The summertime writing blues

For many writing moms the definition of summer doesn’t come with the heat but the lack of school and the decrease in children’s activities. Little Miss Markey (formerly known as Baby Markey until she informed me she is too big to be a baby) is accustomed to a great preschool and a slew of activities. Now except for one art class going on through June she has NOTHING!

My peaceful writing time is no filled with the sounds of “mommy watch me,” and “mommy look what I did.” I love having my daughter home but trying to find an outlet for all her energy, which I desperately want to bottle, can be a challenge and normally results in the dwindling of my daily word count. And keep in mind we live in Saudi Arabia; last week we hit 120 degrees so anything outside is a no go.

Little Miss Markey hard at work at a playgroup.

Little Miss Markey hard at work at a playgroup.

So what do fellow writing moms do? It may take time away from my work but I’m a huge fan of organized playgroups. This gets my daughter around her friends again and it also helps her to burn off some steam. While she still won’t nap after a playgroup she is more agreeable to have some quiet time that will allow me time to squeeze in some work.

I also went to the local office supply store and stocked up on paper and other supplies so that I can encourage Little Miss Markey to work on her own projects. This works sometimes and I like to think I’m building her a good work ethic. She also has a lot of craft projects and even though I’m an artist only in the forms of the written word and dance my house will soon look like an abstract art studio.

I even bought one of those HUGE cardboard playhouses from Toys R Us that she can color and decorate. At least here in Saudi a lot of the “indoor” summer toys are on sale as a way to encourage people to get their kids out of the sun. There are many ways to occupy kids in the summer and I’m sure many will allow moms to continue their writing, work, etc. I believe summertime tests our creativity more than ever as well as our nerves.

How are you structuring your child’s summer so they stay happy and safe while you try to stay sane and manage a sense of normalcy?

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