Moms: Your Free Time is Yours. Do What You Love. (you’ll be a better mom – promise)

moms free time

Inside: Do you ever feel pressured to use your free time as a mom doing things you don’t love? Then, you need to read this.

“Make cookies, please, mama?” pleaded my two year old for the second time that week.

The horrible scraping sound of kids pushing stools across the kitchen floor.  The awful anticipation of kids surrounding me on all sides.

The stress of keeping three kids from dumping ingredients into the bowl unbidden, trying to remember whose turn was last so each kid got a chance to help.

I started hyperventilating just thinking about it.

So I pacified my son with a few chocolate chips and a murmured promise of making cookies at some later (unspecified) date.

And I tried to stop feeling guilty.

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9 Tips You Need to Prepare for a Successful VBAC (from a mom who’s had three)

tips to prepare for a successful vbac

Inside: Want to know how to prepare for a successful VBAC from a mom who’s been there? Get realistic tips from a mom who’s had three.

When I found out I was pregnant for the third time (my second pregnancy ended in a missed miscarriage), I knew right away that I wanted to attempt a VBAC (Vaginal Birth after C-Section).

I absolutely did not want a doctor telling me how many babies I could or couldn’t have.

As confident as I was in my decision, attempting a VBAC was scary and unfamiliar territory for me, and I didn’t want the medical-sounding, “hospital-approved” facts and advice from doctors who had never experienced a VBAC.

What I wanted most at that moment was more realistic and personal advice from fellow moms on how to prepare for a successful VBAC.

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A VBAC Delivery: Should You Attempt It and What You Need to Consider (from a mom who’s had 3)

VBAC delivery, should I attempt a VBAC delivery

Inside: If you have had a c-section and want to have more kids, you’re probably asking, “Should I attempt a VBAC delivery?” Get one perspective on VBACs from mom of four kids who has had not just one successful VBAC delivery, but three.

We have four beautiful children. But when our first child’s delivery ended up as an emergency c-section, I asked the same question you may also be asking: “Should I attempt a VBAC delivery?” 

As I sit here typing away with my two-year-old asleep in my arms, I think, “Had it not been for my VBAC delivery more than six years ago, you might never have been born.”

I remember the day I decided with certainty to attempt a VBAC delivery, like it was yesterday.

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Yep, Your Kids Watch Too Much TV, and That’s O.K.

Inside: Why your kids watch too much TV, and why you need to stop feeling guilty.

Your human alarm clock tiptoes into your room just after six o’clock (in the morning). Bleary-eyed, you try to pull it together, but the baby woke up five times last night.

Not going to happen.

You mumble something unintelligible. The only word that gets through is “TV”. She runs out of the room excitedly, and you roll over.

You’re dead to the world until the baby next to your stirs and starts to cry. The sound of PBS hits your ears, and your eyes fly open.

Glancing at the clock, you realize to your horror that the kids watched far more TV than you intended. You planned on using a show later that day to take a shower and maybe read for ten minutes in peace and quiet.

The day has barely even started, and you already feel like a failure.  

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The Question We Need to Ask Our Daughters (and why we’re afraid to)

question to ask our daughters

Like many other stay at home moms today, I went to college. I went to college, and I’m still paying for those degrees I’m not really using (and I’m not sure I ever will).

As I watch that loan payment deduct from our bank account month after month, I sometimes question my choices. I wonder how I might have chosen differently had I known that I wanted to be a mom, and a stay at home, homeschooling mom at that.

You see, that wasn’t the plan.

In high school, when I was touring colleges and picking degrees, I wasn’t planning on getting married at 21 or having a baby at 23 or having four kids by now. If you have told me then that this is where I would be fifteen years later, I would have laughed in your face! Motherhood was not even a thought. In fact, I shunned the idea altogether and imagined having kids later in life.

And now I have a daughter.

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7 Things Every Mom Needs this School Year

solutions for stress free school year for moms

It’s that time of year again: the time of year when all the moms are scouring the web for ideas on how this school year can be as smooth and stress-free as possible.

Whether you are homeschooling or sending your kids to school, all moms face similar challenges: what’s for dinner every night (before your family asks), how to keep up with the laundry, staying organized. Having solutions to these problems ready to go before school starts will make your school year so much easier!

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Fighting Stay at Home Mom Depression

stay at home depression
Inside: Stay at home mom depression is very real, but it’s rarely talked about. Here’s one simple way to fight it.

Being a stay at home mom is amazing. It’s also incredibly challenging, exhausting, and just really, really hard sometimes.

The good days outweigh the bad for the most part. Most of the stay-at-home moms I know are so thankful for the privilege to do something that not everyone can, especially since it seems more and more moms are trying to find a way to stay home, too.

Most of the time, a good night’s sleep can cure anything…except when it can’t.

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How to Make Mom Friends (when you’re tired of trying)

how to make mom friends

When your first child is born, it’s fairly easy to make mom friends. There are groups designed just for that: like the ones your local hospital or community center coordinates for new moms. You check the birthday range set for each group, pick one, and enjoy regularly attending an event that you didn’t have to lift a finger to initiate, plan, or host.

Connection is easy, nearly effortless, right? You just had a baby; they just had a baby. The topics for conversation are endless!

Birth stories. Baby sleep. Swaddling techniques. Your choices are endless and fairly safe (unless you’re in a group that happened to attract moms who want to duke it out over breast versus bottle or schedules versus attachment).

Making mom friends was never easier. Fast forward five years to when it’s anything BUT easy. 

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18 Frugal Living Tips I’m Skipping Right Now (because I’m just too tired)

frugal living tips, frugal living ideas, how to be frugal

Inside: Pinterest is chock-full of frugal living tips, but when you’re a tired mom, sometimes you just need to know it’s o.k. to skip a few.

Frugal living bloggers love to write articles like “15 Things Frugal People Don’t Pay For”. Before I had this many kids, I loved reading them, too.

I really enjoyed seeing how other people saved money by living frugally. I saw every tip as a personal challenge, and back then, I had the energy to tackle them.

Then I had another kid who just won’t sleep through the night (yes, ANOTHER – why me?!). Then, I was just too tired to do the extra frugal living stuff. 

I could barely keep my eyes open, let alone hang my clothes to dry. I could barely move them from the washer to the dryer on time, for heaven’s sake.

For tired moms struggling just to keep up with the dishes and the laundry with a baby that doesn’t sleep, a lot of those frugal living tips spell two things they just don’t have: time and energy. The thought of adding ten more things to your to-do list just to save a few pennies makes you want to cry, literally.

And that’s why I’m writing this: to tell you to give yourself a break, if only for a little while.

You don’t have to do it all, not right now.

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8 Tips for Surviving Sickness in a Big Family (When Mom Gets Sick)

when mom gets sick, sickness in a big family

Inside: Sickness in a big family is not fun, especially when mom gets sick, too. Get 8 tips for surviving until it passes!

Surviving sickness in a big family is no joke, especially when mom gets sick, too. I read a blog post once claiming that once you hit kid number three, the germs can make their way through every family member, cycle back and start again!

Is it true? I’m not sure, but I do know that if you have more than three kids and sickness hits, you’re surely in for a long week (make that weeks).

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