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St. James Plaindealer - St. James, MN
Healthy living noteables
Warning! Distracted Mom ahead!
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About this blog
By Valerie Brandt
I was born and raised a farm girl in rural Minnesota where I met and married the adoration of my lifetime! Our family currently lives in a rural community in Iowa where we frequently trade stories with the family \x34back home\x34 of the likeness ...
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A Healthy Dose of Spice
I was born and raised a farm girl in rural Minnesota where I met and married the adoration of my lifetime! Our family currently lives in a rural community in Iowa where we frequently trade stories with the family \x34back home\x34 of the likeness and differences of the slower life from one state to the next. My husband and I own our own business where we provide for our three growing daughters who are the light of our world. Writing has always been an outlet for me, starting a diary as young as 4th grade and continuing for each of my daughters currently. Writing clears my mind and my heart of things that I would rather say but don't (due to my impeccable manners) or did say and wished I hadn't (sometimes those manners fail). I am clearly outspoken and am working on being filled with grace and compassion. In my spare time my family and I enjoy reading, biking and cooking. We do NOT enjoy cold snowy weather.
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By Valerie Brandt
June 12, 2013 5:12 p.m.



I know that my job is to be home and mother the children.  I get that.  It is fully understood that it is part of my job.  It frustrates me to no end when we ALL get in the car to drive someplace and my husband is flipping out before we are outside of town (a whole 6 blocks).  My kids are all elementary school age, mostly.  They are in the stage of development that tells their little brains to fight and bicker non-stop to get one foot up on the sisters.  It wears you down, but I live in that battle zone.  While dear husband leaves for work in the morning, I have already stopped 3 arguments from becoming violent and someone probably has stood in the corner for glaring at someone else.  

Is it too much to ask then that while I drive the bickering and fighting can cease?  We drive a van, so there is plenty of space, but they insist on sitting next to each other and today the glaring (or my view from the rearview mirror) was nose to nose, and then fighting about whose snot was on who.

It was in that moment, driving down the road at 60 mph, watching my rearview mirror instead of the road that I realized, I don't even get peace and quiet when I drive.  I am always "on".  I suffocate in the silence when I do go places by myself.  I can multitask in my car with the kids better than when I am home.  I can drive, sing along to music, hand them all suckers, open a water bottle and point out eagles as I drive.  I know, because that was me the other day.  Doing all those things at the same time.  I am amazing.

I know that the law enforcement agencies probably see texting as a problem, but driving with kids is DEFINITELY more distracting.  And yet, no one is stopping me from putting my 3 kids in the car and going places, and I know most moms drive like I do.  No one is passing laws about driving with more than a certain number of kids (and it wouldn't matter, one is just as distracting as three), no one is making vehicles with limo barriers for regular every day driving to stop the noise.  No one seems to care one way or the other how distracting kids are while driving.

So, onto another day of going places, seeing the world, adding a little dose of spice to our lives, all while driving down the highway, handing tiny people their food and beverage choices all while making a list in my head and trying to remember if I brushed my teeth that morning, singing to my favorite songs and loving my life!

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