Joanna Anastasia


Schedule for staying home with kids during the quarantaine

Depending where you live you might be either in full on quarantaine mood or like us, at the social distancing point. Either way, our schools and daycares are cancelled, and many of us are either not working at this point at all, or working from home with kids around.

Here where we are, in Montreal, we are still able to go for a walk around the neighborhood with kids, or play in the backyard, and while we make sure to keep our distance ( witch is easy in our residential area) , we definitely do take kids out to play a bit in fresh air.

However, your reality might be a bit different- and so of course we should all follow what our local health care providers direct us to do.

So this schedule for staying home with kids during the quarantaine is an reflection of how I spend days with my three kids- who are now eight, six and twenty months.

And why actually I want us to stick to a schedule? Well, let me explain:

  • My kids are used to a school schedule– and so without it, after two-three days they become whiny and really unorganized !
  • Without clear “screen time schedule” it becomes impossible to get them off the screens-they become the “Screen Gollums” and throw tantrums once I say it’s enough and we need to eat/go to sleep etc.
  • They don’t want to tidy/dress and follow any routine when there’s no real day plan.
  • It helps me to be the focused mom I need to be now– while keeping my time slots for my own breaks.

Now, it may be only my kids who thrive on planned days and who lose it with too many “do-whatever-you-want” days. But with all that is happening now, the last thing I need are whiny, grumpy and fighting kids. So my way to keep a relatively normal beat is by following our schedule.

Last thing to keep in mind- my plan is based on the time I have spend in the past with my kids ant home- as I used to send them to day care three times a week, and I used to keep them home twice a week so they would be bilingual and speak both the official language of our province- French- but also my mother tongue- Polish.

Also, I always kept them home during all the pedagogical days. So I know that this schedule works for us based on hundreds of days spent following this plan.

But maybe your kids need more active time, or maybe they nap more or wake up much earlier- you might need to adjust it for your own family needs. This is only how I do it.

And if you’d like to download it and print at home here is the pdf!

Also, when I say it’s clean up time- it means that it’s both adults as kids who tidy up- so this is the time when I ask kids to clean their toys, help to clean the table, help with laundry folding etc.

And, my backyard is completely closed, so I can send my older kids to play outside alone if I need to work. So for me this schedule works pretty well even on the days when I actually do need to work from home.

Now, as to all that craft time- we like crafting, I wrote a book on crafting with kids, and often through crafting time I will actually sneak in some homeschooling and reading and writing activities. Plus it’s a relatively quiet time so it’s a win-win in my books!

And a last thing to keep in mind- if you don’t follow a schedule it’s also ok. Whatever you do to pass through this difficult time is fine, and there’s no one way fits all. What’s important is that we go through this safe, healthy and sane- and without passing that virus to anyone on our way!

Realistic New Years resolutions

Realistic New Years resolutions

I don’t know how about you, but every year I have this impressing list of New Years resolutions. And usually I ditch them all after a week or so. Last year I was pregnant and still naive. I hoped that being a grown-up that I was then (expecting my second baby here!) I’ll be able to fix my life for good.

On top of my list was eating really healthy, like quinoa twice a week and no frozen pizza. Ever. And I was supposed to feed my new baby exclusively with fresh and organic hand made baby food. Actually I was supposed to start a vegetable garden !

I was also supposed to start exercising. I think my plan was to prepare myself for the summer marathon, with a baby in a stroller ( hahaha!) because you know, if you really want it, you can do it, right?

Also, I was supposed to find time and place, and paint huge paintings. At home, with babies. Yes, take out all my painting gear and finally become the artist I was supposed to be. I was also supposed to read as much as I used to before kids ( haha!).

There where other unrealistic resolutions on my list, but as I said, after a week I ditched my list, so I can’t even remember them now.

And at this point, I realize that I just need to make realistic New Years resolutions. Not even half, but like 10% of what I used to. Here it is :

1. Stop with the mommy guilt.
That wasn’t on my last years resolution list, but it should have been. There is always something that I feel I could do better for my kids, but actually I’m already doing the best I can. So adding guilt on top of it doesn’t make any sense.

2. Eat healthier once a week.
Next to my vegetarian Fridays, I’m adding healthy and new recipe Wednesday. We’ll see how it goes.

3. Plant one tomato plant.
That should be a good start of our vegetable garden.

4. Do yoga with YouTube twice a week.
Or once. At home, in my pyjamas. That seems realistic enough :).

5. Find time for yourself. Once a month.
Let’s say, every fourth Saturday morning for an hour or two. And when you’re a SAHM , than it means no kids around. And maybe, just maybe I’ll be able to paint one or two tiny watercolours this year. That’s sounds realistic, doesn’t it ?

6. Go to sleep earlier.
And read before falling a sleep, like I used to. Maybe one book a season ? Ok, two a year ?

7. Follow my own parenting advice, and read one book a day to my kids.
It may be difficult on Wednesdays when I’m supposed to cook a new healthy meal, so maybe I’ll read one book a day except for Wednesdays..

8. Have more fun with kids, lough and be silly.
It may be the most important one!

9. Say: I’m grateful.
If we verbalize it, we realize it, so instead of saying what I need I’ll try to acknowledge more what I already have.

10. Live in the present.
Instead of photographing my kids playing in the snow, I promise to myself, to be playing with them ( see number 8).

This is it, I think it’s realistic enough :). I’ll revise it in a month or two. I can always ditch healthy Wednesdays ;).

And you, would you relate with any of these ?