Helicopter Moms and Backseat Drivers

#MommaMonday

Helicopter Moms and Backseat Drivers

Confession: I started out as a helicopter mom.

Wait, I still am one.

Strike all of that.  I am a recovering / still kinda-sorta helicopter mom.

Allow me to explain…

This will shock most of you.  But, my three year old (youngest of my two girls) has never been to Publix…

I know.  Pick your jaw up off the floor.  It’s insane.  I get it.

Well, she went for the first time two weeks ago…and things did NOT go well.

And, let me just say, I really began to think that maybe I was correct in keeping her tucked away at home, shielded from all of the dangers of the world in that moment.

Ok, ok, ok.  Here’s what happened.

We only had 5 minutes to grab three items.  You know the drill…whip ’em out of those car seats and dart in and out of the grocery store faster than the Flash…

Except for when that doesn’t work out.

We get inside and I get a buggy.  Kids say: “NO BUGGY, MOMMY!”

They wanna walk like big girls (imagine an eyeroll emoji here)… This would end up being our demise, people!!!

So, my little ones start meandering alongside me.  As we head down an empty aisle, my youngest decides to bolt for it.

She got up to top speed, turned her head to look at something on the shelves and NAILED that silly buggy I grabbed (FOR THREE ITEMS…I mean if only I could’ve just ditched that thing) and blood started gushing everywhere.

We’re talking crime scene blood.

I mean, paramedics should be required in the future to study this case.

We’re talking NEED LOTS OF MOPS ON AISLE SEVEN, PEOPLE!!

Ironically, we were on the paper towel aisle, and I couldn’t even grab one because I had to get this kid outta there and to the hospital.

Instead of doing the smart thing and dabbing her with a paper towel to assess the bleeding, I buried her head in my chest and bolted for the door.

After the three minute drive to our house, a soak in the tub, more hydrogen peroxide than is probably pediatrician approved, a bandaid or two and gobs of TLC, my baby returned to normal.

She survived.

Heck.  We ALL survived.

And this crazy story  led me to several epiphanies.  But only one that I’m sharing today:

Being a helicopter mom doesn’t always pay off…

In fact, it’s like being a backseat driver.  Those folks mean well, I’m sure.  But, doesn’t it really just annoy the driver?  Like, to the point that they just want to slam their foot on the gas pedal and drive off an embankment somewhere?

Well, I think that’s what my little one may have been trying to subconsciously tell me that day.

All those years of stowing her away like Rapunzel were silly.

All those incessant talks about how to walk in a grocery store, where to walk, when to walk, what to do while walking were all in vain until I let her experience it on her own.

As Mommas, it is so tempting to wrap our babies in bubble wrap and play with them like fragile little dolls.

But just like a back seat driver, we are really just exerting that extra ounce of control that we are so desperately clinging on to…

Ouch.  I said it.

That’s me to a tee.

This “Let Go and Let God” thing is coming slowly for me when it comes to my kids…anyone else?

I’m not suggesting that we throw our kids in the street and wait to see what happens.

But, I am suggesting that after we’ve given them instruction, let’s do our best to stand back and let them be.

They are going to make mistakes.

They may even run into buggies going 100 miles per hour, nail their forehead and gush blood everywhere.

But, that’s all a part of learning.

For them.

And for us, too…

 Do you have an epic helicopter mom moment?  Please share in the comments!

Please subscribe to our Monday newsletter for weekly tips, recipes and encouragement! 🙂

Parmesan Crusted Cod with Fluffy Cranberry Couscous

#TipTuesday

Parmesan Crusted Cod with Fluffy Cranberry Couscous

I know, I know.  The sound of cous cous is SO not my style…

I’m a very “dump it, mix it and serve it”/ comfort food kinda girl.

But, I have to say, cous cous ain’t half bad, folks…

Sharing another one of the recipes from my H ello Fresh finds with y’all today… with my twists, of course 😉

Who knew that couscous could be so yummy?!?  Heck, I didn’t even know how to properly pronounce “couscous” until a Friends episode way back in the day…anyone with me on this one?

So, now that I know how to cook it, I’m kinda fond of it.  It has a very interesting texture.  Throw in some cranberries and mix it up extra fluffy…Y-U-M-M-Y!!  Enjoy!

You will need:

2 cod filets

1/2 cup shredded parmesan

1 cup panko breadcrumbs

1 bag of couscous

1 roma tomato

8 ounces of Brussels sprouts

1 lemon

1/4 ounces of parsley

Vegetable stock concentrate

1 ounce of dried cranberries

Olive oil

2 tablespoons of butter

Salt and pepper to taste

Dish Deets:

Prep Time: 10-15 minutes

Cook Time: 35 minutes

Feeds: 2 adults

Directions:

(1) Preheat oven to 425.

(2) Wash your produce and trim Brussels sprouts.   Half them lengthwise.  Cut the roma tomato into wedges.  Line a baking sheet with a piece of aluminum foil.  Toss the Brussels sprouts and tomato wedges liberally with olive oil, salt and pepper.  Cook for 20 – 25 minutes or until the tomatoes are soft and the Brussels sprouts are hard.

TIP: If you cook the Brussels sprouts with the cut side on the baking sheet, they will come out much more crisp!

(3) Bring 1 cup of water and 1 tablespoon stock concentrate to a boil.  Once the water is boiling, stir in the couscous and add the cranberries.  Place the lid on the pot and remove from heat.  Set aside.

(4) In a small bowl, mix together the parmesan cheese, panko bread crumbs and a large drizzle of olive oil.

(5) Brush each piece of fish with a layer of olive oil and then cover with a thin layer of the parmesan / panko mixture.

(6) Place the fish on a baking sheet and bake for 10-12 minutes, or until the fish is white throughout and beginning to flake.

(7) Finely chop the parsley to garnish the couscous and add to the finishing sauce for the fish.

(8) Cut lemon into 2 halves.  Juice one half of the lemon.

(9) Melt the butter in a small pan over medium heat and add half of the lemon juice.  Stir in half the parsley, salt and pepper.

(10) To plate, fluff the couscous and add a large helping to each dish.  This is the texture you are looking for with the couscous:

Finally, place a piece of fish on each plate and sprinkle the finishing sauce over top each one.  Place a large helping of roasted veggies on plate as well.  Serve and enjoy!

What are you fixin’ in your kitchen this week?  Please share in the comments!

Please subscribe to our Monday newsletter for weekly tips, recipes and encouragement! 🙂

Beach Vibes

#WardrobeWednesday

Beach Vibes

Tassel Tunic: HERE

I’ve raved about this look before, but today I had to lay out the deets for y’all.

This coverup tunic is super affordable from Forver21 and it even comes with a matching clutch!!

I love that it is so colorful, because it will coordinate with so much more that way!

Hat: HERE; Sunnies: HERE

How amazing is that?

Now, you can head down to the beach in style and not have to worry about giving up your style factor in the process…

Plus, I added this hat and matching sunnies to coordinate with these fun finds.

One thing I love about this coverup is that it feels covered up, while still fun and flirty.

The long sleeves are great for those chilly sea breezes and they help with preventing those unwanted sunburns, too 😉

Now, when I need to leave the pool and head to grab a little ‘rita or a bucket of guac, I will feel much more comfortable, rather than lettin’ it all hang out…

You feel me, ladies?!?

NOTE: As always, sharing fashion inspiration with y’all is super fun, but please remember most importantly, that true beauty is found within : “[T]he Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.” 1 Samuel 16:7b

What pieces are you playing around with in your closet this week?

What is your go-to coverup?  Please share in the comments!

Please subscribe to our Monday newsletter for weekly tips, recipes and encouragement! 🙂

#EpicFails to Embracing His Grace

#ThoughtfulThursday

#EpicFails to Embracing His Grace

It’s the dog days of summer, friends.

That sun sure is hot and the days sure are long…

This past weekend was a real doozie.   One of those periods of time in life that you spend hours trying to forget…

To spare you all the depressing minute details, I’ll keep the story short… We returned home from a quick jaunt to the beach to find that our home was actually hotter than outside…

And. that. is. HHHOOOTTT.

With temperatures pushing the eighties early Saturday morning we were sweatin’ it to say the least.  A kind service man arrived at our home and quickly got to work on our fritzy AC unit.

Needing to escape our current reality, I whisked the babies outside where we began the arduous process of filling an inflatable swimming pool to have a little fun in the sun.  One by one, we took our buckets to the water spicket, filled them and feebly drug them back to the pool.

Soon after we had finished filling our little oasis in the sun, my husband appeared and said, “Babe, if you had just used the water hose, you could’ve filled this up in no time, without all the trips back and forth.”

#EpicFail.

Then, it hit me.  I didn’t need an AC unit.  I didn’t need a water hose.  I needed CHRIST!  And I needed Him RIGHT THEN!

So often in life we engage in behavior like I did with my girls this weekend.  We feebly approach God with little buckets and ask Him to fill us up and then we retreat.  We go for what we need and then leave Him in the dust.  It’s as if He just serves as our Godly gas pump and He’s only good when we need to filler’ up.

The truth is, if we would invest, truly invest, in our relationship with Christ – If we would allow Him to serve as Lord of our Life, our faith tanks would always be full.  He would provide divine answers to our worries, game-plans for troubles, unfailing love, undeserved grace and indescribable hope.

“Now unto Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever!  Amen”  Ephesians 3:20-21

As Christians, we have access to the entire ocean of Christ’s love.  Let’s drop our dinky buckets in the sand and run into the sea of spiritual goodness afforded to us right now!

I trust that we will eventually figure out a plan for replacing our AC unit.

I believe that our children will not remember the daunting weekend we just endured.

And I have confidence in all of this because we have God.

And He’s all we need.

Praying you run towards the ocean of Christ’s goodness even now.  Pull out your comfy beach chair and stay a while.  He’s all we need, friends.

Have you had any #epicfails that led you straight to Christ? Please share in the comments!

Please subscribe to our Monday newsletter for weekly recipes, tips and encouragement! 🙂

Fab FriYAY Five

#FabFriYAYFive

Fab FriYAY Five is a weekly listing of my five favorite products, verses, quotes, crafts or ideas of the week – hope you will discover some new favorite items, too!

(1) Wilton Armetale Skillet Just in case you find cooking in fancy things fun, too…

 Taco / Fajita Tuesday just got a whole lot prettier up in here!

Photo: Bed, Bath and Beyond

(2) 2 in 1 Beach Blanket and Wading Pool Mommas – if you have not tried the kiddie pool on the beach trick, then PLEASE try it out ASAP.

I have been dragging down a massive blow up kiddie pool to the beach, but not anymore!  I am buying this thing and making my life a whole lot easier.

It even comes with its own carrying case!

Photo: Amazon

(3) Taco Rack Who else loves to throw a fiesta about once a week…?!?  Anyone?

Well, we happen to love tacos, guac, just about anything fiesta-ish in our household, so Taco Tuesday is a time honored tradition.

After many years of making tacos weekly, I have finally found the perfect way to serve these bad boys with ease!  Now my kids can simply pick them up and head to the table, rather than having to wait for me to pile the good stuff on and watching it flop on their plates.

Side note, you can also apparently use these on the grill…SCORE!

Photo of rack: Bed, Bath and Beyond

(4) Tervis Tumbler Water Bottle If I haven’t convinced you by now, please for the love of everything good, check out a Tervis Tumbler.  They now have a water bottle version and I may have jumped up and down when I saw it.

These are the only cups I have found that keep my drink cold (or warm, depending on the beverage and the preferred temp) and they do NOT sweat!

Plus, I’m pretty sure they come with a lifetime warranty, which is unbeatable!

Photo of tumblers: Bed, Bath and Beyond

(5) Indoor / Outdoor Rug Loved the fun summery colors on this one and had to share!  Price is decent and the colors are just divine!

Photo: Bed, Bath and Beyond

NOTE: I do not receive any form of commission or affiliate revenue from any of my product endorsements.  These are simply just products I really love and thought you may love them, too!

What were some of your favorite products this week? Please share in the comments!

Please sign up for our Monday newsletter to receive weekly tips, recipes and encouragement! 🙂

Target Time with Tots

#MommaMonday

Target Time with Tots

Who else is counting down the days ’til school starts?

Anyone…?

[Insert awkward smile face emoji here…]

Well, we are pretty pumped about it over at our house.  But, so far this summer we haven’t been prepping much for the big day…

I mean, if you count all the motor skills we’ve been improving upon at the splash pads, every playground in town, the zoo, and playdates with friends…well, then we’re rocking out.

All joking aside, we are so excited to start school.  I have fond memories of my favorite past time ever: back to school supply shopping.  I used to spend hours in the aisles at Wal-Mart selecting the perfect binders.  Oh!  And pencil cases were super fun to pick out, too.

Sorry.  Daydreaming about ball point pens and notepads

Ok.  I’m back.

As a mom to toddlers, we aren’t really into the school supply obsession yet.  But, as we were sauntering through the dollar spot, as we do weekly, we discovered some super fun (and educational…SCORE!) school supplies to pass the time until we’re required to remain seated in our chairs all day…

I decided to share my top 5 faves with you today!

Each item you see here is under $ 5 and most of them only $ 1!!!

Check these out and head to your local Target to snag them for yourself today!

These workbooks are only $ 1 each!!!  They have workbooks for every age range and are color coordinated so you don’t get the wrong age range!

Alphabet Magnets!  I bought these just because my girls loved the bright colors.  But once we got home, we came up with a game.  I scattered the letter magnets all over a blanket in front of my girls.  Then, on our easel, I would write a letter from the alphabet.  The girls took turns finding the matching letter in their magnets and then bringing it to stick on the easel!  SO fun!

HOW CUTE are these $ 3 chore charts?!?  I love that they are dry erase, so that chores can change over time.  AND, there are magnetic stars to place as rewards for each day rather than messy stickers!!  These are a must for young children to start learning responsibility.  I may even get one for myself…and my husband …. honey-do lists have never been cuter.  Am I right, ladies?!?  😉

My girls are just now asking about money, tithing and all things expenses.  We have read our Berenstain Bears allowance book one too many times, I think…

Anyways, when I found these felt money purses, I threw it in the buggy without hesitation!  I LOVE that these are made of felt rather than that flimsy paper that inevitably gets lost, torn or discarded within 4 minutes of you opening it up!

Plus, this little set includes coins as well!  It’s only $ 3, and the fun, bright colors just sends it over the edge of being a must have.

This little game has quickly become a fave at our house.

All you need is some clothespins to make this a 30 minute time saver.  Yes, please!!

Ask your children to clasp each clothespin on the lowercase letter of the larger one printed at the top of each card. OR you could totally DIY this in no time at home.  Love this!!

So, like us, if you are bored of the rainy days and the constant schedule filling, head to Target and spend an afternoon walking up and down the dollar spot aisles.  I promise you will have a ball and you never know what you might find…

With a month left, what are you doing to “fill the time” for your kids?  Please share in the comments!

Please subscribe to our Monday newsletter for weekly tips, recipes and encouragement! 🙂

Veggie Baked Chicken

#TipTuesday

Veggie Baked Chicken

I mentioned to you guys a while back that I was trying out H ello Fresh.  And it has not disappointed!

The fresh ingredients are so delicious and I was pleasantly surprised with how easy the recipes are.

Today’s chicken dish is one of those recipes…with my tweaks, of course 😉  Enjoy!

You will need:

2 chicken breasts

1/2 cup of parmesan cheese

12 ounces of Yukon gold potatoes (the little yellow ones)

1 zucchini

6 ounces of green beans

1 lemon

2 teaspoons of olive oil

1 tablespoon of butter

Salt and pepper to taste

Dish Deets:

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15-25 minutes

Feeds: 2 adults

Directions:

(1) Preheat oven to 400.

(2) Quarter, then dice the potatoes evenly.  Trim stems off of green beans.  Toss liberally in olive oil and place potatoes and green beans on a large baking sheet lined with aluminum foil.  Sprinkle salt and pepper to taste.  Cook in the oven for 20-25 minutes, or until potatoes are tender and green beans are cooked throughout.

TIP: Toss midway through for even cooking.

(3) While the potatoes and green beans are cooking, grate zucchini on a box grater.  Make sure to place zucchini shreds in a bowl and squeeze out as much water as possible.  Season generously with salt and pepper, then set aside.

(4) Mix parmesan and zucchini shreds in a medium bowl.  Add a little drizzle of olive oil to make a paste-like mixture.

(5) Place chicken breasts on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil.  Brush a drizzle of olive oil on each chicken breast.  Coat each breast with a thick layer of the zucchini / parmesan mixture.  Bake in the oven until cooked through.  This is the consistency of the zucchini / parmesan mixture you are looking for:

(6) At the very end of the chicken cooking, heat the broiler to high to crisp the zucchini / parmesan mixture BUT make sure not to let it burn.  You are just looking for that golden brown crisp.

(7) To plate, place large spoonfuls of potatoes and green beans on each plate.  Cut the lemon into wedges and squeeze a little lemon over top.  Serve and enjoy!

Even my tiniest diner was crazy for her veggie baked chicken!!

This is an excellent way to sneak more of those awesome veggies into the diets of your little ones!

I sometimes serve my kids their dinner on “big people” plates so that they feel like it is a special occasion.

Do whatever works for your kiddos!

What have you been fixin’ in your kitchen this week?  Please share in the comments!

Please subscribe to our Monday newsletter for weekly tips, recipes and encouragement! 🙂

Grace and Gumption

#ThoughtfulThursday

Grace and Gumption

It was raining the day we buried her.

It was storming in my heart.

In my life she had been so important,

she played such a significant part…

As we stood on the hill next to my grandmother’s resting place, John Croyle – founder of the Big Oak Ranch, charged us with a simple message: With every action you take, leave a legacy.

This past week, one of my grandmother’s legacies turned 59 years old.

As a single mom, with no prior business experience, my grandmother ran a trucking company.

And that trucking company is now celebrating its 59th year of business.

Yes.  A woman wearing high heels ran a trucking company in the 60s.  People always find that shocking.  And I love it.

The question I get asked the most is “How did she do it?!”

I feel honored that I actually know the answer to that question, because I interviewed her for a school project years before.

So, from one aspiring #BossLady to another, I am going to share the 7 tips my grandmother gave me for being successful in any aspect of life:

(1) Serve Others

We must look at our positions in life, whatever they may be, as opportunities and privileges to serve others.

Rather than looking at someone to ask what he / she can do for us, we must ask what we can do for them.

Let’s take those extra five minutes to sit and ask someone how they are doing.  And really listen

Let’s send cards to everyone.  Acknowledge milestones…even the tiniest of victories.  Because something that may seem insignificant to us, may be the highlight of that individual’s whole year.

Thank everyone in your life for doing life with you.  Our tribes are all we have.  Nurture them.  Love them.  Serve them.

Each of us rise by lifting others.  A rising tide lifts all boats…

Rise, shine and lift someone up today!

(2) Embody Humility

One of our family mottos is: “You are not better than anyone, but no one is better than you.”

I love that quote, because it reminds you of the worth you have in Christ, but humbles you when you remember your place in this life.

Christ is the only One worthy of our praise.  It’s our job to exalt Him and point others to Him.

Humility is so significant that the Bible even promises riches, honor and life as a reward for it! :

“The reward for humility and fear of the Lord is riches and honor and life.” Proverbs 22:4

(3) Honesty is the Only Policy

H.I.S. = Honesty, Integrity, Service.

My family chose this acronym as the slogan for the trucking company to reinforce our motivations.

First, HIS = Christ.  The company as a whole and all its members are Christ’s.  He is our Leader and we offer up everything to Him.

Second, and it’s no mistake that this term is used first in the acronym (even though it has to by nature…ha!) is Honesty.

It’s often said that honesty and communication are the two bedrocks for formation of any relationship.

In a world where “fake news” has become a buzz word, let’s make it our mission to be the ladies who lead with honesty.

(4) Be a Forever Student

Whether you have 5 degrees or none, all of us are in a constant state of learning.

We can learn something from every experience in life.

Spend idle time reading.  Take a cooking class.  Travel as often as you can.

Soak up and savor simple moments.

Most importantly, let’s be teachable.  And, in turn, be willing to teach others…

(5) Prepare for Inevitable Failures and Learn from Them

In case you have not yet failed in life, I hate to be the bearer of bad news…but it will happen.

And that’s ok…because those failures are jumping off points for lessons and future successes.

Rather than wallowing in these moments, let’s take that time to recharge and seek God’s plan for our lives.

Those of you who have failed are probably thinking, oh wow, easier said than done.

I agree 100 %.  Full disclosure: My husband and I are currently walking through one of those moments where we feel helpless and confused.  We have to make the decision of where our children will go to school, where to live, where to work, etc. and we feel like all of these questions are hitting us simultaneously.  Stress level around here = off the charts, friends.

The answers to life’s questions aren’t always spelled out easily for us. But we are trusting that God will use this time in our lives to help others down the road.  No, it is NOT easy.  But, it is God’s way of reminding us, sometimes painfully so, that He is always with us.

Which leads me to the next point…

(6) Let Go and Let God

Stay close to God always in all ways.

As a person who loves to feel in control, it wasn’t until I was forced to relinquish it that God reminded me He is the only one in control.

When we walk on His path rather than our own, we will find that path much less tumultuous…

And even when twists and turns pop up, God will be there guiding our way.

(7) Set an Example by Leading with Grace and Gumption

In a world full of Kardashians, graceful ladies are becoming, well, scarce to say the least.  But grace is not just about our appearances…

Grace is much more about how we treat one another.

Do we lend a hand when others are in need?

Do we compliment rather than judge?

Do we lift others up no matter what consequence that has on our own successes?

Do we pave the way for others to follow in our footsteps and then extend a hand back to help others up?

Grace and gumption require more these days, but the legacy left is worth everything.

We can still make a positive impact on this world.  It begins in each of us.

My grandmother may not have been able to see the fruits of her legacy at the 59th Anniversary, but I pray her nuggets of wisdom I’ve shared today will help you bolster the framework for building your own…

Do you know someone who has grace and gumption? Please share in the comments!

Please sign up for our Monday newsletter to receive weekly tips, recipes and encouragement! 🙂

Fab FriYAY Five

#FabFriYAYFive

Fab FriYAY Five is a weekly listing of my five favorite products, verses, quotes, crafts or ideas of the week – hope you will discover some new favorite items, too!

(1) New Fave Sandals – Ladies…you are NEVER going to guess where I bought these beauties…

Guess.  No, seriously.  Just guess….

Drumroll please, I got these at CRACKER BARREL!!!  No joke, I bought these Jack Rogers-look alikes at our family breakfast at Cracker Barrel on the 4th of July of all days!

They are under $20 AND in the month of July they are running a BOGO on shoes!!  Get there and have some pancakes while you’re at it…because they are the GOAT (Greatest of all time ;))

(2) Ocean Spray Mocktails – Who doesn’t love to feel like it’s 5 o’clock all day long?!?  Well…now you can!

Ocean Spray has introduced their new Mocktails line and I am seriously impressed.

The flavors are delicious and make you feel like you’re enjoying a flirty, fun beverage any time of the day.

Individual Photos: Ocean Spray

(3) My New Planner – It wasn’t until last week that I realized they designed a whole line of planners to begin in July.  I know.  Where HAVE I BEEN?!?

Anyways, I found my newest obsession…my Design My Day Planner from Target.

If you are looking for a slim-lined (yet, very detailed), tabbed, and super cute planner, Target has got you covered.

With monthly spreads and detailed daily spreads, this is one of the best I’ve seen.  Especially at it’s price point of $ 9.99!!

(4) Cheap Legos – If your children are as obsessed with Legos as mine, you’ve gotta check out the Target dollar spot for the best blocks since the real thing.

I love these even more (sorry Legos…) because they fit together better and they come in so many vibrant colors!!

(5) Most Chic Barbies of All Time – Ummm.  Chanel called and they want their models back.

I have never seen a Barbie that better represented my personal style, so I snagged these faster than the peeps waiting in line on the day after Thanksgiving!

We’re talking a boucle coat, belted waist and pearls!!  Plus, love the glasses as well.  Way to go, Barbie!  Less Kardashian and more Boss Lady.  I’m loving the new design!

 

NOTE: I do not receive any form of commission or affiliate revenue from any of my product endorsements.  These are simply just products I really love and thought you may love them, too!

What were some of your favorite products this week? Please share in the comments!

Please sign up for our Monday newsletter to receive weekly tips, recipes and encouragement! 🙂

Parties and Rent to Princess Tents

#MommaMonday

Parties and Rent to Princess Tents

Over the weekend, my hubby and I chatted as I trimmed sun-dress shapes out of a piece of watermelon for my kids’ lunches.

Yes, you read that right…

And since we found that activity weird, too, we decided to list all the ways life changes after giving birth to little ones…

Mornings of sleeping in and enjoying a casual breakfast have turned into fire-alarm-esque warning bells that the day has begun and you’re already 20 minutes late to the party.

Breakfast does not consist of healthy yogurt parfaits accompanied by those delicious Starbucks lattes anymore.  HA!  Yeah right.  Now, we’re lucky if we manage to cram a Nutri Gran bar down our throats while driving 15 miles over the speed limit to make it to carpool line on time.

Laundry has become a game of “where did she find this?”; “how did she manage to come back with the entire playground in her shorts?!?” and my all-time favorite: “poop or chocolate?!?”

My closet has become my safe zone rather than my land of pretty things.  I’m safe … and alone… in there, right?!

Speaking of being alone, my restroom rituals have turned into a one woman stage show…with all eyes on me.  It’s almost like my little ones expect a singing, acting and dance show worthy of a short stint on Broadway.  Anyone else like to potty alone?  Could someone share this concept with my kids…?!?

Forget about hosting a Southern Living approved get together unless you block out childcare for three days prior. Let’s get real, they probably need to be gone for the whole week to make it doable…

What about those fun nights out with hubby and friends?  Drinks til 10 or 11…which now sounds like an out of control college rave…have turned into hot toddies and zonked out by 9:30.

And you know what?

 I would not change one thing.

Because now my mornings consist of extra snuggles and slobbery kisses.

My breakfasts contain roaring laughter and frequent giggle fits.

The surprises in the laundry basket aren’t always horrifying and mystifying…sometimes I find tiny hidden stuffed animals reminding me of what a precious stage my babies are in.

One day I’ll miss all those snuggle bunnies in the bathroom.  Well, “miss” is a strong word…I will reflect on those moments fondly as I revel in my return to freedom.

Southern Living can save my cover spread for another day.  I’d much rather be reading those bedtime stories than polishing that silly silver anyway…

As far as a night out, I sneak one of those in as often as I can.  But, nights at home suit me just fine these days.

And I bet you’d agree…after 8 pm, of course 😉

Friends, there are going to be moments when we pull our hair out and scream into pillows.

But, those moments won’t last.

Because joy comes in the morning.

Bright and early, accompanied by those precious smiling faces.

And I know that because God tells me so:

“For everything there is a season, and a time for every purpose under heaven.” Ecclesiastes 3:1

So, if y’all don’t mind, I’m gonna get back to the real party…

Yep, the one happenin’ all up in that Princess Tent over there.

What…or whom… can you pause from pulling your hair out this morning and thank God for bringing into your life?

Please share in the comments!

Please subscribe to our Monday newsletter for weekly tips, recipes and encouragement! 🙂