Staying Sane: Drink your water!!


“Pure water is the world’s first and foremost medicine.” Slovakian proverb

source: http://www.Quotegarden.com

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The human body has some basic needs. Sleep, food, air, water. I wrote about the Hierarchy of Needs and the implications to working mothers last year. Some are basic and some are complex. To be the best you can be to yourself and your family you need to take care of yourself. I decided to focus on one of these basic needs now since it was hot today. The need for water.

The body consists of 65% – 70% water to perform some pretty critical functions. Transporting nutrients and removing toxins to name the most obvious. The Importance of Water and Your Health does a great job of outlining the importance of water to your body, and the impact of dehydration (problems with short term memory, fatigue, others).

If you are anything like me, when you were pregnant or breastfeeding you were accutely aware of the need for water and diligent about getting enough to keep yourself and your baby healthy. But maybe since then you’re not as diligent? But we should be! Since all of you working mamas have busy schedules, and little ones to look after, you need to be on your best game. And you should teach the importance of water to your kids so that they stay hydrated (especially in the summer as they are busy running and exercising their bodies in the warmer weather).

Here’s a tool that I thought was reasonably simple to use to figure out what your body needs: Water Calculator

The best sign that you are not getting enough is the color of your urine. Clear/light yellow is perfect. Dark yellow is not so good. Once my kids started using the potty this is one of the things that we would talk about. If he/she was doing a good job drinking enough water. I fist-pump and high-five when their pee-pee comes out clear. If not, we go and get some water for them to drink. “Be good to your body”, “treat your body with respect”, “you only get one body, make sure you take care of it” are common phrases that I use with the kids.

I hope you are all enjoying your summer and keeping hydrated! Happy drinking all!

– Mama K

Staying Sane: My Sewing Machine and my patches


This seems like a strange topic for me to write about. First of all, I don’t sew. At all. So really I’m not going to write about the sewing machine itself. But from the limited research I did (on amazon, I love that website), I think it is a good one. It has features that many do not. Features that I know I do not need. But you never know, maybe one day I’ll consider myself a bonafide expert sewer. Or, maybe not.

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What this post is really about is the need that I had to accomplish specific, distinct tasks that I perceived as ones that “traditional” mothers should be able to do. For example, in the past when each of my kids were babies, I became a fanatic about making home-made baby food. Even though I was working crazy hours. On weekends I would go into a frenzy finding receipes, going shopping, and making vats of baby food – labeling them, freezing them, storing them for later. This to me was “catching up” on those motherly duties that I thought I was dropping the ball on. I think because I felt guilty. I think because I secretly wanted the time to do the same thing less rushed during the week. To be a mom to my babies. To cook for my babies. As a full-time worker, my weekend time was time I needed to catch up on these sorts of activities to make me feel good about myself and make me feel like I wasn’t being only 1/2 a mother.

Fast forward 5 years. My son is an active BOY and his jeans always take a serious beating. Without fail, he always wears down his jeans at the knee on his right leg. ALL of his jeans wind up this way. So the options are 1) cut them into shorts, 2) ignore the holes; 3) throw them out and buy new ones; 4) iron on a patch; 5) sew a patch that matches the denim of the jeans that he destroyed.

I know the range of options require a range of effort. But even though I was working full time, I decided to take the hardest route. Buy a sewing machine, and I don’t even know HOW many yards of denim (probably enough for 100s or 1,000s of patches), and just start sewing.

  • My first attempt was horrendous. I sewed the pant leg together through the middle. Front and back side. Completely fused together. I just ripped out the stitches and started again.
  • My second attempt was much better. Except you can tell that a Novice sewed the patch. It all looks even and aligned except when you get to one corner, the last corner. I had too much material. So the patch is all bunched up at that one corner. I decided that this error was acceptable and moved on to the second pair of pants.
  • The third attempt was much, much better. It was a lighter pair of pants and I got fancy and turned the denim material over to better match the colors. I sewed the edges of the patch first, and then sewed it to the pants. Scrunching and twisting and turning it around, and in the end the corner seemed OK and honestly it looked pretty good!!!!

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After that, I got wiped out. So after at least 3 hours of setting up the machine, learning the parts, experimenting with practice garments, and then actually trying to sew the patches, I only have two pairs of pants to show for it. I still have a stack of about 5 more pairs. Poor Big Bro is wearing these two pairs of pants non-stop and rotating them and washing them non-stop. My goal over the next few weeks will be to bang out at least two more pairs.

Why do I do this? To feel like a Mom. To feel like I’m fulfilling a need for my son. Sure it would be easier to iron on a patch. I know that. Of course that is the rational thing to do. But I am not rational at these sorts of things. I over-do it. I create projects for myself. I document my children endlessly (that’s probably why I’m still doing this blog). I feel the need to make up for the shortcomings and time that I’ve missed because of having to work full time. I know this sounds silly. I know that it is ridiculous that I have a sewing machine that has 40 stitches pre-programed, and has different “feet” for quilting projects. I know this. It is so ridiculous.

But it makes me feel good that Big Bro has those two pairs of jeans fixed by his mom. And it feels good to have that sewing machine sitting in my house just in case there is another article of clothing to mend, or even if its just the perfect space to start stacking the things that need to be mended.

I’m sure I’m not the only working mom with examples like this. What other “mom” related activities/tasks do you do to make you feel more like a mom???? Please comment! I’m interested to hear and may also replicate your ideas!!!!

Thanks for listening!
– Mama K

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