Sunday, October 3, 2010

No time

Last time I was working both of these jobs, I had spare time. K was in daycare every day and B took bedtime the nights he was home, so I had plenty of blocks of time to both work and do, well, anything else (like update my unbelievably neglected blog).

This time, all of my time is neatly spoken for. Alec is only in daycare three days a week, so I can't start working until after 8pm on Mondays and Wednesdays, which sets me up to need to sleep late Tuesdays and Thursdays, so I'm trying to recover from the night before when I could be working in the morning. Then B comes for lunch, I take him back to work so I can pick the kids up, and if I have a single errand to run, that's pretty much all the time left until I pick K up at three and Alec shortly after. Then dinner, homework, bedtime, and somewhere in there, I attempt to start work. Then I'm up super-late and the cycle starts all over again. Which isn't so bad until I have to be up in the morning on a Friday or Saturday for my other job.

I'm not sure how long I can keep this up. I took a mental health day yesterday and only worked one job. And it felt so good not to work all evening, it's making me seriously question if I want to start working again on Monday. Sigh. Between daycare and taxes, I'm barely adding anything to our monthly income, which just doesn't feel worth it. I think once 's raise finally comes through, I'm going to have to reevaluate the working situation.


We have survived two full weeks of kindergarten so far. K seems to like it and has almost always been happy when I pick her up at the end of the day. We had a lot of resistance the first week when I think it was starting to sink in that this was the new routine and she had to do it every day. But I don't think there was a day once last week that B had to leave her there crying, so that's improving. She seems to be making friends and is getting greeted by classmates as we arrive or leave.

Homework is... argh. It's not hard at all, and there are times it's fun and easy to get her involved with it. Her math assignments, for instance, which involve things like going through the house to find things with numbers on them and pouring water in and out of different containers to see what different volumes look like. Those have been easy to get through. There's just so much more of it though. I've given up on the alphabet flashcards because she doesn't need them, and I save the number flashcards for when she clearly has energy to spare after finishing everything else. The handwriting worksheets started out well but had definitely palled by the end of last week, and by Thursday night, I had to decide how much I intend to flog my five-year-old into finishing her kindergarten homework. Not that much, is what I decided. I have declared that after dinner, there will be no tv until homework is done, so if K wants to watch anything before bed, she has to finish her homework. But if she decides that she doesn't want to watch tv enough to slog her way through it all, I'm not going to try hard to get her to finish. I don't know what consequences there are for not finishing homework at this level, but she can experience them. I realized Thursday that a great deal of my problem is that I don't want to look bad to the teacher, and since her homework requires so much of my involvement, it's hard to detach myself from that. But it's really hers, so I need to give my inner teacher's pet a rest and let her sink or swim based on her initiative.

I'm not sure my opinion on giving kindergarteners homework at all is printable. Part of me sits and wonders why it is exactly that I decided not to homeschool if we're going to go through this volume of schoolwork every night. This is not at all developmentally appropriate, and it really shows in the fact that she's often just too tired to concentrate well. Can they really not accomplish learning letters, numbers and writing in a six-hour schoolday?


And as a break from the tired complaining, a brief update on the one member of our family with energy to spare. Some days, Alec is so high on life he has to lie down and flail his arms and legs out of sheer happiness. He adores Little Einsteins, and will dance to the music and wave his arms when they're increasing the tempo. Tonight, he came by to visit me while I was in the bathroom, and after a brief tour of the room to do important things like poke at the wastebasket and throw some toys in the bathtub, he turned and gave me a big small and a wave good-bye before he left. That boy is so delicious I could devour him whole. I love fifteen months.


1 comment:

  1. Hi there! I love your blog!! I love your honesty too! My children are still too young for school but I am already worried about school! My friend who has four children isn't impressed with her school or the amount of homework. Teachers don't seem very attentive and she is considering homeschooling.

    Anyhow, just wanted to say hi and that I really enjoy your blog ( :