The Space Between

For the women trying to live life in the space between it all.

Tag Archives: two two and under

Why self-care is so important.


Mom. Mommy. Mother. Momma. Madre. Mum. Mama. Mummy. So many titles for one extraordinary person.

Moms put everyone before themselves. There’s a running joke lately that talks about how many times moms have to reheat their cup of coffee because they’re too busy to drink it or they forget about it. I even saw something the other day where a mom said she just prefers it cold now – which for me, ironically, is now true.


It’s currently 3:20pm and I’m sitting on the floor with my 5 month old next to me as I continually bounce her in the bouncer in hopes that she’ll fall asleep for the first time today. She won’t. But I’m trying anyways. I stop to type and she rings out again so I start bouncing again. The cycle continues. She’s been fed, changed, I gave her gripe water and Tylenol for her mean old teeth, all that’s left to do is sleep. But she won’t. As I sit with my naked face because I didn’t have time to put on makeup today and my “mom bun,” I look down at my unshaven legs and my leftover pink nail polish from my last pedicure that was in October of last year. Wow. I try to think of the last time I had a hair cut or color as my grays are growing with a vengeance. I can’t remember. I was pregnant at the time and my baby is now 5 months old. Yikes.

Self-care. It’s a phrase we hear a lot but do we do it a lot? I sure don’t. I tell my husband all the time I want to do this or that but I never get it done. I’m always so busy chasing my toddler or nursing the baby. I’ve “needed a hair cut” for the past few months. I even messaged a friend about getting in to get my hair done but I never followed through. Why do we always put ourselves last? As moms, we have to wear so many hats but sometimes I think we forget that we were a person before we were a mom. I was Alli long before I was Brandon’s wife or Quinn and Audrey’s mom. You may think this sounds selfish and that’s the stigma I’m trying to break. It’s not selfish to take care of yourself. You can’t pour into others if your cup isn’t full. I always think of the “you have to put your oxygen mask on before helping others if the plane is going down” analogy. Have you ever tried to pour water from an empty cup? It doesn’t work very well.

Self-care doesn’t have to be a 7 hour trip to the spa or a mani/pedi or anything fancy. It can be waking up 15 minutes before your kids and drinking your coffee hot and scrolling through Facebook or reading your Bible. It can be as simple as ordering your favorite takeout or running through and grabbing a coffee. It can be as simple as doing a movie day so you can relax with your sweet kiddos. Take a break. Take a shower. Take 15 minutes for yourself every day. You deserve it. You’re worth it.

You pushed my buttons today.


Toddler moms. HOW DO YOU DO IT. Man, oh man. I’m the mom of a 2.5 year old and a 5 month old. Two kids, two and under. Whew. I end my days questioning everything. Did I handle that situation correctly? Did I love them enough? Did they get my best self or just my leftovers? Was I patient enough?

 Why is being a mom so hard sometimes? Why do we question ourselves so much? My sweet and sassy toddler got in my face today, crinkled up her nose and said, “No momma!!!!” My emotions went from upset to angry to sad to dumbfounded. Oh, Audrey. You pushed my buttons today. I’m sitting, nursing Quinn and Audrey walks up to me. IMG_6097“Fruit snacks and water,” she demands. So I ask, “Can mommy have a hug?” “FRUIT SNACKS AND WATER!” she yells then runs away. OKAY. You pushed my buttons today. We pull into the garage, I go around to the driver’s side to get Audrey out. “DADDY GET ME!” Alrighty. You pushed my buttons today. “Audrey, I love you.” “No say I yuv you!” Sigh. You pushed my buttons today. And it continues. And yet somehow, at the same time, she has the sweetest heart of any toddler I’ve ever met. Tonight, we sang our bedtime songs and we get ready to pray so we ask Audrey if she’d like to pray. “God, thank you for mommy and daddy. Thank you for Kinnie. Thank you for our food. Thank you for cheese.” She peeks open one of her eyes, “What else?” she whispers. “And thank you for our blessings.” I’m constantly in awe of her amazing heart.


IMG_8628I find myself frustrated on a daily basis simply because I’m a strong-willed momma raising a strong-willed toddler. But days like today when she snuggles into momma and falls asleep while I rock her, I realize I must be doing something right. Days like today when her sister is crying, and she lays down next to her and rubs her head and tells her everything will be okay, I realize that in the midst of the hard, daily battles she makes my life complete. She pushes my buttons daily but she’s constantly pushing me to be better and she doesn’t even know it. She’s helped make me the person I am. Her sweet kindness and tender heart inspires me daily. She makes me a better person.

I think we go into parenthood thinking we do all the raising but in so many ways, we do a lot of the growing. I never thought I’d look at my 2.5 year old daughter and see the person I want to be. Someone who prays for others. Someone who thanks the Lord for cheese. Someone who consoles her sister instead of being jealous of the attention she requires. Someone who loves so incredibly well. I pray that she never loses that sweet and tender spirit. And I pray that she never stops teaching me how to love others and have that sweet child-like faith. I pray that she never stops pushing my buttons because I don’t ever want her to lose her fire – even though that fire may leave me grumbling to myself most days. I pray that she turns this world upside down and continues to love unconditionally. I pray that someday she realizes that she can change the world.

Poop in the Tub


23658923_10159604866015483_1742143518331014243_nThe other night, my husband and I were getting ready for bed. I told him to go ahead without me because I had to pee. I walk into the bathroom and…disaster. Ugh. I forgot to clean up after bath time. I quickly grab the dirty diapers and dirty clothes strewn across the floor, wring out the wash cloths in the tub and pick up the bath seat. There was poop under it. Poop. I did that thing where you blink really hard trying to make sure you’re seeing what you’re actually seeing. I was. Poop. In the tub. I was so confused. Did Quinn poop in the tub? No, I would’ve seen it. Did Audrey maybe poop in her diaper and I didn’t notice? No, she would’ve said something. Did one of the dogs climb into the bath tub, lift up the bath seat, poop under it then put it back down? Probably. Just kidding, nope. I sat there confused and trying to make it make sense in my head how I could’ve spent 20 minutes giving my girls a bath and not notice that one of them pooped. Neither one of them had any on them when I got them ready for bed. There’s no logical explanation.

There’s a huge stigma in todays society that moms, wives and women in general should have it all together. We’re expected to cook, clean, keep the kids entertained, take care of ourselves, keep our husbands entertained, take care of our homes and families and apparently keep poop out of the tub all while keeping a smile on our face and looking seemingly perfect. We don’t ask for help because we’re either too stubborn or we’re afraid we’ll be judged. We live in a really tolerant society but so judgmental at the same time. It’s funny, isn’t it? Or maybe sad is a better word. Why is it SO easy to judge other moms? McDonald’s everyday? Bad mom. Work outside of the home? Bad mom. Unexplainable poop in the tub? Bad mom. Screen time? Bad mom. Formula feeding? Bad mom. Bad mom. Bad mom. No, no, no. NO. I have yet to meet one mom who has it all together. I decided a long time ago to embrace my inner bad mom. I used to be afraid to let people see I didn’t have it all together. I’m not afraid anymore. I don’t have it all together. I don’t know anyone who does. I’ve done all of those typical “bad mom” things. Yep. All of them! No shame. It’s no wonder postpartum depression and anxiety are so prevalent in our society. It’s impossible to be a mom nowadays.

Being a mom is so unbelievably hard. Sometimes it might feel impossible. You may feel tired, stressed, judged, annoyed, angry and a lot of other emotions. On your very hardest days – the days you think you’ve won the award for Worst Mom of the Year, just remember – I found poop in my bath tub and I still don’t know why, how or when it got there. You’ve got this.