I wholeheartedly agree with Elder Ballard — young moms NEED an out! I mean, no one could do the SAME job, 24/7 no breaks forever without wanting to kill themselves, their “coworkers” and their boss…. we’re just not built that way. Some of my favorites?
1. Lunch with friends. I’ve done this since Conner’s gone to school. It’s huge for me. Gives me something to look forward too, and Spencer really looks forward to it too. You can go pretty darn cheap (Spencer and I usually split)… we usually go walking and then let the kids play at the park and then do lunch. Just something to break the week up. If money’s an issue, sometimes we do mom potluck at the park. That’s always fun, and I often get some good ideas for lunches…
2. Work. I know, I’ve got a pretty ideal situation but work could be an out for you too. I mean, you could do retail one night a week or something. This obviously isn’t an option for many of you — but for some of you it might be something to consider.
3. Be Creative. I really think you need a creative outlet. Most of my life is very restrained. However, I can do whatever I want on my scrapook page. I can play with colors, I can play with my emotions as I journal. It’s really been a great out. Of course, this has lead to photography, which is also very creative for me as well. There are lots of ways to be creative as a mom, but sometimes that just doesn’t cut it for me.
4. Girls night, I’m religious about planning these lately. I find something SO relaxing about going to these. Again, it’s something to look forward too and what a great way to make new friends (which is sometimes hard when you have littles climbing all over you). Sadly, sometimes they’re hard to plan. So, I’ve just taken the lead amongst my friends. I just send out an evite — pretty far in advance (and they can mock me if they want) and whoever comes, comes. I do wonder if people think I am really begging for friends doing this every month — but I’ve gotten over myself (mostly).
6. Read — cheapest best form of entertainment. Sometimes the transport I take on a book is better then any car I could’ve gotten in to drive up the coast (ala, Marie Osmond). This is also great when you only have a few minutes of time while the kids are busy or napping. I remember I didn’t read much when I first had Conner but I’m starting to enjoy it more and more. Need book ideas? Check out good reads – mine are there on the right hand side of my blog, and chances are you have some other friends that have theirs listed as well.
5. Enjoy your kids. We have a thing called “fun jar” and I’ve put in a bunch of activities that I enjoy doing with my kids — playing games, taking their pictures, being outseide, going on walks, riding our bikes and when my kids have had a really good day and we have a bit of spare time I pull out the fun jar and we get to pick one. It makes all of us feel better.
We know it’s cyclical — happy mom, happy kids, unhappy kids, unhappy mom and vice versa… they want you to be happy, and so does your spouse.
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