I think every mother of little ones knows what I am talking about. That time late in the afternoon when the kids just go nuts. School is over for the day, the littlest ones wake up from their naps with a new burst of energy. Everyone is cranky...and then the whining starts.
"When's dinner?" "I'm starving!" "When's Daddy getting home?" "I'm bored!"
The baby is fussy, the kids are fighting and I am just trying to get dinner on the table.
So how do we calm the crazy hour?
I put them to work. Nobody stays bored in this house! :)
I try to turn the crazy hour into a time of preparing for Daddy to come home. After working all day he wants to come home to a haven, not a landmine field of toys. So, we do a quick pick up.
If I were to yell at the kids, "Clean up this mess!". They would take one look, feel overwhelmed and protest. But If I enthusiastically say, "Ok, let's do a quick clean up, everyone pick up 10 things." They jump right to it, usually turning it into a race.
Then we start on dinner...I try to plan out dinner at least that morning so I am not scrambling at the last minute to make something. I love having the kids help me cook, but we have a lot of little hands that are eager to help and sometimes it is overwhelming. I try to use this time as my special time with one of the kids. They take turns who will get to help Mommy in the kitchen, and the rest will help set the table.
They clean off the day's schoolwork, wipe it clean, fold the napkins and set out the silverware. They love to pick out a candle for the centerpiece. They are so excited to show Daddy when he gets home and my assistant chef is just bursting with pride over our delicious meal.
Why is it important to prepare our homes for our husbands? Because he deserves it.
"But he doesn't know what I've been through all day!" No, he doesn't, but neither do you. He has had a boss to answer to all day. He has had a long day away from his family just to provide for us. He hasn't had a sweet baby to cuddle or little ones giving hugs. He has missed many first smiles and first steps.
Yes, I know how hard it can be to be home all day with a full house and no break. I am sitting here now with 3 hours of sleep and no shower...but I would never want to trade this life for what my husband goes through all day.
Every man wants to feel like the king of his castle. And when he comes home feeling like a king, he will be more willing to treat you like a queen.