Friday, August 27, 2010

Simplicity: The Schedule

Life has so many loose ends, thing to do, appointments, spur of the moment events, and, of course, the completely unexpected. So how do we deal with all of that and still strive to maintain a simple outlook on life? The schedule.

The schedule is a tool, a guide. It is not set in stone, yet not written in sand. The schedule is the skeleton, bone structure, of our days. It keeps the vital and most important things in a specific place and time, but the rest can be flexible and changed to adapt to what is happening on any given day.

Because of our schedule, I am able to complete all of my tasks, spend adequate time with my daughter, give my husband the time he needs and deserves, and still have time to do the things I enjoy.

Last week I told you all about starting Addie with our official school time. This week, I thought it would be helpful to give you a bit of a look into the schedule. Times have been removed, time amounts are given instead. I am also offering a brief explanation of specific items, and certain things have been removed because they are just obvious (brush teeth, put in contacts, etc.). For me, I like having everything that needs to be done written down (not that I would forget to do those things) but to help me see the big picture- why I am doing that particular task at that time or maybe another time would work better.

Wake up
Check email
Check blog post
Some sit-ups (ughhhh...)
Put on coffee (prepped the night before)
Pack Brian's lunch (prepped the night before)
Set 1 load of laundry (I only do one load a day)
Clean 1 or 2 rooms (depending on time and room size)
Dry laundry load
Get dressed

30 minutes- Get Addie (although she is in a toddler bed, she does not get out unless we get her.)
Addie devotions
Send off Brian

30 minutes- Addie activity (puzzles, blocks, games, coloring page)
Me: Breakfast and Joyce Meyer

30 minutes- Addie breakfast and YBCR DVD (Your Baby Can Read)
Me: Fold laundry and unload dishwasher (By folding the clothes as soon as
they come out of the dryer, it eliminates most ironing.)

15 min. - Dress Addie

45 minutes- Bible lesson
Letters and Sounds
Numbers and skills
Flash Cards

30 min.- Addie alone playtime
Me: 1 cleaning item

30 min.- Addie Computer time

30 min.- Snack and video

30 min.- playtime with Mommy

30 min.- Activity (play-doh, finger paints, outside, etc.)

30 min.- Lunch

2 1/2 hours or as much as is needed- Addie nap
Me: do whatever I want (I have decided to use this as my "me time" so when Brian comes home my time is his.)

30 min.- Play in Addie's room

15 min.- Piano time (Many times, Addie sleeps through the allotted playtime and piano time, so these are just
filler things.)

30 min.- 1 DVD video

Undetermined- Dinner prep

Evening Prep: Talked about in this post.
All dishes washed or in the dishwasher
Start dishwasher
Get coffee pot ready
Make and prep Brian's lunch
Everything in its place

The items in bold print are the bones of our schedule- the times that I really need to stick to for our days to be successful and simple. The other times are when I am able to fit the "extras" that are ever present- grocery shopping, mini adventures, and visiting. However, when we are home, I don't want to wonder what we are going to do with our time, so I have items "penciled" in.

I must say, except for being exhausted from being up too late and waking up so early, I have no stress. Because most of my work is taken care of before I dress Addie in the morning, I have actually taken the time during "my time" to nap with no guilt and no endless list running through my mind.

Figure out what the "bones" of your day are- the inflexible times that happen or need to happen on a daily basis- and determine about how long they actually take. Decide when you are going to do what. Fit the rest of your day- the flexible items- around those times.

I hope you find your days to be simpler and more relaxed.

Ironically, Brian is off today, so the bones of our schedule drastically changed. Because he had a chiropractor's appointment, but he really wanted to participate in Addie's learning today, our school time changed. Having a schedule is a guide for "normal" days, but we must be flexible where our husbands are concerned. They cannot be made to feel that they "fit" into our schedule.


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