I often get asked how I juggle being a mom, running a blog and working from home. We have written a couple posts about this, but have not done one for awhile.  We are now into the blog about a year and half, and I can't believe how much we have learned since then.  When we started we were literally clueless! Through some definite trial and error our schedules are crazy lives are becoming more "normal," here are some ways that have helped me.

  1. Waking up 30-45 minutes before my almost 2 year old. Lucky for me he wakes up pretty late...so people tell me! I can usually count on him up by 9, however my 4 year old wakes up around 8. He definitely can keep himself entertained though, we snuggle in bed while he watches a show or plays games on the iPad, and I email, catch up on social media posting or write blog content.
  2. ROUTINE! My kids love a routine, most children do. When Lux wakes up we all go downstairs for breakfast. I then let them play in backyard or family room while I straighten and clean downstairs. Once downstairs is cleaned we all head upstairs and I put them right in the tub, where they may stay for a half hour! Do you know how much I can get done in a half hour with them confined to one small area...bliss. I straighten upstairs, make bed, perhaps do some laundry if needs be. This way my house is clean, and I feel like I can move on with the rest of my day! Not OCD at all... :)
  3. Get yourself and kids ready. This can be a hard one for some people, with all the other "crap" going on in your life, why would I spend 20 minutes more to get myself ready when I don't see anyone but the McDonald's drive thru lady (yes she knows my name) or the preschool pick up lady who is on duty that day?! I'll tell you why, because I feel better about myself when I have gotten ready. To be honest I even eat better (sometimes)! When I feel good about myself, I'm a nicer person and mom. For me getting ready does not mean a 2 hour routine...no no no, ain't nobody got time for that! With my eyelash extensions and now brows done I can seriously be done in 15-20 with a quick shower. My boys also get ready every day, yes they are boys so it's really a quick outfit and some wax in their hair, did I mention that I always like my kids more when their hair is done! haha
  4. Taking advantage of downtime. I know what your thinking...who has downtime? For me my downtime is when Lux is napping and Parks is at school. Sure I could sit on the couch, watch HGTV with a Diet Coke and a chocolate, all while enjoying the quiet! Guys... I basically do do this, but at my desk, if HGTV is playing in the background so be it! This is my personal time each day, where I have no disruptions. (Except maybe JayCee asking to help with a feeding, which I happily oblige!) Everyone needs "me time." Whatever makes you happy, and maybe productive at the same time...do it! Find the time, make it happen.
  5. Dinner, you guys this was a hard one for me, and still is. Took a lot of convincing myself that this was the right thing to do, and picking up food 5 nights a week and bringing it home... was not. Every Sunday night I create a grocery list with 4 home cooked meals and whatever else I might need for the week. I do my grocery shopping online that night, I use click list through Smith's grocery store. This has seriously changed my life! I sit on the comfort of my own couch, create my list, and then choose a time I would like to pick it up. Yes you heard me right...I don't even get out of my car! They load it in the back and I hand them a credit card...perfection. To be honest probably 2 of my four meals are crock pot meals, and I have no shame in that! I can put it in the crockpot around 3 while I'm working and it's ready around 6. The other two are usually quick 15-20 min prep. Nothing crazy over here. I can't tell you how much this has changed our family. There is something to be said about a family that sits down to dinner together. It's our time that we turn off all electronics and talk about our day.
  6. Sleep! My kids bed time is very routined, bath, because they are filthy once again, jammies, books, prayer, lights out. From a young age I sleep train my kids. Yes it can be harsh, yes it tugs at your mommy strings, but it makes me and my kids so much happier once it's done! I have great sleepers and always have, I totally owe that to disciplined sleeping. Not to mention that I want time every night to hang out with the hubs, sans kids. If he is home at a decent time (dental school life) we sit on the couch, cuddle, watch our shows and almost always have a treat. I love this time of the day that him and I can share. I think it is so important to make that time for you and your spouse.

I am in no way perfect...far from! However these tips I believe have made me a better mom, wife and friend. I am still learning things everyday and know I have along way to go, but learning is half the fun!