A Realistic Daily Routine For Stay At Home Moms

“Are they twins?”

“Is that your nephew?”

“WOW. You’ve got your hands full.”

“It won’t always be this busy, you’ll see!”

When I was pregnant with my second son, I was constantly searching the internet for schedules. I’m a schedule person. I like organization. I wanted to know that I could get my two babies on an easy schedule to keep my sanity. I couldn’t find much to be honest so I figured I would share the schedules I created as the boys grew.

If you ask my husband I can be rigid when it comes to our routine but as the boys are getting older, I am learning to be a little more flexible. That being said, I don’t think we’ve ever skipped an afternoon nap to be somewhere or do something. It just ain’t worth it, ya’ll!

*Currently my boys are almost 2 and almost 3.

6-7 AM Wakeup, milk, change diapers/potty and make breakfast. Coffee for ME.

7:00-8AM Breakfast, get dressed. I will go wash my face, take a quick rinse off shower, utilize my capsule wardrobe and sometimes I’ll put some makeup on.

8-10AM TV/inside play time. My kids watch a lot of TV depending the day and I stopped feeling guilty about it a long time ago! I also utilize this time to do things like check my emails, write a grocery list, daily chores etc..

10-12 Free Play: this typically involves outside time, a snack, play dates, running errands etc. If we’re inside because of weather, I will fold laundry or clean while they play.

12PM Lunchtime (I let the kids watch a show in the living room while I prepare lunch.) This allows me to safely monitor them while getting lunch ready. Win win!

12:30-3:30 PM Nap Time! I’ve learned to protect this time of the day for myself and not feel guilty about it. I don’t do chores. I eat, sleep, read books, go on my computer, watch movies etc. Having this set time of day for myself has done wonders for my mental health!

3:30 PM Snack Time

4:00 PM Free Play

5:30-6:30 Prep Dinner/Dinner time

6:30 Bath time (twice a week)

7 PM Bedtime for the babies!

One of my goals every day is to have a tidy house by bedtime so that my husband and I can enjoy our small window of free time together. I don’t want to be wading through toys on the floor or scrubbing down a messy kitchen. I clean as I go and it works really well for me. I rarely sit down during the day except for when I’m eating or the kids are sleeping. I’m always thinking of the next small task I can be doing so that when I have free time, I’m not working. Multitasking is the path to more free time and a more simplified, clutter free home, I promise!

Our routine is always changing to fit our needs. I think the secret to a successful daily routine is being flexible and willing to adapt to your children’s needs as well as your own. Never underestimate the power of routine. I don’t deviate far from our routine because I’ve seen what my kids are like when we shorten naps or over schedule ourselves with outings. It ain’t pretty! I will always embrace some semblance of routine because it brings peace to my life.

What kind of person are you? Do you love routine? Do you live by the seat of your pants?

I’d love to hear from you in the comments below!

6 Tips For Balancing Life With Babies Close In Age.

I still remember how I felt when I suspected I was pregnant at 5.5 months postpartum. I had that all too familiar feeling of nausea. I knew it well and I was nervous.

We found out on Family Day 2018 that we would be a family of four before the end of the year. I felt unprepared to be pregnant again, so soon. In the ensuing months I battled morning sickness and extreme fatigue. The end of October of that year, I was 4 days past my “due date” with our sweet Jack and I was so READY to have him be born. For one, I had a truly miserable second pregnancy. But I was also anxious to have Jack be with us so that we could begin to find our rhythm.

Jack’s surprising arrival finally came on October 26th, 2018. I say surprising because we didn’t know Jack would be Jack. We’d been expecting a little girl as we had been told at my 20 week scan. But one look at Jack and we felt our little family was complete! In the weeks to follow, life was at the peak of stress for us. With my husband starting school full-time, while maintaining his full time job, I didn’t have the luxury of him taking much time off. He started his new schedule 3 days after Jack was born and my mom, who had been with us for 6 weeks needed to head home. As I look back over the last year, I want to share how we’ve transitioned into this new season as well as some tips on how to make things easier and what we would’ve done differently.

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    Plan well. My husband started school full time, 3 days after Jack was born. He’s also working full time during the weeks that he’s not in school.  It’s been difficult for both of us but we planned for it and knew it was coming. We try to make it a habit of sitting down before the start of a new month and write everything out on our calendar. Then that calendar hangs on our fridge where we can see what is coming up. I would encourage you to sit down with your spouse and look at the year ahead of you. Don’t say yes to more, especially if it’s around the time your next baby comes. We said no to being in a wedding that was set for 3 weeks after Jack was born, which thankfully the bride and groom understood. Once we said no to those types of things, we didn’t feel guilty.We also talked a lot near the end, about worse case scenario type situations. What if I had a c-section? Who would help me for the 6 weeks post-op where carrying a toddler isn’t an option? Have those conversations long before your birth month because you don’t want to be scrambling for help at the last minute.
  • Ask for Help-My family lives far away so I am extremely grateful to my husband’s family, for all the help we’ve had with Hudson this past year. My mother also came and stayed with us for 6 weeks. Most of her stay was before the birth because I was pretty worn out by the end of my pregnancy. Hudson goes to his Gramma’s sometimes once a week. He’s done really great with sleepovers, something I am personally comfortable with. I encourage you to try something like that, if it’s possible. It’s good for everyone.
  • Make Meals to freeze or have someone make meals-Just like with your first baby, having pre-made meals are a blessing.
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    Pay For Extra Help. There is no shame in hiring someone to help you. If you can afford to, seriously consider hiring someone to come clean once a month. Maybe there is an affordable daycare nearby, that you’d feel comfortable sending your toddler to a few hours a week. We are a one income family but those are both things that we are looking at, as a family. We know that having extra help, whatever it looks like is worth it because it brings calm and peace into our home.
  • Have A Routine-The first few weeks of Jack’s life felt really unsettled. I think that is normal in terms of all the new adjustments going on. But once Jack turned a month old, I began a bedtime routine as well as a nap routine that I stuck to, no matter the outcome. I started lightly sleep training him at 5/6 weeks. Hudson’s schedule just kinda flowed into Jack’s. It doesn’t mean that everything goes according to schedule BUT it does give us some structure to our day. I need structure so I don’t feel like I’m running all over my house, losing my mind. You don’t have to sleep train to have a routine. But I encourage you to find some rhythm to your day to avoid extra stress. You can read about what our daily routine looks like, here.
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    Have Low Expectations In The Beginning-It takes 21 days to form a habit. We all know that! I was kidding myself when I thought I’d have everything in running order, a few days after Jack was born. Sure, I was cooking meals and cleaning my house 3 days postpartum.  My mom kept telling me to sit down and rest but I had to prove to myself that I could handle 2 babies while running my home, right off the bat. It didn’t go well. I had a few minor breakdowns that week. I’ve also made some adjustments to lessen stress , like being done with breastfeeding. It just wasn’t in the cards for me, again, this time. Initially that was a really difficult decision to make but I’m ok with it now. I talk about that here. It’s been in the past 2 weeks (Jack is now 9 weeks old) that I feel like I’m finally gaining ground and we are falling into a rhythm. (Or maybe that’s just today because both boys are miraculously sleeping at the same time!) It will take time to find a rhythm and routine that works, so don’t panic!

Life with babies less than 14 months apart has been the crazy circus that I fully expected it to be and MORE! But I am here to tell you that it’s manageable with realistic expectations and a little bit of planning. In the tough moments (when both kids are screaming because neither has napped, both have probably pooped themselves, I haven’t showered in 4 days and if ONE MORE PERSON TOUCHES ME) I try to remind myself it won’t always be this insane. There will come a day many years from now when my kids won’t need me the way they do now. I’ll actually MISS crazy town days. My house will be quiet, with no sound of little feet running around and someone crying for their mama. It’s bitter sweet, mama. Take a deep breath and know you can do this.