Friday, April 11, 2014

On Saying No

This is a topic I have been thinking about more and more lately.  Between work obligations, family, travel and just the weekly grind, I find myself wanting and needing to say "no" to more things.  No to my co-workers for an after work happy hour.  No to a friend's birthday dinner out on a weeknight.  Or any night, really.

As a working Mom, my life consists of work and family.  I am away from H so much doing the day, that I feel like my free time should be dedicated to her and The Husband.  And I want to dedicate that time to them.  Friday Happy Hour in my backyard with my wonderful husband and daughter is way better than most downtown happy hours I have attended.  I do book club once a month on a week night, and I have occasional girls weekends away, but I really enjoy time with my family of 3 more than anything.  And I am ok with that.

The problem lies in that I sometimes feel obligated to do things, when really I want to say, "no."  I am pretty good with saying no to non-important stuff.  That doesn't really bother me.  I mostly feel bad when I say no to something that concerns a good friend.  Like I should want to do that thing with them or for them, but I really just don't.  I want to go home and hang out with my family.  I want that rare free weekend to be mine, all mine.

I like to think of myself as a pretty good friend.  I don't have a lot of them, I have found that maintaining friendships later in life is difficult.  I don't live in the same city I went to school in or grew up in.  I am not close with most of my college friends, and only keep in touch with a few of them.  People move away, people are busy, people are wrapped up in their own life.  But I try to be a good communicator, and think I do a pretty good job of calling people (the 2+ hours a day I spend commuting really help with this), sending cards, and making an effort to visit when I can.  I hope that the friends I have think of me like this, and know that I love them and want to be a part of their lives.  Even if I forget their birthday.  Which I totally do and I am up front with that.  Please forgive me, because I promise to be your friend 365 days a year, not just on your birthday.

The Husband and I are both really low on the emotion scale.  We are pretty even tempered, not much bothers me, I don't get my feelings hurt that often.  So, for example, if I were having a birthday dinner and invited friends, I would not care one bit if someone didn't come.  But that is probably a bad example, because I would never have a dinner because I don't like to ask people do to anything for me.  But you get the point.

But I realize that other people are not that way.  So if I can't make it to a good friend's happy hour, going away party, shower, wedding, whatever, is it hurting their feelings?  Or are people understanding that it is hard to fit it all in, and do they know that I do care about them, I just care about me a little bit more?

I'm not so sure.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Lunches + a Few Dinners

A post on a working moms message board I read got me thinking.  I plan on doing a post about food prep/feeding/schedule/cooking soon.  I think its interesting to get a perspective on how different people handle the task of meal prep/healthy eating.  Plus, I am nosy and I assume you are too.

Onto the last few weeks:

snap peas + dried cherries + strawberries + pizza

refried beans + orange (she loves to peel these herself) + chicken quesadilla + bunny cookies

yogurt + berries + angel hair pasta and sauce + pepperoni + string cheese (not pictured)

ravioli + turkey hot dog + grapes and raspberries with shredded coconut + orange

pizza (can you tell she often requests pizza??)+ fruit snacks + orange + snap peas

These pizzas are super easy to make - just a sandwich round, organic ragu (we always keep this around and sometimes I even mix carrot puree into it - shhhhhhh), cheese and turkey pepperoni.  Microwave for 20 seconds to melt everything.  Easy, not greasy and somewhat balanced.

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And for dinner, she usually has a deconstructed version of what we are eating.  We tend to eat things a little spicy, so I usually set aside some of the ingredients and make her a little plate before I add spice and finish everything.  Also worth noting, she likes to have a snack when she gets home from school at 5 (usually fruit or crackers and cheese) so her dinner portions are not huge.

This night we had enchiladas, but they were kind of spicy.  So she had the same beans we had + quesadilla + some chicken I cooked on Sunday + cheese + berries.

This night we had turkey tacos, but hard shell tacos are hard for her to eat.  So she had some ground turkey + black beans and corn + a few chips + strawberries.  She was not a fan of the black beans and corn, but did try it.

I love these divided plates, it helps me make sure I am putting a variety of foods and food groups into her meal.  I think they are Nuby brand?

Friday, April 4, 2014

New Blog Title?

I am in the mood for a new blog design, and I think I need a new title as well.  Although I don't plan on changing the domain, I do think that my blog has evolved past nursery art.  I'm not quite sure what to call the content though?

Things I'm thinking.......

A Mom That Works  ::main title::

former crafter turned random advice giver ::or::

because done is better than perfect

Thoughts?  Want to tell me what my blog is about??

Friday, March 28, 2014

Conversations with H

Me and The Husband are probably the only ones that think these are funny, but at not even 2.5 yet, I can't believe some of the stuff she comes up with

Me: (wearing yoga pants and a striped T) Hadley, I'm going to the store, you are going to stay here with your Dad while I get some groceries.
H: You going shopping in your pajamas?

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Me: (on the way home from school, talking about our day) Baby, did you like the squeeze yogurt I put in your lunch today?
H: Yes, Madden had one too.  But not Abigail
Me: What did Abby have?
H: Broccoli
Me:  That's nice, we are having broccoli with dinner tonight too.  (We were having stir fry)
H: I want to go out to eat.

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Yesterday at gymnastics
Me:  Hadley, if you can't be a good listener, you are going to have to go sit and take a time out.  We need to listen to our teacher.
H:  (walks to corner of gym, and sits down) Go away, I am in time out.  I am not being a good listener!
Me: (waits a bit) Hadley, if you can listen, you can get out of time out.  Let's go back and join our friends.
H:  No!  Go over there, I am still in time out!

repeat several times, as parents in the waiting area laugh at me and comment that I have a strong willed one on my hands.  Ya think?

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Lunch Rut

For my lunch this week, I made a big pot of chicken noodle soup.  I used a soup starter kit and added extra frozen mixed veggies and chicken.  I love soup, but The Husband doesn't consider it a meal so it makes a good lunch option for me.  Combined with sliced apples and a string cheese, it makes a great warm lunch in my cold office.

For H, I kind of feel like I am in a lunch rut.  I was browsing the lunch boxes from 100 Day of Real Food, and I was feeling kind of bad about her lunches not being more "whole food."  I struggle with balancing feeding her good food, what she will eat, and the amount of time that I have to source and prepare food.  Following sites like the Food Babe and 100 Days of Real Food is inspiring, but I lack the time and energy it takes to make my own pizza dough from whole wheat flour.  Oh, and I like cheeseburgers and fries a lot.

I am doing my best to provide her with healthy options, but still struggle with getting enough veggies into her.  Maybe I need to try green smoothies?  Although I don't really see myself having time to do that during the week, so maybe just on the weekends.  But is that even doing anything?

ritz crackers + cheese + turkey + raspberries + greek yogurt

pizza with turkey peperoni + snap peas + dried cherries + strawberries

wheat wrap with cheese and turkey + cherries and chocolate chips + gold fish + strawberries and grapes

turkey meatball + orange + cheese pizza + no bake energy ball

turkey and cheese quesadilla + energy ball + pretzels + orange

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Teacher Gift

Last month H moved classes into a late 2's early 3's class.  She got to keep the same teacher, which is great because H loves her, and be with some of the older kids.  I like that she is with the older kids, I feel like it helps her learn more and have to go up to their level.

I made this sign for her teacher as a little thank you gift for being so great.  Hey, I'm not above bribing the teacher to like my kids the best!  Ha!

Monday, March 24, 2014

Scenes from our girls weekend

In an effort to be a more regular blogger, I thought I would try out a Monday post with scenes from our weekend, inspired by Natalie.

B was out of town this weekend golfing with the guys, so it was just me and H for a girls weekend.  We are usually super busy on weekends and out of town, so it was nice to not have much to do.

Saturday morning we met friends at RADD park.  If you are local and haven't been, you must.  We were there for 2 1/2 hours, she loves it!  Then we had a Mommy/Daughter lunch at Zoe's Kitchen.

H slept till 8 both mornings, and it was nice to catch up on some sleep myself.  Breakfast on the couch while watching Cinderella happened both mornings.

We had a great weekend together, just the 2 of us.  She is such an easy kid and besides never wanting to get dressed in the morning, she rarely gets upset.  I feel so blessed to have her and B as my little family.  We have such a great balance as parents and a nice rhythm going on.  She is so funny, with a real sense of humor and comedic timing.  She gets along well with other kids, and is enjoying getting to play outside with our neighbors now that the weather is getting nicer.  She prefers the older kids in the neighborhood, which is funny.  She wants to play with the six year old girl next door, not her 2 and 4 year old siblings :)