Does It Make Me A Bad Parent?

Does It Make Me A Bad Parent

By Chelsea O’Neal

Does it make me a bad parent? That’s the question that kept running through my head the other day. That’s the question I repeated over and over in regards to every parenting decision I am making. Does it make me a bad parent?

Does it make me a bad parent if some days I feel parenthood is just a little too overwhelming? Does it make me a bad parent if some days I just want her to sleep all day so I can get a breather? If I get annoyed sometimes when she’s climbing all over me, fussy and wanting me to hold her? If every time she grabs a handful of hair and yanks and I just want to yell “stop!Continue reading

The In-Between Time

Living In This Chapter

By Kate Kole

It’s Tuesday, which traditionally isn’t my favorite day of the week. I don’t think I’m in the minority here, as there aren’t a lot of graphic tanks on the market with “Tues-yay” or “Hello, Tuesday!” or “Tuesday Funday” plastered across the front. And we certainly don’t greet each other with “Happy Tuesday!” the same way we might on a Friday morning.

It isn’t a bad day, more of just an in-betweener. It’s the day I’ll start dreaming about what I’ll have as my evening dessert at 9:47 a.m. and making weekend plans – dangling the ‘what’s up next’ carrot in front of my face as incentive to power through whatever tasks my to-do-list hosts. Continue reading

She Let In

She Let In.

By Kate Kole

Inspiration: She Let Go by Safire Rose

She let in.

She let in a quiet acceptance for the body she had always harshly critiqued.

She let in emotion. Joy for the ordinary. Grief for her loss. Excitement for her accomplishments. Disappointment for the unattained things in which she had hoped.

She let in her feelings without the need to analyze, judge, deny, or defend them.

She let in appreciation for her past, contentment for her present, and faith for her future.

She let in the vulnerability to be seen and the strength to know her value. Continue reading

Not This.

Not This.

By Jillian Stacia

Not This.

It rang clear and true while I sat in the workshops, networked in the exhibit hall, chewed my dinner during the Awards Banquet.

Not This, Not This, Not This.

The concept of “Not This” comes from bestselling author, Elizabeth Gilbert. Gilbert writes, “Most of us, at some point in our lives (unless we have done everything perfectly…which is: nobody) will have to face a terrible moment in which we realize that we have somehow ended up in the wrong place.” She goes on to say, “I call this moment of realization: NOT THIS.”

This was my moment of realization. This was my Not This. Continue reading

Grieving Through The What-Ifs

Grieving Through What-Ifs

By Becky Houdesheldt

This weekend my husband and I had to return the crib and dresser we purchased for our second baby. It was one of the most difficult things we’ve ever had to do. Because we paid with cash, and had no receipt, the team lead told us we’d get in-store credit for the department the furniture came from. I quietly told her we were no longer pregnant, and that being restricted to the baby section of the store was not something I wanted.

Writing about this loss has not been easy. It is a tricky thing, writing about grief. Especially the grief over a loved one we hadn’t even had the chance to meet yet. Grief is a strange thing, and dealing with loss has a tendency to be a lonely process. It seems to me as though we, as humans, have a difficult time trying to find the right things to say to help someone coping with grief and so, sometimes the easiest way to handle it is to give space to those grieving. Continue reading

Stop Waiting For The Other Shoe To Drop

Stop Waiting For The Other Shoe To Drop

By Kate Kole

Last week, Chrissy Teigen shared on Instagram that her dog had gone to Heaven. Within seconds of seeing her post, I felt emotion begin to rise through my body. The kind signaling that a storm of uncontrollable tears and unspeakable words was coming. I grabbed a roll of paper towels (because I’m classy like that and we rarely have tissues on hand) and told my husband what had happened so that he’d understand why I was curled up in a ball on the other end of the couch crying. (Read: this isn’t our first rodeo of me losing it over random dogs on social media.)

This morning, the tears came again when Teigen posted a picture captioned, “The same day I got you, I told John I was sad. He asked why and I said because one day you’re going to be gone.” Continue reading

7 Things I’ve Learned About Life And Motherhood Lately

7 Things I_ve Learned About Life And Motherhood Lately

By Chelsea O’Neal

In a world where society seems to tell us that we have to be perfect and to do everything with perfection, it’s a breath of fresh air to step back and realize a few things, not only about life, but about ourselves and those around us. That refreshing feeling of coming to place of really appreciating all that there is and accepting ourselves just the way we are.

Here are 7 things that have been enlightening in my daily routines: Continue reading

This Is For The Women

This Is For The Women.jpg

By Christie Page

This is for the women, who get up everyday with a song in their heart despite living in a world that’s tried to silence them.

This is for the women who make meals from miracles when there are hungry mouths to feed and little money.

This is for the women who go without so that their children can have plenty.

This is for the women who offer a smile after crying all night in the sanctuary of the bathroom, under running water where no one will see their tears. Continue reading

10 Things I Wish I Could Tell My Pregnant Self After My First 10 Weeks of Motherhood

10 Things I Wish I Could Tell My Pregnant Self After My First 10 Weeks of Motherhood.jpg

By Jillian Stacia

It feels like just yesterday that I was pregnant. If I close my eyes, I can almost convince myself that the past 10 weeks have been a dream, and when I wake up, I’ll be curled around my humongous body pillow, still nine months pregnant.

But that’s not the case. I gave birth to a healthy little boy. I fell madly in love. I brought him home. And my world has never, ever been the same.

I realize that ten weeks is a little early to start dispensing parenthood advice. I’m the last person to call myself an expert. But I’m doing this, I’m living this, I’m breathing this new motherhood thing every single day, and I am startled by everything I’ve learned so far. I want to take the time to document what I’ve discovered right here in the thick of it, before the haze of new motherhood wears off and I forget what it was really and truly like. Continue reading

5 Ways to Spend Quality Time with Your Kids

5 Ways to Spend Quality Time with Your Kids.jpg

By Brigitte Evans

In this crazy, hectic, chore-filled world that revolves around constant obligations and attempts to make our children’s lives better, we often forget that the best way to make them genuinely happy is to simply spend time with them. They’re always away at school and you’re always at work or stuck cooking, cleaning, and doing laundry, so when you do get together, the time you have is precious. How do you make the best of it? How do you make sure you bond and grow closer than ever before? Continue reading