Wednesday, May 26, 2010

summertime. it's here.



Originally uploaded by Laura Hartrich
S goes to school for an hour this morning, and that's it! He's done with first grade!

I'm looking forward to summer and the change of pace that it brings. I think we're going to have a good one. I'm grateful for a break from homework and packing lunches.
As ever, I have some goals for myself during these months. I want to really focus on the boys and our time together, putting them first. That doesn't mean I can't have any time for myself, but if I find myself frequently swatting the boys away while I try to read or write one more thing on the computer, I'll need to step back and reassess my priorities. I don't just want to be here with them, I want to be present, and that takes some effort on my part.
I don't have any strict policy in place, but I want to keep the tv watching to a minimum. The less the better, in my opinion.
I want to spend a lot of time outside, at the public pool and at my in-laws' new pool, and at parks and playgrounds when it's not too hot.
I have a lot of embroidery I want to get done (hello, wedding gifts!).

There are a few things I wanted S to work on over the summer, and I decided a sticker chart would be a good incentive tool. To keep things fair, T and I have charts too.
S can earn a star for practicing math flashcards, completing a handwriting practice sheet, practicing on his bike (we're trying to get rid of training wheels), practicing tying his shoes, and picking 10 thing up off the floor. He'll also sign up for the library reading program, and earn prizes by reading books.
T's were a little harder to come up with. He can earn a star for reading a book with mommy, practicing scissor skills, riding his bike, writing his name, and picking up 10 things.
The star stickers become a currency. The boys can cash them in for different rewards, and they'll have to really save up to get some bigger prizes. Five stars for a game of tag with mom, 10 for an hour of video games, 30 for a trip to the DQ, 60 for a new Bakugan toy, and 100 for a new Lego set.
I have a chart too. Stickers for garden weeding, laundry load completion, exercise, and tracking my food intake. For seventy-five stars I can buy a new pair of earrings.
I didn't want to make our goals unattainable, but I also didn't want our system to cost too much money.

Summer is a balancing act, just like the rest of the year. Sometimes we'll be too busy. Sometimes we'll be too bored. Sometimes I'll want to get far, far away from my dear children. But the goal is to find the sweet spot right in the middle of all these possibilities. Wish me luck!

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