Staying Bonded

Around here we are working on getting into something that resembles a routine. I really wasn’t at all prepared for what this fall had in store for me. Four days before school started we received a call that Axel had finally made it to the top of the waiting list for the school we had been trying to get him into. After way too much stressing and a ton of prayer we switched him over. Everything since then has felt like a whirlwind.

We had to re-tour the school, get new supplies, take care of enrollment… On top of all that, Axel was not at all happy about leaving all his friends behind so I was constantly worrying about how he would adjust. Then we decided since Miracle will be attending the same school for Kdg next year, we should put her in preschool so she can adjust to the building. We didn’t do preschool for Axel, and I don’t think it at all necessary, but Miracle is such a social bug that we just knew she would love it. Every kid is so different, even in the same family! It always amazes me.

(Are you people remembering that this is all happening over a four day period?!)

I was stressed, Axel was nervous, things got a little emotional around here. Luckily, Axel has adjusted amazingly (a couple long first few days) but I am still not liking sending him off to school everyday. Yesterday I cried when I put him on the bus. He is gone for 8 long hours everyday. I realize this is normal but I REALLY DON’T LIKE IT!

That was a really long rant to try and tell you that we are all having a hard time adjusting to all this. We are trying to make up for lost family time by getting up and having breakfast together and doing a family devotional. I have come to cherish the precious hour and a half that I get each morning with all of us together. (Even if we are only half awake.)

Three days a week I have to run Miracle 20 minutes one way to school. Mondays I get to stay with her for an hour (which is super fun) and then Tuesdays and Thursdays Evangeline and I have 2 1/2 hours to spend together. Today we went to the library, had snack in central park, picked up groceries and played at the park. I really dislike that it is over nap time, but Evangeline so desperately needs this one on one time with momma and I am having so much fun with her!

Our nights stink though. Axel doesn’t come home until 4:30 which only gives us a few hours. Tuesday nights I teach at the Y and Wednesdays are youth group. Throw in any other activities that come up and I feel like I never get to see the boy! Another thing that I have done to savor that precious family time is to make it a priority to not do any errands while Axel is home. If I have something that needs doing, I do it while he is in school. I have caught myself a couple times starting to run to the store but I made it wait for the next day. I want any minutes we have together to be quality, not grocery shopping!

Pretty much all this rambling to say we are not used to all this running. I realize it is a part of my family evolving, and that as my kids grow it will only get crazier. That is why we are taking steps now to instill those healthy habits that will keep us bonded as time goes on. We can’t eat supper together every night, so we do breakfast instead. Evangeline and I don’t have time to go home and nap while Miracle is at school so we go to the park instead…

Another big thing that I am working on is knowing when to say no. We are so involved in so many things that sometimes we forget that it is ok to say no when something gets in the way of the things that really matter. I was supposed to have girl night tonight, but realizing that Axel had been away from home last night and will be tomorrow night, I knew that we all needed a night in together. Me time is important too, but tonight I knew it wasn’t the priority.

What ways do you help your family stay bonded when things get crazy? What are your out of the norm tips and tricks? How do you parents cope with your kids being away each day (or are you happy for the quiet!)?

My sister in law always says to me “It’s only for a season.” It is one of the best things anyone has ever said to me, and I think of it often. It helps me to remember that each phase in life has it’s own ups and downs. I can get through the downs because I know it will soon pass. On the other hand, I will soon be on to a new adventure, and I need to focus on all the amazing things of the season I’m in while I am in it.

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9 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. wifemomwoman
    Sep 20, 2011 @ 23:01:03

    Kimberly Legros Larson: we have always had a night during the weekend to do something as a family. sometimes we play games, or go on a bike ride, riding on the lightrail, or going to Red Wing to go hiking. We feel it will pay off when they become teenagers (which is only 2 yrs away! Panic!!) It looks like you are doing a great job with your little family!

    Reply

  2. Lisa Johnson
    Sep 21, 2011 @ 10:06:03

    I cried when I read this (it was the middle of the night – couldn’t sleep!). It’s still hard for me that all of my babies are gone all day, and I can’t run errands during the day because of the daycare. The Sunday before last after getting a quick (and cheap) bite to eat, me and the kids went grocery shopping. I was stressed out because of having to spend money, following a detailed list, the grocery store was very busy – so it was not a great experience for anyone of us. I decided I would NEVER do that again, not with the kids, and definitely NOT on a Sunday! Last week I put an order in online, the groceries were dropped off on Sunday, and this week I will change the delivery date to Sat.
    I actually usually like grocery shopping, and remember it being a fun time to spend with my kids!
    We also have severely limited outside activities during the school year, and are in the process of organizing weekends so that we get time together as a family. The kids can play with neighbor kids, but even this is limited, since we now have some school-agers involved in our day care and they get to play with them then.
    I remember the wonderful times I had with my children when they were small and am very grateful that I had the freedom to spend that time with them. I think that this is why I cried. Children are such a gift from the Lord! πŸ™‚

    Reply

    • wifemomwoman
      Sep 21, 2011 @ 19:19:32

      that is a great idea to order some of your things online to save a trip to the store! right now my biggest chore that i’m having a hard time fulfilling is cleaning. we are gone a lot of the day, and i don’t have trouble getting my errands done because of the time we have to kill while miracle is at preschool. i am finding that money is a bigger issue now though because of the extra gas and the extra times grabbing ice cream, tea, shopping…

      Reply

  3. Lori
    Sep 21, 2011 @ 20:49:04

    It’s quite an adjustment, isn’t it. So glad they’re doing so well and liking school so much. And the time with Evangeline is priceless, such precious time.
    Still dealing with it over here too…Indie is adjusting well, this year, thank the LORD..was so worried it would be like last year with his homesickness. But I’m the one who’s having the hard time with him being gone…and my girl too, even though I’m more used to her being gone during the school year at this point. I’m trying to cherish the hours we do have…and will gladly look forward to any school days off that come our way. πŸ™‚

    Reply

  4. Suzy S
    Sep 22, 2011 @ 10:06:05

    What we do each and every day isnt much but its something that My mom had us do as a family so to me it is very important. But we eat dinner every night together as a family. The time we eat might change depending on what time we get home or if my hubby works late but we always eat dinner together and laugh and joke and talk about whatever is on our minds or happened that day.
    I loved this blog post, my kids arent quite in school yet (4 & 2) but I know when they go things will change drastically. Makes me really want to enjoy the time I have now πŸ˜€

    Reply

    • wifemomwoman
      Sep 22, 2011 @ 10:58:31

      Those family meal times are so important! Especially making sure that you turn the tv off! It forces you to visit with each other. I can ask Axel a million questions after school and he won’t have much to say, but then we sit down to eat and he is a jabberbox, telling all about things that happened at school.

      Reply

  5. Tammy H.
    Sep 28, 2011 @ 08:34:30

    When I am going to be gone all day, either the night before or in the morning before dropping kids off, i would put supper in the crock pot. Then you can use your cooking time for whatever else you need to get done. Don’t know if you have thought of doing that but it does give you a little more time later.
    Sometimes it seems that you will never be done with everything. Timing yourself when you are doing your cleaning can also help so that when you think you don’t have enough time, you can fit in a couple of quick chores in.
    As for extra gas money and stopping for extra treats, i guess at least gas is starting to go down some now πŸ™‚ Have fun while you can!!!

    Reply

    • wifemomwoman
      Oct 02, 2011 @ 13:51:43

      The crock pot is a great idea. I keep forgetting that I want to search out some great healthy recipes. Thanks for the reminder! And the timing thing too. Sometimes I don’t even start because I know I won’t have time to finish. I need to remember that anything I get done will help!!

      Reply

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