Homeward Bound

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I never know if my blog makes it appear that 1) I’ve got it all pulled together, superwoman style or 2) I’m a hot mess (reality is that I’m somewhere in between).  But I’ll admit that, probably like most of us, I get way too stressed out way too easily.  After long days juggling work and home responsibilities, I sit on the couch, feeling panicked and overwhelmed as I craft long, long To Do lists of everything I need to accomplish:  wash the dogs, shoot photos for that article, write another few chapters, order a winter coat for Henry, balance my checkbook, clean out the pantry (so messy), set up new advertising for the clinic, edit a post, get the oil changed… The list goes on and on.  And all I can think is, “Ughhhh, I need a vacation.”


But then I go away on a work trip, and I realize how much I love home and everything about it – including all my responsibilities and so-called stressors.  Isn’t that a nice feeling?  When you finally get away and discover that all you really want is just to come back?  Absence really does make the heart grow fonder. 


So do cell phone pictures.  I don’t know how I would survive being away from the wee one otherwise!


Last night’s Operation Beautiful event went well.  Lots of HTP readers came out (hi, guys!), which was really, really nice.  I didn’t end up getting back to Tina’s house until 9:45, and she stayed up and talked with me while I ate dinner.  We both crashed shortly thereafter.  When my alarm went off at 6:30, I could NOT get up.  Her guest bed was so comfy cozy!  I ended up rolling around for an extra 30 minutes, essentially making myself late as heck.


Stood in the kitchen with Tina and Murph and ate a quick mini-breakfast.



I knew traffic going into the city would be horrendous at rush hour, but it was bit worse than I expected.  There were a few bumper-to-bumper miles during which I was convinced that I’d miss my flight.   But I made it!


Whew.  Even had time to hunt for breakfast numero dos.


And now I’m home!  What a whirlwind – out to Boston and back in Charlotte in exactly 24 hours.  Juuuuust long enough to realize how much I miss everyone at home.  Between work, Henry and all of his crazy antics, the pups, and the cat, it’s definitely a zoo sometimes…


But it’s my crazy zoo.   And I sure do love it. 


I still really need to clean out the pantry.  Oh well.  There’s always tomorrow!



  • lauren December 6, 2012, 1:02 pm

    can I just say how much your first paragraph hits home with me? my son is a week younger than yours. some days I feel so accomplished and put together and other days I am an anxious/stressed/emotional/crazy person. Cleaning out the pantry has been on my to-do list for weeks, every time I open it something falls out.

  • Grace @ Grace Dishes December 6, 2012, 1:07 pm

    Hope you have a safe trek home! I definitely miss home after a few days out of my normal routine even though I love to travel and go to new places. It’s a catch-22 🙂

  • Kristy @ Kristy's Health Revolution December 6, 2012, 1:22 pm

    I too get stressed way to easily. It’s that whole thing with women where we feel like we have to do it all, be everything to everyone, and look beautiful doing it. I think it’s something that most women I know struggle with.

  • Natalie @ Free Range Human December 6, 2012, 1:28 pm

    Sometimes all we need is perspective 🙂 Glad you made it home safely!

  • Katie @ Peace Love & Oats December 6, 2012, 1:33 pm

    For me, going home to visit my family makes me miss them even more! I’d rather go back there than be here in Chicago! Might have something to do with no school work too…

  • Rebecca @ Blueberry Smiles December 6, 2012, 1:40 pm

    Sounds like an exhausting AND great day, all at the same time!

  • Abby December 6, 2012, 1:42 pm

    Isn’t it nice to love your family and home? I feel the same way, crazy long list to do always but so appreciative of what I have!

  • Amber @ Busy, Bold, Blessed December 6, 2012, 1:43 pm

    Yay for not missing your flight! It’s so awesome how you get to see so many parts of the country, even for small time periods! Tomorrow is Friday, yay 😀

  • Kerry December 6, 2012, 1:53 pm

    Hi Caitlin,

    I would love to see an updated blog roll from you! What are you reading these days?

  • Michelle@Peachy Palate December 6, 2012, 2:24 pm

    I’m such a stress head myself and write a new To Do list pretty much every day…who am I kidding it is EVERY day! But I’m totally with you, once you have a day away you realise how un-stressful life really is or at least should be at home by comparison! I’d say you’re shattered after that trip! Traveling at that turn around always takes it out of me!

  • Sarah @ Yogi in Action December 6, 2012, 2:24 pm

    I love this entry so much!

    I think it’s so easy to take for granted the things we have, and it’s wonderful that even just a day away you already missed all the craziness!

    Hope you had a happy baby to greet you when you finally made it home.

  • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas December 6, 2012, 2:28 pm

    It must be hard to be away from that cute baby!
    I’m glad your to do list looks pretty brief so you can maximize your time with Henry!

  • Karen December 6, 2012, 2:41 pm

    Your first paragraph PLUS a 40 hour work week and 90 minute daily commute back and forth from work. Fun times.

    • Caitlin December 6, 2012, 4:14 pm

      Ughhhh I’m sorry! Commutes suck. Don’t you wish they would just invent the jetpack already?

  • Julianna @ Julianna Bananna December 6, 2012, 2:41 pm

    henry is just so cute! 🙂

  • Janie Kaiser December 6, 2012, 3:37 pm

    just to let you know, Caitlin, you come off and really having it all pulled together!!! (even if you dont all the time!)

  • Mel December 6, 2012, 3:52 pm

    Even though home for me these days is my large village in central Morocco, I LOVE coming home. I had a crazy week of transportation related troubles and work stuff out of my town, and there’s no better feeling then coming home- even if it’s not my American home. Home really is where the heart (or at least part of it anyway) is!

    • Caitlin December 6, 2012, 4:13 pm

      You live in Morocco now, Mel??? That is so sweet. Tell me more!

      • Mel December 7, 2012, 3:24 am

        Thanks! I’m a Peace Corps Volunteer! I volunteer in what’s called a Dar Chebab (Youth Center in English). Mostly I teach English and other classes, but I’ve got a few other side projects too. I’ve got a great group of girls thats meets on Mondays, so I’m hoping I can utilize some Operation Beautiful ideas soon!

  • Ellen December 6, 2012, 4:11 pm

    I just read the first paragraph of your post…but I have been reading your blog since I got pregs since last december and I think your blog makes you look like you got everything pulled together. I am glad to see Im not the only one who feels overstressed and frazzeld at the end of the day…last night ended up with me in tears.

    PS your sleep training post was awesome. For now my little guy is a pretty good sleeper at night and will go down with out a fuss, but the naps during they day are whole other story…oh boy!

    • Caitlin December 6, 2012, 5:57 pm

      I hope you feel better soon! <3

  • Kelsey Y. December 6, 2012, 4:50 pm

    Even though I’m 20, and a college student currently, I have that same feeling of becoming too stressed, too quick or letting the anxiety get the best of me. I’m always trying to stay so organized, and sometimes I feel like it is beneficial for me to NOT be organized (in some parts of my life) and it makes me feel happier.

    I really should be happy all the time; I mean, I only have this life. My 2013 goal (yes, I’m already there) is to live and live happy for myself, and the loved ones who are so important in my life. Speaking of cleaning out the pantry, I need the clean the “pantry” of my apartment. Winter break in MN cannot come soon enough.

    Thanks for the positive climate you provide, where I feel secure in disclosing this information. =)

    • Caitlin December 6, 2012, 5:59 pm

      Thank you so much and I wish you the best of luck in achieving that goal!

  • Katie @ Talk Less, Say More December 6, 2012, 4:58 pm

    I LOVE moments that remind me how much I love what I have, despite it’s craziness.

  • Jolene (Homespun Heritage) December 6, 2012, 6:44 pm

    I’ve been cleaning out the freezer so we can restock it….plus its nice to just shop from what you’ve got for awhile! Some creative dishes came out of it since we’re low on things like milk and bread but the creativity is half the fun! And how do you feed this many people (7 children) from convenience foods? Wow, our bill went WAY down when I stopped doing that! (We went into survival mode shortly after adding 3 children at once…we did have 3 wks worth of food in the freezer, too!)

  • Kendra @ My Full-Thyme Life December 6, 2012, 6:44 pm

    For the record, you are doing a great job! Just remember to put some time for yourself on that to-do list! I always laugh when people suggest that because it is so much easier said than done, but as I sit at home on bed rest (35 weeks pregnant) b/c the doc said I need to take it easy, I realize how bad I’ve been neglecting myself.

    You are right, there is always tomorrow and there is no sense in burning out or getting too overwhelmed over a pantry. 😉 A happy, healthy, somewhat rested mama = a happy family!

  • Shannon December 7, 2012, 6:47 am

    Unsolicited random advice (gah, how annoying of me!), JUST IN CASE you need it: at Henry’s age, the best “winter coat” situation is to get him one of those fleece “snuggly” things that are sort of like blankets that zip up over your infant carseat. This is what I had for both my babies and what all my mom friends had for theirs, too. Then for the times you need something for him to wear in the cold when he’s NOT in the carseat, look for a fleece “suit” type thing that looks sort of like a sleeper, sort of like a snowsuit, but that covers hands and feet and has a hood too. Does that make sense? Much better than a mini version of a coat or jacket like a bigger child or an adult wears in the winter. Just a tip from an experienced mama! 🙂 Now you can tell me to shut up. 🙂

    • Caitlin December 7, 2012, 7:50 am

      Oh awesome. Good to know. I have one of those! I got it on consignment for $3! 🙂

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