Friday, February 14, 2014

My Day In the Life of...

I've been reading "Homeschool Day in the Life" series over at Simple Homeschool and it's been very interesting to glean tips and info from other people's routines.  I'd like to share a glimpse into ours:

Between 5am-6:45am:
Baby Blossom wakes up to nurse.  She's an early riser and I try to stay on her schedule.  I have some personal time with God during this time.  I also help Daddy get out the door if I can, though I do much of his morning prep the night before.

Daddy headed out the door and the other 3 Blossoms start to filter into Mama & Daddy's room.  I sing out, "Bring your Bible and journal" and we have personal devotions all in Mommy's bed, snuggled under the covers.  Then, we have devotions together - some verses, some discussion, some songs and some prayer... all with Baby Blossom crawling over everyone and grabbing their pens. 

Get dressed and start chores.  They grab their chore packs and I assist where necessary.  Otherwise, Baby Blossom stays with me and I do some morning prep in the kitchen after I've gotten ready.  Making breakfast, getting stuff out for supper, checking my daily to-do list, throwing in a load of wash, etc. 

Breakfast!  We sit down together.  Then, everyone finishes up their chores.  I switch wash and nurse Baby Blossom.

School!  They work on what's in their Independent drawer, while I alternately work with each Blossom individually on what's in their Assisted drawer.  Blossom1 is in 3rd grade, Blossom2 is in 1st grade and Blossom3 is in preschool.  We usually take a quick snack around 10:15am.  I try to have 1 special activity for Blossom3.  Otherwise, she plays quietly in the schoolwork, her bedroom and in the dining room, doing puzzles. I nurse Baby Blossom sometime in there too.  If she naps, great.  If not, she plays in the schoolroom with us.  When we break for lunch, they do a few more chores, including my favorite, "QUICK CLEAN," which prevents the house from turning into a complete disaster zone.  I switch wash, answer an email, make a phone call and squeeze in another chore if I'm not nursing.  By this time, Baby Blossom is usually pulling stuff out of cupboards and squealing for snacks!

Lunch together!  I love the conversations we have!  No technology at the table, no answering the phone during meals... it's just us.  Together.

Glory Hallelujah, it's NAP TIME!  Blossom1 & Blossom2 read books in their bedroom, if their schoolwork is done.  Blossom3 sleeps in her bedroom.  I either nurse Baby Blossom and catch a catnap or, I nurse Baby Blossom in the schoolroom and semi-supervise the bigger Blossoms finishing up their school work.  No matter how it turns out, I try to use this time to read and rest.  I force myself to feel no obligation to do any more housework during rest time.  Mommy needs to recharge and so do the girlies!  I've found that even the bigger Blossoms truly benefit from some quiet time alone. 

Rest time is over.  Usually schoolwork is done by now.  I correct all their work, write goals for tomorrow, separate it all again into Independent and Assisted work, go over mistakes and have them correct every single wrong answer, misspelling and grammatical error.  Yes, I am a stickler, maybe a slave-driver.  (Perfect practice makes perfect!)  Whenever this is all done for the day, I move on to focusing on my own chores and preparing supper. 

Teatime.  It doesn't always happen.  Sometimes Blossom3 needed a longer nap, sometimes there are piano lessons to think about, but we love an afternoon reconnect time.  Just a graham cracker and a cup of tea with Miss Rose, Miss Elizabeth, Miss Jo-Jo and Little Miss Twinkle.  I'm Mrs. Tiggywinkle.  Enter the English accents and some giggles.  Good times.  They clean up.  I work on the house, or nurse, or hold Baby Blossom, or pull her out of whatever chaos she's currently creating.  We do another QUICK CLEAN shortly before Daddy gets home.

Our favorite time of day - Daddy's HOME!  Screaming, giggling, hiding, general all-around delight!  Mommy works on supper, while the Blossoms play outside or inside.  They meander in when I call them to help me and tackle their supper chores.

Supper all together!  Blossom3 likes to drag this out as long as possible by dawdling instead of eating.  I retire to the living room to play with Baby Blossom on the floor and chat with Daddy.  Blossom1, Blossom2 & Blossom3 clean up the kitchen.  I launch a few instructions and reminders from where I sit.  They're are surprisingly proficient - a fact that inspires me to continue to train them to work.

I check on the kitchen progress and put my Mommy touches on it.  Between them and me, we've packed Daddy's lunch.  I set up his coffee and breakfast for the morning.  They play for the rest of the evening, until I lasso them to put away their clothes.  I love their free play time - time to invent, imagine and explore.  Usually I'm folding wash right about now and finishing up a few small tasks.  I don't like to do a lot of housework after supper.  I like to be available to watch their ballerina, ice-skating and animal shows or whatever else they come up with.  Maybe we work on our big puzzle... it doesn't always work out that way, but that's what I shoot for.  There's always nursing thrown in the mix too.  I also try to do prep work for the morrow - Daddy's prep, packing the diaper bag, laying out clothes, whatever is necessary for a smooth next day. 

I sing out "Jammies" and they scramble to comply.  There are more bedtime chores, including another QUICK CLEAN.  I try to move into the quieter activities to help us all wind down. 

All the girlies are corralled back for our bedtime ritual - pray, sing a song and talk about our favorite parts of our day.  I nurse Baby Blossom and it's quiet.  More reading and chatting with Daddy, since he's usually recharging in the quiet time too. 

Bedtime for Mommy & Daddy... we fall into bed... that is, after I do some more tidying up and take care of anything else I see that it is still undone.  We usually collapse into bed with a sigh of relief, longing for rest in order to get set to do it all over again the next day.

Praise the Lord for days full of working and training our four girlies for Him!