Here is Denise with some wonderful advice. She taught me all about a schedule before we had our little ones and my life is so much simpler because of it.
Last week we talked about job jars and really that applies mostly to children who are old enough to complete a job without your supervision, so we're talking 6 or 7. Today I want to help those out who have toddlers that need A LOT of supervision and really the care of them takes up most of our day. The best piece of advice I have for mothers of preschoolers and 'getting it all done' is a routine. Not only does it help you get things accomplished, it cuts WAY DOWN on your need to discipline. Even those of you who don't like a schedule or routine, you already have one. You have to. There are certain things that need to get done in a day and you do them. You either do them as part of a routine or you do them at the last minute out of necessity. Instead of going on and on about why it helps, how to do it and what to include in your day, I'll give you an example of what I do when my 2 older ones are at school and my 2 younger ones are home. This is just an example. Another day may look different depending on whether or not we have errands to run or something else to do.
These are all 'ish'. I don't follow a strict schedule, just some kind of routine.
6:30-7:30 Get Tyler up and off to school
8:00 Free play while I get Jackson off to school
8:30 Watch a show while I clean the kitchen and change over the laundry
9:00 Play together in the basement while I clean main floor
9:30 Room time with each of them in their own room while I clean upstairs and do laundry/put clothes away
10:15 or 10:30 Snack
10:45 or 11:00 Go run an errand, go for a walk, go to the park, etc...
1:00 Nap while I clean, do laundry, do my Bible Study and sometimes I nap if someone was up during the night or I went to bed late.
4:00 Everyone is home and needs me all at the same time and I don't know how I survive til bed.
I kid. Sorta. It does get kinda crazy. If one of the little ones wakes up before Tyler gets home(2:45, so it rarely happens), I try to spend time with them coloring or reading books or something they like to do. Once everyone is home, what we HAVE TO DO takes over at that point. Homework, soccer, karate, guitar lessons, church, etc. I try not to do too much so they can play outside after they wake up/finish their homework. Then we have dinner, play a little more outside before it's time for bath and bed.
It's all the same stuff you do, I just like to follow some sort of routine so it gets done. When I follow it, the little ones know what to expect and I don't need to constantly discipline them. They complain and argue less. Try it, you'll like it.
~type to you thursday~