I am that mom ….

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I am the mom that breathes a sigh of relief when school holidays come to an end.

Sure I love my kids, but I like the routine that exists where I drop them at school, and then have a few hours where I do not have to field awkward questions of: “So, where did you leave the kids?”

Last week I was in Willowbridge with Connor. Joyce was there so I stopped by for tea and a chit-chat.  I must confess a touch of panic did run through my when she asked: “So where are the kids?”

For a fleeting moment my brain panicked, as I had totally forgotten all ab0ut  them.  After a few moments I recalled I actually only had one with me, and then the panic passed as I sort of recalled where I had left him.

Moms all over the country are vexed they need to pack school lunches, polish shoes and drop kids off at school – me, not so much.

I did a lot more this school holidays with the kids than I usually would. I got to be almost intimate friends with a Tokai based baboon.  I visited Hermanus. I went to the odd wine farm. I did a spate of Art Jamming, and a few other activities thrown in.

But I for one am glad school holidays are over.

I like the sanity of school time.

I hope your Monday is happy, and you get the kids to school on time.

No, this post has no real purpose, but there you go.

New Year … over enthusiastic parent ….

Last year I felt I was permanently on the back foot with regards to the kids and keeping up with their school work and school commitments.

I realised both Connor and Georgia make for hopelessly poor postman.

I don’t get notes in time.  I never seem to know what is going on, and most of the time I miss the notice about an oral, homework or something they have to bring to school.

I will confess that I also did not go and search out the information.  I used the theory of “if the kids don’t give me the right stuff, then they are going to miss out, and then it is their fault and that is just the way it is…”

I made a realisation this year.  I need to be more involved with the kids.  The less involved I am, the less involved they will be at school.  The less involved they are at school, the more opportunities they will miss out on.  The more they miss out on, will mean the poorer their school career is going to be.

The habits we teach them now about going to school prepared and with the right material, is the habits they are going to have in high school when things are much harder and they need to be more prepared than they are now at primary school.

I felt I needed to step up in the parenting department and start taking a more active role.  I need to be a pushier parent, instead of the sloppy parent I have been up to now.

I really do not enjoy “socializing with other parents” or going to school things.

My social awkwardness escalates and I find it all very stressful, but I am acutely aware that Connor is in Grade 5 and before I blink he is going to be in Grade 7.  Then I am going to be trying to get him into High Schools, and then kicking myself for not motivating him earlier.

This year, I have attended parent/teacher meetings.  Made sure I ask the right questions, and if I don’t know then I send an email to the school for clarity. (I even attended one incorrect one, so found myself sitting in a meeting for parents of Grade 7 children … on the upside, I feel quite psyched for Grade 7 and know how to start preparing!)

The kids have schedules drawn up and have been signed up for groups that I usually miss, because they are full by the time I wake up and realise I need to sign up for them.

The kids are enrolled into sports and cultural activities.  I have the name of the teacher who organises the eisteddfod, and I am on that to prepare the kids.

If something is sent home, I action it that evening, and do not leave it over until the next day.

I have jotted all the things I need to do, and what the kids need to attend for the next term.

By being a bit more involved, I do not feel so panicky and out of control, like I felt for a large portion of last year.

We have decided to have two evenings a week as no television nights – the kids can do homework, extra reading, or something else that does not require a computer screen, DS screen or a television screen.

Part of the reason I wanted to be able to “work for myself” was so that I am more available for the kids at school this year.

I do not necessarily want to have them at home with me in the afternoon.  But I do want to ensure that if there is a thing I need to go to, or a practice I want to watch, or match they need to be taxi’d to, that I am available and can attend.

On my list of things to do this week, is to look at open days for High School!!

How the hell does this come around so quickly?  I am still amazed some days that Connor no longer needs me to breastfeed him, and wipe his bum …. I know it is a cliché, but seriously it is like a blink of an eye and then they stand before you asking to borrow the car keys, and you wonder where it all went!!

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