A few weeks ago I shared one of the ways I stay productive as a work at home mom. Creating a daily to-do list is key for me to stay productive throughout the day. My morning and evening routines are just as important. Keep reading to see what I do and how you can establish daily routines for yourself. But first, incase you missed part one, be sure to read it here.
My days tend to be very chaotic between the kids, our business, housework, etc. I use my daily routines to help me keep the housework in check, whereas I use the daily to-do lists I mentioned in my previous post to help me remember activities and tasks on a day to day basis.
Please keep in mind that what I do for my daily routines may not work for your schedule, family, etc. My hope in sharing what has worked for us is that it can inspire you to find daily routines that works best for your home! Let me also mention that I am human and do not stick to these 100% every single day. My daily routines are simply guidelines based on the tasks I tend to naturally do!
We usually start working at 9am, so I try to take care of everything in my morning routine by then. I don’t always do everything in the same order, just whatever seems to work that day! Unlike my daily t0-do list from my previous post, I don’t keep lists for these tasks. I essentially do them every day (why I consider this a routine) so they are more like habits that I don’t really forget! Here is what I do in the morning:
- Get ready for the day: I try to get ready for the day first thing. If I don’t get ready before the 4 little rascals wake up, I might be in my pj’s til noon! 😀 This getting ready time also includes prayer time before I even get out of bed. I’m not someone who can wake up and hop out of bed. I enjoy spending time in prayer as I wake up for the day; especially to get my heart in the right place!
- Make the bed: If my bed is made, my whole house automatically feels clean! I’m only joking, but seriously though–I love having a made bed. It sets the tone for the rest of my day. Is that weird? Let me know in the comments if you’re the same!
- Unload the dishwasher: If I can start the day with an empty dishwasher, it makes loading the dishwasher throughout the day SO much easier! Dishes don’t pile up and my kitchen stays relatively clean.
- Tidy up: Even though I tidy the house before bed the night before, I still do a quick sweep through the house at some point during the morning to pick up stray socks, toys, or trash left laying around. This makes helps me keep my house relatively picked up throughout the day.
- Start a load of laundry: I mentioned in my previous post that I like to add one household chore to my daily list, as well as a load of laundry. I try my best to start laundry early in the morning so that I have time to dry it, fold it, and put it away the same day.
- Eat breakfast/feed the kids breakfast: This one is pretty self explanatory. Depending on the day, Anthony and I take turns making breakfast. Sometimes we just feed the kids something quick, sometimes we cook.
By doing these things every morning by 9, it helps me stay on track to do the tasks in my evening routine. If I waited until lunch to unload the dishwasher, then I’m probably not going to do it then and the dirty dishes from lunch will just go in the sink. Then at dinner I have even more to clean up!
Our day-to-day activities vary, especially since we work from home running Bourne Southern. But by dinner time, we have the general same routine every night. Once again, these things don’t always get done in this exact order, but pretty close.
We usually try to eat dinner around 6/6:30. Most nights I cook, but Anthony loves to cook and will occasionally make dinner (which is always such a treat). Here is what my evening routine looks like:
- After dinner clean-up: Once we finish dinner, the older boys help clear the table. I go ahead and load the dishwasher and clean the kitchen so I can wake up the next day with a clean slate! I also vacuum the main living area (kitchen, dining room, and living room).
- Set out clothes: Before we get the kids in bed, I try to set out their outfits for the next day. Jace (5) and Evan (3) like to get themselves dressed, so it helps by having their clothes out for them to grab.
- Kids bath/bedtime routine: Anthony and I tag team the kids baths and bed time routines. We both do bath time, and he brushes their teeth. I usually nurse Rhys and get him to bed first around 7:30, and then around 8/8:30 read a book with Lane and put him down in his room. Jace and Evan usually request 15 stories, so Anthony puts them to bed.
- Tidy up: While Anthony is praying and doing story time with the older 2 boys, I tidy up the house just like I do in the morning. I grab any clothes or toys laying around, put the pillows back on the couch, etc. etc. I love having a “clean” house before bed. It helps me start my day off on the right foot the next day!
- ME TIME: Finally, when the house is quiet, I take time to myself. I love lighting a candle (some of my favorites here) and just soaking in a hot bath. During that time I usually do my bible reading and/or devotional. I’ve linked the one I’m currently reading at the end of this post! I also take that time to pray, think, and just enjoy the silence!
- Make a to-do list: I always make my to-do list for the following day the night before. Obviously, I may need to add things to it the next morning, but I try to do this so I can get an overview of what our next day will look like.
Anthony and I enjoy spending time together once the kids are in bed, and whenever we need to have a meeting about the business, it usually happens then as well. If we decide to go out somewhere as a family one night, we pretty much stick to the whole bedtime routine schedule, minus the baths.
Establishing your own daily routines
If you don’t currently have daily routines but want to be more productive throughout your day, I suggest starting small and working your way up. Pick 1-2 things in the morning and 1-2 things in the evening that you know would make your day that much easier by having them done each day. Once you get into the habit of doing them, you can add more to your list!
Don’t feel obligated to finish the tasks of your daily routines each day. We all know life happens, (especially when you have small children at home) and some days everything can’t be done when you intend to do it. I encourage you to catch up as time allows, and start fresh the next day!
I hope this was helpful and inspired some of you to start daily routines of your own. If you already practice daily routines around your home, I’d love to know them! Leave me a comment below and let me know what works for your family!