Homemaking, Homeschooling, Life, Life in Ministry, Mommyhood

A Day In the Life…

I am a very “task-oriented” person.  Give me a plan, a to-do list, a routine, and I am happy.  I like schedules.  And structure.  And, I don’t function too well without them.


This summer, perhaps for obvious reasons, has not been one of structure or routine.  And, it has shown.


So, I am sure you can imagine that I am looking forward to implementing our new fall schedule (even if it is still well over 100 degrees outside!), and re-introducing some structure into our days!!


Good intentions will only go so far.  I can talk about my goals and priorities all I want, but if I never have any sort of plan for putting them into action…well, as the saying goes, “Those who fail to plan, plan to fail.”


Yes, I do think that everyone should have some sort of daily schedule.  It can be a simple “to-do list” for each day, a basic daily framework, or a complex color-coded account of each hour!  (Ours generally falls somewhere between the last two.)  I know that many people hear “schedule” and automatically think rigid, unflexible, and restrictive.  And, I suppose, sometimes, it can be.  I have heard the excuses: “Oh, I could never be that organized.” {I’m not.}  “But, I’ve tried to make/follow a schedule, but I just couldn’t keep up with it.” {Yes. You can.}


I have found that there is great freedom and flexibility in utilizing a schedule.  And, even when the day does not go perfectly according to plan, our days are much more enjoyable and productive when we have some sort of routine (even an abbreviated version), rather than when I try to make it up as I go along!  (Spontaneity is not one of my strengths!)


I start by listing my priorities and goals.  From that, I create another list – this one of all the things that I need, and want to get done in a given week.  (Many of our days are similar, but, because we do have some oddities, I tend to create a weekly schedule in addition to our daily routine so that I can see everything at a glance.)


Then, I start filling in time slots.  I schedule in 30-minute increments, which, for now, seems to work for us.  The “non-negotiables” go in first.  For us this would be things like: personal devotions, family Bible time, school time, housework, certain errands, and some (but not all) church activities/commitments.  Honestly, there isn’t a whole lot of time leftover after all of these have been added!  But, once I have these things in place, I can start adding in the “optional” activities.


After the time slots are filled up, we “test drive” the new schedule for a few days.  During this time, I like to consider these questions, and adjust accordingly:

  • What could I eliminate?
  • What is taking too long?
  • Where do I need to allow more time?
  • How could I save time?
  • Am I giving enough time to the most important tasks?


Sometimes I discover that I actually can, and maybe should be getting more done each day than I originally thought.  Other times, I realize that there just aren’t enough hours in the day for everything I would like to do.  And, I have to realize that while some of these things may be very good, not every good thing is a necessity…nor is it necessarily good for our family all the time.


While the schedule on paper might seem daunting, and idealistic (it is!), in reality, it usually works out to be a pretty accurate representation of our natural routines.  And, because of that, most days do go pretty much according to plan.  But, there are times when unexpected interruptions cause us to get off track – for a few hours, or for the day (my husband has something that he needs me to do, the phone rings, friends need help, emergencies arise, kids – or mommies – get sick, etc.).


On those days, I have to remember that “there are two types of interruptions.  One distracts us from what we should be doing; the other delays us, merely postponing our progress.  Distractions jeopardize our chance to reach our goal, while delays merely grant us unexpected opportunities.” (Choices That Lead to Godliness, pg. 102)


I realize that our schedule is likely useless to anyone but us.  But, I’ll go ahead and share it anyway, because, I always enjoy seeing how other homeschooling families structure their days, even when they are completely different from ours.  And, I do find it helpful to see how more experienced homeschoolers make time to “do it all.”  (And, of course, y’all really need to know when we eat breakfast, right?)


Weekly Schedule:

(Because I designed this schedule with my family’s unique needs and season of life in mind, this might require a little explanation…  Some of you will notice that Monday is conspicuously empty. Sunday is technically a “workday” for my husband.  Therefore, he has Mondays off.  So, to accommodate that, we school 4 days a week, and make Monday a “family day.”  Yes, there are still a few things that need to get done, but most of those can, and often do, turn into family activities!


And, because, apparently I am a bit obsessive, I have our chores for each day listed at the bottom.  The first column is a list of chores that need to be done each day – sometimes multiple times a day.  In addition, each day also has it’s own assigned area, which I focus on “deep cleaning.”  This just helps me to avoid all-day cleaning “blitzes.”  Although they may be necessary on occasion, as a general rule, I don’t like them.


There are other jobs or projects that get thrown in on a rotating basis – monthly, quarterly, semi-annually.  But, those are in another chart… Which I’ll post if anyone really wants to see it.)


Daily Schedule:

(This is our daily routine/schedule.  It is pretty much a repeat of what is in the weekly schedule above, but this really only applies to Tuesdays-Fridays.  And, if you notice the “Wednesday evening” box, you’ll see that even those days aren’t identical!)


There will probably still be a few minor tweaks and adjustments in the days ahead, as we get into our school year.  And, Lord-willing, in a few short months, it will change again…drastically.  (But, that is a very welcome, and eagerly anticipated change!!)


Just a final thought:

I created this schedule for our family.  It works for our lifestyle, with our  family, our child…in this particular season of life.


Simply creating, or following a rigid schedule does not make me a “good” wife, mom, homeschooler, or Christian.  I am not “more spiritual” because I utilize a more detailed daily/weekly schedule instead of a simple to-do list.  It does not mean that I have “arrived” as a homemaker, or homeschooling mom.


Stop by on any given day, and you may notice a basket of laundry still waiting to be folded (long after “laundry day” has passed!), dusty furniture, an unmade bed, and dishes in the sink.  (In other words, a normal home!)


But, I have found that having a clear plan for what must be done, and how it needs to be accomplished is a tool that has helped me to more clearly recognize my own struggle with the sins of laziness or selfishness (both inwardly, and outwardly)…and to be more intentional about fighting them.


Over the past several years, I have been repeatedly convicted by the words of Proverbs 14:1, which says, “The wisest of women builds her house, but folly with her own hands tears it down.” 


I do not want to be guilty of tearing down my own home, as a result of my laziness or selfishness.  But, when I look at the disorder and disorganization for what it really is – sin – my habits and behavior have to change, and so does my heart.


Proverbs 31:27 says, “She looks well to the ways of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness.”  And, Ephesians 5:15-16 cautions us, “Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil.”  While these verses are not necessarily specific to housework or homeschooling, for me, they serve as a constant reminder and warning to be careful with my time – regardless of what I am doing.  I want to look well to the ways of my household!  I certainly do not want to be guilty of idleness, of frittering away precious moments, when I could (should) be productive for thekingdom of God instead.  I want to be wise, and make the best possible use of the fleeting moments that I have been given each day.


This method of scheduling and planning is simply a tool.  It helps me to be accountable for my time and energy, ensuring that I am using it wisely, to accomplish what God has called me to do. 


  1. First, I think I need to read Choices that Lead to Godliness.

    Second, I think this is a great schedule. I often end up with cleaning blitzes, where if I would just do a little each day when I come home from work, life would be so much easier. Will definitely be working up something like this. I’m a structured kind of gal myself.

    Thanks for sharing this!

    1. @Melissa – Choices that Lead to Godliness – yes!! You do need to read it!! 🙂

  2. Thank you for sharing not just your well-thought out schedule, but the convictions and heart behind it. Your post was a blessing!

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