Cheers to the Moms

I lift my glass – of coffee, Mimosa, Bubbly, or wine – to all the moms who have survived the longest Spring Break ever! Cheers to all the moms and dads out there!

Whether your kids are back in school in person or doing the virtual/remote learning thing, you are probably transitioning from the free-for-all that has been summer break to something of a more organized family schedule.

Back to school, in whatever form, means a more uniform schedule for all of us. It means rolling back into having a bed time and getting up earlier. It means (at least in our house) some new rules about TV and Screen Time.

Even with my kids back to school in person, they are using laptops more at school. They are learning what they will need to do if and when they have to come home to work remotely again.

Yesterday was our first day back, and my kids had a great day! But, they were tired. It is a big transition to go back to school – even more so this year after a longer break than usual. It will take some time for everyone to get back into the groove and get used to full days at school. New lunch times. Making sure to eat lunch when it is the time, because it’s a long afternoon until you get home for snacks.

heart flowers in pot
Virtual heart flowers to all the mamas out there!

Cheers to the moms who are managing all of the virtual school, and trying to keep up with work too! I have a cousin who’s mom has moved to Denver temporarily to help her grandkids with online school. Cheers to the moms and grandmas (and dads and grandpas) who are juggling all the things to make it work!

I set a new rule in our house this week: No TV or iPods/iPads after dinner. I am hoping that chilling after dinner helps my kids wind down without zoning out in front of a screen. As I talked about last fall, I am pretty flexible about Screen Time here. I think tablets and iPads, cartoons and movies are all good in moderation. And, lets be real: this year the tablets and televisions have saved all of us. There are just times when we need to get things done, and if the kids are occupied for an hour or two – okay. 

My kids get up and about and play, a lot. They ride bikes and play outside, do craft projects, and enjoy life. They also whine and complain when they’re tired, and lately I’ve enforced my no devices/no TV rule more when they start fighting about shows or complaining about anything. I send them up to their rooms or separate spaces, or ask them to clean up whatever other things they have out, and then suggest a new game or building Lego houses or painting rocks outside.

All of those things are still necessary, no matter what else is happening. So, cheers to the moms out there who are still being the enforcers. Who have to keep their patience and stay calm. Cheers to the moms who are mediating the squabbles and juggling that with work.

self care
Are you taking time for your self each day/week? Make sure you carve that out!

What about working out? Taking some time each day or week to get some exercise and take care of yourself – mind and body? Have you kept up with that this year?

I haven’t! I was doing really good in February and March. And then the gym closed, and I had the kids all here, and it was easy to just let that go. I started back in June, a couple times, and again it just didn’t happen.

So, along with our new back to school schedule, I have promised myself that I will make the time to exercise, no matter what. I will carve out those 30 minutes several times a week. I need that. I know that I will feel better and be in a better frame of mind to juggle all the things and keep up with life.

Cheers to the moms who have managed to keep up with their workouts along with everything else! I lift my glass to you.

Cheers, mamas!

For now, I am celebrating by madly cleaning my house – and cheering the fact that no one is making new messes in all the rooms I’ve just cleaned! Yesterday, I managed 11,000 steps while I cleaned and walked to the coffee shop, made lunch and snacks and dinner. I consider that a good day.

Sometimes, all it takes is making sure to celebrate those little things. What little things have you accomplished this week? Take the time to recognize what you have managed to do, every day.

Whether it is cleaning up the dishes after every meal, or picking up all the toys on the living room floor before bed – making yourself do those little chores along the way adds up. Do I sometimes leave it all for later? Absolutely! But I am happier when I get it done right away.

And, as I talked about last year in Kid Chores vs. Mom Chores, make sure to have your kids help you clean up! Just as they need to clean up their own messes at school (and if they are home with you, this is even more important), teaching them to clean up after themselves at home is a huge skill. Usually, if I threaten my kids with the vacuum cleaner, it is the surest way to get them to clean up the living room floor!

Celebrate the little things. We all need things to celebrate!

Part of my strategy with the no screens after dinner rule? Getting my kids to clean up the toys before bed. If they have some extra energy they need to get rid of? Have a dance party! Above all, celebrate the little things.

We have all juggled a lot this year. It has been a doozy. Friends, celebrate that. Cheers to all of us!

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