MamaBlogger365 – Here Comes Summer! by Jennifer Flaten

For most moms, your school-aged childrens’ summer vacation presents a unique set of challenges and opportunities. Here, Jennifer Flaten shares her ups and downs…

The summer vacation countdown has begun; I’ve got about 30 days until the kids are home all day-every day. It is totally cliché but I really don’t know where the time goes.

Truthfully, with vacation looming, I am having feelings of both dread and anticipation; anticipation because, I don’t know about other moms, but I am so ready for summer vacation.

Summer means no homework, yes, I look forward to no homework, probably more than the kids — can you tell that I was the kind of student who did her homework in class, right before she had to turn it in?

I didn’t like fractions the first time; I don’t like them any more now that I am helping the kids learn them.

The list of things I don’t have to do over vacation is pretty nice, no homework, no packing lunches (although it’s replaced by feeding them three times a day, every day), and no more waiting in the after-school pick up line.

Plus, the stuff I can do is great: swimming, playing outside (err, I work outside in the yard, the kids play), going for ice cream.

Just think, in just a few weeks, we won’t have to hurry every morning; unfortunately, it also means less actual work time for me.

Right now, I have my routine and I do a good job of sticking to it, and I pride myself on meeting deadlines.

With summer looming, I have to make a plan for my remaining projects and I have to stick to it.

This is different from the school year schedule, which offers a bit of flexibility. I build my schedule with enough wiggle room, that if I want to have an impromptu lunch with my mom, I can.

Summer doesn’t really offer that same freedom. I will either squeeze work in after the kids go to bed, which is hard, because after a fun day at the beach finding the energy to write is tough. Still, if I have a deadline that is what I have to do.

Or, I can also try to work a little bit during the day when the kids are otherwise engaged.

That one is the toughest of all. It seems every time the kids are playing nice and I try to sneak in some writing, the sound of the keyboard causes the kids to turn into pinching, poking “he hit me” monsters.

How do you plan for summer vacation?

Bio: Jennifer Flaten is a Wisconsin-based writer with three small children who understands the delicate balance between home and work. She knows having a healthy, happy family is a priority, and with that in mind, she has a special interest in health, family and technology. Her works have been published in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and at various online journals.

MamaBlogger365 needs you! Tell us how you’re re-framing motherhood and help the Museum of Motherhood secure a permanent home in 2011!

Photo credit School Bus by Peter Griffin

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