Seasonal change is upon us. We’ve received preschool letters. We’ve started planning Nora’s fall birthday. We’re procuring fall and winter clothes and school backpacks. I’m scratching my head trying to figure out our fall schedule, which involves two kids going to preschool on separate days, a husband who is working various early mornings and evenings, and a fully packed social calendar.
But summer isn’t over quite yet!
We’ve been enjoying summer activities to the max this week, attending a minor league baseball game, swimming at the pool, and lounging at the beach. I hope you are also enjoying these final lazy days of summer.
Well, I am pretty glad that I decorated my office earlier this summer. I have been living in it!
Since leaving my full-time job last spring, I have been picking up freelance work here and there. I copyedit and proofread books, journals, websites, and other publications. When I left my position as a managing editor, I didn’t want to give up on my career entirely. In publishing, there is a great deal of freelance work. Fortunately, as of late, I have been experiencing an onslaught of projects!
However, for the first time ever, I had to turn down a project. Wow, was that hard! But with several large projects hitting me at once, my pile of work is too big, especially with two littles at home, a husband who is beginning his busy season at work, and a fall calendar already packed to the gills with back-to-school, Nora’s birthday, and church and social obligations.
I’ve found that I LOVE editing and proofreading at home, but I have to balance my love of work (and making some additional income for the family) with my full-time stay-at-home mom gig (or, am I a work-at-home mom now?). Lately on the weekends I have been holed away in the office while Steve takes the kids to do fun things. It’s nice to have another role in my life, but balance is key.
I am an enthusiast by nature, which makes it difficult to say no. I love to craft, work, volunteer, and host parties, which sometimes leaves little free time for my family and me. I’m pledging to keep myself busy (I do thrive on juggling lots of things) but without making my family and me crazy.
Steve and I logged on the computer this morning to register Nora for her fall activities at the YMCA. It was very reminiscent of college days, where we’d set our alarms to sign up for classes and the computer would freeze, and then we’d spend an hour trying to get into Spanish 201 only to find out that all sessions were full. This time around, I still had technical difficulties, but I was thankful to get into our desired sessions.
Fall is coming in our house, though it’s three or so weeks away. The September through December calendar is already looking a bit packed, and that’s just with preschool and extracurricular activity runs. We’ll add church, birthday celebrations, fall festivals, and holiday stuff too. On top of that stuff, Steve’s schedule becomes rather wonky with evening hours and an early Sunday morning shift until February. There will be a lot of adjustment come September 1.
While I like summer and its freedoms, I LOVE fall and its structure (and fall beers, crunchy leaves, and cool nights). This year, Carson will attend preschool two mornings a week, which I think will be an awesome experience for him. I’ll also be balancing a lot more paid work than I did last year (the freelance gig is seemingly working out) and Nora’s going to add an activity in addition to swimming lessons. Plus, I can’t wait to enjoy the leaves change color at our new house, though I think we’ll be responsible for raking at least 50 bags of them come October.
Our final weeks of summer include a baseball game, the Renaissance fair, an art camp for Nora, and a few other things to be thrown on the calendar at the last minute. Then, I’ll be ready for the football season to begin and the school doors to open.
One of my favorite sayings is “Don’t forget to try.” (The other one is “That’s not helpful,” but that’s more related to the stay-at-home life than a general life theory.) I’m a pretty good trier, but there are aspects of my life that get away from me.
I had a moment today in the dressing room at Kohls where I realized that I’ve really let myself go. Like REALLY. I’ve got the mom ponytail, the stained pairs of shorts, the stretched out T-shirts. All I’m missing are holes in my clothes (oh, wait, I’ve got that covered too!). Thankfully, I keep up with my hair color since one of my close friends is a cosmetologist. And my brother’s wedding prompted me to restock my fancy clothes, so at least I looked somewhat decent at a wedding we attended last night.
I’ve got to make this aha moment count. While it’s true that my life is hectic with child rearing and I’m always keeping our budget in mind, there’s no way that I can completely let myself go–I’m only 31 for goodness sake! And with a full fall social calendar, it wouldn’t kill me to try a little harder in the clothing and beauty departments.
For a quick remedy, I treated myself to new nail polish today (Naughty Nautical by Essie), which reminds me of the Elsa costume I recently sewed for Nora. Also, I’ve fallen in love with Jamberry nail wraps thanks to my friend Liss. I’m going to apply these cute rose polka dot ones later this week. A fun way to end the summer, right?
Any tips on how you stay on top of your style? What do you do to reward yourself?
While it wasn’t intentional, the littles and I spent the week doing many activities my home-economics-teaching grandmother would have loved.
We started the week (while we were still healthy!) making fruit pizza:
And Nora and I finished the week sewing a sock snake, found on this blog via Pinterest:
The sock snake was the perfect time-killer for a house-bound end of the week, as Carson came down with hand, foot, and mouth. While he’s starting to feel better, it put a bit of a damper in our typical summer plans.
Slowing down and embracing the everyday has ignited my passions for baking and sewing again, so I hope to post more of our projects in the near future. Yesterday, Nora and I went to Joann to pick up notions for her Elsa costume (making it early though it’s for Halloween). And I’m working away on the living room curtains and pillows. Hope to have an update on that big project in the next week or so (though I just realized I need to order more fabric for the last curtain).