Month: April 2014

Let it Go ~ Parenting 405

Nobody ever tells you about Parenting 405 … they only share with you articles that are so cleverly titled Parenting 101 and the like. My daughter is now 6 and a half [which the half is very important. Do not forget the half!] and I have learned to let a lot go. In her earlier years I had all of the, “What to expect books”, all of the copies of the Parenting Magazine, and several other Parenting 101 paraphernalia.

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Everything about those books is very text book. Do this_this_ and _this and you will have the picture perfect child. My class of Parenting 405 is different. Nowadays, I’m learning to let it go.

 Let go of my plans for the day, because there is nothing like a procrastinating six year old that can jack your plans.

Let go of my pride over the dinner I just made because a little human is making gaging sounds. Apparently she doesn’t like Spaghetti Squash.

Let go of sleeping alone in my bed with my husband(whom we occasionally share with our dogs and two cats) because inevitably around 6 a.m. a little human will snuggle in.

Let go of every insecurity I have because I will gain more every day when I see other mothers parenting more “perfectly than I”

Let go of other peoples “sure fire advice”. Screw that. Every kid is different, and most of the time parenting advice does not magically fix every problem.

Let go of my inability to listen to other peoples sure fire advice, because sometimes it works.

Let go of watching TV at regular times, because the kids might still be up, and the Good Wife is not appropriate for your 6 year old!

Let go of a picture perfect clean home! Sure when we have company our home can be almost model show home clean, but most of the time it is LIVED IN, and by lived in, I mean if you didn’t have kids you would be worried.

Let go of what I am dressed like, or my lack of makeup on most days. Sometimes its a miracle that we made it out of the house!

Let go of judging other parents in the check out lane. You will be in that struggle some day too my friend. Do I even need to explain.

Let go of comparing yourself to “fit mom”. I’m not giving free pass to eat bon bons every night, and never workout, but if you skip your walk/run/workout because your’e too tired… count your blessings that you’re too tired to workout because after all you’re keeping a human alive!

Let go of any preconceived idea of what motherhood and parenthood is. It is not a standard operating procedure its a living, breathing adventure that is never the same for two people, and it can change at the drop of a hat.

Oh I could go on and on.

I’m learning to live in the moment, and cherish every moment. This is a hard hard thing for me as I am an event planner by trade, and every bone in my body screams for a logistics document for life, and motherhood, but there is none. You cannot write it, you cannot plan for it. Motherhood as best as I can describe is like a bull ride. Hang on as long as you can. Fake it ’till you make it! My struggles will never go away. I may learn to handle them differently as I get older, but as I get older my child will get older and enter a new phase in life, and I will have to let that go as well.

I was listening to Focus on Parenting on the way home today, and they were talking about how as a parent, you will never reach a day where you can check off parenting and call it a success. Every day a new challenge will arise, and if it doesn’t, hold on for a few days. I’m learning to let go of what I want,and how I think things will go. Motherhood has shattered my pride.

I’m blessed with the best gifts of motherhood.  The best ones of all….

Love . Happiness . Honesty . Patience . Grace . Humility.

Let It Go! ~ Dinner

Inspired by many of my friends posting tonight about their kids singing “Let It Go” join me on a brand new series titled… “Let It Go”.

Sometimes I have a hard time letting things go…. Over the next several weeks join me on my new series of letting things go. From cooking, to parenting styles, lessons on forgiveness, and spring cleaning!

I am definitely the planning ahead of time type of girl.  I cannot stand anything more than not knowing what I’m going to be doing in a particular day. In fact I found a very nifty app called the Cozi Calendar which has all but changed my life, and you might want to check out if you’re the kind of person who is like me… Everything from school activities to evening activities is completely synchronized between my husband and I’s iPhones. Now there is never the, “You never told me that we had xyz going on tonight…” Seriously, filling in my tasks, and outings in my calendar/planner gives me one of the greatest joys in life. (Moreover I do not argue with you that I am a weirdo.)

For years, I have definitely been the meal planning type of wife and mom. Oftentimes I’m planning  at least a week in advance if not a few weeks and sometimes even a whole month. I would be hardly caught dead ordering fast food for the night, (and I do not judge those of you who do) although the occasional pizza delivery or Chipotle slips, but the truth is, I absolutely LOVE cooking. In my next life I am definitely going to be an executive gourmet chef, or maybe start a food blog… or maybe this will start turning into a food blog!

I’ve never quite understood women who didn’t meal plan and thought to myself, “How did they know what to eat for dinner?”

I love having my dinners for the week written very neatly in my calendar, and on my meal chalkboard next to my stove with hyperlinks to the menus that I am going use for that night.

What is happening though is that generally on Fridays or Saturdays after work I would hit the grocery store with my list of items that I needed to buy for the next week or two. But of course the inevitable happens. Schedules get overloaded, emergencies come up and I’m not having the time to prepare these extravagant meals… So we would either call for pizza or make something completely different using only a quarter or half of the ingredients I had allotted for that particular day.

Thanks to my church I now keep a budget. Like a corporate style budget for my family. While seeing what our actuals were for the month of March I discovered that we spent over $600 on groceries! Yes you read that right… for a family of THREE and that was ONLY groceries! I hang my head in shame. I can tell you we probably did not eat $600 dollars’ worth of groceries…

So… my husband and I decided to alter our plans to be a tad more on the fly! Sure I still have ideas of what I want to make for the week, or the next several days, but instead of shopping for a whole week or month, I now just get what we needed for a particular night or the next couple nights, and then using the left over ingredients up in the next few nights dinners. Plus on the account of the fact that we have so much venison and poultry there is no reason to be spending that much in groceries.

So far we’re already drastically under March’s budget actuals. (Moreover we are only a third through April!) We have a lot less waste, and there is more room for creativity on my part. I have even been throwing together dishes that sound good in my head without following any kind of recipe and its really freeing. Absolutely freeing.

Stay tuned my friends to the series, “Let It Go” over the next few weeks.  What are some of the things you need to let go of? Comment below!

Minnesota – Week 14

{PupDate}

Life with puppy has been going wonderful! I swear this is the most low key dog we’ve ever owned. He is very go with the flow, and very low energy. We just took Niko to our brand new veterinarian today,  for shots and an exam (After a lengthy and thorough search I think we finally found a new and good vet clinic since we’ve dealt with a bit of hell with our old ones)… and things went really good. Niko checked out perfectly. This new vet seems pretty legit. His favorite dog breeds include Pit Bulls, and Rottweilers, so I think he’ll be very comfortable with our Corso. He actually listens to us, and shares some of our same opinions, (read: thinks its ridiculous to neuter dogs at 6 months old due to stunting proper growth development, and can lead to osteosarcoma) and is very affordable so I think we’ll stay with him for a while.

Niko Stats:
11 Weeks
24.6 Pounds
Eats aproximately 3 cups of Large Breed Puppy – Nutrisource three times per day.

Sadie Stats:
2 years, 7 months
20.5 pounds (a wee bit overweight)
Eats just a handful of low fat NutriSourse three times per day. I just bought Just a WEE BIT small breed dog food since the low fat wasn’t doing a THING. Just as people NEED fat to loose fat I’m going to see if the same idea applies to dogs. Currently her food has 9g of fat per serving, and the new food has 18g of fat. Also now that its nicer out I hope to exercise her more.

Niko is becoming more much more playful and alert. Was very sleepy the first week or two we brought him home. Still takes lots of naps, but is awake for about an hour or more at a time now before sleep takes over.

Favorite toys right now are:
* Kips tail (likes to try to play tug of war WITH the cat), slowly getting over that in turn for chasing the cats and asserting his dominance over them.
* Ropes (supervised)
* Licking peanut butter out of Kongs
* Rubber Tug/chew toys
* Likes to play tug (we win every time).

He sleeps in the kennel next to our bed at night, and quiets down fairly quickly without much help. Sleeps from about 11pm-6am, or midnight to 7:00 a.m. He’s right on cue, so I hardly even need an alarm clock. Sometimes he wakes up in the middle of the night, but for the most part, he sleeps about 6-7 hours per night.

During the day he is in the hallway and bathroom (bathroom is puppy proofed) and he has toys , and a rest area. He doesn’t even pout when we leave him there, and isn’t going off the wall bonkers when we get home. Luckily with this wild MN weather Jason has been home many days which is helping out HUGE in the socialization and potty training department. Honestly he hardly ever has an accident. (Quick find some wood for me to knock on!)

Wednesday evenings he goes to puppy playtime to get some socialization with other dogs. He is doing exceptionally well, and although I feel like I’m bragging, he’s doing better than several of his classmates that are older than himself. I’ve told Jason I bet he could do agility once he’s older. We’ll possibly continue on that.

He has been to the groomer officially. Doesn’t love being sprayed with water, but doesn’t mind the drier. I hope he likes the water since we go camping and fishing and are always on the water.

He gets along with Sadie, our Jack Russell Terrier. They love to snuggle together for naps, and romp around during playtime. They both like to gang up on the cats which we’re trying to break them of. They usually go after our torishell Manx Breanna who is more sensitive anyways. They hardly ever go after Kip.

We recently signed up for barkbox.com. Have you ever heard of it? It seems pretty awesome…. Each month you receive a box in the mail filled with new and cool toys like bumi brand and natural dog treats and training treats etc. Its cool because you get new toys, and new treats for about the same cost as you would spend regardless. Plus a part of the proceeds goes towards animal rescue.

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Thats it for now. Stay tuned for another PupDate!

Minnesota – Week 13

Motivation

Its finally April, yet it does still look like late February up here in Minnesota, and its going to get worse before it gets better.

After I’ve realized I am NOT getting to the gym like I used to, I invested in a set of Kettlebells. I found a few videos I like online from Pinterest, and its been going alright. (Okay I’ll be honest.. I’ve used them three times.)

I’ve also just started “running” again which I’ll use that term loosely, because usually I am such a fair weather runner kind of girl. For the most part all of the conditions have to be just right, or this girl aint gettin’ on her running shoes! Sometimes I like to run in wild weather, but mostly I’m picky… and full of excuses. Really I’m an excuse factory.

After a long sabbatical from running completely I’m ready to start again. This time focusing on shorter distances, since I feel this is where my sweet spot really lies. My PR is a 23:00 5K and this year I want to beat it. (I said it, and now I’m scared. I want to take it back, that was 11 years ago….What if I fail?)  I have completely started over doing a couch to 5K program basically, because sadly that’s where I’m at. I think I could run for 3-4 miles straight, but it would be ugly, and my body would feel betrayed for days. So instead I’m taking it slow, and steady, and after I’ve been reconditioned I will really start training!

In addition to the 5Ks, I may possibly do a Sprint Triathlon or two since I absolutely love Tris… but nothing has been set in stone as of now,which is quite fine by me. In order to practice the swimming discipline that would involve going to the gym, and we’ve already covered that. I haven’t signed up for anything yet, and I like the lack of pressure that not being signed up for races brings.

In the past I would sign up for races and say to others that I sign up so, “I will run” and then feel overly pressured into training and agonize over missed runs, and eventually feel like a failure. So I’m not signing up for anything yet. I want to run because I like it, not because I have to for training.

When I need motivation, I usually turn to Pinterest to look at all of the inspirational quotes and pictures. Here are a few of my favorites:

So tell me… how do you stay motivated to lace up your running shoes and hit the pavement? Please drop a line below, and share a thought or two 🙂

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Here’s to lacing up!