Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Divide and conquer

We are starting Andrews third week in school, and I've noticed something interesting about some of the other parents. There are these same parents that always walk their kids to school together. Or they pick them up together. Or both. I kind of think it's funny. There could be a ton of different reasons why they do it. Perhaps one of them just got back from deployment and they just really want to be with their family all the time. Or maybe one doesn't have to be to work until later, so it's a family thing that everyone walks to school together. I don't really know why it is funny to me, but it just is. I've noticed the same thing at the grocery store. All these couples, with children or not, that grocery shop together. Once or twice I've been a little jealous. Because it really has been years since we've done that together. And if they don't have kids, I can see why they would both go. But the couples that have kids with them baffle me a bit. Yes, it is much easier to grocery shop with two parents to take care of the kids. But wouldn't it be a better idea to have the dad just stay home with the kids and give that mom some quiet time at the store?

In our family, we are firmly on the side of divide and conquer. I will not bring my kids with me unless Matt isn't home. Sometimes we do things all together, but even in Walmart or another type of store, we each take one kid with us, and split up. At home, he does one kids bedtime and I do the other. Or I finish up making dinner, and he gets the kids up to the table. Matt isn't always home to do these things, so a lot of the time, it is just me. And sometimes the one has to make up for the other, especially when the one has had a long tiring day. Or doesn't feel good.

So, what do you think? Do you divide and conquer, or do you a lot together?


Heidi said...

Kenn and I are the ones in the store together. I have issues with shopping and spending money (childhood trauma thanks to Mom...you understand, I'm sure) so its just more enjoyable to do it with my husband. Not for every trip, mind you...I get the grocheries alone mostly, but on the misc. "WalMart" type trips we often go together. Plus, we aren't great at going out for a weekly date, so we jokingly say these are our romantic dates (with the kids in tow).

Mary Alice said...

We are totally a divide and conquer family. It would take twice as long to do everything if we didn't. The time we save with the divide and conquer technique gives us time to actually enjoy some real down time together.

Jen said...

Interesting observation!

We are always together, whenever possible. We are the only ones at my DS's school that do this, I've noticed. (there are people who do it occasionally.) If DH is in town (he works out of town about 6 days a month, and works from home otherwise), we all walk down take DS to school and pick him up. It's a family event, its a good chance to talk and visit with each other, its a good way to squeak in some exercise, and we like being around each other. It's become a tradition/routine. As far as school goes, I feel like it also shows my son that we value and are supportive of his education for us all to come along.

And even though it's easier and faster to go grocery shopping alone, I like having everyone there--usually each child gets to pick out a (healthy) impulse buy which makes for a lot more creativity and variety in our snacks and meals, and my husband slips my favorite treats into the cart when I'm not looking, things I wouldn't go out of my way to pick up for myself.

Seriously, I'm addicted to my DH. Love to be around him, even if it is just walking through the aisle at the grocery store.

acte gratuit said...

We are ALL about divide and conquer. And I think the exact same thing "If dad's home, why isn't he home with the kids so you can shop/pick up kids/run errands alone?" Totally baffling!

Anyway, thanks for stopping by! How do you know Lanie? We're friends from Dental School.

Right now we're active duty in the Air Force in Northern Japan. It's our first (probably last) assignment and it's been pretty crazy.

So I have a question for you...the other day I tried to buy something on Etsy using my husbands pay-pal account. Well, the Paypal account would NOT let me change the address to our APO because there is no city or state. Does that ever happen to you? Any way around it???

Thanks for the comment! Come by often!!!

Fort Skinner said...

divide for sure. Although it can be a good learning experience for children to come on trips to the stores with mom. They like that they learn about what you do when you are a grown up.
But... I like to divide anyway.

Becky @ Boys Rule My Life said...

We do a bit of both, more on the dividing part. It's a great opportunity for me to get out by myself to do the shopping, but on the weekends we have more "family time" and do things together. But, like you, we'll go to Walmart and split up to make the trip go faster. I think it's also go to bring the kids to the store for some "training" on how to behave in a store and in public.

Interesting topic. Just yesterday I saw a couple walking their child to school and I, too, was curious "why" they all went. Maybe next time I'll ask... haha. Jk.

Thanks for the comments over at Great Walls of Baltimore! Nice to meet you.

Piouette said...

For me it's a no-brainer, because Don's NEVER home for those things (kids start/end of school day And grocery shopping). Otherwise I think we'd be 1/2 & 1/2 on the issue. I love having him around (do it all together thing), but He likes to get stuff over with (divide and conquer phylosohpy). However for school activities and such, we're all 6 of us there. It really bugs me when the school sas no siblings. My kids have always been very well behaved in public and I love volunterring at school but you've got to let my younger kids join. That's how they learn to serve and to behave. You get me and my kids or whomever is at home at the time.
Nice entry btw.