I was going to post photos of my nearly-finished KITCHEN, but I will save that for next time.

What I would like to write about today is parenting at home.

You know, I have those days when I need a break from everyone, when I wish Little Guy was still in daycare two days a week so I could watch a musical on TV or paint my toenails, or shop.  I insist to others that we’re together ALL the TIME, so he gets bored of me, and I of him.  But today is not one of those days.

Today we played with his Fischer Price barnyard, and the leopard fought the cow for space on the second floor.  Today I read him two books in the glider chair before naptime, and he burst into fits of giggling as he tried to balance his feet on the tops of my thighs.  He drank sips of apple juice and spat them on my shirt and laughed some more.  Oh yeah, and when he asked to eat a second hot dog, I gave in.

I figure this is what those Homeschool parents must feel.  It’s difficult to articulate, but it is a sense of observation instead of guidance.  It is a blissful lack of self-judgement, and a short time when hours go by without my watching the clock.  I find these days to be rare for me.  It is not a way of life by any means.  These days are like visits to the beach, welcome excursions, rare and amazing.

I am the stay-at-home parent, and so I am the one most often administering time-outs in the crib.  It works for me, and I hate to do it.  But who else is going to?  If I did not exercise control over my household, we would never change out of pajamas.  In fact, getting a clean diaper on can be a bloody battle (not literally bloody) half the time.  He’s not even TWO yet!  I suppose then that the answer is balance.  I will most definitely be putting my son in Montessori school in the coming months, so that he can socialize with his peers and learn about shapes and letters and numbers, the four seasons and the names of vegetables.  What happens after that, I cannot guess.  I know that the state of public school in California is not good.  But I refuse to be a non-participant in our society as it is right now.

I welcome the giggles, and I expect the tantrums.  And I smile and give myself a fist-bump.  Today is awesome.

How do you maintain balance as a parent?