Sunday, May 30, 2010

Living the Dream

I've always known I wanted to be a stay-at-home mom. I struggled through career and personal planning classes in high school because "mom" didn't make the career list and nothing else appealed to me like being a mother did. Of course, when you dream up your life long purpose it's always in the most ideal form... Being a mother definitely has it's ups and downs and it's not always the way I pictured it, but I still feel as though I'm living my dream. I love my boys with all my heart (maybe more!) and I am privileged to be at home with them each day. It's not for every mom, and for those of you mothers who juggle a job outside the home in addition to all of life's other demands I applaud you... It takes a very strong and selfless person to be able to do all that you do in a single day. I worked 20 hrs a week from home after my mat leave with Nate and that was exhausting!

In our day and age, though, it's tricky financially to make it work living off of one income. No matter what your spouse does for a living, it always seems to be tight. I suppose we have our previous "lives" to compare it to, when we were both working full-time and had dispensable income. As of July I'll be done my mat leave with Cody and it was really stressing me out. I shouldn't have been stressed because all my life (especially my adult life, when there seems to be more at stake) God has never failed me and ALWAYS provides what we need. So I did up our budget and figured out exactly what we needed, and started to pray about it. Usually something like "God, we need this and I can't even imagine how we'll get it, but I know you can take care of it." And God, as always, blew me away. A few weeks into this constantly weighing on me, I got a call from Monte's mom. A doctor in her office was looking for part-time childcare for her 2 1/2 year old daughter, starting in June. And it would pay the EXACT amount we needed. So I've started looking after this little girl a few mornings a week to ease into this new schedule, and to get her comfortable with being in our home. I hope that she and Nate will become good friends, and that she will one day drive by our house to show someone she loves where she spent a good portion of her childhood, with fond memories. Sure, it's a lot of work, but I'm at home with our boys where I want to be. And I get to be a part of another kid's childhood. I am truly thankful for the way God answers prayers.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Healthy Choices

Ever since I went from having a job that kept me on my feet 8 hours a day to sitting at a desk 8 hours a day, weight loss has constantly been a goal of mine. But it's not easy, especially as you get older and your metabolism slows down. I've never been a fan of diets, and don't feel they work for long-term success, so over the past couple of years I've been trying to make some permanent healthy changes in my lifestyle. In the last few weeks, I've especially made an effort to eat better: using whole wheat flour instead of white as much as possible, adding in ground flax to baking, and making whole wheat pasta and brown rice at dinner. Last week I made cookies from a recipe I found on a website called Whole Grain Gourmet, which exchanged olive oil for butter and honey for sugar. They turned out pretty good, for a healthy cookie! And earlier this week I made quinoa for the first time, which is high in protein, fibre and calcium (among other things). It was also tasty which is great because I'm always looking for ways to get more protein, and in a grain no less! The down side to making healthier meals and snacks is that the three year old at the table prefers the old stuff, and mealtimes - which were already frustrating - are even more drawn out and dramatic.

I'm also trying to be more intentional about excerising daily. I've always been on my feet since having kids, but it's totally different than getting your heartrate up for a good 20 minutes. Now that we have a dog I really enjoy going for walks, usually by myself once Monte gets home from work. It's amazing how getting some fresh air and exercise puts a new perspective on your day. I love my walks with Bailey; I spend the time thinking and praying and it's just the perfect change of pace for me.