In just 45 minutes, both my kids will officially be on Christmas vacation. Which gives me about 35 minutes to either write this post, or wrap presents maniacally until I have to leave to pick them up. Clearly, I’m going with the former.
As we do in the days leading up to every major school break, I sat down with the kids a few days ago to write down what they would most like to do on this break. I love this little ritual; from a parenting perspective, it helps me to see where the kids are, a way to check in a see what it is that is really interesting to them right now. From a purely practical perspective, it helps me to plan our time off together.
This time around, the list is shockingly short and not one but two of the entries on the list of 6 involved eating at restaurants.
I tried to push them for more; I tried suggesting other activities that we could add to the list, but after a few minutes, they were both up from the table and back to doing whatever it was they were doing before I interrupted them.
At first I was frustrated. I had just given my kids carte blanche to plan whatever they wanted for their vacation. And the best they could come up with was eat out twice and open presents. And then I stayed frustrated for quite a while. I like Lists! And Plans! and Schedules!
And then it hit me like a ton of bricks. Maybe the kids were, in their own quiet way, asking for a LACK of Lists! and Plans! and Schedules! over the next 2 weeks. Maybe they just want some time to just be.
Maybe I do too.
On Tuesday I wrote about how my intention for the coming year is to find joy. Since then, I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about how exactly I’m going to go about that task. Or put differently, about what it is exactly that brings me joy, a train of thought which was perhaps sparked by this quote I found . . .
Maybe, as the kids and I spend long mornings and even longer afternoons together in the house just being, I’ll be able to come up with a few ideas of just how I’ll set out to achieve my goal for the year or what path I should take that will bring me (and those around me) the most JOY!
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