As I've told you before, I'm a scheduler. I really really love living by a schedule. And as a parent, that has been magnified.
We get up between 6:00 and 7:00.
We eat breakfast around 8:00.
Lunch is between 11:30 and noon.
Dinner is between 5:00 and 5:30.
Baths fall around 6:00.
The boys go to bed around 7:30.
I go to bed around 11:00.
Nearly every day.
And I live by those times completely. I love that my kids are predictable when they're on a schedule. I don't like the consequences of a late night (ie crabby children, most frequently followed by a crabby momma.).
But, at times, there have also been consequences to my schedule. My kids miss anything socially that happens outside of our house after 6:30 p.m. I have packed up and left with tired children from many an event. I was always looking forward to the day when their little bodies could handle a little more flexibility.
I have been feeling my life getting easier with every passing month. With Jack nearing his third birthday, I have far more independence. He can do a lot of things on his own, I have no one to carry, he understands more complex instructions. But this weekend, I realized: I have entered the next chapter.
Saturday night, we spent a night at a hotel, one night: a micro-vacation. The kids played amazingly well together - including Cole. They were cooperative and excited (oh, that excitement...watching them brought me right back to the emotions I felt as a child with something so exciting as a night in a hotel...with a pool!). They slept well. They are, truly, big kids.
I never want to wish the years away. Right now, I can fix all of their problems with either a kiss, a snuggle, or a band aid. My mom's wise words: The days are long, but the years are short. But I hope, with all my heart, that I appreciate each stage of their lives wholly. Whatever the challenges, I hope I learn from them - become a better parent. Whatever the joys, I hope I soak them up completely. Those boys, they give me so. much. JOY.
This, I believe, will be a very fun chapter!