Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Intentions, Part Two

As I woke up this morning to piles of laundry and a list of errands, I realized I have a problem with intentional mothering. It seems if I really try to be actively involved with the kids nothing else gets done. Or the pendulum swings the other way and I'm only working on cleaning or other projects. I want to go do fun things with the kids, but I also want clean clothes to wear. I desire to do projects but it is also important to have supper. For some reason it's really easy to be all or nothing. I'm either all fun and no work. Or all work, no fun. I might be the best mom ever if I had a cook and a maid.

How do you strike a balance? I wish I knew! I think it's probably different for everyone. I tend more towards the let's hang out and have fun approach so I need to work hard at staying home and doing home stuff before it gets out of control. Sometimes when I do get cleaning I get frustrated because it doesn't stay clean. I'm after the kids to clean up and take off their shoes. When it's already a mess, I just don't really care so much!

On the other hand, I have a friend who is super duper organized. Her house is clean. Her papers are in order. They have chore lists. But she doesn't do a lot with the kids because she is too busy being organized. So we both have areas we have to let go of. She might need to let go and have some fun. While I definitely need to buckle down more regularly.

As time goes on, the needs and routines change. I used to get my housework done at naptime and bedtime but that doesn't happen anymore! It seems I need to work on a new way to strike that balance. One way I know I need to change is by getting the kids to help out more. They are definitely old enough. It's just a lot more work and I'd much rather do it myself. But if I'm intentional about raising them to be followers of Christ and responsible adults, they need to learn about responsibility and work and cleaning.

Being deliberate about mothering doesn't only involve fun, crafts and outings. It's also about meeting the needs of my family. There are days when tasks must be completed to maintain home. The kids need to find something to occupy themselves with: a book to read, a toy to play with or *gasp* a movie to watch!

Take the time to step back and evaluate your balance. Pray about it. Ask your husband about it. I know, I know; that's a scary one! I could ask my organized friends for tips. If my house is always trashed, I will just be intentionally crabby. If I can keep a balance between work and fun, there will be way more time and energy for intentional mothering.

1 comment:

mamabear said...

Very nice series, Michelle!