Motherhood in your 20s vs 30s

This week’s podcast is up! (Click on link below) This week’s topic, starting a family in your 20s vs your 30s. Feel free to share with friends & engage in the topic via a comment below…when did you become a mom, in your 20s or 30s?

www.podbean.com/media/share/pb-zjbnu-9f6178

8 Tips to Help Busy Moms make Time for Themselves (Discount Codes Included)

Get adequate sleep, workout, make time for yourself, eat healthy, and apply your oxygen mask on the flight called life before you assist others! As moms we know what we NEED to do. And boy is everyone quick to remind us, doctors, child care providers, friends, family, etc. But have you ever noticed that no one really tells you how? HOW are we supposed to make time for ourselves when we have to work, do laundry, feed kids, get groceries, help kids with homework, drive kids to extracurricular, & keep the world turning? Here’s your HOW….

8 Tips to Help Busy Moms make Time for Themselves:

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1-Early to Bed, Early to Rise

“Early to bed and early to rise, makes a mom healthy, wealthy, and wise”, technically Benjamin Franklin said, man, but I think he meant mom. Going to bed earlier allows you to get into that deep sleep cycle sooner which is good for your cell reproduction, in layman terms, it helps us look younger longer, ladies (yes, please!). Going to bed earlier also means you can rise earlier and rising earlier means you don’t feel rushed, stressed out, and already behind & having to play catchup all day. It also means that you can actually get some “me time” in.  Morning is the best time for “me time”, set your alarm a half hour before kids get up and read, meditate, or just be. If the children do wake remember you are the mother, you are the Queen of your castle so reign! Let the children know it is quiet time in their rooms for a little bit and provide them with a few quiet toys to play with while you get your “me time”.

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2-Say NO

Just say no! It’s the infamous slogan from the 80s made popular by First Lady Nancy Regan, “Just say NO!” Moms, we need to stop saying yes to everything. We need to not only set limits on how many extracurricular, b-day parties, etc. our children can participate in, but, also set limits on ourselves and how many clubs, boards, volunteer commitments  we make/participate in. And news flash….

According to a recent article in The New York Times, the number of activities your children are involved in doesn’t necessarily have an impact on their chances for academic success later in life. It might, however, have a negative effect on a parent’s emotional state, not to mention a family’s finances https://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/08/29/overscheduled-kids-stressed-out-parents_n_940481.html

 

3-Meal Plan & Food Prep

This is LIFE CHANGING! If you are not doing this you are probably making too many trips to the store and wasting food. Don’t know how to Meal Plan? Here are a few simple steps….

  • Go grocery shopping once a week; pick a day, say, Fridays. On Thursday shop your kitchen, look through your fridge, freezer, and pantry and make note of the ingredients you have on hand. Let’s say you have a random can of enchilada mix, box of spaghetti noodles, 5 cans beans, & half bag potatoes.
  • Start your Meal plans for the week by including those ingredients. Thus, Enchilada, Spaghetti Pie, Chili, and Turkey & Smashed Potatoes will get you started then you only have to fill in two more dinners….say, a Stir-Fry and Burgers & sweet potatoes sticks. Then have children make their list for lunches, snacks, and breakfast (yes, I said children)
  • Make list of all ingredients you need from store & go to store to purchase said ingredients.
  • On Saturday set aside one hour to prep food for the meals (any longer and it becomes a chore). And then again on Tuesday set aside an hour and prep remaining food for meals.

Lost? Have no fear Katie is here!! Katie is a Wildtree consultant and she has helped me and can help you become a meal planning and prepping pro…..

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Is your plate full? Let Wildtree help you be in control of your mealtimes, save you time and money, and keep you from getting stuck in a dinner rut! Wildtree is an organic food company that specializes in healthy, quick, and easy meal planning solutions.

Not only do they have a certified organic product line of gluten free, peanut free, low-sodium, low-sugar sauces, seasonings, rubs, blends, oils, and vegan and allergy friendly Wellness shakes, but offer an amazing work from home business opportunity.

With the kids back to school, we know life can get a bit crazy! Wildtree’s new make-ahead meal kits and Dinners-in-a-Dash bundles solve your meal-planning dilemma and help you be a meal-time hero, without the hassle!

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Visit Wildtree.com/katiegaster to order, and use code #momonthego for a 20% off promotional price in September!

Also be sure to check out her recipe club on FB its, @WildtreewithKatieGaster in case anyone is interested in daily recipe ideas and upcoming local events. And her insta is #wildtreekatie

DISCOUNT: enter code 356B69 thru Sept.30th at checkout – for Mom on the Go 15% discount off any order of $50 or greater towards new Wildtree meal kits, wellness shakes, and pantry staples at wildtree.com/katiegaster

 

 

4-Transfer Responsibility to the Children

Moms, why are you still doing it all?! Why are you making beds, doing laundry, planning the meals, doing the dishes, etc. when you have children who are totally capable of helping out? After all, isn’t our goal as parents to raise self-sufficient contributors to society? How is that supposed to happen when Junior can’t even make his own bed? The honest answer is, because it is easier if I do it myself, the kids take way too long and we have to get to all those extracurricular. But look who just narrowed down their list of activities, now you have time to train the children on household chores. Transfer the responsibility of the household chores onto the children and you will find time for you. Start with a simple chore hub like the one below….

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5-Walk it Off!

You don’t need an expensive gym membership, gym equipment, class, or DVD, just a pair of weatherproof walking shoes! January 1st everyone has the best intentions of joining that gym, taking that cycling class 3x a week, etc. like they are suddenly going to have all this time and energy. Be realistic with your expectations, you have a tight schedule that might not be consistent from day-to-day, you can’t make a commitment. But you know what you can do, take a brisk walk at least 5x a day each week whenever you please.

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Regular brisk walking can help you:

  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • Prevent or manage various conditions, including heart disease, high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes
  • Strengthen your bones and muscles
  • Improve your mood
  • Improve your balance and coordination

 

The faster, farther and more frequently you walk, the greater the benefits. Source:

https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/fitness/in-depth/walking/art-20046261

Side note: I have lost 40+ pounds by removing processed foods and walking 2 miles 5 days a week, what’s more, my head has never been clearer, it feels amazing getting outdoors for a half hour. Humans were meant to be outside; our Metroparks are spot on, “Get Outside Yourself!”

 

6-Have scheduled Electronic Time

Would you let your child wake up in the morning and turn on the TV while checking Social Media, take their phone to school check it periodically throughout the day, use it during their lunch period, come home watch a few episodes on Netflix, & then end the day watching more shows while tweeting on twitter? I’m guessing no. Thus, why do you allow yourself unlimited screen time? It sabotages your productivity. But you need it!

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Solution, give yourself blocked times throughout the day to view screens. For example, first thing in the morning only check the weather, at 10 am check messages on social media outlets and email (set timer for 20 minutes). At lunch see if anyone has returned emails/messages (set timer for 20 minutes). Check one last time before picking up kid. Then limit your Netflix/TV time to one hour or less in the evening. Mind you, it doesn’t have to be these exact times during the day but you get the idea, take control of your screen time with a schedule don’t let your screen time control you.

 

7-Have a standing appointment

Have a standing appointment to get out of the house…go to a moms group, peruse the library, or simply have coffee with a friend. If you make a standing appointment every month same day and time (Say 3rd Thursday of every month @ 6-8pm) you have a better chance of keeping the “appointment” and having a sitter.

8-Treat Yourself

With all the money you are saving by not going out to eat thanks to your meal planning, walking instead of paying for that gym membership, and getting rid of cable because it was zapping your productivity you can splurge on you! How does a massage and/or holistic energy healing sounds?

Both of these amazing women are offering discounts only through Mom on the go in Holy Toledo so take advantage of the deals and make appointments today!

 

AwakenedToVitality

Address: 5600 Monroe Street, Suite 205B, Sylvania, Ohio 43560  

Email: AwakenedToVitality@gmail.com

Want to get back to a space of ease and joy with life! Awakened to Vitality’s goal is to return you to a sense of clarity so that you can begin to choose the things that light up your soul!

The sessions featured are:

($50) With the 30 minute Soul Refresher Session, energetically lift what is weighing you down and then refill to uplift you so that you can return to life, refreshed and ready!

Life strategizing sessions ($60/hr.) We energetically create a new reality with your body and your life!

($110) With an Access Bars session, typically 60-90 minutes, light touch on 32 points on your head which helps release all the stuff in your mind that is no longer serving you. (Even judgements, viewpoints and emotional energy that has become stagnant and is weighing you down when you don’t realize it) This session leaves you in a space of ease and opens awareness to invite change and possibility into your life!

www.AwakenedToVitality.com Click BOOK to schedule an appointment. Discount will be applied at time of invoicing.

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Rey of Sunshine Massage

Massage Therapist: Joy

Phone: 419-377-9066

Location: She comes to you!!! (You can literally have your children watching a movie in the other room!)

Cost: For Mom on the go in Holy Toledo readers only….get at 30 minute massage for $20 & a 60 minute for $40!! (Just mention Mom on the go in Holy Toledo)

Website: http://rosmassage.massagetherapy.com/benefits-of-massage

Experts estimate that upwards of ninety percent of disease is stress-related. And perhaps nothing ages us faster, internally and externally, than high stress. Massage is an effective tool for managing this stress, which translates into:

Decreased anxiety.

Enhanced sleep quality.

Greater energy.

Improved concentration.

Increased circulation.

Reduced fatigue.

My Sheroes do more than Eat Pray & Love

You gotta love Hollywood, add an emotional soundtrack that will tug at audience’s heartstring to any image and/or picture and suddenly watching someone have the equivalent of a bowel movement is not only acceptable, but creative and inspiring. To add insult to injury why not blast Facebook with beautiful images of bad advice, hashtag vague phrases, and ultimately misinterpret ones purpose for life entirely. Once you allow your mind to be fed this alluring lifestyle that breeds self-love, self-assurance, self-analysis, self-examination, self, self, SELF, one could easily become glutton and drunk on the magnetism.

There is a group of women who are quite popular, mostly due in part because of their all-encompassing self-everything books, lifestyles, and who have grown quite a huge presence on social media, via popular picture/quotes, hashtags, YouTube videos, etc. and they have been known to identify each other as Sheroes=She +Hero. Upon learning that yet another one of these Sheroes had decided to leave her husband I literally wept. For I knew that her decision was monumental, she did not just end a marriage, break a vow, a promise, a commitment, but she also broke a family. And once something is broken, shattered into a hundred pieces, no matter how much time, love-wins Band-Aids are placed on it, or glue is used it will never be the same ever again. My heart really breaks for the children; they will never again have a, one, single home, but rather, mom’s house and dad’s house. We can justify anything, there are probably a million and one reasons why this broken family is for the best, but if one goes deep, really deep, beyond the mind, past the heart, to the soul, that is where truth sleeps.

After sinking into a mild depression upon reviewing the Sheroes of our time, these mentors of moms, these role models, leaders with such huge followings on social media, I came to the realization that I was listening to the emotional soundtrack, it was tugging at my heartstrings, & I was watching the equivalent of someone having a bowel movement. I was duped. I started contemplating all the other women in my life that might be feeling this same sense of being deceived and suddenly I had a revelation, a deep insight, my Sheroes weren’t those women with the all-encompassing self-everything books, movies, YouTube videos, etc. My Sheroes are the amazing women God has placed in my life, their stories are profound, and they are the true Heroes.

My Sheroes are…..

The wife who found out her husband was cheating on her and she stayed, worked things out, kept her family together despite all the horrible advice she received to leave. It was far harder for her to wake up every morning and see him and relive all the hurt than it would have been to leave but her love for her children, family, God, her commitment to marriage and her family was more important than her emotional state at that time.

The mother who has a nonverbal autistic child, who does everything she can for that child, along with her family, who you know must live with some heartache but maintains a positive outlook.

The wife and mother who had tumors removed from her brain and who now has to live with side-effects from the surgeries.

The woman whose husband cheated on her, refused to work on their marriage, left her, got remarried, had children, his second wife died, and this amazing women opened her heart and home to her ex-husband’s children because the children were innocent in all his life decisions.

The mother who not only had to give birth to her stillborn baby but also had to go through the heartache of explaining to the other children why their sibling wouldn’t be coming home.

The mother whose dream finally came true and she gave birth to her second, much prayed for child, only to find out the baby needed open heart surgery immediately.

The young wife whose husband had testicular cancer twice early on in their marriage and her commitment, her sacred vows of Holy Matrimony meant far more than any biological family.

My Sheroes do more than Eat Pray and Love, they stay! When the going gets tough, no matter how many times, they persevere, they stay….these bad-ass women honor their commitments!

These amazing women are held to high esteem in my mind, are very close to my heart and each of their stories have touched my soul deeply.

Are there any Sheroes in your life? Perhaps you are a Shero? Please feel free to share your story.

 

 

The, “Why are you STILL a SAHM” Shaming….STOP Shaming Other Moms, No Matter Their Story!!!

So apparently if you are a SAHM who doesn’t homeschool and your youngest is in preschool you are totally looked down upon! This nonsense started WAY back in August! I cannot tell you how many times people, people who I call friends, have asked me, “So, what are you doing with all your free time?”….”So, you say you are busy, WHAT ARE YOU DOING!?”…”Now that the kids are in school WHAT DO YOU DO!?” “You have your BS & MS, are you using those now or are your still JUST raising kids?”. I have to be honest these comments are so hurtful! It makes me feel like I am lazy, worthless, not pulling my weight in society, insignificant, a waste, shameful, etc. And the real kicker, I get it from both sides, the SAHM & working moms…and guess what, I have NEVER worked so hard in my life!!!

 

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True my oldest is in 4th grade, second child is in 2nd, and third is in preschool, all outside the home. So if you add it all up I have exactly 7-1/2 hours a week without children. Not quite enough for a fulltime gig. And truth be told, during that time I am usually doing something for others or, God forbid, taking a few minutes to myself, to reconnect with God, to have time away from the children, to center myself, to hopefully become a better mom. And then I am tossed back into the game of motherhood.

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My husband travels with work and I know there are some moms out there that can relate but based upon the comments I receive there are a lot who have no clue! Imagine if you will, your husband being gone for 4 days out of the 5 during the week, and possibly a Saturday here and there. Imagine you are the only person, parent there 4-5 days out of the 7. Imagine you are the sole provider of all meals, clean clothing, discipline, homework helper, chauffeur, religious guidance, etc. during the week & possibly for part of the weekend that often includes a birthday party, game, church (And you have a 1 year old EXTREMELY energetic Labrador puppy & are driving to PETCO every 4 days to buy crickets for the gosh darn Gecko…I love my pets, I do, put sometimes!!!)

 

I do ALL the meal planning, ALL the meal prep, ALL the cooking; packing of lunches, anything & everything with food is my responsibility exclusively! We kick it old-school. My husband busts his butt and is the sole provider of our family and I love him to death for all his hard work. And I am the sole provider of ALL things household & kid related, which might come as a big surprise to some people, but, IT IS A LOT OF WORK!!!! Children don’t come to this planet knowing how to do math, spell words, be kind to others, be respectful to other, having a relationship with God, etc. those are ALL taught by someone. And on those days when you wake up in the morning, make breakfast, get kiddos ready/dress, go to start the car & it doesn’t start it is ALL on you, it is your responsibility to make EVERYTHING run smoothly while your husband isn’t there! And when you have a rotten day & could use a hug in the evening and maybe some TLC but you have to keep going strong through bath time, showers, evening prayers & stories…no matter how you are feeling, when no one is there for you in the wee hours & you have to stay strong it doesn’t help hearing others’ voices reverberate comments in your head from earlier in the day, “SO, what do you do with ALL your FREE time?”

So, the next time you come in contact with a mother whose children are school aged and she is a SAHM, the appropriate reaction/comment might be, “That is awesome!”…”Wow, that is a lot of hard work, way to go!”….give her a hug…or better yet, if you don’t have anything nice to say don’t say anything at all!!!!

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P.S. There are some moms out there who don’t feel comfortable sharing everything on social media or perhaps cannot due to respecting others involved & who are going through some rough times. Please, please remember to always be kind…BE KIND to ALL!

I love you ALL, single, married, small families, big families, working moms, SAHM, etc. but please work on being kind to one another…we ALL matter!

 

 

Moment that defines an Experienced Mom vs. A New Mom

What a day! We (my preschooler & I) have been running errands all day, Costco, candy & mints shop for teachers’ gifts, etc. with a few brief pauses in-between for lunch, and to pick up kiddos from school. With Christmas only 10 days away we have a lot of people and gifts to still cross off our list, thus, after my son got picked up for basketball practice this evening the girls and I set out to run a few more errands. Perhaps I was biting off more than I could chew; I mean, how long can a 5 year old run errands without something happening?

Our last errand of the day, Barnes & Nobel! The girls and I strolled in, located the items we needed, and started to make our way to the exit. We were so close to the door, in the main/central aisle, and then it happened, my little precious 5 year old started having a coughing fit. Now this might not seem like a big deal to most but my little lady isn’t like most. See, she is getting over a cold and has a bit of mucus, she hates mucus! Unlike her sister and brother she can’t handle excess mucus; can you guess what is coming next?  She looked up at me with that gaze and I knew I knew she needed to get outside STAT!! But instead of moving she stood her ground, more like claimed her ground.  She stood their coughing and coughing until she coughed up her dinner right there in the central aisle of Barnes and Noble during the busiest season of the year!!

 

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Oh the looks, the verbal displays of dismay, the crowd that formed around us, fingers pointing at my poor little lady now in the center of a little pool that was once her dinner. I sprang into action, first order of business, eliminate my little lady’s embarrassment. I ran over to the Starbucks counter & retrieved as many cocktail sized napkins as I could to cover up the evidence. Then I walked around the store trying to locate an associate but I was unsuccessful, so I went over to the Starbuck’s barista and inquired about towels or mop to assist in the cleanup. She was a bit nervous; this must have been her first kid puking in the middle of the aisle incident. Don’t worry, I talked her through it, Lol! She got on the phone trying to contact someone and I assured her things would be okay, we were going to get through this if she could just part with a few paper towels and perhaps a couple bags. She handed me said items while still holding the phone and eagerly trying to contact help. I knelt down and cleaned up the mess, it took a few trips to the garbage, a few more glares and verbal declarations of disgust from strangers, and I had the mess almost entirely cleaned before the barista came over with a wet floor sign. As I gently guided my 5 year old up and we strolled outside I couldn’t help but grin from ear-to-ear, I kinda totally rocked that entire situation!

As I helped my little lady into her booster seat I couldn’t help but think back to when I was a new mom, back when my eldest was my youngest age, and how different the outcome of a situation like that would have been. My first inclination back then, as a new mom, after my child started vomiting in a crowded public place like that would have probably been one of total mortification. I would have become beat red in the face and overly consumed with other’s judgements and opinions of me as a mom. I probably would have beaten myself up and convinced myself that it was my entire fault. It would have probably taken me weeks to recover. So, why share my thoughts on this situation? Because, I want all those new moms to know that they are not alone, we have ALL been there at one time or another, it is not your fault; and yes, it will get better, promise! And I want us experienced moms to rejoice and be thankful for how far we have come, how much wisdom and knowledge we have attained.

 

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Lastly, it is so important that we support one another, both old and new moms. We can learn so much from one another. Encourage, inspire, strengthen, and love one another no matter where we might currently be strolling on the path called motherhood.

Cheers!!

What are your thoughts? Are you a new mom, experienced mom? How have you grown in motherhood?

 

 

 

 

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