Catching My Breath

by Abby on September 21, 2012

cup of coffee and morning paperIt was a Saturday. Not that this fact means much to my kids, who were up and at ’em at the utterly unreasonable hour of 6:30am. I pretended to be asleep so my husband would have to get up with them.* Wife of the Year, right here. When I did finally roll my lazy bones out of bed – after the stomping and door-slamming and shrieks of “I had it FIRST!!” reached a deafening pitch – I realized something. We had nothing planned for the day. Nothing at all.

Relief washed over me. There were no school clothes to rustle up, no homework folders to find, no oatmeal to force down anyone’s throat, no threats of “You’re going to be late!” shouted up the stairs. Not even any shin guards to find or last-minute birthday presents to buy and wrap. We were off the clock. Whew!

A day with nothing scheduled can either feel like a blessing or a burden. On a weekday in the middle of summer when you’ve been everywhere and done everything, you’re the sole parent on duty and the kids are complaining they’re bored at 8am, it’s a burden. How on EARTH are we going to pass the day until bedtime?

But on a Saturday, when the whole family’s home, the coffee’s brewing, and the crazy can’t-come-up-for-air week is behind you, it’s a blessing. We roll around on the family room floor, reading, wrestling, playing board games. Cartoons and coffee. Pancakes and PJs. The sunlight’s streaming in and the phone – for the moment – is not ringing.

There’s a lot of talk about overscheduling kids and the importance of family dinners and making time to “just be.” I agree with the sentiment, but in my life reality has a way of taking over. I might start the week with the best intentions, but before I know it I’m buried in math worksheets and client meetings and back-to-school nights. I guess no one told the rest of the world I’m trying to slow down.

So here’s to simple Saturdays. Taking a beat to relax and recharge – and I don’t mean your iPhone. Staying in your pajamas till noon. Skipping the chores that aren’t pressing. And sleeping in, if your spouse will let you. Happy weekend, all!

*We actually trade off getting up with the kids on weekends. If they “sleep in” till 7am or later on your morning, it’s better than winning the lottery.

RELATED READING: The idea for this post came to me after I read writer Jeff Goins’ essay, Simple Saturdays, and this post, Challenge Yourself: Stop Watching the Clock.

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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Nadine Feldman September 21, 2012 at 8:50 am

What a sweet post! It really made me smile.


Abby September 21, 2012 at 8:56 am

Thanks, Nadine! Happy Friday. 🙂


Pamela Wight September 21, 2012 at 9:42 am

I savor plan-free weekends. We need more of them!


Kathy at kissing the frog September 21, 2012 at 10:05 am

Your Saturday sounds wonderful. I’m hoping to have one of those tomorrow. Sometimes I think without all the craziness and over-scheduling, we wouldn’t appreciate those nothing days.


Abby September 23, 2012 at 8:33 pm

You’re right. Without the craziness, we wouldn’t welcome the quiet nearly as much.


jetts31 September 28, 2012 at 1:05 am

Love weekends when we have nothing planned. My wife and I both work Saturdays so Sundays, to quote the Bangels, are our lazy days. Or at least we try to make them be. Its a coin flip to see which one of us gets to sleep in. Its homemade breakfasts, card games, drawing, laughing, the occasional whining, maybe a Wii Dance competition, and time I love spending with my girls.


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