7 Things Confident Moms Do Everyday

29
Jun
2017

First things first, just because this blog is called, “The Confident Mom,” does not mean I am a Confident Mom or the expert.   However, over my 24 years of mothering I do feel I have learned some great lessons that will help me succeed in being the best version of myself each and every day.

Does it mean I am perfect – NO!

Does it mean I have it all together – NO!

But it does mean that I have some ideas and beliefs about myself which can help me overcome challenges, especially when our world wants to bring us down in so many ways.

Motherhood is important and is valued in my eyes.  It is valued in God’s eyes and we need to appreciate the importance of our job in that role.

So how can you make a shift to help you on your journey to becoming a Confident Mom?  Let’s chat….

Seek His Word

Nearly every morning I take time to pray, read a devotional and allow God to speak to me. This is critical for  bringing real truth into my mind.  If I don’t fill my mind with His word and truth, the world will fill it with garbage.

Self Care

You have to put yourself in your day for care somewhere!!  I am in a season where I am forgetting this gem – and I have to fit it in my day.  Knowing how my soul is refreshed so I can give back to my family is important.  But I also have to make the time to have that happen.

Check Expectations

Thinking you can clean your whole house, cook a five course dinner, run car pool, bake cookies for the school open house and do three crafts with your kids in a day is not reality.  Understanding that you can prioritize what needs to be done and not be Supermom is reality.  Take a look at your expectations for the day – are they realistic?

Find Support

Do you have a support system of friends and family that you can draw from?  We all need to have someone to talk to and reach out to.  If you do not have this…. pray on how you can create one of your own.  I am in a season of this and it helps a lot, having someone to reach out to.

Give Grace

Not only do you give grace to your kids and family – but most importantly to you!  Realizing you are not perfect and will have days where things just do not go as planned are okay and expected!

Believe in YOU

You must know that the decisions you make for you and your family are the right ones for you.  Period.  You will constantly receive judgement from others, but when you know you are doing the best for you and your family, you can find relief in that judgement and let it roll off your back.

Smile & Laugh

Yes, even when the chips are not in your court, you take time to smile and pull up your boot straps!  There is nothing better than having a big belly laugh instead of bawling (but yes, bawling at times is unavoidable, and that is okay!) but when you can shift your energy and those around you by laughing at an unforeseen issue, it definitely changes the atmosphere!

What can you incorporate in your day?

Hope for a Weary Mom: 6 Tips to Overcome

27
Feb
2017

Hope for a Weary Mom: 6 Tips to Overcome

Exhausted, overwhelmed, and numb. Any of those feelings hit close to home?

Last week I shared with you all about my season of loneliness (a topic we never want to discuss or admit). But I am here to see. I am surviving and pulling up my bootstraps and pushing into a new season of expectation.  

Yes, I’m expecting amazing things!

So, what do you do in the meantime during that transition of feeling worn out and weary? Whether it’s a season of loneliness, toddlers running you ragged, or a season of health challenges, maybe you can implement a few tips I am currently using to give myself grace.

Batch Cook

Oh my word. This is a life saver for me right now. To be honest, there are days I don’t want to cook and am worn out physically and emotionally. So I am thankful that when I make a batch of soup or a casserole, I have been doubling my recipe and making sure I have ingredients on hand and freezing a batch. I can grab something in the freezer and dinner is taken care of.  

Rest

This is a hard one for me, and I rarely ever just relax. But times are changing and my body needs time to recharge. Our emotional health is important and will impact our physical health. Finding time to sit, listen to music, and nap. Yes, I said NAP! Snuggling up with a warm blanket and a book is nourishment for your soul.

Let the Guilt Go

I have let my house get a bit chaotic for my own liking the past few months. One reason is I know we are moving, but the second reason was because I was exhausted. I have done the minimum and, you know what, we all survived! I have changed my perspective and chosen to use that time to relax instead of get all upset because I should have ran the vacuum. Find a balance that fits your season for right now.

Play with Kinetic Sand

Yes, this one is a bit odd, but putting aside our “normal” means doing some things NOT normal! For me, it was sitting down and doing Kinetic Sand (one of my son’s favorite activities). I am so not about the play, but when you are needing to change things up a bit, drawing, coloring, or using your hands in mundane activities can be really good! We have had quite the collection of sand, toys, and imaginary play.

Get Outside

I have said this one before (many times), but I know it can be work in the middle of winter. Whether you deal with snow, freezing temperatures, or lots of rain like I do, it is not always easy to just get yourself outside. But do it anyway. Especially when it’s not easy. I can often make excuses to stay indoors for days on end and it will feed my exhaustion and overwhelm. Seeing the inside four walls of my home day after day will exhaust my spirit. Getting outside I am reminded of God’s goodness and His caring for what is around me. I love the fresh air and my body needs the activity for sure.

Get Yourself Some Flowers

Yes, get yourself some fresh flowers to brighten your space. My favorite flowers are tulips and they can bring a smile to my face in an instant. You don’t have to spend a lot, but grab yourself a bunch of daisies, tulips, or maybe a potted primrose and brighten your space up!

What is your tip for seasons of weary motherhood?

8 Tips for Organizing and Managing Your Family

13
Feb
2017

8 Tips for Organizing and Managing Your Family

I’ve been doing this “mom” gig now for almost 25 years, so I feel that I have gained some “secrets” to keeping my home organized and running smoothly. I realize many of us didn’t learn these things at home. Homemaking and motherhood are not “classes taught in school”. But they are learned in the home. Many of us didn’t observe, or didn’t have role models that provided a great learning environment.

I know I receive many emails from moms asking for ways to simply their days and get more organized. This post is for you! Basic steps that can have HUGE pay-off!

#1: Have ONE Family Calendar

This transformed our lives, especially with having older kids who do not live at home. I use an electronic calendar so it’s synced from anywhere. We use i-Cal now, but we have used Cozi in the past, as well as paper. It doesn’t matter which you choose, but picking one and stinking with it for all appointments and activities is key. If you choose paper, like the one Master Family Calendar that you print from the Supplemental Pack, make sure you post it so everyone can see it!

#2: Quick Pick Up

Before going to bed, be sure the kitchen is clean! This one task is really helpful for ending your day well and setting the scene for morning. It’s refreshing to wake up in a clean kitchen – especially when grabbing my coffee!

#3: Have a Housekeeping System

I have this one down now! After years of experimenting, I need to have big tasks broken down into smaller ones. I don’t have one specific day a week to clean, so I created the Confident Mom Weekly Household Planner. It breaks down tasks for cleaning every room in your house and a few other areas too. This system has kept my sanity!

#4: Delegate

I have shared this secret for years – but even I don’t use it as often as I should. Kids are amazing with tasks like emptying the silverware from the dishwasher, folding towels, taking garbage out, and wiping down remote controls and light switches. It helps them develop life skills and also helps us get a bit more done!

#5: Establish Routines

This simple step will be so life changing for everyone in your home. Have a simple morning routine, afternoon routine and bedtime routine. I use to think routines were boring, but NOPE! They provide freedom and especially help children feel comfortable because they learn to know what to expect. Can you imagine not having to repeat directions about what to do after school each day?  

#6: Meal Plan 

Life is good when I know what is for dinner. I have been using Pinterest as a help. I love my Family Favorites Board and plan meals out for two weeks. I also use eMeals and have saved many recipes and meal plans from my seven years of using this fabulous service. If you’ve never tried it, you can grab a 14-day trial for FREE!

#7: Don’t Overbook

This is an epidemic in my opinion. Our current society spends more time away from home than at home. It’s very easy to sign up for activity after activity and commit yourself to helping others or volunteering for different events, but you are truly running everyone ragged. Overbooking can create stress for you and your family and it will play out in anxiety, troublesome behavior, and illness.

#8: Find “Just for Mom” Time

This is non-negotiable. Yes, I am serious. I do believe every mom needs some down time – with no one else. Find what nourishes you. For me it is a once a month massage, getting up before my family and enjoying my coffee and quiet time, getting a nice walk at sunset, and meeting a friend for lunch. No one will make it happen for you – you need to schedule it in yourself!

5 Benefits of Regular Date Nights

16
Jan
2017

5 Benefits of Regular Date Nights

So, when was your last date night? Go ahead. Take a break and check your calendar. I did when I sat down to write this article because it had been almost a month since my hubby and I snuck away for a few hours alone! Yikes! It’s embarrassing really.

I know how I feel when I return from date night, so why is it so hard to get these on the calendar? For us it is a recent move to a newer community that has left us searching for sitter alternatives, but that is really no excuse. There are good things that come from making regular date nights happen, and I am set on scheduling these out in our calendar because my marriage deserves it.

What are the benefits? Here are just a few I managed to consider. I bet you have others too.

Anticipation Is Always Good!

I love having something to look forward to, don’t you? Having that Thursday date night on the calendar and looking forward to it all week can help me and my attitude stay happy and healthy as I journey through the day. Thinking of what to do, where we might go, what we might talk about, what dreams may develop in that conversation because we have some freedom and are not bound by home tasks – it is so nice to have uninterrupted conversation.

Connection and Communication

This is a continuation of the “uninterrupted conversation” part. When we get that time to chat with no destination, it is amazing how connected and affirmed you can feel toward your spouse. I am sure you know what I mean – when you feel they are truly listening to you because they aren’t focused on getting the kids into the bath or making lunches. We need this time to build strong marriages, because let’s face it – we lead busy lives and when we don’t make time for each other, something is bound to break and someone will feel “not connected”.

An Opportunity for Romance

We all need it and we long for that romance in our marriage. It’s a struggle and you have to be intentional to keep the romance alive when you’ve got ten plates spinning in the air. I love being able to sneak away on date night and create a calm that I can’t get at home, and who knows, it might end up creating fireworks at home later.

Lowering Stress

The power of a date night can certainly de-stress you both. I mean, you aren’t racing around checking off lists and managing bedtime routines. You are together – just the two of you. It really is amazing how just a couple of hours can be so helpful for our emotions.

Reaffirming Your Commitment

When you place an importance on having regular date nights, you are stating your marriage is worth it. It’s worth the extra effort of finding a sitter. It’s worth the effort of thinking of something to do. It’s worth the effort of saving some money in your grocery bill so you can go grab coffee and dessert out. Your marriage is worth it. It shows a strong commitment to each other!

7 Tips to Being a Happy and More Productive Mom

9
Jan
2017

7 Tips to Being a Happy and More Productive Mom

It’s a new year and time for new habits, right? If you are anything like me, over the past few weeks my days have become a jumbled mess and I need a reset. My inbox has been getting full of messages from moms wondering how I do it all and how they can catch up and feel better in their role.

First, I do not do it all. However, I do have some tips that I use to reset myself to be happier and more productive at home. Read on if you are in need of a reset or share this with a friend who may be struggling.

Feed Your Soul

What fills you up and gives you energy for your day? Only you can answer this. For me, I must have quiet time in the morning – MUST. When I don’t, my day is flustered and my temper is short. God built me in a way that I must connect with Him and myself before I begin to pour out into others. I love doing devotions (I love the First5 app and am currently enjoying a new reading the Bible in a year series in the  YouVersion Bible app).

Get Dinner Done

One big headache for us moms is getting a plan for dinner. I have made it part of my routine to plan meals and a menu the week prior to when we need it. I can prepare for my grocery shopping and be at peace knowing we have food for meals and I will not be tempted to go out. This is healthier for me and my family. Do you need a free menu planner? Grab one here!  

Having my meals planned is a life saver! It literally gives me more energy through the day because I am not constantly using my mom brain to think, “what am I going to make for dinner?” I do love eMeals (you can try it for FREE for 14 days!) for making dinner planning easy, and also check Pinterest for menu ideas.

Create Your Big Three

Each morning after I get my little guy out the door, I come up with my big three – my three things that MUST get done that day. It could be a trip to the post office, waking the dogs, or working on my blog. I tackle these things and will at least feel successful even if I do not get to the other things on my to-do list. We often have unrealistic expectations of ourselves and what we are truly capable of completing during the day.

Rise Early

Game changer. Period. You say you’re not an early riser, okay, but you are missing out on a chunk of time that can ignite your day, your productivity level, and your happiness. I notice on the days I sleep in or am lazy to get my day going, I struggle to feel caught up and prepared. So for me and a lot of moms I know, getting up earlier than everyone else is a non-negotiable. Find a way to get to bed earlier so you can grab the time in the morning to prepare for your day.

Create a Routine

This is a huge deal and if you are flying by the seat of your pants you will continue to feel unorganized, under-prepared, and frazzled. Set a morning routine for yourself and a routine for your kiddos and an evening one. It is a must! Stick to it as much as you can. We are creatures of habit and the less we have to use our brain to figure out what we are doing next, the better – for everyone!

Slow Down

This goes a bit in hand with feeding your soul and rising early. I have found since we’ve moved to the beach that I have to have a slower pace to enjoy my day. It is not all about the rushing around and doing more. It is about enjoying your day, the small moments of joy that appear. If we are moving too fast we miss those. I will now purposefully break away from my desk at a moments notice to catch the sunset or go take the dogs to the beach. It is the best feeling ever. Even in the midst of motherhood we need to capture these moments.

Tidy the House

Yes, this is part of the equation to having a happier and more productive day. I love my Weekly Household Planner I created that helps mom just do a few things each day to keep their home organized and tidy. Do what you can and cross out the other stuff. I have moms emailing me several times a week saying that this planner has blessed them so much. They are no longer using brain cells to figure out what task to do, they just do what they can on the list. I am so blessed by this! So use a method that works for you. Do a few things a day and it won’t overwhelm you!

What is your biggest tip for having a happier and more productive day?

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