“I just don’t know how you do it with 4 kids (insert look of pity here).” I hear this from time to time. Well, at least once each time we go out in public. My other favorite is, “Are they all yours?” I want to smart off, “No, I just borrow a few so I can get folks in the grocery store to stare in horror.”
I’ve been talking a little about the struggles of being a mom of little ones. And some of the ways I deal with clutter. I must admit, the biggest struggle I face in keeping it together (you know, a decent house, happy kids, sanity and maybe a bit of silly fun running around outside in a sprinkler) is in limiting our schedule and to-do list.
Right now, I stink at this. We have way too many things going on and it shows. We are bottle feeding a calf in the back yard, feeding 15 chicks in the garage, getting a yard sale organized, and trying to be sociable with our family and friends. Oh yeah, and gardening. Umm… and I want to freeze some strawberries. And paint the picnic table. And till up a little spot to plant the roses the kids gave me for mother’s day. Oh, did I forget to mention that we have a birthday party in about 16 days?
Yeah. Overloaded Momma Syndrome. First symptom is can be seen in the not so clean house and dirty laundry pile. The next tell-tale sign is the empty coffee pot. Then, you notice the children’s behavior steadily declining. Before you know it, the house looks like a war zone and the kids are hanging from the chandelier and we don’t even have one!
Sometimes, I don’t have a choice about the things on our schedule. Some things just have to happen, like getting groceries and keeping up with house and yard work. It’s the choices that get me in trouble. I think I’m superwoman when I plan my days, but reality is that I’m just me trying to keep up with a very big job while dragging 4 kids along.
I’m learning to slow down, but it’s so hard. I trying though, because when we are moving at a slower pace, the kids thrive, I smile and my husband enjoys being at home. When we aren’t so over-booked and over-worked, we have time to visit with neighbors and sit outside on the porch swing. The kids start playing nice again and coming up with the most imaginative uses for everyday stuff. I like life when it’s lived slowly.
So, I’m trying to slow down. What about you? How do you control the schedule in your home? What works for you? Do you thrive on a busy schedule? How do you tell people no without offending them or feeling guilty? Here’s your chance, leave me a comment and share what works for you.