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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Format: Paperback
Sighing. I find myself doing it a lot some days. It's because I'm not a huge fan of interruptions and it's because I'm selfish and neither of those issues mesh well with life as a work-at-home mom of three young daughters.

So, I sigh. "Mom, can you?" Big, shoulder-heaving sigh. "Mom, I need help . .. " Deeply dramatic sigh. "Mom, I'm thirsty. I'm hungry. I'm tired. Can I cuddle? Can we play Candy Land?" More sighing.

Sometimes (maybe more often than that), I need the reminders in Tracey Eyster's book on being the mom---that this time with my young kids is precious and short-term, gone before I know it. She hits on attitude "traps" that probably many of us fall into---feeling like a martyr, trying to do this whole mom-thing like everyone else tells us to, being too busy to stop and build into relationships with our kids, and even feeling like we're of little value. Yes, we begin to feel like we're "just a mom."

With lots of grace, humor and vulnerability about her own tough mom moments, Eyster gives us an attitude check. She's laced practical tips with Scriptural encouragement and storytelling, making this book feel like a big sister or an older friend sharing some wisdom she's learned along the way.

Chances are good that if you are a mom, you'll find yourself somewhere on these pages. I did at times. And when I did, I was reminded to make some changes so my kids feel like they are important to me, worthy of my attention and not the recipients of sighing anytime they need my help or affection.

She writes at the end, "There are no perfect moms, and there are no tips or suggestions that will make you the world's best mom. But there are practical tips and training that can embolden you to stay the course." Books like hers give us the pick-me-up, gentle reminders and advice we need maybe not to be a perfect mom or the world's bet mom, but to be a better mom.

I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review and the opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255 : "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on July 25, 2012
Format: Paperback
Every mom needs a copy of this book, especially those of us who just happen to have young, energetic children under foot!

One of my absolute favorite quotes from the book was this (in reference to moms calling ourselves "Just Moms"): "You haven't lost yourself; you've found who you were destined to become. You've been given lives to mold and an opportunity to prepare your children for the future. There is nothing "just a mom" about you."

That, right there, has completely transformed the way I think about myself as a mother. My whole life I have wanted to be a mom, but now that I am one I keep wondering where the confident, patient person I used to be has gone! This helped me to realize that the person I used to be was just a stepping stone (an opening act, if you will) to my REAL, LIFELONG job of being a mom. I was born to do this. :)

As moms in today's society, we are surrounded with lies that tell us when we take the time to actively mother our children, we lose ourselves in the process. Although it can certainly feel like this at times, the quote above has reminded me, time and again, that being a mother to these precious children is part of my destiny. On the days that the diaper changes are numerous and the temper tantrums are endless, seeing the "big picture" as Tracey suggests in her book can be just the ticket to keep from having a "Mommy Meltdown".

In addition to this excellent reminder of fulfilling our God-given purpose as mothers, the author lays out several "traps" that moms can get stuck in if we're not careful. I identified with each of the "traps" shared in the book in at least a small way, though the "Martyr Mom" trap might be my worst! I found myself nodding my head in agreement throughout the chapters and was relieved to find some helpful advice for escaping these traps.

Bottom line: If you are the mother of young kids, BUY THIS BOOK (or borrow it from a friend). You won't regret it. It will give you just the encouragement you need while also challenging you to be even more intentional with your kids.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon October 10, 2012
Format: Paperback
Sometimes, I get so tired of reading parenting books.

One author says you should constantly wear your baby. One author says you should let the baby cry until he finally passes out. One says you should anticipate discipline issues and train your child before they happen. One says you should handle everything with grace. Sometimes it is SERIOUSLY tough to figure out what to do as a parent. With each book I read, I devise new theories and new methods. Miraculously, the methods work for day or two and I run off spouting all my new-found wisdom on whoever will listen. Inevitably, something goes wrong. Someone gets sick and all reason flies out the window. I get "too busy" and end up sitting my kids in front of Wonderpets for two hours instead of "training them up in the way they should go". Its hard being a parent (did I say that already?)

When I saw the cover of Tracey Lanter Eyster's book, Be the Mom, it looked like a lot of fun. "I want to be THAT mom!", I thought. The day is beautiful, the kids are well dressed (getting my kids dressed at all is an accomplishment around here!), and there isn't a "to-do" list in sight. I decided to give it a try. After all, reading books might be what I do best.

At first glance, this books looks like it's going to be heavy in the theory department. The subtitle reads, "Overcome attitude traps". Sounds pretty abstract. However Chapter One confirmed that this lady was in the thick of it, just like the rest of us. There were good days and bad days, and the things she was suggesting were designed to tip the scale in favor of the good days. In every chapter, there is a discussion about the importance of attitude-adjustment, but there are also practical things you can do to pull yourself out of whatever mom-trap is currently afflicting you.

Some of the "Mom Traps" include:
Just-A-Mom Trap (or, what I do isn't important)
Martyr Mom Trap (or, my needs aren't worth caring for)
Busy Mom Trap (or, I can and WILL do it all)
Tomorrow Mom Trap (or, I'll wait for another day to do it)
Practically speaking, you need a plan...
I love the suggestions Tracey gives on page sixteen, such as:

Get dressed, wearing something that makes you feel good
Try to maintain a routine
Don't skip meals
Include some kind of physical activity every day
Smile!!
Teach quiet time
Of course, Tracey gives more detail -- but you get the idea!

My Favorite Quotes
An overwhelming to-do list causes a mom to be more focused on tasks rather than relationships. I'm not saying we should cast aside our responsibilities in order to play with your children. I am saying we need to establish priorities and find balance so that we can accomplish both.
Family comes first, and social media needs to be put on hold, not your spouse and children! Your most important fans and followers are those you live with. (p70)
I fear the Busy Mom trap causes us to thrive off one-upping others and receiving the admiration from people around us who think we're successful in life because we're so busy. (p70)
As you move from site to site [online], you may find yourself measuring your worth and value by comparing your life to someone else's. We need not look for how we measure up against each other, but for how we can support one another as women and as moms. Share, don't compare. (p87)

The Trap I'm in Right Now

The Busy Mom Trap. When I read the following paragraph, I was seriously convicted:

"As I search my own behavior patterns, I catch myself thriving off the accolades of others: "Wow, look at you! You can do it all." Or I get far too excited over a list marred by check marks... Proof, right there in black and white, that I'm a successful, involved mom."

Worth a read!!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Format: Paperback
Being a mom is one of life's hardest and rewarding jobs. What happens when you find yourself falling into the mom traps? You pull up your big girl boots and move on!

Tracey Lanter Eyster, the creator/editor of MomLifeToady.com shares her words of wisdom and encouragement for today's busy moms. She helps you to avoid seven mom traps with step-by-step advice for avoiding those traps. She's funny, transparent and open. You feel like you are talking to your best friend reading the book.

I found myself in the Just-A-Mom chapter. I often say, "I'm just a mom." As if that is all I do...as if that isn't important enough. Her advice gives me something to work on over the next year.

I received this to review. All opinions are my own.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on September 30, 2012
Format: Paperback
As a mother who stays at home with her kids, I must admit, I have had these awkward moments when asked what I do for a living. After answering "Oh, I'm a stay-at-home mom" I see the slight frown and the look of pity and then accept the abrupt shift in the conversation to the weather.

I also admit that in response to that question I have downplayed my motherhood and replied with "I'm a writer". (So cool and bohemian sounding.) Or, "I'm a youth group leader". (Never mentioning that I'm a volunteer.)

To be honest my full-time vocation is a mother to my children. But looking around at our culture, it's not easy to find anyone who will affirm the importance of motherhood, a voice that will state, without apology, that being a mom is the grandest career a woman could have.

That's why I so appreciate Tracey Lanter Eyster's book, Be The Mom. Overflowing with good-natured advice and encouragement, Eyster clearly communicates her love of motherhood. Seriously, this book bubbles over with the kind of "Hey-I- know-what-you're-going-through-and-I'm-in-your corner" inspiration that will make you want to run out into the street and shout OH YEAH, I'M THE MOM! Well, okay, I'm exaggerating somewhat. But if you are a mom struggling with your momhood, this book is a shot in the arm.

Not that Be the Mom is a cover-to-cover pep talk. Far from it. Eyster, chapter by chapter, points out the traps that moms can fall into that can damage their relationships with their family and take the wind out of their self-confidence. From the "Just a Mom" Trap to the "Supermom" Trap, Eyster analyzes those perceptions of motherhood that can tie moms up in knots and cause anxiety-induced thoughts of self-doubt at three in the morning.

Be The Mom is a book that could have easily become a study in maternal shortcomings - the kind of book that makes you not want to a get out of bed in the morning. But Eyster has the gift of encouragement with a coaching-not-criticizing approach.

Sure she points out the pitfalls of the "Martyr Mom" Trap, but she makes you feel like she's right in there with you, urging moms on to see the big picture - to see what a gift from God motherhood really is.

Although Be the Mom is primarily a book that encourages the stay-at-home mom, Eyster certainly does not overlook the mom working full-time out of the home. She admits some moms do have to work, but being the mom should always be of primary importance.

Speaking from experience, being the mom has come with some life adjustments for Eyster, who shunned the corporate ladder in favor of Chutes and Ladders, but she makes it clear, even through the most frustrating and difficult times, it is worth it.

Advanced Reader of Be The Mom provided by Focus Publishing through Net Galley in exchange for an honest review.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on July 20, 2012
Format: Paperback
Love the honest, energetic approach to the bad attitudes moms (like me) can struggle with, plus help for overcoming them through practical suggestions and a Christian perspective. I will be a better mom for reading this book. Thanks, Tracey!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on October 8, 2012
Format: Paperback
I identified on so many points with Tracey's journey as a mom and the mom traps she identifies. Guilt, need for control (The my way highway...), and sidelines mom were so me. Each day is a new challenge, but Tracey encourages us to strive forward with God's grace. Loved it!!!!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on April 10, 2013
Format: Paperback
The role of mom is often described as the most important job in the world. Rightly so, for so much is at stake during childrenfs early years and moms are central in shaping character and personhood. However, when the going gets tough (the endless diapers, the continual messes, the endless conflict resolution, the complete lack of personal time, etc.), moms are often tempted to quit their gmom]jobh. While few would endorse an outright abandonment of motherhood, others may recommend that a woman treat her role as secondary to personal desires in order to combat feelings of discouragement and/or unfulfillment. The enemy has laid intentional traps cleverly designed to discourage and redirect a woman towards self rather than family. Moms need to know how to recognize these traps . . . and avoid them. Be the Mom: Overcome Attitude Traps and Enjoy Your Kids explores and validates the life of a mom who makes her family a priority and introduces the reader to seven Mom Traps that may be preventing them from a full, joy]filled life

I was really excited to read this book as I am a mom of two and am always looking for ways to be a better mom. As I started to read, I thought, I have nothing in common with this woman. Then as I continued to read I realized that we did have things in common...all of the struggles with attitude, time and 'traps' as she calls them. I really enjoyed reading how she over came these 'traps' or how she placed things in her way to avoid them all together. I think we as moms (and dads) face a number of challenges and Tracey Lanter Eyster has some really helpful things to say about them.

I am passing this book along to another friend who is excited to read it because of the things I have shared with her about the book.

I received a free copy of this book from Tyndale, Thanks!!

See more reviews at [...]

Enjoy!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on October 4, 2012
Format: Paperback
Motherhood is not for the weak. It is hard, gritty, roll-up-your-sleeves-and-get-dirty job that requires loads of grace, patience, wisdom and many other traits that most of us really need to work on(or is that just me?).

When that little bundle of newborn cuddliness is first placed into your arms, you experience massive amounts of delusions of grandeur. You just know that motherhood is going to be a fabulous journey through fields of white fluffy clouds and daffodils with only a few hiccups along the way. Your child is going to bring rays of sunshine and lollipops into your life every.single.day and you are just going to have a WONDERFUL mothering experience.

But then, you know, real life happens and suddenly you realize that you were totally unprepared for what motherhood really had to throw at you. You are up to your eyebrows in dirty diapers, cheerios, and unending laundry piles and every step you take causes unbearable pain to your feet as those cursed Legos make you wish that you always wore thick soled shoes in the house. Your daughter is backtalking, your son is literally climbing the walls and you just don't know what to do.

You fall into one or more of the dreaded "mom traps" that Tracey Lanter Eyster describes in her book Be the Mom.

Do you consistently downplay the importance and difficulty of what you do? Are you resentful that you seem to have lost yourself somewhere amidst the repetitive daily tasks that motherhood requires?
You just might be caught in the "Just-A-Mom Trap."

Have you "let yourself go" because you are constantly sacrificing for every other member of the household? Do you find yourself angry at other family members because you are the "only one who ever does ANYTHING"?
Sounds like the "Martyr Mom Trap."

Are you zipping through life so quickly that you aren't really taking in what's going on around you? Are you multitasking so well that you are forgetting to focus on what's really important?
Take a look in the mirror and see if you've succumbed to the "Busy Mom Trap."

Are you hesitant to do what you think is best for your family for fear of what others will think? Do you follow outside advice even when your instinct is telling you to go in a different direction?
You might be a victim of the "They Say Trap."

Do any of these make you nod your head and ask if the author knows you personally? These are only a few of the traps that Tracey dives into with determination and vigor. She wants us all to realize that even though this job is tough, it's manageable and we don't have to end up drained and burnt out. Using humor, personal anecdotes, and her personable tone, she dishes out fantastic tips to pull ourselves up out of the rut and turn ourselves into the mom we know we can be deep down inside. She encourages women to remember that attitude is important in determining outcome. Don't accept defeat! Be the Mom!

A great read for any mother, no matter what stage of the journey she is traveling through.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format: Paperback
Be the Mom is a quick boost of encouragement for the moms out there. I really enjoyed it! The chapters are relatively quick to read through, so it's a perfect book to read here and there. It became my favorite "waiting room" read.

The author and I really didn't seem to have a lot in common, but I still connected with her. We do have the "mommy" part in common. I liked her! She's writing as an experienced mom with older(teen) children(from my understanding). The suggestions she gives are methods that worked for her. She saw things that wasn't working for her family and she changed them. We get to see how these changes worked out. I'm not at all against moms who give suggestions as a "young" mom(young children), but it is great to get advice from the "wise" moms(older children).

The sections on being busy and comparisons are the parts that I got the most from. I'll be the first to admit that sometimes Facebook/blogging is my worst enemy. I see moms who are keeping busy going here and there, and I think I'm just not doing enough. Being busy doesn't automatically equal a great mom, though, and I appreciate the reminder. We're very simple around here. And comparisons. I've came a LONG way from what I used to be. I'm finally realizing that it's okay that my home and family doesn't look like it came out of a Martha Stewart magazine. It has never been spotless, and I no longer expect it to be at any point soon. It's okay that I can't cook worth anything, and that many of our meals come out of a box. I've spent so much time imagining a life of perfection that I've forgotten how to be content with what talents God has given me. I'm finally learning to do what works for us, and that's okay! This book helped me along with those journeys.

Overall, this is a simple, down to earth book with great mommy advice. I liked it!

*I was provided a review copy from Tyndale in exchange for my honest opinion.
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