Yep, this IS a guilt trip

Alright.  I just need to get this off my chest.  Mom’s I am here to make you feel guilty.  Just a little.  How are you spending your time?  Really, where does it all go?

People tell me all the time that I am “so busy”…really.  I think I am doing my part to be a good mom, a good wife, a good neighbor and a good Christian.  Some days though, I feel like I’m the only one.  Curious, here, this is what I do all week:

Mom Time: I stay at home.  This means I do all the laundry, all the dishes, most of the meals, some of the grocery shopping.  I play trains for hours a week, read books for hours a week and generally sit on the floor, ground or porch about 3 hours a day doing whatever the little ones are into.  Sometimes there are even teachable moments and sometimes it is just plain fun!

Employee Time: I work a part time job and do some freelance writing on the side.  It rounds out to about 15 hours a week.  I usually do this during nap time or evening hours when the kiddos are in bed.  It keeps me ‘in the game’ as far as the working world is concerned, helps me think outside my box and helps contribute to my family’s financial position.

Neighbor Time: I am part of my neighborhood mom’s group and I volunteer my writing skills to our neighborhood newsletter (so I visit local businesses and events often!).  This takes up 3-5 hours a week.  The mom’s group is a blast.  I get to spend time with other moms and other kids and don’t ever have to get into the car.  I have even made friends that I see outside of our playgroup times!  Bonus!

Volunteer Time: I volunteer with my husband to lead a group of parents in our journey to be good parents.  We meet once a week and it takes 2-3 hours a week to prepare.  This is a great activity for my husband and I to do together AND it is a great way to contribute to other parents/families.  I also serve on the communications team for our moms group and on a steering committee at our church.  So volunteer time is about 5 hours a week.  I wish it was more but there are only so many hours in a week!

Church Time: I do think it is important to be part of a faith community.  It is good for me on my own faith journey, for my kids to be around values I believe in and as an additional place for me and my family to give back. Not only do we attend church, we attend various church events (picnics, BBQ’s, etc.) and I am part of a moms group (women I attend church with weekly).  This is about 5 hours a week.  And again, I have made life long friends investing in a faith community.  I am so blessed to be able to spend time with them outside of our organized activities!

In the midst of all this I still have time to pray, relax (I like to read, blog and just sit around with friends), date my husband (we are foodies, it is fun to date him!) and be available if my friends and family need me.

I have a full schedule but I also have boundaries.  We only do one “out of the house” activity a day.  That means a play date, meeting friends at the farmer’s market or going to our Thursday Night Parent’s Group.  It is freeing to know I am only making one big venture out of the house with the kiddos and it also gives me peace to know that I will have many hours at home to get things done.

So, from one mom to another…WHAT ARE YOU DOING ALL THE TIME?  Are you giving back?  Is it all about you or maybe all about your child/children?

I know that motherhood is exhausting.  I get it.  I spend 4-6 days a week as a single parent while my husband works. I know that there are a lot of options for you and your child.  I know that there are a lot of questions and theories on how to be the best mom/parent/wife/woman.  Don’t get swallowed up!  Know that God has give you gifts and talents!  Especially as a stay at home mom you have the gift of time, use it!

People often say “but what about your kids”?  What about them?  I bring them along!  I want them to know what it looks like to volunteer, to make friends, get to know their neighbors and spend time on the ground just having fun with your family 🙂

Remember, life is short!  Take time to get involved, give back and live out loud, for you AND your kids!

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