Top Ten Tuesday: SAHM Surprises

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This Friday, I will officially have been a stay-at-home-mom (SAHM) for two months. It’s certainly been an adventure already and not what I expected. This week, I thought I’d share the Top Ten Surprises about Staying at Home. For me, at least.

1. I’m still not a good housekeeper. Guess it’s one of those things. I thought when I got married, I would suddenly be a very clean person. Then when I had kids. And then when I became a SAHM. Well, nope. I still have to push myself to want to clean pretty much anything. If my freelance career ever takes off, MAID is at the top of the list of things I want! Until then, I really am working on it.

2. I don’t have lots of free time. When you’re on the other side of the fence, you think, “Oh, I’ll have TONS of free time when I’m not working!” Free time being time to relax and spend on myself. Um, nope. Blogging, freelance, and cleaning eat up most any time I have while Libbie is asleep. When she’s awake, there is no relaxation and no computer. There is only chasing of the toddler.

3. Libbie can push all of my buttons. I think this is probably a mix of us being together all the time and her reaching true toddlerhood. The last week and a half has been very hard with her. But when times are good, she’s very sweet and loving. It’s just not all fun and giggles!

4. There are days I think I can’t leave the house because I have too much laundry to do. Or cleaning. Or cooking. It makes me laugh that this thought even enters my head when two months ago I had a full-time job outside the home plus a commute! And a social life, since I had friends and all.

5. I am not stir-crazy. Mr. V really doubted my ability to be at home all the time without going insane. I’ve always been a little stir-crazy even having a few days off from work or something. But it’s not like I sit around with nothing to do! Occasionally I do get tired of the house and we go to the mall’s play area or the children’s museum–but most of the time I’m pretty content to be at home.

6. I love being able to cook things that take a long time. Homemade broth and bread have been on my to-do list for a long time, but I just haven’t had time at night to wait out the rising or simmering times.

7. I like having my bed made. My mother will attest that I have never, ever made my bed on a regular basis. And I still didn’t when I got married. But I’ve found that I love snuggling into a made bed at night and it doesn’t take that much effort to head in the bedroom at some point in the day and throw the covers up. It looks pretty and is more comfy!

8. I don’t know when to serve dinner. My dad always got home about 6 o’clock when I was growing up and we ate dinner right as he arrived pretty much every day. Mr. V usually gets home around 5-5:30 and has eaten a big lunch. So even though I feel like I should have dinner ready when he comes home, it’s not really a good time for him to eat. But then if it’s too late, Libbie starts to get really tired and hungry. It’s a conundrum I haven’t solved.

9. Sometimes I find myself taking to Mr. V about grocery prices or doing laundry. I feel boring. It’s weird not to have work to talk about.

10. I get mad at Libbie and yell sometimes. I have a quick temper and I hate it. I want to be a very intentional parent but I let my tongue get the best of me, often. I HATE yelling and know it’s not a solution. But I do it, sometimes.

If you’re a SAHM, what have the surprises been for you?

Top Ten Tuesday is being hosted by It’s Come to This this week. Go visit Mandi and say a prayer for OhAmanda’s Macbook.

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20 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday: SAHM Surprises

  1. So true about the no time thing. I thought I'd have all sorts of time to clean, scrapbook, read….nope. I haven't even touched my scrap supplies in over a year. I have ZERO free time. And stir crazy….I wasn't at first either. I loved being able to chill at home and relax. But now? After almost three years of no car? I'm perpetually stir-crazy. So treasure your ability to get out of the house!!!! Dinner? We eat as soon as my DH walks in the door. But he has an early lunch, so that works for us. And boring? Me too. My DH does a good job of making me feel like he's interested. But really, I don't think he is.

  2. It's really an adjustment! I'm still not so good at being self-motivated or being really organized. It's a daily challenge for me.

    I like to have a few "at home" days per week so that I can stay on top of all that needs done. The errands and outings can happen on other days.

    How do you like your new area? Have you met people yet? If not, push yourself out there and make some other SAHM friends! It's critical and worth it.

  3. Re: serving dinner time.
    We have the same problem in our house. A lot of times, my husband and I aren't hungry until later in the evening and the kids are hungry around 5. I usually make the meal early, serve them out of it and then reheat (in the oven to prevent rubbery food) for us later. It isn't perfect, but it works for us 🙂

    It is all a big game of trial and error. I've been a SAHM mom for almost 4 years now (!!) and still haven't gotten it "right." I honestly don't think there actually is a right way to do it, just the best way for your family.

    I, too, have discovered the wonders of a made bed. I don't get it done often, but I'm working on getting it done more. Again, not perfect but getting there 🙂

    Sounds like you're doing a fine job, Jessie!

  4. Oh, this is so interesting to read! I stayed home with my daughter from the very beginning, with very few ideas about what it might be like. It's hard work, and highly undervalued, I think that's the hard thing. People don't understand what you "do" all day at home.

  5. I really think it's awesome to have both perspectives. It helps to relate to others & know that neither side is easy!! You can more easily appreciate both the sahm & the wahm. Definitely agree that it's a big trial & error … and I'm still there trying to figure it all out. Just like parenthood in general:)

  6. I can sooo relate to this list!! I worked until I was 7 months pregnant with my second daughter. I was amazed at how my 20 month old could push my buttons. I thought "Wow, I'm so not used to spending this much time with her! We need a break from each other!". And I feel you on the clean house thing.Having children really puts a kink in housekeeping! I still struggle with feeling guilty when my husband comes home if the house doesn't look really good. I feel like I need to prove to him I've "done something" all day!
    Great list! And enjoy being a SAHM. It's still the best "job" ever in my opinion!

  7. This is a great list. If I had a list about my "living with someone" experience, the whole "I snap at you because you're always here" thing would be at the top. Intentionality behind our comments has to be the goal, but it can be hard to live up to. 🙂

  8. I have been a SAHM for 4 years and everything you said is true, true, true!

    I am particularly bad at the cleaning thing. It's just not natural for me, and apparently never will be!!!

  9. Oh, this list seemed so familiar, and it made me think about what were my biggest surprises staying home.

    Definitely my most unpleasant one was the same #1 on your list. Unfortunately for the condition of my house.

  10. I can so relate. I struggle very much with getting things done and with motivation at home. I have started getting out of the house more often. It energizes me and makes me more productive when I get home.

  11. I can totally relate on #1 and #7! I find, though, that I have TOO much free time, and I get bored easily. I'm a "checklist" person, and being a SAHM doesn't work on a checklist (at least not for me). I'm going back to school soon, so hopefully that will help to occupy some of my "free time."

  12. Ooooh, I'd LOVE to be able to cook things that take a long time! AND to have my bed made. 🙂

    I have a feeling, though, that I'd also find that I'm not as clean and neat as I think I'd be. Oh well – here's to the day we can PAY someone to do it for us! 😉

  13. I totally could have written this post. Especially lately, entering the terrible 2's I have zero patience with my kiddo. I hate being that way (trying to work on it). My most surprising thing was how busy I am. There is never a time when I don't have something to do. I'm far busier now that when I was working.

  14. I completely understand everything in this post. And I am exactly like you when it comes to the temper thing. Sometimes, my 3 yo sends me right over the edge, and then over the edge immediately following. And I yell. Then, I hate myself for it. I'm trying to learn patience, and trying not to be so easily annoyed or angered. But it's really tough! It's seriously comforting to know that I'm not alone. Not that I'm some screaming maniac with my kid, but sometimes, that edge is a little too close for comfort. Thanks. You're a blogger than has true integrity and courage, and I like that.

  15. It's amazing that the time thing is so deceptive. You always think you will have so much time, and yet the laundry list of things you want to get done during nap time never gets accomplished. For me, the cleaning thing is still hard. This year I decided to schedule which days I would mop, which days I would clean the bathroom, etc. So far, it's helped some, but I'm still a work in progress.

  16. I have been a SAHM(WAHM) for over 11 years(hard to believe or admit that). I have done daycare for most of that time on top of it. The suprises that I had were that I wouldn't always love being at home, that my children wouldn't magically be wonderful because I was home with them. And let me tell you I hear you on the cleaning. I try but it just never becomes a ultra tidy house. The positive suprises are too many to mention and wouldn't have changed this time in my life for the world

  17. I love this post! I stayed home for the past 8 weeks (I delivered 1/17) and am going back to work in a week. Ugh! It's been amazing to stay home with a newborn and 24 mo. LOL It's definately been trial and error.

    Honestly, having a meal plan and pulling items from the freezer has saved me – for sure. I think the house is in constant state of unclean!! I started #speedclean ing to motivate myself to get the house cleaned. I would strap the 2 yo in a high chair so he was contained. Um, speaking of which, he doesn't watch TV, ever. So he needs constant attention…

    But for sure, after working 10 years and finally getting to stay home for a few weeks, I'm more surprised about 1 & 2 than anything else!!


  18. Great post!! Re: when to eat dinner. We eat when the toddler is hungry. If Hubby isn't home from work yet, then he eats when he gets home. I'd rather eat without him than have a tired, cranky toddler. Just my opinion.

    I love staying home, but I wasn't sure that I would. I love cooking from scratch, I love playing with my girlie. Our days are BUSY. I think that's the one thing I didn't expect. I am BUSY. But I can't always tell you what we did during the day. The time flies by so fast…

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