reaching the parenting promised land

Rhett is my youngest and he is now four and 1/2.

Precious.   Precious. Precious.

We made the decision to keep him at home this year and not put him in preschool.   Because of our unusual 1/2 school & 1/2 home school schedule, that leaves 3 full days a week that Rhett is home alone with just blog-Stedman and me.

We have found ourselves fighting over him.

If you are just going to run errands, leave Rhett here with me…he isn’t interested in going to Target.

I am taking Rhett to Target because he IS interested in stopping by the toy aisle.

I will play with him in the backyard while you are gone.

I will stop by the park on the way back.

I will play Thomas the Numbers Game for 2 hours with him.

I will get him a drink at Starbucks on the way home.

Crap.   You win.   He won’t pass up that.

This is a huge shift from the previous stage of life where taking care of the kids in a quiet moment was drawing the short straw.   And ANY amount of children at Target was too many.

But now all the kids are older and threatening in public works, but for the most part they are much more delightful to be around.

Thank God.

It was touch and go there for awhile.   Now we have MOMENTS vs. EVENTS.

I remember being in public with two toddlers and a baby and looking over to the mom directing older children with a twinge of jealousy…

She had her hair combed.

She didn’t wear the look of this situation could head South at any moment in her eyes.

She looked…dare I say it…in control.

This leisurely morning I lost the Rhett bid so he stayed home with Blog-Stedman.   I stopped by Shauna‘s house for a quiet meeting because all her kids are in school and then returned home to go on a lunch date with my guys.

I even had my hair combed.

And in the middle of our lunch, we looked over at a frantic family seated across the room who was trying to quiet their car-seat-encased baby.

We felt a little empathy.

We felt a lot relief.


  1. I’m calling these the “Breathing Years” – and yes, my sweet lady, it does feel very nice to get enough oxygen. Cheers to us both.

    You almost make me regret sending Youngest M/W/F mornings. Almost ; -)

  2. Melissa R says:

    reason #493 why we homeschool. I can’t give him up. I would miss him too much. Time goes too quickly and I don’t want to miss a moment of it.

  3. Gremlin (finally) starts kindergarten on Wednesday. My neighbor just had her third three months ago. Two sides of the same coin but I think I like heads better.

  4. I love it! The look that says This situation could head south at any moment. I must wear that look permanently on my face. My whole life is just trying to ESCAPE the already south-landed situations. LOL

  5. And then….before you know it…they are teenagers.

    Riffling in your purse for singles…

    Borrowing the car…

    Eating you out of house and home.

    But when you want you can….leave the house.

    And…they stay there (mostly).


  6. Well, Sistah, I had really hoped to relate to this, but the sad fact is that I still can’t take my 16-year-old son into Target without people glaring at me :). Also? Still not playing the, “no – it’s my turn to be with him / her” game. Well, maybe with the 18-year-old (when she’s in a good mood). In a week or two (or sooner) you’re going to have a bad day and think you wrote this post on crack. But enjoy the high while it lasts! You’ve got some cute kids.

  7. When my youngest was 4 and still home alone with me, we used to sneak out to super-secret, don’t tell the other kids so they won’t get jealous lunches together. I loved it, but the little rat fink sold me up the river every time.

  8. Ha ha I am so coming out of those messy hair days. This year my oldest is finally in school all day and I feel like a new person. I still have the little one but he is so much easier than the first. I cant imagine what life will be like when they are both in school but on the other hand I miss them so much when they are gone.

  9. I’m starting to fee that feeling these days too. Now that we’re all over the age of four and nearing all being over the age of 5. Not to have to carry a diaper bag everywhere. Diapers, pullups are all gone. The girls, while not always sociable, are controllable and tolerable in public situations. They’re little humans instead of crazy little monkeys.


    LOVE this post 🙂

  10. ultrasound technician says:

    What a great resource!

  11. I was 32 when I had my first and I thought that I was “grown up” enough to have things all under control; after all the advice to “young parents” to don’t worry about the furniture, enjoy the ride, you have the rest of your life to have a tidy house and showcase yard, didn’t apply to me, right? About a year after I had my second, at age 35, I realized that “young parents” doesn’t just mean “parents who themselves are young” but really “parents in the stage of life with babies, toddlers, pre-schoolers.” Now that my boys are six and three, daily life is getting so much easier–more complicated with school and sports schedule plus my new work schedule, but easier nonetheless. Several friends had their third babies this past year and I had those longing for a baby feelings at times, but now that the school year has started I am enjoying my new freedom and nothing is missing from my life!

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