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Do you want to do everything? Homeschooling mom Kasii Oakley has five kids in Vermont. She’s a nurturer at heart and wants to do everything! She wants to make all their food from scratch and have time to do some writing or painting for herself. Is it possible? What are the deeper challenges beyond just efficient scheduling?
Hunter is the creator of the Mindful Parenting course, host of the Mindful Mama podcast and author of the bestselling book Raising Good Humans: A Mindful Guide to Breaking the Cycle of Reactive Parenting and Raising Kind, Confident Kids. She helps parents bring more calm and peace into their daily lives. Hunter has over twenty years of experience in meditation practices and has taught mindfulness to thousands worldwide. She is the mother of two active daughters, who challenge her everyday to hone her craft!
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*This is an auto-generated transcript*
[00:00:00] Kasii Oakley: So my name is Kasii Oakley and, I live in Vermont and my husband and I moved here about two years ago. So right when the pandemic started, we had plans before that we moved up here. We have five little ones and right now they are nine of a nine year old girl. Almost eight year old boy, six and a half year old girl, and then four year old twins, a boy and a girl.
And there’ll be five in a couple weeks. So it’s a huge milestone. oh, and yeah, we live up here, a Ridge and I,we homeschool or unschool and take care of animals and just live life.
[00:00:40] Hunter: Oh, my gosh. That’s amazing. I, so wanted to like do that. Like when my girls were little and Maggie, I wanted to, I had aspirations to like homeschool and things like that.
But then I was like, oh gosh, I don’t think I can spend like that many hours with my kids. Like I need a break actually. No, totally.
[00:01:01] Kasii Oakley: That’s what I tell people considering homeschooling. And like the first year is really getting used to being around your kids the whole time.
[00:01:07] Hunter: because it’s intense. Yeah.
Okay. We are he really in it together all the time? Yeah. That’s all the time. Awesome. So Kasii and I worked together in Mindful Parenting. Did Mindful Mama Transformation Coaching group during the pandemic. Wasn’t that at the beginning of the pandemic.
That was, so that was so intense. We were all like, yeah, what’s going on. Yeah. And, so I know. Fairly well, but so I’m gonna ask you kinda, it’s a lot to ask since then, but what are your wins
[00:01:44] Kasii Oakley: yeah, Hunter, I just first wanna say thank you for all that you’re doing and for the work that you’ve put in to helping families and because it’s really meaningful work and it’s just really necessary. I think some of the wins in the last couple of years that I haven’t really. I guess I’m able to put into words or the relationship that I have with my children in that I feel very connected to them.
That’s I think was, is, has always been the goal, but I think I feel such a sense of groundedness, some of that’s time, but a lot of that is the tools, that I’ve been given and the accountability that I had through meeting with you and other Mama. To put those tools into practice. seeing like the fruit of the hard work,and just continually connecting with my kiddos in really precious ways.
That’s a huge win. And I think also taking care of myself, which is a, which is also we’ll get to the challenges. also a huge challenge still, but like the, just understanding, how important it’s for me to prioritize my mental health, that has been a really, huge learning for me.
Especially as a nurturer, someone who’s always giving themselves, that’s just my, my, my wiring, but then, if I’m not putting myself first, then I’ve just totally spent and then I’m mad at everybody. So a win has really been just me learning how to do that. And a lot of, what we processed, and your coaching groups and things like that just inspired me and gave me handles for that.
So it’s a huge. For the whole
[00:03:20] Hunter: And that wasn’t that from what I remember that wasn’t what you were modeled, right? Like your own family of origin was, it was,it was fairly, I don’t know. I can’t, I don’t know if I remember correctly. Maybe I’ll let you describe
[00:03:31] Kasii Oakley: that’s okay. Yeah. Everyone in that I know is a servant, and for the best and the worst you it’s just modeled to continue to give you say yes, you do all the things you take care of everybody.
But little like intention to nurture your own. That was almost selfish, to take care of yourself and not explicitly stated, but it just wasn’t done, so yeah, for sure. Yeah.
[00:04:00] Hunter: Yeah, everyone is a servant. That’s really interesting to think about. I can think of a few people in my life who living by that.
But yeah, you don’t wanna be, to have that continue you end up like angry and resentful and that’s no good. That’s not where we wanna go with this at all. So you guys uproot everything, you move to Vermont, you’ve got five kids,your homeschooling twins who are. At the time, like three or or two and a half, six year old and eight old, nine year old now.
So what are, I can imagine there are plenty of them, but what are some of the challenges that are arising for you?
[00:04:40] Kasii Oakley: Yeah, so the longer days. Mean that children are awake for longer summer, always in the spring and summer propose a unique challenge for me. And that there’s so much that I wanna do, I’m super active, I’m a gardener.
We have animals. I milk my goat in the mornings where, we’ve got this homestead wanna be, we’re new. Everything’s an experiment at this point. And yet, and then I have all the needs in my children,and wonderful things. I love to bake. I love, I cook every meal.
We don’t eat out a ton we’re we don’t, we go to the library and we have our little play dates and events and hike and all our things, but we’re home. And so you pile that on with keeping a clean house, you’ve got, all your, every space in our home is basically, children running through it, leaving stuff, and you do your best to have everyone pick up.
You have your tidy times. You have, the chores that the whole family participates in. But it just all adds. Each day, and, then there’s the idea of, oh, I wanna take time for myself. I love to write, I read, I play the piano. I love painting. And these fill my cup.
And so I’m, my challenge is always, how do I set up my day and that I am not. Just completely spent by 6:00 PM where I still have dinner and baths and or all the things. And I have a really supportive and,helpful partner. And I couldn’t do any of this without him. Thankfully he works from home and we’re able to juggle things, but it’s a challenge to Do it all and still be happy and loving and model, all the right ways to talk to everybody and all the concerns and all the things.
And so my husband, has asked, what is it that you can let go of in this season? Or what do you say no to maybe it’s time in the kitchen? Let’s, so he’ll grill four nights a week or so that’s really changed things for us. But still I’m. I wanna do it all. I don’t wanna, I don’t wanna let anything go and I wanna do it all with excellence and then I’m just spent, and I have nothing for anybody.
And so I’m still there. That’s still the challenge of taking care of myself,and doing anything really well. And so I think that’s where I’m at right this minute.
[00:07:13] Hunter: That’s a lot of things you wanna do, Kasii. The goat, the garden baking. Five kids that are homeschooled. This is not like I would be overwhelmed with the goat garden and baking.
If they were all at school every day, you’re doing the goat, the garden, the baking, and wanting to paint and write and everything. When they’re home all day, you’re right. You really wanna do everything. I do. . Wow. It’s amazing. Okay. So I’m,I hear that. And you have an incredible, like zest for life is what’s coming through here for you, for me.
And that you want to do all these things. What. What does it give you to,be able to like, like when you can get it together to do all the things, what does it give you?
[00:08:15] Kasii Oakley: I, for such as long season, when you have so many little ones,and you are constantly meeting their needs.
There’s diapers and there’s, there’s all sorts of things. Nobody can do anything for themselves for a really long time. . And so when you, I, now I’m getting glimpses of we’re almost five, my nine year old is so capable. My, like they, they, they need.
Supervision and boundaries and those kind of things, but they’re doing a lot for themselves. They go and play for an hour and, and it’s wonderful. And so I’m seeing these like pockets and these windows, and I almost get anxiety when there’s free time for me. Cause I’m like, there’s so much I wanna get done.
But as I’m even stating this, I think what the challenge is for me Hunter is that, I have a hard time switching from my doing mode to like being. . And I’ve noticed that when I’m in like my doing mode, if I’m like working in the garden, I’ve got stuff it’s hard for me to have little ones around.
It’s hard for me to keep the conversation going maybe with my nine year old, but maybe not so much with my five year old, and I find that in those moments, it’s really hard for me to be present with them. It’s really hard for me to like connect or to like, cause I’m like, Hey, I need this hour to.
Knock this out, kind of thing. And I actually want to, I don’t want anyone to talk to me, yeah. And so the challenge is really like my Mama heart wanting to be available, wanting to oh, let me see you in this moment, oh, wow. You found that little snail, what’s his name or whatever.
He’s, they’re excited about. And just having boundaries, but also being present, it’s this, it’s challenging to figure out when it’s time for me to set up a boundary, I’ve had enough connection and I’m connected out. And then oh, I’ve been really working and not available.
And now I need to connect. Does that make sense?
[00:10:21] Hunter: Sure. If I could like wave a magic wand and give you the ideal amount of like connection with your kiddos versus like time to like garden and paint and feed goats. what each day, like what would that ideal ratio look like? What would the ideal number of hours look like?
If we could just magically make it.
[00:10:48] Kasii Oakley: That’s a great question. You know what my, I, I, view that in terms of,the accountants, my children’s accountants and what I say, what the vision that I get is like, When I’m not available, I see it on their accountants. And so I, you
[00:11:09] Hunter: mean on the way they like presenting, like their faces, their demand,
[00:11:13] Kasii Oakley: that kind of thing.
Yes. I feel like it’s a let down if I’m not, and that’s hard for me. And so ideally it would be all the time. , I’m always available for you, I’m not sure what the ratio does that make sense?
[00:11:27] Hunter: Yeah, it makes sense. But the question is let’s imagine you could be there for your kids perfectly and they would be perfectly happy all the time.
And you could, we’re just making an imaginary world right in that imaginary world where they’re perfectly happy with the amount of connection you have, they have from you. And you’re perfectly happy with the amount of time you have to do your own thing. What, how much time is that?
[00:11:51] Kasii Oakley: Oh gosh, Hunter. I don’t know, I would say at least half the day I don’t know.
[00:11:59] Hunter: 50, 50 half the day for 50 50. Okay. Yeah. 50, 50
[00:12:03] Kasii Oakley: connection. And the other half,doing a thing or kind of switching yeah. From one thing to the other, okay, let’s connect. Okay. Now you go play and it’s my turn to do this, or. Does that
[00:12:14] Hunter: make sense? Yeah. That makes sense.
Yeah, that makes a lot of sense because then you per, you’re perfectly ready for the one thing, for the kids, cuz you’ve had a lot of like rest and recoup time. Okay. Alright. So I’m hearing. That you are wanting to do everything you do a lot, you like doing, but you have a hard time switching from doing to like being with your kids.
And that’s a huge value for you is to be there and be present for your kids. And it’s something you’ve worked at in practice and you have tools for and,And yet this sort of switch thing. So your husband has asked you a wise question. I think , what can you say no to in this season?
Cause I’m wondering if you had less on your plate of doing and if you could, like then we, then that switching. There’s not as much switching costs, you’re not as driven to use the hours, get the hours right. To, yeah. If, because you’re running outta time to do this in order to get that done, to then feed the goats.
I keep saying feed the goats, but I’m besides feeding the goats. I’m wondering, if you had to prioritize everything, everything you do in a day,like what would be the top priority? And then we could go downward just in this season, right? Yeah. So just for right now, because seasons will change.
Like when your four year olds are both. 10, you’re gonna have a whole different amount of time. It’s gonna change a lot. This is just as the season is changing. So anyway, for just this season. Yeah. How would you prioritize? What’s the most important things for you?
[00:14:04] Kasii Oakley: Yeah, I think, high on the list would be basic needs of the.
Everybody’s getting food we have a, we kinda have a schedule you have to with so many kids. So they know like breakfasts at this time snack at this time lunch at this time. Having food available, being there,is definitely a priority. What probably isn’t a priority is needing to make the snack.
Make my own power balls or granola stuff, or, like I like to whip things together really fast. But then there’s all this cleanup after that, and so maybe just letting go like this, isn’t a season where, but like my six year old is the baker and she loves it and that’s our connecting thing at many times through the week.
And so it’s man, I there’s this guilt. I feel to let go of doing baking with her because it’s such a gift to her, and, but even more than that, like just the amount of time I spend in the kitchen probably could go down, whereas I could. and this is my husband’s encouragement as well.
he’s get him an apple, get a bag of chips out who cares, and I’m like, oh, it’s not organic. And like it’s hard for me. Oh yeah. And so I’m like, okay. Yes, we can streamline some of this stuff. So it’s not as. But then I get in that loop where I’m like, oh, let’s do pancakes.
Like I want it for me too,
[00:15:39] Hunter: okay. Okay. But on a general basis, you have a value of like homemade, organic, natural food. Yeah. Which is great. That’s nice. But also it can be something that we also. Feel pressure about we, it can be part of our identity, right? It can be part of I am this kind of person.
I am not that Cheetos bag kind of person. Totally. And I’m wondering, oh, I totally agree. Part of that is what’s going on also for you as you’re like having this feeling, this pressure to make everything. Sure,
[00:16:10] Kasii Oakley: sure. Yeah. Yeah. I would say you are totally right in that. This is like. The framework that I have toward eating is oh no, we’re gonna choose this.
And not that, kind of thing. And maybe almost too strict, although I don’t limit my kids in that way, we, I just don’t buy other things. Like I buy all the things to put it together so that we have stuff. Yeah, but maybe in this season, I just buy package stuff.
[00:16:45] Hunter: you call it a day. It’s okay to do that.
I know it’s if I were, I’m gonna be, I’m gonna be buying snacks for my kids. In our community, we have a, like a very loose summer camp that our kids go to. We all contribute stuff. And I like, I buy the snacks because one year I discovered that someone else was buying the snacks and they were brought everybody mountain Dews and clon bars.
And I was like, perfect.
Oh my God, you giving my children holy for everyone. Sure. For everyone. Yeah. Yeah. So then I was like, I volunteer to get snacks and then we have. Hummus little hummus containers, totally things like that. Yeah. But you’d be amazed at what you can get. That’s convenient food. Yeah. That’s not
[00:17:36] Kasii Oakley: and we are gluten free and we’re dairy, we try to be dairy free and all the things we have, some allergies and stuff.
You’re always like trying to monitor that kind of stuff too. Yeah. But no, I feel you. I think you’re, I think you’re absolutely right.
[00:17:52] Hunter: yeah, because there’s a trade off. You have to make between okay, this is my identity, but if I wanna be able to enjoy my life. Yeah. If I wanna, if my priority is one of my priorities is being able to be present for my kids.
When they’re in this still in this little phase of four, almost five, six, even nine. If I, if that is important to me, I can’t be present for this phase. If I’m over, overdone over overdoing everything. So yeah. Yeah. Maybe a concession can be made there, but maybe not with the baking where you bake with your daughter once or twice a week.
But it, maybe it doesn’t have to be all the time. Okay. So you’re identifying some places. Would it be, even be possible? And I’m thinking about this idea of the priorities, obviously food is priority and if food would be a priority, even. Every day, but even if you had, I’m wondering if, every spiritual tradition has a day of rest.
And so I wanna kind of circle back into that for you, a day of being and not doing right. Yeah. That’s so good. Thank you there reminder. So something so like a Sabbath day, a day of rest can include, if, when you’re thinking about food, things like. Paper plates. Like I know you recycle everything and all that, but like you could buy the recycled paper plates and compostable in your compost pile.
Yes. Yeah. Like you could try that, like once a week we do that. And then, if you get a really busy time, you pull ’em out on a random Tuesday too, and you give yourself permission, cuz it does not mean that you are. Like it does, we don’t wanna make it about your identity. You wanna be, you wanna practice to be secure in who you are, regardless of whether you’re making your own chia balls.
[00:19:55] Kasii Oakley: Right. I know. I totally agree. I appreciate your permission to do that.
[00:20:02] Hunter: It’s true. You have permission even to order pizza once a week. Cause think about, so and I have some crunchy friends and I, and we can get we get in our little worlds and we get into can, we can get into extremes.
Like I have a friend, a good friend who didn’t want her kid to have a bunch of sugar and she was homeschooling her child. And so she only gave her unsweetened chocolate and. This poor child thought chocolate was the most disgusting thing in the world, eating this unsweetened chocolate. So funny and now is obsessed with milk chocolate.
If you don’t like bring in a little bit of what’s in the mainstream, you can get a real pendulum swing on the other side. Oh yeah.
[00:20:43] Kasii Oakley: Oh yeah, no, I, we were at a community block party the other night and pretty sure they all had four bags of Doritos, like age. I was like, great. Knock yourselves
[00:20:52] Hunter: out.
That’s what is this magic? Yes. What is this? It’s amazing.
it’s precious. Okay. Yeah. All right. Food is a priority cleanup. Are the kids helping with cleanup? Yeah.
[00:21:07] Kasii Oakley: Yeah. They’re, they’ve got their morning chore things that they do. My nine year old takes care of all our chickens and, the birds, they do all the bird feed, so that’s really helpful.
And,we have a once a day clean the table sweep under the table, all the dishes, all that kind of stuff. Like I, I clean our house and bathrooms and all that stuff and that kind of. I hate it. I do. I’m like, oh, who are these women who are like joyfully cleaning their house and modeling that for their kids.
I’m like, it’s just not me but I think, it’s unnecessary and my kids help with the bathrooms, but, you just can’t leave them with like a. Thing of Clorox or I put Clorox in, I can’t not do anything else other than your toilets. I have to be Clorox. I’m sorry. I’m an I’m natural in almost every other way, except for that one.
Can’t do it.
[00:22:00] Hunter: That’s hilarious. Okay, cool. Yeah, but if you hate it, I mean, there’s, it might be, there might be ways to work around this. So we. I don’t know, for years we found somebody who we pay and she just comes and cleans our two bathrooms every week. It’s not a lot of money.
It saves me so much. Mental and emotional energy to like, not have to do that and just know that once a week it’s gonna be amazing. So I don’t know if that’s gonna be available for you and Vermont, but it might be worth it to ask around from friends like, Hey, do you know anyone who’s interested in, just a light one.
Bathroom cleaning job. At first, we did it every other week. And then we were like, yeah, we love you. Please come every week. Totally. So that might be, when we think about our, whatever resources we have and our wellbeing, if it’s something you really hate and you can outsource it, there’s a huge gain in wellbeing and yeah.
Then even attention for what you have, that what you want to give your attention to.
[00:23:13] Kasii Oakley: I appreciate that. And, we had cleaners in the past, especially when we had so many little ones. And I think our strategy here with all the children was, for it to be a family thing that we’re all, participating and it’s we’re not gonna have someone come do this for us.
This is what we do. But , I, am resonating with your encouragement a little bit more than I was. Would’ve been,
[00:23:43] Hunter: a few months ago, but I see that as an ideal, I can see that as an ideal, but when, when you. Reality strikes. And you have, you are someone with so much zest for life, been doing all those things and that’s something you hate.
Yeah. Is that, maybe that trade off is worth it. It might just be worth it. okay. Yep. Food is a priority cleaning. The bathrooms is obviously not what’s next after food
[00:24:17] Kasii Oakley: I would say. Connecting with my kids is a priority in the, in like just, being available for them. So like my older two they’re we’re in a space right now where they get on a book series and then they’re just like, loving their afternoon time of reading.
And I love that. And being present for them whenever they’re done with that, and just being like, yes, tell me about your book, what’s going on, and that kind of conversation is really important to me. So just making sure there’s that, those connection points throughout the day times five though.
That’s a priority for me just to make sure that I have an, a listening ear to what’s going on inside of their heads. You. Yeah, I would say that’s huge. And I, and also just reading together, we read, probably, I don’t know, four or five nights out of the week. I’m reading to them before bed.
Oh, that’s so nice. Picture books or whatever that is. We listen to a lot of audible books, things like that. I would say that’s a big priority to me.
[00:25:21] Hunter: Okay. So it’s that connecting? There’s that reading together? Now, so that all that stuff takes some time. Is there a time in your day where you are not, you’re not, you don’t have a a job or a chore or an activity for you?
[00:25:42] Kasii Oakley: If I want there to be so you know that, and I think that’s what you just asked is. The challenge because, really for the, in the last three days, I have been making it a point to when they’re doing their reading time to just sit and read as well on my own, in the, on the porch. Ooh, just rest.
But it’s three days come three days. No. But that I, in the first time I did it and sat down my body felt in motion still. You know that like the doing and the being kind of moment where you’re like, wow, my body is just in go mode. And so I’m sitting down and I was literally like, actively letting myself let go of all of the movement and just allowing my body to rest.
But it was like such a wake up call for me, okay. Sit down. And I and I do have a practice of sitting. It starts my day, but then I don’t sit the rest of the day. Does that make sense? once I’m, once I’ve sat and done my, quiet time and you’re like read little bit of reading, I’m done.
Yeah. It’s like up the door, you
[00:27:02] Hunter: know?
[00:27:03] Kasii Oakley: Yeah. And it’s really, it’s. . Yeah. So the last few days, I’ve, I just have just been sitting while they’re having their, we have a rest time, in the afternoons, the days are so long. So and they all appreciate it. They are all like ready for it too. But I’m putting my feet up and reading as well.
[00:27:26] Hunter: I like that you’re doing that. And that could be a nice practice to because if you can practice at least, you start your day with that, which is amazing is probably helping you weather this intense time. Of course, because yeah. But, if you can practice that transition and just the awareness of where your body is and how that feeling of motion and all of those things, it might be nice to think about I wonder if it’s possible.
I wonder if it’s possible to do more of the things with ease, to do the activities and the chores, to have breakfast, but to do breakfast more slowly , to like slow down the general pace. And I’m curious, I’m wondering if you did slow, if you took a week. And you slowed yourself down.
Like you started to like practice, just being aware of when I’m sped up and slowing myself down, even in the midst of activity. I wonder if I’m curious if what you would still get done, right? Would you still get everything done if you weren’t hustling? What do you think that might be.
Possibly. I love that question. Sound crazy.
[00:28:49] Kasii Oakley: no, I love that question. And I, water the garden in the mornings and we have this pumpkin patch. I have to take the hose over to the pumpkin patch and. Like I said, we’re new at this. , we don’t have all the things set up and I’m watering, but I literally was like, oh, this is a mindfulness time.
And as the sun’s like shining down my face and I just and so it was like almost a window into what you’re talking about. I totally resonate with that. And I think that would be calming to my nervous system. Maybe. Because I think this is what Liz I’m processing with you.
What I’m really articulating is my nervous system is constantly like on, even in my like precious times with my children or in my quiet moments, like it’s still activated because there’s oh, cause I’m just doing. And so what I hear you saying is conscious awareness of.
The present moment and doing your activities with ease and kind of with, a restful mode. Might actually help your system, but you still get stuff done. Is that what I’m hearing?
[00:30:11] Hunter: yeah, I think it’s possible. I totally get you, like we get into this rush mode, this go mode. We don’t feel like we don’t have enough time.
I used to, my kids went to school, but they went school like, like almost a block from my house. Yeah. And I would drop one of my kids up, sore off at school. And then I. Literally run back to use the three hours with the most efficiency that I could. Totally. And at some point I realized. Like I would run back and then I would be going and I’d go and do all these things.
And one, some point I realized that it was just getting me more hyped up and more anxious. And I started to practice Mindful walking home. It’s not a long walk. I actually didn’t even add a lot of time on to, To do this Mindful walking, but I started to walk slowly and breathe on my way home and it amazingly, I got back and I was more relaxed and I still got all the things done, but I just got them done with less frenetic energy.
[00:31:20] Kasii Oakley: That’s so
[00:31:20] Hunter: good. I think it’s possible. It’s it’s a big, almost spiritual practice, right? Like the whole bag OFTA is about doing the work, doing our work. But letting go of that outcome, and it almost sounds like part of this is this like showing up, doing the work, being present for the work, but not being present, not being, not having your worth, your wellbeing, your everything tied to the outcome of this work or the efficiency of this work or whatever it is just letting showing up and being there for it be enough.
[00:32:05] Kasii Oakley: I really love that. I read something the other day that it was about this Indian woman who had 10 children. And she apparently in her old age had reached enlightenment and they said, what was her secret? And she said, I stirred the rice mindfully. yes. I was like, that’s it takes, but what, but that resonates so much with me and I, and.
I think you’re, you nailed it in when you talk about the result or like the outcome, because then there’s this, this, when you don’t feel like you’re doing anything, you have a sort of judgment about yourself or about what’s going on. And when you’re letting go of that judgment, you’re detaching yourself from worth or from identity or from, any of those things and that you don’t realize.
I don’t think we realize how much. Weighs on us or that, causes our system to be activated in a kind of subconscious way, but the letting go the presence or the Mindful, activity releases that I think probably. I’m not sure, but I’ll do it this week and I’ll let you know. I’m just kidding.
[00:33:26] Hunter: Yeah. You will. You’ll have to let me know. Yeah. But yeah, and there’s a, there’s like a mantra that can help with this. This might be good for you to write down. Yeah. And I’ve used it different times is, there’s more than enough time for everything important. There’s more than enough time for everything important.
And I think that’s so helpful because. it’s okay to not have enough time for everything because you’re human . Yes. You’re not like, a Marvel character that can like Marvel, homeschooling mom, who can do all the things, like you’re just a normal human being. And, but you can, so some things you may not be able to do everything constantly all the time.
Like you may miss the chia ball snacks, but. If it’s important, there’s more than enough time for it. And in your priorities, being with your kids and connecting, that’s more important than, making everything you eat organic or cetera, right from scratch, right?
[00:34:35] Kasii Oakley: Yeah. Yeah. From scratch the
[00:34:36] Hunter: latest, yeah.
okay. Cool. And then if we zoom out to the big picture , you were saying you wanna do everything, you wanna paint, you wanna write? What else was there that you wanted to do? I love to read, not reading gardening. Okay. Reading. Yeah. Reading, you can do like somewhat with your kids, a little, which you said that’s cool.
Painting, maybe writing, maybe. So what I guess might be helpful to think about the larger season of your life. So one thing I’m realizing now that my kids are 12 and 15, is that. I think a lot of stuff going on. Like there, my 15 year old now has a job. She’s lifeguarding, she’s off doing this.
Like she walks to the pool and lifeguards and so goes off to the barn. I have like hours, so I’ve had, I’ve like now I do. I last year, I learned took some sailing lessons on the Delaware river. And then I am now doing Scottish country dancing. sounds I’m not like obsessed with, which is so funny.
It’s really fun. You guys, that’s amazing. But anyway, just to say, there’s gonna be a season of your life. You’re a young person where, you know, your kids who are gonna be five in 10 years, they’re gonna be 15 . You’re not gonna be like doting around, ready to die, then
[00:36:07] Kasii Oakley: I’ll be 50 Hunter, 50
Oh my I’ll be so young. I’ll be so young.
[00:36:19] Hunter: But anyway, it might be helpful to think about, to pace yourself as in some ways, like you’re not gonna run out of time to do all the things. There’s more than enough time for everything important, even in the span of time, if you don’t have enough time now. Yeah.
[00:36:40] Kasii Oakley: I appreciate that. I think, in this new awareness of taking care of me, and kind of like realizing these passions are still there.
These, all these things are like not gone they’re they were just dormant, they’re here now. I have a little bit of space each day, so I think maybe what I hear you saying is like tempering that a little bit and still recognizing the season, not feeling if I’m not getting to those things, I’m neglecting something.
Or neglecting, myself in some way, but like just taking it in stride. Cause I think I do. Yeah,
[00:37:26] Hunter: go ahead. No, I was gonna say, yeah, like there’s a middle path here, right? Because I want you to hold on to the things that spark joy in your soul that are about you and not being mom. And being absolutely. That whole thing. I want you to hold onto those things. Yep. But maybe. Like everything all at once. ,
[00:37:50] Kasii Oakley: that’s how I do it. No, I’m just kidding. No, like we had five kids in four years. This is just what we do, we do it all at one time. No, but I really appreciated that encouragement.
And I totally hear you on that. Yeah.
[00:38:05] Hunter: Yeah. Okay. Cool. So for the things that spark your soul that are for you, just for you, what is some, what is it that is the most important for you in that category right now? What is a priority
[00:38:20] Kasii Oakley: conversations with other moms? That’s that is my favorite place to be talking with other women about anything just chatting.
I’m so social. So I think that’s where I’m like filled up when I have a. A time where I’m out with other moms or, doing a coaching session with somebody or something like that. I feel this sense of filled then I’m home and there’s not a care in the world. My husband’s do more of that yeah, that’s a big win
[00:38:53] Hunter: for me.
Okay. So do you have that in your life at a regular basis?
[00:38:58] Kasii Oakley: Yes and no. I did just host a little Mindful Mama group, for some of the ladies in my area. And that just ended last Sunday or two Sundays ago. That was really life giving to me. And then I’m really intentional about scheduling play dates and with families and mamas that I really connect with.
And so like-minded families and we have a really good time and. Last week we were hiking up to a waterfall with another family, two other moms, and that’s like a win for everybody. We’re all moving. We’re having a good time with friends and it’s great mom conversation. So I’m just, intentional about having one or two of those a week that always fills up my cup.
[00:39:39] Hunter: Okay, good. That sounds great. Yeah. It’s great to have those things on a regular basis, I’m thinking about, yeah. Especially when life gets crazy, just to, even, your homeschoolers, so you probably want like a network of homeschooler people, right? And have those people.
And if you can have a regular, like every Sunday we hike or every. Thursday afternoon. It’s Fridays for us here. Yeah. Whatever. And you go hiking. Yeah. Okay. Good. All right. So you have that in your life. You do. Okay. All right. Cool. So back to what your husband said, what can you let go of in this season?
[00:40:21] Kasii Oakley: I don’t know. I started writing again. And I think I had sent that to you in an email and I really enjoy that. And that’s a muscle. I wanna continue to exercise. I sit down and play the piano because I wanna model that for my kids, and they’re playing and I want them to hear me and see me.
And not that I’m a proficient piano player, but I make up my own songs and do that kinda thing. So I think. I want to see them. I want them to see me reading. So I, carry a book around with me and, want that just to be a normal part of our culture. And having a hard time, what do I I have actually let go of painting this season.
I painted just watercolors. I really would love to continue to grow in that’s something I’m intentionally just dropping for now and not feeling any, even when I want to, or not pressure, but like desire and like it’s okay. That’s maybe a winter thing, for me.
[00:41:22] Hunter: So I, what if, I’m wondering Kasii, what if like the afternoon rest time that your kids like so much.
What if there’s when you were, when your kids are little and you were nursing one child, like you had like a little basket, a box of things. Yeah. Some right for the older kid. What if there were like a little Kasii basket that had one of those, just like mini, super easy accessible watercolor, pallets, those like full travel, pallets, Uhhuh, your, some writing.
Some music, like what if that were the some time where you intentionally slow down your mind yourself, of your intention to slow down and you read or you write, or, you, you make that time there carve out a little time there, even with the family. Yeah.
[00:42:15] Kasii Oakley: Yeah. I love that idea. And I think that’s really sweet.
I, when you were talking about don’t
[00:42:20] Hunter: let chores. Inter you hold a boundary of chores, like where you say any chore that needs to be done can be left. Even if I didn’t marinate the chicken or whatever. It’s
[00:42:35] Kasii Oakley: No, that’s a real thing. No, I love that. I think what, yeah, I hear you saying is like, Setting up something for yourself, causes the intentionality.
Like it, it brings you, gives intention to that being a sacred moment or a sacred space versus that okay, kids are down for quiet time. And then I run the list of all the things I could be doing. And then I have to like really make the choice to sit and read, but it’s a hard choice. And what I hear you saying is like, there’s no.
There’s just, this is what mommy does during this time.
[00:43:12] Hunter: Yeah, exactly. Yeah. And there’s more than enough time for everything important. It’ll all get done. Eventually. I love it or not. And it wasn’t that important and everyone lives. Yeah. And hopefully, and everyone lives. Yeah. It’s good. Okay. So this is awesome.
So I have two kind of assignments for you in this from then. I wanna take re. From this, which is I’m gonna invite you to really take a week and slow down while you’re doing and going and doing the chores and things and see if you can try to be mindfully present and maybe moving forward from that week, it may look like I’m gonna PR really practice when I do the goats or do the garden to.
Walk slowly feel the earth beneath my feet, breathe in, breathe out, connect with the earth, feel that solidity of the earth and be mindfully present. And cuz we’re not it’s. You’re allowed to be human. You don’t have to be like Buddha mom, like all the time. But maybe you pick one thing a day where you’re like, I’m gonna really slow down with this and then invite that like ease into the rest of the day.
Hopefully I love that. Yeah. and then in the afternoons, have that basket for yourself and just, that’s what you do. Like your kids have rest time. If you want them to have rest and ease in their life as adults, you have to model it. So agreed to know that. So adults aren’t servants, adults are allowed to relax and have ease and rest and enjoy their lives. Yeah. So you should, that’s great. Show them that every day.
[00:44:59] Kasii Oakley: I can do this. I love this. This is like resonating with my insides right now. Yes .
[00:45:07] Hunter: Yeah. Yay. It’s great. Yay. Yay. Awesome. Okay. So what is your biggest takeaway from talking today?
[00:45:15] Kasii Oakley: Let me think everything you just said at the, what you said about modeling rest. Woo. That, that hit me at the core. Because that’s how I parent, I’m trying to model a way of life that I would hope for them to, understand and in some way, and maybe, reflect. And yeah, I think I, I heard you earlier talk about the Sabbath.
You nailed that one. Or, a day of rest or however you wanna describe it or call it I really liked that. Um, And then modeling rest each day, but also choosing something the morning, I can imagine myself walking out to the bar and, and that moment, and I’ve had moments of mindfulness, but early on where I was like, oh, this is a good Mindful time, but it hasn’t been in a long time.
I’m just like, get it done kind of thing. I really appreciate. The encouragement to have that space, maybe be a Mindful time and then having the afternoon be intentional about nourishing myself. Yeah. That’s those are my takeaways. I’m like, I have, I’m a little basket of takeaways right now.
[00:46:20] Hunter: all all right.
That’s awesome. Thank you so much for coming and sharing this time with me ever really enjoyed it, Kasii. Amazing. You can find her in Vermont, and so at some point in the future, she’ll probably be a certified, Mindful Parenting teacher up there too. Yay. So we excited for that.
Thank you, Kasii. Thanks so much.
[00:46:46] Kasii Oakley: Yes. And thank you for all your insight and wisdom and all that you do for our community.