Tag Archives: changes in life

The Transition to Being a SAHM

I have now been a stay-at-home-mom for almost three months. It has definitely been a period of trial and error and transition (especially since Rhys is at an age of perpetual transition). And this transition was not always the easiest for either Rhys or me.

When Rhys was born last year, I became a part-time teacher. This year, I'm full-time SAHM. As a workaholic and someone who believes her calling in life is to teach, this is what the summer of transition to being a SAHM was like for me.

Growing up, my life plan was this:
1) Go to BYU and get married.
2) Teach until we had kids.
3) Stay at home until all are school aged and then go back.
4) Eventually become a history professor.

Well, when last summer came around with a brand-new baby on the way, a difficult choice was made. I had fallen in love. In love with my students, my school, my curriculum, my momentum. I loved being a teacher more than I ever dreamed of. And, I just couldn’t shake this feeling that I needed to stay teaching. So, when Rhys came along, I dropped down to be a part-time teacher. And guess what, the Lord works in mysterious ways because for the first term, Justin was still jobless. The Lord was looking out for us financially by making me want to continue to teach.

Being a part-time mom was a nice beginning. Since Rhys was born in the middle of the summer, I had about a month and a half to acclimate to new motherhood before returning to work. That helped lay the foundation for me. I worked everyday during the 2nd half of the school day, roughly 11-3:30. I was able to begin to focus on my health and blog again in the mornings, and by making the ultimatum to not bring work home with me, I was able to focus on m family and my role as mother and wife more.

I had a few samples of what being a SAHM would be like during Christmas break and spring break, while Justin still had to work. I felt I could get used to it. But, I always knew I’d return back to work at the end of the break…

So, here is an analysis of my transition so far:

Positives of being a SAHM thus far

1) Less stress! No lesson plans, no timetables, no contract hours, no commuting, no grading, no worrying about any child other than Rhys!
2) I can wear jeans during the week now, and open toed shoes, and shorts, and I don’t have to wear tights. So nice to be out of the charter school high standard of dress for teachers!
3) I’ve cooked more. True, most have been easy throw-together meals that didn’t require a lot of planning or prepped, but at least it’s better than eating out.
4) I can nap when Rhys naps and not worry about setting an alarm to make sure I still have time to get stuff done or to leave on time.
5) I get to see all of Rhys’s milestones and teach him everything. Honestly, I just love watching him!
6) Did I mention less stress?

Negatives of being a SAHM thus far

1) I don’t have a car. Near the end of the school year, a tree from the city park fell on our 2nd car (a piece of junk, anyway). Thankfully, the city paid us far more than it was worth, but now we are only down to 1 car and since Justin has a job…
2) Little socializing. Point #1 is a big factor into that, but I don’t have colleagues to chat with, or even teens for that matter. A conversation with Rhys can only go so far and only last so long.
3) Too much Netflix! We got rid of cable to help save some money, but I’ve been watching far too much TV and Netflix for my liking.
4) Getting out of the house. It’s been super hot this summer, typically in the 95-105* range. Taking a bike or stroller only gets us so far in this heat. I’d have loved to get out more with Rhys and for my own sanity if we had a second car.

What I’ve learned

1) My anxiety with school has just been overrun by other anxieties, such as Rhys and finances. But, I’m learning to deal with it.
2) It’s okay to still ask for a baby-less day, especially if you have doting family close by who jump at the opportunity to watch him.
3) I have absolutely loved watching Rhys and paying closer attention and detail to him. I love watching him learn and grow and interact with his world. It just reminds me more and more how endless my love is for him and how astounding toddlers can be.
4) I miss those 5 hours and the fact that someone else dealt with rebellion to eat lunch and to nap some days, and that’s ok.
5) Being a SAHM is just as exhausting as being a working mom.
6) I am trying to be more intentional with Rhys and engage more with him by being on social media less when he is awake, or to put it aside when he wants attention.
7) I am able to follow his cue more and be more flexible. For instance, he is in the process of weaning himself off bottles of milk and trying to get down to one nap.
8) I’m still not sure if this is the right long-term plan for us, but so far it has helped my mental and emotional health, and that is what is important right now.
I’m excited to see what the rest of this year will bring us as I continue to transition into being a SAHM!
If you are a SAHM, what was your transition like?

Tayler is a work at home mom. She does free lance articles and dabbles in graphic design and virtual assisting for bloggers. She spent 3 years as a history and English teacher. Her passions are her husband, two children, history, reading, nature, and her Savior, Jesus Christ.

I Am Anxious

Last night found me on the floor of our guest bedroom crying my eyes out.

I have anxiety. Most of the time, it’s under control, but sometimes, it gets out of hand and I lose it–I lose my faith in myself, I feel depressed for a few days, and nothing anyone says will make me believe otherwise. Typically, I have anxiety attacks when everything seems to pile upon each other.

This time, it was a few things:
~ I have been told by two people that I am impatient with Rhys
~ I am just about fed up with his bloody-murder piercing screaming phase
~ He is such a poor teether–he’s barely eaten in the past week and a half and is starting to lose a tiny bit of weight
~ I am now a SAHM (big transition)
~ I am afraid that I won’t have the patience to be a SAHM 24/7 since I’ve already had two breakdowns having to do with Rhys already this past year
~ I wondered if we made a mistake in having me be a SAHM rather than continue working (because of the above…and maybe a teeny bit financially, but mostly because of the above)

It is crippling to have these thoughts because they do lead to a downward spiral. Anxiety attacks don’t just happen…it has to be the straw that broke the camel’s back. I’ve been worried about these things over the past few weeks and although a major burden has been lifted from my shoulders because school is over, on the inside, I’ve still felt glum.

But, not only do I feel down, I don’t feel like doing anything else. That is why I haven’t really been putting my heart and soul into blogging the past two weeks or so–my sponsors haven’t been getting what they paid for, excellent quality writing hasn’t appeared, and networking hasn’t been happening. I don’t want to work on my goals, I don’t want to work out, I don’t even want to watch TV.

It also makes me very tired. I’ve been going to bed between 8:30-9:30 many times this week because I’ve just been so emotionally overwhelmed.

I want to be able to succeed. I want to be a good SAHM. I want to be patient with my son–he’s only 11 months old, after all, and everyone always tells me everything “is just a phase.”

So here is my prayer:

Please allow me to have faith in myself that I have the ability to be a SAHM, as it’s been my dream for a long time. Please allow me to find the patience for both myself and Rhys. Please allow me to be able to know what I need to do to help him continue to get the nutrients he needs without beginning bad habits. Please allow me to have confidence in myself and the decisions my husband and I make. Please give me counsel as a mother when I need it and trust in my own maternal instincts.

What parts of the transition was hard for you when you became a SAHM?

Tayler is a work at home mom. She does free lance articles and dabbles in graphic design and virtual assisting for bloggers. She spent 3 years as a history and English teacher. Her passions are her husband, two children, history, reading, nature, and her Savior, Jesus Christ.

What I Will Miss About Teaching

Ever since I can remember, I have wanted to be a teacher. I loved all my education classes at BYU and just got more and more excited to teach. During my internship, I learned that it was far, far, far harder that I ever expected, but, I also learned that I loved it more than I ever thought possible.

I felt comfortable teaching. I am still a new teacher, and know that I have miles to go in both curriculum and management, but I felt like my right place in the front of the classroom. That was the reason I worked part-time with a brand-new baby. It is a part of my soul that I couldn’t just leave behind.

Just after my very first month ever of teaching, I wrote this post.

So, after three years of teaching and on my very last day as an employee until who knows when, I thought I’d share with you all the things I will miss about teaching.

My Charter School
– The fact that my first year there (technically my first year as a licensed teacher), I was welcomed with open arms, and not treated as a new, young, inexperienced teacher by the staff. I was one of them.
– The community of the school. Although there are some downfalls to having such a small school, there are also upsides: students are more willing to work in different groups, there isn’t a stigma about teachers driving students home, parents and teachers are one and the same sometime, many are in the same church congregations, and teachers and parents know each other well.
– The focus on service. The day before Christmas break, the entire school does a canned food drive as well as make journals and gather dolls for homeless children. We had a student recently die of cancer and there were many assemblies and fundrasing for her. The students help keep the school neat and tidy and help set up for assemblies.
– The high standards of academics. We push our students and they are more than prepared for high school.
– My principal and boss. She is the sweetest, kindest, most brilliant woman I’ve ever met. She knows the name, face, family, personality, and strengths/weaknesses of each and every one of our 530 students!
– The unity. The entire school uses the same classroom management, standards, benchmarks, etc.

In General
– Watching the lightbulb go on over their heads as they make connections with the literature, realize what words come from their Latin Roots, and realize they automatically supported their thesis with textual evidence.
– Watching the growth and progress of students, and watching them grow-up.
– Conversations with students on music, movies, videogames, BBC shows, comics, anime, etc.
– Conversations with teachers on parenthood, English, history, comics, movies, religion, etc.
– Continually learning. I get to read new books, learn more history, discover for myself before helping my students discover.
– Being creative. I loved coming up with different activities and projects for my students. And I love seeing my students’ creativity shine in their assignments.
– Seeing parents tear up and show faces of pure joy when they see how much their student likes my class and tries their best to learn.
– Being liked. I’ll be honest. Yesterday, when my picture would come up during the Jr. High end-of-year slide show, there were a lot of cheers. I’ll miss that. Students I’ve never taught say hi to me in the hall and like talking with me. I’ll miss that attention. (I think it’s because I’m probably the same age as their older siblings. I mean, my youngest sister just finished 9th grade this year!)
– Feeling useful. I teach for the outcome, not for the income. I am helping these students be prepared for not only high school and college, but for the world.

I have no idea when I’ll go back to teaching. I know where I am supposed to be for now is at home with my son. Since it is summer, and teachers have those off, I don’t think it’ll really hit me until late August/early September that I’m not returning to my classroom. I’ve had a good experience these three years: public and charter schools, history and English, big and small class sizes, and all sorts of other experiences. I know those memories and lessons will stay with me my entire life.

But, starting today at 10 am MST, I will officially be a SAHM, and that is an adventure I’m excited to begin.

What do you love about your job?

Tayler is a work at home mom. She does free lance articles and dabbles in graphic design and virtual assisting for bloggers. She spent 3 years as a history and English teacher. Her passions are her husband, two children, history, reading, nature, and her Savior, Jesus Christ.

When Things Don’t Go According To Plan

I’ve learned during the summer that sometimes, things don’t always go according to plan. Justin was supposed to graduate in April, that didn’t happen until August. Every home we found that we wanted to rent was given to someone else. My pregnancy hit a bump that caused me to be on “bed rest” for the last two weeks. Justin hadn’t ever found a job.
But, even though things didn’t go according to my plan, they went according to the Lord’s. And, everything turned out well. Rhys was born healthy, Justin finished all his classes (except for an online class), we had a beautiful home, and Justin was interviewing everywhere.
Then, last week happened to make us even happier.

christain quoetes and pics | Inspiring christian quotes, christian inspirational quotes

Everything was finally fitting together: I had a part-time job, allowing me to spend plenty of time with Rhys, we were just about finished paying hospital bills, Justin had just gotten hired at a bank, and we had just found someone in our church who runs an in-home daycare to watch Rhys for us. And, we had just had a wonderful family luncheon when Rhys got blessed.
We were very happy and had nothing to worry about at all!
Then, last Monday came.

I hate when things don't go according to plan..something I'm working on changing:)

Literally right before I left for work, I got a message from the daycare lady that she was going to take a full-time child instead of a part-time child. From a business point of view, I could completely understand–she was helping to provide for her family. I would’ve made the same decision if I were in her place. However, we freaked out. Justin was to begin work full-time in two days and we had no one to watch Rhys! And I had to go teach. I cried a bit in the car, but wiped my tears before entering the school. During my prep period, I searched and searched for a daycare, as Justin did the same at home. I received a message saying the lady would be willing to watch Rhys until we found another place. I felt a tiny bit better.
Then, when I got home, Justin gave me the bad news. The bank that hired Justin actually decided he wasn’t right for the job. They also didn’t like the fact that he was still working on one last online class. WHAT!?!?!?!?!?!?!?
We were devastated. We had been built up so much by this opportunity and now to have it taken away from us. It ruined our plan.  It was a severe blow to us. Justin had been searching for a job basically since the beginning of the year!!!

God's plans for your life far exceed the circumstances of your day. | Isaiah 46:4. Thank you Father, I couldn't make it without you

Last week was very hard for us. We did a lot of number crunching: my part-time salary will barely cover rent, and rent only. And, since I’m part-time, my insurance (and Rhys’s) ends with October. This was definitely worrisome. We had worked so hard to both graduate without debt and put a lot away into savings. And now, that would be all for naught.

So what do you do in a situation like this? 

Put all your faith in Christ and remember it is his plan that will happen. That is all you can do and what you should do. We have been very consistent with scripture reading and prayers.

One scripture comes to mind: Proverbs 3:5-6
Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.

Much of the pain in life comes from having a life plan that you've fallen in love with and when it doesn't work out, you become angry that you now have to pursue a new life plan. If you want to tame your inner demons, you must not become too attached to any particular life plan but remain open to there being an ever Better, Happier life plan.

 We are also trying our best to help ourselves (as I don’t believe the Lord will help you until you try all you can first): Justin is looking for any type of job, and we aren’t eating out anymore (it was real hard last night).Justin has already gotten quite a few interviews. We are hoping that if we do everything we can on our side, that Heavenly Father will help us and bless us with a job and perhaps even benefits.

And maybe, that bank job wasn’t right for Justin, Maybe the Lord has other things in mind for him and I. 

Our lease is up in January for this townhouse. I have no doubt Justin will get a job, but whether or not we can continue to afford all our monthly expenses is another story. We have backup plans, but we hope we don’t have to use them. However, if that is the Lord’s plan, we will.  Our main concern is doing whatever is right for Rhys and be able to provide for him and to trust in the Lord with all our hearts.
So, we are just asking, keep us in your prayers. Hopefully the Lord’s plan will bring us to where we feel good and secure.

Love this.  A great way to start out the new year and begin living life.  All things happen in Gods time.  Let him lead you and your life will never be the same and you will finally find peace.

Tayler is a work at home mom. She does free lance articles and dabbles in graphic design and virtual assisting for bloggers. She spent 3 years as a history and English teacher. Her passions are her husband, two children, history, reading, nature, and her Savior, Jesus Christ.

Why I’ll Miss Provo

As you may have found out, we finally found a place to move to! Today we will be moving to a 2 bedroom, beautiful townhome in Sandy. Justin will still be a student for another month and a half, so it’ll be a little bit of a commute for him (about 35 minutes), but it drops my commute to my Charter School from 50 minutes to 25 minutes! It’s also in a busy county, so it’ll probably be closer to wherever Justin ends up working. And, I’m so glad to be moving out of a college town and into a real town! I’ve lived in Provo since 2008 and have been out of college for two years, so it’s about time.

But, even though I’m so exciting to be leaving Provo and the college scene, I’ll still miss it. 6 years is a fourth of my life! Provo is a nice town and we’ve had plenty of adventures here. So, in no particular order, here are some major reasons we’ll miss Provo.

Note: Almost none of these pictures are mine. Being under strict orders not to go on “adventures” and not previously not owning a good camera, I couldn’t take my own pictures.I got almost all of the pictures off Google Images.

#1 BYU

Yes, we’ll be glad we’re done with college, but BYU is the main reason we came to Utah! We both only wanted to go to BYU–neither of us applied to any other college. Going to a college that is run by your religion and has your standards (and happens to be close to family) was very nice. The classes were super fun and interesting, and definitely a challenge. All the different activities on campus: movies, bowling, science museums, art museums, etc

#2 LaVell Edwards Stadium & the Marriott Center

I worked concessions for BYU’s sporting events while in college. Justin likes actually going to the football and basketball games. He’s always had an all sports pass and I thoroughly enjoyed my opportunity at being able to have one last year. Although the games are all broadcast on BYUTV and some on ESPN, we’ll miss actually attending the sporting events in person.

#3 Y Mountain

This mountain has a big “Y” on it that looks over BYU and Provo. It is the iconic hiking trail. It’s an unspoken rule that you have to hike it at least once a year and at least one of those hikes has to be in the middle of the night. It’s a pretty steep hike, so I haven’t hiked it since being pregnant, and will be sad that I won’t have the opportunity to do so this year. But, it’s always been fun to hike with friends. And the view, overlooking city and Utah Lake is breathtaking.

#4 Center Street

Provo is an old town, founded in 1849. Center Street was the main part of town and has been since then. It has that old, rustic town center feel to it. But, it also has a lot of new startups and holes-in-the-wall. It’s so fun to walk up and down, seeing the different little shops and new restaurants. Ill definitely miss it.

#5 University Mall, Provo Towne Center, and the Riverwoods

These were the malls in Provo (even though University Mall was technically in Orem, it’s still Provo). Justin and I spent so much time at these malls, and I would frequent them in the summer, Black Friday, and the day after Christmas. Of course, each city is going to have their own malls, but there were specific places I enjoyed about each of these. University Mall had Papaya and Wet Seal, my two favorite places to buy clearance clothes. Provo Towne Center is where I saw the last Harry Potter movie at the midnight releasing, and it has this tempura dessert shop–delicious! The Riverwoods is a beautiful, outdoor mall and was always fun to explore.

#6 Food Truck Roundup

Provo is definitely the place to be with food trucks and startups. So, my Welsh professor and his sons, who own a building they lease to start-up companies decided to work with the different food trucks in the area so that they gather every Thursday to sell their food. Justin and I have gone once a month and love the food every time we go. As far as we know, there isn’t anything like this in Salt Lake County.

#7 Provo River Trail and Provo Canyon

The Provo Canyon has a lot of National Parks in it. We have explored it many times and I have hiked the infamous Bridal Veil Falls…by hike, I mean I climbed up the falls. Provo River runs through the canyon, then winds all through Orem and Provo. Trails follow it and I loved biking these during the summer evenings and sitting next to the river–it reminded me of Virginia.

#8 Married Student LDS Congregations and the Provo Temples

We will be moving from a married student congregation to a normal congregation. But, what is nice about married student congregations is everyone is in the same situation as you–young, just married, still in school, poor, and just starting families and jobs. We have also made very good friends in this congregation and will be sad to leave them.
Also, we lived 5 minutes away from the Provo Temple, as well as 5 minutes away from the currently-being-constructed Provo Town Center Temple. It has been a blessing to be so close to such holy places.

#9 7 Peaks Water Park

This was such a fun water park! Wave pool, lazy river, and intense water slides! The previous two summers, Justin and I spent a lot of time at these water parks. We were able to bike there, we lived so close! We had season passes which also allowed us to get into some BYU and University of Utah sporting events, as well as Real Salt Lake soccer games, as well as other discounts at other fun places throughout Utah. So, it’ll be sad to leave it and find another water park to take its place.
#10 Farmer’s Markets

Provo hosts a huge Farmer’s Market every Saturday. BYU Concessions even hosted their own every Thursday in the fall. I loved going to these, sampling free food, buying huge and delicious produce and homemade bakery products, and buying cute crafts. I will have to search for another Farmer’s Market as big and diverse as Provo’s.
We’re not moving too far away from Provo, but it’ll be about half an hour away and besides Justin finishing school, there really isn’t any other reason to go back down. We are graduating from college life and entering adult life. So, Provo, thank you for all the memories. We will never forget you!

Tayler is a work at home mom. She does free lance articles and dabbles in graphic design and virtual assisting for bloggers. She spent 3 years as a history and English teacher. Her passions are her husband, two children, history, reading, nature, and her Savior, Jesus Christ.