Sunday, December 28, 2014

Getting Back into Gear

It is always difficult to get back into the swing of things but just like at the beginning of the school year there are some things you can do to help everyone adjust smoothly without resorting to tears all around.  Generally, you have more uninterrupted school time during this time so it's important that we are working hard.

1.  Bedtimes - Make sure bedtimes are being enforced.  It is hard to get up in the morning if no one went to bed on time.  That includes Mom.

2.  Chore Lists - Make sure everyone has an updated chore list.  This is a great time to update, re-arrange or allow kids to trade chores.

3.  Schedule- Re- look at your schedule that you, hopefully, made at the beginning of the year and make any needed adjustments.  Make sure you go over any changes with your kids and post the schedule.  Keep an eye on the level of commitments you are making.  For some reason, I always think that I am fairly free and then May hits and I am swamped.  Check your end of your school year commitments before making new ones now.

4.  Crockpot - The Crockpot is your friend.  Utilize it. 
Overnight Oatmeal in it for breakfast.  I then use the leftovers to make bread.  Leftover Oatmeal Bread. has some great crockpot recipes.  Here's a fun crockpot mac n cheese. Crockpot Mac N Cheese

There are great one dish Dutch Oven recipes on Allrecipes as well.  If you don't have a Dutch Oven, beg for one for your next birthday, Christmas, Anniversary, Mother's Day, Valentine's Day etc.  I LOVE my Le Creuset.  Expensive, I know but totally worth it.  I love Arroz Con Pollo and this is a great recipe, although I cook it all together in one pot to save time and I think it tastes better.  Stews and Soups are also great in the Dutch Oven.  Start them on the stove and then out them on the oven to cook at 275 or 300 for a couple of hours.  No muss, no fuss.

Don't forget to double or triple your recipes and then freeze the leftovers for meals.  I usually have several meals in the freezer for crazy days.  This includes muffins, rolls, bread and cookies.  If you are already cooking make extra to freeze.

5.  Plan Fun Stuff!  It is important to make sure you doing a fun activity every couple of days.  Don't let the drudge get you down.  Make snow ice cream or have a fun hot chocolate bar.  Make a craft. Plan a family movie/pizza night.  Plan a do nothing day for a Saturday and do nothing but play and lay around.  Have a game night and invite a bunch of friends.

6.  Start looking towards next year.  I know, you are still doing this year but convention season is almost here and you will be better off if you start thinking about next year's plans now.

7.  Plan a Vacation or a Stay-Cation.  I ALWAYS do better if I have something to look forward to.  We generally don't do Spring Break so I have a summer vacation in the works and it helps me have something to look forward to.

8.  Date Night.  Have a date with your husband.  When was your last one?  More than a week or two?  That's a problem.  Trade with a friend, enlist the grandparents, pay the neighbor down the street - do what you need to do and make it happen!  It will help everyone!

9.  Take a focused look at your kids attitudes.  After the holidays, I always find we have let attitudes slip and have to get them back in check.  Are they whining and complaining?  Are they obeying the first time?  Are they helping?  Pick one thing to work on each week and soon everybody will be back to normal.

10.  Remember that being a Mom is fun.  Homeschooling is fun, too.  If you need too, take a look over your list of why you homeschool.  Take time to see the joy in the little moments.  Your time is fleeting with your little ones.  Ask me how I know. I am facing my oldest graduating in just over 2 years and my twins in 6 years.  Take time to enjoy the process.  Take time to gloat in the little victories.


1 comment:

  1. What wonderful reminders!! Thank you for this post and your wise words. I've been a member of the MFW fb page for years and saw the post today about parent/child training on your blog. I'm nursing our baby and started reading away... So much great stuff here on your blog. Kinda makes me want to be your neighbor. ;)
    Thank you Dawn for the encouragement and great advice. God bless!!
    Homeschool mom to 4 (ages 7 months to 11 - used MFW from the beginning and love it)


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