Life Lately // Finding Balance

Balancing Work & Families
Lately I’ve been feeling the struggle of finding that right balance between family life and work life. Work life for me encompasses a lot of different areas, my two part time jobs, this blog, the shop and the volunteer commitments I’ve made. My goal is to make sure that my family life takes priority over everything. But that doesn’t always happen. I feel pressure – put there only by myself I know, but still there nonetheless – to keep doing and keep going. I sometimes feel like I need to have something tangible to show for my day (you know, other than the kids being kept alive); that if I can’t provide a list saying this, this, and this was done today outside of my mothering/home life, that I somehow haven’t done enough. But those times when I let those feelings take over, when I try to take on more and more, I’m left feeling overwhelmed and so stressed that I’m not able to do it all.
What I have decided to commit to, to do during this season of life, is to be here for my kids. And I need to embrace that fully, while I still can. Because as I sit here, the silence surrounding me right now reminds me that too soon, this silence will be here all day. That it won’t be just a short break and that those moments when I’m asked to build a train track, or read a book, or make a snack won’t be here anymore.
These last couple of weeks I’ve been looking hard at what I’m giving my time to. I’m working on trying to say no to more outside commitments. And to learn to be okay with that. To learn to be okay with a bit of a slower life right now. Because I want to make sure that my husband and my boys are getting enough time, attention and care from me. I also want to be sure that I’m taking care of myself – that I’m making daily time to read my Bible and pray, that I’m taking care of myself physically and mentally, that I’m getting the sleep I need so that I’m not crazy mama! And I want to take care of my house and make sure it’s a place that feels calm and orderly. Because I have years ahead of me to fill with work, I’ll have countless hours to get those projects tackled and goals accomplished.
This post and these thoughts feel jumbled and just thrown out there. Sorry for that. Voicing these thoughts and feelings can be hard to share (who really cares what’s going in my head!) but freeing at the same time.

And on that note, I’d like to add another jumbled thought to the mix…one of the things I’ve always felt bad about with blog life is that I don’t get to connect enough with you, our readers. I feel terrible about not responding to comments or not responding to emails in a timely fashion. I’d love to be able to spend more time reading blogs and commenting on the lovely stories and posts I come across. But I try hard to set limits for how much time I spend on blogging and the computer. And some weeks, a lot of weeks, just spending the time to make, photograph, edit photos and write a few posts is about all I can give. So the other things sadly get pushed to “another time”, which never seems to come about. Please know that we love reading your comments – it’s nice to feel like this blog is not a one-sided conversation and that people do read/see/like what we’re doing. And know that I do visit your blogs sometimes, but don’t always have the time to comment. Because I’m working hard to keep my boundaries, to protect my precious family time while I have it. Soon, I’ll have more time to dedicate to these things, but in this season I don’t. But know that I wish I could and that we’re so grateful for you reading, commenting and connecting!  And for those that take the time to read through these more personal posts, that encourage us to open up and share more – we love you!

xo. Manda

8 comments
  • AnnaWednesday, September 24, 2014 - 12:32 pm

    Aw, I don’t even have kids and it’s hard to find balance. Good for you for recognizing that you need to focus on it; I hope you can figure out what’s best for you.ReplyCancel

  • KaylanWednesday, September 24, 2014 - 1:59 pm

    You are enough, Mama. Blessings to you during this busy season.ReplyCancel

  • KaylinWednesday, September 24, 2014 - 2:57 pm

    You should never feel obligated to share your life moments and thoughts with people, it is all entirely up to you. Life is too short to worry about documenting every moment of it. Memories you keep tend to be the most precious of all anyway 🙂ReplyCancel

  • GeorgiaWednesday, September 24, 2014 - 8:18 pm

    Whether you respond or not, I always enjoy reading your blog 🙂ReplyCancel

  • Stephanie BeresfordThursday, September 25, 2014 - 6:50 am

    Your blog is your blog sweets! I enjoy reading it, keep up the great work! xo

    http://www.chasing-peonies.blogspot.comReplyCancel

  • Julia-tagandtibbyFriday, September 26, 2014 - 9:07 am

    I understand! This month has been the first month in a very long time where I don’t feel frazzled (my kids started school). Life really does come in seasons. I tend to probably spend too much time being “social” on media and need to balance that with what you mentioned (photography, ideas, ect)ReplyCancel

  • AlisonFriday, September 26, 2014 - 11:25 am

    Thank you for this, Manda. As a full-time graduate student with other life commitments, I feel the exact same way towards blogging. I’ve been wanting to discover new blogs and reach out to other bloggers that are similar to me, or that I would just like to get to know better. As I am not a mother (yet), I cannot even begin to imagine the amount of time management and flexibility that I will have to change once that milestone comes along.

    I also am glad you shared this because every once awhile, I want to have a little cathartic thought process, rant, or opinionated piece that maybe my readers won’t necessarily care about. But then I remind myself that this is MY blog and I can do whatever I want. 🙂

    Keep up the amazing work here, and in your personal life. You’re doing a great job so far!ReplyCancel

  • Denise ThomsonTuesday, September 30, 2014 - 8:52 am

    Hi,
    You’ve voiced (or rather jogged down) my own struggles and thoughts exactly! I have come to realise lately that nothing is more important than family! I want my children to look back when they have grown up and remember the love and warmth and the fact that I was there for them (which I try to be when I don’t have to work), rather then how spotless the kitchen was or how well up-to-date we were with all the DIY etc.
    Thanks for the confirmation of this!!ReplyCancel

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