So, I have been a full time nanny/pre-school teacher/grandmother for three entire weeks now. I have definitely entered into a new phase of life! Here are some of my observations:
My body is screaming - "What do you think you are doing???" I am definitely getting a workout like I never did at my desk job. While I am sore and knocking back Advil more than ever - I am still glad. I needed the exercise and I figure it's saving me the cost of a gym membership.
I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE teaching pre-school. It is a career I never imagined doing - but I seriously am wondering if I missed my calling. I love the creativity involved, I love when my sweet little 3 year olds understand a concept, and I even love the preparation involved. It is just pure fun to me.
However, it is infinitely difficult to teach two 3-year olds while I have two 1-year olds underfoot. If anyone has any suggestions - PLEASE share them!
ROUTINE and STRUCTURE are the only way to survive this daycare task I have undertaken. I made a chart of our daily schedule, posted it on the fridge, and we stick to it like glue. The kids love it and are constantly running to the schedule to see what is expected of them next. I can't take credit for thinking this up - it's just something I inwardly knew would have to be. We do not vary from the routine one little bit - except for Fridays. On Fridays, Poppa comes to town and we do fun things with him.
Part of our schedule is a two hour nap/rest time in the afternoons right after lunch. I have been amazed how much knitting and reading time it affords me. I have never had a job that gives me this much personal time.
It's amazing how many of the habits and skills I used as a young mother have come back to me - it's like riding a bike I guess - you never forget. Things like put things away the minute you are done using them, and write things down when you think of them just come natural in a house full of children. Unfortunately, over at the empty nest it seems I have forgotten these valuable tricks as things don't get put away quite like they used to ;(
Amazon Prime membership is a MUST. I have never used this before but since I got a Kindle Fire for Christmas (best gift ever!) I had a free month trial membership. It didn't take me long to pay for the annual membership. I don't have time to go shopping anymore (and I don't really enjoy shopping anyway). Being able to purchase what I need, with free shipping, and receiving my purchase in TWO days is invaluable to me! Just this week I bought some pre-school supplies, a new pair of pajama pants for my husband, and a season two DVD of Downtun Abbey.
Speaking of Downtun Abbey , have you watched it yet? Oh. My. Goodness. It is so incredibly good - I just love it. It's a Masterpiece Theatre series from PBS. It is a period drama set in England in the early 1900's and it is riveting. If you haven't seen it, stop right now, go to Netflix and start! You will love it! It's another thing I treat myself to during nap/rest time.
Since three of my little charges are little boys, and I only raised girls, I wanted to learn about boys. I downloaded Bringing Up Boys by my beloved Dr. James Dobson and have started reading it. It is so obvious that boys are different from girls and I want to do the best job I can molding and shaping them to be little men. I have already learned so much!
I am afraid that I will not be good enough for this incredible task I have been gifted with. I look at these little lives, these little people that I love so deeply I can hardly stand it, and I worry that I will fail them. I want so much to do this right. I want to give them a legacy of faith and love and wonderful memories and I worry that I will not do it to the level it should be done. It has become the number one prayer priority of my life.
I have never felt more tired. I have never felt more alive. I have never felt so blessed.