I thought more about my What a diff post and realized that, duh, I now have FOUR children, ages ranging from 2 years old to almost 10 years old.
In 2009, I "only" had two children, an almost 4 year old and a two year old. Wow. Double the laundry, double the food prep, quadruple the clean up and fighting.
No wonder. One would have thought that was obvious.
Not to mention that they are all boys, energy abounding, with a preference for wrestling and racing all around, led by the oldest boy who has freely admitted that he stirs things up to a frenzied pitch on purpose if and when he gets "bored".
Or the fact that I am trying to keep up with a preschooler and a toddler while simultaneously trying to stay on top of a homeschooling schedule for a 9 and 7 year old.
The one thing I have to remember, always remember, please please please remember, is that life is constantly changing; and with that, I have to be continually adapting to keep the pace. It is hard, as I usually feel like I am adjusting woefully late in the game. I need to get better at that: the continual re-address and problem-solving part of parenting. It never ends, but somehow it slips off my radar on a semi-regular basis.
Furthermore, as a homeschooling mama of four, everything depends on me. There is no outside structure. It is all me.
This is good and bad. Good, in that I prefer autonomy. Bad, in the fact that I tend to be a fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants, inspired-to-action kind of gal. I can do routines, but the day always seems like it gets away from me. And I think it is making life harder.
It feels like we are all floundering, particularly in the morning hours. I have a skeleton outline for the day, but reeling in the boys for our various tasks and assignments can be arduous. Set expectations make everything easier. I know this. An established, daily structure makes everything easier too. Instead of having to think about it or question "what's next?", we flow. Like a stream.
And with all that, I need to actively impose further order to my life, for all of us.
My plan is to start parsing out the day with a timer. Seriously. I am going to use it as practice to divide up our hours into manageable chunks, giving the boys an understanding of what to expect so it isn't pulling teeth to move to the next phase of the day, or for me, to wonder what we should be tackling next. I will do this until it becomes normalized.
I need to identify hot spots, hone in on our routine, and make sure that I have plenty of down-time with the little guys to be able to give them my full attention.
And now . . . I post. Speaking of the devil, I've got a little four year old wiggling all over me who obviously needs my attention. ♥
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