Thursday, November 30, 2017

Five On Friday: Traditions to Save, Skimp or Skip

I started working outside of the home in January. Just part time, three days a week and I could still get the kids on and off the bus. Perfect!

It kicked my ass a little more than I thought it would. I kept saying to people, "I can't believe how hard it is to still fit everything in, I'm only working three days a week" . . . until my best friend gave me a little reality check when she said, "I wish you would stop saying only."

I stopped saying it. I do a lot, I know that, even without the part-time job. There's, oh, you know, the five kids (and two extras after school most days), the house, the yard, the dog, the writing, the theatre troupe, the volunteering . . . not to mention wanting to  have some time for self-care and for spending with my husband and friends.

Some corners realistically had to be cut. Some balls were dropped anyway--pretty sure my kids had their worst Halloween costumes ever this year. We never carved a jack-o-lantern (when we usually do five) . . . and the world kept spinning and everyone had a great Halloween anyway. Will we do better costumes and jack-o-lanterns other years? Yes, this is transition year and I refuse to let the youngest kids get the short end of the stick. (That's not to say that next year maybe we'll have great costumes but terrible something else.)

We have a lot of fun traditions in this house, especially in November and December. This year, for the sake of my own sanity, I'm going to put some thought into them and make some decisions: Save, Skimp or Skip.

1. The Turkey of Thankfulness that I told you about last week?  Skimp. They're usually a little bigger and better than that.

It doesn't look like a turkey at all. The thing's a damn mess.

2. Our annual gingerbread--the kids love this way too much to skip. I thought this was going to be a skimp but instead it just sort of--took over the weekend and is definitely one of my favorite ones ever. So that's a save, apparently.

Oh, you know, just a giant gingerbread representation of our epic road trip last summer.

3. The Advent Calendar of Good Deeds: skip. We'll still do good deeds, we've already donated toys and wrapped gifts at the hospital. I just know I can't handle trying to keep up with daily deeds this year.

4. The kids doing Secret Santa for each other: skip. I never loved this one anyway, they get enough gifts over the holidays without doing this but sometimes they insist plus it just makes more work for me. Not this year and I'm not sorry about that.

5.  Annual holiday party with some of our closest friends that includes a grown-up white elephant gift exchange as well as the smashing and devouring of the gingerbread: save! Even if I have to buy more pre-made food than I usually do, this will always be a keeper.

Days to make, minutes to destroy

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