Thursday, October 25, 2012

The Times are a Changin'

September marked a milestone for me as a mother-- both of my girls were in school full time. I have been a stay-at-home mom since about half way through my pregnancy with Eloise, so 6 1/2 years! It has been awesome and I loved every minute of being a SAHM. Taking care of my family and our home is incredibly  fulfilling for me because it takes heaps of stress off of all of us. My husband has very little to worry about outside of his job (which is stressful enough!) and my kids know that I am always here for them and I can be a part of their lives in so many ways I never could if I worked. Being able to stay home and home school Iris last year, for example, was so important to Iris's development. 

But now that my girls are in school full time, things have changed.  It immediately proved a little, well, lonely and boring to be a SAHM in an empty house. On my girls' first day of school I interviewed for, and got, a very part time job. This past week marked my first full week of work, which is two four hour days. Not exactly a huge undertaking, but just enough to give me something to do outside of the home that also helps pave the way for me to get back in to the work force. Eight hours a week is kind of perfect. And the job is completely flexible with my girls' school schedule. If the girls are off, I am off. 

In addition to working I am also volunteering in each of the girls' classrooms. I do one morning a week in Iris's and one afternoon a week in Eloise's, so about a total of five hours a week. I am often helping out with other school projects in addition to those scheduled volunteer times. Last year I chaperoned a lot of kindergarten field trips, but so far this year the field trips are happening on the two days I work, so I haven't done any of those. I am not feeling too much guilt about chaperoning since I am in the classrooms every week already.

Right now it feels like a perfect balance. I am still 100% at home when my kids are home, I am able to work a little, volunteer a little and still have time to take care of myself and my home. Luckily I can fit in (almost) all of my running/exercise, my appointments and my errands while the girls are at school. 

I forsee this balance to hold for at least the next few years, at least until the girls are old enough that I am not needed as much in the classroom or for fieldtrips. Some day my girls will probably be embarassed to have me around school much, huh?

I'll try not to think about that right now, though. 

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