February 14, 2012

Don't Forget to Love Yourself

“To love oneself is the beginning of a life-long romance.”
- Oscar Wilde

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The dishes are all put away from our pink chocolate chip pancakes and heart shaped watermelon breakfast.  The cards have been opened and are displayed on the family room mantle.  Valentines have been created for all of Big C’s school friends and are stored in his Star Wars themed Valentines box.  When all of the hustle and bustle had finally died down, I was able to have a moment and really think about today's holiday.

I know we have all heard it before….put yourself first…make time for yourself.  I always just smile when people tell me that and nod my head.  I know that it is true, but lets be honest; more often then not the day gets ahead of us with kids, cooking, cleaning, work etc.  Sometimes by the end of the day, I count time for myself as going to sleep.  My hat goes off to all of the full-time working mothers out there.  I lived your life for such a long time. Trying to balance between being a good employee and also the best wife and mother everyday is comparable to constantly being on a hamster wheel.  You feel like you never really get ahead, but one slip up and you fall way behind.

I used to think that loving yourself meant taking a big spa vacation with your friends, or getting away from it all with your spouse.  Don’t get me wrong, those are all great ideas, but I don’t have the opportunities to do that very often.  And was that truly loving myself?  Since going down this path of Throwback Road I have come to learn that it is so much simpler.

For me, loving myself means to make sure that I am constantly cultivating my spirit, mind, and body.  Taking quiet moments during the day for prayer and reflection help to refresh my spirit.  My continuous path of learning to homestead and become more self-sufficient has really engaged my mind.  Learning to cook “real” food, sourcing local organic meat and produce, and making myself sweat has strengthened my body. 

One of the best things that Mr. G and I did a couple years back was build a garage gym.  We are not really the types of people that subscribe to the whole big box gym movement.  Why pay someone else to work our bodies, when we can throw around some weights, push each other, and create a fun activity for our whole family.  This past year has been tough for us between Little C and new jobs, but things have slowed down and we have enjoyed getting back into our routine. 
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We love having our gym in the garage because we keep the door open and enjoy the fresh Colorado air.  You would be surprised how cool it stays in the summer and, with a little heater, it stay fairly warm in the winter.  I love having easy access to the street for a quick sprint!
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As you can see there is not any fancy equipment here.  A rower, kettle bells, weights, pull-up bars, and some medicine balls.  Our goal is for strength and overall health.  Strength helps us with chores around the house, playing with our boys, gardening, and hopefully one day to help us build our dream home.  Plus, we like our boys to see their parents using their bodies in a positive way.
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Mr. G and I are not workout fanatics, but we realize if we want to be the best possible people we can be, we have to continue to challenge our spirit, mind, and body.  I also love strapping Little C in my baby backpack and going for long hikes.  Of course, come spring most of my exercise will be creating my new garden!  I usually try to fit in exercising right after I drop Big C off at school.  Little C always falls asleep in the car and I let him nap with the window down while I do my thing in the back of the garage….don’t worry I turn the car off and the garage door is open.  On the weekends, we do family workouts ( which are more like big games) to get Big C involved.
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So on this day, where we all are expressing love for one another, make sure to also love yourself.  If that means going for a walk, having a cup of tea, or turn on some great music and dance while cooking, do whatever makes you happy.  Enjoy your day and also remember that calories do not count on Valentines day.

What have you done lately to love yourself?


  1. oh i love myself! though my body is a little out of shape afte r moving and not going to a gym anymore... so i have started yoga and am really enjoying it. it's a more intense fit yoga so i am sore after and i love it! :) and i love to create, decorate, and make this house our home.... i like to read, listen to music i like...and take with friends, kid-free... and take time with the kids to do fun stuff... all these things make me happy and are how i love myself.