I’ve always found this to be the worst time of the year. There is not enough sun and the lack of light makes me feel as forlorn as Jennifer Aniston, my faculties as sharp as Britney Spears’, my life as vibrant as Stephen Harper’s personality. Even though life is great right now, I still have those blah days. Cakes and I really miss our parks-we still go because it’s been so mild, but there is usually no one there and it’s muddy and cold and there’s nothing to do. I bought Cakes a sled in the fall, with great excitement, envisioning the two of us frolicking through the flakes, building snowmen and making snow angels. It looks like that is not to be.
The thing that allows us to keep our sanity is our drop-ins. I don’t know what we’d do without them. We’re so lucky here-we actually have two great drop-ins that are just a short walk away. One of them we’ve been attending for over a year. We know the other parents quite well now, as well as the staff. The staff are so warm and knowledgeable. I take all of my child-related (and some non-child-related) questions to them, saving me from reading those dreary parenting books. This centre has a rare focus on the mom – there is always a pot of coffee on, and a pair of arms to hold your baby while you pee. Once a week they hold a morning seminar and will provide childcare while mom (or dad) attends. They are a godsend.
We found the second drop-in just two weeks ago. It is run in Cakes’ future school (we lucked into having a good school near our house. When we were house hunting, we were more concerned about the restaurants in the area). This centre is more child-focused and structured. We have song-time and story-time and then the kids head for the gym where we drag out all kinds of balls, cars, and trucks and they run around like maniacs. Great fun. I also like the fact that Cakes is getting accustomed to her future school already.
The other way we’re coping is by having frequent play-dates with our neighbours. There are two great ladies who live right across the street. We all like to read, so we’re going to start exchanging the books we’ve read and holding informal book club while the kids play (it will be even better once the kids are old enough to actually play together and amuse each other and not require constant refereeing).
Despite these blessings, it is still a hard time of the year. I crave warmth, life in my garden, the feeling of sun on my face.
How do you keep your sanity during these dreary winter months?