Tag Archives: Self-Care

Working Wednesday: Rough Mornings

Today’s blog post does not really have any advice in it. I’m very sorry. Instead, I am going to relate to you, my Monday morning experience.

I think that Baby Girl might be going through somewhat of a growth spurt. She’s cranky, but has no sign of any illness, she’s eating like a horse (again, contradicting an illness theory), and she is not sleeping well. I was worried she might be getting too much caffeine in my breast milk, since I’m still nursing, so I cut down for a few days (toddlers metabolize it differently) and that did not change anything. If anything, it made things worse, because then I was cranky, too!

So, Monday morning, after very little sleep, I got up, got dressed, had her refuse her morning nap, and dragged myself into work. On top of everything, I’d made cupcakes for a birthday (the trials of which will no doubt be posted to Butter and Whisky shortly). I was at work for a little less than an hour (with me typoing everything in sight and generally being cranky) when my husband texted and said that Baby Girl was finally feeling sleepy.

Remember that post where I said vacation time is all right? Well, I decided that between me being incredibly unproductive and Baby Girl needing me, taking a couple hours of my vacation time would be okay. I’m salaried, so my vacation time doesn’t work quite the same as everyone else’s anyway.

I went home and got Baby Girl to sleep, took a nap myself, and got back in time to work a little bit more of the day – I think I was gone for about two hours total. It was worth it, for my health, for my family, and for my productivity on the job.

… I’ll try not to feel too guilty that I just had a real vacation not two weeks ago.

Self-Care Saturday: Make-up

How do you feel about makeup?
I know that we’re supposed to love our flaws. But there is pressure to look good when you’re a professional and a woman. I have the added bonus of looking like I’m approximately 18 without makeup, which I will appreciate later but not right now when people still routinely confuse me with the students.

I also actually like makeup. I still wear my signature black eyeliner even though I’m pretty sure it went out of style a million years ago. I like how I look with it. But putting makeup on in the morning can be a big hassle when you have little ones.  So I have some advice for those of you who wear makeup regularly or would like to again:

  1. Streamline your process. I wear 4 things on my face: concealer, mineral foundation, bronzer, and eyeliner. If I wear anything on my lips, it’s typically a gloss that doesn’t require any accompaniment (or even a mirror.)
  2. If you have anything you really want to keep in your routine, see if it can do double duty. For example, I use my bronzer as blush as well – a light dusting over my whole face and then a bit darker on my cheeks.
  3. Toss out makeup you don’t use. It’s just getting in the way. That includes applicators.
  4. If there is makeup you don’t want to part with but you don’t use regularly, put it up away from your day to day makeup. It will save you time because you won’t be fumbling.

There. Take some time to follow these suggestions and see how long – or short! – your makeup routine can be. Mine is less than 5 minutes!

Self-Care Saturday Issue #1

As moms, we often feel the pressure to do for others to the point that we do not do things for ourselves.

As career women, we often feel the same way in the workplace. We don’t have to get into a dissertation about women in the workplace, but we have all been the person who takes on the crap jobs, or picks up the slack for a coworker, or just busts our ass because we feel we have something to prove.

I am here to tell you something that it has taken me a long time to learn, and that I often still have to remind myself of: it is okay to take time for yourself. It’s also okay if you have to remind yourself of that.

The other thing I have learned is: quality over quantity. I don’t need two hours to lounge around and do nothing (only to be overwhelmed by the guilt of everything that I didn’t get done in those two hours.)  Therefore, every Saturday, I am going to try to bring you some self-care tips  that are easy, feasible, and meaningful. Not all of it will work for everyone, but hopefully all of it will work for someone.

This will  start in earnest next Saturday, but I’m going to leave you with a tiny pick-me-up/self-care idea that most of you can do right now. In fact, it really has nothing to do with being a mom – my employee has done it and she’s a relatively care-free almost-22-year-old.

Go scrounge up some loose change from your purse, or a couple dollars from your wallet. No more than $5 (plus tax, if you want to get technical). I know even the best budgets get stretched with kids in the house. The next time you are at the mall buying expensive things for your little one, or at the grocery store doing the weekly shopping, go to the bath and body care store or aisle. Find a small bottle of a lotion that you love, and buy it. Mine is from Bath and Body Works, is 3 oz., and is $5 when not on sale. That’s how I know you can do this for $5 plus tax – or less!

Put it in your desk drawer, purse, locker, or wherever you store stuff when you are at work. If you are having a bad day, or just need a pick me up (stressful presentation coming up, meeting with your boss, whatever), use the lotion.

I’ve had mine in the drawer since January and I’ve still got plenty left. Plus, since it’s only three oz., it’s TSA-approved in case I have to go to a conference!

Rebranding this Blog

As a Mother’s Day present to myself, I am going to be re-branding this blog. In the past I’ve used it to showcase some of my creative endeavors (most recently, my 21 Days of Creativity). I’ve also occasionally linked to my cooking blog, Butter and Whisky. That stuff will still happen, but in addition, I will be writing more about being a mom.

This is not another SAHM Mom Blog!

I am a career mom. I am a librarian at a university; I am tenure-track faculty. I love my job. For the first year of my daughter’s life, I can honestly, 100% say that I loved my job more than being a mom.

These days, it’s more-or-less even. Some days work sucks (cornered by the chancellor, difficult student questions, unruly employees who love writing on the whiteboard) and some days being a mom sucks (middle of the night wake-ups, super messy/stinky diapers, unexplained tantrums),  but they tend to even out.

But I felt like I did not have a lot of places I could go for advice about being a career mom. I adapted some advice from SAHM blogs, but a lot of it, I went it alone. So I am going to write out my experiences, starting from the pregnancy and going forward. Not all of it will pertain to every one, but I hope it will help someone.

Especially a couple of friends – one of whom has a career and is about to try to have a baby, and the other of whom has kids but is going back to school to pursue a career.

I’ve got a few categories of ideas thought up, but is there anything else you want to see? Let me know in the comments!