Wednesday, June 20, 2012

I'm a Creature of Routine

I have found that I have unintentionally created a weekly routine for myself.  One would think this would not be the case since I stay at home with three young children and you never know what the day will bring, but it is.  I have a Type A personality.  I like a plan and I try hard to stick with it.   Since we have moved, I have tried to alter the "schedule" that I had created for myself, but in less than a month I have returned to my old ways and added more to that routine.  Instead of viewing this in a negative way, I am going to roll with it and be proud that I have a plan.

After years of spending Saturday mornings cleaning the "priority" areas of my house, I am making a conscious effort to quit.  Just like those who have Monday-Friday jobs, I would like my weekend to be free of "work."  This has added some pressure, though, to schedule these tasks into an already busy week.  I have decided that I will divide and conquer, as I don't have enough time to finish it all in one day at home alone with the kids.

This brings into play my other lists.  About a year ago I finally decided I needed to purchase a spiral notebook to write all of my lists in.  My lists were scattered everywhere with many different titles and I was losing them causing me to make yet another list.  For now the spiral notebook is the solution.  I'm thinking of changing it up a bit soon, though.  Perhaps a DIY dry erase board will spice up my daily "to-do" list.

These days, my weekly schedule looks something like this:

Monday:  Clean the bathrooms (why not knock that one out right away!).
Tuesday:  Dust
Wednesday:  Wash towels, vacuum upstairs, plan the meals and create the grocery list
Thursday:  Kids' laundry and vacuum downstairs
Friday:  Our laundry

When I look at everything broken down this way it seems attainable.  I don't feel overwhelmed and it is good to know when I get up in the morning what I need to accomplish that day.  I'm sure women of previous generations would think this is a pretty skimpy list of "chores."  I feel like the older generations put more value on a clean house than I do.  For me, I want to make sure that the basics are covered and anything I can do additionally is a bonus.  After all, who has time to mop the floors once a week?  Not me!

I have found that my kids are creatures of routine as well.  If possible, we start and end our day the same way every day.  The upside to this is they know what to expect and we can work our way through our morning and bedtime routines.  The downside, however, is when that routine is changed ever so slightly and the meltdowns that occur.  We do our best to get through it all, but I have to admit that I empathize a bit when we throw them off their game.  I don't like it much either!

All things considered, I think being a creature of routine and having my lists keeps me sane and moving forward as a stay-at-home mom.  When I was a teacher, it was how I ran my classroom and prepared my lessons.  Everything was quite predictable and planned out.  It's just how I operate.  I am a planner and I'm proud of it!

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