Surfboard Style Parenting

I recently saw a picture on facebook that said, “If you haven’t left a store carrying your screaming kid surfboard style your not really parenting?” I laughed and nodded to myself reminiscing all the times I have done this in eight years of motherhood. The picture itself was shared thousands of times over again.  I’m hoping you can relate to this post as much as I can. 

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I reminded of five years ago, I was nine months pregnant with Jay (my middle), prying my screaming (then) three year old daughter Sophia’s hands off  a flag pole because it was time to leave the park. After came the walk of shame carrying her surfboard style six D.C. blocks to our car where I had to physically sit on her to get her strapped in. I sat on the curb and sobbed as people walked by staring at me.  I remember just a couple months ago doing my best to remain calm at Whole Foods when my five year old threw a screaming fit as we checked out. He chose that moment (of course) to scream how horrible of a mom I was and all the bad words he had ever heard in his life. I did my best to keep my cool and hold back the tears as I carried him surfboard style to the car. Again everyone staring. 

Surfboard carrying in my house happens more that I would like to admit. But besides the embarrasement and exhaustion of children that seem to misbehave at the worst moments, its the looks of disgust, judgement or better yet the words that some people have actually said to me that pierce my heart and make me feel the worst. 

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“He needs a spanking.” “Well if that was MY kid…” Or better yet actually addressing my child and telling them what’s wrong with them… those are fun people.

Moms – the judging Moms has to stop. Actually not just moms – to everyone – the judging HAS to stop. 

There are days I’m rocking this mothering thing, and days I suck. Probably more of the latter as I feel like I’m struggling some days in this season of life…but I am doing my best.

Raise your hand if you’ve ever judged another mom? You can’t see but my hand is so high in there air! I pride myself on doing my best to be a non-judgemental person but truth is, yes I too judge. I judged the other day when I listened to two new moms at Chic-fil-a talk about transitioning their 15 month girls out of their room and into thier own cribs. “Whaaaatttt? Omgosh how can they STILL be sleeping with their kids!? They must be hover moms.” I caught the thought and immediately turned around introduced myself and decided to offer loving words of encouragement instead of judgement. Snap out of it Rachael. 

I reminded myself I don’t know their story.

We all have a story. Maybe they suffer from abandonment issues, mabye its postpartum anxiety or depression like I had. Maybe its the fear of everything that your first kid instills in you that makes you constantly think they are either going to die or your going to screw them up. Maybe that mom carrying that screaming child surfboard style is doing everything she can to hold back the tears of a really tough day, month, or season.

I find that often what works best for me doesn’t always work best for others or vice versa. Thats okay! Repeat THATS OKAY.  Instead of judging another mom for giving in and giving the cookie, or the thinking “Welllll if THAT was my child….!” try sending that mom all the loving energy you can. Better yet, go to her and hug her. Pat her on the back and tell her she’s doing an amazing job even if her kid is screaming how much he hates her or acting like a brat. Grab the bag of groceries, carry them to the car while she does surfboard style parenting. Go to her with out a judgmental heart. 

Offer words of encouragement not judgement. I know its hard, but I also know how much I would love for someone to do this for me in my current season that seems oh so tough.

Our story is often a hidden book covered up by the highlight reel of social media. Those pretty filter cropped pictures don’t show the 20 outtakes before the popsicle, where a very exhausted mom gave in out of defeat. Take a minute to acknowledge and honor their story. Most often the judgements we throw at others are the same ones who have been thrown at us.

It takes a village and there is no handbook and if  you see me going surfboard style out the store I will gladly take all the hugs…and wine.

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xoxo

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Maximus 9 Months

Our sweet Max is one month closer to the big UNO!

This busy little guy has had quiet the month! He is on the move and has no intention of ever slowing down. He currently pulls up, cruises, and crawls faster than I would like.

Nothing in the house is safe and although he has a big basket filled with baby friendly and appropriate toys, he still prefers trying to get a hold of anything he can that is not baby friendly. Super annoying.

The days of popping him on your hip and going from place to place is no more. He now squirms till you have to put him down and he weighs almost 20 lbs and most days my arms physically hurt lol.

New Tricks:

Max has graduated from his army crawl and is officially up on all fours. He still does the army crawl when he’s trying to get somewhere fast, he’s pretty speedy! He’s also pulling up and cruising around any where he can. He officially said his first word! I about died with excitement as it was: Mom <3 Since then he has new words like: dad, dog, and down.

Sleep:

Max still is an iffy sleeper. He still wakes up at least once a night or he wakes up for the day between 4-6am. It makes for a very exhausted mommy and daddy. Nap schedules are either non-existent or random. I’m trying hard to work on this but with our nanny’s schedule and two busy big kids its hard to make happen.

Likes:

Max love to eat all the food! He will pretty much try anything. He’s obsessed with his big siblings. If they are around he just wants to be with them and do everything they do. He doesn’t understand the concept that they are big and he is small. Thankfully they are just as obsessed with him.

Dislikes:

Max dislikes being held for to long or being confined to anything, the kid always has to be moving. Being told no. Taking naps longer than 45 minutes.

This kid is truly the happiest kid. His smile is infectious and to say we are madly in love with him would be an understatement.

Picture Drop below!

Thank you for sharing our wonderful journey with sweet Max!

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Food Friday: Cauliflower Nachos

I know what your thinking there…

“That sounds absolutely disgusting. Who would ever think to ruin nachos like that.” 

Gimme a chance here though because #nachosarelife and although a big ol pile of nachos are great sometimes, I love nachos and want to eat them more. These are healthier, tasty and super quick and easy to make!

Cauliflower Nachos: 

What you need: 

  • 1 head of cauliflower cut up, not diced ( I actually just buy a bag or two of cauliflower – so much easier!)
  • Low Sodium Taco Seasoning
  • Olive Oil or avocado oil
  • Your nachos fixings! The possibilities are endless people! I like: cheese, guac (duh), black olives, pickled jalapeños, and pico de gallo.

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Directions: 

  1. Preheat oven at 400 degrees and line a baking sheet or pie dish with parchment paper.
  2. Place all the cut up cauliflower in a large ziplock back. Add a couple drizzles of oil about 1/2 tablespoon and 1Tbs of taco seasoning. Close bag and shake making sure it gets spread easily.
  3. Place seasoned cauliflower in pan and bake for 10 – 15 minutes.
  4. Remove from oven add Cheese and any meat bake for another 5-7 minutes until cheese is just how you like it. I like my cheese super melted and a little crispy.
  5. Take out and add the rest of your toppings and boom – You got some healthy nachos!

These are a perfect addition to any Friday night family movie night. They feel like a huge cheat and are still pretty healthy since your omitting the greasy tortilla chips and replacing with veggies!

Let me know if you try them and what you think!

Happy Friday Mommas!

Selfish Mom Project: Part 2

Its that time of the year again where I find myself looking for a project.

A project on myself.

I feel like I need it. My creative side needs it, this blog needs it, and with summer coming I think other moms need it.  But definitely My family needs it.

Last year when I started the Selfish Mom Project I had no clue what to expect. I think a lot of people thought I just went and got massages and mani/pedi’s every day, but that was not at all what happened.

I found that over the course of those 60 days there were 4 major areas of my life that needed attention daily.

  • My Spiritual Well Being (prayer, meditation, time with God, visualization)
  • My Physical Well Being (my ability to move my body for at least 30 minutes a day and focus on mindful eating instead of stressed/overwhelmed eating)
  • My Emotional Well Being (journal therapy, personal development books, practicing gratitude daily, affirmations)
  • My Social Well Being (being a member of society, date nights, phone calls/text/emails to friends, mom’s nights)

These were the things that when I did them, made me feel good. Sure the bonus moments are fun (an SO needed!) but these were the pieces that when met (daily!) I was actually my best self.

I really do try and fit each of these things in daily but like anyone else I too miss the mark on occasion. May is always the toughest month for me. A million sports and kids end of the year activities, all the parties, this is where I always end of putting myself on the back burner for everyone else — insert evil mean resentful mom.

Already 1/2 way through the month I decided what a great opportunity to start a NEW Selfish Mom Project and really focus on hitting these four areas of importance and growth.

Thankfully I’ve got about 1,200 Mom’s joining me this time in our Selfish Mom Movement Group. I’m excited to see what they learn. How they feel. How they GROW in unexpected ways. Would love for you to join us <3

XOXO

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