Tuesday, July 30, 2013

How I Do it All

DEFINITELY the best part of my day yesterday, outdoor storytime with my babies

People say to me all the time, "I just don't know how you do everything you do with three little ones at home!  I just don't know how you do it all!"

And I do not want to give anyone the wrong idea about me, or give false impressions of my everyday life.  So I want to share a little secret with you all on how I do it all.

I totally don't.  

Yes, I do a lot.  I am a very hard worker, I pick my battles, and my kids love independent play (thankfully).  But I am balancing being a wife, a stay at home mom of three, an entrepreneur of growing small business, a blogger, a cook, a crafter, a friend, daughter, sister, among tons of other things.  I have about a thousand balls in the air at all times, and I swear, at any moment, they alllllllllllllll could hit the floor.  The truth of the matter is, I do not do it all.  And today, in the spirit of keeping it real, I thought I would share with y'all the things that I, in fact, do not do.

I do not...

...take regular showers.  Gross?  Perhaps.  Do I care?  Nope.  I can go a good three days with dirty hair (and it actually looking pretty decent), and though it doesn't seem like it would be so hard to carve out 20 minutes a day to take a quick shower, for me, it is.  So, it's one of the things I sacrifice.

...have a clean house (all the time.  Or even most of the time).  If you come to visit us (a planned visit, that is), most likely the house will be in pretty good shape, picked up, bathrooms wiped down, etc.  But on a regular basis?  It's a pretty big mess.  Dishes in the sink (more on that later), toys in the den, sippy cups on the floor, shoes on the sofa, and that's just the kitchen and living room!  Do I like a clean house?  Not like, LOVE.  Do I like to clean?  Absolutely not.  And if I wanted a spic and span house, I'd be cleaning from the time I got up until the time I went to bed.  And there are just other ways I'd rather spend my time.

...get up before my kids.  As a matter of fact, they are the ones that usually wake me up!  I like to stay up really late.  That's my mama time, my alone time, the time when I get a lot of things done.  It's not that I'm not a morning person (though when I was in high school, my parents would beg to differ), I would just rather stay up late to get things done than get up early.  And it's not like I'm sleeping until noon, but 8:30 is pretty average.  Thankfully my kids sleep pretty late too, and Ben is a rockstar, and I actually usually wake him up.

...send birthday/anniversary/mother's day/father's day/wedding/baby shower/thank you cards or gifts on time.  I actually really hate this one, as I wish I was on top of this, but alas, it falls by the wayside.  I like to think that I'm a very thoughtful gift giver, but it will probably be a few weeks late.  Better late than never, though, right?

...stay up to date on laundry.  This is a pretty bad one.  Like, right this very minute as I type this, I am staring at a huge laundry basket, overflowing with clothes to be folded.  But yet, I am blogging.  That laundry basket will most likely stay in it's current position, in it's current state, for at least another 24 hours, if not more.  I'll get to it soon...

...do the dishes everyday.  Or every other day.  Actually, sometimes it takes me not being able to fill up a sippy cup with water because there are dishes in the way that I will finally clean out the sink.  Scott will buy paper plates at the grocery store a lot so we don't have to do the dishes as often.  Or maybe he just knows that I won't do them.  I hate doing the dishes.  But, until I can assign them to one of the kids on their chore charts, I am stuck with them.  And everyone else is stuck with paper plates.

...exercise enough.  Or at all, really.  This is one that I aim to change, since Ben is ten months old, and I am still pretty far from my pre-pregnancy weight, and that pudge isn't just going to work itself off.  But still, it's something I am not focused on right now.  But it really stems from something larger.  I don't take very good care of myself.  I am so focused on others, and the other things that I have to do, that I have not made exercising a priority like I need to.

...eat breakfast very often.  I know its the most important meal of the day and all, but I am just not that hungry in the morning.  All I want is coffee.  I'd rather just eat an early lunch.  I try to eat breakfast, for the sake of getting my kids into the good habit, but I usually just drink lots of coffee.

...hang out with my friends enough.  I don't get enough girl time.  I don't let my friends know how much they really mean to me.  There, I said it.  But, it's as much my fault as anyone else's.  Again, I don't make it a priority like I should.  Another thing I'd like to change.

It's not an easy thing to admit, that I don't do it all, because I, as a mother, as a wife, as a woman, want to be able to do it all.  I feel like I ought to be able to do it all.  And the funny thing is too, that I never, ever feel like I am doing a great job at any one thing.  I feel like a jack of all trades and a master of none.  So, I just try to do my best, and hope that it makes those most important to me happy.  And when it comes down to it, I think my family just wants my love and attention, and maybe some clean underwear, so I try to keep those things on the top of my list of priorities, along with the things that make me the most happy.  And everyone's priorities are different.  It may be far more important to you to have a clean house than to craft each day.  Or much more important to have an hour to yourself getting a shower, dressed and ready everyday than to have a home cooked dinner each night.  The thing that's important is that you do what makes you happy.  And what works for your family.

The thing is, it's impossible to do it all.  My life is truly like a juggling act.  And there is no way for me to juggle all the balls without dropping a few here and there.  And if I try to toss them all up at the same time, it's too much, and I drop every last one.  So instead of doing that, I keep a few in my back pocket.  I let a few drop every once in a while, so I can throw up the others.  Then I pick up the ones on the floor, put a few others in my back pocket, and just try to keep most of the balls up in the air.  

I prioritize, and focus most on the things that make me happy and that makes my family happy.  I spend time with my kids and husband.  I cook.  I sew and craft, I blog and create.  I keep my kids rooms picked up, and I keep my closet organized.  The dishes eventually get done, the laundry gets put away, I (finally) shower, and you'll get that Happy Birthday card 2 weeks late.  I do what I can, but I do not do it all, at least not all at the same time.  I fail just like any and every other mother does once in a while.  I just try to do the things I enjoy best, and the things that keep my family working well.  

I don't do it all.  I don't want to give the impression that I do it all.  I do what's important to me.  I do what I'm responsible for when I have to, but I really just do the very best I can.  And that's how I do it all.  Not at the same time, but just as I can, and the best I can.

And anyway, with my loving husband, my amazing friends and family, and my three beautiful and healthy children, I don't have to do it all.  

Because I truly have it all.

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  1. I feel like I could be your friend even though I'm ten years older than you.You have your feet on the ground and you're doing a great job!

    1. Oh, thank you so much! Some days I feel like I have a good grip on things, and then the next I am a total mess. I guess that's just what it's all about, right? Lots of balance! :)

  2. This is great!! I'm finding a lot of freedom in letting go of perfectionist expectations that I feel are ingrained into women's heads sometimes :) Thanks so much for sharing!!


    1. Hi Rachel! I agree. I am a reformed perfectionist, I think! But you're right, not only is there freedom in the loss of those expectations, but much greater joy!

  3. I love this post! And thank you for not making me feel like the only dirty hippie. Dry shampoo is my best friend haha. You are an amazing woman!

    1. Thanks Laura!!! And funny you say that about dry shampoo, I am writing a post now about time saving beauty products, and that is #1!!! I cannot live without it! :)


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