Monday, July 28, 2014

On Going Back to Work


I return to work next Monday. The wave of emotions that sweep through my heart are so bittersweet. The subject of staying at home versus returning to work has been deeply discussed countless times throughout my maternity leave and as my first day back to work quickly approaches it seems to occupy my thoughts all day. We've reviewed our finances, weighed our personal reasons, considered our career goals and more. At this time in our lives we think it makes the most sense for me to keep  working.
 
Our daycare doesn't start until September so both Grandmas are coming to stay with us for two weeks each to watch Caroline for the month of August (we are so lucky and grateful)! Hopefully this eases my transition going back to work a bit better.
 
Most of you probably don't know what I even do. Heck, there are days I still don't know what I do. My official title is "Business Development Coordinator" for the second largest law firm in Charlotte and is actually the second title I've owned since starting at my firm exactly two years ago today (happy anniversary to me). Before accepting this position I knew it would be temporary as my dream of staying at home with all my babies would outweigh any reason to stay in the corporate world. However, once we actually started planning our family my thoughts and attitude toward being a working mom began to change. I love my job more than I ever thought I would which is not something most people can say. My co-workers have become close friends, my boss is someone I love and admire, my daily activities stretch and challenge me to think, I am thankful for my salary which we depend on, my schedule is fairly flexible and I enjoy working with the attorneys I support. To give all of this up, all that I've worked so hard for would be a sacrifice in itself. I love my baby just as much as any other mother and choosing to go back to work is no easy decision. 
 
There will be many sacrifices I will have to make as I return to work. I know that 8 hours of emails, conference calls and meetings will follow sleepless nights, lunches out with friends will likely be replaced by eating at my desk so I can leave on time for daycare pick up, my “second shift” will begin at 5 pm and I will have very little leftover time to exercise, blog or soak in the tub (unless I get up even earlier). And although we love our amazing daycare, I know I will still worry over how Caroline is being cared for and sometimes feel guilty about not being with her all the time or even missing out on some of her "firsts."
 
However, I hope to set a wonderful example to Caroline and show her that her mom can have a fulfilling career, contribute in some way outside the home and still be a loving mother. I want to show her that her mommy was created with spiritual gifts, passions and talents that include and extend beyond being a mother. I want to show her at an early age that there are rewards for hard work. I want her to see Matt and I as equally involved in her life. Most of all, I want to exemplify strength, endurance, dedication and tenacity, all with joy and love for her.
 
I'll be signing of from the blog this week to soak in these last days at home with Caroline and will also be taking a short break as I get settled back into work. Unfortunately, when my cup is too full the blog is the first thing in my life to get cut out and this happens to be one of those seasons for me. I promise not to stay away too long!
I'll miss this baby-wrecked living room.
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Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Lavender Linen Spray

I recently made some lavender spray for our bed linens and towels. I loved the clean, calming scent so much that I decided to use it for much more than just linens. I got spray-happy started freshening up our furniture, the nursery, bathrooms, closet, my rugs and more!

Lavender spray also makes for a great gift for friends. Studies suggest the aroma of lavender promotes relaxation and help you sleep better. How's that for a gift? Sleep deprived mommy? Yes, please!
The spray is very inexpensive to make. All you need is a spray bottle (I picked one up at Target for 99 cents), a mini bottle of vodka, lavender oil and distilled water.
Lavender Spray
2 cups distilled water
1 oz. (2 tablespoons) vodka or rubbing alcohol
1/2 - 3/4 teaspoon lavender oil (depending on how strong you like your spray)

Add each of these to a spray bottle and shake gently to mix. Spritz and enjoy!
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Tuesday, July 22, 2014

2014 Summer Vacation {Bald Head Island}

It's taken me longer than usual to write my vacation recap...probably because I am still feeling the effects of our relaxing trip. Matt and I joined his family for almost a week in Bald Head Island. It was nothing short of amazing and we truly felt recharged by the end of vacation. From the moment we arrived we hopped on a 25 minute ferry ride across the water to the coolest little Island where there are no cars allowed, only golf carts.
Golf Cart Selfies
 I actually stepped away from my camera quite a bit and put down my phone for long periods of time so I didn't take as many pictures as I normally do. It was definitely a much needed change in pace.
We spent our mornings at the beach while Grandmom and Grandad watched Caroline. Then after lunch we'd switch off and let them have their time in the sand. It was so perfect and Caroline enjoyed spending lots of quality time with her grandparents and Matt and I enjoyed our first day dates alone!
 Our little nugget on the other end of the walkie talkie.
For the first time in over a year I even read 609 pages of something non pregnancy or mommy related. And I cannot recommend this book enough. I was hooked from the first page!
 More selfies from our walk along the marsh trails. We are dorks.
 Old Baldy lighthouse. Built in 1817 and still stands today!
 Should also mention that the island has several amazing restaurants and we ate out a lot for lunch and dinner.
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