You may have noticed that there was no regular blog post last week. Well, since you are also a busy mom, you know that sometimes life gets crazy and something has to give!
First off, my home has been dealing with on and off sickness all around. Nothing crazy severe to keep us from going about our normal routines of work, school, or daycare, but it’s enough to keep Emma from sleeping well at night. And when Emma doesn’t sleep well, no one sleeps well (except Matthew who seems to be able to sleep through anything!). After 6 weeks or so of this, my husband and I are really starting to drag. We are going to sleep earlier, and getting less done once the kids are in bed. But as with everything related to kids, I know this will be a phase and things will eventually get better!
Secondly, we have been rapidly approaching Matthew’s 4th birthday, and this was the first time that I actually planned a celebration for him. All his prior birthdays were small, intimate, family gatherings. A celebration for sure, but nothing spectacular, especially since he was too young to really care. But we have been invited to a fair number of birthday parties recently – enough so that Matthew is well aware of how much fun they are, and he finally got around to asking for his own.
So I decided to honor his request, and we set up a party for the weekend before his birthday.
To be honest, the party was for him, but it was also mostly for my husband and I. Matthew is forming friendships with the kids at his new school, but he’s only known them since the fall, so instead of doing the blanket classroom invite, I kept the guest list to our family (including all the extended relatives who lived near enough to attend), and our adult friends (those with and without young kids Matthew’s age).
This was perfect (for this year at least). There were no hurt feelings on Matthew’s part for friends who could or could not be there. All the littles got to run around at the play place together and burn off the sugar-infused cake. And Rob and I got to catch up and chat with some of our adult friends who we haven’t seen in a while (since it can be hard to keep those relationships alive once kids come and dictate all your free time).
2 hours of adult interaction was great – even if we were surrounded by bouncing and yelling kiddos!
I’m sure that next year and moving forward, Matthew’s birthdays will be more about his friends and who he wants to invite, but since I am all about maximizing what little time I have, I figured I’d take advantage of his party this year. At 4 years of age he was more concerned about just having a party, much less who and what it would involve. I didn’t go all out with a fancy cake or decorations. I got a simple sheet cake and bulk snacks from Sam’s Club. I didn’t even have a sign or banner saying “Happy Birthday!”. The rental at his favorite play place and being the center of attention was sufficient enough.
He had a great time!
And I had a great time “being an adult” for a few hours as well!
As much as I love being a mom, I also love and crave my adult time when I don’t have to constantly think about the responsibilities of taking care of my two small children. There were so many other family members and extra hands around that I was able to unplug from mom life for a while, even in the middle of a birthday party. And having those moments of decompression are essential to my sanity – and can be for yours as well. So be sure to work those into your life, even if you have to “multi-task” it in somewhere. You’ll be much happier for it – and a much better mom – in the end!
All the best,