Housework with Two Under Two: How Do I Keep my House Clean with Young Children?

Housework with Two Under Two: How Do I Keep my House Clean with Young Children?

Housework with Two Under Two: How Do I Keep my House Clean with Young Children? Doing housework has never been my strong point. I don’t naturally clean my environment as I walk through the house and seem to have missed that “mom gene” where you naturally add order to your surroundings without thinking about it. When I don’t think about it, the house gets dirty...really, really fast! Once I do look around and think it’s about time to tidy up, my next thought is how? I work from home. My little ones are both under two, and sitting with them while they crawl and run around me as I work on my computer is actually easier than trying to figure out how to sweep and mop, cook, do laundry, and clean the bathrooms with them. Full disclosure - for this blog I’m pulling heavily from the advice of some experienced moms who have been there and done that. So thank you Charity, Lindsay, and Megan for giving expert advice on today's topic, how do I keep my house clean with young children? This Phase will End This stage where housework feels so difficult is just that - a phase that is short

How Do I Get A Break as a Busy Mom?

How do I get a break as a Busy Mom? Mommy Breaks are a wonderful thing. Being a mom sometimes feels like a long distance race, and we all need time to recharge for a few minutes from time to time. Have you ever tried to take a Mommy Break and found that you honestly really felt no better afterwards? For example, one day when I was just feeling done, I watched my son empty the bookshelf because I was too exhausted to to even think of sitting down to train him on how to put the books back in anymore. So, while he emptied it, I ate my candy bar. I stood there thinking, “Sure, I’m calmer now, but I also have a huge mess to clean up and I’m just as tired as I was before!”  Then, in a moment I had a revelation: “This is not rest; this is a timeout….rest needs to be restorative.” This thought was revolutionary to me. Rest needs to be restorative or it’s not rest! Wow! Actually, there is some solid research on the necessity of rest particularly for moms. Check out this article for more on that.   Rest vs. Timeouts Me watching

How Do I Help My Child with the Transition to Kindergarten?

How Do I Help My Child with the Transition to Kindergarten?

How Do I Help My Child with the Transition to Kindergarten? Change is just plain hard. I still remember sobbing as a child when my parents sold our big, beautiful, brown 1975 Volvo Van. Then, when we moved away from our old, yellow farmhouse as a teenager, I shed a few more tender tears. Even as an adult, I still struggle with the changing seasons in my life. When something is good, you just want to hold on. Ironically, sometimes good turns to better with a life transition. Or, if not better...it is just a different version of really good. Case in point. Kids are so darn cute when they are little. So innocent and beautiful. Then, one day they turn big. Just like that. Big kids with big opinions and big mouths. Not so cute anymore. It took me several years to just START getting comfortable with having big kids. I longed and longed for them to stay little and cute. Now mine are no longer babies. No longer even toddlers. My youngest is in Kindy and my oldest is twelve. Major life transitions for us. Lots of emotional adjustment for Mom. One unexpectedly bumpy transition for us has been my

How Do I Handle My Emotions as a Mom?

How Do I Handle My Emotions as a Mom? Today was the first day of Kindergarten. I cried when I saw that my little kindergartner was the first up in our family and had her uniform on before the crack of dawn — her jumper twisted over her shoulder, with one blouse collar up and one collar down. One was sock pulled high, and one sock barely on. I cried when her teacher simply greeted me in the morning. I cried when my baby got in line to go to class, with her big brave eyes and a wave goodbye. She was fine. I was a wet mess. I did feel better when my friend, Jessica, admitted that she shed a tear when her baby ate her first bit of solid food this week. Sigh. This is what we do. As moms, we cry. We deeply sense every transition, and we feel it somewhere deep in our heart, our spirit. This is how we are made. In fact, this lovely, awful pang is what makes us so able to connect with our kids, with our friends, with our own moms. And, however emotional it is...however heart-wrenching and beautiful it is to navigate...

How Do You Workout With Kids at Home? 6 Practical Ideas

How do you workout with kids at home? As a starting disclaimer. I have modest mommy-fitness goals: jog a few miles without dying, strengthen my core, hike in the mountains. You get the idea!  Marathons are not among my life goals, at least not yet! I’ve just passed the six-week postpartum mark which means I’m getting back into the workout routine. Here are six practical mommy-workout ideas.    1. Go on a Walk If the weather is good, put the little ones in the stroller and go for a brisk walk. Once you work up to it, you can jog this way as well. It’s helpful to have a jogging stroller, but not absolutely essential. Older kids can ride their bikes beside you. This method tends to get challenging if you have more than two kids under four because the older ones can’t go fast enough on their bikes yet. You may have to invest in a double stroller or do what one of our contributors, Aimee did. She would put her baby in the stroller and have her toddler sit facing toward her, arms linked on the sturdy stroller handlebar. This was a perfect solution for those brisk walks, but certainly

A Long and Rocky Road: How do I deal with Pregnancy Loss?

How do I deal with pregnancy loss? How do I deal with a miscarriage? From a mother who walked in your shoes

How do I deal with Pregnancy Loss? First know, You are Not Alone A friend of mine just had a first-trimester miscarriage and is grieving deeply. Another friend just shared with me how several years ago she lost her third baby at 24 weeks. Many, many of my friends and women in my family have suffered pregnancy loss; at this point, I find it more unusual to meet women who haven’t. My Personal Story Several years ago I lost twins right at the end of the first trimester, just before we were about to share our excitement with the world.  Then I had another very early first trimester miscarriage after the birth of our most recent little boy. Losing the twins was the hardest, but even losing a baby I’d only known about for a few days was wrenching. Miscarriage is devastating. I plunged into a depression that lasted months. I felt like my body was a vessel of tears that just kept spilling over. I cried every day, and anything and everything set me off. I was haunted by the mental image of an ultrasound screen with no heartbeats. My body was a mess trying to reorganize itself and the changing hormones gave me

How Does Mommy Medicine Work?

Mommy Answers

Providing Mommy Answers! So, I definitely have some OCD tendencies. And this in addition to being very, very Type A. Mix these two ingredients with being a new mom & well… let’s just say with every single new mom question I faced, I grit my teeth, dug in my heels a little farther and searched fervently for the answer. Looking back now, I see I was a bit animal in my behavior and certainly fear-driven. But, as new moms we simply have so many questions and we are hunting for oodles of answers. Why is my baby crying? Why is he not sleeping? What is that red thing on her forehead? Oh God, is she coughing or dying? Initially, I refused to give my firstborn any vaccines, as I had heard so many theories flying about. Her first 6 months I read countless books and websites...trying to make sense of everything. Do I vaccinate? If so, at what pace do I vaccinate my child? Do I give my child all of the vaccines or do I pick and choose? In the end, because of our frequent travel to Third World countries, we chose to do most of the vaccines but at a

A Good Night’s Sleep

listening to your mommy instincts and getting a good nights sleep

  Before I had kids I really was pretty harsh on the young parents in my life. They'd come in to work complaining about lack of sleep and I simply did not get it. My thinking was they should have just turned off those lights and gone to bed earlier. I mean, how hard could it be to sleep? Oh, I had no idea. No clue as to what happens when you bring a new baby into your home--for the rest of your life! No understanding of the torture that is involved. Beautiful joy and beautiful pain all wrapped together. It isn't just one night of sleep that you lose. It is a 2nd and a 3rd and a 4th...and then it is one year of no sleep, 2 years of no sleep. And so forth and so on. I have always been really pleased when my kids reached about 2 or so, because I found that there were less disturbances at night and less early morning wakings. Now that my youngest is 3 it is even better. I am actually beginning to get my 8 hours of sleep-- now and then. Until of course, nights like last night happen. So, I'm

What is Mommy Medicine?

What is Mommy Medicine?

One night a few years ago...when I was having a rare and wonderfully deep sleep, I had a vivid dream. In my dream I was Mary Poppins. I wore the hat, carried that fantastic magic purse and was strolling along using the umbrella as a walking stick. Suddenly, I--or me as Mary Poppins--found herself signing up to study Pediatric Medicine online. I woke up with a jolt and sat up in bed, horrified. You see, dreams will sometimes mean something to me. I find God will use dreams to direct me, share thoughts, or reveal my emotions to me. In fact, a few years before I had prayed that God would start speaking to me in dreams. And He had. Now I was petrified. Here I was with three young children. Had I missed my calling? Was I supposed to become a pediatrician? How could I have missed this? How would I accomplish this? There was simply NO way. It was 4am and I was wide awake, my heart racing. I just could not wrap my heart around the "how" of this. How would I quit what I was doing and spend 4 years in Medical School? When I was

What do I do with all of the conflicting parenting advice?

how do i know who to listen to as a mom, new mom advice, what to do with all this conflicting parenting advice?

  As a parent you will receive a tremendous amount of advice, much of it useful, some of it useless, and the rest might simply be maddening! It can be very frustrating to figure out if you're doing everything "right" for your children.  This last year as we started a nationwide dialogue on childhood vaccinations, this was never more evident. Our hearts as moms shout out, "Just tell me the RIGHT thing to do, and I will do it!" It seems as though there are valid points on each side of the vaccine debate, and it's so hard to figure out what to do, especially when well-meaning friends share their opinions vocally. Here are a few pointers that have helped me over the years: 1. Your friends don't have to answer for how your kids turn out- but you do. 2. Somethings that seem so life-shattering in the moment won't matter at all in a year, five years, or ten years. Ask yourself, "in five years will it really matter if I let my baby cry it out in their crib or went to pick her up?" Even though I'm a strong proponent of breast-feeding, I myself am the result of bottle-fed formula,

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