Monday, September 7, 2015

Short Little Work Week(ends)

As most everyone else that we know (and most everyone else in America) is getting ready to start the work week, Peyton's/ours has just ended.

Tonight seemed like the perfect time to elaborate on Peyton's schedule a bit. For years and years, I tried to be vague on here about what days he worked because he worked so late on the days he was gone and it made me nervous being at home by myself with the kids. Well, NYC (and some other life experiences) fixed that for me and it no longer really worries me at all. Also, even on the nights he works he's home by nine. WHAT? That is like insane for us. 

So....a new adventure and a different reality. 

Peyton is now working four days worth of hours in three days and obviously getting paid for four days worth of hours (he's home with us Monday through Thursday and Friday evenings). 

Four days worth of hours in three days because we've both decided we like the marathons better than the sprints. 

Four days worth of pay because Peyton *loves* this stage the kids are in and I don't think it's fair that I get the monopoly on it. So we decided that as long as he's eligible for FT benefits, nobody actually needs to be working forty hour weeks. 

We don't need that money and we want to prioritize time together and time to pursue (all four of) our interests. We totally realize (like with Brooklyn) that we are in a unique position, but it's also amazing to see the wonderful opportunities our approach to finances and simplicity is bringing.

More specifics: Peyton works twelve hour shifts on Saturday and Sunday (eight to eight) and an eight hour shift from seven to three on Fridays. 

On Fridays, the kids and I have a low key day and then Peyton gets home and we all go to beans at my parents'. We try to get home at a more reasonable time that we used to since he has a long day ahead of him. On Saturdays while Peyton's at work, I do a really full day of school with the kids (some weeks this is the only day that I do math and English and our extra stuff all together). I try to get in a little housework and bath the kids but school is the main priority. This works so well with the one car situation. On Sundays, we drop Peyton off in Clinton at eight, go to church, come home (and do absolutely nothing- I have very few goals for Sundays these days) and then head back to get Peyton at eight . I feed the kids, read to them, and have their teeth brushed when we leave. 

Then comes Monday and for the next FOUR days the world is our oyster.

Sort of. 

If you've been following along, you know this adjustment hasn't been entirely easy for me. For one thing, I'm used to more time alone/more time with just the kids. Carrie asked me recently how I was doing without as much introvert time at naptime and bedtime (she knows P's personality pretty well and mine really well) and I'm pretty sure my eyes just got really wide and I looked like a legit crazy person. 

For another thing, it's hard to find a routine in this. It's not like a weekend where I feel justified in just checking out an relaxing (not that some folks aren't productive on the weekend, but we have never pressured ourselves much to be). The kids need educating and I want us to be doing productive things. And mostly we are- family bike rides have happened, Peyton's been going to his grandmother's in South Mississippi to help his dad with farm work, school is going amazingly well, we signed the kids up for Fall sports, I'm planning to sub a bit and reinstated in the Junior League. And we're spending a good amount of time with friends and family, which is one of my huge priorities right now. But sometimes I struggle to balance it. We've been using Google Calendars and I've been using my new planner to sort of plot our days (both kind of obsessively, I'll admit) and that's helped a good bit, I think. 

And I'm not going to lie, Saturday and Sunday (particularly Sunday) often feel long and hard. I'm finding more peace in trusting that, in this season, it's okay if Peyton takes a step back from church because that may be what he needs. I'm not trying to force it and I'm not worried about imposing my standards on him. But it does still make me sad at times. Understandably, I think. 

All that said, I really do love the new schedule and I think Peyton is over the moon about it. I'm so glad to see him giving himself a break instead of working a ton of extra days like he used to. And the kids. Goodness. I overheard AP telling Graves that today was Sunday and that meant tomorrow was Monday and Papa would be off. They love being with him so much. And I love the four of us being all together so many hours of our days. It's certainly a privilege I don't take for granted. 

It's so very far from perfect, but I'm so very grateful for these days. 

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