End of Fall/Winter time is hands down my least favorite season for motherhood. Thank goodness it has Christmas going for it because somewhere between it getting dark at 5 o’clock and having to fight all kinds of viruses, I’m slowly losing my love for this season. When the kids were born, I had all kinds of fanciful ideas about the magic of snow days, holiday baking, and first time traditions that slowly got overshadowed by an unbelievable amount of days spent wiping snot, administering meds, and being stuck in the house. Hibernation isn’t really my style and it seems to become a regular habit this time of year. However, I also can’t stand feeling down in the dumps so I’m pretty much writing this for myself and we’ll see if I can follow my own advice to happier days…
Essential Oils– This is a totally new one for us. I’m bound an determined to be a faithful oil applier this year and here’s hoping it makes all the difference for us. I’ll let you know! 😉 The idea of diffusing all these yummy scents seems therapeutic, even if it just lifts our moods. I’ve heard rave reviews on the antiviral effects for kiddos so I’m willing to give it my best shot!
Make Plans to Get Out– This is a big one for us! Even if the kids aren’t feeling well I try to plan things at night with my girlfriends. It makes me feel a million times better to get out of my own “worrying mommy head” and laugh with friends. If the kids are well, we try to keep plans going throughout the week so we don’t wind up with that awful cabin fever feeling. Some of our favorites are: library story times, open gymnastics hours, Bounce U, Soccer City, Chick Fil A, Children’s Museum, etc.
Keep Expectations Low– In past seasons I’ve put too much pressure on being at every holiday event or making every Christmas memory. I was always so disappointed if we didn’t’ squeeze it all in and it just wasn’t worth our kids health. Keep your expectations low and be willing to slow down when you know your babies really need rest. That’s the time to make adult plans or grab a trusted babysitter for a good date night.
Make Time for Yourself– Whether it’s a hot bath during nap time or a trip to the gym, you need to recharge your batteries. Working out will give you a great kick of endorphins and make you feel energized. I know these times away always make me feel so much more prepared to be a happy mama. Serving and caring for our kids is a non-stop job and everyone needs this time for themselves.
Happy Music– I’ve been making a huge effort at this one because it really helps me. I’d been feeling like we just kept getting bad starts to the day (kids waking up super emotional and whiny, house turning into a wreck, and feeling like it was just all-around chaotic). I decided to start playing worship music and lighting a yummy candle during our morning routine. I feel like it totally lifted the mood of the house and set the tone that today is going to be a calm one.
Steam Showers– I’ve been going to this one a lot lately. It’s dual purpose because it helps break up any mucous while keeping the kids both entertained and contained. It gives you a break from wiping snot because it can all come out in there. 🙂 I pin up a towel to trap steam in the shower and let them play away with all kinds of toys. It feels so good to hear them giggling and singing away in there while I try to get myself dressed and ready for the day.
Make the Mundane Special– If you feel like watching tv is all your kids can handle then pop up some popcorn, build a fort in the living room, get a movie and make it seem like an exciting event. Things like this definitely require more work but always makes me feel happier. If you know you’ll be stuck at home, find a recipe to bake with the kids or a craft to pass the time. Try to break up the ordinary with a little creativity! 🙂