It is easy to envy the perfect, happy moms that seem to have it all figured out. But chances are, they were once just as stressed and frazzled as you feel right now. Choosing to have these positive habits in your life will turn your mommy frown upside down and help you enjoy making memories with your kids:
1. Get your beauty rest
Sleep deprivation turns you into grumpy mom. You will function better with eight hours a night (or close to it) and by eating substantial foods. Being hangry and sleep deprived makes it impossible to love the moment and keep up with the kiddos; be a well-rested and happy mom by taking care of yourself.
Happy moms know how to ask and say "please." It takes a village to raise children, so let a relative or babysitter give you a much needed break. Divvy up chores with your husband and kids to lighten your workload - and teach responsibility and strong work ethic (all while lessening your stress). To the perfectionist mom: this is a great teaching moment, so don't go back and redo everything you just asked your children to do - that defeats the purpose.
3. Leave the house
Being cooped up all day with housework is exhausting and unhealthy. Getting fresh air and sunshine are mood enhancers you can enjoy while also spending time with your kids.
4. Establish routines
Your life will be easier if your kids have a routine to follow. Use consistency to teach lessons of responsibility and stability. Just remember: Happy moms have routines that balance high expectations with merciful understanding.
5. Take time off
Spend some time alone. Take a long bath after the kids go to bed, run errands without the kids, plan a girl's night so you don't burn out. Recharge so you have energy to give your kids the affection they require. Reward yourself every once in a while because you deserve it. Treat yourself to flowers or a facial, and let your husband pitch in so you can take a break.
6. Pencil in some fun
Happy mom knows how to have fun! Plan a vacation to remind yourself why you and your spouse work so hard. Make priceless memories with your children by going out for a backyard picnic or exploring another city.
Have mom friends that you can have adult interaction with. When you plan a playdate for your kids, plan one for you too. You can exchange recipes and conversation while the kids play.
8. Get active and get your kids involved
Going to the gym or exercising at home will allow you to do something for yourself and lets those endorphins help boost your mood. It becomes a glorious self-indulgent loop: When you look better, you feel better. Encourage your kids to exercise too by getting them to jog in a 5K with you.
9. Get groovy with your hubby
Don't forget your marriage when being a happy mom. A happy husband and wife set a strong foundation for your family and the flirting will keep a smile on your faces.
10. Serve others
Service can bring joy into your home; happy moms set a good example to their children by being kind to others. It wouldn't take too much longer to make an extra lasagna while you're already at it anyway and run it over to the neighbor in need. Be the happy mom to the unhappy mom.
Being spontaneous can make a mundane task magical. Seeing if you can mop the whole floor during the kids' favorite song. Or swing by to get ice cream after the soccer game. When a child needs a pick me up, cater individually to them every once in a while so they feel special and can enjoy those impromptu moments.
12. Kid's night out
Have a date with your kids. You and your husband can take turns creating fond memories while having one-on-one time with you kids.
13. Love what's yours
Learning to be appreciative of what you have gives you a humble and happy outlook on life. Know what you can and cannot afford, don't compare your relationship (or your kids, your car, your house or yourself) with those around you. Make do with what you've got, and take pride in it.
14. Cut the clutter
Occasionally forget the mess in the kitchen to make memories with your babies. The kitchen will always be there - kids won't be. Make memories before they grow up, and you miss your chance.
15. Live, laugh and love
When you laugh with your kids, it releases endorphins that make you feel happy. So laugh until it hurts. Love and cuddle those kiddos. Give hugs and kisses every chance you get. Live your life with them to the fullest.
Screaming at the kids only makes you (and everybody else) miserable. When life is hard, look ahead and realize that somethings won't last forever. Realize that the sticky kisses and messy hugs are gone before you know it.
Happy moms are happy because they chose to be happy. They make the little memories matter. Enjoy the years of laughter, and the messy process of making memories.
Kristina Tieken is a staff writer for FamilyShare, public relations specialist with a love for the fine arts, food and exercise. She enjoys watching movies and spending time with her husband and family.