Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Finding my Namaste

I love to practice yoga.  In fact, I NEED to practice yoga.  It feels so good to stretch my body and concentrate on nothing more than my breath for ninety minutes.

 I’ve been finding it difficult to practice as much as I would like since becoming a stay-at-home mom on a budget.  Yoga classes are expensive and practicing at home has always been too full of distractions.  It was tough enough to practice when there was only a cat pouncing all over my bridge pose but practicing at home with a cat and two kids?  Impossible.
Or so I thought.

During the week, my daughter and I walk my son to school and then have two and a half hours to ourselves, which is usually spent running errands.  Lately though, I’ve added yoga into our daily schedule and she loves it.  We both do. 
I have spent the last five years struggling to find my old before-kids self and wondering where it was she had gone.  I missed her.  Every day I missed her, and as much as I hate to admit it, I started to resent my role as mom because of it.

Why did I consider kids a distraction from the things I love to do before now?  It’s not their fault that I hadn’t been practicing yoga nor doing all the other things that I used to love doing before they came into my life.  I have been choosing to not take care of me and in doing so, have not been fair to myself or to my family.
Spending time practicing yoga with my daughter has done so much.  We have that special bonding time together and I get that amazing stretch and focus on breath that I need.  The cat?  Well, he’s still a distraction but he loves when it’s time for cat pose.  Obviously.    

Monday, April 22, 2013

Good day, Sunshine!

Life is just better when it’s warm and sunny, isn’t it?  We spent hours outside today – checking out snails, digging for worms, playing hopscotch and making ourselves dizzy on the swings.  We cooked outside, we ate outside and we loved every minute of it.

After a long and crappy winter, I’m so ready to say hello to warm sunshiny days.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Brownies for a rainy day in April

So, I'm not sure if you noticed but last week, I missed the first of my own deadlines - Pinterest Fridays!  Oh well.  Maybe completing one Pinterest project every other week is a more realistic goal for me.  It's all about knowing your limits, right?

This week, I took an idea for protein-filled Black Bean Brownies from my friend Karen's site That Mom Blog.  I followed her super easy directions, (rinse and blend a can of black beans with just enough water to cover, add to the dry brownie mix), and just like that, they were a hit!  Kids loved them, hubby loved them and I enjoyed my fair share as well. 

WARNING: While these brownies may be a lower-fat, higher protein option, they may or may not make you and your family a little farty.  Enjoy with caution!  :)

Monday, April 8, 2013

In which she realizes a nap means more than a nap.

The kids are tucked in, the house is cleaned up and for the first time in about a month, I actually feel on top of things.  I’ve even made tomorrow’s snack already.  I feel in control of my life, my moods, my head.  Today, anyway.

This afternoon, the kids wanted to watch a movie and, as I often do, I saw it as my opportunity to snuggle in beside them and have a nap.  It wasn’t long before my husband woke from his night-shift slumber.  When he came downstairs to say good morning my four year old announced, “Mom’s resting again.  She always has to rest because she always feels sick.” 

Wow.  That stung.
I was offended at first.  My husband always snuggles in for a nap at movie time and the kids have never called him out on it.  Why were they doing it to me?

Then I thought about it from their perspective.  Sure, today I was feeling great and the nap really was just an innocent charge of the old batteries, but I haven’t been myself lately.  I’m quick to yell, I don’t play as much, and I take every day that my husband is home as an opportunity to sleep rather than a chance to spend time together as a family.
I’m glad that I found my motivation today.  I just wish there was a way to sprinkle myself with it every morning because I would sure love to feel like this more often. 

What do you do when your mental health gets the better of you?

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Was 22 really all that great?

My short answer?  Yes.  Yes, it really was all that great.

I was living in Toronto, going to university, working in a record shop and life was simply all about having as much fun as possible.  My cash was spent on nights out having drinks, dancing until long after last call and twenty-four hour breakfast spots.  I was hanging out with the people I thought I would know all my life and we were going to do this forever.  We were never going to stop dancing, lose touch, grow old.

Here we are 14 (FOURTEEN?!) years later.  We have kids, mortgages and sadly, little time to dance.  We really only catch up by looking at photos posted to Facebook and, if we're lucky, we can squeeze in a few minutes of conversation at the park while our kids play together.

Would I ever trade places with my 22 year old self?  Not a chance.  While she may be happy, free, confused and lonely in the best way, I know who I am, what I stand for and have never been more comfortable with that. 

And once in a while, my bestie and I will dust off our dancing shoes and show the hipsters that we still have it.  Even if it means we're the oldies at the club.