Ahhhh summer…all the fun trips, days to sleep in, and kids climbing all over you all day long. The summers are lots of fun in our house but the two short months do a number on the rhythm of our household. Today I’m sharing some of the ways I work to reset the rhythm once school is back in session.
Alarms for Everything
I start the school year by getting up at 6:15 each morning. By September I will have this adjusted to 6:00 and by October the goal will be 5:45. 6:15 gives me time to lay for 10 minutes, get dressed, put toothpaste on kid toothbrushes, turn on bedroom lights, pack lunches, and get the bags in the car, in that order. 6:00 adds in time for me to eat and 5:45 adds in time to sit down at my computer and do a quick work email review and respond all before getting the kids up at 7:00.
I’m working on putting my phone on the counter and not touching it again until I push the kids out of the house at 7:27 to head to school. For each of the times mentioned above I have alarms. It really helps me not get absorbed in whatever task I’m taking on and lose track of time, especially when I have time to do a little work first thing in the morning.
In the afternoon I have alarms for leaving the house for pickup, getting dressed for sports, leaving the house for sports, and bedtime.
Have you heard about habit stacking? Basically it’s adding a new behavior to an old behavior, you can read more about it with this Real Simple article, if you’re interested. I use habit stacking to help reset the rhythm at our house. To my morning rhythm I added putting toothpaste on the kid’s toothbrushes when I walk through the hallway to turn on their bedroom lights each morning. This makes sending the kids directly into the bathroom when they wake up to brush teeth 10x easier because I don’t have to be in there helping with the toothpaste, it’s already done.
For the afternoon I’ve stacked unpacking book bags with packing snacks for the next day. The kids are learning they have to unpack right when we come in the house from school and Christopher likes to pick his own snacks so adding snack packing to the afternoon rhythm solves two problems – snacks are packed and Christopher can’t complain about the snacks I picked.
Think of things you already do and add something to that rhythm to make your day/evening easier.
Rhythm not Routine
You may have realized I am using rhythm not routine to describe my mornings. It’s just a small mental change I’m working on to help not get so frustrated when things go downhill. A routine is rigid, if you break the routine you may consider your day out of order. A rhythm is more flexible, if it doesn’t go absolutely according to plan it’s not as big of an upset.
Looking for more household tips?
I’m no June Cleaver but I do have a great post about how we’ve made some changes in our house to be just a bit greener. I would love to say we are environmentally friendly in all shapes and forms but really I can only manage a few small changes. You can read about them with the link below!