Family over 2 years ago by Liz Adams

One Month in Charleston

Shop the post: Vineyard Vines Tee, The Great Skirt, Wyeth Sunglasses c/o, Nuna Demi Grow Stroller c/o, Roller Rabbit Quilt

It’s been a month since we moved to Charleston! I kind of can’t believe it. It feels like it’s been a month when you look around our house (still so much to unpack) but it also feels like we’ve been here forever. I guess that is probably a good thing!

We are so happy. Dave and I wake up every day and pinch ourselves for the fact that this gets to be our new normal. I don’t think I’ll ever get over seeing palm trees outside our window or the smell of the ocean when you open the door. It’s just been such a welcomed change.

The boys are in heaven. They are outdoors from morning until night if weather allows. I’m pretty sure everyone who walks by knows their name because they start conversations with just about everyone. It has been so nice to spend our mornings at the beach and end our days on the front porch.

On the other hand, I can’t a grip on life. When I think about what our days look like, like if I take a step back and look at our lives as a fly on the wall, holy hell we are a hot mess. Like can’t for the life of me get organized, am constantly pulling out my boob to feed George, Charlie is a maniac and Jack follows whatever Charlie does. Does anyone else feel like all they do is reprimand their kids every 3 minutes? If I have to tell Charlie to “listen!” or “stop whining! you’re 5 years old!” one more time I’m going to pull out my hair. And then they stare at you with this blank stare but also nodding their heads and you know they are saying to themselves “I’m not listening to a word you say.” So I sort of just throw my hands in the air and give up. Someone with older children, please tell me that one day it clicks and they learn that what you’re saying matters? Please. Lie to me. Dave and I are exhausted, ha.

But I’ve learned a lot about myself in this past month. One major thing being that when things feel out of control (ie: no schedule, moving, keeping a new baby alive), I try to control EVERYTHING. And it’s not the good kind of control. It’s the anxious, angry, short tempered, easily irritated kind of control. Which then just makes me feel like a bad mom, wife, business owner, life-liver. The answer for me is to get outside, let go of the control, move my body, meet up with friends and say F it.

Shop the post: Vineyard Vines Tee, The Great Skirt, Wyeth Sunglasses c/o, Nuna Demi Grow Stroller c/o, Roller Rabbit Quilt

So one month in Charleston has been pretty dreamy. Grateful for the beautiful weather, sandy beaches, cocktail hour outdoors and fresh ocean air streaming through the windows.

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  1. I have no advice because my oldest is 4, but we’re in the same boat. No one listens. You’re not alone.

    1. Also same boat. You described it so well. Just had third (and last) baby. Especially the pulling out the boob constantly to feed the newborn. It’s madness.

  2. My kids are 4.5 and almost 6. I am constantly telling them to listen, stop whining, and basically just no every other minute. When I feel like I’m saying no to everything, I try to ask myself if I truly have a reason or if I’m just trying to control the situation. Because I’m the same way – when everything feels out of control, I want to control it!

  3. Thank you for being so honest. I relate to this so much. Your older two boys sound so much like mine. They don’t listen to a thing most of the time either. But are also so so cute! My youngest stays in for the green light but also screams, shouts, sings, and wakes up his 5 year old brother. It’s tough. Solidarity!

  4. Thanks for keeping motherhood real! We have a 7, 5 and 2 and the 5 year old is our first boy and MAN the whining…wasn’t so much with our daughter. But our 3rd is a wild and happy guy. Life is still chaos, just less boob!

  5. Ditto. My kids have started wrestling ALL THE TIME and it’s like a terrible ticking time bomb to see which one causes the other to get stitches first.

    1. I definitely don’t have the answers and am struggling with this with our 2.5 year old. BUT my husband and I are reading and trying to implement lessons from the new book Hunt, Gather, Parent. Man, it’s great. I recommend it to every parent!

  6. I love seeing all the pictures from Charleston! It’s so beautiful! As for Charlie, it does get better. My oldest is 14 and is much better than she was as 4/5, she was tough at that age, but we did just have our second baby. My second is almost 10 now and I still find myself saying “you’re almost 10! Why are you whining?!” We feel you mama and you are 100% not alone! It’s hard, but it does get better!

  7. Liz- do you ever put Charlie “on the steps?” That was our reprimand at that stage. There’s literally nothing to do on the steps and my son still remembers it. Jack will see Charlie doing his time and you will have some calm. Three kids is tough–It’s zone defense from here on out.

    Always enjoy your posts as it reminds me of my life exactly 22 years ago. It flies by so fast and soon you are packing them up for college. You are doing just fine.

  8. Yes, yes yes. I feel you. Control is such a tricky beast. It seems like it will make you happy but the pursuit of it is so exhausting. I don’t have older kids, but I have constantly reminded myself that “everything is a phase” during parenthood and I’m sure the boys are reacting to the changes in their lives. Things will settle down. Good luck, mama!

  9. Totally relatable. We had two boys; 4&5… it’s tough. I know your boys are in school, right? I found it very helpful to be consistent with how school handles those situations or any tips teachers can give. Teachers are incredible, definitely 100% use them as a resource!! Also, @biglittlefeelings on insta is great! Hang in there 💜

  10. You’re taking on a lot! Chaos will eventually settle down – not sure about the boys ever listening though 🙂
    What color are your shutters – they look great!

  11. I relate to this so deeply. You have got this and I don’t even have to lie to you when I say – it does click and get better. You’re in the throes of change and at some point you just “ride the wave” until you can get off the board and relax. Sending sunny days and 🤍 your way.

  12. Wow. The out of control statement. I have never seen it written out so well. Describes me to T! Outside and movement is exactly what I need. Thank you! So glad to see you are all happy in your new space. The settling and feeling organized will come soon enough. Take care Adams Family.

  13. I’m here for all of it, Liz. Long time follower and just love your honesty. Keep it going, mama. You got this! Sending love from South Florida.

  14. Ginger Hubbard started a podcast and just posted a great episode about whining. She is a southern girl <3 which you are now too! I have a 6, 4, 3 and 1 year old. It is SO hard. But don't give up! You must train them now or you will see it in the teen years 🙂 take the time, be patient and give yourself grace with a new born. The best part of southern living is the pace. It is slower. So try to enjoy and soak it up! They don't stay young forever. Enjoy those newborn snuggles and welcome to the south!!!

  15. I even think my husband doesn’t listen to me after 1 year of COVID bc he’s so used to tuning the kids whining out 😂

    My oldest (7) has always been the most challenging and reason I read parenting books. First Super Nanny’s toddler book, then Magic 1 2 3, and now most recently Explosive Child. I think Magic 1 2 3 works for most people…

    For a long time we did a point system – they would get 1 point for good tasks ( putting away dishes, listening first time asked, being sweet, focusing on a craft or school work, sharing etc). They would lose points for not listening or hitting etc (generally violence made them lose lots of points like 5 or 10 at once). They needed 5 points to get to “small dessert” and 10 for “big dessert.” And we’d say 15 points got them a special board game w parents. Bonus was that it really helped their math skills. (“Well I’m at negative 5, so to get to small dessert I need 10 points. How many points can I get for cleaning the mud room? Basement? My room? Great, I’ll start cleaning”

    Also re Jack’s sleeping – how short is his nap? We started cutting our 2.5 year olds nap to 60-90 minutes and that has helped move his wake up time from 545 to 630 (and shorten the bedtime procrastination process)

  16. Always love your honesty! I just told two of my friends who just had their third babies to follow you bc they would relate to you a lot! I have two girls 3 and 1 and they are just as wild as boys. I thought the 1 year old was more chill but she seems to following in her sisters footsteps haha! I hear 4 is better but then I hear it just gets harder and they think they know everything at that age. Oh my! I’m with you, I’m type A so when it’s out of control I don’t handle it well. I pray they start listening one day bc the whining and tantrums are hard at this age. I keep saying in my head daily “children are a gift from God”
    Lord give me strength. Haha!

  17. I felt like you were talking about my life! Glad I’m not the only one. And welcome to Charleston, we’re glad you’re here!

  18. Oh my gosh. I am a mom to three young boys (8, 5, 1) as well and also keep asking others for a guarantee that there’s a light at the end of the tunnel. I hope so! I just remind myself everyday that “the days are long but the years are short”.

  19. This was everything I needed and more. New mom of three here and somedays I feel like I’m literally failing at everything and ruining my kiddos. Other days I’m like ok let’s just embrace this chaotic mess haha. Needless to say you’re not alone and thank you for being so raw and real and helping us mamas also not feel so alone!

  20. Have someone clean your house once a week. It will force you to pick stuff up and organize. It will make you go outside and put the kids in their events. Beach living is great living.

  21. I always love your vulnerable and truthful posts! Not a mom yet but I can only imagine! I dog sat the other day and spanked the dog when it screeched barked at the neighbors (hopefully they invite me back to watch the dog hahahh). If I lost my temper with a cute animal…oh man, I will need some prayers with kids. You are rocking mom life!