For those that know the details of my life, this subject may seem a little off. I'm at a point in my life where I'm spending more time with my children than I ever have or ever could. To make it more clear, let me put it this way. Since March 15, I have been with my children every day except my birthday and for a few hours yesterday. That's a large quantity of time by any one's standards! Don't get me wrong. I've truly enjoyed almost every minute of it but I've learned something over the past couple of weeks. Although I believe that time spent with children and family is extremely important, I would like to point out that the one thing that is much more important than that is the quality of that time. For the last two weeks of summer until school started today, I seem to have just been in existence with my children versus spending time interacting with them. The long hours and little appreciation of this job was obviously beginning to wear on me to the point that I had to give myself a pep talk to make it through those last few days. It has been a fun yet exhausting summer trying to care for and entertain 4 very different personalities and 3 different age groups. (For anyone wondering, I had my 3 and was babysitting 1 other child) Fortunately, I kept the children busy enough that I'm hoping they didn't notice my detachment over the last couple of weeks. Despite my feelings of despair, I became aware that I was not spending quality time with my children. Realizing this, I chose to do something about it. After all, that is why I chose to stay at home so I need to take advantage of this while I still can! First things first, I took a break for a few hours without any kids yesterday. That was a much needed and well deserved break I might add. Being a Psychology student, I know how important it is to get yourself straight mentally before you can give to others. Beginning today, I vowed to get back in the game and so far, its been a great day. It does seem to be a long day since we had to start our day so early and we had gotten used to those lazy days of summer, but I'm sure we'll get back into the routine soon. The girls were eager to begin our new schedule and I can tell the difference already. They have both been much more agreeable and easy to manage today. What an improvement over last week! I can't say that Austin was quite as eager to get back to the grind but I'm sure he'll adjust quickly as he always does. I'm looking forward to his 4th grade year and the new challenges that he'll face. I think it will be good for us all and I can't say how glad I am that I'm hear to support him this year. I think he appreciates it too. He's also planning to play baseball, both in the fall and spring since we couldn't ever talk him into playing football this year. Still he's excited about that and his guitar lessons are continuing (with his new guitar that his dad bought him). And finally, I have the opportunity to be at his games and listen to him play without being rushed. Curtis has not had the same advantage I've had this year (and I'm not sure he'd have taken it anyway! jk) This has made it even more apparent to me that the little time we see him should be quality time and that we have to make it count. Although most people do not get the opportunity to spend such a large quantity of time with their families, its so important to make sure the little time they do have is full of quality.