Monday, December 5, 2011

Losing sight of priorities is easy when you are constantly on the move

I read something I want to share with you:

"I recently listened to a mother rattle off the after-school schedule for her three children. This woman picked each of them up from school every day so that she could run them to swimming practices, chess matches, music and tennis lessons and Scouts. "We're usually out until seven or eight o'clock." she said. When I asked her how the boys ate dinner and did their homework, she told me that they usually eat while doing their homework. Often, this is late into the evening. I was alarmed by the image of a family so busy that they can't even sit down together for a relaxing meal.

We are a busy society. So busy, in fact, that we often forget what really matters in our lives. Why is it that so many of us feel we need to fill our lives with activities that keep us moving, but don't bring us happiness?" - taken from Positive Thinkers Club

This is exactly why I do not allow my children to sign up for every activity under the sun. I simply refuse to drive them all over town to different activities, every night of the week. It's just an added stress and rush that none of us need. It takes away from what little family time we have during the week. It's not worth it. Besides, when I get rushed and stressed, I get crabby and end up taking it out on the kids. I'd rather do a craft activity with them at home or snuggle up and read books to them or draw pictures. Or, just sit and laugh as they chase Lizzy around the house (or vice versa).

I prefer to have relaxing evenings and it is a MUST in this house for us to all sit down together to a family dinner. This is the way I was brought up and it is imperative that I teach my children the importance of this. Plus, kids need their rest too. They need down time. If I were to drag them all over town most nights, they would have to come home to a rushed dinner (probably not very healthy), an evening of homework before bed, and no family time. I figure they'll have their whole adult lives to be rushed and stressed, let them be kids and use their imaginations and creative play while they can. They will have a opportunity to play team sports when they get to middle school. Up until then, one activity each is plenty. So far, they seem to be surviving on that ;)

Many parents whisk their children off to practices and lessons and they become amazing people; talented, skilled and great athletes. Nothing wrong with that. But my kids are amazing people too. Talented. Skilled. And happy. That's my number one priority (yes, even more important that my health obsession). That my kids feel loved and happy. If I can accomplish that, I am happy too.

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