"You have two kids? Both under 3yrs old? How you get any work done? It must be so hard... " *sympathetic sad face*
Umm.. life as a mommy have been the best days of my life! There is nothing sad or hard about me raising two young kids while running a writing business from home. This was much before I started the Curly Girl journey. Want to know my secret? A routine. We follow this plan on weekdays. We don't do this over the weekends. Here is what my daily routine for a toddler and a baby looked like:
Early Morning: 7 am - 9 am
My toddler of 32 months is the first one up. Sometimes she wakes me up with a soft kiss, other times it's an elbow in the chest. We are talking through this issue, but either way, Baby#1 is our alarm clock for now. So, in logical order:
- Bathroom - Breakfast - Brush teeth - Get toddler ready for playgroup - Husband and Toddler out of the house!
Mid Morning: 9.30am - 11.30am
As soon as these two are out of the house, Baby#2 of 9months is ready for her morning nap. After spending about 20min to put her to bed, I look forward to spend some quiet time with God. For about 30min to an hour, I spend time with the Lord. At this time I followed a Community Bible Reading (CBR) plan by Marg Family Church. - a chapter each, from the Old and the New Testament. It's not reading, but studying the scripture portions to understand and pray through:
- What were God's qualities visible in the scripture, - Where do I fall short of God's standards, - Thanking Jesus for what he did on the cross for me, - Asking the Holy Spirit to help me with a struggle of the day.
With this exercise and the confidence that God is with me, I start my day.
My Help comes over to cook for us by 10.30am and deals with the dishes too. While she gets busy preparing lunch, I express clean every room. My goal at this time is to get the house tidy and get the laundry done.
Baby is up from her morning nap by 11am. I get her ready, and if there's still time, respond to emails and chats. Then I'm off to pick up my toddler from her playgroup. I take my baby along for this brisk walk too (We babywear, so exercise? Check!)
Afternoon: 12pm - 3pm
This is what I like to call my golden period. This window is the kids' nap time. As soon as we're back from the playgroup, we lunch together. Then everybody is off to bed for an afternoon siesta. If the morning coffee is still pulsating through my veins and I can't sleep, I do these things:
- Watch a movie - Read a book - Take a bath - Proofread last night's work.
Ah... the bliss! Now you know why it's my golden period *wink*!
Early Evening: 3pm - 6.45pm
My maid comes over at this time to sweep and mop the house. By this time children are up! This is their golden period. Since they are alert, I find this is the best time for them to learn things. So we:
- Read books, - Dance - Bake - Video call with grandparents - Have a play date over - Go to the park for free play
Life as a Mommy Night Routine: 7pm - 8pm
As soon as we are back from the park, my children get a warm bath. We have dinner. Sometimes, I let my toddler start on dinner while I put my little one to bed. Both are in bed by 8pm.
From 8pm onward, I am on full power work-mode. I have to stay productive while working from home in this time slot. As I work mostly with international clients this is an ideal time to chat or video call with them. Oh of course, the silence is perfect to read, research, and writing time for me.
I'm in bed by 1 am. and so the cycle continues until Saturday.The weekends are relaxed for the children. I observe the Sabbath on Sunday. Basically, we don't do the things we do normally on the weekdays. So no freelance writing work or laundry over the weekends. Unless there is no urgent content writing delivery on Monday, Sunday is relaxed for me also.
All in All
We have our daily challenges and struggles too. Not all days are the same but I like to keep it on schedule as closely as possible. Read 10 reasons why children thrive on routine here. I am grateful for god who gives the wisdom and the strength to handle these things. Praise God! For His plans are always perfect!
More details on how we got them on a routine coming soon!