This is the place for moms In The Making, who smile with the messes, embrace the unexpected, and know that every day is a blessing.

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Life Through The Eyes of a Child

Are you kids ever jealous? Not of other kids or toys, but of your relationship with your husband?

life through the eyes of a child

There is a whole new perspective we can learn on life if we look at things through the eyes of a child.

I always thought it was odd that my son would fuss and wiggle his way in anytime my husband would give me a hug or try to sit next to me on the couch. It was funny… he didn’t want to share his mama. Sometime he would even push my husband away. Not to say that he doesn’t love his dad… he just didn’t like papa monopolizing mama’s attention.

See his grumpy face!

Then walking out the door for work the other day my husband commented on something. “Charlie sees us leave together every morning…” (We only have one car and both work, so we leave together each morning)

Charles and I together

For all he knows we are just going and having fun without him all day. Little does he know that we are simply driving off to work. When he sees us come through the door at night he’s thinking, “Dad you’ve had her all day… now its my turn!”

I have to sympathize with the little guy! He’s thinking he’s being left out while in reality every moment of our day outside work is spent with him… We rarely even go out on a date without him because I don’t want him left any more than necessary.

Do you ever stop and think about why your kids act a certain way? No, it may not be logical to you as an adult… But what is their kid logic behind how they are acting?

Close up of Charlie's face

Can you share a story about a time when you were surprised by how your kid was thinking of a situation? Can’t wait to hear! I love your comments.

Monday, April 28, 2014

A New Way to Clean - Success!

Does the task of cleaning often overtake you? It absolutely does for me, so I invented a New Way to Clean. You can read about the initial idea here.

Basically I decided that I would rather have 12 super intense weekends a year… than have it looming over me constantly.

Listen To This Podcast Episode

Rules for A Super Clean Weekend

  1. No Smiles, No Fun… These are cleaning weekends!

  2. Easy meals. Aka order pizza

  3. Wake up early - Before the birds

  4. Lots and lots of coffee

Our ideas for the project were a hybrid of The House That Cleans Itself and personal thoughts on not taking too long on any particular area.

For weekend number two we decided to tackle two main areas, my son’s clothes and the livingroom.

We started by describing the problem areas are and writing down ways to solve them.

Issues we discovered:

  1. Charlie out grew the Brilliant Baby Clothes Organizer, so instead of perfectly organized clothes, we had a giant heaping mess.

    While perusing Walmart, I discovered wonderful treasure chests.

    These were the perfect size to organize his much larger big boy clothes.

    • Chest #1 All Shirts

    • Chest #2 Pants and Shorts

    • Chest #3 Onesies, PJs, and Socks

    • Chest#4 Random - Suits, Bowties, Sweatsuits, and everything else that doesn’t have a place in the above.

  2. We have way too many toys. I already struggled emotionally with the question of wondering Am I A Bad Mom If I Throw Out Toys? Your support was awesome knowing I can put a few things away.

The Treasure Chest worked so great, I decided to carry the idea over for my toys.

Are you feeling inspired for your house yet? My house is looking better than ever, and I know yours can too!

If these ideas weren’t your cup of tea, maybe you can help me figure out how to clean like this :)

Truly, do you have ideas for keeping your house clean? I love your comments!

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Stuck Trying To Lose Weight?

Are you drowning in quick sand? Ok not literally… but does the difficulty of losing weight seem to drag you down?

A depressing fact that we often forget about is what worked in the past may not still work now.

Listen To This Podcast Episode

This can come in two ways for us:

  1. The things we did that helped us lose weight or stay in shape before no longer have the same effect.

  2. The things we were doing before still work, but we don’t have the time, energy or mental capacity for them.

A great first step in losing weight is answering the following questions:

  1. Do your previous weight loss, workout techniques and routines no longer work?

  2. Are you no longer doing the things that worked in the past?

I realized that I know how to lose weight. I know what it takes to be skinny… But if those things are true why is it such an impossible task?

The challenges of losing weight have been milling around in my head for several weeks now. I’ve lost a lot of weight since having my son a year ago… And although I’ve lost all my baby weight… I can’t seem to get back to my pre-marriage weight (It's like the freshman 15 except with marriage).

I started to think about the differences from my life back then until now. I used to go jogging. I rarely ate processed food… everyday I had a wonderful salad and lots of fruit. I had an abundance of sleep. I took plenty of naps.

Now I am constantly lacking sleep… even if I get a great night's sleep it was still interrupted multiple times for nursing. I rarely have an opportunity to nap. My lack of sleep is compensated for with plenty of coke and frappuccinos. I am constantly eating on the go… (think more processed food). Because I’m nursing, I’m hungry all the time… but working full time, I often only have access to snacks.

picture of Theresa sleeping

Finally the most important factor: drum roll please… my will. I am tired now… I am using the fight in me to keep going each day. Be patient even when I’m sleep deprived. Change poops… when I’m rushing out the door. Love my son even after he pinches or bites me.

Before my will was ready… I had plenty of emotional energy to put into eating great foods and working out. My will wasn’t exhausted… so although it was hard I had the umph to say yes to working out.

In Charles Duhig’s book The Power of Habit he talks about how when we have to constantly use our will power we are tired and have a tougher time embracing challenges by the end of the day.

I will lose weight! I know I can do this! But I need a new approach.

I wish I had the perfect solution on How to Lose Weight Quickly. I don’t… I’ve had some ideas that worked in 10 Ways to Lose Baby Weight. Or at least the feeling of skinny… with Skinny or at Least the Jeans.

I had problem #2. My weight loss/workout things do work. I’m just no longer doing them. But the solution was a bit more complicated...

My goal for my new approach: How can I make it less of a struggle? I’m too worn down by the end of the day. Can I move my work out earlier? Can I find some easy healthy snacks to bring along to work? How can my husband help with my son so I can steal away a few moments for working out?

It is a process… I’m not going to wake up as the mini version of me tomorrow… but, can I be a small step closer? I hope so!

How do you stay in shape while balancing a baby filled life?

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

In Search of Perfect Hair

Look in the mirror
Check out your hair

Is it quite bedazzled
Or just rather bare

Do spunk and alive 
Exude from you face

Or simply blah
That’s tough to erase

Is simple and safe 
What we always do 

Take the leap now! 
And try something new

Surprises hold mystery
Magic and grace

If you hate it 
More will grow back in its place

This moment may be 
Long overdue

Awaiting is cute,
Adorable you

Listen To This Podcast Episode

Do you love your haircut? How did you come to your decision in choosing a style?

Even if you have the perfect hair, bad styling can keep it hidden. My hair looks beautiful when it's down… Yet I am constantly rushing around… and I don’t like it hanging in my face. So, I end up with it all pulled back in a pony… That’s alright, but it is not like I’m taking advantage of having long, beautiful hair.

It took a lot of courage to bust out and try a new style without the safety net of pulling it back in a pony or sock bun. I couldn’t be happier, I feel like I lost 20 lbs.

If you are concerned about trying a new style, find a stylist that will work with you. In addition to having my haircut I had her write me a list of weapons I need to purchase to control this new beast. Then I went back the next day to have her style it for me and teach me her ways.

I am happy to say I was able to style it myself with her tips and instruction and it looked as good as when she did it.

Tips for having the perfect hair:

  1. Be bold. Don’t be afraid to try something new. Your favorite haircut may be just around the corner.

  2. Find a stylist who understands you. I went in hopelessly without a plan. I explained my twofold problem of not wanting the same old thing. I really wanted a bold haircut stacked in the back… but I was concerned about not knowing how to make it look right. We decided on a swing bob, with the thought I could always go more extreme once I learned how to style short hair.

  3. Buy actual beauty supplies… I tend to always be saving money, so I’ll buy a cheap curling iron doesn’t really work. This time I went to Sally’s… and asked what straightener to get. It was $47 on sale… I almost had a stroke! For a second I contemplated skipping the whole thing, but I already had the haircut so I went for it. It is amazing… using it I was able to get that “perfect hair” look. All this time perfect hair was only $47 away :)

  4. Take the time to learn. I love reading Kate’s hair advice… yet I found after a year, I never actually watched any of her hair tutorials. My problem was that I was alway reading the blog at times when I couldn’t watch a video. I spent about 40 minutes watching videos that I specifically thought would help with my new style. It may have been the most valuable 40 minutes I’ve ever spent on my hair.

  5. It isn’t magical. As much as I wish the Jettson’s were true that you could just wake up and your shower would do your hair for you… it does take time.

  6. Speaking of #5… What will it take to give yourself the time to spend on hair? I needed to get up a little earlier. Yet, I hate morning… So I found listening to the Frozen Soundtrack made things a little easier.

If all else fails pull a Jane Jettson…

How do you stay happy with your hair?

Monday, April 21, 2014

It Takes Two to be a Mommy

It takes two to make a mommy. 

It is a simple fact, Grandma’s have immeasurable wisdom! While talking with my grandma recently about my blog I got to receive one of those pieces of wisdom.

She commented on how while she loved all the pictures of me and my son… it takes two to make a mommy. She missed seeing my husband in the pictures.

That got me to thinking. There can’t be a Mom in the Making without papa. Reading and enjoying mommy blogs is awesome! I can  savor and enjoy mommy son moments, plus receive and share encouragement with other mothers about the joys and struggles that come during this time in our lives.

Both my boys in peaceful sleep!

But without papa this all goes away. Natalie, The Busy Budgeting Mama did a cute example on her about page when she said first come love, then comes marriage… then she shows her kiddos. It was a cute play on the song.

Before I ever had the joy of being a Mom in the Making… I was a wife :) This is so important to remember. As a mom my days and nights become so full with nursing, diapers, story time etc it is a great joy, but our fun as a couple gets lost.

Recently, we moved up the little man’s bedtime so we can spend time together without him. It has been wonderful… whether we’re playing Monopoly Deal (a quick card game version of monopoly), or laughing together watching a show. It is fun having some us time… not just always being mommy and papa.

And the more time we spend together as a couple the better parents we are!

How do you find time to be a wife?

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Dance to your Alarm Clock

Beep Beep Beep! Your alarm is sounding… like a rooster at dawn announcing that morning has arrived. What is your reaction?

#1 Finding a brick to crush your alarm clock

#2 Burying your head deep under the pillows hoping it will stop


#3 Bounding up and starting to dance!

When we don’t enough sleep somehow morning seems to lack that magical flavor. But do we let that define how we begin our day?

I think we can learn from the joy and innocence of a child on how our day should begin. Each morning when my alarm goes off and I scramble for option #1 a brick to crush my clock yet my little son jumps up and begins to dance!

He likes the music that my phone plays as an alarm. He is excited to start another day. He will smile and try to “talk to me” wondering all the while why I am not joining in his morning dance.

We each have so much to be grateful for as every new day begins. Even if we’re not ready for a dance each morning, let us try remember the joy of a child and begin knowing the day in front of us is a gift.

Do you begin your mornings with dance?

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Striking down Stress

Do you ever feel like you’re having a really bad day?

I still remember this particular day... it was bad from the moment my alarm went off. Stress at working, running late, Little Charlie was on a nursing strike… which then made him incredibly cranky for the babysitter… My head felt like it was going to explode!

Only it didn’t stop with that feeling… As the afternoon progressed my forehead started to hurt… and a volcano started to erupt on my face! Just what I needed for a bad day was a giant zit screaming look at me!!

(Ok, I guess it wasn’t that bad…) But it reminded me of how much our bodies reflect our attitude. I was stressed so lunch was a wash and instead of consuming some healthy options, I enjoyed a variety pack of candy bars after returning from the office ranging from crunch, crunch crisp, twizzlers…

Pumping in chocolate at that rate no wonder my face was exploding! My only consolation was that I did move my water jug closer so I drank a small ocean.

Stress isn’t leaving, so finding a good way to move forward with it is very necessary. Even though I made a few poor choices with the candy bars, I moved towards a better goal as I dove into my water bottle.

The day’s not over till we fall into bed, so get back up smile that’s what I said!

How do you handle stressful days?

Monday, April 14, 2014

How to Change Diapers While Traveling

Do you think changing diapers while traveling is a nightmare? 

How do you find a livable solution? 

I found I never really used public restroom changing stations...I always find them gross Instead I am always changing Charlie on the seat or my car or looking for a small patch of grass. Don’t worry I've learned from my mistakes on changing diapers in a car.

I also don’t use the diaper changing pad... you lay it on a gross surface so you’re not putting your kid on it sure, but then you take all those germs and put them in your diaper bag.

If I’m not changing him in the car, or outside on the grass... I have decided to use a blanket so I can wash it once I’m done!

How do you change diapers while traveling?

Thursday, April 10, 2014

5 Things I learned while Nursing

Were you able to nurse your baby? 

I am incredibly blessed that I was... but it wasn't without a rocky start or lots of struggles along the way. 

What was your experience? As the sad time for weening has come, I wanted to reflect back. 

Things learned while Nursing. 

#1 It is possible to work full time and nurse... without bottles. You can master Nursing Faster Than Pumping.

#2 Nursing is a miracle. One bonus if you struggle to begin nursing is that you will have an incredible appreciation of its beauty. 

#3 When problems arise with nursing, the solutions can come in unlikely places like the grocery isle.  

#4 Nursing is an Adventure... Both for you and your baby. My son used to think he should go running while I nursed. 

#5 Don't give up when biting starts. It does get better. 

What did you learn while trying to nurse your baby?

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Does your House Scare you?

Landry's piling up 
Ahh what will I wear

Food inside the fridge
Is growing like a bear

Bills left on the counter
Start to pile high

Stress is overwhelming
Reaching to the sky

Sure I can fix
If it is just one thing

But all of it together
My ears begin to ring

Things never happen
With space to spare

But come like an avalanche
I start to despair

What can I change
If I only have today

Tomorrow I’ll begin again
Its the mommy way

Do you ever find yourself trying to do everything? I know I'm guilty of this all the time. 

Jon Acuff recently had an amazing tweet.
I'm still pondering this question.

What do you need to cut out to have a peaceful and joyful life?

Monday, April 7, 2014

Is it too Early for Sunscren

I hate sunscreen! But I burn like crazy! 

I know summer isn’t hear yet… but can you tell I’m getting ancy. I recently found my favorite sunhat and couldn't help but take a few fun pictures.

I feel like a I spent my life being told to wear sunscreen to avoid skin cancer… yet now everyone seems against it because sunscreen = poison!! All I know is that if I am out in the sun without a sun hat or sun screen I turn out looking like a fried red tomato! (not nearly as nice as fried green tomatoes)

So I enjoy floppy sun hats, the shade, and the poison of sunscreen while in the sun…

How do you keep from being burned?

Friday, April 4, 2014

Why Mom's Crash

Yes, yes I can do
Sure I’m on my way

Anything to help a friend
No matter night or day

Making meals, hanging out
Lending a kind ear

Doing projects, cakes and crafts
Of course that’s why I’m here

What is sleep, who needs it
If I stay up all night

I grab a coffee, espress beans
That will make it right

When does my saying yes
Start to mean no

For the things I really love
My dreams are a no go

This is really hard for me
I think no is bad

I want to be super mom
Missing things is sad

But when I see my sanity
and life slipping away

I have to cut a few things out
to make it day to day

Where do you draw the line
‘tween craziness and fun

So you have those golden moments
To spend with your son

I love being involved in everything! Spending time with family, friends, going for walks or writing for my blog. There is only one tiny problem... my house, bills, and the 'boring' things in life suddenly pile up so I can no longer do the things I love.

I've been enjoying Crystal Paine's book Say Goodbye to Survival Mode, she talks about why is it sometimes good to say. Check out more about that on my podcast episode Setting Goals, Great Books, and Much More!

How do you balance things in your life?

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Why do we Second Guess our Looks

When do we learn to second guess our looks? 

Last week I was talking about How to Avoid Fake Smiles… As I flipped through the our photo shoot I really enjoyed looking at my son. Everyone of his photos was great.

#1 He’s a little kid so he couldn’t look bad if he tried.

But secondly he had no reason to look funny. He was just excited to be playing outside after a long winter spell. Running through the hills while the wind whipped around him, nothing could make him frown.

When do we learn to think twice about how we look in photos? Now I agree, some photo do just catch you at a bad moment like when you’re shovin’ a cupcake in your face (but truly did it look that nice in real life).

As moms we need to strive to be confident in our looks. Sure my pictures inspired me to lay off the m&ms and start running. But eating junk food is a choice that I make, complaining about how I look as a result is never productive.

We are an example to our children, our friends, and other moms. When we complain about how we look it doesn’t only hurt us, but make others feel bad too. (I think our natural reaction when we hear someone complains about a photo is “if they think they look bad I must really look bad!”)

I believe half the reason kids look so great in photos is they don’t know any other way to look. They haven't learned to be squeamish and muster fake smiles.

Let’s learn from them and celebrate life and with authentic joy and smiles in all our photos. (I can't reveal the good photos from that day yet because I'm redoing my about page...coming soon!)

How do you avoid second guessing how you look?