I have had a lot of jobs. But being a mother is by far the hardest job I have ever had. I wrote an article recently on children’s healthy play dates and I decided I didn’t want to leave us moms out of all the fun. I think it is time we talk about us for once. It’s so important to remember that you’ll take better care of your children when you take better care of yourself no matter how hard it is to get out of your house, day or night.
It is really hard to make time for your girlfriends. especially if you’re feeling guilty because your husband works late and you only get to see him after the kids go to bed, you don’t have money for a sitter, you are tired after a long work day, and the list goes on. I know first hand how hard it is to get out of the door to see my friends. Something always seems to go wrong. Just last week I was on my way out the door for book club and my daughter hurt her wrist. We thought it might be broken so I stayed home until my husband returned from the doctor’s office. She came home with no broken bones and a smile on her face so I was able to sneak out for a couple of hours.
“In a friend you find a second self” by Isabelle Norton
Here are some clubs I love being a part of and I hope this motivates you to start your own, even if it’s just you and your neighbor. I know once you get started you will look forward to that special time every month.
I cannot tell you how many people (men and women) I have taught to knit. It is a true love of mine. Ever since I was a little girl my family gave homemade Christmas gifts on Christmas Eve. I made my fair share of painted mugs, vases, blankets, photo books and more. I was just married and nannying for a family in Salt Lake City. I saw Liz (the lady who I worked for) knitting all the time and I thought it would be wonderful to learn. She taught me and that holiday I surprised my two year old nephew with a giant baby blue hand-knit hat. It wasn’t the prettiest thing, but I was so proud of myself. And I could tell my family was too.
I loved knitting so much that in 1998 I started a knitting club. We had it once a month and I had it every time at my house. Now 15 years later my knitting club is still going strong but we rotate homes and it has turned into a dinner club. The person who brings dessert is in charge of knitting club the next month at their home. We love to relax and talk about life and just get out of our homes for a couple of hours. Sometimes it is hard getting there but once I am there I am SO happy I went. We all need a break from our everyday life. By enjoying activities you love outside of parenthood you can set an excellent example for your children. My girls both now love to crochet and knit and I am so happy I can teach them.
I always came up with the best excuses not to join a book club. Mainly because I honestly didn’t have time to read when my kids were younger. I barely had time to wash my hair. But now that my children are older I decided I had a little extra time to pick up a good read.
My girlfriends Lindsey and Rachel started a book club last year. Lindsey is a writer and I have to admit I was a little intimidated to join her book club. I didn’t want to pick a bad book and embarrass myself, but I joined anyway and I have been able to keep up even with my busy mommy schedule. I honestly forgot how much I love to read and discuss books. I learned quickly that I could save money by not purchasing every book by going to my local library and checking it out.
I know everyone has their own taste in books but here are some of the books we have read.
I hope this helps you to get your book club started
“Austenland” by Shannon Hale
“These Is My Words” by Nancy E. Turner
“Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother” by Amy Chua
“Same Kind of Different As Me” by Ron Hall and Denver Moore
“The Fault In Our Stars” by John Green
“Rebecca” by Daphne Du Maurier
“Sarah’s Key” by Tatiana De Rosnay
“The Lost Wife” by Alyson Richman
Lindsey’s next book, Going Vintage will be available this month on Amazon. Our book club is so proud of her.
Hiking or Walking Club
Spring is in the air. Time to get out and get some vitamin D. This trail head is very close to my house. I love that I can get to it easily. Not only is this great for girl time but we also get our excersize in for the day. My friend brought her son along and was pushing her stroller, which was not so easy up the steep trail. A study found that women 32-70 years old who walked 60 minutes, 3 times a week were less tired and depressed. Read more here.
Some Benefits of Hiking and Walking
– Walking or hiking is free. You don’t have to pay for a gym membership.
-Over 150 minutes of walking a week can prevent heart disease and help manage stress
-Walking increases blood flow in the body reducing back and joint pain
– Take a group of friends so you can laugh and chat along the way, it makes the time go by faster and they won’t let you skip out on the fun
-Walking helps you sleep better at night
– Hiking helps with weight control; It burns up to 370 calories an hour (155 lb person)
Simple tips to start your own Mommy Club
1. Find friends with the same interests.
2. Make a schedule and stick with it. Having the same day each month is a reminder to put nothing else on your calendar.
3. Set a realistic time so everyone involved can make it. Book club is later then our knitting club because we eat dinner and we all are hungry around 7.
4. Some of my friends are single mothers or their husbands work late. We don’t want them to pay for sitters so it is easier for them to bring their kids and let them hangout with our kids. This works best if my husband is home to help. Sometimes we get a babysitter at one house and we split the cost so it is cheaper.
5. Try out a few activities and see which you like best for your club
Here are some other Mommy clubs or activities…
-Dinner or movie night
As we get busy in our life the first thing we stop doing is hanging out with our friends. The second is forgetting about our talents. It is so fun getting together with a group of women and hearing about each others accomplishments. I for one am so proud of my girlfriends. They have brought so much joy to my life and they are always so supportive.
“The only way to have a friend is to be one” by Ralph Waldo Emerson
When was the last time you did something for yourself and enjoy your friendships and hobbies?
I hope this article helps you find a healthy balance in your life and reminds you that you need to take time for yourself.
What Mommy play dates keep you happy and healthy?
Ashley was born and raised in Boise, Idaho and now lives in Henderson, Nevada. She studied in Germany and created a hand knit hat business in 1998–Mutze by Ashley (meaning hat in German). She is obsessed with her Husband, three daughters, fashion, coconut desserts, and garden gnomes.