Faith & FamilyThe Everyday Moments March 30, 2016 Growing up, my mama had a saying. And she did. Holidays, birthday parties, and special occasions growing up were always amazing. I’m not talking “My Sweet Sixteen” extravagance, but more thought. There was thought put into every single detail. She taught me how to carry out a theme through every little element. Some of my favorite memories growing up are of floating at the lake in the summer planning my sister and I’s September birthday parties. We dreamed and schemed. This was one thing I was so excited about when it came to being a mama: making her feel special through holidays and special occasions. I love using my gifts and interests to create a special occasion atmosphere and memories that are unforgettable for her. I had a blast planning her first birthday (see party reveal here and decor here). But I’ve realized that I often miss it on the everyday moments. Now I completely see why: adjusting to having a baby, trying to figure out how to work some while staying at home with baby, having health issues, renovating a house….I know it’s a long list. But I have realized that so much of the time, I’m in my own head. I’m playing with Rosie and I’m ticking off the list in my head of what I’m behind on with work. We’re having lunch together and I’m scrolling through e-mails on my phone. When I look back at what made everyday moments special for me as a child, it was that mom was present. She was focused on us. She was showing us love and that we mattered more to her than her work (she also worked at home) or house chores. The other day, I woke up before Rosie and the birds were chirping. Rays of sun were streaming in through the windows and I knew it was a porch morning. We’ve gone out on the porch a few mornings and always have the best time. We’ve moved most fabric things from the porch inside due to pollen, so I shook off some pollen and prettied it up a little. Kantha Blanekt | Ratan Loveseat | Moroccan Pouf | Neon Tray | Pillows are from Target several years ago I grabbed a few things I have lying around for the playroom and a few pillows from the living room. I brought out her high chair and made some toast (and coffee for mama). And when she woke, we had the most wonderful little mommy-daughter breakfast date on the porch. I purposefully left my phone on the other end so that it was only used for a picture. And we just ate and talked. We listened to birds. We laughed. We sat out there for several hours and it was truly a moment of magic and special in our everyday. For the rest of the day, I was on a high, but I also wrestled with some things. I kept thinking, “This is what it’s about.” I know that when sweet Rosie is grown and I look back, I want my memories to be overflowing with moments like these. I love my work for many reasons, but I don’t want to remember the stress, the pressure, the guilt for not getting more done… And it hit me. You’ve just got to let go of that. I put so much pressure on myself for what the blog “needs” to be. I beat myself up when I’m not able to get enough posts done certain weeks, not processing how much I might be doing behind the scenes to plan or finish rooms. A good blogging friend told me recently that she just does what she can and let’s the rest go. When she has something quality to post that she wants to share, she does. When she doesn’t, she doesn’t feel guilty for not posting. Her family comes first and the blog gets the leftovers. In a sea of bloggers who are just killing it and seem to be getting it all done, it’s a hard pill to swallow, but I know that I have to. The issue for me isn’t wanting to blog or even having something to blog about. It’s that I have so many things I want to share and so many projects I want to do that it gets overwhelming. Add the mama piece, and I’m constantly in my head running through the never-ending to-do list. I spent a lot of time yesterday soul searching and dreaming for the blog AND the kind of mama I want to be. I reminded myself that the mama piece comes first. We’ve had so many days since Rosie came that she was sick and fussy or I felt bad or we had a rough night and instead of just cuddling her and letting us have a relaxing day, I’m beating myself up for not getting more done and end up not loving her well. I also realized that some of the dreams I have will not be possible during this young mommyhood season and that is completely okay. For everything there is a season. I’m done beating myself up, but I do want to make the balance better. Many of the base dreams for what I want the blog to be are totally possible right now. What I need to make that happen is some structure. Structure is almost a taboo word for me. I’m a very free-spirited, be flexible sort of person. But in this new season, the only way I’m going to make it is by adding some much-needed structure. I’ve found myself craving it, which is so unlike me. First of all, that means when I work. For me, what I feel good about is working before she wakes, during nap time, and about an hour while she plays independently. I’ve been trying to do this, but work is constantly on my mind when I’m with her and I keep thinking, “I need to do more!” I’m making myself be okay with that schedule and what gets done, gets done. I do want her to see me being creative, so doing a project she can sort of be a part of is different. I’m talking phone or computer time. I also wrote out all of the areas that I want to share on the blog. The things I LOVE, not that I feel pressured to share. And I made myself a little schedule. I do think about future posts and some things are scheduled in advance, but for the most part, I just sort of post whatever is on my mind that day. My mind is too full for that to work well anymore. I’m not going to do some big announcement of what you’ll see each day because this is more on my end. I need for it to be easy. I need to know, “Okay, on Monday, I share this.” Though you will probably see a few new series rolling out in the coming weeks. I’m not going to promise a certain amount of posts. I’ve done that in the past and that added pressure makes me want to post less and I think the posts become less quality. I’m just going to play with this and see how it works for us. Overall, I’m going to prioritize the everyday moments and rest in the truth that they’re enough for me. I’m going to blog because I love the outlet and I love being creative, NOT because I need it to be successful and show me that I matter. Now, that’s a hard one that I’m always battling. If y’all have a secret cure for that, please share, friends. Do you bloggers out there do any kind of a schedule? I’d love to hear what’s worked for you! And I’d love to hear any work/mama balance tricks you guys have learned!