Sunday, February 24, 2008


It's the name of the game for me these next few months! Organizing and scheduling are NOT my strong points. I love having no schedule, waking and sleeping as I please, and spending my days doing whatever I fancy. Sometimes we wake up at 7am, sometimes 10am. Some days we do homeschooling work at 9am, sometimes 9pm, sometimes not at all. Sometimes lunch is at 11am, sometimes 3pm. Some days I wash the laundry, but rarely do I fold it so that it tends to pile up in baskets until I can no longer handle the mountainous sight. I clean like a mad woman when guests are coming over. Some nights I go to bed with my family around 9pm, and other nights like tonight I’m up at midnight with my own bowl of popcorn. It’s a wonderful life!

But as much as I seem to “love” the lack of structure, I feel like a lazy mom most of the time. And I know for the kids’ sake, some routine is needed. And for the husband too, who I’m sure would love to stop eating fast food lunches if I could only drag myself out of bed with him in the morning…and maybe even have the dinner planned before he gets home at 7pm. We would all feel better with a clean house. And now that the baby is 2 months old, we seem to finally have gotten rid of the evil flu bug, I’m actually having my final OB checkup tomorrow, and I’ve had a nice reflection on my faults with my spiritual director last week…I know it is now time for me to figure this out. I also read a wonderful post on a blog I've been enjoying, These Thy Gifts, which discussed the importance of organization and routines starting now when the kids are preschool age.

I know there is no way I can effectively homeschool Mary Clare with this kind of structure-less lifestyle. But it will not be easy for me. It does not come naturally, and I’m the type of person who gets lofty ideas only to ditch them a few weeks later. So you guys are now my accountability factor (along with my real-life friends and spiritual director), and this is in the mail:

I’ve heard good things about this Catholic Women’s Daily Planner from Family-Centered Press, and it even has extra sections for meal planning and lesson plans! I really hope it can help me implement some of my goals. I’m going to write out my rough schedule plan below to help me figure out how to start some routines in a natural way.

6am Wake up with Steven to make his lunch. Allow myself to “rebag” (during this transition at least)
7:30am Morning prayers and meditation
8am Morning chores w/ girls: get dressed, brush teeth, make beds, put in laundry, unload dishwasher if needed
8:30am breakfast
9am schooltime: lessons w/ Mary Clare, reading to Ellie, etc
10am playtime for kids, breaktime for mommy
11:30am start preparing lunch
12noon Angelus and lunch
12:30pm Chores: laundry, tidying
1pm REST
3pm Play with kids
4pm Dinner prep
5pm House clean up
6-7pm (when Steven gets home) Dinner
7:30pm kitchen cleanup
8pm baths and pjs
8:30pm books and bed
Kids in bed by 9pm, me in bed by 11pm

I’m sure this will require some tweaking and will not be an exact science, especially with a small nursing baby. I’m sure it will also take a long while for me to get committed to this. With our busy schedule including lots of activities, I will have to learn how to adjust it when we have a morning out. But hopefully it will be a good starting point for me. We’ll see how this week goes.

(That was written last night when we had no internet connection to post--yay for free wireless in our neighborhood--but the connection is not the best. So far so good this Monday morning. House is fairly clean, I've had my last OB appointment, and Mary Clare was even asking if we can make a list of chores for her. Hopefully the rest of the week goes smoothly!)


Em said...

Blair, I could have written this post, right down to the part about coming up with lofty ideas and then ditching them (for me sometimes I spend a great deal of time making elaborate routines/schedules and then never even do them... not even once... they are that unattainable!). I am a natural disaster and total free-spirit. Yet, I am always happiest following some sort of routine and living in a well-ordered house. The trouble has been trying to both overcome my inclinations and do something that I am not good at and am unsure how to exactly accomplish. I look forward to hearing how things go for you. The one thing that has worked wonders for me has been flylady... and the idea of a routine vs. a strict schedule (with time slots) seems to appeal to the free-spirit in me and to work better with a bunch of little ones who can totally kill any schedule with ease.
Anyway, good luck.... let me know what works!!!!!!!!!!! I am feeling in a bit of panic right now because I really wanted to be better organized for the baby's arrival, and the clock is ticking!

Colleen said...

Blair, I really relate to your happiness in a lack of structure as well as the feeling of being a lazy mommy. It's so hard to balance getting things done (laundry, cleaning, cooking, etc.) with mommy duties (reading books, teaching, nursing, cuddling, etc.) so that at the end of the day you can feel like a success on both fronts. I'm looking forward to any wisdom that you gain from your new schedule. I've tried to make them in the past but I think I have gotten too detailed and then it's impossible to stick to. I like the simplicity of yours. Wishing you the best with it!

Stephanie said...

For your "spare time" (haha), pick up the book A Mother's Rule of Life. It's all about everything you just wrote about- incorporating structure in your life (including homeschooling). She's a Catholic author and I really think you would enjoy the book!

Good luck!!!

Blair said...

Haha, Stephanie...amidst the book for our study circle (History of the Legion), finishing your vaccine book, and the 3 books I just got from the library! Actually I've read A Mother's Rule at the Mom's group in Aggieland. It was really good, but I felt like I already had most of that information through Regnum Christi and our whole "Program of Life". I'ts me implementing all this stuff that's the hard part. One day down, a lifetime to go, LOL :D

veronica said...

You know me, nature I am not a busy body nor a free spirit. I do enjoy order and cleanliness although I think that as the years have gone by I appreciate it even more....(because I see my children and husband benefiting from it) and so I admire your willingness to take this big step... I think that you will see it does not come without reward! Best of luck!

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