I have a confession to make. I really, really enjoy getting a peek at how other people spend their days. Like, really spend their days. Not the Pinterest-worthy version of it. Does that make me sound like a stalker? I hope not. I’m a big fan of the saying “don’t compare your day to day to someone else’s highlight reel.” It just fascinates me and comforts me to see that deep down, we’re all kind of the same. So, since I like reading the day to day ramblings of others, I thought it was only fair that I share mine. If you’ve ever been curious about what a day in the life of a work at home mom looks like, I’m here to deliver. It’s not all sunshine and roses, but it’s here. On the blog. For everyone to see.
A Day in My Life as a Work at Home Mom
Working from home with young kids can be a really daunting idea. I know a lot of people are hesitant, because they don’t know how they’ll fit it all in. I hope seeing my schedule written down like this will help you see that it is possible. My schedule changes every few months as my families needs grow, but the general outline is still there. We make it work for us, and if this is something you really want, you can, too!
5 am: My alarm goes off. The house is blissfully silent and the coffee is brewed. This is my quiet time. I have roughly an hour and a half of blissful silence ahead of me. I used to be a night owl, but there is something so soothing about waking up before everyone else.
5:30 am: I’m finally awake enough to function, so I sit down to do some work. First, I check my stats from the previous day to see how my site did. Then, I take a quick look at my calendar to figure out what I need to do this morning. It’s usually either finishing up a post that’s scheduled to publish, writing my weekly newsletter, or drafting something to work on in the coming days. This is my most focused work time of the day. I don’t check emails, or Facebook, or anything else. I know I won’t get this time back later in the day, so I use it to get the most important tasks done.
6:45 am: Now it’s time to wake up the kids and get my oldest ready for school. This is when my real morning starts. It’s chaotic. It’s full of cooking breakfast, packing lunch, inspecting outfits, finding homework, and navigating the school drop-off line. I don’t eat until we get home from the school, because there’s really just no time and I like a hot breakfast.
8:30 am: My mornings with Charlotte (3) are usually pretty chill. She has some free-play time with the TV on while I get some of my less focused work taken care of. This is my time to check my emails, look at Facebook, research an upcoming post, and anything else that can get interrupted without causing a set-back. There are frequent breaks to play, read, or run to the potty (for her!).
10:30 am: At around 10:30, we’re both ready for a little break. Charlotte gets a snack and we talk, watch a show together, and then she’s ready for her nap.
11-1 pm: Nap time! Usually this is another couple of hours of solid work, although, it’s never a guarantee. I finish up loose ends, return emails, work on printables for the library, or even catch up on social media responses. If I’m in a particulary healthy mindset, I’ll squeeze in a quick home yoga workout during this time, too. (But, let’s face it. I haven’t been in that mindset very often lately).
1-3 pm: Charlotte is awake from her nap and ready to greet the afternoon. I try to have a fun activity ready to do during this time. She’s not in any formal schooling, so I like to work with her for an hour or 2. Some days we enjoy our local library story time, or we might go to the park, have a playdate, toddler yoga, or even the Children’s Museum. Other days, we hang out at home and build with blocks, play with play-doh, or make “neckaces” together to practice our threading.
Related: How to Work at Home with Kids
3:15 pm: Time for school to be out. We pile into the car and get in line to pick up Addison. We’re home around 3:30 and the afternoon hustle starts. We have snack time, talk about our days, and then start on homework. She’s pretty independent, so she’s able to do most of this on her own, but I make myself available to answer questions. While she’s doing that, I’m usually in the kitchen washing all the dishes from breakfast and lunch, and pulling out something for dinner.
The life of a dance mom…
4:30-5 pm: Once 4:30 hits, the evening is pretty much a blur. Our schedule differs every evening, but since Addison is in dance (4 regular practices plus rehearsals for the big production), we have classes most nights a week. If we’re not at dance, we’re at Girl Scouts. She’s old enough now that I can drop her off and come home, so most nights, I’m balancing being a chaffeur with dinner prep. (Tip: If you’re a busy mom and don’t have an Instant Pot yet, you need one. It has revolutionized the way we handle dinner!)
5:30 pm: Daddy’s home! Yay! He tends to help out where he can. It’s really a blessing for him to have a job with a steady schedule that has him home every evening.
6:30 pm: Most nights, we’re home for the evening by 6:30 or 6:45. On Tuesdays, dance starts later and ends later, but I make sure to have dinner ready early those nights so we’re not eating at 9 pm. Once dinner is over, we’re able to enjoy a little time as a family before we have to get the girls ready for bed.
Finally, bed time.
8:30 pm: Whew! Both kids are finally in bed and I can slow down a little. My husband goes to bed shortly after they do during the week. He wakes up at 4 am and is gone for 12 hours a day, so he’s definitely ready for an early bed time.
9 pm: Everyone else is in bed and it’s time for some me time. I try not to have any work to do at this point, although every now and then I’ll have a few loose ends to finish up. On the nights before I publish a post, I usually go in and double check that everything looks good and that it’s ready to be shown to the world. But for the most part, I prefer to relax on my own and wind down. I love knitting, so I use this time usually to work on a project and binge-watch Netflix. I’m currently watching This is Us, Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal, and Reign. I’m nowhere near caught up on the first 3, though! I haven’t watched them since before Spring Break!
10:30 pm: Bed time! This is fairly strict, too. I can easily stay up all night if I’m not careful, and then I’ll definitely regret it the next day. If I’m going to be up and ready to get some work done by 5 am, I need to make sure I practice a little self-care and get to bed at a decent time every night.
I love this chaotic life.
My days are chaotic. They’re full of very carefully planned schedules, early mornings, and forgetting to do yoga for 3 weeks in a row. I drink more coffee and wine than I care to admit, and I obsessively work in every free moment I get. When you’re passionate about something, that’s just what happens! I’m grateful every day for the opportunity to stay home and do something I love while being here for my kids. I know it’s a hectic season in my life, but soon, they won’t need me. I’ll take every minute of them needing me while I can, and continue working in the margins to get things done.