Archive for the ‘Just for Mom’ Category

03/24/10
Amy

(Just for Mom) Mommy-Flowers


mommyflowersAs spring arrives, we often find ourselves being showered with lots of mommy-flowers from our little ones. Somehow, in the grubby little hands of our child, these weeds magically become lavish and priceless bouquets.

Dedicate a small vase for this special variety of flowers. Having a special place to display the gift sends the message to your child that what they offer is precious and it will be a memento that the two of you can always cherish.

02/11/10
Amy

(Just for Mom) Maximum Impact Clothing


I made an interesting self-discovery recently – I spend most of my clothing money on the wrong items! In the past, most of my money has been put towards shirts and sweaters. It is relatively easy for me to find ones that I like and feel good in without spending too much money. In contrast, I find jean-shopping, shoe-shopping, and coat-shopping to be much more time-consuming, overwhelming, and not as exciting.  The result is that I have a closet full of shirts and sweaters that I really love, but I get frustrated when I try to match them with jeans I don’t feel good in, a 10 year old coat, and jogging shoes. feb8

Yet if you think about it, I actually wear those despised items more than any shirt. And in the winter time, that 10 year old coat is what constantly covers the sweater I was so excited about.

So in light of this recent self-discovery, I have changed the way I look at clothes shopping. I now try to focus on purchasing foundational clothing items such as jeans, shoes, and coats, that I love and feel confident in and use those as the building blocks for my wardrobe. The accumulation of those items is a gradual process, but I have already been amazed at the difference it has made.

So what clothing items in your closet frequently put a damper on your otherwise chic ensemble? What clothes do you wear the most but don’t feel good in? That is where you can make the maximum impact on your wardrobe and your confidence.

01/12/10
Amy
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(Just for Mom) Mental Health Day


Sometimes you have one of those weeks. It can be due to a buildup of stress, family issues, a core event (or sequence of events), or even just a teething baby. The cause matters little. What does matter is being aware of your limits. When you’ve reached it, no amount of pushing or “fixing” or analyzing will remedy it. You have simply reached your limit and true productivity ceases.

When that happens, give yourself a mental health day. No expectations, ideals or analyzing. Just be. Relax, do minimal chores, rent a movie, answer only the phone calls that you want to answer and lay to rest whatever you have been thinking about. It will all still be there tomorrow. Today is for you. Your sanity.

When you acknowledge your limits and let yourself rest, you will be stronger tomorrow as a result.

11/21/09
Amy
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(Just for Mom) The Mommy Survival Kit


My husband jokes that our minivan is my over-sized purse. In all honestly, that’s not too far from the truth. Between the french fries under the seats and the stash of toys that constantly take over the space, we could probably effectively live out of the van for a week. Okay, well maybe I’m exaggerating a little, but I have intentionally set up the van to be our home-base away from home. Life happens, especially with kids around, and I want to be prepared.

Enter the “Mommy Survival Kit”. Purchase a soft-sided cooler and filled it with all sorts of items necessary for survival away from home. Most of the items are not things that you will need all the time, but when you do need them, there is no replacement. You can purchase most of your kit contents from the travel-sized product section of Target or Wal-Mart or the dollar store.

mommysurvivalkit

Here are a few ideas for items that you could add to your kit:

Scissors, tape, first aid kit, diapers, wipes, hand sanitizer, nail clippers, umbrella, makeup, calculator, pens, pad of paper, gum/mints, brush, comb, deodorant, mirror, travel toothbrush, sewing kit, tissues, Q-tips, sunscreen, hairspray, lotion, chapstick, stain remover pens, small tools, tape measure, granola bars or other packaged snacks, ziploc bags (various sizes), trash bags, travel games or other small toys, hair clips, etc.

Whether it is bandaging a wound, wrapping a present, touching up your makeup, or applying an emergency coat of deodorant, your Mommy Survival Kit will become your trusty side-kick when you are away from home.

*Tip – They also make great gifts!

11/05/09
Amy
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(Just for Mom) A Simple Haircut


We all go through phases of feeling like we are in a rut with our appearance. We often blame it on our wardrobe, aging, or chocolate.

The reality is that sometimes we just get lost in mothering. There is always somebody with a need that is more urgent or more demanding. But don’t forget about yourself. Time that you take to build energy and confidence within yourself will also spill over into your family.

A fresh haircut is a great place to start. It is a jump-start change that you can make haircutto energize and remind yourself to take care of you. It can motivate you to put time into your appearance again and it is amazing how it can shed new light on your clothes and accessories.

So the next time you feel the urge to overhaul everything related to your appearance, try starting with a simple haircut. Maybe all you need is a little bit of change and a fresh perspective.

10/16/09
Amy
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(Just for Mom) The Daddy Countdown


When Dad goes on a business trip, the days can feel extra long. You don’t get backup and companionship at the end of the day and the kids can get restless.

aug2By forming traditional Dad’s-out-of-town events, you can fill the extra hours as well as give the kids some fun memories and extra time with you. You can let the kids plan dinner or pick the restaurant, cuddle up with a movie night, or have a slumber party in Mom and Dad’s bed. Try to plan one or two extra events or treats each day that you and the kids can look forward to.

Another way to help count down the days, while simultaneously creating a homecoming gift for Dad, is to do a simple craft a day until he comes home. At the beginning of the trip, mark a piece of paper (i.e. Day 1, Day 2, Day 3) for each day that he will be gone. Then let the kids do a simple craft on the corresponding day of the countdown. They can paint, draw, glue, make a collage, color, write a letter, etc. This provides a visual for the child to see the number of days before Dad returns while also providing them with an opportunity to be active in their excitement about his homecoming.

09/04/09
Amy
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(Just for Mom) 5 Minutes


If you haven’t noticed, once you become a mom, most of your time is no longer your own. It isn’t exactly a 9-5 job where you get evenings and weekends off. And especially during certain seasons of your life, true breaks can be hard to come by (not to mention the ability to go to the bathroom in peace).

Getaways, Mom’s Night Out, dates with your husband, or an occasional movie are all significant breaks that provide refreshment to a mother’s soul. For the days and weeks, though, where those breaks are not an option, learn to look for 5 or 10 minute opportunities to be alone. Savor them and let the quiet wash over you. Take a hot shower on the weekend when your husband is able to watch the kids, opt to be the one to return the movie to the store, pick up takeout, or simply go get the mail.

Realize the value in a few quiet moments alone and just breathe.

08/26/09
Amy

(Just for Mom) Manicure


nails

Your hands give life to your family. They feed, brush away tears, gently guide, fix broken toys, write love notes, pay the bills, put bows in hair and band-aides on cut knees. In the flurry of taking care of others, our hands so often get neglected.

Take care of them this week and give yourself a manicure. You will give new life to this life-giving asset.

08/19/09
Amy

(Just for Mom) Social Networking….at the Park


may28When you are in a new town or a new phase of life, it can take a while to build a social network for yourself. And sometimes it is hard to simply know where to start. Options can feel abundant yet limited at the same time.

There is something magical about motherhood, though. You have an instant connection with other moms simply because you have both borne children. Maybe it is the leftover macaroni and cheese that you both have stuck in your hair, the mutual lack of sleep, or maybe it is how we see the same passionate love for our children reflected in the eyes of the other mother. Whatever the reason, potential connections now abound.

If you are feeling lonely or just having a bad day, pack your kids up and head to the park. Push your kids on the swings, help them on the climbing wall, watch them go down the slide or try their hand at the monkey bars. And chat with the other moms that are there. Some days you may make a lasting connection with another mom and other days it may just be a simple conversation in which you laugh about some of your kids’ antics. Whatever the case, the simple fellowship with another mom can help refresh your spirit…..and you had to go no further than the monkey bars.

08/05/09
Amy

(Just for Mom) Bedtime Mix-up


pjsIt has been one of those days.  Meltdowns, whining, sibling quarrels. The kids’ bedtimes can’t come soon enough, but it isn’t even dinnertime yet.

There are a lot of benefits to bedtime routines, but some days mixing things up a little can be enough of a distraction to reset the mood. So the next time you are faced with one of these evenings, try doing bathtime and putting on pajamas before dinner. This calms the mood a little and avoids the need for doing bedtime prep when everyone is the most tired. It also sets the tone for doing low-key evening activities like cuddling up with some books, playtime in the bedrooms, or even watching a bit of TV.

A little bedtime mix-up just might be what everyone needs.