Having a larger than average family is difficult for a few reasons. Obviously, finances are tighter the more children you have. You need more clothes, shoes and food. There are more co-pays and more activities to join. You also need a gas guzzling car that seats more than five. Actually you need a car that seats about eight to be exact, especially if you want to tote any friends around.
Aside from money, the basic task of planning where everyone will be every day becomes a time consuming nightmare. We need to remember who has practice, who has a playdate, who has an appointment and who is going to cry they don't have a playdate. Homework needs to be completed, reading logs need to be filled out, and there is always that one on one time every child craves.
As of late, I am finding that along with finances and schedule chaos, making everything fair is near impossible. When we ask where everyone wants to eat, we have at least three different answers. If we need to choose a family game, everyone has a different idea.
The trick is a rotation system. The next trick is remembering whose turn it is to chose dinner.
Truthfully, keeping everyone in good spirits is usually easy, although there are times my kids feel shorted. And I can't blame them. I have to say no for reasons that really don't make sense to them. It's tough to explain that you can't do something because I don't want to deal with the mess when your two year old sister wants to do the exact same thing.
Last night LLG wanted a popsicle at 9pm. Since we're on vacation, everyone was still awake. It was a full house. Normally, I don't mind if my munchkins have popsicles. We pick our battles around here.
But last night, if I handed LLG that popsicle, I would have had to hand out four popsicles. I also would have had to clean a very sticky toddler, and most likely provide her with new jammies as well.
I just didn't have it in me. And this was very upsetting to LLG, who suffers from middle child syndrome more than my other babies.
I try my best to make them all happy, but it's tough to make everyone happy all the time. I take comfort in knowing my kids will grow to be very well adjusted adults, with a solid understanding of the fact that the world does not revolve around them.
Sometimes you can't have a Popsicle, and the reason stinks. But that's life, and sometimes it just isn't fair.