This week means a return to what, for many people, is a monotonous and seemingly never-ending saga of doing the same thing over and over.
Yes, I’m talking about the routine that comes with children making their way back to school.
From getting up at the same time and trying to get the kids to bed at the same time, five days a week, to organizing work or home life around drop off and pick up times along with any after-school activities or home work.
It can be a big task for everyone in the family, even if the family has just one child.
For some families, that transition back into this routine is simpler as one parent may stay at home or has a very flexible schedule. For others, it may mean having to rely on relatives or even the kids themselves, should both parents be part of the full-time workforce.
Now while a ‘routine’ can quickly get boring, there are a few ways to ‘mix’ things up without totally ruining the regular schedule during the week.
Some things I have found that keep the ‘routine’ interesting include — finding something the whole family enjoy doing together and doing it on a different day of the week sometimes; taking an unexpected trip out during the week which can be as simple as a trip to eat or heading to a playground; and, changing up what the kids take for lunch with a special addition or treat.
Okay sure, these suggestions — and likely others people can come up with — take a bit of pre-planning, but it is certainly worth it in the end. The children are usually happier, there is normally less conflict (especially when people are groggy/grumpy in the morning) and the parents don’t get lulled into complacency because they do the same thing day after day after day after day after…
And if you aren’t ready to change things up, that’s okay too. Every family is different, so feel free to do what you feel is right and works for your family.
This is the time, every four years in this province, that I tend to dread — the final month before the province-wide municipal elections.
As a journalist, I hear the campaigning, the promises, the seemingly sincere quotes, the fresh ideas, the real truths and the outright falsehoods extended from the mouths of current and wannabe politicians. I hear it for months before the actual deadline to file nominations, to the point where I have tuned out all of those voices with two months left to go.
Sure, I guess that makes me a cynic.
However, through covering various federal, provincial and municipal elections in a wide variety of urban and rural communities, in four different provinces, I think I have heard nearly every idea — good and bad — and have witnessed the aftermath of the election up close.
So, I go on with doing my job, not judging or drawing conclusions, but laying out the facts as they stand or how the candidate wants their position to read and leaving it to the readers to determine and figure out whether it will work for them.
Do I catch flack for doing it this way? Yeah, sometimes I’m accused of taking sides, but I skiff that off because I also try to ask fair, though investigative questions. Why? Because as a journalist I’m supposed to be the line that balances the right to express an idea with the right to know the truth and what lies behind the idea.
Regardless of whether or not I really care about what’s being said.
But that is…just an observation.