It is so easy to get over-scheduled, Or at least feel that way, when time is just flying by. Sometimes I am easily distracted by things that are not important, at least not priority. I’ve realized I’ve not been a good steward of my time. I’ve been reading and learning, and praying and pondering about this. So I’ve been making some changes.
I am a list maker by nature. So scheduling my day or the kids’ day is nothing new, but scheduling us all together on the same page has been an eye opener. This truly has been an amazing change in perspective for me. Seeing how we, as a family, are intermingled and spending our time throughout the day, has caused me to make some changes in our routine.
Here is our morning schedule:
This is the 3rd draft of the morning schedule – it is a work in progress. As time goes on I will adjust it as needed. Each block of time, at first appearance, may seem very rigid, but actually some free time, or down time exists in each block of time.
For example - If we are finished with our Spelling before noon, then the children have free time until their next scheduled assignment time. This not only keeps us working toward a goal, but it also rewards the children when they really focus and get their work done in a timely manner.
Although I have additional things scheduled earlier in the morning for myself (which are not on this chart), our Family morning schedule starts at 9am. This starting time seems to work out well for us. It allows the children to ease into their morning and have some free time before they get busy with their school day. This schedule also allows Michael some needed down time, since he has already attended Early Morning Seminary and his college class by this time.
Our Afternoon Schedule varies with the day of the week. Our Evening Schedule(which is not posted) includes chores, Family Scripture and Prayer Time (FSPT) and other things like Cub Scouts, Church, and Activity Day Girls and the like.
Here are the benefits I’ve found thus far:
- We get more accomplished in less time.
- I’m not as easily distracted by other things. You know like email, facebook, blogging etc. and the children aren’t distracted by other things either.
- Dad knows what our plans are for the day.
- We can dump the schedule when an unexpected opportunity presents itself and then jump back in the schedule at any point.
- We can easily see when we have overscheduled ourselves and let go of those things that are not priority or necessary at this season of life.
- With less distractions, I am connecting better with my family. We are not interacting like busy room-mates passing throughout the day; we are connecting emotionally.
- Behavior is MUCH better. Even our dogs behave better when I am connecting with them on a daily basis.
- School work is not neglected due to chores, and the chores are not neglected due to school work. We have scheduled both into our day.
Here is another thing, that has helped save time and money.
I use this to plan my weekly shopping trips. I account for what we will eat for all three meals each day of the week. From that menu, I will make a grocery list. Sometimes I need to run to more than one store. For most of my groceries I go to Kroger, but for some things I go to the Super Mart. This past week I also went to the bread store. I write the places I need to go in the “Errands” section and I make a notation of what get picks up where.
Since I am limiting my trips to the store, I save money. If there is something we need, we will go get it, but if the item desired is merely a want, we will not; we will make due with what we have.
At the end of the day I feel good about how I used my time.
And that feels … well … good! ☺