Making Room for Mom

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When I was pregnant, I was obsessed with watching shows about new parents making room for babies. I even use to watch a series called “Making Room for Baby.” It’s not until my son is three years old going on four, where I am busy every single day preparing lunches, working a full-time and part-time job, and trying to care for an entire family; that I realize that I have failed to make room for me! I have no idea where time for myself has disappeared to. I’ve tried daily to better keep up with my morning devotionals, make more frequent post, journal more, and to take time out to read a book for personal enjoyment, but they all seem to be the most impossible tasks. I’m not sure if it’s that it gets dark earlier, or if I’m just lazier, but making room for mom has become unfeasible.

As a working mom, I frequently feel that I am being pulled in multiple directions. I get to work and must perform for an entire new family (clients, coworkers, and supervisors). While, we all try to give our career our undivided attention throughout the day, it’s not always easy when you still must schedule appointments, make market list, plan meals, and keep your mind from wondering about how else everyone day is going. Most days you find yourself finishing up work, just in time to start a new shift at home. If you are any thing like me, the one thing you look forward to is the car ride home. If your life is truly like mine, that time doesn’t belong to you either. During my rides home, I catch up with friends, return calls from the day, and plan things. By the time my car pulls up to my son’s school my time is up!

I’m sure that this is something that all moms experience at some point in motherhood. It’s moments like now that I don’t exactly feel like a super mom and it sucks. Yet, I remind myself that I’m not perfect and I deserve a spot in my own life as well. As Moms, we must remember that if we don’t choose us daily, there will be no them. Well, maybe, they would somehow make it, just not well! Lol.

Today, I’ve decided to make room for me again! I know that many Moms all over the planet are saying the same thing and failing at it. I’ve accepted that I may fail at it too. However, I believe it’s still worth the try. They say, “Nothing beats a failure, but a try,” so I’ve created some simple ideas of how I’m trying to MAKE MORE ROOM FOR MOM!

  1. Adequate Sleep – There is only one thing worse than a cranky you, and that’s a cranky mom! Unless you ask your husband, because he will swear the absolute worse is a cranky wife! Lol. Part of the cure for crankiness is sleep. Most of us have had months, if not years of sleepless nights. Establish set bedtimes Moms, for EVERYONE. This includes husbands too. They don’t have to go to sleep, they just need to understand that you have a set time that you need to.

 

  1. Waking up a little earlier to have a little more me time – 15 to 20 minutes in the morning can make the world of difference in your day. In my house, early mornings are the only time that everyone is sleep! That means peace and quiet for Mom!!!

 

  1. Prayer – No matter what you believe, take some time out to pray. Cover yourselves and your family.

 

  1. Positive Affirmations – They keep me motivated and encouraged, when everything else is dragging me down. Is a great way to stay uplifted.

 

  1. Hide- sounds crazy, but it works. Sometimes you just need to hide. Some of my favorite hiding places are the bathtub, the back porch and the basement.

Let’s face it moms, we have already learned to live off the bare minimum, that’s just a part of being a mom. Trying something new will not hurt.

Kristina – Kristopher’s Mom

Marriage Chronicles-Part I

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Marriage-A legal joining of two people, a union (dictionary.com)
I’ve been married for 5 years now and I will say that there are some things that my married friends and or family members failed to mention before I tied the knot. Don’t get me wrong, marriage is a beautiful thing, but with the wrong person it can be a disaster. I will also say that before marriage there were some things that I didn’t really consider. Below I’ve compiled a list of things that most people don’t talk about!

I love my husband……but
Although I love my husband I don’t always like him or the things that he does. There- I’ve said it! So now you know that you are not alone in this, Lol. The important thing to remember when these feelings arise is that they are temporary (hopefully, Lol). Try not to lash out or say something really mean that you may regret later. Sometimes it’s not even about your spouse when you feel this way, you may just be tired, hungry, or having a bad day.

Don’t Tell Everybody Your Business-This is some of the best advice that I’ve received. As women we are emotional and when we are upset we sometimes need to vent. This is fine, just be careful who you are venting to. I may be mad at my husband today and back to being his BFF tomorrow. Some people will throw your own words in your face.

Nothing Stays the Same-Most of us don’t think five, ten, or even fifteen years down the line when we are in wedded bliss. Life events happen such as having children, the loss of jobs, parents, and loved ones. When these things happen, they often change us. These major life events will be the true test of your marriage. It’s easy to love someone when everything in life is perfect, but when things get hard, ugly and messy it’s not always so easy.

It’s Ok to Still Be You-Early on in my marriage; I realized that although my husband and I are now a union, we also needed to maintain our individuality. He lets me be me and I let him be him, otherwise we both would have serious resentments.
Maintain a Sense of Humor-It’s important to still have fun together and laugh. Sometimes when the bills won’t stop, the baby won’t sleep, and then something breaks you literally want to scream and sometimes it’s at each other. When this happens find a reason to laugh.

Make Time for Sex-We are all super busy with careers and or raising children. The laundry and housework is never ending. The to-do- list is just that-a list-and it will be there tomorrow. As a working mother and wife, trust me I’m exhausted most of the time and can barely see straight, Lol. Many couples fail to make time to connect sexually and as a result they are even more stressed, angry, and the man is probably pissed and resentful! Sex is important in any relationship, especially a marriage. If someone tells you otherwise then don’t believe them.

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-Kristle (Keith’s Wife)

 

Motivational Monday –

I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows very well.  

                                                                                                                                  – Psalm 139:14

Have you ever talked to someone and the moment someone else enters the conversation, the other persons entire personality, opinion, and even behaviors changes? It’s one of the most annoying, yet unfortunate things. The reality that so many adult people have not found the comfortableness or realness in being exactly who they are, or feeling/believing in what they say or do. Being able to always be yourself is a liberating and satisfying feeling. It gives you the power to disagree, no matter who the opponent is, or the audience may be. It separates you from the crowd and makes others respect you more. Blending in is boring, and no one truly enjoys people who are boring. It is important for you to be bold, and to be original.

This week, think about places or areas of your life where you have assimilated to fit in and start to change so that you can stand out. Remind yourself daily and each of your thoughts and actions are unique and meaningful. Know that you will never be greater than who you are.

“Be different so that people can see you clearly amongst the crowds.”

                                                                                                                           – Mehmet Murat Ildan

-Kristina

Summer Time Fun on a Budget

Most kids can’t wait until school is out for the summer, but for parents it can be pretty stressful when trying to find activities for them. If you’re a parent who wants to keep your children entertained but you are on a tight budget, do a little online research before choosing activities.

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• Websites like Groupon and Living Social are your friend. They often have affordable deals and activities.

• Check out Home Depot’s website. They often have free monthly activities for children.

• Sometimes children just want to run around and be outside. The playground is always a free option. Annie’s playground in Fallston Maryland is a pretty cool option.

• Storyville at the library is a fun free option. The ages are from newborns to age 5 years.

• Gymboree and My Little Gym are good options for smaller kids. They often have free days where you can take your little one for free play. The ages range from newborn to 5 years old.

• If your budget is really tight, try incorporating at least one free activity such as the library, playground etc., and then you can take your child for ice cream or an inexpensive meal. Most restaurants have inexpensive kids meal options.

• The Baltimore zoo and Aquarium often have days when prices are cheaper.

• Try taking a walk to a park or your local reservoir; it’s free and gives your child the opportunity to explore nature.

• For swimming options, Codorus State park in Pennsylvania has a large pool and a small pool area for babies and toddlers. There is a fee but depending on your child’s height they may be able to swim for free!

Anytime I can find a deal or discount I get excited! Please feel free to share other tips for budget friendly activities for the little ones.

~Kristle (A Budgeting Mom)

 

100 Posts Strong!

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I recently received a notification that Kristina and I have officially posted 100 blog posts to our WordPress website! We are both super excited! We started with just an idea and the goal was to become bloggers, LOL. Today I would say that our goals have expanded. We both love the connection that we make with people and the ability to put something positive out into the universe! In addition, we are both passionate about motherhood and love talking about our sons (LOL), so we figured why not write about them and our experiences of motherhood! It feels really good to look back on previous posts and know that we created something that is entertaining, helpful and so special to us. Kristina and I started when our boys were around 1 ½ and now they are both 3 years old. Whew, time sure does fly! Below I have compiled a few tips for people who would like to start blogging.
1. Blog like no one is reading.
This allows you to be your true and authentic self. I kind of view blogging as a diary; it can be very therapeutic to release your thoughts and ideas.
2. Write about topics that you want to read about.
This is often how I decide what my next topic will be about. We are all super busy, especially those Moms with little babies or super active toddlers LOL, so it’s important to get straight to the point and make the blog interesting.
3. Add pictures.
I find that pictures help to keep people’s attention, especially if the post is lengthy; the pictures kind of break it up. In addition, some people are visual like me, and the pictures help to draw people in.
4. Just don’t quit.
Like anything else consistency is key. Set a realistic expectation and make sure that you hold yourself accountable to it. There are times when you are super busy or life happens to get in the way, don’t get discouraged. Just read and keep blogging.
5. Last but not least…..have fun.
Blogging can be fun, not always but there are times when it is. In order to make blogging fun, be sure to write about fun topics or something that makes you laugh!
-Kristle (A Blogging Mom)
We would like to thank all our followers on Instagram, Facebook and WordPress! If you aren’t following us we are @monumentalmoms on Instagram and Facebook and our website is monumentalmoms.com.

Motivational Monday – Time

“Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise, making the most of your time, because the days are evil.”

– Ephesians 5:15-16

We often find ourselves somehow just moving through the days. Today is Monday, and next thing we know it’s Friday. We have no idea how we have gotten here, or what we’ve done in the time between; yet somehow, we have arrived here! We move throughout our days without a plan, lack of emotion, and no destination. If we have a plan, it’s typically just to make it to the weekend. If we have feeling, it’s anticipation for the weekend. That is not living wisely, and doesn’t allow for us to maximize our days. We have so much life to live every day, let’s not waste any of it. It’s our mission to master our days! To ensure that at work we are given our most, that we are providing our families with our greatest selves and saving some of us, for us as well!

This week, we must look forward to living beyond the weekend, the vacation days, holidays, and off days. We all must learn to live in the now all the time, so that we are allowed to make the most of our entire lives, rather than just select days of it. Being able to make use of our days, means that we are better able to create a plan for our futures. Let’s be present always.

“If you don’t know exactly where you’re going, how will you know when you get there?” – Steve Maraboli

  • Kristina G.

Motivational Monday – Finding Peace

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“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”

-Philippians 4:6-7

I am probably one of the most anxious people in the world. I literally worry about everything: the good, bad, and just upcoming. Anxiousness seems to be a natural part of me, but I know that it’s something that can’t stay. Finding peace of mind is important in our daily lives, because that peaceful place is where we can settle safely. Living without a safe place, is like consistently fighting a battle that will never end. We must all be able to have a place in our lives and minds to retreat to. We must voice our needs and trust that they will be delivered, if we are meant to receive them. That’s where most of us struggle. It’s hard to accept that what we want, is not what we always need.

Some ways that I have been finding to get to that place of peace is through prayer, positive affirmations, and walking. Prayer reminds me that there is already someone greater than me, working on my behalf, for all the things I have prayed for, and for the things that I haven’t even thought of. The positive affirmations empower me, and encourage me, to move throughout my day without fear. Lastly, the walks give me a chance to clear my mind, while building my body. We each must find our special place to make peace with ourselves daily. It won’t always be easy, but it will always be worth it!

Dedicate yourself to the good you deserve and desire for yourself. Give yourself peace of mind. You deserve to be happy. You deserve delight.

-Hannah Arendt

 

-Kristina

A Mother

I don’t believe that the life, actions, or nature of a mother can be defined. There is no precise way to bottle up everything that entails a mom into one definition. Moms are fluent, we are forever changing and evolving into what our families need. Take a moment to think of the process of becoming a mother. Our organs and bones shift, our hormones change, and our body grows to protect and accommodate a new life form. From those profound changes, we begin the process of forever changing. Chemically and internally our minds and bodies alter to make us more nurturing. Our bodies understand that we must produce milk and it magically does! Change for mothers doesn’t just stop there though. Watch a predator approach a mother animal’s offspring in the wild, you will see her immediately tense up and prepare to fight to the death. Every cell inside of her compels her to save her child’s life and potentially lose her own. As human mothers, we are no difference. It’s a instinct that’s triggered with motherhood. The changes don’t stop there. As our children age, we learn to be their friends, enemies, teachers, and so much more. The essence of motherhood is breathtaking.

If that doesn’t amaze you, look at the bond that mothers share with their children. Every ounce of pain that a child feels, a mother feels in tons. When we watch our babies sleep, we lay there exhausted, but unable to take our eyes off them. When our children become afraid or nervous they naturally search for us to comfort them. What amazes me the most, is how at birth they already know our voice and can detect us by smell.

I wrote all of that to say, if for any reason someone doesn’t celebrate Mother’s Day, or see it as such a big deal, they need to rethink their logic. Mothers are the backbone of humanity and the beauty that we see in the world. This Mother’s Day, I want every mother to be celebrated with love and appreciation. Moms……. know that without us, there is no anything. We are amazing!!!

Happy Mother’s Day Monumental Moms

-Kristina (Kristopher’s Mom)

Tips for the Expecting Mom

I’ve compiled some tips that I would not only use myself, but I would offer to an expecting first time mom. You can never fully prepare for the drastic change of motherhood, but you can try to plan as best as possible.
1. Take a vacation with your spouse.
It can be a weekend getaway, but it’s important to savor the alone time because once the baby comes, it might be a while before you two get some alone time!

2. Treat yourself to something really nice!
Now is the time to splurge before the baby’s arrival LOL! I mean it! Truly treat yourself to something that you have been eyeing but just haven’t purchased because you are trying to be practical. Trust me, once the baby is born your finances and priorities change! Your needs, wants, and desires will take a backseat immediately!

3. Savor the quietness.
Once you have a baby there won’t be a lot of quiet time. Especially if the baby is hungry, sleepy, teething, etc. I never realized how much I liked the quiet until I became a mom, LOL!

4. Appreciate your body now!
I have a few friends who don’t have children yet and they are often really critical of their bodies. Although your body may not be perfect pre-baby it will definitely be different after growing and birthing a baby.

5. Live in the moment.
Be adventurous and do things that you would not normally do before the baby comes. Getting out of our own comfort zone is hard! But once you become a mother, you feel a sense of empowerment and feel that you can do almost anything! You just may not have the time to do it, LOL!

6. Sleep now while you can!
Sleep like you’ve never slept before, LOL!! If you are tired, take a nap. If you are bored, tap a nap. If you are feeling adventurous take off work and take a nap! Sleep will never be the same post-baby, even once they sleep throughout the night your sleeping habits are never the same. You are on constant alert even when sleeping, LOL.

7. Cook and Freeze.
Once the baby comes, you won’t feel like cooking for a while. Toward the end of your pregnancy, cook some of your favorite foods and freeze them. You will thank yourself later!

To other moms, please feel free to leave some of your tips that you would give to an expecting Mom!
​Kristle~Kodie’s Mommy

Mommy Bloggers

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Kristina and I initially came up with the idea of blogging when Kodie and Kristopher were still babies; however, we didn’t actually start blogging until the boys were around a year and a half. We had so many great ideas but fear stood in the way! I have to admit that before I started blogging, my perception was very distorted LOL. I just knew that Kristina and I would be an overnight success! I just knew that we would take off running and we would have thousands of followers with all of this success but the reality is that like anything else, success does not happen overnight. Below are some tips for people who are new to blogging or for people who may be having some growing pains in life:

1). Just Do It
Taking action is the first step to anything. You can have all of the ideas in the world but if you don’t put them into action then they mean nothing. My very first post was about stepping out of your comfort zone. In that post I talk about how you have to push yourself out of your comfort zone and stop talking yourself out of things. I literally push myself every time I write a post LOL, but once it’s done I feel good.
2). Don’t Be So Serious
Life is hard, work is hard, and raising children is hard! Don’t make blogging so serious. My job is actually pretty serious but I love to laugh so I guess that’s a conundrum. I find ways to still have fun while at work; otherwise all of the seriousness would get to me LOL. Find ways to laugh even if it’s at yourself! I often try to have humor in my posts because I have enough seriousness in the day to day LOL.
3). Don’t Be So Critical of Yourself
You’re going to make mistakes such as spelling errors and grammatical errors but it’s ok; it’s not the end of the world! Don’t over analyze your post. The main thing is to write it and then post it!
4). You Will Want to Give Up
There are weeks when I literally wait until the last minute to write a post because either I could not think of a good topic or I just don’t really feel like it. Sometimes, I will almost convince myself not to do it at all because we don’t have a lot of readers who read our blog, but then I just do it! Why? Because after I write a post I feel a sense of accomplishment and even if we don’t have thousands of followers yet, there are some people who support and enjoy our posts.
5). Consistency is Key
Even on those days when you don’t feel like blogging, just think of the big picture. The difference between successful people and unsuccessful people is that the successful person kept going until they reached their goal, whereas the unsuccessful person stopped probably right before they reached their goal. This can apply to many aspects of life such as eating healthy, working out etc.
6). Have Fun Blogging
I’ve come to think of blogging as an outlet. Sometimes it helps to just release whatever thoughts or feelings you have. Even if blogging isn’t your full time job and you don’t get paid to do it, you can still make if fun.

~Kristle (a Mommy Blogger)

“Success is the ability to go from failure to failure without losing your enthusiasm.” Sir Winston Churchill

“The value of an idea lies in the using of it.” Thomas Edison

“A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.” Albert Einstein

“The harder the conflict, the greater the triumph.” George Washington

“Write what you know.” Mark Twain