The Temptation of Busy

by Laura on October 28, 2013

in Blog, Planning

GraySoccer350

Soccer-filled weekends

I’m experiencing Monday morning exhaustion. The kids are at school and I’m seriously thinking about taking a nap, as this is my first quiet moment of the past 66 hours. The reason . . . Busy!

We’ve filled the weekend hours with four soccer games, a parish auction dinner, a school fundraiser, and more pumpkin carving. Through it all, I was tempted just sit back and let convenience take over.

Following our two-soccer-game-Saturday, and the evening’s auction dinner at our church, I was ready to throw in the towel when the alarm went off early Sunday morning. It was my son’s 8 a.m. soccer game that put me over the edge. Not only was I wanting to have one morning just to sleep in, but I was dragging three tired, and cranky girls out the door to watch their brother play on a cold and damp morning. I knew that the morning wake-up would be hard for them, and I wondered how I could let them sleep in as long as possible before rousing them when it was still dark outside.

The day before, Greg and I exchanged a few ideas of how we could make breakfast work. Ultimately, I didn’t want to feed them early in the morning, then have to do the same thing when we returned home after game.

He suggested Egg McMuffins. Immediately, I suggested that I make them. (I’ll do anything not to go to McDonald’s)

Portable breakfasts would certainly work in the early morning time crunch, but when it came down to it, I had forgotten to buy English muffins. Greg still pushed the McDonald’s option, with “They’re actually really good. We can pick them up on the way to the field, and be done with breakfast.”

I still resisted (as I always do when McDonald’s occasionally comes into the conversation).

soccerGirls

Early morning soccer supporters

In the end, I decided that the extra chocolate chip muffins I had on hand from snacks after Saturday’s soccer game, along with some hot chocolate would do the trick – and keep their bellies satisfied until we could get back home for a proper breakfast. For my soccer-playing boy, I’d have to do something else – eggs and toast – to give him some energy before the game, and then a second breakfast after the game.

The breakfast/snack idea worked, and we successfully dodged the McDonald’s option.

But, as the day continued and we found ourselves at another game in the afternoon, followed by a fundraiser at the school, and I was pressed to figure out how to feed the family in the middle of our over-scheduled weekend.

We eventually wound up back at home around 4:30, exhausted. And, of course, the kids immediately asked, “What’s for dinner?”

At first, I couldn’t remember what I had planned, but when I did divulge that it was Jalapeno Beef Stew, I realized that I should have started this dinner much earlier in the day, and let it sit in the slow cooker.

“Dinner will take about 2 hours before its ready,” I said to Greg, hoping he would suggest that maybe we’d order out instead. This time, he was the one pushing for a home meal. “That’s fine,” he said. “I’m not too hungry right now.”

Despite my exhaustion, I knew making the meal I had planned would be best in the long run. I pushed through the 25 minute preparation for the stew, then left it to finish on the stove.

As we all settled in at home after a long, exhausting weekend, the smell of the stew cooking made us all excited about our Sunday dinner.

When we sat down, we laughed about the weekend, congratulated our two who played soccer this weekend, and high-fived them all for their energy during the school’s walk-a-thon fundraiser.

As I realized this past weekend, the temptation to find the quick and convenient answer to the what-to-eat dilemma, especially when you’re exhausted and just want to sit down and relax before getting up and going again, is always there.  Overscheduling does a number on the mealtime priorities, but the reward of the effort put into last night’s dinner was worth it. We had been on the run all weekend long, and despite how tired I was, I resisted the temptation of being busy and ordering out. Instead, I stuck with my planned meal — and our Sunday night dinner together. I am sure had we ordered in, we just wouldn’t have had the same experience.

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