Sunday, February 24, 2013

How a Neurotic Mom Schedules Her Week

On Thursday, I asked for reader questions


"What are your limits for out of the house activities? Do you have a hard and fast rule or do you operate on a case by case basis? I know I need to be home for the majority of the day at least 4-5 days a week or household duties start slipping, but I'm sure this is different for everyone based on ages of children, personalities, etc."

I do not have a hard and fast rule, but I do tend to limit my days out of the house.  We have certain activities that occur on a regular basis and they are woven into the thread of our lives, barely noticed. I grocery shop on the same day of the week twice a month.  We meet with our small homeschool co-op on the same day each month.  We visit the library once a week.  Those outings are so standard that our routine is arranged to accommodate them. 

Otherwise, I try to limit us to only 1 extra event each week (excluding weekends).  Anything more and our school schedule is strained and I fall behind on the house work.  I keep a pocket calendar in my purse where I pencil in field trips or invitations so that I don't over-schedule myself accidentally. 

This is where the neurotic part comes in.  At this stage in my life-- my youngest being almost 2½ with none of my children nursing or taking an afternoon nap-- we could probably handle more activities in the week.  However, it stresses me out be out of the house more than 2-3 days a week.  I start stressing about the laundry that is piling up and what we're going to do for lunch and how we're going to find time to read our history lesson and not being too tired when I get home to cook a decent meal! 

I find it easier to add variety to our days by inviting people into our home or planning activities to do at home than to button coats, put on gloves, buckle everyone into car seats, and venture out.   (Again, this excludes weekends when Brian is home, too.)

Sometimes I push myself out of my comfort zone if I think the activities are worthy of our time.  Sometimes grocery shopping and co-op and a field trip to the space center happen to fall in the same week, and knowing that each thing is good on its own merit, I throw caution to the wind, maybe do a little extra planning, and then go with the flow. 

I recently realized that we have new options open to us now.  With Alaine giving up her nap right after she turned 2 in the fall, and school work usually finished by lunchtime, we can feasibly add more afternoon activities to our days without greatly sacrificing routine.  Afternoons used to be sacred, the only quiet time of the day where I could catch up on housework or take a nap.

It's so easy to continue in a rut, but I have to constantly reevaluate to see if what we are doing is working and makes sense.  For now, that means that quiet time is the evenings after the little ones fall into bed early after a long day, and it means that afternoons are mostly open and unscheduled. If we have another baby or if other circumstances change, we may need to tighten up again, but right now, I'm seeing more flexibility in our days.


  1. This is exactly how I'm feeling lately. While all mine are still napping, thankfully, I find that staying home and making fun within our own walls (or fence) is what works best. I am such an admirer of your blog. I find a lot of motivation in your writing, so thank you. :)

  2. "If you have another baby?" Had to ask! LOL ;)

  3. Great post. and I can very much relate. Isn't it strange not to have a baby on the hip? I've been parenting for 24 yrs now, the "baby" being four (and our last)it all seems a bit bitter-sweet. Admittedly, it is getting easier though. *smile*


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