I am not turning into Captain Von Trapp, but I’m a little bit turning into Captain Von Trapp. Not that I’m blowing a whistle and expecting my kids to come, but I’ve realized that a few things really help our household run a little bit more smoothly, especially at the times of the day that have the most potential to be stressful. By that I mean, mornings before school and that time between five and seven that can sometimes be a little bit of a crapshoot.
We’ve shifted things a little bit over the past few months. Jack works out of the house, but he often works long and late hours. I work full-time from home. Remmy’s in kindergarten, Sophie’s in preschool, and now Minnie goes to a lovely little in-home daycare. I’m up early and I hustle (at home! by myself! it’s super quiet!) until about three, when I hop into the babe-mobile and pick up my girls. From 3 until 7 I do nothing but mom (as a verb). Occasionally I’ll have to check an email on my phone, but I’m really committed to trying to make that me-and-kid time only.
We’re planning playdates for Spring/Summer 2014 if you, too, like burning off energy at parks. I’m into it. Highly recommend.
In order to make things run a little bit more smoothly, I have just one or two lists (okay, it’s four) for the girls that help us get through the day. I KNOW! Four! So VonTrapp of me. (As an aside – I’ve said this before – I know that I’m getting older now that I watch the Sound of Music and think the captain is kind of hunky.)
Here are our routines. It’s okay if you tell me I’ve lost it. I’ve come to terms with it.
They look super sterile, which isn’t helping my statement that I’m totally cuddly and not at all a dictator, but I promise I print them out and draw a bunch of goofy little sketches on them, as shown when I first introduced the ‘morning routine.’ These lists sort of serve as a framework – not just for them, but also for me (and Jack). Oh right, I can’t leave the house unless I have Minnie’s blanket! Oh, one of my girls is sitting on the couch in her underwear? Hey, babe, go check the list and see what you have to do next.
There’s less scrambling, less shouting-of-instructions (GIRLFRIEND GET SOME SOCKS ON WE HAVE TO LEAVE IN 90 SECONDS), and I don’t have that frazzled “Wait, did I just forget something?” feeling.
Last time, some of you asked for a printable PDF. I didn’t provide one last time, because schedules vary by family and needs, but here it is. You’re welcome to download it and draw pictures of Alf on it.