I’m the daughter of a writer but my writing has never been exceptional. Whenever I send an email I reread it at least 6 times for fear of missing a grammar mistake or having bad sentence structure. I blogged for a bit when I had a voice lesson website but by “a bit” I mean, like, 2-3 times. I couldn’t find the time and motivation to write about things I thought my voice lesson students would enjoy. So why am I starting this venture again (especially with a newborn!) when I clearly over analyze everything??
There are a few reasons. First, I’d be lying if I didn’t say it was for the potential to make a little extra cash. With five kids and wanting to have them involved in activities, a little help beyond our regular paychecks would be great.
However, that is definitely not the main reason to start this new venture. Google is great for a lot of things; I don’t think parenting advice should necessarily be one of those things. The best advice I’ve ever gotten was from fellow moms that were walking through the trenches right alongside of me.
For example, when my child has an epic meltdown as I’m making lunch, Google is not going to help me through it. Here are some of the top Google results for “what to do when my child has a meltdown”: "9 ways to prevent a meltdown" (um, it already happened. I need help recovering!), "5 critical steps to take when your child has a meltdown", "Why child temper tantrums happen"…
Here are the results you get when you tell a fellow mom your kid just had a meltdown, the top results are: "Sorry, you’ve had a rough morning – can I help?", "My kid spit his food in my face at lunch today so I get it" or "You free Friday for tantrum free coffee?" THESE are the kind of results I want when faced with a tough situation. To know I am not alone is better than any list of reasons why it happened.
So yes, it would be great to make this into a side gig but more importantly it is for moms to know they are not alone.
The thing I’ve learned as a mom so far: Don’t mom alone.
Since I don't want anyone to mom alone, I'd love it if you considered helping in the following ways:
1. Like & Share! If you like what you read, please share it with others you think would, too!
2. Comment! Lets make the comments a positive space for other parents to share their own experiences!
3. Follow on social media! Right now that just means Facebook but I am looking into Instagram, too and would love to connect with people on different walks of their lives as parents.
4. Subscribe! With the birth of baby #5 I wasn't able to do a 1 month-versary email but I'm planning on starting that at the two month mark next month!
And lastly, feel free to email or DM me with any particular topics you'd love to discuss! Thanks for your support and for coming along on this journey ♡
Consider this the second edition of the "Sometimes you're the mom who forgets..." series...you can find the first edition here!
We’ve had a busy week with the addition of our fifth beautiful baby, (more on that soon!) but life keeps moving and with a kid in school, there were some things that slipped. We didn’t get to practice L’s spelling words, – THANK YOU mom for working with her!! – she didn’t get a fruit or vegetable in her lunch and we didn’t even attempt to do the fall fundraiser. Friday morning G had a doctor appointment at 9 so I drove L to school first before heading to the doctor. As we approached the corner of the school parking lot we saw a bunch of parked cars. Most parents just drop off kids at the door so I couldn’t figure out why there were so many cars along the street. And then it hit me.
Muffins with Mom.
The event before school that I told L I would go to, since I couldn’t go last year, was happening at that moment and since we got to school so close to the bell, I couldn’t go in and enjoy it with her.
Needless to say, I felt awful. The look on her face when we realized what was happening and then me telling her I couldn’t go with her was heartbreaking. I held it together well enough to tell her to have a great day and then couldn’t help but tear up as I pulled away. I think it is so important to spend time with each child individually when you have other kids but even more so when you bring a new baby home. It’s usually best though if you actually FOLLOW THROUGH 😭
I beat myself up about this most of the morning but then I realized I could do something about it.
The thing I’ve learned: You are going to forget sometimes. But, you can also make it up to them.
I may not have gotten to the school in time for the official Muffins with Mom but who said you can’t have muffins with mom after school?? After picking L up from her friend’s house after school we headed home…or so she thought. When we got closer to the school L asked what we were doing. I pulled into the school parking lot, parked and told her we were doing muffins with mom. I had bought a 4 pack of muffins at Hy-Vee and we were going to eat them together for our own “muffins with mom” date.
She loved it. It was time just for us, with no phones (besides our picture) and lots of talking about school, art class and how much she loved the cinnamon muffin. As much as I don’t want to miss the next one, I feel confident that, if it were to happen again, I could make it up to her and have it be just as special.
This was not the post I had planned to publish today. It was going to be about some baby products that it took me a while to find or one about how many times my kids seem to end up in the ER.
…but then last night happened.
Days when I work are usually a little bit stressful. I love that I have an opportunity to do what I love, and something I’m pretty good at, but I also take three of the four kids with me for the hour drive (one way) at 6:30 in the morning. The added stress of yesterday though was that I am still trying to get all the things taken care of before my maternity leave starts – which could be any day now!
So, after a busy day of sub prep and teaching, it was time to get the kids and head back home. Here’s what that looked like yesterday:
The thing I’ve learned: These days are hard.
Period. The end. SO many people say, “Oh it’s just a phase. You’ll look back and miss these days.” You know what, I probably will. But when I am in the middle of a nervous breakdown because I cannot seem to get through the day, the LAST thing I need you to tell me is that I am going to somehow regret what I am feeling right now.
THESE. DAYS. ARE. HARD. And there should be no shame in feeling that way.
So yeah, I’ll say it. The best part of yesterday was when everyone got ready for bed. Just because today has been worlds better than yesterday, doesn’t mean I should feel guilty for struggling. Kids are the most difficult and yet the best things I’ve ever been responsible for and not every day is going to be sunshine and rainbows.
Andre pointed out the other day that I have been pregnant for most of our marriage. 5 times in our 8 years of marriage. So when the day comes – soon! – that I will no longer be pregnant, it is going to be an adjustment for both of us!
I have been incredibly fortunate to have had some pretty good pregnancies. Instead of each one making me sicker, with each one the symptoms subsided a bit more. The only symptom - if you want to call it that - that has been consistent is the ever prominent belly that comes with it. And by this 5th pregnancy, my body knows what’s up. At three months pregnant I looked probably closer to 5 months which made hiding the news from students a bit more challenging – especially when you think about me being pregnant 4 times in 5 years with them! Some of them knew pretty early on since they had seen it so many times before.
I’ve come to realize, though, that there are things I will miss about the belly and other things I’m ready to say Bye, Felicia to asap.
Hello season of yoga pants that look like dress pants and oversized sweaters 🙌.
The thing I’ve learned: You can’t. Give up and just accept that you will forever have old macaroni and cheese stuck to your floor.
And when you do find time for that...
Happy kids and messy floors -- you can have both :)
I’ve been pregnant for the better part of 6 years with two different jobs and during different seasons. I can honestly say that I don’t always hate shopping, but what I do not like is spending money on clothing that I will not wear for very long. Especially since I know baby #5 is it for us, I really didn’t want to spend tons of $$ on clothes I would only wear for a few months…well, potentially next summer too if I can’t lose the baby weight which is a pretty strong reality.
When I was pregnant for the first time it was kind of fun to go to Motherhood Maternity and buy the cute things on Zulilly but that faded quickly as the price, as well as my number of kids, added up. I was also surprised at the LACK of maternity sections in Kohl’s and JCPenny. Target has always been, and will most likely stay, my go-to for anything I could ever want/need. Our bond is deep. About a month ago I walked through the maternity sale section and scored a pair of pants for $6.48! Even when they are not on clearance, Target jeans are a super affordable staple for your maternity wardrobe!
I’ve also recently had really good success with maternity clothes form Old Navy! I took advantage of a 40% off sale they had going on a few weeks ago and scored 7 items for around $80! This included 3 pairs of shorts, 2 t-shirts AND 2 dresses including this one, here. I’ve gotten so much use out of them in the last few weeks and know they will continue to hold up through my transition out of pregnancy!
Lastly, although I haven’t ordered from here during this pregnancy yet, 2 babies ago I ordered a few things from H&M that were instant staples in my maternity wardrobe. Their jeans are super comfortable and the shirts were perfect for my growing belly. These below even come in a two pack for $13! Um, yes please!
What is your go-to shop for maternity clothes??
L was born at 12:53am on a Friday after about 13 hours of labor start to finish. We were thrilled and also exhausted as we adjusted to the responsibility of raising a small human. We watched closely as the nurses gave her a bath, practiced nursing until it felt right and quickly became pros of the diapering we would be doing for years to come.
Friday was the most tiring day, as we hadn’t slept since Wednesday night, but then Saturday came and we were feeling better thinking that we would be going home that evening. Much to our surprise, when we spoke to our evening nurse, she mentioned that protocol was staying two nights after the baby was born. Since L was technically born early in the morning, we would need to stay one more night. As much as we so appreciated all of the help we got from the Labor & Delivery Center – every single nurse and doctor we interacted with was amazing! – we were so ready to get out of our room and back to our home. We asked to get discharged first thing in the morning and were home by about 10:00 on Sunday morning.
R was born at 5:43pm and E was at 11:37pm (down to the wire!!) so those stays did not feel nearly as long. And then there was M. My water broke at 11:58pm the day before her due date and she was born at 8:18am on her due date. Along with the complete joy of welcoming another little girl to our family, we dreaded the fact that we would still be in the hospital for two more nights. So we decided to ask to leave early and, since we had been through this a few times before, the nurses and doctors agreed. We watched the purple crying video, stocked up on the hospital diapers, spent one more night in L&D and were home by 11:30am the next day; just over 27 hours after giving birth.
It was so great to be home but we completely neglected the fact that we already had 3 kids, ages 5, 3 and 1, at home and things were not just “back to normal”. I spent the next week struggling with anxiety and guilt about not giving my other kids as much attention (but Andre to the rescue! He spent time with each kid individually during that week and I don’t know how I got so lucky to have him!!). We, of course, ended up finding a new normal but it wasn’t without its challenges.
The thing I’ve learned: Stay the extra day in the hospital! (and seriously, take all of the diapers).
That extra day may not have ended up making a tremendous difference, but hospital staff is there to help you adjust whether this is your first or seventh baby. All experiences are different so take all of the time they give you so you don’t overwhelm yourself and miss out on the amazingness that is getting to know your new baby.
Hi, I'm Rebecca
I’m a wife, mom to 5 kids, former choir teacher, Christian and advice giver? I can honestly say I never expected to be the one giving advice when I so frequently ask for it, but the advice I’ve received is so valuable and must be shared! Here are some of the things I’ve learned so far!