Sometimes I have to laugh and cry at the same time. I’ve just said ‘hurry up’ and ‘come on’ about ten times in 1 minute to my boys. And did it make a difference? Nope. Just made me more annoyed. I’m pretty sure it’s just white noise to them. However, I have come up with a couple of strategies to help with getting kids out of the house in time:
1) Give them 1 instruction at a time. Kneel down at eye level and give them the instruction quietly whilst looking straight into their eyes. Then ask them “What do you need to do now?”. And then when they still haven’t done anything a minute later, look them in the eye and quietly ask them again “What do you need to do?”. This usually works and they head off to do their allotted task. The key is 1 instruction at a time, with their’s and your full focused attention.
2) Reward their independence. It’s been an effort but my 3 and 5 year old boys can now dress themselves, find their shoes, hats, schoolbags and get into the car all on their own. They get a small prize (1 malteser or jaffa ) if they beat myself and my daughter to the car. No punishments for not getting there, just rewards. Works most mornings!
When I first heard about Paleo – I laughed. Huh! Caveman food? It sounded so last year, and so cultish.
However, little did I know it but my western diet (which I thought was pretty healthy) was just not good enough. My kids had constant respiratory infections, rashes (which I thought was due to heat), my husband had ezcema, and I kept getting regular chest infections and strange itchy spots on my face which I put down to stress and pregnancy hormones. Slowly we looked at our diet, removed the dairy (so hard to begin with but the rewards kept on coming – the rashes, eczema and respiratory infections disappeared), and then slowly started realising that our diet was very high in processed carbs, and very low in good fats.
2 years on and I would call our diet paleo-ish. Most of our meals would be paleo, but if we are with other people or having other people over for dinner then we are not going to snob some good old fashioned chocolate dessert. I am also a fan of goat’s cheese in our salads. There are probably some other non – paleo items too.
Paleo certainly doesn’t have to be boring or tasteless or difficult. We started with the crossfit meal plans as a way to plan our day’s food, and slowly we cut out the majority of processed carbs. We are so much healthier and happier for it!
Crossfit meal plans (a must read):
Okay. I admit it. I am a Crossfitter. It took me a long time to call myself this, and countless moments of annoyance as I listened to my husband CONSTANTLY talk about crossfit.
But seriously. It’s great. I have worked it into my routine – every lunchtime I meet my husband at the Crossfit gym dressed in my workclothes. It takes about 30 seconds to strip into workout gear, an hour to do the workout, and then a 30 second utilisation of baby wipes, lipstick, a hair brush and I’m out the door and back at my desk. I eat lunch at my desk.
And guess what! I’m almost able to do a pull up. I never would have thought I would. My husband and I have a deal – I’m allowed to buy a new bedspread (we did get a new one a year ago, but its grey and very boring!) as soon as I’m able to do 1 strict pull up… I’ll keep you posted.
8:30am Monday morning. Ding. Murmurs of forced cheery ‘Morning!’s. Expected exclamations of ‘I need some coffee!’ as people turn on their workstations and head to the kitchen. I overhear some of my colleagues complaining of their early starts and chuckle when I hear that the early start is the not so early start of 7:30am…and catch the equally amused smile of a fellow working mother. Wow. Wait till they have kids!
…6:30 am my alarm sounds and as this is already cutting it fine, I can’t even hit the snooze button. I partially get dressed, deliberately not putting on my workshirt as I have found out the hard way that feeding a 7 month old in the morning will always be catastrophic for those smart monotone shirts that show all the attempts of cleaning off food stains! However, I do my two minute makeup and hair routine (lipstick, mascara, earings, and bobby pins, and some dry shampoo!) and then pull out a tin of tuna. A mouthful or two later, I’m into the boys room carrying them to their chairs half asleep. A tin of tuna each, a handful of nuts and specially cut up pieces of orange put in front of them, another mouthful of tuna for me then its my daughter’s time to feed. Getting dressed, mentally ticking off lunchboxes, bags, shoes, is it school uniform or sports uniform today? have I signed all excursion forms?, oh dear my toe nails need painting!. Into the car the 50 minute round trip of drop offs begin for each child, complete with 2 minute chats with various teachers, the biting back of multiple ‘come on darling, we will be late, where’s your hat? until I finally pull up at my office…
Ahh. All before 8:30 am.
I’m sitting here, unable to sleep because I’m just so excited! My oldest child is about to start school tomorrow! Mixed in with all the excitement is the knowledge that my life is about to change…again. Yes, it changed dramatically when my son was born five years ago. I know – but that is long in the past and 2 kids since then have kind of blurred the edges there. Starting school though, means more hats for me!
The question that is going through my head – surely it is possible to have it all? Happiness, healthiness, family life and a career? I’ve juggled it so far – worked for 5 years in between having 3 children, started studying another degree whilst on maternity leave, started crossfit a year ago, playing touch, going to church and bible study, volunteering… surely I can keep juggling even with this school thing thrown in??
But I can’t ignore the flutters of uncertainty in my stomach. I am a teeny bit scared of losing it all whilst trying to have it all.
And so I start a blog.