I’m Not An Expert!
I’m not the greatest at keeping up with daily routines. I lack follow through! But I’ve been taking notes of the flow of our day, and I’ve come to see that since I’ve done two things, everything else is seemingly fitting into place. And, although I’m still an absentminded housekeeper, I’m beginning to see more opportunities to spend time with my children.
I’m not what you’d consider an easy person around children; I get overwhelmed easily, even around my own. That makes the fact we’re homeschooling our children even more interestingly ironic. What might come naturally so some Mom’s doesn’t come that quickly to me. Some Mom’s are able to come up with fun things to do with their kids, and allow their children to easily merge into their daily routines around the house much better than I’m able too.
I know ALL of the experts tell me to have the children ‘do along with me’ because that’s how they learn, grow, become productive, yadda yadda yadda. And logically I agree 100% with this. Putting it into practice, however, is VERY hard for me.
This brings me to my conclusion about our days now, and how routines fit into this picture.
I need things to be simple and easy to do, for it to stick around. I’m learning to wholeheartedly embrace this aspect of myself, and it’s showing in how housework, homeschool and live are now.
- We wake up early around here, between 5a-6a the children are up, and so am I. I’m not a Mom who gets up before the children do. So we all do our morning routine of brushing teeth, hair, getting dressed, and making beds, together. (Hey look! They are ‘doing along with me’! lol)
- After this, I may put on the TV (full discloser: I turn it on too often!) or I may direct them to play with legos or blocks which are their favorite toys right now. While they do that, I get something going for breakfast! (I need to make some muffins up, and other freezer items for breakfast…oatmeal and eggs get old after awhile!)
- After we eat breakfast and put dishes in the sink, we’ll probably watch more TV (again, bed habit that we’ll be weaning ourselves off of!) and I try to find something educational this time, maybe about an animal they have talked about, or something like the weather and how rain clouds are formed.
- Next, we head outside, where we take care of the chickens, and pull some weeds, pick up outside, etc. We get these big dust devils, as we call them. They can be VERY powerful with wind, and toss stuff everywhere. I let the kids stay outside for as long as they want, while I head back in to do dishes.
- When they come back in, I have the kitchen table set with a few of their workbooks, kinesthetic games, crayons, pencils, glue, etc. We sit down for as long as they will pay attention, and do what we can in that time frame. Once they get too figity or all over the place, we get up, play some music and dance, or tag inside. Usually after this, they are willing to do a few more pages of their workbooks.
- Once we’re done with workbooks, it’s either snack time, or lunch time. If it’s lunch time, they eat and are sent outside. When they come in, it’s quiet time!
- When quiet time is over, they are usually VERY hungry, so I’ll try to have something ready for them when they get up. The rest of the day is free play, inside or out, and helping to clean up, or make dinner.
- Bedtime routines are this: bath, dressed, brush teeth, bed, and one book is read to them. I then give them one book to look at, and turn their nightlights on, and that’s that!
You’ll notice, I have no times by anything. I’ve tried that…it doesn’t work for me! Which is why I look at the flow of our day, and try to change things here, or there, gradually. It sticks better that way, than trying to fit into someone elses idea of what a home should look like.
Are there areas for improvement? Of course there are! (TV anyone?!) Those would be examples of giving myself grace, learning from bad habits, and moving on to change them, one step at a time. *I woke up in the middle night last night after I wrote this, and knew I had to add some more thoughts. There is more I want to do with out days, and I hope to one day not even have the TV on, or at least, it would be a minor compliment to what we’re currently learning. I don’t want to get rid of electronics completely, that wouldn’t be fair to the kids. This is a technological world and they need to know how to navigate it. But I constantly am concerned with the over-abundance of usage I see in my own life, and in the life of those around me.
The Two Things I’ve Done To Help
I bet you’ve been wondering when I’d get to those two things I mentioned, huh? I’m a round about kinda talker, so bare with me! 🙂 They aren’t that earth shattering, I promise.
1-daily quiet time (not every day do naps happen, but quiet time DOES happen. Even if they don’t want it!)
2- Prayer and His Word! Yes, I know this probably sounds trite to some. I love you anyways. But for me, it works in way that are hard to explain. When things are rough, and tantrums are happening, I pray. When I’m feeling tired and overwhelmed, I pray. I’m also considering writing a scripture verse on my hand daily, to remind myself of His provision.
I can feel my husband cringing at that last part, writing on myself. I love you, honey! In the long run, I think it’ll help me a whole lot more!
What does your routine look like? What methods do you use, to make sure you’re getting all the things done that you want done, done? Please share! I truly do enjoy learning more, and keeping tricks in the back of my mind for future needs!