Finding the time ~ Family Time
Finding time for family and fun is always challenging. Life seems to demand full-time everything. So how do you find a balance between work, hobbies, kids, friends, and a side hustle? Well, for our family, that meant incorporating the kids into all those aspects of our lives. When you have a large family and a blended family, time seems to slip away. Keeping the focus on our children for all our choices and how we spend our time has to be first.
The driving force behind the Celtic Clan Soapery was to develop activities to do with our children. In 2020, like for most families, our life was flipped upside down. Suddenly in what seemed like a blink of an eye, the world around us was on lockdown. As a mother of seven (four biological three bonus daughters) with children ranging in age from 6 months-10 years old, I found myself suddenly scrambling to find activities we could all enjoy. When the lockdown began, the kids found it relatively easy to adjust. We had already been limiting outside activity because our daughter had been born nearly three months early. And with her limitations, we were cautious in the months leading up to the covid closure.
But we quickly found that with schools no longer teaching in-person and juggling full-time work, my husband and I needed to develop activities to fill the extra hours of idleness. As I have mentioned before, working at my Aunt's craft store as a child significantly impacted my life.
Also, with my experience in creating handmade soap and skincare, my husband and I thought that would be a fun way to incorporate science and art into the impromptu homeschooling curriculum.
We found that the kids enjoyed the creative process. They enjoyed the dedicated time even more. It is not easy to find activities that can engage this age range of children without one (or a few) feeling left out at times. I found that I could break up activities and find projects that interested each of the children. We could focus on what they cared about, but still, all have a common goal together. When we added the extra step of forming a Soapery, the kids became even more excited. They could see the process of marketing and experience the satisfaction of others enjoying their work.
Over the summer of 2021, when things were settling down, the children held a pop garage sale where they featured products they had made. Our Goal of selling soaps to raise money for care packages for the Tacoma Rescue Mission was successful. My husband and I have found that helping the children to focus on what we can offer to others helps when the "lt isn't fair" words creep in. And this is not just for the kids; I admit there are times when I feel like this life isn't what I signed up for. As a family, we faced a challenge that caused us to honestly examine if the things we were teaching the children were, in fact, something we were willing to live or if they were just lip service.
- Read more about Celtic Clan Soapery ~ Crisis of Faith
- Read more about Celtic Clan Soapery ~ Mission-Driven Business.
Still, today when life gets hectic, we strive to make sure that our activities keep the focus on family time. When the Celtic Clan Soapery Crew is not in the kitchen, you will often find us shooting hockey in the driveway and having a spontaneous water fight (trying to avoid flooding the house). We also enjoy playing indoor/outdoor laser with dad keeping them up far later than I care to admit.
- Read more age-appropriate ideas for family time.
The most important facts that we have found throughout this year are twofold. First, kids are resilient. And second, when you find ways to encourage their creative desires, they will learn and grow despite the obstacles they face.
Oh, and a third point... it's ok if the laundry is not folded, there are dishes in the sink, and the beds aren't made. Sometimes an extra night in the tent is more important than the mowed lawn and green grass.
~The Mahaffey Family~