Thursday, December 9, 2010
It’s a well-established fact about me….. If there’s a stairwell and an escalator right there next it, I can guarantee you that 100% of the time…I’m taking the escalator.
I thought about this, this morning as I was making my usual commute into my office via the NJ-PA train line I take every day. As I approached the part of the station where there is an escalator next to a stairwell, I watched a few of my fellow commuters running up the steps and I thought to myself (as I boarded my moving staircase to the sky) “No way….I'm taking this escalator because it’s the littlest bit of help I’m going to get during my rush into the office this morning. Exercise be damned!"
Once I was seated on my train, I thought about it again (in writing this…I’m beginning to think that I think about escalators WAY too much) …”Take the escalator…take the help”. Like a weird chant heard at a political convention…. "Take the escalator….take the help”.
In this day in age, everyone is in a hurry…overwhelmed with responsibility….worried about the finances (personal and global)….concerned about our communities and the list goes on, and on, and on and then on some more.
Sometimes I think that when I spend so much of my time focusing on the “big problems”, most of which I have no control over, I forget that I do have some control over the smaller issues I face on a day to day basis.
I think that very often, in an effort to keep myself running on the treadmill that is my life, I’m afraid to accept an offer of help (someone offering to pick up one of my kids for a playdate or someone offering to help with one of my Room-Mother projects, or someone offering to help me with a situation at work etc.) for fear that it will somehow catapult me off the treadmill only to take me that much longer to get back on and get balanced again.
Sidebar....I once did get "catapulted" off of an actual treadmill when I set the speed too high in an effort to keep up with the MUCH more in-shape people running next to me at the gym. It wasn't pretty. I haven't shown my face in that gym ever since.
I have no problem offering my help to someone in need, and yet I think twice before accepting the help myself. This is RIDICULOUS....and I need to realize that right now.
It does “take a village”…and sometimes, the village finds you before you find it, often in the form of someone extending an offer of assistance. I’m not suggesting that everyone should rely on the help of others to accomplish their daily routine (job, role etc.). I’m simply suggesting that accepting a little bit of help when it’s offered, or asking for a little bit of help when it’s needed, isn’t going to somehow impair our success at being a parent, employee, spouse etc. In fact, it’s much more likely to make us better.
The Working Mom (aka Heidi)
Tuesday, November 30, 2010
In my ongoing quest to be more efficient and less crazed in the morning, I borrowed a tip from one of my Daughter's teachers. In her class, everyone has a "job". There's the "line leader" and there's also the "end of the line leader". There's the child who gets to supervise cleanup after lunch and the child in charge of pushing in the chairs at the tables. Rumor has it that the cleanup kid is mighty quick to dispose of your uneatens, so if you want those Cheez-Its than you'd better get to it.
My Daughter's favorite job is the "end of the line leader" and when I asked her why, she told me...because the end of the line leader gets to turn off the lights before the class leaves the room. To a 3 year-old, flipping that light switch is a VERY big deal.
So back to thinking about being less crazed in the morning......."Ahaa" I thought. Jobs....right.
There are so many little things that make leaving the house in the morning something akin to scaling
Mt. Everest. In an attempt to apply my "jobs" idea to the morning hustle, I decided to itemize all of the little time-wasters and distribute them to my children as "jobs".
We have the "leash getter" i.e. the one who gets the leash for our dog's morning trip outside (That person is coincidentally, the "leash putter awayer" as well) There's also the "Bookbag filler" i.e. the one who puts the lunch boxes in each bookbag and zips them up. NOTE: I always make sure to check the Bookbag Filler's work because we did have an instance where a lunch was mistakenly NOT put into the bookbag, and I came home to a VERY pouty kid because they were subjected to the school lunch.
In total, we have about 6 jobs distributed amongst the two children. So far, they're pretty good about taking care of their responsibilites. As a bonus, every once in a while a day will pass when they don't pester me for a "prize" for doing their jobs.
So far we've seen two benefits....I'm getting out a few minutes earlier (aka on-time) and they're feeling more a part of the routine.
Now...if only I could get them to walk the dog, do the grocery shopping, wash and fold laundry, pay the bills, etc. etc. etc.
- The WM (aka Heidi)
Wednesday, November 3, 2010
These recurring blog posts are going to be related to the trials and tribulations often experienced by working parents (not just the Moms). I hope to offer tips and tales and create an overall "experience share". I encourage your feedback, questions and by all means....SOLUTIONS, if you can offer any suggestions to the dilemmas we'll tackle.
Today's subject....random non-school/daycare days. By random, I'm referring to those days not designated and/or noted on the calendar as holidays. While they are often scheduled and I am alerted to these at the beginning of the school year, they still seem to sneak up on me.
In NJ, there is a week in November that's cut short due to the annual Teachers Conference that's held in Atlantic City. As a kid, I remember this being a very cool, pre-Thanksgiving vacation. As a Parent, it really throws a wrench into the schedule considering I'm forced to juggle the work schedule while trying to find "fill in" daycare.
One smart solution I've found and I wanted to share are daycare centers that offer "drop-in daycare". Very often these centers require very little notice for a reservation for your child and they will charge you a per hour or per diem rate for the care. Until recently, these centers were tough to find however in the past couple of years, I've seen more and more of them springing up around the area.
Please let me know what suggestions you may be able to offer regarding "random non-school/daycare days"....I'm happy to pass them along.
--The WM (aka Heidi)
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
Wednesday, September 8, 2010
Wednesday, August 18, 2010
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