Category: "balanced life"

How to prepare your kids for summer camp

May 16th, 2017 | no comments

As parents you have the final say on where your child goes to summer camp. In the end you know best, and you should never send your child to a camp that you don’t feel 100% comfortable with.

Having said that, it’s vital to talk to your child and let them be a part of the process. They’re the ones that are doing the camping after all, and without their input you may be setting them up for a less-than-optimal experience. Here are some tips on what to discuss with your child when picking a summer camp that’s perfect for them.

What kind of stay are they comfortable with?

Summer camps fall into two categories in terms of stay – day camps and sleepover or overnight camps. With day camps, your child will participate in activities every day but you’ll pick them up before nightfall. With sleepover camps, your child will be at the camp site 24/7 for however long they stay.

Both have their advantages and disadvantages, and some children do better at day camps and some do better at overnight camps. Sleepover camps allow for kids to experience an immersive experience and helps them to foster their sense of independence. Day camps allow kids not quite ready for overnight camping the opportunity to experience a good amount of what summer camp can be. You should always encourage your child to take risks and confront trepidation, but you should never force them. Make sure your child says they are ready for a sleepover experience before shipping them off.

Also remember to discuss length of stay. If it’s your child’s first overnight camping experience, you may want to opt for a few days or a week – even if the full camping package last for two weeks or more.

What are they interested in?

Apart from type of camp stay, the most important question concerning summer camp is whether your child wants to go to a specialty camp or a general camp. The former focuses on one or two specific activities – think dance, music, horseback riding, sports, archery, etc. The latter tends to have kids participate in a wide range of activities.

If your child is obsessed with dance, for instance, they may do better at a camp that focuses on what they love. Anything else may be a distraction.

If your child doesn’t yet have a specified interest, sending them to a specialty camp in the hopes of developing an interest may backfire. General camps allow kids to experience many things, and can help them figure out what they love for themselves.

Don’t shy away from the “homesick problem”

You might think that as soon as you mention the word homesick, you’re setting your child up for failure. But according to Christopher Thurber, PhD, co-author of Summer Camp Handbook, and a spokesperson for the American Psychological Association, that’s simply not true.

“There’s a conventional idea that if you mention homesickness, you’ll just make them focus on it. But it doesn’t work that way. Have an open discussion with your kids about how they feel about going away. What’s most important here is that the parent gives the message that he or she believes the child can handle the stress of being away, that the child is competent at handling temporary, uncomfortable feelings,” he tells WebMD.

The more your child feels like they have a say in the decision making, the less likely they are to be overcome with feelings of homesickness when away.

Camp can be a great way for your kid to make new friends and learn new things while they’re off from school. However, if they have been struggling in a particular area of study, looking into summer tutoring services as an alternative is not a bad idea either.

 

Thank you to our guest post from Alex of Safeytoday.org !!

More than milestones – your free guide!

May 12th, 2017 | no comments

What a phenomenal summit. I hope you enjoyed the interview as much as I did!

As promised your Thriving as a Busy Mom – Essentials guide will kick-start your journey to managing your home, work, kids, your partner and yourself with ease. I’m so happy to share with you:

  • 3 healthy and easy recipes
  • Shared Google calendar that will save you and your partner time
  • Evernote app tips to help get your life organized
  • Mama Self-Care Planner (printable) to get more “me-time” in your life
    • Mindfulness video that can quickly recharge your energy from anywhere

Subscribe below to receive your FREE guide!!

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Creating a theme for 2017

January 7th, 2017 | no comments

As we enter a new year there is pressure for resolutions, changes, improvements or somehow stating to the world that you are dissatisfied with your current state. I’ve never been disciplined enough to keep a resolution top of mind for 365 days straight…who does, really?!

So, instead, this year I’m gonna roll with a theme because it’s more of an intention. And intentions are not so restrictive, limiting or have so much pressure attached. I’ve got enough pressure in my life, thank you very much!

This year for me it’s, FLOW. Ahhhhhh, I even relax just saying it. I don’t mean roll over and take all the crap that rolls your way this year. No. It’s not about inaction. This is coming from a place of intentional action. I interpret FLOW as a willingness to not judge the present and just go with it, pivot, embrace, fight, dance with it, ect. Because, after all…

“What you resist, persists.”

I wrote on my Instagram feed:

My theme for 2017!

Flow.

As in EASE.

Allow.

Be in the moment.

Delight in synchronicity.

Go with the flow.

Yes please! All of it and a side of 🍟!

Being in the flow probably feels a bit foreign for a “go-getter”, for a professional woman climbing the corporate ladder or a mom who’s just trying to figure out why her baby is crying so much!

This state of being is not an American value. Could it be perceived as lazy, bad mom, not career-oriented? So don’t feel bad if FLOW feels weird. We were not raised like this, this behavior is not rewarded in sports, taught in school or promoted at work.

But I argue that it’s the strongest place that a working mother can operate from!

  • Flow cuts out worry, anxiety, not-enoughness, or keeping-up-with-the-Jones syndrome.
  • Flow frees you to accept and then in turn, like the situation you are in.
  • Flow expands possibilities
  • Flow says “I’m okay”, “I’m a good mom right now”, and “I’m enough.”
  • Flow strengthens resilience
  • Flow doesn’t judge
  • Flow helps conserve your energy
  • Flow frees you up to experience life

How do you stay in the flow?

  1. Keep faith that everything will all work out. Trust that life is working FOR YOU not against you.
  2. Have awareness of yourself in each moment
  3. Don’t judge yourself or your circumstances
  4. Allow and don’t label it as good or bad
  5. Ground and center yourself so you have a clear head
  6. Protect your energy and keep going!

I’ll keep my #flow2017 vibe alive on Instagram and I hope inspire you to to keep your intentions going all year long too.

Leave a comment below about how the word FLOW feels for you?

How to thrive as a working mom podcast interview

January 7th, 2017 | no comments

It was a privileged to chat (and later nosh at Cafe Gratitude) with Jessica from The Superwoman Project about our current state of working motherhood, how companies can’t ignore half their workforce and what it means to thrive after maternity leave!

Her podcast in so rich with inspiring women, you must check it out. She can help you run your career like a BOSS!

In our conversation we covered:

  • Transition coaching for working mothers
  • Corporate consulting for greater employee retention
  • Challenges facing working moms from returning to work after maternity leave and managing their energy

Thanks for listening!

Motivating Mom Podcast interview

October 8th, 2016 | no comments

movtivating-mom-podcast

I’ve admired Lisa Druxman for her bad-ass entrepreneurship and her Fit 4 Mom business that helps so many moms! I joined Body Back because it’s the best way I know to fit in a workout post-baby.

It has been on my bucket list to meet Lisa and when she asked me to be on her podcast, well, drop the mic, dream come true!

I’m humbled and honored to share some of my favorite tid bits on her Motivating Mom Podcast. We covered my “secret recipe” for a successful return to work after maternity leave, my favorite self-care tips for busy moms and what it means to be “okay with okayness”.

Take a listen here.

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And be sure to click on the purple “podcast” icon on your iphone. search for Motivating Mom Podcast.

Do yourself a favor, subscribe and enjoy!

25 Working Mom Tips

June 26th, 2016 | no comments

The struggle is real for working moms! Lack of time, meal planning prep and the relentless giving of our time, our and energy to others. That is why this blog round-up from Thoughtful Journey Counseling of some of my most favorite mom-support experts is a keeper. I was honored to contribute a nugget about how to master the morning routine. Hope you enjoy them all!

25 Tips for Working Moms guest blog!

25 working mom tips

Mother’s Day Gifts Working Moms Really Deserve

May 8th, 2016 | 2 comments

Happy Mother’s day! You deserve a day of pampering, filled love, appreciation and joy! In honor of you I’ve gathered some of my favorite women to share some of their gifts that you really deserve. While most of them fit into a gift-wrapped box they are gifts you can give yourself every day of the year.

I hope you are inspired by these these self-care tips, practical advice and divine goddess wisdom. Happy Mother’s Day to you mama! Enjoy your day and take a little time to nourish your soul,Cheers!

mothers day gifts we deserve ThriveMomma

 

Gift of Support

Busy career women need a strong partner. Not just to open that jar of spaghetti sauce but a true ally in the day-to-day raising of children, managing the home and in support of their careers.  Emily of Women, Work and Life mentions ways how men can support women in their career and it’s a beautiful thing!

Men Take Note: What women really want for mothers day

 

Gift of time

So not all gifts come in a Tiffany box, but giving yourself the gift of time and freedom from stress is almost more valuable. Monica at Redefining Mom never holds back and her five tips on how to manage your busy mom life are the best. So go ahead and give yourself the gift of sanity.

5 Practical Time Management Tips for Working Moms

 

Gift of Recognition

And don’t forget the other working moms at your work. They deserve a little props for all the work they do too. Lori of Mindful Return gives some great suggestions on how you can recognize and appreciate other working moms you work with!

Celebrate your mother colleagues this Mother’s Day

 

Gift of Love

When we give love we get so much more in return. Courtney’s moving love-note to her cutie daughter Madeline is a great reminder of why we endure this motherhood thing, after all. It’ll make you wanna hug your little cutie a little bit more.

Celebrating my daughter on Mother’s Day

 

Gift of Peace

Life is stressful. Sometimes stress is thrown at you like when your child has a 102 degree fever or when your business goes through a reorganization and you don’t know what’s gonna happen to your job. Whatever life challenges us with, the key to finding PEACE among the chaos is about how we DEAL in the moment that counts. My Mother’s Day Momtra (mantra for moms) is a simple tool to help you relax IN THE MOMENT!

Mothers Day Momtra

 

Enjoy your special day today Mama! You deserve it!

What gifts are you looking forward to getting today? Leave comment below!

 

Mom self-care planner

May 1st, 2016 | 1 comment

mom self care printable blog

You’ve seen the sign “No shirt no shoes no service”. Well some days you have hit your limit and the sign should say “no sleep, no patience, no sanity”. We get run down, overworked, sleep-deprived, emotional, and it all starts to snowball until you just NEED A BREAK!

Have you ever felt this way? I sure have!

It all boils down to self-care for a mom (or lack of it.) Yeah, yeah, we have heard this a million times. But what IS self-care really about? Is it just a spa-day every once in a while? Is it sitting on a meditation cushion every day? Those are all nice but how realistic is that in our BUSY lives.

Here is how I define Momma Self-Care:

Moments, hours, or days spent in solitude that recharge your energy, level your emotions, heal and fulfill your soul that will ultimately make you a better mom.

A couple key things to keep in mind:

  • The benefits of self-care happen instantly like through some deep breaths or happen over the course of hours or days like at a retreat. We need room for BOTH types in our lives to have energy for this marathon of motherhood.
  • There is nothing selfish about being in solitude. Being alone without the demands of a crying baby or having to make another meal or the pressure of a work-team is NECESSARY to regain your energy. Oh, and if being alone makes you uncomfortable, it’s time to get requited with yourself.
  • If every break from your kids includes hangin’ with girlfriends or being around people, it may be more taxing on your energy than you realize. Consider mixing it up with a long walk by yourself.
  • Recharging your energy is all about slowing down, relaxing, stopping the busy mind and taking a break.
  • We deal with a lot of emotions, we experience the gambit of emotions as a mother and finding space to process and letting go of that baggage is necessary. This can only be done when you are away from it all.
  • We all need our hearts and souls to heal. Healing from birth trauma, postpartum depression, isolation of maternity leave, fears of failure as a mom, guilt from working too much…all can be healed through time spent processing and loving ourselves enough to take a self-care day.

I’m not saying that taking some time for self-care is a good idea I’m saying it so necessary that we should think of it as part of our hygiene.

 

Mom self-care is like a beauty regime for your soul.

 

Taking time to feel better should be as ingrained into our habits as brushing our teeth. But society, our mother’s generation and frankly on a cellular level it’s so ingrained in us to perceive this as selfish and bad. So we just have to embrace and heal that part of our dark past and welcome a new way of looking at caring for ourselves.

I also believe that frequency and duration are important. I was encouraged by a Mindful Magazine study that showed the lengths of meditations that bring the optimal benefit in relation to their lifestyle and the working mothers benefited most from a quarterly one-day retreat (as opposed to daily meditation or weekly one-hour sessions, etc.) This confirmed my intuition that for busy working moms we need a plan to get the right amount of recharge time into our lives at the right time.

So I made the Momma-Care Planner. It is a great worksheet for you to brainstorm daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, and annual ways to regain your energy. How about that THAT for hygiene!?

 

Momma-Care Planner steps:
  1. Print it out and find some alone-time. Make it special by lighting a candle or play some lovely music
  2. Write out ideas: In the Ideas section write out your favorite and NEW ways for self-care. Dream mama, don’t be afraid to write done something you have never done before.
  3. Figure out when: In the When? Section think of times when it will fit in a reoccuring day of the week, specific day or month on the calendar
  4. Bonus section: this is the really fun part, where you can image something grand. Enjoy!
  5. Schedule: Get out your paper calendar or Shared calendar ( I use a shared Google Calendar) and schedule it up. Allowing your partner to see will hold you accountable and let them know you are committed to taking care of yourself. The second page of the planner has some examples for some inspiration.

Click here to download your PLANNER

Leave a comment below with some self-care ideas you have so we all can get inspired!

Classes moms should take

April 10th, 2016 | no comments

Classes mom should take in college ThriveMomma

I may not win any awards for this but… I know our complete pantry, fridge and freezer inventory at any given moment. It may not seem like much, but any mama who struggles to keep bread in the house past Wednesday can appreciate the immensity of that. Keeping your kitchen inventory in your head is like the mom-world equivalent of a Emmy or a Grammy.

You know what? Shoot, there SHOULD be an award for that! I’ve got a rhythm down, I know my clans eating habits and I’ve got food eating and food purchasing down to a weekly science. HOT DAMN. That’s it, I’m gonna create the “Planys” awards for all the badass moms who successfully plan and manage their homes. Accepting nominations now 🙂

The reality is that you have a child and you are expected to successfully raise a tiny human, to know how to meal plan, buy healthy on a budget and manage a household and take care of yourself at the same time.

This is on-the-job training where your fails are on display for everyone to see.

But it didn’t always come so easy for me. We were constantly running out of stuff, over buying produce and dreading the “what’s for dinner?” question. Do you struggle with the same pain? The problem is not you…it’s that we didn’t learn this stuff in college, ya’know!

Now that I’m a mom, these are the classes that I WISH they taught in college:

LISTENING TO AND TRUSTING YOURSELF: So much of the exercise of motherhood is developing your intuitive muscle. As our technology evolved, the volume on our guiding voice went way down. Our secret mom super-power is not reserved for the mom who looks like she’s got it all together (besides, she doesn’t). But it lives in all of us. Slowing down to hear the tiny voice is the real work!

Homework: keep an intuition journal and write down each time you trusted your intuition. It’s way more often than you expect and it’s tangible evidence of your genius.

TIME MANAGEMENT FOR BUSY MOMS 101: We do an ungodly amount of stuff for at least 3 human beings every day,  365 a year! On top of that we work, we maintain the social calendar, we plan birthday parties, we make time for friends, etc. Keeping all of that straight takes tools, time and, eh hem, may I suggest, TRAINING. There is a reason I created the Time Management for Busy Moms workshop. So many busy moms feel like they are behind the eight ball. Don’t feel bad if you can’t manage it all. You can’t, no one can. And no mom should manage it all, by herself.

Managing your time is all about getting your priorities aligned with how you WANT to spend your time on. And learning how to say NO, deciding what you can delegate and finding out what you can outsource.

Extra credit: write down three things that you HATE doing each week (i.e. folding laundry, paying bills, going to three grocery stores for food) and write down who you can delegate to, who you can outsource to or simply write down NO if you can stop doing it.

MEAL PLANNING aka TIME MANAGEMENT 201 If you are thinking about what you are going to make for dinner that night on your commute home…that is too late! In fact spending 30 min at the start of each week can actually save you hours of panic and frustration.

Cheat sheet: The dirty little secret about meal planning is that the first step has nothing to do with food or the kitchen. It has everything to do with your time and how much or little you have to cook. Set aside some quiet time, light a candle and make meal planning something to look forward to. Here are some of my favorite meal planning tips.

LONG TERM RELATIONSHIPS: Our society is really good at closing the deal with the wedding hoopla but, holy cow, a marriage with kids is a PHD level curriculum. A committed relationship is a daily, conscious choice to show up and be there for each other…through the good, the bad and the mundane. Evolving together is the key, yet it’s too easy to drift away.

Open book test: My hubby and I swear by the 3 ‘ations of a happy marriage. 1. Communication. 2. Vacation and 3. Fornication (with each other). You have those firing on all cylinders and you have a healthy marriage.

STOPPING THE MADNESS WITH MINDFULNESS. There are facts and then there are the “facts” we make up in our heads. We can weave some tight webs of stories, lies and torture for ourselves if we are left in a room alone to think. Mindfulness helps to break habitual thought, and have enough self-awareness to rise above our own bs. If you can rise above only 1 out of 10 times…total win.

Mid-term test: Try mindfully doing a simple task. Brush your teeth mindfully. When a thought enters your mind focus back on the bristles on your gums. You will pleasantly be surprised how even that sliver of time can relax your busy mind. You could also try mindfully eating as well.

FUN: HOW TO BE AN ADULT WITHOUT HAVING TO GROW UP. Having a mortgage, raising the next generation and increasing shareholder value is a tremendous responsibility! What do taxes and breastfeeding babies have in common? They suck the life out of you. Remembering to always have fun and to not take life so seriously is the key to happiness!

Extra credit: Who you surround yourself with is key. Reach out to some local moms and make some new mom-friends!

REDEFINING YOURSELF AND SELF-CARE: This should be a pre-requisite for all majors. Motherhood changes you. It changes our biology, your physiology, your priorities and whoever you were in the past. We need to learn how to reinvent ourselves from the inside out with dignity, with support and with a hot-ass pair of skinny jeans (because skinny jeans solve a lot of problems).

Final exam: Look at yourself in the mirror. No REALLY look at yourself in the mirror, the way that you lovingly gaze in amazement at your beautiful child. Say “I love you” to yourself in the mirror. Keep saying it until you mean it. Keep saying it until you FEEL it. Now YOU can feel the love that you give out to world all day long.

Ok, ok. Now that I’m a mom I realized that there ARE classes in college that I SHOULD have taken:

  • Child development
  • Child psychology
  • Finance
  • Bowling (I’m a terrible bowler)

Are you going to do your homework, Missy!? Now that you are a mom, leave a comment below the classes do you wish you would have taking in college?

Workin Mama online class ThriveMomma BabyTalkCo

Speaking of classes. I”m very excited to share with you very soon that two of my most popular workshops: Return to Work After Maternity Leave and Time Management for Busy Moms will soon be online classes later this year!

Moms Making Memories online summit

March 26th, 2016 | no comments

I’m honored to be one of the 21 amazing women who will be interviewed for the Moms Making Memories free online summit!

mmm-summit-graphic2-768x320

Elizabeth gathered premier  experts on health, wellness, mom-life, parenting experts and more so that you can have some sanity in your busy life!

I’ll be talking about how:

1.  How I birthed ThriveMomma for one of the most traumatic times in my life…going back to work after maternity leave
2.  How can busy moms incorporate mindfulness and balance into their busy schedules
3.  What the heck time management and what little things can you do today to get organzied
4.  Some of my favorite work/life balance tactics
5.  Return to the workplace after maternity leave tips and tricks
Each interview is an easy 20 min and they are delivered to your inbox daily.
After the interview you can download my Time Management for Busy Moms Essentials guide + a BONUS!

Sign up for the summit

and I know you will enjoy them all!

Cheers!