I’ve been doing this homeschool thing for a minute now… five years, actually. If there is one thing that I have learned as a homeschool Mom is that I am at my best when I have had my rest. I’ve also learned that homeschool moms rarely catch time away. It isn’t easy to set aside time for yourself when there is lesson planning to do, teaching to be done, and children to be motivated, praised, and sometimes disciplined. It doesn’t mean that the homeschool moms don’t require time to themselves… it just means that we have a tendency to put ourselves last on the list priorities.
NIV, Homeschool Mom’s Bible, Hardcover: Daily Personal EncouragementHope for the Heart of the Homeschool Mom: Encouragement for the Days When Sanity is Limited5 Minute Devotions for the Homeschool MomGrace for the Homeschool MomAre You Enough?: Encouragement for the Overwhelmed & Exhausted Homeschool MomPrayers for Homeschool Moms
It is essential, though, for homeschool moms to take the time to recharge, regroup, and reduce homeschool stress. I’ve learned a few tricks along the way and thought I’d share them with you.
How Homeschool Moms Can Score Some Precious Me-Time
Get Up Early or Stay Up Late
Sometimes scoring Me Time as a homeschool Mom means I use the time that the kids are in bed for myself. I’ve found that if I get up an hour or so earlier than my kids, I can use that time to have my coffee, read, journal, and mentally prep for the day. If I stay up past their bedtime, I can use the time to decompress by taking a walk, relaxing in a hot bath, or catch up on my favorite TV series.
Kid Swap with another Homeschool Mom
As a homeschool Mom, chances are you know other homeschool Moms… who are also in need of an occasional break. Arrange to swap kids with each other once in a while. Once a month you could host her kids for a day, and then once a month she could host your kids for a day.
Enlist Dad’s Help
Often times, the guys in our lives don’t know how we need them to help because we don’t tell them. Do not feel embarrassed about asking Dad for an evening on your own. Dads and kids like to spend time with each other. They can have a special game night or movie night while you have some downtime.
Employ a Teenage to Babysit
Often times, homeschooled teens are open to babysitting. They can earn child care or teaching hours while you snag a little me time. Homeschool teens are also often busy, so if there isn’t one available, don’t despair. Ask for references from Mom’s you know for a teen who can babysit.
Take Your Kids to the Park
Taking kids to park tends to turn out to be an incredible method to workout because you chase them all around the country park. On the other hand, older kids might play for more than a few hours under little supervision. They will climb, swing, and run as well and you’ll have some time to catch up on the book or novel you keep trying to read. If you’re lucky the older kids may even keep the younger one’s busy for you. ;)
Taking out special toys for the kids that you have reserved for the times when you need the children amused so that you can have a little me time. Children love to play with the toys that they have not played with in the past few months. Reserve a few toys for special down time for them, which equates to precious me time for you. You never know when you may need to snag a few minutes to yourself.
Employ a Mommy’s Helper
From time to time, hiring a teenager to act as a Mommy’s Helper can be helpful. Some teens may not be ready to babysit solo yet,but are able to keep kids busy (and safe) while you relax in another part of the house. This is a great way of building trust with a teen that may later babysit on their own, as well. Of course, if you’re in the home, your me time may be a bit interrupted, as the teen learns the ropes of occupying the littles.
Consider an Earlier Bedtime for the Kiddos
Lay the kids to bed timely. As young kids require more time to sleep, this will provide you a little me time after the sunset to relax along with watching a movie or any activity that you like to do.
Keep the Kids up Late
Another choice that works well for a lot of families is to allow the kids to stay up later. It provides a long time with the family in the evening. If your children are late risers, you can have a little me time in the morning. If they are grumpy in the mornings, this may not be your best solution.
Set a Timer
Establish a practice of setting a timer for the kids, in which they have to spend some “down time” in their room with a book. Teach them that their down time is also Mommy’s Me Time. This will help them to learn the importance of spending some time on their own and that you need the same.
Whatever method you pick, plan the time into your daily or weekly routine. Trust me, if you don’t plan it, it is not going to happen.
Know a homeschool Mom? Why not get her a gift to show her how much you appreciate her!