Thursday, February 24, 2011

"Normal" Daily Chaos

HOLY COW…what a week!! And it isn't even over yet.

This is one mom, wife, cook, housekeeper, laundry lady, secondary bread winner (and baker!) who is seriously looking forward to The Hubs™ going back to a "normal" schedule.

My husband currently works third shift at a lab in a larger town nearby and he's been on third shift for nearly a year now. As much as we all thought that with us homeschooling and the kids being on a similar schedule with ours, it doesn't seem to always be working. And, well, let's just say that with the whole house on a late night, late morning schedule it's sometimes difficult to mesh with all those people out there who have "normal" schedules.

Now I say normal…I mean daytime. I remember daytime schedules, but that's just it. I've never been a daytime person anyway. Sure, some days when it seems I'm not really moving until noon I feel I've wasted part of my day. But the key is to make the most of the "business" part of the day I'm awake and run all errands, etc. while things are open and THEN concentrate on what needs to happen at my house.

And then there's homeschooling…

I took on homeschooling my two children this year and I have to say that I've enjoyed it. I know, for some parents they are unable to fathom what it would take to do this and that's okay. Sometimes I wish they were at public school just to be out of my hair, but I've really enjoyed spending more time with them. I can honestly say I'm one of those parents who hates to watch my children walk out the door because I simply LOVE being with them and I MISS them when they're not with me. They'll be grown and gone before I know it and I want every moment they're willing to give me (or that I can take!)

The chaos of homeschooling for us is this…

We have ONE daytime person  (who happens to be the third-shift person currently being forced to be a night-time person) who thinks everything should be on a "normal" schedule.  Now this is wonderful and it would be great if it always worked that way, but it doesn't. Several days during the week I'm glued to my computer working, The Dad™ is sleeping so everyone has to be super quiet (extra light sleeper!), the kids have their assignments they are required to complete and then we have question time. Question time is never at the same time of each day because that doesn't work for us. We've even changed our schedule several times, but it still doesn't always mesh with our daytime person's vision of "normal."

Our lack of normality is this…

My schedule is subject to change at any moment and is always jam packed with many things such as work, activities and church related commitments. We have to be flexible with our schooling and our bed times to accomplish everything we schedule in a day. I don't think it's a bad thing, but it's obviously not for everyone.

I think the most chaotic thing right now is my age and how I sleep…and let's just say it's definitely NOT "normal."

No, I'm not going to reveal my actual age (unless you can do the math on the fact that I've been 29 for 9 years now!) and I sleep in four hour increments. On some days this is good, because I am able to run with it and I still feel I slept and got rest. We've all done it…the "less is better" sleep theory. Other days, um, not so well and I feel it. I mean I FEEL it.

When I have a most creative project that is under deadline, less sleep is better. It's kind of funny that way. Creativity comes alive in moments of "slap happiness" when it otherwise probably wouldn't have surfaced. Those are awesome moments.

There's also the sheer fact that even though I've learned to say no to some things, my brain seems to thrive on not being idle. I have numerous projects that I start and come back to just to keep myself busy. My brain does not comprehend sitting in front of the TV just watching TV, it doesn't work for me. I must be doing SOMETHING.

Now I have been labeled with "Project ADHD" and I'm just going to admit it…those who say that are right. One friend actually told someone one day, "You shouldn't ask her what she does. You should ask her what she DOESN'T do. The list is much shorter!"

Not to brag, but that's probably true.

For those of you who don't know me…I'm the mom who took every dictionary we own and whited out the word "can't" because I don't believe in it. If everyone would only TRY, they may fail the first time, but TRY, TRY AGAIN and you might find you CAN do it and it only takes practice and time to get better.

But back to the chaos…

The sleep-deprived working of numerous jobs and projects seems to have been slowly catching up to me. I'm starting to crack  in joints I never did before and my body whines when I've sat too long doing one thing.

I know, everyone says exercise, but that is limited for me because of a couple of injuries that really only allow me to walk now. Those aggressive, dance-based, jumping up and down fun workout programs are almost out of my sight. Gone are the days when I could dance for two hours at a time and not pass out. Hey, I'm doing good to show my kids the running man and Roger Rabbit for only a few seconds at a time. (For my high school friends, sad, I know!)

And trying to fit exercising much more than a brisk walk into my schedule…well…that just adds to the chaos, doesn't it?


I'm just going to continue going about my day-to-day doing what works for my family and me and what seems "normal" for us…

And you do what works for you!!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Frizzy Hair On A Sunny Day?

After being prodded by several friends to start my own blog, I sit here and reluctantly begin to write (TYPE, I'm TYPING!) Now this is not the funny, day-to-day stuff that I am setting out to write about in this blog. I'm not trying to offend anyone by starting this way, but before getting to the fun I feel I must get something off my chest.

In dealing with some life situations that have come to be in my little spot in the middle of nowhere, I'm reminded of many things from my childhood that it seems are simply not taught in our day and time.

Seriously, I'm not kidding. It's almost as if as adults we expect our own children to just KNOW things that we ourselves have not taken the responsibility to TEACH them ourselves. And forget the parents who simply seem to still be teenagers wrapped up in their own little worlds of "ME, ME, ME, ME, ME!!!!" I don't have the time or the space here to open that humongous can of worms. It's too deep for me to dive into!

But back to the main reason I started writing this. I know I'm finding every day things that I'm sure I covered, but somehow still managed to overlook. HOW could I have missed expressing the whole "please remember to put the cap on that so it doesn't dry out" or "don't try to drink while you're walking because you'll spill it" and other things that seems to be "common sense" and spoken plain enough for even toddler minds to have a grasp on?

Are my kids drinking some special water that causes their brains to block learning sensors? Why do they stand there with a glazed look on their face like my mouth may be moving but the mute button has been pressed? Or just the mere fact that they're quiet but the moment my voice is heard interrupt mode kicks in and The Mom's spoken word is overwritten. WHAT? Yeah, I know that one too!!

Maybe that's just it…"common sense."

Sense just doesn't seem to be too common anymore.

Common sense that manners matter.
Listening, not talking, makes you smarter.

And then there's my personal favorite…and those of you on board with me I'm sure will agree it's aggravating…EVERYONE'S A WINNER!

WHAT?!!!!!!!! REALLY?!!!!!!!!

Now, I have to say, when my children were smaller I did let them win at board games and hide-n-go-seek, but they're much bigger now and if I let them win they get angry! They want to win on their own merits just as badly as the next person!

What infuriates me is what is creeping into every corner of everything my children work hard for…sports, academics, whatever is out there…"EVERYONE IS SPECIAL."

Does this not imply that life is fair? Wait…but it isn't.

"If everyone is special, then no one is." ~ Mr. Incredible

I totally agree…

How am I expected to teach my children to "DO THEIR BEST" when doing their best isn't going to matter and they will never have the same "fair" that "everyone is special" is supposed to provide?

(Yes, my son went through Cub Scouts with me as a leader and has advanced to Boy Scouts!)

You've been there…no matter how hard your child tries there's always those couple of kids who win the prize because it's one of a couple of things…they're in the "Clique" or someone feels pity for them.

So what's so special about that?

I'm not trying to stand on my soap box and tell everyone I'm the best mom because I've taught my kids this and that better than anyone else. Let me get off that box right now and let someone else stand there…but really, what are we teaching our children? It seems it's not the way it used to be, but maybe it should be.

And then I wonder what we as adults are really TEACHING…or are we?

Keep in mind this one thing…we are always watched whether we think we are or not and our actions DO speak louder than words. So what ARE you teaching?

I'm teaching frizzy hair on a sunny day!