When Do I Find Time to Write?

I’ve been asked this question so many times I decided that I’d dedicate a whole blog post to answer it.

When do I find time to write?

Let’s see right now I have about 45 minutes to type with one finger on my phone while my husband drives us home from karate class.

Oops! I have to pause a moment to feed the baby while my husband runs into the store to get sandwich makings.

Okay, I’m back. Um the baby is reaching for my phone now. My husband is still in the store. It’s times like this I a……..

I just answered the question, “Why is that guy carrying trash in a buggy?” Yes, we call the shopping carts buggies.

Okay, back to writing… Where was I? Oh, yes! It’s times like this I really appreciate auto-correct.

20130124-211446.jpg The baby is now thoroughly distracted. She is laughing at her siblings that are laughing at the worker taking out the trash.

She’s not going to be happy when she gets put back in her car seat. I may or may not be able to write during this drive.

What did I tell you? See, she’s mad.
Time to make sandwiches… I’ll be right back.

Those were good sandwiches. My sweetheart went all out and bought cheese for our sandwiches.

Finally, the baby has fallen asleep I can stop patting her mouth. I only got bit once. Okay, back to writing.

Right now I’m writing about when I find time to write. Normally instead of telling you about the interruptions I write a few words about the subject I have on my mind.

I can get quite a bit said in 45 minutes or so even with distractions. I’ll need fewer distractions when I finally stop to edit this. Right now there are a lot of typos even with auto correct. I’m pretty sure I’ve repeated myself a couple of times.

My eyes are tired from looking at this bright screen in the dark. I’m going to stop for a moment. I might have a few minutes to work on this at the house.

20130124-215914.jpg

I’m glad I went ahead and got all the dishes washed right before running out the door for karate class. I knew I’d be too tired when we got home.

Just got the kids to bed but I’m too tired to think right now.

I only made it my goal to post two blog posts a week. I didn’t say which days they were going to be posted on. Last week I had my first post out by Tuesday or Wednesday. This week I posted my first post on Thursday. I try to be flexible though. If I made it a set day I’d probably give up.

Good morning, everyone! Yes, I’m finally up and at ’em. I woke up too late to write much this morning. However I have a few minutes right now while the kids are happily chit chatting over their breakfast. The baby is enjoying some Cheerios.

Uh oh! My baby is no longer enjoying her Cheerios. I only got one paragraph in during that break. Of course, I did check my notifications on Facebook but we don’t have to talk about that distraction. Do we?

My almost 8 year old keeps bringing the baby to me before she even cries.

I dare to hope right about now that the baby will take a mid morning nap. I still hear bowls and spoons clanking in the kitchen. I’m feeding the baby who is not cooperating on this nap idea.

Um… She’s working on a diaper. Would that be TMI (Too Much Information)? I better change that diaper.

She is wide awake.

Battery warning!!! I need to charge this phone and get myself breakfast.

Is this post almost done?

Oh, no! The baby thought her sisters’ hair bands were fruit loops. I rescued them and her.

20130125-092414.jpgI think you probably have the general idea of how I find time to write. Last year my goal was to post 1 blog a week. My husband had gotten me a tablet that helped a lot in accomplishing that goal.

This past Christmas my parents gave me a smart phone. I tell you what! That phone has sure helped me with my goal of two blog posts a week. I can type a few words here and there where ever I am at. I just save it as a draft and then I can finish writing on my computer.

Hello, Elisabeth!  I’ll be right back…

Okay, I fed Elisabeth. Picked up Joshua from his job feeding the neighbors animals. Now I’m determined to finish this post!

I used to try staying up at night after getting everyone to bed. However I kept falling asleep with my computer in my lap. Then I’d be tired all day.

I tried getting up early to write. That doesn’t seem to work too well. I prefer to read first thing in the morning. I read my Bible and then the blog updates that I follow. By the time I get all my reading done Elisabeth wakes up.

Basically I find time to write whenever I can. Sometimes I just have to tell my kids to give me a few minutes. I let them know what I am working on and that I only have a few more sentences before I’m finished with my blog. Then I write like crazy for those few minutes.

Typically, with distractions, it takes me a couple of days to get a blog written and a partial day to edit and tweak it. Depending on the topic too.

I’m almost done with this post. Right now, I’m typing with one hand while trying to feed the baby who is fighting sleep. She’ll probably fall asleep right about the time I hit “Publish”.

I know I’m not the only busy person in the world. Some of you probably have more going on than me.

Do you have a hobby? When do you find time to work on the things you enjoy? 

What did I tell you? She’s out like a light! Now that the baby is finally asleep, it’s time for me to hit “Publish” and get the rest of my kids back on task.

Now if I could just find the time to shower. 😉

 

 

 

EmailShare

Conquering the Chore Monster

20130111-111324.jpg

We are coming upon the end of our second week of 2013. Quite often you can know at the end of a month whether the goals you set were reasonable or not.

I feel pretty good about our goals this year. One great thing is I’ve been meeting my goal of waking up earlier in the mornings. I’ll be posting more on that in future posts.

Today I want to tell you about our housekeeping goals. I have a goal this year to never leave dishes in the sink. There were many nights in 2012 that I sighed and left the dishes to be done the next morning. That is because I had a chore assignment fail between 2011 and 2012.

Yes, it was pretty sad.

Let me tell you what happened.

20130111-111401.jpg

I have tried so many things these past couple of years with chores. We do pretty good when we’re in a good routine that works but when something breaks the routine sometimes it turns crazy. In 2011 we tried assigning each child monthly chores and paying them an allowance. That did not work!

The problem I had with paying them an allowance was that they took so long to get the job done. Then if there was a dirty job they didn’t want to do, it wound up set aside for the next month’s switch. Which meant that just made that chore yuckier for the next child assigned to it.

It was also hard to judge how much to pay our children because they preferred not working more than money. I also felt if I helped them by doing their assigned chore they were only learning that  someone else will do it for them. 

It is a lot easier to maintain cleanliness than to catch up on it.

20130111-111450.jpg

This past year (2012)  I had a hard time getting caught up. I felt I was constantly washing dishes. I’m faster at the dishes than the children and more thorough. So I had my kids doing other odd jobs around the house or working on their lessons while I did dishes. 

My husband was very sweet and started trying to help me with dishes as well. He was seeing the effort I put toward getting things caught up around the house.

Two weeks into the new year and things are going well. I’m determined that my goal of having a clean house is higher priority than even my writing goals.

The clothes issue is another matter.

We have too many clothes. We are given quite a bit of hand-me-down clothes which isn’t the problem. The problem is we’re not getting rid of the outgrown clothes quick enough.

Then it becomes a mess because the kids don’t have a place to put it all. It gets left on their floor along with dirty clothes. Well, you can probably imagine how their rooms looked. Picture 6 kids in 2 small bedrooms. Scary!

My husband had 2 weeks off during the Christmas break. One of those weeks he took and bagged up the trash and hidden toys in their rooms and kept the laundry running with clothes.

I had the kids helping me sort through those clothes as soon as they came out of the dryer.

We’re not finished with that project yet but basically I am having them pick only a certain number of clothes to keep. The rest we need to get rid of. So far besides what my husband has already taken away, I have two large garbage bags of clothes waiting in the van to be given away.

My husband told them that he will be doing weekly checks on their rooms at random to ensure they keep them picked up. Anything he finds on their floor or out of place will be thrown away. He gave them a warning to look in their rooms yesterday and tell him what they would be losing if he were to check them right then. They had a few things they would have lost but I think they are taking him seriously.

20130111-111510.jpgI have simplified our kitchen routine this year. We no longer leave the kitchen for one or two people to clean. I assigned the two younger boys to wipe the benches and the floor. (They tend to cause the most spills.) We don’t let those spills set around for someone else to clean up anymore.

I assigned my 7 year old daughter the task of clearing and wiping the table. She can reach everything on the table and is able to put things where they go. In the picture I also have her straightening the cookbook shelf.

My 12 year old daughter is very good at organizing. I usually have her dry and put away the dishes that I wash.

And my 14 year old I usually have getting all the trash off the floor and sweeping. I’m not sure where all the trash comes from but there never seems to be an end to it getting on the floor. We don’t even use paper napkins. I’m not sure where it all comes from.

That’s our new after-meal routine. I must say that so far it’s been working. I no longer have to stay up late doing dishes. Nor do I have to sigh and decide to leave the dishes for the next day.

I found that by my being in the room washing the dishes while they do their tasks keeps them from getting distracted. We now get the kitchen completely cleaned in a matter of minutes.

That is much better than the whole day it use to take.

How about your home? Are there chores that your family struggles with? Do you have any housekeeping tips that might help us out?  Please share in the comments section.

Hopefully I’ll be having a success story about our laundry woes soon. Stay tuned by subscribing to my email updates. That way you won’t miss a single post.

I’m also linking up with some other Mommies today at
Rediscovering Domesticity Blog Button

If you want to read some other Mommies perspectives on Thriving at home, check it out.

EmailShare

Team Work

I am finally able to stop and blog a little bit. I have a hard time finding a “good” time to blog. So I’ll just try to pop in and blog as best I can when I am able and the computer isn’t tied up.

Yesterday, the kids and I worked a bit on our living quarters. I swept all the toys, clothes, trash, papers, etc. into a pile in their room and had them picking it up. I would love to be organized like a family I saw a website for that has 11 children. I like to glean tidbits of information from those families so that I might can incorporate a little bit of organization into our daily routines. I have quite a ways to go before I’m that organized, but maybe before I have 11 children I’ll have it figured out. Until then we just have a massive clean up the bedroom of too many toys. It gets better though because they wind up breaking their toys and those get thrown away, so that makes less to pick up for next time.

While they were working on their room, I had my own challenge of clothing. There is 6 of us and a lot of clothes. So I spent the time they were working on their floor to work on sorting clothes. Winter clothes, summer clothes, church clothes, play clothes, outgrown clothes, torn clothes, for 6 people can be a bit daunting sometimes. Then on top of it being daunting I put the job off and it really becomes a disorganized mess. So that was the task I worked on yesterday and still have more to go on it. I have found though that when the children and I work together on tasks they get done pretty well. There are a few jobs that the kids wind up being “too much” help and slow me down, but if I get them on the right task then the job gets done easily and quickly.

A good example of team work was our moving a t.v. yesterday. We have a big t.v. that my brother had given us before he had moved to France. The t.v. was on our floor because we didn’t have anywhere else to put it. We had been given a rolling t.v. stand and it was in the children’s room. Hannah helped me roll it into our dining/ family/ bed room. Ruth helped hold the cart from rolling so that Joshua and I could lift this incredibly heavy t.v. Joshua held the back of the t.v. while I lifted the front. We had to lift it about two or three feet in order to get it on the cart. It didn’t take long and we were real happy to be able to surprise Scott when he got home, instead of having to wait until he got home from work to pick it up for us. I was real proud of our team work. I couldn’t lift it by myself so with the little bit of extra help, we were able to get it done.

Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labour. For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow: but woe to him that is alone when he falleth; for he hath not another to help him up. Again, if two lie together, then they have heat: but how can one be warm alone? And if one prevail against him, two shall withstand him; and a threefold cord is not quickly broken.
(Ecc 4:9-12)

It’s amazing what we can accomplish when we all work together. Time to get back to work. Just wanted to share my thought for today. :)

EmailShare