Another summer has zipped past filled with busy weekends and family trips. Fall is here and that means that the holidays are *gasp* just around the corner. The past few months have been a whirlwind and our baby has quickly become a toddler in every single way. The transition has been a ton of fun and we’re all learning a lot from each other. As parents, we have realized that toddlers require a lot more attention – mentally, emotionally and physically. We’ve also found that we have a little boy who is smart, opinionated and really, really funny. I can’t wait to continue watching him through this next season and into winter.
I’m especially excited for the holidays this year because we unfortunately didn’t get to celebrate very much last year. Our winter months were consumed with hospital visits and a lot of worry – you see, my dad has cancer, and there were some pretty scary complications last November and December.
When I wrote my very first post for Lake Country Family Fun just about a year ago, I was admittedly busy. I was worried about managing all that I had going on in life, but I was happy doing it. I can say with certainty that I’ve learned a lot MORE about balancing life in the past year. Between working full time, nourishing my relationships with my husband and kiddo, running my personal blog and everything else in between – adding a cancer diagnosis to the rock of our family was a pretty hard blow. I will be honest with you and say that it’s really difficult to juggle projects, priorities and emotions when all you can think about is the worst scenario. If you’re wondering, my dad is in treatment, doing well and we take each day at a time. There are good and bad days, days when we get devastating news, and days when we laugh and live the best life we can. We no longer take each other for granted, and remember to say I love you as much as we can.
A while back, when I was thinking about how to approach every responsibility on my plate, I kept coming back to the same few things – the ones that are so important, I refused to sacrifice. These things are my priorities, and they’ve been the steady points I focus on during more rocky times.
It’s obvious that this is something I won’t sacrifice, given what I just told you. But it’s more than just that – it’s making time to see family who we don’t often get together with. Over the summer we took some trips, planned fun events and spent a whole lot of days on our patio soaking in each other’s company. I wrote this blog post that is one of my very favorites about always doing what you say you’re going to do.
It’s incredibly hard to find time to myself these days, but I’ve realized that it is imperative to my happiness and mental health. Even just 20-30 minutes a day of quiet time that is only for me does wonders. It’s time for reflection, prayer and self-improvement. I use to complain about my commute to work, but it’s become some of my favorite time during the day. It’s relaxing to sip my coffee and turn on the radio or an audio book and enjoy the “me time”. Another time I use to relax is when I’m washing my face – I know it sounds funny, but just that routine including a few quiet minutes at the end of the day is the best way to unwind. To be totally cheesy – it’s like wiping away today’s worries and hardships and knowing that tomorrow will be a fresh start.
I don’t know about you, but at this time of year – when the seasons change and all of the go-go-go of summer ends, my body tends to feel it the most. My mom always calls it burning the candle at both ends – and it never fails that I will get sick. It doesn’t help that I have a daycare kiddo, who brings mama lots of germs without even trying. To help combat this, I’ve been trying to stay on top of exercise and fueling my body with healthy foods. Overall, when I’m healthy – I’m happier.
In the end we all choose what we believe in. We all have our individual values and know who and what is important to us. It’s really important to me to stay true to what I believe, and that I keep spreading happiness, encouragement and love to others. It’s never easy to share my truth online for the whole Internet to read, but it’s worth it if the message I’m sending resonates with even just a few people.
Life is always going to throw you curve balls – you just have to figure out the right way to react. It’s in these times when you have to dig deep and set boundaries on how far you’re willing to bend and what is most important to you. Do you have things that you aren’t willing to sacrifice? I’d love to hear about them!
Until next time,