One Step At A Time

Hello New Day.
Hello New Week.
Hello New Adventure.

HelloMonday

Oh, what will this week hold? What do I hope to accomplish this week?

I am starting this week out completely and utterly overwhelmed, filled with anxiety, stress, and I’m already tired. I want to think positive, I want to believe that this week will turn out completely wonderful. But honestly, thinking that positive just seems like a lot of work right now. But that doesn’t mean I won’t try. One step at a time. One step at a time.

So this week I decided to start writing out weekly goals again. I hope it will help me to focus, and relax, so I can accomplish everything I need to, and mostly so I don’t end up crying on the kitchen floor. (Why is it always the kitchen floor?!)

So my goals for this week:

Home:

1. Get on top of laundry. Laundry is seriously evil.
2. Nightly clean up. Some days, especially lately I am just too tired at night, but I always regret it in the morning.
3. Home cooked meals. Having home cooked meals every night helps everyone moods and not to mention everyones tummy!

Family:

4. Have more non-tv family nights. Movie nights are fun, but card game nights… those are hilarious.
5. Go for more walks. I miss walks. We haven’t go on many walking adventures this summer. And that make me sad. I like going on walks with my kids.

Personal:

6. Remember that I am only one person and there is only so much I can do in a single day.
7. Starting working out regularly. My workouts have been so random, most days I don’t have time, but I need to start making the time!

Work:

8. Focus on one thing at time. I have a million ideas, but I can’t do them all at the exact same time!
9. Clean up and organize my work space.
10. Step out of my comfort zone.

What do you hope to accomplish today? This week?

I really hope this week is a good week. I really hope my anxiety monster stays at bay. This week is going to take a lot of effort. I hope my toddler lets me sleep this week! If she doesn’t that possibility of me crying on the kitchen floor will most likely happen.

~ Michelle

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Lets Talk Dreams

Hello New Day.
Hello New Week.
Hello New Adventure.

HelloMonday

Monday, lets do this. Today I am pumped. I am excited. I am hopeful. I am happy. I am blown away. Also I am a whole lot of anxious. But lets focus on the good.

I told you awhile back about my new adventure, following my dream, my new business Inspired By Five. It has always been a dream of mine to create and design jewelry. And now I am. I took the leap. Or rather my husband pushed me off the edge. Either way here I am.

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I have a small circle of friends and family. I’m a major introvert and it takes a bit for me to let someone in. So like I said, my circle is small. So I knew starting off the new business with zero money put away for any kind of advertising I would be relying on my awesome family and friends to help spread the word, and hashtags. I love hashtags. And Instagram. Instagram and hashtags are sorta of my happy place. Any who…

Yesterday I woke up and chased my kids around like normal, wrote out my grocery list, and decided to check on my social media accounts. There waiting for me was an order. Not just any order but an order for two, yes TWO Sea Glass Necklaces! Dude, I was so excited. Like happy dance in my kitchen happy. That was quickly followed by another order! 3 orders in one day. I was truly blown away! I still am.

I dreamed of this, but still in my wildest dreams I did not think I would be here. You know? Its crazy, right?

So here I am, Monday morning. The morning after. And I am thrilled. But being the anxiety filled person I am there is also my anxiety cloud following me around. Especially because I sent out a package of two necklaces, and until I know that they got to their home sweet home, I worry. It gives me major anxiety. Last week I sent out two packages and I was a wreck till I got word that they made it. I never expected to feel like this. Actually I never thought about it all. But I guess it is something I have to learn to deal with.

So right now, I want to focus on the good. The happy. The excitement. All the warm fuzzy feelings.

I also have to adult. So I have to focus on this week and my kids. I have a what seems like 37938202873893048 appointments this week. This week is all about balance. Balance of looking at the big picture of everything that has to be done, keeping track of it all, working on my business, being a kick ass mom and wife, but also just taking it one day at a time.

Deep breaths.

I can do this. I will do this. I will totally rock this week!

~ Michelle

Inspired By Five

I thought that being a mom would be the scariest thing I ever did. And it is. It scares the sh!t out of me almost daily. But there is something else in life that I never thought would be scary and it ended up being so scary that it held me back for YEARS! Wonder what could possible have that much power over a person, well I will tell you: Following my dreams. Seriously. I’m not kidding.

Ever since I was a little girl I have had an obsession with designing and creating. Anything from clothes, crafts, houses at one point, but mostly, always, jewelry. I used to have notebook upon notebook filled with drawers.

Then I met my husband, then we had 2 kids in 13 months. Then I started Sugarplum And Applesauce. Like I said I have always loved to create and design. I’ve always loved fabrics. The different colours, textures, all of that. But still my first passion was always jewelry. But I held back. Why? Because it absolutely, without a doubt, right down to my bone, scared me.

I have held off on my dream for years. Far longer than I should have. But then I suffered a miscarriage, then I had a high risk pregnancy. Then I gave birth to my beautiful daughter. My family was finally complete. Those events changed me. Changed me to my core. Finally having my whole family here supporting me and encouraging me finally gave me the strength to push forward. To take the leap. To jump in. Whatever phrase you want to call it.

And thus, Inspire By Five was born. You can also find me on Instagram  and Twitter.

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Now that it is here, I am still scared out of my mind about it! I haven’t fully launched it yet. But still, it is out there. Out there for the whole world to see. I feel like not only am I showing people a piece of jewelry I created, but a piece of my soul. And that thought terrifies me.

I hope you will join me on this adventure as I turn my dream into a reality.

And if you have a dream, I hope you find the strength to follow it! Don’t wait! Jump in now! When you do, I will be here to cheer you on to and encourage you!

~ Michelle

Countdown To Back To School

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It’s summer. A time when everyone expects moms to jump up and down for joy because their darling children will be home 24/7 for what can sometimes feel like forever…

Don’t get me wrong, I love summer vacation. But I miss the structure that the school year brings. All the hard work we as a family have put into our routine, our schedule, it is all thrown right out the window in the summer.

I plan and plan for summer vacation, to the point that I’m tired and left feeling drained. Then summer vacation happens, and 75% of those plans go out the window. Every year. Every single year. Which just leaves me feeling somewhat disappointed that all that effort and time was wasted.

Then there is the dreaded “I’m bored” from the kids, or the sibling fighting. Fighting over nothing. “Mom I think he looked at me all weird like!” Seriously kid?!

Oh how I have a love/hate relationship with summer vacation. I like the relaxing mornings compared to the rush of getting to school. But I still have to get my kids up and fed, clean up after them, feed the again and again and again, because they have apparently never eaten before and must eat all day long during the summer.

Summer vacation is far from relaxing when you are a mom. I have 3 kids, and so far summer vacation has consisted of breaking up fights, dealing with the I’m bored, going on adventures only to have them fight in the car, dealing with the constant parade through my kitchen, the endless toys and mess inside and outside my house. Its not as simple as checking the living room for toys before bed, I have to check outside too now.

I miss my kids when they are in school, I honestly do. But right now, school is looking pretty good.

Maybe its because I am such an introvert, that I feel most comfortable when things are done a certain way, and I just find all this more draining than other moms do. Maybe its because I haven’t slept properly since my daughter was born. Maybe its the not having a single moment to myself thing. The lack of adult conversation. Maybe its the feeling so alone in the summer when its just me and the kids day in and day out.

Blame it on what you want.

As much as I love my kids, love the extra time with them, love the extra cuddles, love the extra talks, as much as I love being able to go on adventures and spend so much time with them. As much fun as we have already had, and will have, I am counting down to the first day of school! (Which of course I will cry over. Don’t judge!)

Do you feel the same way? How do you deal with summer vacation with kids?

~Michelle

 

Talking To My Kids About Adoption

Something was brought to my attention and I felt the need to write this down. I am adopted, and I am a birth mom. There is no denying or hiding it. Its a major part of me. And really it is something I would never try to hide or deny. There is no shame in adoption, in being in any part of adoption. And there is also the  minor detail about having an adoption tattoo on my arm in plain sight that I show off proudly.

Adoption

Growing up I don’t remember any single moment that I was told I was adopted. It was a simple fact that I grew up with. When I placed my son for adoption I knew without a doubt that any future children I had would grow up knowing all about him. Fast forward 3 children later and they all know about him. My daughter is only 2, but she has spent every summer of her life with him, and sees him on FaceTime, and sees his pictures around the house. She may not understand, but she knows he’s her brother.

No, telling my children that they have an older sibling that was placed for adoption did not hurt them, or scar them in any way. No I did not tell them “too soon”. Well unless you mean I talked about their older brother even before they could talk, then sure, maybe it was “too soon” as they couldn’t talk about it and join in the conversation.

My children have grown up with the fact that they have an older brother. Being that my oldest son was placed into an open adoption. My oldest son was able to meet my 3 younger children all before they were 6 months old and been able to visit them every few years.

Adoption isn’t something to be hidden away, kept in secret, only talked about in dark corners in the middle of the night in whispers.

I am adopted. I am a birth mom. Why should my children grow up not knowing these things?

Yes, my children miss their older brother. Yes, I miss him. Yes, it hurts me to know they miss him. Yes, I have answered many, many, many questions over the years and will probably continue to do so. Yes it is hard, some days harder than others. Yes, we have all cried countless tears. Is it worth it? Yes. My children all know each other and get to grow up together and create their own special bond together. Seeing all four of my children together, I wouldn’t trade that for anything.

Adoption should be talked about. All the time. Adoption is not a bad thing. It is nothing to be ashamed about. Adoption is a beautiful thing. Adoption is all about love and family. Because of adoption my family has grown in numbers and love, a love that crosses the oceans.

Just as my kids grow up knowing that the sun rises and sets, they know that they have a brother who has another family and has his own life path to follow, but that he is still their brother no matter where he lives.

~ Michelle

There Are Sometimes Bad Days In Motherhood, And That Is OK

I’ve been a Mom for  10 years. I have learned so much in that time. So much about myself, my husband, our kids, our family and friends, and life.


Mostly what I have learned is that not every day is a great day, and thats ok! I’m not super woman, I’m not an expect, I’m not sure what I am doing. At all. But I do know one thing that is for sure, I try my best every day.

Some days I feel like I am totally rocking this mom thing, the house is clean, meals are cooked, clothes are washed, everyone is happy and clean. And then some days the house is a mess, the baby won’t sleep, the boys argue with each other, there are mountains of laundry growing and I feel like I am failing.

There are days that are amazingly good. So good. I feel like I am on cloud 9 all day. Some days I end up crying, mostly on the kitchen floor. I’m not sure why, but the kitchen floor always seems to be the spot.

The first few bad days were the hardest. I felt like a failure. A failure as a mom is the worst feeling. As a mom I always want to be at my best, and be the best, and sometimes that just doesn’t happen.

But I learned something along the way, its ok to have bad days. Life’s balance. Good and bad. Ying and Yang. Dark and Light. Up and down.

More importantly I learned that my kids don’t care if I have bad days, because they don’t remember. What they do remember is me trying, they remember the good, the fun, they remember that despite everything I tried my best, that if I got knocked down I got back up.

I try my best every day. I may not know exactly what I am doing, or what the perfect choice would be. But I try. Every day. And if I have a bad day, its ok. Every single day may not be the best day, but there is good in every day. The sliver lining. It is there. Always. You just have to have the strength to look for it.

On the bad days I may feel like I am falling down a hole and failing, all I have to do is look at my kids, look into their eyes and I know I’m doing something right. Probably the most important thing I am doing right. I look into their eyes, and I know everything will be ok.

The bad days end, they don’t last, and they won’t be remembered. And the best thing about bad days, is that even bad days end and there is always a new day just around the corner.

~ Michelle

June Bug

Hello New Day.
Hello New Week.
Hello New Month.
Hello New Adventure!

HelloMonday

So far I feel like I am totally winning at this whole Monday and adulting thing. But a part of me fears it may be setting me up for complete failure for this week! This morning I got up early, which for me is a giant thing, I love what little sleep I get, I got all three kids up, feed, lunches made and walked to school all with time to spare before school for some play time. Lets hope I can keep this up throughout the week.

This week will be crazy. I have two parties that I am planning, a 40th Anniversary celebration for my parents. 40 years! So crazy! My parents are so awesome. And here I thought my time with my husband was impressive when we had our anniversary last month. This week will consist of making decorations and planning and finalizing the meal. And everything needs to be done early because my son has an all weekend sporting event. My mother has been known to read my blog, so that is all I will be saying on the matter of her anniversary.

I also need to plan for a weekend away with my husband coming up, fathers day, and my little guys birthday.

Basically there is a lot coming up and I have a lot of planning and doing to do this week! So I will have to be extra organized and make sure all my plans are in order and all my goals for the week. Can’t have all work and no play. Right?

So my goals for the week are:

Home:

1. Have the house clean and organized for this weekend of busy sports and anniversary celebrating!
2. Meal plan and stick to it. Find more meals I can cook in the crockpot that are always kid friendly! (And easy!)

Family:

3. Help the kids as they get used to their new chores chart. Yes, I finally made one and I love it. The kids… no so much.
4. Read together. This comes and goes. Sometimes we read together every day for weeks on end, and then they go off and read on their own, and I miss them. I miss the cuddles and experiencing a book with them, it is almost as good as reading a really good book for the first time.

Personal:

5. Get all my to-do lists in order and plans finalized so I can be ready for this weekend!
6. Workout. Working out is a must for me, for my energy level, and my happiness level!
7. Take a chance to relax. I don’t want to be to worn out to enjoy the weekend adventures!

Work:

8. Clean up and organize my desk/office. My kids have overrun my area with toys.
9. Organize all my ideas! I have SO many ideas in the works, and I keep coming up with more and more before I can actually do anything with the first ideas. I can’t do it all at the same time, I need to organize!
10. Keep on dream! Get out of my comfort zone!

This week is going to be busy. So lets get started!
What do you hope to accomplish this week?!

~ Michelle

 

 

Recovery Time Is Over

Hello New Day.
Hello New Week.
Hello New Adventure.

HelloMonday

Its been over two weeks since I had surgery. Which means I can start easing my way into working out. I can not tell you how excited I am about this! I have missed working out so much. I have missed my workouts so much. I need them so much. They help me, not just to feel better physically, but emotionally. I am always in such a better mood after. Which is good news for everyone. The real challenge now will be taking it easy and not jumping in the deep end right away and over doing it.

After two weeks of taking it easy not just in the fitness department, but in every department really, I am looking forward to not feeling like such a lazy butt. Dare I say, I am looking forward to cleaning?! Crazy, I know!

I am also looking forward to working again. Working on my blog, working on my business. To be able to put all the ideas I have had over the last 2 weeks into something I can show all of you.

This week I have goals. This simple thing also makes me happy and excites me! I can do things again!

Home:

1. Clean up! My husband and kids have been great about helping out and cleaning up around here, but it needs a mothers touch.
2. Meal plan. Meals that don’t involve the oven. Now that summer temperatures are here, I don’t need to turn our kitchen – our house- into a sauna while cooking.

Family:

3. Spend more time outside together. Unplug and play.
4. Go to the beach more often.

Personal:

5. Workout. Slowly. But surely workout again.
6. Read. I started a book, I think back in February, or March. Either way I would really like to finish it.
7. Make plans and finish plans. Birthday celebrations, anniversary parties, sports, trips, summer outings. So much planning to do. So little time.

Work:

8. Clean and organize my desk. Since taking some time off my kids have used my desk as a dumping ground for all things not related to my work.
9. Get caught up on my photos.
10. Bring things into reality.

What do you hope to accomplish this week?

~ Michelle

 

My Hope For The Future

Lets be honest here for a minute… Let’s talk about the bad days, and hopes for the future.


Some days are harder than others. Some days take a lot of extra effort. Some days I am just so tired. Some days are amazing. The truth is there is good and bad in every single day. Even the really really bad ones there is still some good. It just takes some extra effort to find it, but its there, I promise.

Motherhood, parenthood, is such a crazy adventure. It takes those regular good days and bad days and takes them to massive extremes. When you have a bad day and you have a whole audience watching you, relying on you, depending on you for everything, it makes those bad days even harder.

Like anyone else I have bad days and good days. I have cried in front of my kids many times for many different reasons. I have cried from pure joy and happiness, to love, to just being so tired. I have cried over spilling food (I once dropped a tray of food, I’m not sure if it was the wasted food or the mess, or the laughing at it all, but I cried). I have cried from laughing so much. I have cried from sadness. Basically any and all emotions will make me cry when I feel them strongly enough. (And there is no shame in that. I was once told not to let your children see you cry. I never understood that. And clearly I didn’t listen to that advice.)

But despite all that, despite the tears and bad days I try. I try my best to be the best mom and wife I can be. Every day, good or bad, I try. I hope when my kids look back on the their childhood that is what they see. They see that I’ve tried. They will see that I loved them so fiercely and that I tried. Every single day, good or bad, I tried, I pushed harder, for them.

I hope my kids see a mom who loved them, a mom who was so happy even when she was sad, a mom who behind all the tears was trying, a mom who when she wanted to give up and hide from the bad day that she continued to try harder.

I am just a mom trying my best to be the best that I can be. I am doing my best to raise my kids right. I am doing my best to hold it together especially when I feel like I am falling apart. I am doing my best to make it through the day having maybe taught my kids something and made their life a little brighter.

When they look back I hope they know how fiercely loved they were/are and how much I tired, every day.

Motherhood isn’t always easy or fun, but it always the best.

~Michelle

This Week Is Mine

Hello New Day.
Hello New Week.
Hello New Adventure.

HelloMonday

I woke up this morning with a giant knot in my back, sore neck, and grey cold skies. I’m not all that impressed to be honest. I just want to crawl back into bed with a heating pack and fuzzy blanket and sleep till its a sun shiny day. But life doesn’t really work that way, does it?

The weather has such an impact on my moods. I try to not let it, but sometimes I just can’t fight it. Today is one of those days. Today everything takes extra effort. Things I would normally enjoy doing, take extra effort. By the end of the day I will be so worn out, I won’t really fall asleep tonight, it will be more like passing out.

One thing I know for sure about today, it will contain a lot of caffeine in various forms. Mostly coffee. Lots of coffee.

My goals for the week.

Home:

1. Clean toy room and living room. Re-organize it all. I guess since it is spring now you could call it Spring cleaning.
2. MEAL PLAN! So much bad food lately. Too much pizza. I am actually sick of pizza, if thats possible!
3. Put away the remaining winter gear. Random hats and mitts that seem to keep popping up.

Family:

4. Figure out a chore chart that works for my family. It is not as easy as it sounds! Maybe I am just super picky, or a control freak, I don’t know. I just can’t seem to find something that speaks to me.
5. Come up with summer plan ideas. Day trips. Fun activities to do. Things to keep us busy. Basically anything that will stop the “I’m bored” complaining.
6. Read. Something so simple, yet never seems to get done. We have been so busy lately that we haven’t been able to take the time to sit down and read together. Which really needs to happen. Our lack of reading hasn’t stopped the boys from creating a list of books they want to read together with me.

Personal:

7. Know that I am enough. Know that I am doing my best. Know that it is ok to take a break, to do something for me. Some days are harder than others. Its a hard lesson to learn, and accept, truly accept. Especially the doing something for myself part.
8. Workout. I am been slacking so much lately. Its sad. It needs to stop.

Work:

9. Organize my desk/office. Come up with a work schedule. 
10. Keep pushing forward and follow my dreams! 

What do you hope to accomplish this week? I would love to hear your plans on how you plan to rock this week!

~Michelle