Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Mozart Hour

As silly as the name may sound, we have adapted an hour of our day that I call the "Mozart Hour". The kids instantly know what it means. When 4pm comes along, things tend to get crazy. I am usually preparing dinner or getting my chores done before Jeremy gets home. Sometimes I am folding a load of laundry or organizing something but usually it is dinner. Classical music has been something that always helps sooth my mood. It helps me to feel at peace and brings a nice touch to a crazy time of day. In the early morning hours when I am alone, before the kids wake up, I listen to classical hymns and it helps set the tone and prepare me for the madness of breakfast time. Classical music in the afternoon reminds everyone that it is time to slow down, calm down and get ready to use manners at the dinner table. Peace at the dinner table is something I crave and my boys are still learning how to do this. This new family devotion time will help tremendously.

Okay so what is "Mozart Hour"? At 4pm my kids know that I will have classical music playing and that they will sit at the kitchen table to color, draw or paint with water colors. We have an art box I put out on the table and a sterilite FULL of crayons. I buy crayons at every grocery store trip to ensure fresh, sharp crayons! If all three kids need the color red, well there are plenty of reds in the box and there are never any arguments over crayons. Huge sigh of relief! Because I have made this a part of our day, without fail for the last two months, they expect it and look forward to it.

I know as Moms we have certain times of the day that are difficult or busy so I wanted to share something that works for us. I don't really know how I came up with this except for the fact that I am constantly praying that the Holy Spirit will speak to me about my children and our time spent at home. I must give HIM full credit because I am not usually good at coming up with things like this. Any creativity or parenting success I may have comes 100% from my Lord, Jesus Christ. 

You know you have found something that works well when Daddy walks in the door and the house is clean, supper is on the stove and the kids are quietly coloring or creating art of some sort with music playing softly in the background. Oh and Mom is calm too! If my husband can walk into a peaceful home, no matter how hard my day may have been before his arrival, that is success! I love when I do something that impresses my husband and this is something that he thinks is pretty amazing. 

Maybe your family has something similar to this or something you have found that works great before dinner.  If so, please share!  So many of you are incredibly creative on the home front and I love learning from you.
Looking forward to "Mozart Hour" already!


(P.S. At 3:30pm EVERY SINGLE DAY, the kids do a run through of the house to clean or put up their laundry I have folded.  Josiah and Ava Beth take turns vacuuming the tile and rugs.  It is a system that works and they do it wholeheartedly because they know as soon as they are finished that MOZART HOUR is here!


Love Being a Nonny said...

WOW! I love this! What a GREAT idea!

P.S. Do none of your children take naps?

Amanda said...

My five and seven year old do not take naps. The three and a half year old just dropped his. They do have an hour though in their rooms where they can play with legos or read.

Erin said...

That is an awesome idea! Love it.

Kelly said...

Love this:-)

I agree wholeheartedly with you about your husband coming home to a peaceful home. This is the perfect idea for that crazy hour, and very similar to what I do with the girls. I have candles burning, classical music playing, and snacks ready for them when they get off the bus. That way they can unwind and chat with me while I am getting diner ready. Now that they are gone all day, what used to be the crazy hour is my favorite of the day because it's when I get them back!

Christie Taylor said...

I love this idea Amanda! I might borrow it from your repertoire. Sounds like a fantastic way to avoid the craziness that is late afternoon!

Amanda said...

Oh Kelly I love that! I can picture you and your sweet girls. You are such a blessing to me and always make me feel so loved by ALL of your comments.

Christie, I am so happy to see you!! OF COURSE! Borrow it, steal it, whatever! It's not mine cause it was the Lord who gave it to me!! Love you!

Kate said...

love that! i make sure they start picking up around 4 and are usually listening to adventures in odyessy (they are a little older but yours may start to enjoy that sometime soon). but man, classical music? LOVE that idea! it really soothes the soul. :)

Margaret said...

love this - may I please borrow it? My children are wild at dinner time :) You are so smart Amanda :)
My kiddos don't nap anymore either, which means they go to sleep earlier and I like that!

Paula said...

I am going to HAVE to borrow this idea....Colton is a nut during that hour....This may help us all because I feel like all I do is fuss...fuss ...fuss and then I am so upset before his bed time.

Christie Taylor said...

Okay, we are in the midst of Mozart hour II. This has TRANSFORMED my afternoon! I am not at ALL on edge, my kids are creating art together, and complimenting each other genuinely! (And I am starting on dinner...) I am so glad you shared!!