Five days of posts this week? I must be making up for the fact I will be
largely absent during our trip later this month. For now, lucky you, especially considering I came across some great reads this week! Let’s waste no time – here’s my list of Friday Favorites: the people, places and things tickling me pink this week!
Ashley Ann writes about my truth (and likely, the truth of many parents): our kids are a direct reflection of ourselves. And, it’s not just the temperamental, loud, misbehaving child who is clearly interrupting your peaceful, adults-only dinner. It’s more than just manners and self-control. It’s taking our day-to-day lives and putting them under a microscope to discover the exact ways in which our children mimic us. I learned this lesson loud and clear when Gavin became a toddler. We have always had a pretty good morning routine from wake-up to getting out the door to daycare and work. If I am feeling rushed or have a million things on my mind and try to rush Gavin through his routine, I am met with extreme opposition. Gavin will directly and indirectly thwart any attempt to get out the door, attempting everything from ignoring my requests to taking his sweet-ass time to outright body-melting tantrums as he piles himself into a wet-noodle heap on the floor. From these episodes alone, I have learned if I expect Gavin to be calm and collected, then I must lead by example.
This week, I shared more information than you were likely ever interested in reading about my weight loss journey. What I didn’t share was a link to a blog post that was important in advancing my mindset about weight loss. Once my journey was well underway, thanks to this post by Claire Zulkey, I realized that how I viewed my food intake needed to be completely separated from how I viewed exercise. In a previous life, what I ate was directly related to my exercise. If I was in marathon training, I tried to eat certain types of foods (and stay away from other types of food), especially the day before long runs. After those long runs, because I exerted so much energy, I allowed myself to eat whatever I wanted (and in whatever quantity I wanted). And that trend could be extrapolated to my life in general: because I was working out and staying fit, I felt I could eat unhealthy food in moderation and healthy food in whatever quantities I wanted. You can see how this was problematic as my ability to workout changed over the years, right? Anyway, that one statement about separating exercise and food was so simple, yet so revolutionary for me.
As our trip to Italy becomes imminent, I am thinking more and more about whether or not I want to remain connected while I’m away. Do I write blog posts as I’m living it or save the posts for what I remember? Do I take quick snapshots with my phone for random Facebook updates or do I only stick to my DSLR? Do I check personal email or do I just save it for our return? I know what I think I want to do: commit to my one-sentence journal, write down a few additional thoughts as needed and skip blogging and Facebook altogether (email is up in the air – I am thinking I’ll check it every few days). But, the reality is I won’t really know until I’m in the moment, so I reserve the right to change my mind. What is pulling Aidan away from blogging is very different than what will pull me away from blogging, but the sentiment is very much the same.
A friend of mine “liked” Rachel M. Martin’s Huffington Post page, which stated she writes about intentional living and motherhood. My ears perked up, because I think a lot of what I write about is living intentionally and my life, which now includes being a mother (side note: I am slowly evolving this blog – at this time, I have a category above about being intentional; I plan to add one about motherhood). Needless to say, I clicked through to her blog and the very first post I read sang to me. Let me share this quote to give you an idea of exactly why it pulled me in: “Motherhood, parenthood, they’re amazing things. It’s not just roses and sunshine and skipping though the meadows holding hands. It’s real hard stuff. Stuff that doesn’t seem like it will push us to our limits and yet it does. Stuff that gives us great joy and puts a smile on our face and an hour later has us wondering why in the world the four year old is making us want to pull our hair out.” Ummmm, yes, exactly that. If you have ever wondered what parenting is like, please take Rachel’s statement at face value.
Remember my purse dilemma? In case you missed it, I was looking for a functional bag that could serve as purse, diaper bag, camera bag and everything else bag while we’re vacationing in Italy. I scoured the internet and let you vote on two bags that were fairly similar in color, size, style and purpose. Even though there was a clear winner, I just wasn’t convinced that I wanted to spend $100 on a bag that was leaving me with feelings of “meh”. So, I did something I should’ve done in the first place: shopped local. I went into one store and fell in love with their most expensive bags (of course!), so marched home without spending a dime. The next day, I went to another store and faced a different dilemma: I found two bags I liked; both were within my budget; and both showed more style than the two I had picked online. So, I threw caution to the wind and purchased the rust colored bag. One of my favorite features (besides the zip closure) is the three separate compartments inside (one of which also zips shut). Mi versare un bicchiere di prosecco! (Pour me a glass of prosecco!)