Thursday, August 12, 2010

Family Dynamics is 100% different during the summer

Just as the summer is beginning to wind down and we are so used to having our children around all day long . . . I have to say I think I may find it hard for my children to return to school.(snort and snicker do I hear)

However, I feel it is my responsibility (and perverse pleasure) to enlighten you. Staying home all the time is much more difficult than working. How the children being home for the summer changes the family dynamics in my house is rather filled with hilarity (in my opinion).

The house or family dynamics is 100% different during the summer. Like it or not, being home all day long with your children is a tough job. Guess what, you are around your children, all day long(I thought I needed to say that again)! You won't get lunch breaks or an opportunity to run errands. You can run errands, but your children are with you. If your kids are anything like mine, running errands is like taking them to the dentist. They are hopped up on adrenaline and always whining for something or other. Another thing, you will be around your children all day long (a point worth repeating, again). I find myself lucky if I get to use the toilet by myself!

Each day is jam packed with activities such as golf lessons and horse riding lessons and ballet and gymnastics and baseball and cheer leading and summer tutoring (and yes, I absolutely torture my children and make them have enrichment tutoring in the summer). In between all this shuffling time I need to find time to actually have fun with my children. You know, like take them swimming or to the park or bike riding. All these activities I thoroughly enjoy!(do you hear my sarcasm) Do you have any idea how difficult and exhausting it is to watch three children at a local swimming pool. I nearly had five strokes this summer, all at the local swimming pool because I lost sight of my son or daughter for, you know, like two minutes!

But I guess worrying about my children drowning is much better than worrying about mundane tasks such as deadlines and appointments and meetings. That is good because I don't think I have the mental capacity to actually worry about such mundane tasks anymore. I really need to put forth some effort to use my brain in other ways than to snort at Sponge Bob in the morning. I'd really love the opportunity to use my brain on an adult level again . . . sometime soon.

Oh, and since there is not a babysitter in the equation, because I am the babysitter. My children are magically(say this in a singing voice) little angels . . . every single second of the day. Because you know since I am around 100 percent of the time, I can redirect their behavior at a moments notice . . . and let me tell you, it so works! I get to enjoy their wonderful personalities all day long!(did I say that already?)

I have yet to make peace with the level of filth that has accumulated in my home this summer. Sand in the corners, sand in my rugs, ice cream wrappers stuffed in the sofa, freeze pop wrapping under the ottoman, flip flops fricking everywhere! I mean, seriously, can I clean my house once and have it remain clean for like say, an hour??

When summer first began I was so excited for a fabulous summer, I planned days at the museums, outings to the zoo, days spent at local fairs, evenings at baseball games, we even planted a garden! Then I decided I was a bit tired from all the running around with the children. Reality set in, I needed to pace myself. Summer wasn't even half over and I had already run a marathon!

We had craft days, and rainy days and movie days and the "I'm so bored today" days. I was bored (Shh, don't tell my kids). Boredom was particularly heavy for me because I was basically a single parent this summer as husband was off to various locations across the globe every other week. The days stretched into weeks and the weeks into months and I was left to fill a (seamlessly) endless void for my children. Some days I would pass a mirror and catch a glimpse of myself and realize that I had not showered yet and was still in my pajamas . . . and it would be two o'clock (and my children would still be in theirs).

Being at home all summer long with my children is not easy . . . my house is a wreck (literally, it is a wreck), I have laundry in piles in my basement, my dog is (sadly) neglected, I have bags under my eyes bigger than my favorite LV, the diamond in my engagement ring fell out, my kids have eaten more frozen pizza than I care to tell anyone and my husband has made our living room his permanent packing place.

I am ready for my kids to start school so I can clean up my house and get things (mainly me) back in order. I don't feel guilty for wanting my children to go back to school because my house changed so much over the summer. But I am ready for what is ahead! I'm painting walls I tell you!

I am going to look at what is important to me, and hold on to the fun times of this summer break, for I know I will miss these days when my children are older. I did enjoy each day, but realize that it is a roller-coaster of change, just as the days were of altered nap times(only a few short years ago).

I get used to one thing, and it changes. Hmmmm....maybe change is good, for it is the "cycle of life"!

Tiara's and Tantrums

Other posts by Tiara's and Tantrums are HERE and HERE.


Florida Dom said...

Good to hear you enjoyed each day. You certainly have been busy.


Shelle-BlokThoughts said...

I think you are right, I think staying home is harder. I know with my kids out of school I feel even more guilty working.

I try to make up for that by taking them places and doing things with them, but I'm so tired from work that I'm not fully there.

So the summer now brings an added stress that for some reason I don't feel during the school year. They started yesterday... When I get home I have laundry, who knew I'd welcome that!?

tiarastantrums said...

Shelle - I have about 16 loads near my washer if you like? (hee hee)

FL - Thanks!!

Shelle-BlokThoughts said...

Ok... I have a pounding headache and have been up for awhile... But I think I just read 16 loads!!! Aaaaacccckkkk!

I think they wld have to start paying me for any clothing they wore that was unnecessary... Like underwear. Holy cow girl!

Btw- I read your BlogHer post and my phone was acting up so couldn't comment. But I wanted tot tel you I have felt the same way with both conferences I have attended, especially the part where I didn't get the info I wanted out of them.

I connected with everything you said really, but that part also kinda peeves ya off... You know what I mean.

tiarastantrums said...

we went on vacation right before BlogHer & my brother house sat for us - I don't know what he did to my house - b/c I have never seen it that dirty or disgusting and literally everything was dirty and needs to be washed. Then I was off to BlogHer and hubbie does NOT do laundry. I can't even get up the courage to start a load (hee hee)

Were you at BlogHer this year and I didn't see you????

Shelle-BlokThoughts said...

Sadly no. I bought my ticket and was gung-ho to go (pun unintended for the vagina pic still up on in our follower box *rolls eyes*) but I had already been to two conferences this summer and my kids hadn't been on a vacation at all.

So I sold my ticket and took them to Minnesota where I stayed with a friend I met through blogging.

We had a fabulous time in Minnesota but I do feel a little like I missed out just because this year I actually knew a lot of people that went, daddy and mommy bloggers that I have been friends with for a while now and would have LOVED to meet them in person!

But I definitely made the right choice. But I have that personality- I hate missing out on anything!

Anonymous said...

I work full time out of a home office, so summer can present some unique challenges with the kids out of school. With certain ground rules, it works out well. Thankfully, there are also summer vacations, and other opportunities to engage their time and attention. However, I LOVE having them at home more (even though it felt like my teenager was jetting off every few weeks).

For me at this stage of life, I have to say that the school year is more challenging and exhausting than the summer. It requires a serious amount of organization, planning, and swinging by the seat of my pants to meet everyone's commitments and needs.

Summer is the time where I recover from the school year, relax and rejuvenate. We usually try to take one "back to nature" trip in the summer without phones, computers, or any other distractions.

I think I would lose my sanity without summer break!

PS, I too use summer break for enrichment learning & homework for the kids as well. Sometimes there is grumbling at first, but they secretly enjoy it when it is all said and done.


TisforTonya said...

I went back to work last school year - and so the contrast between the school year and the summer was DRAMATIC since I was suddenly jobless as well... with them going back yesterday I'm still just in a daze... but have done 4 loads of laundry (I'd have to burn them if it were 16) and actually had dinner on the table when ManOfTheHouse came home...

I was feeling useless during the day - yeah, I cleaned... but I wasn't really DOING a lot y'know... and then my sweet little six year old RAN from the bus steps into my waiting arms and made it worth it... yeah, jobless sucks a little ($ wise) but I would have missed that one precious moment and many others...

ack- got side tracked! bidding a fond farewell to summer and looking forward to getting the sand out of the couch here as well!

Liz Mays said...

I can't even imagine how busy you must be shuttling three kids to their various activities! I totally understand how fall would be a calmer time for you!

UP said...

Great post! Family dynamics are just that, dynamic! Change, change, and more change. I hate change. I know you can't keep them little for ever, but the dymanics of a growing family can be heart wrenching. Mine are 25 and 21, I miss them calling me "Daddy" and I miss them being little. It's all "cat's in the cradle"!

(can you tell I'm blue?)

tiarastantrums said...

JT - (I know I left a comment earlier for you- wonder where it went ) I said that I applaud and commend any woman that works in home or out - I don't think I could do it - no, I could, I'm sure - b/c we women - JUST DO! But I am thankful I can stay home.

T - I am sure once school starts I will be walking my home like a fricking nut case - bored out of my mind - but I know one thing - my house will be squeaky clean!!

blueviolet - yes, fall will be easier (I think)

Up - I don't even want to think about my kids growing up - really - I just don't! I NEVER want that to happen!!

heelsnstocking said...

being a full time owrker im always exhausted when I do a week at home with the kids, I cant order them to be quiet and make tea, fetch lunch! (must get them on a work placemnt soon!)

nitebyrd said...

Reading your post I can, happily, remember those days and,even happier, not have to do them anymore.

Change is always good and they do grow up.

Now I'm going to take a nap because just reading what you're doing has exhausted me.

Sandra said...

I agree, staying at home during summer months is more work than...well, working. And I know this to be true, because my husband will come home sometimes in the afternoon to grab a bottle of water, and will look at me, and say, "I feel so sorry for you." This from a man who works TWO jobs! You nailed every single point on the head! And thank goodness. Your post completely validated me! Thank you!

See Mom Smile said...

Dynamics have changed too since my kids have gotten older. I have young kids AND teenagers. Lovely. But they do babysit wether they like it or not and I do errands alone!

robin said...

I am amazed reading this... and Teresa knows me so she'll get a kick out of this comment.
My parents sent me and my brother to full-time day camp from age five through junior high when we were then shuttled off to a horrendous religious sleep-away. And they would INSIST that they were the best parents EVER because they spent a fortune to have us at camp. Which really just meant my mother had her weekdays free to play tennis and lunch with her friends. And then when we were old enough, she had her whole summer free. What hard work! Snort. She would have lasted a half an afternoon doing all that you described. :)
Anyway, you deserve a month at a spa. At the least! :)