After the Detailed Look Through the Learning Spaces post, Jaime asks…
“I would love to hear more about how your daily routines go….how does your day flow?”
Keep in mind that organization and order are helps to the busy mother. There is an investment of time on the front end of organizing something – whether that is your school room or your day – but the payoffs are that you become the manager of the day, a manager of the time, not a slave to it reacting to everything that comes up.
Organizing the day means anticipating as much as possible and leaving PLENTY of elbow room in the schedule for those things I cannot anticipate. I move through the day on the rails I laid down – habits of order and obedience. If I’m derailed for a time, I just pick up the rails NOT where I left off, but where I should be in the day. Shift what was missed to another day (I do this all.the.time!) A Mother’s day just does not work on a strict schedule or rule. A Mother’s Rule is dictated by LOVE and must be open to being flexible while being obedient to her vocation.
I was starting to self-destruct trying to react to all the things that hit me during the day, so this loose “Rule” is my answer to meeting the day. Think of it as a Rule…with Wide Margins! 🙂 It’s really more of a rhythm than a rule. I think St. Benedict offers us much wisdom – it is good to have a Rule in place that offers us opportunities for obedience, humility, and service. Our vocations demand certain obedience to the daily duty. A Mother’s Rule for her day must consider her vocation as well as the persons (little and big) she encounters in her day. A Mother’s Rule must have sufficient space for LOVE – dialogue, snuggles, spontaneous tickles, discipline, crisis:
“And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony.”
- While I’m nursing the littlest I say my morning prayers privately. These consist of prayers from my Mother Love prayer book and In Conversation With God. During this time the children stumble down and sit at my feet while I’m praying. The two older children are kind enough to know not to disturb until I finish my prayers, the 4 year old is in training. 🙂 I’ve visited with you before on my daily prayer routine.
- KEY to a happy day…..choose a happy apron to wear!
- Coffee, breakfast, morning visiting, breakfast clean-up, kitchen tidy, observation of the morning birds.
- Morning chores. Everyone has their own. The children get dressed and tend to morning hygiene, beds are made. I start laundry, tidy the living spaces, and take a look at the lesson plans for the day. I set out (some call this strewing) little vignettes or displays of books or activities. These aren’t ornate or complicated – many times this is a picture book, a statue of Our Lady or another Saint, and a coloring page. Very, very simple here – lest the temptation to become side-tracked on a tangent takes over!
- Free time with the leftover time in this block. I might check in at 4Real…or do some other online research, call mom for a **quick** chat 🙂 Sometimes I am firming up the lesson plans for the day. The children are ALWAYS enjoying playing outside during this time.
:: Morning Family Block (8:00 – 9:30)
- Morning basket of work. I reserve the first hour of our learning time as together time. These are things we all do together. I have students from 8th grade down to preschool/Kindergarten-ish age. I gather all my resources into a large basket (hence the name) so it’s all kept together. We begin with morning prayers and devotions and a bit of reading about the liturgical day. I like reading from A Year in Faith and Art. (Updated Morning Basket post)
:: Learning Blocks (9:30 – 11:30)
That’s it. It’s off to bed and start all over again the next day. This is a fairly typical day. It doesn’t account for trips out of the home which I am very guarded about during school hours. The only exception being Monday morning Mass. Sometimes after Mass we stop at the market for the week’s groceries, grab a treat for lunch and then start the day from there.