When I first announced this week’s adventure, all I got were groans, except from me – I was excited! I’ve had a massive shelving unit (covered in a green tarp) sitting in my driveway for the last month or so. The goal has been to paint it and move it into the house to help organize (aka downsize and organize) the kids toys.
My challenge in getting it done was the weather. If you’ve ever visited Florida you know that it’s bound to rain at some point during the day so trying to schedule a day to paint it when it wasn’t supposed to rain and then move it (with help) into the house took longer than expected. I’m sure my neighbors are just as excited as I am to not have this massive green thing sitting in our driveway.
The cutest little redhead played her part too and helped by taking a really long nap that day so that the boys and I could get it done and moved into the house before she woke up. 🙂
I was really proud of myself because I typically plan everything out in my head about how the event will occur and if it veers off course I get upset. After my beach adventure, I learned that there isn’t anything I can do sometimes except roll with the punches.
So I rolled with the punches. My boys are a little ‘protected’…I admit it…probably the only time I’ll admit it. I have this guilt that I carry about leaving their dad that I don’t think I will ever shake. I work hard to find a balance between always wanting my house to be fun, a place of rest and comfort and growing men that have to do chores and be responsible for their decisions. It’s probably not that different from the typical mom guilt, I think I’m just hypersensitive about it.
To say that laborious work is something that they aren’t used to, is an understatement. I have chores and chore charts and chore punch cards and chore rewards but it’s hard to create habits when they aren’t here every day. So this ‘adventure’ didn’t sound like a ton of fun to my two boys…until they saw what their hard work produced.
When we started the project, we attempted to use a paint sprayer that didn’t end up working, so we pulled out the paint brushes and went to town. What ended up being the most fun part of this ‘adventure’ was spending one on one time with the boys. Their friends from the neighborhood came over and my boys took turns painting with me and playing street hockey with their friends so I was able to spend 15-20 minutes with each of them at a time. It’s amazing what that can do to a relationship. Sometimes we talked about hockey, sometimes about their friends, sometimes about how long it was taking to paint the shelving, sometimes about how they were feeling about my relationship with their step-dad, and sometimes we didn’t talk. I loved every second of it.
The boys worked hard, got tired and even got some paint on them. I got some quality time and a painted shelving unit. I’d say it was a win/win for all of us.
My dad helped me move it into the house and my #2 little man went to town organizing toys and cleaning out their room. He’s my mini-me when it comes to my need to organize things. My #1 man liked to be able to stand back and admire his hard work. As much as I am a perfectionist, I love the imperfections that I see in each shelf that they painted. And I think that this ‘upcycled’ shelving unit will be one of my most prized possessions.
How I did I do this?
#1: Get them excited! Excitement is contagious – if you are excited, they will get excited.
#2: Materials: I printed each of the flyers above and then slid them into sheet protectors and hung them on the front door. The day that I announced this was a day that they boys were coming home from their dads so they were quick to see it on the door.
#3: During our time together, I took pictures and then printed them onto a third page, in a collage form. Our next adventure will repeat this process – print out a description of the adventure, print out a collage of pictures from the adventure. Then add it to a notebook/folder so that when the year is over we can go through and relive some wonderful memories.
#lovemykids #lovemyboys #lovemyredhead #lovemyfamily