Finding the sweet spot of motherhood in Monmouth County. Nurturing yourself while you care for your children.
Take a look at your family calendar. Is it overflowing with activities for the kids and you feel like there’s not enough time to do what you want? Does it feel empty and so your days feel lonely and long? Or do you schedule activities for yourself but suffer from mom-guilt for prioritizing yourself?
We are lucky to live in an area that provides outstanding resources, activities, and events for children, adults, and families. But this abundance can have it’s own challenges, and you’re not alone if your calendar feels off balance in one way or another. Here are some ideas and strategies to help you find the sweet spot of motherhood by nurturing yourself while also caring for your children.
Whether you are a mom who feels there are too many empty hours on your calendar or a mom who feels there’s not enough time to do things for yourself or your child(ren), your backyard has something that is the right fit for you. Here are some strategies and suggestions for making Monmouth County your home that nurtures you and your family.
Start with this simple exercise:
Remember Venn diagrams from your high school math class? (I know you didn’t think you’d ever use that concept again!)
Draw two overlapping circles. One represents activities for your child: things he/she enjoys or things you prioritize for your child to participate in.
The other circle represents activities you enjoy, that nurture you in a meaningful way.
See that overlapping spot? That’s the sweet spot. When you find activities that benefit both you and your child at the same time, everyone benefits.
Here are some questions to help you identify activities to fill not just your diagram and your calendar, but your days and your wellbeing:
- What were your favorite activities from childhood?
- Being a parent can allow us to revisit some of the things that brought us lots of joy and happiness in our earliest years. During the teen and adult years we may abandon things we once enjoyed for a variety of reasons. But sharing in play with your child may give you permission to reconnect with activities for the sheer sake of fun!
If you remember the fun of arts and crafts, being creative and artistic, you may now enjoy participating in an art class with your child.
Holmdel, NJ 07733
Or if you cherish memories in the kitchen with your mom or grandma, you may want to recreate those experiences for your child with the help of
Young Chefs of Marlboro for ages 4 and up
- What are activities you didn’t participate in childhood but have wished you had the opportunity to experience?
- Exploring a new destination or a new activity with a child allows you to have a child’s heart and enjoy all the magic of discovery. Maybe you try something new that you’d never have the courage to be a beginner at, but the opportunity to share it with your child provides a comfort and reason to learn and participate.
Did you always imagine you would have been a rock star if only your parents got you music lessons? The dream isn’t over at Lake House Music Academy, where they offer kids and family style classes. And if you really want to nurture your dreams, moms and dads can participate in Adult Night Sessions.
- What are things that interest you as an adult that you’ve yet to explore?
Have you ever tried glass blowing? Check out Hot Sand in Asbury Park, a hot sand glass studio on the Jersey Shore.
If your children are age 9 or older, they can participate in glass blowing with you. There are activities available for younger children as well, (like the Quick Cast or Sun Tile projects).
- What is an interest you had before becoming a mom that got put on the back burner because you felt you no longer had time for it?
Is time with another mom friend the last thing that makes your calendar? Let the kids play and you can have a cup of coffee and a meal (that you didn’t have to prepare or clean up!) at Little Giggles Play Cafe, an indoor playground in Englishtown.
Or if it’s physical activity your calendar and body have been missing, Firefly Yogis in Rumson offers family yoga sessions!
We hope these activities provide good ideas to get you started in your discovery. Please share with us what this inspires you to try! And check back next month for new strategies and ideas to continue exploring Monmouth County while you venture through motherhood!
-Jaime Malone, M.A., LPC
703 Broad St. Suite B202
Shrewsbury, NJ 07702