10 Ways for Stay-at-home Moms to Relax and De-stress

It has its rewards; however, things can be overwhelming sometimes for a stay-at-home mom. Are you always doing things for others with little or no time left for yourself? Here are some ways to relax and de-stress:

  1. Tell others when you feel overwhelmed. They may not like what you have to say, but it is better to express how you feel. You don’t want to hold your feelings in and lash out at a later time. Calmly express your feelings. It’s always nice to HEAR that you’re appreciated for all that you do.
  2. Pamper yourself. Go get a massage, manicure, or pedicure. Go to the beauty salon. If you don’t want to go to the spa, there are things you can do at home. For instance, you can take a long bubble bath, light some scented candles, or give yourself a facial. When you look good, you feel good.
  3. Exercise.  Physical activity relieves stress and burns calories.
  4. Take time to see friends. I typically get together with friends at least once a month for dinner or other activity. It gives us a chance to talk and catch up.
  5. Accept those invites. If you get invited to a party or event, go if you don’t have other plans.  It’s a privilege to be included.
  6. Go shopping. This is always fun for those that enjoy it. Macy’s, Victoria’s Secret, and DSW Shoes always send me coupons.
  7. Have daily quiet time. I either do it first thing in the morning or in the evening. Sometimes I do it twice daily. This is the time that I use to brainstorm, pray, write in my journal, and do meditation.
  8. Have date nights. When you can get a babysitter, plan a night out for two. Dinner and a movie always work well. If you both enjoy sports, plan to go to a game.
  9. Plan a getaway. Sometimes you just need a change in scenery. If you’re fortunate enough to a vacation each year, do it. There are so many beautiful places to see, within the U.S. as well as internationally. Life is shorter than you think.
  10. Get a hobby. Find an activity that you’re passionate about. Your hobby could later become a source of income.

When your kids are in school, that gives you time to run errands and relax for a while. If your kids take naps, use that time to catch up on sleep. I rarely have the opportunity to sleep past 6:30am. I’m usually the first to get up most days. Even though I only have one child, he keeps me busy. I treasure our time together. He’s growing up.

5 Ways to Keep Your Children Healthy and Happy

I communicate with my son’s teacher frequently.  I dress him appropriately according to the school activity.  For instance, on the days that the students have art and cooking, I will dress him in one of his older outfits.  On the days that he has occupational therapy, he needs comfortable, loose-fitting clothes. His teacher commented on how well-dressed that we keep our son. I personally don’t like seeing well-dressed parents with unkempt children.  Children with uncombed hair, runny noses, dirty faces and clothes…not cool.  If anything, the parents should be willing to sacrifice so that their children can look nice. It doesn’t take much effort, only a willing spirit.  Now that school is back in session, here are some ways to keep your kids healthy and up to speed.

  1. Get all required immunizations.  Depending on their ages, children are required to have certain shots before returning to school. Check with your child’s pediatrician and /or school.
  2. Make sure that they are wearing the correct shoe and clothing sizes.  Kids go through growth spurts.  It’s especially important that they wear the correct shoe size.  They will avoid foot pain and problems later in life.  It doesn’t matter if the shoes cost $20 or $50.  I remember my mother taking me to Stride Rite because my feet were so narrow.  I wore patent leather Mary Janes (the shoes with the straps across the instep) for most of my childhood.  Ironically, I take my son to Stride Rite because his feet are wide.
  3. Keep vitamins and allergy medications on hand.  It may not be a bad idea to give your children a multivitamin for preventive maintenance.  Last school year, my son had a stomach virus that lasted almost a week, and he caught ringworm a few months later.  To treat ringworm in the hair, you have to take a pill for almost a month and follow-up with the doctor.  (I know that this doesn’t even scratch the surface when you think about the various illnesses.) Since he’s been taking this current allergy medication, he doesn’t suffer from seasonal allergies like before.
  4. Have a consistent bedtime.  My son’s bedtime is 8:00 pm regardless of whether it’s a school night.
  5. Keep your children active.  If you allow your children to watch television, put limitations on it. We turn the television off while my son eats because he appears mesmerized by certain commercials. Is it just a coincidence? I believe that it is deliberate.  Ever wonder why they call the television set an idiot box?  Do you know why more children are obese now?  Children, particularly those with special needs, need time outside for gross motor breaks and exercise movement time.  When they’re not in school, they need to be involved in positive activity.

Although being a parent can be exhausting sometimes, your children are gifts.  Treasure your time with them.



The Transition Back to Work



I know that it’s been a while since I’ve posted a blog. After almost a year and a half of being a stay-at-home mom, I decided to go back to work. Since my son is in school for 5 hours a day 5 days per week, I figured it would be a great time to return to the lab. I have a Master of Science degree in Analytical Chemistry, so my experience is primarily in the pharmaceutical and biotech industries. I must say that so far, it has been an interesting experience.   Every day is unpredictable. You don’t know what projects may come up. Of course, everything has a tight deadline, but most places that I’ve worked revolve around them.

My commute is reasonable and typical…about 45 minutes to an hour when you factor in traffic. My co-workers are friendly, although many of them are very stressed. There are times that you are required to stay past 5:00 pm or work on the weekends. Whatever the case, I refuse to be stressed out. Things are starting to turn around for the better. Oh, the power of prayer! The company recently treated us to lunch from Panera Bread, one of my favorite places. Three or four days out of the week, I leave on time. If you plan your workday properly and organize your time, you don’t need to work late. However, as I mentioned before, this job can be very unpredictable at times; things will just pop up out of nowhere.

One thing that I’ve learned this past week is not to second-guess myself. When you’re given wrong information, it affects your results. Fortunately for me, for my current project, I double-checked the method, and my results were ALWAYS correct. Just think if I had not brought it to their attention and repeated that entire experiment? It would have been in vain and a waste of time! I know that I’ve been out of the lab for a while, but I always try to produce high-quality work.

Do I regret going back to work? Not at all! I’m home to read to my son every night, and I see him before I leave in the mornings. I truly believe that this job is preparation for the next opportunity. (This position is a short-term contract, and the company will be relocating to Tennessee.) Also, I love having extra money. I like to pamper myself and buy necessities for the house. As wives, I’m sure that we all love getting facials, manicures, and pedicures. Maybe even a different hairstyle will sometimes make a difference.

Regardless of my next work project, I am prepared for anything that may happen. The key for my success will be organization, trusting my instincts, and attention to detail. Not only do you need to check your own results and data, but you also need to check to make sure that you are receiving accurate information from others working on the same project.