I like to have a little time over each summer to work on projects – decluttering and cleaning the house; homeschooling and planning for school in the fall; routines and habits that need to be established; or sometimes something even bigger and more life-changing. You can see the last summer parenting project that I asked readers to pick up on here in 2010: http://theparentingpassageway.com/2010/06/07/a-summer-parenting-project-for-you/
This year, I have two separate threads of projects I am hopeful that mothers will want to be a part of and participate in this summer.
One is the call for greater self-care and health. Mothers everywhere, often who have small children for very long hours with no extended family to help, need encouragement to take care of themselves. It pains me to see mothers who are not taking care of themselves, because I love mothers and their children everywhere. We all know we can take better care of our children, our homes, our spouses, our world with a more patient, more even- keeled demeanor, with more energy if we can get enough sleep, eat healthier and MOVE our bodies. Our bodies were designed for a lot of movement. One study cited in the book, “State of Slim: Fix Your Metabolism and Drop 20 Pounds in 8 Weeks on the Colorado Diet” by James Hill, PhD and Holly Wyatt, MD states:
People in Amish communities live lifestyles that resemble a typical American’s lifestyle in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. They walk most places or drive horse and buggies and farm in a way that relies on human power. The Amish eat a diet very much like the one most people ate 100 years ago – meat, potatoes, homegrown vegetables, and homemade pies and other baked goods. It’s obviously not a low-calorie diet, yet obesity rates in these communities are extraordinarily low: zero for men and just 4 percent for women.
What’s the Amish secret? It’s their active lifestyles. Dr. David Basset Jr. at the University of Tennessee found that in a typical day, the Amish men will walk an average of 18,000 steps (about 8 miles), while Amish women get 14,000 steps (more than 6 miles).
If you decide to work on your self-care this summer and write about it on your blog, please be sure to let me know so I can link to your blog posts every Monday for “Summer Project Monday”. I recommend the above book as a great place to start, and it should be readily available at your local library.
The second area many mothers I know are committing to work on include getting organized. The most recent book I have read on this subject, which was excellent, was Barbara Reich’s “Secrets of an Organized Mom.” When we parent, or parent and homeschool, we are combining our parenting with making and taking care of a home on a physical and emotional level. De-cluttering and organizing is such a huge part of that! I am such a visual person and I have a hard time focusing if my house is cluttered. I have used Flylady for years, and it really does help me with taking care of my home. If you decide to de-clutter and organize this summer, and you write a blog, please let me know so I can link to your blog posts every Monday for “Summer Project Monday.”
Lots of love,