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Vancouver Mom > VM Voices > VM Voices: The fine line between bored and over-scheduled

VM Voices: The fine line between bored and over-scheduled

I’m a hypocrite: I complain about how busy my family is, but I continue to sign my kids up for activities. I know how important down time is, I’ve read the articles about how creativity is sparked by boredom. But I’m not a good “let’s do activities at home” mom. I don’t make slime. I don’t bake cookies. So I try to find out of the house activities to keep us busy. 

But I’m not a good “let’s do activities at home” mom. I don’t make slime. I don’t bake cookies. So I try to find out of the house activities to keep us busy. 

I’m not a good “let’s do activities at home” mom. I don’t make slime. I don’t bake cookies. So I try to find out of the house activities to keep us busy. 

Trying to keep your kids busy but not over scheduling them is a fine line to walk. It starts off simply enough: Kid 1 wants to play soccer. Sure. You can handle that. You sign Kid 1 up for soccer. Then you find out it’s two days a week. No biggie. You can make that happen. 

Then Kid 2 wants to take ballet. Sounds reasonable. Maybe you have a future ballerina in your home. You should foster their talents. Then you look at the registration form and realize there’s a jazz class right after the ballet class… well, if you’re at the studio anyway, Kid 2 might as well take two classes. Make it worth the drive there. 

If you have a Kid 3, you can probably handle them signing up for a class as well. 

And you’ll be okay for awhile. You’ll get tired and by the end of the year, you’ll be ready for the summer. But you’ll survive the year. You’ll get it done. 

Then it’ll be time to sign up for the next session or season. Your kids are now a year older and it’s expected that they will up their commitments to their chosen activities. 

So soccer is three times a week. And dance is four times a week (because you’ve added in another ballet class and a tap class). And basketball (that’s what Kid 3 decided to sign up for) is twice a week.  And now you’re looking at the schedule thinking “How can we make this work?”

Maybe you’ll cut out a class here or there to relax your schedule a bit. But where? Every activity has its list of commitments. So do you cut out the activities all together and worry that you’re not giving your kids all the opportunities they deserve? Or do you sacrifice down time and free time to spend your life in the car chauffeuring your kids to and from their activities, and then complain about how busy you are and moan about how you wish you had a little more free time?

Sorry, but we’re going to have to continue this discussion another time. My Kid 1 has Musical Theatre and my Kid 2 has Rock Climbing (on the North Shore even though we live in East Van because the East Van climbing gym class conflicted with Ballroom). This hypocrite has some driving to do.  

(Just wait until we add in our Kid 3 this fall… I may have to quit my job just to keep up with their activities.)

Amy Beeman is mom to twins Sam and Lucy, and soon-to-arrive Stanley. She is also a  VM Top 30 BloggerLeading Moms speaker and radio personality.

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