Tuesday, August 11, 2009


Who woulda thunk? We "began the school year" so to speak, yesterday morning at 10:30 (we had a rollicking good time with friends in their pool the night before and no one was ready to begin our day early). We commenced with lighting a candle and a sharing of joys and sorrows. To a child, even the ones who had been protesting the "back to school moment" most loudly, they all listed as a JOY, starting up our routine again. Some called it school, some called it circle time, some called it "our usual day" and baby, I think, said something like; "Gaeouze-moufalb," because his mouth was full of apple or blue marker or both, it was hard to tell. They were all happy to have days where they knew what would happen when and to have time together peacefully.

I believe in rhythm, I believe in setting the pace and keeping it a calm one for children. It is reassuring to them and creates harmony and flow in a busy household. I also believe in spontaneity and following through on last-minute ideas. Finding a balance of the two is an ongoing mama samba for me.

Another, less flattering note on rhythm; the baby (two now, and a bit beyond baby, but he's the last) has definite expectations of his own day's proceedings. We came home from a long trip a few weeks ago. It was late at night and we all just fell into bed and sleep. Or we would have, had we remembered his bed time routine. He resisted and resisted sleep. He would drift off and then wake up again, crying and screaming for "la-la" (his potty chair) or "bas" (en bas, downstairs) or "Memo", the unmentionable video he is allowed to watch five minutes of each evening. Only at that point, I had not yet realized that this had become a habit. (I won't qualify that as a routine or ritual, too awful for that.) After removing his diaper and taking him downstairs to "la-la" three times, I came to the realization that, at 12:30 am, he was not going to sleep until we sat with him by the tv for five minutes with Finding Nemo turned on. I grumbled and dragged my fanny out of bed and down the steps, baby in tow, sat on the darn sofa, turned on the aforementioned movie and he was out like a light. How humbling for an almost media-free mother!

I'll have to watch what I encourage as habits; my own as well as theirs.

How do you keep the flow going in your house? What are your scheduling absolute limits? Please share!

1 comment:

  1. Rollicking!!! I'm thrilled you assigned such a great adjective to our gathering:) I love this post as it addresses an important issue. I adore the early attachment phase when I'm able to (or at least try to)follow all of baby's cues. As they get older, however, this dance changes and it seems for everyone's sanity we need to take the lead more and (dare I say it) dictate a flow to the day. Whether it be the fault of our society or of nuclear family arrangements, allowing everyone in the family to do what their heart desires does not seem to promote harmony. I think we allow a lot of flexibility as one day in our lives can look quite different from another, but having three now seems to force us into a "rally the troops" frame of mind. My best to you all as you embark on a new school year. Allison


Thank you for stopping by. I am always happy to hear from you! Please leave a comment and let me know how you feel about a post or add advice, anecdotes, etc. of your own.