April 2016 in the Books

CPCU

April CPCU

Another month down, and April 2016 is in the books. I’m approaching my last big test to complete my CPCU, an insurance designation, and I’m pretty overwhelmed. After my test, I’ll catch up on all those things that are building up while I’ve been studying.

-.2 – Pounds lost in April. My first weight loss this year.

2 – Blog posts, including my heartfelt Leaving Motherhood post.

3 – Book read. including my last CPCU book!

12 – Social events, I was sure a social butterfly last month! There was a couple of girl’s nights out and a couple more where we let boys come too, there was family dinners and even a birthday for a cute little boy.

April Party14 – Projects completed, including finishing my taxes and I helped my daughter with her’s too. I’m so glad tax season is over.

23 – Workouts this month, one of my goals I’m doing well on.

38 – Photos on Instagram in April.

1301 – Words added to my new project. I’m not doing good at finishing a project, but right now I need to work on whatever story is in my heart.

1044 – Just Wanna Be Me page views, more than twice as many as last month!

64,650 Pinterest views.

Last month was crazy. Crazy busy. There were some good days, and some really bad days. But life keeps rolling along. Every day is a new opportunity to learn, grow and move forward. Here’s to another month to discover and explore.

Top Posts of April 2016

  1. Book Theme Party
  2. Humilty Family Home Evening
  3. Leaving Motherhood
  4. Summer Goals
  5. Raingutter Regatta
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Leaving Motherhood

MotherhoodDiscovering my sense of self causes me to reflect on my motherhood role. I spent the last 25 years being a mom. I was far from perfect – just ask the kids. But I loved them and my life revolved around them. While my kids were the center of my world, I never felt like one of those moms whose children were her entire universe. I took classes, had different business ventures and served at church and in Cub Scouts. Absolutely my kids were a huge part of my life, but I had plenty of other facets of my life.

When I got divorced, my foundation was upended. So much of what I thought was reality, turned out to be just my reality. I was aware of plenty of loose bricks in that foundation while I struggled through marriage. Afterwards, those bricks and several others crumbled away. I moved, left my network of friends and the comfort of my neighborhood. I was over 40 years old and for the first time I was living on my own.

I started working full time and I tried to do everything I did as a stay at home mom. I am still surprised that I’m still adjusting three years later. I tried to keep as many of the bricks in tack as possible, but only so much can could fit in a day. I now hate the saying “you make time for the important things”. I had to let go of many things that were important and clung to what was vital; work, motherhood (although in a much different form), and learning. I discovered writing isn’t a hobby, it’s the key to my sanity.

As much as I loved planning elaborate theme parties for my kids, I didn’t have the time or energy. The upside is they had outgrown the structure and preferred to hang out and eat. They lost interest in other traditions and often preferred to spend time staring at a screen or with their friends. I was tempted to try to force them to play with me, but I know the whole “You’re going to fun and like it” thing rarely worked. I tried to plan with them things to do. But feeling them cut those apron strings often left me more isolated than my divorce or moving away from my friends did.

Two years into my ‘new life’, I was still struggling to adjust. Then my middle daughter left for college. This is the daughter that cuddled and comforted me since she was little. She started mothering me before she was 10. We’d spent Nestevery day together for several months before school started. When she moved away, I felt so alone. I wandered around the house lost. I knew I’d miss her, but I wasn’t prepared for how much.

It’s a little early to be facing empty nest syndrome since the twins are still home. With the core of my world slipping away, more bricks crumbled and I had no footing. I suppose if things went according to plan, I would be part of a couple and we would handle the change by focusing more attention on each other and rekindling our relationship.

But the realization of how little my kids need me makes me see the importance of figuring out who I am and what makes me happy. I can’t depend on validation from my children, my boss, or a significant other to provide acceptance. I have to do it for myself. I’m the one responsible for building my bridge with bricks of self-love and purpose. I guess the advantage of being alone is I’ll have plenty of time to figure it out.

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March 2016 in the Books

With the end of March, 2016 is a quarter of the way through. I had to pull out my 2016 goals and check my progress. I’m well on my way to 7 of my goals, 2 are a little questionable and 1 I missed but I’m hoping to compensate in another way.

0 – Look Mom, no cavities! I’m not sure she cares as much now that she’s not paying for my dental expenses, but it’s still nice to hear every six months.

March 2016 craft1 – Pound gained in March. I’m really tired of this gaining thing, but I’m glad I slowed down from the last couple of months. I started making myself do 10 seconds of plank for every .1 pound I gained everyday. Assuming that strategy helped me not gain as much weight, I’m upping the anti this month. There are signs of hope so far in April.

1 – Blog post. This is the 2016 goal I missed, at least 2 posts per month. But I’ve posted 8 times so far this year (not counting this one), so that averages to more than 2 posts a month. I need to take it where I can get it.

2 – Books read, including The Good Wife Strikes Back by Elizabeth Buchan.

3 – God’s eyes, we had a throwback to my childhood craft day.

4 – Hours of fun at Main Event, I was brave and tried the ropes coarse! Which was so terrifying one little girl was clinging to the ropes crying, while her family stood on solid ground 20 feet below pressuring her to cross these wobbly ropes. After my son and I coaxed her across through her tears, I had to do it too.

March 2016 Candy8 – Social events, two of the events didn’t completely revolve around food. Of the ones that did revolve around food, one was at an old favorite and another was a new to me.

9 – Projects completed, including everyone’s favorite – taxes.

12 – Different kinds of candy brought by the Easter Bunny.

25 – Workouts this month, one of my goals I’m doing well on.

31 – Photos on Instagram

311 – Words added to my book.

446 – Just Wanna Be Me page views, mostly from Russia.

45310 – Pinterest views.

Top Posts of March 2016

  1. Book Theme Party
  2. Sense of Self
  3. Beatitudes Family Home Evening
  4. Native American Blue and Gold
  5. Palm Sunday Family Home Evening
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February 2016 in the Books

February 2016 was longer than most Februarys, so it’s taking me an extra long time to sum it up. Or I got overwhelmed with test preparations. Either way, it’s in the books so let’s get it wrapped up!

1 – Book read, I enjoyed a second Brene Brown book

2 – Social events, one of which was a delicious dinner at Abuelo’s with a few friends from work

2.2 – Pounds gained, can I blame it on too much studying? I did come up with a new strategy. I’ll let you know next month how it worked

3 – Blog posts

February 2016 Muffins4 – New recipes tried, my favorite was the Gouda Bacon Macaroni and Cheese

16 – Projects completed, including apply to go back to college for my Bachelor’s degree and  a makeover for my coffee table

21 – Photos on Instagram

41 – Sealed with a Kiss Muffins baked, and I love how the photo turned out

92 – Words added to my book

100 – Reasons why I love my sweetie from the Dating Divas

391 – Just Wanna Be Me page views

37815 – Pinterest views

Top Posts of February 2016

  1. Native American Blue and Gold
  2. Beatitudes Family Home Evening
  3. Book Theme Party
  4. Pizza Nachos
  5. Simple Blue and Gold

There you have it, and March isn’t even over yet! How did the shortest month of the year go for you? Let me know in the comments, on Facebook, or Twitter.

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