I wanted to talk a little bit about parenting + how we do things in our house. First is my disclaimer, I am certainly not a professional nor am I anywhere near a perfect parent! This is just how we like to do things and what works for us + why!
People are always telling me that my kids are so chill and usually.... usually go with the flow! They ask me how we do it and well, I don't feel like we are doing anything special however, I do feel that it probably has a lot to do with the lack of a schedule in our house (insert gasps)!
When our first was born, we did all the things you are supposed to do:
Give them a bedtime bath
Lay them in their bed and yada yada
While this was great at first, we quickly found that we were wondering how on earth we were going to have a life again if the only place this girl would sleep was in HER bed and she couldn't adapt to a changing environment so.... we threw that out the window and learned to just go with the flow..... the arrival of our second child also threw us wayyyyy off! Learning how to live life again with these tiny humans to take care of is crazy!
Just when you think you might be on time, you look down to find poo smeared down the front of your shirt + up your baby's back. They spit up all over, you realize you forgot a zillion things, and the list can go on!
Let's just say I accepted the fact that I would not get a hot meal or clean clothes for at least the next four years of my life! The hubs thinks I'm nuts when I get distracted and then eat my food cold vs warming it back up. I'm used to it at this point so serve it to me hot or cold and I'm happy!
Whenever we got the chance with our babies, we still did the bath + bedtime story, etc... but it wasn't a must. We also may not have always been in the exact same place nor did they always sleep in the exact same bed every single night of their lives.
I have to give credit to the lack of a strict + never changing routine as the reason all of our kids are the go with the flow type. Life isn't perfect. It's messy and crazy, + running around with older siblings is just unavoidable! Ain't nobody got time for stressing over making it home in time when fun is happening am I right?!
Now, we have kids in gymnastics two nights a week, dogs to run, camping trips to go on, etc... A strict schedule is impossible for us.
Life shouldn't stop just because you have kids and we didn't feel like we should have to say no when friends ask us to go out for dinner because our baby needed to be in bed at a certain time. Life is meant to be enjoyed!
One last and final thing that we have learned along the way that has absolutely nothing to do with having a schedule for your kids is to value your marriage!!! We were so bad at this in the beginning stages of having kids. I'm talking when we would go on a date and try to talk about things other than the kids, we couldn't. You guys, we couldn't come up with a dang thing to talk about aside from our kids. That's great and all, but when our kids leave the nest, what on earth will we talk about then?
We were young + had no clue what the heck we were doing (still don't) and we put our relationship on the back-burner. This caused so much stress along the journey. I am glad we finally realized... or I pulled my head out of my buns and realized I had a good thing going on, it just needed a match struck under it to get it going again.
Now, our relationship comes first and foremost before our kids because if we don't take care of us, how can we take care of them?! Also, if we don't keep our relationship alive outside of the kids, where will we be when the kids move out? If our lives stayed centered around them it's going to be one heck of a shock and may not end well.
Here's my challenge to you... take your special someone out on a date and find things to talk about even for just a few moments that has nothing to do with your kids. If you are great at this already, kudos, because we weren't and it took us a long time to realize it!