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It is a tradition for most to set New Years resolutions as a new year comes around (rather quickly might I add). I like to be as positive as I can all year round however, 2017 was a tough year for me and my family so I was very excited to see the back of it. I’m taking this new year, 2018 as a fresh start. 12 new chapters, 365 opportunities for exciting new adventures. Life is to be lived and I am SO beyond ready to live more than I have ever lived before.

These two people are my absolute world. I’m sure every day I take the power of my love for them for granted. My first goal of 2018 is to no longer take advantage of the blessings I have in my daily life. Starting with my little family even if they do drive me around the bend sometimes (nearly always).

If you’ve been following my journey into motherhood you will know that Esmé is quite the daredevil and from now on I plan to follow in her footsteps. As I have said, life is for living. I plan on doing just that and so much more. Adventure is there to be had and boy do I want it. I want to travel more, I want to explore nature more, I want to see so much more of the world. This is one goal that I hope I achieve LOTS of. What a beautiful world we live in which means lots of beautiful adventures to be had.

I have so many goals that I want to achieve this year, I could have you here all day reading them BUT I am excited to just show you my life over the next year. My life that will be full of adventures and excitement and so. much. fun. Follow me on Instagram @ohthatstacey to follow my journey more closely.
The new year gives everyone a fresh start. If you haven’t set yourself some goals why don’t you give it a try, a way to figure out what you want to have from your life within the next year. A plan, a check list, a hope of how joyful your next year will be. And that is what I wish for you all, the most joyful year yet.

Happy goal setting loves.

Ohthatstacey
Xo

Christmas partyin’

Christmas partyin’

Do you know what my favourite part of the Christmas season is? P a r t i e s with all of your favourite people. You really can’t beat it. Christmas music making people bust out in the funkiest of dance moves, excitement for the big day, Christmas games helping everyone remember their inner child and how could I forget the gooooorgeous Christmas food (in endless amounts). Pair all that with the best company and it really is just the perfect time.

And something even better about Christmas parties is having a little child to dress up. I mean, allllll the heart eyes, right?

I can’t even cope with the cuteness and was absolutely 100% tempted to get a matching elf outfit for me. No such luck folks, I had to miss out.

She is clearly as excited as me for Christmas. Who isn’t though let’s be honest? The cutest elf I ever did see.

Oh and of course, it wouldn’t be a Christmas party without the big man himself making a special appearance. Esmé still isn’t exactly a fan, not quite sure she’s got the whole be nice to Santa get more presents idea down yet (haha I’m joking of course).

She wouldn’t get any closer to him without crying, maybe it’s the beard? We’ll go with that. She clung on to “gran grans” for dear life. BUT, was more than willing to take the present that he was offering, that’s my girl! Let’s hope Santa got her letter so that he knows what she wants for Christmas since she wouldn’t sit on his knee!

And here she is, opening her first present of the Christmas season. She couldn’t tear into it fast enough, which is just one of the many reasons why I CANNOT wait for Christmas, she’s a little older this year, will be able to open her presents herself and I just can’t wait to see her little, excited face.

And the good thing about selection boxes for her? I get to eat all the chocolate that she can’t. Winner winner chocolate dinner!

What’s your favourite thing about the Christmas season? Or is that an impossible question to answer because every part of it is the freakin best?!

Happy Christmas partyin’ loves, put on those elves costumes in honour of me and rock them bad boys!

Ohthatstacey

Xo

The truth about motherhood

The truth about motherhood

I always rave about how amazing it is to be a mom and how much I love it. Which I do, but I thought it was time to get a little real. Being a mom isn’t all cuddles, kisses and cute clothes.

Being a mom is poo-nami’s, vomit-splosions, tantrum-nados and everything to do with poop, gastly coloured plastic toys, mom buns, shared baths and zero alone time.

There’s been days where I’ve took my little monkey for a walk because, I could just not bare to spend another second in the house, waiting for the thousandth tantrum of the day to erupt. There’s been days where I’ve had to go and sit in the corner of the room, with toddler not in sight (for 0.00001 second) to count to ten and breath so that I don’t explode myself. There’s been nights where I’ve practically begged (out loud) for my little girl to just go the heck to sleep, so that I could get some sleep too.

The good thing about being a mom, is that each day is a N E W  day. To start a fresh and try again. Not to be perfect but to be perfectly imperfect. Because that, that right there is motherhood. It’s learning new things about yourself as you watch your little one grow. It’s seeing yourself turn into this new person, with new responsibilities and an even more exciting life ahead of you. With a forever partner in crime.

So sure, it’s not all staying home and baking perfectly cooked pies, or having dinner presentably perfect on the table for 5pm every day. It is however, rushing out the door with chocolate in hand for breakfast already ten minutes late, forgetting the nappies or wipes and having to sprint your way back in to find wherever your toddler hid them. It’s imperfect in the most perfect way. A life I would never change. Because, a life with a child is unpredictable, exciting, and the most loving road you could ever take.

Being a mom is thee least glamorous job but better pay than a n y w h e r e else. Because, the payment is in first smiles, first crawls, first steps, first words, first days of school, all the firsts that you can think of. It’s an unbreakable bond, a forever love.

Here’s to motherhood, the greatest hood of all!

Ohthatstacey

xo

Ways to conquer mom guilt

Ways to conquer mom guilt

We’ve all been there. Spent a little extra time doing our hair, bought ourselves a new outfit, planned to go out for the evening. That massive wave of mom guilt comes flying in. Why? Because now we think that because we’re a mom, all of our time and devotion should be on our child. We’re not far wrong when it comes to that. BUT that teeny bit of spare time we ever have should be invested in ourselves. I can’t stress enough how important that is.

I can really see the impact it has on my sanity if I don’t take some time out for myself in a week. We need it, we’re human and dang it, we sure as heck deserve it (insert praise hands emoji here). Now, sure just because we deserve to invest in ourselves, doesn’t mean that dreaded mom guilt isn’t going to make an appearance. Here are my ways to nip that green little monster in the butt (yes I’m pairing it with jealousy, they’re probably best friends).

R e m i n d yourself daily that you are doing the best job you possibly can. Your child is safe, clean (most of the time) and loved. That, my friends, is all that truly matters. Are they not going to be any of those things just because you treat yourself to that new pair of shoes you’ve been dying to get? Nope. Their wardrobe is bound to be bulging full so don’t you worry your pretty little face about it. Treat yourself. You’ll thank yourself for it later. Besides, if we’ve got to rock that mom bun and big bagged eyes look than why not pair it with a gorgeous pair of shoes?

U n d e r s t a n d  that it is important to be in the best frame of mind to be the best parents to our children. When you’re over tired, got a banging head ache and haven’t eaten since the leftovers from last nights dinner.. Do you really think you’re going to handle a tantrum without having an almighty meltdown yourself too? Probs not. Take care of yourself and you’ll be a better parent for it, I promise you. Happy mom = happy children 100%.

K n o w  that one day your child will understand why you’re going to work. You’ll teach them about all the things you don’t think about when they’re crying for you as you close the front door. Independence, respect, gratitude, understanding, not to mention the memories of what you were able to provide for them from working.

I had MAJOR mom guilt when I went back to work after maternity leave. It hit me harddddd. I didn’t want any one else to be looking after my child, that was my job. But those six months taught me the most about being a mother. It taught me patience.. boyyyy, a whole lot of patience, respect for other working moms and love. Even more love than I could have ever imagined. I appreciated every little moment so. much. more.

Oh and you stay at home moms, I salute you. This stuff is harddddd. You da bomb!

L o o k  at the bigger picture here. Yes you’re a mom but you are also you. Just like I am me, Stacey. I still have my interests, my hobbies, my passions. My child has become my number one priority but that doesn’t mean that I can’t be me. I’m still Stacey even when I’m Mom. Still the crazy, little old me. Life is for living. You can live as a mom, no matter the people that tell you you’ll be tied down forever. The only thing you’re tied down to is love. A whole lot of love. Now, go buy those shoes, go sign up for that course, go eat that cake, go on that spa trip/girls holiday. You do you and be happy. Because every child needs a happy mom as well as a tired, crazy, emotional, NORMAL mom. And I promise you, the way you are feeling is completely normal. You’re not alone and never will be. Us moms gotta stick together. Who’s with me?

Ohthatstacey

xo

How I plan my days to be productive

How I plan my days to be productive

With a toddler in your life, productive days can become a thing of the past. A few months after little E was born, I tried not to spend my days spent in pyjamas, as easy as that is. I knew for my own sanity that I needed to get up and out so I did just that.

As months passed by, I came up with routines to make days easier and make sure that I came up with ways to become more productive. I love pj days as much as the next person and implement them into my weeks as much as possible but now, with a crazy, mischevious toddler on my hands I have to be on my toes and save my pj slob hours for when she naps or goes to bed. I’m sure I’m not alone on that one.

On the Sunday evening before the beginning of the week I like to search to see if there’s any activities little E might enjoy during that week. There’s a lovely little activity every now and again in our local park where they have a little picnic, story time and toys for the little ones to play with. It’s one of Esmé’s favourites. She loves a good story book and any new toys she can get her hands on, even for a short while. You should see if there’s one in your area, there is more often than not a group on Facebook that advertises them if you search for one. I promise you’re little one will love it and will make at least one day in a week, more entertaining and more bearable for you and your child(ren).

I often keep to a schedule on how to keep on top of things. For example, every Monday I go to the farm shop and do the weekly shop. I never have to panic that we don’t have enough bread or enough snacks because I stock up every Monday morning. Saves me a lot of stress and keeps this MASSIVE foodie satisfied, winner! I wash the bed sheets for all the beds every Tuesday, make sure they’re dry and get them ironed ready to put back on to the bed for a cosy nights sleep. Tuesday night’s have quickly become my favourite nights because freshly laundered bed covers are just perfection. Am I right or am I right? I never have to worry that I’m going to get behind because I have a set day to do it. I can put them in the wash as soon as I wake up, hang them up to dry and go out for the day if need be. Organisation really is key when you’re a mama.

Every Friday I’ll have a “face mask Friday”, it’s a little me time and that is SO important. This can really help with the productivity problem. If we’re not taking care of ourselves are we going to want to be productive? I know I don’t. We should remember that we are important too and I always stress that even though we’re a mom, we’re a person too who also needs taking care of. Remember that if nothing else.

I make sure I get out and see family/friends at least once a week. Save your sanity by not being stuck in the same four walls with no adult communication. A good catch up (especially if food is involved), where you can laugh and be yourself is good for the soul. It helps even more when those friends have children so they can all play together while you put your feet up and have a natter. Mom and child are happy. Absolute winner in my eyes.

The most important point to ALWAYS remember is to not be so hard on yourself. If you’re having an unproductive day, still in your pjs at 2pm, no idea what you’re cooking for tea, rocking the messy mom bun then OWN it. We alllll have those days. Anyone that says they don’t, are just lying. We had days before we had children where we wouldn’t want to do anything and that’s no different now we’ve got smaller versions of ourselves running around. Take a day off being an adult. Be a sloth for the day, whatever it takes just take a breather. You’ll be so much more prepared to take on the next day. Parenting is hard. Do what you gotta do to get through it.

Happy future productive days babes.

Ohthatstacey

xo

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A letter to the struggling parent

A letter to the struggling parent

I’ve recently had a lot of discussions with different mamas that are finding this whole motherhood malarkey super hard and sometimes feel scared to open up about it. Sometimes as parents, we feel like if we say how much of a difficult day we’re having or that we’re struggling it makes us bad parents. Is that what you’ve been thinking? Well, I want to put a stop to that right now. This is to all parents, especially mamas, because we’ve ALL been there.

I like to keep things real. So, as much as I LOVE being a mom and feel like it’s my calling in life. I also have the worst of the worst days too. And if you’re sitting there thinking you’re alone, stop. Because you are most definitely not. I promise you that every parent in the world has had their days/weeks/months where they thought they were failing at this parenting business with plenty more to come. And that is absolutely normal.

Just last night I wanted to have a tantrum myself after little E woke up crying for the tenth time in the space of two hours. As much as I love being a parent, I know that bad days come and I don’t beat myself up about that. Children throw tantrums, it’s a given so prepare yourself for it and don’t ever beat yourself up about it.

Some home truths are, children cry, they get sick and are grumpy just like we would be, they sometimes don’t understand why they can’t throw themselves into the pond with the ducks, they absolutely don’t want to leave the park even though they’ve been there for hours already, and they don’t understand that what was their favourite meal is now something they refuse to even put near their mouth. Yes, they push our buttons. Buttons that we didn’t even know existed. But, let’s be honest, they pull on heart strings that we didn’t know were there either.

Being a parent is a choice you make every single day. To put someone else’s happiness ahead of your own. To teach the hard lessons that they are struggling to understand and to do the right thing even when you’re unsure of what that is. But most importantly, to forgive yourself over and over again for doing things “wrong”. Well, your idea of wrong anyway. Because as long as your kiddiewinks are happy (majority of the time), safe and loved then you are doing everything absolutely right.

You will never have this day with your little ones again. Tomorrow, they will be a little older than they were today. Today is a gift as is tomorrow and the next. Just breathe, take in every moment, study their faces and their character and their teeny feet. Pay attention and relish in the charms of this moment. Enjoy today, it will have passed by before you know it.

I know that sometimes when you’ve been stuck inside the same four walls with poo-namis and tantrums galore that it can feel like your world is so small with no escape. Let me just remind you, that you are the world. You are the only world that your little ones revolve around. You are their comfort, their safe place, their home. You are everything to them and I hope you remember even on the hardest of days, just how special you are. Especially to your little people.

Chin up babes, tomorrow is a new day ♡

Ohthatstacey

xo