One of the most annoying parts of my day is making afternoon-tea-to-go. Every day after school this term, my kids have some after school activities, and at 2pm I start getting organized. I make a sandwich for each child, add some fruit, some dry fruit and nuts, a biscuit or some crackers, plus something extra. I also add extra for whichever child has more than one after school activity that day – like today my daughter has soccer practice and then ballet, so I’ll pack an extra piece of fruit for her. I also fill up some spare drink bottles for the car, cause the kids drink bottles are always empty by 3pm.
This is an annoying thing to do every afternoon, and I’d prefer to just come home and let the kids organize themselves however, I have definitely learnt the hard way about not providing a full and filling afternoon tea come 3 o’clock.
Grizzling, and whining, frustration and anger. Tears and emotional breakdowns are all a big part of trying to do too much in the afternoon without fueling and hydrating the kids.
Yes – it is wintery out there.
Yes – the kids are spending more time inside.
Yes – dehydration is not such the big problem it can be in the summer heat ……
But – there are a lot of winter sports practices, a lot of moving in and out of heated rooms, and kids are still getting dehydrated, and hungry by the end of the day.
The personality traits that you find most challenging are exasceberated by the H.A.N.G.R.Y child (angry/hungry) ……
The Introverted child, is already at their wits end of the over-stimulation of their day, so providing food allows them to just stop. It allows their thoughts to turn internal, and helps them replenish their energy.
The Extraverted child too, has used up a lot of energy having to be quiet through school based activities, or sitting still and silent in assembly, so they need fuel before they head to their favourite part of the day which is doing sport with their friends, being in action, and around people and action. To be the most successful at this they need fuel and water.
Frustration aside at constantly making ‘food-to-go’ it’s really important to me that I set up my kids to be as successful as they can be. And it works.