Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Over-scheduled but fun fun fun

Life has gotten crazier, if that's even possible. We suddenly find our little family extremely over-scheduled but everyone (except me LOL) is having a blast so we're just plugging along trying to navigate and coordinate calendars and keep up with the necessary among the extra-curricular. Three big cheers for Honolulu Parks and Recreation who offers quite a few awesome programs that are free Free FREE so we're taking advantage. Here's our crazy line-up these days (and the reason I still haven't gotten around to blogging about seeing Alex O'Laughlin, Scott Caan, Terry O'Quinn, et al. in person a few weeks ago!!! Sqeeeeeeeeal!)

  • Toby and Brady are going to the most fabulous swim lessons! Offered FREE by the Honolulu Parks and Rec Department, the boys have swim lessons at the Waipahu Community Park Pool. Their instructors are amazing! Toby has gone from timid and clinging-for-dear-life at the edge of the pool to jumping off the wall and swimming back to the side with a big grin on his face and without any assistance. Brady got registered for a level just above his comfort zone but his teacher has been so encouraging that he's risen to the challenge and is swimming incredibly well and perfecting strokes he had previously not learned. They've only had four lessons so far and they're just taking off. It's been simply awesome to watch! And the swim lesson season is 21 classes long!! FOR FREEEEEEEEEEEEE! I'm just stunned by the quality of this program and the cost blows my mind. It's absolutely a billion percent worth the little drive we take to get there twice a week. Did I mention there's open swim immediately following their class and that that is free also?! So Ben and Molly can get some pool time for free as well. Amazing.

Loving his local teacher. He's like a big teddy bear and
Toby totally trusts him.

On the very first stinkin' class he had Toby's face in the
water and letting go!

Learning some proper technique.

Lots... and lots... and LOTS of bobs in the 6 ft pool.

  • Yet another amazing Honolulu Parks and Rec program, this time for Molly. Every Tuesday we're now going to a Parents and Tots co-op playgroup. It's kind of like a pre-preschool program. We have a couple hours with a group of about 25 kids and their parents doing circle time, arts and crafts, snack, free play and story time. Molly is in HEAVEN. Mommy? Not so much. I'm really having to keep my eyes in check or they'd probably roll right out of my head. I'm not usually a parent-judger. Honestly! I know I lack so severely in many aspects of parenting that I can usually just look away but there are a few instances in this group of such cringe-worthy parenting that I can't help myself. Indulgent much? Some of these Mommies have completely conceded control to their toddlers. And then there are the checked-out Mommies who seem to have completely forgotten that they are the responsible adults and should be keeping their child from harm or from harming others and do moronic things like not correcting their child who is riding the trike against "traffic" or who is climbing up the "roller coaster" track as another child riding the roller coaster car is zooming down it. Aside from the questionable parenting going on the program itself is fun and it's giving Molly and I some great structured fun time together. I appreciate that. I appreciate that the program is FREE! **Edited! I started this blog post before going to Parents and Tots today and had a MUCH better time today than previous days. I talked with a lot of moms today and the obnoxious ones weren't there today so it was downright enjoyable for everyone. Yay! Exchanged phone numbers and talked about playdates. It was a successful morning for Molly AND Mommy.

Our little ahem... budding artist? Check out that color combo!

  • Tuesday is also a Performing Arts day for Brady. He just stays after school for it so no transportation or scheduling really required. He loves it! Was a little heart broken that he didn't get a solo singing spot at recent auditions, but he'll keep trying.
  • Tuesday is also my hula class in the evenings. Aaaaaaahhhh. I love hula. It does my mind and body a LOT of good!

  • Brady and Toby have swim lessons again on Wednesdays.
  • Brady has Breakdance class on Wednesday evenings. I shared pics of his dance at the end of July. He LOVES his breakin' class and teacher, Remedee!
  • I have Zumba class on Wednesday evenings in the same studio where Brady has his dance class. Sometimes I do one class. Sometimes I temporarily lose my mind and do a class and a half or even two classes. They overlap timing with Brady's class so I have some options depending on when we can get there and when I need to get home. In any case, Zumba is the other part of my week that does my mind and body a LOT of good!
  • I have four piano students on Thursday afternoons. I love teaching piano. I only have this small handful of students right now but it's quite plenty for me and my schedule. I could maybe take one or two more, but I'm not really sure where I'd fit them in LOL.
  • Brady has Performing Arts after school again.
  • Molly has her hula class. She is doing SO much better now! We tried the class back in January of this year and she was just too young to focus and was a lot more interested in just having fun and being silly, which was to be expected of a not-quite-three-year-old. Now she loooooves hula and really enjoys going to class and learning new moves and dances. Some of her movement is hilarious and adorable all at once. I can't wait to see her in her little hula dress in her first performance. I'm a sucker for cute, and Molly dancing hula is dang cute.
She's focused and practicing hand motions here...

And she's Chatty Patty here... (can you find her? My little
blondie is pretty easy to spot in this group...)

"Duck Walks" - Molly's favorite.
  • Thursday evening Brady has Cub Scouts and Ben has Boy Scouts or Young Men activities at church. Recently Brady's troop did a play which Brady thoroughly enjoyed participating in. And Ben got to go to Boy Scout Camp this summer with his troop. He loved it! Willy is totally fired from taking pictures of people though... these were literally the only two pictures of Ben that he got for the whole 48 hours Willy was at camp with the scouts. He did, however, take 98 gorgeous pictures of plants, flowers and scenery at the camp...

  • Ben has Robotics Club after school. He seems to be liking it, but it's a brand new year and club so I don't have much to report about it yet.
  • One more big shout out to the Honolulu Parks and Rec for their awesome programs and classes! Molly and I go each Friday afternoon for her Tiny Tots swim lesson. I have to get in the water with her which is turning out to be more fun than I expected. As confident as Molly is in the ocean water and at the beach in general, she was pretty dang clingy the first few times we went in the pool. I'm pretty sure it's because she couldn't figure out how deep the water is, whereas at the beach she walks out as far as she's comfortable and knows she can touch. When she progressed in her lessons to jumping in to me from the side of the pool she once touched her feet on the bottom of the pool (4 ft pool) and I think that helped her understand that it wasn't an abyss or something. Her confidence has improved dramatically and she's *this* close to being able to float independently on her back. Another lesson or two and I think she'll have it. Yay Molly!

Sculling and straight-leg kicks on her back. This is her
fav thing to do.

Blowing bubbles and practicing big arms. Not her fav...
And I need a new swim suit top.
This one has gotten baggy thank you very much. :)

Just a hug now, no longer the death grip she had the first few weeks.
Thank goodness for weekends and no regular recurring commitments (besides church on Sunday mornings)!

So there is is. The insanity of our week. The reality is that the kids are having fun and we're getting out of the house a lot and that feels good in the grand scheme of things. It's hectic and busy but we're not spending a fortune on this stuff and the value of several these opportunities was too good to pass up. I've never wanted to be one of those people who over-extends her kids and forces them into a bunch of extra-curriculars, but I think I'm the only one actually feeling any kind of stress about our schedule. Brady was a little frazzled last week when on top of his extra-curricular activities he had JPO (Junior Police Officer ...aka crossing guard) duty before and after school each day. That made for a looooooong week for him.. But when he's not doing that it's just fun after school, low-key stuff. All in all? Busy but good.

How about you? Do you have a schedule full of activities that puts ours to shame? Or did you read this and think "whew. they're nuts"?

1 comment:

  1. You are a busy mama! Have you considered investing in a taxi with all that chaffuering your doing? You are a saint and I know your kids love you for providing so many great opportunities for them. How awesome that so many are free! I love that word!

    Our schedule is pretty low key. I think it's best for the time being. I know it won't be that way forever so I am enjoying it for as long as it does.