Today is Take Your Child To Work Day. When I was working in a so-called “Real Job” the kids were excited about having the chance to go with me to work. Or perhaps it was just the thought of skipping school? Even though I quit that old job I still invited the kids to live a day in my shoes. After a very long all day field trip yesterday, which I will blog about tomorrow, Jay decided to decline my invite and go to school. Gracie on the other hand accepted. I think she thought things would be a little different. Below are bits of conversations we had last night and throughout the morning. Since blogging is one of the things mama does… Gracie is helping me write this. In fact doing it like a script was all her idea!
(Last night while getting ready for bed.)
Mama: So what do you think I do all day?
Gracie: I think you sit in the office and play games and blog on the computer all day.
Mama: Really? Okay! Well set your clock for 6:15am, that’s when I get up every morning and get some rest. You are going to need it!
Gracie: Ummmmm… Okay?
( 6:15am and Gracie’s alarm clock has gone off. She has hopped out of bed, gotten herself dressed and come downstairs to join me in the kitchen.)
Mama: Good morning. Ready to start the day?
Gracie: I guess, what’s for breakfast.
Mama: I don’t know? What are you making?
Gracie: What? Oh, um. Pancakes I guess?
Mama: Okay get the bowl and stuff and let’s get cooking!
(Below picture of Gracie washing the dishes after BIG mess of cooking. Not sure she realized how many dishes making Pancakes would create! After dishes we started laundry. Today is sheet changing day. So Gracie got to work. She even had to take the sheets off her brother’s bunk beds. Both beds, as he likes to go back and forth sleeping in both bunks.
With the Laundry started we went back downstairs to finish cleaning up the living room. She also swept the front stoop before mopping inside so that stuff would not be dragged into our clean floors. Wait it gets better. I also had her clean the downstairs bathroom. I didn’t make her clean the toilet but she watched me doing it. Gracie commented about how if she was at school she would be having a morning snack,so I decided it was time to have a coffee break. I know I know many people think she is way too young to drink coffee. Unfortunately my baby picked up a bad habit living in Brazil. But don’t worry it is mostly milk! And the poor kid needed something. It was only 9am and she was already dragging. LOL) (Along with her grownup drink we had some grownup conversation.)
Mama: You know Mama made the decision to stop working and stay home. There are many advantages to staying home and many disadvantage. And as you are seeing I don’t just sit home eating bonbons all day do I?
Gracie: No! What are some of the advantages to staying home, besides that fact that we get to see you a lot more. Which I like. (She came over and gave me a big huh)
Mama: Well the main one is just what you said… I get to be with you and Jay. I am not just a mama, I am the Manager of the house. I get to make my own schedule. And because I make my own schedule it is flexible. I can work around you guys.
Gracie: I don’t get it.
Mama: Okay… if I was still working at (Name of company I worked for) and I got a call from school that you were sick, what would I need to do?
Gracie: Tell your boss and then come get me.
Mama: Yes. But if I was working on a project that needed to be done right away, I would need to find someone else to take over, and most likely I would need to continue working on it from home after I picked you up. But now lets imagine that I am a at home mama and I get the same call. What happens then?
Gracie: You stop whatever you are doing and come get me!
Mama: Now you get it. You know sometimes Mama gets lots of calls from the school about Jay. It was hard to get off all the time when that happened. And with daddy working the crazy hours and traveling like he does… well it was just hard. Daddy and I talked about what would be best for us, for our family and this was the decision we made. But it has a big disadvantageous!
Mama: Mama doesn’t get paid to do what she does now! After you finish drinking your drink I am going to show you how I pay bills and what I mean.
(With coffee break over and the mugs washed and put away, we went upstairs where we put clothes in the dryer, another load in the wash and then we went into the office. Gracie had a real eye opener. I showed her how I pay bills online which she thought was fun. I then went over with her, having her write down each thing, exactly where our money goes each month. How much we pay for groceries, how much we pay for electricity, water, gas etc. Then I showed her how much her daddy makes each month. Her response…
Gracie: We are broke!
The poor baby started crying. I felt kind of bad about that. I held her and explained how things have a way of working out and how we were not broke but that we definitely are on a budget now that I am not working. I told her that most likely after summer I will need to go back to work at least part-time. Her idea was for me to get busy, and finish writing my book so that we would have money! How sweet. If only it was that easy.
Gracie is taking a break. I put the TV on for her and made her lunch, while I finish this. My baby girl needs to be a baby for a little while. I don’t have the heart to tell her yet that mama still has to finish laundry, make calls, figure out dinner and help Jay with his homework when he gets home in a couple of hours. Plus tonight is Taekwando so I will play carpool mama as well. I think my baby girl learned today that all Mamas’ have pretty big shoes, whether we stay home to work or leave the house. During the day she asked me a question that I found interesting. She said…
Gracie: Do I have to be a mama?
My heart stopped for a minute. You see I never ever can remember a time when I questioned wanting to be a mama. In fact that was the one thing I ever was and still am sure I wanted to be. I hope my plan to work her to the bone didn’t just back fire. I held my baby girl close to me and told her…
Mama: Baby you can be whatever you want to be. That is your choice and one you don’t have to make right now.
The school at first was not going to allow Grace to participate in Take Your Child To Work Day. It was going to be considered an unexcused absence unless I proved that it was an educational experience. Perhaps they thought staying home with me would not be educational. I think I can safely say that my girl learned something today. I know I did!