ten thoughts on a wednesday |37|

IMG 3257 IMG 3464
IMG 3330 IMG 3238

after months of reflecting and working on my habitual screen time, i’ve come to a firm conclusion that i am addicted to my phone, full stop. realizing this is scary and i’m determined to get in control. here’s a couple of my action items for this week:
first, take a seven day fast from social media. our prophet recently challenged the youth of the church to do this, and i decided to join in. yesterday morning i deleted instagram from my phone (i had previously deleted facebook) and i’m excited to see what realizations and goodness come out of this practice. i am embarrassed to say that i had to build up some courage to delete instagram!
second, have a rule that every time i pick up my phone while i’m with my toddler, i have to tell him what i am doing with it. i came across this idea while listening to this podcast, and it’s such an awesome tip. doing this really helps me not only to connect with moses and help him learn about proper smartphone use, but it is also such a great accountability tool for me. i don’t really want to tell my almost-two-year-old: “now i’m just mindlessly scrolling through alluring images and comparing my life to other people’s…” :) 

some days i think to myself: “oh yeah, i got this! i’m doing this mom-of-two-under-two thing like a total boss!” and then other days this mom-of-two-under-two thing completely kicks my butt. mostly, i genuinely love this wild chapter of life. gabriel has truly brought an added measure of sweet love and goodness to our home and family. ian and i are closer than ever, moses is in many ways rising to the occasion as a big brother, and i am being stretched in ways that are exciting to me. sometimes it’s so chaotic and sometimes i am sooo exhausted, but i’m trying my best to just enjoy this crazy adventure. 

IMG 3215 IMG 3246
^^ football class and sitting on the random horse statue that is in our garden, ha! ^^
IMG 3196 IMG 3204
^^ after one such motherhood-totally-kicked-by-butt days this past week, i didn’t leave the house until ian got home around 8:30pm. i went straight to our garden and was so refreshed seeing that the roses has started blooming in earnest! ^^

moses and i both have had lots of fun with friends lately. every thursday morning we get together with a bunch of pals and do some simple learning activities, and then the moms chat while the kids play. it’s so great. we hosted this “toddler class” this past thursday and it was a party — usually only about half of the moms/kids can come but this time nearly everyone in the group showed up. i wish i would have taken a picture of our front room just packed with friends. i was so relieved that Gabriel slept through the entire thing, haha. many other days of the week we meet up with a few friends at a playground or museum or event. i’m really grateful for growing friendships for both me and mo. 

IMG 3098 IMG 3101
IMG 3080 IMG 3087

gabriel is six weeks old. i can’t believe how time has flown and also how i can’t imagine what life was like before he was here. wix weeks is a significant milestone for most women postpartum - it is kind of universally accepted as the point at which the womb is re-adjusted and regular physical activities can resume. for us it also marked the end of regular visits from our wonderful midwives. our primary midwife, sarah, came over last week for a “discharge appointment” and we were all pretty sad that we won’t have her in our home any more (although we definitely plan to stay in touch forever!). sarah has been an angel in our lives and will always be a part of our family heart. ian and i are pretty big fans of hers, and gabriel owes her his life in some ways…but sarah is for sure most beloved to moses. sarah and moses just adore each other and have had lots of fun together over the past few months :)  

IMG 3268 IMG 3278

the season of bursting roses, sumptuous flower boxes, and splash pad fun has arrived in london! i love summer in the city.

IMG 3334 IMG 3388
IMG 3339 IMG 3342
IMG 3343 Screen Shot 2018 06 05 at 9 46 31 PM png
^^ at our first splash pad outing of the summer, mo discovered the fun of dipping his head in the fountains. he thought it was pretty hilarious! ^^
IMG 3357 IMG 3371
^^ and meanwhile, gabriel snoozed in the wrap and the roses of holland park delighted our senses. ^^

i read this article recently after my sister-in-law shared it with the family, and i really love it. the author shows that "the very verse that has been used to marginalize women was really god’s own tribute to his daughters.” and so, “it is high time that we reclaimed and embraced god’s vision of women.” i think quite a bit about feminism in the context of my religion and this article was really enriching to that continuing thought. 

as i’ve mentioned here before, i have been planning to go back to school this fall for quite some time. i have been so, so excited about the education/career path that i had discovered and my school-loving mind was so looking forward to getting started. recently we learned that, despite being told otherwise last year, i do not qualify for the “home” fees for the program i had chosen to apply for. instead i was liable for the international student fees, which are more than twice as much, and ultimately prohibitively expensive. realizing this has been genuinely devastating for me. i am heartbroken that i cannot follow through with the plan i carefully crafted and have felt so, so good about over the past couple of years. i am learning from this experience and trying to stay positive, and i feel confident that i can find another (and perhaps better in the long run?) path for education so i can do the work i have become really passionate about. we will see how it all shakes out. 
sometimes things just don’t work out after you’ve invested a lot of energy and excitement in them, and that sucks. but i always chose to believe that something better in some way or another is available, if we keep our heads up and look for it!

IMG 3282 IMG 3096
IMG 3328 IMG 3495

yesterday one of my angel friends took care of moses for the morning so i could get some things done and focus on the baby. when it was nearly time for me to go pick mo up, i decided to walk to this friend’s house through notting hill. there were so many delightful scenes along the way, and it did me good to take them in. london may have many days with grey skies, but it is such a colourful city. 

IMG 3398IMG 3395
^^ i swear i can’t walk by this place without snapping a photo! ^^
IMG 3408 IMG 3425
IMG 3427 IMG 3452
IMG 3443 IMG 3441
IMG 3445 IMG 3447

the other day i discovered a secret weapon for keeping a toddler entertained on a ten-hour transatlantic flight - face filters on instagram stories! moses was so excited about the different funny things the phone did to his cute face and his attention was kept for a long time, haha. we are flying to utah a month from today! we decided to take this flight three days before mo’s second birthday, so we wouldn’t have to pay for him (airlines require kids to have tickets/their own seat as soon as they are 24 months old)! yep, we are cheap like that… moses and ian are sitting in the back of the plane and gabriel and i are sitting at the bulkhead with the baby bassinet that attaches to the wall. it made sense to divide and conquer and i definitely got the easier end of the deal… we will see how it goes - there’s definitely a reason a seat is required from 2 years old - it’s tricky to keep moses on your lap for even five minutes these days! 

IMG 3470 IMG 3471
IMG 3475 IMG 3473

a football class for kids younger than two years old is admittedly pretty silly, haha. but we tried it out a couple of times before gabriel was born and it was just so cute and fun. moses had two more football classes this past week. sure, he’s not quite big enough to understand the concept of the game at all :) … but the activities the coaches do seem to really be helping him learn about following instructions and interacting well with other kids. at the end of his class last friday, mo got a medal, haha! he was at first quite perplexed and then totally delighted by it :) 

IMG 3298 IMG 3301 IMG 3299
IMG 3311 IMG 3322

happy wednesday! life is beautiful!

IMG 3507 IMG 3327


  1. Hi charity, congrats on your new role as ‘mom to two’! You are doing an amazing job. I’m sorry to know about your non-qualification as a home student but I was just wondering if you could share more details about the course or area of education that you were looking at. I don’t mean to sound insensitive but I’m so looking for a career change and any ideas would definitely be appreciated. Thanks

    1. perhaps i will soon in a future blog post. i haven’t shared here just because it has all been up in the air and i don’t really want another level of “never mind” disappointment, i guess.

  2. Are you moving back to the states?

  3. not for at least a few more years...what makes you ask?

    1. To avoid paying international tuition. I recall your travels before he started work. It seems it is possible for him to work in a number of major cities.
      Not pushing. You have a degree already. There are only a few years left to have Little ones. When I went to graduate school straight from undergrad I was the youngest. Lots of people nearing retirement getting their masters. School is available for decades. Babies are only for a short season. Since you aren’t near any grandparents and his job is intense it’s extra hard.

    2. oh the program is here in the UK, so i couldn’t do it if we lived in the US. i agree with you about babies and school :) i feel like i have plenty of time but i also really miss school and think working part time will be good for our family. we will see how it shakes out.

  4. Are you sure you can't afford it? Not being rude, honestly, and I don't know your situation, but couldn't you cut down on something else, like travel, etc. since it is so important to you? Being in the financial industry myself, I know that once someone passes the CFA exam they normally get some type of incentive or bonus, and usually a raise... Also, are there student loans you could get? Again, not being rude, but seems like there is always a way if you want it so much and have a supportive mate.

  5. Lovely summer photos! Those flowers!!

    The note about your education is so sad and your resignation (guised in cheery acceptance) seems unlike you. I hope you and Ian consider making your professional goals/passions a priority and allocate your resources accordingly.

  6. tabby:
    we can afford it (by making sacrifices of other things like you mentioned). but it doesn’t feel right to us to pay 2.5x the perceived value of the program and the cost would affect other plans that we don’t feel right about abandoning. there is definitely a way, but that way doesn’t seem like the right thing to do at this point.

    do i really seem cheery about it?!? if so, that’s not accurate... but i am trying to stay positive. why wallow? my professional goals and passions are absolutely a priority, but the scenario as it is just seems to be pointing us to a different path/timing.

  7. I am not a believer in "things didn't work out so they must not have meant to be" or the thing about being pointed in another direction. I applaud you for being positive about it, but it had to be somewhat "the correct path", since you obviously thought hard about it, chose it, were so excited about it... I say don't abandon it if it's something you really want, just because of the cost. Especially since you say it's not impossible. Never settle. You may think you are ok with it now, but trust me, you will regret it later and be very resentful, even subliminally.

    1. She should also judge if she would be compensated after employment given the amount she invested into the degee. She isn’t 19. She will have less years to earn that money. Her earlier reply suggests she could live in other places. Would she need more certification after moving? Is the job over saturated in the place she might move to?

  8. thanks for sharing your perspective! but given that you know virtually none of the details or me personally i am not sure you can determine what i will or won’t regret ;) i really want a certain career destination, but there are several paths to that so i am staying positive about exploring several different ones (even though this one seemed pretty great!).

  9. HI Charity. I've been loving your posts lately. I've decided that I would certainly walk more if I lived in London :) (How's that for my sluggish excuse). Your explanation you'd use to MO for justifying your phone usage made me laugh. It's so true isn't it--so much time can be frittered away on the phone.
    I, too, am sorry about your educational plans taking a step backwards. Having a change come when your mind has charged forward is always frustrating. I'm sure things will align in the proper time and you'll be able to get started. I know just what you mean about setting your financial priorities. Hoping for easy momma-to-two days for you.

  10. I came across this quote recently and the visual it gave me made me lol. It seems like you are definitely trying to keep a positive focus on your next steps in life. I hope it all works out for the best.

    “Being negative only makes a difficult journey more difficult. You may be given a cactus, but you don't have to sit on it.”

  11. Gabriel is so small and Mo is in such a sensitive age... I totally believe staying home this fall will look like a right decision once you´ll look back to these years!
    How cute looks Mo with his medal!

    1. the program would only require one day a week away from the boys (it is mostly self-paced and my work could be done during the evenings/naptime/saturdays) ... but i agree that it may turn out that this specific time isn’t best for me to do something as involved as this program would be.

  12. Brittany Connelly17 June 2018 at 13:07

    That seems reasonable. You don't want to buy your toddler a ticket for a 10-hour flight and you don't want to sit next to a two-year-old-less-three-days child without his own ticket, so you leave that for a stranger to do. Negative externalities in action.


Post a Comment