Everyone knows about the how time seems to pass in such strange ways. As a stay-at-home mom I’m faced with that reality every day. Most days the boys wake up around 6:00, after working nights my husband wakes up just before noon. Those five or six hours seem to last an entire week! Trying to keep the boys engaged in some sort of quiet play so their dad can sleep is a real challenge. How do I make it happen? I put on a DVD (one they haven’t seen in a while that doesn’t have too much excitement) and give them each an iPad. At some point I will generally feed them (usually whenever I start to get hungry) and they have learned that I need at least two cups of coffee into me before they start demanding a whole lot.
As soon as Daddy wakes up they know that they are allowed to run, jump, drive cars up and down the hallway, play piano, play drums and dance and sing as much as they want. I really like to encourage this type of behaviour later in the afternoon because it makes them so much easier to get to sleep at night! I’ve built them obstacle courses, dressed them up and thrown them outside to play in the deck snow (not on the grass because that would require me to get dressed. This way I get to sit in the warm kitchen and watch through the window) They’re finally old enough that I can send them downstairs alone to play on the slide (it’s 18″ tall) and run around down there (this one actually has multiple benefits: they can run and I can sit and have a grown up conversation with my husband before he leaves for work and I don’t see him until noon the next day!)
Those three hours between “Daddy wake up!” and “Daddy has go work” go by the fastest of my entire day. It’s not that I’m off the hook for the boys and can have some Mommy time, I occasionally get a diaper change or potty run from my husband but he’s not as much of a morning person as I am so the few hours each day that he is home are not his best. (Weekends from just before dinner on are the times that he really shines!) If I’m lucky I can stretch out on the couch and close my eyes for a few minutes but, invariably, as soon as I start to relax I get hit with a weighted object that wants to know, “Mommy sleeping?”
As soon as my husband leaves for work I usually have a running, screaming, dancing, singing event with the boys to let them get all their silly out so they don’t bug me for the rest of the night. We have dinner early because the boys are hungry and why should I cook them something and then wait myself? By the time they’re done eating it’s the late, late hour of about 5:00pm. They really like their bath and will often spend an hour in there before bed (which I like to aim to have happen around 7:00) The 60 minutes between dinner and bath often feel like 60 years! I have discovered that my personal “kid” time only lasts about 13 hours and that anytime after the 12-hour mark I start to get really annoyed with anything they want from me, or do, or say! Although when I’m in a really bad mood my 3-year-old will come over, give me a hug and kiss and say, “It’s okay Mummy, big boy is here. I make it all better.”
Somehow, he always does.