Daily Archives: October 27, 2006
I’m really not good at coming up with new ideas for things. I’m better at taking others’ ideas and running with them. But, I decided that to keep my 5yo involved in today’s Friday Work Day that I would have to become a little creative.
I went through the house and tagged all the light switches with a piece of masking tape onto which I’d written a number with a Sharpie marker. I also printed out a sheet with the numbers 1-20 printed large and widely spaced upon it. I gave Wesley a little bucket with a rag and a little soapy water in it, and told him it was his job to find all the light switches in the house, remove the piece of tape and place it on the corresponding number on his sheet, then wash that light switch & plate. I showed him how on the first one, explaining that he needed to use his muscles to wring out the rag.
Oh, my goodness. I haven’t seen him that delighted in a long time. He immediately proclaimed, “It’s a game-job!” He set right to work, singing a made-up song that told of his own commendable, hard-working mastery of light switches. He also frequently stopped, counting out how many he had done, and how many were left to do, giving me a report. He even found two light switches that I hadn’t tagged. He got the whole thing done in less than 30 minutes.
After a good half-hour break, I did a similar thing with all the doorknobs in the house (25 of ’em), but he wasn’t quite as thrilled that time. But, we talked about perseverance, and he eventually got it done. I gave him a jawbreaker for a treat, and let him know how very proud I was of him for not giving up.
I’ll definitely use this “game-job” idea again.
A few weeks ago, I was a stressed out ball of nerves. We were getting school done for all three boys (4th gr, 2nd gr & K), but many days we weren’t done until 3:30 or 4:00. I wasn’t getting enough done around the house, and I was consistently not getting dinner done until 7:00 or even later.
Since Grant, my 2nd grader, has always been quite advanced in a number of subjects, I do most of school with the two older boys together. Interspersed with the stuff I read aloud is seatwork. Up until this year, I’d get them started on their seatwork and then do the dishes, start a load of laundry, get dinner prep started, etc. But now that Wesley is doing K, while the bigger boys are doing their seatwork, I usually have to sit down with Wesley for his work instead of doing some task around the house.
On top of that, I now have a nursing baby. And while she is a mostly very contented baby, and an absolute delight to all of us, she still takes up quite a bit of my time and attention.
So. All of this came to a head a couple of weeks ago when my husband, who really is not demanding at all, kind of sat me down and let me know that things could not continue as they were. My feelings were very hurt by this — it’s hard for me to face any kind of failure — but I had to admit what I already knew: he was right.
So, I did some re-evaluating of how our time is distributed, and came up with some changes in our schedule. Now,
I was very excited when my hubby came home from work last night, announcing that he’d made reservations & plans for our impending 12th anniversary. As we previously had discussed, we’ll be staying at the La Posada Hotel in Winslow, AZ.
The best pics I found are on this guy’s Flikr account.
It’s only for one night, and we’ll have our baby along, but that’s OK on both accounts.
Staying with our 3 boys will be my BIL, Adam. The boys delight in Adam’s freeform parenting style and his Playstation2. In the past, when Adam’s stayed w/ the boys, I have stocked the pantry and freezer with pre-made meals, printed out instructions about what meal comes at which time, yet come home to see the food untouched, and hear reports of how they ate every meal out because Adam “didn’t know what to feed them.” So, I’ve learned to just expect that, and be thankful that we have someone to stay w/ the boys on occasions like these.
And, Audrey will be accompanying us, but as I remarked to my hubby last night, “When you have four kids, but only one is with you, it feels like you’re almost alone.”