Help God - I'm drowning down here!!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Have you ever felt like that?

I sure have.  By the end of the last term of school I was taking one tiptoed day at a time (some days it was second by second).  It felt like everything was becoming too much & it was all  upon my shoulders - house /school /parenting /farm /church /youth group / relationships etc.  - the weight was too much too bear.  The funny thing is I've always been one to believe to "cast my cares upon the Lord" but for some reason after I did this, I kept on picking them back up & carrying them a little bit - ever done that? 
After much prayer & me begging God to PLEASE help me sort it all out God gave us the most relaxing holidays imaginable - with very few commitments.  I am so thankful for the time to not only enjoy precious times with the children ( I do a lot of that anyway - blessed aren't I!), but to re evaluate the way our lives were going and to sit down & endeavour to make it less complicated.  I thought about cutting things down to the bare minimum, but realised with a little more organisation things could go smoother while still being able to continue in ministries & activities that are beneficial for us & others.  So I have introduced a schedule into our lives - something I thought I would never do as to me a schedule sounded boring & rigid & not something an exciting, fun home schooling mummy would use (I've always had a schedule for school time, but I mean at other times)!  How wrong I was.  Our schedule has introduced order & peacefulness into our lives.  No, everything doesn't always go as planned, but when things go off schedule that's OK (after all it's just a guide) - we know where to pick up & continue from.  Our schedule looks like this (click on the pics if you want to read it):

If you're wondering - all the kids have a colour (they've had them since we began home schooling - it was just easier).  I got the idea from a book "Managers of their homes" by Titus 2 (thanks to my friend who let me have a look through her copy - still saving for my "wish list" of books from that site - sigh - if only postage wasn't so steep) & different blogs  here, here, here, here & here (& probably more) who displayed their schedules & gave me great ideas!

I've also introduced further chores for the children - & so far they are doing them well & of course I'm loving having a load of washing done for me (Zai); the "pink" bathrooms sinks (it has 3) cleaned (Ellie) & the plants on the patio watered (the twins) each morning.  (Home schooling mum's - you thought we did it for love - it's so we can have fully trained house maids by the time they are teenagers- LOL - just kidding!)
(Sorry about the laminated glare - thanks to Cassandra for this layout idea)

I've also found since doing this the children enjoy knowing what's going to happen next.  Probably the only thing they aren't too happy about is "rest time" - where they have to lie down & read for an hour each day (what I wouldn't give for that....)   We're still working on doing this without dismantling bedrooms !
Probably the biggest difference is that I'm trying to get to sleep by 10pm, which makes for a very happy, more energetic Mummy all round!

So if you're going under again & not sure where to turn, turn firstly to the Lord - the giver of strength for each day &  don't write off a schedule - I'm so pleased we gave it a go!
What are your favourite home management tips?

Have a lovely weekend


Leanne said...


It always makes me smile so big to see that you've visited my blog! Thanks for the understanding comments.

First, I LOVE your new chore system.. I have a lot of friends who do Managers of their homes, and after reading your post, I'm thinking maybe I'd better give the book a look. We do have chores for each child and a set week for laundry and dishes for each child, but a detailed schedule for school would be great too. I loved how you said your kids like knowing what's going to happen next. My kids do too, and I find when they have too much time on their hands, things start to boil over!! Lol.

I've also been drowning too!!!!!! Believe me, you are NOT alone, even waaaaay over there in Australia! I feel such a kinship with you, knowing we have a lot in common. I find myself taking my cares to the Lord too, only to pick them back up and fuss over them again! I want to learn to leave things with Him, because He can handle them. Aren't you glad that on those drowning days, He is always faithful to keep your head above water??

Keep up the good work, friend! I'll be praying for you!

Mum-me said...

It was a looooong school term, wasn't it? I felt it too.

Glad you have found some peace through a schedule. I couldn't function without my chore chart and fortnightly menu plan. I found that the children argue less about doing chores (they still complain, though!) and they love knowing what to expect for dinner. I am trying to get my housework into a schedule too, but so many things keep wacking that one off kilter.

It is a good idea to keep the schedule as a guide rather than a 'must do'. Sometimes we don't always get the dinner I had planned, every now and then I do the childrens' chores as a surprise for them, sometimes we just all pitch in and help together ...

Grandma said...

Hi Narn! When I read this post, I was reminded of a Scripture verse - Isaiah 43:2 - "When you go through deep waters and great trouble, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown! When you walk through the fire of oppression you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you". It's reassuring to know that we never have to go through anything alone!!!!!
Wish we could be of more help to you! Lots and lots of love
Mum xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Grandma said...

Hi again, Just a quick one - I seem to have to "Post Comment" twice now before it goes! Love you all xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Smilie girl said...

It looks like a fantastic system you've got going there. I'm sure it will help break things up and give direction for everyone. I felt quite overwhelmed by housework last term. I had let things mount up and didn't know where to start. It certainly drains your energy away. This looks like a great solution. Hope you have a wonderful term with less stress.

Grandma said...

Love Ellie's face at the start!!! You know what Granny used to say to us when we were kids if we pulled a face like that - if the west wind blew, we'd stay like it!!!! We were always a little cautious about pulling such faces during winter (when the westerlies blow!!!) lol - amazing how some old wives tales take hold isn't it!!! Love you all xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Duckygirl said...

We've used the Managers of their homes schedule on and off for a couple years now. When we start up school again (beginning of Aug., only a couple weeks!) we'll pick it up again. I used to think I wouldn't be able to do as much with a schedule but actually find that the opposite is true, LOTS MORE gets done! :)

Good to hear you have it working in your favor!

Frizzy and Bird said...

So far I haven't introduced the schedule to our lives. That said, this year will have more activities and a possible need for one. Winging it just gets a bit overwhelming at times. Ya kow?

Thank you for sharing your ideas. Have you read my friend Janese's blog? She's going to be homeschooling this year for the first time. I bet she would love to hear some of your suggestions and insight.

debi9kids said...

how great! I have needed to get us more organized as well. Oh boy can I totally understand where you're coming from with taking it one tippy toe at a time. And also understand casting your cares to God but revisiting it anyway.
Well done getting a hold of it!

Amy @ Homestead Revival said...

Renata, I bought the same book (Managers of Their Home) about 8 years ago and loved it. I didn't always use the color coded chart, but all the wisdom in it was wonderful! I had forgotten about the chore charts in the book. Time to pull it out and go over it again! We have used a schedule of some sort for years, but I find that when we go from school to vacation or vacation to school, there is always an adjustment period to get into a different routine.

Glad to hear the Lord and your break refreshed you and praying the schedule keeps you sane!

Ann at eightacresofeden said...

We have a schedule though I no longer have it attached to the fridge. Our daily routine is not that different to yours Renata and now they all know their responsibilities and 'just get on with the job' most of the time. I actually got bogged down with charts because I kept having to update them with their next door milking jobs - it just became a headache having to rearrange jobs all the time. I was forever sorting out chore chart disputes!
I am intending to do a post on how we manage our laundry using the 'responsibility for' method as I call it. This works better for me with more children as I know exactly who is responsible for what. The whole chart thing just became too complicated!
Having said this, we have a family household routine - Fridays is 'family working bee day - mainly for gardening and outdoor work. I always shop on Saturdays at 8am before ice skating lessons. Praise the Lord that Aldi is not far from the ice rink! Tuesdays is local town day - 3 activities on the same day for 3 children, also library and small shopping at my wholefoods store if I need to.. so when my daughter wanted to do dance lessons I said yes - at long as she paid for them (milking cows has its benefits!) and they had to be on Tuesdays! Cutting back on our extra curricular activities especially in the late afternoon, really saved my sanity - I used to run around like a headless chook taking children to different things and then I only had 4! - have you read my post 'Why I'm not a Soccer Mum'? You will get an idea of how my life changed when I slowed down.
I hope this helps - I am recovering from the party but it was a joy to prepare for it because I had a team of helpers - it really was a family affair - everyone helped and the only stressful part was having to go to Aldi on Thursday - pensioner day! Arggh! - I will be sticking to my 8am Saturday shop!

Jenn said...

AWWW, Yes! We stick to a schedule. It keeps my sanity and I know we all get through our days better with it. When I wander away from it, I tend to feel the chaos coming back to haunt me.

Kimmie said...

Glad you are NOT drowning and that the Lord has sent help to you through this organizing book.

Bless you as you set your eyes on Him...may He make your path straight!

mama to 8
one homemade and 7 adopted

Kath said...

When I was homeschooling and had young children I too used a schedule. I still TRY to keep to a schedule with my cleaning chores.

Hope you keep your head above water at all times!! :)

Michael said...

Renata, Meredith has had a sore neck for the last couple of days. Your cushion has helped in the car. Just wanted you to know that the cushion you gave her really has been "such a blessing!"

Cassandra-ann said...

I am so glad you posted up your schedule so i could see ! (i had been hoping you would)
Isnt it wonderful what a difference it makes?
I am so glad to hear its working well for you :-)

Cassandra xx

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