Friday, February 5, 2010

Friday Forum: Making sure you've still got it


It was a Monday, late afternoon. I had finally gotten a quick run in on the treadmill and had just finished bathing myself and my boys when my husband, Taylor, arrived home from work.

"Hey!" I greeted him. "I just need to throw on my leisure suit and then we've got to go. We're invited to my parents' house for dinner."

"I knew this was going to happen," Taylor said with a grin.


"That leisure suit. I don't care how fancy a brand it is. They're still sweats."

I felt defensive for about two minutes, until I realized that he was totally right. I'd been wearing my sweatsuit a lot lately. Feeling sheepish, I slipped on my jeans before leaving the house.

A few weeks ago I was snuggling with my four year old. His head was tucked up under my chin and I said, "Henry, your hair smells so good! Did you put something in it?"
"Yea...I sprayed some of your perfume on my head, the kind with the silver lid."
"Mmmm, well you sure smell nice."
"Yea...let me smell your head and see what you smell like." (*He sniffs my forehead, then all around my face*)
"What do I smell like?" I asked.
"Well...just like regular skin...kinda stinky, actually."

I used to be a daily spritz of perfume gal. Three or four varieties to choose from. These days I'm barely a daily-shower gal. That's all changing though, friends. I'm going back to a daily douse - even if it's the same scent every day (at present the only fragrance I own is Hugo Deep Red). One little step on the path to make sure mama's still got it (Wink!)

You know you've been there. You look at your frazzled self in the mirror at 4:30 p.m.--hair in a messy bun, mysterious baby goo on your shirt, a bottle of Windex in hand--and wonder,
"what happened to me?!"

In this romantic time of year, we ask you--How do you make sure you've still got it?!


Abbie said...

Some days I don't put on a bra. That's sexy, right? :)

I think a daily workout makes us all feel good. Oh, and having "special cuddle time" often makes him forget that I've been wearing yoga pants all day.

Thanks for the reminder, ladies.

Linds said...

I've been thinking about this a lot and wondering when I went from the cool, hip mom to the mom that shows up at school with her child's lunch wearing slippers and a bathrobe (not really, but pretty close). The older I get the more I just want to be comfortable and the less I care about how I look. Like tday, do I mop the floor while the baby is sleeping or take a shower? My floor seriously needs some mopping. But since my husband commented on my hairy legs last night I guess the floor will have to wait until tomorrow.

Stefani M. said...

I have made a deal with myself: I am not allowed to buy sweats or wear grubby shapeless Ts. Yoga pants are okay when I'm pregnant (they're slim fitting and black so easier on the eyes *wink*wink*). Shirts with a little gunk on them are okay--I mean, seriously, I can't change my shirt every time my child gets snot on it... I'd go through 10 a day, but serious messes call for a wardrobe change. Also not allowed for myself: bathrobes and wearing pajamas all day. Fortunately, I've never been a make-up person, so I can't be expected to keep up what I've never done. I'm just a lip gloss gal. :)

Maybe part of the problem is that we equate comfort with clothes that baggy/shapeless. I shop and shop and shop without buying anything until I find the pants/shirt/shoes that are comfortable AND flattering. It takes some time, but saves effort in the end when I know that I can put on nearly anything in my closet and be comfortable and attractive.

Although, I must admit like Linds, with wintertime here, my razor has been enjoying too little use... I really want to get an electric one so I can shave whenever, instead of taking a longer shower... plus we have a stall shower in our bathroom and I HATE shaving in it.

Rachael said...

Like Abbie said, I've decided that in the long run my husband will appreciate the fact that I spent half an hour running rather than straightening my hair.

Most days I try to take a quick ten minutes before my husband gets home to spruce up both myself and the house; he always checks the state of the house to assess what kind of day it's been for me (i.e. if there's a big mess he figures the kids have probably been wild and then he gets a little stressed).

Please note that as I type this I'm wearing yoga pants...but I did straighten my hair! :-)

Rachael said...

also, I should say that my advice is to invest in a really flattering pair of yoga pants. I usually don't wear mine all day, but my husband thinks they're hot! ;-)

Mickie and Matt said...

I honestly laughed OUT LOUD after reading this post, story of my life. My husband leaves at 6:30 AM most days and doesn't get home until 9:30 PM Work 7-3:30 then School 4-9. I take care of our little guy ALLLL day. I'll usually get myself looking decent around 4 pm that is getting dressed... hair and makeup usually goes on at about 8 pm or so (just in case he comes home early). Then I make sure that when he does get home I scramble to find something useful to do, like folding laundry straightening something or fixing him the next days lunch and dinner. I act like I've been completely productive for the full 15 hours he's been gone. When in realization I did read about 14 chapters in my Jane Austen collection if that counts for anything... allthough I am training for a Triathlon so I have usually exercised. Sometimes he'll find me in my work out clothes but he doesnt mind he likes the fact that I exercise a TON.

I'm anxious to see what others comment because I should probably work on still having "it", at least on the days my husband doesnt have school.

Tiffany said...

you hit on such a great topic. it was much harder to dazzle up after my first child because it took me much longer to lose the pregnancy weight. however, i lost the weight much quicker the second time around and i feel so much better about myself. so now i'm more willing to dress nicely and put on makeup.

funny how something such as weight can make such a big difference.

Valerie said...

Oh Bloom you hit it on the head. Just last night I was telling my hubby I was at this moment in my life, everything I DID NOT WANT TO BE. I am fat (granted its pregnant fat, but nonetheless), my energy is gone, I feel out of shape, I have less paitence becuase of less energy so I am not very nice. Ugh, everything I just don't want to be, but am.
I said to him,
"Do you think I enjoy looking this way?" as I gestured to myself.

I had no makeup, hat hair/messy bun, his over sized sweatshirt on, big pajama pants, was a sight. (and how funny is it that in the past I said I would NEVER be this person ha ha ha)

But the hour I would spend on me, is an hour I NEED to spend on much more important things right now, like making sure everyone has clean clothes, and getting dinner on the table.

How funny it is too that I get both my boys dressed, bathed, and their hair done so cute, and then I throw on my hat, stretchy pants and I call it good.

It's definitely just the stage of life I am in though and I realize that. I realize I give up a lot right now and have to be very unselfish, and it's ok, it won't be like this forever.

But my tips to make sure you still got it? I shower every night, not the day. I also take the ten minutes at night (even though its usually after midnight) to blow dry my hair straight. Then I can usually do it quick the next day. (plus I smell all nice going to bed, that is sexy right?)

If you just need to throw on a hat, there are so many cute options now over just baseball caps. Get yourself one of the cute caps with a flower accessory or something.

Black leggings, long shirt, boots, and a cute hat...takes five min to put on, and you look chic.
Don't have time for a full face of makeup? Do just one thing, lip gloss, or blush, or just mascara.

And on those few days you actually do get really ready and look good, I usually stop by my husbands office to take him to or bring him lunch. Just to stop by while I look good, so he can actually see that sometimes...I do look good, ha ha ha

Those are my lil' ideas :)

Jacque said...

I pretend that every day is a "going out" day. I shower in the morning usually with toddler in bathroom or strapped in his highchair watching favorite show. Then put on a flattering combo; even tshirt/jeans but like Stefani said make sure things fit and are flattering. And then put on makeup. I remember equating my Mom's mood with her make-up status. Make-up she was usually cheerier and more make-up she seemed more stern...goofy huh? I feel more put together even if I am just cleaning windows all day.

Banana said...

Oh, this hit home. For the last few months, since my my oldest started school and I got pregnant with #4, I have just been too tired to care! I don't like putting my appearance on the back burner, or my DH's feelings, but winter is not helping. I hate being cold, and if left to my own devices I would probably just hibernate until spring :). Anyway, in an effort to step-it-up I have been trying to wear more dresses (my husbands favorite) and wake up early enough to do my hair in the morning. Gotta start small and work my way back to perfume and shaving ;)

Laurel said...

I do hair, make up, and something cute on my bod every day, without fail (unless I'm ill or otherwise seriously rendered nonfunctioning) because it makes me feel good. Even with the remaining baby weight, which I am struggling with, getting myself together makes me more productive; plus I can leave the house in a moment's notice if something fun comes up, and if someone comes over I'm not embarrassed because I'm a hot mess. My hubby has actually thanked me a few times for "taking care of myself," and he regularly tells me, "You look pretty today." I, too, want to be comfortable with myself, but I don't think that means I shouldn't look as good as I can for the one I love. I still want him to think I'm hot. He's my forever boyfriend afterall.

p.s. I put on a little spritz of perfume before bed last night because I had plans to cuddle. (wink)

Sugar... said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Katrina said...

My husband mostly works from home right now so we both spend a lot of time in sweats! :-) In fact, as soon as he gets home mid morning from teaching, he changes right back into his sweats...unless we have to go somewhere of course. Since he doesn't leave for the whole day, I don't feel the need to spruce up. Not necessarily a good thing, but he doesn't mind. And when I do get dolled up he appreciates it all the more.

I think its really just about what makes you feel good and works for your relationship. Whether that's putting makeup on no matter what, or wearing yoga pants 4 or more days a week.

For the record, I always put on "real clothes" when I leave the house. :-)

The MOB said...

Although I do think it is important to feel attractive to your hubbie and feel good about yourself, I don't get all dolled up everyday. I do like to get dressed up when I am going out with friends or on date night, but when I am at home for the day I skip the full routine.

I work three days a week and I have to get dressed up for work - full-on suit and heels. On the days I am home with my little guy, I could care less about my hair and make-up. I am a pony-tail, jeans, and sweatshirt kind of girl and that is the girl that my hubbie fell for.

I would rather spend time hanging out with the kiddo and hubbie than doing my hair. I do run 4-5 days a week though. Sometimes with the kiddo in the jogger and othertimes solo to get in a little me time. I am in a better mood and feel good about myself when I feel fit.

Doing a little something for yourself (whether it is exercise, doing your hair, or getting dressed in something other than sweats) goes a long way to making you feel better about yourself. When you feel better about yourself, you are going to be in a better mood and more attractive to others, including the Mr.

Jesslyn said...

I just survived my first year with twins (and a 2yo!) and my daily wardrobe/pampering took a backseat. Actually, it wasn't really even in the car.
A few months ago, nearing the end of the first year, I took a deep breath, said, "ok, I can do this. We're busy but we're good!" and started building in time to take care of myself better. Paint my nails, do my hair, shave, make-up, etc. I wear t-shirts and yoga/exercise pants most days, since they're great for all the time I spend playing on the floor and the inevitable mess of babies. But I'm never in baggy sweats or oversized schlumpy clothes. And I do it up nice whenever we leave the house. Even grocery shopping. :)

sarah said...

i promise i will stop wearing my yoga pants in public. :) thanks for the reminder girls!

Sabrina said...

Great post...just found your site yesterday and I'm hooked.

After baby boy #2 came a few years ago, I felt SO incredibly yucky about myself and stayed in that funk for a while. Then last year, I joined a gym for the first time and it truly has changed me in SO many ways. I CARE what I look like and my husband (and I!) have enjoyed the results. Just recently I started putting a little mascara on in the morning (even on gym days)and its crazy but that makes me feel better too.
Have a great weekend ladies!

Sugar... said...

I totally deleted my previous comment because it made it sound like I never feel ugly, but I totally do! You know how you know what you want to say, but it just comes out all self-righteous and lame? Well, yeah. Anyway, I do like to get dolled up. Jeff nevers complains about how I look, but there are days when I look in the mirror and think, "When did I get so OLD? and frumpy? And why I am not only wearing gross sweats, but ones with holes in them no less???" So, although I think it is virtually impossible to look gorgeous all the time as a mother, I feel that working out each day, and blowdrying my hair to at least get the kinks out, and wearing jeans (not sweats) is my cure to make sure I've still got it. And go buy yourself a new item to add to your wardrobe each month. It's amazing what a new shirt can do!

Barb @ getupandplay said...

When feel like I have "it", then I'm nicer to my husband, more patient, more loving, and happier. That's what impacts my relationship more than the physical stuff (which is important and fun, too). So for me, that's wearing real clothes (not yoga pants), showering, a little makeup (at least mascara), and hair done (this one hardly ever gets done!)

Danielle said...

This is a wonderful topic and I had so much fun reading through the comments. I used to spend about an hour on Sunday evenings doing my nails, eyebrows, and general maintenance for work on Monday. Then one day I thought, "What am I doing? Why am I getting all groomed for the people I work with?"

Now I do it on either Thursday or Friday night after my little one is in bed so that I can look good for the weekend and my hubby :)

Sarah said...

I wake up before everyone else and spend a few quiet moments to myself exercising, reading a book, having a cup of tea, showering, just little things like that help me get through the day. Getting into my jeans & slapping on a bit of tinted moituriser, mascara & lip gloss, spraying on some perfume (it only takes 1 minute) makes me feel i still get taken care of. My husband appreciates a clean & happy wife & kids, more than a clean house anyways. i think keeping yourself healthy helps keep you in a good mood & gives you enough energy to tackle the day.

Megan said...

What makes me feel like I have "it"? My husband. It is all my husband. He tells me he loves me at some of the times when I feel the worst. and he'll comment on a pair of pants because he thinks it makes my butt look cute. I know I can try a lot harder than I do, but I've never been one to spend large amounts of money on myself(meaning my wardrobe is old, I don't own makeup and haven't had a good haircut in a year). And when I feel like i have it is when I can do something for my husband and it makes him feel special too.

sarahandmatt said...

I actually do get ready everyday, although I probably still look like heck by the time my husband gets home. Lately, I've had a goal to have the house picked up and myself touched up before my husband gets home. You know how it is, the house is clean until 3:30, then the kids get home and there are backpacks and coats and homework everywhere. I looked great at 9am, now the lipstick's worn off and the hair is a mess. It really only takes a few minutes to get things back in order, and it makes a HUGE difference in how I feel and behave when my husband gets home. He notices too!

Diana said...

A lot fell by the wayside for me when motherhood arrived, but recently, I've been making a point of putting some effort into my appearance daily. A little makeup (a shower, for sure!) and some new cute clothes (thrifted, mostly, but still!)...and working out! So important..when I feel good, it shows and spreads!

LCM said...

I go to Zumba. A few hours a week shakin' my groove thing and I just feel hotter. Plus, there's the exercise thing... One of the nice (unfortunate) things about being so tall is that I can't find any track/sweat/leisure, etc suit to wear. Even my PJ bottoms are high water, so there is NO way I would be caught dead out of the house with them.

Anonymous said...

ugh. As I type this I am braless, wearing a cardigan that stinks of liquid vitamins (got a whole dropperfull on me yesterday) and "yoga" pants, except....I havn't actually worked out since my daughter was born. And I'm not sure when I last shaved or washed my hair. I have been thinking about this quite a lot lately...and I just have to do something...thanks for the reminder!