Saturday, January 8, 2011

To Daycare or not?

To daycare or not? That is the question that every woman faces when they learn they are about to be a mommy.

It is a hard thing to say that you do not want to be a stay at home mom... that is just unheard of, right? I wobble sometimes between wanting to stay at home and wanting to work, but often, even if we could comfortable afford for me to stay at home, I would not want to.

That does not make me a bad mother, but I think a better one. I am more focused at home once I have had grown-up talk during the day and the chance to relax without holding a two-year old all morning long.

Regardless of how my kiddos being in daycare benefits me, it most definitely benefits them more. My son was singing Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star today in the grocery store on his own... I didn't even know he knew that song to be singing it!

At his school they teach him numbers, colors, animals and many other things that I would not be able to do as a working mother. Let's assume for a second I was a stay at home mom, I would be busy doing chores, paying bills and many other duties and probably would not have the time to teach him new things and explore as they do at school.

The socialization is a great aspect too! He has been doing play dates all his life but he talks so much more at school and because of that has such a greater vocabulary. So, when it came time to decide what to do with our little man while mommy and daddy worked, it was easy to choose a daycare that loves my son as much as we do.

Anybody else out there brave enough to admit that they, even if they could financially, would not be a stay at home mom... or am I alone on this one?

The Under Over-Achiever

Many times when a New Year presents itself, many will list out the resolutions or goals they would like to achieve. Most, in my opinion, are overly audacious and unattainable without a very deep commitment.

I am one of those people who set goals frequently, looks five years ahead and plans for education, childcare costs, medical expense, etc. It's pretty sickening how annoying I am about the planning. I even have a tab on my Excel budget spreadsheet that details the life insurance I have on both myself and my husband-- not totally weird yet. But then I take the amount and less the outstanding debt to pay off, how much to put into a trust for the kiddos, and how much will go in savings less our continued single annual salary. Told ya it was weird.

So it is safe to say I am an over-achiever. But often due to life happenings, it is easy for me to get off course with out goals, or to become so sick of the limits I set on myself that I will just say screw it and buy whatever until I come to my senses and get back on track. This is what you call an under over-achiever. It's a self-fulfilling prophecy that I can't seem to break. Ironically, I should set a goal to not forget to stick to my goals, but we all know how that will end.

How do you stick to your commitments? Any tips for an under over-achiever and how I can walk the line?!

Friday, January 7, 2011

Date Night

Whether you are single, in a committed relationship or married, you know about date night. For single girls this is the time when you are wishing you had a boyfriend or are cursing those who do. It sucks going out alone on date night when couples surround you. I know, I used to be one and was reacting the same way.

If you are in a relationship you know this night as the night when you are getting your man all to yourself. Rarely is there a time when you have all the attention on just you as a couple. Whether its dealing with work, taking care of the kids, or any of the many mundane tasks such as cleaning or paying bills, something always finds a way to interrupt that 'special moment'.

I am not an overly romantic or touchy-feely person but I know from many heart-breaking stories that it is so important to have these nights to maintain a relationship, keep the spark, and just feel like two kids on a date again. Without these moments it makes those other tough moments, like fighting about finances or chores, really hard to move past.

Our routine is to go on a date once every month to really just be together and enjoy the company of my best friend. Now, once a month seems like a lot but it still feels like we still do not get enough quality time together so once a week we will snuggle on the couch and enjoy a redbox movie together. Cheap, no babysitter, but still enough to re-establish our connection and get us through the week.

And let's not forget, a week here and there can make or break you. Here is hoping my date night does the former.