Begin as you mean to go on

No, don’t. Who could ever live up to that? The pressure’s killing me already.

“Begin as you would like to go on” would be more accurate. Begin well even if you know you’ll never keep it up in a million years. Begin as if someone was watching. Begin as if you’re blogging it for your very beautiful lifestyle and homeschooling blog that makes people want your life and think your children are always perfect because you’re doing it right.

Begin by going all out, and some little part of it might stick and become a bit of every day.

This brings me to summer vacation, which is breathing down my neck. In fact, it’s practically here. It is here, I’m just hanging onto denial with my fingertips. Mabel finished last week; Dash has two more days.

(I can’t believe he still has spelling homework for a spelling test on the last day of school. When they added those extra four days to make up for all the snow cancellations earlier in the year, they decided to really get their money’s-worth out of them.)

I have so many half-baked plans for the summer. On Monday morning we’re going to sit down and have A Meeting. We’re going to Decide “Together” what we will do this summer. Mabel will wander off and start drawing a picture after about three minutes, but Dash will like it, and I will have some sort of buy-in from the kids on every rule I lay down thereafter. I have notions, like…

– While I work out (I’m doing the 30-day shred again, day 6 today, woot) every morning Dash will do his reading. Mabel will… get in the way, probably, and cause this plan to be amended, but I’m going to try to get them to go for it.

– We will specify exactly which two hours, and no more than two hours, daily will be accorded to tv, and then we’ll stick to it yes we will. If this involves some time when they get to watch My Little Pony or CyberChase on my computer, I will put up with it, because that way I have to clean up the kitchen.

– We will allot some time every day to housework, which the children will partake in, my control-freakish tendencies bedamned. (Not that I want to do the housework myself, but I get all twitchy when they start trying to clean things because it never works the way I want it to.)

– We will write a list of things “we” want to do, or parks we haven’t visited, museums, whatever. Dash will put “Make a lemonade stand” on this list, and I will try very hard not to shoot him down with my killjoy attitude to him and lemonade, which always involves me buying a lot of lemons and doing all the work. (I think he actually can do the work himself by now. But see above re. control freak.) (See this whole post, I suppose. Shush.)

– We will write a schedule (what? what sort of crazy woman am I?) wherein all the things we are going to do get their own time of day, and we will put meals and snacks in this schedule so that we leave the allotted 3 hours between each, just as the doctor ordered. Or we’ll work up to the 3-hour gap, because so far we haven’t been doing very well with that. Going cold turkey straight from a grazing lifestyle to a rigidly French-children one has not been a good or practicable thing this week. There has been much whining and asking and yelling and being turned down and finally helping of oneself to unauthorized snacks.

– We will teach ourselves Italian from the Internet. That’s a great plan, that is. I have great faith in that one working out well.

And then we’ll just go to the pool every damn day we can and maybe that will do the trick.

Whatever the trick is. The staying-sane-over-the-summer trick. That one.

2 thoughts on “Begin as you mean to go on

  1. Karen

    ok, here’s the plan elsewhere on the court:

    1. Children will play outside every day, for at least an an hour, because it is TOO LOUD in the house otherwise.
    2. One child will not spend all day reading, the other will learn to read in his second language.
    3. We will finally organize that yard sale/lemonade stand we keep talking about (hmmm, a theme?)
    4. We will try new vegatable recipes, with children cooking, and we will eat some of them
    5. At the end of the day, we will give up and go to the pool

    That’s what she said, and I’m sticking to it…..


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