MARRIAGE: Day 19-21 of 30 – I’m a Better Wife Because I’m a Mom

I’m a Better Wife Because I’m a Mom

My role as a wife and a mom is blurred. On Days 19, 20, and 21 of the 30 Day Marriage Challenge I discovered that being a mom makes me a better wife.  As a mom I have to do things myself if I want things done. I have to have patience if I want to teach. And I have to forgive if I want to love. As a wife…

Day 19
Don’t ask him to do any chores or honey-dos.

Besides making money to pay the bills, his “chore” is taking out the trash. Mostly because I prefer not to go outside. During the nice months, he takes it upon himself to do the outside work. So, I don’t have to ask him to do anything.  I do, however, leave hints. Today, no hints. ūüėČ

As for the “honey-do” list, I had never heard of this until recently.  I know I’m not the only woman out there who also plays the role of handy[wo]man in their house. I may need him for the heavy-lifting, but I’m usually the one with a screwdriver, hammer, caulk, snake or plunger.  When we started building our house, he even bought me a drill.  I love to DIY.

30 Day Challenge Accepted Marriage

Day 20
Today’s focus: Patience

I’m a very patient person. However, I lose it when my husband’s driving. I have zero patience for his inconsiderate driving – from unnecessary lane changes, to cutting people off, to merging last minute to exit. It drives me nuts, and I’m not quiet about it. Unfortunately, today was a day we commuted to work together. To distract myself from being a passenger-seat driver, I closed my mouth and focused on liking and commenting on Instagram – come join me.

Day 21
Forgive him when he makes a mistake.

Is it possible, he hasn’t made a mistake today (yet)? Regardless, whatever trivial mistake he would make, I’m generally a forgiving person. I will let him know I think he made a mistake.  But I learned long ago that forgiveness is easier than staying angry. I will end this post like yesterday, with a quote:

“Forgiving someone may cost you your pride, but not forgiving them will cost you your freedom.” Because holding onto anger only hurts you, not them. Speak your piece. Then have peace. 

Most wives will say they have a man-child as a husband or include their husband in the # of children. I am one of those.  However, the skills I’ve grown to improve as a mom are helping my marriage.

Super mom. Super wife. Super woman.

30 Day Challenge Accepted Marriage

Want to read all 30 Days of the Marriage Challenge?  View the Overview page HERE

MARRIAGE: Day 13-15 of 30 – I’m Back! Just in Time

I’m Back! Just in time

We’re half-way through the 30 Day Marriage Challenge and I’m glad to state that whatever was bogging me down the past week has passed, and I’m back! No more dark cloud. ¬†My smile has returned. The sun is out.¬†I took the tasks for Day 13, 14 and 15 with a positive attitude and skipping into the second half with a better mindset.

30 Day Challenge Accepted Marriage

Day 13
Do not use sarcasm with your husband today. 

This reminds me of Day 2 where I had to go the whole day without correcting my husband. It was easier for me to just not talk! I was hoping today he was going to the office, which would make this task even easier to accomplish. No luck. He ended up having to work-from-home and I ended up having to bite my tongue quite a few times.  Sarcasm is just how I deal with life.

But, really? Don’t most marriages, especially with kids, communicate with varying levels of sarcasm?

Day 14
Remember that being a wife is a blessing. 

I know I’m blessed. Like I said on my “About Me” page, ¬†I must’ve done something good in a prior life to be so lucky in this one.” I found what some people spend their whole lives searching for.

For 18-1/2 years we’ve been together. ¬†8-1/2 of those years, married. ¬†Whether as a girlfriend, fianc√©, wife and mother of his kids… I’m am blessed to go through life with him as my best friend.

Day 15
Think only positive thoughts about your husband. 

Today he gave me so many reasons to think only positive thoughts about him.

He took the morning off to hike with the kids while I went for a job interview. ¬†Before I left he said to the kids, “Wow, mommy looks beautiful.” It gave me a little perk in my step. Afterwards when I told him¬†I think I bombed the interview, he reassured me but¬†also told me to just keep moving forward. He’s also been my biggest supporter, but also my motivator. ¬†He took us all out for lunch, then off he went to work (looking all handsome).

I’m glad whatever mini-rut I was going through in my head is gone, but I’m not going to ignore the thoughts it conjured up. ¬†I hope that the remaining 15 days of this challenge continue to be interesting. I said I wanted this 30 Day Marriage Challenge to be a fun experience, but not all parts of marriage are fun. ¬†So let’s see what else happens…

 

Want to read all 30 Days of the Marriage Challenge?  View the Overview page HERE

MARRIAGE: Day 7-9 of 30 – Boy, I Sound Like a Bitter Wife

Boy, I Sound Like a Bitter Wife

Up to this point, the 30 Day Marriage Challenge was all fun-and-games. ¬†Then it got deep. ¬†Day 7, 8, and 9 were seemingly simple tasks, but I had trouble letting go of things I didn’t realize were bothering me. Things I thought I reconciled in my mind a long time ago. ¬†I stated one of my goals of this challenge was to be raw and unfiltered; not to sugarcoat. My marriage is not perfect, and I’m not going to pretend like it is.

30 Day Challenge Accepted Marriage

Day 7
Leave him a sweet note

Today is Valentine’s Day. I mentioned on Day 0 that we stopped exchanging gifts a long time ago. ¬†Along with that, we also stopped giving cards, which I’m actually sad about. ¬†I love cards – namely the art of thoughtfully written words. ¬†I¬†like to read and I obviously like to write (hello, blogging over here!). But years ago I discovered a letter I wrote to my husband that I had given him a year earlier still sealed in his drawer; it broke my heart. I know he didn’t not open it to be rude; he just doesn’t care for sentimental notions. After that I gave up on showing him my love¬†in that format.

So today, instead of wasting my time and setting myself up for disappointment… I opted for something simple. ¬†My kids (who¬†still¬†create cards for any occasion) had valentine’s cards ready for their dad. ¬†So I asked my son for one of his Blaze and the Monster Machines Valentine’s and wrote one out to my husband.

30 Day Challenge Accepted Marriage

Today he was working from home, so we¬†slipped it under his home office door giggling the entire time. ¬†I don’t even know if he saw it, picked it up, or read it. I just know, he never acknowledged it. And I can’t say I’m surprised.

Day 8
Put at least one date night on your calendar this month.

Does anyone else not enjoy date night with their significant other?? My husband and I will go out to eat, with or without our kids, for survival. We need to eat.  But put that in the context of a date, and I dread it.

Not that I don’t enjoy my husband’s company, but ever since the¬†normalization¬†of smartphones it’s like he can’t hold a conversation. And since his jobs aren’t 9-5, I can’t really ask him to stop checking messages. Besides, I’m not exactly innocent¬†myself. ¬†Also, ever since we bought our homes and had children, we really don’t talk about anything else except the good and bad of those two things.

So like an old boring couple, the idea I came up with is having the kids sleepover their grandparents and have us cook a meal together. ¬†It’s not a novel one, I know. ¬†But, the out-of-the-box¬†ideas I’ve suggested¬†(i.e wine tasting, indoor-rock climbing, etc.) he shot down. Rejection is exhausting.

Day 9
Imagine how it feels to be in your husband’s shoes

Although I’m not that nice to him all the time, I definitely respect him and cater to his needs before¬†my own. ¬†His parents and mother-in-law spoil him. ¬†His kids think he’s the the cooler parent. And his friends find him entertaining.¬†I think he feels minimal¬†pressure to¬†fulfill these roles because being a good son, husband, father and friend comes naturally to him. He’s a good guy. However, I think he puts a lot of pressure to support and maintain it financially. ¬†Meaning, he feels he needs to take care of his family is a very traditional sense, in the¬†bringing-home-the-bacon way.

I imagine, in my husband’s trendy¬†shoes (he actually has good taste in shoes – one of the things I find attractive in a guy), that he walks proudly of the life he’s created. ¬†I also imagine him dragging his feet, tired from long hours. I picture him running, because he’s always in a rush to get to the next thing. And lastly, I see him kicking off his shoes, leaving them by the front door haphazardly knowing that he doesn’t have to put them away himself.

I had to step away from this post a few times because I feel like I’m coming off like a bitter wife. ¬†Then I reminded myself that¬†the purpose of doing this Marriage Challenge was to identify and address parts of my relationship with my husband that needs tweaking. Days 7, 8 and9 remind me of something I tell my kids all the time – you can’t control what other people do, but you can control how you react to it.

 

Want to read all 30 Days of the Marriage Challenge?  View the Overview page HERE

MARRIAGE: Day 4-6 of 30 – Take Care of Them, They Will Take Care of You

Take Care of Them, They Will Take Care of You

As a wife and parent my days are filled with taking care of my family.  Getting our morning started on-time and efficiently, making sure our days run smoothly and on-schedule, and then tucking our days in at night.  I can easily complain about how much thankless work it all is, any mom can – a working-mom or a stay-at-home-mom.  Most days I feel unappreciated and my efforts overlooked.  Sometimes I resent the people I love most because I feel like they don’t understand the heart and energy I put into their lives.  But then on days like Day 4, 5 and 6 of the 30 Day Marriage challenge there are bright moments that make choosing an unpaid career more rewarding than any paycheck can provide.

30 Day Challenge Accepted Marriage

Day 4
Kiss your husband the first time you see him in the morning.

Actually, he kissed me… on the forehead, then tucked me back into bed.  I made a kissy-sound back; that counts, right?

I had a rough night, catching a bout of the notorious stomach virus had me spending more time at the toilet than in bed.  So really I shouldn’t be kissing anyone.  I slept the rest of the day, and he took care of the kids.

I am not a meme!

30 Day Challenge Accepted Marriage

Day 5
Tell yourself, “He really loves his family and he is doing his best for us.”

After finally crawling out of my sick-cave, I discovered my house (when not under my control) is complete disarray! I wanted to turn around and run right back under my covers.  So, I had to repeat this sentence to myself several times while I attempted to clean up after my children and man-child.

But let’s look at the big picture… I was sick and my husband had no issues stepping up.  He took care of the kids, he took care of me and, most importantly, he had the kids learn to take care of me too (checking on me, bringing me water, etc.).  He loves us. He didn’t do everything MY way (the right way ūüėú), but he did his best. (And not just today – every day.) So, “bless this mess.”

Day 6
Bake, make or buy his favorite food.

This was a tough one. He’s so picky.  And I can’t cook (read: About Me).

He was only going to be home for breakfast today because he’s going into the office late and staying late. So after dropping off my older one at school, I made a quick run to the market. Operative word: quick.  No one got sleep in our house last night. While I’m still weak and recovering, our younger one caught the virus and had been puking since 3am. I got the ingredients to make his favorite breakfast dish – loaded hash browns.  And since I can finally eat solids, I made a little extra for myself.  

Unexpectedly the husband ended up coming home in time for dinner.  He was hopeful that today’s Marriage Challenge task would cover two meals.  He’s lucky I was in a good mood.

Want to read all 30 Days of the Marriage Challenge?  View the Overview page HERE

SLEEP: Day 28-30 of 30 – Best Decision I Made – Challenge COMPLETED!

Best Decision I Made

Taking on the 30 Day Sleep Challenge was a last-minute decision.¬†¬†For most adults, getting the recommended 7-9 hours of a sleep doesn’t seem that difficult, but I’ve always been the person who was more productive at night… so even the thought of going to bed before 1:30am seemed impossible.

Especially now that I’m a parent, I procrastinate on personal tasks, pushing them to the hours after my kids have gone to sleep. ¬†However, because I’m a mom, these hours are even more limited because I have to¬†maintain a home. ¬†But running on EMPTY was taking a toll on me. I needed a change.

30 Day Challenge Accepted Sleep

As I finished up Day 28, 29, and 30 of the Sleep Challenge, I cannot believe¬†the changes that have easily happened in the past month. ¬†I have gotten more sleep than I have had in years. ¬†My body adjusted quickly to the new bedtime (12:00pm). ¬†I’ve stopped hitting the snooze button. ¬†And while I don’t feel more energetic physically, my brain doesn’t feel like a blob sloshing in my head. ¬†Sure, our house isn’t spotless (truth: it never was!). There are still dishes in the sink and I haven’t clean laundry I have yet to fold. But I’m still taking care of work that needs to get done, and more importantly… I’m taking better care of me.

Day 28
1:30am – 9:30am + 5pm cat nap (8 hours), Snooze: 0x

I wish it was a lazy Sunday, but as with most weekend my social calendar is taking my kids to their socializing events.  I have no social calendar. This was also the reason for the cat nap I snuck in while the kids played with their cousins.

Day 29
12:30am – 7:15am (6 hours, 45 minutes), Snooze: 0x

The excitement of the superbowl is the reason I went to bed a little later than usual.  But I popped out of bed in the morning.  The sun was shining bright and I am ready for this week.

Day 30
12:00am – 7:15am (7 hours, 15 minutes), Snooze: 0x

My daughter woke me up at 2am asking if I could go lay with her in her bed. I slept walked my way to her bedroom and it was probably better because the husband was snoring up a storm.

So although the Sleep Challenge wasn’t on the top of my list, it was the best decision I made. ¬†Now¬†my beloved latte¬†isn’t wishful thinking to improve my day, it’s a reward… which already makes for a better day. Cheers!



My Goals were:

  • ‚úĒÔłŹsleep at least 7hours a night for 30days, with the ultimate goal to get 8 hours
    • The average for the past 30 days was 7.31 hours of sleep a night.¬†ūüėī
    • I can’t get a steady 8 hours because that would leave me with no time to do the things I do when I’m not with the kids¬†ūüíĽ
  • ‚úĒÔłŹfinish this challenge as close to 30days as possible
    • as a night owl, this challenge was surprisingly easy… probably because I desperately needed it.¬†ūü§§
  • ‚úĒÔłŹeliminate sleep distractions for good
    • still laugh at the fact that the simple act of putting my phone in a different room was all it took¬†ūüĎčūüŹľūüďĪ
  • ‚úĒÔłŹfind ways to induce sleep
    • didn’t need to. I was so ready for sleep each night¬†ūüõĆ
  • ‚úĖÔłŹbecome a better morning person
    • that’s a different challenge altogether¬†ūüėĚ

Let’s take a look at how my¬†Status Quo has changed:

  • My current bedtime is ~1:30am¬†12:00am and¬†I‚Äôm up and struggling by 7:30am at ’em at 7:15am.
  • I have a very difficult time falling asleep, unlike my husband who snoozes as soon as his head hits the pillow
  • I‚Äôm not a morning person. I hit snooze a few times before I finally roll out of bed.
  • I usually (accidentally) take¬†power nap when I‚Äôm putting my younger one down for his nap [still true. i can’t help it.]
  • On weekends, my family let‚Äôs me sleep in and I don‚Äôt wake up until almost 11:00am 10:00am
  • I love my bed [or any bed really. i think the major preference is sleeping solo.]

CHALLENGE: SLEEP¬†– ‚úĒÔłŹ¬†COMPLETED

Want to read all 30 Days of the Sleep Challenge?  View the Overview page HERE

SLEEP: Day 25-27 of 30 – Too Excited to Sleep

Too Excited to Sleep

Since I started the 30 Day Sleep Challenge I’ve been shocked at¬†how I’ve¬†been able to fall asleep so quickly by simply putting my tempting phone far away from me. ¬†I notoriously had trouble falling asleep, and my solution before used to be sleeping in the opposite direction (head where my feet are) or in a different place altogether¬†(usually the basement because it’s pitch dark).

On Days 4-6 I spoke about being stressed and using the emotional exhaustion to fall asleep. On Day 25, 26 and 27 these stress factors still exist, but the reason I couldn’t fall asleep is because I was excited. After a year on the journey to get myself back on the career track, I got the phone call I’ve been waiting for. ¬†The interview was scheduled rather quickly, which is probably better because I had less days to ponder what to say and how to say it, what to ask and how not too seem too excited. ¬†This is not a bad reason not to be able to fall asleep.

30 Day Challenge Accepted Sleep

Day 25
12:30am – 7:15am (6 hours, 45 minutes), Snooze: 0x

Got into bed at 12:00am but didn’t fall asleep right away.

Day 26
12:30am – 7:15am (6 hours, 45 minutes), Snooze: 0x

Got into bed at 12:00am but didn’t fall asleep right away, again.

Day 27
1:00am – 8:30am (7 hours, 30 minutes), Snooze: 1x

Knocked out and only snoozed because I forgot to turn off my 7:15am alarm

I didn’t completely bomb the interview, by the way. There’s still a long road ahead for me, but it was a proud moment because I felt like the chances I have been taking with my career lead me to this. ¬†It was the first time I mentioned the creation of this blog to an interviewer, taking it back my initial purpose of starting this project and one of my goals – to be able to put this on my resume. ¬†It was a great feeling.

 

Want to read all 30 Days of the Sleep Challenge?  View the Overview page HERE

SLEEP: Day 16-18 of 30 – Let Mommy Sleep

Let Mommy Sleep

I have to admit, so far getting 7 hours of sleep at night is a much easier challenge than I thought it would be. ¬†I thought that the act of falling asleep, which has always been difficult for me, was going to be my biggest hurdle. ¬†Who knew that simply putting my phone far from arm’s reach was the solution. ¬†The only thing I haven’t been able to resolve through this 30 Day Sleep Challenge is getting my kids to sleep in their beds through the night, every night. ¬†How many of you have a voice that screams in¬†your¬†head, “LET MOMMY SLEEP!”? How many of you actually scream it aloud?

30 Day Challenge Accepted Sleep

Day 16
12:15-7:30 (7 hours), Hit Snooze: 2x

Slept with my daughter in her room last night because of the storm; the winds and rain were so loud I don’t blame her for being scared. Thought it would be better than having her wake me up in the middle of the night. ¬†Didn’t work out as planned. Her kicking woke me up through the night. I think she punched me once too.

Day 17
12:15-7:15 (7 hours), Hit Snooze: 1x

It’s like my kids conspire against me – how do both of them have nightmares the same night? First my little one came down in the middle of the night. ¬†His little 3-foot body managed to take over my side of the bed. As soon as I woke up to adjust him, my older one walked in. ¬†So I gave up and let her take up whatever remaining space there was in our bed and I left to go sleep in her bed.

Day 18
11:45-7:15 (7 hours, 30 minutes), Hit Snooze: 1x

Today was a rare night. I don’t even remember falling asleep, and slept through the entire night, no interruptions. I was ready to complain about my husbands snoring as tonight’s interruption, instead he complained about mine. Sorry, not sorry.

How did this miracle happen you wonder? My mom came to stay the night, and the kids both slept with her in the guest room. Grandmas are the best.

Want to read all 30 Days of the Sleep Challenge?  View the Overview page HERE

SLEEP: Day 7-9 of 30 – I Love Lattes

I Love Lattes

I’m on a roll with this 30 Day Sleep Challenge!  Wasn’t sure how the weekend would look, but I was able to fit in at least 7hours on Day7, 8 and 9 even when I went back to my usual, preferred, bedtime of 2:00am.  But with all this sleep, I have no physical reason to make a Dunkin Donuts run. What I feared is coming true! But it’s even worse. I never thought myself as a coffee drinker.  I don’t like hot beverages. I don’t like hot coffee, especially the smell of it.  I didn’t start drinking iced coffee until I had kids.  Then I discovered the iced caramel latte (regular milk, no whip cream).  And now I can’t deny it.
“Hi, my name is 30DaysV, and I love lattes.”

Day 7
2:00am – 9:00am (7hours), Hit Snooze: 0x

Yay for Saturday! And for a husband who takes the kids on weekend mornings.

Day 8
2:00am – 12:00pm (10hours!), Hit Snooze: 0x

Yay for grandparents who take my kids for a sleepover when the kids don’t have school. Had a relaxing night with family and friends that included a lot of wine and a continuation of my House of Cards marathon.

Day 9
12:15pm – 7:15am (7hours), Hit Snooze: 0x

Shocked I was able to fall alseep relatively early. But even more shocked that I went into the office and survived the day without coffee.  I was definitely craving it all day, but didn’t need it. I wasn’t sleepy. I wasn’t yawning. My brain was focused, except for the nagging need of caffeine.

As a reward for how well I’m doing, I’m treating myself to a iced caramel latte tomorrow. ūüėč And as a DD Perks member, I have a FREE Beverage Reward waiting to be used. Winner!

30 Day Challenge Accepted Sleep

Want to read all 30 Days of the Sleep Challenge?  View the Overview page HERE