Day One of Summer

I look forward to summer vacation all year-long.  It is truly my favorite time of year.  The break from routine – no more homework, packing lunches, and busy work, school, and sports schedules.  3 months of downtime, family time, and no “have-to” is vital for my family.  Even though we are simply 3 – that is still 3 different directions to go the majority of the year.  We have a saying in our house – “Home Sweet Home.” Our home is our haven and I do my best to make this a retreat for us – a place of rest and serenity where we can comfortably escape the busyness of the world.  Summer time usually means a lot of time at home – catching up on projects and simply just relaxing.

With my husband being a teacher, me a substitute teacher, and our son out of school for summer – we are home the entire summer together, as a family.  This also means, we-are-home-the-entire-summer…together.  While we love and adore each other and truly treasure this time – there is such a thing as too much togetherness.  I have to adjust to a complete turnaround of my routine and schedule now that my boys are here.  I will feel, more than once this summer, that I don’t have only one child – but two…my hubby loves being a fun and silly daddy.  As the wife, mom, and “house manager”, I run this house on routine and structure.  For me, rest and serenity usually accompany order and cleanliness. While I try to hold that a little more loosely in the summer – I am who I am.  I get a little grumpy in the face of chaos and disorder. :|

Welcome to Day One of Summer – some yearly household maintenance is about to commence.  My husband is a little irritated that I scheduled these things on his first official day to sleep in – oops.  My sweet little one – is donning a 9-year-old attitude about why his plans of TV and Lego’s have been interrupted.  He is “one” after all – that comes with a few challenges which my husband and I prayerfully tackle as we try to impress upon him that…uh…the world does not revolve around him!!  We start day one with a little “chat” about how the attitude better find itself adjusted or the summer will be spent doing school worksheets and reading in his bedroom.  That is met with an attempt to exert that independent and ever maturing spirit – in the form of back talk.  I shut that down faster than you can say – “which Lego should I take away?” :)

This exchange was quickly followed with a dose of calendar and routine – let’s map out what this week will look like in the life of a 9-year-old.  We will allow lots of time for playing and relaxing – but we’ll mix in some school review, reading, piano practice, and playdates.  We’ve done the busy summer – it stinks.  But structure – we thrive on it.  And you know what – my little guy immediately settled and loved the idea that he knew what was coming next!  He gave me that sweet little smile, a somewhat reluctant apology, and was on his way to tackle his list.

I’m certain I face the same challenges as any other mom, in the summer – just in a smaller dose.  I’m equally stretched to make the bumps in the road teachable moments as we strive to raise a well-rounded individual who, while an only child, realizes that an attitude of entitlement and selfishness is not acceptable.  We don’t tolerate disrespect and we will train him up in the way he should go, with time in God’s word and reminders about accountability to God and to our family.  I’m determined to have fun and treasure the little moments, but still have order and direction and not have a home that functions on a free-for-all mentality.  Balance – it’s really just all about balance…with a few doses of perspective for good measure.

Worry is the product of a mind that lacks perspective. Such a mind needs to fill itself from the reservoir of God’s Word, not the innumerable concerns that constantly vie for our attention. “Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!” (Psalm 46:10).  via Randy Alcorn – http://www.facebook.com/?ref=tn_tnmn#!/randyalcorn/posts/10150884291299142

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