Who better to dive into this realm of insanity then Brooke, Union Riveter, owner of successful DIY shop Brooke van Gory Designs, and mom to a toddler and a pre-teen?
I am going to preface this post by saying, there is really NO easy way to be a WAHM. None. If I knew what was eventually going to be involved, I would have chosen a different path. This is the hardest job I have EVER had, and I do it while scrambling to help with alphabet songs, removing toys from the toilet, and working on school papers. It can be done, but you have to have a method to your madness. Juggling both a family, kids, and a full time (and then some) business calls for strategic planning, and organization.
Monday: Library day
Tuesday: Science Day
Wednesday: Numbers and Letters
Thursday: Colors and Shapes
Friday: Fun free Day
Then Saturdays and Sundays, the kids get to have fun with dad, so he usually does one special thing with them, so I can pull two (usually just one) days of extra work. Now, all of these "themes" usually are only for the toddler, but my 11 year old jumps in when he gets home from school. So for science day, for example, we will cook breakfast together, and talk about measurements. We usually do a science "experiment" like baking soda/vinegar volcanoes, water beads, ect. On the letters and numbers day, I usually run errands and do grocery shopping, so we have a "number and letter of the day" and look for those at the different stores we go it.
So how about hour-to-hour you say? Here is a typical day for me. Let's just say it is "Numbers and letters day"
6am: Wake up, and kids get dressed and eat while I check e-mails from the night before, and get packages in the car to drop at the PO. We pick a letter and number of the day.
7am: Drop oldest at school, drop BVG packages at the PO, and come back home.
8am: re-check e-mails, take product pictures, and place flash cards on floor in a pattern, and find the number and letter of the day. We do a LOT of counting, and alphabet reciting, and spelling. All while I am answering e-mails.You need to multi-task here. And sometimes the kids love to "help". That usually turns into something like this!
12:00:Back home for lunch. I usually eat lunch while updating the fanpage, and do fabric searches while eating. Again, you need to multi-task.
2:00 pick up oldest from school. When we get home, we all sit at the kitchen table, oldest goes over his homework, I usually will cut orders, and toddler will color in his coloring books. This is also an awesome time to bust out the "dump buckets". I fill buckets full of small items (pom poms, large wooden beads, foam letters, ect) and let him dump and sort them. This is awesome for counting, sorting, and fine motor skills.
4:30: Both kids help me make dinner, and we incorporate measurements, and following directions. My almost 3 year old can make a mean mac and cheese. ;)
Then usually for the rest of the night, I sew, while the kids watch a movie with dad, or play outside.
Now, When I say "for the rest of the night, I sew" I really mean that. I usually am sewing until 2am or later. 7 days a week. This allows for me to do "fun" things during the day with the kids, and I am able to keep up with the high volume of orders I get.
Some awesome resources for some amazing activities to get the kids into while you are at home with them (if you are working or not) can be found in a variety of places. Play at Home Mom is AMAZING for sensory activities, Color me Katie always has some really cool stuff going on over there, and my newest favorite, A Magical Childhood.
The main goal here to remember, is that you are allowing yourself to stay at home with your kids, while making a living. This means sometimes will mean that your 2 year old is in the bathtub with green jello for an hour while you sew in the hallway, or you take your smartphone with you to do a fabric search from the park. This is what we CHOOSE to do, so we have to have a plan of attack.
Now if you will please excuse me, I have customer e-mails to answer, and paper snowballs to throw! :D
Brooke is the owner and seamstress at Brooke Van Gory Designs. She lives in The Chicago suburbs with her two kiddos, and her rock star husband! You can shop BVG here, and follow her on Google+ here.