I thrive on routine. And right now I have a routine.
The routine of chaos.
Every morning I wake up and wonder what day it is.
Because depending on the day, it depends on where I work and what I do.
And it is mentally exhausting.
Once I am moved and settled, I will be working full-time. Which is more hours than now. But at least it will be routine. And I thrive on routine.
There are two moments in my day where tradition reigns and I can be happy.
The morning routine is a bit hairy but it is still a routine.
The kids get up and dress themselves.
They get their breakfast shakes.
They play together or read some books.
I crawl out of bed (weary from another late night of studying) about 15 minutes before we have to leave for school.
I check their bookbags, sign homework, help tie shoes, wipe faces.
You get the idea.
I drive them up the road a few blocks to the school.
I used to say memory verses with them on the way to school. Last year we learned Ephesians 6.
I failed them. And I'm saddened by the lost minutes of time spent memorizing God's word.
We used to have a prayer. Where I would pray for each child that I was taking to school. For the teachers, prinicpals, superintendent, school board.
Again, I failed them.
And I miss it.
I realize how much we lost as a family from not doing this.
This summer? It will be put into our routine. Somewhere.
One thing that hasn't changed at school drop off is how my kids say good-bye.
They get out of the car blowing me kisses and hugs.
What is hilarious is when Riley stands at attention and salutes me. Seriously. He has done this for over 2 years now.
He read a book in kindergarten where the word 'salute' was mentioned. He asked me what it meant and I told him. Ever since he has insisted on saluting me goodbye in the mornings.
I shudder to think what the teachers think of my parenting skills. I'm sure it looks like I am army rigid with my discipline by making my son salute me.
This morning was extra cute. After Riley shut the door to the van, he hugged it. Like he was trying to hug me.
It makes me realize that in all my failings as a mother, I just might be doing some things right.
The other part of my day where there is guaranteed routine is polar of morning.
Every night the kids get on their jammies, brush teeth, go potty, etc. while I am in their room setting out clothes for the next day (gives me an extra 15 minutes of sleep...I'm thinking ahead here!)
I start with Reagan. Then Riley. Then Rhianna.
I stop at each bed individually and have one on one time with them. It is the greatest time of my day.
First they pray. Then I pray for them.I just started doing this. I already was praying for them. Why not pray out loud with them,and only for them, by their beds every night?
I read them a chapter out of a book that only we are reading together. We read fun adventures where they beg me to use my 'voices' and then they smile and giggle.
Once I have read to them and tucked them in I ask them two most important questions:
"How was your day?" "What was the best part?"
Two simple questions. But so very important.
There have been times that I have forgotten. They instantly remember and call out to me "MOM! You forgot to ask me how my day was!!"
The sweetest times are when Riley will yell "Mom. Come back. I didn't get to ask you how your day was."
Makes me smile. Makes me feel special. Makes me feel loved.
Bedtime can take an hour and a half. A long time for a bedtime routine. But I wouldn't trade those moments for a world of free time. They are completely priceless.
I pray that these simple moments of routine are remembered forever and held dear in their hearts.
I know that my routine will change.
Most likely drastically.
And thats okay and good.
But I pray that our routine of praying. talking. reading will never change.Ever.