Monday, March 1, 2010

Easing Stress

I've finished the Managers of Their Homes book and went on to create our daily plan. It's a doozie of a task organizing six people for twelve hours of the day. But I did it, it's done! We now have a fairly large multicolored schedule posted that starts at 7am and concludes at 7:30pm.

It started out a little bit too big and an awful lot scary.

I'm the yellow and then it goes to the right by oldest child to the youngest. Yeah, I scheduled Max but it's all mostly free time, napping and eating. Dotted around the house we have smaller "charts" that show certain things. The livingroom one lists out 4 things to clean up and then ends with a vaccuuming. Upstairs in the hall is a morning and night routine checklist. Just a gentle reminder to the reading kids that we're supposed to do things like put our dirty clothes in the hamper and wash faces, brush teeth and go potty. Sounds silly? Sometimes, after they're all tucked in their bladders remind them if we don't do it before. When everyone is settling down for slumber, that one noisy kid getting up to pee by turning on lights, flushing toilets and yelling down the stairs "I forgot to go potty!" breaks the lull and reawakens spirits. It's not really fun.

People might visit and think seeing all the charts for cleaning posted with scotch tape around the house might be odd but I hope they ask questions. Even if one of these little charts helps me not have to fight with the kids, keeps them (and me) on task and gets the house tidier.

There is a weekly reminder (see the photo at the top) of what's supposed to happen on what days. Key words, people: supposed to. The schedule and supporting charts aren't a set in stone guide to our lives. Something that provides a rigid military functionality. No, these laminated or colored pieces of paper are simply tools for easing stress.

God knows I need it.

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