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I’ve been a bit MIA from blogging lately, it’s so good to be back!
As if life with 6 kids isn’t crazy busy enough, add blogging, husband working, cake business and a new home business into the mix and you get totally over-scheduled. So, some things had to take a back seat, until it was time I realized what I was and wasn’t doing, was not working.
So, what took a back seat? Well…
Blogging took a huge back seat, though I love blogging I just couldn’t seem to fit in the time.
Cake business took a back seat. Let’s be realistic here, while cakes are super fun and look really cool and provide a decent income, they take an enormous amount of my time! And not just that, but it’s usually late into the night, because there is no way I can work on cakes, with all the kids up.
And, homeschooling took a back seat, unfortunately. What do I mean by that? My kids did a lot of online math, work books, and reading, but didn’t get a lot of individual attention, and were spending more time watching tv than I’d like to admit.
So, I needed to re-evaluate.
I’ve spent a lot of time the last 2 months, trying to focus on what was important. As I mentioned in my “My Why” post, we are trying to reach some goals. Goals which require additional income to make up a difference so that Ryan (my husband) can change careers. So, I ventured out into 3 different directions, hoping to be able to make them ALL work. That may not have been the smartest idea, but I didn’t know what else to do other than try to make up enough income with all 3!
What I love to do vs. What I can realistically do
I love baking. I love blogging. I love makeup, I love feeling good about myself, and I love homeschooling, and spending time with my family. But, I can’t do it all. Imagine that. Life is an incredibly challenging balancing act sometimes. Can I blog and bake, and have a makeup business with kids back in school? Can I have a makeup business and homeschool and eliminate the other two? How do I know what I personally can do? Let me tell you how I came to answer this for myself, and how our family came to a conclusion that will hopefully bring our life back in to a better balance. First, I looked at what I knew consumed the most time.
This cake – I enjoyed every bit of making it. But it took HOURS. Lots and lots of hours. And as a parent with 6 kids, that’s just not realistic to do on a full-time basis. Not from home, and with a husband that works full-time anyway.
Baking cakes, making buttercreams, and fillings, decorating, making characters, and modeling chocolate and fondant. And we can’t forget about how I become a bit OCD and perfectionist when it comes to decorating, so it probably takes longer than necessary. So, that was the first to go. I do love creating cakes, it is a lot of fun! But, for now it takes a back seat, and when I have time I’ll take one or two on. Right now, that means my kids get fun cakes, and that’s about it! But that’s most important! So, it works!
Discovering what I find the most joy in
Without question, spending time with my family brings the most joy. Being a wife and a mother, is hands down the best joy and brings the most fulfillment in my life.
If I am going to be working to help my husband’s dreams come true I need to find something or some things I can do that also bring me joy. Does baking? yes. Too time consuming though. Does blogging? yes. Does Senegence? yes. Can I successfully do both, and be Mom, and wife, and have the time to put my family and God first while blogging and working from home? Well, that’s something I am still learning! Blogging has seriously taken a back seat, but I miss it. So here I am. I enjoy being able to write articles that help parents. I enjoy writing about ways to entertain a large family, and I really enjoy sharing recipes that work with varying dietary restrictions, and foods that are made mostly from scratch!
So, I’ve re-evaluated. I’ve discovered a couple things that most definitely do NOT work. But, I have also learned that if I work hard at keeping God and family first, all other things I need to be doing and want to be doing will fall in to place if it’s right. And right now, blogging, Senegence and building a new business (which I will share more details on later!) is what is right for us! It’s right for our family, and we are learning to balance. Some days I feel on top of the world, able to balance it all! And others maybe not so much. HOWEVER, the important thing is that each day is a new day to start over. Each day is a blessing and an opportunity to do our best, be an example to others, inspire others, learn, grow and become closer to what God wants us to be.
How can you re-evaluate your life and discover balance again? Here are a few ideas to help get you started!
1. Parenting books – I’ve been reading lots of books over the years, and there is one book that has truly helped our family learn to work together, teach our children to be responsible, and helped our family grow. An excellent place to start? A House United. This book teaches specific ways that families and children can learn to self-govern, work together and become cohesive and happy! I’ve been given this book recommendation many times by friends and finally jumped and bought it. What a great book! If you want your family to be united, and really solid this book is a must read.
2. Look at what you have taken on in your life. Make a list of the things you MUST do. And then a list of what you WANT to do. We can’t do it all! Write down what on your want list is the most important, and you feel needed for peace and balance in your home! You’ll find that this may change from time to time. I used to really want to do cakes, and made that more of a priority! Now, I can’t. It just does not fit with everything else I want/need to do. So, it’s on the back burner for now. But it’s not permanent! Different times and seasons of life will allow us to focus and foster our talents at different times.
3. Counsel with your spouse and your children. When you take the time to listen to their needs, and everyone works together you’ll find more unity. Maybe one thing you felt important, your children don’t care so much about! It’s important to constantly be striving to meet the needs of each individual in your family. And by counseling together you’ll be able to determine what those needs are, and make changes as needed.
To really prioritize, it’s important that everyone in the family knows how important they are, and what their personal responsibilities are. They can then see the importance of their contribution to the family as a whole. This alone has been a huge factor in helping us determine how much we can and can’t take on our plates. Work together, you’ll find a rhythm that works for your family! Re-evaluate often, and council with your family! Everyone is in this together, make the best of it and enjoy life as you go!!