Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Summer is Ending

Summer is almost over, school starts soon and we are trying to finish up all the summer fun we had plan. My husband took off the week so we can take some daytrips. The zoo, the beach, the park and summer fun in our own backyard. Also the girls joint birthday party. But alas, we are home, day 2 and home. Its Murphy's Law in my house and of course something on my car broke. The expensive problem is something my husband can fix, but again, he notices more problems and needs more parts so the quick fix is now into its second day. So I played soccer in yard, frisbee and cleaned for the girls party. Summer memories are what you make of them. No beach this year, but Liv learned how to catch a ball, hit a ball with a bat and Eve can kick a soccer ball. I'd say even with all the problems, horrible weather and things breaking at home it was a pretty nice summer and ending on a nice at home note.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Managing my Home

Woke up, feed children made muffins, made lunch for husband showered, dressed laundry, hang one load on line park play date picnic girls nap do another load in the washer work out video take clothes off line hang second load online clean up kitchen girls wake up go outside play garden, weed, plant lettuce and spinach, removed dying plants snack time dinner prep color through another load in the washer get garbages ready and bring to curb cook dinner read get clothes off the line, place last load in dryer give girls a bath read stories girls in bed get bills read blog rest I can not believe all I did all of this in one day. I'm beat, but I did it all. Recently a friend lent me Mangers of Their Homes by the Maxwell family (I read the Duggars use their system so it if can help of family that large it surely can give me some ideas). Reading it I was shocked how much these woman did in a day. They all homeschool, keep their homes well and still had time for crafts, reading and exercise. Seeing how they can do it I thought I must try to schedule my day better. I get off and on the scheduling since I have never been strict with it. I sat down and worked up all I want to do in a day and all I need to do and made myself and my girls a daily schedule. Its amazing how just putting it all down helps me get it all done. I'm exhausted, but I will probably sleep well and fall asleep fast, something I don't often do. It's still not all done. I have loads of clean laundry, but its not put away. That will be on tomorrows to do list. I'm not a perfect homemaker and not a perfect parent, but I'm trying to get more done and its working. I want more time to knit, to read, to read to my girls and so far I am getting more time to do this, while still getting more done. I've never been a scheduling type of person, but as I have grown up I have realized I really am the scheduling type, I just didn't know it yet.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013


Okay? A simple word I found myself saying daily. It was either "can you clean this mess up?" or "we are going to bed now okay?" Why am I giving my kids the option, why am I okaying? them. Why I am checking with them and asking them when there really is nothing to be asked. I feel into this trap once before, right around the time Liv was Eve's age now. And with Eve starting the terrible 2s I started reading parenting books for some inspiration, some ideas and to hopefully help and find ways to limit her tantrums. Right away I realized I was doing it again. I feel back into the okay? is it okay if I discipline you? The ambivalence with adding okay? or can you? to my statements must be so confusing to a toddler. "she said okay? or can you, well I don't feel like so no I can't" is what is often probably going through her head. Why did I fall in this trap again? I read this once years ago and it was like an epiphany to what my parent skills were lacking. Overall I think I'm a pretty good parent, but I have this problem with commanding authority over my kids. But I know I'm not the only one. This is so common today in parenting and I wonder why. I have no problems with my kids questioning me, I'm not for blind obedience to authority figures (google the Milgram experiment to see one huge reason why) but I do want obedience. I want my kids to respect authority, to be responsible and respectful to me as their mom. But I got back in this wishy-washy discipline and believe me my kids noticed and took advantage. Its so hard all the mixed messages our kids see and hear daily I don't want my parenting to be another. Yet as parents many have a hard time correcting our children. Is it our own problem with authority? we are the authority and that is strange or difficult for us to grasp. Is it our need to be friends with our children? Is it our need to protect them from hurt and pain? All of this backfires, our children can be our friends, but we are parents first. We can not protect them from all pain and discomfort, nor should we. We need to expose them so they can deal when they are out "in the real world" The will be inept and not ready if we don't start at home. Exposing them to small trials and tribulations. This will help our children succeed in life, be happy and productive. Isn't that what every parent wants for their kids? Okay? will not get them there. When I opened my most recent parenting book and read this again recently I realize, I'm doing that, again. My own past problems with discipline and authority were again hurting me to be an effective parent. It was amazing the difference in one day of saying "I need you to clean that mess" instead of "can you clean that mess" They listened, no arguments. When Eve did argue she did eventually come around, without a major tantrum. Her tantrums have gone down significantly. This is a great relief to all of us since her tantrums are often epic. The world is overwhelming enough for a toddler, it must be such a great relief for her to know that Momma is in control and Momma is here and a secure figure for her to lean on and rely on. Being a parent isn't supposed to always be easy and fun and okay? is something I need to remind myself not to do. I am a strong, confident woman and need to be a strong confident parent for my girls. This will inturn help them become strong in who they are and confident and secure with themselves.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Weekly Menu

I've been told my menu planning is cute, quaint, and very Martha Stewart like. I don't think too many New Jerseyans take pride in homemaking skills. Its all very quaint to most people I talk with. But to me menu planning is a budget saver and time saver. I look at my board, I can see if I need to defrost anything, but mostly its okay this is easy no thinking about meals for the rest of the week. I sit Sunday nights and look at the circular, I plan my dinners and lunches around sale items. It saves so much time. The specific board I use I have not seen for sale again, online or at Target where I got it. Which is a shame because its so perfect but any white board or even a piece of paper taped to the fridge works. For this week our plan was Monday- Burgers Tuesday- Eggplant parm Wed-Chicken Milanese Thursday- BLTs Friday- Meatloaf Sat- Dinner date night (girls will have pasta Sun-Chicken roaster I will use the chicken leftovers for at least one more meal the next week and possibly for lunch.