Join Melissa and I today as we talk about her littles Kiera and Mason, and a project she enjoys doing for their well being. Melissa appreciates a variety of books and excels in cooking and baking. She recently started learning the art of riding horse, a lifelong dream of hers. She says her favorite thing in all the world is taking care of her man (Jeremy – 6 years and counting!) and kiddos.
Joanne Hershberger: Hi Melissa, welcome to the Refresh blog. How about we just dive right in! You are a mom to two busy little people who are 19 months apart. What are their current ages?
Melissa Hostetler: Kiera just turned 4 and Mason is 2 ½.
JH: Being a mom to toddlers/preschoolers is a busy season. What have you found works well to keep your two occupied while you are tending to tasks?
MH: I have found that they do really well with keeping each other entertained. On those days that I feel like I am not getting much done I like to pull out some toys that they do not play with very often or their coloring books. Usually, that distracts them long enough that their imagination takes over and they are off doing the next thing.
JH: Do you have a daily morning routine that helps to keep things running smoothly?
MH: I’m not a person that likes a set routine but I have found that if I have some sort of morning schedule, my day goes better. I get up with my husband in the morning and fix his breakfast and lunch. I am usually awake enough by the time he leaves that I can convince myself to stay out of bed. Then, I like to have my devotions and read whatever book I’m currently reading. I sometimes get a load of laundry started also. When the kids wake up I try to set aside whatever I am doing and give them my full attention for a couple minutes before our day begins. I feel like having that time alone before the kids wake up really helps my day go better.
JH: How do you include your children in your homemaking responsibilities?
MH: I get them to help pick up their toys regularly. Things like putting laundry in the washer and dryer are easy and fun for them to do. The latest thing they have been wanting to help with is the dishes. I can be a little hesitant to let them help with things like that because I like to get them done as fast as I can but at the same time I hate to discourage them wanting to help. To my surprise I found out that Kiera can dry dishes really well and it was a big help to me. Mason does a pretty good job of rinsing them! Other times when they are wanting to help, all they need is a spray bottle and rag and they are happy!
JH: What would be your encouragement to other moms with youngsters who at times feel overwhelmed with all that is vying for their attention?
MH: I’m still trying to learn that not everything goes according to plan and to roll with the punches. Focus on the things that have to get done and let the others slide until things settle down again. Our kids need us more than our houses do. Oh, and grilled cheese sandwiches make a great supper!
JH: What are your favorite things about being a mom?
MH: Seeing things through a child’s eyes! The smallest things can make their eyes light up, which gives me a new appreciation for small things. Also when their imagination really starts developing, we get lots of laughs hearing what’s going on in their minds!
JH: Tell us about your hobby of making kombucha and how it benefits your family. Some of us may need a little educating here. Also, what made you decide to give it a try?
MH: I started making kombucha in March of this year when a friend introduced it to me and sent some supplies home with me to get started. After hearing how it’s full of probiotics which support our immune system I didn’t need much convincing to try it since we just came through several rounds of strep between the kids. I wanted to do something that would help build their immune system and I figured that was a good place to start.
JH: For someone who may have interest in the process what are your recommendations for beginning? How involving is it and what supplies are needed?
MH: It is very easy to get started. All you need is:
- A large glass jar with a wide opening
- A scoby (from a friend or you can order one)
- Tea bags (black or green)
- Starter tea (premade kombucha)
- Glass brewing bottles if you want to do a second brew for added flavor
It’s mostly a waiting game since you only have to bottle it once a week or it can go longer. I personally prefer to let it sit about two weeks. The book I linked below is an excellent source of information and will answer all of your questions. Or you can go to kombuchakamp.com which is by the same people that wrote the following book. The Big Book of Kombucha: Brewing, Flavoring, and Enjoying the Health Benefits of Fermented Tea
JH: You will be using your cooking and baking gift for Refresh. How do you feel about the food preparation for the event? What are you looking forward to the most?
MH: I’m excited! I have always enjoyed making food for people and seeing them enjoy it. I feel like it is one way I can bless others in this stage of life with young children.
JH: Thanks for sharing with us today, Melissa! You inspire me. Thanks for your desire and willingness to serve the ladies at Refresh.
MH: Thank you for the opportunity!