Finding Time With Routines And Schedules

I know how busy life gets and we all… ok, most us… feel like we need more time every now and then, right? Well, there are only 24 hours in a day and we can’t make more time no matter how hard we try so that means we just need to find ways to use our time more wisely.

First things first…

First, we need to get our priorities straight and make sure we are getting the things are done that need to get done like feeding everyone and making sure they have clean clothes to wear. We should probably make sure we clean the house from time to time and if you homeschool you gotta have time for that too. Not to mention that there are so many other things like appointments, grocery shopping, and other obligations that happen every day.

Click here to read about our Google Home Hub has helped this busy Momma keep our routines and schedules organized.

Sometimes it seems like there is no time left for the fun stuff but I promise that routines can help. I have written many a post about our routines here. Our routines help keep us running smoothly most of the time. The routines work when we follow them and sometimes we don’t but we quickly realize how much we need them. As soon as we get back on routine our lives get less chaotic.

I have included some pics and screenshots of our different routines and schedules below but please don’t think this is complicated. Ours are far more complicated than most as we have a lot of things going on here and I need these to keep myself and my household organized. Every family is different and every set of routines will be different What works for us may not work for you but feel free to use these as a guideline for setting up your own routines and/or schedules.

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So many choices!

I don’t know about you but sometimes I get overwhelmed by the number of choices I have to make everyday. Choices about what to make for dinner, what to wear, and heaven forbid that I need to buy a new appliance or gadget for the house.

Everywhere we look there are choices. So much marketing about what is the best choice and why we need one brand versus another brand. So much persuasion about how things will make our lives better or how we just can’t go on another day without a certain product.

I try to be as informed as I can be about every choice I make. If it is a big financial decision then I try to take my time to think about it and weigh my options. Sometimes I overanalyze the decisions and sometimes I just fail to make one and it gets made for me. So how can we make sure that we make the best choices?

When it comes to the things about what to wear or what to eat then those are usually fairly simple. I keep my clothes weeded out and organized so I don’t have too many choices. I have something for about every occasion but I don’t keep an overabundance of clothes. As far as meals go, I always try to plan ahead and I have our menu on a rotating schedule. This helps me narrow down that ‘What’s for dinner?’ dilemna. (See meal planning for more info.)

For the bigger decisions I always try to ask God for His guidance no matter how big or how small the decision is. When I was married I would also consult with my husband and have him to help me with the decision. If I am still in doubt I will try to find someone knowledgeable about the product and ask their opinion. I check reviews for the product and/or service before making my decision.

We need to learn to be as informed as possible in making decisions. Sometimes we don’t always have days or months to gather information or ponder over what to do. Each of us is different in the way we handle our decision making and sometimes we need to pray for guidance and wisdom. If we go ahead and pray for that right now then we will prepared for whatever lies ahead.

This is especially important when we have children who are looking up to us and watching everything we do. Now the decision to buy the automatic coffee maker over the manual may not be something that really affects them but there are and will be other choices that do. They are watching us and learning from us when we are making choices in life. They see the big choices and whether you realize it or not they see the little ones as well.

The way we handle these decisions is helping to mold our children in the ways they will handle their future problems.We need to make sure that we’re setting good examples with our decision making process. We can help them by allowing them to make choices from an early age. Decisions about what to wear or what snack to eat. I’m not saying to give them free reign but present them with a couple of options. The younger the child, or the less mature, then the fewer choice options they should have. Maybe let them pick from two outfits or two different snacks.

It is important that they learn to do this as we need to practice skills to get better at them. When they make choice help them to stick by it, when appropriate, and let them learn the rewards and consequences of their choices.By showing them how to make responsible choices and how to accept the consequences our decisions we will be helping them to be more responsible adults.

 

Daily School Routine

Below is a copy of the checklist I made for the kids. This is just a simple checklist for their independent work. The pictures help the younger ones who can not yet read. DS14 also works best if he has a visual guide to follow.We have a few things that we do as a group, like our Bible studies, which are not included on the list.

I have found that this helps to keep them motivated as they can visually see what needs to be completed before they get to play. This also helps keep me organized as I can check their lists too.

I printed them out in color and laminated a copy for each child so they can check them off with a dry erase marker. I will also be posting a copy on our bulletin board in the kitchen as that is where we do the majority of our school work.

daily-school-routine

If your kiddos seem to have trouble remembering what needs finished or if they are constantly asking you what they need to do next maybe you should try making them a checklist as well. It will not only keep you from being so frazzled but will also help to make them more independent and responsible.

Happy Schooling!

Just a twinge

Last night I was reading over some things on my computer when I happened upon a very nice comment left for someone regarding something they had written. There was nothing wrong with the comment, nothing wrong with the person who wrote the comment, and nothing wrong with the person it was directed to. When I read it though I felt an instant twinge of jealousy. Why? I really wasn’t sure.

I admire the life she has. She seems to have everything going for her. The profile picture shows a happy family with a handsome, smiling husband and two kids right beside her. She has many accomplishments listed in her profile and she has traveled the world. So many things that I had planned on doing when I was younger.

When I felt the twinge I knew why, well at least partly. Then I thought about my family and all the things that I have done. If I had been in school or working I might’ve missed out on some of the opportunities that I have had. I instantly knew that I am where God would have me to be at this moment in time and I felt a sense of peace. I asked God to forgive me. Then I also asked him to bless her and her family as I know that they are right where He would have them to be.

 

The key to overcoming this feeling is to be aware of it. Don’t let it grow or it will overwhelm your emotions. I realized it immediately when I felt it but sometimes it is an emotion that comes on more subtly. It creeps into our minds and our hearts without us noticing it. We may start to feel discontent and not know why.

We may admire something someone has or something someone else’s husband has done for them. These feelings may trigger other feelings of insecurity and doubt about ourselves, our marriages, our families, and our lives. These feelings can grow and manifest themselves into bigger uglier problems like resentment, distrust, and anger.

 

Maybe you know or admire someone but you feel anxious or resentful towards them. Maybe you compare yourself to them and you feel like you are never enough or that you just can’t measure up to them. Maybe you wonder why they always seem to have all the luck. Maybe you wonder what they ever did to have or to earn the things they have.

You need to recognize that these feelings can come from being jealous. I know, I know, we don’t want to admit that we could possibly be jealous over someone else but it happens. We might laugh at someone if they suggest that we could possibly be jealous of a certain person.

You are still worldly. For since there is jealousy and quarreling among you, are you not worldly? Are you not acting like mere humans? – 1 Corinthians 3:3

The truth is that we are human and we have emotions. We feel things like no other creature on earth. We also have the ability to control these feelings. What do we do about this?

First, you need to recognize the feeling. Let yourself acknowledge it but don’t let it over take you. You can’t let it control your emotions, your actions, or your life. Accept responsibility for the emotions.

Second, take a look at why you feel the way you do. Take a step back and really look at the situation. Are you jealous of someone’s relationship? Are you jealous of someone’s appearance? Are you jealous of the recognition someone else gets from their job or other accomplishments?

Third, remember that you have the power to change the way you feel. The root of the problem lies within yourself and your own heart. Think about things you can do to improve yourself. Look at your own strengths and build on them.

Fourth, stop comparing yourself to other people. I mean it! Stop! You need to remember that what you perceive to be true is not always as it seems. Look at everything you have been blessed with and be thankful for what you have. Remember that if it is in God’s will for you to have something then He will give it to you in His time. I know how hard it can be to watch things fall in place for others when it might feel like your own life is falling apart. Just remember that everything is working together for the good.

Fifth, pray about it! Admit the feelings you have and ask God to forgive you for feeling that way. Ask God to help you develop a more positive outlook on life and to help you make positive changes in your life. When you recognize your faults and weaknesses you can ask for specific changes. God hears your prayers and He knows the innermost thoughts of your heart.

If you are struggling with jealousy God can and will help you. He can take away those feelings and He can create a new heart in you. He can help you overcome these feelings. Jealousy is a tool that Satan uses to get to you and he will use it to destroy you.

I pray every morning that God will help me to take away any feelings of jealousy, lust, envy, anger, unforgiveness, bitterness or discontentment that may be hiding in me. I may not see these until its too late and I have done or said something that I will regret later.

I ask Him to give me strength to prevent these emotions from creeping into my relationships with others. I ask him to help me remember that I was beautifully created by His own hand and that He loves me even when I don’t love myself. I also ask Him to prepare me for the changes He is making in my life and to help me accept the things that I can not change.

I trust in God and His plan for my life. He only wants the best for us and He has a plan for each and every one of us. So when you are dealing with jealousy or anything else you need to hand it over to God. He will help you just as He has helped me.

Set me as a seal upon your heart, as a seal upon your arm, for love is strong as death, jealousy is fierce as the grave. Its flashes are flashes of fire, the very flame of the LORD. -Song of Solomon 8:6