Eat, Sleep, Work, & Play

I rarely get a chance to update this blog anymore. Which is disappointing, but not unexpected. There is a ton going on during regular daily life that keeps me occupied and between eating, sleeping, and working (the paid stuff, parenting, and volunteering), there is barely time to play around on blogging.

Eating

Sounds exciting, right? Well, it isn’t.
I am working hard to try to start being more mindful about food though. I am trying to limit my grocery shopping purchases because we waste a lot of food when it sits unused until it goes bad. Which means, I am finally taking the time to do something I should have done a long time ago: Meal Planning.

I have a love-hate relationship with meal planning because I like flexibility in cooking/eating what I feel like. As a result, I do weekly meal planning with the mindset that I will eat them all within the week but not necessarily on a specific day.

For lunches, I am also trying to eat more meatless meals (2-3 per week). I am not interested in being a vegetarian or vegan, but this allows me to consume more plant-based foods. Obviously, there are health benefits to increasing fruits and vegetables in my diet. Today, I ate a roasted bell pepper with a rice and red beans mix. Last week, I had a risotto with beets, pistachios & goat cheese. Delicious.

Sleeping

I’m sure I’ll do that sometime. Just not sure when.

Working

The hardest part of being a stay-at-home and part-time-work-from-home parent is balancing work with home. Unlike a job outside of the home where there are very distinct boundaries, working at home means the lines get blurry. I sometimes feel guilty for not providing any income. Other times I feel guilty for not doing enough around the house.

The nature of freelance is unstable, so I like to take as much work as I can when its plentiful so I don’t worry so much when it is not. I enjoy it, and it keeps my mind active, but I know I can only do the bare minimum during summer to stay active and handle the increased parenting workload.

I am grateful that I can be home to support everything on this end though, even though it means our family income isn’t what is once was. It also means I get to volunteer more, which I do.

Playing

I just took my biennial cruise with the girls to Mexico/Belize/Honduras. So, I shouldn’t complain about playing. I’m lucky to be able to do that. Here is a picture of the Bacalar Lagoon we visited in Mexico after touring Chacchoben (Mayan ruins) nearby. Now, I’m already planning more fun times for the future of places to visit and things to do with friends and family 🙂

Bacalar Lagoon in Mexico

My Year as a SAHM

It’s been about a year since I officially became a Stay-At-Home Parent.

I quit working at an office to stay home and manage the kids, especially my youngest. I still freelance to earn some extra money and to keep my skills active.

So far, it has been a pretty good experience. Not perfect, or without its challenges, but definitely good overall. Here’s a quick breakdown:

Continue reading “My Year as a SAHM”

My Top 2018 Reads

Every year, I set a Reading Goal for how many books I plan to read that year.  In 2017, I got a little over ambitious with a goal of 75 books, but since I met that goal (see My Top 7 reads of 2017 here), I decided to set my 2018 goal to the same. Unfortunately, I missed the mark by a single book. Since 74 books is still a creditable amount though, I’m okay with that.

I usually use Goodreads to track my books, and like to go through them at the end of the year to select my favorites of the bunch.

My 8 Favorite Reads of 2018

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15 Healthy, but Yummy Snacks

I’ve been attempting to snack better.  So, each trip to the grocery store I try to pick up a couple new things to try.  I love salty and sweet things, so finding things to satisfy my cravings while keeping me happy is not always easy.

Most of what I was looking for was alternative options with less salt, sugar, and “fluff” than my typical snacks, but they still had to be things I would actually eat!

Continue reading “15 Healthy, but Yummy Snacks”

ADHD and School: Part Two

If you have never set through an IEP or 504 meeting at school, you are missing out on some fun.  No wait, I’m thinking of ice cream socials. IEPs and 504s are more like Parent-Teacher Conferences with an added helping of bureaucracy.

Not that they aren’t helpful or necessary. They are. But, the meetings are also a step before a step (a formal written plan) to take other steps (the actionable items in the written plan).

Continue reading “ADHD and School: Part Two”

ADHD and School: Part One

The kids are back in school! Finally, I have the house to myself during the days so that I can actually get some editing (and chores) done!

But, it’s not all sunshine and daisies, because with the new school year comes…parent-teacher conferences.

No, I’m not talking about the one every parent is invited to attend in November to review quarterly process. I’m talking about the one for ADHD kids. You know, the one that happens less than a week into the new school year.

Oh, you didn’t know about that one? Well, let me tell you…

Continue reading “ADHD and School: Part One”

Ready for Autumn

I am ready for autumn. I’d love to pretend it’s because I love the changing of leaves (really, I think it’s depressing to see them all wither up and die) or because I enjoy cooler weather and shorter hours of sunlight (who doesn’t enjoy seasonal affective disorder). Really, I am just ready for the boys to go back to school!

Seriously, September…get here already!

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A Break From It All

Every year or two, my husband and I try to get away from it all. It’s challenging as a parent, especially a special needs parent, to disconnect from all the responsibilities of daily life and just be a couple.

So, we make a point to rent a cabin in the woods and/or mountain every once in a while to get away from all the things that keep us busy.  We don’t bring work, try not to always talk about the kids, and spend a couple days just being adults. Continue reading “A Break From It All”

Nighttime Cuddles

Most nights, if M wakes up at 1 AM, it is going to be a rough night. Some nights though, he jumps out of his room and creeps quietly into mine.  I open up the comforter to let him crawl in next to me and he falls quietly asleep snuggled up.

I wonder on those nights if he had a bad dream or was lonely and just needed his mommy to comfort him and make him feel safe.  It’s hard to know what he’s thinking since he is non-verbal and can’t really communicate those kinds of things to me.

I love his silent snuggles though.

Start to Summer Break

I made it through my first week of summer vacation.  It wasn’t easy, but gave me a better idea of what to expect for the rest of the summer.

The biggest challenges are my limited ability to take on freelance work while managing both of the kids on a daily basis, keeping Q socially engaged with other children his age, a lack of freedom/personal time for my own personal activities (such as exercise), and finding the balance between chores, playtime, errands, and structured activities that works for us.

Next week, both the kids have day camps which I have carefully balanced the drop off and pick up schedules for to manage since they are an hour apart.  Q really needs the social interaction with more kids, so I’m looking forward to it for his sake.  Also, since M has his camp for three days of the week, I’ll be able to get some more work and errands done (and get some walking in) hopefully.