As a mom, May has always been my least favorite month of the year. There is always so much jam-packed into that last month of school that by mid-month, I often find myself just hanging on and praying for June to hurry up and get here. There’s school trips, projects, finals, sports and, in some cases like ours, Fall sports conditioning practices have already begun … which overlaps with the Spring sports schedules! IT’S NUTS!!!
I give you Exhibit A …
I’ve been fortunate during the last week to have five days off from work. OH, the plans I had! No, I wasn’t going away … but I saw those days as an opportunity to get some much needed work done around the house. I was excited at the possibility and eagerly looking forward to it! Now … day one, I’ll admit, I was just excited at having that many days off in a row and sort of gave myself the day just to relax. The next four days, however, I had all planned out and was going to go at it with gusto!
But, life happened and over those next four days, I dealt with everything from a call from a friend that I had been waiting to hear from, hubby coming home early the one day and deciding to take a nap … in the bedroom … where I had been cleaning, a bowling tournament for my son, an out-of-town lacrosse tournament for my daughter that she, unexpectedly, needed us to drive her to because she lost her ride at the last minute … back to bowling another day for the start of mine and my son’s adult/youth bowling league, and finally … one of my kids missing their bus on the morning of my last day off. Absolutely CRAZY!
This would be laughable if this, honestly, was just a once in a while thing. But, literally, almost every time I am off for a few days or more … crazy stuff like this seems to ALWAYS happen, usually with a birthday party or two thrown in somewhere as well!
So what’s a mom to do?
Stay the course and have a backup plan! Instead of working in just one area that day, make up a rotating cleaning schedule. That way, when you are cleaning the bedroom and leave for a minute to tend to something else (only to come back to find your hubby napping there) … you can continue in another area without missing a beat.
Enlist help. While at your child’s activities, make up a plan for what NEEDS to get done that day at home when you get back. Make a list up of tasks, not only for yourself, but for your kids (and possibly hubby) as well. Let them know that, by helping you, they make it easier for you to be there to cheer them on. Be specific in what you are asking them to do (don’t assume they should know .. even the hubby). Also, if they do the task(s) on time and with little fuss, reward them with a surprise movie or game night. Let them know you love spending time with them and can do so more often when all the household tasks are completed. If you have older kids, surprise them by allowing them to have a friend over, a trip to the mall or the movies with a friend of theirs.
Be realistic in the amount of tasks you can accomplish on any given day. I used to have one of those business-type appointment planner books that had the time written for every half hour in the left hand column, with space after it to write in your appointments (or in my case) tasks for that day. I would fill in the entire thing with things that needed to get done for every single hour of the day. The problem with this, of course, is that there was absolutely no room for “life” to happen! It was micromanaged down to a “T” with tasks that HAD to get done that day. Spontaneity? Forget about it! There was no room!
Above all else though … don’t get upset and frazzled. Realize that these days with your kids are days that you can never get back once they are gone. Yes, things like getting out of bed early to drive your kid to school because they missed the bus are a nuisance. But I have had some of the best conversations with my kids on those unexpected trips. Conversations that I might not have had the chance to otherwise.
For every time there is a season and this season too … shall pass.
*Photo by http://openclipart.org/user-detail/gustavorezende
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