I have learned that setting a strict rhythm and attempting to dive in rarely has long term success. So what I try to do is identify a few things that I feel need tweaking, and I make those changes before moving on. This week I have 3 goals:
1) Limit my computer time. Our lives run so much more smoothly when I disconnect from the internet and connect with my family instead. I used to not use a computer while my children were awake, and that worked exceedingly well. They are older now, however, and don't sleep as much! I can't save all of my computer tasks for the hours that they are sleeping, but I can make an active choice not to fritter my time away. Whenever I feel that I need a break I eliminate any elective computer usage that isn't nourishing and inspiring. Do you recall how people say to keep items that are only beautiful or truly useful? This can apply to message boards and blogs as well. When I need to pull back I severely restrict my time at one parenting message board and I stop reading almost all of the blogs that I like to follow.
2) Take a bath at night. This is such a simple thing to do that makes our mornings so much smoother, and yet I put it off and end up with either a) a rushed morning or b) a lazy morning. Now there are days that I can really use a slow, lazy morning, but the reality is that it tends to create a rushed afternoon. The evening bath not only makes for an easier morning, it is also more relaxing for me.
3) Prepare all of our meals at home, excepting date night on Friday (but I'll cook for the boys) and a birthday dinner out on Saturday, and perhaps a Sunday breakfast out at our favorite cafe. Odds are that Papa is going to want one take-out lunch from our favorite local taco stand, so I won't stand in the way of that either. Often he can do that on a day that we have our nature co-op or a play date.
What do I plan to do with my time if I'm not on the computer? Well, I'd love to think of myself sewing, knitting, felting, etc. in the mornings but my main focus will be to observe our natural rhythms more closely in order to determine what steps we should take next. That means that I need to be available and not too deep into my own work. We won't be doing formal lessons again until May, but that doesn't mean we won't be trying a few things in the afternoons.
So, tonight I managed that nice bath. I know what we are eating for breakfast, lunch, and dinner tomorrow. I don't have any errands to run, just a bit of tidying and laundry to do ( as I do every weekday). And now I must go to bed, to sleep, so that the day starts with a refreshed and inspired mama.