Wake up before your kids
I wake up at 5 a.m., shower, and enjoy a hot cup of coffee on the couch while watching the news every day. My kids usually don’t wake up until 6:30/7 a.m. so those 1.5-2 hours of me time are my most relaxing AND productive hours. I hop on my phone and check in on my Instagram friends, write my blogs (it is currently 5:59 a.m. as I type this), clean, craft or sometimes just kick back on the couch.
Create a dedicated workspace
Work alongside your kids
Invest in a good headset with a microphone
Post your schedule on the fridge
Grab a piece of paper and write down the dates and times of all your meetings for the week and stick it to your fridge with a magnet. Not only does this help you remember, it also helps your spouse/partner to know when interruptions might not be ideal. It’s extremely helpful if your spouse also works from home, so you can figure out who will attend their web conference with the kids in tow if you both have one at the same time.
My husband is a P.E. teacher so while he IS currently working from home (while also working toward his Masters), his meetings are far less than mine. So when he does have a meeting I make it a priority to allow him the privacy of our bedroom or office.
Just like with fresh air, staying active is super important. I have recently taken up running outside (weather permitting) and we go on a LOT of walks. When I can’t get outside I have been doing a LOT of painting. My house is looking fabulous.
Plan meals in advance
I make a grocery list every week and plan my meals around it (with some wiggle room because you never know the availability of certain products these days). I have a large, dry-erase calendar on the side of my fridge that I use to write down meals for each day. This helps keep me on track and prepared, and when my husband asks me for the millionth time what is for dinner, I can direct him right to the calendar. I also do my best to plan meals that include leftovers.
Take advantage of grocery pickup/delivery
I absolutely love using Kroger ClickList. And nowadays, most large grocery stores have a similar option. I love that I don’t have to worry about creating a list; I can just open up my phone app and throw an item into my cart as soon as I think of it. Have it delivered or pick it up on your lunch break.
Snacks on snacks on snacks
Nothing quiets a crazy toddler like a trip to the snack bin! I’m always sure to have a variety of individually packed snacks as well as fresh fruits, veggies and yogurt. I’m not ashamed to throw snacks at these little sharks to help get me through my next meeting
Rotate your toys
Make a To Do List
I prefer a combination of a written list in a planner along with an ongoing, electronic to so list in an app like Microsoft To Do. This will help you stay in task during the day and give you that sense of accomplishment you so desperately need when you cross items off said list.
Spice things up with surprises
Paint your kids’ faces and turn them into animals. Buy some new games or toys (we just played Pie Face for the first time and it was a hit). Turn their bedroom into a campsite with a bed tent. There are oh so many new and slightly extra things you can do to switch it up.
Pinterest is your bestie
PIN ALL THE THINGS. Recipes, crafts, activities, etc. You’ll want to be ready to pull up your account during desperate times.
Bust out the electronics
When all else fails, hand out tablets, phones or queue up Dora the Explorer on repeat! I try to ensure my kids are doing something educational (like using the ABC Mouse app) MOST of the time. You’d be amazed how much Spanish my toddlers have picked up lately!
I certainly hope this list helps get you through the rough waters ahead. Take splice in knowing you’re not alone in this and that all over the world there are moms losing their shit while working from home. God speed!