My Crazy Life With Two Kids

Literally pulling my hair out.

I realized this morning that I am completely overbooked and as the writer of People I want to Punch in the Throat would say, I am an Over Achiever Mom (OAM). However, this OAM is just not cutting it. I have good intentions, I really do but I’m learning that I just can’t balance it all.

This single mom is the Girl Scout Leader, helps with Boy Scouts when I can, is the parent administrator for the soccer team, sits on several committees for work, volunteers at school and local nonprofits, has an adorable but very demanding puppy, constantly has the kids friends over, works full-time, and wants to be the best mom ever. I also am responsible to take them to all orthodontist and doctor appointments, school concerts, practices, etc. And I VERY RARELY miss a game and never miss a school program.

Girl Scout Trip at Natural Bridge

Happy Birthday Dr. Seuss!

Last week, the day before Dr. Seuss’ birthday, I thought it would be a good idea to make “hat” treats for the kids’ classes. At 8 a.m. that morning, before my day really started, it did sound like an awesome idea. But by 5 p.m., when I was leaving work and still had to go to the store to get $30 worth of items, it didn’t sound so fun anymore. I came home to discover my almost 13-year-old and her friend had decided to make 2 dozen no-bake cookies. Wow! I wish they were no-mess cookies. There is a child in my son’s class with a nut-free allergy so the kitchen had to be scrubbed top to bottom before we could start making the hats (totally worth it though so that she could enjoy the treat). Luckily A decided to jump in and make most of the hats out of Oreos, icing and red Gummy Savers. Seventy hats later, I was ready to pack them up for school.

That morning, Dr. Seuss’ birthday, I’m already in my car leaving for work when my daughter calls and says she forgot her treats at home. “Are you kidding me?” All that work and her hats are sitting in the kitchen. Of course I turn around because I can’t imagine wasting them. I run them up to school and finally head off to work.

Waiting out the tornado.

Then the weekend came. Friday night: J tells me he can’t find his black pants that are required for his Odyssey competition the next day. Rehearsal is in 30 minutes. So right before the tornadoes are supposed to hit (yes, I live in NKY), we run to Target. The cashier is dumb enough to say in front of my 10-year-old, “you better hurry, the tornado is coming and is going to destroy us.” Really buddy? Was that necessary? I rush J to school for practice, knowing that the basement at school is probably the safest place he could be if we had a tornado. I then rush home to be with my daughter and puppy during the storm. We bunker down in our half bath in the basement. The tornado doesn’t hit us but did hit nearby towns. The next hour is spent checking on friends. After cutting veggies and making dip, A and I leave to pick up J from school and then head to a family fish fry at my cousin’s home. We finally get home at 10 p.m. when a friend calls me for an emergency ride 40 minutes away… I finally get to bed at midnight.

Between tournament games

Scout playing with Buddy at the dog park.

Saturday: Get my daughter out the door at 7:20 a.m. for her soccer game and leave shortly after with J for the Odyssey Competition (he took second place!). We were there until 2 p.m. After we headed to Graeters Ice cream to celebrate as a team and got home about 3:30. I then headed to the park with our puppy to let her run off some energy. I decided we were staying in the rest of the night and that we would not have friends over or go anywhere. I needed a break.

Sunday: A wakes up not feeling well and has a low-grade fever. The puppy is puking. Awesome day ahead! I cleaned up the house and finally watched Judy Moody (very good). I ran to Target to buy items for a friend impacted by the tornado and the local Animal Shelter that was housing the animals until they could be reunited with their families. We then headed to my mom’s to celebrate her birthday.

Monday comes and back to work. I have a lot of paperwork to do for the soccer team that I still haven’t finished, a to do list at work that is a mile long, puppy training Monday night, a school concert Tuesday night, soccer practice tonight, a very messy house and I could go on and on. So today, I am finally in my car and start to head to work when my Droid beeps. I tend to ignore this when I’m driving but luckily looked before getting on the highway. I see that I am supposed to be at my son’s school in 5 minutes to participate in gym class with him. I know he’s expecting me. CRUD! I turn around and head to school making it with about 30 seconds to spare. I call work on my way in and tell them of my delay. I get into gym class to bowl as the email invite said. Apparently we are doing exercise bowling. If you miss three pins the entire team has to do three star jumps. If you miss one pin, everyone has to do a crazy dance. If you miss five, you have to do five pushups. Wow, I wasn’t expecting a workout but I guess it was a good way to start the day. Then we started “CRAZY” bowling. We had a disco light and had to roll the dice to see which way you rolled the ball. I found myself having to do the old between the legs and J had to lie on his belly to throw the ball.

Parent/Child Bowling in Gym Class

It was a lot of fun but I almost missed it! He would have been so devastated. I almost missed it because I’m way overbooked and can’t keep things straight. I can’t imagine giving up any of it though… well maybe work but that’s not really an option. I feel like my house suffers more than anything. Notice that none of this included “me” or “dating” time, which I have completely given up on. So how do all you other parents do it? How do you stay on top of everything? How do you balance it all and not lose your mind?

Team Work On and Off the Field

Like many people, I often feel like I need a break after the busy weekend. Most of my weekends are focused on my daughter’s soccer schedule. She plays club soccer, which includes two trainings a week and one to three games a weekend. She also plays indoor in the winter so soccer is truly year-round for us. People without children or those who have children who aren’t involved in activities and sports often ask me why I put so much time and energy into a sport. I immediately tell them that organized sports and activities promote confidence, health and teamwork.  My daughter has built friendships, learned to take direction from other adults outside the classroom and work hard for something she wants. The training that Northern Kentucky Soccer Academy provides is intense but my daughter looks forward to it each week.

Over the last few weeks, I’ve seen how these skills have translated in her life off the field. The 18 members of Team Fusion, who joined together earlier this fall, have become fast friends. These girls truly enjoy being together. And although they haven’t had a lot of wins on the field, they have learned how to work well together on and off the field.

Two weeks ago the girls had a two hour break between games. We set up lunch for the team and cornhole for the parents. The girls discovered several ears of corn nearby. Next thing we know, the team is sitting in a circle shucking corn. They then scraped the corn off the cob into a large box. This may seem like such a silly task, but they worked as a team to do this. They were laughing and working together the entire time. They were entertained, saved their energy for the next game, bonded and used teamwork to accomplish a goal they set for themselves. They then decided to give the corn to their coach so he could feed the squirrels in his yard.

On Friday, the coaches and a few parents took the team to watch the NKU men’s soccer game. The girls were so excited to cheer their trainer Kevin on during the game. Earlier that week the girls devised a plan. Several of them met at one house immediately after school to make posters and T-shirts. Five of the girls made shirts that went together K on one shirt, E on the next, V on the next and well you get it. The girls worked together for about three hours on their shirts and posters.

Although I love soccer, I often feel that my life revolves around it. However, it is times like these that make me know it’s totally worth it. My daughter has created long-lasting friendships, learned to work well with other people on many levels and become more confident on and off the field. I’ve also had the opportunity to make good friends by sitting on the sidelines week after week with the same parents.

Go Fusion![slidesho

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Getting Started

First day of 7th and 4th grade

My 12-year-old daughter A is probably going to be upset when she finds out about this blog so let me start by apologizing to her. Sorry hon. Now that we got that over with, I’ll get started by telling you a little about me.

My name is Gina Holt. I have two children who we will call A, my 12-year-old daughter, and J, my almost 10-year-old son. I’ve been a single mom for 8 years now, which does make raising two tweens a little more challenging I think. Thank goodness their dad is just a phone call and 30 miles away.

I wrote for several local publications for 10 years. I have covered topics like 9-11, the Erpenbeck Scandal, the deer hunting issue in Fort Thomas, politics and much more for the Community Press, The Enquirer and The Kentucky Post. I have written about the restaurant industry for Prep Magazine, Northern Kentucky festivals for Kentucky Monthly and my favorite… family and kid issues for Cincinnati Family Magazine.

I am now the public relations coordinator for the Kenton County Public Library. I love my job but I miss writing about family events, medical issues, my kids, etc… So here we go.

My plan is to write about the funny stuff my kids do as well as some of the issues we take on socially, medically, etc. You will quickly discover that my children have had a lot of health issues over the years, that my life revolves around my daughter’s soccer schedule and that my son is a genius who can’t find his shoes as he trips over them. You will also find out that I love my children more than anything but wine and good food is how I stay sane.

Feel free to comment, tell stories about your own kids, ask questions, etc… I hope you enjoy!