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Moms of 3 or More Do you have 3 or more children? Often times, parents with 3 or more kids face challenges that those of 1 or 2 just do not. This board was set up for those parents to ask others how they cope with issues such as making time for each child, who stays u

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  #11 (permalink)  
Old 04-27-2004, 08:12 AM
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Thank you ladies!

Thank you all for being so understanding and giving wonderful advice to help me get through this time.

Euripides, thank you for the suggestion of the carpet sweeper. What a terrific idea, my grandmother used one often on the days she didn't vac. You made me remember that she would vac than take out her plastic rake and rake the shag carpet to make it look nice. Oh the memories from childhood! I'll look into picking up one of those sweepers.

I'm not able to afford a cleaning service and I've tried coordinating with a friend for various things: switch off days watching each other kids once a week to get errands and cleaning done, plus we've talked about going to each other's home to help clean while the kids play but our schedules just don't mesh well.

My standards have fallen greatly, it's in my head that I need to remember it's okay for our home to look like this and relax about it not get stressed over it.

Kelly, great minds think alike...I just thought last night that I could use a break from everyone and go for a short walk with no kids, what a nice break it was!

Others suggested a moms group, well I forgot to mention in my intro that I volunteer to my time to a MOPS group here as the craft coordinator so my time is filled up greatly with this but I've met wonderful women through this for support and encouragement.

Also I spend lots of time with the kids doing craft projects with the girls, reading more to my dd#2 since dd#1 can't sit still that long it seems. She likes more hands on, craft stuff than reading time. I enjoy spending time with the kids but I definitely need breaks somewhere in my week to destress.

Thanks again ladies for the great advice. Melissa
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  #12 (permalink)  
Old 04-27-2004, 08:46 AM
kellyandkids
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learning styles

Give a little test to dd#1: While she is diddling with her hands is she listening to every word you read? Ask her some content questions.

My dd#2 is one of those physical learners. She needs to be moving to get it in. Hint: math means jumping the tiles in the kitchen.

It's just a learning style that the public school has difficulty adapting to. I don't blame them because I can't teach to 3 kids moving at one time; I tend to do one at a time. If you are putting her in kindergarten talk to the principal about getting the right teacher to fit her style.

When the kids are little this is the highest stress time for a marriage for the man's point of view. That means statistically it will get better; just keep talking about it with him.
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  #13 (permalink)  
Old 04-27-2004, 05:12 PM
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Location: central California
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My 3 children are adults and I now daycare the 6 grandkids, 13, 12, 6, 4, 2, and a 1 year old. Needless to say I do not have a spotless house, but it *is* clean. We have toys in 3 areas, the familyroom, the bedroom, and the patio. I keep shelves and covered storage boxes in these areas so it is easy to do a quick clean up before meals, before Papa gets home, and before they leave in the evening (it was before bath time when my children were home). All of us have learned to pick up and wipe up as we travel through the house. My laundry days are Monday and Friday as well as a daily load of cloth diapers and cloth training pants. The daily dishes are rinsed immediatly and are washed after the children are gone (or in bed) if my husband doesn't do them first.

When my daughter was about a year old I fussed at her because she wanted to color with me and couldn't wait until the evening dishes were done. My husband asked me if I wanted my children to remember that their mom was always too busy with house work or to remember that she took the time to play with them. It made a huge impression on me because he came from a family of 6 children and according to them his mom always found time for them.

I asked her how she did it and she said she spent 1 to 2 hours every day outside with the kids. In the yard gardening, at the park, at the library, at a church function, etc. She said it was the daily break that saved her sanity, gave her the energy to clean the house while the kids napped, and made her look like a super mom to her children.

I tried it and it works! My favorite is the park. You can read a book while they play in the sand or visit with an actual adult who is also desperate for grown up conversation. Another great thing about parks is that you don't have to keep saying "No!" because most of the things they want to do at the park are ok.

Take the time to laugh and play with the children, you have a perfect excuse to blow bubbles and play in the sprinkler!!!

Love & Prayers,
Linda
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  #14 (permalink)  
Old 04-27-2004, 06:43 PM
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Hi,
I am 42 going on 43 and have three elementary age kids.
10, 9, & 6.
I am a stay at home Mom but my DH is hardly ever home. For all practical reasons I'm a single Mom.
We've been married for 20 years and dated 4 years before getting married.
I can tell you a few things I have learned... first declutter....and box up or throw away all those pretties and fancies. If you don't need it get rid of it!
The less you have the less you have to clean. Keep it simple!
Less is more when the kids are young.
Find a routine that works for you. I've got a spray bottle filled with a good quality germicide/cleaner in almost every room of the house. I keep a cloth diaper on top of it. I can clean up spills or hit the high spots and not have to chase down anything.
At night I load the dishwasher and turn it on when I go to bed.
In the morning after the kids are taken to school I unload it and put things up. When things are dirtied through the day they go into the dishwasher for that night.
Although not always the best environmentally we use paper plates and cups on nights when after school activites and homework clash. I fix a quick meal like mac and cheese with either petite diced tomatoes or the Mexican kind with a little kick. I fix some crusty bread with it. Glass of milk or juice.
Don't kill yourself cooking. Find a few good cookbooks with healthy quick meals. Make lunches simple. I make lunches from turkey breast, ham, etc. some veggies with "dip dip" and cut up fruit or applesauce etc. I've got a vegetarian DD so I don't use alot of meats. For the boys I put the luncheon meats on their plates.
For breakfast.... we do things like cheese toast on whole wheat,
oatmeal or meal replacement shakes. A big hit is fruit smoothies!
The bottom line.. keep it simple.
Fold clothes while sitting down watching the news or a favorite program. Get creative on how to make short cuts that work for you.
We all throw our hands up.....it's OK!
Find a good Moms group like MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) They are wonderful and supportive!
Good Luck!
Robin in NC
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Old 04-27-2004, 06:58 PM
kellyandkids
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I make my bed now and it does make me feel better. The real trick is when I throw all the dry laundry on it and then I am forced to put it away before bed. This also gives me a chance to listen to a tape or music for a little while. This is how I prevent laundry mountain from growing on the couch.

Note: mount a "free-sliding" wire rack over your dryer and hang almost everything you can right on the hangers -- after only 5 minutes in the dryer. Saves energy and wear on the elastic in your clothes. Not to mention your sanity!

But declutter! Buy or make throw covers that can be laundered. Too late for my furniture.
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Old 05-01-2004, 08:13 PM
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Rule the Roost

I feel for you, just like everyone else who replied does. What works (or not ) for me is that I am in charge, not my kids. I also have three, daughter almost 4 and twin boys 18 1/2 months, and the other day my daughter told me I was acting like Cinderella's stepmother (mean). Well too bad!!! My floors never get vacumed or mopped it seems, my bathrooms are just as bad, and as far as laundry goes, be grateful they are clean.

I would love to take my kids to the park every day like they want, I would love to stay up to 11pm every night like my husband wants, but it just isn't happening. My kids are in bed everynight by 7:30 ready or not, and up again at 6:00am with me (if I have to be up, so do they!)

To stay sane, don't drink any coffee or caffinated drinks. Sounds hard I know, but the energy you need will come naturally, and being caffinated only agrivates your nerves. Also, prayer works wonders!!! If you are lucky enough to find time to go to church, ask around for someone to come to your home every other week or so to bible study with you, it works wonders to reset your spiratual batteries, and you don't have to get the kids ready.

I also look forward to my 50th birthday. My boys will have turned 18 yearlier that year, so to me that is my freedom bell. My best girlfriend and I already have our vacation planned. AND MY HUSBAND IS NOT INVITED!

Good Luck and God Bless!!!!!!!!!!
__________________
Bethie - wife of John SR
Mommy of Sarah, Justin, and John JR
AKA (kids) - Bug, Jay, & Johnny
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Old 06-23-2004, 08:39 PM
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My husband asked me tonight if I was ok. I'm overwhelmed and a little depressed. I have 3 foster kids that I'm hoping I'll get to adopt. It's really nice to read that I'm not the only one wanting to throw my hands in the air. I clean then turn around and there it is again... that same toy I just put up. My husband had hernia surgery last week, so that leaves me doing just about everything. It's only the first week of I don't know how many till he can start helping again. I'm just glad to read that i'm not the only person rattled in the world. That's how I describe me anyway. I work outside the home and come home and work too. rattled and overwhelmed.. that's me.
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Old 06-25-2004, 12:38 AM
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Wow! I thought I was reading something I wrote!! It was like a page out of my life... I also have three kiddos DD#1 is 4.5 y/o, DS is 2 y/o, and DD#2 is 5 mos. I'm having the same issues you described in your post... don't have time or energy to get things done around here. DH works predictable shifts at work, but he's gone for over 10 hours a day, and when he's home I still can't get a break from the kids to get much done. He usually does most of it, but I need to figure out how to get more done before he gets home. (somehow)

DD#1 doesn't nap....... DS naps, but only if we're out or DH makes him lay down........ DD#2 naps a lot, but she won't let me put her down!

At least you're not alone in all this..... and now I know I'm not alone either.

Row.
Liz - 1/15/04
Aidan - 4/6/02
Casey - 9/24/99
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Old 06-25-2004, 10:34 AM
kellyandkids
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Advice from a mother-in-law (MIL)

I read somewhere that a MIL hired a neighbor girl to come over for her daughter in law every afternoon after school and sit the kids for one hour. Then this mom of young kids could take a shower and get some quiet time in before hubby came home.

What a great idea to save mom's sanity and keep a marriage in tact!

Funny side: I tried to hire a new next door neighbor's 12 yr old to do this. She had no clue how to babysit and was so surprised when I handed her money. She never did get it; she just wasn't sitter material. But I made a point of trying to get in a shower before hubby came home after that - help or no help.

And I began putting myself to bed at a regular time. I announced to my TV addicted hubby and kids that I was off duty and closed the bedroom door and went to sleep. No more guilt.

Small steps lead to solutions.
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