Parenting on the weekend...
Being a parent is a daily challenge. There is always a new obstacle to overcome or another tantrum to deal with. And after a long week of work, and school and homework and chores, on the weekend, you just want to relax and have a win. No chaos, no stress, no running around. Just a nice weekend. But as a parent, there are always things that need to be done. There’s no way around it. But there is a way to win the weekend as a parent and not lose your cool.
This is a list of how we try to win the weekend. And so far, it has been working.
Accept that not everything can be done.
Things will slide, plans will change, and somethings will not get done. Do not worry about it! This is part of life. But the world will not end if you did not finish cleaning the house or if the dog missed a walk. The sooner you come to terms with this, the better. Trust me!
Make a list
I am a big advocate for making lists. But this really helps. Make a list of all the things you would like to accomplish on the weekend. Either make 1 list for both Saturday and Sunday or make 2 lists – one for each day. Put all the things you want to get done on this list. This includes things like laundry, showers, walks, homework, even eating lunch. This gives you an idea of things you need to do. In the times when there is a lull, look at the list.
It is important to remember that this is a list of things you would like to do. So not everything needs to get accomplished.
When something gets finished, just cross it off the list. I use paper, but you can do any method you like.
Make sure you involve your kids
You had kids for a reason. Make them grow into civilized people and teach them to help. You can also get them excited about doing things on the above list by adding items they want to do. I mean, you want to win the weekend as a parent, so you have to keep your kids engaged, involved, and happy!
Divide and conquer
Sometimes you have to split up if you need to get things done. My hubby and I love to hang out as a family with the kids, go shopping, go for a walk, play at the park. But sometimes that is just not possible. And that is ok.
Napping is encouraged
Whenever possible, encourage naps! I mean for the whole family! Adults included! My youngest still naps, and he needs it. But I have successfully convinced my girls to take a nap on a lazy Saturday afternoon. Hubby or I will take this opportunity to also sneak one in. One of us will inevitably suffer and have to stay awake and prep food for post-nap, but at least one of us is rested. And if one of us is rested. The kids are rested post-nap, the probability of meltdowns and emotional overloads are significantly reduced.
Do not stress out
The workweek is stressful enough, and so is adulting. There is no need to help your gray hair multiply. Do not stress out about the little things, and try to not stress out about the large items. The weekend should be an enjoyable time, and if you are stressed out the whole weekend, you will not have a good time.
This is the most important one and often forgotten, but have fun! I know parenting is hard! I have 3 little ones, I know! But, have fun and enjoy yourself! Live in the moment and be free and happy! Laugh and play with your kids. Enjoy the weekend!
I have been a parent for several years now, and I am always learning new things about successfully parenting. Things are always changing in life, so I am constantly adapting my methods. The above list currently works to win the weekend as a parent, but I am sure it will change again shortly. Just some final thoughts to keep you winning:
- Every family is different, and every family has its own needs and wants. Do not compare your wins and failures to that of other families. They are not you and your family. They have their own challenges that you do not know about, so do not compare yourself to them.
- I am not going to claim that my suggestions are the be-all-and-end-all. But they work for my family. The kids are happy, and so are the parents. And at the end of the weekend, no one wants to be more exhausted than they were on a Friday after a long work week.
- Being a parent is a constant learning experience because the minute you figure out how to manage your kids, they grow up a bit and change the rules on you. Take the little wins and celebrate them.
- Keep learning from your kids and adapting so you can keep winning.
- It gets easier. I promise. But I am not going to lie – there will also be hard times. However, overall, it does get easier.
- Kids grow up fast! Before you know it, your kids will be adults! Enjoy the time with them, enjoy the weekends and the ups and downs. These little creatures that you created are constantly growing and changing. Do not blink too long, as you will miss the great moments.
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