If any of you are like me, being the fun mom needs to be scheduled in. I can get so caught up in keeping the house relatively tidy and making sure school work gets done and starting laundry and all the myriad other things that can consume my day, that I forget to just sit back, relax, and enjoy my children. I also forget that I want my children to have memories of me other than telling them what to do or telling them they'll have to wait. It is easy to fall into the trap of so wanting to do the best for our children that we forget the reason we wanted to do our best in the first place.
That is why tonight I planned a surprise dinner. Now this completely unnerved some of my children. The ones who just want to know everything that is going on were a little focused on figuring out my plan. Others who just need to know what is going to happen had some brief moments of spinning toward out-of-control-ness. (As a side note, I am aware that for everyone's mental health being able to know what is going to happen in advance, even if it just a little bit in advance, is best and I work with that. But I also think it is good to have safe opportunities to practice being surprised and I decided this was one of those times.) I thought having it be a surprise would make it a little bit more fun.
And what was the surprise? Instead of a regular dinner, we had banana splits. Yes, I served my children ice cream for dinner. (It was 100 degrees here today, I thought it was brilliant timing.) I didn't really come up with this on my own. I was inspired by the mother who recently lost her young son due due to a heart defect. She suggested to anyone who wanted to do something that they create a memory with their own children by serving banana splits for dinner. The point being that none of us know how much time we have allotted to us on earth and we should make the most of them.
I am also always challenged by a line in the book, Will Mrs. Major go to Hell? by Eloise Buckley Heath. It is in the introduction, which was the eulogy that was written by her brother, William F. Buckley. In it he describes his sisters, her love of life and her love of her children, and her untimely death. When one of her young daughters was told of her mother's death, the daughter's response was, "Nothing will ever be fun again."
I want my children to enjoy life and I know I have a big part of the responsibility while they are young. We parents are in the business of making memories, after all, we just need to be careful what memories we are making.
So, go be the fun mom. Enjoy your children and your time with them. Make memories together... the good kind.