working mama: balance.

8:00:00 AM Jaclyn Armstrong 0 Comments

Balance. The key to happiness, fulfillment, and peace. A word that has no place in my life.

Back when life seemed perfect, when I worked part-time and spent most days with Logan, my life had a surreal sense of balance. I had the best of both worlds... plenty of time to snuggle and play with my little man, but just enough time away in the company of other adults to keep my sanity. I blogged my thoughts and pictures, used all my craftiness to tackle my favorite pinterest finds, met my bestest for weekly walks and lunch, kept the house clean and the kitchen stocked, and even cooked an elaborate meal every once in a while. I was doing (almost) everything in life I wanted to do.

Since becoming the breadwinner of the family, balance has been stripped from my routine. I spend most nights at work, at least 1 day recovering from night shift (and often 2, because my shifts are split most weeks), and the other hours/days I'm a walking zombie. I can't form coherent thoughts, let alone be inspired to write or make something brilliant. Most of my meals are granola bars or yogurt and lots of coffee. I see plenty of Nick, but I'm usually so tired and cranky (and resentful) that we can't enjoy a minute together.
My time with Logan is so limited it breaks my heart. For the past month he has begun crying whenever I enter the room or he hears the sound of my voice. If I'm home he wants serious snuggle time (which I love). I'm missing milestones and playtime... and days that I will never get back.

I can't find the time to do any of the hobbies I love. When I'm scrolling through posts or pinterest (at stoplights, while nursing, etc) it always saddens me when I realize I will never have time to do the things I find. Not this week, not next week, not next month. I have unfinished projects from the good ol' days collecting dust in the back of closets.

Work. Sleep. Repeat.

I've been hoping to find God and bring Him back into our lives, but most Sunday mornings I am leaving work only to return again Sunday night. I can sacrifice sleep to meet with a friend or for a playdate, but I can't enjoy anything when I've been up for 24 hrs.

I just can't get it figured out.

I need balance. I need to enjoy life again. I need to be happy to be at work, and happy to be at home (awake).


this kid loves to swing!

4:39:00 PM Jaclyn Armstrong 0 Comments



12:00:00 PM Jaclyn Armstrong 0 Comments

Dreading going back to work tonight. After 3 full days in NC with the best friends and family (+2 days of travelling) and 3 Mommy & Logan days, the last thing I want to do is return to my life without sleep and normalcy. I do miss my lovely coworkers though!

Loving watching this little boy grow up before my eyes. The smiles, the laughter, the pure joy and happiness in his eyes... He's not my little snuggly newborn anymore! He's definitely a Mama's boy though.

Watching Parenthood. Since the previews first came on for the initial season, I always knew I could appreciate this show. I love it! Still watching the first season, but I can't get enough. It reinforces my desire to have a big family, and reignites my desire to move home to be closer to our families. Until that actually happens, I will live vicariously through my little TV family.

Making (crocheting) hats, hats, and more hats! There's not much in life I find more relaxing than sitting with a cup of coffee and ball of yarn on a cool fall day. I'm hoping to crochet stockings for our family, and a colorful throw and pillows for the day we finally get a new sofa. A girl can dream!

Looking forward to pumpkin patches, Halloween costumes, and (online) Christmas shopping. It's my favorite time of year!

Wishing things would finally start to fall into place for us. I'm over the financial stress and uncertainty the last few months have brought into our lives. I'm ready to have it all figured out.

Thinking about job changes. I'm beyond ready to try new things and spark a new love for my career. Nick and I discussed the possibility of returning to school for my MSN... a dream I let go of long ago... and I'm ready to make it happen! 


link love

3:08:00 PM Jaclyn Armstrong 1 Comments

  • This post by Melissa was so sweet, and such a beautiful way to express how times have changed.

  • If I had a little girl, I would definitely be splurging on these beauties!

  • The start of Fall means it's time to crochet again... this is my favorite pattern for the perfect hat for all ages.

  • I am obsessed with this site. I race to finish each book just so I can check it off my list! Too bad the iphone app never seems to work...

  • I think I've finally settled on Logan's 1st Halloween costume (for the photo op, of course). 

  • Definitely taking advantage of this offer from Tinyprints!

  • Have you seen this? In love.

  • I must make one of these for Logan. So cute!


finding God: part 1

8:35:00 AM Jaclyn Armstrong 3 Comments

I hesitate to write about this, but the more I think about it the more I realize that I may not be alone in my feelings. There may be someone else out there going through the same thing, needing a little inspiration on their own journey, and may benefit from reading my path as it unfolds. So here is my story...

I lost God a long, long time ago. I was raised in a home full of faith and love... attending church every Sunday morning and night, most Wednesdays, and being an active member of the children's and youth groups. My best friends were those that went to my church, I spent my summers working at the mother's morning out program and VBS, and God was a huge part of my life. I was baptized early, and never thought that I would feel any differently than the way I did then about my faith.

As I entered high school, church was less and less appealing to me. I still believed in God and the way in which I was raised, but it didn't fit into my life the way it used to. I would miss church because of my part-time job, or choosing to stay at a friend's house Saturday night, or just not having the energy or desire to get up on a Sunday morning. I did attend Young Life each week and a few retreats, but purely for the social aspect of it all. I started to question what I believed.

I moved away to college, and away from the only person that ever pressured me into going to church when I didn't want to (thanks, Dad). I don't remember attending church a single time while I lived in Wilmington, except for tagging along with my family when I was home for the holidays. I believed less and less in the values that had been the foundation of my childhood, and really didn't believe in God at all. I took a class titled "Great Books of World Religions" and became intrigued by Eastern religions, but couldn't fit any Western ideas into my current way of thinking about the world. Christianity didn't make sense to me anymore.

Nick and I moved to Tennessee, and continued to not attend church or allow God in our lives. Nick was raised in Catholic school, and although he maintained his beliefs we made no effort to practice any religion. God was completely lost from my mind and my life. I didn't believe anymore.

I was always ashamed and embarrassed about my lack of faith, but it seemed so far lost I could never get it back. While I couldn't agree with my friends' thinking and beliefs, I was still envious of their devotion and everything I lacked in my own life. It is something I have struggled with for so many years now. Occasionally I would attend church with a friend, hoping for something to bring me back to Him, but I always left remembering exactly why I had lost my faith. It was hopeless... I wasn't a believer.

I accepted my life as it was, until I became pregnant with Logan. How would I teach my son the values and foundation I had been raised upon, when I no longer understood them myself? I couldn't imagine not raising my family in church. It had been such an important part of my childhood. But how was I supposed to sit through church each Sunday, not agreeing with anything that was taught? Wouldn't my children see right through me? I didn't want to be a family that only showed up for the holidays... I wanted this to be a way of life.

So here I am, still unsure of myself, still trying to figure it all out. I see Logan growing more and more everyday, and I know the clock is ticking.  Nick and I have discussed attending church over and over again, but I'm still not ready. I'm still drawn to the beliefs of Eastern world religions, but want to raise my children in a Christian home. I feel as if I am always in conflict... always struggling to find my own path back to God.

I don't see anything changing overnight, but I want to document my slow journey that hopefully results in a happy ending I can be at peace with. There is only one thing for certain: I need God in my life... maybe now more than ever.


looking up.

4:36:00 PM Jaclyn Armstrong 1 Comments

If you've noticed my absence lately, it's because I've been in a bit of a funk.

For whatever reason (and there are many), the world has felt like it was closing in on my life, my dreams, and my outlook on life.

This little blog has always been my happy place, and for that reason I chose to stay away. I didn't want to cloud my writing with negativity or self-pity. It was the one place I could shield from my depressing thoughts and feelings.

Finally (and thankfully) I have snapped out of it, and my thoughts are looking up for the first time in weeks. It was a time to reevaluate my goals and dreams in life, and now I am determined to focus on them one step at a time. Life is looking up.

I hope to share some happy memories and photos once I make it through the rest of the work week!