Category Archives: Parenting Advice

Wake Up, Your Baby is Crying.

wake up every night

An article in the New York Times reported of a study by MindLab to determine the top ten most frequent reasons men and women awaken from their sleep.  Are you surprised to hear that the sound most likely to wake a woman from sleeping is a crying baby, regardless of whether the female subject had a child of her own?

 The top ten sounds a man is most likely to waken to are car alarms, howling winds, buzzing flies, snoring, noise from drains, crickets chirping, sirens, ticking clocks, construction sounds, and a dripping tap.
“Crying baby” didn’t even make the list.

And that’s not all, folks. An article in the Washington Post reported that, according to a study done by the University of Michigan, women are 2.5 times more likely to wake from sleep to care for others.

Is it not just me, or is this not even remotely surprising? The lead researcher on the study by the University of Michigan, Sarah Burgard, commented, “Obviously, the child-rearing responsibilities may be slanted at first due to breast-feeding, then the responsibilities are never renegotiated.”

I know some of you will disagree with the study completely. Some of you probably would have to be reminded that you even have children while you are sleeping. I would have assumed, pre-motherhood, that this would be true of me. I’m the world’s most crabby person when woken–particularly when woken repeatedly–and I tend to get downright nasty if you don’t shut off your flipping stupid alarm right this second

Approximately one day postpartum with my first child, I become an entirely different person in my sleep. The softest baby moan rouses me from the deepest, most loveliest sleep. To this day, my two year old rarely sleeps through the night, and I am the one to take her to the potty many times over, give her a sippy, *I command you not to judge me* and comfort her when scared. The other day my husband went to bed with a migraine. I woke up no less than half a dozen times with Abigail, taking her potty and soothing her back to sleep over and over.
{Mental note: find out about sleep training.}
 Most nights I don’t mind, as I’m a stay at home mom and my husband leaves the house before dawn. Half a dozen times seemed like a bit much, however, and I was exhausted the next day.

The next night my husband was feeling better after sleeping an entire day and a half. I commented that as he had slept the past 36 hours, it was his turn to take care of Abigail during the night. Any guesses as to how many times she woke up?
Zero.
I think that’s a first since potty training.
Go figure. 

Who takes care of waking children in your home? Do you take turns, or is it all up to you?

Help: Threats or Consequences??

Sibling Rivalry - click for source

I need your help.

It’s week three of the summer (seriously?? just the third week?!) and I’m out of consequences for misbehaving kids. I prefer consequences that fit the crime or at the very least, that take effect immediately.

As of late, I’ve lapsed into staring blankly at the misbehaving child, wracking my brain for a punishment. I come up with nothing and out pops some lame threat like, “Stop doing that or we won’t go to the pool next week.” It stops the behavior momentarily. It doesn’t do anything to change the behavior.

And worse, I forget. Or the kids can “earn” the lost privilege back.
(Of course, they lose it and earn it about seventeen times in the course of the week.) 
It’s pretty pathetic.
It’s also pretty ineffective.

So, I ask you:
What’s your preferred punishment for older and younger children?
What’s the most creative punishment you’ve given?

Introducing: MOMentity {Giveaway!}

Awhile back, Nicole from My Everything Else did a guest post on my blog called “How to Find Your Mommy Mojo.” She is so passionate about finding yourself within motherhood that she has created a new site that I’m so excited about called “MOMentity.” The site features six Mommy Resolutions to help you become a Mother of Magnitude.

MOMentity

Today she had an official launch party, which I was lucky enough to be a part of. Watch the video of the party here. You’ll want to do this because she is giving away some fabulous prizes. She has a jewelry line with hand stamped jewelry featuring the MOMentity resolutions; my favorite is stamped with the words “I Am Valuable.” She’ll be giving away two necklaces, and I’m giving away an FHE Made Easy packet. You just need to watch the video to grab the secret words to comment on her post here!

There will also be plenty more giveaways throughout the month on her blog, as well as regular articles on finding happiness in motherhood. If you struggle, as I do, to find joy in being a mommy each day, this is definitely a site you’re going to want to keep an eye on. MOMentity also has a Facebook page, a Google+ page, and you can follow her on Twitter as well!

Sick in the Summer

You know what’s unfair?
Being sick in the summer.
Kind of makes life suck. Especially when you’re the mom. Of four.

Side note: I have occasional moments when I think, “Aw, baby! Another baby wouldn’t be so bad…” Then I do the math. That’s five, people. Five kids. No way. Uh uh. Not now, anyway. Not in this house. Babies are like a gateway drug… to kids. 

Anyway. Nothing like being sick to realize how needy your kids are.

Every
second
of
the
day.

They need you.

They need you to eat.
They need you to pee.
They need you to poop.
(This is fact, people. I can’t make this up.)
They need you to listen when they need to tattle.
They need you to kiss their owies.

Even when doing so is going to make them sick and miserable. You have to do it. They won’t let you not do it, so you kiss them and cringe, knowing how miserable they will make you in the coming days.

Then they need to eat again.
Which only leads to more pee.
And more poop.
All of which
they need you for.

My husband works a zillion hours a week (that’s an actual calculatable figure, people). Once he gets sick he goes down hard. And while the people at work tend to get pretty upset that he is home sick, he gets to stay home and sleep.

When I get sick, I’m still making breakfast and lunch and usually dinner. (Though Gary did do it last night, 5 points for him!) When I get sick, I still am wiping bums and holding children and all those other crappy things you do 100 times a day without thinking about it until you’re sick.

So… I’m just a wee bit sick. How are you?

How to Find your Mommy Mojo {Guest Post}

How to Find Your Mommy Mojo

Okay, you have got to meet the lovely, talented, amazing Nicole from My Everything Else. She is such a talented writer, she even writes for KSL and other fabulous news outlets. I had such a fun time guest posting on her blog, and she was lovely enough to return the favor. I just said “lovely” twice about the same person, so now you know it’s true! I am inspired by this post because my Mommy Mojo has been in hiding this past… month. Year? Well it doesn’t matter, because Nicole is here to save the day. For real.

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Lost your Mommy Mojo? Three Tips to Get It Back

I am so excited to join you today! It’s a privileged to be a part of Confessions of a Slacker Mom!  Last week Sarah was my lovely guest over at My Everything Else. (Do I dare admit that her post encouraged me to stop slacking?) Her ideas inspired a toddler-friendly Learning Cupboard for my twin toddlers! Take a peek…

I’m Nicole, from My Everything Else. I’m a mommy to four (#3 & #4 are identical twins), writer and consultant. My blog used to be about learning to juggle the new twins in addition to everything else. I quickly learned that life is much more about the Everything Else.

But recently those little twinners have thrown me into a Mommy-Midlife-Crisis. It’s real and it’s serious.

They went from two naps a day to just one. Just. One. Nap. It cannot be.

I was a mess! I needed those nap times more than I needed my daily dose of Diet Dr Pepper.

Much of my life exists through my laptop and nap time was laptop time. How was I going to get work done for my client, meet my writing deadlines, pay bills, plan meals, and (admittedly quite important) Facebook and blog?!?

I sulked for several days, barely finding any time to shower. This was tough. I tried to squeeze in computer time everywhere I could. I was never present in the moment. I even day-dreamed about my previous life and ambitions for a career.  Then I realized only I had the power to snap out of it.

It wasn’t easy. It required dedication (that means no slacking).  Here are three tips that helped me. Maybe, if you ever find yourself in a Mommy-Midlife-Crisis, they can help you too.

Early to Bed, Early to Rise

I love my sleep. I went years and years as a sleep deprived mom. We just got the boys to start sleeping through the night regularly. But I realized if I woke up one hour before I had to get my daughter up for school I could shower, get dressed and maybejust maybeput on makeup.

If I woke up two hours early. I could even read my scriptures, do some yoga and get time in on my computer! Ahhh.

It was a plan. Six A.M would come early but not if I made Mom Rule #1: In bed by 11 p.m.

Separate ‘Working Me’ from ‘Mommy Me’

Even though I stay at home with my kiddos. I work from home too. I suspect lots of moms do. Even if their ‘work’ is just for church obligations, the PTA or a hobby. I decided in order to succeed and bring my Mommy Mojo back, I would need to ‘go to work’ each day.

I took out a weekly planner and blocked off my working time from my mommy time. And then I made Mom Rule #2: I am valuable.  I was sure I could succeed at both ‘working me’ and ‘mommy me’ and view myself as valuable and successful.  Why do we moms not have higher self-worth?

Engage My Kids

Now that I wasn’t sneaking off to my laptop, it was time I cherish the moments with my children.

While my laptop was closed (thankfully I have email and Facebook on my phone), I put my aforementioned Learning Cupboard to use. All four of my kids are crazy about it. And, as soon as the weather gets nicer, we’ll spend time outside. Maybe I’ll even get crazy and plan a picnic in the park.  Why? Because of Mom Rule #3: Above all else, spend quality time with my kids.

 I still slack a little. This week I broke Mom Rule #1 and really paid for it the next day. And I have a really hard time avoiding the snooze button on my phone. But I assure you, I got my mojo back! I actually now have more time on my laptop to get stuff done and am present in the moment.

If you’ve lost your Mommy Mojo but found it again, I’d love to hear about it!

 

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