Feature Friday – Mothering Honestly

Feature Friday – Mothering Honestly

Welcome to another edition of Feature Friday. I’m really excited about this week’s feature, Lauren from Mothering Honestly. I “met” her through my mom group chats and follow loops. Just recently she was extremely helpful when I was trying to set up a Telegram group and couldn’t figure it out. She went out of her way to help me, which I always find admirable and so sweet. I’m sure she was busy working on her own social media platforms and raising her 8-month-old daughter.

The main reason I am especially excited about featuring Lauren’s blog is that she makes it a point to focus on mothers who are suffering from postpartum depression. Which anyone that knows me personally or has read my blog knows that is my biggest reason for going to school and pushing myself as hard as I do. I appreciate anyone who can talk openly and honestly about the struggles of motherhood.

Anyway, enough rambling from me. Here is a little bit about Lauren in her own words;

My name is Lauren. I am a mother to Lily, who is almost 32 weeks old. I am married to a really awesome man named Joshua as well. I like to cook, craft and do DIY projects. I have been a licensed cosmetologist for almost 10 years, and am currently being a stay at home mother to Lily.

www.motheringhonestly.com

www.facebook.com/motheringhonestly

www.twitter.com/motherhonestly

www.instagram.com/motheringhonestlyblog

www.pinterest.com/motheringhonestly/pins/

  1. What made you want to start blogging?

I originally started blogging as an outlet to connect with other mothers when I was really struggling with post partum depression and anxiety. I have always wanted to write, and had a blog prior but had never really done much with it.

  1. What is your favorite book/movie of all time and why did it speak to you so much?

My favorite movie is called The War Room It speaks to me deeply because prayer is so incredibly important and God has been with me every single struggle I have ever had. He has never failed me.

  1. What did you want to do growing up and are you doing it now?

I realized in the 4th grade that I wanted to be a hairstylist. I got my license for that before I graduated high school, and I have been licensed to do that for almost 10 years. So yes, I have been doing it 🙂

My other dream was to always be a mommy. I recall playing house when I was younger and I just dreamed of having kids. That dream finally came true when we had Lily.

So, I am totally blessed that both of my dreams have totally come true!

  1. What is the craziest thing you’ve ever done and would you do it again? 

Ha! I am so not the crazy type anymore. I suppose I could say that I used to drive when I was younger without a license? Does that even count?! I hope Lily doesn’t read this.

5.     Do you consider yourself a feminist?

I do not think so?

6.     Why or why not?

Part of me is old fashioned and I don’t mind raising the kids and staying home and cooking. But I also believe in equal rights. My husband and I have a pretty awesome partnership worked out.

7.     What was the best phase of your life?

There are a few.

The best time for me was moving away from home after high school and figuring out life on my own at a young age. It was also one of the hardest phases. I got to learn who I was as a person, and build my clientele and really do my life for me at that time.

Another one is the phase of my husband and I dating. We had been friends since 6th grade, and then got back together after high school and have been together since! We have had so much fun over the years and I love him so deeply!

The next of course is becoming a mother. It has taught me so much about life and myself that I never even knew existed. It has shown me a love I never knew existed.

8.     What was the worst phase of your life?

I wouldn’t say it was the worst, but the hardest was probably my postpartum depression. You never know how that will affect you until you are in it, and it really made me feel like a bad mother. But, looking back, it has made me an incredible mother and taught me all of the strength I have and I know I am actually an amazing mother. It also got me blogging, which has turned into something so much for that just a “blog” for me. I have connected with so many women, and now I have friends and connections all over the country, which to me is quite incredible. I also now have so many plans for my website coming out in the future, and it is so exciting!!!

Tips for Balancing Motherhood and School

Tips for Balancing Motherhood and School

I am a full-time college student and a stay at home mom to two little boys. Everyone always asks me how I do it but it’s not as hard as everyone assumes it is. I can’t even imagine trying to work full time and go to school full time! However, I do have some tips and tricks for you to stay on top of whatever you have going on in your life.

ASK FOR HELP

Most people can’t work from home while their kids are awake and around simply because they require a lot of attention. I am the same way with homework, I cannot effectively study and do homework while the kids are away or around. My lifesaver has been our gym. The gym we are members of has 4 hours of daycare every day which means I get 4 hours of uninterrupted homework time every day. For a working parent, it means 4 hours of uninterrupted time to work or just to relax.

Anyone with kids knows they can be extremely stressful and frustrating. They take up a lot of time and effort. My first piece of advice is to ask for help. I don’t know about you, but I have always had such a hard time asking for help when it comes to my kids. Call it pride, call it ego, call it whatever you want, but I couldn’t bring myself to ask for the help I desperately needed. It took me having a second, more difficult child, to start asking for the help I needed.

When I am feeling overwhelmed I have started to ask my husband to help and take the kids for a few hours so I can get some homework done and/or relax a little bit. I usually ask him to take them during nap time, which is something I need to work on. I should be able to ask him to take the boys at any time, but we are all a work in progress, right?

Another facet to this is finding quality childcare. We have lucked out finding an amazing nanny that the boys and I love. I can leave for school for the day and not worry about my kids because I know they are being loved and taken care of. I know she gets Cash up and ready for school on time. I know she makes Tate nap and eat even when he doesn’t want to. If I didn’t have her I don’t know what I would do. I wouldn’t be able to focus on school that’s for sure.

STAY ORGANIZED

This is easy for me simply because I like to see things neat and orderly but I understand being organized isn’t always a trait that comes naturally to some people. And if I’m being completely honest not everything in my life is organized. My kitchen and backpack, for example, are both a complete disaster.

You need to find a system that works for you and what you want organized. My personal blog, for example, is all organized through Excel. I have a column that lists every date of the year and broken down into weeks, a column for the type of blog post (interview, repost, original, etc), a column for the name or idea of the post, a column to state whether that post is ‘in progress,’ ‘finished,’ or blank if it’s not started, and the last column is for me to know which posts have been posted on my blog. I know that sounds like a lot of work for some people so you need to find a system that works for you. It may take a few different trials to get it down right, and there’s nothing wrong with that.

When I’m getting organized for the semester I get my syllabi and pray the professor gives us all the dates of our tests. If they do I put them in my google calendar and check it every Sunday so I know what I have coming up that next week. If I have important projects or papers due I also put those in my google calendar just so I can’t forget about it. My first semester I tried writing everything out in a planner and it just didn’t work for me. I felt like it took too long and was a messy way of keeping track.

Staying organized can also help with your morning routine. I always pack my backpack the night before as well as Cash’s backpack for school. If I know it’s going to be a crazy day for me I will pack their gym bags at night as well so I can get home from school, grab those, and head out the door again.

TAKE TIME FOR YOURSELF

Finally; you need to take time for yourself. I don’t know if it was because I started growing up and became more mature, or if it was because I was overwhelmed by constantly being with my children, or if doing homework and getting that quite but I realized how enjoyable alone time is. Whether it’s alone with your friends or alone by yourself it is necessary. It’s a good way to recharge your batteries and face whatever obstacles you have with a fresh mind and a better attitude.

If you’re managing your time wisely you should be able to fit in some much needed ‘me time.’ Do something you like to do. Find something relaxing that will allow you to recharge. If it’s an especially busy week use your commute time to take that much needed ‘me time.’ When my commute was longer I used to listen to audiobooks in the car. I would also call friends from home and use that time to catch up. It’s the little things that make you feel human again.

These three little things have changed my life in so many ways and I am constantly fine tuning these aspects of my life. And these can apply to anything, not just school. They can apply to work, school, kids’ lives, etc. Like I said before, life is a work in progress and we are never truly finished. Every hardship you’re going through will pass and when it does I want you to have a sense of accomplishment that you made it through, even if it wasn’t as graceful as you would have liked. It’s all about the journey!

Week 4 Picks

Week 4 Picks

I picked 9 out of 16 correctly this past week. There were some crazy upsets, my Steelers in particular, and I want to brush my hands of week 3 and move forward. LOL Here are my picks for week 4.

Bears vs Packers

Saints vs Dolphins

Panthers vs Patriots

Jaguars vs Jets

Titans vs Texans

Steelers vs Ravens

Bengals vs Browns

Lions vs Vikings

Rams vs Cowboys

Bills vs Falcons

Eagles vs Chargers

49ers vs Cardinals

Giants vs Buccaneers

Raiders vs Broncos

Colts vs Seahawks

Redskins vs Chiefs

 

Ponder This

Ponder This

In Boston, during a verbal dispute, an unarmed teenage boy was forcefully hit in the head with the butt of a rifle by local law enforcement.

Word of the incident spread quickly and a large number of locals gathered in the street where the incident had happened to protest almost immediately. As the crowd grew, angry protesters shouted slogans; some business owners, fearing property damage, shut their doors. The local authorities called for uniformed backup, backup came, well armed.

THe assembly was deemed “unlawful,” and the crowd was ordered to disperse. The protesters disobeyed and began to throw snowballs.

In response, multiple uniformed law enforcers fired on the crowd. The first protester to die was a black man and the authorities justified the shooting by claiming that they “feared for their lives.”

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

The year was 1770. The authorities were British soldiers. The protest would later be called in Boston Massacre. The first protester killed in that conflict was Crispus Attucks, a black man considered by many to be a heroic American Patriot and the first casualty of the American Revolution.

If, while reading this story, you found yourself siding with the authorities and thinking that the protesters should have dispersed when ordered, and/or that the protesters armed with snowballs and sticks deserved to be met with deadly force by armed law enforcement, be aware that you choose the side of the tyrant King George III, not the American Patriots.

Ponder that. Take all the time you need.

I will be here waiting. 

 

Originally posted by Taft Love.

Take A Knee

Take A Knee

I have seen numerous posts and memes regarding the events that took place yesterday on the football fields across the country and it makes me so sad to see my fellow Americans completely oblivious to what’s going on.

I’ve seen so many people, my own family included, make posts and comments about how they are mad at the players who didn’t stand during the national anthem because they feel like it’s disrespectful to the flag and our service men and women.

I am more than happy to have a discussion with you regarding this subject and hear your opinions. However, give me a few minutes to tell you the truth about “Take A Knee” and then we can talk.

This all started with Collin Kaepernick. He did not start this peaceful protest to be disrespectful to our service men and women or our flag. He started taking a knee in response to all the police brutality going on in our country, which mind you have not stopped. He used his fame and platform to take a knee and bring people’s attention to the black lives matter movement.

Kaepernick originally said “I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color. To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder.”

I’m happy to say Kaepernick has won a small battle. People are now talking. People are angry over the disrespect and injustice our fellow Americans have suffered at the hands of other Americans. He was willing to put money towards the black lives movement, he was willing to lose his job over this and unfortunately, it took a disrespectful comment from Trump to bring the conversation back to the spotlight.

And let me remind you of a few of Trump’s comments regarding race:

Back in August, after the protests in Charlottesville killed someone Trump insisted that there were “very fine people on both sides.” On Friday night in Alabama Trump said “Wouldn’t you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say “get that son of a bitch off the field right now? Out. He’s fired. He’s fired!” Let me break this down for you, Trump said that anyone who peacefully

Let me break this down for you, Trump said that anyone who peacefully protests racism is a son of a bitch. While anyone that takes part in a protest that kills an innocent person is full of very fine people.

Now again, let me remind you these players taking a knee are not protesting Donald Trump, the president, the flag, our the military. They are taking a knee and standing up to bullies, racists, and standing up for one another. Peaceful protests can make changes and have in the past. I hope the NFL players, coaches, and owners don’t stop taking a knee or linking arms or staying in the locker room for the anthem anytime soon. I hope the people in power and with a platform stand up and make their voices heard.

I am proud of these NFL players using their platform to make a positive difference in our society. However, I would love to see one of these owners or coaches start the conversation to pick up Kaepernick. He is still without a job this season for starting this entire conversation.

I will say, anyone that thinks this is about the flag, the anthem, or the military is part of the problem.  

This is a photo of the Steelers sidelines during the national anthem. They choose to stay in the locker room in peaceful protest.ap-steelers-anthem-sideline

 

I think it’s incredibly moving to see an entire team coming together to support one another and their fellow Americans. Raiders Redskins Football

Many players raised fists in peaceful protest. 20160911193923

Even those that did not agree or want to kneel linked arms to show their support.104728233-GettyImages-852932148-3.530x298

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Feature Friday – The Joyful Lane of Life

Feature Friday – The Joyful Lane of Life

Welcome to Feature Friday! Today’s blog post features The Joyful Lane of Life which is all about life with her 2 daughters and husband. ❤️

  1. What made you want to start blogging?
    I love sharing and building communities through blogging.
  2. What is your favorite book/movie of all time and why did it speak to you so much?
    I love too many books to pick one!
  3. What did you want to do growing up and are you doing it now?
    Be an accountant or FBI agent. Nope I am a blogger/mom
  4. What is the craziest thing you’ve ever done and would you do it again?
    Have 2 kids 2 years apart. Hahahaha nope probably wouldn’t do it so close together again.
  5. What was the best phase of your life?
    Best phase of my life- now. In a sweet spot of life.
  6. What was the worst phase of your life?
    Having a newborn and 2 year old.

Check out her social media accounts and her blog!!!

RAINN DAY

RAINN DAY

Today is National RAINN (Rape, Abuse, & Incest National Network) Day.
I don’t want to write a long post about this, I just want to bring it to your attention because it’s something that is important to me. I will give you some stats and tell you a little bit about RAINN.

RAINN Is the nation’s largest anti-sexual violence organization.  They help survivors, educate the public, improve public policy, and give consulting services. They also help colleges choose sexual assault prevention programs, which I feel is extremely important.

EVERY 98 SECONDS, ANOTHER AMERICAN IS SEXUALLY ASSAULTED. AND EVERY 8 MINUTES THAT VICTIM IS A CHILD. HOWEVER, ONLY 6 OUT OF EVERY 1,000 PERPETRATORS WILL END UP IN PRISON.

If that does not make you mad, sick, angry, pissed off, disgusted, input whatever negative word you can think of, then you are part of the problem.

If you are a victim of sexual violence please reach out and get help. You can call and chat at 800-656-HOPE(4673) or you can go to their website and “chat now.”

If someone you know has suffered from sexual violence why not make a donation in their name? $0.93 of every $1 donated goes towards helping survivors and preventing sexual violence.

As for myself, I have been on campus since 7:20 this morning and have not seen a single thing about RAINN day. I am going to do some research to see if DVC has anything in place, might simply be because this is not a campus where people live. If there isn’t anything currently in place I am going to see if I can get involved and get something started.