When Dawn and I began talking about celebrating our birthdays this month, we thought “Breakfast in Bed” was perfect for one of the themes. DID YOU SEE HER AMAZING BIRTHDAY CAKE?!? I personally love breakfast in bed, but you know what?? Eating breakfast in bed, only to have to get up and wrangle three children, a husband, and the never ending pile of laundry is not my idea of self-care…and it’s about me right!?! Is that awful?? Ha! So my birthday dream of breakfast in bed, is to eat breakfast in bed…before bed…and sleep like a baby. UNBOTHERED.
In the month of May there is just SO much going on at my house. My birthday, Mother’s Day, my mom’s birthday, graduations, Memorial Day, the kids’ 101 end-of-the-year school activities…I’m so tired, I feel like the walking dead. I can barely breathe, let alone sleep at night.
Most people begin their “New Year” on January 1st, but I like to think my new year begins with my new year of life. On May 11th. So every year for my birthday month I try to reflect, make some positive changes, and do everything I can to make this year better than the last. I’ll be honest, sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. 2015 put the moves on me, with the most difficult highlight being losing my GaGa.
So as I looked back over the last year, several things stood out to me. I found, I could be more organized. I could be more forgiving. I could even dream a little bigger and actually GO for it instead of watching, waiting, and wishing. It took some advice from a dear friend that really helped “get my life.” She wanted to know what I did for myself, to relax and just treat myself, and if I had any interests outside of being a mom, and a wife…and I didn’t. Not anymore. “They are my life! My life is about them now.” She said, “They’re important. That’s true. VERY important. But how are you going to take care of them if you don’t take care of you? If you’re broke down, exhausted, and empty, what could you possibly pour into them?
Last year was depressing yo. My hair started falling out. I gained a ton of weight. I missed nearly every goal I set for myself, and I developed an iron deficiency that sent my body into a fatigued frenzy! Doesn’t make sense right? In some way shape, or form, everything that went wrong last year, came down to me not taking care of myself. My mental health, physical health, every kind of health there is…neglected. Then I had the nerve to be trying to care for someone else! SAY WHAT?!!?
So my promise to myself on this birthday, was to take care of me this year before anyone else. I got rid of the “mom guilt” and the misconception that I was being selfish by taking care of me, and I’m owning that I need it. For the sake of my sanity! I signed up for bi-monthly self-care box, and I wrote a huge list of things I want to do and WILL DO to take better care of ME.
One of the biggest areas that I could identify that I don’t take care of myself in is my sleeping habits. I just don’t get enough of it to function at my best in the mornings. I’m moody. I yell at everyone, (Can I just be real?) and by lunchtime I want to crash with the “twonager”. So IMAGINE my delight when I found out my self-care box that I invested in came for my birthday, and the theme was SLEEP WELL! Yassssss!!! I got: a satin sleep mask, a calming tea blend, bath truffles, and a scented eye/body pillow. A mini “brain dump” notebook was also inside!! (Because I think of ALL THE THINGS when I should be winding down.) They were all in my head with this one.
I tend to have a sweet tooth in the evenings, so I made these bedtime bars laced with bananas (which help you relax), dark chocolate and walnuts, and paired them with some of the goodies from my Bloom Beautifully Box, and was OUT! The next day I had the most productive day I’ve had in a very long time.
These Bedtime Bars are great for busy mornings too. When you make them just pop them in a freezer storage bag or airtight container, and just take out one or two as you need them. If you are a sleep-deprived, self-neglecting mama like I USED to be, definitely indulge in something that’s just for you DAILY, and check out the Bloom Beautifully box so you can stop making up excuses that you don’t have time to take care of yourself. I see you. 😉
Here’s the recipe for the Bedtime Bars:
|1/2 cup||old-fashioned rolled oats|
|2 3/4 cup||all-purpose flour|
|1 1/2 tsp.||baking soda|
|2 sticks||butter, softened|
|3/4 cup||brown sugar, packed|
|3/4 cup||granulated sugar|
Dark Chocolate Chips
Preheat oven to 350, and prepare a brownie pan with nonstick cooking spray. In a large bowl mix together oats, flour, cinnamon, baking powder, and salt. Mix together gently with a fork. In a separate bowl, cream together butter and sugar until smooth. Mix in vanilla, and banana, until smooth. Beat one egg in at a time. Fold the dry ingredients in the other bowl, into the wet ingredients. Gently fold in chocolate and walnuts until just mixed. Scoop into brownie pan, and bake for 15-18 min, until golden and done in the middle. Let stand 10 minutes before serving. Store in an airtight container.
Are you a sleep-deprived, self-neglecting mama? What’s your plan to get right? Share it with me!
By the way, I’m celebrating my b-day ALL MONTH LONG with Mama Harris! Be sure to follow the #SprinklesandMAYhem hashtag on social media and follow us both at @mamaharriskitch and @chewsylovers to keep up with the fun!