How I battle Mom Guilt

I think most moms struggle with that little feeling of guilt. Some may feel it when they are working, others while they are working out, or maybe when you are treating yourself to a girls night … or just when sitting in your car before going in. Ya know, its just so quiet in the car, you’re alone, so peaceful, and you know that as soon as you walk in the door the chaos is gonna hit you upside the head. I don’t think “Mom Guilt” is a totally bad thing. I think it can be used a tool in our lives, like a measuring stick instead of a bat that we use to beat ourselves up.

Here are somethings I tend to beat myself up about:

My temper = Mom Guilt

The baseball bat tells me no other mom loses their temper. All the other moms are sweet and well spoken.

Time away from my kids = Mom Guilt

The baseball bat reminds me that in order for me to leave them I have to ask someone else to step in. And this means “inconveniencing” my friends and family, and failing my kids.

My phone = Mom Guilt

Here the baseball bat tells me that other kids are better, smarter, and funnier than mine. Along with the fact that I can easily just swipe right out of reality on any of these social platforms and forget about needing to make dinner.

So obviously the baseball bat is not my friend. It does not build me up. It does not help me. The bat hurts me, and it actually makes me a worse mom, and a lesser version of myself.

If I were to take a measuring stick to these areas of guilt instead I would get this…

My Temper: I know for a fact other moms lose their tempers. I know that I am working on mine…Thanks counseling! I know that I am quick to ask for forgiveness and that my kids often don’t even remember the last time I yelled…I mean asked them to clean their ever loving rooms.

Time Away from my kids: This one is tough for me. I really do hate asking others to step in and watch my kids but you know what?! Jesse and I just got back from a trip yesterday and the kids were gone with friends all weekend and they had the best time. I don’t think they missed us at all! And the best part was the hugs, smiles and kisses we got when we picked them up. Also, the fact that Jesse and I got 3 nights away was magical!

My phone: So I know that I am on it too much. In fact just last night Zeke totally called me out. We finished a movie and I immediately grabbed it, he noticed and said just that. So this is me measuring the fact that, yes, I am on it too much and need to make some changes.

So friends, lets put down our bats and take a step back. We cannot be the best versions of ourselves if we are bloodied and bruised. We can, however, step back and measure ourselves not against one another but measuring ourselves against the moms we want to be. No shame, no guilt just trying everyday to press on and be the best for those we love!

Being alone with this guy helps me to refocus so I can be better for him, me and the three we left at home!

Books I ALWAYS recommend

I get asked a lot for book recommendations, and it’s probably one of my favorite questions to answer and give out! So I thought I would tell y’all a list of the ones I always recommend. Sometimes I give based on what I’ve recently read and loved, but for the most part, I start with these few books…

Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers– This is my all time favorite book in the entire world. I read it when I was a senior in high school and again when Titus was maybe a year old. I don’t love reading books twice because I have a long list of books I want to read. so I don’t want to spend time reading something I’ve already read. This book is my exception to that. This book so well written, a beautiful period piece and love story.

I am a firm believer that everything Francine writes is gold! I loved the Mark of The Lion series (3 books) and Marta’s Legacy (a 2 book series) and really anything else. You can’t go wrong.

Love Does by Bob Goff– I am almost certain that no one tells a story quite like Bob. He’s funny, adventurous and he used to set up office on Tom Sawyer island at DisneyLand. He’s a man that I truly believe is teaching generations to come what love looks like. In Love Does he writes about his journey to faith, his family, his career, and so much more. I cannot say enough good things about this book! He has a new book coming out in April and I CANNOT WAIT!!

Kisses From Katie by Katie Davis– Now her name is Katie Davis Majors and I feel like I mention this book in almost every blog, but to me this was a game changer. I love her story, I love her heart and I love that it was shared in this way! I just finished her latest book Daring to Hope and it was great too. But honestly I don’t know that anything she writes will ever compare in my heart to her first book.

Switching gears a bit…

On the Island by Tracey Garvis Graves– This book is captivating! I read it all in one day and it was just GOOD! It’s got some romance but not R rated or anything, and it’s a sweet love story. I think it would be the best beach read, or great for traveling.

I’ve read just about everything Tracey Garvis Graves has put out, and they are all good. Some are definitely a little saucier, but all great reads.

What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty– I read this book while on a vacation with my cousin. It is so funny because we both read it, and we both LOVED it, but we also saw the ending very differently. I couldn’t fathom the idea of losing my memory, but that last thing she remembers is that she was pregnant at the gym happily married, and the next thing she knows she has a 10 year old and in the middle of a divorce. The book walks through how much our lives can change in ten years and that alone was phenomenal!

I haven’t read everything Liane has written and while I LOVED Big Little Lies, she has another one that I just couldn’t get into, so I set it down.

Harry Potter by J.K Rowling- I would be a lying liar if i didn’t add these books to this list! I didn’t read Potter until I was about 28, and I don’t even have the words to express! The magical world that J.K Rowling created is beautiful. Her books are much more than the magic within the pages but speak of love, hope, discrimination, light and dark….all of it! It’s just pure magic. ALSO if you are not an avid reader but want to read the books, these are the best audiobooks I’ve ever heard.

I think I’ll end there. I do have some more, but I don’t want to bore you. Let me know what you love and if you’d like some kid suggestions I can do that too!!

My little reader. He is so much like me. Loves to read and devours series! I love that we have this shared interest!

Happy New Year 2018

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!

I cannot wait to see what 2018 and the Lord have in store for me, my family and here on my little corner of the internet! I have some big goals and a road map in place to get me there, now I need to be brave enough to take the necessary steps.

2017 was a fun year in our house:

Jesse and I went skydiving for my birthday

We went to Disneyland for spring break and got to visit our California family

Tent Camped and the quickly upgraded our tent to “Poppy” Pop-Up Camper

I went to RISE with my Cousin Melissa, and saw my hero Rachel Hollis

Got a matching tattoo with Melissa

Jesse and I ran away to Disney World ALONE

Zoe got Sister Locs and all my hair woes are now GONE

My sister Michelle visited before moving to Germany

DISNEY WORLD as a family, where we basically moved there

Visited the Wizarding World of Harry Potter with the kids!

Loved all things Summer: swimming, Schlitterbahn, TBARMcamps, beach trip, and lake trip

I started blogging more

We hung out with friends, and really dove into our community

We dated more and communicated better

Built furniture and rearranged our house

Wore matching Christmas Jammies

And rested like it was our J-O-B

So here are some of my resolutions, goals, oh I don’t know what to call them but here is what I am striving for in 2018:

Do my 5 minute journal EVERYDAY

Drink more water than coffee

Read my Bible daily

Write more

Be Present with my fam = less time scrolling on my phone

Slow to anger and Quick to Love

To work out because I am ABLE to move my body and because I enjoy it

I find that having something to narrow your focus, to hone in on improving yourself, you need a very specific idea. No fluff around it or extra stuff to get caught up in. This year I picked a word that I could focus on. A single word that will help me remember who I want to be and where I want 2018 so lead me. My word for the year is COURAGE. I want to stop worrying about what others think of me and that takes Courage. I want to speak to women and share what the Lord has done and that takes Courage. I want to love my kids and husband with all that I am even when I feel like I have nothing left to give, and for me, you guessed it takes Courage. So this year that’s what I’ll be focusing on being brave, and courageous!

What about you? What are your goals? Do you have a word? Or a focus? I want to hear it! Let’s keep each other accountable this year!