How They Do It- Heather’s Tale


Let me begin by saying I never set out to be a quilter-photographer-Simmer-knitter-memory keeper-app junkie-blog lover-YouTube watcher-makeup fancier-writer-wife-mother. I didn’t intend on doing all of these things while working full time and keeping a marriage happy and keeping two small boys relatively clean and well mannered. But the alternative just seemed so boring! I knew when I had Gabe, my wild, smart, sensitive 5 year old that I wanted my children to fit into my life, not take it over. I didn’t want to be one of those moms who stopped doing everything that interested them before motherhood to focus all of their energy on their kids. I have nothing against that kind of mom, but it’s not how I wanted to roll. I wanted my children to fit into my life and roll with me.

My kids appreciate a mom who pampers herself, and ends up looking like an alien.

It was also important for me that my kids see that their parents had interests other than cooking and cleaning. My husband also works full time, is a home brewer, a voracious reader, and has recently become fascinated with charcuterie (this means we get to eat a lot of homemade bacon!). Most importantly, I don’t want to be bored. We have all of this time in our lives, why not do something with it? So while the boys are watching Scooby Doo on Netflix for a little bit before dinner is ready I can sit with them and knit. Or read blogs on my iPad. Or write. Or take photos of them. Obviously, I could be folding laundry, which I do sometimes, but more often than not I’m doing something creative.

It all comes down to choices and dedication. This is November so I’m doing NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) where you write a 50,000 word novel in a month. I’m able to do it because I make writing every day my priority. I don’t watch TV, I don’t watch Netflix, I don’t play Candy Crush (very much), I don’t edit photos or knit or anything. I write every night. Granted, something is always going to fall by the wayside when you make choices but I’m okay with that. I’m okay with things getting a little dirty, and getting down to the last pair of clean socks. Then I do a ton of laundry and it all begins again.

The time that I can’t do anything about, work and commute, I at least try to fill with creative inspiration. I’m in the car for over two hours every day and I listen to a lot of podcasts and books. From Stuff You Missed in History Class to Welcome to Night Vale to The Skeptic’s Guide to the Universe I’m learning so much every day and I love it. The good thing about those podcasts is they’re all safe to listen to with the boys (no swearing). My all time favorite, however, would be Elise Gets Crafty by the amazing Elise Blaha Cripe. She talks about creativity and inspiration and balancing motherhood with work and I always come away from it with new ideas or a new perspective.

I do A LOT of this

I guess the most important thing is to figure out what’s important to you. My boys are important to me. Time alone is important to me. As an introvert in a job where I have to be ‘on’ a lot of the time I really need time every day by myself to recharge. Creating things is important to me, be that a Project Life page, a few more rows of stitching in a quilt, a blog post or a few more hundred words in my book. Time with my husband is important to me, which is the an area that I could be better at (that dang laundry still hasn’t learned to fold itself). We spend time together but it’s not always quality ‘us’ time. It’s a work in progress.

Do not think I’m some champion baker- this was a pre-made mix that we used

But that is what’s awesome about life. We can always do it better tomorrow. So if I spend too much time doing ‘me’ stuff tomorrow I can try better to focus my energy on the boys and the house. Or if I feel like I’ve been focusing only on the boys and the house I can try to get back into my own creative endeavors the next day. Granted, you can only do better if you see the space in yourself for improvement but I’d like to think that I do. I’m not perfect and I’m a little self-centered, but I’m trying to be better at it. Every day.

A yolk face that turned into a monster face: life with a 3 year old

You can follow Heather in all her endeavors at Write.Drink.Sew.Repeat