Balancing Work and Family Responsibilities - Mothering Forums

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Old 09-28-2011, 03:39 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Those of you who are either working or in school, how do you cope with your parental responsibilities? What gets done and gets left undone?

I am a university student, mother of three and I often struggle with finding enough time. I hadn't given this much thought until I recently read Heroes of Tohoku Earthquake by Adela Valerian. In this story the family is stuck alone together. It made me wonder how close me and my own children are. What would they like to play on a rainy day....

 

Any thoughts?

 

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Old 09-30-2011, 08:12 AM
 
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I think this is a question all working parents struggle with.  For me, most of the housework doesn't get done until it gets real bad I just can't take it anymore or someone important's coming over!  Then I go into a cleaning frenzy.  I try to leave early for work and get home early.  I ask the nanny to get the kids dinner at about 4, so when I get home at about 5 we just play legos and babies and kitchen and trains and whatever.  Then dad comes home and the kids have some fruit or nuts or some other snack while dh and I eat a simple dinner.  So, I guess "family dinner" goes by the wayside in our family. 

 

I was a stay at home mom until July.  We did basically the same stuff.  We also did a lot of long walks/ bike rides and we played at the park alot and went to the library alot and we'd watch trains at the train depot and sometimes go for a ride on them.  Also, I'd sign us all up for story time at the library and stuff like that.  What do you do with the kids on the rainy weekends?  It'd be just like that. 


Married to one of the last good guys left Jim
Mom to AJ 4/07 and Genevieve 5/09

And then: I'm really, really tired of making angels.

But wait, could it really be true?


The whole story at: www.xerxella.blogspot.com
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Old 09-30-2011, 07:57 PM
 
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Left out: Housework, fancy cooking, time for me to just veg, yardwork, non-essential work stuff that would otherwise be fun or good for my career, watching the news, etc.

The things I love about my job: thinking, connecting with grownups, doing things that matter to people who need help, having a place I belong outside of the house.

The priceless things I do get as a mom: giggles, homework, hugs, fighting about eating vegetables, snuggles, insisting that thank-you notes are written, sloppy kisses, nagging about brushing teeth, holding small hands, tripping over small shoes or toys left whereever, "Mommy, I love you."  

Balancing is hard.  I do neither part of my life perfectly.  But I manage, and I know that in the end this is the right decision for me and my kiddos (the only decision right now, as a single mom, but one that I made for nine years when I was still with my ex)...


Mom to two terrific kiddos, affirming every day that the Universe is unfolding as it should and all is well...

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Old 09-30-2011, 08:25 PM
 
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I don't touch a thing in the house really.  Ok I do but it's dishes, laundry and a clean bathroom.  That's all I care about.  I don't make the beds and everything that doesn't include the kids gets limited attention.  I try to do what I need to do with them above everything else and include them in everything.  The other day I came home to a super clean house.  DH asked them to help him clean so that mommy can just relax with them.  DD2 who is 6 cleaned the whole bathroom herself... to include the toilet.  Apparently they like me that much!  Otherwise I'd drag them around with me and they'd tell me their day while I cleaned the bathroom quickly.  I actually felt like crying.  Made me feel pretty good that they wanted my full attention enough to do that. 

 

I cook easy meals too.  And my down time is gardening.  Something I can do that while they run around and play.  Usually they find something to do or sit on a mat while I dig away and talk to me.  I try, I do what I can and I just hope they know that I'm giving all I have.  I look back and realize my mom did less outside the house and gave me less of her.  I don't want them to think for once I didn't put them first.  Though I do have those pull my hair out crazy moments, I know it will pass.

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Old 10-03-2011, 11:58 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Imakcerka View Post

I don't touch a thing in the house really.  Ok I do but it's dishes, laundry and a clean bathroom.  That's all I care about.  I don't make the beds and everything that doesn't include the kids gets limited attention.  I try to do what I need to do with them above everything else and include them in everything.  The other day I came home to a super clean house.  DH asked them to help him clean so that mommy can just relax with them.  DD2 who is 6 cleaned the whole bathroom herself... to include the toilet.  Apparently they like me that much! ; Otherwise I'd drag them around with me and they'd tell me their day while I cleaned the bathroom quickly.  I actually felt like crying.  Made me feel pretty good that they wanted my full attention enough to do that. 

 

I cook easy meals too.  And my down time is gardening.  Something I can do that while they run around and play.  Usually they find something to do or sit on a mat while I dig away and talk to me.  I try, I do what I can and I just hope they know that I'm giving all I have.  I look back and realize my mom did less outside the house and gave me less of her.  I don't want them to think for once I didn't put them first.  Though I do have those pull my hair out crazy moments, I know it will pass.



The same thing happened to me this week-end. I'd spent the last two years working the same hours as the kid's school (as a sub TA)or from home (I have a small hand-made toy business and do some free-lance knitwear design). I took this seasonal job over the summer as the recreation person for the local nature resort and it was OK until the other person working left in September and I got guilted into finishing the season (it's done October 16, I'm counting the days!) on a schedule that involves the entire weekend and Thanksgiving (Canadian Thanksgiving is next Monday). So I got home 8pm on Saturday night and the floors were scrubbed and the kids actually cooked the supper meal (well, it was easy, they did canned soup and tuna sandwiches), and I just about bawled!

I have been spending my home time just on cleaning basics, nothing big unless I'm alone in the house during school (like today). I make time to talk to DH, play cards with the kids, help with homework questions,read books together, pick berries (also with the kids, right now it's cranberries), and on sunny days we do wood and clean the barns together.

Busy keeping up with three children and an awful lot of chickens!

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