June was an adventurous month. We started the month camping in northern Arizona and I'm ending the month with the boys in Austin. I'm writing this from my parents shaded screened back porch where he ceiling fan is barely holding the humid heat at bay. But honestly it's a welcome break from the intense dry heat and cloudless skies of Arizona. When I look up from writing I can watch a mama deer and her fawn roam around the back lot and check on an armadillo in a live trap in the yard (we'll release him somewhere where he can't dig up the yard). It's always exciting around here!
Every season of life and motherhood offers lessons to learn. This summer the lessons offered to me are to lean into the boys' rambunctiousness and to be okay with a season of not being productive. Or being productive in a different way. This is a lesson I've been working on since quitting my full time job. At the end of a day with the boys I don't often feel very productive, especially when the house is a mess. But I'm working on reframing my perspective. The house is a mess because the boys have been playing. At the end of the day I haven't made that appointment or finished putting away the laundry because my attention has been on the boys and not the house. Those things do reflect a productive day as a mother; I just need to remind myself of that. What I do remind myself of in those moments is that one day the house will be clean nearly all the time. And I will miss these messy, full days fiercely; I'm appreciating them now while I still have them.
Being in Austin is like stepping away from normal life in the best way: We have extra hands to help with the boys. Plus the boys sleep at my parents' house while we sleep next door at the guest house (amazing!). We don't have to do much housework. And we have free lodging, free babysitting, and a car we can borrow with no shortage of restaurants and fun things to do in Austin. Not to mention that I feel fulfilled and grounded spending so much time with my family and dear friends in a place so deeply familiar. A good place to reflect on current life lessons. Also, THANK YOU MOM AND DAD.
June goals update:
+ Stretch for 10 minutes each day. Doing really well although I have missed a couple of days only because I forgot. I'm not doing well at stretching in the middle of the day and then have to fit it in right before bed which is not as enjoyable. So I'm not loving this challenge as much as I thought I would even though I do love stretching.
+ Create time to write and edit podcast episodes. Did pretty well. I finished a podcast episode before we left for Texas and am trying to find more blog writing time while I have extra help with the boys here.
+ Clean up my office. Half way there.
+ Catch up on the boys' artwork. No, grrr!
Other June wins:
+ Ordered cute washable name labels. Minted has the cutest labels for stuff and clothes! I've been wanting to buy a set for myself and the boys for several months and finally did it. I wish I had known about these when the boys were in daycare and we had to label alllll the things! A set of 30 is just $20 but sometimes it takes me forever to buy smaller purchases like this. I bought a set for the boys with "WHARTON" and my phone number. For myself I bought a set with my name and phone number. Now I'm looking for as many things as possible that I can label, haha! (P.S. I also bought a set for my label-loving dad for Fathers Day so keep this in mind for a gift, too!)
+ Mini family reunion in San Antonio. We had so much fun renting a big house with most of my mom's side of the family: my aunt and uncle, cousins and cousins-in-law, my sister + brother-in-law, and my parents. My cousins, my sister, and I all grew up together and it's so fun to now be adult friends and to hang with everyone's awesome partners. Plus we love being with our parents, too! We used to do a beach trip every year together with our families and our grandparents and I'm so thankful we had that time together. Our trip made me want to make annual get togethers a thing again, especially now as many of us are starting/have families of our own. (P.S. My cousin Emily and her husband Brian have a podcast, Kidding Ourselves, about their journey to start a family through adoption. If you like personal, chatty podcasts you should check it out!)
+ Friend hang outs in Austin. Being in town for three weeks has meant I have plenty of time to see everyone I want to see. It's so nice! Often during my Austin visits I feel like I'm juggling trying to see people and have lots of time with my family. Usually I'm not able to see everyone I want which I feel bad about. This trip I've had time to see my three best girl friends, my college rowing pal Tiff (who has four girls 7 years old and under and really inspires me as a mom!), Sara, and Kaileen who I met in person for the first time.
+ Booked travel. I made a second fall camping reservation, we finally booked our flights + hotel for a wedding we're attending in Turks and Caicos (!), and spontaneously decided that I'll join Chris for a conference in Philadelphia in November. I love having travel to look forward to.
Hope you've had a good June!