Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Malia, my tether!

Months 2 and 3 with Malia in our life have been a crazy whirlwind.  She is growing and changing so much each day.  She smiles and laughs far more than she cries.  We are both getting used to our schedule together.  She has started to nap during the day, and still basically sleeps through the night.  She is fun, my little buddy and partner.  I, of course, knew I would love her but I could never imagine what joy she brings to my life.  I love to wake her up and see her infectious smile or listen to her in bed as she stares at the ceiling and coos to herself.  I love to give her baths, she is so calm and relaxed.  I examine her little features, those cute fingers and toes and even the little hidden mole on her head.  She loves to be read to and for reasons beyond my understanding the girl can not get enough of my singing.  We sing about everything, changing diapers, cooking dinner, going to bed, petting the dogs... who knew you could make a song about such things!  It is amazing to watch her learn and understand more about her environment, and I love that I get the privilege to be a part of it all.  These are the moments that money can't buy, the time that I will never get back, the experiences that I can never recreate.  I love being at home with my daughter and to be honest there is nothing that I would like more than to make this permanent.  

This is not to say that being at home with her hasn't had it's trying times, it has.  There have been times that I struggle to shower let alone have dinner ready.  My house is not nearly as clean or organized as it was when I worked full time,  I assumed when I was on maternity leave I would be super mom, super wife, super friend.  I would have coffee dates with friends, play dates with other moms, date nights with my husband.  Why wouldn't I?  I wouldn't be working, I would have all the time in the world, right?  I quickly realized that I would have a never ending to do list at home just as I would if I was working.  That there would be things I just could not get to.  Being at home with Malia is not easy by any means, but man is it worth it!  Working outside or inside the home are both hard, they both require a lot, both have that list of things that I may never get to.   But working at home means that spending time with my daughter will never be an item on my list of things to do.  She will never be something I have to make time for or pencil in.  Yes, there will still be things that do not get done, yes I will still be stressed at times but I will not miss her first step or her first word.  I will not miss the sweet sound of her voice as she wakes from a nap or her giggles when mom (who is the funniest person she has ever met) cracks a joke.  

This is not some sort of guilt trip for myself for needing to work outside the home or for other working moms.  I hear day in and day out about the struggles of moms trying to juggle everything, it is tough business.  This is just me saying that I am drawing a line in the sand.  I am saying that I am taking back control of my life.  That I am going to choose when/if I work outside the home.  I realize that this is going to take great sacrifice.  This means a strict budget, this means going on a spending fast, this means denying myself some of the luxuries I have grown accustomed to (like a new shirt once in awhile or dining out).  This also means that I need to generate an income that I can do part time from home.  I am going to have to work hard to be at home with Malia, but I know how important this is to me and I know how important it is to our family.  

I wrote this on Facebook the other day and it perfectly described how I am feeling as I embark on this journey: Have you ever had goals or dreams that you didn't accomplish?  I was told once that the reason for this is that our dreams are not tethered to something that mattered enough to us for us to change.  Therefore, we give up and stop trying.  Being blessed with a daughter is the best tether I could have ever imagined! Here's to making changes and living this life!

I am blessed to have found a way to stay at home with Malia, to not miss the things that are so very important to me.  This is going to take hard work and sacrifice but I am up for the challenge.  I know I have the ability to make this happen and to help others accomplish the same if that is the desire of their heart.  Becoming a mother has completely rocked my world in every sense of the word and I am ready to respond accordingly.  I want to help other moms come home to their babies.  If you are interested in partnering with me on this journey please let me know, you can do this too!  Nothing fires me up more than the thought of debt free families with time and resources to invest in each other and others.  Please pray for our family as we forge ahead for what we believe is right for us and our daughter.  

Here are a few photos of our last couple months with our little lady, my tether! 

Thursday, January 3, 2013

November Date Night (or day...)

I was warned long before Malia was born that having a baby is difficult on a marriage.  I can confirm, this is true!  Of course nothing we can't handle but Aaron and I have definitely experienced our fair share of trials and disagreements since her arrival.  Mostly due to such an increase in responsibilities and stress and a drastic decrease in sleep and relaxation.  The baby also takes our focus from caring for our marriage to caring for our baby.  

To help keep the spark alive we have committed ourselves to at least one date night per month, as I blogged about here.  November was our first date.  It didn't actually end up being a date "night".  Malia was less than a month old and we felt more comfortable leaving for a couple hours during the day.  So we went to a movie... at NOON!  I have never done that before and apparently neither has anyone else! There was no one there.  It was actually pretty great to practically have the theater to ourselves.  

We watched Flight which was a pretty dramatic movie, not exactly something you just sit back and relax during.  We both enjoyed the movie despite the heavy nature.  I was pretty tired though.  I knew I was some what delusional when I told Aaron that Denzel Washington looked like Malia.  He literally looked at me like I was crazy!  I guess I had the baby on the brain.  It was truly wonderful to get away together and to be able to leave Malia with someone we trust, Aaron's sister Jesi.  She is such a great Auntie to Malia and we are so grateful for her.  Here are a few photos of our date day.    

Had to take a pic with Malia before we left

Love this theater

Shared a lemon drop for old times sake

It was a beautiful day

 My love... 
we were trying to master the self portrait/kissing photo...
Maybe next time!

 Jesi sent a pic of Malia while we were in the movie
Looks like she was frantic without us...