Having kids is one of the best things that will ever happen to you. It’s also one of the most time consuming, stressful, and trying things you will ever do. Kids are wonderful, don’t get me wrong, but there are times when I feel like mine are making me crazy one tiny little face at a time and it’s hard to stay sane. Fortunately, I’ve learned to master the crazy and make time to get everything done that needs doing throughout the day. Trust me when I tell you that it makes me feel much better about sitting down with my husband, tivo, and a glass of wine after tucking my sweeties in bed at night.
Wake Up Early
No one likes to wake up early, but I can assure you that once you have kids you won’t see the back of your eyelids after 7 am anyway. For me, I’ve learned that I can enjoy my morning and start it off on the right foot if I get up earlier than they do. In my house, that means setting the alarm for 6 am, getting up, drinking my coffee, and getting my day started. By the time my kids are up I’ve already had my coffee, washed and dried the coffee mugs, made the bed in the master bedroom, and taken a shower. I’m halfway through my day by the time the kids wake up. I’m also more patient, happier, and more relaxed with them throughout the day.
Even if your kids are too old to nap, make sure your house has a designated time for quiet. For me, this means I put my 15-month-old down for her afternoon nap at two and make my four-year-old spend an hour in her room reading books, watching a movie, playing quietly, or working on her handwriting. She enjoys the time to herself, I’m able to get things done, and everyone is happy and ready to play nicely with one another after quiet time is over.
I have a post-bedtime routine. By 8 pm, the lights are out, the songs have been sung, and kisses have been given. My husband and I take a shower, hop on the couch and pour a couple glasses of wine. We talk or we catch up on our tivo, or we just laugh at whatever seems funny at the time. The house is spotless (I do this while my husband handles bath time) and I always go to bed relaxed and happy.