About this time five years ago, I quit the career I had spent my entire post-college life building and decided to be a stay-at-home mom. When I left the office that hot, summer day, I felt like a senior graduating high school. Who hooo! Time to sleep in! Time to bask in the realm of no responsibility! Long, lazy days at the pool, hanging with my kids … here I come!
Boy was I in for a shock. I quickly found out there’s a reason why you pay someone to keep your kids while you’re off answering emails and having educated conversations with adults all day. It. Is. Work.
I suppose those early days of being an at-home mom was just training for what was to come with Jake as he brings a whole other dimension to my daily work load. Especially when I’ve made a commitment to myself to not to let him indulge in his favorite TV shows all day. It may still sound like a lot, but I’m shooting for 1 1/2 hours of television time per day. That’s three, thirty minute shows (hopefully not all at the same time) and considering I’m with him for about twelve energetic, action-packed hours, I think that’s fair. Thank goodness for my middle son. He’s truly been a lifesaver this week to help me keep Lil’ Man entertained.
Summer vacation began with a last-minute trip to the beach for the Memorial Day weekend. Every day for the past two months when we get in the car to go somewhere, Jake says, “Go beach?” Although it was getting repetitive in a weird kind of way, he planted the seed and we figured out a way to make it happen. The weather was perfect and we had a good time. We enjoyed playing with the kids and Lil’ Man rode a wave on a boogie board for the first time.
If you’re wondering how the whole severe fish allergy thing works on a trip to the beach, Jake doesn’t have any reaction in the ocean thank goodness. But one day while I was playing in the sand with him, he loaded seaweed up in his toy dump truck and he started itching and got red bumps all over his arms. It looked and acted different from his typical reaction, but we quickly retreated to the pool anyway to take a chlorine bath!
How does dinner work when you’re at a place that has seafood on every menu? Because Jake’s allergy is so severe that he has a moderate reaction even when fish is cooking, eating out is not a possibility for us. One night I cooked and the other nights we ordered take-out and ate our seafood on the patio. It’s actually better that way. No wait, smaller tip, cheaper drinks, and your kids can run around and play while you enjoy a quiet dinner together.
Kindermusik started up this week and when I told Jake we were going to see Ms. Dana, he responded with an enthusiastic, “YES!” Thursday is a busy day for us. We have speech at 9:00 for thirty minutes and then fly over to Kindermusik at 9:45. It’s nice to take a mental break for 45 minutes and hang out with my boy and have some fun.
Over the summer, Jake will continue doing private speech therapy two days a week on Tuesday and Thursday and so far, the flash cards have worked great. I finished up punching the holes on Wednesday afternoon and we’ve done about 50-60 cards per night. I’m still going to review these words even on the days that he has speech therapy.