Week in review: May 8th (with a little love for Mother's Day)

I once read that caring for young children is a lot like going through boot camp. In each, a master (either the staff sergeant, or the children themselves) who lacks patience and expects you to anticipate and meet their each need enslaves you. In the early years of training, you slog through the day in a semi-comatose state, pushed to your emotional and physical limits. You are bombarded by criticism; your desire to please receives no reward, either momentarily or otherwise. And yet somehow, despite the sleep-deprivation, limited medical knowledge (determine cure for colic; provide wound care for a screaming preschooler), complex mathematical equations (formulate ounces of powdered formula to water at 4:18 in the morning on three hours of sleep) and assaults on your self-confidence, you become passionately devoted to your commander.

When I first became a mother, I judged myself harshly against the ideals of the past. The 1950's mother served cocktails and nutritionally balanced meals while remaining immaculately dressed. The 1960's and 70's mom prepared organic baby food, crocheted baby blankets, and nursed their children until their teeth were large enough to chew steak. In the 1980's and 90's Power Mom emerged, an enigma who worked full-time, aerobicized to Jane Fonda and staged elaborate children's parties with cakes that would've put the the Cake Boss out of business. The 2000's gave us Super Mom, an SUV-driving force who taught her children Mandarin Chinese, practiced pilates and and somehow managed to have an energetic sex life. And today we have the indie mom, a woman who outfits her baby's nursery with things from Etsy, drives a hybrid, and appliques baby clothes with remnants from vintage thrifted garments.

Over time, my mothering style has evolved into a combination of all the above. I feed my children whole-wheat pasta one night and Chick-Fil-A the next. My home can best be described as Elementary School Chic - furniture from Thomasville, room decor from Lego. The wood floors are swept, but missing marker caps, candy wrappers and dried-out hunks of Play-Doh lurk under the couch. And don't even ask me what the interior of my car looks like. Family activities include visiting museums, painting, giggling at Spongebob, and playing endless games of Build Your Own Mousetrap.

Some days I pray that I'll make it to dinnertime without losing my voice, my patience, or my mind. Despite the pressure, challenge and guilt, I've managed to retain my sense of humor and discovered the true joy in being with my children. Nothing can compare to the sound of my twins' laughing, or watching them battle it out over Super Mario, or taking them fishing  (which we did yesterday. It was a hoot.)  I feel privileged to have witnessed all of their "first's." And despite my hatred towards celebrity moms, impossible-to-assemble toys, and the dread of sitting through one more torturous school performance, I wouldn't trade my life in for anything else in the world.

I make every attempt to keep the focus of my blog off my kids. I don't want to be one of those twee bloggers who endlessly obsesses about her children, inundating readers with photos documenting every moment of their precious little snowflake's life. I kind of like it that my blog is a place just for me, where I can share my own interests separate from those of my children. But I can't resist the opportunity to share a few photos. Cue adorableness.

My twins Jake and Josh, 3 weeks old

My daughter Becky, 3 years old

With my brood at brunch this morning - notice Jake in the middle, being a punk (he gets that from me *sniff*)

While I'm going through old photos and baby clothes and choking back my tears, here's what went down on Dress With Courage this week:
Let me take a moment to welcome all my new followers.

I could not believe it when I hit 200 followers through Google Friend Connect yesterday. Best. Mother's. Day. Present. Ever. Seriously. Thank you for following and reading my blog every day. I'm humbled and so happy you're here. BIG giveaway coming tomorrow to celebrate!

If you're visiting my blog for the first time, please  think about follow me through Google Friend Connect, tweeting with me on Twitter, or becoming a Facebook fan. It would be like a massive virtual ((((group hug)))).


  1. Happy Mothers Day Elissa! You have such beautiful children!

  2. You are not only one of my favorite bloggers, but one of my favorite mothers as well. Happy Mother's Day Elissa. I hope it is a utterly fantastic day for you and your beautiful family.

  3. Happy Mother's Day! I'm one of your newest followers. I love the pictures of your kids. I'm so glad I met you through IFB and I look forward to making your blog a daily read.

  4. Here's to the next 200 GFC. You deserve them. Happy Mo's day to you, too!

  5. Great pics! Your kiddos are adorable. Love your outfit today! We went to brunch too. It was so yummy and I loved every minute of the "all about me" time today! It only comes once a year so we better make the most of it right? Happy Mother's Day!

  6. I really like the way you unappologetically claim this part of the blogosphere for yourself. After all blogging is all about your point of view. But I do love that you occasionally post pictures of your family just to give us readers a bit of context and to see that this blog is only a tiny part of your life.

  7. I am a new follower and I love your blog! A belated happy mother's day to you!


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