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)

 

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.

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

Mommy Year

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Welcome to the New Year, Monumental Moms!!! As this year gets started, we just wanted to offer you 12 ways to be an even more amazing mom this year!!

    1.Be silly more: we get so caught up in the day to day hustle, that we forget to cut  lose and be silly with our little ones. They love seeing mom make funny faces and to roll around the with them.

  1. Celebrate something different this year: maybe Valentine Day is not your thing, but it could be a fun time to do crafts with the kids or to teach them about something different.
  1. Plan a vacation somewhere new: kids love visting new places and trying new things. This year find somewhere new and exciting to go. Kids love road trips, boats, planes, and trains.
  1. Find a new game to play: new games, teach new things. Create or purchase a new game, that you can enjoy together.
  1. Clear out the old stuff: kids grow fast, so managing clutter is a must. Clear out old clothes, shoes, and toys. It will save you space and stress!
  1. Go on adventures together: exploring and discovering new things is one of the best ways to build a bond. Go out as often as you can; hike new trials, visit new museums, go to new parks, or just explore nature.
  1. Be more understanding: as Moms and adults, we don’t always understand the things that seem small to us, but are big to them. Try to be more understanding of their needs, wants, and fears.
  1. Add new reading material to your home library: a new year, means your child is getting older, and is eager to learn about new things. Reading is one of the most important things to do with your little one, so take out a little more time, to read together.
  1. Eliminate a bad behavior: our children aren’t perfect and can all improve. This year, work on eliminating at least one of their negative behaviors. Address the behavior, and be firm about resolving it.
  1. Take out some time for Daddy too: as Moms, we get so caught up in our little ones, that we forget our Big one!! Daddy’s/Husbands, are like kids too. They need just as much love and affection. Don’t forget to love on them a little extra as well.
  1. Say “yes,” to yourself more: set the money aside for hair and nail appointments. Go to see movies you like alone, have more girls nights, and treat yourself more. If you lose you, you lose part of what makes you the great mom that you are. A happy you, equals a happy everyone else!
  2. Pray More: Prayer helps us Moms to keep our sanity, to worry less, and to have inner peace.

 

Kristina – Kristopher’s Mom

Motivational Mondays – Self-Pity

 

But the people thirsted there for water; and they grumbled against Moses and said, “Why, now, have you brought us up from Egypt, to kill us and our children and our livestock with thirst?”

                                                                                                                                       Exodus 17:3

Failing at things, missing appointments, having bad days, poor relationships, stress with kids and husbands, dealing with illness, and being bombarded with responsibilities are all apart of life. They are each just a few things that many of us may experience on a daily basis. Problems have a way of building up on us, and attempting to crush us. When those issues start to weigh us down, we often fall into the habit of self-pity. Self -pity is a nasty little devil that threatens our inner peace, and the people around us. It sneaks up on us, and tosses our minds into a pit of uncontrollable sorrows and annoying self-absorbed unhappiness! Who wants to be stuck in that? More importantly, who wants to be around a person like that?

Bad days, events, things, and times are going to happen, but it’s how we respond to them that matters. It’s okay to vent a little, and even to have a moment of being down, but do not wallow in it. We are what we speak. If we consistently speak in a self-defeating tone, how can we ever expect ourselves to win? Speak life into yourself during the hard times. If you can’t find your smile, force yourself to smile!

“Self-pity is like a thief in the night, robbing us of our joy”       -Unknown

Kristina

Motivational Monday – Self-Control

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For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love.

                                                                                                                                       2 Peter 1:5-7

This is your year to improve your life in any way that you see fit. As the new year begins we are all eager to make changes that will hopefully lead to better lives. The problem with that is, no matter how much weight we want to lose or how much we want to spend less; if we lack self-control, we lack the discipline and courage to truly make any meaningful changes in our lives. Without self-control, we don’t possess the spirit we need to move through the challenges that await us. As we plan and create our resolutions, be sure to prepare for them and pray for the self-control that we need to take them on. Not matter what goals we set, we must be strong and resilient when working towards them. Self-control, is what will keep us from back sliding and cheating ourselves.

This year, as we set out on a new path let’s first get our self-control in order. Gaining self-control requires us to:

  1. Set realistic goals with realistic outcomes
  2. Know what it is that you are trying to control (impulsive behaviors, overspending)
  3. Find an important reason that we fully understand, as to why this goal needs to be met
  4. Motivate yourself to prepare to reach your goal
  5. Know that you can conquer anything that you put your mind to

Good luck Monumental Moms!!!

“I have learned that I really do have discipline, self-control, and patience. But they were given to me as a seed, and it’s up to me to choose to develop them.”

                                                                                                                                                –  Joyce Meyer

 

-Kristina

Being a Monumental Mom – 2016

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Before this year comes to an end, we wanted to thank everyone who has read our weekly post and our motivational Monday post, liked and followed us on Facebook and Instagram, and anyone that has supported us. When we first ventured out to start Monumental Moms we had no idea what we would talk about, doubted that people would follow us, and couldn’t figure out when we were going to find time to write anything with careers, husbands, and toddlers! Honestly, I don’t think that we still really know how we get it all done, but we do. If I had to select one reason why we push through with posts, motivation, funny memes, etc., it would be because we love Monumental Moms. Over this year, it has become our extra child. We enjoy being able to touch the lives of others through sharing our stories and thoughts. If we just have one follower, that’s one life that we are speaking to in a positive way, and that’s what it’s all about.

For 2017, we hope to reach even more Monumental women, and to find some new ideas, topics, images, and quotes to post. More importantly, we hope to continue to inspire and motivate. We all have that day that we feel as if it’s all falling apart. Those moments where we aren’t sure if we should laugh or run for the hills! Being a woman is hard enough, but when you add being a wife and mother to your list, it gets even harder. Empowering each other is what will encourage many of us to apply for that promotion, try a new haircut, go on an adventure, love freely, laugh instead of crying, or try something new with our kids. We aim to be a network of strength and love!

This upcoming year, it’s our goal to share a little more of ourselves with all of you. We hope to add a “Wednesday Wife,” addition to our blogs. We’ve share the funny, horrific, and joyous moments of being mothers, but being a wife is just as entertaining, difficult, and amazing! It’s also our hope that in 2017, each of you will step outside of your comfort zone, and do something different, scary, or fun that you have been putting off. You may not get the immediate support, or increase that you would like from it, but the blessed feeling that it will give you for trying, will be enough!

Happy Holidays Everyone!!! 

Thankful and Supportive

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When I think of Thanksgiving, I think of food, family, memories, and laughter. Thanksgiving for me, marks the beginning of the holiday festivities. I get even more bubbly, and excited as the holiday approaches. It’s a lot of work, especially for moms, and anyone who is hosting and opening their home to others to come and celebrate. The time spent laughing and sharing together always excites me. For others, I know that holidays aren’t always the perfect time of year. For many, the extra work, money, chaos, family, memories, and holidays in general, can be overwhelming and depressing. Holiday depression impacts the lives of many.

Growing up my parents always made sure that we had everything we needed, and a little more. They were sure to make holidays an exciting time for us. As I got older, I noticed that holidays weren’t always an exciting time for my father. He grew up differently than us, and had different memories attached to holidays. I didn’t understand it as a child, but I now better understand the “Holiday Blues,” that some people get. For my father, Thanksgiving, is the start of big holiday time, and stress. The short days, cold weather, and dull light doesn’t help his mood either. He loves seeing us happy, but never seems to reach that same level of joy himself.

As I’ve matured, I have learned to respect the feelings of others during the holidays. Especially, when I noticed that my husband suffers from holiday depression as well. My past has helped me to better cope with holiday depression with others. I’ve learned to offer them the space and love that they need to feel comfortable, to be encouraging, and not take behaviors or attitudes personal. I try to remind those around me that holidays are whatever we decide to make them. They are more than gifts, decorations, and food. Thanksgiving, especially has great meaning. It is a time to be thankful. As this holiday season starts, I just want to share the top 6 things that I am thankful for this year, and I hope that everyone who reads this creates their own list of thankfulness and encourages those around them to as well.

1. Self-evaluation – I’ve learned so much this year about who I am. It has helped me to better understand my passion and happiness.

2. Opportunity – this year, I have been blessed with a great part-time job. It’s not something I really was ever serious about doing, but it just happened and I went with it.

3. Growth – this year I feel that I have grown a lot, but more importantly that my marriage has grown as well.

4. Milestones – watching my son master counting, abc’s, colors, potty training, and many other things has been fulfilling and exciting!

5. Monumental Moms- being able to share in this blog and on IG, has become a major joy for me.

6. Family – I saved the best for last, because without family, I am nothing. They are the glue that holds me together. No matter how big or small you family is, recognize their worth to your life.

This holiday season while laughing, cooking, and sharing memories take a moment to just be thankful. Make sure that you think about and spread love to each person that means something in your life, especially those who suffer from depression during this time, and remind them of why you appreciate having them in your life. 

“Give thanks for the little and you will find a lot.” – Hansa Proverb

Kristopher’s Mommy – Kristina