This post about my amazing, hard working husband is sponsored by Old Spice.
I am surrounded by boys. Stinky boys. Wild boys. Crazy boys. Boys that make me fall head over heels for them every time I turn around and find them, grinning like goobs in the middle of their latest mess.
My husband has always been very involved in our homeschooling routine, and is often the mastermind behind the mess. When he is here, he’s often right in the middle of lessons and activities. But, as a service member (go Air Force!) he doesn’t always have the option to be home with his family. He’s incredibly hard working, and I am so proud of his service, but that doesn’t make being a military family easy.
His current assignment means a lot (and I mean a LOT) of travel (and no, I am not here alone, so don’t get any crazy ideas, bad guys out there). We’ve come up with routines that help us cope with the frequent travel, that ease my stress levels, and help him stay involved in the kids schooling. There are plenty of ways to keep him involved in the boy’s wild and crazy days- even if he isn’t here in the flesh.
He works incredibly hard for the Air Force, but he also works incredibly hard at being an awesome Dad, and I am thankful for all the things he does to keep in touch when he has to be away.
These are our best tips:
Install Skype, Facetime, Facebook Video Chat…
Basically, install ALL the things. My husband travels stateside and internationally, and we never really know when using the phone will be an option. I am so glad we have a million different ways to communicate today.
When he is home, my husband is in charge of looking over the day’s assignments (especially the tasks the kids complete alone). He also follows up with any assigned lessons for their online classes, and helps teach concepts that I may have struggled with that day.
When he is gone, he’s often able to keep up this routine. He may not be able to flip through the workbooks, but he is able to ask how the day went, and he can listen to the kids talk about their day. The kids love knowing that Dad cares about their lessons, and I love knowing they’ll still be accountable to someone other than me at the end of the day.
Make the Most out of Time at Home
If you are trying to share homeschooling responsibilities with a spouse who travels a lot, you may want to consider a modified block schedule for your lessons. For example, my husband tends to do a lot of the hands-on (read- messy and unsafe) science projects. When he is home, he may do a couple hours worth of projects with the kids.
Yup, projects exactly like that. ALL the crazy things. He doesn’t even break a sweat. Meanwhile, I am standing back, watching from a safe distance, hoping that no one hurts themselves. Think of all the dangerous physics and chemistry experiments… that’s what Dad teaches.
He is wonderful at taking advantage of teachable moments. For example, as we have been getting our home ready to sell, he’s been replacing the old, dingy brown power outlets for new, clean ones. The kids were able to get a re-wring lesson on the spot, which lead to playing more with their Snap Circuits kits, and more research on how electricity works.
When he is gone, I may not capitalize on the same “teachable moments” that my husband does, but I do reinforce the lessons with videos and readings on why the experiments worked, and important safety lessons to store away for when he comes home.
Have a Go-Bag Ready
If your spouse travels as often as mine does, then you know that time really is of the essence. Hubby tends to have two bags, one that stays home, and one that travels with him. They stay packed. That way, he can come home, we can swap out the bags, and wash what needs washed, and he’s ready to leave for the next trip without much of a fuss.
His toiletries stay well stocked, with plenty of Old Spice Odor Blocker, Old Spice Dirt Destroyer, toothpaste, razor blades, all that jazz, stocked up. We also keep a store of easy to cook and eat foods, so he can carry some with him for the plane, or just to save money on meals while he is gone.
This cuts back on the time it takes to pack for trips, and gives us more time together as a family. I’d much rather drop by his suits at the dry cleaner, or shop for more toiletries while he is out of town, instead of trying to do it all in the couple days he has at home between trips.
Always Recognize the Effort
I don’t think my husband always knows how much it means to me that he’s willing to put in the extra work to support the kids homeschooling. The military is incredibly demanding of his time, yet he always seems to have extra when the kids need it. For him, the hands-on activities are fun, and a way to bond with our kids. I’m fortunate to have a partner who is fully invested in our family, even when he isn’t home.
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Old Spice (P&G). The opinions and text are all mine.