Yesterday I told you all about what keeps me busy and the emails and questions have not stopped.
How do you get started? What are your tips for time management? The emails I’m not getting from friends because they think I’m too busy for them.
So. My lovelies.
Weekends are my overtime. I have a helper who loves to hang out with his kids. He’s amazing support in the fact that I can disappear for half a day and not come home to a messy house, crabby kids or worked up husband. He literally steps in when I’m away or working.
I make time for my friends – meeting for coffee or play dates. I recently had to decide if I want to be the kind of friend who always says yes and then never shows up. I have friends, who time and again, show me how important I am in their lives just by making time for me – when I know they have a million things to do.
That feels amazing. I want to be that friend.
I also want to be that mother. So yes, I have a lot on my plate – but my kids schedule, needs and wants come before any of this. If I can’t be somewhere I need to be – I always have backup in a sitter or family member who is willing to help out once in a while. I make it a point not to abuse that not because I want to wear out a welcome – but my kids will catch on pretty soon if I’d rather be working than investing in their lives.
Which I do not wish.
As for tools to help me stay on task: I need to write stuff down. My lists are every where and that usually means there’s a paper trail. This is where Evernote comes in – it’s not always easier because writing it down helps me remember better – but it’s organized much better and I’m getting the hang of depending on it.
Google Calendar is amazing because it syncs my calendar to Aaron’s work schedule (which is imperative to having any kind of life outside of work.) we also sync each of our kids’ calendars all in one – so I know when our daughter has piano and not to schedule a doctor’s appointment for my son on that day/time.
We all have a COLOR and then our “Home” calendar is for family events. Extended family visits, Thanksgiving dinners, birthday parties, vacations etc.
Aaron is BLUE
Jodi is PINK
Home is GREEN
Jessica is PURPLE
Oliver is ORANGE
I look at a rainbow every day.
Not all, but a good portion of what I do here on jodimichelle.com are family invested things. The photos and how-tos. So much of what I put here is something I’m doing anyway – so it’s not the extra time to create it – it’s literally the effort to share it.
My daughter LOVES to help with the food and video taping things. Pretty soon we’ll see more of this because of her. You can thank her personally – she digs that.
I still am not awake before my kids every day but I always start my day with them – getting them breakfast or making it hot then hopping in the shower and doing my morning routine.
I make lunches, do hair – make sure everyone matches – double check home work and kids’ school schedules. Who needs to wear what shoes today for gym? It’s RED day! Go up and change! And put on socks. (Seriously with the socks!)
If I have AM carpool some time’s Aaron will bring the kids on his way to work and I stay home with our son – either getting him ready for his school day or just beginning our day together at home.
Once our daughter is off for the day I make sure I know what I have to get done before she gets home. Usually laundry, dinner, snacks/baking and some cleaning. I try not to clean their rooms but some times I just have to.
Then we run errands – stores, accountants, book keepers, post office, coffee (always the coffee), groceries, thrifts etc. Some days we don’t go any where. Most days we’re out for a bit in the morning.
If my son has school too – then I drop him off and either go work at a coffee shop (working on articles or photos), have a meeting or come home to work/clean.
After preschool is always lunch (on non-preschool days we’re home by about then too) and then nap.
Oh how I love the nap.
During nap time is when I get the most “work” done on writing or photos, conference calls, emails, contacts etc. I run most of my “upkeep” through nap time. Scheduling a post, emailing an article, corresponding with a company or contact/brand for Gleek etc etc etc.
Some days? I stare at the wall.
After naps if I have PM car pool we go get some kids – otherwise after my daughter is dropped off we all get in the car and head for the gym.
I spend at least an hour at the gym every day running. This is what we’ll call “sanity”.
I make it home in time to make dinner, greet Aaron at the door, sit down and eat and then we have a marathon of parenting until bedtime.
Homework, picking up, baths or showers, making sure we know what’s happening tomorrow, signing permission slips or reading the book that’s sent home with our daughter from school on what’s going on in her classroom. Then there’s bed time – brushing teeth and tag-teaming corralling the tired little people into bed before they get the giggles and then we’re gonners.
Read stories, ALWAYS get a drink. Even if they already had one. Use the bathroom AGAIN. Door open, lights on … zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.
I continue to check my email and will sometimes write after the kids go to bed, too. Drink a glass of red wine, sit down and talk about our days. We’ll watch some TV or read next to each other ………. zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.
This is obviously a rough outline of my day. My life is not a marathon of things to get done. I enjoy my life. I love to write. It’s like breathing for me – so it’s not a task I’m ever without.
We do a lot of “non working” fun stuff during the day too. Building train tracks or chasing one down in town. We have dance parties and mini photo shoots. I dream ideas so we often try something out to see if it would work or I share them on twitter or with friends so someone else can chase them down.
I volunteer in my daughters school whenever I can and help in my son’s once a month. I also have time during the week when I allow myself to be out and not working on something. I have a sitter and want to go to the library – then I will. Or get coffee and read – that’s fine too.
I’m not always working when I’m not with my kids and I LOVE seeing my friends and having the flexibility to walk away from my computer to have a life.
One of my favorite things to do, though? Is to get together with a bunch of other bloggers and have a life with them. 😉 It’s like we’re all weird off-brand Trekkies. I love them so much.
I’m guessing I made this more confusing for you – so just keep asking. I have a mind that literally does not stop talking to me. It’s all about embracing that.