My Day | Agreements, Routines, & Rituals
As a follow up to my post on mindset practices, this is a snapshot of daily routines and agreements in our family... on a good day, a really good day. We strive for equity as much as possible, and there are things we rarely agree on, and days when the house is a mess. If you haven’t read my beliefs about mindset, please do! I hope this look at our schedule helps!
Rituals & Routines
M O R N I N G S - Since I get up early and usually leave for work before the household wakes up, Sean gets the kids ready and drives them to school in the morning. I usually pump and leave a bottle ready for the baby (6 months) and set up breakfast for River (3 years old). She loves toast with butter and cinnamon, sliced strawberries, and a glass of milk. She is highly independent and usually come downstairs on her own. I leave her breakfast on the table in the dining room or on her designated shelf in the refrigerator. While I am at work, Sean wakes up with the kids around 6:30-6:45 am. He changes the baby’s diaper and gets him dressed for the day. Then he makes himself breakfast and has coffee while River and Kellen play together in the living room. River paints/colors while Sean feeds the baby and packs up their things for school. Kellen plays in his crib while Sean showers/gets dressed. River dresses herself then joins the baby to play. I’m so lucky my babies love each other! Final touches: brush hair, brush teeth, baby in car seat, puts shoes on. Then they’re off to school around 8:30 am.
A F T E R N O O N S - My work day ends around 2 pm and I sometimes stay for an additional 30-45 minutes to plan, prep, or grade. I have a 45 min commute home and pick up the kids from school between 3:30-4:30 pm. Sean works until 5:30 or so, but he has flexible hours so some days he finishes up around 4:30 which is nice cause we can all hang out. From 3:30 - 4:30 pm, when weather permits we are outside playing (park, backyard, or strolling Main Street). On Wednesdays, River has Theater Class from 4-4:45 pm and Sean goes grocery shopping (10% off at Adams!). River loves to help him shop from time to time as well.
If we are inside for the afternoon, I put on music and we color/paint/craft or watch an occasional show (check out this amazing list from The Homesong Blog). We have an IKEA shelf with bins that contain different work: play dough/sculpting, painting/drawing, musical instruments, and puzzles/games. These are the only toys that live downstairs. All other toys and books live upstairs in the kids’ rooms. The baby naps at 4:30 pm and River and I prep for dinner. She helps chop using her own special knives. And she loves cleaning. We use Young Living’s Thieves Cleaner. It’s chemical free so it makes having little helpers easy and worry free!
While dinner is cooking, I bathe and feed the baby and he’s in bed at 6 pm. Most days Sean takes charge of dinner. Huzzah! We eat together, take turns saying what we are thankful for, then we clear the table together. Usually I get River ready for bed (bath, brush teeth, PJs) while Sean cleans up the kitchen, but we happily trade off on these tasks from time to time. By 7 pm, we snuggle in Rivy’s room, read in bed, and say goodnight to River at 7:30 pm… And then we get River “icey icey icey cold” water, or sing her a song, or she suddenly needs to use the bathroom, or she is suddenly still hungry, or asks us to sit with for just a little bit longer. Toddler bedtimes…
E V E N I N G S - Sean and I generally like to spend our nights doing something together, like watch a movie and snuggle, play Settlers of Catan or Ticket to Ride, or maybe get frisky (*wink, wink*). Sometimes we use our evenings to pursue our own thing, a side hustle, or something else that is independent. Time alone is just as essential to our marriage as is our quality time together. Some nights Sean may go play chess with the local chess club and other nights I may go to yoga.
W E E K E N D S - Most of the time our weekends are jam packed with visiting friends and family. There’s an occasional kid’s party, wedding, or a local event. I should note that all week we take advantage of any and all opportunities to rest, especially on weekends when we have no plans — rest is always our main to do. Friday nights are reserved for “Friday Family Movie Night” and anyone is welcome to join us for pizza and a movie (PJS required.) Saturday and Sunday mornings call for pancakes and fritata. The kids don’t know we can sleep in on weekends, so I get up early on Saturdays so Sean can sleep in (8 am vs. 6:30 am) and he gets up with the kids on Sundays so I can catch some extra Zs. We also try to hit up the local Farmer’s and Flea Market.
D A T E N I G H T S - Rivy’s favorite Mommy-Daughter Date is going out for sushi. Her favorite Daddy-Daughter Date is bike riding and browsing the local toy store. Sean and I don’t have a set date night, but we usually have grandma babysit at least twice a month (all hail Mimi!). We also try for a night out with friends at least once a month, but man it is hard to align everyone’s schedules. We do our best.
To the best of our ability we agree to…
Keep everything in its home (shoes by the door, bags/coats are hung up, dishes in the cabinet or in dishwasher if they’re dirty, etc.)
Make our bed each morning (or at the very least make it tidy).
Put our dirty clothes in the laundry basket; keep the clean clothes folded and away.
Play with one toy/activity at a time; if that work is finished we clean it up before moving onto the next task.
Have equity in household chores: River and I empty the garbage around the house and Sean brings it to and from the curb. One person cooks/cleans up dinner while the other gets the kids ready for bed. Everyone does their own laundry (trading off towels/kid’s clothing). I clean the bathrooms. Sean vacuums and River dusts.
Be honest - speak your truth and take nothing personally.
Be open to change.
Things we can’t seem to agree on…
Who will do the dishes/empty the dishwasher. We calls this a “dishes standoff” ha!
Who makes the coffee
We used to “whoever cooks, doesn’t have to clean,” but I had to change this agreement cause Sean makes such an awful mess when he cooks. When possible, I sous chef for him. Add music and wine and you’ve got some pretty nice quality time.
Yard Work is the bane of our existence and we are struggling. Seriously, our yard is ridiculously overgrown, but what are ya gonna do. Let that shit grow.
Clutter… I shop too much and love to purge. Sean holds onto things and values little rocks and twigs. River has also inherited this trait. While everything has a home, we will be first to admit we have way too much stuff.
Deep Cleaning - we do tidy and keep things generally neat and “clean.” We don’t make a ton of time for that deep clean (ya know with like mopping, wiping cabinets, nooks and cranny clean and such).
Again, this is what strive for and some days miss the mark completely. Even so, come back to gratitude and intention. Give yourself grace. Then start again.