One year ago today I started this blog with a post called " First Day at a New Job" and am I ever glad I made that decision. I really started this blog as a way to give myself something to do, a way to chronicle my time with the kids, as a justification for all the things I knew I would make with and for the kids, a creative outlet and a way to meet and connect with other grown-ups on a day to day basis. One year later I can say this blog has been all of those things as well as many more that I could have never imagined. So first I want to thank all of you who have read this blog and supported me along the way. You all help me to feel like I am not alone and not just a crazy woman talking to myself. And then I want to share with you some of the things I have learned in my first year as a full time stay-at-home-mom/blog writer. So without further ado here is my list:
1) The more you do something the better you get at it:
Obviously we all know the saying practice makes perfect, but looking back over the last year I am amazed at how true that saying really is. Writing almost every day has made me a better writer, taking photos every day has made my photos better. This time last year I had never made play-dough. Now we are play dough making pros. Just the act of doing something everyday has made me better at it.
2) Creativity comes in lots of forms:
When I first started teaching art I was always a little self concious of not the being the best drawer or painter. To me those things equated being an artist. In the last year I have realized that creativity comes in lots of forms, and I really have my kids to thank for that. Being with little children, who see the world with so much possibiltiy is contagious. I see them building with blocks which quickly becomes a trip to the moon, and it makes me see the creative possibility in things too.
3) Making lots of stuff builds confidence in your ability to make stuff:
One of the biggest lessons I have learned about myself this year is that I really like to make stuff. I always associated that aspect of my personality with my job. However in being home I have realized it wasn't just a part of my job it is really a part of me. Looking back I have made a lot of things this year both with the kids and by myself. I see now how much more confident in my ability I have become along the way.
4) You learn amazing things when you go new places and try new things:
One of the things I have always known about myself is that I don't sit still very well, I usually need a project or something to do (hence this blog.) But honestly big projects and little kids don't always go hand in hand. So I have created projects for myself that involve the kids and the kinds of things I would have done with them anyway i.e. The Playground Tour and The Farmers Market Tour and through these projects I have learned how much you can learn just from going somewhere new. Sometimes we meet a new friend, sometimes we find a new shortcut, or a new favorite place. Sometimes I learn that you should always check to make sure you packed extra underwear and other not as fun lessons but I still always feel like I came away from the journey feeling like it was worth it.
5) Finding other people that you have something in common with is unbelievably helpful:
One of the hardest parts of being a stay at home mom, is that it is often isolating. You don't often get to interact with other grown-ups and when I do I am often distracted by the kids and not fully focused on the conversation. I have found other blogs, sites and thing like instagram, not only inspiring but also comforting. After a bad day or rough period it is nice to know that others have gone through the same thing and even read about some of the things that helped them.