A Mother’s Balance: Still Learning

Yesterday was Mother’s Day and I told my boys the only thing I wanted from them was a BIG, genuine hug!  Two of them are teenagers and the many, random hugs of their younger days are too few for this mama.  They graced me with my my request and it was the perfect gift.  I told each of them that I LOVE being not only a mom, but THEIR mom and I am so proud of that role.  I have had many talks recently with my 16 year old asking for grace as I figure out how to ‘mother’ him and let him grow up at the same time.  It is HARD!

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I found myself reflecting (once again) how hard it is to juggle being a work from home mom and being present for my family when needed.  The reason I work from home is so I can be at home with my kids, but sometimes the lines get blurred.  Does that make sense?  This poem says it all for me…

“My hands were busy through the day.
I didn’t have much time to play
The little games you asked me to,
I didn’t have much time for you.

I’d wash your clothes.
I’d sew and cook,
But when you’d bring your picture book
And asked me please to share your fun,
I’d say, “A little later son.”

I’d tuck you in all safe at night
And hear your prayers,
turn out the light,
Then tiptoe softly to the door…
I wish I had stayed a minute more.

For life is short, the years rush past.
A little boy grows up so fast.
No longer is he at your side,
His precious secrets to confide.

The picture books are put away,
There are no longer games to play.
No good-night kisses, no prayers to hear,
That all belongs to yesteryear.

My hands once busy now are still
The days are long and hard to fill.
I wish I could go back and do
The little things you asked me to.”

Author Unknown

WOW!?  That totally helps me remember perspective in the juggling act. I am living the ‘no longer is he at your side’ moment with my boys.  They are older and now it is me that must go to them.  I must be ready to ‘catch’ them when they are ready to talk.  Believe me…it’s tricky with teen boys! I don’t want to be so caught up that I miss those moments with them.  I want to be available.

My greatest joy is being a wife and mom.  Is it yours too?  Do you feel it’s hard to ‘juggle it all’ too?

xoxo,

Claire

Where in the US are we now? Plus BIG News!

We have been traveling in our 5th wheel for 7 months now, touring the US.  [more about that in a post to come soon!] We have had so many questions from friends, family and fellow travelers as to where we are and what will be next for our family. 

So…. where in the US are we are now?

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We have been in Arizona for the past 3 months enjoying good weather and Clark’s brother and family.  Our original plan was to continue moving to the East Coast this month.  But our plans have changed!

While we have been here, my husband has been working with his brother at his RV business and he was offered the chance to stay. Clark loves it here with his brother and I love the warmer weather and the sun for sure. In working out just what that job would mean, we had to make the decision to stay here during the busy sales months.

After much prayer …..

We are officially moving to Arizona!

After living in and traveling in a small space, we are excited about settling into a house again.  This is a BIG change for all of us, especially the boys.  I appreciate everyone’s prayers for us in the transition. 

I will keep you updated when we find a place!

xoxo,

Claire

JUMP Street

My boys had spring break last week and one afternoon we went to Jump Street, an indoor trampoline park, ready to burn some energy!  Let’s just say after 2 hours: mission accomplished.

I love this picture of our feet.  Yes.  Even I jumped! 

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This is the dodge ball area and where we spent most of our 2 hours playing.  

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It can be hard finding an activity that appeals to all three of my boys and their ages.  We would do this one again!

What did you do for Spring Break?  Have you ever been to an indoor trampoline park?  Did you jump with the kids?

claire

Sand Dunes + a Birthday Party

This past Saturday was my middle son’s 14th birthday!  I keep telling my boys to stop growing and getting older but they don’t listen to me.  lol  Seriously, though, the time just seems to fly.  I can clearly remember this sweet little 4 year old riding on the vacuum like it was yesterday.   We are currently in Arizona visiting family and we took a trip out to the sand dunes at the border of CA for a weekend of riding toys.  So.much.fun.!

Here are a few pictures of our weekend trip….

This is Carter, the birthday boy, helping pack up my brother in law’s toys and super excited!

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This is my brother in law and my niece going riding in the razor.

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This is hubby and my two other boys in the rhino.

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Here is the birthday boy driving the rhino.  He loved driving!

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Hubby was just as excited as Carter about the weekend.  He has been missing his days of motorcycle riding.  Good to have a big brother with all the gear!

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This is our 5th wheel and where we camped.  There is no hook ups so we ran off our battery and generator.

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Here is my brother and sister in law’s motor home.  They have a trailer to pull the sand toys on.

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The dune hills are steep!  A few of us decided to hike it one day.  Such a good work out!  The view is just gorgeous…isn’t it?

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My youngest boy, Caden ran down to the bottom first and then hiked back up.  We all did this a couple of times.

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I love this picture!  The colors and the sky is just amazing!

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So beautiful isn’t it??  Have you ever gone riding in the sand?  This was my first time in the four wheelers.  The last time I went was 20 years ago when hubby and I were dating!  We rode his dirt bike.  The boys had a great time and it was especially fun going with family.  We had a campfire with s’mores both nights and Carter requested ice cream pie for his birthday ‘cake’.

Happy 14th Birthday, Carter!  I love you and am so proud of you.

claire

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top posts of 2012

Top Posts of 2012

I can’t believe that the year is over.  Wow, what a year!!
Are you ready for 2013?
Do you make new year’s resolutions or goals?

Want to get rid of clutter? (I have a new series coming soon!)

Want to clean faster, smarter and cheaper?  (new series on this too!)

Want to get your body back?  (Join our next challenge today!

I want to thank you for you!! YOU mean so much to me!  Thanks for connecting with me!  Thanks for reading, commenting, pining, liking, emailing, etc.  Thank you for your business and for joining my team. Thanks for joining me on facebook!

Today, I want to share some of my top posts of 2012.

top posts of 2012

Easy, Delicious + Healthy Freezer Meal Planning + Cooking

freezer meals

Our RV Home Tour

weerv

 House Cleaning 101

house cleaning 101

 Getting Rid of Migraines Naturally

migraines

My Favorite Packing Tips

pink luggage

How I Clean Green for Pennies

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Super Soft, Shiny + Healthy Hair

super soft hair

Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Smoothie

chocolate peanut butter protein smoothie

Thanks so much again!

What posts would you like to see more of in 2013?

claire

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La Jolla Cove Beach

Sea Lions, Seals, and Sunset

 

I hope you all had such a great Christmas with loved ones.  We celebrated pretty early this year with our extended family and on Christmas Eve and Christmas day it was just our family of 5.

We are currently just outside of the San Diego, CA area.  [read more about our family US RV tour here]

Christmas Eve we found a church to attend.  Honestly, this is THE ONE tradition that I really don’t ever want to miss.  This church also did candlelight during the singing.  Simply beautiful!

Here are the boys next to one of the church Christmas trees.  I really love them all in blue.

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After opening presents and having our traditional Christmas cinnamon rolls, we drove to La Jolla Cove Beach, CA. 

It is know for it’s sea lions, seals and sunsets. Here are our pictures of our day there.

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I just love the beach!  Nature always reminds me of the beauty and power of our created world. 

What did you do Christmas day?  Do you have any family traditions?  Do you love the beach too?

claire

messytotidy

Thank You + Merry Christmas

merry christmas

Hi friends,

I want to say THANK YOU to each and every one of you for being here. I genuinely love writing on this blog and am so grateful that I get to do what I do every day.

I am excited for 2013!

I am going to focus on bringing you more good stuff focusing on

Living Real, Healthy, Happy + Simple.

This will include more of my cleaning + organizing tips, free recipes + wellness tips and programs and products that will make you an even better version of yourself.

Here’s what’s coming for YOU in the New Year:

1. In January I’ll be adding A LOT to this blog!

In particular, a cleaning video series! Be sure you’re on my email list to get notified of every post and update!  I am very picky about what I send to my list and only send the good stuff!  So you don’t have to worry about getting a ton of extra emails. I’m giddy just thinking about all the added stuff!!!

2. I’ll be hosting a Body Turnaround Challenge Program starting January 7th to help you start the New Year off on the right (healthy!) foot.

Get your body back!  Imagine this… ~ You lose your fat FOREVER!  We tell you exactly what to eat & show you how to exercise (in 3 minutes a day) for 90 days AND We show you how to keep it off for another 90 days! Go HERE to get the details today.  Registration starts January 1 at 9am.

3. For anyone who wants to pump up their 2013 finances, I will be offering mentoring to women who want to supplement their income through marketing wellness + nutrition products with my product partner, Shaklee, the #1 Natural Nutrition company in the US.

Over 100 women have joined our marketing team Project Dream in 2012!  You can earn $500-$1000+ per month, too.  To get a jump start on 2013, go HERE to get on my list to learn more.  I am soooo excited to help more women get their homes healthier and wealthier in 2013

 

I am taking the next week off to unplug and be with my family.  I hope you get to do the same.

Again, thank you for being a part of my community.

Let’s make 2013 our best year yet – shall we?

Merry Christmas,

claire

Christmas Bucket List

Christmas is a week away! 

In the past, each year when the Christmas season comes. so many ideas fill my head of all the fun and many activities we are going to do to enjoy the season.  You know what I discovered? 

Too many activities do not always equal lots of fun! 

So I have learned, after making the same mistake many years in a row, that cutting back to just our favorites really do make for a more fun season.  But more importantly, I want my kids memories of the Christmas season to be centered around the real meaning of the season and giving to others.

This is our little tree for our RV. 

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Here is my Christmas Bucket List for 2012

  1. Help a family/child in need.
  2. Volunteer time.
  3. Drink egg nog.
  4. Bake and decorate cookies.
  5. Stuff someone’s stocking.
  6. Spend time with friends who I haven’t seen in awhile.
  7. Give something away. 
  8. Decorate a tree for our rv.
  9. Watch Elf. (a family tradition)
  10. Read the nativity story.
  11. Try a Gingerbread Latte.
  12. Drive around and look at the lights.

We have already done a few off the list.  I highly recommend the gingerbread latte!  Yum!

Do you make a list every Christmas?  What is your family’s favorite tradition?

If you missed our RV story check it out HERE and take our RV home tour HERE

claire

My Boys

Life is precious!  I was certainly reminded of that last week.  First there was a shooting at our local mall.  Then the tragedy of the school shooting.  I don’t know what to do about all of that, but I do know I can love on my kids and spend time with them.  So that is what I am sharing today.  My precious children and thanking God they are still here with me.

 

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clarks pictures 1030

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claire

Maui Family Vacation

My family just got back from a vacation in Maui.  The last time I was on Maui was for my honeymoon almost 19 years ago!  Things have changed a bit since then, but it was still just as gorgeous as I remembered.

This trip was with my extended family…13 of us.  My grandparents, parents, brother + wife with their 2 boys and our family of 5.

This is the view from the hotel we stayed at.  Isn’t is breathtaking?

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We headed right for the beach to snorkel and play in the sand.

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The cousins swam everyday!  The hotel had 5 pools which included 2 kids pools with waterslides.

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On one of the days, my sister and I got to ride horses on the beach while the husbands went scuba diving with sharks.  I think the last time I was on a horse I was 12! It was so much fun!

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We also went to Camp Maui and went ziplining!  The kids loved that!

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We did drive the road to Hana…..uuuhhhmmm.  That was an experience!  We made it to the 7 pools after a 2.5 hours drive going 15 miles per hour.  If we went any faster I got really sick.  My hubby made a video on our travel blog HERE.

Isn’t this tree cool?!

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(photo taken by Livin’ the Fit Life")

This is at the end of the 7 pools and looks cold but it was warm and 80 degrees. 

 

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Here are the 7 pools.  You can just barely see the bridge at the top of the picture that we drove over to get here.

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When we got back that night all 13 of us went to the Luau.  We were celebrating my grandma’s 82nd birthday and my grandparents 64th wedding anniversary.  They made a special announcement for them there and honored them both. 

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And this was the most beautiful sunset that night! 

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Ahhhhh.  By the end of our 7 days, Clark and I were dreaming of ways to stay.  lol  I’m sure everyone does. 

The whole trip was such a blessing and had been in the planning stages for a few years before it finally came to be.  I think the timing was right since my youngest son is 9 and the boys and cousins are all old enough to remember the memories made.  I think it will be a special trip for all of us to remember!

Check out our travel blog for videos (including the shark dive!)

HERE

Have you ever been to Hawaii?  What island? Would you move there?  Do you travel with extended family?

claire

messytotidy