If there is one thing working moms struggle with each and every day, it’s setting boundaries. Knowing when and how to say “no,” is exceptionally challenging when you’re quite comfortable moving at the speed of light and wearing many hats at once. Setting boundaries is pivotal to avoid burn out, and most working moms (myself included!) don’t realize we’ve over-committed until we hit the wall. Hard. We’re so used to being on the go with a never-ending to do list, that saying “yes” or “I’ll just do it myself” comes naturally to us.
When Kim Buck from Are You Willing to Be Seen? reached out to me and asked if I’d read her most recent book, The Thriving Woman’s Guide to Setting Boundaries, I immediately accepted. As you know, I don’t review too many items these days, but a book on setting boundaries and thriving as a woman? That certainly seemed like something I needed to read. Kim’s book did not disappoint. She clearly defines what a boundary is, why setting boundaries is important, and the energy behind our tendencies as women in our professional and personal relationships.
I love, love, love how she describes our personal boundaries in simple, crystal clear visuals. I’ve started to think of my boundaries as my purse, and what I put in my purse is my choice. Other people can’t force items into my purse, nor can they take items away. I have a right to organize my purse any way I choose and so does everyone else in my life. I’m the only one responsible for carrying my purse, and if it’s heavy, it’s up to me to make the change that makes it more bearable. Realizing that I need to protect my boundaries just like I do the contents of my purse was a “light bulb” moment for me. As a self-professed workaholic and overachiever, giving value and definition to my personal boundaries was a huge stress reliever. I felt validated.
If you’re struggling with daily life, feel burnt out and frustrated at the world around you, it’s time to pick up Kim’s book, The Thriving Woman’s Guide to Setting Boundaries. It’s a refreshing, quick read that will help you release the guilt that we place on ourselves when we take on too much. It will help you understand that setting boundaries means paving the way to your very best you, and when you don’t set boundaries, no one wins. Reclaim yourself, your life and thrive with a new-found understanding that cradles your well-being so that you can truly excel in a fulfilled life.
You can also check out other books by Kim Buck from The Thriving Woman’s Guide to™ series.
KatyFest 2015 #MySummerStaycation
Let’s face it. I haven’t been on a REAL vacation in what…a decade? Life demands it, at least for now. But one thing I do plan regularly is my annual KatyFest. If you’ve been following me for awhile, you’ve run into KatyFest at least once or twice. Every year I take a week to myself. I don’t go anywhere – I stay put, keep the kids in school, keep appointments to a minimum and catch up. I’m sure that doesn’t sound like much of a vacation, but to me, it’s heaven. This year, I celebrated #MySummerStaycation as part of KatyFest2015 and with the help of my pals at ProFlowers. You may remember them from a recent post about starting fresh as a family in this new season of my life as a single mom. #LoveGrowsHere
Why am I writing this post?
To remind you that it’s important to schedule time for yourself.
It’s important for me to schedule time for myself! #MySummerStaycation gave me the opportunity to clear my head, find some peace of mind and just rest in silence. ProFlowers sent me this awesomely amazing little terrarium thingy (Formal name: Hanging Paradise Terrarium), which was the perfect solo project for a peaceful afternoon. Something about creating a little piece of earth is supremely calming. Now when I look at my hanging terrarium (which are the ONLY plants I can keep alive!), I am reminded to breathe and rest.
1. Add charcoal. 2. Add sphagnum moss. 3. Add soil. 4. Arrange plants in soil. 5. Add decorate rocks and moss. 6. Gently water. 7. Keep in medium-high light (no direct sun) at room temperature.
Who knows when my next opportunity to actually visit Paradise will be, but until then, #MySummerStaycation will remain in the form of one perfect week of KatyFest hermit time. How do you recharge and refresh?
10 Sorting Games for Your Math-Loving Child – Sorting Bears by Eureka
When J’s teacher told me he really enjoys math and that sorting toys would be a great idea for Christmas, I ran straight over to Amazon Prime and began the hunt for the perfect toy. I bought about a million puzzles, little projects and a whole slew of other games. But none so far can compare to these bad boys:
Before I get started, here is my only CON for this toy. These bears are a relatively good size and really hard, so they don’t scream “Put me in your mouth!” But, as all mothers know, this means nada. So…while they are awesome, this is a toy that requires some observation on the parent’s part. This is not the toy to busy your kid with while you hop in the shower or run the vacuum.
Now, the good stuff.
The opportunities are endless for free play with these little dudes. Here are the 10 sorting games I play with the boys (and they then play with each other – which is super cute):
1. What color is this? I have them identify the color and then place the bear in its matching cup.
2. Here are 3 bears (different colors). I have them identify each color and count them back to me as they place it in its matching cup.
3. Pick a “red” bear and give it to Mommy. I line up all of the bears (or even dump them in a big pile) and give them a color to pick out and give to me. This can be taken up a notch for more advanced kiddos, by asking them to give you a certain number of bears of certain colors.
4. Count our colors. We separate the bears into piles of their colors and then count them together back into the cups.
5. Clean up the bears. Seriously, they love this one. It’s like 52 pick up with animals instead of cards.
6. Line up your colors. Everybody loves to build a mini army of color-coordinated bear squadrons.
7. Stack and unstack the cups. Tower! When the bears get old, I swap to the cups. Some simple towers always bring a smile.
8. Flip cups – Bears on top. Instead of lining up the bears or grouping them in piles, we switch it up by using the upside down cups as platforms for whatever game we are playing.
9. Color patterns – What’s next? I set up simple patterns and ask them to pick the bear that fits next.
10. Give me “7” bears and count. I give them a number of bears that I want and they get to pick what colors they give back to get to that number.
One final twist that they love…turn the tables! They’re in control and get to ask me the questions. They LOVE to ask “Mommy, what’s this?” or order me to “give them a red bear.” Let them play teacher for a bit and you’ll keep them busy for hours!
Welcome to the New Chaos & Kiddos! Blogger to WordPress Transfer by Blogelina
It’s here! I made the leap!! Today marks the first official day of the new Chaos & Kiddos. I’ve migrated from Blogger to WordPress and I couldn’t be more excited. I loved Blogger and had my little workflow down, but truth be told, I am an HTML nightmare, and as my blog began to grow, so did my need to integrate additional programming and functionality. I quickly became overwhelmed with how to insert the appropriate HTML in the appropriate places. I needed the easy button. The volume of available WordPress plugins and easy-to-use formatting options had captivated my interest some time ago, so I decided to make a change. And then it hit me. How in the heck do I do this?
It was time to be very honest with myself. Up until this point, beyond tiny things, like buying my domain URL (If you haven’t done this, read 3 Mistakes I Made When I Started My Blog!), I hadn’t spent money on my blog. Mainly, because I hadn’t really, truly set up the monetizing strategy platform that I wanted yet. I realized that I’ve been beyond blessed to have had such great blogging success in a brief 7 months of existence, and it was time to treat this puppy like the real deal. It was time to outsource. For a big move like this, I wanted to be sure my content carried over, my image links didn’t break, and that all of the hard work of the last 7 months wasn’t completely lost when I switched platforms. I knew I had neither the knowledge nor the time to commit to this task, so when Blogelina was suggested to me, I know exactly what I needed to do.
Blogelina offers a wealth of great information and resources on a constant basis, and I’m always finding new tips and tricks on their blog. It’s very clear that they know what they’re doing. Whether you’re just a reader that keeps up with their recent posts, a seeker of quality takeaway resources for your blog , or looking for help taking your blog to the next level, there’s something for everyone. I was of course delighted to see the “Stress-Free Blogger-to-WordPress Transfer Package,” and knew I was in the right spot. And while I was at it, I opted for the Blog Makeover as well. If we’re going to do this, do it right!
I could not be happier with the new blog. I love the new style and the absolutely mind-blowing plugins I have already been able to put into play so quickly with WordPress, but even more satisfying is knowing that all of my content is there, all of my images are present, and any back links or pins or anything other linked items will properly redirect to our new home. I know that if I had done this by myself, it would have been an absolutely nightmare and the source of countless panic attacks. I am so relieved that it is complete and so excited for what this means for the future of Chaos & Kiddos.
I highly recommend the folks at Blogelina. They were timely, personable and patient. I had about a million questions, and they provided appropriate resources and friendly communication whenever I needed it. I am thoroughly satisfied with their work and my own sister already plans to use them to migrate her blog at the end of the summer. I always talk about how delegation is key to the success of a small business owner, especially one with a family. You need to know when you’re not the best man for the job, and I was definitely not the best man for this job. Choosing to invest a small bit of money for the promise of a seamless transition, more time with my family and less headache…worth every, single penny. Well done, Blogelina! And thank you!
Click on the pictures and links below if you want to give Blogelina a whirl! I promise – you’ll be so glad that you did!
Total Blogger to WordPress Transfer Package