Sleep ... how much do we need

Posted 4/3/2013

So last night I was tired and thinking about the subject of my next blog…sleep. When after reading 3 or 4 articles on the needs of sleep and mothers, I realized that it was 12:30AM, and the chances of me getting my 7 hours of sleep, or being in bed for 8 if Mackenzie wakes up, wasn’t going to happen. And I was tired so I turned off the computer and my iPhone, and closed my eyes to sleep. Sure enough, 10 minutes later Mackenzie woke up soaked! It reminded me of this video I had just watched earlier that night on "Why Mothers Need Their Sleep"

Oh, how I yearn for sleep, and not just the 7 hours required in the game to get my points, but restful sleep. There are so many articles written on the importance of sleep, the effects of sleep deprivation on your health, the equivalent dangers of driving drunk and driving sleep deprived. This is why sleep is so important for the mommies in this game. Besides the dangers of driving mentioned, most of us don't think you can cause that much damage to your child from being over tired. Let’s think about this ... if you’re too tired that your patience wears thin quickly and you end up yelling or saying something you shouldn't, you can't really take it back. Sure you can apologize, but it's probably too late. Psychological damage can be just as bad as physical. Or you're so tired and trying to get stuff done - you don't notice your two-year old running with a pink disposable razor - because you were tired and didn't put it out of reach (yes this actually happened and thank goodness daddy was up!!) One of my missions in this game is trying to end is mom sleep deprivation.

It's one thing to have a few bad nights of sleep, and those early months with new borns can be a bitch - but after that - do your best to get 7 plus hours of sleep, even if it means sleeping in shifts or switching off nights!

Sometimes I feel like its been over 2 years since I've slept through the night, and it's possible it's close. I've even gone on vacations and still wake up when my girl would be getting up. But I'm lucky, my husband helps out so I can nap, and lately I sleep from 9 to 8 with Mack so I get very rested.

Do your best to sleep, not just for your sake but the sake of the whole family. And if you're struggling with getting your little one to sleep there are so many techniques out there that you can try, the Ferber Methodno-cry sleep solution, secrets of the baby whisperer, and sleepy planet philosophy. Take whatever works for you and your family and ignore the rest. My hope is that you and I, both get some good quality sleep.

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Sick Days

Posted 3/18/2013

In corporate America, and in many industries, people get an allotted amount of sick days to either care for themselves, or to care for family members. Stay at home moms don't really get this option. This week in our game, 3 of the kids got sick, most likely from playing with each other. This seems to happen quite often with pre-school age kids. It's not like stay at home moms get paid for what we do, but it sure would be nice to take a sick day for ourselves and not have to get all of the housework done. Especially when you catch all the germs from your little one. Washing dishes with a runny nose, or trying to dust with a new cough, or bending over to pick things up with a stuffy head are not easy tasks. With this thought, I'm thinking about adding sick days to the game rules.

Just like in the corporate world where you get anywhere from 3-6 days of paid sick leave, (or in Poland where you get 26), the Mommies will now get at least one sick day, maybe 2 over the 28-day game. I'm thinking it will be like when people go on disability, you get paid a percentage of your salary, not quite enough to live like being fully paid, but just enough to survive. The sick day will be a percentage of the points you would be getting if you hadn't been sick. And just like in life, you have to "call in sick” and let your teammates and opponents know you're taking a sick day.

I know Mackenzie is about to start pre-school next month, and I hope that this occurrence isn't as common as the cold itself. I do know that if I, and my fellow mommies follow some of these Sick Day Guidelines, our kids will be healthier, and hopefully so will we.

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How to score?

Posted 3/15/2013

First week complete, and it seems to be going great.  Well maybe not all of it.  I had one of the lower scores for the week, and I’m not surprised as I didn’t expect to go from disaster to domestic diva in just one week.  The best part was that one of the Mommies who was in the disaster category, got a perfect score!  She attributed it to her husband who was excited to help her get her points by doing the dishes for her.  I loved reading that on our Facebook page.

Our biggest issue is trying to figure out the fairest way to score the self-care section.  My original idea was that it would be a daily or weekly thing, but what some people chose were things like exercising 4 times during the week, or loosing weight – so I think there should be partial score for efforts made.  The thing is, Self-care is sooooo very important for the Mommies, and it’s the one area where we will instinctively put ourselves last, to make sure the rest of the family is taken care of.  So not only is self-care the highest points in the game, it’s the one most likely to be one of the hardest for mommies to get in.

Right now, each week we can get a total of 231 points if we do it all, 35 of which is for self-care.  How do I give credit for trying, but still make this a more valuable part of the game?  My husband and I were thinking that points should be awarded as a percentage based on how much of your goal you accomplished.  For example, the mommy who set out to get in 4 exercises a week, but only got in 3, should get 75% of the self care points.     So I’m open for comments… and suggestions.

* I thought I posted this ... apparently I need to up my self-care to include more brain fuel.

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Sex; is it self-care, exercise or both?

Posted 3/6/2013

So in The Mommies Game, there are a bunch of categories that need to be met everyday or every week.  Family exercise is a daily category in which each child & mom should be energetically moving for 10 - 15 minutes.  Self-care is a weekly or daily category in which the Mommies are to do something in order to strengthen their balance, wellness and quality of life through things like stress elimination, special & personal care items, pleasure, healthy living, appearance, and daily rituals.

The question came up ... where does sex fit? So, if my husband and I are having sex, we are getting in more than 10 - 15 minutes of energetic moving (at least the way we’re doing it).  We work up a sweat, our heart rates go up and we’re burning between 85-200 calories.  Climax for all, reduces more tension than anything that I can think of.  And according to this webmd article sex also lowers your heart rate, boosts your immunity, improves your heart health, and gives you better self-esteem - that sounds like self-care to me.

I guess this is a matter for each of the Mommies playing the game, to see where they want to get the points.  And I’m sure the Daddies will love the idea that this is something that they can do that will give their wives more points to winning the game. I guess a Mommy could choose to have sex be their daily exercise everyday … however, I’m sorry daddies … more than once a day doesn’t mean the Mommies are going to get more bonus points.  More sex might just be a perk from how great Mommy is feeling because she’s kicking tushi playing the game.

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The Mommies game starts today

Posted 3/4/2013

So last night I was tired and thinking about the subject of my next blog…sleep. When after reading 3 or 4 articles on the needs of sleep and mothers, I realized that it was 12:30AM, and the chances of me getting my 7 hours of sleep, or being in bed for 8 if Mackenzie wakes up, wasn’t going to happen. And I was tired so I turned off the computer and my iPhone, and closed my eyes to sleep. Sure enough, 10 minutes later Mackenzie woke up soaked! It reminded me of this video I had just watched earlier that night on "Why Mothers Need Their Sleep"

Oh, how I yearn for sleep, and not just the 7 hours required in the game to get my points, but restful sleep. There are so many articles written on the importance of sleep, the effects of sleep deprivation on your health, the equivalent dangers of driving drunk and driving sleep deprived. This is why sleep is so important for the mommies in this game. Besides the dangers of driving mentioned, most of us don't think you can cause that much damage to your child from being over tired. Let’s think about this ... if you’re too tired that your patience wears thin quickly and you end up yelling or saying something you shouldn't, you can't really take it back. Sure you can apologize, but it's probably too late. Psychological damage can be just as bad as physical. Or you're so tired and trying to get stuff done - you don't notice your two-year old running with a pink disposable razor - because you were tired and didn't put it out of reach (yes this actually happened and thank goodness daddy was up!!) One of my missions in this game is trying to end is mom sleep deprivation.

It's one thing to have a few bad nights of sleep, and those early months with new borns can be a bitch - but after that - do your best to get 7 plus hours of sleep, even if it means sleeping in shifts or switching off nights!

Sometimes I feel like its been over 2 years since I've slept through the night, and it's possible it's close. I've even gone on vacations and still wake up when my girl would be getting up. But I'm lucky, my husband helps out so I can nap, and lately I sleep from 9 to 8 with Mack so I get very rested.

Do your best to sleep, not just for your sake but the sake of the whole family. And if you're struggling with getting your little one to sleep there are so many techniques out there that you can try, the Ferber Methodno-cry sleep solution, secrets of the baby whisperer, and sleepy planet philosophy. Take whatever works for you and your family and ignore the rest. My hope is that you and I, both get some good quality sleep.

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The Mommies Game is about to begin ...

Posted 3/1/2013

I have recently been reading quite a bit about mom’s competing with each other either overtly or in secret.  The idea that we all judge each other as parents, and homemakers is natural, but unfortunately most of our judgments are a bit righteous.  I admit I have done it before.  I’m sorry that I have judged others, thinking, ”Why can’t they just get it together?”  Now I know why!  I am now the one who doesn’t have anything together.  Now I’m in other people’s houses wondering how they all do it so much better than I do.  What’s their secret?

I’m always looking for the positives in everyone, and I find if I am vulnerable with my mom friends, they are compassionate and willing to share to help me out.  This is why I think these “mommies games” will really help bring out the best in all of us as mothers, and as friends.  This game is designed to help motivate and support moms just like me who seriously don’t have it together.

To give you a clear example of my not having it together, a few weeks ago we had two loads of clean laundry sitting unfolded in baskets on the dressers behind the sofa in the living room.  I had a friend come over with her three children, and after we had grilled cheese, and soup for dinner – the kitchen was a disaster.  Not just from our dinner, but also my earlier failed attempt at pasta salad, which I’m usually great at – but this time I over cooked the pasta, and it was so soggy and limp, even Mackenzie wouldn’t eat it.  So those dishes with the soggy pasta got left in the sink over night, and the greasy pan from grilled cheese, and stuck on soup dishes from dinner.  The playroom had toys strewn everywhere. The two younger girls had dumped the blocks all over the place, a bunch right in front of the two stairs.  We also don’t really have the best storage system for Mackenzie’s overwhelming amount of toys.  There was also another clean load of laundry in a basket on a TV table in the bedroom, which I had forgotten to fold and put away three days earlier. Now it’s not just that the place is messy, but also I’m lucky if I get to shower twice a week.  I do remember the days of showering every day, but it’s been awhile.  And yes I will admit it, there are even days when I forget to brush my teeth…ewww gross!  Don’t worry, at least my dentist and I have been spending a lot of time together lately trying to take care of my teeth.  But, hey, there are also so many times when I feed Mackenzie, and don’t feed myself…there can’t be too much food building up in my dirty teeth, right?

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