Throughout the year, I am very careful not to over-schedule my children. School, Family Time and Play Time are our 3 Schedule Staples, but I add in a mix of music lessons, one sport per season and church activities as well.
Music lessons are a "Non-Negotiable" activity in our home, although we do let the child choose between violin or piano. Music is a passion and skill wihch spans a lifetime, long outlasting a football player's moment of glory. It develops parts of the brain that otherwise go undeveloped. Did you know brain scans show the activity in which a human child uses the greatest percentage of their brain is playing the violin? Ask Atticus--he will gladly show you his color copies of these scans illustrating such a fact. Plus, there is such a dignity and decorum in learning music--it teaches children to act civilized, if but only for the lesson. The lessons aren't cheap and we both gulp a bit when we realize what it will cost us to put 5 kids in music lessons, but the Mister and I would gladly work a part-time late night job if necessary, because we so believe in the value of music lessons.
This year the kids chose Dance as their sport for their year. I love that they chose Dance because that too is a skill which can be enjoyed throughout a lifetime. I am still TOTALLY dismayed and saddened by all the idiots out there who will not let their sons take dance out of fear they might become gay. Good Grief. What makes me even sadder is the complete lack of tact these people have in stating their opinions to me.
That being said, however, it makes it for easier for me to "consider the source" and completely write off their moronic opinion.
Yet, try as I might to keep our schedules balanced, all of these activities culminate in a jam-packed, recital-ridden period of time in May, which I equate to the likes of a fraternity's Hell Week. In addition to finishing up these activities, the new ones overlap for these two weeks, so we need to add soccer practices into the mix.
I am not a Mom who thrives on busy-ness and chasing. I love to be home, where I can nurture my family and home. And when Spring arrives like it has, with sunshine, fresh dirt and seedlings calling my name, it just about kills me to have to run about the city like a chicken with her head cut off.
And to add to all of that, we continue to get snippets of good news out of Haiti. We may just yet get those boys home this summer! We are slowly adjusting to the idea that we really may need to start preparing here. So we are digging out the Kreyol books, dusting off the language cd's, and talking to the kids about what to expect when the boys come home.
The boy's room, however, leaves many things to be desired. Like thorough cleaning and top to bottom re-organization. I don't know how one little 6-year old boy and a tadpole can so thoroughly trash a room.
I need to take a lesson from my dear Mrs. Becky B., who is expecting their beautiful baby boy at the end of summer. A woman with a mission, she is a Room-Painting, Furniture-Moving, Bed/Crib-Relocating Machine. Once she is done with it all and has a chance to put her feet up for a rest, I'm going to enlist her help here in my home. Of course, I'm not going to make a pregnant woman move furniture about in my own home. But I will let her put her feet up, plop a huge bowl of fresh strawberries at her side, and let her dictate to me exactly what she would do if the boys' room were hers. Praise God for friends with Room Decorating/Organizing Vision like Becky!