On Friday, I gave some tips for creating a flexible routine. Today, I’m giving you a glimpse into our own.
Currently, my awesome husband is getting up with our kiddo first thing in the morning to get them both ready for the day and make us all breakfast (we’re on a big oatmeal kick). The whole second-trimester-energy-boost hasn’t been happening around here so I’m extremely grateful for the extra rest.
After breakfast, my kiddo and I wave goodbye to Dan at the front door and set about our day.
We start with a half an hour of uninterrupted playtime – pretty much doing whatever my kiddo wants. It really is the most productive 30 minutes of my day.
Next we do chores/more playtime. This usually extends for the rest of the morning because we alternate between doing chores and playing together. While I’m getting stuff done, I give my daughter the option of helping me or playing on her own. Sometimes she’s ridiculously excited about sorting laundry. Other times, she’s happy to draw or run around or pretend.
This chore/playtime is extremely flexible. I tried designating certain chores for certain days and realized it just stressed me out. Now I usually start with the daily load of laundry and simply do whatever else needs to be done/what seems semi-interesting. I also make sure we have something to eat for lunch and dinner.
This time also includes a snack time, a bath if need be, and lots and lots of breaks to play. For instance, last Wednesday during this time we had apples with peanut butter, my kiddo “did dishes” while also requesting ingredients (baking soda) so she could “make a cake.” I participated in an elaborate game she made up and oh yeah, got a few chores done.
Next, we eat lunch.
Then we have an extended reading time. Reading often happens at other times of the day but since reading aloud is something I highly value, this reading time guarantees it doesn’t get easily pushed aside.
After reading several books, we have relaxing time. I instituted this when my daughter stopped taking naps. She goes into her room and plays quietly (or not so quietly) with toys and books while I do more chores or blog or read or lay down to rest.
Relaxing inevitably induces hunger so we follow this quiet time with a snack.
The rest of the afternoon is pretty flexible. Sometimes chore/playtime is extended or we do a more organized project. If the weather is decent we may head outside. The other day, we had a dance party after relaxing time.
Before Dan gets home, I try to get dinner on the table. Try being the key word… During this time, I’ll often put on a show for the kiddo.
Then it’s dinner, playing with Daddy, and her bedtime routine which includes reading out of The Jesus Storybook Bible.
Our evenings vary immensely depending on the day/week so I won’t bore you with all the possibilities there.
If this routine seems incredibly simple, it’s because it is. I decided my non-negotiable values include daily uninterrupted playtime with my kiddo, a house in a state that makes our lives easier instead of harder (i.e. as little clutter as possible), healthy(ish) snacks and meals, time for reading out loud, time apart (relaxing time), lots of time for free play and imagination and a specific time in our day to talk about Christ.
There are certainly days when this routine gets ditched. Chore/playtime easily gets replaced with a trip to the park or a play date. But this routine keeps us grounded on the days we’re home. My kiddo generally knows what happens next and responds very well to a steady, flexible rhythm to our days. I also reserve the right to change the routine at any time. Because, hey, it’s only a good routine if it works for us.
What elements does a typical day hold for you?
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