Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Working Mama Wednesday - Weeknight Plans

I often find myself being asked the same question repeatedly by a handful of folks - my husband, my sister, some other random strangers - What are your plans tonight? 

Long gone are the days where they are asking about what exciting adventure I'm planning to lead that night.  Let's be honest - since I've worked full-time and gone to school full-time since I was 18 (that's 11 years folks) - the answer has pretty much always been work or schoolwork.  And I've never been a partier so it was wild when I said I was going for a walk through the woods, shopping, or (gasp!) getting a pedicure on a weeknight.

I don't think I've actually ever done that last one.

In any case, now when I'm asked that question of course it refers to me and the kids - 4 right now. 

The question doesn't bother me or isn't all that unusual I think.  What I find amusing is my regular answer:

Pick up the kids.  Go home. Feed the kids.  Put them to sleep.

That's honestly what I normally say.  Folks who ask me regularly realize that of course that's not ALL I'm going to do, but planning beyond that is a bit nonexistent in my home.  The truth is that I often do a whole lot more with my kids (see my posts about our 4th of July activities) but I don't particularly plan for those activities.  It all depends on traffic.  How the kids' days were at school.  How fast can we get home and make dinner.  Do they eat their dinner.  Are they throwing tantrums at dinner.  Is there any good tv on? (I'm really kidding about that one...).  I like to mix these pieces in:
  • Baths (I bathe the 4 kids at the same time - girls in the tub boys in the shower, which are right next to each other and I can see both groups easily)
  • Playing outside on the playset
  • Going to the park
  • Going for a walk
  • Playing in the front yard sprinklers
  • Ice cream/popsicles from the freezer (after the littles go to bed)
  • Ice cream from the ice cream truck (that guy finally learned to come down our street!)
  • Going to go get ice cream
  • Playing in the spray park
  • Watching "funnies" (America's Funniest Home Videos) or Wipeout or Scooby Doo
  • Cleaning
  • Craft time (coloring, play-doh, other crafts)
  • hide-n-seek (we have a great house for that!)
  • Reading stories
  • Writing letters to family members (eek...bad at that this year...)
  • Homework (we have school books)
  • Shopping (sometimes I just have to do it)
  • Baseball in the backyard
  • chalk & bubbles
  • Playing in the playroom
  • Watching a movie (usually reserved for weekend nights)
I usually have 2-3 of those activities each night mixed in to our regularly structure of dinner and bed.

I have this fantasy that SAHMs and families with both parents home at night often have a tight ship where they have kids in bed by 7 or 8 (depending on their age) and then they have 2-3 hours of their own time, spent relaxing, reading, taking a shower, exercising, cleaning alone (!), etc., but I know that's probably not entirely accurate.

So what about you - what do your weeknight plans include?

1 comment:

Monkey Momma said...

I have this fantasy that SAHMs and families with both parents home at night often have a tight ship where they have kids in bed by 7 or 8 (depending on their age) and then they have 2-3 hours of their own time, spent relaxing, reading, taking a shower, exercising, cleaning alone (!), etc., but I know that's probably not entirely accurate.

Bwhwhahahwha! No. At least not at our house. N doesn't get home from work until 7-ish over here, so bedtime for our boys is 8:30-9:00, if we're lucky. (Otherwise he'd never see them.) By the time they're down, N's lucky to see me upright. I doubt I'm more tired than you, or have a harder/easier day than you, it's just different. I'm sure personal stamina has something to do with that too. I don't have much. LOL!