Today, is the 2nd full day of Little Mama being in kindergarten. For the last month of mind-boggling preparation for first day of school, I have simply forgotten what it means to be back to school for mom.
Moreover, I have been so distracted by the anxiety and worry about Little Mama being away from me for more than 2 hours at a time. Only now, am I realizing there are in fact, some pretty great things about her being in full day kindergarten, 5 days a week.
Now, this isn’t to say homeschooling isn’t an incredible alternative, and we have definitely given it a lot of thought, leading up to this year. My co-host for #5Faves, Bonnie Way from The Koala Mom, happens to be an awe-inspring homeschooling parent to 4 kids herself. However, after a year of hemming and hawing about what was best for Little Mama, we decided to send her to traditional schooling. And as it stands, 2 full days into our plan… so far – I truly believe we’re on the right track.
And not just for this happy little thing…
I’m talking about…
Here are 5 of my most fave things I love about Little Mama being in full day kindergarten, and how it’s been great for me:
1:: 5 THINGS WE LOVE ABOUT BEING BACK TO SCHOOL FOR MOM – Mama’s Gotta Werk
As we all know, a kiddie (or 2, or 8) at home brings such immense joy and hours upon hours of entertainment. One thing I have never EVER uttered in the last 5 years of being a parent are these two words…
There is just no time or space in our home, to be bored. If we aren’t out and about running errands, going to appointments, hopping from one playdate to another, chasing each other in the open fields, or making sand castles at the beach – we are at home telling stories tucked away in our makeshift fort, baking a potentially disastrous cake (luckily, Little Mama bakes better than I do), or reading books.
So. Many. Books.
That’s about 10 hours of a 24 hour day. 2 of those hours are committed to morning and evening prep. The remaining 12 hours is spent with her sleeping (we hope). 4 of her 12 hours of slumber are spent cleaning up hers and Big Daddy‘s mess (okay, I may or may not contribute to some of that mess myself…), bookkeeping, and of course preparing for the next day. 8 of those 12 hours, I would hope to get sleep myself. But alas, that just doesn’t happen. I spend too many of those much needed hours of sleep, catching up on emails, returning messages, keeping up with my social profile, and attempting to work with one eye practically closed. It’s so difficult to be productive, when your mind and body is ready to shut down after a busy day.
But now that Little Mama is in full day kindergarten, I am sitting here enjoying a cup of tea, at a decent hour of the day (Working when the sun is out? Pinch me, I’m dreaming!), while my mind is fresh with ideas.
It has only been 2 days of this, so I can’t give you any number-based stats on just how productive I have been – but I can tell you, that being able to work without distraction or guilt, is worth its value in gold.
2:: 5 THINGS WE LOVE ABOUT BEING BACK TO SCHOOL FOR MOM – A Clean House
My house has been a disaster zone for about 5 years straight. I’m not going to COMPLETELY blame it on my ONE child… better yet, my TWO kids (big and small) whom I have spent the last half decade cleaning up after. But, I am going to say, at the very least – they, and a very exhausted over-extended mama, aren’t helping with the cause. I just don’t have the energy or interest to wipe counters and put away the laundry. Heck – I don’t even care to do the basics sometimes, like hang jackets coming in, or making the bed. Life just became too hectic on a daily basis.
With a new routine in place, my schedule is far more predictable than it has ever been in the recent past. Now that I don’t have spontaneous playdates lined up back to back, 4 times a day, 5 days a week, for both our sakes (cuz us frazzled moms need each other, right?) – I am more available to take care of our home.
The funny thing is, I don’t actually spend the entire 6 hours away from the little one cleaning, as seen from the point above. Quite the contrary, actually. Now that she is relatively exhausted from a full day of school, she just wants to come home, read a book, or play quietly with her toys in a corner. This means that clean up takes only a fraction of the time. And that means, more time I get to spend with my favorite little kindergartener.
3:: 5 THINGS WE LOVE ABOUT BEING BACK TO SCHOOL FOR MOM – Health As a Priority
I am ashamed to say that I have kind of let myself go. I don’t mean I’ve completely given up – but physical health has pretty much taken a back seat to everything else in my life for the last 5 years of playing the role as mom. I look around and see moms coming out of their kick boxing classes, as energized as ever, and ready to face the day. Unfortunately for me, I always have something going on that day. And that something is called…
And my number 1 excuse is about 3.5 feet tall, having the time of her life in full time kindergarten.
With my body going through so many changes after loss and miscarriage, it’s been tough not only to get my body back into shape like it was 9 pregnancies ago, but also to have the mindset WANTING to take better care of myself.
We have been blessed to be placed in a fantastic school that is within walking distance from our home. Ever since school has started, I have been taking my fabulous new kicks and my its mini-me to and from school. After dropping Little Mama off, I put on my headphones and immerse myself in a fictional world (thanks to audible books), all while burning some calories. My brain is getting as much of a workout as my body. It’s a win win for this once (and always) exhausted mama.
4:: 5 THINGS WE LOVE ABOUT BEING BACK TO SCHOOL FOR MOM – Routine for Mom
It has been engrained in our heads throughout parenthood, to give our kids healthy routines. But have we ever thought about implementing routines for ourselves, as moms and dads? My routine for the last 5 years has been pretty much this: Wake Little Mama up. Feed Little Mama. Wash Little Mama up and help her brush her teeth. Plan Little Mama‘s Day out. Clean up after Little Mama and Big Daddy. Make sure Little Mama is happy. Make sure Little Mama is well rested and well fed. Make Little Mama‘s and Big Daddy‘s favorite meals. Keep Little Mama active. Give Little Mama her vitamins. Give Little Mama her warm bath. Read to Little Mama. Kiss Little Mama goodnight.
Big Mama exhausted. Big Mama tries to work. Big Mama fails. Big Mama goes to bed.
With a predictable daily schedule, I have now made a decision to follow my own set of routines for MY own good. Like remembering to eat breakfast. Or going to bed at a decent time. Or taking my own vitamins. You know… the essential stuff.
Who would have thought, I just needed some time on my own to figure this out…
5:: 5 THINGS WE LOVE ABOUT BEING BACK TO SCHOOL FOR MOM – She’s Going to be Okay
I admit it. I’m one of those parents.
I ask questions.
A LOT of questions.
I sometimes even answer said questions with my own answers (in other words, I answer for Little Mama… gotta work on that!)
But now, for 6 hours of the day, she’s under the care of another person that isn’t her overprotective, sometimes overbearing mom. She is posing and answering her own questions. For once, I have to completely trust in prayer, in my very smart daughter (who I have never really given much credit to prior to this), in her fantastic school, and our continued guidance. It isn’t easy, and it is still a work in progress – but I must admit, with every passing day, I’m feeling that this is becoming more and more easy to accept.
My baby girl is growing up. And she’s going to be okay.
And that’s all that I need to get through my day.
Accessories :: Sports Cap (similar KD 8 True Adjustable hat here | Bixbee backpack | Ray-ban Junior Aviator Sunglasses | Top :: Pop Kids I Love LA Raglan (similar Flowers by Zoe Graphic Raglan Sleeve Tee here) | Bottoms :: Tractr Five Pocket Skinny Stretch Jeggings | Footwear :: Ralph Lauren ‘Scholar’ Sneaker
THE LOOK:: WANT IT? GET IT!
Happy first day of kindergarten to my little one and to yours!
And speaking of being back to school; home or not – don’t forget to visit our fabulous co-host of #5faves at The Koala Mom for her list of 5 favorite homeschool tools! We would love to hear some of YOUR five favorite things too. Link up below!
In order to take care of the little one, mama’s gotta work on herself first,
DISCLOSURE: THIS POST CONTAINS AFFILIATE LINKS.