Woulda, Coulda, Shoulda — No Regrets

Image credit: <a href='http://www.123rf.com/photo_10358539_today-yesterday-and-tomorrow-words-on-blackboard-time-concept.html'>lawren / 123RF Stock Photo</a>

Another school year has passed. Over the next few days, we will go through all the projects that came home from my children’s class and look back at the year through art, writing and reading projects. (We’ll skip the math sheets.) Many of the creations will be placed in a frame and take their rightful place on the family room wall with other beloved art.

Summer is a great time to catch up, clean up, sift out and re-organize. It’s also a great time to spend time with our kids doing things we normally wouldn’t do during the school year. As time quickly passes, I want to remember not to get so caught up with the “to do” list that I am not “doing” with my kids. One day, their presence in our home won’t be what it is now.  I won’t find crayons in the silverware drawer or Polly Pockets under the sofa. Stuffed animals won’t be strewn on the sofa  and as a result, the decorative sofa pillows will probably look unappealing and quite ordinary without a dirty sock or T-shirt strewn on top of it.  Of course, I still have time before we leave the doll stage and look for colleges, but I see how quickly time is moving, and I need to move with it, alongside my kids in ways that count.

The poem below sums up how I want to be mindful of my choices this summer…and always. It’s amazing how one little word…one little action, can make an impact and contribution to our goals, values and relationships.


by Shel Silverstein

All the Woulda-Coulda-Shouldas

Layin’ in the sun,

Talkin’ bout the things

They woulda-coulda-shoulda done…

But those Woulda-Coulda-Shouldas

All ran away and hid

From one little DID.

 Don’t let summer pass with woulda, coulda, shouldas…end the season with worthwhile dids.




    • Summer is a great time to re-group and check-in with ourselves ain’t it? Thank you, Jennifer…hooray for good timing!

  1. Thanks for the great reminder. You are so right on with this one. As I start to think of my “dids” with the kids, keeping the cleanest house on the block isn’t on the list! I want the summer to be all about connecting, relaxing and laughing together.

    • I love how you put that, Kelly. The next time I am cleaning, I am going to ask, are we connecting, relaxing and laughing together? I think I’ll know rather quickly whether those things are taking place and if what I am doing can wait. Your kids are going to have a great summer…and a meaningful time bonding with you!

  2. What a wonderful way to start Summer off with insight and for that matter, Life. Yes, how do I want to look back at my life with my children when it seems to speed up every day more and more. Your insight is wonderful and a reminder to all that time is a fleeting moment, but the memories last a lifetime. Collect them and cherish them. The future is NOW. I love you my friend.

  3. You are so right and I love how you put that, Deirdre. The future is now. I forget that too, because the urgency of the present seems to take over. But with wonderful, faithful friends we can encourage one another in this journey and move forward with meaning and intention. Thank you for being a huge part of my path!

    • Thank you my friend. I am so happy that our paths have crossed and that we can be there to support and encourage one another. Thank you for your presence in my life.

  4. So true, so true. And not just for moms with young kids. I think summer, and its beginning especially, is a season of looking back and looking ahead to do things better, especially within the home. Focusing on relationships and doing those things we’ve neglected in the busyness of the normal routine. Love the poem… thanks, Linda!

    • Absolutely true of moms with older kids! All relationships need to be nurtured and fed (though in different ways depending on the stages). Summer is a great opportunity to re-focus, re-shift and re-orient ourselves in those relationships and as you said, reflect back with the future in mind. Thank you for your perspective, Laurie!

  5. This is very true. Its hard with 3 kids to make sure you find time with each and every one of them. <3

    • That is for sure a juggling act, Lauren, and how great that you are wanting to do so. Sometimes just making that time in the home with one while the other two do something while waiting…knowing that they will have their turn with mom too, might help them give you that space. A tickle fight or curling up with a good book or playing a game…it’s the time that matters, not where it’s spent. We take what we can. And you are such an awesome mommy!

    • Sorry, posted before I commented on this article. As a I Mom of a college graduate I saved so many projects, special art & writing assignments for our son. When we were packing the house up to move across the country I asked Joel what he wanted to keep. His response was ‘I don’t need all that stuff’, then he started going through the boxes and it turned out he wanted it all! Saving all these special things is not only for our memories but one day it will be very special for them as well. And summer is a great time to go through the year of all these fun activities.

  6. Summer is a great time to go through all those priceless projects and memories, and yes, one day, years from now, they will be so precious to our kids. Hooray that Joel took a second look and will now have those things to keep and to treasure. Thank you Marilou for that perspective from an older son!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.