Friday, November 27, 2009

Stay-At-Home-Mom Doings

In response to my dear friend Tammy's question what I am doing now other than being a mom at home. I'm glad to elaborate!

What I intended to do: paint more, apply for a masters art program, create a less-stressful environment at home, be available to do client work, be able to stay home nearly on a whim if Skyler or Tasia is sick, go with the kids on their school fieldtrips, paint murals and work on few extra special projects.

What I've been doing lately: get up at 6:30 a.m. just to get Skyler on the bus, go to Gold's Gym, drive Tasia to and from her morning preschool, grocery shopping, check out FreeCycle for free stuff to get/give away, muse, look on the internet, and work on the final details for a client whose Deaf alphabetical book will come out in 2010. The latter I will let you know when it comes out! Still working on special projects, some I have yet to get started with. Skyler has had to stay home due to illness as well as needing a time-out from school (only twice so far, one was our decision and the other was the school's decision). I've also been cooking yummy dinners whenever we're home for dinner; unfortunately half of what I make the kids won't eat so I'm still adjusting our family menu. I have more energy and the family overall is happier. I'm happy with how things have turned out for our family thus far although I know I need to have better focus to work on my personal health and art!

I chatted with a father recently- he'd said he enjoyed staying home with his kids this week, could imagine becoming a SAHF, but also imagined that he'd go running back to work after 2 or 3 months with his pre-school age kids. That was true for me when Skyler and Tasia were much younger- I'd gone back to work when Skyler was almost 3 and Tasia was 18 1/2 months old. It is different now that they're older, though, because Skyler is in Pre-Kindergarten full time at Kendall and Tasia's preschool is from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. Ah, nearly 3 hours of peace!

Events and choices keep coming up and reminding us what a great decision we made when I said farewell MSSD in June 2009.

Photo at top: We love face painting, courtesy of the FacePaint Lady! At first we'd go to ChickFilA on Tuesday evenings to get the kids' faces painted and later on the FacePaint Lady told me where I could get the TRUE face painting materials and not the crap found in general art stores. Now I can do our kids' faces anytime, anywhere. Below is a video (and not a photo that I thought we were taking) of Skyler and Tasia's faces- I painted them!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Working Mom vs Stay At Home Mom

I was a stay at home mom for 3 years, decided to become a teacher for two years and now I'm several months into my first year back in the role as stay at home mom once again. I realized I couldn't be a great teacher and a great mom. My family and home were suffering. My husband is a teacher, too. We'd barter over who'd stay home with a sick kid- maybe we'd have a lesson that MUST start that day or give a time-sensitive exam (such as final exam). It was tough that I had to make a decision, bury the hatchet, but when having to choose family or work, it was easy. I picked family first.

A thought that helped put the decision in perspective for me: When I lay on my bed during the twilight evenings of my life, will I regret not spending more time being a teacher or not being more available as a mom and wife with a delightful family?

You have one chance at a family- the one you have right now. You can return to teaching once your children have taken off, there will be a new class somewhere where you will be able to make a difference with.

Photo above taken by Hex of a mother and child walking along Beitou Creek, Taiwan (September 2009)