Stephanie Pletka

Inspiring Moms To Live Their Greatest Life

7 Reasons Moms Feel Isolated

I sat on the end of my bed in tears, with 3 kids in tow, a supportive spouse and a good life, but something was missing. I had started a Video Production Co. a year earlier, and with the juggles and struggles of work/family balance, deciphering how many ways to cook a chicken, and dropping off 3 kids at pre-school, keeping up with the Joneses seemed an impossible task.

I felt isolated. Don’t get me wrong: there were people all around, but the connections of like-minded women, discussing, listening, the “I’ know how you feel – I’ve got your back” sort of connection, was missing. Deep rooted relationships had fallen by the wayside. I had become an expert plate spinner, swirling in “organized” chaos, but it turns out, it was just chaos.


Suddenly, I found myself separated from the human race with little beings needing my full attention and sleepless nights had become the lowly standard. 

My carpool attire had become LuLu Lemon with a ponytail. But most days, it wasn’t even that. I found myself in the midst of moms who made motherhood look easy.

As I reached out for advice, tips, and authenticity, I found myself listening to women up the ante on how their pre-schooler was learning Japanese. Another multiplication. Seriously?


My child wasn’t potty trained, their first word was Hurry, and I caught one eating dirt in the backyard.


I fell into a depression, too vulnerable to show my vulnerability, rather I padded myself with isolation. The perfect breeding ground for disconnection.

Social media and decorating sites created the perfect storm for mom guilt, judgment and comparison traps, reflecting only the beautiful parts of life, the perfect angles, vacation spots, and happiest moments. There were few pictures of moms struggling, laughing about their mistakes, posting pics of destroyed laundry rooms or applauding you for being the “World’s Okayest” mom.

My husband looked at me and said: You should write, post and blog about these issues. Become your own answer. And that week, spitupandheels.com came to life. The Solution: Authentic Relationships! Find your tribe, your people. And celebrate.

It’s been my goal to help other moms connect, laugh, relate, discuss and empower one another through authenticity, vulnerability and intentional living.

It’s so easy for us women to fall out of the pack and go it alone. Don’t allow vulnerability to create isolation, rather let it empower you, catapult you to greater levels.

Per the abundantmama.com there are various reasons for isolation.

7 Reasons We Find Ourselves Isolated
1. Comparison Traps
2. Money
3. Socializing is Difficult
4. Your Kids Ages & Stages
5. Geography
6. You Don’t Think Like Other Moms
7. Feel Too Vulnerable to Share

Don’t worry about what others think. “Those who MIND, Don’t Matter and those who MATTER, Don’t MIND” – Bernard Baruch.


Splash color on life and allow yourself to be the real deal.

We need more Authentic YOU’s in this world. Besides, dirt never hurt anyone and why is it important to keep up with the Jones’s anyway? Here’s to living the Best Version of You! Tell us how you connect with other moms.

 

 

 


8 Life Lessons Kids Learn from Travel

Warning:  If You Travel with Kids, They Will Be Changed Forever

Mark Twain once said: Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness.

In the last 3 years, our family of 6 has traveled to 45 states, 10 countries and 9 National Parks via planes, trains, and automobiles, before moving to Scottsdale, AZ to explore the beauty of the West. (click to continue reading at http://scottsdale.citymomsblog.com/2017/04/07/8-life-lessons-travel-with-kids/


No One Told Me It Was the Last Time

When I was a kid, summers held the fondest memories! My little sister and I jumped off our old green boathouse into the lake, giggling as we ran toward the house eating peach ice cream; making our way to the trampoline, dodging the sprinkler system.

Barefoot and carefree.  Life was full of promise.

But then one day, it stopped.

If only I knew that was our last day hanging out like that. Perhaps our attention turned to other things, we grew up, we moved? I’m not sure.

But if I had known it would be our last, surely I would have embraced it more, held on a little tighter, enjoyed it a little harder.

Do you have a memory that brings a smile to your face, a friend, a moment, a person, a song?

When my oldest son was little, he loved for me to throw him in the air. I think that child lost weight, giggling!

I look back on those fond memories with laughter and sadness because I had no idea throw #399 would be the last toss, the last giggle.

A new phase came along, and he never asked for another air throw.

Time doesn’t stop for reflection. It has a quiet way of moving forward. Life doesn’t throw up a red flag to say: Warning, your pre-teen won’t think you’re fun or smart in 17 days.

Caution: those endless hugs your daughter loves to give – but annoys you – she’ll never offer again, starting next week. So make all the hugs count!

Did you realize when you picked up your child when he was 7, it would be the last time?

I know, I’m thinking, I had no idea. Now he’s in high school and time is slipping away. No one told me it was the LAST TIME.

I guess I could go pick him up, now. Of course, I might get a hernia, and he’ll think I’m crazy, but we’ll both remember when I picked him up, last!

Embrace all the moments. This could be family vacation #101 of #102 or the last good cry over life and boys as they leave for college. Life is short, now go pick up, hug someone!  For it could be the last time.

Here’s to Living the Best Version of You.

What was the last moment for you?

James 4:14
You do not know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life, but a mist, that appears for a little while, then vanishes?


Allowing the End of a Season to Create a New Beginning

When crying, fighting and resisting can’t stop the Inevitable

by Stephanie Pletka
I LOVE new beginnings. I love it when a new door opens, new friends join my circle, new adventures, new new new. It excites me. It brings oxygen, a freshness to a season.

But with new beginnings, it also means an end.

When a butterfly extends its beautiful wings, it’s no longer a crawling caterpillar. Eventually, a swimming tadpole becomes a frog perched on a lily pad and such is the circle of life.

You have to say goodbye to a new season, a great job lost to a move, a friendship that runs its course. It’s the end of something that helped make you the person you are today. A cycle, a process to becoming you.

I love new beginnings, but endings are tough. It’s a closure, a termination, a finale – that perhaps you didn’t foresee.

Who knew that was the last conversation, the last hug, the last laugh, the last goodbye.

I have a hard time with endings: whatever you enjoyed, whoever you laughed with, there’s something about laying the season to rest. A death of sorts.

My oldest son started high school. I dropped him off and said goodbye, but as I made the long walk to the car, it felt like someone had snatched my son, literally stole him from me.

His life, all the good times, our moments together, his first word, how he ran to me as a toddler, as if I were his only comfort – flew through my mind.

I made it to the car before I lost it. The ugly cry times 10.

We had the best summer, traveling cross country, hiking through 9 national parks, laughing, telling stories, sharing wisdom for future trials to come.

Those priceless moments you wish could be preserved in a bottle for years to come.

Even though they can make you crazy, there’s something to be said for all the long walks, late night talks, laughs in the kitchen, reflection on the porch swing, stories told that only your inner circle, your peeps, your tribe, truly understand.

They are your people. Tears cried, hearts broken, laughs that turn into snorts.

Those moments you argue and make up, because blood is thicker than water; and no matter how far they drive you to madness, if an outside force interferes, you would jump on their back and fight for their cause, till the bloody, dirty end, with clear eyes and full hearts.

From those late night PB&J’s and talks till the wee hours of the morning about life, love and the pursuit of happiness.

Those seasons of pools, popsicles and jumping off the pier are gone.

It’s the subtle moments that seem so nonchalant, yet make the lasting impression.

We’re raising our kids to leave us, well at least leave the basement, to be productive citizens, to go into the world and be great people.

To throw color and kindness and truth and adventure on mankind, yet when the college applications, girlfriends, and boyfriends begin to widen our inner circle, we see them as the enemy;

the one taking away all those memories, those moments, our partner in crime. And yet, the entire time, we’re the ones raising them to go, to be, to inspire, to fly.

But with every new ending, life gives us a beginning.

That’s how it’s intended. That was the intention the entire time, yet we loose sight of the end, or should I say: The Beginning. It’s what makes the world go round, what increases our circles, what allows us to become the butterfly, to grow and thrive.

Instead of seeing our season as a beginning to an end, let’s view the end as a New Beginning, a new chapter, a place to increase our inner circle, increase our love and allow our hearts to grow bigger.

Here’s to endings, that become New Beginnings.

Isaiah 43:19

I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.

Share with us a tough ending that has become a new beginning.


10 Reasons We Don’t Rock at Motherhood


At 38, with 4 kids under 7 and a business to run, to say my life was in ‘Busy’ mode, was an understatement. I was throwing and slinging, washing and strolling, jumping railroad tracks and breaking laws, trying to make carpool on time.

Life was about HOW FAST I could check off the TO DO List; when suddenly my 3rd son – clinging to the stairwell, said his FIRST word:  ‘Hurry.’  It was more like Hoo-wey!  

Nooooo! I’m a mom blogger. This can’t be your first word. How am I suppose to share it with the world? ? You’re making me look bad, kid.

But the realization that I had influenced this child to say ‘HURRY’ rocked me to the core.

My life was running me when I should have been running IT. What happens when this Mom Gig is over?

And I’ve run them thru the gauntlet of pre-school to productive citizenship so fast, I didn’t savor the moments because we had a schedule to keep. Go-Go- Go! Stamp the ticket.

What happens when all the windows are smudge free, the stickiness is gone and I can Pee in Peace?

Wait . . .  Is that a thing!

10 Reasons We Don’t Rock at Motherhood

1. Stop Acting as if a Season of Life is Your Permanent Fate.

Seasons of Life, good or bad won’t last forever. The job, the sweet spot of life, the crabby teenager, the rash on baby Liam’s butt, are all fleeting. Hang tight for the wind to change.

2. Mom Guilt – STOP. IT. It’s a dead end road.  

There’s a 50/50 chance you’ll make the correct decision, yet somehow we guilt ourselves into thinking our choice is ALWAYS wrong. Give yourself Grace! Some slack, mama. You’re one person.

3. Stop cleaning your house: Clean houses are overrated.

I cleaned the house today and we still live here, that was dumb!

Yes, clean is a good thing, but the house will always be there, the kids won’t.  Don’t create a regret, by allowing the need for a clean house to trump time with loved ones. There’s a time and place for everything.

4. Stop Rehearsing for Perfection. 

Your life is a Live production. The show must go on in all its beauty, sadness, and complexities. Live in the moment.

5. Stop embracing the Oscar for ‘Worst Mom’ Moment. 

I should have done this, I should have done that. I’ve messed up their lives forever. They’re gonna need counseling. So what, we all did. Kids love unconditionally. ❤️ It’s their gift. They think you hung the moon. See yourself through their eyes ?

6. There’s Beauty in the Ordinary, quit trying to make ALL moments Extraordinary.

While the mountain top is pretty special, the valleys and plateaus offer rest, healing, a reset button.

We have to go through all the processes, feel all the feels. Every day can’t be Christmas.

7.  Don’t permanently reside in the Chaos of Life.

BE Still & Know – the answers hang out in the Stillness. In the quietness, in meditation, in prayer, in white noise. – Just BE

8. Stop Saying Yes, when you should have said NO.

It’s selfish to give a Yes when you didn’t mean it. You’ll regret it later, and not give your best. When you say No to others, you say YES to your Family. Choose wisely.

9. Stop Wearing the Hero Cape, Daily.

Give the cape a rest, for the love! You don’t need a cooking show to stand out. Besides, who are you standing out for? You’ve already won the hearts of your greatest fans, your people.

10. Stop Choosing Perfection over Progress.

Lord knows Perfection is only real on paper. It’s a myth and sabotages the goodness. Let. It. Go.

Now go enjoy all the Ooey Gooey goodness life has to offer, with your tribe.

For they understand all the

inside jokes,
carry your secrets,
hold your heart
and love you like no other!

Go . . . Create the slow down button and Hoo-wey – before it’s too late.

Here’s to living the Best Version of You!

What actions have you taken to rock motherhood?