Family 10 months ago by Liz Adams

Taking A Break for What’s Important

This blog post is sponsored by American Express.

Working for myself is sometimes all consuming. As much as I love the freedom, it can feel like the work never shuts off and I have a hard time giving 100% to both my business and my role as a mom. If I feel stretched too thin and don’t do anything about it, it can be a downward spiral which leads to lack of motivation, a short temper and just general unpleasantness. No one wants to be around me when that happens. Thankfully, I’ve learned the importance of taking a break. Not only for my own sanity but to make me a better mom, a better business woman and a much happier person. One of my favorite ways to take a break is with Charlie. Watching him enjoy life is so refreshing! I swear every little thing gets him so excited. Seeing a school bus for him is like someone saying they will do my laundry for free for the rest of my life. He gets sooooo excited! And don’t even get me started on donuts. This kid lives for donuts. When he wakes up in the morning, most days we can hear him on the monitor saying “mama I want a donut!” So taking Charlie on a date for donuts is the perfect escape from my to-do list…

Last week, when I was feeling particularly stressed – Dave was on a golf trip, Charlie and Jack were both coming down with colds, no one was sleeping and I was in need of some fresh air – I asked my mom to watch Jack and I took Charlie to get some donuts. We went to the cutest little shop in Western Springs called BB’s Baby Donuts! They have a ton of different flavor options and homemade lemonade. It is the perfect spot to bring kiddos and I knew Charlie would be in donut heaven. They even have chalkboard tables and it is such a fun activity to do with your littles. I left our 25-minute date feeling re-focused, re-energized and just genuinely more content with the chaos, my to-do list and lack of sleep. A good realization that life is all about balance and sometimes just 25 minutes and maybe a few donuts is all you need to reset.

I’m excited to partner with American Express to encourage you all to Live Life Moments. I love this concept. Live life moments, rather than rushing through them, watching them through your iPhone or failing to see the actual moment at all. We all have busy lives and I know that I sometimes look back and think to myself, “why didn’t I take advantage of that moment when I had the chance.” This campaign is really inspiring to me, especially when it comes to taking a moment to focus on the things that are really important in your life. It’s the best way to get re-inspired or recharge.

What inspires you to Live Life Moments?

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  1. After working full time and trying to graduate college while being a mom to our 3 children and a wife to my husband who was my High School Sweetheart it seemed more like a battle of will power over who and what was going to get my attention first. I went through a good 10 years like that and realized that I was missing my children’s “honey years”. That was a phrase I learned from a dear friend that she explained was the years that your children learned about love, life and how to become a person and those “honey years” were the years that they needed their momma’s the most. I had missed those Honey Years with my three but I still felt a closeness with each child. I decided to set aside the remainder of my College, not work any overtime, refuse to be on call for the Hospital I was working at and not take any work home with me. Everyone except my children and my husband would be put on the back burner and would have to be worked out without my help. I watched as our Children thrived. We had already laid a firm foundation for them in the beginning, they just needed that time with me. I may have missed their Honey Years but as my Grandchildren came along I was there for them and my children have always appreciated the fact that I am a hands on Grandmother. Each vacation time whether it be Fall Break, Winter Break, Spring Break or Summer Vacation I am there for my Grandchildren and they are with me each day, all day and sometimes all night. I take them places that I wish I would have been home to take their parents when they were young. I have learned first hand how important those Honey Years are for a parent or grandparent is to be there for the children. However hard it may be, take the time to be there for the children. It does not need to be 24/7 to make a difference it just needs to be quality time to make those Honey Years meaningful for the children and for the parents. A Child looks up to his or her parent or grandparent constantly. If time management is a problem you can work your child into your schedule in so many meaningful ways. Children love to help cook meals. My Granddaughters love to help make breakfast. I let them help mix the Waffle mixture on Waffle morning. We started this at age 5. They have now worked up to helping me put the Waffle mixture into the Waffle Iron. Waffle Irons are hot so I do not advise letting them do this alone. I am right there with them while this is taking place. We spend more time talking and laughing then we do making the Waffles. I learn more about their lives during this 45 minutes then I do at any other time. At lunch the girls usually want fruit and Chicken or a salad. I keep baked Chicken in my Fridge all summer long. When they were very young I started something that they still love today and that is my special PBJ’s with the special ingredient. That special ingredient is LOVE. Our oldest Granddaughter is now 16 and she will still asked for the special PBJ. I never knew that the Special PBJ would become a family favorite with our four Granddaughters. Their ages are now 4, 11, 11 and 16. No Twins there with the 11 yr olds. When they are here for dinner they want the family favorites which are spaghetti or pork chops. Their Great Grandmother would make those for them and they learned the special recipes from her and the 3 older girls know how to make the spaghetti and the pork chops the same way she did. These times spent with the girls are times that cannot be bought, cannot be faked they are real and heartfelt. They are part of their Honey Years!