Tuesday, my allergies and stress got the better of me and so we didn't do anything but read a little and enjoy the weather. This then stressed me out by leaving me with only Wedns and Fri (our homeschool co-op is on Thurs and that day is always shot) with dinner guests planned for Fri. Why do I let myself get stressed out? I don't know! I think that my personality has to get things done just so and in the right order. It borderlines on sickness, folks......
I wish that I could just learn to relax and go with the flow so that I didn't end up pressuring the kids in any way. I know that this is when I should go to the Lord in prayer but my body fights against the Spirit and says,"No time for that now! Go, go, go. Let's just push through this and get it done!" I'm sure you can all hear the pride in saying 'no' to prayer when I most need to head the Spirit. Oy!
So here is where my own planning, pushing, and stressing got us this week. I was left trying to get all the leftover school tasks finished, in addition to a full load of lessons, in addition to preparing for dinner guests, on Friday.
- Adam wakes up at 4:45 howling and soaked in pee (thanks so much for dh dealing with him for me)
- Lincoln wakes up at 5:30 for some strange reason. Thankfully he goes back to sleep - although I am now truly wide awake.
- I look over at the clock at 7:45 and realize that I did indeed fall back to sleep and am now an hour late in getting up! This means no peaceful prayer, breakfast, or quiet time for me.
- I forgot to thaw the chicken for the soup for dinner guests and have no bread for them. I run to the local grocery and break our grocery budget by buying another chicken (larger - I am nervous that there won't be enough for 5 adults and 3.5 kids) and the other things that you always end up buying when you make an extra trip to the store.
- I finally start breakfast at 8:30 (an hour later than usual) after getting the food put away and the leftover dishes dealt with (should have done this the night before). Thank goodness that dh slept late too and is helping with the 3 oldest kiddos.
- Nurse Lincoln at 8:45. This takes about 45 mins w/ diaper and clothes and helps me too loose any morning energy I might have had. I almost fall asleep in the chair.
- Adam has been throwing a tantrum for 15 minutes straight in his highchair while I refuse to help feed him until he calms down. This entire episode began when I touched my tongue to his cereal to make sure it wasn't too hot. Sheesh.
- Coffee at 10:00 (ahhhh...the blessed 'happy juice'). I feel like I've waited all morning for it. I lament in my mind that we haven't started any lessons and proceed to bark orders at Jefferson to at least get out his Friday folder and start "something, anything!" Adam has quinoa cereal all over him and is screeching about something else in the high chair. Who knows what Reagan is doing - trouble most likely. Lincoln is still being ignored while he lies under his playmat thingy.
- Gotta get the chicken in the pot so that I can have it cooked and picked apart by 3 or 4. It barely fits in my pot! Will I have enough broth for soup for all of us tonight? Jefferson wants more food (he always wants more food!). Adam is at my feet screaming about something else and saying "Up-uh, up-uh!"
- Finally, at 10:30, I just clean up Adam's snotty nose (for the millionth time), change his loose poopy diaper (I won't even go into the anxiety it causes me to see his diaper loose and burning his bum again - his g.i. issues are another story), and throw him back into his crib. There is nothing else I can do to meet his needs but to force him to get more sleep so his sick body can heal. Lincoln get plopped into the excersaucer.
- It's 10:45 in the morning before I can sit down with Jefferson to teach him. But at least it's quiet and we can focus - therefore math comes first. What's Reagan doing? Not sure - I think she's looking at books or a puzzle. Lincoln is quiet and happy, jumping up and down - as usual (this is why it's so easy to ignore the poor baby!).
- The quiet lets me breathe and we get some good lesson time in. But I won't give Jefferson the breaks that he usually gets since the time when both babies are asleep is priceless for lessons. I push him through math, phonics, grammar, and spelling. He is fidgety and distracted by the end and it's obvious that he needs a break. I keep breaking his focus by getting up to attend to another food prep for the lunch and/or dinner.
- Preparing lunch by 12:30. Babies are still asleep due to their colds and late start this morning. Jefferson works on his spelling list for 10 mins while I have to cut up and fry (olive oil and a little honey) 3 chicken breasts and 2 pounds of carrots for Adam and Reagan's lunch. Also have to make deli sandwiches for myself, Jefferson and dh (yes- the chick and carrots get gobbled up by A and R). Wash and cut up salad greens for dinner; pull out cooked chicken to cool before picking. Jefferson still has science and his own reading to get done as well as any leftover work from the week - maybe this afternoon I'll be able to sit down with him again?
- Nurse Lincoln at 1pm (an hour later than usual). 3 older kids are eating outside. I am breathing again - nursing is so relaxing. Even so, my mind is racing. There is so much food prep still to be done. Thank goodness that at least the house is clean enough!
- At 2 I'm cutting strawberries, beating the whip cream, cutting tomatoes, and cooking 2 more pounds of carrots to put into the soup (forgot to add them in the morning and the kids ate the last batch). Getting coffee serving items ready and cleaning all dishes as I go. Kids are actually quiet outside - Reagan isn't screaming at anyone! Lincoln is on the floor playmat again.
- Dh is home early to cut the grass and trim (and change the overflowing trash). The kids love being outside with him - the weather is beautiful! Thank goodness that we can eat outside tonight - no table setting needed. Still haven't stolen a minute for a shower - p.u.!
- At 3 I bring the kids in for a little break from running around (dh goes back into work). If they get too tired out, they'll be monsters for our guests in the evening. They are caked with dirt in every little crevice. Could they get any dirtier? Adam loves the fingernail brush because it tickles as I scrub away the mud. They watch 1 hour of tv while I continue with food prep by picking the chicken meat and making sure the kids' snacks are ready. Wait - did I eat lunch?
- Adam goes back down for another nap at 4 since he's sick and tired. I have 1/2 hour for history - not really enough time to do more than just read and narrate SOTW. I ask Jefferson to finish his copywork but it didn't get done. I am thankful that at least he is reading in bed in the mornings before I get him up since we didn't get that done either. I throw J and R back outside again.
- At 5 (yes - that's PM) I finally get a quick shower and am hoping the guests will be late as I nurse Lincoln in my bedroom. Then, I crazily decide that I can give him a quick bath too. But the guests aren't late and I take his clean, fat nak*edness downstairs to lotion and dress with the guests. It's always fun to show off his sumobaby fatness anyway!
I seriously don't know how Jefferson learns anything on days like this! And this week, every day felt like this - just packed to the brim. Reagan did not get a single hour of focused lesson or even reading time from me this week (except Tues)! I just don't think that I'm balancing this very well sometimes. I wish that I could do better.
I know that I'm not the only mom out there that is busy. After all, it's not like I have five or even seven kids. But days like this make me long for the days of PB&J lunches and relaxed play dates, where my biggest concern was that a baby had yellow poop up his back!
It was definitely good to hear Jefferson come in at 7pm as we were cleaning up some dishes and say,"Boy, it sure is nice to have people over and have dinner and stuff!" Despite the work, I know that too! Next week, I will try to get my prayer life together and hopefully Adam's cold (passed so nicely on to Lincoln already) won't pressure us too much.