Sunday, April 6, 2008

Tales of a Soccer Mom....

....Or basketball mom, or baseball mom....or whatever!

Landon loves to play sports and be active. He loves art and music too. I want to help him to enjoy these things he loves so much. So, what do I do? I enroll him in piano lessons, art classes {sometimes}, soccer, basketball, golf, and there were the months last year he was in gymnastics {to help him build self confidence}. Currently, my son is busy Tuesdays and Thursdays with piano lessons and Cub Scouts. Soccer season just started. The games are twice a week. Golf season has just kicked off in our house too. I have PTA on Tuesday nights as well. I'm the treasurer, so the first two Tuesdays of each month are set aside for PTA meetings. The first Thursday of every month is Girls Night for me. :0) EVERY Thursday night from now until the fall is Golf League for the hubby. Landon is gone every other weekend to go be with his dad, too. Which means that every other Friday night is Road Trip time, as well as every other Sunday to meet to pick him back up. Every other Sunday night is family dinner night with either hubby's family or mine. This fall dear daughter is starting to take dance because she'll turn 3.

Can you see where this is going? Where does it stop? Should it stop? I'm feeling rather torn.

When I grew up, there were a couple of years of tap dance and a year of little league baseball. Not too much going on. The only consistent thing was piano lessons, which I took from 8 until 18. We mostly just spent time at home. Do I think I was jipped {spelling on that one?}? Not at all. We played outside, rode our bikes, and just had fun being kids. I could have played sports, but had no desire when I found out that it wasn't just for fun. :0) {I'm SO not a competitive person when it comes to sports}

Today, I feel like in order for my kid to "compete" with all the other "smart" or "special" kids I've got to get him into classes or athletic things to help his "talents" grow. My kid is pretty smart. Gets straight A's {he's only in 2nd grade}, works well with others :0), and reads better than most kids his age. {No I'm not bragging, just informing. Yes, I'm a proud mommy :0) } He loves to play sports. He's a good little piano player. But am I overloading him in my attempt to help him "be all that he can be"? Our week is busy. Between all of his sports and piano lessons and scout meetings, I feel like we are constantly rushing around.

I paid for him to participate in Spring Soccer. The first practice was yesterday. We didn't go. The games are on Tuesdays and Thursdays. When was I going to fit that in? They play soccer twice a year. I figured we could get him back in it in the fall. I pulled him from gymnastics last year. We were gone every night of the week between gymnastics, fall soccer, and piano lessons. I just couldn't do it anymore.

So, again...when is too much, TOO MUCH? I feel like we don't get any family time when I am busy being the soccer mom/scout mom/PTA mom. Like you all know, I have a little OCD problem. I don't DO the added stress thing. I like routine and structure and flow. When I am running around with my head chopped off from 4 pm until bedtime EVERY NIGHT, I lose it. I lose my patience, I lose my routine, and sometimes I feel like I'm just plain old LOSING IT. :0) So, I snap at the kids because I have no patience; my home cooked family meals turn into quick cooked, HURRY AND EAT! WE'VE GOT TO LEAVE IN 15 MINUTES! meals; and my house SUFFERS.

Am I the only one with this problem? Have I done this to myself and you are all shaking your heads wondering why you even read my blog now that you've learned the truth about me?

My new plan is this....
Mondays are family days
Tuesdays are piano lessons {it's a must in my family, my mom teaches him}
Wednesdays are father/son golf days
Thursdays are cub scouts for 45 minutes and then family time
Fridays are either family fun night or Road Trips {I can't help that one}

We are bagging soccer. There's no way I can add two games a week into the schedule. Don't forget that I still have PTA to deal with in the middle of all of this. Tuesdays can get crazy around here.

Even family nights are busy nights with homework, chores, piano practice, and dinner time. We only end up with 1 1/2 to 2 hours of actual family time. In a 24 hour day. That's sad. :0(

Anyway...I've ranted and raved enough here. But I want to know what you all think. Do we let our kids down if they aren't participating in stuff? Or are we letting them down more by not providing them enough quality family time? How do you find the right balance?

11 comments:

Montay said...

I get the picture I just got so excited today when Rhetts soccer coach called and said his games were on diffrent days than Coles I can go to both but umm wait that means we will be at the soccer field everyday did you get that everyday monday thru Thursday.. yikes I applaud you for taking the time to realize you can not have them do it all we don't expect it of ourselves ( I have to add a little side note in here just for Ashlee " the da da song just came on and I seriously thought of forget it I can not listen to this she will just have to get comments from someone else but I am sitting here pressing on just for you) so we should not expect our kids to be doing things everyday they do need time to just be kids whatever that is nowadays..... Okay now I have to go the song is still playing get me out of here!!!

sogratefultobemormon.wordpress.com said...

hey ashlee -- the new plan sounds a lot better. i think kids who are involved in too much outside of school don't have as much time to just BE kids. hope the new plan makes it better and more peaceful for all of you guys. good luck, kathleen :)

Anonymous said...

I keep thinking that I want to put gage in all these things but what is more important, bringing up the worlds next best sports player or creating that family bond that will be there eternally. I though that i should go and get an evening job but then i would miss out on my husband and kids time. in the end what do we have besides our family. I think that you did a great thing with cutting things out. Rachelle

~Virginia~ said...

alas...i am absolutely no help whatsoever. no kids. :) good luck with the new plan though!

Alicia said...

After hearing Elder Ballard's talk, it put things into such perspective. I love the part where he said allow for unstructured time to bond. I think your new plan sounds great and you are a great mom.

The Orton's said...

I think that is exactly why Elder Ballard talked about this specific subject. The majority of parents overwhelm their children with two much stuff. I think we do it thinking that it will be fun for them, a good growing experience, etc. But really...time is one of Satan's tools - too much time on your hands is trouble and not enough time on your hands does not enable to do the things that are most important - like Family Home Evening, family scripture study and just being together. It all needs to be balanced somehow and I applaud the fact that you are giving up soccer. That can be hard to give something up but I think you are benefiting your children.

Jane the Sane said...

I don't have any good advice since TLP is only 8 months old. We keep her social schedule pretty light :p I think your schedule sounds crazy and I wouldn't want to do it. I think the new one sounds more manageable. My life growing up was a lot like yours, pretty laid back by today's standard. I don't think I suffered. It will be interesting for me in a few years when we get to that point in our lives. Good luck slowing down a bit!

Bridget said...

It sounds like slowing down a bit is a good idea. When my kids start complaining about not being home enough to play, is when I know I need to cut stuff out. It has happened before. I don't want them so exhausted that they aren't enjoying all the things I am wanting them to enjoy.

saintseester said...

Hi! I saw your comment on my site today, and I came on over.

You are right to trim the schedule up a bit. Ours seemed to get like that at one point. But, as the kids get older HOMEWORK gets harder. We limit ours to piano and 1 physical activity at a time. When your kid starts having to do research papers in the 5th grade, time management gets pretty tough.

Chin up - they eventually find their favorite things they really want to devote time to, and they really can grow a talent there. So it is fun to watch as well.

i'm kelly said...

no advice from me... i'm not quite there yet, but i'm loving reading the other's peoples comments. hopefully it'll help in the future.

Bonnie B. said...

I think it sounds like you've already figured out when too much is too much. I always feel bad when I don't let my kids sign up for every extra curricular thing there is. Price is an issue, but also, it'll only get more busy as they get older. I figure one or two things (including scouts and YW) is enough. I don't think they've suffered. I have relatives whose kids are so busy with all the extra stuff, it's taken priority over everything else, including family functions. To me, that's sad.