Preschool Friendship…How Cute!

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I was observing Annora interact with her friends the other day. It was fun to see them get imaginative, play dress-up, get the Barbies out, sing crazy funny songs, etc. It was nice to see her as a friend as well. She was kind, gentle, and patient with her sweet little guest. I noticed that a conflict arose between the two when one of them didn’t want to play what they were currently playing. Instead of jumping in to help resolve the disturbance, I watched it play out. Boy am I glad I did! The two girls got upset with each other, turned their backs, and then started playing together again within a matter of seconds. It made me curious and I began researching preschool friendships (I know…who has time for that right?!?).

I was amazed how much girl friendships start off magically. I knew it wasn’t just my child and her friends but it is actually a stage girls go through. Annora can go up to another child and start talking and when she has to leave, she is eager to tell me she met a new “best” friend. What I have noticed is the magic of friendship really starts when girls are drawn to each other through imaginative play and common interests. My question is why does that leave us as we age? Fear of rejection maybe?

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Annora (and most preschoolers) has an enormous capacity to bond with others and she thrives on doing so. She forms attachments that have a great deal of importance and meaning to her. Almost like she ‘falls in love at first sight.’ Everything becomes right when her friend walks in the door. You can easily hear a high pitched squeal as a friend enters a room.

I have also noticed that girls and boys often stop playing together in preschool. Maybe this is Daddy directed though-LOL. Annora has become more drawn to her girlfriends and how often she can get together and play with them than playing outside with her little boy friends. I read somewhere that the shift into gender-exclusive play begins between ages of three and five for many children. When given a choice, Annora tends to be drawn towards art, dolls, and fantasy games, while her little boy friends often go to play with blocks or want to play with trucks and cars. With boys, the activity seems to be the main focus, but with girls, even as young as Annora, the relationship has become primary.

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It amazes me the difference of a relationship between the ages of 3 and 5, how vastly they change and the importance they have in Annora’s life. For now, we continue to play dress up, dolls, perform on stage and squeal when our “best” friends walk through the door… and I dread when those days cease to exist.

 

It’s a 10! Healthy Holiday Treats for the Classroom That will Make You Look Like Super-Mom!

When the holiday season rolls around, so do classroom holiday parties! Of course we have to provide our kids with some festive treats, but who says they can’t be healthy?

These healthy holiday treats are perfect for classroom parties, or even just snacks at home! They’re full of festive holiday spirit AND nutrition. We’ve also included a couple non-food treats. All the kids will love them!

  1. Strawberry Cheesecake Santas
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    CHEESECAKE STUFFED STRAWBERRY SANTAS
    Author: LAURA FUENTES – SUPERGLUEMOM
    Recipe type: TREAT
    Serves: 6-8
    INGREDIENTS
    • 16 ounce package fresh California strawberries, washed
    • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened at room temperature*
    • 4 tablespoons honey, or
    • 4 tablespoons powdered sugar
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • mini chocolate chips, to decorate
    INSTRUCTIONS
    1. On a cutting board, slice the stem off the strawberry (try to cut it as “flat” as possible since the Santa-berries will use that as a base).
    2. Cut the top third of the strawberry, this will be used as the “hat”.
    3. In a mixing bowl, beat cream cheese, honey or powdered sugar, and vanilla. Mixture will be thick so it’s best that the cream cheese really is at room temperature.
    4. Place creamed mixture inside a zip bag (or a piping bag) and snip one corner off. Make this first cut a bit larger since you are filling the “faces” first.
    5. Top strawberry base with cream mixture, top with the strawberry hats, and squeeze additional mixture on top of the hat.
    6. Next, snip the opposite corner or the bag (or change your piping tip) and make a smaller opening. Use this end to decorate “Santa’s” jacket buttons.
    7. Use mini chocolate chips or chocolate sprinkles to decorate Santa’s eyes. Serve immediately or store in the refrigerator up to 3 days.
    NOTES
    Once you create the Strawberry Santa’s, they can’t be frozen. When frozen strawberries thaw, their texture change.
    Can you use whipped cream? Yes, but make sure a) it’s very cold when you pipe it onto the strawberry, and b) you make small “hats” otherwise they will sink inside the whipped cream.
    Revised: you can also use whipped cream cheese and cheesecake filling (although I haven’t tried it but one of my readers has).

2. String Cheese Snowmen from NoBiggie

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3. Applesauce Rudolphs from the Melrose Family

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4. Simple Christmas Treat Cups from Simple as That

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5. Grinch Fruit Kabobs

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7. Snowman Juice Boxes by Pigskins and Pigtails

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8. Christmas Play-doh Favors from One Little Project

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9. Healthy Reindeer Treats from Hello Splendid

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9. The Grinch Grape Snack Bag by Kitchen Fun with my Three Sons

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10. Baybell Cheese Santa Bellies from Cute Food for Kids

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Top 5 Products/Ideas our Family Can’t Live Without

As a family of 4, I feel like we have a lot of stuff! As a means to declutter our home, I have found that there are 5 products our family could not live without. I am sure you can relate to this list of must haves!

#1 Baby wipes

I never bought baby wipes until I had children – now I can’t possibly imagine life without them. It doesn’t take long to appreciate just how many other uses wipes have. I seriously use these things for far more than wiping the toosh of my sweetie pie!

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#2 Skip Hop Moby Safety Bath Kneeler

This little whale invention has saved my knees from the hard bathroom tile floor while washing my babies and watching them play in the bathtub. I got

it as a gift before having my second child and it has been A-MAZ-ING! I get it for all new moms now.

https://www.amazon.com/Skip-Hop-Moby-Bath-Kneeler/dp/B005UND06I/ref=sr_1_1_a_it?ie=UTF8&qid=1479725101&sr=8-1&keywords=skip+hop+moby+bath+kneeler

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#3 A travel bag for restaurants or when visiting someone without kids

This works.

I pack a bag (and it changes occasionally) filled with busy activities our kids can do while out at a restaurant to entertain them. They have NO CLUE what is in the bag until we get to the restaurant. I don’t like giving them our phones or iPads to entertain them…just good ole activities. Sometimes I pack the bag with Barbies, Polly Pockets, coloring books, Play Doh, games, schoolwork, etc. but the idea is to have something to pull out continuously when one thing loses attention. I allow each of the girls to take 1 thing out at a time to play with. When they have finished and there is still time, they may pull out another item to play with. This has eliminated so many meltdowns and Ben and I trying to entertain the girls with a straw wrapper. And…imagine this…we can have an adult conversation and not feel like we are ignoring our kids. WIN, WIN!

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#4 The toddler step stool

This has been my saving grace time and time again! The girls like to help me in the kitchen with baking, cooking, washing their play dishes in the sink, etc. This step stool (which I actually had my dad make for me but it looks exactly like this one) has been such a blessing! Not only do they use it, but I also use it to get tough to reach items in the kitchen. The best part is they are able to lean forward, resting their knees on the back panel without feeling like they are going to topple over.

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https://www.amazon.com/Wood-Designs-WD21200-Step-Up-N-Wash-28/dp/B002SRFI1O/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1479726976&sr=8-3&keywords=toddler+step+stool+with+rails

#5 Shakeology

This may seem strange to have on a list but we don’t go a day without this super-food smoothie! My youngest daughter is a bit of a picky eater and doesn’t like her veggies or meats. Now that I give them Shakeology every day, I can chuck the multivitamin out the window and know that my girls are getting the nutrition equivalent to 7 salads, their daily dose of fruits and veggies AND it is safe for them to use (although not tested in young ones by Beachbody). My oldest has always struggled with tummy issues and using the restroom regularly and drinking Vegan Chocolate Shakeology has helped tremendously! The link to try it out is below along with a short, 3 minute video that gives you everything you’d like to know about this A-MAZ-ING product!

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Here is the link on how to purchase this awesomesauce:

http://www.beachbodycoach.com/esuite/home/marybeth4fitness#

Here is the video link:

 

 

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How to NOT Break the Bank for Thanksgiving

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One thing I have learned as a stay at home mommy is how to budget and save for the best bang for my buck. Holidays can be overwhelmingly expensive if you don’t plan things out. We aren’t hosting this year (and never have) but I came up with a list of important to-do’s to help cut the costs of hosting Thanksgiving in your home.

1. Create a meal plan

Get the idea in your mind of you want your table to look like when the guests arrive. Do you want mashed potatoes and gravy or sweet potatoes with brown sugar, carrots or green bean casserole, or all of the above? Once you have decided on what the “feel” of how everything should be and what the menu consists of, get to work writing it down. Remember, Uncle Joe does not need to go home with a HUGE plate of leftovers!

2. Set your priorities

Once the menu is complete, figure out what you feel is a must for the holiday gathering. It isn’t necessary to have 3 different desserts and 2 different potato options. Think of your guests and what they might enjoy and go from there.

3. Set a budget

If you don’t have an arm and a leg to spend then it is important to set a budget. A group of 10 people can eat a FANTASTIC Thanksgiving Day meal for just over $70…that’s right….$70! Set the budget and STICK TO IT once you are at the supermarket.

4. Shop your pantry

Before leaving to get the supplies at the store, double check your pantry to see if you have any substitutions or even ingredients that are required in your recipe.  It’s likely you already have at least a few of the ingredients on your list. No need to buy the same ingredient twice!

Congratulations! The planning stage is done and now you’re ready to hit the grocery store.

5. Leave the kids at home

I don’t know about you, but I simply cannot focus when I have my girls with me. When shopping for the meal and supplies, you want to stay focused (and stick to the budget). When the kiddos tag along, I usually end up spending more than I had anticipated.

6. Buy generic

Go generic where it makes sense but splurge on the stars of the meal. Generic tends to have the same ingredients as name brand items so don’t feel like you need the most expensive ingredient to make the recipe taste good. But if a generic brand only saves you 50 cents and could jeopardize your famous sausage stuffing recipe, it’s okay to stick with name brand.

7. Skip prepackaged meals

Making food from scratch is a MUST when cutting costs. By purchasing prepackaged foods, you’re not just paying for the ingredients. You’re paying for everything that went into making the meal and getting it to your local grocery store.

8. Save a tree

Take out Grandma’s fine china or dust off your own and get the real silverware ready. It will feel more “traditional” and classy anyways. Yeah you have a bit more work to do when everyone leaves BUT you’re saving trees, cutting costs, AND looking classy when hosting. Don’t have enough silverware and plates for everyone…that’s okay…borrow from a friend or neighbor!

 

Turkey just tastes better when it doesn’t cost you an arm and a leg. So make a game plan and stick to it. Keep the grocery list under control, and you’ll be well on your way to enjoying a delicious and regret-free (well, except for that third slice of pumpkin pie) Thanksgiving feast.

 

What to do When Your Child Suffers From Anxiety

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Ben and I went to Delise’s doctor yesterday to get a good handle on what is going on with our sweet 2 year old. She has been demonstrating a lot of aggression and her temper tantrums are almost too much to bear. We knew something wasn’t right so my husband and I took her to a developmental pediatrician and she underwent a series of tests and we underwent a booklet of questions that never seemed to end. In the end, we discovered that our child has severe anxiety. Honestly it was a HUGE sigh of relief. It sounds cruel to say something like that but when the terms autism, sensory processing disorder and ADHD are thrown at you, you start to get anxious yourself. Now we know and can move forward. I started doing my homework and this is what I came up with to help her get through the tough times.

1. The goal isn’t to eliminate anxiety, but to help your child manage it.
None of us wants to see our child unhappy, but the best way to help kids overcome anxiety isn’t to try to remove stressors that trigger it. It’s to help them learn to tolerate their anxiety and function as well as they can, even when they’re anxious. And as a byproduct of that, the anxiety will decrease or fall away over time.

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2. Don’t avoid things just because they make your child anxious.
Ben and I are so guilty of this. It is so hard to see your child get anxious and afraid. Helping our children avoid the things they are afraid of will make them feel better in the short term, but it reinforces the anxiety over the long run. If your child in an uncomfortable situation gets upset, starts to cry—not to be manipulative, but just because that’s how she feels—and you whisk her out of there, or remove the thing she’s afraid of, she’s learned that coping mechanism, and that cycle has the potential to repeat itself. Since researching about this, it is something we are going to have to be conscious of when faced with every situation.

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3. Express positive—but realistic—expectations.
Oh the Momma Bear and Papa Bear seethes out of us as we try to protect our children from anything that may “hurt” their feelings or cause their anxiety to spike. We can’t promise our child that her fears are unrealistic—that she won’t fail a test, that she’ll have fun ice skating, or that another child won’t laugh at her during show & tell. But you can express confidence that she’s going to be okay, she will be able to manage it, and that, as she faces her fears, the anxiety level will drop over time. This gives her confidence that your expectations are realistic, and that you’re not going to ask her to do something she can’t handle.

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4. Respect her feelings, but don’t empower them.
Validation doesn’t always mean agreement. So if your child is terrified about going to the doctor because she’s due for a shot, you don’t want to belittle her fears, but you also don’t want to amplify them.You want to listen and be empathetic, help her understand what she’s anxious about, and encourage her to feel that she can face her fears. The message you want to send is, “I know you’re scared, and that’s okay, and I’m here, and I’m going to help you get through this.”

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5. Don’t ask leading questions.
Encourage your child to talk about her feelings, but try not to ask leading questions— “Are you anxious about school? Are you worried about the going to the park?” To avoid feeding the cycle of anxiety, just ask open-ended questions: “How are you feeling about going to the park?”

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6. Don’t reinforce your child’s fears.
We don’t want to do is be saying, with our tone of voice or body language: “Maybe this is something that you should be afraid of.” Let’s say our child has had a negative experience with a dog. Next time she’s around a dog, we might be anxious about how she will respond, and we might unintentionally send a message that she should, indeed, be worried. I say “we” because I anticipate Delise’s anxiety every.single.day and tiptoe around it. Something I need desperately to work on.

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Healthy Thanksgiving Recipes that the Kids will LOVE!

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As a momma, I am ALWAYS trying to keep our meals as clean as possible. Making sure to get in all of the food groups can prove to be tricky at times and keeping the sweets to a minimum (especially since we have Halloween candy galore right now) can be almost impossible. I have spent several hours and countless experiments in the kitchen to “clean” it all up (by clean I mean nothing processed). Since Delise is our beautiful little one who has proven to be a bit tricky, we have tried to take out as much processed anything as possible (another topic for another day).

I thought it fitting that I blog about creating a healthy, unprocessed Thanksgiving meal that everyone will LOVE. The flavors are rich and the meal is as healthy as it can get. You won’t feel guilty stuffing yourself and then laying on the couch to “sleep it off” with these recipes.

Please enjoy and leave a comment in the comments below if you have a healthy recipe you would like to share.

Let’s start with dessert first!

I have 2 to share with you:

  1. Baked Pecan and Sweet Potato Pie

Total Time: 52 min.
Prep Time: 20 min.
Cooking Time: 32 min.
Yield: 12 servings

Ingredients:
1 cup quick-cooking old-fashioned oats
1 cup whole wheat flour
¼ cup ground raw almonds
1 Tbsp. + ¼ cup pure maple syrup (or raw honey), divided use
½ tsp. sea salt, divided use
3 Tbsp. + ¼ cup extra-virgin organic coconut oil
1 Tbsp. water
1½ cups raw pecan halves, divided use
6 large medjool dates, coarsely chopped
1 large egg white
1 large sweet potato, baked, skin removed, mashed
¼ tsp. ground ginger

Preparation:
1. Preheat oven to 425° F.
2. Combine oats, flour, almonds, 1 Tbsp. maple syrup, and ¼ tsp. salt in a medium mixing bowl; mix well.
3. Add 3 Tbsp. oil to oat mixture; mix well. If needed, add water to hold mixture together.
4. Press into a 9-inch pie pan. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes, or until light brown.
5. Reduce oven temperature to 350° F.
6. Place 1 cup pecans in a food processor; pulse until well ground.
7. Add dates, remaining ¼ cup maple syrup, remaining ¼ tsp. salt, remaining ¼ cup oil, egg white, sweet potato, and ginger; pulse until well blended.
8. Pour pecan mixture into cooled crust. Top with remaining ½ cup pecan halves.
9. Bake for 20 to 22 minutes, or until firm. Serve warm, or cool pie on wire rack.

Tip:
• This pie is extremely rich, so a serving size is small than a regular slice of pie.
• For a vegan version eliminate egg white. This pie will be more dense, so it is best served warm, or cold (out of the refrigerator).

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2. Pumpkin Coconut Custard

Total Time: 1 hour
Prep Time: 10 min.
Cooking Time: 50 min.
Yield: 8 servings

Ingredients:
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
½ tsp. ground ginger
¼ tsp. ground nutmeg
½ tsp. fine sea salt
4 large eggs, beaten
½ cup pure maple syrup (or raw honey)
½ tsp. pure coconut extract
1 (15-oz.) can pumpkin puree
¾ cup canned coconut milk
¾ cup unsweetened almond milk

Preparation:
1. Preheat oven to 300° F.
2. Combine cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and salt in a small bowl; mix well. Set aside.
3. Combine eggs, maple syrup, and extract in a large bowl; whisk to blend.
4. Add spice mixture and pumpkin.
5. Gradually add coconut milk and almond milk; whisk to blend.
6. Pour mixture evenly into eight 6-oz. custard cups. Place cups in 13×9-inch baking pan; fill pan with 1-inch hot water.
7. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes, or until knife inserted in custard halfway between center and edge of ramekin comes out almost clean. Cool completely on wire rack. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

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My FAVORITE Appetizer!

Lemon Garlic Shrimp

Total Time: 20 Minutes

Prep Time: 10 Minutes

Cooking Time: 10 Minutes

Ingredients:

3 tablespoons minced garlic

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1/4 cup lemon juice

1/4 cup minced fresh parsley

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1 1/4 pounds cooked shrimp (medium)

Preparation:

Place garlic and oil in a small skillet and cook over medium heat until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add lemon juice, parsley, salt and pepper. Toss with shrimp in a large bowl. Chill until ready to serve.

  • Make Ahead Tip: Cover and refrigerate for up to 2 hours.

 

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My FAVORITE Side Dish!

Creamy Mashed Cauliflower

Total Time: 45 Minutes

Prep Time: 15 Minutes

Cooking Time: 30 Minutes

Yield:

Ingredients:

8 cups bite-size cauliflower florets (about 1 head)

4 cloves garlic, crushed and peeled

1/3 cup nonfat buttermilk (see Tip)

4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided

1 teaspoon butter

1/2 teaspoon salt

Freshly ground pepper to taste

Snipped fresh chives for garnish

Preparation:

  1. Place cauliflower florets and garlic in a steamer basket over boiling water, cover and steam until very tender, 12 to 15 minutes. (Alternatively, place florets and garlic in a microwave-safe bowl with 1/4 cup water, cover and microwave on High for 3 to 5 minutes.)
  2. Place the cooked cauliflower and garlic in a food processor. Add buttermilk, 2 teaspoons oil, butter, salt and pepper; pulse several times, then process until smooth and creamy. Transfer to a serving bowl. Drizzle with the remaining 2 teaspoons oil and garnish with chives, if desired. Serve hot.
  • Tip: No buttermilk? You can use buttermilk powder prepared according to package directions. Or make “sour milk”: mix 1 tablespoon lemon juice or vinegar to 1 cup milk.

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I would LOVE to share a turkey recipe but, quite frankly, my turkey always ends up dry. If you have a turkey recipe you would like to share, please post it in the comments below!

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Best Fall/Thanksgiving Crafts to do With Your Preschooler & Toddler!

I just can’t help it…the holidays near and I get all geeked up about crafts and art projects. I did a little Pinterest investigation and found my Top 10 crafts that Annora, Delise (and even Daddy) and I plan to conquer! We may not get to all of them but at least we have several options. Whenever I choose crafts to do with the girls, I always look for something that incorporates some type of learning. You will see that these Top 10 will not only be FUN, but educational as well!

You can also follow me on Pinterest at: https://www.pinterest.com/mommy2be81/

  1. Turkey Time Directed Drawing

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2. Fall Leaf Painting

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3. Gratitude Turkey Craft

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4. Turkey Color Matching Craft

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5. Feather Letter Activity: Creating Your Name

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6. Lego Stamped Indian Corn

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7. Hand-print Turkey Poem

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8. Turkey Tissue Paper By Number

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9. Invitation to Create Turkey Play Dough

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10. Pattern Block Turkey

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The myths of the Stay-at-Home Mommy!

What happened to me?!?

I went shopping at the mall for the first time since I had a child and the sales associate said something that horrified me.
He asked “What do you do for a living?”
Smiling I said “I’m a stay at home mom” I should have said I’m a domestic engineer because that is more accurate.
“Oh. you don’t work then. Your lucky. Sit around the house all day and do nothing. You have a life of leisure and relax all day.”
I was livid! It is baffling the crazy stereotype of the modern day homemaker. It is because of these myths that we get little respect in society. Today I hope to set the record straight and educate the public.

Here is a list of 10 myths about stay at home moms debunked!

1 – We stay home all day. The term “Stay-At-Home-Mom” indicates all we do is “stay at home,” and that is far from the truth.

2 – We are lazy! Choosing to be a mom who stays at home deserves respect and admiration.

3 – We must be bored all day! Being a stay-at-home mom is challenging in all the right ways, and we are not “bored” by being a mom.

4 – We just don’t want to work. Many stay-at-home moms do work through volunteer and paid positions; we just do it from our homes around the family schedule.

5 – We must feel unfulfilled. Being a stay-at-home mom does not leave us “unfulfilled or feeling cheated out of a real career” — I walked away from a “real career” by choice.

6 – We don’t have any dreams. All moms have dreams and aspirations, and each should be celebrated for her gifts and talents.

7 – We don’t approve of working moms. Stay-at-home moms do not harbor animosity toward moms who choose to, or must, work outside the home — we actually like to support them!

8 – We regret leaving our careers behind. I do not regret leaving my career. I am not “missing out” or hindering my own personal growth. … I have learned much about life by being a stay-at-home mom.

9 – Building a strong legacy is more important to me than building a strong career; Hubby and I have made certain lifestyle choices that allow us to manage on one income — we are blessed.

10 – We have nothing to offer the working mom. Leaving the voice of a stay-at-home mom out of media conversations is detrimental to all moms. If you would care to interview a stay-at-home mom about her view of life, you might find she has much to offer to the conversations you are having.

Instead, here is what we do daily…

We work many jobs throughout the day. We are nurses, chauffeurs, chefs, teachers, playmates, housekeepers, laundry attendants, accountants, referees and babysitters all rolled into one. The stereotype of a woman sitting at home watching soap operas while eating bon-bons is a distant reality for the stay-at-home mom.

In fact, many stay-at-home moms aren’t home much at all because we’re running kids all over town to school, soccer practice, dance lessons and doctor’s appointments, plus attending school meetings, grocery shopping and running other errands. “Home” is only part of our title in name only.

And when we are at home, we’re doing everything to keep our houses running smoothly, including managing the household’s budget (not me though), taking care of the house and planning the family meals (my LEAST favorite thing to do!). Most importantly, we’re taking care of the kids and their every need, especially when they’re younger.

Many people don’t view a stay-at-home mom’s work as work because we don’t receive a paycheck for the 24 hours a day, 7 days a week we’re on duty. We don’t get a pay raise or 401K plans. There are no vacation or sick days accumulated.

While some may argue that a stay-at-home mom doesn’t contribute to the family, they’re strictly thinking about a financial contribution in the form of a paycheck. But as a 2010 report from salary.com shows, a stay-at-home mom would earn $117,856 a year for all the jobs she performs if she were paid. Moms in Canada would earn $132,288. The salary estimates continue to rise with each year.

Today’s stay-at-home mom is not your Leave it to Beaver image of a woman who stays home vacuuming the carpets in her long dresses and pearls while waiting on her children to come home from school. While some stay-at-home moms maintain their title all the way until the kids graduate high school and leave the house, others go back to the workforce, start their own businesses or find new ways to stay at home while earning an income…I know I have.

 

Play with a Purpose

“Momma, what can I have my chef make you from the kitchen?” Annora LOUDLY announces.

“Um, what do you have?” I reply.

“Well, it’s all healthy food. We have salad, oranges, strawberries, chicken noodle soup, oatmeal, and key lime pie,” she firmly states.

“Key lime pie is not a healthy food option.”

She replies with, “Well it has limes in it and limes are healthy.”

This kid…..

It is too often I am so excited for the next stage of her life that I rush her out of her current stage. Academic rigor was the only thing on my mind at the beginning of this school year. As I have seen Annora mature into a “bigger” little girl, I am slightly sad that she is weaning her imaginative side a bit. Now I see her teaching her little sister how to play using her imagination only to leave her sister and do something different, more concrete.

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It is days like Tuesday, November 1st, 2016 that will forever stick in my mind. It was an absolute GORGEOUS day out nearing 80 degrees. The sun was shining and the clouds were HUGE and fluffy in the blue sky. Annora begged me to wear her bathing suit one last time before the winter set in and I reluctantly ok’d it. I sat back and watched as my two beautiful little girls used their imagination and played for 2 solid hours…TOGETHER! They worked together (not something I see too often with the two of them) nonstop. It allowed me to sit back and appreciate all that they are, all that they are becoming and it allowed me to breath in what they are destined to become.

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I have always been extremely close with my sister and it has saddened me that Annora and Delise have a difficult time getting along. It seems that I am always putting out a fire and taking those teachable moments to explain to them how important it is they get along with one another and how important it is that they become close sisters. Annora is just getting to the age that she understands what I am saying but when the little sister comes in and destroys her Frozen ice castle, all words I have shed on her that day seem to be lost as she sheds her frustration on her sister.

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November 1st is when I saw my teachable moments come in to play. I saw them working together, I saw them working through their frustrations with one another and I saw them come out the other end without mommy having to get involved. The fact that I was able to witness them playing for 2 hours and sit and enjoy the weather along with their play was magnificent. Their play had a purpose that day. Their play was teaching them how to get along, muster through the difference of opinions and come out the other end with a better relationship. Now if only us adults could get that same concept down pat…LOL

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