Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Calendar Chaos... aka... Keeping up with my Kids

photo credit: Moleskine的台历啊,兄弟们!!! via photopin (license)
It’s that time of year again. The time of year I dread. The moment when I keep sliding that one daunting task on my to-do list further and further down – until there is no where else for it to go. The time has come... it is now or never. It is time to ... update my calendar (cue shrieking).

So what’s the big deal? Why all the dramatics?

I keep two calendars – one is hanging on the wall in the kitchen, and the other is my digital Google Calendar that syncs with my phone (sometimes). These two calendars must match at all times or it gets ugly.

Every August, I sit down with other calendars that I have collected during the summer. There is the soccer calendar, the school calendar, the football calendar, the dance calendar, the religious school calendar and the doctor/dentist appointment cards that I have been collecting.

My youngest has soccer every Sunday plus practices. In the spring he will do t-ball. My daughter takes seven dance classes each week (yes – you read that correctly.) She has at least one class everyday except Sunday and all at different times – plus competitions on the weekends in the winter and spring. My oldest plays football. He has practice every afternoon plus games every week. When that ends, he plays basketball (did I mention my 13 year old is 6’3”?) This year he announced he also wants to do lacrosse and golf. He also participates in the school snowboard club, and last year he managed to throw an art class in the mix. On top of that they each have religious school once or twice a week (depending on the child).

photo credit: Sports equipment bucket at school via photopin (license)

I also have to make sure I have all of the school information on the calendar – early dismissals, teacher in-service days, back to school nights, holidays, ... you know the drill.

Adding each item into two calendars takes me hours. Seriously – this is no exaggeration! I am starting to feel anxiety just thinking about it all!

For those who think I may have my kids over-scheduled, I don’t necessarily disagree. But these are activities they have asked for (well maybe not the school/religious school part – but they are non-negotiable) and believe it or not they do still have a lot of down time. The deal I made with them is this: School comes first. If you are having trouble keeping up, the activities go away. In a way, the activities act as a motivator, and I don’t have to worry about what they are up to after school. So far, it's worked and all activities have stayed in place. Which is good, because then I'd have to re-do the calendar.


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