Our five mom bloggers share their favorite finds from Kmart. See which toys, gifts, shoes and apparel get their real mom Seal of Approval.
I am a well-intentioned mother.
Well, okay, look around. Chances are? If YOU'RE here, you're ALSO a well-intentioned parent. I like that about us. You and me; US. We mean well by our children. We want the best for them.
Our free time is not only sparse, but in turn, it becomes a precious commodity that cannot be wasted. It must be meticulously planned out, savored if you will, and memories MUST be made.
But .. if I'm being totally honest here? I throw about eight gutterballs before I can pick up a spare.
(I use bowling analogies in this one. YOU'LL SEE WHY MOMENTARILY.)
Summers are challenge in a household where the kids are out of school, but both parents work. It's a challenge because our kids are not quite old enough to stay home alone, but man, that older one does NOT want to go to summer day-camp. And I kind of don't blame him. (But I sort of do, because I would LOVE to go to day-camp at 32 years old.)
The youngest is in daycare, which is year-round, but he wants summer off too. And, look, don't even get me started on the guilt trip of Well, he SHOULD get a break too.. it's HIS summer too.. because, yes, I know. In a perfect world, we could subsist well enough on one income that daycare wouldn't be a necessity.
I am derailing here.
Okay, so my point is this: family time, time where we're not torn twelve different ways and bound by bedtimes and naps and what have you, is rare. And I cherish it. As a result? I want to CRAM AS MUCH FUN AS HUMANLY POSSIBLE INTO IT. I just DO. I know it's unrealistic.
So here's my query this week: is it okay to give up on a family outing that's not working?
Case in point: we went bowling. I thought it would be fun, right? Air-conditioned, smoke-free bowling alley. Cokes in abundance. Sports! (.. sort of.) We got two lanes - one for the serious bowlers, and a bumper-lane for the four year old and me. Because I need them too. (I once bowled an 11. AN ELEVEN.) We got about four frames in and it was just CLEAR that no one was having any fun. The whining started, the refusal to participate, the frustration when strikes weren't acheived as easily as on the Wii console.. it just kind of came to a head, and I was blindsided.
I kept thinking of Chevy Chase in any of the National Lampoon movies, where he wanted so badly to just have family memories made. Be it on vacation or a Christmas around the tree, he just wanted the Norman Rockwell postcard. And it drove him crazy.
AND I GET THAT.
So I think a sane and well-balanced parent would just go Oh, my. This doesn't look to be fun for ANYONE. We should probably abandon this idea. I, however, am neither sane nor balanced when it comes to my family, and I was having NONE OF THAT.
"We are finishing this game and we are going to have fun," I growled through clenched teeth.
Which.. is kind of awful, right?
Oh, and it was. No one's attitudes turned around, everyone became Grumpy Bear on Steroids, and there eventually were tears.
I'll admit it: I take it personally when my family does not have fun. I pin a lot of my self-worth as a mother on their happiness and their enjoyment in activities. Especially ones that I think they should enjoy. (Again. I mentioned this was not sane.)
Needless to say, we will not be bowling any time soon.
Have you ever had to abandon a family activity? DID IT CRUSH YOUR SOUL TOO?
I know exactly how you feel. We went miniature golfing last summer...my son just wasn't having it, but dammit, I paid for all 4 of us and he was going to finish. It was HOT out so I can imagine that might be why too...but we were bound and determined to finish since it was my daughter's first time too and I was beating everybody. LOL After we finished by going into an air conditioned arcade room where I was now the bored one but still enjoyed watching my kids smile. :D I know exactly what you mean. ;)
On our expensive and carefully planned trip to Disney, our 4 year old got overwhelmed and we had to leave the parades and fireworks and go back to the hotel.
yes we have. i think its perfectly acceptable to do so. there are lots of other things that one can do as a family if something else does not work...
I had to cancel our normal Saturady night camp-out this weekend and switch it to Monday night and my son was very upset about that....which made me sad!
I'm not sure we've ever had to cancel anything we were already involved in. I honestly don't know what I would do if this happened to us. I guess it depends on several factors.
There are times when mommy has had enough and just wants to go home. So I tell my DH and we go home.
I think the only thing we've had to abandon was family movie nights at home. I wasn't crushed, I knew in my gut it wasn't going to work but we gave it a shot anyway.