Living (and working) the dream

Desk and chair. Check.
Laptop, keyboard and mouse. Check.
Access to food and drink. Check.
Ready to work. Yep.
Wait there’s one more on the list. Kids. Check.
Hang on a minute, kids too? Yep, this is no ordinary workplace and the hours aren’t exactly what you would call 9 to 5 either. I don’t even leave the house, well for work purposes anyway, daycare/kindy, groceries and other “fun” trips are another story.

I can be madly typing away on my keyboard and cries of “Mummmmmmy” fill the air. Or I have to stop mid-sentence to source snacks, deal with sibling squabbles or even kindy drop-off. Not to mention changing nappies and trips to the toilet.
It’s a fine balance but doable. It takes practice but it’s worth it.
Why?
Because then I get the fun of spending time with my kids and working as well. I don’t have to worry about missing out on anything.
There is probably a hint of sarcasm in there, if you know what I mean?!

Hats off to the awesome Mummas who manage to work full-time or part-time and then come home to their kids. You are more amazing than you know!
But to those of you, whose office also doubles as your family home, you are rocking it too.
We’re all mums (and many dads too) and we all work hard, no matter what. And don’t let anyone tell you any different!

Is there a downside to working from home? Always.
Some days you just can’t work because the kids won’t leave you alone, they’re really sick or tantrums ensue if you don’t play, feed them instantly or just give them attention.
Not to mention, there’s no stimulating or exciting adult conversation. I think anyone who knocks on the door must think I’m crazy with how much I talk to them.
And some days I eat more junk than I probably should. Hello chocolate, my best friend!
But the pros far outweigh the cons and when you throw in the chance to be back in the workforce again, it’s even better.

I’ll admit, there have been times when I’ve been tempted to give up on the work from home dream, it hasn’t always been easy and it’s not for everyone. But where there’s a will, there’s a way. My creative flair has often thrived better at my own home “desk”, sometimes more than it ever did in a crazy office environment.

So, even if you feel like it might be a difficult path to go down, know that you’re not alone. But it’s one that’s been well travelled before you and will continue to see many footsteps taking the same path. And if the prospect of “working” in your favourite comfy clothes, with a bowl of your favourite food at your disposable, entices you even more, why not try it?

**Multitasking Mummies (www.multitaskingmummies.com.au) is a new platform that has been created for stay-at-home mums/dads and other potential stay-at-home job seekers looking for positions they can take on from home. Jump online and check them out whether you’re looking for a job yourself or you’re a business hoping to find an awesome new employee.**

One foot in front of the other

“Mummy. Mummmmmyyyyy. “Mummmmmm. Watch this!
“MUMMY!
“Why?? Why Mummy? Why????????”

Ever feel like the walls are starting to close in on you?
My favourite saying when it comes to motherhood is “never a dull moment”.
Oh how true it really is!

My girls are forever keeping me on my toes.
Whether it’s constantly yelling for my attention even when I’m already looking at them or deciding to start an argument over a silly toy (when don’t they?!) it just goes on and on.

But no matter what is going on I just feel like there’s never enough time. We just get over one hurdle and are facing another. I spend time with both girls but then I’m faced with the one-on-one dilemma. If I could split myself in half I’d be the best mum ever!

It’s always when you feel you’re getting a handle on things that mum guilt throws you back another ten paces. And mum guilt is a bitch!

It doesn’t matter whether you’re a working mum, a stay-at-home mum, a part-time or full-time mum, however you fill the role, those little monsters…..I mean darling children….know how to make you feel all the feels.

You can spend all the time in the world with them and it might never be enough in their eyes or yours. But know that no matter what you do someone will deem it not enough. But who cares what anyone else thinks?! What matters, or really what should matter, is what you think and you really should give yourself more credit as a mumma!

I know I can’t talk, I’m my own worst enemy, I always have been! And it certainly doesn’t help when Miss Izzie or Miss Phoebe turn the sad eyes on me when I say no for what feels like the millionth time. Ahhhhh it’s a vicious cycle this mum guilt and I imagine it’s not going to disappear anytime soon!

They can take you to the highest of highs and make you proud as punch with beautiful manners, big achievements and cute smiles but things can go pear shaped in the blink of an eye and you find yourself acting as umpire in an impending battle of wills.

But what really warms my heart and brings a smile to my face (other than to see them peacefully sleeping) is when they genuinely get along. It’s amazing to watch them kiss, cuddle and giggle together. I know it’s not going to last forever but I’ll take it while I can get it!

And I guess even though no matter how much time you have, it may never feel like enough and mum guilt will always haunt us, there’s still the best part….unconditional love. Mummy is always their safe place, their warm arms and their go-to spot to make everything better when their little world is turning upside down and there are tears everywhere. And above all else my favourite words are still “I love you Mummy”……

Misconceptions of time

“What do you do with yourself these days?”

It’s a question I’ve heard a fair bit lately.

While many have given up asking when I’m going back to work, it seems now the hidden question is along the lines of what I do all day.

I may be a stay-at-home mum but I certainly don’t sit around all day having a good time.

In fact, it’s the complete opposite.

Unless you think the washing, cleaning, cooking and other house duties take care of themselves (I wish!).

But they’re just a small part of my day.

In fact I actually spend a big chunk of my time playing and or entertaining my 18-month-old bundle of energy, AKA Izzie.

Oh and providing her with what feels like a never ending supply of snacks and meals.

Other then naptime, which can last anywhere from an hour to three (if I’m lucky) depending on the day, she’s on the go from first thing in the morning right up until bedtime at 7pm.

It makes for busy times.

I’m not saying we don’t have quiet reading time or maybe a bit of downtime watching a show (think Bananas in Pyjamas) but usually there’s a lot of running (Izzie) and chasing (me).

Never a dull moment, that’s for sure.

The quietest time of day (bedtime, yay!) isn’t always necessarily an opportunity to relax in my comfy chair either, well not straight away anyway.

Dishes, sorting washing, re-making the bed, ironing, all the menial tasks really, usually take place at this time of night.

Oh and not to mention the words you see before you, my blog writing, the words don’t just fall on the page.

I often wonder how I managed to work full-time, do all the house duties and still have a social life.

I can’t remember the last time my lovely husband and I went out for dinner (I’m sure he’d like to change that).

Now my social life involves catching up on my recorded television shows.

Oh how life has changed….for the better, of course!

There are days where I long to be back working to a deadline but I know I’d miss hanging out with Izzie too much.

I’ve heard many mums (and a few others) say being a stay-at-home parent is one of the toughest jobs out there, because it never stops.

I’m sure everyone would have an opinion on this and let me just say, most people work hard in their own way.

But they do say to really appreciate what someone is going through, you need to walk a mile in their shoes.

Any takers? (Haha!)

But if I can leave you with a thought, let me give you a tip. Never ask a stay-at-home mum (or dad) what have they actually been doing all day, it may not go so well for you.

The bigger picture

I’ve been asked by a lot of people lately, the one question that every mother who has been at home with young children hears frequently.

“When are you going back to work??”

With a pause and a sigh I usually respond with “not anytime soon”.

It’s a response usually met with a mixed reaction, either surprise or respect.

I’ve heard from other mothers who have returned to work, that staying at home is a lot harder.

I’ll admit there are days I miss the daily grind of phone calls, deadlines, interviews and writing stories. Even after writing that sentence I feel a pang for what I’m missing.
And maybe one day I’ll go there again.

But right now as I hear the high pitched squeal of an excited one-year-old sifting through her toys, my mind is quickly catapulted back to the here and now.

I may not receive an income for what I’m doing but I am certainly rewarded with cuddles, cute smiles and giggles and of course the nasties of snot, dribble and dirty nappies.

I have plans, who doesn’t?! I also have goals and set myself benchmarks of what I want to achieve. Whether I get there now or in a year remains a mystery.

As honestly as I can put it, yes I have days where I feel like I’ve lost the old me and I’ve cried more times than I can count.

I don’t regret my decisions (well most of the time) but I know that I have to look forward and not behind because you can’t change the past.

I’m grateful for what I have achieved personally and professionally and thankful to those who have helped me get to where I am today.

So when am I going back to work I hear you asking. And I know you’re thinking it…..

Well actually I’m working right now, as a mum my job never stops.

But if that’s not the answer you’re looking for, don’t worry I do have plans to work again.

My creative mind is already ticking over with ideas….

You just never know what I might do next 🙂

Until next time.