I bought over 100 e-books/pdf's a couple weeks ago and one of the books included was Jamie Martin's, Steady Days (she writes at Simple Homeschool and has her own blog, Steady Mom). I was excited to see it among the list of books I received and started reading it immediately. She is one of my favorites! She's real, funny and is a busy work at home mom who also home schools her 3 young children.
One of the things she mentions is having a routine, flexible to you and your family. She even gives printables at the end to fill out and make your own. I printed it off and started filling it out. So far, it's been very helpful. I consider myself a fairly organized person but our days weren't going like I thought they could, some days at least. I struggled to find productive things for the girls to do at times and just got frazzled. The flexible schedule has helped!
One of the ideas, in the schedule, that really struck me is what she calls "room time." This is a 30-40 minute block (morning or afternoon, whichever suits your family) where your kids go to their respective rooms and play independently. It's not punishment, it's just a chance for everyone to recharge their batteries. Let's just say the girls haven't taken to it all that great. I'm starting out in a 10 minute block of time (she says to start small if your kids aren't used to it) and that's worked well. We'll build up each week and hopefully it won't be an issue in a couple weeks. It's hard getting them up to their rooms, they fuss and think they're being punished. I explain, in a few words, it isn't punishment, but a time to play with your own stuff and not have to share. The girls spend ALL day together and some separation time is helpful to them. I know it'll be good in the long run.
Not only is "room time" good for them, to learn some independence, but it's good for this mama. I can catch up on emails, this blog, switch laundry, get lunch together or just put my feet up. I need a few quiet moments just like they do. Who doesn't?
I can see that this will be a good thing for all of us. We'll build up to the 30-40 minute block and I think they'll be disappointed when "room time" is over. At least that's what I keep thinking in my head. Who knows, maybe we'll do 2 a day.
What routines have you established in your home that make you feel less frazzled?