Aside from blogging more, ‘making and keeping a daily routine’ was another one of my New Year’s resolutions. Looking back at the month of January I am happy to say that I have actually kept both of these resolutions so far!
Ever since Sawyer was born I had felt stuck in this newborn, life-change haze. I fully expected my days to look pretty unpredictable for a good while, and it was. I gave myself a lot of grace and not much expectation after Sawyer was born which was actually just what I needed to do because I think I would have been greatly overwhelmed otherwise. But after a few months of the house being a constant disaster, dinner usually being something frozen, and the kids having way too much screen time, I just felt so unhappy with our daily life and I could see it affecting the entire family’s mood. Before the new year began, Sawyer’s daily schedule was much more predictable, yet I was still letting our daily life have no structure and it was driving me crazy! So I decided to do something about it and realized I needed a daily routine that I could actually stick with.
When making the daily routine I didn’t want to go by the clock. All 3 of the boys wake up at different times and our day doesn’t really “start” till all 3 are awake. Sometimes they’re all awake really early and other mornings someone (usually Carson) “sleeps in”. I also didn’t want too much planned to where if the baby was extra fussy, etc. most of it didn’t get done. I wanted specific intentional times; a time for playing with the boys, a time for teaching them, a time for independent play so I could work on things, and a chore time.
So here’s what I came up with:
- Bible Time
- Chore Time
- Super Learning Time (got that idea off the interwebs)
- Play or watch Super Why/Mommy Work Time
- Story Time
- Nap Time
- Snack & Watch a show
- Tidy Up Time
- Play Time (waiting for Daddy)
- Daddy Time
- Bath Time or Play Time (they don’t get a bath every night!)
- 15-min House Clean Up
- Bedtime Routine
I really love this schedule. It has helped me enjoy our days so much more and to be much more productive. The boys enjoy it too and Aiven now knows the routine by heart and tells me what is next, especially if we hadn’t started it yet. 🙂
For Bible Time we read a Bible story, go through all our memory verses, sing, and pray. When it’s Chore Time, I have them help me with the dishes, the laundry, Aiven feeds the pets, and then I give them my Norwex dust mits and let them “dust” the house while I finish up a specific chore.
Then for Super Learning Time they get their capes and sit on their own pillow on the floor. I choose different things each day and pick from: ABC’s, #’s, colors, shapes, etc. I use a variety of methods such as flashcards, puzzles, shape/color stacking games, etc. This has probably been my favorite thing that I’ve started. It is SO fun watching them learn and enjoy learning! Also watching them work together is great! Oh and Hudson is a pretty good student too…
Then I usually let them watch Super Why (a fun reading show) or some other learning show, while I do some work (pay bills, write a post, put away laundry, put dinner in the crockpot, facebook, etc.) Having a set time for them to be occupied and to know mommy is working on some things has been so helpful!!
Story time before naps has started to include Sawyer now, which is so fun!
During nap time I again try to work on my personal to do list. A lot of times Sawyer is napping in the pack n’ play that’s in our living room, so I rarely do any loud chores during naps. And a lot of times I find myself rocking Sawyer and watching Friends or reading during the boys’ naps!
Sometimes Aiven won’t take a nap and in those cases I let him get out one of his Quiet Time Activity Bags/Bins.
*Side Note* Here’s what it took to make these activity bags/bins…a huge mess!! 🙂 (Had to do this when the big boys were out of the house with my mom for 2 days)
Before James gets home I *try* to do a quick tidy-up so he can come home to a somewhat clean/organized house…but we don’t always get to it before he gets home.
It has been a long time coming for me to find a daily routine that works for us. I’ve tried and tried different things over the past 2 years and would usually come up with something overly complicated that made me always feel disappointed in myself. But this one works because of the simplicity and not going by the clock, but just by following a routine. Most days, when I can stick to this routine, I end the day feeling accomplished and happy of the intentional moments spent with the boys teaching them and playing with them. Having time set aside for house and personal work has helped me to be completely in the moments spent intentionally teaching or playing with the boys – I have felt much more present, instead of pulled in a million directions every minute of the day!