Sunday, March 20, 2011

Routines and lists

It seems like the busier I get, the more I need my routines and lists to keep a balance and to help keep all the balls in the air.  Feel free to skip this post unless you're like me and love reading about how people schedule their time :)

I set up a loose schedule before we went to the US, and so far its been working fairly well since we got back.  Its helped me balance spending constructive learning time with Billy, work, activities, exercise and keep the household functioning.

Mornings I usually get up around 7am, and between then and 10am, I exercise (on the Wii Fit), check emails & whatever blogs I have time for, have breakfast, shower and do a quick tidy of the house - load & unload dishwasher and washing machine, put things away etc. 

Monday, Wednesday & Thursday mornings after 10, Billy & I watch the school shows together (our ABC TV shows educational shows between 10 and 11am) - or at least the ones that interest him.  Then we have some learning time until lunch - Monday is Maths, Wednesday is cooking, Thursday Science.  Or that's how it sometimes works out :)

After lunch on those days, I spend 3hrs on paid work.  Billy plays lego, uses the Wii or computer or somehow amuses himself.  After that, its time to prepare dinner, get ready and go to 'after school' activities.  We're out of the house 4 nights with classes / activities - and yes, he loves them all and doesn't want to drop any of them.

Tuesdays we're out most of the day - archery, time at the park with other homeschoolers and then we do any errands, grocery shopping etc.

Fridays I try to get to my exercise class in the morning - it doesn't always happen but at least its got a chance being scheduled in!  Afternoons we have night classes.

I try to keep Sundays free to potter around the house and prepare for the next week.  That will change in a few weeks once Billy starts having AFL games, so I might have to swap to Saturdays.

The other tool that's helping me (mostly) stay on top of things is the calendar and task functionality of Outlook.  I love it now that I've worked out the best way to use it for me.

I have 3 calendars that I can overlay:
  1. my calendar that shows activities & meetings etc - basically when I'm out of the house.  That's shared out so Pete can see it as well.
  2. Pete's shared calendar so I can see when he's out of the house (yes, we're nerds).
  3. My 'task' calendar where I can schedule in stuff I need to work on at home - either paid, school work or household.
Added to that are the tasks.  I love the task feature on Outlook!!!  I've set up categories with different colours - eg light red is work, dark red is Urgent - must be done on this date!, purple is personal, green is one of my volunteer jobs etc.  As emails come in that have to be dealt with, I can allocate them a category and a due date so they'll appear below the calendar on that day.  Or I can add a task separately if it isn't associated with an email.

Tasks can be set up to be recurring so for eg it reminds me when I have to invoice clients or clean out the water filter.

I have to admit I still have a 'big picture' paper list of overall jobs that have to be done, but the task list helps me keep track of all the little bits and pieces.

Oh and the other thing that helps me keep me sane atm - my phone.  I love the fact that I can now get internet access on my phone - I've saved time being able to catch up on blogs and reading email lists while I'm waiting for Billy at his activities!  So I might not always be commenting, but I am reading.


Libby said...

I don't know how you do it all Kerrie. Well, I guess having a schedule is how you get it done :-).

mum+dad=akira and linkin and elijah said...

Oh I LOVE your schedules and lists. If I was more computer literate I would be right there with you.

And I'm the same, reading blogs on my phone but not commenting much.

Korina said...

Love it - I love lists and schedules and instructions so you have created my perfect life! lol If only my children followed schedules life would be perfect! :-)

Risa said...

I totally relate to this--I've got similar schedules and lists we follow. Like you said, loose schedule, though--hard, filled-in-every-minute schedules make us all nuts! BTW, my morns are like yours except I have added the boys into the morning chores mix, so they're learning how to maintain a house. We certainly don't need any more males out there who have no idea how to do laundry or run the vacuum (hoover)! :-)

Oh, and Jim and I coordinate off google calendar--we need to, or we'd never see each other. Too many balls in the air and people going off in all different directions.