As the oldest of 5 children, it's not hard to guess the amount of lessons and outside activities we were able to take on as extracurricular activities; especially during the school year. If 5 children participated in 1 club and played 1 sport that is 10 different activities and/or events that you are required to drop-off at and attend events for. This is a ridiculous amount already when there are 2 parents responsible for carpool duty; take away one parent (that's right, my mom was a single mom...hats off to this crazy woman) and you, as the child, are left to pick and choose what is the most important to you.
However, this truly has nothing to do with why my kiddos will be enrolled in classes. I look back and realize I had a perfectly normal and happy childhood and am not upset at all about anything that I did or did not do. No parent should at all be offended by my husband's and my choice to have our children in the lessons of their choosing. All of those events that I did or did not participate in made me the person that I am today; and, I may not be the most awesome person that there ever was, but I have a family that loves me and that I am grateful for every day. The reason that my babies will be in classes is because we can afford it and that's what we want to do. Plain and simple. We aren't trying to avoid boredom, well our kids' boredom anyway haha, (there are so many articles on allowing your children to be bored that do make some great points) and we aren't trying to make up for things we didn't get to do as children (really, we were fine). It really is just what we want to do and how we want to raise OUR children.
As a full-time working mother, I obviously spend less time with my princesses than parents who stay home with their children get to. There are many days that I go to work and wish that I could stay home with our girls and provide them with my love and attention 24/7; however, this is just not in the cards for us. Financially, if I stayed home, we would survive but it would be tricky as is the reason most parents who are full-time employees continue to be full-time after having a baby or 2. Of course, we have found ways to save and always discuss what we can splurge on and what we can not splurge on. One of the things that we have discussed is whether or not to allow our girls to take a couple of classes to help shape their personalities and allow them to grow in the areas that interest them (well, when they are able to choose of course; we obviously have chosen a class for our baby so that she has something too). We have found that when we have the time to spend with our girls we want to make the most of it. Making the most of it includes doing the things that interest them, which, in turn, also interests us, than to get the latest Webber grill or have the fanciest cars. Our PERSONAL preference is to spend any extra money that we do have, after setting aside some for savings to help us out in the future, on our ladies. I am not saying that this is the right thing, taking care of our children by providing those things critical to their well-being (i.e. food on the table, warm beds, clothes on their backs, love in their hearts) is the RIGHT thing to do, but this is our thing. My husband and I have always loved being on the go and we have not felt the need to "slow down" even though we have children; all that has changed are the activities. And yes, our calendars are full and we run around like chickens with our heads cut off BUT we enjoy watching our girls enjoy things that interest them.
So, Olivia started gymnastics on Tuesday (yay, this might excite me more than her BUT she did choose it and was super excited about it) and Addison started swim lessons last Saturday. What activities are your kiddos enrolled in?