Hi lovely readers! I hope you enjoy this day in the life video filmed from our new camera! Blessings, Peta xo
My mind is not the mathematical type. However at times I see life as a wife and mother as one large puzzle. A puzzle filled with many different shaped pieces and facets. Each area of being a wife and mother needs to fit together in some sort of organised manner, clipped in place like a 1000 piece puzzle.
Meal planning and preparation being one piece of the puzzle, keeping up with dishes being another, then there is the laundry piece, finances piece, quality time with the family piece, showering piece, hair cuts piece, homework piece and even little things become puzzle pieces like the getting out the door on Sunday mornings piece.
There are many problems that need to be solved when you have a family – and even when you are single! Just the problems to be solved seem to multiply when you have a family.
How can I organise my life so all the puzzle pieces fit together and my life runs smoothly in an orderly way and not in chaos?
I pray. Whenever I’m feeling overwhelmed with a certain area in my life I try to remember to bring it before the Lord. The Holy Spirit gently leads and guides me on my path. For example, our bath times used to be very chaotic and exhausting. For years we tried to give all the children a shower or bath 3 nights a week. It was always right at the end of the day after tea when Luke and I were tired. The tea dishes often didn’t get cleaned because it took so long to bath every one. It would take a good hour or so to get everyone bathed and dressed for bed. Often Luke did this completely on his own because I have been either pregnant and feeding babies for so much of the last several years. Bedtimes were often pushed back later then we would like and it was getting to the point were ‘bath nights’ were causing us a great deal of stress.
I prayed to the Lord about it. I was instantly reminded of how during my childhood I only had a bath once a week. This may sound gross to some but it was just the way my parents used to do it. The only time I bathed more often was when I had been out with my dad doing sheep work on the farm or if I had gone to the beach. I showered more often when I reached puberty but throughout most of my childhood – one bath a week was it.
With this in mind Luke and I decided that we would do the same. We also decided to change their wash time to the morning so not to upset our already busy evenings anymore. In the morning (not too early) is when I’m feeling most energetic and bright and fresh.
So now every Saturday morning I give all five children a shower or bath and shampoo their hair. I will also check their toenails and clip any that are getting a bit long. During the week our two youngest daughters get sticky hair so we often give them a midweek bath – but I now do it in the morning after breakfast when I have the most energy.
Making a little change like this can really lift the organisation of our household and make it run smoother with less stress.
Beating the overwhelmed feeling all comes down to prayer and problem solving. If I am feeling stressed and overwhelmed by my day, I need to try to relax, take a step back and look at my problem from a strategic perspective.
What is it exactly that is causing me stress? It could just be the dishes that were left from the night before that is causing me so much work and setting my mornings back. If you are feeling overwhelmed by your life or job at home as a mum then just tackle one problem at a time. Lean on the Holy Spirit and ask the Lord for wisdom. He cares about the small details of our day and if you take time to listen, He will reveal to you the solutions to your challenges. No problem is too big or too small for our Lord Jesus.
Here are some areas which I’m feeling aren’t working as well as they could be and need some work and orgainisation in our house.
- Dishes being left overnight
- School lunches
- Dining table mess left overnight
- Clutter on the kitchen floor and under the table left overnight
- Mornings (I keep sleeping in!)
- My Bedtime
- After school (homework, chores AND piano practice AND tired children…)
- Gardening/watering plants and lawn
- Car cleaning
- Sunday mornings/little ones during church
Slowly slowing I WILL become organised!!
Are there any areas in your life and homemaking/mothering that are bothering you and causing you stress at the moment?
I pray that you can leave overwhelmed behind and find the organisation and peace you are looking for.
Blessings, Peta xo
Get my new ebook Yes You Can Lose Your Pregnancy Weight HERE. 87 Pages of tips, tricks and encouragement. Also included is 10 nourishing recipes and a copy of a whole week of exactly what I ate to lose weight.
My children are not a pack. I need reminding of this daily. When you have lots of little children all in a row it can be easy to think of them as a group. But really they are individual people all with different, unique, and complex personalities. They have different individual needs as well as the same basic needs of food, love, care, shelter and clean clothing.
Spending one one one time with my children is a constant struggle. I need to work hard at this and be intentional about how I handle it. They all talk to me at the same time and I turn this way and that trying to work out who to give attention to first. The children love their siblings though. Never have I thought things would be better if we didn’t have any one of our children. They each play a special part in our family and in our lives. They all love their brothers and sisters and it brings me joy to see them playing with and enjoying each others company. None of my children hold any resentment to each other. They are happy playmates. Sure they fight too – but that is just life!
It is my hearts desire that my children have a happy childhood where they look back and cherished the way their mum showed them love and attention. I have a few traditions and ways that I have set in place in our home to ensure they get the attention they need.
I spend time everyday in prayer pouring out my heart to the Lord for him to reveal to me any of my children’s needs that have been overlooked.
This has been something that I haven’t always been consistent at but when all the children were very little I would do a reading time where I told everyone to choose a storybook. I would read a book to them one at a time. All the children would gather around close to listen, however, I made a point to let only the person who’s turn it was to sit in my lap. I included the baby in this too and it was lots of fun!
Bed time tuck ins.
This has been something that I have started this year. I am so tired and drained in the evening (sometimes I am just plain in a stinky mood and really need some space!) and the last thing I feel like doing is just one more thing with the children. Luke usually gets all the children’s teeth brushed and PJs on and does a Bible story app on his phone with them at bedtime. I used to just say good night to them from my comfy chair in the lounge but we noticed that the children often didn’t settle well and got out of their beds way too many times. I knew I had to change this habit and go into their rooms for one last time with mum. They just needed their mum and I had to push myself.
I now go in and spend a few minutes with each child snuggling with them on their beds. I try to open up conversation to see if there is anything on their hearts. I ask questions like “what was the best thing that happened today?” and “is there anything bad that happened today?” I make sure I end our little time with a prayer of blessing.
I make sure I speak positive words over them at this time of day and thank the Lord out loud for how smart, kind, and wonderful each child is. It gives us a chance to right any wrongs that have happened during the day. Sometimes I have even apologised for snapping at them or being in a grumpy mood. We end our time with lots of snuggles and kisses. All my children have responded so well to this special time. I’m sorry I didn’t begin it sooner! It took the Lord to give me a bit of a kick up the be-hind to get me out of my comfy chair! 🙂
The days with my children can seem so busy as we rush from one activity to the next and I don’t want anyone to get lost in the rush. Spending a few minutes with each child at the end of the day is a great way to catch up on any feelings that have been pushed aside and need expressing. My eldest child is eight so we only talk for a few minutes but I’ve been warned by mothers of teenagers that these nightly conversations may go until past midnight! I guess we’ll cross that bridge when we get to it!
Mum and son/daughter dates.
Over the years I made made a point of allowing one of the children to come with me on my big fortnightly grocery shopping trip. The special ‘star of the day’ got to help me choose lots of grocery items that they like the best and during our time away we would have a special lunch out together and I would spoil them with treats like a doughnut and juice maybe even a book or a small toy. Even a big Wendy’s ice cream all to themselves! I would treat them to all the things that I would usually say no to when we have all the children together because it’s just too expensive to buy five of everything all the time. I let them do the coin spinner and have a go on the ride outside the shop. We have a blast together!
In the last year or so I have been more intentional about these dates and they have become a tradition. Once a week, when Luke is home to care of the other children I take one of the children out at a time. Often instead of taking them grocery shopping we go out for about an hour to where ever they choose. My six year old son loves this one cafe we have in our town that has a little play area. I buy him anything off the menu he likes and he smiles from ear to ear eating his big ice cream and sitting just with mum. It makes me smile right now as I write this just thinking about the delight in his face!
I’m sure the ways I spend one on one time with my children will change and adapt over the years as my children grow older but these traditions are working well right now.
How do other parents spend one on one time with their children?
I’m open to more ideas!
It was a cold winter morning. Luke had been up early preparing for work in the crisp dawn air while I slept on, exhausted from yet another big night of feeding and changing my newborn. Luke was greeted by our smiley 19 month old son with his head full of bouncy blonde curls. He graciously let me sleep while he made our toddler some warm toast with my mum’s homemade jam, changed his nappy and wiped his face and fingers. I was awoken by my husband with a kiss good-bye and groggily focused on little sons sweet eyes sitting on the end of my bed.
Just like that my husband Luke was gone. And I was alone. Well technically I wasn’t alone, but it sure did feel very lonely. My eyes glanced from my curly haired toddler to the bassinet beside my bed with my precious little new born son. His head covered with think black hair that spiked up in a tuft. How on earth was I supposed to care for two babies? There was only one of me, I was outnumbered and they both wanted me. It was overwhelming and I worried a lot about whether I could meet the needs of both a baby and a toddler. With a squirm my 3 week old opened his lungs and gave a familiar shriek that meant he was hungry. Right now! While I sat up in bed and breast fed him my toddler was trying to get off the bed and was stuck half way. With my baby still well attached I shimmied around the bed and used one arm to hold him up and the other arm to help my toddler to the ground.
I was starving from all the night time feedings and decided to make myself porridge. I carefully put my little son in his bouncy chair on the kitchen floor. As soon as I started stirring the pot he began to cry. I began to cry also. I was tired, overwhelmed, lonely, probably hormonal and had no idea what it was going to take to care for two babies. I just wanted a bowl of porridge.
I remember it well. A little while later a midwife came to our door for my littlest sons check up. She opened the door and asked me if I was okay because it looked as though I’d been crying. I replied that I was fine, but then burst out crying on the midwifes shoulder (almost a complete stranger to me) (also not like me – I never let people see me cry and don’t cry a lot) and said..
“I didn’t know having two kids would be this hard.”
Things did get a little better as my baby grew, though I did go through several months of postpartum depression after my second baby was born. I wasn’t on a ‘baby high’ like I was after my first baby. I unfortunately didn’t fully feel close to or really bond with him until he was six months old.
Looking back at this time brings back memories of how hard it was for me back then. Twenty two years old with two children under the age of two. Most of my friends didn’t have any children yet. I struggled with my self image, loneliness and I was stressed a lot from two little ones needing me constantly.
So how are things ‘easier’ now I have five children? My little newborn second born son is now almost seven years old and is a real delight.
Firstly I would say that I’ve learned a lot about children since then. Each child’s personality and needs are different though, and present to me new sets of challenges. However, overall I don’t worry as much any more about many things because usually the problem is just a passing phase.
When you have all little children and no older ones it can be physically harder because of all the lifting and changing you need to do. I would say that life became smoother and less intense once our children could physically dress themselves and go to the toilet. Even get themselves some water and a snack. Little things really do make a difference to the flow of the household. Right now I have five children yet four of them can dress themselves and use the toilet on their own. I only have one still fully dependent on us for nappy changes and getting dressed.
By the time I had my fifth baby I was well and truly used to splitting my attention between lots of people who all need me at once. When I only had two children I was so worried about whether I could give two children the attention they need. But I’ve learned now that our older children adjust well to a new sibling and over time their new sibling becomes a cherished play mate and companion. Giving multiple children the attention they require is still challenging but I have gotten used to it and learned some strategies along the way for making sure every individual’s needs are met. Getting ready for school this morning I had one child wanting me to tie their shoe and two wanting me to do their hair. Instead of freaking out I just said okay hop in the ‘need mummy line’ and they lined up waiting to get their turn with me. They learn about patience and that other people have needs as well as themselves.
Perhaps that would be a good topic for another post – how I spend individual time with all five of my children?
I pray more now, than I used to. I used to send up quick prayers for help. But in the last year or so I have been relying on the Lord more for his wisdom. My prayers have become more focused, intentional, detailed and consistent. If I don’t know how to deal with a particular parenting challenge I spend some time with the Lord and his Holy Spirit gives me an answer. The answer comes as a thought, through reading his word or at times through advise from others or reading a book or article.
Thank you for reading! Leave a comment if you have something to add to this from your own experience.
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Hi all my lovely readers. Wow it’s been a busy couple of months for me. End of school year craziness, Christmas, and 6 weeks of summer school holidays. I don’t actually like business. I know many who thrive off it. My personality type screams for peace, quiet and slow. Otherwise my head gets cluttered and I have a tendency to get overwhelmed, brain fog and shut down a little. However I am slowly learning how to cope when life gets busy – I just keep rolling and don’t give into the stress and hope that a quieter time is around the corner when I can think…and write. Daily rituals that I have embedded into my life in recent years have helped me to cope better with stress too such as cups of tea, walking in nature, talking regularly and deeply with my husband, lists, daily prayer and journaling.
We got back from a lovely holiday 6 days ago. We were very blessed to have the opportunity to stay in my uncle and auntie’s holiday house which happens to be right at the most popular sea side location in the city! Luke and I vlogged one day of our holiday where we caught the tram which goes from the coast all the way into the city. We had a great family day out while we walked to the museum, mall and a guitar shop. Luke edits and does all the graphic design for our Youtube channel, he is very talented in this area!
I hope you enjoy! Blessings, Peta xo
Here is part two of our story. We went from having a full on ‘it’s homeschooling or nothing’ mentality to sending our children to public school and eventually finding peace.
We were all prepared for homeschooling at the beginning of this year. (2017) I had ordered all the curriculum we needed, shopped for supplies like lead pencils and notebooks and had made up a schedule that looked doable.
I had been feeling a bit stressed with the children home all summer holidays though. It does seem to get to me a bit after a while. All the mess, demands, questions and sibling squabbles that go on when all the children are home at the same time for a long period of time.
Other parents I knew COULDN’T WAIT for their children to get back to school
…and I guess I can understand why. Don’t get me wrong, I love my children so much and love being around them and spending time with them. It is a true blessing and privilege to be given children by God and I do enjoy caring for them. But sometimes I do need a bit of quiet to catch my breath and perhaps think a clear thought.
Also one of my children has some very intense moods, and that, has always made homeschooling very challenging. He reacts in anger and when he’s in one of his ‘moods’ the whole household suffers.
By the fourth week of term one I was not very well. I became so stressed that it pushed my nervous system completely out of whack. I was in bed for days and couldn’t function properly. I guess I had some sort of nervous breakdown, I’m not really sure what to call it. My shoulders were so tight and painful, my pupils constantly dilating and in ‘flight or fight’ mode, and my body wouldn’t stop trembling. I was so wound up and began taking it out on my children by snapping and screeching at every little move they made. This triggered off my anxiety that I also suffer from. I saw doctors and a psychologist. I was put on medication, which I only took for a month because of the awful side effects. I did a lot of research and dove into some natural remedies and a herbal supplement regime instead. I was in bed for days and didn’t go out anywhere for weeks. It took me a few months to fully recover.
While this was going one Luke and I made the decision to send them to school.
It was clear that the pressure of homeschooling really got to me, and to him as well.
We did a lot of prayer, discussion and wrote up pages of notes on the weight of our decision. It became pretty clear that school was the right move to make. Our first choice was a private Christian school 25 minutes away in a nearby rural city. However it was sadly beyond our budget. Our second choice was a small local public primary school only a few minutes away from our house.
We are really happy with this school. It has small classroom sizes and a good behaviour management system. It seems to care a lot about each individual student. Being close to home means the boys feel secure that mum and dad aren’t far away and has made the drop off and pick up doable.
The first couple of weeks were hard. The boys didn’t really want to go and all the packing of backpacks, lunchboxes and buckling everyone in the car took some getting used to!
It was hard emotionally as well. I felt like a failure.
Was it really happening that homeschooling was not working out yet again!? Why can’t I be like other parents who make one decision for school and stick to it? Will my children recover from the roller-coaster ride of being pulled in and out of school? I felt lost for a few months and didn’t quite know what to do with my time during the day when I was usually homeschooling. Even though I still had 3 little girls at home to care for.
I knew I needed something to take my mind off the two boys being in school so I began a project of setting up a veggie patch in our backyard. Something I had wanted to do for ages but just hadn’t had the time for while I was homeschooling.
As the year rolled along I began to see how the Lord has used this situation for good.
Many positive things have happened through us sending our kids to school. – I have began getting out in the local community more and actually meeting other mums from this town. I have been taking the younger three to playgroup – something I couldn’t do while homeschooling and I have had the opportunity to witness to other mums.
I now get excited about all the new opportunities that our children are having at school like doing a swimming carnival and being involved in a musical. The boys are now thriving, have made friends and have both won respect for learning awards. I like doing other ‘regular school mum’ things like watching my children swim at the school lessons and seeing all the creative things they have made. The little crafts they made me for mothers day was so cute – I’ve never had that before because they have always been homeschooling during mothers day. Just little things like that make me smile.
My nervous system is so much better. The pressure of managing their education is off and I can just be mum instead of teacher. I no longer feel wound up and am better able to deal with stress. I have noticed that I am enjoying my boys so much more because I have a break from them during the day . When I see them at 3:10pm I get excited and can’t wait to hear about what they’ve been up to. I am well rested and a calmer, better mother than I was before. Having a rest during the day charges me up for a full on evening of homework, after school activities, dinner and bedtimes. I have been able to give the younger ones more focused attention too.
I have replaced worry with prayer.
Everyday I get up and pray for the Lords protection over them physically and spiritually as they go off to school. I pray for their salvation and pray for the Lord to lead them out of any temptations. It has bought me deep joy to see the boys being a witness for Christ in the classroom. They have given their classmates gospel tracts, Super Book DVDs, and spoken to others about Jesus numerous times.
We have nightly discussions about what the children at school do and say and how we, as Christians are to behave different. For the first time in their lives they are hearing swearing and atheist concepts like evolution. However, it gives us a chance for us to explain to them what the truth is and for them to see how unbelievers think and behave. They’re seeing for themselves how lost and hurting many people in this world are.
I’m now actually looking forward to having three children in school next year. As miss Savannah joins them for her first year of school. God is using our family for good in this community and in our local school. I’m excited about this next chapter of our lives. I know they will be okay – they are in the Lord’s hands.
It’s possible that we may try homeschooling again in the future if we feel like it’s the right thing to do. But not for now and not next year either. We will assess at the beginning of each year what the education path will be for each of our children individually.
How about you? How do you deal with the stress of homeschooling?
Have you sent your children from homeschooling to public school?
Are you plagued with guilt and fear from sending your children to school or have you also found peace?
May God bless you as you press on with the challenging and important role of parenting your precious children.
You may also like to read:
In this video:
What I eat in a day to maintain my postpartum weight loss.
Come with me for my bike ride and see a day in the life of us including seeing the aftermath of baby Willow eating her tea. Also see a little of our family devotion time and family worship.
What’s going to happen to me after I die? That’s the ultimate question isn’t it. It’s this question that attracts me to Jesus.
When I was seven years old my parents began attending an AOG (Assemblies Of God) Church in the small town we lived near. I began to learn heaps about God and suddenly the world began to make sense to me. Heaven, Hell, what Jesus did for me. It all made sense. I prayed along with my Sunday School teacher and asked Jesus to forgive my sins and I put my trust in Him. I became a Christian that day. I’ve never looked back. The Lord has a plan for my life and it was his will for me to become a Christian that day. When I was eight years old I decided that I wanted to be baptised to further show my commitment to the Lord. My Sunday School teacher and Pastor baptised me at the local beach. It was a glorious day. I was very young but still understood the old me was being washed away in the water and the new spirit within me was rising up and I was ‘born again.’
I remember writing in my journal back then, a prayer from my young heart.
“Lord let me always be close to you. Don’t let me ever become distant from you and follow the world. I want to be yours forever. Use me to do whatever you want me to do in my life. My life is yours. Amen”
I learnt that I can be in a relationship with Jesus. I can speak to Him anytime and anywhere. He delights in being close to me. He will speak to me by reading His word – the Bible. He can also speak to me and lead me along the right path for my life through the Holy Spirit which he sent to help us after he went up the heaven.
I realised that there was nothing I could do to get right with God. No good or nice thing will get me into Heaven to be with the Lord. It’s only by God’s grace that I am saved.
God sent his only son into the world as a baby. So he would grow up and become a sacrifice for me. I am a sinner and deserve to die. We all are. But God in His mercy, sent His son to lay down his life for me so I could live forever. My heart burns for my Lord as I think of him suffering on that cross. It deeply distresses me. I take this as seriously as I live and breathe.
The thought though, that I am now saved gives me hope and joy down to my deepest being. I imagine myself on those golden streets, as the Bible describes, dancing whilst weeping for joy!
I’ve had a burning passion since I was a little girl that others around me would be saved too. It’s a huge desire of mine. My passion for telling others about Jesus peaked in my teen years where I would begin telling everyone in my public school about Him. Some listened and asked questions. Some said I was weird. A particular group of boys harassed me very badly for it. I was spat on, tripped over, punched and kicked to the floor and verbally pulled to pieces.
Still all the while this Bible verse was going through my head…
And you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved. Mark 13:13
The Bible speaks about Hell. Torment, isolation, fear, pain and burning for eternity. That place was made for Satan and his fallen angels, not for man. But because of mans disobedience to God way back at creation, they sadly must die and be judged. God judges the condition of our hearts by the way, not all the ‘good’ things we do.
But there is hope! That is why God sent Jesus into the world. So we didn’t have to spend forever apart from Him being tormented in Hell.
To be saved and spend eternity in the paradise of heaven, all we must do is…
Repent. Which basically means to feel deeply sorry for all the sins we’ve done. (Lying, stealing, lust, using the Lord’s name in vain etc) and asking God for forgiveness.
Believe in Jesus, God and the Holy Spirit with your whole heart.
Trust in the God. – Put your trust in Him and dedicate your life to serving Him.
All this can be done, in your heart and in the privacy of your own home, or at church. Anywhere. Not to a priest or pastor. Just between you and God.
Other important things…
Once we become a Christian it is REALLY important to connect with other believers. Without regular contact with other Christians your faith can dwindle. All the ways of the world can begin to slip back into your life. The best place to connect with other believers is at a Bible believing Christian church.
There are many great denominations of Christian Churches! Here’s a few I recommend.
- Australian Christian Churches – ACC also called AOG
- Acts 29.
- Many non denominational churches are great too.
I went to an AOG (ACC) church for 20 years. I now have been attending a Baptist church for the last 2 years.
Having a Bible to read is also important. The Bible is God’s handbook for our lives. In it you will find the answers to all life’s big questions. Reading God’s word will bring us closer to Him, deepen our faith and transform our lives. I try to read mine daily.
For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword… Hebrews 4:12
You can download a Bible app onto your phone right now! Or go http://www.biblegateway.com. Or buy one from a Christian book store. http://www.koorong.com is a great place to buy Christian books, music and DVD’s if you are in Australia.
Another important thing is being baptised. There are some that agree with babies being baptised. However it is my understanding that it is better to be baptised when you are at an age of understanding. Being baptised is a decision of faith in action. Something a baby cannot yet comprehend. Jesus was baptised as an adult. All through scripture it tells us to believe and be baptised. Ask the pastor of the church you are attending about baptism. Many churches do baptism services from time to time where they baptise a few people at a time who are ready and willing. They are baptised by full body immersion in water in a pool, river or beach. Like I mentioned above – I was baptised at the age of eight at the beach. Many members of our church came and stood on the foreshore to watch and congratulate me as I came out of the water.
There really is more to life than just going through the motions of getting up, going to work or school and coming home and going to bed again. There is hope and it is found in Jesus Christ.
This is why I am a Christian.
PS. Beware of cults. Cults take God’s word and twist it to make up their own set of beliefs. They follow their own written book of rules and are NOT Christian. Cults are controlling and repressive. Some examples of cults are Jehovah’s witnesses and Mormons.
Once again I am doing a day in the life post! I love writing these because it’s so fun looking back and reading my old posts and seeing how much my family changes every 6 months. Children do a LOT of growing in 6 months! I hope you enjoy getting just a little taste of what a typical day is for me caring for my family. Every day is so different yet seems to always follow the same pattern.
7am – My alarm goes off. You know that playschool song that goes
“I jump out of bed in the morning
I jump out of bed in the morning
I jump out of bed in the morning
I hope it’s a very nice day.”
That was NOT me this morning. Actually it’s not me any morning. I do struggle with getting out of bed and always have. I was particularly tired this morning because of a little middle of the night visitor in our bed who then got a blood nose, which went all over our bed!
I roll out of bed and do my morning routine which consists of;
Packing the boys school lunches (I’m not quite organised enough yet to do this the night before). Getting all the children their breakfasts. Getting dressed. Helping the children dress and supervising their morning chores.
Willow has a blow out nappy! Luke hadn’t left for work yet and he dealt with that! Phew
I make myself a green smoothie for breakfast and sip it as I head out the door with all the kids to drop the boys off at school.
I drive the wrong way home even though it’s been several weeks since we moved to our new house. I must be tired!
Once home I head to my room with a green tea and spend some time in prayer. The Lord will give me everything I need to get through each new day!
9.20am – I begin my morning chores which consists of putting a load of washing on, doing all the dishes, clearing and wiping the table and benches and sweeping the kitchen and dining room floors. Sometimes I am not finished this until 11 in the morning or later. I have no idea why it takes that long. It just does. I guess I have lots of people to clean up for by myself and during this time I also get the little girls some morning tea, take my supplements and maybe deal with a cranky toddler. Or a change poopy nappy or two.
10:30am – My parents in law drop in and give us two boxes of yummy oranges from their tree and a birthday present for Francis. We chat for a while.
11am – I settle Willow for her nap, then make myself another green tea. I continue the breakfast dishes which are still not done yet. Savannah has come down with a fever and is now asleep on the couch.
11.30am – I head outside with Holly. It’s a beautiful spring day and I spend an hour digging and pulling out weeds where I plan on planting some summer veggies. Holly loves finding worms and is having a great time in the dirt.
12.45pm – Holly and I have lunch. Holly has a peanut butter sandwich and I eat butter chicken, baby spinach and brown rice leftover from last nights tea.
1.20pm – I have an oat straw tea and sit down to have my quiet time of Bible reading and devotions. I get out my journal and write a little. I read Holly a book about colours in bed and try to get her to have a nap but she just quietly plays in her room for a while.
2pm – Savannah wakes up and wants to watch a movie. She appears to be coming down with the flu that we all have had in the last few weeks. I put on Tarzan for her on the laptop then head outside to hang out the washing.
2:05pm – Willow wakes from her nap. I give her lunch and she eats it sitting outside watching me hang up washing.
2:15 – Holly is knocking on her door and wants to come out. She had a ‘play nap.’
2:25pm – I put on a second load of washing and whip up a marinade for the chicken wings I’m planning on cooking for tea.
3:05pm – Shoes on for everyone and I buckle 3 girls in the car to pick up the boys from school.
3:30pm – Luke is home from his work training day. We have a quick chat, cup of tea and ‘handover’ as I prepare to leave the house.
3:50pm – I take the boys to their cooking class. They’ve had a block of 5 cooking classes and this is the last one. Savannah is upset about being sick and missing out, poor thing! Holly tags along with us and Luke stays home with Willow and Savannah.
5pm – We arrive home from the cooking class. I put the chicken wings in the oven. Savannah is in her bed now feeling very sick. I read her a book and try to cheer her up a bit.
6:15pm – We eat tea. Chinese chicken wings with brussels sprouts, cucumber slices and brown rice. I let the boys eat their pizzas that they made at the cooking class.
6:40pm – I sit with Francis and Arrow and help with their homework. Luke puts the little girls to bed and does some dishes.
7:15pm – I give the boys their supplements. Francis practices piano. He does a bit but he’s so tired he’s beginning to lose the plot and act loopy. Piano can wait for tomorrow – it’s bedtime.
I brush my teeth with Francis. He’s really excited about some toothpaste and a teeth cleaning chart that he got at school today. He loves charts and orderly things.
Luke sits with the boys in their room and does a Bible story with them on his phone. He’s been using ‘The Bible App for Kids.’ By Youversion. They are really enjoying it.
I do a few more things in the kitchen like get out some meat for tomorrow’s tea and some chicken carcasses for some chicken stock I’m planning on making. We say our good-nights and pray for the boys.
8pm – Blogging and writing time and checking emails and replying to text and facebook messages that I haven’t been able to check yet because of our full evening and afternoon so far.
Luke and I have a cup of tea and usually head to bed between 10 – 10:30pm.
Our life with our family is busy and full and I love being a mum so much! It really brings me so much joy! I do hope to home school our children again in the future but for now I am enjoying this season and it’s restful simplicity.
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Make sure you check out the I Quit Sugar Kids cook book. It’s full of great kids recipes and are all sugar free. I took my children to the dentist this week and the dentist gave us a handout pamphlet about how much hidden sugars are in our foods. It’s scary and so unnecessary! As soon as Luke got home Savannah ran up to him with the pamphlet and says “look how much sugar is in your iced coffee dad, you can’t drink that anymore!” Haha he was totally busted!
There are many parents who want to home school their children but for a number of different reasons are unable to. Perhaps they begin homeschooling but need to send the children to school for a while. Or they might want their children to finish up their education in a school. Perhaps the children have gone to school while mum or a family member deals with a health issue.
Luke and I have always planned on homeschooling our children right from the time I was pregnant with our firstborn. We started off homeschooling but it hasn’t been an easy road. The beginning of our home school has had a few hick ups. The pressure of being responsible for my children’s education while managing a home full of little ones has been hard on my sensitive nervous system. At the beginning of this year I made it to about week 4 of term 1 before I got very sick. My nervous system went completely out of whack. I couldn’t function for a few weeks and it took a few months to be feeling much better. During this time we made the difficult decision to send our oldest two boys to school for a while. Sometimes you have to make difficult decisions that are right for your unique circumstances. I can look back and regret it or I can be confident that we made a good, well thought out decision.
While the boys are attending school I want to keep a home schooling mentality. What I mean is I want to still continue to intentionally keep up with the things that are most important to us, the things we value the most as a family. I don’t want to throw away the vision we have as a family just because the children are attending school.
Here are some of the ways I am keeping a home schooling mentality during this time:
- Keep doing devotions as a family. The first thing we used to do around the table before they would begin their book work was ‘discipleship time’. I didn’t want to stop doing this when they began school so I now read them a children’s devotion while they eat their breakfast and we read out a memory verse and pray for their day.
- Home schooling them on ‘sick’ days. The boys have had a few colds and there have been a few days where they are too sick to send back to school but they have been well enough to sit on the couch or at the table doing an activity. I bring out the school books when I can and do some school work with them.
- Keep seeing the children’s homeschooling friends. We’ve been blessed by meeting lots of new homeschooling families in the last few years and making some lovely new friends. I make sure we keep in regular contact with our Christian friends.
- Home schooling the little ones. Just because the older two are in school doesn’t mean I can’t do some pre-school work with the younger ones. Savannah (aged 4.5) has been doing some home school book work with me a few days a week. The pressure is off because she’s not official school age yet. It’s just for fun and to keep her occupied.
- Pray a lot. Every morning I get up and pray complete protection physically and spiritually for all the children. I pray that the Lord’s will will be done and he’ll guide me towards the best education and parenting decisions for all my children as individual each and every day.
- Don’t feel guilty and enjoy the stage you’re at right now. Even if it is just enjoying little moments that happen throughout your day. Don’t worry about what anyone else thinks either. Be happy and be confident.
- Even though the children have a different teacher doesn’t mean that you are not still in charge of their education. Keep the lines of communication open between you and your child so if they are struggling with anything they will feel comfortable telling you. Go to the parent teacher interviews and make sure what they are learning is satisfactory to you. Also add extra curricular lessons here and there if you feel like your child needs to/wants to learn something extra.
Have a great day and keep soldiering on with the great task of motherhood.
Blessings, Peta xo