It isn't really the driving that is the biggest challenge to me. Most of the activities aren't far away at all. Janelle's dance studio is less than one kilometre away. Our church is about two kilometres away. The home where we attend our community group is also about a three to five minute drive (depending on the traffic light between our house and theirs). And I usually don't mind ferrying the kids around. No, to me the issue is more the time we don't spend together at home. I am realizing that I really cherish our family dinners, the time that we connect around the table and recharge. I'm afraid those dinners will be at a premium this year. Chris struggles to get home from work before 6:00, and the kids' activities begin between 5:00 and 6:30. I'm going to have to be creative, but I'm determined to be able to find a way for us to have dinner together at least two of the four crazy days of our week.
Here's a quick run-down of our week:
Monday — Connor tried out for a competitive basketball team last week, and he made the team! We're so happy for him and we both think this will be a great experience for him. Connor has basketball practice 6:30 to 8:30 Monday nights, about a 15 minute drive from home. We'll probably alternate taking him, depending on Chris's work schedule. Chris and I have our Community Group, 8:00 to 9:30, not far from here, but for now we'll be taking turns since someone will be picking Connor up in the middle of that time.
Tuesday — Janelle's piano lesson, 5:00 to 5:30, about ten minutes away. I usually take her and Chris tries to pick her up since it is on his way home. That means I can probably manage to prepare us a family dinner that night. At 6:30 Janelle goes to Kids Night Out at Church, until 7:30. This is her busy night — homework has to get done right after school.
Wednesday — Busy last night because we had "Meet the Teacher Night" at 6:00, but usually Wednesday is just Connor's Jr. High Youth Group at the church, 7:00 to 9:00. That means we definitely get to have dinner together that night. Yay!
Thursday — Crazy night! Janelle has dance, just down the road, 5:00 - 6:00. Connor has basketball, about 15 minutes away, 6:30 - 8:00. Homework has to happen right after school, and who knows how we'll manage supper, but I'm sure we'll figure it out eventually. Today is our first day of the Thursday rush, so I'm planning to make homemade pizza (I'll try to remember to add the yeast to the dough that I forgot when I attempted this dinner on Monday!)
Weekends — For now our weekends are pretty easy. We are mostly focused on finishing the basement. The priority this weekend is to get to the half price paint sale that our colour consultant told us about when she came on Monday evening (yeah, somehow that got thrown into the schedule!) I may sign the kids up for a Saturday swimming lesson later in the year, but we'll see how things go before I do that. Connor starts weekend tournaments and exhibition games in November, with a tournament about once month. A couple of these will be in London, but others will be in Toronto, Niagara Falls, and Brantford, so we'll be travelling. Hopefully the basement will be finished by then!
I always swore I would have my kids involved in only one extra-curricular activity, aside from their church programs, and I'm still pretty convinced that is a good rule of thumb. Connor is only doing basketball and youth group, except for this month when he also has cross-country. He'll run a two kilometre race this afternoon, and then have a 90 minute basketball practice tonight. I'm glad it's him and not me! Janelle does have piano and dance, so I've strayed from my resolution a bit, but she so desperately wanted to try dance that we decided this year we'd make an exception. I'm not willing to let her quit piano, so it was really the only solution. I don't know how all those "Tiger Moms" do it, whose children are involved in and excelling at everything. I think this is as much as my kids and I can handle.
So I guess it's a good thing I'm not working right now. I'm far more able to cope with my evenings because my days are somewhat relaxed. The Lord knows how many balls I'm able to juggle. But I did apply for two more teaching jobs today. Still holding out hope...
|My Calendar — The stickers help me remember things with just a glance. You can see how the craziness kind of snuck up on us in September!|