At the beginning of this new year, many of us decided to re-examine the priorities in our lives – begging the question, how does anyone find time to keep up with their blog?
Most of my blogging time is either first thing in the morning or in the evening after the kids are in bed. But there are times during the day where I crave it…you know, when I just need to connect with the outside world for a few minutes.
Last week, I had one of those days. Okay, why lie…I had a few of those days, not just one. Does that make me a bad mom? No, I think it makes me an honest mom who’s not afraid to admit that sometimes her kids suck the life out of her.
I knew I had to be creative in finding an activity which would engage the kids for a little while.
As if a light bulb went off above my head (or as Oprah would say, an “aha” moment), I figured it out.
1) I rummaged through the pantry and fold an old musty jar of sunflower seeds (probably which I had bought at the peak of my “I’m gonna lose 10 pounds” phase, last New Year’s and had since forgotten about).
2) I said, “Hey guys, why don’t you plant some pretty flowers for me in the garden?” Three of them come charging towards me and they ask, “But you said that winter isn’t a good time to grow flowers in the garden?” I say, “Oh, what do I know? Let’s at least try”.
3) As if this is music to their ears, I notice their smiles, as they come alive from their stupor of complete boredom. The 4th child was smart enough to stay indoors where it was much warmer and watch tv.
4) I hand them the seeds and the gardening tools and give them the whole “the world is your oyster” speech, while one kid examines the seeds and finds a brown one in the midst. She says, “Eeew, this one’s ugly…what should we do with it?” The “world is your oyster” speech turns into a “it’s not about what’s on the inside, my dear….even something that looks like that can grow into something beautiful” speech.
5) As they work together to dig holes, I sit my ass down on a chair, open up my laptop and breathe a sigh of relief….World, here I come!
6) Every few minutes, I shout out things like, “Wow, I’m impressed with your gardening skills” and “I like how you all are working so well together”. You know, things to encourage them to work as a team, instead of using the shovels to pound one another on the heads.
7) In the meantime, 10 minutes later, I giggle to myself while I check my e-mail and read some of my favorite blogs. Wow, this is working out SO well. Too well, in fact. Something’s about to go wrong. I can smell it in the air.
8) Then I hear it, “Mommy, how long will it take for our flowers to grow? Will they be sunflowers since we planted sunflower seeds"?” and “We’ll have to come out here and water everyday to make sure they grow”
9) Uh…yeah, crap. I hadn’t exactly thought of THAT part. But perhaps I can milk this for what it’s worth. I say, “Well, over the next few days, you guys will have to come out here to water them and make sure the birds haven’t eaten them”.
10) So cool….I’ve just bought myself at least three more 15-minute breaks throughout the week. The first two 15-minute breaks will consist of them watering the garden and freeing it of weeds.
11) As my mind kicks back into a gear I call “cruel reality check”, I realize it’s not so cool after all. I’ll probably spend that third 15-minute break explaining to my kids that the evil birds swooped down out of nowhere and ate the seeds, while cheering them up with some new seeds for them to plant.
12) The following morning, my blogging time will be spent calling various flower shops with a desperate attempt to locate 4 sunflowers, which will make their debut in the garden the next day.
Note to self: It’s important to think of the outcome of such a plan before implementing it. Yes, desperate times call for desperate measures but this one may end up causing more of a headache than it was worth.