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Learning to Juggle It All… Again

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Juggling a Crazy, Happy, Real Life @ AVirtuousWoman.org

I’ll be honest. I’ve been struggling these last couple of months to juggle our busy, happy life. Just when I thought I was falling into a solid routine, our schedule changed. Again.

Between kids in homeschool, kids in college,  orthodontist appointments, ice skating, multiple children in music lessons, choir practice, church, minister meetings, and blogging – life’s been pretty crazy since the beginning of February!

In the past, this kind of crazy schedule drove me crazy. I like routine – the simple kind where you know what to expect each day and each day is pretty much the same as the day before.

The older my kids get, the less “routine” our days are. And I’m okay with that. This is a season of motherhood that I am definitely enjoying.

Emily and Laura.
Emily and Laura.

In years past I woke up early – usually sometime between 6:00 and 7:00 am. I have always encouraged stay at home moms to wake up early and take care of their little ones, get their chores done in the morning, and see their husbands off.

And I can honestly say that I believe waking up early is a mom’s secret weapon. Those early morning hours are key! But I have also said many times that sometimes waking up early is not the best course of action. Sometimes circumstances are such that waking up early will leave you exhausted and unhealthy.

These days I usually wake up around 7:30 or 8:00 am.

You probably already know that one day a week we’re gone for roughly 14 hours so that Hannah {14 years old} can ice skate. We have to drive 2 1/2 hours one way to get to the ice rink and then she skates for about 8 hours. We don’t usually get home until around 10:00 at night.

It’s an exhausting day. 

Last week was a competition week. We made that drive 4 days in one week. Hannah had two events: Solo Program and Solo Compulsory. She took first and second place! {I’ll be sharing more in an  upcoming post.}

Hannah took first place in the Solo Compulsory event.
Hannah took first place in the Solo Compulsory event.

Anyway, that one day a week when we get home late from Knoxville means we don’t get up extra early the next morning unless we absolutely must. But the following day is music lesson day. So, we do get up by 7:30 so everyone can get showered and dressed in time to go to lessons.

By the time lessons are over it’s just about lunch time so I make lunch. After lunch we sit down for homeschool lessons. And then we take a walk. Then it’s quick supper before Emily and I head out for a two hour community choir practice. We don’t get home from choir practice until around 9:30 or 9:45.

Which means the girls still don’t get to bed until at least 11:00… which means that I don’t really get to bed until about midnight.

Emily and Hannah.

We always schedule orthodontist and dentist appointments for the morning and with two kids in brace {soon to be three} we have these appointments on a frequent basis. Minister meetings are usually in the morning. When we have to go get a load of hay for the horses… we do it in the morning.

Our homeschool day used to begin by 8:00 in the morning everyday. These days we almost always start our homeschool sometime between 10:00 am and noon and work until early evening.

I’m so thankful that homeschooling is so flexible – otherwise my stress levels would be sky high! I love that we can take our books when we are on the go or traveling and that we can school right through the summer if we need to.

Laura during home school time.
Laura during home school time.

And I’m very thankful for this season of life when our schedule is full of wonderful, amazing, everyday adventures.

I’ve realized in the last year that being flexible is really a key to being happy. I’ve never been one to enjoy sudden changes in plans, unexpected cancellations, or other kinks in my day. But I’m learning to be less serious and more flexible. But it’s more than that.

[Tweet “3 Simple Keys to Being Happy & Juggling Everyday Real Life:”]

3 Simple Keys to Being Happy

  1. Be flexible when you need to be. There’s only 24 hours in a day. Do your best. And if your best isn’t  strive to do better, but don’t beat yourself up if you don’t get where you want to be over night.
  2. Be thankful. There’s not a day that goes by that I’m not immensely  grateful for my home, my family, and more. I am so blessed and I don’t want to ever take all of my blessings for granted. If you need help, read Ann Voskamp’s book, One Thousand Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are. You can read my review of the book here.
  3. Learn to forgive yourself and others. And love unconditionally. You’ll just be happier and so will everyone around you!


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  1. I agree about homeschooling being flexible. I had major brain surgery when I was 9 years old, the doctors didn't even give me much chance to live. Homeschooling was a God send, even though I am an only child. But with constant doctor visits, my lack of energy, mood swings, depression, suicide, medications, and me staying sick there was no option. Today I'm 22 and in college but I still fight a lot of the same things...that's why I'm taking online courses. Homeschooling has always been the best flexible option, especially since the public schools are going down hill fast.
  2. Love this! Very helpful:) my mom used to homeschool me before she passed and when I got older I realized how amazing it was to have all that time with her. I loved every minute of it.. You build such a bond you can't explain..
  3. I am so happy that you shared this. I completely agree with you on so many levels. I'm sure we are no where as busy as you guys but I am so happy that homeschooling is flexible. I'd be lost without the flexibility.
  4. Wow you guys are sure a lot busier than me! Great tips regardless, thank you for sharing with us.
  5. Hi! Found you on the Sew Many Ways linky party. What a beautiful view you have! I agree, waking up early is definitely key in many cases for my sanity. My problem is with two little ones (one who is almost one year old and doesn't sleep well at night) I find that I can either be organized and prepared for the day OR well rested, but not both! That's not every day, though, and your three keys to being happy - right on the money! Thanks for sharing a great post and your beautiful view!
  6. I can say that I for some reason was not expecting to be sooooo... busy as a Mother. But with 2 boys one in middle school and one in high school with work, homework, sports, church, family and friends... I feel like I am going insane most days. It must be (what I call) all that fairy work late at night to get everything done. I wish sometimes I wasn't such a perfectionist. Or that I had more help. I try to stay positive and count my blessings but there are times I just cry and realize that maybe a nap is in order (wishful thinking). Occasionally I have (what I call) a Rumpelstiltskin day and sleep in to make up for the other 6 days of running the rat race. All I know for sure is its kinda like having a baby once your in labor its gonna hurt no matter what you decide your going to do about it. I AM A MOM and people are counting on me. Like my son said one day when I asked him to put away his own laundry...( I told him I shouldn't have to do all the laundry and that I am not that kind of Mom because I want my boys to put away their own laundry so they can be more independent.). He said,"But I don't want that kind of Mom." Someday I probably will be sad not to have so much to do, so I try to make it as enjoyable as I can. God is good! I asked him for these boys and he said Yes so he must know what he's doing. I will do my best and the rest I will leave up to God:)
    1. Shelia, motherhood does keep you busy! But I would also like to suggest that teaching your children to be responsible even when they don't always want to learn that responsibility is how you can LOVE them best. They also need to learn to have compassion on you and share in the chores so that one day they do the same for their wife. It's okay! One day one of my girls said to me, "All my friends get an allowance for chores." My reply was: "I'll give you an allowance. I'll allow you to eat supper if you get your chores done." I wasn't being mean. I actually laughed when I said it. But the point was made. They needed to help out regardless. Today my girls are helpful, respectful, and hard workers.

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