The Meltdown Tea Time

by Josée

I feel very blessed to have the opportunity to stay at home with my children. I know that for many women this is not a possibility and for others it isn’t even a desire. That being said, being a SAHM, like most things in life, has it challenges. If anyone thinks that SAHMs sit around all day eating bonbons please come and spend a day with me. With the extra set of hands I’m sure I’d have more bonbon eating opportunities!

I’m a strong believer of having rhythm in our days. It gives us things to look forward to during the day. Times for stories, art, quiet, outdoors and snacks are cherished in our home. Despite our rhythm, I’ve noticed certain hours of the day to be particularly challenging. I’m sure every family has times of the day that are difficult.

Over the last week I have named our challenging time The Meltdown. It begins the moment the clock strikes three o’clock and continues until we begin supper. During The Meltdown, everything seems to fall apart all around me. Monkey is overtired but refuses to nap, Sweetpea thinks napping is overrated and Student arrives from school. In the next couple hours Monkey and Student chase each other around house while Sweetpea wails in protest at being left out. It’s a time to sink or swim. I’m content if I can manage a doggie paddle. I kiss ouchies, cook supper and dish out discipline for behaviour that never seems to happen during the rest of the day. All the while I am fervently praying for patience, wisdom and more patience.

However, today I was sinking fast. My usual resources for The Meltdown were already exhausted and I was ready to hide. My thoughts skittered. Somewhere between needing calmness, craving chamomile and praying I put the kettle on. As the children were screaming I pulled out some herbal tea and announced, rather calmly I might add, that it was tea time. As soon as Monkey saw me bring down the fancy tea cups he sat at the table and I was doggie paddling again.

Monkey and Student sat quietly for over half-and-hour sipping their tea and eating dried apricots, almonds, banana and a cookie. I smiled, something I should do more often during this time of day. There is something simply magical about tea time with children. I know of families that have liturgical teas with their children as a way to teach them more about Advent, Christmas, Lent and Easter. Today I am convinced that teas are a wonderful way to calm and collect the family. I will definitely be adding this activity to my Meltdown arsenal!

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cindyswobblog February 25, 2011 - 5:26 am

Good for you Josee! Wow, it sounds like you're a veteran mom – I never would have guessed that somthing like that would have such an effect! I LOVE to find out new ways of dealing with certain times of the day too. My "meltdown" time so to speak is at bedtime. I did not know I could get so frustrated and lose patience SO fast. Often I am too frustrated to even think about praying! I value my evenings so much, that when I feel I'm deprived of them it's not fair. I have to continue to remind myself that it's "not my time" as it were, but God's time, and he's even more patient with me daily than I am at my best with my Bunny. Thanks for posting about this – it feels like a topic that SAHM's don't like to talk about very often, although I could be wrong about that. I hope you have relaxing evenings! Praying for you and your family 🙂

Rosina {Rosy ~ Posy} February 26, 2011 - 5:37 am

Oh I love tea time! It really does work doesn't it. I don't know what it is but my 3 will sit like perfect little angels (well almost *grin*) and sip on tea and eat fruit for a good long time to and it just cuts some of the chaos that some days bring 🙂 Have a wonderful weekend!

Elisa March 1, 2011 - 3:01 am

YES! My boys LOVE tea time. It is a perfect time of day to remind everyone to relax a little. It will soon be too hot here for tea time..but I will have to figure something nice out, like ice tea time or something. =)


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