We’ve been home from NICU for nearly 2 months, and I have to be honest, I’m still struggling to get my life in gear. I’ve tried using my At-A-Glance schedule, but I’m beginning to realize it needs an overhaul, and now is not the time for an overhaul. I just need to get some things done right now. I am seriously schedule/routine challenged right now, and I literally need someone to TELL ME what to do.
I also need to get back to school with the kids. We sort of coasted for far too long, because I wasn’t able to plan and I wasn’t even sure where the homeschooling materials were since so many things were moved and sorted while I was away.
So, here’s how I’m working toward getting back on track…
First of all, I am doing brain dumps almost every day. I’m making lists to get things out of my head as I think of them. That way, my brain doesn’t have to sort them and try to categorize them – that can be done later. I am using the methods in my own book Home Management for the Homeschool Mom to navigate this time in my life.
Secondly, I’m taking things in bite-sized pieces and giving myself baby steps to get things accomplished. I found myself saying, “I need to homeschool plan,” but when I would try to do that, I couldn’t find everything I needed and ended up frustrated and overwhelmed because I didn’t even have all the materials within reach. So, instead I broke things down and told myself, “I need to find the Tapestry of Grace notebook,” and when I found that I moved on to, “Now, I need to find the math workbooks and CD’s,” and so on and so forth until I had everything I needed so I could then accomplish the homeschool planning.
I heard about this little gem a while back, but had never really taken a good look at it (and honestly, when I heard about it before, I didn’t NEED it – now I do!) This is about as simplified as you can get when getting your life back on track. It is a week-by-week guide telling you exactly what to do each day. I simply print off each week’s list and keep it. I am so glad it was in the Conquer Your Clutter Bundle (which is still available HERE!)
NOTE: If you are homemaking-impaired, Motivated Moms is a great way to learn what it takes to keep a home!
While we are on the topic of the Conquer Your Clutter Bundle, another product that came with my bundle was the Home Organizing DIY Assessment Book. In my own ebook, I talk about creating systems to take care of the things that drive you nuts. This DIY assessment printable is a perfect companion! It takes you step-by-step through your house looking for the things you need to change so you have a place to start when looking for systems and organization tools that make your life easier!
Another thing I am doing that I have done for many years is using my lovely Thrift Store Bag. In my bedroom behind the the door I keep a garbage bag that is always at the ready to house the things I no longer need, but are in good enough shape to head to the thrift store when full. The helps me get on track by giving me the freedom to declutter as I go about my life. There is always a place for my cast-offs – no need to get out special paraphernalia to declutter – I can do it whenever I run across something that no longer has a place in my life. (Rachel from Nourishing Minimalism has a couple of books in this year’s bundle that I have used to facilitate decluttering over the years – 30 Days to a Clean & Organized Kitchen and 30 Days to a Clean & Organized Living Space – check them out!)
And finally, I’m taking time to breathe. That may sound strange, but trying to get back on track is super stressful. I want it done NOW! But, that isn’t possible. It didn’t fall apart in a day, and it won’t get back to normal in a day…or a week…or even a month (or two 😉 ). When I start to feel like I’m going to hyperventilate over all the stuff I think I need to get done right now, I ask God to stop me in my tracks and let me breathe. I breathe through all the craziness, and then start over with that brain dump I talked about, thanking the Lord as I go for all His provisions over these last 2 years.
It’s easy to get discouraged by how far I have to go and totally missing how far I’ve come. 3 months ago I couldn’t walk. I was bed-bound, not cooking or cleaning or teaching school. Praise the Lord I’ve come as far as I have! I could easily still be where I was (and by the way, if you are dealing with a prolonged illness and need help figuring out how to manage your home during this time, you’ll want to take a look at Energy Budget in the Conquer Your Clutter Bundle – it will help you create a home management method that meets your family’s needs.) I’m getting healthy. I’m getting more and more school in every day. I’m finding my way back little by little. That is worth a smile on my face!
Are you having trouble getting back on track this year? Feel free to ask questions and lend your own advice in the comments section below!