Finish the Year Strong: Family Tips from Local Moms
Today’s blog comes to you from Lindy Mullen of Jacksonville Mom, a locally focused parenting website written by moms, for moms. Lindy is the mom of two Florida Prepaid kids. As we reach the final stretch of this challenging and unprecedented year, we could not think of a better source of perspective and inspiration!
The year of the unexpected! For most families, this year has been unlike any other. There were days when time flew by, and other days when time stood still. There were days when we had it all together, accomplishing all the things on the to-do list at home and for the outside world, and days when the DIY crafts were a fail and we let our children have more screen time than we would like to admit. The emotions ran high(er) than normal, we were exhausted and may have shed a tear, waiting for bedtime — only to wake up and do it all over again. We also enjoyed extra giggles and relished the extra time with our kids and the slower pace of the world. We also may have spent more time apart from those we love, yet felt closer than ever in our connections.
As we close out this year, it still looks different for many of us. School is back in session and whether your family is learning in-person or virtually, we realize with a new appreciation how important connection and education is for our families and for our kids to learn, socialize, and grow. We entered the school year excited, nervous, and even relieved. And now as we are hitting the groove of the day-to-day and heading into fall and the holiday season, we are already looking ahead to a new year and all the things to come. October just might be the new January!
But, we must “stay the course” because this unprecedented time isn’t over yet! Moms (and dads!) are usually good at pulling things off, but with the emotional drain taking its toll more than usual, we might need a little help to keep plugging along with smiling faces. We still need to be ready for the curveballs that this year may bring and the leaves of change that are ever-falling.
Here are a few tips, as moms ourselves, to help your family finish the year strong! The best just might be yet to come.
- Connections are Key: Did your kids enjoy video chats with Grandma, or did you enjoy reconnecting with your college besties? Did you have backyard chats with your neighbors and learned you have new things in common? Are you sending in a special treat to those teachers we love to make them feel appreciated all year long? Make notes of those things you enjoyed and keep the intentional connections going.
- Pace Yourself: As we enter back into a more normal life, remember to take things one at a time. Maybe you don’t jump back into the carpool grind and all the activities you committed your family to previously. Let’s be picky (it’s okay!), savor those moments of giggles and find a slower place when the days allow.
- Map Out to Maintain: Did you adjust your goals for your family as things changed throughout the year? Did all the change leave you with a fresh perspective, making you realize things you could live without and what you wish for your family for the future? Make a “map” or plan as a family that reflects these new goals. This is a great way to finish the year feeling accomplished.
- Celebrate the Successes: Even though times may have felt different, there are still successes to celebrate! Spend an evening revisiting these precious moments and talking about them with your family. Celebrate with a special treat and let one another know how proud you are of each other.
We look toward the future with a fresh perspective and with new goals big and small for our families and yours!
About Jacksonville Mom: Jacksonville Mom is a locally focused parenting website written by moms, for moms. Passionate about parenting and our community, Jacksonville Mom strives to connect area moms to relevant resources, local businesses, can’t-miss happenings, and most of all — each other! Founded in October 2012 by two local moms, Jacksonville Mom has quickly become the city’s largest parenting resource. Comprised of a diverse team of 30+ local moms and writers, we aim to share our own personal experiences, creative ideas, useful tips, local businesses, and relevant products that may interest you and your kids. Because after all, while you are an amazing mom, you are still in essence, YOU — with your own thoughts, opinions, interests, and ideas.