We're all stuck at home staying safe and cozy in our homes. As much as we wished and craved for it at 2pm Monday through Friday while sitting at our desks, it's not as blissful as it may seem. To be completely honest! I mean shoot, I wanted a full-time job so I wouldn't have to work as much as I do when I'm at home with my two kids. Ha! I got a quarter of a semester under my belt and the universe told me, nope! Go be with your kids!
So, here I am at home figuring out how I'm going to work from home, take care of my kids, be a wife my husband wants to come home to, and finish my online classes with A's.
The best thing that's worked for me in past and now more than ever is to create a routine. Since your kids are in school, just borrow that routine. If they have a morning snack at 9:30am, provide a nice healthy snack at the same time. My go to is a fruit and a protein, such as an apple and peanut butter. I know my son's teacher plays youtube videos once in a while, so during snack time, I play Dora the Explorer. This gives me a little break, too.
So here's my routine, if you want an idea.
5:30am- Yup! 5:30am!!!! I hear crying from my 21month old. I go in her room and nurse her.
6am- start breakfast, give a snack to baby. Send kids outside so I can cook breakfast in peace.
7am- Eat breakfast (I take my time cooking!)
- Kids clean up the living room and their rooms, while I clean up the kitchen.
8:30am- Go for a stroll
9am- Begin learning. I usually start off with literacy. My kid is only in PreK, so we do 30 minute learning activities at a time.
9:30am - Snack and Educational show
10am- Exercise Activity inside (I just discovered Cosmic Kids Yoga and GoNoodle)
10:30am- Learning Activity - usually math
11am- Outside play time, while I prep lunch
11:30am- Eat Lunch
12pm- 2pm- Nap Time. My homework time
2pm- Clean up
2:30pm- Snack time and Educational Show
3pm- Learning Activity
3:30pm- Outside time until I'm tired of being outside
4:30pm- Play with toys
5pm- Small snack, while I'm prepping dinner
5:30pm- Kids clean up
6pm- Dinner time
6:30pm- Bath time
7pm- Speech Homework
7:30pm- Bed Time
8pm- My homework time/ Hubby Time
10pm- If not earlier, bed time!
One thing I've definitely taken advantage of is having a son who can clean up after himself and little sister. I make sure he cleans his own plate, his restroom, his room, his toys in the living room, our little home classroom and whatever else I see needs cleaning. I am not one who takes pride in cleaning the home by myself. My home is rarely spotless (ok, I'll be completely real, it's never spotless).
As I've learned to adapt to different settings and situations over the years as a military spouse, I've come to appreciate the gift offered to all of us, which is grace. The above times are rarely followed to the T. It's more of a guideline instead of an agenda. Things don't always go as planned, and thats ok. Do what you can, give yourself and your kids grace, and keep pushing forward.
Setting a routine and following through with it are two different things. Just try to follow it and as the days go on, things will get easier. You're kids will stop going through the fridge every 15 minutes because just like at school, they'll know when to expect food.
Also, just like we wish every teacher would teach to each child's abilities and needs, keep you're own child's needs in mind when creating a routine. If your child's attention span is great for 10 minutes, then give short breaks every 10 minutes. Let your child run around the house, do jumping jacks, lay his head down, or read a story for 2 minutes. Then bring him back in the house and continue the learning activity.
I only have one child with educational requirements. I know there are many moms with more children requiring different educational goals, so create different routines for each child that align during the times they can all be doing the same thing, such as snack, lunch, outside time. Ask other moms who have multiple children to see how they're surviving and thriving.
We're all going through this, so lets do what we can together. Let's connect and be there for one another. Good luck to all of you! I know you're going to continue to rock at motherhood and being a teacher and whatever else you have to be! Share any ideas you or tips of your own in the comments.
I'm writing this as my 21 month old fights her nap. So don't think this routine creates bliss and peace. It doesn't. It just helps with sanity and effectiveness. She'll get used to taking a nap with mommy in the other room soon.