Thursday, October 1, 2009

Finding our groove

When I gazed on the horizon of our fall schedule, I had some concerns. My 12 online courses, 1-2 nights a week of teaching, and Steve in grad school 2 nights a week. We'd see each other on Fridays for family night, and then the weekends. Jack and Andrew both started some classes this fall, which gave a skeletal routine on M, W and F of each week. This is new for us, as Jack just turned 5. So his options for schooling stuff are only now starting to open up. He couldn't be more thrilled.

NONE of us do well when we have no structure or plans. I think the boys share my need for activity 80% of the time, and then "vegging out" the other 20%. We work hard. We play hard. And then we sit in front of a movie with popcorn and blankets and let our minds go blank. It works for us.

I have fallen madly in love with our fall schedule. Love it.

How is it that the busier we are, the more things get done? They say that "if you need something done, ask a busy person." I am realizing about myself that if I need things done, I need to be really busy. Good busy, not just frantic busy. What I love most about our fall schedule is that it's filled with great stuff...not just mindless activity from one thing to the next.

We fill our days with museums and classes and cooking and learning about whatever strikes our fancy. I sneak in my work during naps or after bedtime, and use my night-class time to plow through my online grading with the efficiency of a well-oiled machine.

My realization this last month or so: If we go-go-go for 4 days of the week, we need to leave a day open. This is the groove I've finally found for our family. If it's 5 days a week, people get crabby. Mom included. If we have all sorts of great adventures for 4 days, we can all sit home on the 5th in our PJs and love it.

When we hit the groove, the house is cleaner. I'm making "real" dinners. My grading is done early in the week, instead of a cram session on Sundays. It's odd how that works.

I adore the direction our family is heading. Seeing Simone poke her sweet little head out of the Baby Stage means that we've got a chance to make adventures work for everyone. I'm drooling over camping trips. Weekends in DC. Experiencing life with the kids. I can feel it happening, and that's a really peaceful place to be.

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