Monday, August 12, 2013

First Impressions

There is something to be said about the way women used to greet their husbands on those old TV shows.  You know the cliche scenario where the wife sees her husband pull into the driveway while baking a pie for dinner.  She joyfully walks to the front door and greets him with a kiss.  She leads him to his chair to prop his feet up as she hands him the newspaper and the remote.

Ahhh, how picture perfect life appeared in those shows.

You never saw the kids running around half-naked, throwing boogers at each other while you are frantically running through the mine-field of Legos strewn all over the living room floor toward the toddler shoveling guinea pig poop into his mouth.  (Yeah, I've never seen such things either;)

But that second scenario is real life.
It just is, and that is okay.

But I still have this thing for the TV show greeting.

Here is what I DON'T want Josh to witness upon his arrival:
* a frazzled mom running out the front door yelling to the kids over her shoulder that she is running away to the nut house (again, something I have NEVER seen;)
*a house full of busy people, none of which even acknowledge his arrival
*a house in total chaos with a mom who is completely out of control
*a wife who immediately begins spouting off all the things that went wrong that day

This time of day is one of the hardest times of the day for me.  Mentally I am spent.  I was ready for Josh to be home 3 hours ago.  I am frazzled.  The kids are beginning to get out of control.  Dinner isn't ready.  The baby is fussy.

But these aren't the FIRST things I want Josh to see when he enters back into the family unit.

My goal is NOT to paint a false picture of the day here, ladies.  It also is NOT to stress yourself to get everyone and everything looking and acting perfect!  But rather to put a halt on the happenings of the day to refocus and regroup.

Here is how the Colony does it:
  • Typically Josh texts me right before he leaves Journey.  That gives me 20+ min. to get to work.
  • First things first, "simmer" music is turned on.  Oh how I love Spotify and Pandora
  • Next, rally the troops.  Communicate that daddy is on his way and that we want him to hear a family that loves each other.
  • Now, put them to work.  Assign simple, age appropriate tasks to get the house in order(ish).
  • Walk around and light some candles (it's hard to stay grumpy or anxious with Gardenia and Magnolia wafting from the corners of the house) 
Now you can get back to stirring the stew or flipping the chicken in the oven.
  • Finally, for goodness sakes, stop peeling the potatoes and kiss your man when he walks in the door.  Making eye contact and physically showing him that he is more important than the tasks we are all working on will shout your love to him, even if only for a moment to acknowledge his arrival.
There are days when this just does NOT happen.  Josh gets home and I am a wreck, the house is a wreck and the kids, well, we don't need to talk about them right now...

But, by doing this, it not only allows for a quick-cleanup of the house and the scent of Magnolia to rise above the stench of diapers, it also promotes team work and thinking of others while we anticipate daddy coming home. It also removes the kids from their bickering matches and me from my feelings of being completely overwhelmed just long enough to dissipate those fires.

Now when daddy enters back into the family unit he will see a family that he enjoys coming home to.
I want him to feel safe when he walks in those doors, never a feeling of dread, not knowing what he is going to walk into.
I want him to be glad (excited, even) to be home with us.

We'll have time to get to the highs and lows of the day around the dinner table or at a more appropriate time, but the first impression I want my husband to see is that this is his family, that we love and appreciate him, and that we are trying to work together, even if it's been a rough day.
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