This Week at the Brennans’

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Kids sitting at a bar in front of a window

Mama had a breakdown this week! It was a hard one!

Here’s what happened this week:

My husband left for a work trip the week prior to this current week and I was a solo parent for the past seven days. He was able to come home for 4 hours on Wednesday afternoon to help rearrange some furniture, but I’m not sure that counts. ANYWAYS, I have had a hard time managing everything I need to manage alone. I feel like so many more obligations automatically fall to the Mom’s rather than the Dad’s. Maybe its all in my head and maybe I need to be more vocal about my needs, but man is it hard trying to accomplish everything on your own and feel like you’re raising decent humans. The things on my to do list that keep our apartment and family running smoothly are what I get so frustrated with. The continuous conversation I continue to have with my husband is “you are doing so much already!” to which I respond “I don’t really feel like I’m doing enough.”

The consistent internal battle I have with myself is I’m never really doing enough because my to-do list never gets shorter. (Will it ever get shorter? Does anyone know?) I know I am doing stuff throughout the day because my kids eat, we all wear clean..ish clothes and we go do things together. But if I don’t feel like I’m accomplishing anything, then it tends to de-rail me and make me feel like awful. So, for most of the week, I felt like a horrible person. Not because I am, but because city living is hard. Being the only parent home with three kids is hard. Running a business is hard. Not having close friends nearby is hard. And all those things piled one on top of the other is what made me crash and burn. Also, the on again off again thunder and lightening partnered with the late nights and early mornings really threw me for a loop.

So, I’ve been a little out of it this week and have hardly taken pictures or really done a ton with Instagram stories because I just had nothing exciting to share. But after a few quick texts to my best friends Amy & Amy and then the arrival of my husband back into town, I feel the foggy, doom & gloom attitude starting to lift. I did start writing back in my self love/gratitude journal as well, which has helped immensely. Also counting the days until school starts back up again has also really helped my attitude. HA!

I did also find some clarity and created some goals for my business. I have been so un-motivated (and just plain busy!) for the past 18 months, it’s been a little ridiculous. But, having reached a new normal and thinking things through logically, I’ve been slowly formulating plans for growth. So hooray for that and taking a few steps about it.

Blake showing off his shoes

A few other things worth mentioning: Blake and Eddie got new shoes for the Fall. Blake chose his and then chose the exact same pair for his brother. They are so cute together! Brooke’s new shoes will be coming this week! She got pink converse high tops. That girl LOVES hightop shoes 🙂

Eddie has started counting!! He learned numbers 0-10 thanks to all the UNO cards we have lying around and can count 1-2-3. He also knows his colors, lots of animals, body parts and a few letters. He will repeat just about anything you say , so you have to watch yourself. At night when I was tucking him in, I mentioned “don’t worry Eddie, I’ll be right back!” and he said “white back”. Lots of little phrases I’m starting to hear!! Woot woot! Go Eddie!

On Tuesday, Brooke mentioned to me that she didn’t like having her own room anymore and wanted to go back to the triple bunk bed with the boys. So, we put their bed back together (why Gordon came home real quick on Wednesday) and now they are really loving life. They love each other so much!

We moved our king bed into Brooke’s old room and our bedroom is going to be our new dining room! We didn’t have room for a dining table before, so now that our children have consolidated themselves, we have more living space. We still need to drop off a TON to a storage unit we have yet to get, but that’s ok! Progress! I’ll snap a few pictures when we find places for all the miscellaneous junk we’ve accumulated.

Kids crossing the street

Here’s whats happening this coming week:

Tomorrow we leave for Canada! We are going to visit my parents in Ottawa for a week before we meet Gordon for one last vacation before school starts 🙂

Here’s to a better week!

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22 Responses
  1. Letty

    Girl you got this, I’m on that same boat…but with 3 kids all under 4, one who just started preK (thank god) one who started SPEACH THERAPY (cranky and frustrated almost 2yo) and last but not least my teething 5month old… o did I mention we’re moving too… let’s see if I don’t accidentally purposely pack the kids I a box’s for a quick nap… but i find myself thinking them same but I see them happy and healthy so we’re doing a great job… keep it up!!!

  2. suzanne

    You’re asking if all the busyness ever ends. I am 70, living with just my husband and my grown children and grandchildren live nearby, so I feel I’m in a position to answer your question. And the answer is NO! I was a single parent for many years, teaching an hour away from my home for 35 years, so I know what busy means. It is all in my/your head! We are people who feel the need to be productive to justify our existence and that will probably never end.. We’ll take responsibility for the behavior and character of our kids well into their adulthood. But I will tell you that grandkids are something to look forward to as you can totally enjoy them without feeling the need and responsibility to form them. The only actual advice I can give you is to speak up about your needs because your family is not full of mind readers. I’m glad you can vent to your blog followers. We support you. Take time to wander once your kids are back in school to recharge. You are a human battery that does need to recharge. Just like a battery, your recharging time is productive. Have a nice vacation and bring back some Canadian recipes. Donair pizza, butter tarts, oatcakes, fish cakes, poutine!

  3. Gidget

    I bet you did amazing and rocked it. My friend had 4 7 and under and lived overseas then her husband got deployed to a war zone for a year. She always said it was insane and hard but it made a stronger person and her girls (yep all girls) said mommy was supergirl!

    The shoe club sounds cool! Wish that was around when I had littles. My 7th grader loves Vans high tops. She graduated from converse. Vans are sturdier and have more foot support. If they have those maybe check them out and they have cute girly colors.

    Have safe travels and enjoy the last few weeks before school craziness sets in.

  4. Shawnna

    Don’t forget to give yourself some grace. Being a mom 24/7 is HARD. And you don’t have a break because it’s summer. I love my kids but I think we do better with the structure school gives. No mom can do it all without a break.

  5. Elizabeth

    Lauren please give yourself a break. If you sit back and see how much you are doing you would be amazed. Remember most young ladies your age are just starting their families and you have been doing this for awhile. You need to take some time for yourself – I know it is difficult to spend time away from your husband when you have limited time with him but you need a break from your family every once in awhile. It is ok to ask for help when you are tired.. Once the kiddos are back into school try to set up play dates so you could get some time with the other two – suggest making a meal for the family if you can’t have play dates at your place. Some nights it is ok for your children to eat cereal for dinner – even food bloggers don’t need to be work all the time. Enjoy your kids before to long they will be adults – time starts to speed up the older they get.

  6. Emily

    I only have 1 child and she is in daycare (i work full time) so I can’t relate BUT whoaaa I can’t imagine how you juggle having 3 at home, running your own business and being in NYC! I am always (always!) amazed at how much you do and how you keep it all together! Thinking of you and hoping you enjoy your vaca and have time to recharge!

  7. Rachel

    I just had my third child a few months ago and it’s kicking my butt! I don’t even want to imagine being a single mom — or basically on your own for the vast majority of the week. God gives grace to the weary!

  8. Judy D.

    My heart goes out to you. I was a single mom living in NYC with three kids (very close in age). It was very, very hard. After feeling like I was going to go crazy, I finally moved up to a town called Cold Spring. It was on the east side of the Hudson River, across from West Point. I leased a house that was on 22 acres and it was the best thing for my sanity. Compared to rental prices in NYC, the house was dirt cheap….and beautiful. The kids never wanted to come into the house. Ha, ha. They had so much fun playing outside.

    I want to comment on putting “stuff” in storage. Storage units are pretty expensive. So many time people put items in storage that when you figure the dollar value, it really isn’t worth the storage rental fee over a period of time. Be careful what you spend storage money on…it might not be worth it in the long run.

    Kudos to you Lauren. You’re dealing with a lot. Enjoy your trip to Canada. I know it will be a well-deserved break for you.

    ~JD

  9. Bonnie

    I think all of the ladies above gave you very good advice. About all I can say is ask God to help you through this rough time you are having. I think it is good for you to go see your parents it sometimes helps to get away.

  10. Gina B

    I think it is good to tell your bloggers that you are having a bad time. They can give you advice that may help. I don’t know how you do it. I guess it is day by day. Since your husband is home and soon the kids will be going to school, may give you a much needed recharge. Enjoy your trip to Canada visiting your parents. Can’t wait to see pictures and maybe new recipes.

    So enjoy your blogs. Keep up the good work.

    Take care.

  11. Sheila Best

    My motto when my 3 kiddos were young and growing up was, “don’t sweat the small stuff. And really, most of it is small.” I was a single mother and guardian of my teenaged sister after our parents both passed. We all survived. And we all grew up and turned into very fine people, IMHO.

    Btw, I love the images of Eddie climbing up to his brother’s bunk to get his leggos. And I love that Brooke missed her little brothers. Lots of love and hugs to you all. I promise there is light at the end of the tunnel.

  12. Wanda

    Hang in there Lauren! You’re doing a great job! I’ve had my shares of breakdowns…..it’s hard being a parent. But your kids are loving and caring because of the great parents they have.

  13. Courtney

    Wishing you a great relaxing vacation. I know I’ve said it before but I commend how resilient you are. Here’s to back to school and schedules!!

  14. Jenny

    I hear you, my friend! (I’ve been following so long, I feel like we’re friends!…? ha!) This was a HUGE issue for me. That’s why I’m starting a blog just about how to stop stressing and start enjoying life. I mean, you’re already doing so many amazing things!! Why not just do it, and drop the part where you’re overwhelmed and worried about it all? That’s draining SO much of your energy, making you less efficient and zapping all the fun out of running your business and raising your kids, too. If you’ve never listened to the podcast Better Than Happy, I’d highly recommend it! It helped me get on a new track of thinking, because the truth is, it’s not our kids and busy lives that are draining us, it’s our thoughts. Getting in the habit of thinking different thoughts can change how you see everything, energize you and help you deal with all the tough stuff that’s part of being a mom. You’re one special mom, Lauren! I’ve always looked up to you so much. Just keep going and don’t give up! AND it’s totally okay to give yourself a break–you totally should, and not feel guilty about it one bit. 😉 Have so much fun with family!!

  15. Angie

    Lauren, I’m in a very similar situation to yours. Not the NYC thing but most of the rest. I carved out time to read Anxious for Nothing by Max Lucado. Don’t ask me how I read that book in a week… anyhow it was a game changer. Highly recommend. It’s an easy read and sooooo applicable.

  16. me

    This was so very timely! I found myself on the floor of the bathroom last night in a self-imposed timeout because I was self-destructing. Things build up and my own expectations are ridiculous. We need to cut ourselves some slack!

  17. Lisa

    True life is hard enjoy every moment with friends, family and people you know with out regrets
    you never know what will happen the next day.
    In Trinidad is a killing everyday you never no you might end up dead the next day.
    Take it one day at a time , god is great everyday and we should be thankful for everything we have
    They have worse people out there than you.

  18. Lisa

    Enjoy every single day every moment that comes your way bad or good
    Once you are healthy and have strength to do things do it to the best as you can
    God takes care of everything in his own timing

  19. Charley

    I seriously think my most favorite part about is your blog is well food of course. But I love the glimpse into your family life on NYC. The kids look so cute scottering across busy streets. The contrast from Idaho still makes me chuckle.

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