One full week of summer vacation down, please nobody tell me how many there are still to go.
My big job — the corporate freelance-y consultantish one that I mentioned every now and then, a job I really, really loved — was paused abruptly in early March, and ever since I've been in a sort of limbo with it. They want me back, they keep promising to give me hours again, but probably not until next month. And "next month" has since gone from meaning "early April" to "mid-May" to "June-ish" to "let's talk in July." I've done a bunch of short-term projects in that time, and have several excellent leads on other long-term work, but right now I guess I'm still technically in between gigs and I'm not really a fan.
(None of this work is Amalah-related, by the way, just to try to wave off the inevitable GET A REAL JOB, YOU DUMB BLOOGER comments. I do freelance marketing/copywriting/editing/corporate-blog-creating/stuffs. All very boring and "real" and I rarely ever write about poop. I work pretty steadily and it's been the best fit for our family's crazy schedule, vs. a 9-5 office job, but it can definitely be ebb/flow and feast/famine. It's been super great and I'm not complaining, except for all the complaining I'm about to do, sorry.)
I am mostly not a fan of the current arrangement because — well, besides the whole money thing — it means I have all three children at home with me, with no summer camps or babysitting. I didn't want to commit to paying for any of that until I had some significant work lined up, foolishing believing that I could get the small amount of work I DO have done in a normal about of time, while also not completely sucking at being a good mom who does fun things and remembers to feed her children.
The plan was that I'd work half days. The kids would amuse themselves/each other for a few hours and by lunch time I'd call it a day and focus on them the rest of the afternoon. Take them to the pool or playground or just run errands together, or set up the sprinkler outside while I cleaned the house and started dinner and all that Responsible Adult Bullshit. I'm fairly confident I'll be swamped by the time school starts, so I dreamily dreamed that having one part-time summer would be a good thing, something I'd look back fondly on, when I got to be more SAHM than WAHM for a little while, or WOHM, if that's what ends up happening again. (GET A REAL JOB, BLOBBER.)
Okay, it's only been a week, but I can pretty safely declare that I am a world-class failure, the absolute worst, all is lost and we're basically doomed forever.
I tragically underestimated how much longer it would take me to do anything — even just answering emails, some basic proofreading, pounding out five measly semi-amusing paragraphs here and there — with the kids around and constantly interrupting me. I had to re-write my resume from scratch last week (whoops) and it took me four days. FOUR DAYS! I'm trying to work on a book idea and so far it's basically seven pages and fourteen hundred Post-It notes.
And the FIGHTING. Oh my God, the fighting. It's endless. It's irritating. And so, so stupid, I can't even take any of the shrieking INJUSTICE IS HAPPENING TO MEEEEEE! seriously.
(99% of the time the solution to the problem is for one child to go play somewere, ANYWHERE else in the house. Go play in your room! Or the playroom! Or outside! Or, I don't know, just move seven feet to your left and you're technically in the dining room and your brother will no longer be distracting you or breathing your air. But no. Every day, after finishing World War VII over elbow space at the breakfast table, they all camp out and declare zone defense in the living room, fighting over custody of specific couch cushions and floor space, and even the once-peaceful Lego bag has become a non-stop source of HE'S USING A PIECE I WANTED AND WE ONLY HAVE SEVERAL HUNDRED SIMILAR OPTIONS BUT THAT PIECE WAS SPECIAL BECAUSE I JUST NOW DECLARED IT TO BE THE SPECIAL PIECE OF FIRE POWER SPECIALNESS MOOOOOOOMMMMMMM.)
(Also, if someone could tell me where my children keep finding Play-Doh, I'd appreciate it. I've thrown out a half-dozen cans of old Play-Doh in the past week, and yet every time I come downstairs there's another fine coating of dried-out Play-Doh bits all over the place. I vaccuum it up, it reappears while I'm in the bathroom. Someone has a secret expired Play-Doh hoard-stash somewhere and as God is my witness, I am going to find it and I am going to set it on fire.)
So I'm thinking maybe it will help if I swap the day around? Get up and do the kid-focused stuff in the morning, then tire everybody out and hopefully Ike will take the occasional nap (because ho ho, guess what he's decided to stop doing since turning three) and maybe Noah and Ezra won't ramp up the stir crazy level as much when I need to get work done? I don't know. I tend to not be able to settle down and enjoy them until I've knocked out deadlines and gotten on top of email first thing in the day, and worry I'd spend the whole morning glued to my phone and fixating on my to-do list.
You'd think I'd be able to figure this stuff out by now, since I've been juggling various numbers of kids and various hours of work from home for close to EIGHT YEARS, but alas I
That sentence was just interrupted by Noah, informing me that Ike had made a "big mess" with "food things." Indeed, he'd opened a spice container of yellow mustard seeds and dumped the contents all over the floor. Because why not! That looks fun. At least it wasn't Play-Doh? Progress?
I hereby declare this summer to be the Summer of the Vaccuum Cleaner. It's getting mad play, y'all.
Anyway, it's lunchtime and I'm going to stick with my promise to step away from the computer and go...I don't know. Invent a game called Mom Sprays Children With Garden Hose, or Hey Everybody Let's Learn To Clean Bathrooms, or Why Don't We Go Ring Doorbells Until We Find Someone Else Who Doesn't Have Summer Camp This Week.