The Rocking Motherhood Challenge began as a way to help moms remember all the things that make us great mothers instead of constantly focusing on the areas where we fall short. All the moms I know are totally rocking motherhood, each in our own ways. I challenge each of you to add at least one way you are rocking motherhood in the comments for this post. Let’s hear what makes you rock mamas!
I was tagged to participate in the Rocking Motherhood Challenge by one of my favorite mom bloggers, Elizabeth Brico at www.bettysbattleground.com. I encourage you to check out her amazing blog about parenting with PTSD.
And to keep the challenge going, I tag fellow mom bloggers Sarah at This Awkward Mom, Liza at My Petite Picassos, Alicia at Adventures with My Littles, Allison at The Little One Chronicles, Nykkie at BobbieDaisy, and Meghna at Love, Life and the Little One to post their own 10 ways they are rocking motherhood.
10 Ways I Rock at Motherhood
1. I Take My Kids Outside Everyday
That’s right. I take my kids outside every single day. Even in winter. I believe fresh air and active play can improve just about anything going wrong with your day. And I believe all humans, especially the little ones, need to get outside at least once a day to be happy and healthy. On the rare days when extreme weather or illness keeps us from getting outside we all feel it in terms of added crankiness and crummy behavior. Getting outside isn’t always easy with little kids. It usually takes us as long to get ready as the amount of time we get to spend outside. But I make it a priority because it’s worth it.
2. I Let My Kids Make a Mess (Even When I Hate It!)
For me, mess equals stress. No one would call me a neatnik, I don’t mind a little clutter, but my kids create more than clutter, they create chaos. And some days it makes me want to tear out my hair. But my girls love their blanket forts, stuffed animal villages, Kinetic Sand, Play-Doh, art projects, and so many other disaster creating activities so much I can’t turn them down. Because those are all the things that are fun about being a kid.
3. I Say I’m Sorry
Sometimes I really screw-up. I overreact or raise my voice when my kids are misbehaving. When this happens, I tell my kids I’m sorry. Mama makes mistakes too and I will try to do better. I regret it when I lose it with my kiddos, always. And I want them to understand that everyone makes mistakes, including moms. It’s ok to make them. But it’s important to admit when you’re wrong and to try and do better.
4. I Read to My Kids Everyday
One of my favorite things we do every day is read. I read one-on-one with each of my kids as part of our bedtime routine. My youngest daughter gets a favorite board book. And my oldest gets a book of her choosing. My oldest daughter, in particular, looks forward to this every day. I enjoy spending time with each of my girls separately. And it’s one of the few times a day they let me hold them anymore. Reading is one of my favorite activities and I love that it’s something I can share with and hopefully pass on to my daughters.
5. We’re on a Schedule
I know some moms rock motherhood by just rolling with it and taking the day as it comes. I imagine these moms are calm and have laid back kids who can nap anywhere. I am not that mom. And that in no way describes my kids. No one who has ever spent time with any of us would use words like calm or laid back. My rambunctious littles and I are on a schedule. It’s not exactly minute by minute but every day does follow a pattern for eating, sleeping, and when we go outside. I like having my day planned. My kids thrive on routine. And we’re all happier with a schedule to follow.
6. I Keep the House Clean, Mostly
Some days it seems like the minute I get everything picked up, I turn around and someone emptied a dump truck of toys in my living room. It’s the only possible explanation for the mess. Days like that make housework seem like a thankless task. But I do my best to keep up with the cleaning and daily pick up of toys. For one thing, I’ve got some germ phobia to deal with and things have to be at least sanitary with kids. Secondly, keeping things mostly picked up gives my kids space to play, otherwise known as space to make a whole new mess the next day.
7. I Let Them Have Free Play
When it comes to playtime, I don’t micromanage. I love watching my kids play on their own. My oldest daughter has loved stuffed animals ever since she could hold one. To her they are real. She talks to them and creates elaborate worlds and storylines. I know all about them because I listen. But I don’t interfere. I think independence and the ability to entertain yourself are skills kids need to practice. It gives them room to stretch their imagination and not always depend on external sources of entertainment.
8. We Play Together
There is a time for independent play and then there is time for organized family fun. My husband and I both love board games. We’ve been teaching Ellie to play since she was two or three with age appropriate games. It gets us all playing together as a family. And playing together teaches listening, following rules, and taking turns. When Ellie was a baby and now with my youngest, we play peek-a-boo and patty cake and all the baby game silliness I miss so much when they outgrow it. And now that she’s a little older Abby loves joining in a dance party or game of hide and seek with her sister and me.
9. I Try to Say Yes as Much as Possible
There are a lot of rules when you’re a kid. And it can seem like everyone is always telling you no. So I try to say yes as much as possible. Even if what they want isn’t my first choice of activity or toy. If there is no compelling reason to say no, I try to let my kids have what they want or do things they like. I am not talking about spoiling them with endless piles of toys. I’m talking about eating ice cream for a snack. Or having a flashlight at bedtime. Or as I’ve mentioned, letting them make a mess. Little indulgences that bring lots of joy.
10. Love, Love, Love
I love my girls so much. I’ve built our lives around that love so they are always surrounded by it. And I try to tell them and show them every chance I get that they are loved, loved, loved by their mom and their family.
How are You Rocking Motherhood?
Let’s hear from you, mamas! Tell me how you’re rocking motherhood in the comments below! And if you would like to join the Rocking Motherhood Challenge with your own blog, check out the rules here to get you started.