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Today, I’m thrilled to have Angela joining us here on the blog. Angela is an amazing mom to three spunky and adorable kids, living at the foot of Utah’s Uintah mountains. She’s an amazing adventurer, and today she’s sharing some great tips with us to have meaningful adventures with kids that DON’T get dragged down by school! A perfect reminder this time of year – thanks Angela!
I love adventure!
I feel confident enough in my adventure prowess to Bring the Kids.
As you can see, my problem is not in taking the kids. It’s being mentally with my kids when we’re having adventures so its not just how we spend our time. It’s bonding time.
Ok, my hang-up to being mentally with my kids…I’ll paint the picture for you:
I wake up in the morning and walk into the kitchen. On the counter, I find (along with a few dishes that didn’t get washed last night because, no, I am not one of those people that goes to bed with a clean kitchen) a stack of papers. I walk into my bedroom. Papers. I walk into my kids’ room. Papers. Papers, papers, papers. I feel inundated with papers!
Please tell me you know the feeling. How can you not, especially if you have kids in school? I swear teachers chant a mantra every morning “Five pages home tonight!” (I’m not trying to talk smack about teachers. I love you! I was you once, and I did the same thing.) School generates a lot of papers!
What do papers have to do with adventure? I’ll tell you. PAPERS ARE SUFFOCATING. There is always a stack of papers hiding the address I need, or the homework that’s due today, or waiting to fall over and be cleaned up, or gone through and organized, again! For the third time! I try to be efficient about it, but I just don’t know what to do with them all. Every time we leave the house to go have fun I feel guilty, like I’m running away from the mess I should be taking care of at home. I swear I have a pile of papers in my head that I am constantly sorting and organizing, and that sucks my energy and leaves less and less of me to truly, genuinely engage with my children when we are out having fun. I have a hard time being in the moment.
Have you been there? Argh! It’s infuriating! Especially because I know it shouldn’t be this way.
Well….LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, I have decided to change. I’m starting small and I’m planning to tackle one thing at a time, starting with the papers that come home from school. And, I have some help to make sure I teach myself right this time.
I discovered this awesome program over at POWER OF MOMS called the ORGANIZING FOR SCHOOL SUCCESS KIT. The tagline that caught my attention was “Overwhelmed by your children’s school papers and assignments? We offer simple, proven methods to set children up for success”.
That’s right up my ally.
Here’s what I love about this program
#1: It’s broken into sections.
Sections that help me recognize what needs to hang around for a few days, a few years, or a few minutes (my favorite!). Then it suggests where they should hang around, and these suggestions are doable for me. They’re not all cutesy and time-consuming. Simple and Get ‘er Done kind of suggestions.
#2: It’s not just a list.
It’s more like training, not just good ideas.
#3: It’s in two formats, podcast and written.
That has been huge for me! I like to listen to podcasts and I get lots of good ideas that way, but then I forget and I feel like I have to go back and listen again, and that’s boring. This way, I can listen once and then refer back to the written portion without going through all the “fluff” if you will, again.
#4: It gives me homework.
Each section has a homework section. Here are the ideas. Here’s why. Here’s what you need to do it. Now set a date and get it done. I like that. It’s small chunks so I don’t get overwhelmed and I’ll actually do it, but not so small that I get lost in the minute details of it all and completely get distracted from the end goal.
#5: The ideas make sense.
I am now finding myself making contact with papers and thinking “Oh, if I had my tickler file ready, this would go right in there,” or “Man, this is exactly what the sneaky sorter is for.” That keeps me excited.
Here’s what I don’t love:
For some reason, my papers have not just up and started sorting themselves. Sucks, I know.
So far, that’s the only con.
Being organized for me is going to mean developing a whole new skill set that will take me way out of my comfort zone, but I’m counting on all the hard work paying off in big ways. Number 1: I’m counting on being more mentally available for my kids. Number 2: I’m counting on teaching my crazies a few organization skills of their own now so they won’t have the steep learning curve I am having. I want independent, ORGANIZED adventurers and to teach them to be one, I have to be one.
I’m a work in progress.
Wanna join me on this adventure? Here’s a giveaway for YOU!!
POWER OF MOMS has graciously provided one ORGANIZING FOR SCHOOL SUCCESS KIT to one of our readers. To win, just leave us a comment below. Tell us what your biggest mental hang-up to getting out the door and enjoying your adventures is. What kinds of things are lurking in the back of your mind that keep you from being genuinely engaged with your kids? Giveaway ends at midnight on Halloween!