Go Ask Mom

Go Ask Mom

Lynda Loveland: Super no more

Posted September 28, 2011

Lynda Loveland

I’ve been talking on the radio a lot lately about my mom being in town. It’s been great.

My husband and I have been out on “dates” several times while she watches the kids. I soooo miss spending time together. We go out when my mom’s not in town too, just not as much. My mom is also great around the house. The laundry somehow gets done without my touching it!

She gave me a little nugget of advice the other day. She’s always telling me to take a break and stop doing so much. You see, I hit the ground running at 3:45 a.m. and don’t shut it down until 9 p.m. or later.

Well, I shrugged off her suggestion until the other day. It was after dinner and I was hustling the kids upstairs to bathe them. My husband was putting up some crown moulding, (he’s the man!) and my mom started on the dishes. She told me I needed to stop making such involved dinners.

I started to do my typical, yeah OK mom, but then I started to think about it. I usually spend about two hours in the kitchen preparing dinner. I always feel like I have to make this big meal. I’ve been planning my menu a week ahead of time, which has been great, but I’ve also been planning more elaborate dinners. You know, gotta be a SuperMom! The evenings always seem to be so crazy busy! I feel like I’m racing to get everything done by the time I go to bed. It’s as though I’m in a hundred yard dash with no finish line!

But mom’s right, as she always is. There are more important things than big meals every night. For one thing, big dinners mean lotsa dishes. Maybe that’s why mom told me to make simpler meals …

Seriously though, I need to dial it back a notch. Is there a vaccine for “SuperMom” syndrome? Have you scaled back on something without the world falling apart?

Lynda is the mom of three and co-host of Mix 101.5 WRAL-FM's Bill & Lynda in the Morning. Find her here on Thursdays.


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  • whyalltheproblems Sep 29, 2011

    By walking away from things I thought I "had" to do, it has freed me up to be 100% w/my kids.
    I started a cookie business a few years ago to help supplement our income and to help build up our savings. It was featured on groupon in February. From Feb, until the end of July, I made, shipped / delivered over 4,000 cookies by myself. I did this while teaching preschool, doing carpool, being a wife and mom. It was crazy, but we made it.
    Now things have improved financially, I no longer feel the pressure to be doing something to get us ahead. I've not quit the business, teaching preschool or being a wife and mom :), but I know if I had to keep it up I could.
    Guess I'm saying all this to say if you don't have to, allow yourself to free up some time. It's made me so much happier...and when mom is happy, everyone is happy :)

  • blahblahblah Sep 29, 2011

    My children are grown, but they tell me that two of their favorite dinners were when we had breakfast for dinner, maybe once a month, and when I did what I called "you make it, you eat it and you clean it up". In other words, I wasn't cooking that night, usually a Friday, and everyone was responsible for themselves. I still made sure everyone had dinner and we ate together, I just didn't put it all together or clean it up. I think kids basically like simple over complex in anything, including their food choices.

  • gwycon2 Sep 29, 2011

    Lynda, Take this bit of advice from an empty nester: Before you blink, those little folks at the table will be off doing their own thing, so please take a moment to relish the time with them right now. Simple meals fill their bellies just as well and I'd wager your hubby would be ok with simpler, less involved meals too.
    I used to take time on the weekends to make a couple of meals ahead of time. My kids helped with those meal preps as well, so we had even more time together. I also learned that our most important conversations happened while our hands were busy. So, those Sunday afternoons prepping meals for the week to come were the teachable moments and prime time for worries and concerns to surface.
    By the way, Mom's right. My Mama used to advise: "Be selfish. Take good care of yourself so you can take good care of your husband and children."

  • katizs Sep 29, 2011

    Remember that time goes by fast enough - spend time with the little ones you treasure so much - I am a single mom of 3 and I always am reminded by the thought that they will grow up and leave - what do you want them to remember - mom always was so busy making big dinners or housework, or the thought - hey even though mom worked we did this (fill in the blank) at nights and she took time for us

  • kimstewart98 Sep 29, 2011

    Bake a couple of batches of mini meatloaves in muffin tins, a baked Mac and cheese...can also be done in muffin tins ....Freeze and pop out as needed!

  • CricketGayle Sep 29, 2011

    Crock-pots are great. So is a dutch oven. One of my family's favorite meals is pot roast. It takes me about 20 minutes to get everything ready (chopping/searing veggies and seasoning/searing the meat) to go in the oven where it cooks for several hours. A few additional minutes to mash some potatoes and finish the gravy and we've got a great homecooked meal.

    If you want to do more elaborate-type meals, get the Dream Dinners cookbook. You can do the prep work for several meals at once and put them in the freezer. Then when you plan your meal schedule, take them out of the freezer as necessary and all you have to do is cook them. All of the prep-work is done ahead of time so you're not having to spend extra time in the kitchen each night doing all of the cutting/chopping.

  • goforth4pack Sep 29, 2011

    The best invention for easy dinner-crock pot! There are so many crock pot cookbooks out now with easy, delicious meals that are almost labor-free. As a single parent, it really frees up the after work and football practice frenzy in the evenings and keeps my stress level down a bit.

  • j-lo93 Sep 29, 2011

    crockpot!! with a couple of sides~ less time in the kitchen, more time with family :)

  • kellypratz Sep 29, 2011

    wow, if I cannot complete my dinner within 30 minutes than I am faultering. I do not spend alot of time on dinner, I would much rather spend it with my family after a hard day at work.

  • superman Sep 29, 2011

    When I cook on the grill, I use the entire top. Hot dogs, hamburgers, chicken, ribs and anything else I can find to cook. We always have enough that fixing a meal is always pretty simple. The cooked meat is always in the frig ready to be warmed up. Cook the ribs on the grill, put them in a crock pot with some sauce and let them simmer a couple hours and makes for a great meal. Cooking for 2 hours for a meal. I dont think so-- that is unless it is a special deal.