Friday, June 28, 2013

Getting through the day

I am a stay-at-home-mom.  I chose this.  I choose this.  But some days, man, I would choose anything else.  Raising kids is relentless.  They are little bundles of need-want-need-tantrum-need wrapped up in diapers and snot and they certainly don't care if you're busy, tired or, well, let's just say indisposed.  More often than not the clock strikes noon or 1 and I scream (to myself or aloud, it doesn't faze my two) "It's only 1 o'clock??!! Is my house in a parallel universe where time warps happen regularly??  Wait.  If a time warp happens regularly is it just normal time?  Huh..."  This actually reminds me of something my uncle was telling me a few months ago when he visited. He was talking about a study done on nursing home patients and how time does seem to slow down when you're bored because your attention is brought to the passage of time and nothing else.  This study suggested that activities would greatly enhance the lives of the people living in nursing homes, which makes perfect sense.  This correlates neatly to my day-to-day life.  When the afternoon slump hits and I start dreaming about my bed, I try to do something for myself that doesn't involve the kids.  These days I've been making a cup of herbal tea my midday mental break.  I like the routine of picking out the tea, the perfect tea cup, heating the water, and watching the tea steep.  Soon enough there comes a "Mooooom, I need you" from the toyroom and it's back to reality.  But the tea has helped.

Who needs sleep? (Well, you're never gonna get it)*

It's a fact.  My husband and I do not make good sleepers.  Or, I guess I should say, we don't raise good sleepers, since we had nothing to do with the making of Patrick.  Last night the baby was just. not. having. it.  We're trying to get her to sleep in her crib, but after almost 9 months of co-sleeping with me and no will to let her "cry it out" on my part, it's a challenge.  We all need more sleep, but at the moment I'm trying to remind myself that this time is so fleeting and there's no way I'll be this tired forever, right?  (Right????)
So last night after nursing for an hour she had had just enough rest to really turn her off of the idea of sleep.  Instead of fight it, we moved into the little room next to her bedroom that I've been using as an office and I let her crawl around and get into my old scrapbooking things.  She made a mess and had a great time.  I got a couple of cute shots of her.  Win, win.

I hope that years from now, when I look back on these pictures, the exhaustion that is beating me down today will be just a sliver of the memory of this night when I was her favorite person in the world and she just wanted to spend more time with me.  Awake.  

*Barenaked Ladies FTW

Thursday, June 27, 2013

"Green" Drink for beginners

I love the idea of the hugely popular green drink.  What a fabulous way to get a few servings of vegetables and fruits in, and easily!  In practice, though, it's a bit more work than pouring cereal and milk into a bowl.  We started "green drinking" a few years ago and we're pretty regular about it, though some weeks we're better than others.  And that's fine. I do find that on days when we start off with a green drink it's so much easier to make better choices as the day progresses.  Of course, it's also easy for me to say "sure, let's swing by Starbucks for a treat because I drank a big glass of spinach this morning!".  (This scene may have played out this morning.)  Our green drink is certainly not the pure, heavy-on-the-veggies drink that the nutritarian crowd espouses (hi, mom!), but this is a big step away from the Standard American Diet and that is the right direction for my young family.

Our basic recipe goes into the blender like this:

2 cups of water
2 bananas
Fill the blender base to the top with organic spinach and baby kale (this is a lot, but the taste really does disappear into the fruit)
1 small bag of organic blueberries
1 Tbsp chia seeds

Blend on high for longer than you might think.  We blend for a good 90 seconds.  Serve immediately and enjoy.  The best part is that you can easily add in a handful of baby carrots, some frozen broccoli, different fruits or all of the above and the powerful flavor of the bananas really keeps it from tasting like you're drinking a salad.  I love salad, I just don't want to drink it.
  *the drink pictured above is hardly green because we were out of bananas and I added more blueberries than usual.  I swear, it's always feast or famine in this house when it comes to bananas.  Naturally, I purchased three bunches when we went to the commissary earlier.  I predict a mad dash to use up a few overripe bananas early next week.  It's a viscous cycle.

xoxo, Maura

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Doing my best

I'm working hard these days.  I'm working on doing my best.  Not THE best, simply my best.  In my previous life (you know, before this morning) I would become paralyzed with certainty that whatever endeavor I was contemplating would be hard work and I would not be perfect.  Since I would (obviously) be imperfect at whatever I was considering at the time my choice was always very clear: Retreat!  Close up shop!  Don't dare put yourself in a position where you might be not good enough!!! It turns out I am perfect at something: talking down to myself. This is all to say that I could easily talk myself out of starting this blog.  I have talked myself out of starting a blog countless times before.  In fact I'm getting clammy palms just thinking about hitting publish.  But here it is, and, spoiler's not perfect.  It's not perfect but it's here and that's a start. 

I want this to be  place where I can share my life, my journey to fixing up our house, my cooking, photography, attempts to lose weight (again!), and of course, my perfectly amazing children.  I want this blog to be  beautiful and joyful and a reminder to myself that even if I'm overwhelmed, exhausted and generally unhappy with everything I am so dang blessed.  I have so much to be thankful for.

Please join me.  I'm so happy you're here.

xoxo Maura

Monday, June 24, 2013

A brief introduction

Well, hello there.  I can't believe I have a free minute in the middle of the day to write something down, but thanks to a trip to the zoo and a now-napping three year old, I do!  Even more surprising is that I am not taking this free minute to read Lainey and catch up on whatever Brad Pitt was up to this weekend.  While Patrick is napping and Annabelle is banging around at my feet I thought I would open this blog up with a gentle sigh.  A picture of my kiddos, enjoying each other.  It's a rare sight, folks, but it warms my heart and makes the rest of the day(s) worthwhile.  As Glennon would say: Kairos!