guilt for good).
  2. Keep it simple - 'me-time' doesn't need to be a week-long kid-free trip to the Caribbean (but I'd sign up for that ANY day). The easier and more doable your time is, the more likely you'll be able to keep it up. Lucky for you, I've already shared a big list of self-care activities that are super easy to work into your day-to-day life no matter how many little people you have.
  3. Schedule it - put it in your daytimer, put a timer in your phone, leave a post-it on your mirror. Whatever you need to do to make sure you keep this commitment to yourself.
  4. KNOW you deserve it. This goes with losing the guilt and I know it's been said time and time again but I kinda think it's one of those things worth repeating. You cannot be your best self and take care the most important people in your life unless you, yourself are taken care of. Plus, you certainly deserve a break (on the regular) for all the awesome you do!
That's it... off to have a bath and enjoy some "me-time"




Once you've linked up with us below, head over to the Blended Blog to see what the other ladies are saying about "me time".








on nurturing relationships as a busy mom

Monday, February 13, 2017

I know, I know, it seems like whenever I find the time to write here, which lately is not often, I'm constantly talking about how busy I am, how crazy life is. It's also not lost on me that, despite all the chaos, I managed to do very little this weekend and still put off writing this post until the last minute (and by 'last minute' I mean it's 9pm on Sunday night... must get better at prepping!).

That's the thing about being "busy", it's not always a bad thing, it's just a state of doing something else. It's having a lot of 'to-dos' but trying to fill your time with things that are important to you, things that make you happy.

As a mom, it seems like the list of things that need to get done is never ending. Sometimes that means there is less room for some of the things you might rather be doing or people you might want or need to spend a little more time with.

When I became a mom I was not prepared for how quickly some relationships would change. What has become very apparent over the past 4 years is that all relationships require work. Be it your husband, your children, your other family or your friends, all the important relationships in your life need and deserve to be nurtured. The best part is, this is a two-way deal, so you shouldn't be the only one doing the work here.



the BIGGEST thing is time. Time. There's never any time!!!

Here's the thing though, relationships, especially the ones near and dear to you, are WORTH making or finding or taking the time.

For me, I find scheduling time to be key. Particularly for a 'girl's night' or 'date night'. Those are the kids of things that usually require some level of 'prep' so it's best to know a head of time.

I also try to find time to connect with people when I'd otherwise not. For example, since I'm back to work, I usually try and call someone on my way from work to the kid's daycare (on bluetooth, of course). This is an easy way to stay connected with family and/or friends and it's at a time that's super convenient.

Since I'm terrible for putting things off, I try and do things when I think of them. Like sending someone a quick letter or card or a kind text just to let someone know I'm thinking about them. It doesn't take much time at all but it's so important to let people know they're important to you, even when they're not around.

Probably the MOST important tip of all is to BE PRESENT. When time is of the essence it's vital to use it wisely. It's silly to go out on a date or for a girl's night and to be staring at your respective phones all night. It just doesn't make sense to scrounge for time with people you love and then waste it away. Phone-free time is always a good idea, even if for part of the time because most things can wait.

Last, if you truly can't find the time to spend with some of the people who are important to you, tell them! Le them know that's weighing on you and tell them that you miss them.


Now head on over to the Blended Blog to see how the other ladies are nurturing their relationship.

How do you nurture the relationships that are important to you??? Tell me in the comments


Alright, that's all I got. If you've got a post on nurturing relationships feel free to linkup with me and my Blended Blog friends below.




An InLinkz Link-up

Meal Planning and Food Prep for busy moms

Monday, February 6, 2017

As a mom of two who also works outside of the home, life is hectic to say the least. By the time I get the kids home at the end of the day, it's practically time to get them ready for bed. Apparently they like to eat before going to sleep though, go figure. Suffice to say, I feel like I'm running around like a lunatic from the second I get in the door until they're cozy in their beds for the night until someone needs to pee or needs a drink or needs a snuggle.

Of all the pieces of this working-mom life I find challenging, meal time is right up there on the list (right behind and tying into, not having enough time with my kiddos).

Seriously, when I get home from work my children literally start raiding the cupboards for any accessible carbs (read: cereal and crackers). It's a mad rush to get something somewhat healthy on the table before they fill their bellies with all the processed things.

In order to get a moderately healthy meal on the table in lightening speed, I rely heavily on meal planning and food prep.

Here are some meal planning/food prep tips for busy moms (or anyone really because who doesn't want to spend less time worrying about dinner on the daily?)



The most important things are:

1. Making a plan

2. Prepping all the things

that's IT! Easy peasy, right?

Just KIDDING!!

My plan was to do post with tips but when I read posts like that I sometimes feel like it's not concrete enough. So, instead of me taking you through an abstract 'to-do' list, I'm just gonna tell you what I do, specifically.

Making a plan:

You probably read that and think I have a giant menu planned out for the week. I don't. Not all the time (read: usually not). For me, the most important thing is sitting down before I do groceries and having a general idea of things we want/need for meals for the week.

I basically think, very basically, about what meats, easy sides and veggies I want. I don't make complicated meals during the week (because, not practical) and I usually like to have things I can easily mix and match.

I have a plan for dinner but I also like to have a plan for other meals as well. Again, I don't over complicate this. For example, for breakfast I find it super easy to make overnight oats. Obviously, when I'm shopping I need to make sure I have the ingredients for my ideas. In this case, greek yogurt, large flake oats and some fresh berries.

Once you pick the things you want and that can mix together to make some healthy fairly balanced meals, the rest is all in the prep.

Prepping all the things:

THIS is the most important part and as I mentioned before, even though I have an idea of the meals we'll be eating, it's when I'm prepping that I really put things together. THIS is where the magic time-saving happens.

Because time is of the essence, most of our meals are cooked ahead of time and re-heated. I don't love using the microwave ALL the time, but we like hot food and this lady doesn't have time to cook a full on the daily. Having stuff ready to go is my life-saver. No, I'm not being dramatic.

Sunday is the day where I usually prep all the things.

What does this mean? I season, cook, cut up and pre-make everything I can possibly think of to make meals easier throughout the week.

Here are some of the things I prep by meal:

breakfast:
- overnight oats - 1/3 cup eat of greek yogurt, rolled oats (large whole flake), water. Make at night, at fruit and stir for breakfast
- omelette muffins - eggs, ham and veggies
- boiled eggs - I literally boil a dozen eggs on Sunday for an easy breakfast or quick add to a salad

lunch:
- cut and wash lettuce - pre-portion lettuce and/or spinach for salads
- turkey chili or soup (an easy and healthy work lunch)
- cut up various veggies and pre-portion for a healthy snack (celery, carrot sticks, peppers)

dinner:
- chicken - skinless chicken breast on the BBQ - we cook a bunch on Sunday and will use them for wraps, adding to a salad or as the main meat for dinner
- salmon - I usually cook a couple fillets for during the week. Yes, I'm the jerkface who microwaves fish at the office. #sorrynotsorry
- rice - I cook a few cups of brown rice and use it as sides for dinner during the week
- pasta - kids LOVE pasta (okay, so do I) and it's super convenient to have on hand and ready to heat for a speedy side
- mac and cheese muffins for the kiddos (always a hit)
- potatoes/sweet potatoes - roasted or mashed, a healthy and delicious side
- carrots - my kids love boiled carrots, so I boil a bunch on the weekend to use as a side during the week.

I try and cut up as many fruit and veggies as possible. I find if I have these things prepped, I'm more likely to eat them (and feed them to my family) as opposed to above-mentioned cereal and crackers.



So that's pretty much it... it's not rocket science but doing these simple things significantly reduces my work-week dinner time stress.

Now, PLEASE spam me ALL your meal planning and food prep tips because I'm willing to try anything :)

THEN, hop over to visit Nicole who is also sharing her own meal planning and food prep tips!!



If you have any meal planning or food prep posts - link them up for me and the Blended Blog ladies :)





- DESIGNED BY ECLAIR DESIGNS -