KIDS CONFIDENCE MATTERS!

2270558762706.jpeg

Our first night of T-ball practice was a huge success!! The only thing their practice consisted of tonight was running bases and hitting the ball. It was a great start! ALL of the kids did such a wonderful job & even though it was freezing cold out there they still had a great time! I’m proud so proud of my babies though!! They were listening, paying attention and most importantly having fun 🙂 

I’m especially proud of RJ though and let me tell you why. First, I’m going to start by letting you in on a little bit of my personal business. For a little while now, RJ (my five year old) has struggled a little bit with self-esteem and confidence issues. At first, Justin & I couldn’t figure out what was causing him to feel so low about himself at such a young age because we make sure the exact same love and attention is shown to both of our boys but during this past year of trying to help him gain confidence and improve his self-esteem.. it just sort of clicked with me!

RJ is my firstborn child and like most first time parents – I spoiled him rotten! As a parent, you want to give your kids everything their heart’s desire to make them happy, but parents who give too much, too often can spoil their children. As a matter of fact, between me, my family and his biological dad’s side of the family.. we babied him entirely too much. I’m not gonna lie, we were all a little too overprotective over RJ. I mean as soon as he would fall down, bump his head or something like that we’d rush to his rescue instead of letting him be a big boy and get back up on his own. As time passed, I started to think that we probably did more harm to RJ’s growth than we actually helped it and when he started Pre-K.. my thoughts were confirmed to be right! Spoiling/babying your children can be harmful to them, both socially and developmentally.

RJ started Pre-K when he was four years old and he had the hardest time. As far as schoolwork went, he excelled in that but his social skills were awful, he lacked independence, and he struggled some with his speech. He wasn’t as mature as the rest of the kids in his class. In fact, his teacher that year told me that he wasn’t mature for his age yet. As disheartening as that was at the moment, she was right and it was just a hard truth that I had to face. Because his social skills weren’t where they needed to be, he didn’t play much with the other kids. He was considered the “loner” in his class. Even though, he could dress/undress himself and never needed any help in the bathroom he still lacked independence because he wasn’t good with following two and three step directions. Even though he excelled in his schoolwork, knew how to do everything and made really good grades, often times he wouldn’t actually complete his work without a teacher sitting right beside him kind of guiding him and watching him do it. Last but not least, he struggled some with his speech. I feel like this and his social skills definitely had a big impact on his self-esteem. For the most part, you could understand what RJ was trying to say but sometimes what he was saying didn’t make sense. Sometimes, the teachers didn’t understand him nor could they make sense of what he was trying to say. Of course his teachers would work with him the best they could but then there were kids… kids being kids… when RJ did try to play and talk with them and they couldn’t understand what he was saying.. some of them would kind of tease and pick at him and ask questions like, “Why do you talk like that?” and after a few of those questions is when RJ shut down even more. His teachers started telling me that he started to be more quiet than usual and was hardly talking at all. At this point, I knew that my baby was embarrassed. He would come home and try to tell me about it but just didn’t know how to get it out so he would say things like, “I don’t have any friends or I only have one friend or the other kids were making fun of me or I don’t know how to do this or that or I don’t understand” and as a parent.. as a MOM.. this was very hard for me to hear. A part of me wanted to get those kids and confront the teacher about potential bullying and the other half of me just wanted to break down and cry. I did cry actually because I knew that everything RJ was going through was pretty much my fault. Had I not been babying him so much, he would have never been in that type of situation. So anyways, after a few breakdowns or two.. I finally got myself together. My Husband & I came up with a few plans and different strategies to put into the action of working towards improving his self-esteem, confidence and maturity.

The road to this type of success has not been easy but worth it! We’ve worked more in depth with learning school work, reading, improving speech, let him participate in more activities with many other kids and I also had to put my foot down with my family! It is so hard trying to raise your children a certain way and teach them new habits when family members keep encouraging the exact opposite. It’s very frustrating. We had to have a few “Come to Jesus Meetings” before I finally just said, “If you can’t respect the positive changes we’re trying to make in RJ’s life for the betterment of his growth and future.. then you will be cut off!” and I wasn’t playing either!

RJ has improved tremendously in all areas and I am so proud! All of the extra work we’ve been putting in with him has paid off. He talks so good now that no one would ever believe that last year he struggled with speech at all. His social skills are much better. There’s a little group of kids in class that he sticks with and he has like two “best friends” haha!! He’s definitely way more independent now with everything. He gets that classwork done with no problem or the comfort of having a teacher right beside him. He’s one of the top smartest in his Kindergarten class!! That makes me & his dad sooooo PROUD! He’s currently five years old and acts like it. He’s definitely matured a lot in this past year and I couldn’t be happier! Most importantly though.. his self-esteem and confidence has came a loooong way! I feel like it’s finally where it needs to be at, especially after last night’s first baseball practice!! 🙂 He was so proud of himself and excited. He was confident in everything he done on the field last night. He’s like a different kid. He’s a big boy now .. so he says.. but deep down he will always be my baby! Both RJ & Noah will. 

I’m sorry. I know this post was a little lengthy today but I appreciate you taking the time to read it! The moral of my post is that self-esteem is an important part of confidence. Having good self-esteem means accepting and feeling positive about yourself. Confidence is not just feeling good but also knowing you are good at something. Particular ways of thinking are very important for building confidence, especially for kids. Kids confidence matters… a lot! 

xoxo,

Jessica!

ME Time for M0MS.

img_1313

Even the most dedicated and patient mother needs a break every now and then. Your reasons may be different from mine but I know for me personally, sometimes the responsibilities of life tend to get a bit overwhelming. Every once in a blue moon, I’m able to catch a break from work, school, church, friends, finances & everything else that demands my attention almost on a daily basis but the one thing that I can hardly seem to catch a break from is MOTHERHOOD. Now don’t get me wrong, because I love my babies. They are truly my two little balls of sunshine but sometimes the day-to-day tasks of motherhood are just tough. That’s not really the reason we all deserve a little quiet time. It’s because those day-to-day tasks literally never end. If you’re a mom you know exactly what I’m talking about; there’s always something to do! It is so easy for moms to forget that they’re people too and as such, deserving of the occasional breather.

Due to the fact that I don’t have a very good support system, I don’t get breaks very often. In fact, “breaks” are very rare for me so when I do get them… I appreciate them very much! Because of this, I tend to dramatically indulge in my little “me time” moments!! Maaannn, I ENJOY EVERY SINGLE SECOND I GET!! Just to help another mom out there that’s like me and doesn’t get to enjoy the luxury of breaks.. I’m gonna share some of my mommy indulges.

  1. GET UP EARLIER

Monday-Friday I’m automatically up no later than 5:45am to get ready for work & get my kids ready for school but on the weekends.. sometimes, I’m up early by choice! I like to enjoy the quiet and stillness of the house while they’re sleeping in. I have found it to be one of the best times to read a book, study my bible, spend some time in prayer, write/blog, do some exercising, get a head start on cleaning or just lay there and be lazy in peace while scrolling on social media.

2. GIVE YOURSELF AT LEAST ONE NIGHT OFF PER WEEK

Now sometimes, this is just something necessary to do…absolutely nothing and it feels good! I don’t have a designated day for this one. I just kind of base this one off of how my work day went. Most of the time if it was a super long and stressful one then yeah.. I’m taking the night off at home and by night off, I mean I’m literally coming home to unwind and relax! I’m not cooking dinner, doing laundry and sometimes not even the dishes! The only things those type of nights consist of in my house are my daily tasks with my children (homework, showers and easy dinner like pizza) , a big glass of wine to myself, enjoying some of my favorite TV shows and spending time with my Husband!

3. BATHROOM TIME!!

OK! This funky little idea right here just so happens to be one of my FAVORITES!! It kinda seems like the younger your children are the more they seem to harass you while you’re on the toilet or in the shower but now that mine are a little older (3yrs & 5yrs) they know to leave me alone when I’m in there!! Now before I go spend 45mins-1hr in the bathroom, I usually wait until their dad is home just in case they need anything… they can ask him! (& don’t ask me why I’m in there that long either haha sometimes it’s just the best place to relax… ya know a bubble bath & a glass of wine, music, my phone and to get away from everyone!!) If he’s not there, then I wait until they’re in the bed! Usually, by that time they don’t need anything else but to go to sleep. Time in the bathroom is a great way to get some good quiet me time!

4. QUIET TIME AKA NAP TIME

I don’t make my kids take naps as often as I use to just because I feel like they’re getting a little too old for them. Even though, the house is quietest when they’re sleeping and most relaxing for me… I save this method for when I’m exhausted and need a nap myself or if I’m just not feeling well and don’t have the energy to do anything but lay around. However, when a daily nap use to be apart of my children’s schedule it was usually a time of relief for me. I would take advantage of that time to get some things done that I would normally struggle with if they were awake and running wild.

5. MAXIMIZE YOUR COMMUTE

Sometimes, I leave my kids at home with their dad & take trips to Walmart or the Dollar Store just to get out of the house and catch a breather. Sometimes, I go because I have something in particular that I need to buy and sometimessss I go just to get that break away from home for a few minutes; especially after a tough day. It’s just nice to be alone and get some fresh air. This is indeed relaxing. Not only is it nice to get away from the kids for a minute but its also nice to window shop! haha and when I’m shopping for real, it’s just nice to shop in peace! This sounds horrible but I love going to the store without my kids because normally when they’re with me they ask for absolutely everything!! Every now and then, they’ll drive me completely up the wall in Walmart from one aisle to the next! Bless it Lord haha.

5. BOX TECHNIQUE!

The box technique is also known as “chill time” in my house. This particular box is where you keep all of your children’s favorite toys/games that they don’t play too often or have to be under supervision while playing with them. For example, my box consists of Tablets, Nintendo DS, Playdough, Slime, Coloring Books & Crayons! Well actually, I don’t quite have box. I’m not that organized 😂 my stuff sits up on a shelf! But anyway, my kids LOVE chill time!! Whenever I want a few minutes of “calm & quiet” I let them choose from the shelf what they want to play with. If it’s electronics, then I make them sit on their beds and play them quietly. If it’s playdough or slime, I let them sit at their table and quietly play with those as well. Same method for the coloring. My boys LOVE when I let them get their hands on this stuff! Believe it or not but it keeps them very content, calm, happy & entertained for a long time! I know when I pull this stuff out, most of the time I don’t have to worry about them arguing/fighting. Y’all know how kids can be! Anyways, this gives me the chance to kinda relax in my world a little bit & just do some things that I enjoy doing in peace. (Arts & Crafts, Making Door Wreaths, Writing/Blogging, or just watching TV!) Yay, another win for mom!!

6. THE BEAUTY SALON

This is another form of “me time” that is absolutely one of my favorites! You get to pamper yourself AND enjoy the luxury of “me time” all in one! It’s pretty self explanatory. I haven’t been to the beauty salon in what seems like forever!! It’s about time that I pay them another visit very soon. I need something done to my hair ASAP 🤪 I shall be treating myself very very soon !!

7. PUT THE KIDS TO BED AT A DECENT TIME EVERY NIGHT

I understand that a lot of parents are different when it comes to this. Some people put their kids to bed by 8pm and some let their kids stay up til 2am. Some people have their kids on a schedule and some don’t. At my house, my kids are in the bed by 8pm most nights. Occasionally, they get to stay up until 10:30pm at the latest but other than that.. they’re in the bed at a decent time. For my Husband and I have to them on a daily routine like that is beneficial to both them & us. They get the proper amount of sleep they need to function the next day and we get the rest of the night to spend quality time with each other. I personally know a few people who have said that one of the biggest issues between them & their partner/spouse is that they never get to spend any time together due to always having to deal with the kids. These are also people/parents who let their kids stay up close until 2am every night too. I just want to state the fact that one of the reasons marriages & relationships fail .. is due to lack of communication and quality time. To have your kids on a schedule/daily routine is beneficial to single parents as well. I don’t make my kids go straight to sleep as soon as they lay down. I let them lay there and watch a movie of their choice until they doze off. (which is normally an hr after they’ve gotten in the bed) When they’re in the bed, I use all of that time to really relax! I get to sit down and eat my dinner in peace, enjoy TV in peace, spend QT with my husband in peace and get super comfortable! I know by that time it’s always perfectly okay to do so. If you’re one those people who absolutely can’t catch a break for nothing… just know that if and when you get your kids on a schedule when it comes to bedtime, you’ll find a lot more relief. Don’t complain about never being able to catch a breather if you haven’t tried this yet!

I love my babies but sometimes.. I just need a break from my little rugrats and the day-to day tasks. I know there are other moms out there like me who don’t have the greatest support system and have to take quick breaks when they can and enjoy them! Just don’t forget that you’re a person & you deserve the occasional breather too. I hope that some of my Me Time for Moms Ideas helped you and if you have any that you’d like to share please feel free to do so!! I’m always open to new ideas 🙂