The dog days are over

Sayonara, summer. It’s been real. Continue reading

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Summertime: When inconsistency is inevitable.

I’m amazed at writers who are also stay-at-home mom’s. They really impress me. The ones who put out good content multiple times a week, some even on a daily basis. I want to know the secret to their success; how in the world they manage to think clearly, much less document any of those thoughts, while they have their children with them constantly.

It was easier for me when the kids were a little younger and still on a regular napping schedule, and I can see it getting  easier again when they are a little older and in the more private tween/teen stage. But right now, they are all 3 in the my-parents-are-the-coolest-so-I-want-to-be-around-them-24-hours-a-day-stage.

It’s wonderful and frustrating at the same time.

While I am writing regularly throughout the summer, I am finishing nothing. If you could sneak into my drafts folder and peruse it a bit, you’d feel a sense of excitement and anticipation followed by abrupt disappointment, like seeing “To Be Continued…” at the end of your favorite TV show. I can only seem to make it halfway through any of them before I am forced to leave my computer to feed a child, break up a fight, or try and fix a scratched DVD. I return to my spot with the intent to finish my piece, but it’s no use. That first interruption gives way to countless more interruptions until I finally wave my white flag and just shut it down for the day.

So I apologize for my inconsistency in posting recently. Please understand that I am really wanting to get new stuff up at least once a week, as I leave you with this visual:

photo (116)

That’s the youngest with his mouth covered in painter’s tape and his body strapped to a tree in our front yard. The oldest is holding a homemade staff, as he called it, with a (thankfully) just as equally rudimentary machete attached, swinging by a string. The middle one is wearing soccer goalie gloves since we don’t, and will never, have any boxing gloves in the house.

This was a couple of weeks ago, but this fun game of pretend hostage could really happen on any given day at our house while I’m trying to get something accomplished.

In this instance, we had finished eating dinner and, in the hopes of maximizing my efficiency, I suggested they go out front to play while I cleaned up the kitchen. And though the kids had been busy all week creating swords, axes, catapults, bows with arrows, and  ninja stars out of some old blinds and any kind of tape they could scrounge up in the garage, I didn’t expect to peek out the window by the front door and see this.

So, if you are a beloved reader of this blog and in the next couple of weeks wonder why you haven’t gotten a post delivered to your inbox recently, think back and remember this picture.  Know that I am writing something almost daily and that you will get to read it. At some point.

On the other hand, if you are a neighbor of mine or just a stranger driving down my street and see my kids taped to a tree, please don’t pass judgment. Know that it was not the act of a frustrated mom who just desperately wanted to get her kitchen clean or to write down one complete thought, but simply a boy’s interpretation of his mother’s command: “Go outside and play!”

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Keeping a summer schedule to save my sanity

Thursday was the last official day of the school year around here and since then I’ve already sentenced each of my boys to take breathers in their rooms countless times. It’s only three days into summer break and I am already counting down the days until school starts up again (a mere 85). While I am looking forward to the few trips we have planned and little fun excursions here and there this summer, I am already very close to dreading each uneventful day and its accompanying chaos, sibling rivalries, and verbal and physical fights. After commiserating with other mom-friends at a 2-year-old’s birthday party yesterday, I’ve decided to this is not how I want to spend my summer break. And I won’t.

Today I’ve come up with a structured daily summer schedule in the hopes of avoiding this behavior. It will be posted on our bulletin board and enforced beginning tomorrow. I figure I’ll switch out some of the activities on days when we go to the library, meet friends for lunch, or head to the pool, or if some things just don’t work, but otherwise this gives an outline of what’s expected for the day. It will, hopefully, deter the daily question of what are we doing today, too, which will also help to keep me sane this summer. Ideally, it’ll also give me a time slot to get some work done, which is an added bonus but not something I’m banking on. I’ll let you know how it goes–if it flies or flops. I’m desperately hoping it flies.

Daily Summer Schedule (a.k.a. Summer Sanity Saver)

Breakfast and free time
-get dressed
-brush teeth
-brush hair
-tidy room-make bed, pick up toys
9-9:30              Math skills
9:30-10:30      Outside play and snack
10:30-11:30     Computer/reading activities
11:30-12            Lunch
12-12:30           Individual free reading
12:30-1             Individual free draw, craft, Legos, music
1-2                     Individual free time – TV, play with toys
2-3                    Snack and outside play
3-4                    Art/Science/Cooking -play doh, paint, draw, craft
4-5                    Educational TV time