being a better mom means saying “me too”

Being a better mom means saying, “me too…”

There was once a time where I wondered if God had made a mistake allowing me to be a mom. I felt I was failing much too often, and when I looked around and compared myself to other moms around me, I was certain I was the worst of them all. I simply longed to be a better mom then I felt I was…

Those early years were long and hard and tiring, but I realize now that I would never had survived them if I hadn’t been willing to share the truth of my heart and the reality of my days with the other moms in my life, and especially with the moms I had yet to know from my blog.

Saying and hearing “me too” can save us…even when it seems scary and vulnerable to say so. And today on my post over at The Better Mom, I’m sharing my journey and just how God has proven time and again, that we were never meant to walk this road alone.

metoopost

Click here TO READ MORE of my story over on The Better Mom…

SHARE THIS POSTShare on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterPin on PinterestGoogle+Email to someone
It means so much that you are here! I know life gets busy though, so if you don't want to miss a thing, I invite you to subscribe to my blog through email!

the DTR talk: time to define the relationship

Sometimes it’s just good to have that talk.
To really set some boundaries so that you and everyone involved can really know what to expect…

I’m getting focused.
I’m defining me.
I’m defining my “brand.”
I’m defining us.

And after you watch, I need a little something from you too.

Watch and see….

***As you may have noticed, I’ve been splitting my time more between my blog and my YouTube channel.  It’s been refreshing for me to have both outlets for me to share creatively.  And I’m so incredibly thankful and grateful for every single one of you who have continued to support and encouraging me all along in “a place to say, ‘me too!'”***

SHARE THIS POSTShare on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterPin on PinterestGoogle+Email to someone
It means so much that you are here! I know life gets busy though, so if you don't want to miss a thing, I invite you to subscribe to my blog through email!

parenting, health & beauty confessions of a (non) super mom

I talk about a lot of uncomfortable and messy emotions and situations, but being a mommy is a tender place for me.
So I tend not to go there too often.

I carry so much burden, so much responsibility, and so. much. GUILT…and I place it all there myself because I don’t want to be that “mother that wasn’t enough.”

You know the mom I’m talking about.
Dear Jesus, let it not be me.

Except, guess what?
It’s totally me.

One example of just how un-super mom I am showed up in a conversation I overheard between the kids the other day.

Chloe was in the midst of a mini breakdown of her own.
She can’t help it really, she’s her mothers daughter.
Poor thing.
And in the midst of the meldown, Taylor got super close to her and whispered…
“Chloe, if you don’t stop crying, Mommy’s going to make a video of you and show it to EVERYONE.”

Chloe sniffed and looked up with wide eyes, “No she wouldn’t!!!!”

To which Taylor knowingly responded, “Oh yes she will.  She’s done it to me SO many times.  I’m telling you, you gotta stop.”
{a quick glance at my Facebook/YouTube proves he’s telling the truth.  Oops.}

I guess it’s better he remember that parenting fail (or is it?), then some of the other massive mistakes I’ve made.

Like this week when I yelled.
(yes yes, i know it’s hard to believe such a thing of me.)
But, truthfully, it may have been an octave louder than yelling if you ask the neighbors a few blocks down.

It’s just, I had been sick for a week, and their non stop fighting, seriously, had me at hello.
That entire week I was the “mom that wasn’t enough.”
I was too tired.
Too sick.
Too impatient.
And definitely not leaning into or connecting to God one tiny little bit.

All of that “too” quickly accumulated into one big “UH OH, MOMMY’S HAVING A BREAKDOWN!” moment.
And I yelled.
Ish.

Now, to redeem myself ever so slightly…
Eventually, I did calm down and then returned to my stunned family humbling asking for forgiveness.
I confessed that I had been wrong and then I held my babies and kissed them and made sure they knew I was desperately seeking God for help in the areas I struggle with.

“Ya mom, of course I forgive you, but you just gotta really start asking God for even MORE help, ya know?”

TOUCHÉ Taylor.

Their grace and mercy and forgiveness are always overwhelming.
No conditions.
No exceptions.

Just pure unconditional love and acceptance.

So, I share all that to say, I am the furthest thing from an example of a super mom.
But thank goodness they have a SUPER God to cling to instead.

~~~~~~~

I was recently tagged to do this “Super Mom” video on YouTube, which really turned out to be more of a “Confessions of an UN-Super Mom.”
See if you can relate.

And if you’re up for it, I tag you to answer the questions as well!
(Either on your blog or YouTube!  And let me know if you do so I can check it out!)

Enjoy!

I would just LOVE if you’d subscribe on over there! Next week I’ll be doing a MAJ Giveaway for subscribers only. And I promise, you DON’T WANT TO MISS IT!

xo

SHARE THIS POSTShare on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterPin on PinterestGoogle+Email to someone
It means so much that you are here! I know life gets busy though, so if you don't want to miss a thing, I invite you to subscribe to my blog through email!

kids say the darndest things…

Our kids are constantly at work trying to embarrass us, almost as though it was their part time job.

So where do I even begin?

How about that moment when Taylor went running down the aisles of Home Depot screaming, “Don’t spank me really hard three times!”?

Or the time when Chloe yelled out at Trader Joe’s, “Ow, Dad! You just hurt my wiener!”
She’s a girl, by the way.
You know…she doesn’t HAVE a wiener.

Ya, how’s that for a start?

Okay, so enjoy these last few stories, you know, at my expense.

Gotta love them though…they keep me humble.

Thanks Kat, for inspiring me with your Writers Workshop Prompts!

SHARE THIS POSTShare on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterPin on PinterestGoogle+Email to someone
It means so much that you are here! I know life gets busy though, so if you don't want to miss a thing, I invite you to subscribe to my blog through email!

homeschool confessions: curriculum, scheduling & why we homeschool!

I’m now going on my second year of homeschooling, and while I am FAR from truly knowing what I’m doing, I am so much closer to being convinced I am absolutely in the sweet spot of Gods will.

And this comes from a wife who may or may not have threatened divorce once YEARS ago when Jimmy suggested I begin praying about it being my heart.
In basic words, I responded…. “If you EVER desire to have a happy marriage, I suggest you NEVER bring that up to me. I am NOT a homeschooling mom.”

And then I came to know Michelle Duggar.
You know, on TV.
Although my DREAM is to be able to meet her, and possibly stay a weekend with her (with my kids) to truly see her in action and learn from all her wisdom. I also want her to teach me not to yell.  (whoever can make that happen is my favorite.)

And then I started talking to moms who don’t necessarily homeschool the traditional way, which intrigued me, and I realized that maybe I COULD do it!!! A little prayer, and wa la…..here I am.

Totally off my anxiety pills and homeschooling, all at once… two things I never thought I’d say in the same sentence.
See?
God is a God of miracles.

And while it is definitely tough some days, I have to say that there have been so many benefits both for my own humility and character, but for our entire family unit.
And yes. It’s totally hard.
But growth doesn’t come easy.
And man, are we growing.

But sometimes God calls us to do hard things, and we obey.
His ways don’t always make sense, but I trust Him.

So. All that said, here is the latest of my Homeschooling YouTube series.
In this video I’m sharing what we’re using and loving for curriculum this year, our schedule, HOW we homeschool, and WHY on earth we decided to take this lofty road.

If you homeschool, or even if you don’t, I highly suggest you watch this… because you just never know.
PLUS, it’s always good to know you aren’t alone.

P.S. I hate asking this because it seems so desperate, but would you PLEASE subscribe.  With each view and subscription, I am allowed more opportunities to help YOU!  So help me help you.  Because YOU COMPLETE ME!

Make sure to leave a comment either here or on my YouTube video sharing your own tips, fave curriculum, vents as well as how you schedule your day.
We all have SO much to learn from each other.
I just LOVE that!

SHARE THIS POSTShare on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterPin on PinterestGoogle+Email to someone
It means so much that you are here! I know life gets busy though, so if you don't want to miss a thing, I invite you to subscribe to my blog through email!

kids doing chores: a bandwagon to jump on & why!

I realize I haven’t posted a whole lot on parenting, outside the whole homeschooling thing, and I’m not quite sure what changed there as it used to be a lot of my material back in the day!

One thing though that I love to read about, is how parents parent their kids!
I want to know the family rules.
The family traditions.
What are their schedules?
What chores do the kids have to do, and do they get paid?
What do they get paid?
Do they take vitamins and what kind?
What are they going to do about dating, and what kind of a gun will they use to keep it under control?
{kidding. ish.}

I suppose I’m a bit of a nosey nelly.

It’s just that every family is SO different, and I feel there is so much, SO MUCH to be learned and I just can’t get enough!

This is why I was so excited to team up with Karen on this Vintage Homemaking Week Series!!!  An entire week dedicated to these kind of issues (plus giveaways, score!), just to see how they do things both at home and with their kids.

Think of it as a week of free life coaching/mentoring!

vintagefinal1-1

So, all that said, I thought that maybe, perhaps there may be a a few of you out there curious as to how we do things around here as well.

It’s changed a bit, okay a lot, since we started homeschooling and I’m realizing ever so slowly (on my good days) that I kind of love the change.

And it all begins with chores!

Now that we aren’t rushing out the door every morning to school, we are able to take our time getting ourselves, our tasks, and our moods (okay, my mood) together for the day.
One of those tasks includes chores for the kids.
And by kids, I mostly mean Taylor since Chloe isn’t quite 5. (her chore list will officially begin at 5!)

With Taylor being 8 and a half, we feel he’s more than ready to take on a good amount of chores, and we honestly expect him to do them well. In fact, we tell him that if we have to go behind and finish what isn’t completed, he won’t get paid for that particular job.

This is a child definitely driven by money and praise, so this keeps him working at his best!
{you gotta discover what motivates!}

Our Chore List:

The following is what’s expected of Taylor Monday through Saturday, with Sunday being our day of rest.

~ Make bed & brush teeth
~ Clean his bathroom paying special attention to the toilet and floor around the toilet.
(what is the deal with boys and their bathrooms smelling like a homeless man lives in there???)
~ Feed Stella (our dog)
~ Pick up doggie poo
~ Empty dishwasher (this is my personal favorite!)
~ Before bed, pick up room & toys
~ And on laundry days, he has to put away all his clean clothes and hang shirts. Neatly.

Handling the money/allowance:

We don’t give an allowance, but we do pay for chores.  For all the work listed above,  we pay Taylor $40 a month.
(another option to figure out how much to pay is to double the childs age.)
We’re also discussing that by age 13, we’d cap the amount between $75-100, which will also go towards clothes, phone, gifts, etc.  We have some time before then though, so it’s still up in the air…

Also, starting this year Taylor will be taking 10% and putting it towards an offering or tithe. We are allowing him, at this point, to choose whether it goes towards church or to help others in need. This is because we believe God honors the heart and motives behind the giving more than the actual giving, so we hope to teach him to do this with a good attitude.

In addition to tithing out of his allowance, we will also be setting aside 10% for savings.  This is such a good habit to learn early that it’s best not to spend it all, and to always set some aside for emergencies or big purchases.

After talking with one my incredible friends and mentors, we have also decided that starting in September (3rd grade) he will begin being responsible to pay for half of his friends birthday gifts. I love this idea, as it teaches him to really think through purchases and actually put thought and heart into what he wants to give.

I have to say, that in this last year, Taylor has truly surprised us with his attitude and responsibility, with chores and handling money, at such a young age.

Every morning when I get up, he is already dressed and every single chore has been checked off before ever turning on the TV. (We only allow TV in the morning, as it’s my morning babysitter, due to the fact that they wake up usually before 6 am.  I, on the other hand, am not a morning person. It’s truly all about priorities!)

In fact, when he was away at camp for a week this summer, it hit me just how much he really does help out and what a blessing it is to our family and home.

So, if you’ve been thinking about having your kids take on some chores, or maybe adding in some new ones, let me be the first to tell you, YES, DO IT! 

And if you are already on this bandwagon, I would absolutely LOVE to hear what chores you give your kids at what ages, and even what you consider to be appropriate for their allowances. I know every family is different, and I’m always up to hear your advice and wisdom!

GIVEAWAY TIME!!!

One of my subscribers will be winning Financial Peace Junior to help set you up on on your way to the happy land of kids doing chores! (therefore allowing you to sleep in!)

See below for all the ways to enter!

Winners will be chosen and announced on Tuesday, September 3.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

SHARE THIS POSTShare on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterPin on PinterestGoogle+Email to someone
It means so much that you are here! I know life gets busy though, so if you don't want to miss a thing, I invite you to subscribe to my blog through email!

homeschooling 101: 4 tips every family should know

{You subscribed, right?!?}

While you will hear MANY tips on Homeschooling, these are my TOP 4 TIPS that I truly feel every homeschooler, new and old, should absolutely know! And please be sure to share your own wisdom & tips in the comments below!

As always, let me know what videos you want to see next!

Music by Helen Austin (with permission!)

 

SHARE THIS POSTShare on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterPin on PinterestGoogle+Email to someone
It means so much that you are here! I know life gets busy though, so if you don't want to miss a thing, I invite you to subscribe to my blog through email!

inspiring links: fitness, faith, parenting, family, food & beauty

P1010740

Where I’ve been and what I’ve been loving this week on the WWW!

FAITH/PARENTING:

After my “faith crisis” and especially after these last couple trips to the D.R., I can feel God in the works of changing me.  It’s as though He’s given me new eyes and a new heart.  And when I read this article on how to rescue our families, I was absolutely challenged and inspired.  In fact, I think all parents would be blessed in reading and following his advice.  How can we rescue the family? (John MacArthur a.k.a JMac as we call him in our house.)

~~~~~~~

PARENTING:

A friend sent this to me this week since we are both in the throws of sibling conflict.  Having tried every method and read every book, I was all about learning another way to find peace.  Take a read and let me know what you guys think. 3 Steps that Transform Sibling Conflict into Sibling Comaradare  (Psychology Today)

~~~~~~~

RELATIONSHIPS:

After a women’s bible study I attended last weekend, our associate pastor came through and handed us an envelope to give to our husbands.  It was a perfect match to everything we wives had just learned in Titus 2, and I may have encouraged Jimmy to read it every day if he could. =)  This is definitely a letter EVERY husband (or soon to be husband) should read, and I’m not even kidding you right now.  Print it out and hand it over to your man ASAP.  Dear Husband (Barabbas Road Church)

~~~~~~~

FITNESS:

Burn away fat cells with this simple trick…  I’m intrigued!  Especially with my anniversary trip only 4 weeks away….I gotta get vacation body ready!!!  If you’ve ever tried this method and have thoughts on it, I’d love to hear! (Dr. Mercola)

Speaking of getting vacation ready, I’ve been upping and intensifying my workouts this week and decided to add a bit to the end of my TAM Meta workouts.  I start with one of my new fave YouTube channels Blogilates:  This particular inner thigh workout KILLS, but oh my goodness, in SUCH a good way!!!  (YouTube)

And then when my thighs are dead, I finish up with some extra arm work.  This week I used Tracy’s Hampton Arms, which I’m pretty sure nobody can finish without resting their arms at least once.  If you can, I am in AWE!!! (YouTube)

~~~~~~~

FOOD!

We’ve been trying to pin and then ACTUALLY make the healthy meals we find this week to stop our bad problem with eating out.  This was by far my favorite meal of all AND the most easy to make! Grilled Chicken & Pineapple Quesadillas (The Girl Who Ate Everything)

~~~~~~~

BEAUTY:

Ipsy: Join me on Ipsy and subscribe to the Glam Bag! You get 4-5 beauty products every month delivered to your door, for just $10. (Michelle Phan curates the bags!)  Check out my Instagram pic to see what was in this months bag, which was worth well over the $10 I spent!  Score!!!

I’ve also been totally hooked on my Conscious Box Subscription as well.  Every month, the box gets better and better, and I discover new organic and natural products that I love.

~~~~~~~

Now it’s your turn!!!  Leave a comment letting us know what blogs, links, or videos YOU loved most this week!

xoxo

SHARE THIS POSTShare on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterPin on PinterestGoogle+Email to someone
It means so much that you are here! I know life gets busy though, so if you don't want to miss a thing, I invite you to subscribe to my blog through email!

friday favorite links: Hair Tutorials, Health Tips & Parenting 101

It’s been awhile since I’ve joined the masses of the blog world in doing Friday Link Favorites…. But I really do love reading them, so I want to join in when I can!
So here are just a few links that I loved (and some I wrote, lol) lately.  
You gotta check them out!!!
~~~~~~~
Stuff on the web I loved…
With all the traveling my family and I will be doing from here on out with the building of the orphanage in the DR, reading books on my phone may not cut it on long plane rides anymore.  So when I read this article on Laura’s blog Hollywood Housewife, I knew I had found my Mothers Day Gift.  How do you read?
Is taming your child’s tongue really the answer?  Or does it really have more to do with the overflow of their heart?  I love Sarah Mae’s wisdom and approach to this, and it’s already made a difference this week in how I handle certain situations with the kids.  I’ve stopped trying to tame my childrens tongue.
My friend Karin recently turned me onto this new blog, We’re THAT Family, because of their family ministry.  It’s quickly becoming one of my favorite reads every day, because I understand her heart.  I absolutely love her honesty & compassion.  This post made me realize…she gets me, and she doesn’t even know it.  For when you need the Son.
I am so guilty of getting distracted.  I have a short attention span but a BIG heart to take on a lot all at once.  So reading this post How to focus in an age of distraction on A Holy Experience, actually really got me to focus, slow down and pay attention.  Can you relate?  ….Oh look at that butterfly….
My writings on the web….
I may be one of the only people who can ONLY braid my own hair and not others, so on SheKnows I wrote an article complete with step by step instructions and pictures: 5 easy steps to create your very own fishtail braid
And speaking of hairstyles… I also wrote another SheKnows article on Easy Alternatives to the Mom Ponytail.  Because we all need them, and we can ALL do these styles in seconds!!!
Did you know NOT flossing can lead to heart problems???  I didn’t either until I started researching it.  Check out my newfound knowledge on my P&G Everyday article Flossing: The secret to healthier teeth
I love writing for P&G, because I always learn so much in my research.  And for this one, I convinced myself that stretching every morning can change the whole day before me.  Get familiar with the benefits and then get busy stretching!!! The Benefits of Stretching: Start Your Morning Off Right With Stretching
My incredibly sweet kindred spirit friend, Stacy, wrote a life changing devotion that I absolutely loved.  This girl is the real deal, the kind of christian Jesus is truly proud of.  If you’ve ever struggled with finding joy in the midst of pain, this devotion is for you!  Finding Purpose in the Pain: 21 Days to Finding Purpose in Pain (only $3.99 on Kindle!)
And then of course, there’s the Mommalogues
….which I absolutely love!
This month we have Tia from Tia & Tamara as our celeb guest AND we have a NEW Mommaloguer!!!  
So you definitely need to go check them both out!
…..
P.S. Next week I have EXCITING news to share!!! 
© 2013 “Le Musings of Moi”
SHARE THIS POSTShare on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterPin on PinterestGoogle+Email to someone
It means so much that you are here! I know life gets busy though, so if you don't want to miss a thing, I invite you to subscribe to my blog through email!

her & i…. makeup how to, childbirth, aging and more!

We’ve been collecting your questions over all our videos and we’re taking some time to answer them!

Here’s our part 1!

Part 2:

music by the one and only Helen Austin with her permission of course!

© 2013 “Le Musings of Moi”

SHARE THIS POSTShare on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterPin on PinterestGoogle+Email to someone
It means so much that you are here! I know life gets busy though, so if you don't want to miss a thing, I invite you to subscribe to my blog through email!