A diagnosis was the biggest gift we didn’t think we wanted

I was driving home from dropping Eliana to her weekly social skills, Occupational Therapy and Speech Therapy session. I began to think back to how far our sassy six-year-old has come in the last four years. It seems not all that long ago that a diagnosis was the biggest gift we didn’t think we wanted. Continue reading “A diagnosis was the biggest gift we didn’t think we wanted”

Love Languages for Self-care

The book Love Languages by Dr. Gary Chapman has been around for a number of years now, and you can now read books on how his theory relates to your spouse, children, men, teens and singles. My husband and I read the couples version after we received it as an engagement present many years ago. The love languages are something I have tried to keep in mind when interacting with my husband and in raising our kids. However, until recently I had never considered how it might be beneficial to apply the love languages for self-care. Continue reading “Love Languages for Self-care”

Know the size of your plate

It is common knowledge that we, as mothers, wives and homemakers, put incredible pressure on ourselves to “do it all”. It took me almost 10 years of marriage and 8 years as a mum to realise this is not only impossible but completely unnecessary! It’s important to know the size of your plate- how much you can take on-  and to adjust accordingly.

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Imperfect

When I was pregnant with my first child, I spent hours reading books on pregnancy and about the first year of a baby’s life. I wanted to ensure that I knew how to get everything ‘right’. I even read books about parenting boys and girls into their teenage years, to make sure that I didn’t miss anything important along the way. However, it only took a very short time for me to face the reality that parenting, and life with children in general, is imperfect. It is wonderful but also messy, chaotic, unpredictable and rich with learning opportunities (aka mistakes).

Imperfect People

I have three children, my eldest is in high school now, and I still find myself floundering as each new age and stage brings with it new challenges to navigate. I’m someone who is not afraid to admit when I’m wrong and the greatest lesson that being a mother has shown me is that I am flawed, my husband is flawed, and my children are flawed. We are all imperfect; it’s just a fact-  and that is ok.

Learning Opportunities

When my children were younger and I’d mess up (as we all do), I would lie awake at night feeling immensely guilty. Sometimes even crying myself to sleep, feeling like I was failing and doing “damage” to my children. As they’ve gotten older, and I’ve matured, I have come to realise that sometimes it is through our imperfections that our children learn the best lessons. They see us fail, they see us apologise, and they see us trying again.

As parents we aren’t able to be everything for our children. It’s an impossible ambition and one that is not expected of us. What we are called to do is to parent each day to the best of our ability. We don’t expect our children to be perfect; all we ask is that they try their best.  So why then do we expect ourselves to be perfect? We need to do our best and let God be our source of strength and comfort each day as we grow and learn and become better mums. Life isn’t perfect and it’s ok for our homes and families to have imperfection in them too.

“It’s actually our ability to embrace imperfection that will help us teach our children to have the courage to be authentic, the compassion to love themselves and others…”- Dr.Brené Brown, parenting author and researcher.

Be kind to yourself

The greatest advice anyone has ever given to me (at a time when my young Type A personality was crushing me), was to be kind to myself. And it’s something that I remind myself of daily. So be kind to yourself and encourage your mum friends as we walk this motherhood road together. You’re not perfect and that’s completely ok. Sometimes, it’s even a good thing.

Catherine Begley

Lead as a mum- because you already are!

 

Have you ever considered stepping up to lead, but didn’t? What held you back? Often is the lack of belief in our own skills and abilities that holds us back from stepping up to lead.

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Exercising when you have young children

You might think that you get enough exercise from chasing your children around all day!  However, it’s still important to fit some planned exercise in as it helps keep you mentally and physically fit. If you can find some space to exercise by yourself, it can also give some much needed time out. Exercising when you have young children is possible! So how do you fit exercise in while raising small children? There are a number of ways I made it work. Continue reading “Exercising when you have young children”

Sensory play

Ever noticed how babies and toddlers get into everything? As a baby explores the world around them, they engage in a lot of sensory play. Most things go in their mouth. Little fingers continually reach for new things. Cats are fair game as their fur is touched and tugged. Books are chewed, tasted, grabbed, flipped and looked at. Keys are jingled, chewed and thrown.

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What do eggs have to do with Easter?

We often joke in my household that is 80% female “step away from the chocolate, and no one will get hurt”. When it comes to chocolate I’m a big fan. Here we are about to celebrate Easter again, and there is chocolate aplenty in every supermarket. But do you find yourself wondering how to explain to your little ones (or even to yourself), what do eggs have to do with Easter? How do chocolate eggs and the death of Jesus both manage to find a place in the celebration of Easter?

Travelling with Children

With state borders opening once again, and flights between capital cities resuming, many of us are looking to travel again.  Maybe it’s for a  well-deserved holiday, or to visit family and friends that you could not see during 2020. For some, the mere thought of travelling with children long distances can be enough to make us groan. Continue reading “Travelling with Children”

Remember Your Mountain Tops

Have you ever taken one of those quizzes where it asks if you’re a ‘beach’ or ‘mountain’ kind of girl? I answer ‘mountain’ every time.

There’s something about mountains. Their might and grandeur make me feel small, yet safe. There’s nothing like climbing to a mountain top and taking in the view or sitting in a valley under the shadow of its peaks.

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