Over the years while our family routine is constantly shifting and altering as the season of life changes I have found that we tend to stick to a basic routine that honestly doesn’t change all that much! I guess if it’s working for us why change it?!
Come on in and see what we get up to in our daily family routine
Welcome to a day in the life of a stay-at-home mom, a 4.5-year-old, and a 2-year-old. This is a highly specific day, Wednesday, March 23rd to be exact. I hope that a peak into our family routine inspires you to step back and see what kind of routines your family has and maybe inspires you to add a new family routine or two!
Other Day in the life posts you might be interested in
Real-life breakdown of our Family Routine as it is right now
Below I have documented a perfectly normal Wednesday at home. While I do document things by the hour know that this actually matters very little to me. With the exception of naptime our family routine is sorta just go with the flow vs. watch the clock
7:00 – WAKE UP – Girls get some TV time, shows of choice these days are Story Bots, Gabby’s Dollhouse or Octonauts. I take this time to get coffee, try and wake up a bit more and get ready for the day.
8:00 – BREAKFAST – Today we had waffles and smoothies, that’s pretty typical breakfast for us. Bitty likes to help make the smoothies and I am trying to include her more in food choices so this is an easy one to start with.
8:30 – FREE PLAY – The girls go play with their free play shelves I clean up after breakfast and take care of any work that might need to be done early in the day
9:00 – GET READY – the girls pick their clothes for the day and I help them get dressed. Bean still needs a lot of help. Bitty has it handled for the most part but she likes the moral support and me being there keeps her on task more.
9:15 – INVITATION TO PLAY – Some days I have my act together and I have some kind of activity for them. Could be playdough or sensory bin or painting or some kind of loose parts thing. Today I didn’t have anything planned, but they were really wanting to do something so we broke out a floor puzzle that we could all work on together
10:00 – OUTSIDE – I tend to kick them outside around this time, as long as the weather is decent. We attempted a walk around the neighborhood but it was too windy! So we quickly returned home and took shelter on our porch
10:15 – SNACKTIME – in an attempt to get more hours for our 1000 hours outdoors challenge we had snack on the porch and it was a perfect solution. They stayed outside I rounded up a snack and second cup of coffee!
10:30 – FREEPLAY – So long as we stayed on the porch/by the garage we were able to stay decently warm so we stayed outside for a bit more
10:45 – CRAFT – I try and do some kind of activity or craft or something more structured. If they are actively engaged in something else I won’t interrupt them but they are often looking for something new to do about this time. Today we did qtip seasons tree paintings for our Earth homeschool unit
11:00 – FREE PLAY – while I get the craft cleaned up and actually have a second to drink the coffee I poured like an hour ago… lol Bean disappeared into the guestroom and broke into the toy closet, Bitty grabbed some books and “read” for a while
11:30 – Bitty asked to do another floor puzzle…I was hesitant to say yes as I know her patience for puzzles and she had already done one earlier…in the end, we did get another one out but it was a struggle and required a lot of guidance from me. Bean did not join us and just generally wandered around, climbed the pikler, watched us, general toddler stuff
12:00 – LUCNH PREP – I set up the nugget for them to climb on while I went to get lunch prepped
12:15 – LUNCH – Bean refused to eat and pitched one of her classic ‘ALONE’ fits and ran off. Eventually came back and had a little more but not much. That is her way these days. I don’t have a better answer for you than ‘toddler’
12:30 – FREEPLAY – one of the most peaceful moments of the day. They are both fed and happy and tend to be content with playing in the living room. Today they were cute and giggly rolling around the nugget and then we read a book
1:00 – SCHOOL – Bitty and I start School while Bean tends to fidget with stuff on the shelf or sit in my lap and “listen” to calendar time
1:15 – NAPTIME- I leave Bitty to pick some shelf work while I quickly get Bean settled in for a nap. I take her back to their room, we check her diaper, read a book, sing a song and tuck her in and leave her to fall asleep
1:30 – ONE ON ONE – We have Shelf work that Bitty is free to choose from at any point in the day, but if I am honest she doesn’t choose it as much as I would like. So I have started setting aside 2 “lessons” where she has my undivided attention, and we cover a topic that she needs practice on or a shelf work that she hasn’t done yet. Today’s specific lessons ended up being an introduction to the 100s board and a land-air-water sorting activity. If you want to know more about our homeschool setup you should check out some posts here
2:00 READING – we spend 15 – 30 mins reading everyday usually nonfiction or topical books for school but can also be free choice books if we arent feeling anything from the school shelf
2:30 QUIET TIME – Bitty has transitioned from independent quiet time to more of a free choice quiet time. She still has a quiet time bin (you can learn all about that system here!) that she often plays with but she now spends that time out in the living room where there are her normal toys as well and if the weather is nice she is allowed to go out there as well. I spend the time getting my personal world done, taking a quiet time break myself or doing household work. Today’s task was some follow up from an Usborne party
3:30 SNACK& TV – Bitty cleans up her quiet time mess and I get Bean up from nap. She is a slow wake so we put on a show and get a snack and they chill for a bit. This is also when I usually take resetting the dining room and the kitchen before the mess of dinnertime
4:30 FREE PLAY – This part of the day really varies. If it’s nice we arere outside, we might be working in the shop or the garden or just enjoying the sun and playing out back. I might be tackling a bigger house project like folding laundry or a massive load of dishes. I might be prepping homeschool lessons or Instagram work. It’s really free flow and some days the girls are in the mix and some days they are still watching TV. Today was a housework day for me and the girls sorta floated between the living room playing and the TV.
5:15 – OUTSIDE – the weather wasn’t amazing, but it was decent enough and Dad took them for a little scooter ride just to get them out from underfoot for a bit and burn a bit of energy since they had gotten a little extra TV time.
6:00 – DINNER – tonight was easy, leftovers baby!!! Bitty helped prep some salads while I warmed up the food. We ate, wiped down the table, loaded the dishwasher, and made sure that the living room was picked up
6:30 – DOWNSTAIRS – This is code for TV/Family time. Some nights we all watch a show together, some nights I fold laundry and watch something with the girls. Other nights they are watching their own show/free playing around the room while Dad and I work/play on our computers.
7:30 BEDTIME ROUTINE – we recently bumped this up a bit to allow for a bit more of a relaxing (less rushed) routine. We grab a simple snack (mostly just because Bean isn’t eating much at most meals so we want to make sure she will make it through the night with enough in her belly), take a bathroom break, brush teeth, jammies, read a book, tuck them in and lights out.
8:00 PERSONAL TIME – for me this most often looks like computer work – editing pictures, writing posts, homeschool prep, etc, etc. but I usually have a sweet treat to snack on, and then I call it a night around 10:00
How to Make your own Family Routine
Kids thrive on predictability and routine and odds are you already are following some kind of family routine. The most important step is to set a few hard and fasts. Could be lunchtime, carline, naptime, bedtime… Whatever things you have in your life that are non-negotiable then work backward and plug in the things that have to happen before those things. The most simple family routines are based around eating and sleeping so start there!
What does your family routine look like? Share it down in the comments or connect with me on Instagram!