I love accessories. Especially hats. So you’d think I’d have this wearing different hats and sometimes even two or three at one time, thing down. There are so many hats for me to wear throughout the day and sometimes I feel like I’m not wearing any of them well.
Writing is therapeutic for me. In many of the counseling sessions I hold, I’ll ask the client to write things out because sometimes seeing it, reading it, writing it–makes it more real. So, I thought I’d take a piece of my own advice.
I wrote out my schedule so that I can see it for myself. Not so that we can compare notes. Or that you can ooh and ahh at my schedule. Or to beat myself up and aspire to do more. But more as a reminder for myself that what I do, day in and day out is important. Because the reality is sometimes I don’t believe it. I don’t believe that it matters to anyone that between teaching breaks I’ve swept more than once that day though it may not look like it).
My hope is that it’s an encouragement for you and a reminder to me–
Every little thing matters even if it goes unappreciated or noticed.
Why? Because–love does. Love does and as mothers, our days are filled with “Love Does” moments.
What we do all day is important. Whether you stay home or not, isn’t the issue. You don’t stop being a mom when you head to work. Moms are essential!
The question I get asked most often is, What do you do all day? I’m usually not offended by it, unless it’s covered in contempt and criticism but for the most part it’s usually people who truly are curious. I’m curious what my friends do all day. So here’s the answer, this is for the most part a typical day for us. My schedule gets throw off balance if I have to throw in an unexpected appointment, holidays, sick days…
The Question I Get Asked Most Often, What Do You Do All Day?
- 6:30 a.m. I’m awake. Sometimes cuddling with my littles other times just trying to get myself to fully wake up.
- 6:45 a.m. I’m out of bed or trying to get myself out of bed.
- 7:10-7:30 I’m making breakfast for myself, at times for Ben and the boys. If I’m behind on homeschool planning I go straight to the books and plan until the boys come down for breakfast and I have them make their own breakfast.
- 7:30-7:55 a.m. I’m going through my mental to-do list. Jotting things down and gathering my things for our homeschool day.
- 7:55 a.m. It’s time for the boys to get ready for the day: make beds, brush teeth, get dressed and clean up their room.
- 8:10-8:30 a.m. I’m eating breakfast, drinking tea and having my devotional time. My boys are eating breakfast and doing their own devotional time.
- 8:30- 9:00 a.m. I’m working out. My boys are finishing up their devotional time and starting on their Spelling. While I’m working out I’m checking their spelling work and asking them questions about their devotional time. Three times a week we go to the park and walk/run 2 miles for our P.E.
- 9:00 a.m.-10:00 a.m. I’m on the internet printing off worksheets for their school day or coming up with activities to make their language arts, science or history more hands on. Meanwhile, they are reading their chapter books or working on reading comprehension or grammar.
Through out the day when I get free moments, I’m working with Mateo on his preschool stuff. Checking my email, Facebook messages (If I don’t I’d have around 150 message at the end of the day to filter through) and being socially active online, so my blog doesn’t fall off the face of this world.
- 10-10:30 Recess time. I use this time to clean up around the house.
- 10:30-12:00 Explain their math lesson and have them do their math practice lessons. If they are done early they take out their chapter book (which a lot of times is part of history). Math is one of those subjects I have to be around and available because they constantly need my help. I’m also working with Mateo on his preschool stuff when I get a moment.
Throughout the day I find myself oohing and ahhhing at countless art pictures, math problems figured out, silly tricks and laughing at knock knock jokes that aren’t funny. Listening to constant tattling.
- 12 – Free time for them while I make lunch. Once a week we have a preschool co-op and once a month I’m in charge of the co-op.
- 12:45 – 1:30 Dig into social studies and/or social studdies. Going through our Peoples of the World book and praying for a people group. Finding them on the map and finding ourselves fully amazed at how vastly different God made us.
- 2:00-2:45 Music practice, art class and/or Spanish lessons. Certain days I’m driving them back and forth from music classes in the middle of our school day.
Throughout the day I’m going beyond enforcing rules and refereeing fights but trying to teach my kids to become problem solvers, encouragers, men of action, men of integrity and reminding them that family comes first. I find myself saying things like: kindness is important, use your words, don’t fart at the table, say please and thank you, when you fall you get up, you can do it, God loves you, I love you, I appreciate when you…. Oh my friend, it’s endless but it’s necessary.
- 3:00 Finish up our day.
- 3-3:30 Clean up the house.
- 4:00-4:15 Sit and just take a breather while I figure out what to make for dinner.
- 4:30 Start dinner. Check on the boys every 15-20 minutes if they are playing outside. Referee sibling fights. Catch up with Ben, oh yea, and I cook.
- 6-7 Eat dinner. Ben is home at this point and we tag team. He helps me get the table set, round up the boys and what not.
- 7-7:30 Bedtime routine: PJ’s, brush teeth, read a book and pray.
- 7:30- 8:00 Clean up kitchen and dining room.
- 8-9:00 Meet any of my deadlines for my freelance writing work and sometimes depending on my deadlines I have to squeeze in my writing into whatever “free” time I get during the day. If I’m lucky I get to work from my bed.
- 10:00 p.m. Exhausted, bed time.
These are some of the things we do weekly: Service Outreach— Service outreach activities: working with teen moms once a week, counseling a young girl who’s been trafficked, conducting seminars or workshops for parents or students (this varies), passing out lunches to the street kids (this varies), plus whatever service outreach activity we do on a whim.
And just so you don’t think I/we don’t have a social life this is a glimpse of our–Social activities: hosting at our house, work related events, meeting up with friends, date nights (spouse and/or children), organize monthly ladies mixer, homeschool playdates or outings, couples group (every other week), preschool co-op (once a week and I’m also on the calendar to lead), bible studies or small group.
I also have to make room for me. It’s what keeps me sane, the little wee moments for me, just me. Personal hobbies: art class (every other week) and sometimes I get to walk or run ALONE if Ben gets home from work on time. If I’m lucky every other month I get Sunday morning to myself–to praise and worship all ALONE!
Do you believe me yet? What you do is important. Why? Because–love does. I don’t do any of this perfectly, not even love. But my days are filled with “Love Does” moments whether I like it or not.
And guess what I’m betting that you won’t do mothering perfectly either, so stop expecting the impossible from yourself. Yes, strive to love but don’t strive for perfection. Because above all you want them to remember is love.
If you’re child doesn’t have a caring adult around to hold them when they fall or cheer them on when they draw your dream house, with a garden and your very own purple unicorn (though it all looked like lots of lines and squashed circles)–it would be tragic. Our “love does” moments are vital in their lives.
I love how this male blogger, Matt Walsh worded this:
“The people who completely immerse themselves in the tiring, thankless, profoundly important job of raising children ought to be put on a pedestal. We ought to revere them and admire them like we admire rocket scientists and war heroes. These women are doing something beautiful and complicated and challenging and terrifying and painful and joyous and essential. Whatever they are doing, they ARE doing something, and our civilization DEPENDS on them doing it well. Who else can say such a thing? What other job carries with it such consequences?
It’s true — being a mom isn’t a “job.” A job is something you do for part of the day and then stop doing. You get a paycheck. You have unions and benefits and break rooms. I’ve had many jobs; it’s nothing spectacular or mystical. I don’t quite understand why we’ve elevated “the workforce” to this hallowed status. Where do we get our idea of it? The Communist Manifesto? Having a job is necessary for some — it is for me — but it isn’t liberating or empowering. Whatever your job is — you are expendable. You are a number. You are a calculation. You are a servant. You can be replaced, and you will be replaced eventually. Am I being harsh? No, I’m being someone who has a job. I’m being real.
If your mother quit her role as mother, entire lives would be turned upside down; society would suffer greatly. The ripples of that tragedy would be felt for generations. If she quit her job as a computer analyst, she’d be replaced in four days and nobody would care. Same goes for you and me.”
My dear mama/caregiver friends, if for one minute you think the endless amount of pb &j sandwiches you’ve made day in and day out while diligently removing the crust for one child but remembering to leave it on for the youngest, is not important–think again. You are awesome! Why? Because–love does.
Whether you stay home with your child all day or you work outside of your home–nevertheless you’re a mom. You brought another human being into this world and now you’re taking the time, patience and love to raise your precious child.
Our days are filled with “love does” moments–the WHOLE day. Don’t underestimate what you do!
Yes, go celebrate! I haven’t celebrated, so I’m off to celebrate as I climb into my bed to get some much needed sleep before another day of “love does” begins.