Sometime in the past few years, I’ve started seeing time as seasons and holding onto ideas a little less tightly. This works, right now. This is our normal, for now. This is the season we’re in.
This is what is working for us, right now. In our family and homeschool life as well as me personally.
We don’t go visit the library regularly.
I know, it feels weird to even type that out. As life has gotten busier and having a baby who needs naps, finding one consistent morning or afternoon each week to visit the library has been hard. I was returning books late all the time and feeling like our library basket was filling up with twaddle and books I’d rather not read aloud. Our solution: making full use of the hold shelf. I request books all the time and then dash in to pick up our nicely curated picks. No one misses a nap, no one leaves the library with meh books (including me!) and we’re all reading a lot. For the girls I love the monthly picks from Sarah Mackenzie, I’ve linked to her February books here but her January books were stellar as well. For me, it’s often a mix of books from Anne’s blog and podcast , recommendations from friends and what’s on the back of the book I’m currently reading.
Menu planning for the winter season
I have a love/hate relationship with menu plans, once it’s done I feel like I can conquer the world but getting it done has been such a chore every week. Enter the seasonal menu plan. I write down 30-40 of our favourite winter meals highlighting seasonal vegetables and budget requirements. I start with our favourites, flipping through a few cookbooks for inspiration and then hitting up Pinterest to fill in a few gaps and keep me interested. Each week, I fill in our meals from the list and the job is done! I also make a weekly schedule for each night- meatless Monday, taco (mexican inspired) Tuesday, Saturday is always pizza and family night and the girls make Sunday night supper.
Getting up early (which actually means going to bed early)
Before I had children, this was something I could do easily. But it’s not something that I’ve even tried to do in the last few years. I need a certain amount of sleep and being awake before my children but then being a grumpy, impatient mum for the rest of the day hasn’t worked well for me. My baby is now a year old and has been sleeping consistently for a few months, I can get the sleep I need when I go to bed early. And because I have an hour before I need to interact with my tiny humans, I am a much more patient mummy for when they need me, often all at once. Jared and I get up together, he makes me coffee and it’s become one of my favourite new rituals.
Pen and paper
To manage our home life, I bought a big desk calendar and hung it on the back of a door. I write everything on there from appointments to date nights to work schedule. It helps me see how often we’re going out, how often I’m getting together with a friend and it helps us make sure that we don’t book up every weekend. I got a bullet journal for my birthday and am working on figuring out the best way to make it work for me. So far, I love it. I am also writing down each day what we actually did for school (as well as having my monthly plan) so that I can track our progress and see trends or ways we actually like to learn together as opposed to having a plan that doesn’t work well for us right now.
I’d love to hear what simple things are working for you right now, in this season. Any other book-lovers, non-library goers out there?