Category: January Slow Down

Slowing Down for January

I’ve noticed a trend on the internet in this new year. Many people are opting to not make any resolutions. Because we were going to be having a newborn, I decided that I wouldn’t make any resolutions or goals for the beginning of the year, but because I’ve seen others doing this too, I have no idea if I came up with this on my own or if anyone on my social media feeds influenced my plans. In my hitch goals for this month, I kept it super simple because all I wanted was my baby in my arms. Now that I’ve had him, I’m ready to spend my time cocooned with my family. I said before how busy the holiday season was for us. Every time Kevin was home, we had so many obligations and we hardly had a day to just stay home and rest. Now that the holidays are over with and we’ve had our baby, I’m ready to just stay home.

For the last month of my pregnancy I was so looking forward to the newborn stage of keeping away from going out in public. A slow down month is exactly what we need. Before Christmas, I was thinking I wanted to do a no spend month because I knew I had spent a lot over the holidays. But maybe what our finances will really benefit from is just being able to slow down and saying no to things.

I’m hoping to spend this time doing things we love like going to the swamp or maybe even the zoo, but that option might not be possible. Something I want to get away from is how much tv we watch. I can almost see Kevin’s eyes rolling at that statement, we have different needs when it comes to how we entertain ourselves, but that’s ok. And at first when I was thinking of having a theme for this month of slowing down, I was coming up with a mental list of things I wanted to stop doing.

But. Something that I wanted to do in the new year was to change how I think about things. I noticed the past several months, or maybe year, or I really have no idea how long I’ve been viewing life through negative words and ideas. What I mean is there can often be two ways to word a statement that has either a negative or positive connotation. Lately I find myself leaning towards the negative versions and I want to change that. I want to choose the joyful route.

So keeping that in mind, instead of coming up with a list of all the things I want to stop, I want to come up with a list of things I want us to do more of. I believe that by doing so, the other things will naturally be left behind. I have no problem with us watching tv. Sometimes I need the kids to be entertained by something besides me. And I know that the more we spend time playing puzzles, going outside, reading books, etc. the more we will be used to depending on ourselves for entertainment and less on technologies. As for me personally, I know my tendencies for having the tv on hinders my productivity and before I know it, I will have spent all morning with the tv on. Usually whatever I am watching is something that is totally non-edifying to my life.

Instead of saying that we are going to watch less tv, I’m choosing to say we want to do more. For me, the secret to choosing to do more is that the doing more has to be what is for our family. Not what other people expect us to do. I think that many people often hold expectations of other people and can be judgmental when we don’t live up to those expectations. Now I’m not saying we should all become self-centered and only do exactly what we want with no regard to the needs and wants of others. But as a mother, my first responsibility is doing what is good for my family and for my children. I’m choosing less of the world, less of the busy; more of my children, more playing, more rest.

I want to do more outside play, more puzzles, more creative play. I believe childhood should be fun and busy in a good way. And if we fill up our time with play, then that leaves less time for filling our day with screens. Instead of being anti-screens, I am choosing to be pro-play.

Outnumbered 3 to 1

So now that we have had Jake, I’m now more outnumbered than I was before when Kevin is at work. So far my mom and his mom and his grandmother have all helped out tremendously and I’ve been getting a good bit of rest which is just fine with me!

Last night was my first night on my own with all three of them and I’m so proud of how I handled it. I had both of the kids in bed by 8 and they were asleep by 9! I couldn’t believe my luck. I’m not gonna see how tonight will go because my mom took both of them to her house to spend the night. As much as I wanted to keep them home so we could start to get into a rhythm, there was no way I could turn down an easy night! I even had the dishwasher loaded, the kitchen cleaned, and my coffee prepped for tomorrow.

My plan is to take my days and nights slow and not try to do too much. For right now this looks like consistently keeping the sink fairly clean of dirty dishes and running the dishwasher every night when I can. If I miss a night, then that’s ok, I can just get to it the next day. This also means that I need to keep the trash can clear and open by not letting it overflow to the point where I can’t use it anymore. When these two things are being done in the kitchen, then it helps my life run a little smoother.

Finding ways to make everything run smoother is the key to surviving when I’m outnumbered. I’m really glad several months ago I began implementing a laundry day every week. It has totally changed my life in regards to always having clean clothes and I’m more prone to hang the shirts and put away other clothes in drawers. It’s also surprisingly easier to do the laundry now because I only have a week’s worth of clothes to fold and put up.

I also try to run the dishwasher every night. No matter how much or little is in there I just go ahead and run it. I use the same pans and dishes almost every day and it’s just easier for me to put it all in the dishwasher than to wash it all by hand. There are nights that this does not happen. Especially when I was still preggers because I was so dang tired! Surprisingly I was tired more when I was pregnant than I am now with a five day old newborn.

As long as I can keep the cycle up then life will run smoothly. Or somewhat smoothly. I’m setting the bar for myself really low, I’ll onky have these precious slow days for a short time. There is no need to put any pressure on myself that doesn’t need to be there.

I’ve been looking forward to spending January in my own little bubble with my family. The past two months have been so busy among the flurry of doctor appointments and the holidays, I couldn’t wait to slow down! Now our time is here and we get to spend it with our growing family, keeping to ourselves.