Remember way back in January when we had all these words, goals, and resolutions for 2019? Yeah, how are we doing with those? I'll speak up and go first, NOT SO GOOD... To be completely honest, I forgot what my word of 2019 was. I picked refresh for a reason and it was because 2018 was a very difficult year emotionally. I needed a refresh in so many ways yet I've somehow sunk in to a whole deeper than I am tall. Here's what's been going on and how I finally came to realize all of it.
I am truly overwhelmed right now. I'm 34 weeks pregnant and don't feel prepared at all to have this baby. Sure the nursery is put together, the clothes are washed and folded, and I have a list of what I need to pack in my to go bag. But there's some other things that I just can't seem to let go of like putting up bump dates on this blog and booking a maternity shoot. Especially the maternity shoot. You may be asking why I'm so obsessed with this. Well to be frank, I've done a shitty job of appreciating this pregnancy and documenting it. Once I go in to labor, it's over. There may be no photos to look back on to remember this time. Sure I can backdate some blog posts for bump dates, and I do plan on doing that but still, it's not the same as going along with the journey. I know I need to give myself a break but at the same time, I'm wasting time on unnecessary things that have brought a lot of negativity to my life. I'll spare you the details but just know that social media is such a life sucker. Anyways, just because this hasn't been the easiest pregnancy, doesn't mean I want to forget it. So there's that. Next, I feel so buried at work. I should be wrapping things up so I can hand things off for when I go on maternity leave, yet somehow every day I walk away with even more work on my plate. I'm in this struggle of wanting to do a good job and proving that even though I'm pregnant I can handle all of it...well I'm at a break point to where I almost can't anymore. Then there's this looming date coming at the end of the month that I am oh so dreading. The reason why 2018 was so hard. If you've forgotten or if you're new around here, October 25th of 2018 was the day my wonderful dad passed away. I've always promised to be honest here, so here it is, I am still so angry about it. I think I've overwhelmed myself with baby things and work things so that I don't have to focus on it but the reality is the day will still come. This event in my life robbed all of us of some wonderful things and I still feel like it's unfair. First and foremost for my dad. He had to spend the last months of his life in the worst way possible. He had to just look at his grandson from afar and never hold him. He couldn't eat anything for months. It breaks my heart how cruel that is. It robbed my mom of seeing Kai crawl around, going out and doing things with all of us, and most importantly coming home to her husband who she loved so dearly every day. It robbed Caleb, Kai, and I from having all last summer of adventures together and with Kai's grandparents like going to the zoo, road trips, the beach...even just family BBQs in the backyard. My dad never got to take Kai to a Cubs game. This was my dad's dream. To take his grandson to a baseball game. We had to spend our weekends sitting in a hospital pretending not to feel this hurt and anger. And you know what, it's still there. Maybe even more because now grandson number 2 is coming and my dad will never get to meet him on this Earth. The crushing realization of that is so devastating to me. I should have been working on letting go of this anger this year and focusing on positives. I should have let this anger out long ago but I've done the opposite and now I have to deal with it with a big ole baby bump, a mountain of work, and a lot of lack of sleep.
I realized this all within a matter of 24 hours. I went from just being so done with this pregnancy, to having anxiety about going in to labor from all the stress I'm harboring, to just coming to terms with I need to make some personal well being changes before I truly get to my darkest place. Then I remembered my word, "REFRESH." I'm not mad at myself for forgetting it, just honestly disappointed. When I think of this word, I feel so light and positive. It brings me a clear head, which is 100% what I need right now. I already purged some negativity that has been dragging me down tonight. I'm sitting here writing a blog post (crying, but still writing) because it brings me joy. Once I'm done rambling and I set this up to be posted, I plan on turning the lights off, no TV on, and hopefully getting a good night sleep. I've let go of the house needing to be cleaned and all the laundry to be folded. Honestly, Caleb is 100% capable of all those things and just because he might not do it exactly like I would doesn't mean I shouldn't just let it all go for the time being. Because I truly don't have the capacity right now to do every single daily chore that I use to do. I can barely bend down, I struggle to breath sometimes, and I'm just tired. But that's how it is when you're 34 weeks pregnant and I need to recognize that. This is the season of life we're in right now and there is so much good in it. I get to feel this beautiful baby inside me, see him grow, protect him, and have an excuse to just prop my feet up and have some things done for me. It's quite the blessing!
So it's time for me to refresh my thoughts, get some sleep, say no to the non-essential things, and truly take care of myself. I hope you all are doing the same and remember what you set out to do at the beginning of this year, too. We picked these words, resolutions and goals for a reason 10 months ago...let's keep it up and finish out 2019 strong.
Let's talk about self love, beautiful friends. There is so much that falls under these two small words and it is so important. I've truly fallen in to the movement of self love. Since becoming a mother, I've never loved myself more. I'm so grateful for my body, my motivation in life, and just who I am as a person in general. Because of how I finally feel about myself, it has led me to take much better care of myself lately. I know I've said it many times before but we are remarkable. Think of all the things we do now and imagine how much more we could do if we treated ourselves with genuine love.
Self love is deeper than a feeling though and it's more than the awesome phrase "treat yo self." I truly believe it's the actions we take to care for ourselves so we can continue those feelings of love for ourselves. While yes we deserve to treat ourselves often and I always believe in having something to look forward to, it's more important to do things on a daily basis to show yourself love. The best part about that though is that it's different for everyone. For me, it's waking up early, meditating, and reading a book while sipping my coffee. It's getting my work outs in during the week as a way to keep my body strong and get a mental break from work and Kai. (Trust me, Kai's wonderful, but I'm a better mother if I get a break from him a few nights a week.) It's doing my skin care routine every night. It's getting 8 hours of sleep at night. There is so much I try to do for myself on a daily basis to show myself love and I'm not going to lie, not every day is perfect. Far from perfect to be honest. I tend to get mixed up in that "treat yo self" trap of binging on candy and Game of Thrones instead of going to the gym and having a salad with dinner. While the first option is fun, it's actually not showing myself the true love it deserves.
Self Love Ways
These are just some of the ways I try to instill in my life for showing myself love. Like I said, it's so different for everyone but if you're looking for a place to start, pick out a few of these points and try to incorporate them in to your daily life. You deserve it! You are so beautiful, strong, and wonderful. Love yourself first and foremost and you'll be able to love the world better!
What are some ways you practice self love? I'd love to hear from you guys so we can keep adding to this list for everyone to try! Leave me a comment on this post or on the Tiny Tribe post about self love! Have a. beautiful Wednesday, friends!
Welcome to the first Tiny Talk of 2019! Woo sorry it's been awhile friends. I've honestly been kind of lost in this fraction of the blog. I have so many topics I want to discuss with all of you but there's something missing in the Instagram Live aspect of it and I've been trying to put my finger on it but just can't. I can't seem to find a good time to host them that works for everyone. I know plenty of you watch it later because I get so many awesome messages from you! Do I start a podcast? Do I try Facebook Live instead? I'm not entirely sure where to go with the live chat part of our Tiny Talks, so for now, I will just be writing up some posts and sharing them with you here + putting up a post in The Tiny Tribe to go along with the topic. We can work on adding the chat back in later, but I need you all to send me your ideas!
Alright so let's talk about Marie Kondo today. I absolutely adore her. I think she is so fantastic and I have been straight up Konmari-ing my house for the last 3 weeks. It feels amazing. However, I do have some reservations about all of it and I know some of you do, too. Just the other day I had my best friend say to me..."but I like my stuff" and my cousin sent me an amazing article about her philosophy not working the best for books, and I couldn't agree more with them. I think it's all about balance. So I wanted to weigh in on some pros and cons of Konmari here and see if you all can answer my dilemmas or if you think they are completely warranted...
PRO: You feel refreshed, lighter, happier
I certainly feel refreshed and lighter with less crap cluttering our home. I actually started clearing out our home before the new year because I had the last week of 2018 off of work. Then Tidying Up was released on Netflix on Jan 2nd! It was the perfect timing and gave me the motivation to keep going and taught me how to properly store things. It definitely works and I walk around our home now and smile at how organized it is and truly feel happy with the work Caleb and I have done.
CON: What about the middle ground?
I know I'm probably just making it up in my head but it feels like there's only two options with Konmari...get rid of if it doesn't spark joy or keep it if it does spark joy. My heart pulls a little at this because there are some things that "spark joy" and they aren't technically sentimental making it a situation like where do I keep these things and when am I going to use it but I'm not ready to let go yet kind of thing. Woo...know what I mean? Then I feel guilty! But why? That's dumb...like my best friend says...I like my stuff!
PRO: Organization makes me giddy
When things are properly organized in our home I actually feel giddy. I look at our closets and my heart flutters, ha! I've always been that way but our home has definitely lost a lot of it's organization since having a baby. I've really learned to let go of living in a way that everything needs to be in it's proper place but at the same time, if you let things stray too far from it's proper place it just gets out of hand. Then it takes forever to tidy back up. So I really like Marie's method of just putting everything back where it's supposed to be in bins, baskets, trays, etc, so that it stays easy.
CON: Will it stay this nice forever?
Ok so I wouldn't exactly call this a con but more of a question that can lead to. con depending on the answer. Will our closets and drawers and cabinets stay this nice forever? I have a hard time believing they will and then what? We have to go buy a whole new organization system? How many times do I need to Konmari our home in a year? No joke, it took me 45 minutes to fold and put laundry away the other day with her folding method. All I could think of is how that is all I am ever going to be doing during nap time. Today's load of laundry I think took me 20 min? So a little better but I feel like I was folding faster and maybe a little more sloppy? Which in turn if I keep doing it faster, will the folding not look as nice or will I just get better at it? I'm probably just overthinking it but with how much time and energy we've put in to this process I want our home to stay all beautifully organized! Am I alone in this thought cycle!?
PRO: Money + Donations
With the amount of stuff we're getting rid of we're going to have a pretty great garage sale this summer and hopefully make some good cash! I'm planning on selling a lot of my clothes on Poshmark, too, and all this money will be helping us pay off debt, woohoo! Anything we don't sell we will of course be donating, which always makes us feel great at the end of the day.
CON: But I like my stuff...especially my books!
So my cousin sent me this article from The Guardian and it dives in to how Marie's method about sparking joy with books doesn't make sense and I kind of have to agree. I'm kind of the middle zone where I think some people might be taking the "sparks joy" thing too literally but anyways, with books, I believe a home library is essential. I read every day. I read to Kai every day. We read with Kai every day. Books are very important to us. Some of them I've had for years and haven't read yet. Some I've read 10 times. To me though, none of that matters. The books I've read 10 times spark joy but so do the ones I haven't read yet. Heck, even the books I don't like or I'm not interested in still matter to me because what if they spark joy for someone else in my family? What if Kai eventually wants to read one of them? The books are staying...for us at least.
I've had a lot of moments of smiles and tears with this process. I've come across a lot of important things to me that I haven't seen in awhile that make my heart happy. I always save cards that people give me. No matter what it's for, I save it. Well I did decide to finally throw some away but there were some that really sparked joy that I couldn't toss in the trash. Like every card that had my dad's handwriting in it. Who would have thought I would never get another birthday card with that handwriting in it anymore? Old photos. Man I love looking at baby Caleb ha! We finally took apart the photo collages I made for my dad's memorial service, too. I honestly couldn't do it, so Caleb did it. He asked me to help in the end and it was honestly a gut wrenching experience. So I want you to know that you're not alone if you're struggling with going through your life because there were definitely moments that I wanted to just give up and not face it at all. Take breaks but also be so grateful for all the love, wisdom, and memories your home has. And definitely remember to say thank you!
Leave me a comment with how you've chosen to tidy up (or not!) these last few weeks. And PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE leave me a comment letting me know how you'd like me to proceed with our chat portion of Tiny Talks!
Hi friends, I hope you all had a wonderful weekend! It was a cold and rainy one here, but we still made the most out of it and were super productive. On Saturday, we took Kai to meet Santa and do some Christmas shopping! He didn't cry at all, was very interested in the big guy's beard, and looked a little dubious when Santa held him for his picture. I'm calling it a win though! Yesterday I did my weekly yoga class in the morning and then we spent the day running errands and finishing up decorating the house for Christmas. Kai and I baked our first batch of cookies for the holiday season, too! We always start out with snickerdoodles in our house. You can find my recipe here!
For today's Tiny Talk, I want to talk all about confidence in yourself. This is something I've struggled with for so long and it wasn't until a few months ago that I really felt like I am proud of who I am. Things really started to change for me when I became a mom, but even at the beginning I really lacked confidence in motherhood. I was always worried if I was doing the right thing for Kai or if people had negative things to say about my parenting style. I reached a point though where I finally realized, I am doing the best I can at every aspect of my life. I give 100% to all areas whenever I can and that is enough. I am enough.
When this mindset finally took over I honestly haven't felt judged or mom shamed. I probably have been but I really don't care or notice anymore. Kai is thriving and so happy and so am I. We breastfeed in public and I just smile when someone looks at us. I wear crop tops to yoga and if my pants slide down and expose my tummy stretch marks I just keep going until I have a few seconds to readjust. Let me tell you friends, it's so freeing. I am so proud that I'm still breastfeeding my son at 10 months old. I didn't even think I'd make it to 3 months let alone 10! I do yoga twice a week and am doing poses I wasn't even able to do before I was pregnant. Plus I always pick a spot in the front row! The thing is, you need to find things that make you proud of yourself and use them to build your confidence. Thrive on them. Let them spread through your life. For the first time in my life I look at myself in the mirror and I truly smile at myself. It's wonderful. Here are a few things that I've done to change my mindset to really help with my confidence especially in motherhood.
BEGAN MY WELLNESS JOURNEY
I'm planning on doing a whole blog post on my current wellness journey very soon here but a slight overview of this is that I've started doing things that make me feel well from the inside out. I eat healthy because that's what my body deserves (see self appreciation post here), I drink water because my skin and breastmilk need it, I sleep 8 hours a night because my mind, soul, and body need that much sleep. By gradually doing all these things for myself I finally feel well and in turn I am able to let that shine on the outside. When you feel happy and healthy you will automatically have more confidence.
LISTEN TO PODCASTS + GOOD PLAYLISTS
I am a big lover of podcasts and one that I recently started is The Goal Digger podcast by Jenna Kutcher. Just listening to her speak gives me this sense of happiness all throughout myself. She instills confidence in me just by listening to her 30 minutes a day. I always listen to a podcast to and from work and hers just brings so much light in to my life. I also have this killer playlist that I love to listen to on Spotify. I created it myself and I believe my account is public so you all are more than welcome to follow it. It's called "Your Best Self." The songs on this playlist aren't specifically confidence boosting songs but what they are for me are reminders and motivators. Each of these songs fills me with love, adrenaline, happy memories, and motivation to be my best self. Some songs remind me of Caleb, some of Kai, one of my papa & dad, and so on. I listen to it on my way to yoga, when I'm cleaning the house, or when I'm getting ready for the day. So I encourage you to sit down and just add a few songs that have a lot of meaning to you to your own "Your Best Self" playlist! I didn't just create this playlist overnight either. As I hear songs that resonate with me, I add them to my playlist, so it is ever growing.
GET OUT OF YOUR COMFORT ZONE
Do things that scare you. You can do anything you set your mind to and when you succeed your confidence will grow. If you don't succeed, find motivation to keep going or try again. Trying again to me is a success in itself because you had the courage to pick yourself back up and do it again. My biggest example of this for myself is in yoga. Like I mentioned, I love wearing those cute matching crop top and yoga pants sets. This scared the shit out of me at first. I was always like "what if other women judge how big my boobs are in this top?" "what if my stretch marks show?" "what if my love handles pop out?" But I went for it. And you know what, I feel so strong and beautiful in my yoga clothes now!
MAKE A LIST OF YOUR STRENGTHS + ACCOMPLISHMENTS
Literally sit down and make two different lists that are ever growing. One of all your strengths and one of all your accomplishments. Keep them in your Notes on your phone and just add to it whenever you think of something. Remember, your strengths matter more than your weaknesses. Yes, you should work on improving your weaknesses but they don't define you. Your strengths and accomplishments are what define you. A few of mine that might help you get started are:
SMILE ALL DAY, EVERYDAY
All the cliches...a smile is worth a thousand words, fake it till you make it, smiles are infectious. They're true though. Smile at everyone you see. You will make their day and in turn it will fill yourself with warmth and confidence in yourself that you can bring goodness in to the world around you.
EVERY NIGHT THINK OF 2 THINGS YOU DID WELL
I've made it a habit when I lay down in bed for the night to think of two things I did well that day. It can be anything from I made a great batch of cookies or I got everything on my to do list at work done. Big or small, it doesn't matter. When you do this you start to realize how much of a boss you really are!
Apologizes for getting this post up so late today! I will host the Tiny Talk on Instagram Live tomorrow night instead of tonight since it's such short notice. Tune in on my Instagram at 7 PM CST for a great chat and head over to the Tiny Tribe to talk with the group about confidence there, too.
Happy Monday, everyone! I hope you all had a lovely weekend. We had an amazing one! We hosted our annual Friendsgiving dinner and it was Kai's first one! He tried turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, and cranberry sauce for the first time and loved all of it. I'm so excited for Thanksgiving this week and for him to try even more! I have this whole week off of work to prep for hosting Thanksgiving and just spending quality time with Kai. I've been looking forward to this week for awhile now and am just so grateful that I'm able to take this time for myself.
So it's Monday and you all know what that means...it's Tiny Talk day! Today's topic is all about self appreciation. This is something I've struggled with my whole life. I've never been able to reach that point of being content with myself. I've always strived for more whether it be to be skinner, prettier, more intelligent, more loving, the list goes on and on. While I still strive now to be my best self, I've actually never loved myself more. Ever since becoming a mother I've really looked at myself in a new light. Thanks to my little boy, I can finally say I love who I am.
Ladies, we make humans. We grow them inside us and then bring them in to this world. Then we sustain them in every way possible. Just think about that for a second, whether you're a mother or not. That is INCREDIBLE. That is what we're capable of. The thing that blows me away, too, is I didn't consider myself the most healthy when I got pregnant. Heck, I've never really taken care of myself the way I should have my whole life. Yet somehow I endured 15 years of gymnastics, ran a half marathon after I was told I'd probably never really be able to be athletic again, wake up every single day and do life, and had a baby. This all gets me thinking...I wonder what I could do if I give myself all it needs the best that I can? How would I feel then? Why don't I appreciate what I have in myself because the list of what I've done and endured in amazing? The same goes for all of you. These thoughts early on in my postpartum journey changed my whole life. From that point on I've taken care of myself and appreciated who I am because I deserve it. The list goes on and on but some of the things I've started doing religiously is eating well, working out consistently, taking baths, getting massages, drinking lots of water, meditation, and getting at least 8 hours of sleep every night. I don't do all of this to lose weight or be more beautiful or whatever else I may be insecure about. I do it because my body deserves all the love and attention.
I've always been self conscious and even during my pregnancy I would wonder what others thought about my shape. Or how I would look postpartum. But after I had Kai, I literally did not care. I have a nice squishy belly with stretch marks but I'm damn proud of it. It's like my little mom battle wound that I get to rock and when my yoga pants slip down a little during yoga and my weird little belly button and stretch marks show, I'm like yeah that's right ladies, I'm a mom and I'm here doing my thing! I cared so much about making sure I wasn't making others feel uncomfortable when I breastfed in public. Ha! 10 months later and I literally give 0 Fs how other people feel. I'm not going to excuse myself so my baby can eat. My body physically makes my baby's food and feeds him. If you think about it that way then it's not weird at all...it's actually amazing.
I still have a ways to go but at the same time I am so satisfied with how I feel about myself. I wish I had the encourage to just whip my boob out in public and not cover Kai's head if others are around like I do at home, but I'm not quite there yet. That's ok though...maybe I'll get there, maybe I won't. I haven't had to wear a bathing suit yet with my mom bod so we will see how that goes, too. But at the same time, I am so proud of myself and how far I've come and all I can hope is that you feel the same way about yourself, too.
I will be hosting my weekly Tiny Talk chat on Instagram Live (@dmcab) tonight at 7 PM CST and we will all chat more about loving ourselves and ways to just be more appreciative of ourselves. Talk to you all tonight!
I’m Diana; curator & author of Tiny Dapper Fox. Here you’ll find posts on motherhood, home life, travel, & fashion/beauty as well as City Guides for places all around the world. Make yourself cozy and let’s be friends!
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