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Time management. Enough said right? I have always been a person who manages their time and tasks right down to the tiniest detail, and then I became a mom and that particular quality has been challenged. I am sure you know what I am talking about right? Our jobs as mom are a 24 hour a day job, I literally can not have every moment of every day planned nor can I expect it to happen perfectly according to my agenda. Plus, I have to take a moment and look at the entire picture… yes I might need to dust, the folded laundry might need to be put away BUT my son also needs my attention as well when he is bringing me books to read or puzzles to put together. I have had to learn to “manage my time” so that those precious moments of reading books, finger painting and trips to the park don’t go missed. It can be easy to feel like we are not getting our jobs done as wife and mom when our attention is being pulled in nine million directions. But, that is not the case! Spend a little time putting laundry away and then dedicate all your attention to a fun book to read, save the dusting for another time. Not everything has to be done at once, take joy in the things accomplished in that day and not focus on the “failures” of what was not accomplished. Housework will always be there calling our names, how long will our children be little? Not long! Basically I think the biggest thing I have learned and would tell other moms experiencing this challenge is that “time management” as a mom is more about learning that not everything must be done right this second and that our children don’t stay little forever.

Photo Credit: Sean McGrath

Top 10: Favorite Food

February 13, 2012 — Leave a comment
I heard so many stories of children who were either picky eaters or never wanted to eat their vegetables. I am so thankful that my little one not only loves his veggies but he actually enjoys them more than fruit! Parenting has no road map and every child is different so you never know what kind of eater you will get. Here is my top 10 list of foods that I never thought my child would love but does!
  1. Avocado 
  2. Squash
  3. Mushrooms
  4. Almond milk
  5. Cauliflower
  6. Kale
  7. Prune juice
  8. Peas
  9. Broccoli
  10. Bell pepper

What food does your child love that you never thought they would?

Photo Credit: Naotake Murayama

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV) 

“If you want to make God laugh, tell him about your plans.” Woody Allen

We make plans. That is how we go about our daily lives. We plan what time to leave the house in the mornings, when to make dinner, what to buy at the grocery store. We plan how we want to raise our children, family vacations, finances and pretty much everything we do is based on some sort of plan. But, how many of those plans change? How many end up looking much different from what we had expected? I have heard the quote from above many times, although I never put much thought into other than thinking it was a good point. But, when you really think about it, it’s completely true. God’s vision for our life never is as we thought it would be. He always has the bigger picture in mind. I believe that we tend to think to small, looking more at the short-term aspect of things… a couple of years or so. God however sees it all, our entire life and knows the courses we will take a long the way. His plans are far better than ours, we can’t do better than what He has in store! I have to remind myself of this plenty of times because I am a planner, an organizer and perfectionist. It’s not easy to let go. I still plan, that is just part of my nature. But, I have to remember to be flexible and listen for God because there is a good chance that what I am planning may change because He has something else in store for me.

Photo Credit: Sylvia Schade

Today’s post features a guest blog, Abbi Meadows. She is a blogger and owner of BodSchool. It is always nice hearing stories from moms who are going through what you are going through or have been down that path before. Eli has become very independent and Abbi’s post about Baby-Led Weaning was very helpful! Enjoy..

From the moment a woman finds out she’s pregnant, she’s bombarded with decisions: Midwife or OB? Natural or epidural? Find out the gender or be surprised?

These questions are just a foreshadowing of the myriad questions a parent is faced with after Baby arrives: Cloth diapers or disposables? Bassinet, crib, or co-sleeper? Breastfed or formula? Should we ‘schedule’ Baby’s day? What do we call the grandparents? How are we going to discipline? Who do we trust to babysit?

I researched and read up on pregnancy as if it were my full-time job. I checked out library books by the dozen. I could quote the “Business of Being Born;” I knew statistics and the reasons I wanted to have a drug-free, natural birth; I adapted my workout regimen so I could keep exercising. By my second trimester, I felt like a pregnancy guru!

During my third trimester, I switched the focus of my reading to child-rearing books. And while knowledge is so important, researching cannot ever totally prepare you for actually BEING a parent. I realized this when my son, Beau, reached six months old– the magical age when babies are ‘approved’ to start solid foods.

In my maternal excitement, I gathered spoons and cute bibs and bowls and got ready to introduce my guy to the joy of mushed bananas! I even had a recipe book, tools, and plans to make all of his food myself. And then? He adamantly refused to be spoon-fed. WHAT?! All the books say he’s the right age! I spent time mashing up all this food! Is something wrong? Why doesn’t he like it?! What do I do now?

Luckily, I have many wise friends who have walked before me on the Mother road. One told me about “Baby-Led Weaning” and I found this book, and this site, Baby-Led Weaning Blog, and I just knew this approach would fit Beau perfectly.

Baby-Led Weaning (BLW) isn’t very mainstream, and because of that, it’s often misunderstood. Even I had my reservations about trying it out, and I was desperate. Rapley’s book explains the principles behind the method in such a way that my world was rocked! I originally thought there was only one way–the Gerber way…You mean not everyone feeds their babies the same things at the same age in the same way?! Whoa!

So we switched our method.

In following the BLW approach, so much has changed as a result. My son is an adventurous eater. There isn’t a power struggle to get him to take “one more bite.” My husband and I eat even better because we don’t want to be hypocrites and eat foods we won’t allow Beau to eat. I only have to prep one meal at each mealtime. Less food is wasted. Beau’s meals come from whole foods and fresh produce, not boxes and jars. When we travel, we don’t have to pack special baby food. Beau is learning independence, hand-eye coordination, textures, colors, and flavors…and Mama is learning a lot, too. There are many, many more benefits to BLW, but you’ll just have to read the book. 😉

As parents, it’s our job to be the expert on WHO our baby is. Whether it’s feeding or sleeping or daily routines, sometimes the “normal” way of doing things doesn’t work for our particular child(ren) and as the parents, we have to find a solution that does work. This is where all that research comes in handy!

“Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.” Romans 12:2 (NIV) 

“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.” Romans 12:2 (NIV)

“Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.” Colossians 3:2 (NIV)

To many times we believe that we can not change the world and we allow ourselves to get caught up in the routines of life and the “normalcy” that we all believe we want. As Christians are we truly normal or even supposed to be? To be honest my husband and I began praying while I was still pregnant that we would not raise our children to be “normal” as considered by society’s standards. Raising passionate, Christ following world changers means in today’s world that you do not raise “normal” children. You raise weird kids- but in a God kind of way– the most amazing way! I believe that my son can and will make a difference in this world. The first step in raising him so that he believes this to is for me to no longer strive for the “normal” life, but the God kind of weird. Raising by example! Our family has decided that “normal” is just not good enough, it will not do! During Easter weekend at church this video was played. What a truly inspiring point it has! The sermon was inspired from the book Weird by Craig Groeschel. Let’s all take a step back and realize that we were not placed in this world to strive for the comfortable “normal” life we all tend to aim for. Let’s strive for God’s weird that impacts the world!