Thursday, October 1, 2015
- The honeymoon Phase - I was so delighted to be able to go to the pool anytime we wanted and not have to deal with needy customers on a daily basis. This phase lasted for approximately two weeks.
- The "This is really my new life?" Phase - Once I got over the lure of the pool, I realized how hard this was going to be. Since it was summer, I had to drag the kids with me anytime I went to Target or the drugstore. They always complained about going, and I found that Amazon Prime became my new friend. Suddenly, there was nothing new to look forward to. There were no big deals that would close soon (and bring a big commission check with it). This phase lasted for about 1 month. I began taking a lot of naps during this phase because it helped me cope with my new life.
- The "I've got to find something to do" Phase. - During this phase, I started doing freelance work at a frenzied pace. I began yearning to have conference calls and I wanted a paycheck. I even did work for free sometimes, just to have something to do. I NEEDED to use my brain. This phase lasted for about 6 months.
- The "Okay, my kids really are fun" Phase - This is where things really got fun. I began to really appreciate staying home with the kids and my freelance gigs didn't seem as appealing anymore. I learned to cook. I began to realize how fun life could be when home with the kids. This phase lasted about 3 months.
- The "I can rock this job the way I rocked my other job" Phase. This is where I am now. I began to really think about what I could do to make my husband's life better. I could keep the house as clean as possible, I could cook super yummy meals, I could make as many memories as possible. This is when life really started to get amazing. Unfortunately for me, the kids also both started full time school, and I became incredibly sad that my special time with them was over.
That being said, I began to document all the things I do during the day that makes my family stronger, happier, and less stressed. I wouldn't be able to do these things if I were working full-time. And that makes me feel wonderful. So, when someone asks what I do all day, here are some things I can say:
- I can read to the kids in the mornings while they're eating breakfast because I’m not rushing off to get ready for work at the same time and I can clean up the kitchen after they leave. This makes nights easier because the pressure if off for reading to them for the required twenty minutes.
- I can take the time to work out and make my body healthy and as de-stressed as possible so I can treat everyone as nicely as possible.
- I can run errands during the week so I don't have to drag the kids with me on the weekends and I can focus on family time.
- I can make healthy meals from scratch while they are at school and have them ready to put in the oven when they get home. Plus they're yummy, which make my husband happy after a long stressful day at work.
- I can make our home look nice and I have time to get it as organized as possible.
- I can be the one who is responsible for paying the bills and keeping the house running so my husband doesn’t have to worry about it at all. We divide and conquer. He makes the money, I make the house run perfectly (well, okay, it's not perfect. Sometimes we have ants and sometimes I forget to turn on the oven. I'm only human)
- I can take naps so that when everyone gets home I have plenty of energy to listen to all their troubles, put everyone to bed without being impatient, and I can help my husband navigate his stressful day and have the energy to listen effectively (something I couldn’t do when I was working).
- I can get caught up on the non-urgent but very important things like keeping up to date with our photo albums so that as they grow up they can easily look at memories and find photos for school projects.
- I can be attentive to the kids when they are home sick and not just put them in front of the TV while I am on the phone all day on conference calls.
- I can make the most of days off and early release days so we can make memories even though they're in school most of the time.
Also, check out my book! It's about making the most out of the time with your little ones!
Tuesday, July 14, 2015
Tuesday, July 7, 2015
My daughter finished Kindergarten this Spring and her teacher advised us to work on sight words every day this summer so she doesn't forget everything. We prefer to spend our time outdoors playing in the sunshine, so this seems a little daunting. However, I know it's important, especially since we will be moving to a new school next Fall, so I made a list of all the fun ways we have worked on letters in the past. I hope this will help you this summer too!
- Egg Hunt for Letters and Sight Words - Write words or letters on small pieces of paper and leave place them in eggs for a fun hunt!
- Make Letters with this Easy Home-made Play-Dough
- Write letters to friends or family or create a Pen-Pal
- Matching Game - Write letters on several different sheets of paper. Use Play-Dough to create shapes and then ask your child to match each shape to the correct letter. Such as matching "Star" to "S". Have your child physically place each shape on the correct letter.
- ABC Activity Using Dot Markers
- Rock Letters
- Hunting in sand for letters
- Using glue and Christmas sprinkles for fun sensory letters and words
- Letters with Home-Made Puff Paint
- Play Bingo, either by making your own, or buy this cheap one from Amazon!
- Play Scrabble Junior - It's a lot more fun than than we thought it would be!
- Do "Homework". Make letters on a page and have them circle each letter as you say it (This works especially well if kids have an older sibling and you can tell them they are doing "homework")
- Cut out objects from a magazine and spread them on the table. Tell your child to pick out every object that start with "s", and so on.
- Letter Tree - Make a large tree and make sight words on "leaves". Have your child glue the sight words to the tree and let them hang it in their room so they can see it often.
For more ideas on engaging your children and keeping them busy, please consider buying my book, co-written by an amazing Kindergarten Teacher! We give you lots of fun ideas on ways to work on fine motor skills, reading, math, science, and lots more. The Happy Mommy Handbook: The Ultimate How-to Guide on Keeping Your Toddlers and Preschoolers Busy, Out of Trouble and Motivated to Learn.