The forecast shows that San Diego is due to get 6 straight days of rain starting now. While to the rest of the country 6 days of light rain seems like no big deal, for us sun loving – live outdoors San Diegan’s it’s almost terrifying. Other cities are built to account for poor weather; malls are indoors, there are indoor play places and a healthy balance of activities that work well when the weather outside is bad. In San Diego, the weather is rarely bad and almost always sunny. As a result, for a city our size there aren’t a lot of indoor options for places to take your kids when it’s raining and most of us just don’t know what the activities are.
Being a good house guest in my parents own home is something I typically never thought twice about until recently. Up until a few years ago, I still considered their home an extension of mine since it is where I lived my whole life. As a 20 year old, that attitude didn’t matter much because I left a small footprint behind and was often running in and our visiting childhood friends. But, with the introduction of first Summer and then Cal both the physical and emotional space that our family takes up in a home grows and grows. Over Thanksgiving I went up and visited my parents in Sonoma County for 10 days, 5 of which was just the kids and I without Ryan. While there, I put a lot of thought into what I could be doing to make our footprint less intrusive and what my personal revolving door of house guests do to make their presence less daunting. Whether you are staying with your parents, sibling or friends definitely put some thought into these suggestions this holiday season.
After spending a 10 days in Sonoma with the kids and then Ryan, I came home to start December feeling like I had a million things to get done. Work is at it’s busiest, life is at it’s busiest. Before December 1st even came we had already put up our Christmas lights, decorated the tree, ordered the holiday cards and started blowing through the checklist of things I wanted to get done. It took me through the end of the week and being so exhausted that I was starting to get sick to realize that although I was plowing my list and we were getting through all the holiday stuff at lightning speed I wasn’t finding the joy in what we were doing. I wasn’t crushing it and I wasn’t present.
This is a post I have thought about writing almost every week. I’ve hesitated because the topic surrounds something negative and I don’t want to instill fear or create a forum for an entirely different discussion. However, every few week I see a fellow mom and blogger post something that makes me think maybe we should start sharing tips on how to put some best practices in place for when we do share pictures of our kids. I’ll be the first to admit that sharing pictures of your kids is a slippery slope. I went into my blog thinking that I was going to have cute fake names for my kids and never say their real names. But over time I grew more comfortable writing about them and more comfortable sharing moments form our lives. But with the ease of relaxed practices and falling into a groove it’s still our responsibility as mothers first to have a moment of reflection where we ask ourselves, what could be the implications of doing this and how can I minimize them?
If you are anything like me you spend the last hours before bed determined to do more crafts with the kids the next day. I tell myself, “I can totally be that mom who had education and adorable activities for my kids each day. Why can’t we have a house filled with elaborate Halloween decor all made by my 4 and 2 year old?” And then the next morning I wake up to find them trying to fill their play kitchen with water they harvested from the powder room sink that still running and remember exactly why that ideal is simply not us.
But rather than accepting defeat entirely, I’ve switched my pinning to look for the easiest, no fuss, little mess Halloween crafts that would work for preschoolers. Almost everything in these crafts are already in our home which means that I can just whip them out on the fly when I can tell our afternoon is about to take a turn for the worst. Because let’s face it, in my house I don’t need crafts as a dedicated preplanned morning activity but instead for the – no one took a nap but everyone actually needs one -afternoons.