Saved by the Schedule

Last year I made an interesting discovery: my home runs better on a schedule.  When I am not required to put thought into what happens next, I suddenly have mental energy to devote to what is currently happening.  Our schedule has helped me to become a far more “present” mother.

I would be remiss in not mentioning how much Mystie Winckler’s writing has affected me.  Her words helped to pull me out a very dark place and showed me how managing my home could be done, even by someone who prefers thinking and reading and creating to boring everyday life.  I highly recommend her Rejoicing In Repetition ebook.

Over the next few weeks I’ll posting a bit about how our day works.  I have no reason other than the fact that it was similar posts that helped me to find the equilibrium for my own home.  It has taken me over a year to figure out the rhythm of our lives, and how to be flexible where it matters. Even now, with the current schedule having been in place for months, the details of it are still a work in progress.  Maybe I’ll get it all figured out before it changes again, maybe not.  But in the mean time, I am able to bring an increased measure of peace and productivity to our home.

Before I go on, I think I should mention two things about my attitude towards schedules, because I think they make a difference.  The very reasons that I find a detailed schedule makes our home more peaceful might make such a schedule a great burden to some with more perfectionist tendencies.

First, our schedule is always Plan B.  The schedule tells us what must be done if we don’t have a better idea.  The trick was to schedule the necessary events so that only a unusual opportunity would become more important than the schedule.

Secondly, I feel no personal compulsion to accomplish everything on my list each day.  The schedule works well to keep me from wandering aimlessly from room to room, trying to choose the most important task to tackle.  It keeps me from spending three days organizing one room while the rest of the house falls apart around me.  It spreads out my labor so that everything gets a bit of attention, which is not a talent that comes naturally to my project-oriented self.  But it does not cause me a moment’s distress if I missed a chore time, dinner was late, or nobody got to bed on time.  It is an ideal to strive for, not a set of rules to follow.

With all of that out of the way, here is a glimpse of what our day holds.  In the day’s ahead I’ll talk a little more about what happens during each component of our day.  There is a copy of this in my Circle Time Binder and a copy of it on the refrigerator for the children to access.

Daily Routine

5:30 – 6:00 Morning Routine

6:00 – 7:00 Chores, Kid-Free Projects

7:00 – 7:30 Children up, Dressed

7:30 – 8:00 Breakfast

8:00 – 8:30 Morning Chores

8:30 – 9:00 Circle Time

9:00 – 11:30 Schoolwork

11:30 – 12:00 Lunch

12:00 – 12:30 Afternoon Chores

12:30 – 1:30 Quiet time, Computer Work

1:30 – 4:30 Tackle To-Do List, Dinner Prep

4:30 – 5:00 Dinner

5:00 – 5:30 Dinner Clean-up

5:30 – 6:00 Evening Chores

6:00 – 7:00 Free Time

7:00 – 7:45 Book Time

7:45 – 8:00 Snack

8:00 – 9:00 Bedtime

9:00 – 9:30 Read, Relax

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3 thoughts on “Saved by the Schedule

  1. Thank you, Lizzie! Seeing words like this makes writing feel worthwhile. 🙂 I love the way you put it with the schedule being Plan B – that’s a great perspective, summed up neatly. Your days look laid out very similarly to ours.

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  2. I still can’t remember whose blog I first saw the “The schedule is always Plan B”, but it made a lasting impression. 🙂 Though the idea didn’t originate with me, I’ve always been grateful that someone else passed the idea far enough that I was touched by it.

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  3. Pingback: Stupendous Selections on Sunday | Afterthoughts

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