Well, folks, it's Friday night and we're all doing fine. Matt and I are happily surprised, but we've made it through this first week back and I'm not even totally exhausted.
We could feel the difference made by all of my organizing, for sure. But a few other things also helped. For one, Baxter's teacher has organizational skillz herself. She made up a chart for the fridge with every bit of important information on it that I could think of (I made one myself last year)...her phone numbers (she gave us her cell number!), email, school hours, and even the schedule for their specials (gym, music, Spanish, art, etc.). This is huge! For another thing, our new nanny has been fabulous so far! Lyle takes off with her to the playroom the minute she arrives and is happy all day, just as he was with our previous sitter. She also does an amazing job around the house, so when we get home from work the laundry's been put through, dishes cleaned up, and toys put away.
Can you hear my sigh of relief from there?
Despite the blip during the week of my new gym closing down (grrr...), I was able to find another great gym the very next day, which is also close to our house (3 minutes), is a little cheaper, and even has a pool that the kids can come to anytime for free! So in the end, I think I am actually going to be happier with this one.
Tonight we reinstated a family tradition that we started last fall but let slip at some point last year...Friday Night French Toast! The kids love this! Now that Lyle's old enough, we added a Game Night to the agenda, so after our delicious candlelit French Toast dinner (complete with the "Secret Ingredients" that we'll never reveal!), the boys took a quick bath and then we reconvened to play Candyland Bingo, a very simple game that Baxter still enjoys and Lyle is capable of playing. It was a lot of fun.
I know I made a lot of fun of myself for all the organizing I did before school and work started back up, and yes, I still think it's funny. However, it has had the desired effect this week; that is, I am not so inundated with details from five different "to do" lists and 3 different calendars across the house that I can't relax and have fun with my family and on my own.
Matt and I have come to realize that last fall, everything was new. Brand new. Confusingly new. We were unsettled in every way last September. So when work and school added lots of due dates, paperwork, and details, it just felt out of control. Now, at least when things get complicated - as they already have this week, for sure - we aren't left feeling anxious or overwhelmed. And somehow, miraculously, the end of the week found us sitting around a table eating French Toast by candlelight and laughing over a board game.
I think, by all measures, this was as good a start to the new year as we could have asked for.