Something funny happened this fall. We became insanely busy. I think it was a complete shock to my system. We went from having most days/evenings/weekends genuinely free, to activities almost every night, Saturday and Sunday mornings. Something had to give.
I talked last week about my small blogging break. And it was much needed, especially considering how busy we became. Add the activities to homeschooling and trying to prepare meals and keep the house clean, well it was a little crazy! Nothing like just jumping in! Perhaps this was a point where I should have thought more about baby steps.
I realized that I need to be better about balancing everything. It seems like I have a constant list going of things that need to be done. Usually I love my “to-do” lists. I like to cross things off and feel like I accomplished something. Unfortunately, the time was getting away from me. I was entirely unsure of where I could fit in some of the things that were being neglected (meal planning, quiet time), things that I still needed to do but could not find the time for.
I am not a big “day” scheduler. I like to have a general rhythm and my list of what I need to do. Unfortunately, I did not realize that my rhythm might need to change! So I am in search of a new rhythm. I definitely do not want to get down to an hour by hour schedule. Things come up too often to be able to do that, but I needed to change some of the things we were doing.
We have always done school first thing in the morning. It is what works best for my kids. They are fresh, and ready to go early in the day. That makes me happy because I would rather get it out of the way when everyone has a good attitude! What I didn’t expect was how much longer school would take this year. Instead of just an hour or so, we have about four hours of dedicated school. Of course some days it is shorter, but that seems to be the average. Also, school time is all about me being fully engaged with the kids. They are not at a level where I can say “here is what you need to read and work on today.” They are obviously small, and need all the direct teaching I can give them. Which means I can’t get up as easily to go change laundry over or clean the dishes, or start preparing a meal.
I’m not upset at all about being busy, I love it. But, I do need to work on a better rhythm for us. I spend a lot of time preparing for school, doing school, trying to clean up school because it is incredibly important. But, I also need to be able to do all the other things that involve running and keeping a house (and my sanity!). So I am working on new strategies. Maybe spending a little less time engaging with people on Facebook, staying up a bit later, preparing more meals in advance; I am sure we will get there soon! I think that the craziness of the holidays coming up has really showed me that I need to get down to business to get a new working rhythm for us.
Do you ever find that your old rhythm is a little too stale and needs freshening up? I would love to hear from experienced homeschoolers, can you accomplish everything or does something always fall by the wayside?