Motherhood Spotlight: Blythe Bray

Hello! I'm Blythe, wife to Vaughn and momma to three crazy and wonderful kiddos. Braddock (5), Vera (3), and Cohen (18 months) keep me on my toes and make me want to try a little harder each day. Being a parent is difficult, much harder than I ever expected. It is the most challenging but also the most rewarding thing in my life.

I grew up with a mom who made every holiday and event special. My favorite memories growing up surround those events. I decided I wanted to continue that tradition with my own littles.

We live just outside of Washington DC. We love being surrounded by so many things to see and do and learn. But, it is a very expensive area and some times it's hard to keep our heads above water. Making holidays a little extra special isn't about giving your kids big, expensive things. It's helping them create memories that they will carry with them. It makes each holiday exciting and something to look forward to. I can't count the number of times my kids talk about their birthdays or Valentine's Day or Halloween every day, all year round.

Cutting out a few paper decorations and taping them on the wall or blowing up some balloons is really all you need. We use the main wall in our kitchen to decorate for every holiday or special occasion. Since we are constantly in the kitchen throughout the day, the kids see it and want to draw new pictures to add to the decorations. My husband teases that it sometimes makes our house look like a kindergarten classroom, but I know he secretly loves it. Including your kids in the decorating process makes it extra special for them. They'll even start to remind you about the ghosts that need to be hung or the leprechaun trap that needs to be built!

A couple of favorite things my family does is create a Thanksgiving thankful tree by writing down things we are grateful for on paper leaves and taping them to the wall. I am always surprised by some of the things my kids think to put down. The Love Fairy visits our house every Valentine's Day. She brings a little treat or toy each day leading up to Valentine's. I love to use balloons in our celebrations. Including them at Christmas makes the day more special even when there maybe aren't a lot of gifts under the tree.

There are days that I don't feel like I was my best mothering self and nights I ask my kiddos to forgiving me for being grumpy. Putting a little extra fun and celebration into holidays is something I can do without needing a do over. I believe creating fun memories and traditions for your family is what makes happy kids and ultimately a happy home.