Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Giving up or Prioritize

Mamma's Thoughts

If you are a mother, chances are you are faced with many decisions on a daily basis. If you are a working mother, those decisions often have to deal with choosing between work related events/opportunity and motherhood related duties. How do you make the decision? Which one do you prioritize. One would argue that the choice is easy. A mother will always choose family, right? I guess, I agree, as I find myself making that choice on a daily basis. But what are the costs? and more importantly, how to do handle avoiding being left behind?
I have learned very quickly, once I got back to work full time, how my professional network did not have my back. How those that want to get ahead will get ahead without thinking about what the consequences may be for other. So, I started thinking, what does a mother do in these situations? What are the best approaches so to continue the climb on the career ladder, without compromising your integrity, values and reputation (unlike others)? I have to tell you, I have yet to find an answer. I choose very carefully what opportunities are "worth" prioritizing at the sake of my family and what opportunities I can miss. It is not always black and white, but I remind myself that the priority is always family. As result, I have no regrets when making my choices.
However, in dealing with such a puzzle, one has to face the fact that the chance of being left behind is more likely than not. Therefore, the fight to constantly stay afloat continues.
Have you ever experienced being left behind? Or see the fruits of your labor taken? How did you handle it? How do you make your career/motherhood decisions?

What is new with Baby Maya

Maya is growing. fast. She is now 8 months old and we cannot believe how fast time has gone by. It is unbelievable to think that 9 months of pregnancy and 8 months of her life have already passed and that we are approaching the one year mark. In other news, Maya's first fall is coming up and I am so excited. I love American Fall. The smell of pumpkin, cinnamon and maple everywhere you go is something that I love and cannot wait to share with Maya. Plus, Halloween is going to be fun and pumpkin pie eating and pumpkin carving are going to be a top priority. In preparation of fall, we picked some pumpkins for decorations. Here is Maya with her picks!

What's for dinner?

Well, nothing exciting, except that Mamma and Papa' finally got a chance to a night out. We had a wedding to go to and were lucky enough to have grandma and grandpa babysit (first time!). Here we are all glamorized.

Mamma's Tips

If you are into crafts (or Pinterest!) chances are that you have compiled a list of things you want to do for your nursery, chld bedroom, child album etc. Well, I had my eyes on a cool project that I found of Etsy. I thought $35 for it was not too bad...until...the idea of not having to pay anything became even more appealing. And so, I decided to make it myself. This is what I made:

I love the idea of framing the Baby's birth info. And I had seen the idea on Etsy. It was so so easy to make. I used Microsoft Word, and WordArt. Cannot wait to frame it. You can make it with any information you wish to include. You can personalize it with your favorite colors, nursery colors or baby girl/baby boy colors. It is fun and it takes only 20 minutes!

Happy Parenting!

Friday, September 7, 2012

The Balancing Act

Mamma's Reflections

As the days pass, I quickly realized why they compare the job of a mother to a full time CEO position. From the moment you wake up, you have to manage, direct, plan, organize and prepare the whole day, week, month. You have deadlines, you have expectations, your team depends on your decisions, your actions and your executive role. Breaks are seldom and the need for down time, well, a dream.  Little by little, you begin to miss the activities you once enjoyed, and you realize that you have to get back into the swing of things before you are buried deep into the ground. Crafting, cooking, baking, beauty regime, can become a thing of the past, if, as CEO, you don't make the executive decision to TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF FIRST.
Motherhood the contrary of selfishness. You tend to put everyone else first (although at the end of the day, you are still criticized by media, society and everyone else who thinks they can do it better). 
But, I learned that if I take care of myself, I can take better care of my family.
If I am happy and, really, feeling human, then I can make you believe that everything is under control and that I have mastered my balancing act. And so, as I try to do it all, I find moments of accomplishments, of joy and of self-gratification, as I convince myself that...I can do it all!

What is new with baby Maya

Maya continues to grow. Teeth have made their grand entrance and they have left their mark on Mamma. Literally! Who said that biting gets the milk out faster! Oh the tears that I shed the first time those little pearly whites dug into my skin. And so every time I nurse, I start with a little prayer and the hope that milk and not blood will be the nourishing food for my little vampire! Speaking of food....I am slowly becoming a master of food freezing.
I purchased this, and it makes my life so much easier.
Each cube holds exactly 1ounces of frozen food, which makes it easy to know how much food is Maya eating.

{Frozen bananas}

{I made carrots, and green beans. This is the finished product. Frozen. 
I then stored it in ziplock bags.}

{You can even mix two types of food together}

The great advantage is that the ziplock bags will stack up nicely and neatly without any mess!

Mamma's Tip

Weight Loss. Today is about weight loss. I have been on the Weight Watcher's plan for 5 months now.
I have lost a total of lb22 and I am 5 pounds away from pre-baby weight. BUT! Pregnancy has shifted my meat around. I have retained weight in places I did not have meat before. Lost in other and overall gained under the belly button...after all....that area...was...stretched for 9 months.
Anyway, not to panic!Weight Watcher's has worked perfectly because they have a nursing plan. So i eat a lot, I don't feel like I am dieting and I shed the pounds.
HOWEVER, my muscles have also gone bye bye.
So here is my tip: Mammas around the world, you MUST workout to get back into shape. 
You cannot escape the fact that you need physical activity. Picking up baby is great for your biceps, but not enough!
This is what you do:

1) Sign up with the GYM. Check your insurance. many have wellness programs that cover gym memberships partially. It costs me only $36 a month to be part of the gym.

2) Schedule a meeting with the gym trainer. You always get two free hours. USE THEM!
They will make a weight training designed specifically for you! Tell them how much time you have in the gym. Tell them you are a monther and don't have two hours to waste. They will create a circuit that is so tight and we will work all your muscles fast and efficiently.

3) You make time to go to the gym. Sometimes it may not work out. It is ok! But use the daddy-baby time in your advantage and go!