Sample Morning Routine for a Breastfeeding Mom

Sample Morning Routine for a Breastfeeding Mom

Sample Morning Routine for a Breastfeeding Mom

 

When you’re a breastfeeding mom it can be hard to have a morning routine. You’re most likely very sleep deprived depending on how old your kid is, you have a lot of tasks on your already busy plate and the last thing you might be thinking about is having a routine that works for your mom life.

 

But trust me when I say, having some sort of routine can be a lifesaver when breastfeeding!

 

I remember what it’s like when you’re breastfeeding your newborn, you use the timers on your phone, track which side the nursing session finished on, and want to make sure that your baby is eating enough. And while so much of your time is focused on growing that little baby, at some point, you can start to get back to a routine that helps your self care as well.

 

When I talk about routine for new moms or breastfeeding moms, I’m not talking about an hourly schedule. There is so much that is unpredictable when you have a baby and trying to keep to a structured schedule is setting both you and baby up for failure.

 

This is the time when you are allowed massive amounts of grace. If you’re like me, the transition from being super Type A to having to be more ‘go with the flow’ is tough. I wanted to be in control of everything. If I was supposed to track nursing sessions down to the second I would. I was going to make sure I had control as much as possible.  I quickly learned that it’s impossible when you’re a new mom.

 

But what’s not impossible is having a flow and routine to your day. Having this semi-structure, allows you and the kids to know what to expect and start to get back to a ‘new normal’.

 

Below, I am going to list some ideas for a sample morning routine that could work for a breastfeeding mom. In this example, let’s imagine the baby is past the newborn stage and not cluster feeding. Mom and baby aren’t sleeping through the night and feedings are happening every 3-4 hours.

 

Again, this is a sample. There are going to be days when you want to just curl back into bed — that’s okay. There are going to be days when you feel like crying — that’s okay. And there are going to be days where you are on top of the world — that’s okay.

 

Use this as a guideline to help you start to get your feet under you as a new mom, start to get back to whatever ‘normal’ is going to look like and allow you to focus on breastfeeding your baby and taking care of you!

 

This post may contain affiliate links which cost you nothing extra to use but may provide me with a commission. To read my full disclosure head on over here.

 

What to do if your baby doesn’t sleep through the night?

For many breastfeeding babies, nighttime feedings are a norm. They like the comfort, depending on their age they might still require the nutrients for their little stomachs, and their circadian rhythm is still backwards where they think day is night and night is day.

That means for mom, you probably aren’t sleeping through the night either. That can make thinking in the morning hard, it makes decisions tough, and it makes you feel like a zombie. By planning out a small morning routine in advance, you’ll find that you will start to go on autopilot with your daily tasks. This allows you to slowly get back habits you need to run your home and take care of you.

 

Related Post: 7 Tools to Help Your Baby Sleep Through the Night

I suggest starting with just 1-3 tasks for a few weeks while you are still trying to figure out how to live life with little sleep. Don’t create a massive to do list each morning – your main goal is to keep the tiny human alive.

By choosing a few tasks to complete, your sleep deprived mind can figure out what is most important and what needs to get done. If your baby isn’t sleeping through the night, I recommend a snooze feed to start your morning.

A snooze button feed is essentially one that happens around 4-6am and helps them go back down for hopefully another hour. It’s up to you whether you pull your baby into bed with you or nurse them in a chair. I tried my best to not have my baby in bed with us but I found with my second, I was more willing to do so. Safe sleep practice are key when co sleeping at all (even if just for an hour) so please research them first!

Starting your morning with a snooze feed lets your baby get a little more rest and you to either sleep with them or slowly begin your day with quiet time. Many of the times my kids would go back to bed after a laying down nursing session, I would try to close my eyes with them but sometimes, I just couldn’t sleep!

Instead of just mindlessly scrolling social media, staring at the ceiling or online shopping, I did my best to use that time to start my day for me!

 

Need help getting you baby to sleep through the night? Check out the tips on my friend Jilly’s site by clicking the banner below!

 

Reading and Prayer Times for Moms

I truly don’t know what moms did while breastfeeding without smartphones! Our phones as such a great tool while we’re nursing or trapped in a chair with a sleeping baby!

While there is nothing wrong with spending time on Facebook or checking emails, I suggest you add some reading and prayer time in your morning routine. When you’re breastfeeding, you can use reading apps to start your day right.

My favorite apps include Kindle Unlimited (get a free trial here!), Scribd, or Hoopla. Many of these give free trials or are free (Hoopla attaches to your library card!). If your baby has fallen asleep, reading a book is great time for mom!

 

As much as I love fiction (and I’m a huge reader!) I try to use times when I’m trapped under my kids as self development times. This is when I read books that fuel my soul and mind! This allows me to be a little less crabby, feel more intentional when it is time to wake up and less annoyed at my little sleep.

 

Related Post: 30+ Must Read Books for Christian Moms

 

You can also use this time to do a prayer or devotional. All of these apps I mentioned have great devotional downloads or you can use the YouVersion or First Five app to get free bible plans! I found the time when I was breastfeeding my kids to be a great time for my bible reading and prayer because it was quiet, I could be super reflective as I stared at their little faces, and really got closer with God.

 

 

Breastfeeding Schedule for Infants

Once your baby wakes up, it’s time to start the day!

Don’t feel the need to jump out of bed, enjoy a slow start with your little one! So often we just rush the day but it’s okay to take some time for you and them to charge up!

If you were already awake and did some reading, I bet that you’re in a good place to jump out of bed. If you slept with them, allow yourself a minute to stretch and gear up for the day.

Your baby should be okay now for at least 2 hours before he or she wants or needs to nurse again so it’s a good time to start the day. (Remember though that every baby’s needs are different so use these as suggestions)

When thinking of a morning routine that you’d like to have as a breastfeeding mom, think of your morning in chunks. Ask yourself, “what do I want to get done before the next feeding”? Instead of trying to plan a whole day or even 4-5 hours, start with creating your 2-3 hours morning routine around nursing sessions.

After you are up and change their diaper and clothes, make sure to take time to take care of you! I don’t mean you have to put on a full face of makeup, curl your hair or wear a dress but get out of your pajamas – even if it’s into your ‘daytime yoga pants’ — oh come on, you know you own them too!

In the beginning it can be self care to just put in contacts, brush your teeth and change your clothes. I find that I am immediately in a better mood if I feel less sloppy and remember that I’m ‘more than mom’.

While you get ready, don’t feel bad about using a crib, pack and play or swing. Between those, bouncers and play mats, we had one in almost every room so that I could put the baby down! If your baby isn’t ready to be put down, give baby wearing a try! It’s super magical to be hands free and have your baby snuggled in close!

 

Breastfeeding Meal Plans

 

Now that you’re ready to head out of the bedroom, it’s time to eat! In order to keep your milk supply up, you need to make sure you’re taking in the right amount of calories. And I get it – you’re starving when you’re breastfeeding but make sure you are putting the right types of food in your body too.

 

Ive been able to lose 50 pounds after having both my kids AND nurse them for 19 months each so it is possible to lose baby weight, keep your milk supply up, and not starve!

 

 

 

 

 

If you want to check out any of the meal plans or programs that I did from Beachbody (including 21 day fix, 80 day obsession, 2B Mindset and more) you can check out the links below! I give you a sample meal plan and tips for how to keep your supply up!

 

Related Post: Weight Loss Tips for Moms

 

One of the biggest tips I can give you thought is you have to drink a LOT of water and you have to eat! Once you head downstairs, go right to the fridge and chug 8 ounces of water! If you need to keep a timer on your phone to go off and remind you to drink water, go for it! Breastfeeding was my habit trigger so, whenever I fed the kids, I chugged water and it helped a ton!

 

Since you’re probably going to be holding baby a lot, I recommend meal prepping when you can ahead of time. It would work to do this on the weekend when your spouse might be home so that you can get 1 hour to get this done. You can make things like make ahead omelets, overnight oatmeal, or smoothies! This way, when it’s time to eat you can do it fast and easily!

 

Playtime with Your Infant

 

Now that you’re up and moving, you probably have another 90 minutes before your baby might want to nurse again. We typically followed the eat-play-sleep routine with all of my kids. This is when after they ate, we would play for a bit and then they’d nap. I liked to do this so that it didn’t create any nursing associations with them and I did my best to make sure that they didn’t fall asleep nursing or need it as a crutch to fall asleep.

 

Since you’ve both ate, it’s time to play! This is a great time for them to do tummy time, you to read books to them, or play with some noisy toys on a mat. With my first, I literally was glued to her for 6 months. I didn’t give myself permission to do anything when she was awake. I felt like I had to be on top of her or I was a bad mom.

 

Let me give you some permission right now — you can do other things. Yes, you need to watch, play, read and interact with your baby but you don’t have to freeze life because they are awake. Let them play on a playmat while you grab laundry to get started. Allow them to enjoy time in a swing so you can load the dishes. Pick 1-2 household tasks that you’d like to get done in the morning and do them and get them out of the way. These should take 15-30 minutes which still leaves you at least a full hour before another nursing session to interact and love on your little!

 

Are you a pumping mom or need tips? Click the picture to check out this course!

 

 

Finding Time to Workout as a Breastfeeding Mom

 

I suggest you use this last hour as a good time to interact with your baby! I like to take the baby for walks or maybe stream some yoga to do together. My baby loved getting kisses as I did push ups or getting pushed in the stroller. Remember to ease your body into exercise post baby but still move! I worked out during both my pregnancies until the morning I delivered and I still had to go slowly back into it! Walking and yoga are great starts! Use your morning time to do some sun salutations and kiss the baby on the way down!

 

When you go for your walk, use this time for self care! Listen to an audio book (get a free audible trial here), use the YouVersion App to read your bible aloud while you walk, or get your mind right with some podcasts!

 

If you do get sweaty, make sure to take a minute to wipe yourself down! My poor baby has definitely had to nurse after a workout and I’m sure she didn’t love it! You most likely won’t have time to sneak in a shower if you need but baby wipes rock!

 

By this time, your breastfed baby is ready to probably sleep again (and remember, in the beginning ‘naps’ for infants can be anywhere from 15-60 minutes!) so ease your baby down, see if they’ll fall asleep on your walk, or rock them in the chair.

 

If you choose to feed them first, do your best to put them down to sleep in their bassinet or AAP approved swing! And if they won’t let you put them down (depending on their age and sleep habits), put them in the baby carrier or hold them! This is another great time to text and connect with a friend, chat with other breastfeeding moms in Facebook groups or get back to that self development on your phone!

 

And if they do let you put them down… do something for you to close out your morning routine! Take a shower, watch a show, change over the laundry or grab a nap! Pat yourself on the back, you made it through the morning and did a great job!

 

What sorts of things do you do in your morning routine or while breastfeeding? Post it in the comments!

 

 

 

morning-routine-breastfeeding-mom

 

More Help for Breastfeeding Moms!

How to Create a Bedtime Routine for Your Kid

3 Keys to a Nighttime Routine for Infants

7 Tools to Get Your Baby to Sleep Through the Night

21 Day Fix for the Breastfeeding Mom

 

Must Have Resources for Breastfeeding Moms Routines

Baby Sleep Made Simple

Pumping Mom Academy

Makeover Your Mornings Course

 

 

Want to grab my free stay at home mom evening routine checklist? Just drop your email address and it’s all yours!

 

 

Evening Routine for Stay at Home Moms

Evening Routine for Stay at Home Moms

Evening Routine for Stay at Home Moms

 

Stay at home moms need routines to help their homes run smoothly and an evening routine is one of the most important ones. A lot of time we start with trying to fix and improve our morning routine but, I truly believe that your evening routine is even more vital.

 

A good evening routine will set up your day for success. It allows you to wake up less stressed and frazzled and actually achieve more in your morning routine.

 

And I hear you… as a stay at home mom once my kids are in bed the last thing I want to do is another routine, wash another dish, or make a decision. As soon as my kids are tucked in bed I truthfully plop (seriously, imagine a belly flop) onto my bed and scroll my Instagram for 15 minutes while I ask my husband for quiet.

 

But as soon as my 15 minute scroll timer goes off, I get myself up and start my evening routine, no matter how tired or worn out I am, because I know it’s value and importance.

 

 

How to End Your Day As a Stay at Home Mom

 

I recommend having a structure that splits your evening routine into three parts – closing out today, prepping for tomorrow, and taking time for you. As a stay at home mom, our job starts the second the kids are awake (and if their like my early birds that is 5:30am) and goes way past their bedtime. Having a plan, checklist, or routine for the evening is going to be super helpful when you have decision fatigue and just want to put most of your tasks on auto pilot.

 

Closing out the day is the toughest part of the evening routine as a stay at home mom because we just get burnt by the end of the day. We’ve cleaned up the same mess over and over, attempted to fold laundry all day, and just don’t want to do it.

 

But it’s super key and needs to be done first to help you get your evening routine mojo flowing!

 

I suggest putting on some uplifting music or a podcast and just getting started. I like to listen to podcasts while I do my routine because I find that it makes the time zoom by and gets me motivated to keep going. You can see my list of favorites here if you need some ideas!

 

I’ve shared a checklist below of suggested things you could do to close out the day and I left some blanks for you to come up with the things that you know need to get done. All of our homes are different but, when you’re trying to come up with tasks to close out the day, think of 1-4 looming tasks you know you didn’t compete or must get done. This is not the time to complete your entire to do list, berate yourself for ‘not doing enough’, or feel like a failure – this is the time when you get done what you know will decrease your stress and set you up for success tomorrow.

 

And a quick note: you do not have to complete this entire checklist by yourself. Many nights, these tasks happen before the kids go to bed and we do them as a family. I like to put them on my checklist because for the crazy busy nights, or the ones where we are at church or sports, or I just want to direct people to how to help, it is helpful to have a reference.

 

Remember, there is power in a checklist. I like to use this checklist as a data point for myself each week. If you’ve never done an evening routine, you can try it out for week one and get a percentage of the tasks that you’ve completed. Next week, you can aim to get 1-2 more tasks done than last week. This helps change the ‘all or nothing’ mentality into a mentality of growth and grace!

 

For me my ‘closing out today’ tasks include;

 

 

 

Prepping for Tomorrow as a Stay at Home Mom

 

Once the close out tasks are done and I feel less overwhelmed by the craziness of that day, I am ready to plan for tomorrow.

 

As a stay at home mom, you want to create an evening routine that makes sense for your day and helps you run your home well. I am a firm believer in having routines even though we’re at home and feel strongly that kids thrive off them as well.

 

Prepping for tomorrow really allows you to start your day with ease because you have things done and know what to expect. If you’ve ever had a frazzled morning trying to get everyone off and ready for school and forgot to pack lunches or check book bags than you know what I mean!

 

On the checklist that you can download for your evening routine at the bottom of this post, you also will see a blank space for adding in preparing tasks. I’ve added in some of the things I do but again, think about the season of your family! Your tasks may look different if your kids go to traditional school or you homeschool. It may look different if you have older kids vs younger kids. So take the template I’ve given and customize it for your needs!

 

My prepping for tomorrow tasks include;

  • Making lunches (including mine and the kids as much as I can, even though we’re home! This may look like pre making salads or making a batch of hard boiled eggs)
  • Packing book bags, diaper bags, sport bags or anything else needs (and again, the kids can be a part of this as well!)
  • Laying out clothes – I lay out my workout clothes so that I have no excuses in the morning and the kids pick their clothes out during our bedtime routine to make it simple.
  • Loading the coffee pot with the timer
  • Reviewing our schedule for the day and pre planning my time blocked tasks. Read more about time blocking here!
  • Setting out an independent morning activities for the kids (I put one on their small table that they always gravitate to so I can get breakfast and the morning going without them under my feet and them asking for TV right away)

 

 

I think it’s key to have a good idea of your schedule and pre planning tasks for your family the night before. I like to use time blocking for most things so it helps if I know in advance which errands I want to run, which work tasks I’m planning to focus on or any phone calls that I have to make before places close.

 

 

Taking Time for You as a Stay at Home Mom

 

After you’ve done the majority of your home tasks for the night, it’s time for the best part of the evening routine — time for you! The closing out and prepping stages of an evening routine might take you anywhere from 30-45 minutes depending on how much you get done before the kids go to bed (again some of mine gets done with their help before bed) or how crazy the day is.

 

I like to close out my day with time for me and, as a stay at home mom, it’s very important you do the same. When we’re just go-go-go for everyone else and don’t pause for us, stay at home mom depression and burnout can occur. I find as a stay at home mom I have to be super intentional about time for myself, self care and personal growth.

 

Once my checklist is complete, I take 15-60 minutes in my own learning and growth. And I know that seems like a lot of time if it’s not a habit you already have but trust me, 15 minutes can start to become a habit that you crave and take more of!

 

So what are some things you can do during this time? (and again, start with just 15 minutes and over time increase it by 5 minutes. You’ll find that you love that time, the mom guilt will melt away, and your mindset will be on fire!)

 

  • Bible reading, devotionals or Christian development and reading
  • Take a course about a topic you want to learn about
  • Watch youtube tutorials on how to gain a skill
  • Read a book to increase your mindset or for pleasure
  • Exercise, do yoga or meditate
  • Journal, draw, or anything creative
  • Check out this post for a bunch more options!

 

 

By ending your day for you, you’ll go to bed with less anxiety, more peace and feeling jazzed about the next day. What I don’t recommend you do though is just plop on the couch and have a Netflix binge or get sucked into a social media scroll. These things wreak havoc on your mindset, make you compare your lives to others and don’t fill you up.

 

Now, there is nothing wrong with social media or TV but I just don’t think it’s the best way to close your day. The lights from the TV and phone can keep you up, your brain gets super stimulated, and the last things in your brain tend to be where your dreams go. Give yourself the gift of  positive thoughts!

 

 

 

More Evening Routine Ideas for Stay at Home Moms

How to Create a Bedtime Routine for Your Kids

The Ultimate Bedtime Routine for Adults

3 Keys to a Nighttime Routine for Infants

7 Tools to Get Your Baby to Sleep Through the Night

 

Must Have Resources for Stay at Home Mom Routines

Ultimate Homemaking Bundle

Motivated: Caring for Your Home When You Don’t Feel Like It E-Book

Makeover Your Evenings Course

 

 

Want to grab my free stay at home mom evening routine checklist? Just drop your email address and it’s all yours!

 

 

What do you do as part of your evening routine? Put it in the comments!

Work at Home Mom Morning Routine

Work at Home Mom Morning Routine

Work at Home Mom Morning Routine

 

Work at Home Moms need a good morning routine to set their days up for success. Whether you have a baby, school age kids or high schoolers, having a morning routine as a work at home mom matters.

 

Being a work from home mom is hard. You have to balance your priorities as mom and your priorities as a business owner. You are surrounded by the piles of dishes and laundry and the to do list and emails that overwhelm you.

 

What I’ve learned the past 4 years as a Work At Home Mom is that without my morning routine, the rest of my day is set up for failure. Once I took that time to develop a morning routine that fit, I found that I was more productive, happier and more joyful as a mom, and treated my business like a business and less like a hobby.

 

 

This post may contain affiliate links which cost you nothing extra to use but may provide me with a commission. To read my full disclosure head on over here.

 

 

Work at Home Mom Schedule

 

You need to have a good work at home mom schedule to make your business succeed. When you go into the day making decisions about what you will accomplish as the day goes on and not before, you waste time, get less done and can get to the end of the day being busy but not productive.

 

So what types of things do you need to create routines and schedules for when you’re a work at home mom?

 

  • Morning Routines
  • Work Time Routines
  • Evening Routines
  • Batching Routines
  • Household Chore Routines
  • Kid Playtime Routines
  • Homeschooling or Learning Routines
  • Cleaning Routines
  • Self Care Routines
  • And more!

 

There are so many things on our plates as work from home moms that it’s important to you create a schedule around all of the routines that run your day.

 

Before we dive into a work at home mom morning routine checklist, I want to encourage you to take some steps to figure out your day.

 

Create a list of the things in your day that are TIME BOUND. What events in your day cannot be changed and must be completed at a certain time? These could include school drop off and pick up, sporting practices or events, work calls or meetings, or personal appointments you have. Once you have these on your paper (or better yet, fill them in your planner) then you can really look at your day and see how much time you have to dedicate to your business.

 

If you’re like me, or most work at home moms, you’ll most likely realize that your time is pretty limited during the day unless you have created dedicated work hours. I highly recommend this for all moms who work at home. I’ve been struggling with this as my kids nap schedules change and am looking forward to September when both of my kids will be in preschool from 9-12pm 3 days a week. This will allow me to know that those are at least 9-10 hours that will (most likely) not change.

 

Once you see your time laid out, don’t panic! It might be tight and you may start to wonder how you’ll find time to be a work at home mom but, with a great morning routine, know that you can start your day strong and get more accomplished.

 

 

How to Get Up Earlier

 

It’s hard to get up earlier than your kids most days. My kids wake up between 6-6:30 am every single day (and sometimes earlier). I found that the mornings are my only quiet and alone time before I have to hit the ground running so I need to wake up before them. Whether your kids get up early like mine or sleep in, I highly suggest waking up earlier so you have that time to work.

 

If you struggle to wake up earlier, start by setting your alarm for just 10 minutes earlier than you work up today. Do this for a few day or a week and let your body adjust. Then, next week, get up 10 minutes earlier than that. Repeat this for a few weeks or months until you’ve created an early waking habit. Your body will slowly adjust and you’ll realize that 10 extra minutes isn’t that big of a deal.

 

Related Post: Using Habit Stacking to Create Routines that Stick

 

Morning Prayer, Personal Growth and Reflection for Work at Home Moms

 

I always like to start my day in my bible reading and praying. I find that if I don’t spend the first 20 minutes of my day with the Lord, my priorities get mixed up easily and I’m always in a rush.

 

I suggest spending the first 15-20 minutes of your morning for you and your growth. Prayer, connect with God and your purpose, do some personal growth and reflection or a gratitude journal. Starting the morning with positivity helps work at home moms get their mind focused and centered around what matters.

 

Related Post: 30+ Must Read Books for Christian Moms

 

 

After I do reading, I start to jump into my work at always grab a positivity podcast perfect for work at home moms. I like to have a positive podcast playing so that my brain is in a good place and I can get inspired as I work. It helps my flow more than having the TV on, so I suggest you try it! Do your best to keep the TV off and stay away from the news as long as you can! What we put in our brains impacts us more than we realize so choose the right things!

 

Podcasts are great because they are absolutely free and you can tune into whatever you need. If you’re feeling lost in your business or motherhood, you can search and find something. If you’re working on an email series and needs tips, just search and find some free education! I find that positive mindset or Christian homemaking and motherhood podcasts are my favorite to listen to in the morning and I try to keep the business ones for during my work block later in the day.

 

I’ve linked to some of my favorites HERE for you to check out.

 

 

Planning Your Time as a Work at Home Mom

 

It’s important to plan your time as a work at home mom. You don’t want to wake up and then wonder “oh, what should I be working on now”? You want to spend time during your evening routine planning it all out beforehand.

 

I try to pick 1-2 tasks to complete during my morning work hour. I always suggest keeping your work tasks in 20-30 minute chunks and if it will take you longer than that, you need to break it down more. This helps when you are a work from home mom because you never know when an interruption may come up and you can pick right back off where you left off.

 

I use Trello to plan out my work tasks and goals in advance. I follow the 12 week year method of goal setting and I have already predetermined what work tasks need to get done that week. At the beginning of the week or the night before, I assign a task or two to my morning so I know exactly what I am doing. I like to pick a morning task that revolved around writing because that is my most creative time of the day and I need to be able to write without interruption. Determine what tasks you need the most focus for and put them at the start of your day.

 

Cleaning Routines for Working and Work at Home Moms

 

After my 1-2 tasks are complete, I  turn my attention to a morning chore. I don’t like to do any of my cleaning routines until my kids are awake. One of the ways I run my business is that when they sleep – it’s work time and when they are up – it’s mom time!

 

Once the kids get up, we work together to start our morning chores. For us, this includes starting a load of laundry, emptying the dishwasher from last night and making breakfast. I make all of the lunches the night before so that I don’t have to worry about doing that in the morning or feeling rushed.

 

We spend the next 2 hours before school completing our cleaning routines together as a family. The kids then get time to watch a TV show and I get in exercise!

 

It’s so important as a work at home mom to fit in time for you and exercise matters! I’ve learned that working out in the morning helps me feel less stressed and gives me more energy. I do a 30-40 minute exercise program using Beachbody on Demand to stream from my house (grab a free 2 week trial here). While I do this, they play in the playroom and I get to be a model of healthy living! I typically take my daughter to school in my workout clothes and shower when we get home.

 

You can read more about that routine in detail HERE.

 

 

 

 

Mom Morning Routine Checklist

 

I’ve created a checklist for work at home moms to help you focus your day and start it strong. You can download it below and start using it in your mornings. It includes important things to help you create a miracle morning as a work at home mom.

Creating a Cleaning Routine with Your Kids

Creating a Cleaning Routine with Your Kids

Creating Cleaning Routines with Your Kids

 

Looking to have a cleaning routine that your kids help with? It can be hard to find the best ways to have your kids help around the house without getting in the way. Know that the work we do to equip and teach our kids now will help them become better adults (and take away some of our stress!)

 

Still to this day, I can remember the sounds of Motown Classics playing on the radio on Saturday mornings. Waking up to this sound was the dreaded signal that our mornings would be filled with dusting, vacuuming, and cleaning. My brother and I had our routines and we knew them well.

 

Growing up, I thought the routines and processes my mother had in place were crazy. Today, I absolutely love them and even have modified them to create my own system.  It’s helped me create a 3 part cleaning system that not only gets your kids helping you around the house, but teaches them skills that will last a lifetime.

 

Having a house with 8 children can get a little bit messy! The amount of dishes, dirty socks, and sticky tables is enough to make anyone want to pull their hair out. My anxiety levels rise to the highest heights when my house is a wreck.  It doesn’t mean that our house is spotless. That would be a gross exaggeration. Our house is definitely lived in! I just admitted that the task of keeping the house clean could not be left to me. We believe in getting everyone involved, because we all live there. My general rule of thumb is, If the child is old enough to make the mess, they are old enough to be a part of a system to learn to clean.

 

Over the years, I have tried many systems and chore charts to help me teach my kids about chores. The majority of them focused on ways to remind my kids to do their chores. Stickers, charts, calendars, apps, there are tons of ways to REMIND your kids. However, I realized I wanted something more than just reminding my children when to do their chore. I wanted a system that gave them essential life skills and taught them HOW to do their chore.

 

But maybe you’ve had these thoughts in your head…

 

It is so much easier to clean without my kids!

 

I don’t want my kids exposed to cleaning products.

 

They aren’t going to do it right.

 

These are common reasons many moms don’t get their kids involved with the cleaning process. I get it. Honestly, I do. The thought of leaving my kids unattended to clean an area or the entire house was enough to make the hairs on my neck stand up. However, I promise, the reward comes in the work you put in upfront.

 

 This post may contain affiliate links which cost you nothing extra to use but may provide me with a commission. To read my full disclosure head on over here.

Teach Your Kids to Do Chores Around the House

 

 

Show Them! Support Them! Send Them on Their Way! Is not designed for parents who want a quick fix to getting chores done or the house cleaned. There is work involved and it takes time for kids to really learn how to clean, but once they have mastered it, Holy Moly! You will find your cleaning process to be much simpler.

 

 

Setting Up Your Kids to Do Chores

 

 

Before you can even begin to show your kids how to clean, the first step is to separate your house or chores into zones. In our house, we have four children who are responsible for four zones. As a homeschool family, our house hot spots are the kitchen, dining room (which is our school room), the living room, and our bathrooms. These four spaces are the most used and can be perfectly straight to looking like a tornado hit them in under 5 minutes.

 

After selecting your zones, come up with a list of tasks that are needed to clean each zone that can be completed in under 15 minutes. The tasks on this list should be thought out and when they are completed and followed properly, the assigned zone is considered “clean” according to whatever standard you have in your home. It is easy to just say, “Ok, I know what needs to be done.”  or “I will just tell my kids what needs to be done.”

 

It may seem a little cumbersome, but WRITE THE STEPS DOWN! It will save you a ton of time later and it will serve as a checklist for your kiddos when completing the task independently. Do you want to take it a step further? Snap a photo of your zone when it is clean.

 

Related Post: The Best Digital Cleaning Systems for Moms

 

The next step is to gather all of the supplies that are needed to clean each zone. In my house, I find it easier to purchase multiple bottles of the same product so that each zone has its own supplies. This eliminates excuses such as, “I couldn’t do the mirrors because (insert sibling name) had the glass cleaner.” Now, don’t get me wrong, this doesn’t mean you have to have multiple vacuum cleaners. It just means, having a caddy with the necessary wipes, products, etc. in one bin already in the zone will set your kiddos up for success. In addition to the cleaning caddy for each zone, print and laminate the cleaning checklist you already created and place it with your supplies or you can even hang it up in the zone.  Did you take a picture? Put it in your caddy or hang it in your zones.

 

Lastly, determine a cleaning rotation for your house. How often does each zone need to be cleaned? Several times a day? Daily? Weekly? Twice a week? Make the rotation based on what works best for your house. Don’t set yourself up by creating an unrealistic schedule or unrealistic expectations.

 

Feel free add in some fun incentives! Allow kids to earn badges or certificates based on their accomplishments. Cleaning the house may sound like a dreaded thing to your kids. It’s important to remind your kids of the reasons they are being asked to keep the house clean, how much you appreciate them for being a part of the process, and celebrate them for mastering each zone.

Here comes the real work!

Show Your Kids How to Do Chores

 

The first part of the system is to just show your kids how to clean. Make sure you first assign each kid a zone for a designated period. In our house, my kiddos will shadow me for one week while I clean their assigned zone. So in reality, if you have four zones, your kids will be shadowing you as you clean for four weeks. I told you this wasn’t a quick fix!

 

During the cleaning session, give your kiddo the checklist you created. Have them observe you as you perform each step. Allow them to ask questions and ask them questions, such as “Why are we using this product for this area? Or How do we safely use this product? Each of these questions gets them thinking of the “why” behind the cleaning and not just trying to rush through. Remind your kiddo that the zone should take no more than 15 minutes. (If you went over 15 minutes, it should only be because you were explaining and dialoguing).

Support Your Kids As They Learn Chores

 

Once your shadow week is over, it’s time for the kids to start cleaning. Unfortunately, you are still not off the hook. In our house, we believe it is necessary for our kids to master an area. We decided that we would rather have them master the zone than have to constantly go back and clean up after them. We usually stay on this step for about two weeks. If you find that one of your kids has mastered their zone while the other has not, let the other kids switch and continue your rotation. Put the child struggling in their zone back in the rotation once they mastered their zone.

 

If you don’t have time to do it right, you must have time to do it over!

 

I love this phrase because it sets the expectation that trying to rush through their zone is not going to fly. I have been known for calling my kids in from playing because they half-heartedly cleaned their zone in an effort to go outside.

 

It may sound too tough for some, but getting called in from playing or made to turn off their video game a few times is enough to get the job done right.

 

During Support Them! your job is to shadow them while they are cleaning their zone. Make sure they are set up for success by making sure they have their supplies, the checklist, and even the photo of the cleaned zone, if you took one. Now sit back and observe! Do your best to keep your mouth closed and refrain from criticizing while they are cleaning. If you find they missed a step, gently remind them. Your child should not feel stressed out or afraid of failing to clean properly. Use this time to encourage them and use words of affirmation! Sayings such as, “ You are doing a great job!” “Wow! I love how clean you got that!” will go much further than a criticizing them for not doing it right.

 

Challenge your child to effectively clean their zone in 15 minutes or less. If the cleaning process is taking longer than that, it is possible that a second person is needed because the zone is too large or they are taking too long on a specific task.

Send Them on Their Way!

 

You have successfully showed your kids how to clean their assigned zone. If your child has mastered their zone, you will be able to tell during this step. Your child should know when they are expected to clean their zone. This is a great time to use a chore chart, app, or rotation calendar that is visible for everyone. It will help to get rid of the famous unwanted house guest named, “I Don’t Know.”

 

When it is time for zone cleaning, send your child on their way. You have already given them the skills and tools needed to clean their zone based on your standards and expectations. Just make sure you go back and check their work. Every child makes mistakes and some will even try to cut corners. Use this time to encourage your child to clean their zone properly. This is a great time to instill the incentives and rewards that were mentioned.

 

If you have multiple zones and multiple children, you will walk through each of the three steps over and over. It may seem like you are still doing all of the cleaning. Actually, it will feel that way for a while. That is perfectly okay. You are doing more than creating a quick system. You are giving your children skills they will use for a lifetime.

 

Show Them! Support Them! Send Them on Their Way! Is a great way to lay some of life’s foundational skills. The system can work with even your younger kiddos. There are tons of age appropriate charts that give examples of chores that can be completed by various age groups. The system works great and helps our crazy and quirky family of 8!

 

Did these tips help? Make sure you PIN them to come back to later!

 


 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           

 

Guest Post by Christel Brewer of Perfectly Blended and Blessed.

 

Christel Brewer is a wife and homeschooling mother of 8 beautiful blessings. She is no stranger to knowing the importance of understanding one’s unique self. Born shortly after the passing of her father, becoming a young mother while in college, and struggling as a single mother of five children, she uses her life experiences as the foundation for her workshops.

 

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How to Fit Self Care into Your Day

How to Fit Self Care into Your Day

Self Care Ideas for Moms 

 

What is self care for moms? The term ‘self care’ has most definitely become a buzzword recently. And while it sounds like it’s mostly spa days and taking naps, self care is so much more.

 

Self care means realizing that you need to ‘fill your cup’ or you are no good to those who need you. Self care is taking time for self love and being proud of yourself for doing so. Self care is doing the things that make you feel less stressed, set yourself up for success, and living a more enjoyable life.

 

But the thing is, most moms don’t spend much time with self care.

 

Related Post: 5 Podcasts to Jumpstart Positivity 

 

 

 

This post may contain affiliate links which cost you nothing extra to use but may provide me with a commission. To read my full disclosure head on over here.

Why Moms Don’t Do Self-Care

 

One of the top reasons that the moms I work with don’t spend time on themselves is that they feel they are too busy to do so.

 

I mean here is the thing… we’re all pretty dang busy. There are NOT enough hours in the day to do everything we need to get done and, life can get pretty crazy.

 

But that doesn’t mean we should neglect ourselves.

 

I make sure to take time daily for tiny forms of self care from reading for 10 minutes, to exercising, to simply decompressing with a cup of tea at the end of the night. You don’t need to take a weekend to go to a quiet retreat (though it would be nice) to do self care and, so often as moms, if we can’t do things ‘perfectly’ we don’t do them at all.

 

We find time to do things that are priorities to us. The things that we think are important are the ones that get done during the day. And self care, like anything else, isn’t about ‘having the time’, it’s about ‘making the time’. You need to prioritize YOU, find pockets, schedule dates with yourself, and make yourself a priority.

 

Related Post: The Benefits of Healthy Living

 

Faithbox - Embrace Your Faith Today!

 

The second reason I hear from moms for not doing  self care, and the one that honestly can trip me up too, is MOM GUILT (which if you struggle with this, head over right now and get the book Mom Set Free.. it's life changing!)

 

Ugh the dreaded mom guilt. I have it a few times a day and it often rears it’s ugly head when I’m about to do something that I want to do. It’s that voice that always just pops up when I am about to take 60 minutes to get work done in the office while my mother in law stays with the kids, the one that tells me to take a quicker shower, and the voice that makes me feel bad that I let my kids watch an episode of Daniel Tiger while I workout.

 

But mamas… we gotta shut that dang voice up.

 

We deserve to take some time during the day to center ourselves and do what makes us happy. So often moms lose themselves in ‘being mom’ and eventually can get grumpy, bitter, and unhappy. It’s so important that we take time for us because, we set the mood for our homes.

 

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How many times have you snapped or been in a bad mood and all of a sudden you can see everyone else’s shoulders lower just a little bit? Have you ever been cranky and can feel everyone else get cranky too? As mom, it’s up to use to set the tone and mood for our homes and, when we feel good, confident, and happy… that radiates to our family.

 

It is also up to us to be the example for our children. If all your children see is a mom who takes on everything, never gets help, takes breaks, and is stressed out then that is the image of ‘mom’ that gets ingrained in their brains. That might be the type of mom they are when they get older or the way that they treat their future wife.

 

Decided to change the tone in your home, decide that you matter enough for some ‘me time’, and decide that it’s time to prioritize you!

 

Now… how the heck do you do that?

 

What is Self Care?

 

Self care comes in many forms and can look differently for every person. Like I mentioned above, it can totally be a massage or a trip to the spa but it can also be as simple as a phone call with a friend that fuels your soul.

 

Here is a list of my favorite ways you can get self care in your day. Think about which ones you love to do and make it a goal to hit at least one of them each day. I find that I am able to fit many of them into my day and they really become great routines that I look forward to!

 

 

 

 

15 Minutes or Less 

  • Read
  • Sit outside
  • Call a friend
  • Color
  • Listen to Music
  • Buy yourself some flowers or something you’ve been wanting
  • Draw
  • Journal
  • Meditate
  • Enjoy a cup of coffee, tea or glass of wine ALONE
  • Paint your nails
  • Put on a face mask
  • Have a dance party
  • Listen to a podcast or audiobook 
  • Read a magazine
  • Indulge in a treat
  • Stretch or do yoga 
  • Read positive affirmations 
  • Cuddle your pets
  • Braindump goals and dreams
  • Look at old photos
  • Aromatherapy
  • Spend time planning out meals or activities
  • Practice gratitude and text someone something you love about them

 

30 minutes or more

  • Get a manicure and pedicure
  • Take a bubble bath
  • Declutter
  • Go to your favorite store alone and walk around
  • Enjoy a long shower
  • Watch a movie
  • Enjoy a lunch date with your spouse or friend
  • Create a vision board
  • Volunteer
  • Grab a massage
  • Take yourself out shopping
  • Take a nap
  • Do a craft you enjoy
  • Exercise 
  • Have a girls night
  • Enjoy a meal alone
  • Bake or cook
  • Go for a long run

 

Why Schedule Self Care?

 

Self care doesn’t need to be complicated but  it does need to be scheduled. If I don’t create routines around my self care, such as daily exercise, reading, or even when I’ll shower, it won’t happen. If I don’t text a friend and actually put a date on the calendar for a coffee date, we won’t see each other for 6 months or longer. It’s just the way life and human behavior is.

 

My suggestion is to make sure you put in your planner ONE THING you can do each day that fuels you. If you check out the above list, you can certainly find something that takes 15 minutes or less just to feel like you again. The most common form of self care in my home is listening to worship music and singing. All day long, we have worship going on our Echo Dot and, if I notice I’m a little snippy, I can typically pinpoint it to the fact that our music is off.

 

Once a month, schedule out a self care habit that is 30 minutes or longer, let your spouse know you’re taking some time to do whatever it is and ENJOY. Let go of the guilt, go to groupon and find something you want to do, and just be YOU again.

 

 It’ll make you a better and more cheerful mom and bring much more fun into your life! And I know what you’re saying … ‘well that’s nice for you, but I can’t take a long bubble bath everyday’.

 

Well neither can I! And on those days, I say some affirmations, or make sure to enjoy my end of day tea and realize that is just the season I am in.

 

But I’ll tell you what… I’ve never regretted treating myself well. I’ve never regretted doing something that I know will make me happier for myself, my family and my kids. And when I do take care of myself, I am reminded how valuable and loved I am.

 

And guess what… so are you!

 

So grab a positive podcast, stare at some clouds, or spend time planning your meals for the next week so that you have less stress in the next few days. They are all important forms of self care and you deserve it!

 

If you need some accountability and a little push, go and grab my 30 day self care challenge! Print the chart out and do the task listed! Each task takes 15 minutes or less and I bet you can find 15 minutes of your day to prioritize you. Make it a goal for yourself to not mindlessly watch a show or scroll facebook for 15 minutes (unless that’s part of your self care !) so that you can get the task done! And make sure to share this on your social media to help other mamas and PIN it for later!

 

 

More Healthy Living Resources for Busy Moms

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How to Find More Time to Be Productive as a Busy Mom

How to Find More Time to Be Productive as a Busy Mom

How to Find More Time to Get Things Done

 

Since we have a finite number of hours to get things accomplished, it’s important to have systems and routines that help you get things done.

 

 

These don’t always have to be where you spend hours and hour cleaning your home, making elaborate meals or working on your goals.

 

 

Sure, these huge chunks of times are helpful but, as a super busy mom, I’ve found that I get more done in the margins of my day and 15 minute chunks than anything else!

 

 

time-management-moms

 

This post may contain affiliate links which cost you nothing extra to use but may provide me with a commission. To read my full disclosure head on over here.

How to Find More Time in the Day

While I know we all think that we truly are maximizing our time, I want to encourage you to start looking for those minutes where you can sneak in a few time saving productive tasks.

This is not to say that you have to always ‘be on’ and doing things - that’s just a recipe for burn out - but start looking at ways you can get small tasks done instead of putting them off.

To start, I encourage you to do a time inventory for 3-4 days (or a week if you can!). This is where you literally write down every single thing you’re doing and the time it takes you to do it.

Spend 30 minutes folding and putting away laundry? Write it down!

Scrolling Pinterest for a dinner recipe for 10 minutes? Track it!

Commuting to and from work for an hour a day? Mark it on your sheet!

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Writing down and doing a detailed time inventory will help you see a few things. First, it’ll show you where the bulk of your time is spent (obviously). After you see this, ask yourself “is this where my top priority lies?” Because if not, you might need to move some things around!

Now I know we can’t always change work or school schedules but if one of your top 3 priorities is your children and you spend more time doing housework then with them, it’s time to make some shifts.

The second thing you’ll learn from a time inventory is where you can delegate, where you are wasting time and places you can sneak in small and mindless tasks.

I bet that you’ll find that there are moments in your day being wasted (like when you’re commuting) that you could fill with phone calls (hands-free of course!), listening to audiobooks or talking intentionally with your kids. You’ll also find time where you truly could sneak in minutes to get your housework done, easy emails written, or short tasks completed.

Related Post: How to Use Time Blocking for a Simple Weekly Schedule 

 

 

Using Small Pockets of Your Day to Get More Done

 

Once you’ve identified where you might be wasting time (either doing things you have to do or just letting time pass you), the next thing to do is to tell your time what to do!

 

 

I like to use what’s called ‘microwave minutes’. Since we’re all standing at the microwave at some point, instead of using those minutes to scroll your social media feed, you could use them to do small tasks.

 

 

Every time I’m at the microwave waiting I do one of a few tasks that I’ve discovered I can squeeze in throughout the day. These types of tasks could be things like putting a few dishes away from the dishwasher, folding some laundry, or answering an email or two.

 

 

We often think that because we can’t do everything in one shot or spend a long time doing a project that we can’t even get some work done at all. If you have 25 thank you cards to write, why not spend time writing one out every time you’re at the microwave? By the end of a few weeks you’ll have them all finished, the tasks will be done and not overwhelming, and you wouldn’t have had to take anytime from your busy schedule to get it done.

 

 

Stop having an all or nothing mentality and get done what you can! We have more time than we realize!

 

Time Management Tips from Experts

 

This year the team at Ultimate Bundles put together an incredible productivity bundle! The resources are INCREDIBLE and perfect for women who want to get more done! It’s full of ebooks, planners and courses (including our course Organize Your Life with Trello!)  

 

If you’re reading this during February, they have also come out with a FREE e-book that will help you discover how to get more done in the margins! Head over here and grab your copy while it lasts!  

 

 

Free Productivity eBook

Here are some snippets and my favorite tips from some of the contributing bloggers!

 

 

“I keep a master list of all the things I need to get done but aren’t a high enough priority to be scheduled into the day. When I find some free time, I tackle one of these. If I can’t get motivated to do one of the tasks, I’ll spend time reading or message a friend.” Corinne from Wondermom Wannabe  

 

 

“I use small pockets of free time to read! I love to read and I have the Kindle app on my phone so I always have a book with me.” Cassandra from Mom Choose Joy  

 

 

“I keep a running list of 10-minute tasks I can accomplish in the margins. (I’m currently Mom to a toddler, so this is key!) I might use a small pocket to post on Instagram, or I might unload the dishwasher. I might pick just one room to vacuum, or I might check the grocery list for the week. Tidying is a great 10-minute task, and if I do it quickly, it’s a mini workout that gives me a burst of energy for my next big thing. I also love listening to podcasts, online courses, and audiobooks while I’m driving, cooking dinner, or doing household chores. You can learn so much while you’re doing manual labor of some sort, and I’ve listened to over a hundred books and at least 20 online courses this way!” - Beth Anne from Brilliant Business Moms  

 

 

“I am often most productive with housework during those small pockets of time. It’s amazing what you can get done in 5-10 minute increments. Other times, I use those moments to text friends to check in with them or do nothing and enjoy peace, stillness, and rest”Julianna from The Simplicity Habit  

 

 

And I love this last one from Laura of I Heart Planners   “I try to spend little pockets of time throughout the day really connecting with my loved ones instead of trying to get one more thing checked off my to do list. I snuggle with my kids, read them a book, or I turn on the music and we have a mini dance party - that one is a bonus because it also gets us some exercise.”  

 

 

If you want more tips on how to get more done in the margins, productivity tips from the experts and tips on taking care of you, head over and grab this free EBook with over 175+ pages of tips! (But hurry! You only have until February 11th!) 

 

 

And if you are really ready to take it to the next level, grab my course (a $47 value) and a TON of others in this year’s productivity bundle!  Click here to check it out! 

 

 

 

Conquer your to do list - reach your goals!

Morning Routine for Moms of Toddlers

Morning Routine for Moms of Toddlers   Looking for a morning routine for moms of toddlers? Have no fear! As a mom of toddlers, I know that my morning routine will set up my day for success or failure. If you’re like me, then you need to come up with a streamlined...

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