MFP’s new work schedule is upside down, meaning that he leaves for work just about the time that the first kid arrives home from school. 

While working unusual hours is great for fighting traffic, it isn’t so great for family life.  With the sun setting so early these days, I find it particularly challenging to fill up the dark hours of the day, from 4:30 to bedtime, with three active boys.  After what we’ve been through, I will never complain about work hours.  But a schedule readjustment on our part was imperative.  Immediately.

Of course, I could let the boys watch TV while I paint my toenails and catch up on gossip with my girlfriends, but we all know that would end in disaster.  Well, perhaps not, but I am too much of a contrarian to allow that anyway.


Yesterday I took them to a local nursing home to hand out stockings and sing Christmas carols to a very excited captive audience, along with their Sunday school classmates.

“But it might smell bad there.  Or I might catch germs…” they argued.

“Just think, one day I will be there.  You will eventually be there.  God willing, if we live that long.  Come on, it will be fine…” 

And it was fine.


I’ve also been trying to take them for a bit of exercise as well.  I tell them that they need to help train their racing dog, Charlie.  That dog can fly. 


Occasionally he lets them win, just to be nice.


I know this because the boys will be huffing and puffing and he will all, “when can we go again?”


Even though they are distance runners, they all ran sprints yesterday.  They think it is because I have some elaborate plan to prime them for their upcoming track seasons.

The truth is, I just need them to get out the maximum amount of energy in the shortest amount of time.

I may be a planner, but I am a mother first.

One who needs to stay sane between the hours of 5 and 9 p.m., when the unexercised the youth male has trouble with playing any game besides those that involve bouncing and sprinting in socks around the house while dodging sharp-edged pieces of furniture.

So far, so good.


  1. GPGrammy Pat says

    I know this will be difficult, but how very much they will learn about making a schedule and sticking to it, and especially doing nice things for senior citizens. You will do fine. I’m really happy about the visitation to the senior group. It’s a learning experience and can help them learn how many stories seniors have packed in their minds. They are usually very interesting to chat with. You just have to get them started. Please remind them that Grams lived in such a place and always loved it when young people came to sing.

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