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Here's why I'm a SAHM—even with my kids in school

Raising my kids is the most important thing I could ever do.

Here's why I'm a SAHM—even with my kids in school

For as long as there are stay-at-home moms, there will be moms that question that decision.

I had to be a stay-at-home mom.

I still remember it, the feel of it, the heartbreak of it. We were living in Alaska at the time and after work one day I headed off to pick my girls up from daycare. As we stood by the door chatting and talking about the day, the sitter handed me my sweet baby, Grace. As our conversation went on, Gracie reached back out of my arms for the babysitter. She reached back like that was where she was comfortable, like that was where she belonged... like that was her mama. And I was just a stranger passing through. That moment forever sealed itself into my story.

On the drive home, my babies in the back seat. I cried. That was my baby. I'm her mama. I knew at that moment I had to be a stay-at-home mom. After the sting of it wore off, I started planning. If I worked X amount of overtime for X amount of hours for X number of months we could pay off the car. I spent the rest of the evening with my mind spinning. Surprisingly, it wasn't a difficult conversation to have with Lou. There was no push-back. It was decided, when we left Alaska (we're a military family) I would officially be a stay-at-home mom.

And a stay-at-home mom I was. My babies were ages one and two—they needed me. We bought our first house, the house needed me. I started couponing to help out however I could. All said and done, we were fine. There was so much to be done. School enrollments, drop-offs, pickups, potty training, home decor... the list was endless.

But it seems that while I was cleaning the bathroom, the world had moved on.

Once the girls were in school full-time, I found myself wondering what I should really be doing all day. I plan meals, run errands, bring lunch to my husband when he can't get away... So what? How did I get to the point where what I do seems so unimportant? Did my importance boil down to whether or not I had hand soap in the house? And yes, one day when my husband asked me for soap, I cried.

I briefly thought about returning to the workforce, however, I was quickly hit with the realization that the band played on and whatever I could bring to anyone's table was just irrelevant. How can that be an example to anyone?

I encourage my girls to be something, to do something, and to rely on only themselves. When they say they want to be like mommy and stay home to take care of their family, I don't feel the sense of pride that I think I'm supposed to feel and it makes me sad. I don't want them to ever wonder if they are enough. I don't want them to ever feel as though the world has moved on. I want them to "do" and "be" so that if someone ever tries to pull the rug out from under them, they will land on their feet.

My mother raised my sister and me to be women who don't have to stay (something that has proven priceless once in my life already). I want the same for my girls. I struggled to reconcile how I can "be" for myself and still be there for them.
Raising my kids is the most important thing I could ever do.

After some serious soul searching I realized that what I am doing is so much more. I am there to hold my babies when they are sick or there to hold them just because. I get to spend the time with my children so many other parents long for with their own. Still, with all the time I am given, I find myself wondering where it all goes, and why so fast.

Being present is important, but so is being an example. I have shown my girls how to be kind and empathetic towards others. I have shown them how to keep a home, not just a house. I have even shown them how to make a chicken dinner on their own. Now, as they grow older, I want to show them what being proud of yourself looks like, and selfishly, a little part of me wants them to be proud of their mom.

Having something beyond motherhood is good (for everyone).

I decided to become a freelance writer and blogger. It's the perfect storm, really. I could write about the things I love and maybe help others in the process. I am able to work on my terms, and still be available for my kids and my husband when they need me. Writing, researching, and blogging have given me a newfound purpose. I am excited to work on my blog every day and I go to bed every night unable to fall asleep because my mind is spinning with new ideas. I have something to pour my creativity into, something that is mine. I found my happy medium.

And as I sit here writing this article my daughters are sitting at the table with me... working on their own "blogs."

My cup runneth over.

Originally posted on Her View From Home.

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Create a school-ready capsule wardrobe for your kids

Dress for success whether virtual learning or in the classroom!

Tina Meeks

Going "back to school" this year may be less of a literal statement than in years past—but there is just as much reason for your kids to celebrate moving on to new grades. Just like in every new school year, a big part of the fun is refreshing your kids' wardrobe with clothes that allow them to express themselves.

Even if finding back to school clothes this year doesn't include a trip to the mall, you can still make an event of it by shopping H&M's kids collection from your computer. Pull up another chair for your shopping buddy and get the cart started with these fave capsule wardrobe options we've already scouted.

Here are our favorite picks:

A t-shirt made for play

H&M t-shirt

Call them essentials, not basics. A graphic t-shirt aces the test when it comes to being perfect for school. And because your little student will probably want to wear something that expresses their personal style as often as possible, it's great to know the shirts can stand up to school time, playtime, downtime and everything in between!

$4.99

Dressed-up casual shorts for total comfort

H&M boy shorts

Whether pulling up a chair for a virtual meeting with the class or heading back to the school for in-person learning, some comfortable, yet stylish, shorts will help your kid focus on the real tasks at hand: learning—and having fun while doing it!

$19.99

Layers for when seasons change

H&M sweatshirt

When it comes to feeling comfortable at school, layers are the MVPs. Whether the AC is blasting or the day started off cool and is warming up quickly, having a unique sweatshirt to shed or add will help your kid look cool while staying warm.

$9.99

A bit of flair with distressed denim

H&M distressed jeans

A school staple for generations, denim is both classic and continually fashionable with updates like distressing and new wash colors. If you're shopping online for jeans this year, take note of H&M's generous return policy—your kids can try on the orders at home and return anything that doesn't fit without a trip to the store.

$24.99

A fashion statement piece

H&M girls skirt

What's better than expressing yourself through a stylish outfit when school is back in session? Still feeling perfectly comfortable and ready to tackle anything the day holds while looking so good. With so many fashion-forward looks available at budget-friendly prices, H&M's children's collection means every kid can find an outfit that speaks to them.

$14.99

Some comfy kicks

H&M boys shoes

A sure way to put a little pep in your child's step this year, cool and cozy shoes are a staple on all back-to-school shopping lists for good reason. (Plus, it's fun to compare them to last year's shoes to see how much your kid has grown!)

$19.99

Anything-but-basic blouses

H&M girls blouse

Whether in the classroom or showing up for a video call with the class, a styling blouse or button-down shirt is a great way for your student to comfortably dress up the day. Better yet? Style doesn't have to come at the expense of comfort with so many made-to-move tops designed just for kids.

$14.99

A shirt ready to go whatever the day holds

H&M boys shirt

With "going to school" meaning anything from showing up in the classroom to doing a virtual session, it's important to have clothes that are perfect for anything the day holds. A classic, cotton shirt with a fashion-forward design is a great way to keep your student feeling ready to start the year with an A+ attitude.

$9.99

This article was sponsored by H&M. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.

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