Friday, October 23, 2009


There’s never enough of it. Like most of you reading this blog, I’m busy. Juggling three kids, a part-time job, a work-from-home editing gig, and finishing a novel has proven to be a bit much. And before you get too impressed, keep in mind that by “finishing a novel” I mean “spending a few hours editing and writing at some point every week.”

Since there’s never enough of it, I’m learning to make time for what’s really important to me. I try to carve out time each day for each of my kids. Sometimes it’s just ten minutes of one-on-one conversation at the end of the day, or a game of yahtzee or chess (I’m learning! And believe it or not, the kids are teaching me).

Last week, I was story mom in Twin B’s class, and I decided to surprise him and take him out for lunch before my volunteer shift. I dropped the preschooler off to play at a neighbor’s house and caught B. as he was waiting in line to go into the cafeteria. I hope I never forget the look on his face when I called his name and invited him out to lunch. His entire face lit up, and he just grinned as he followed me out to the van. We chatted over burgers at Wendy’s and he kept saying, “I just can’t stop saying thank you!”

It wasn’t just the burger he was thanking me for. It was the time. He knows I’m busy and have a million things I could be doing with an hour of free time. The fact that I was choosing to spend time with him—not because I have to, but because I want to—made a huge statement to him. You’re special. I enjoy you. You’re worth my time.

We all get 24 hours a day. How will you spend yours?

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Where are my chickens?

Every day is an adventure with a preschooler in the house. Honestly, I’d forgotten how cute a three-year old can be. He loves going to school like his brothers (two mornings a week), and helping me with jobs around the house. Amazingly, his favorite “job” right now is cleaning the toilets. And everywhere we go, he checks the bathroom and often announces, “That potty looks dirty. They should clean it.”


But by far my favorite part of this age is watching his imagination explode. Some days, he’s a cat, crawling around and meowing and telling me “the kitty likes to be petted.” Other days, he’s a “good guy,” keeping all the bad guys away with his assortment of pretend guns. (Don’t lecture me. I lost the battle against non-violent toys long ago.)

Even as I type, the preschooler is managing a small farm of chickens in a laundry basket. Invisible chickens, of course, which makes it tricky to play along. He just yelled out, “Mom! My chicken got away!” I tried to grab the invisible chicken, but when I gave it to him, alas, that was not it. He was looking for the OTHER chicken.

So he grabbed two plastic sandwich bags and put them over his hands for “glubs” and is off to recapture the escaped chicken.

All this fun and it’s only 6:08 in the morning.

The farmer has just invited me into the chicken fort and assured me that he’ll keep me safe. Because, according to the farmer, "the chickens really like you."

Which is why I love having a preschooler.