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the status update

Lessons. This year has been fulllllll of lessons. Some I needed to learn and some I didn’t know I needed to learn, but I am walking away a much more intentional person than I was before February 2012.

One of the things my dear, sweet, handful of a boy, Everett has taught me is a little thing called “prioritizing.” I was not so great before I had him. I was overextended, over committed and convinced I could do it all. There is nothing like a high-maintenance baby to teach you a little lesson about what really matters in life. Top of that list (behind feeding children): sleep. Sleep or laundry? SLEEP. Sleep or clean floors? SLEEP. Sleep or blogging? SLEEEEP!

& that is why this blog has been neglected. I have so many posts I have started, so many things I want to share but at the end of the day the decision I make about my smidge of free time is either to do a project, or write about doing a project. & I sure cannot write about projects that I don’t do, so most often they are left on my hard drive. My computer and I have just not been friends.

image by Nicole Dina Photography

But you all keep coming here. Even for my personal project 52. Or maybe it’s my monthly-ish post about something I really want to share. But you are still here. (& I am so glad you are) but I am hitting the place that I have seen many blogging friends hit. I came to grips with giving up business for motherhood a couple years ago-and have happily been a MWAC ever since. But this blog filled my heart with what I needed beyond motherhood. But right now, it feels forced. It does not feel like the outlet is always has, because I cannot figure out how to be the mother/crafter/cook/wife/homemaker I want to be, and still have time to share here too.

If you’ve been reading this for awhile, you know that I manage this household alone about 95% of the time. My husband is a surgery resident physician, in a very demanding program. We see him for just a few minutes a day on work days, and hopefully on his four days off per month, if we’re lucky. We are almost five years into this training schedule (one more to go), but he has recently decided to further specialize and will be continuing on to a three year fellowship that will include even more demanding work hours than he has right now. This has been a huge decision for our family–and seeing my husband so passionate about his future, and literally giving people another chance at life, is really pretty neat. It’s rare to meet a person who gets to do what they love, especially someone who chooses a profession that requires 13 years of post graduate training (you read that right). I have no help (nor family close by) and I don’t want help. My floors are mine to clean. My children are mine to care for. My garden is mine to tend to. But I cannot do it all. Especially on my own.

So I have to give myself peace of mind right now and promise to take care of me, my babies, my own family. I get emails daily about advertising on this blog and opportunities–amazing opportunities–that I just can’t say yes to. This blog is an outlet, not a business. & that is by choice. I have a huge marketing plan for The stylebabyLOG, but it’s on the back burner. I cannot do it all.

I am not saying goodbye to blogging, but I am relieving myself, publicly, of the pressure to write consistently. I will not be doing project 52 next year. I will write when I am moved to. I will write when it brings me joy, not stress. I will share what I can, and in the meantime, you can catch snippets on Instagram. I cannot do it all.

image by Nicole Dina Photography

There has been nothing more freeing to me than not turning on my computer until after my babies are in bed. Not checking email a zillion times a day. Not being glued to my phone. Technology is a blessing, but also a really huge curse. It is so hard to remain present and engaged with the life in front of us instead of the virtual reality that we create for ourselves behind our computer or iphone. I found this ecard and it really hit me hard, and has been on my brain since I saw it. It socked me in the gut.

 

So I am signing off through the end of the year, (I will finish out project 52,) and I’m not sure when I will be back next year. I am going to soak in my babies. Enjoy them and the magic that is Christmas. I will never have a baby again, and I don’t want to take that lightly. Being a mother has always been at the tippy top of my list of things I want to be. Everything else is icing on the cake.

I hope you will understand. & I hope you take some time to reflect upon your reality–the virtual and the in-front-of-your-face. Coffee dates and lunch dates are so much more fulfilling to me than sitting behind a computer and hitting refresh. refresh. refresh. There is a whole world right outside my office that brings greater joy than interactions from behind a keyboard. I love what this blog is and what you all bring to this supportive community, and it will always be here. But for now, I am choosing to just let it be.

May your holidays be Merry & Bright!

xoxo,

shawna

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  • M-C - Sad to see you go, but happy at the same time :’)ReplyCancel

  • Katie - Go you! Have a Merry Christmas! And we will see ya when we see ya. Well I follow you on Instagram so.. :)ReplyCancel

  • Kate Brough - GOOD. FOR. YOU. It is such a tough balance to strike (being a mom and anything else). You have always inspired me to follow my intuition, and to do what is right for ME and MY family. Good for you. I will still be a loyal reader, and will always read when you post…ReplyCancel

  • Crystal - Best to you, Shawna, while you soak in all the lovely around you. Your blog is a wonderful little bright spot on my internet and I’ll look so forward to seeing you around! Your ability to prioritize what’s right for you and your family and stick to it is humbling. Happy Holidays, web friend :)ReplyCancel

  • Kristine Neeley - Right now, I’m just thanking God that about a year and a half ago when googling “how in the world do you cloth diaper?” (or something like that) I ended up on your blog. And that somewhere along the way of IG, we crossed paths, and I consider you a friend. Weird, maybe, but I love your heart – your drive – your creativity – and I’m so grateful for how you have, without even knowing it, helped me flex all of those same creative muscles within motherhood instead of feeling like they had to be separate. Knowing that I could diaper as an art, prepare a nursery as an art, cook as an art, care for my body as an art, love my sweet baby through her difficulties as an art, pretty my home as an art… I’ve never been more okay with the slowness and uncertainty of my business’ future. I’m just happy to know you Shawna. Thank you for sharing your life and loves in whatever venue that may be whenever you choose to do so.ReplyCancel

  • Kate - Good for you! Wishing you many smiles and much happiness in the coming year!ReplyCancel

  • alison - You’ve always been a source of inspiration for many, this post is no different. You will never regret the decision to be with your littles. It goes by far too quickly. Enjoy your holiday preparations and time with your family.ReplyCancel

  • marie - thank you for your inspiration! [in so many ways!]ReplyCancel

  • Stephanie - I love reading your blog Shawna, but massively appreciate what a huge amount of time it takes up. Enjoy your time with your family and we will enjoy your snippets as and when they appear. Merry Christmas and thank you for all your inspiration xReplyCancel

  • Beth - Holy cats. are you saying you might able to get together for coffee! :DReplyCancel

  • Kristin - Thank you for this post! I have only been reading your blog for a little while but this post is really touching. I am a new mom to a 9 month old baby boy. Sometimes I look back at my life before baby and I kind of miss it BUT like you said, being a mom was on the top of my list of things to do in life and the rest is definitely just icing on the cake. Great sentiment! Thank you! Blessings and prayers to your family this holiday season!ReplyCancel

  • Sara - Yay for you! I just deleted my facebook & blogspot accounts in November because of how much it distracted me and took away from me being in the moment with my son. I love your blog so much, but I am even more happy to see other moms prioritize their families over the internet.
    I come here all the time for a recipe or to reread old articles. Your one on Loss & Hope continues to carry me (just had my second miscarriage) & your success gives me hope. Thank-you.ReplyCancel

  • Shannel - I could say so much, but all I’ll say is good for you!ReplyCancel

  • Shantel - Love this post! I just want to say thanks for being an inspiration to all of us on what is most important in this life! Motherhood is definitely #1! What we do in the home is far more important than anything else we will ever do! “No other success can compensate for failure in the home.” –David O. McKay. Thanks for your example!ReplyCancel

  • Sara - I know that I am one of many, but I am thankful that I found you when I did. The information on motherhood was so very helpful as I welcomed my daughter in january this past year! You are a role model and an inspiration to so many. The styleberryblog, baby food prep, babywise, ergo, radian AND soothies (much needed in those early days) to name a few! Enjoy those babies mama!!ReplyCancel

  • Ann - Your blog and presence have been a great help (and fun) for me, and so is this–your choosing what’s right for you and your family, and sharing that. Thank you, and lots of blessings on the time with your little ones.ReplyCancel

  • Aja - Good for you! Such a brave thing in this crazy, online frenzy we live in. I’m honestly a little jealous of your resolve! And inspired to consider my own decisions online/away from my daughter. It’s been on my mind a lot lately. Good luck to you and your sweet family!ReplyCancel

  • April M - Yay you! I don’t know you {although my mom gets her hair done with Nowlin and convinced me to go see him–so when you posted the discount…I drove down from Austin-so I feel like I do} but you have helped in more ways you can imagine. I am sure it was hard to make this decision but know that you have helped {and will continue to} EXACTLY who you were/are suppose to. Your inspiration will continue even if you aren’t blogging. I know personally your posts were EXACTLY what I needed to read 18 months ago when I had MY 2nd little one….I can’t tell you countless times when I got my butt up and just DID IT after reading a post. And when my daughter was 6 months I was so inspired, I started a blog for teachers. Now almost a year later, I have a successful blog and sell resources for teachers/moms but most importantly, you helped me buy some time with my little ones…I am a WAHM now and I get this amazing time with them and frankly, if I hadn’t found your blog, I’m not really sure I would be home. You are so blessed to be able to be a SAHM {all the time}. Like you said, the blog will always be here..but the kids…they grow…they won’t always be little. Keep taking pics of all you do…one day you will be able to come back here and tell us all about it. {and BTW there is no shame in getting a housecleaner–even if you are home full time}–it takes a village! Congrats!ReplyCancel

  • Nicole Dyk - i hope the next three years bring you “closer” to coffee dates with me, xoxox. call me this week!

    nicReplyCancel

  • Kari - I have never commented on a blog before, but feel compelled to write after your last post. I am the daughter of a surgeon and was mostly with my mother growing up, while my dad was working long hours. I have so much admiration for what my mother went through after having my own daughter, she is amazing and you are too. Your children will grow up hearing many accolades for their father, but they will know who the real hero is. A great surgeon with a family has an even greater wife at home.ReplyCancel

  • Traci - I will truely miss you blogging! Yours is one of the only few I regularly check. I have loved your honesty about life and babies and I love that you can be real with yourself now! You are an amazing mom to step back and see what your family needs right here and now. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and your family with us! Enjoy this break, for however long it might be!ReplyCancel

  • Tara - Awesome decision! I came across your blog a few months ago when I was just starting out cloth diapering my third child and did some google searches and I came across your blog. I am convinced that if we ever met we would be great friends. Hope your New Year is wonderful and a little less stressful!ReplyCancel

  • Rachel M. - I have loved your blog and will miss it…but I applaud you for doing what is best for you and your family!

    Just wondering…do you have a public instagram account and did I miss your user name? I’ve tried searching styleberry and styleberry photo and am not finding you. would love to follow you!ReplyCancel

  • Vandana M Khemka - Ah I will miss you :) …I love your space and will eagerly wait for your lovely ..true to heart moments :) …life is all about priortising!!!…I also started crafting work with blogging and that eats pretty much all my time so i started blogging as in when I can without any pressures :)…

    Lotsa love to yr kids …they are super adorable.

    much love

    VandanaReplyCancel

  • project 52 | one » quietfootsteps - […] inspired me to do this project last year isn’t doing it this year.  You can find out why here and […]ReplyCancel

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