(Photo: Emily & Conrad Drum, expecting their first baby in August)


Finding Clarity In A Busy "Mom Schedule" 

By Laura Kennerson

Busy by definition means having a great deal to do. Busy just doesn’t seem to cover it when it comes to talking about the unlimited amount of tasks a mother has to complete. 


From waking up the kiddos, making breakfast, slapping together lunches, getting the kids off to school, cleaning up the house, getting the dishes done, the laundry done (don’t even get me started on that never ending monster) folding the laundry, putting it away, ironing, going to work, picking up the kiddos, getting the kids to practice, scrubbing toilets. Oh I’m sorry I was just getting started but it appears maybe I should just stop right there, you get the point! 


It doesn’t matter if you are a stay-at-home mom or a full-time working mom, the time is filled with countless hours of things to do and the lists never deplete.  The juggling act is real (and you didn’t even know you knew how to juggle)!

 

Each year in January a friend of mine shares a word for the year and then she uses that word as her focus for the year. (If I knew the name of the book she gets this from I would drop that right here) It is truly a fabulous concept, and I even adopted a word of my own this year. My word is "simplicity." So I am doing al I can to simplify our lives around here this year. Be it decluttering and organizing the closets, or simply minimizing the schedule.


This word resonates with me as the essence of what I am longing for in my life right now. SIMPLICITY! Doesn’t that just sound like HEAVEN?

 

When your kids hit a certain age, (this can be different for everyone) the driving around from place to place schedule heats up. You become a bus driver or taxi driver and it’s insanity because this is now another job on top of your millions of others. Getting to guitar lessons, band practices, hockey lessons and hockey games and making sure to find a way to feed the kiddos on the way and not overlap schedules is enough to make any mom break down and cry!

 

Here's the deal, there are a few little ideas to help ease the crazy but know you have to find a way that works for YOU. There is no one size fits all, but here are a few little ideas to help ease the crazy.


PLAN AHEAD…. Planning ahead of time can help you find little ways to add in time for you, or even just time for dinner! For me that means having a weekly meal plan, a weekly schedule that lists all of the members of the family. I do this weekly as a week doesn’t seem as overwhelming. 


 I post the schedule on the fridge or pantry door so that if things arise everyone knows to update the schedule and alert the family. For whatever the reason having a clear picture of what is coming gives me a clear vision of where I can have some leeway to do what needs to be done above and beyond the crazy.


ORGANIZE… Organizing makes everything easier. I color coordinate by family member in my calendar. Mine is a paper planner from the happy planner line, and yes I carry it everywhere and get made fun of because my phone could do the same thing - don’t judge me!


Remember there is no one size fits all! If you are a phone person, there is an app called "Awesome Note," that color coordinates and lets you do all sorts of great organization.  However, simply having an organized schedule isn’t enough if you can’t find your belongings. Everything needs its place. 


 If you have a place for where things go, they are amazingly there when you need them.  For example, when you come in the door and put your keys on a hook, they will always be there.  This is an anomaly for me so I have a tile to find mine. Saves me almost daily!

 

FLEXIBILITY…Things always change!. And often!  We have to learn flexibility if we want to survive.  So try not to be rigid when you are making your plans. I try to leave room for a night out for dinner and for just vegging out at home. However, I have to be flexible with these plans because inevitably something will come up.  My son will find a new thing to add to the calendar and I will have to come up with a new plan. In order to NOT have a total meltdown, I am learning that flexibility really is key.  


Wednesdays are a taxi driver's dream at my house. We have to drive all over the place with little to no time to spare.  My son takes guitar lessons four towns away on early dismissal day, when pick up at the school is a nightmare. So I plan ahead and park on a side street facing away from the crossing guards, as to avoid the foot traffic, and I give myself an extra ten minutes for .a cushion.


Nothing will take away the fact that there is an overwhelming amount to do, and that a Mom’s job is never done. But, I have been told that there will be days we long for the crazy schedules, full houses and cars. So while you are having your breakdown (or is that just me?) try to be present and enjoy your chaos!

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