March 19, 2016 by Courtney
Over the course of the past several months (about 5 months), I have worked my way into a daily routine that has helped me to thrive as a stay at home mom/homeschooling mom. It also has helped me tremendously with my bipolar and anxiety. One of the things that my doctor told me is that someone with bipolar needs routine. We need to go to bed and wake up about the same time every day. We need a daily routine that keeps us moving even on our worse days. And we need to do our best to not take naps during the day because we need to sleep at night :-). I have learned so much about myself these past 5 months, and I’m so grateful.
The biggest thing I’ve learned about this is that routine is self care for me. Without it, I cannot function fully. I wrote a post about it several months ago: Self Care for Me Looks Completely Different than I Thought it Would Look.
This is what a day in my life looks like. Every day, I get up and spend time in Bible study/prayer while drinking my coffee. The kids and I gather up dirty clothes and put them in the washer. I take a shower while the kids do their chores and get ready for the day. I make my bed. I make a quick breakfast and we eat (or we eat something I made previously). Then, we do school. Somewhere in there, I move the clothes over to the dryer. After school, I fold that load of laundry and we all put it away. That’s the laundry for the day. I make sure to always keep dirty dishes in the dishwasher so we don’t have dirty dishes in the sink. Once they are clean, Karis empties the dishwasher. I do one weekly chore per day such as dusting, floors, meal planning/budgeting/paying bills, washing sheets/towels, “town day,” and bathrooms (and floors again). Sunday is our rest day. The kids clean their room at least once a week, but I don’t worry so much about the state of their rooms. Mostly I just want them to keep their floors pretty clear and beds made. We keep the living area picked up most of the time. If the kids get something out, they put it back.
We eat lunch at noon (because either we eat in the dining hall here at camp or we eat when Robert comes home for lunch). After lunch, we go for an hour long hike. We have several trails here so I try to vary it so the kids don’t get too bored. They don’t love hiking, but I need it (and I won’t go early in the morning because it’s too dark). I count it as “PE” (even though they do play outside or ride their bikes for hours).
After our hike, the kids are free to play outside for the rest of the day. Somewhere in there I let Karis and Levi have some electronic time (Ethan could care less about electronics). Some days it’s more than others… just depends on the day.
I struggle with what to do with this time. Usually by this point the house is clean and the laundry is caught up, so I don’t know what to do with myself! Sometimes I bake. Sometimes I read. Sometimes I blog or just spend time on my computer. I don’t really have any hobbies (besides blogging), so some days I end up bored. Everyone keeps telling me to pick up a new hobby. The idea of anything crafty stresses me out. I’ve thought about sewing, crocheting, knitting, etc… and I get anxious just thinking about it. So crafty is out. We can’t garden here because we live on a hill of rocks. I am open to suggestions!
Honestly, because of this, I wish I could handle an at home job… but I can’t handle working (which I’ve written about many times).
When my kiddos were littles, I never thought there would be a day in which my house was clean/laundry caught up and I’m bored.
Anyway, I have been asked many times how I keep my house clean, keep caught up on laundry, and homeschool. I just thought I’d give you a peek into our day! I can’t say that every day runs smoothly, but more days than not with this daily routine. I’m praying that I stay mentally healthy (with this great medication that I’m on!). I’m assuming things won’t run as smoothly if I dip back into depression. For now, I am grateful for the good days and just take one day at a time!