Sunday, August 24, 2008

Thinking Out Loud: Notes to Working Gals

I've learned so much these last two years as a stay-at-home mom and I certainly do not want to forget any of it. And, to be sure that I do not, I wanted to create a memo to return to time and again to keep myself in check. Just about any parent could learn a lot staying home with their children for an extended period of time.

Live on one income: Even if you make two, try very hard to live on one. Be frugal. Save a lot. And, keep things very simple.

Be creative: It's not about being able to go out and purchase a piece of art; it's about working within your means to create it and have fun doing so. This goes for just about everything, too. Pick up pieces of a wardrobe at thrift shops and then try to make them work. Spend more time at the craft store than at the toy store. In fact, do not even go to the toy store.

Think natural elements: Put rocks in your windows. Twigs in a bowl. Pick up acorns, leaves and pine cones to remember the place you visited. Spend more time outside than inside. Value Mother Earth and all the beauty she spins on this planet. Try to walk more; drive less. Stop to smell the roses, meditate and cherish a little piece.

Snuggle: Our kids need this. Even if it's just once or twice a day. Stop cooking and cleaning if they want held. Pick them up and do it. If you can't that second, let them know you know that they need it and work hard to make it happen.

Quality time: Take time each morning and each evening to really just be with your children. Period.

Remember, we're all busy: And, we truly are. The stay-at-home mom life doesn't offer much in the way of breaks or time to fix dinner, either. It also doesn't offer sick time or vacation. Nor, was it easy to get to a doctor's appointment. Motherhood is hard no matter which way you slice it. Suck it up.

Write, write, write: Between getting ready for work, working out, meditation, preparing breakfast and dinner and spending good, fun times on the floor, playing, you have to find time to reflect on this life. If you do not, it will pass too quickly and you will wonder where the time went. Write about it so you'll always remember. Just write. Even just a sentence like, "We ate ice cold ice cream in the scorching sun today -- as a family."

Thank you for visiting today.

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village mama said...

great memo!

Claroux said...

WOW - seriously....are you secretly bugging my house or something??? This post could not have come at a better time. J and I have been living way beyond our means for quite some time now and it is finally catching up with us. After the panic subsided, we talked about how we love all the STUFF we have and all the THINGS we do but we've both been really longing for a simpler life. We started brainstorming this past weekend about ways to do that. Your list is getting added to our list. I hate how commercialized everything has become. I hate that kids expect to get everything these days. We had virtually nothing when I was growing up and I don't have one unhappy memory. My folks were very into nature and the arts and made sure that I was not only exposed but gained a good sense of appreciation and awe for both. I hope to do that with my girls as well. And I agree - toy stores are EVIL. Last night we played with the girls for over an hour with a big diaper box and a flashlight. They were laughing harder than they have in weeks. It's totally the simple things that make this life less hectic and it's good to see that other Moms are realizing it too. Again - you're awesome Shawn! Now let's see some short hair pics!!! *smile*

RocketMom Cheryl said...

thanks for the reminder to write it down. two lines doesn't take long, and not everything needs to be a masterpiece.