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Finding Balance + Being Present

Boys on the beach

Happy Friday friends!! Today is the last day of school for my boys and it feels bittersweet. It has been a great year and although I do know all good things must come to an end, I guess a part of me doesn’t want to fully recognize that they are growing up and getting bigger. It’s all going by too fast. I am trying to hold on so tight to this time together because I want to always remember the pure joy I feel. I have written so often how important it is for me to “be present” because I know from the personal experience of loss that these small moments of time are such a gift.

I have been struggling with something and have tried hard over the last few months to find balance with it. Keep in mind that when you are a blogger you are working at different times of the day and social media is a very large part of the equation.  I know that, I get that. Well one evening a few months back my boys and I were outside in the backyard. They were playing soccer and I was watching. I realized I needed to post something on SM. So I started to write and became immersed in my phone. All of a sudden I heard the sweetest laughs coming from the other side of the yard and Shane said, “mom did you see that?” a sudden wave of guilt and sadness came over me. I said “no, I missed it bud, I am sorry” they both stopped laughing and looked at me with disappointment. I know I can’t be there to see everything, all the time but I guess the thing that struck me was that I was there and made a choice. I made a choice to not look up and be in the moment with them. That realization hit me hard. That post didn’t really matter (at that time) but that moment with them did. I want to be looking up, not down and being all in for these amazing little pieces of time.

So… I decided to set boundaries with blogging and how it relates to social media. When they come home it’s their time, unless they are at an activity, then I have more flexibility. I have voluntarily chose to be a silent presence whenever I can on my personal accounts because I would rather be living the moment then writing about it. I don’t want anyone to take offense by this, for other people I think it comes more naturally. I still go back & forth with this because SM is really the way we all connect and I do want that but at the end of the day I want it more with my family I suppose. So if you notice me being quiet, it’s not that I don’t care or value all of you, I do more than you can imagine. I just need to find balance with my family. This summer I plan on working in the mornings and playing with my family in the afternoon. My goal is to write more personal posts like this one and bring you the real person behind the blog. I also have some fun projects ahead I think you will really like and I am still writing for BHG and I will continue to bring you those as well.

Do any of you struggle with this?

Be Present Free Printable

Feel free to use this free printable. Just right click & save as.

Speaking of Better Homes & Gardens I am sharing a great article about sheds. We have all become obsessed (me included) with the idea of a little backyard hideaway where we can work, relax and maybe entertain. I have found 8 incredible ideas for creating a stylish shed. Come on over to read more.

Stylish Sheds-8 Incredible Backyard Ideas

I am sure some of you are in full summer swing already so I hope you are enjoying it and it’s Friday so I hope you all have a great weekend!!!

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  1. I agree with everything you said! Family first always! And so easy to get distracted by all the SM stuff! My kiddos are teenagers now and are off doing their own thing quite often. I have to try really hard to get everyone together in the same room to spend some family time. I love my teenagers and each stage of life is unique and fun but I also miss the days of them playing in the yard and needing me more. So yes! Cherish every moment you have with your little (ish) ones!

    1. Thank you Andrea for your sweet words of wisdom, I hear you 100%:). Have a wonderful summer, Jen

  2. I’ve struggled maintaining my blog as well since my son was born. Yes, blogging is a great hobby, but being a parent, spouse, etc. is an incredible gift we shouldn’t take for granted. I’m glad I’m not the only blogger facing this dilemma and choosing family over online communities.

    1. Glad my post resonated with you:)! So true, such a gift! I hope you find balance and have fun this summer! Jen

  3. hey girl love your post! Thank you for being so honest! Love you and family is so much important than social media. God has blessed you so much and you have a beautiful family and I know you are so thankful!

  4. Yes! Couldn’t agree more. My son is home from college for a brief time and I know someday even that will come to an end. I’m soaking up every minute I can. It’s all about priorities and finding the right balance.

    1. I completely get where you are coming from. And I can’t believe you have a son in college, you look so young!! I couldn’t agree more, here is to a great summer!!! Jen

  5. Stick with it, your family comes first, there is nothing worse than waking up one day and your children are all grown up and you realize you’ve missed it. It’s so good you see it now enjoy them while you got them. Nothing is faster than the speed of life.

  6. Jen you are not alone. I keep seeing, reading and hearing this same sentiment all over blogland and social media. I think we’ve hit a plateau and we’re just no realizing what’s really important and taking stock. I for one have joined you in being more present, working less but more focused, and giving more to my kids because they deserve me and time is a wasting! Enjoy your summer, the blog (and social media) will still be here 😉

    1. Yes Jamie, here is to that:)! I hear you 100%. You too, enjoy summer and see you at Haven (I think)! Jen

  7. Have been following your blog for some time now, but would love to see photos of your kitchen. Have I missed them some how?

    1. Hi Jean, I have only shared it a few times in tours, it always feels dark in pictures. Working on a makeover this fall:). Have a great weekend, Jen

  8. Love this post! I have been struggling with how to be more present myself and to savor the moments. Thanks for your thoughtfulness on this. And I’m going to put the printable somewhere visible as a beautiful reminder. 🙂

  9. No, I don’t struggle with this but it’s because I don’t, by choice, spend much time on SM. I’m a happier and more centered person when I limit my SM time.

  10. Ohhh I so agree, my three children are all grown now and I have grandchildren, witch is amazing!! BUT when my 3 were young I remember someone saying to me enjoy they grow fast, I looked at them and at that moment (we were having a bad day )
    and i remember looking at them and thinking they are never going to grow up, well let me just say they did and I would love to have those days back again. Time stands still for no one, so spend as much time as you can, you will never have that chance again!! And don’t let anyone make you feel guilty for it…..hugs.

    1. I hear you loud & clear:). My dad always says he misses the chaos and the craziness of a house filled with children. He is alone now, in the house we grew up in and tells me often to cherish it all because it goes by so fast. Thank you so much for this thoughtful comment and taking the time to write it! jen

  11. I think SM has become our culture’s addiction–controlling us and giving us a false sense of who we are. You are courageous to take control of your life online. you are one of the few decor blogs I check once/week. I no longer have children at home, all grown. But I value my time and I value real connections, face to face. Facebook, a huge distraction–so easy to get sucked into “liking” this and that or getting attached to others “liking” a post–a vicious round of junior high approval ratings. Here’s to your strong recovery and determination to say the strongest word, “no.”

    1. Hi Cheryl, thank you for leaving such a sweet message & supportive comment. I will certainly do my best:), Have a wonderful weekend! Jen

  12. Thank you for posting this. I have recently been trying to up my social media game with blogging and design, and it’s amazing how quickly I can get sucked in. I don’t want my life to be defined by my online presence, and I needed this reminder. So needed to read this today!

    1. I am glad you connected with the post:). It is such a tough balance sometimes but we so need the off button to refuel. I hope you enjoy summer, Jen

  13. Love this post. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and feelings on this. My daughter is getting married this fall and it has really hit me hard, how quickly our kids grow and leave home. The time we have with them really is precious!

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